FHS Lifestyle Magazine & Anthia https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/rss/author/anthia FHS Lifestyle Magazine & Anthia en Copyright © 2023 Finest Herbal Shop LLC all rights reserved. What Happens to Your Body When You Lose 10 Pounds? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-happens-to-your-body-when-you-lose-10-pounds https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-happens-to-your-body-when-you-lose-10-pounds Lose 10 pounds

When it comes to losing weight, there’s a certain exhilaration that hits you when you get on the scale and see that your first 10 pounds are gone.

For people trying to lose 50 pounds or more, that first 10 pounds is a significant milestone. You’ll probably feel excited, flushed, and — hopefully — proud of your success. It’s confirmation that you can — and will — reach your goals.

And while the mental and emotional benefits are worth paying attention to, the physical benefits of losing 10 pounds are also quite impressive.

We broke down seven things that happen to your body immediately after losing 10 pounds — changes to keep top of mind along with the well-earned exhilaration to keep you motivated and going strong.
 

Less Joint Pain


Excess pounds translate to excess strain on your body’s joints. That’s especially evident in weight-bearing joints like your hips, knees, and ankles. Just one pound of extra weight adds 4 pounds of pressure to your knees. That means that when you lose those first 10 pounds, you’re reducing 40 pounds of joint pressure on your knees! You’ll experience similar effects on your other joints, which may reduce or eliminate any joint pain you’ve been experiencing.
 

Lower Blood Pressure


Extra weight directly correlates with increased blood pressure. A National Center for Biotechnology Information study points out that losing weight “decreases blood pressure substantially both in hypertensive and normotensive subjects.” This is one of many that have demonstrated a positive relationship between weight loss and lowered blood pressure.

Researchers have also estimated that every pound lost equates to a one-point decrease in blood pressure. That means your first 10 pounds off likely resulted in a 10-point reduction, helping to improve all sorts of high blood pressure-related risks, such as those from heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and more.
 

Reduced Risk of Serious Health Complications


Countless studies have found a link between excessive weight and a lengthy list of health-related issues — everything from cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and stroke to sleep apnea, gout, and even mental health issues. The more weight you lose, the more your chances of developing one of these debilitating diseases decrease.
 

Better Sleep


A healthier body weight means more balanced cortisol levels, which, in turn, means less stress and food cravings. That, in turn, can help give you a better night’s rest. Plus, higher weight is associated with sleep apnea, a potentially dangerous condition where your airways become blocked while snoozing. Healthier weights tend to decrease the risk of developing it.
 

Lower Blood Sugar


People who struggle with their weight often struggle with elevated blood sugar levels, too. That can directly result in developing pre- and type 2 diabetes, a condition that can lead to high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, and blindness. If you’re at risk, losing just 5-10% of your body weight lowers your risk of developing diabetes by up to 58%! And that starts with the first 10 pounds, which will also likely reduce your blood sugar levels. Win-win.
 

Less Belly Fat


Dropping 10 pounds usually means you shed belly fat, which may mean you drop an entire clothing size! Reward your progress by heading to the store to buy some new clothes, if you can. At the very least, your pants are going to feel a lot loser, and you’ll probably be able to tighten your belt.
 

Healthier Cholesterol Levels


Experts recommend a cholesterol level of below 150mg/dl. Thankfully, if you use a healthy, balanced diet to lose weight, your cholesterol levels may have dropped, too. That, in turn, reduces your risk of developing cardiovascular diseases. One thing to note: If you used a keto or low-carb diet, you may not have lowered cholesterol when you lost those 10 pounds.


 

As you continue on your weight loss journey, pay close attention to how your body feels every step of the way. You’ll probably find you have more energy, stamina, and drive as a direct result of all these physiological improvements. Celebrate each milestone and enjoy the changes you make to improve your life!

 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:17:24 -0500 Anthia
Tailoring Your Fitness to Your Age https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/tailoring-your-fitness-to-your-age https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/tailoring-your-fitness-to-your-age Tailor fitness to age

You know that exercise is essential, with countless studies showcasing how it can improve everything from heart health to immunity, skin vitality, and more. But if you’re getting on in life, there’s a good chance you’ve noticed any movement becomes a bit more difficult the older you get — whether you’ve ever been an avid exerciser or not.

For example, running a mile or two in your early 20s may seem challenging but not too terribly difficult. That’s quite a different story when you’re in your mid-to late-40s or beyond — when running a mile may take a good deal of training.

The reality is that while you should always strive to make exercise an integral part of your life, it’s going to look different at various stages in your life — and that’s more than okay.

We outlined a plan to create a fitness routine tailored to your age, plus some expert-recommended workouts, to make it as easy as possible to incorporate exercise into your daily routine.
 

20s


Ah, your early 20s — you’ve got the youth, the energy, the ability to stay up all night and go to work the next day with no problem — it truly is a glorious time in terms of physical health.

Being young means you can go longer and harder when it comes to working out. With that in mind, aim for at least three 60-minute weekly cardio routines and two or three weight-lifting routines. Be sure to challenge your body by increasing your speed and resistance each time.
 

Recommended Workouts:

 

  • Running, cycling, Cross Fit, yoga
  • Weight training

 

30s


The later you get into your 30s, the more likely pulling an all-nighter or taking on a hard workout with no recovery time will be a no-go.

That’s why you may want to swap out some of the hardcore cardio days with resistance training, which can help combat things like osteoporosis and arthritis. If you’ve been going hard with steady-state cardio most days (i.e. running), it may be time to try out high-intensity interval training or lower-impact options a couple of times a week. This also may be a good time to hire a personal trainer to help you create a routine that works well for your personal life.
 

Recommended Workouts:

 

  • Circuit training, spinning
  • Presses, pulls, squats

 

40s


If you haven’t noticed changes in your body yet, you’ll likely start to as you progress throughout your 40s. Your metabolism naturally slows, and muscle mass starts to decrease, particularly if you haven’t done a lot of weight lifting previously. You should plan to do lower-impact cardio for 45 minutes or so at least five days a week, as well as focusing even more on resistance training and adding intensity to weight-lifting. You’ll also want to pay close attention to each area of your body to adapt your routine based on what needs more work.
 

Recommended Workouts:

 

  • Stair climbs, hiking, light jogging
  • Squats, pilates, weight-lifting

 

50s


If you’re in your 50s and haven’t yet, now is a more important time to incorporate fitness targeting bone and muscle, especially in your core, back, and shoulders. Strength training can increase bone density and help slow muscle depletion that comes with aging. You may also want to shorten your cardio sessions (and maybe do them more often) to give your body ample recovery time between each workout. Warming up, cooling down, and stretching become even more critical now, too.
 

Recommended Workouts:

 

  • Low-impact sports, walking, stationary bicycles
  • Curls and presses, planks, lunges

 

60s


All those years spent leaning over a keyboard or staring at a computer screen may start to show up in your 60s. Back pain and poor posture (the classic “hunch, for example) may be a problem. Thankfully, you can combat these two by doing exercises that work on your back and shoulder, as well as continuing with short bursts of cardio all week long. You may have to cut way back on aerobic exercise that puts extreme pressure on your joints (like running), but you can replace it with slower cardio that doesn’t stress your joints and muscles as much. Ultimately, be okay with doing lower-intensity workouts fewer times a week.
 

Recommended Workouts:

 

  • Walking, water aerobics/water jogging, low-impact sports
  • Pilates, low-weight/high-rep strength training
     
70s+


You deserve a serious round of applause if you’re still exercising regularly in your 70s. Energy may be harder to come by these days, but you’ll likely find that working out at least a few days a week improves your vitality drastically. Focus on exercise that improves mobility and strength to help you maintain your independence. Be sure to allow for a couple of days of recovery time between workouts.
 

Recommended Workouts:

 

  • Walking, water aerobics/water jogging
  • Low-weight/high-rep strength training

 

The Bottom Line


Ultimately, the best workout is one you keep going with, whether you’re 23 or 60. That means incorporating it into your schedule, prioritizing it like you would an important meeting or doctor appointment, and staying consistent.
 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:17:24 -0500 Anthia
Crockpot Lasagna Soup https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/crockpot-lasagna-soup https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/crockpot-lasagna-soup This easy crockpot lasagna soup is a lifesaver for those of you who love lasagna but don't want to go through the hassle of making it. It's got all of the meaty, tomato-y, cheesy goodness of a classic lasagna but in deliciously slurpable soup form.

The post Crockpot Lasagna Soup appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:47 -0500 Anthia
Focaccia https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/focaccia https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/focaccia The post Focaccia appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:46 -0500 Anthia
Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/instant-pot-butternut-squash-soup https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/instant-pot-butternut-squash-soup This Instant Pot butternut squash soup is rich, smooth, and loaded with flavor. From the savory sweetness of the butternut squash to the creamy coconut milk to the soul-warming flavors of curry, cumin, and turmeric, you won't be able to get enough of this bowl of comfort.

The post Instant Pot Butternut Squash Soup appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:45 -0500 Anthia
Organifi Product Review https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/organifi-product-review https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/organifi-product-review Sharing the details on Organifi and my favorite products! Because I love the brand so much, I partner with them as an affiliate. It gives you a discount and gives me a small kickback if you decide to place an order! You can use FITNESSISTA here for 20% off. 

Hi friends! How are you? I hope you’re enjoying the morning! One of my favorite morning rituals is to drink a glass of Organifi Green juice or AG1 and then head into the day.

For today’s blog post, I wanted to share more about Organifi and the products I love from their line. I’ve been using Organifi for years, but I know that it can be a little intimidating to sort through everything and decide which one to try first. I found out about Organifi from Shawn at the Model Health Show (my #1 all-time favorite podcast) and was 100% influenced. If he was using it, I wanted to try it. I used his discount code and never looked back! I started with the classic green juice and have evolved into red juice, Harmony, protein powders, and their immune support. I’ve also tried a couple of their supplements.

Organifi is dedicated to using organic and natural ingredients sourced from around the world, and prioritize transparency, ensuring that each product is free from artificial additives, fillers, and GMOs. Additionally, Organifi takes sustainability seriously, using eco-friendly packaging and supporting fair-trade practices. Beyond their exceptional products, Organifi fosters a vibrant community, offering education, inspiration, and support on their website and social media platforms.

Organifi Product Review

Since I’ve tried their products, I’ve noticed a few different benefits: from less eventful cycles, to higher energy, and immune support while traveling. I’m going to break down all of my favorites in this blog post, including prices and how they compare to some similar brands on the market.

Organifi Green Juice

Organifi Green Juice is a powerhouse blend of organic superfoods like coconut water, wheatgrass, spirulina, and chlorella. With its refreshing taste and convenient single-serve packets, it’s a fantastic option for those seeking an on-the-go boost of greens.

I alternate between taking Organifi Green Juice powder and AG, which has a comprehensive blend of over 75 vitamins, minerals, and whole food-sourced ingredients. It also includes probiotics, enzymes, and antioxidants to reduce cortisol levels and support overall health and wellness.

While both products offer impressive nutrient profiles, Organifi Green Juice stands out for its affordability and simplicity, while AG1 provides a more comprehensive and all-encompassing approach to nutrition. Ultimately, it comes down to personal preference and individual needs. You can read my blog post comparing Organifi Green Juice and AG1 here. I will say, as do many Organifi Green Juice reviews,  that Organifi tastes way better; like a slight lemon-y green juice, while AG1 tastes more vitamin-y.

Organifi Red Juice

Organifi Red is crafted with a blend of premium ingredients such as beets, acai berries, cordyceps mushrooms, and rhodiola. These carefully selected ingredients work synergistically and can provide a range of benefits. The beets deliver natural nitrates, supporting healthy blood flow and cardiovascular function. Acai berries bring their antioxidant power to the mix, protecting against oxidative stress and supporting overall well-being. Cordyceps mushrooms are known for their adaptogenic properties, which can help to reduce stress and enhance energy levels. Rhodiola, another adaptogen, supports mental clarity and focus. Together, these ingredients create a harmonious blend that can help support energy levels, promote detoxification, and boost overall vitality.

It tastes like a fruity punch and is super refreshing.

How to drink: I like it blended with room-temperature filtered water.

Organifi Harmony

Organifi Harmony is made with carefully selected ingredients like maca, chasteberry, and shatavari, and offers a natural approach to nurturing hormonal health. Maca can help the body adapt to stress and promote a sense of balance. Chasteberry, also known as vitex, has been traditionally used to support menstrual health and alleviate PMS symptoms. Shatavari, an herb commonly used in Ayurveda, can aid in hormone regulation and supports reproductive health.

I love the chocolate flavor of the Harmony and recommend this one the most to friends!

How to drink: I like it in warm almond milk (like a hot cocoa) or a scoop in my smoothie or oatmeal. It gives an awesome chocolate flavor.

Organifi Immunity

Organifi Immunity is a powerful blend of immune-boosting ingredients to help support your body’s natural defense system. Packed with key nutrients such as elderberry, turmeric, and ginger, this potent formula offers a holistic approach to fortifying your immune health. Elderberry is known for its antiviral properties and can help reduce the duration and severity of cold and flu symptoms. Turmeric is a potent anti-inflammatory spice that can support immune function and overall wellness. Ginger, with its immune-enhancing and antioxidant properties, aids in digestion and can provide relief from respiratory issues.

It has a lovely orange-y flavor and tastes delicious.

How to drink: I mix it with filtered water and talk it like a shot.

Is Organifi Good For You?

I would say that if you’re looking for an extra nutrient boost and some extra adaptogens in your life, it can be an amazing choice. As always, talk to your health care provider before adding any new supplements into the rotation.

FAQs About Organifi:

Does Organifi green juice have caffeine?

Organifi green juice includes matcha green tea and has trace amounts of caffeine. It doesn’t make me feel wired when I drink it. It has around 3-4mg of caffeine, while a cup of decaf coffee has around 7mg.

Does Organifi green juice help you lose weight?

I don’t see it as a weight loss tool, as that will be dependent on SO many different factors. However, I think a glass of green juice in the morning can encourage you to make healthier choices throughout the day, as it can help set the tone for the entire day.

Does Organifi need to be refrigerated?

You can keep the products in the refrigerator, but it’s not required for freshness. You may find that the products taste better and/or feel more refreshing when they’re consumed cold.

Is Organifi a meal replacement?

Their protein powder includes vitamins, minerals, and enzymes, but I don’t think it’s enough to sustain for an entire meal. For a meal-sized smoothie (with some fruit, veggies, and healthy fas), it would absolutely work (and tastes delicious).

Is Organifi FDA approved?

From their website: “All organifi blends are produced in a GMP certified facility — which means that the facility is an FDA approved facility — and each batch must pass microbial testing before any product is allowed to be released into the marketplace.”

Is Organifi safe for pregnancy?

I would definitely check with your doctor or midwife to be sure, as you should before trying any new products or supplements during pregnancy.

So, tell me, friends: have you tried Organifi? If so, what’s your favorite product? if place an order, you can stack FITNESSISTA for an extra discount on top of current promos.

I’ll pick a lucky commenter from today’s post to receive a product of their choice ????

xoxo

Gina

The post Organifi Product Review appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:35 -0500 Anthia
Friday Faves 2.16 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/friday-faves-216 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/friday-faves-216 Hi friends! How are ya?? I hope you’ve had an amazing week. We’re heading out for something fun – I’ll share the adventures over on IG stories! What do you have going on this weekend?

I feel like I need to get back into the “in the moment” style of blogging because I have a lot of pics to post today. It’s been a very fun week ????

Last weekend, we went to an event here in town called Beefsteak. It was a benefit and auction to support military veterans, and we had the BEST time. We went with a group of friends, ate amazing food, won some prizes, and spent hours on the dance floor. I quickly remembered how much I enjoy dancing to 90s rap, Selena, and early 2000s music with a margarita in my hand. It’s been wayyyy too long.

Some pics from the festivities:

(My dress was a Dillard’s find! I ordered three from Rent the Runway and nothing worked. I was pumped that I found something cute at the last minute)

This week was also Valentine’s Day and Ash Wednesday.

It was wild that such a somber day coincided with a festive candy-filled holiday, but we enjoyed the best of both worlds. The girls woke up to Valentine’s baskets,

we went to mass together,

and had an epic dinner at Fleming’s.

Always the seafood tower:

plus the potatoes (I want to curl up and live inside), asparagus, salad, gin cocktails, filet mignon and chocolate lava cake. We started celebrating Valentine’s Day with the girls when Liv was a baby. We couldn’t find a babysitter, took her to dinner with us, and had the best time. It’s become a bit of a tradition, and I look forward to our fancy family Valentine’s dinner.


Friday Faves 2.16

Read, watch, listen:

I CAN’T WAIT for this.

Listening to this on the way to barre today. 

How to grow in self love.

Fashion + beauty:

Amazon finds! I ordered two dresses from Amazon recently:

this Nap dress dupe 

and this LBD.

The Nap dress dupe is thinner fabric than the original, but not see-through, and a fraction of the cost.

The LBD is flattering and comes in quite a few different colors! The quality is excellent and I want the brown and cream one now, too.

Fitness, health, + good eats:

HigherDOSE President’s Day Sale! If you’ve been wanting a red light face mask, sauna blanket, or PEMF Go Mat, this is the time. I use these products every.single.week and they make a huge difference in my personal wellness routine. You can use FITNESSISTA20 through the weekend for 20% off sitewide (excluding bundles and full-sized saunas). Check it out here!

Instant pot chicken tortilla soup

Grain-free dairy-free chocolate lava cakes

Exercise boosts motor learning.

I hope you have a lovely weekend! Thank you so much for stopping by the blog today and I’ll see ya soon!
xoxo

Gina

The post Friday Faves 2.16 appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:33 -0500 Anthia
Why I Tried Nutrisense (and What I Learned) https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/why-i-tried-nutrisense-and-what-i-learned https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/why-i-tried-nutrisense-and-what-i-learned For the past week and a half, I tried out Nutrisense and wore a CGM to monitor my glucoses levels. Sharing a recap of my experience here! I was gifted the Nutrisense membership for 1 month to try, and this post is not sponsored. Use my link and code GINA50 for $50 off .

Hi friends! How’s the week going? Thank you so much for all of the beautiful birthday wishes for P! We had a great day celebrating and capped it off with the requested hibachi dinner. I hope you’re having a wonderful week, too!

For today’s post, I wanted to share a recap of my experience using Nutrisense. I’ve been curious about this company for a while, especially after doing my Inside Tracker bloodwork earlier this year. My fasting glucose levels were a little on the high side, and I was concerned that it may be a deeper problem. I waited it out, and after my good friend Mia posted about using Nutrisense to monitor her blood glucose levels, I knew I wanted to give it a try. Then I reached out to the company and was excited when they offered me a month to try it out and see how I liked it.

I received the product and was SO nervous to put it on (hi, I’m a giant needle phobe) and waited and waited until Mia said that she’d walk me through the whole process and attach hers at the same time. You can watch the video here and witness the moment I almost started having a panic attack on live video. (She was like, “See, you can see the needle right there” and I turned white.) I really wanted the data, so I took a deep breath and went for it. I’m really glad I did, because having the ability to see my body’s response to different foods was extremely valuable.

(I’m smiling but panicking. Turns out, attaching the CGM was NOTHING like I imagined it would be. It was painless and super easy.)

Why I Tried Nutrisense (and What I Learned)

What is Nutrisense and how does it work?

Nutrisense is a program that offers expert guidance in alignment with a Continuous Glucose Monitor (CGM). The CGM tracks your blood glucose at 15-minute intervals throughout the day, so you’re able to see how sleep patterns, diet, exercise, stress, and nutrition impact your blood glucose levels. Continuously elevated glucose can cause inflammation and damage in the body, so it can be helpful to see how your body responds to the factors above, particularly how it recovers. For example, if your blood glucose spikes after a carb-heavy or sugary meal, does it stay elevated? Or does it recover within 2 hours? How high is the spike??  

When you sign up for Nutrisense, your Continuous Glucose Monitors are delivered to you, along with details on how to attach it. (You can watch me do this here!) You’ll attach the CGM and protective patch on the back of your arm, download the app, and scan your CGM to start tracking the data. It usually takes about an hour after adding it for your phone to recognize it and start scanning. (You just click “scan” on the app and hold your phone up the the CGM where the camera is located.)

Within the Nutrisense app, you’re initially paired with a Registered Dietitian who can help you interpret the data in real-time, make recommendations, provide feedback, and run experiments.

How much does Nutrisense cost?

The service starts at $350 per month, and the cost goes down depending on the time commitment. (With a 12-month commitment, it’s $199/month.)

The CGM that Nutrisense uses is the Freestyle Libre and they expire in 14 days. (You app will let you know when your sensor is expiring.) You do not need a prescription to use Nutrisense.

What type of data do you receive and how do you interpret the data?

Your blood glucose is charted 24/7 and you can see how high gets and how long it takes to stabilize. It can be interesting to see spikes throughout the night and how different patterns and lifestyle changes affect your blood glucose.

I got this from my Registered Dietitian, who messaged me frequently and was always available to answer questions: (this was after a smoothie that caused a higher spike than I expected)

To help provide more context, I want to walk you through what I’m looking at as I assess a glucose response so let’s check out your breakfast on 10/11 as an example (chocolate, smoothie, almond milk):

Peak (^ on your meal card). First, we want to look at the peak glucose value and aim to avoid repeated exposure above 140. Your peak glucose value was 114, which is well below the threshold and a normal peak!

Exposure (squiggly line on meal card). Second, we also want a small area under the curve (AUC). So a quick glucose spike to 150 but a return to pre-meal glucose values within 1 hour of eating is a small area under the curve, but a slow glucose climb to 130 and staying elevated for 4 hours would be a much larger area under the curve. We want glucose to return to pre-meal values within 2-3 hours after eating. You can help monitor your AUC by assessing your meal card AUC values and by checking your standard deviation in the analytics. Your AUC was 42.9- I would say optimally I’m looking for <30, but <50 is still okay!

Stability (triangle on meal card). We also want to avoid major “shifts” in glucose. So it may be possible that after a meal you only went to 130 (which is good!), but your pre-meal value was 70, so that would be quite a big swing. You can monitor this by assessing your delta values, as we always want to strive for a delta <30. Your delta was 33, which is great!!

Recovery (2h score on meal card). Finally, we want glucose to return to pre-meal values within 2-3 hours after eating. Your response was 23, which tells me you were 23 points from baseline value at the 2 hour mark.

What I learned using a Nutrisense CGM

Some buffers to prevent a blood sugar spike

Especially when you’re having higher-carb meals: take a walk before or after your meal, have some type of protein first, moderate carb intake, and meal timing. Since your insulin sensitivity is better during the day and wanes towards the evening, you may tolerate foods better if consumed in the afternoon instead of late at night. This is absolutely the case for wine with me – if I have it late-afternoon, it doesn’t affect my sleep.

Whole foods-based carbs do not have a significant effect on me

Especially when they’re paired with protein. (Berries, apples, bananas, and oranges didn’t cause a spike, even when I ate them by themselves.) Oatmeal, paleo pancakes, Siete tortillas, and starchy veggies were the same. Refined carbs, on the other hand, did cause a spike. We went to a party at a friend’s house and I had more sweets and refined carbs than usual (plus champagne) and my blood glucose was elevated all night and the following day. It was interesting to see how one meal can affect your insulin sensitivity for the following day.

Stress levels have a huge impact on insulin response

I noticed that I peaked during days I felt more stressed.

Workouts will spike your levels

But they will immediately drop and lead to an improved insulin response throughout the day.

Wine spikes my blood sugar, tequila does not.

An important lesson haha.) Both recover fine if I have one glass, but two glasses led to increased levels the following day. This experiment verified the fact that I don’t do well with a ton of alcohol, and it’s been a good reminder to minimize it. (Right now I’m at one or maybe two drinks per week.

Also, my body loves tacos, beans, and rice.

I had my usual Wednesday night Mexican meal with the family and no huge spike.

Peace of mind

A large percentage of our population is not metabolically flexible, which can impact how we handle stress, and injuries, and recover from illness. I was concerned that my last blood test showed higher fasting glucose, but this was able to verify that it isn’t the case for me normally (my blood test was an outlier) and a good indicator of my metabolic health and how habits affect my blood sugar levels. That was my main concern going into this and it was a welcomed sigh of relief.

Pros:

 The RD support was invaluable.

I loved having the ability to ask questions, and she did an excellent job of teaching me how to see my patterns, assess my response, and ideal target ranges. This became one of my favorite health devices!

The app is very well-designed, easy to navigate and use.

I liked using the app and found that even as a newbie, I figured it out fairly easily.

Cons:

I ate a little strangely when I first put it on.

It’s like I was afraid to eat anything that would spike it, and eventually, I had to tell myself to get over it and eat normally after a couple of days. The data wasn’t going to help me if I only ate protein and vegetables for 14 days. So I had margaritas, tacos, desserts, all of the things I normally eat, so it would provide a true picture. If you have a history of disordered eating, I wouldn’t recommend using this.

It was uncomfortable and I ended up taking it off a few days early.

(I think it was more the adhesive than the actual sensor.) I recognize the privilege I have to be able to say, “I don’t want to wear this anymore” and remove it, when I have friends out there with diabetes who depend upon a CGM for survival. Just wanted to put a little note here that I see you. <3 I didn’t sleep well at all for the 11 days I had it attached – it was super light sleep because I was subconsciously worried about rolling onto it and sleeping on it during the night. Also, I was a little shocked by the catheter when the Pilot removed it for me – it’s a teeny plastic tube, but it was longer than I expected lol.

All in all, it was a really valuable experience and I enjoyed having access to all of the data + learning from my Nutrisense RD.

How To Remove Nutrisense

Removing Nutrisense from your life is as easy as pie. Here’s how you can do it: Simply disengage from the Nutrisense CGM programs – oops, something went wrong while submitting the form? No worries. Just unsubscribe from their newsletter, and you’ll be good as gold. But before you go, remember that Nutrisense allows you to engage with your blood glucose levels and gives you the ability to track your health goals.

It’s an excellent way to start your journey toward a healthier and happier lifestyle. And speaking of lifestyle, Nutrisense can give you guidance on how to adjust your diet and lifestyle based on your blood glucose levels. However, keep in mind that Nutrisense is not a quiz that provides a diagnosis, cure, mitigation, prevention, or treatment of any disease or medical condition of the body. Nonetheless, you can still start with your blood glucose levels with Nutrisense, lose weight, and achieve your health goals. Keep it up, mate!

Am I going to attach the second sensor?

I think I’ll definitely do it eventually but am taking a break for a couple of weeks. I want to run some more experiments with meal timing and eating certain foods by themselves + in conjunction with other foods.

Any questions about Nutrisense? Is this something you think you would do? If you decide to try it out, you can use my link for and code GINA50 for $50 off. Or you can learn more by signing up to our newsletter for any future Nutrisense content! ????

xo

Gina

The post Why I Tried Nutrisense (and What I Learned) appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:33 -0500 Anthia
Home Gym Ideas on a Budget https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/home-gym-ideas-on-a-budget https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/home-gym-ideas-on-a-budget Sharing 7 home gym ideas on a budget and how to incorporate them into various spaces. 

Hi friends! How are you? I hope you’re enjoying the morning so far! I’m here working on blog content for the day – I try to batch my content days- and looking forward to an afternoon hike. For today’s post, I wanted to chat a bit about home gym ideas and some of my favorite staples.

In today’s fast-paced world, making time for the gym isn’t always easy. I feel like some days, the entire day will blu by, and I find myself collapsing into bed, wondering what the heck just happened. Setting up a home gym can be a game-changer, offering convenience and flexibility. If you’re busy and/or have kids, removing the transportation time and possible need for childcare can make a HUGE difference. It’s not about breaking the bank; it’s about finding the right equipment and setup that works for you and your space.

Here are some budget-friendly home gym ideas to get you started.

Note: This post contains affiliate links, meaning I may earn a commission if you purchase through my links at no additional cost to you. These commissions help me keep the lights on for this little blog, so thank you for supporting me.

7 Home Gym Ideas on a Budget

Basement Home Gym Ideas

Flooring: Begin by ensuring the floor is protected. Use inexpensive interlocking foam tiles or rolled rubber flooring for a comfortable and durable surface.

Adjustable Dumbbells: They offer a range of weights in a single set, saving space and money.

Resistance Bands: Versatile and affordable, they’re perfect for a variety of workouts.

Stability Ball: Engages core muscles and can be used for various strength and flexibility exercises.

Yoga Mat: Essential for floor exercises and stretching.

Garage Home Gym Ideas

Plyometric Box: Great for box jumps, step-ups, and other lower-body exercises.

Pull-Up Bar: Easy to install and versatile for upper body workouts.

Punching Bag: Ideal for stress relief and cardiovascular workouts.Kettlebells: Compact and versatile, great for full-body workouts.

Foam Roller: Helps with post-workout recovery and flexibility.

Outdoor Home Gym Ideas

Jump Rope: A simple and effective cardio tool.

TRX Suspension Trainer: Can be attached to trees or a stable structure for bodyweight exercises.

Battle Ropes: Excellent for cardiovascular conditioning and strength training.

Slam Ball: Versatile and durable, perfect for full-body workouts.

Parallette Bars: Compact and useful for upper body and core exercises.

Attic Home Gym Ideas

Compact Treadmill or Exercise Bike: If space allows, consider investing in a space-saving cardio machine. Here is the walking pad I use every day!

Adjustable Bench: Versatile for various exercises, including bench press, step-ups, and core work.

Dumbbell Set: An essential for strength training. I’d recommend at least one set of light, moderate, and heavy weights.

Bluetooth Speaker: Sets the mood and helps you stay motivated.

Office Home Gym Ideas

Adjustable Desk: Standing desks can double as a space-saving workout station. I LOVE this one.

Resistance Bands with Handles: Versatile and compact, ideal for quick exercises between tasks.

Balance Ball Chair: Helps with posture and provides an element of stability training.

Walking pad: a great way to get in extra movement during long calls, emails, or meetings. I use mine every single day.

Check out my work-from-home office setup here. 

Living Room Corner Home Gym Ideas

Foldable Yoga Mat: Easy to store and essential for any living room workout.

Dumbbell Set with Storage Rack: Organizes weights and keeps them within reach.

Medicine Ball: Versatile and excellent for core workouts.

Fitness DVD or Streaming Service: Provides guided workouts without the need for much equipment. Try Sculpt Society or Pvolve!

Guest Bedroom Home Gym Ideas

Foldable Weight Bench: Allows for various exercises and folds up for easy storage.

Resistance Loop Bands: Affordable and versatile, they add resistance to bodyweight exercises.

Compact Stationary Bike: Ideal for small spaces and offers cardiovascular benefits.

Adjustable Dumbbell Set: Compact and versatile, allowing for different weight options.

Portable Pull-Up Bar: Fits into most door frames and offers a variety of upper body exercises.

Creating a budget-friendly home gym doesn’t have to be complicated. Start with the essentials, consider your available space, and gradually add more equipment as your fitness needs evolve. Remember, it’s about consistency and finding what works best for you!

Do you have a home gym setup? What are some of your favorite tools to use, or favorite equipment?

xoxo

Gina

More:

How to set up a home gym

My Aviron rower review

The post Home Gym Ideas on a Budget appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:30 -0500 Anthia
What is Spenga (and would I recommend trying it)? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-spenga-and-would-i-recommend-trying-it https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-spenga-and-would-i-recommend-trying-it Sharing a review of Spenga and if I’d recommend adding it into your fitness routine. 

Hiii! How are ya? I hope you’re having a lovely day so far. I’m headed to a barre class and looking forward to family dinner later tonight.

For today’s post, I wanted to talk a bit about Spenga! I heard about it years ago, and it was always in the back of my mind as a format I wanted to try. Recently a friend moved back to Tucson – we went to middle school together! – and Spenga is her workout studio of choice. She invited me to join her for a class, so I was pumped to finally give it a try. I have to say, it exceeded my expectations and I can’t wait to go again.

What is Spenga (and would I recommend trying it)?

What is Spenga?

Spenga, short for Spin, Strength, Yoga, is an innovative fitness concept that has been rapidly gaining popularity in recent years. It’s a group fitness program designed to offer a complete workout in a single session, providing the benefits of cardio, strength training, and flexibility work.

The Spenga Concept: Why Was It Created?

Spenga was created with the aim of offering a time-efficient, effective, and enjoyable workout routine that maximizes the benefits of different types of exercises without overloading on any one. The concept was developed to cater to individuals who may not have the time or inclination to participate in multiple types of classes or visit multiple facilities to meet their fitness goals.

What Does a Spenga Class Look Like?

A typical Spenga class is a 60-minute session that is divided into three equal parts:

Spin:

The workout begins with a high-energy spin cycling session. This part focuses on improving cardiovascular endurance, boosting metabolism, and burning calories. This component included lots of sprints and heavy hill climb; it went by so quickly!

Strength:

The spin is followed by a strength training circuit using a variety of equipment like dumbbells, kettlebells, resistance bands, and bodyweight exercises. This segment is designed to build muscle strength, improve bone density, and enhance overall functional fitness. Our particular workout had a combination of functional and compound movements, like renegade rows, pushups, and biceps curl to press.

Yoga:

The class concludes with a yoga-inspired stretching and recovery session that promotes flexibility, relaxation, and stress reduction. This final part ensures a holistic approach to fitness by nurturing both the body and mind. I loved the breath work and the gentle flow.

The Pros of Spenga:

Efficiency: Offers a complete workout in just one hour, saving time.Variety: Incorporates different types of exercises, which can prevent workout boredom.

Community: Group atmosphere can provide motivation and support.

Guided Workouts: Classes are led by experienced instructors who ensure correct form and intensity.

Comprehensive: Balances cardio, strength, and flexibility in one session

Monitoring: They offer heart rate monitoring, which establishes your personal “goal” baseline for the cardio section. You can see your name on a little bubble and how well you’re performing compared to your goal. This target will move depending on your performance and how often you go.

The Cons of Spenga:

Intensity: May not suit all fitness levels, especially those who are new to exercise or have specific needs. I didn’t notice many modifications offered, particularly during the strength segment.

Equipment Access: Some locations may not have the same range or quality of equipment as others.

Cost: Membership or class fees may be higher compared to single-discipline gyms or studios. I feel like our Tucson studio had very competitive pricing compared to other boutique studios, especially if you do the unlimited or auto-pay options. (I want to say drop-in is about $25 per class, which is pretty standard here.)

Availability: Not all areas may have a Spenga studio, limiting accessibility for some individuals.

Potential for overtraining: just like ANY specialized studio, it’s really easy to get excited and want to go every day. Because of the strength training component and the intense cardio section, I feel like this would be best 3x a week max on non-consecutive days.

Can you lose weight with Spenga?

You guys know this isn’t my #1 goal when I try a new workout, but I’m adding it here for friends who are curious and also The Man (aka Google). In order to lose weight with Spenga, you’d want to make sure that you’re incorporating enough rest days into your routine, eating enough protein and produce while maintaining a calorie deficit (this is what’s going to change your body composition), and working on your nervous system. Your body also has to be *ready* for weight loss. So this often means stress management and getting your maintenance calories UP. It’s very difficult to lose weight when you’re super stressed. I’d also emphasize lifestyle habits to support happy hormones, like sleep, supplements to fill in nutrient gaps, toxin removal, blood sugar balance, daily movement, sunlight, protein, smart carbs, and healthy fats.

To wrap it all up:

Spenga is a well-designed fitness program that aims to cater to those seeking a comprehensive workout without having to commit to multiple classes or facilities. Its balanced approach to cardio, strength, and flexibility makes it an appealing option for busy individuals looking to maximize their fitness efforts. As always, look at your routine and ensure that it has a balance of cardio, strength, mobility, and rest throughout the week. Talk to a doctor before making any fitness changes and honor your body.

I LOVED the class. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I really enjoyed each component, and thought the instructor was great. I could see how it would be challenging to hire instructors who have backgrounds in cycling, personal training, AND yoga. I’m curious to know what the instructor requirements are, because I’d imagine it would require multiple certifications.

Whether you’re new to fitness or a seasoned athlete, Spenga can be an excellent addition to your workout routine. By combining the best elements of cardio, strength, and flexibility, it can give you a balanced routine while also preventing boredom. Definitely check it out if you have a studio near you.

So, tell me, friends: have you tried Spenga? What’s your favorite fitness studio right now? My top three here in Tucson are Pure Barre, Roots Hot Yoga, and F45.

xo

Gina

More:

Pvolve review

Sculpt Society review

F45 vs. Orangetheory 

The post What is Spenga (and would I recommend trying it)? appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:30 -0500 Anthia
A Realistic 4&Week Weight&Loss Workout Plan for Beginners https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/a-realistic-4-week-weight-loss-workout-plan-for-beginners https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/a-realistic-4-week-weight-loss-workout-plan-for-beginners Losing weight is one of the most common fitness goals, but it’s rarely straightforward. We’re here to break it down and help you get started with this realistic 4-week weight-loss workout plan.

The post A Realistic 4-Week Weight-Loss Workout Plan for Beginners appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:17 -0500 Anthia
The Love Story Yoga Helped Create (Actually, 5 Love Stories) https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-love-story-yoga-helped-create-actually-5-love-stories https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-love-story-yoga-helped-create-actually-5-love-stories The Love Story Yoga Helped Create (Actually, 5 Love Stories)

Who says yoga only draws you closer to yourself?

The post The Love Story Yoga Helped Create (Actually, 5 Love Stories) appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:10 -0500 Anthia
The Outside Festival is the Gathering That We All Need https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-outside-festival-is-the-gathering-that-we-all-need https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-outside-festival-is-the-gathering-that-we-all-need The Outside Festival is the Gathering That We All Need

An array of yoga and wellness classes and speakers, incredible music, riveting adventure films, and more. So much more.

The post The Outside Festival is the Gathering That We All Need appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:09 -0500 Anthia
What Pisces Season Means for You, According to Your Astrological Sign https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-pisces-season-means-for-you-according-to-your-astrological-sign https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-pisces-season-means-for-you-according-to-your-astrological-sign What Pisces Season Means for You, According to Your Astrological Sign

Consider it to be a long, slow breath out.

The post What Pisces Season Means for You, According to Your Astrological Sign appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:08 -0500 Anthia
The Week in Yoga, February 11&17: Dating and Meditating, Teaching a New Sequence, and Work Wellness Perks Backfire https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-week-in-yoga-february-11-17-dating-and-meditating-teaching-a-new-sequence-and-work-wellness-perks-backfire https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-week-in-yoga-february-11-17-dating-and-meditating-teaching-a-new-sequence-and-work-wellness-perks-backfire The Week in Yoga, February 11-17: Dating and Meditating, Teaching a New Sequence, and Work Wellness Perks Backfire

Where yoga was in the world this week.

The post The Week in Yoga, February 11-17: Dating and Meditating, Teaching a New Sequence, and Work Wellness Perks Backfire appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:07 -0500 Anthia
Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 18&24: Becoming Even More Yourself https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-february-18-24-becoming-even-more-yourself https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-february-18-24-becoming-even-more-yourself Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 18-24: Becoming Even More Yourself

The more you release what is not aligned with you, the more you attune to what is.

The post Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 18-24: Becoming Even More Yourself appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:06 -0500 Anthia
What the Full Moon in Virgo Means for You https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-the-full-moon-in-virgo-means-for-you https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-the-full-moon-in-virgo-means-for-you What the Full Moon in Virgo Means for You

Where you have been expecting too much of yourself?

The post What the Full Moon in Virgo Means for You appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:05 -0500 Anthia
6 Family Yoga Retreats and Vacation Destinations https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/6-family-yoga-retreats-and-vacation-destinations https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/6-family-yoga-retreats-and-vacation-destinations 6 Family Yoga Retreats and Vacation Destinations

Places that feel like a reprieve for you and won't make you-know-who roll their eyes.

The post 6 Family Yoga Retreats and Vacation Destinations appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:04 -0500 Anthia
7 Best Exercises for Golfers (and a More Powerful Swing) https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-best-exercises-for-golfers-and-a-more-powerful-swing https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-best-exercises-for-golfers-and-a-more-powerful-swing 7 Best Exercises for Golfers (and a More Powerful Swing)

And you can practice them all year long.

The post 7 Best Exercises for Golfers (and a More Powerful Swing) appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:03 -0500 Anthia
10 Most Essential Yoga Poses for Rock Climbers https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-most-essential-yoga-poses-for-rock-climbers https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-most-essential-yoga-poses-for-rock-climbers 10 Most Essential Yoga Poses for Rock Climbers

Whether you're prepping for or recovering from a climb, this practice will bring much-needed focus and release.

The post 10 Most Essential Yoga Poses for Rock Climbers appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:16:02 -0500 Anthia
What Is Skin Care Cocktailing? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-skin-care-cocktailing https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-skin-care-cocktailing Woman with towel on head applying skin care

What Is Skin Care Cocktailing?

These days, we are becoming more aware of skin care ingredients and what they can do for our complexions. Whether it’s via social media, beauty blogs or our estheticians, information about skin care products is all around us. And with more exposure to the ingredients and their benefits for the skin, plus tutorials at our fingertips, there’s no end to the different recipes we can tweak to make our skin care work at its most optimal level. Read on to learn about the concept of skin care cocktailing and how it can shake up your routine.

What Is Skin Care Cocktailing? | How To Mix An Effective Cocktail | Cocktailing Step-By-Step | Combinations To Try | Mixing Masks | Combinations To Avoid 

What Is Skin Care Cocktailing? 

A multi-step skin care regimen is no longer thought of as high maintenance, it’s just kind of the norm these days. After all, if one effective product is good for your skin, then two or three (or more) must be better. While that is not always the case, there are a lot of ingredients that can be mixed and matched to complement each other and supercharge the effects beyond what they can achieve individually. Skin care cocktailing is a process of combining or layering products within your skin care regimen to enhance the efficacy, absorption, results (or all of the above) for healthy and glowing skin. The process is easy and customizable based on your needs.

Some ingredients bring out the best in each other and amp up their results, taking your skin care to the next level. These combinations can create an optimal skin care routine tailored to your specific needs, but cracking the code takes some work. More is not always more when it comes to ingredients, and layering too many can disturb the actives, cause irritation and defeat the whole purpose of the practice. But, in the same way a good bartender can mix up an amazing drink, the right skin care cocktail recipe can be a magical combination. 

How To Mix Yourself An Effective Skin Care Cocktail  

The key to a cocktail that works for your specific skin is to really hone in on what you’re trying to achieve. Whether you’re looking to create a brighter-looking complexion, clearer and more balanced skin or a smooth and hydrated glow, knowing your end game and working backwards is the most effective way to curate your mixology.

A skin care cocktail routine requires some knowledge on how to layer actives. It’s important to both understand which ingredients work well together and in what order they should be applied. The rule of thumb is to apply based on texture. Lightest products first and thickest last. Toner, serum, oil, moisturizer and SPF for day. 

The timing of the application is also important. Give each product enough time to soak in and dry on the skin before you apply the next one. About five minutes is a good window. A clue that you layered something on too soon could show up as pilling or separating of the product on the skin. Again, while the term "cocktailing" might conjure up the image of one big martini shaker full of different ingredients, this is more about ingredient layering rather than mixing. 

Skin Care Cocktailing Step-By-Step

Follow these easy rules to get the most out of this skin care strategy.

Step 1

Cleanse your face to make sure you are starting with fresh, clean skin. Based on your goals, you can choose a cleanser that aligns with the results you’re trying to achieve. In other words, rather than just cleansing the skin to create a nice, neutral canvas, amp things up by using a cleanser that addresses your issues, from dark spots to fine lines. 

A good tip is to find a product that complements your skin type and addresses any concerns you are struggling with. If your goal is a cocktail that will help with problem or acne-prone skin, our Clear Skin Probiotic Cleanser is a good place to start. It’s both cooling and balancing and reduces the visible signs of problem skin and breakouts. Or try the Acne Advanced Cleansing Foam which effectively prevents acne breakouts and clears blocked pores. 

Follow the cleanse with an exfoliation to get rid of dead skin cells and other debris on the surface of the skin that could get in the way of product absorption. An exfoliating cleanser like the Charcoal Exfoliating Gel Cleanser or the Mangosteen Daily Resurfacing Cleanser will save time by doing double duty. Both will cleanse and exfoliate in one step, priming your skin to drink in the rest of the cocktail. 

Step 2 

Applying a toner and an essence can help enhance the results of your cocktailing routine. A toner completes the cleansing process by getting rid of any residue that may be left on the face. A toner can also address skin concerns, from acne to aging, and can balance out pH levels of the skin. Follow that with an essence that preps the face for the next steps in the routine, while also maximizing hydration, plumping and protecting. Skin is known to better absorb actives when it is slightly damp, so a spritz or swipe of a hydrating essence can prepare the skin to receive the next ingredients in the cocktail routine.

Our Pineapple Refining Tonique is designed to brighten, hydrate and exfoliate with gentle enzymes and acids. If you’re looking to purify the skin and improve barrier function, the Birch Water Purifying Essence is a great option.

Step 3

This is where the true cocktailing begins. As mentioned, some products work well in tandem to enhance the results of each on their own. Two ingredients that play well together are salicylic acid and hyaluronic acid. Salicylic acid is a beta hydroxy acid (BHA) that provides protection against acne breakouts and encourages exfoliation and the unclogging of pores. And hyaluronic acid is a skin hydrator, meaning it will nourish and moisturize dry skin. Applying the two back-to-back will allow the salicylic acid to do its job of absorbing excess oil, while the hyaluronic acid mitigates any dryness by pumping moisture back into the skin. Our Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum does the mixing for you by combining hyaluronic acid with salicylic acid from strawberries for just the right balance.

Niacinamide is another ingredient that our Product Support Team loves because it can be combined with almost anything. Also known as Vitamin B3, niacinamide visibly reduces pore size, retains hydration, supports the skin barrier and smooths uneven texture. It is commonly combined with ingredients like antioxidants (Vitamin C), glycolic acids, conventional retinol and bakuchiol. Combining Vitamin C and niacinamide can yield hydration, brightening and skin smoothing benefits. And the combo of niacinamide and bakuchiol found in our Bakuchiol + Niacinamide Moisturizer smooths the look of wrinkles, visibly firms skin, minimizes the appearance of large pores and uneven texture with no visible irritation.

If you’re looking for more pairings that target a specific issue, we’ve got you covered. 

Dehydrated Skin

Combining Birch Water Purifying Essence & Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum unites birch water, reishi mushrooms, Botanical Collagen and Botanical Hyaluronic Acid to restore hydration to the skin. Looking for more combos? You can also blend the following ingredients to combat dehydration: Glycerin, ceramides, jojoba oil, PHAs, AHAs and linoleic acid.

Blemish-prone Skin

The dynamic duo of Clear Skin Willow Bark Booster-Serum & Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Hydrator is a great combination for lightweight, clarifying moisture. Ingredients to look for: Hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, salicylic acid

Fine Lines & Wrinkles

Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum & Bamboo Firming Fluid. Layer SPF over top during the day to further fight the signs of aging. Ingredients to look for: Natural Retinol Alternative and Vitamin C

Happy customer, Julie, has tried this combo and said in a review on our website: “I mix the Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum with Bamboo Firming Fluid and have seen amazing results in the clarity of my skin, the even skin tone and the smooth feel. My Eminence consultant gave me the idea to make a product ‘cocktail’ with this ingredient. Give it a try! You'll be happy you did!” 

Product picks first

Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum Bamboo Firming Fluid

Product picks second

Radiant Protection SPF Fluid Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum

Body second

Mixing Masks

If you like the idea of layering or mixing ingredients to personalize your results but don’t want to commit to an entire routine, double masking might be a good option. The right mask can deliver a shot of nutrition, plus all sorts of benefits — from hydrating to brightening the look of dark spots, absorbing excess oil and minimizing the look of fine lines and wrinkles. And because they are designed to deliver higher concentrations of ingredients, masks can give your skin an instant boost, making them an easy and convenient addition to your at-home routine. If one mask is good, can doubling (or tripling) down be even better? The answer is yes! Find out more about double masking here

Combinations To Avoid

In the same way that some products enhance others, there are ingredient pairings to steer clear of. Avoid using too many chemical exfoliants, such as alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) and beta hydroxy acids in your routine. These can lead to over-exfoliation of your skin and potentially damage your skin barrier. The same goes for conventional retinol since too much can cause irritation, especially on skin that has already been exposed to acids. 

SPF is a non-negotiable in any daytime routine but it is important to note that it should never be mixed with other products. Instead, it should be the last layer applied to the skin before makeup. Mixing SPF with another product can dilute the efficacy of the sunscreen, which can both defeat the purpose of using SPF and potentially cause serious sun damage. However. while we don’t recommend ever mixing your SPF with anything, if the ingredients come mixed with SPF in their formulations (like the bakuchiol and niacinamide in our Radiant Protection SPF Fluid or Vitamin C from passion fruit in our Lilikoi Daily Defense Moisturizer) you’re all good and the skin will benefit from a treatment built right in. 

Of course, SPF should be worn daily to protect your skin, but it’s crucial to apply it the day after using retinol and acids. One more great cocktailing tip for maximum protection is layering Vitamin C alongside your SPF in the morning to protect your skin from environmental stressors. What that looks like is three to four drops of the Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Serum on cleansed skin before applying SPF. 

Body third

Are you interested in building a skin care cocktailing routine? Visit your nearest Eminence Organics Spa Partner for advice about which ingredients you can combine to achieve the results you’re looking for!

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:53 -0500 Anthia
The Best Skin Care Tricks From An Esthetician https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-best-skin-care-tricks-from-an-esthetician https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-best-skin-care-tricks-from-an-esthetician An esthetician with a client

The Best Skin Care Tricks From An Esthetician

Looking for skin care tips and tricks from an esthetician? We're excited to chat with Eminence Organics' Lead Skin Care Trainer, Natalie Pergar, and tap into her expertise, including the most effective skin care strategies and personal product favorites. Dive into Natalie's wealth of tips, covering everything from refrigerating your eye cream to multi-functional skin care products. Watch the full video below, or read along for her top tips.  

1. Evaluate Your Time Investment 

Evaluate how much time you can dedicate to your routine, as this will dictate the types of skin care products and treatments you can realistically incorporate into your day. It's all about finding a balanced approach that's neither too overwhelming nor unsustainable. Gradually building your routine enhances your lifestyle without causing undue strain on your skin or your schedule. 

2. Gradually Add Products Over Time

Starting with a few key products, such as a cleanser, toner and moisturizer, can prevent overwhelming your skin all at once. This approach lets your skin gradually become accustomed to new products, minimizing the risk of irritation. As you grow more familiar with how your skin reacts, you can carefully add more products. Progressing step by step ensures your routine is both effective and enjoyable and it simplifies identifying any product that might cause a problem.

3. Maintain Product Hygiene For Clearer Skin

To keep your skin healthy and clear, it's important to prevent contamination when using your skin care products. Instead of using your fingers, which can spread bacteria, opt for a clean spoon or spatula to apply your products. This practice helps keep your products pure. Remember to clean these application tools thoroughly after each use. Washing them with soap and water, or sterilizing them with an alcohol wipe, will ensure that they remain hygienic for every use.

4.  Pop Products In The Fridge

Natalie likes to keep her products cool by popping them in the refrigerator so that they feel cool on her skin. This method can be especially beneficial for products like eye creams or certain serums, providing an additional soothing effect upon application. You may want to do this if you want your eye cream, for example, to feel more refreshing on your delicate eye skin. 

5. Store Your Products In A Cool, Dry Location

To ensure the effectiveness and longevity of your skin care products, it's best to store them in a cool and dry place. This is particularly important for products containing active ingredients, as heat and moisture can affect their potency.

6. Embrace Multi-functional Skin Care Products

Consider using skin care products that serve more than one purpose, like a cleanser that also offers exfoliation. This approach not only streamlines your routine but also saves you time. 

7. Trying Micro-Masking For Efficiency

If you're finding it hard to commit time to regular masking, try "micro-masking" sessions. These are brief, about three to five minutes each and you can do one to three of them to meet your skin care objectives. Micro-masking is a time-efficient method that fits easily into a busy schedule, allowing you to enjoy the benefits of masking without it being too time-consuming.

8. Morning Mask Routine

Natalie suggests that applying masks in the morning maximizes their benefits, as they prepare and protect your skin for the day. Morning masks are great for addressing specific issues like puffiness or a lackluster complexion, providing a quick fix for a more refreshed and vibrant look. A favorite of Natalie’s is the Turmeric Energizing Treatment as it’s designed to rejuvenate the skin with an exfoliating and stimulating effect. Ingredients such as turmeric and paprika help to revitalize the skin's appearance, giving it a soft, radiant glow. Additionally, kaolin clay in the mask acts gently to cleanse and remove the look of impurities.

Product picks first

Turmeric Energizing Treatment Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant

Product picks second

Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Masque Facial Recovery Oil

Body second

9. The Ideal Water Temperatures for Skin Care

Begin your facial cleansing with tepid water to gently wash away products. Finish off with a splash of cool water. Tepid water is mild and effectively cleanses without stripping away essential oils. It's important to avoid extreme water temperatures, as they can be harsh on your skin. For example, using hot water can lead to dryness and irritation and can worsen conditions like acne or eczema by removing natural oils. Tepid water offers a balanced approach, maintaining the skin's health without causing stress to the skin barrier.

10. Choosing the Right Facial Oil

When adding facial oils to your skin care routine, opt for ones that suit all skin types. High-quality facial oils are concentrated and powerful, so a small amount goes a long way. Usually, just a few drops are enough for your entire face. Natalie suggests starting with the Facial Recovery Oil as it's high quality and crafted from organic and Biodynamic® ingredients. This oil features age-defying clary sage, balancing ylang-ylang and nourishing olive and sesame oils, making it a versatile choice for various skin types.

11. Prioritizing Nighttime Skin Care

In addition to your daytime skin care products, it's crucial to select a product that nurtures your skin throughout the night. During sleep, your skin naturally repairs and rejuvenates itself. Nighttime skin care products, such as Natalie's recommended Marine Flower Peptide Night Cream, are specially designed to support this overnight recovery process by helping hydrate during the skin's repair cycle. They address overnight moisture loss, aiding the skin in retaining hydration and recovering from the day's environmental stressors. Incorporating such a product into your nightly routine can significantly enhance your skin's health and appearance.

12. Extend Care To Neck & Décolleté

Remember to include your neck and décolleté when applying products, like SPF. These often neglected areas are just as exposed to harmful environmental factors like UV rays and pollution, as your face is. The skin in these regions tends to have fewer oil glands compared to the face, which can lead to increased dryness, sagging and the earlier appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Just as caring for often overlooked areas like the neck and décolleté is crucial, selecting the right skin care products can make all the difference in your routine. Let's dive into Natalie's top picks for esthetician-approved skin care products that can help you achieve amazing results.

Natalie’s Must-Have Esthetician Skin Care Products

Are you ready to incorporate these tips and tricks? Visit your local Eminence Organics Spa to get a personalized skin care consultation for your skin type.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:51 -0500 Anthia
How to Go &quot;No Poo&quot; with Easy Herbal Hair Rinses https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-go-no-poo-with-easy-herbal-hair-rinses https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-go-no-poo-with-easy-herbal-hair-rinses How to Go "No Poo" with Easy Herbal Hair Rinses

Have you heard of "no 'poo" and scratched your head in wonder about what this means? While the term is definitely not my favorite, the philosophy behind it is worth exploring. It refers to moving away from using expensive commercial shampoos and conditioners, which often contain harsh synthetic fragrances, sodium laureth sulfate, propylene glycol, and other creepy ingredients from mystery labs around the world. Because we trust that such products will make our hair gorgeous, we drench ourselves in weird chemicals without knowing how they affect our overall health. Plus, think of the millions of plastic bottles from all the hair care products we use that end up in recycling bins or landfills.

But we HAVE to use shampoo, right?—Wrong!

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:42 -0500 Anthia
2024 Herbal Events Calendar by Mountain Rose Herbs https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/2024-herbal-events-calendar-by-mountain-rose-herbs https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/2024-herbal-events-calendar-by-mountain-rose-herbs 2024 Herbal Events Calendar by Mountain Rose Herbs

All of us here at Mountain Rose Herbs are thrilled to embark on another year of exciting herbal event endeavors! Last year, we had the much-anticipated opportunity to reunite through in-person gatherings, along with continuing our virtual events to ensure herbal education remains accessible to those out of arms reach in the PNW. In 2024, we're looking forward to watching the blossoming return of herbal events and strengthening the bond of the ever-expanding herbalism community.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:42 -0500 Anthia
The Oral Tradition of Caribbean Herbalism https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-oral-tradition-of-caribbean-herbalism https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-oral-tradition-of-caribbean-herbalism The Oral Tradition of Caribbean Herbalism

 

The Caribbean islands, scattered between North and South America, are a hotspot of weather, plant biodiversity, and culture. Islands range from tropical rainforests to chilly mountain peaks, some densely saturated with remote mogotes: isolated, steep-sided mounds on otherwise flat plains. The high humidity and rainfall contribute to a lush flora and fauna. There are over 11,000 discovered plant species, 189 amphibian species, and 564 bird species. The Caribbean’s herbal traditions are rooted in this abundance of biodiversity.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:41 -0500 Anthia
Sprouts: Growing Sustainable Food On Your Countertop https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sprouts-growing-sustainable-food-on-your-countertop https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sprouts-growing-sustainable-food-on-your-countertop Sprouts: Growing Sustainable Food On Your Countertop


Eating sprouted seeds is a relatively recent culinary trend in the U.S., even though they are ridiculously easy to grow and can be an excellent source of potassium, magnesium, folate, beta-carotene, calcium, vitamin C, and vitamin K. These days, bean sprouts, grain sprouts, and salad sprouts are readily available at farmers markets, natural foods stores, and in the produce section of many grocery stores. But I grow my own because it’s easy to do, saves me money, and I like to keep control over the process to ensure that the sprouts I feed my family are safe and at the peak of flavor and nutrition.

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:41 -0500 Anthia
Sustainable Benefits of a Bioswale and Rain Garden https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sustainable-benefits-of-a-bioswale-and-rain-garden https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sustainable-benefits-of-a-bioswale-and-rain-garden Sustainable Benefits of a Bioswale and Rain Garden

In Oregon, winters are notoriously known for rainy days, cloudy skies, and wet everything. Some may find it challenging to live without consistent sunshine, but there are many benefits to a seasonal abundance of water. The bioregion of Cascadia consists of numerous rivers, streams, and waterways that carry life to the land, providing nourishment for all species from the top of mountains down to the Pacific Ocean. In some areas, annual rainfall can reach up to 200 inches! So, what do we do with all this water?

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Wed, 21 Feb 2024 16:15:40 -0500 Anthia
Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Cookies https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herbal-aphrodisiac-shortbread-cookies https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herbal-aphrodisiac-shortbread-cookies

Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Cookies

Recipe and Photography by Sarah Snyder
Other text by Meghan Gemma

Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Cookies

When we feel a longing to connect with our sensual side, herbal aphrodisiacs are an alluring option.

Aphrodisiac herbs are plants that elevate, nourish, or sustain our sexual or sensual desires. How is this magic aroused in the body? Herbal aphrodisiacs work in varied and complex ways—while some are known to enhance libido and improve sexual function, others bring us into states of passion through more subtle channels.

For example, some herbal aphrodisiacs widen our blood vessels and stimulate blood circulation, thus moving more energy, oxygen, and nourishment into our pelvis and heart. Other herbs help us relax, making us feel more open and receptive to intimacy. Some herbs support the release of blissful compounds produced by our bodies when we are in love or experiencing sensual pleasure.1

All of which is to say, herbal aphrodisiacs are nuanced—finding the right ones for you (or your loved one) can be an exciting experience.

Our Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Recipe introduces four delectable and desire-inducing herbs:

  • Maca (Lepidium meyenii) is an adaptogen that enhances libido, improves sexual performance, and releases anandamide (the “bliss molecule”) in the body.2
  • Rose (Rosa spp.) is a stirring ally for nurturing intimacy with its skin-soft petals, alluring aroma, and ability to arouse the blood. It can be used as a nourishing tonic for awakening the libido and thawing sexual frigidity.
  • Vanilla (Vanilla planifolia) is an orchid family botanical whose aroma is known to induce arousal, relaxation, and sensuality. It’s a classic ingredient in folkloric love potions and amorous confections.
  • Cacao (Theobroma cacao), like maca, releases bliss-inducing anandamides and infuses the body with a sense of pleasure.2 It also nourishes the heart and energizes the body in anticipation of sensual moments.3

To go deeper with herbal aphrodisiacs, we highly recommend Kimberly Gallagher’s book, Aphrodisiac: The Herbal Path to Healthy Sexual Fulfillment and Vital Living.

Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Cookies
Print

Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Cookies

These shortbread cookies are delightfully decadent and not too sweet. The cacao nibs, which are small pieces of the cacao bean, provide a rich and nutty crunch, while the rose water adds the lightest floral note. The rose petals contribute a splash of alluring color to entice the eyes along with the nose.
These cookies are tasty as a stand-alone treat, but we also love them biscotti-style, served with coffee or tea. 
Course Dessert
Keyword aphrodisiac, cookies
Prep Time 1 hour 15 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Servings 24 cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter , room temperature
  • ½ cup powdered sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons powdered maca root
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon food-grade rose water*
  • ½ cup cacao nibs
  • ½ cup dried rose petals

Instructions

  • In a stand mixer, cream together the butter and powdered sugar until fluffy and well-incorporated.
  • Add flour, ½ cup at a time, and mix until just combined.
  • Add salt, maca powder, vanilla extract, and rose water. Mix.
  • Add cacao nibs and rose petals, gently mixing until they’re dispersed throughout the dough.
  • Shape dough into a log about 10 inches long, making sure to pack tightly to prevent any holes. Roll to round out any edges. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 3 days. If doubling the recipe, make 2 logs and follow the instructions in Step 7 for both logs.
  • When you’re ready to bake the cookies, preheat the oven to 350°F (177°C).
  • Using a sharp knife, divide the log into 24 equal pieces by first cutting the log into quarters. Then, cut each quarter in half. Finally, cut each of these 8 pieces into 3 cookies.
  • Bake on a parchment-lined baking sheet for 15-17 minutes or until lightly golden. These cookies don’t spread, so they can be baked closely together.
  • Serve immediately or store in an airtight container for up to two weeks.

Notes

*Make sure to use food-grade rose water (we love Nielsen Massey), which can be found at most natural food grocers or online retailers.

Looking for more arousing recipes?

Lavender chocolate truffles

Lavender
Chocolate Truffles

Prepare to be enchanted by the allure of these Divinely Naughty Lavender Truffles.

Ashwagandha Lavender Vanilla-Infused Ghee

Ashwagandha Vanilla Ghee

This herbal-infused ghee is calming, nourishing, and warming to the heart and body.

A bowl of pomegranate molasses compound butter.

Pomegranate Molasses Butter

Elevate your breakfast toast and tapas trays with this smooth and fruity spread.

References

  1. Pino-Figueroa A, Vu H, et al. “Mechanism of Action of Lepidium meyenii (Maca): An Explanation for Its Neuroprotective Activity.” Am J Neuroprotec Neuroregen. 2011.
  2. Gallagher K. Aphrodisiac: The Herbal Path to Healthy Sexual Fulfillment and Vital Living. Hay House; 2021.
  3. Sinadinos C. The Essential Guide to Western Botanical Medicine. Christa Sinadinos; 2020.

Meet Our Contributors:

Sarah Nicole Snyder is holding a woven basket full of freshly picked strawberries.

SARAH SNYDER grew up in a small wooded town outside of Charlotte, NC. She studied music in college before moving to Asheville, NC to study pastry arts. Here she developed a love for plants, gardening, medicine-making, and homesteading. She has worked as a photographer, pastry chef, journalist, and social media manager.

Most days you can find her reading with her dog and a mug of tea, getting the perfect shot of her garden, trying out yet another craft, or wrangling chickens back into the yard.

Meghan Gemma of Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

MEGHAN GEMMA is one of  Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine's primary instructors through her written lessons, and is the principal pollinator of the school’s social media community—sharing herbal and wild foods wisdom from the flowery heart of the school to an ever-wider field of herbalists, gardeners, healers, and plant lovers.

She has been in a steady relationship with the Chestnut School since 2010—as an intern and manager at the Chestnut Herb Nursery; as a plant-smitten student “back in the day” when the school’s programs were taught in the field; and later as a part the school’s woman-powered professional team. Meghan lives in the Ivy Creek watershed, just north of Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Herbal Aphrodisiac Shortbread Cookies appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:07:16 -0500 Anthia
Monitoring Breast Cancer Progression with Tumor Markers https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/monitoring-breast-cancer-progression-with-tumor-markers https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/monitoring-breast-cancer-progression-with-tumor-markers Monitoring Breast Cancer Progression with Tumor Markers - Breast cancer is one of the most diagnosed cancers, with an estimated 380,000 cases annually. Learn about the stages and grades of breast cancer, and how blood-based tumor marker tests play a role in managing stage IV breast cancer. Discover the types of markers available, their functions, limitations, and clinical applications. Find out about the convenience and minimally invasive nature of blood-based testing. Explore common blood-based tumor markers such as CA 15-3, CA 27.29, and TK1, and their importance in monitoring disease progression and treatment response. Understand the considerations in selecting the most suitable tumor marker for disease monitoring. Get valuable insights for breast cancer management in this comprehensive guide.

The post Monitoring Breast Cancer Progression with Tumor Markers appeared first on Health and Natural Healing Tips.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:07:09 -0500 Anthia
Sun&Dried Pasta https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sun-dried-pasta https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sun-dried-pasta The post Sun-Dried Pasta appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:51 -0500 Anthia
Strawberry Shortcake https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/strawberry-shortcake https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/strawberry-shortcake The post Strawberry Shortcake appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:50 -0500 Anthia
Sesame Chicken https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sesame-chicken https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/sesame-chicken This easy sesame chicken is just as good as your local takeout spot's renditions. Bite-sized pieces of tender chicken and nutty sesame seeds are coated in a silky smooth, savory-sweet sauce that you won't be able to get enough of.

The post Sesame Chicken appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:50 -0500 Anthia
HigherDOSE Red Light Neck Enhancer Review https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/higherdose-red-light-neck-enhancer-review https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/higherdose-red-light-neck-enhancer-review Sharing a full review of the HigherDOSE red light neck enhancer and if I think it’s worth adding it to your wellness routine. Check it out here and use FITNESSISTA15 for 15% off. 

Hi friends! How are you? I hope you had a wonderful weekend! I missed this past week’s Friday Faves post – Friday ended up being wild – but I have to post the winner of the NOW giveaway! Congrats to Katie M.! I’ll be sending Katie an email this morning to get her prize on the way. Stay tuned for more giveaways this fall, including my annual Favorite Things giveaway ????

For today’s post, I wanted to chat a bit about something I’ve been using and loving in my routine lately: the HigherDOSE Red Light Neck Enhancer! You guys know I’m obsessed with my HigherDOSE products, including the PEMF Go Mat, Sauna Blanket, and Red Light Face Mask. I was so pumped to add this to my routine, especially since I’ve been a fan of Red Light Therapy for so long. I use this for skincare, but also for injuries (of course, after seeing a doctor if necessary. When Liv hurt her knee, we did red light therapy everyday using this wand.)

Red Light Therapy is a groundbreaking technology transforming skincare and wellness. The HigherDose Red Light Neck Enhancer takes this innovation to a new level by focusing on the often-neglected neck and chest area. I feel like the neck and chest can tend to show more visible aspects of aging, because it’s easy to forget about treating and protecting this area.

Today, I’m excited to talk about Red Light Therapy, share details about this new HigherDOSE device, and chat about how this can potentially enhance your skincare routine.

HigherDOSE Red Light Neck Enhancer Review

What is Red Light Therapy?

Red Light Therapy, or Low-Level Light Therapy (LLLT), uses powerful wavelengths of low-intensity red or near-infrared light to penetrate the skin. This non-invasive treatment offers various potential benefits:

Collagen Boost: It can stimulate collagen production, leading to smoother and firmer skin.

Wrinkle Reduction: By increasing collagen, it can reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

Skin Healing: It can accelerate natural healing, making it useful for scars and acne.

Pain Relief: Red Light Therapy can relieve muscle and joint pain.

Improved Complexion: Enhances blood flow to activate glowing, healthier, more radiant skin

*You can explore studies relating to these potential benefits on the product page here. 

HigherDose Red Light Neck Enhancer

Designed specifically for the neck and chest, the HigherDose Red Light Neck Enhancer is made from medical-grade silicone and utilizes two different lights to target this delicate area: red: 630nm and NIR: 830nm.

Its benefits include:

1. Collagen Production: This device can boost collagen, reducing sagging skin and neck wrinkles.

2. Skin Tightening: It can promote skin tightening, rejuvenating your appearance.

3. Even Skin Tone: This can lead to a more even complexion.

4. Improved Texture: Experience smoother and softer skin.

5. Convenience: The HigherDose Red Light Neck Enhancer is easy to use with a comfortable, hands-free design. It’s also super flexible, lightweight, and easy to store.

6. Safe and Non-Invasive: Suitable for all skin types, this therapy is generally safe and requires no downtime.

How to Use the HigherDose Red Light Neck Enhancer

Using this device is straightforward:

Cleanse:

To start, gently clean and dry your neck and chest. Option: use the HigherDOSE serum after cleansing.

Wear It:

Place the enhancer around your neck, ensuring direct contact with your skin. (You can also use this product on your back, thighs or lower chest area.

There’s no need to apply sunscreen. Red light provides a safe way to absorb the rejuvenating light of the sun without the harmful UV rays.

Power On:

Turn on the device and select a program time: 10 minutes or 20 minutes. You can also use this in conjunction with the Red Light Face Mask or PEMF Go Mat.

Relax:

Use this time to unwind, meditate, or simply relax.

Consistency:

For optimal results, use it 3-5 times a week, ideally as part of your daily skincare routine.

Red Light Therapy is celebrated for its skin rejuvenation benefits, and this device brings those advantages to your neck and chest. This is super convenient and easy to use regularly. I feel like the Red Light Therapy gives me a little mood boost, too.

If you’re ready to take your skincare routine to the next level, you can check it out here! Also, you can use my code FITNESSISTA15 for 15% off the HigherDOSE website (minus bundles and full-sized saunas). Plus, if for whatever reason, you don’t like it, you have 30 days to return it with a money-back guarantee.

What’s one of your favorite parts of your daily routine??

xoxo

Gina

The post HigherDOSE Red Light Neck Enhancer Review appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:38 -0500 Anthia
Friday Faves 2.9 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/friday-faves-29 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/friday-faves-29 Hi friends! Happy Friday! How was the week? I hope you had a great one! Ours was pretty low-key. The Pilot flew nights, the girls had all of their usual events and activities, and I’ve been here working on blog content, client calls, and podcast interviews. We have an event this weekend that I’m looking forward to, and I’m still looking for a dress. If you wait until the last minute, it only takes a minute. ????

(My fave Sakara goji rose donut)

(Smiling with her lil teeth after her Valentine’s haircut)

Other than the event, I’m teaching barre, working on some fitness programming, and it’s movie night at the kids’ school.

It’s time for the weekly Friday Faves party! This is where I share some of my favorite finds from the week and around the web. I always love to hear about your faves, too, so please shout out something you’re loving in the comments section below.

Friday Faves 2.9

Life:

We went to the Annual Fighter Wing awards banquet in Phoenix and it was a blast as usual. It’s fun to see friends we haven’t caught up with in a long time and also celebrate some hardworking and inspiring squadron members.

It was hard to believe that this was the last time the Pilot will ever wear mess dress. This time next year, he’ll be RETIRED!! Tbh, I’m more than ready, but I can tell it’s going to be bittersweet for him. His military career has been a huge part of his identity for so long, and I know he’ll miss it.

I’m definitely looking forward to more stability and a return to the airlines, but I’ll definitely miss seeing him in his mess dress and flight suit. ????

(dress was from RTR. It wasn’t my fave dress I’ve ever rented, but all of my top picks were gone. It was ok for the occasion.)

Since we were in Phoenix, the kids requested a hike at Camelback. It’s probably their favorite hike, which doesn’t surprise me at all.

They climb and skip around while I fear for everyone’s lives. It’s a great time, I tell ya ????

The first climb is extremely intense – you can hold onto guard rails because it’s so steep and high –

but after that, the intensity goes down a bit. It’s an incredible view, and the weather was perfection.

We also tried the Original Chop Shop for the first time, and it was SO, so good. I got the gf hummus and veggie wrap (added chicken) and we’ll definitely be back.

High Performance Health. This is going to be my first 2024 certification and I’m so excited to dive into this one. HPH is all about longevity and biohacking, so I’m excited to use this information for intermediate and advanced clients to make the most out of their routines, and get very strategic about daily habits. I’ll share more along the way! If you’d like to be my study buddy, you can check it out here and enter the code FITNESSISTA for $100 off.

Fashion + beauty:

New Beautycounter body butter. I’m waiting for mine to arrive and can’t wait to try it. I LOVE a body butter with clean ingredients – especially during these chilly winter months – and this is in the lovely Monoi scent. Check it out here. 

Ordering this dress for spring. It looks like a Nap Dress and is less than half the price!

Also adding this to cart. I love lounge sets so much right now.

Read, watch, listen:

Definitely check out this week’s podcast interview. We’re chatting all about seed oils.

 What are your simple pleasures?

Enjoying this audiobook right now. Lots of helpful tips and encouragement to shift more to investments.

Fitness + good eats:

You have to try these homemade peanut butter protein bars.

More reasons to practice self-compassion. 

Gf oat flour tahini chocolate chip cookies. 

Happy Friday, friends! Have an amazing weekend and I’ll see ya soon.

xoxo

Gina

The post Friday Faves 2.9 appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:36 -0500 Anthia
why I didn’t like the MyDNAge test https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/why-i-didnt-like-the-mydnage-test https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/why-i-didnt-like-the-mydnage-test (and not just because I’m salty about my results)

Hi friends! How are you? Did you have a good weekend? What did you do for the Super Bowl? We went to an amazing event – I’ll share details in Friday Faves – and the fam came over to watch the Usher concert.. I mean the football game. ????

For today’s post, I’m finally ready to talk about my MyDNAge test results. It took me a while to marinate on my thoughts because at first, I was a little salty. I’ll share why below, in addition to how this test works. I’m not including a referral link because I’m not quite sure if I recommend this one. I had a much better experience and feel like I got more useful data from InsideTracker. 

I really feel like at-home lab testing is the future, and we’re going to see more advanced methods and data in the future, which is very exciting! In the era of personalized health, understanding our genetic makeup has become a powerful tool for optimizing wellness. MyDNAge takes this concept to the next level by providing insights into the very fabric of our being – our DNA.

 why I didn’t like the MyDNAge test

How MyDNAge Works

MyDNAge utilizes advanced technology to analyze specific markers within your DNA associated with the aging process. The science behind this process lies in the examination of specific regions known as epigenetic markers. These markers provide a unique snapshot of how your genes are expressing themselves over time, offering a glimpse into the biological age of your cells.

The process involves:

DNA Collection:

MyDNAge requires a blood sample, through an at-home fingerpick. (More on this under Cons lol)

Epigenetic Analysis:

The collected DNA is then subjected to sophisticated epigenetic analysis. This involves examining specific chemical modifications to the DNA molecule, known as methyl groups, which play a crucial role in regulating gene activity.

Age Determination:

By analyzing the epigenetic markers, MyDNAge estimates the biological age of your cells. This information provides a personalized and data-driven perspective on how your body is aging at a cellular level.

Information Provided by MyDNAge

Biological Age:

MyDNAge reveals your biological age, offering a more accurate reflection of your overall health compared to chronological age.

Lifestyle Insights:

The service provides recommendations based on your genetic profile, offering insights into lifestyle factors that could influence the aging process.

Disease Risk Assessment:

Some genetic markers may be associated with an increased or decreased risk of certain diseases, offering a proactive approach to disease prevention.

Pros of MyDNAgePersonalized Insights:

Early Intervention:

Understanding potential health risks early on allows for proactive lifestyle adjustments, promoting preventive health measures.

Cons of MyDNAge

Blood collection and results delay:

The test comes with a lancet and a little tube. You’re supposed to prick your finger, and attach the little tube to your finger so the blood can go through the tube. I lanced my finger, pressed the tiny tube against it and blood would NOT go into the thin tube. It just went all over the outside and made a mess. I ended up having the get their venous kit delivered to my doctor’s office so my PCP could draw the blood for me. Also, it took 89 years (6-8 weeks) to receive the results, which felt like an eternity.

Limited Predictive Power:

While MyDNAge offers valuable insights, its ability to predict future health outcomes is not foolproof, as genetics interact with various environmental factors. The thing about genes is that they are not our destiny. They can give great insights BUT you can have tremendous power on how genes are expressed.

Emotional Impact:

Learning about potential health risks may have emotional implications. It’s essential to approach the results with a balanced mindset and take these things with a grain of salt.

Delivery of the results:

As a holistic health coach, I love digging through data and test results. As much as I do this in my everyday life, I found the results to be fairly confusing. It told me which genetic variations I have – wasn’t surprised to learn I have MTHFR – but I didn’t feel like it gave very customized recommendations. The recommendations were incredibly basic: make sure you exercise daily, eat fresh produce, focus on sleep, aka everything I’m already doing, and the things that all you guys know you should do for optimal health, too.

It also didn’t give any lifestyle suggestions if you have troubles hitting these basics. InsideTracker does a much better job with customized recommendations (“here’s why you should have 1-3 servings of beans per day. You need to increase your fatty fish consumption. If you avoid alcohol, here’s how it will help you” etc.)

Revolutionary.

I was also disappointed to find out that the age of my cells is 40. I’m going to BE 40 in November and feel like I do positive things for my health every single day. It was kind of defeating to see this number and the fact that I’m at the 53rd percentile for my age. I’m FAR from perfect, but I feel like I make a consistent effort to check the major boxes each day. It kind of made me feel like to drastically improve from here would be unattainable for everyday life? Also, why weren’t my numbers great? It didn’t tell me.

Cost Considerations:

MyDNAge services come with a price tag. This test is around $500, but I won it through an EquiLife contest. Individuals should weigh the cost against the perceived benefits.

As with any genetic testing service, it’s crucial to approach the results with a balanced perspective, considering both the empowering information provided and the potential emotional impact.

Ultimately, MyDNAge drops the ball. I think that it has incredible potential, but I wasn’t blown away with the delivery of the results or the action steps associated with the results. I think that I’ll learn how to dive into this test with High Performance Health, so if that’s the case, I’m excited to take another look. (Also, if that’s the case, you may want someone who is certified to actually go through the test with you!)

Even though this is a bomb for me, for now, I definitely recommend Insidetracker. My referral link gets you 20% off!

Have you done any of these tests? If you’re interested in functional testing (with someone to go over the results with you), you can apply here.

xo

Gina

The post why I didn’t like the MyDNAge test appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:35 -0500 Anthia
the best herbs for PMS https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-best-herbs-for-pms https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-best-herbs-for-pms Sharing some of my favorite herbs for PMS. 

Hi friends! How are you? Happy Valentine’s Day!! I hope you’re having a lovely morning. I’m looking forward to mass with the kids (it’s also Ash Wednesday) and family fancy dinner tonight. I hope you have a great day, too.

For today, let’s talk about PMS and some herbs that may help!

For many women, the days leading up to menstruation can bring about a slew of uncomfortable symptoms, collectively known as premenstrual syndrome (PMS). While managing these symptoms may feel like an uphill battle, nature offers a plethora of remedies in the form of medicinal herbs. In this blog post, I’m going to share some popular herbal solutions for PMS, exploring the benefits, usage, and considerations that may help you find relief naturally.

It’s also to remember that while PMS is common, it’s not *normal*. It is possible to have a completely uneventful cycle, but it takes some lifestyle changes, nervous system resetting, and dialed-in nutrition. While herbs can be a helpful complement to your routine, they can’t makeup for your lifestyle or daily habits.

the best herbs for PMS

Understanding PMS and Herbal Remedies

Premenstrual syndrome encompasses a range of physical and emotional symptoms that occur in the days preceding menstruation. From bloating and mood swings to headaches and fatigue, these symptoms can significantly impact daily life. Herbal remedies offer a holistic approach to managing PMS by addressing the underlying hormonal imbalances and supporting overall well-being.

Herbs for PMS Relief

Chasteberry (Vitex agnus-castus):

Chasteberry is renowned for its ability to balance hormones, particularly by increasing progesterone levels. This can alleviate symptoms such as irritability, breast tenderness, and bloating.

Dong Quai (Angelica sinensis):

Dong Quai is a traditional Chinese herb known for its regulatory effects on the menstrual cycle. It can help alleviate menstrual cramps, promote blood flow, and regulate hormonal fluctuations.

Evening Primrose Oil:

Rich in gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), evening primrose oil is prized for its anti-inflammatory properties. It can help reduce breast tenderness, bloating, and mood swings associated with PMS.

Black Cohosh (Actaea racemosa):

Black cohosh is beneficial for relieving menopausal symptoms, including hot flashes and mood swings. It may also help alleviate PMS symptoms such as irritability and anxiety.

Ginger (Zingiber officinale):

Ginger is renowned for its anti-inflammatory properties, making it a valuable ally in combating menstrual cramps and digestive discomfort associated with PMS.

Cramp Bark (Viburnum opulus):

As the name suggests, cramp bark is highly effective in relieving menstrual cramps and muscle tension. It works by relaxing the uterine muscles, easing pain and discomfort.

Wild Yam (Dioscorea villosa):

Wild yam contains compounds that mimic natural progesterone, making it beneficial for hormonal balance. It can alleviate PMS symptoms such as mood swings, breast tenderness, and bloating. Wild yam should ideally be used in the luteal phase of your cycle (following ovulation until your cycle begins).

Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata):

Passionflower is revered for its calming properties, making it ideal for reducing anxiety and promoting relaxation during the premenstrual phase. It can also aid in improving sleep quality.

Red Raspberry Leaf (Rubus idaeus):

Red raspberry leaf is a uterine tonic that supports reproductive health. It can help regulate menstrual cycles, reduce heavy bleeding, and alleviate cramps associated with PMS. It was also a key ingredient in my favorite pregnancy tea. 

How to Use Herbal Remedies

Teas: Brew herbal teas using dried herbs or tea bags. Drink 1-3 cups daily, preferably during the week leading up to menstruation.

Tinctures: Dilute herbal tinctures in water or juice and consume according to package instructions.

Capsules: Take herbal supplements in capsule form as directed by a healthcare provider or herbalist.

Pros and Cons of Herbal Remedies for PMS

Pros:

Natural and holistic approach to symptom management.

Fewer side effects compared to conventional medications.

Addresses underlying hormonal imbalances.

Cons:

Effectiveness may vary among individuals.

It may take time to experience noticeable results.

Potential interactions with medications or existing health conditions.

Disclaimer: Consult Your Healthcare Provider

Before incorporating any herbal remedies into your routine, it’s essential to consult with your healthcare provider, particularly if you’re pregnant, breastfeeding, or have underlying health conditions. While herbs can offer significant benefits, they may also interact with medications or have contraindications that need to be considered.

Herbal remedies can provide a natural and effective approach to managing the symptoms of PMS, offering relief from discomfort and promoting hormonal balance. If you’re curious about testing to see what’s actually happening with your hormone levels and cortisol throughout the day, you can apply for 1:1 coaching here or join us in my Vitality program!

Enrollment opens today and we start as a group on February 26th.

xoxo

Gina

More:

PMS self care

Natural remedies for PMS

How to eat for your menstrual cycle

Optimizing your workouts through your menstrual cycle

The post the best herbs for PMS appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:34 -0500 Anthia
Couch to 5K: 6&Week Training Plan https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/couch-to-5k-6-week-training-plan https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/couch-to-5k-6-week-training-plan This 5K training plan for beginners and pros will get you across the finish line with strength and confidence.

The post Couch to 5K: 6-Week Training Plan appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:30 -0500 Anthia
RECIPE: Jalapeño Popper Bean Soup https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-jalapeno-popper-bean-soup-162 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-jalapeno-popper-bean-soup-162 Our Jalapeño Popper Bean Soup is loaded with protein and big flavors. Try this fuss-free, hearty meal that’s perfect for prepping ahead of time.

The post RECIPE: Jalapeño Popper Bean Soup appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:28 -0500 Anthia
RECIPE: Healthy Avocado and Greens Mint Smoothie https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-healthy-avocado-and-greens-mint-smoothie https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-healthy-avocado-and-greens-mint-smoothie Packed with micronutrients and flavor, this macro-friendly mint smoothie is a healthy treat perfect for before or after a workout.

The post RECIPE: Healthy Avocado and Greens Mint Smoothie appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:25 -0500 Anthia
30&Minute Cardio Workout You Can Do Anywhere https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/30-minute-cardio-workout-you-can-do-anywhere https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/30-minute-cardio-workout-you-can-do-anywhere Boost endurance, strength, and form — and burn major calories — with these 6 coach-created cardio exercises you can do at home to get your heart rate up.

The post 30-Minute Cardio Workout You Can Do Anywhere appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:23 -0500 Anthia
Tickets to the Outside Festival Are on Sale Now With Amazing Bands Headlining the Unique Gathering https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/tickets-to-the-outside-festival-are-on-sale-now-with-amazing-bands-headlining-the-unique-gathering https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/tickets-to-the-outside-festival-are-on-sale-now-with-amazing-bands-headlining-the-unique-gathering Tickets to the Outside Festival Are on Sale Now With Amazing Bands Headlining the Unique Gathering

The inaugural event in Denver is designed to reacquaint you with the outdoors and features Fleet Foxes, Thundercat, Lettuce, Andrew Bird, Say She She, and The Heavy Heavy along with adventure films, an ideas summit, and more.

The post Tickets to the Outside Festival Are on Sale Now With Amazing Bands Headlining the Unique Gathering appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:15 -0500 Anthia
The Week in Yoga, February 4&10: Lil Jon Confirms Meditation Album Rumors and You Know It’s a Good Yoga Class When… https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-week-in-yoga-february-4-10-lil-jon-confirms-meditation-album-rumors-and-you-know-its-a-good-yoga-class-when https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-week-in-yoga-february-4-10-lil-jon-confirms-meditation-album-rumors-and-you-know-its-a-good-yoga-class-when The Week in Yoga, February 4-10: Lil Jon Confirms Meditation Album Rumors and You Know It’s a Good Yoga Class When…

Where yoga was in the world this week.

The post The Week in Yoga, February 4-10: Lil Jon Confirms Meditation Album Rumors and You Know It’s a Good Yoga Class When… appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:11 -0500 Anthia
Is Google Leaning Into Astrology? Here’s What We Know About the Naming of its Latest AI App, Gemini. https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/is-google-leaning-into-astrology-heres-what-we-know-about-the-naming-of-its-latest-ai-app-gemini https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/is-google-leaning-into-astrology-heres-what-we-know-about-the-naming-of-its-latest-ai-app-gemini Is Google Leaning Into Astrology? Here's What We Know About the Naming of its Latest AI App, Gemini.

Is it coincidence that something touted as analytical, innovative, and chatty was named for the sign with the same traits?

The post Is Google Leaning Into Astrology? Here’s What We Know About the Naming of its Latest AI App, Gemini. appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:10 -0500 Anthia
Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 11&17: Feeling Your Potential https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-february-11-17-feeling-your-potential https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-february-11-17-feeling-your-potential Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 11-17: Feeling Your Potential

Lean into the directions that whisper your name.

The post Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 11-17: Feeling Your Potential appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:08 -0500 Anthia
10 Easy Ways to Stretch and Strengthen Your Wrists https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-easy-ways-to-stretch-and-strengthen-your-wrists https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-easy-ways-to-stretch-and-strengthen-your-wrists 10 Easy Ways to Stretch and Strengthen Your Wrists

Don't wait until they start to ache.

The post 10 Easy Ways to Stretch and Strengthen Your Wrists appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:07 -0500 Anthia
The Love Story Yoga Helped Create (Actually, We Have 5 of Them) https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-love-story-yoga-helped-create-actually-we-have-5-of-them https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-love-story-yoga-helped-create-actually-we-have-5-of-them The Love Story Yoga Helped Create (Actually, We Have 5 of Them)

Who says yoga only draws you closer to yourself?

The post The Love Story Yoga Helped Create (Actually, We Have 5 of Them) appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:06:06 -0500 Anthia
What is Black Seed? A Guide To This Ancient Medicinal Plant https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-black-seed-a-guide-to-this-ancient-medicinal-plant https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-black-seed-a-guide-to-this-ancient-medicinal-plant Black seed

What is Black Seed? A Guide To This Ancient Medicinal Plant

Love being the first to know about new trends? Then you’ll want to know about black seed oil. While not a new ingredient, black seed oil, also known as black cumin seed oil, has recently become a highly sought-after ingredient in skin care  — and for good reason. 

This ancient herbal oil, which graced Cleopatra's skin, has been traditionally used across the Middle East, Africa and Asia; and is now gaining global recognition for its remarkable benefits for the skin. Let's explore its varied applications and gain practical insights on how to integrate black seed oil into your daily skin care routine.

Black seed oil

What Is Black Seed Oil? | Beauty Benefits | Health Benefits | How To Use | Supplements

What Is Black Seed Oil? 

Black Seed, an annual flowering plant, originates from Western Asia and parts of Europe (mainly Bulgaria and Romania). Ancient civilizations, including those of Egypt and Mesopotamia, valued black seed for its versatility, using it not only in cuisine but also for its medicinal properties. The real magic lies within its fruit, which houses numerous small, black, triangular seeds that contain powerhouse nutrients, such as linoleic acid, oleic acid and thymoquinone. Packed with antioxidants, antibacterial properties and omega fatty acids, black seed oil can be used to fight acne and reduce clogged pores as well as a source of hydration. Let's delve into the specific beauty benefits of black seed and how its oil can be a transformative element in your skin care routine.

Beauty Benefits of Black Seed Oil

Worried about clogged pores? While some oils have a reputation for making congestion worse, there’s no need to stress with black seed oil. Thanks to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, black seed oil can clear symptoms associated with clogged pores — think excessive oil production and blemish formation. Azadeh Shirazi, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist tells Forbes that black seed oil can potentially alleviate symptoms of skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, vitiligo and acne. Black seed oil is also renowned for its benefits for your hair and scalp health. The phytochemicals in black seed oil reinforce hair strands from the roots to the tips, reducing breakage and split ends, while also providing hydration to revitalize dry and brittle hair.

To understand the wizardry of black seed, we should look at its core components. The two most prominent are linoleic acid and thymoquinone. Linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid, reduces excess sebum production that can lead to acne, possibly owing to its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory qualities. Meanwhile, thymoquinone takes on the role of a guardian against blemishes, providing a preventive measure for clearer skin. Thymoquinone is known for its antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties, which bolsters the oil's capability for reducing the appearance of clogged pores. Together, these components help to tackle the look of clogged pores and reduce their formation. 

Health Benefits of Black Seed Oil

While there is limited research on the health impacts of black seed oil, existing studies suggest it might have beneficial effects. The following are some notable insights from the current research, according to Healthline

  • Enhances wound healing
  • Supports hair health maintenance
  • Aids in acne reduction
  • Assists in reducing inflammation
  • Improves blood sugar management
  • Contributes to vitiligo treatment
  • Alleviates symptoms of eczema
  • Assists in psoriasis treatment
  • Lowers the risk of metabolic syndrome

With these potential health impacts of black seed oil in mind, let's explore how you can effectively integrate it into your skin care routine.

How To Use Black Seed In Your Skin Care Routine

Now that you know the benefits of using black seed oil, here are some tips for incorporating black seed oil into your routine:

  • Patch Test First: Before applying black seed oil to your face or body, do a patch test on a small area of skin.
  • Use To Treat Your Scalp: You can also apply black seed oil to your scalp before shampooing to nourish your scalp and promote healthy hair growth.
  • Dilute The Oil: If you’re using black seed oil directly, consider diluting it with a carrier oil like coconut, jojoba, or sweet almond oil, especially if you have sensitive skin. 
  • Dab Blemishes With A Cotton Swab: Due to its antimicrobial properties, black seed oil can be dabbed onto acne spots with a cotton swab to help reduce inflammation and clear up blemishes. Please consult your dermatologist before applying this oil to your skin. 
  • If You Have Skin Conditions: Similarly, if you have conditions like eczema or psoriasis, please consult your dermatologist before applying this oil to your skin. 

Supplements: How Much Black Seed Oil Should I Take? 

Doing a patch test for new skin care products is sufficient for most, but when it comes to ingesting black seed oil, we recommend consulting a doctor before starting any supplement to confirm that it's suitable for your personal health needs.

Typically, adults can consume 1 to 2.5 grams of black seed oil orally each day for a period ranging from four to 12 weeks. Alternatively, black seed powder is commonly taken at doses of one to two grams daily for eight to 12 weeks. To establish the most effective dosage for a particular health condition, it's advised to speak with a healthcare professional.

Is Black Seed Right for You?

With its historical accolades and contemporary acclaim, black seed offers an alluring proposition. While black seed is generally considered safe and well-tolerated, it's essential to be mindful of potential allergies, either when ingesting it or when applied topically. For those who are pregnant, breastfeeding or on medication, it’s vital to seek medical advice before incorporating black seed into your routine. 

Are you looking to improve congested skin or change up your skin care routine with natural products? Visit your local Eminence Organics Spa Partner to find out how.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:05:49 -0500 Anthia
Can You Get Clogged Pores At Any Age? The Causes And Solutions https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/can-you-get-clogged-pores-at-any-age-the-causes-and-solutions https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/can-you-get-clogged-pores-at-any-age-the-causes-and-solutions Four mature women on the beach

Can You Get Clogged Pores At Any Age? The Causes And Solutions

Clogged pores: a phrase that can make anyone pause and inspect their skin a little closer. But have you ever wondered if age plays a role in this pesky skin issue? Sure, we all know about teenage acne, but what about later in life? Is it a problem that fades with time, or does it evolve, taking on different forms as we age? Let’s uncover the intricate link between age, skin type and the best approaches to keeping your skin clear and healthy without clogged pores, no matter your age.

Why Do We Get Clogged Pores? What Causes Pore Changes?

Why Do We Get Clogged Pores?

Clogged pores typically occur when hair follicles on your skin get jammed up with oil, dead skin cells and other unpleasant gunk. Pores are tiny openings that contain these hair follicles and are connected to oil-producing sebaceous glands that keep your skin supple and protected.Signs of congested pores

Your pores play an important role in regulating skin’s moisture balance but when they mingle with dead skin and pollutants, it can spell trouble. Are you unsure what clogged pores look like? They can manifest as congestion on your skin, in the form of annoying blackheads, whiteheads and other symptoms including: 

  • Excess Oil: An oily or shiny appearance, often more noticeable in certain areas like the T-zone (forehead, nose, and chin), often goes hand in hand with pore congestion.
  • Whiteheads: These are small, raised, white bumps on the skin's surface, resulting from pores clogged with sebum and dead skin cells. 
  • Blackheads: Similar to whiteheads, this form of congestion appears dark due to the oxidation of the debris inside the pore.
  • Dull Skin Appearance: Congested skin often loses its natural radiance, appearing lackluster and tired. This can be connected to lingering dead skin.
  • Enlarged Pores: Pores may appear larger due to the accumulation of oil and debris.
  • Rough, Bumpy Texture: The skin's surface can feel uneven and coarse to the touch, indicating underlying congestion.

Now that you’re familiar with what clogged pores are, you may wonder if you can get them at any age. 

Clogged pores infographic

What Causes Changes In Pores?

The likelihood of you getting clogged pores will depend on several factors: 

Aging

As your skin matures, a natural part of the aging process is the depletion of collagen levels. This reduction in collagen can cause the skin to lose its firmness and plumpness, which in turn may lead to enlarged pores. Enlarged pores are more susceptible to becoming clogged with oil, dirt and dead skin cells, which can result in clogged pores.

Acne

According to DermNet, acne is associated with clogging enlarged pores "through weakening sebaceous gland and hair follicle openings, making them more prone to blockage." This blockage can also involve bacteria, leading to acne spots or lesions, or can be a result of an overproduction of oil, the accumulation of dead skin cells and the body's inflammatory response. 

Neglecting Your Skin Care

Inadequate cleansing, such as not washing your face properly or often enough, can lead to oil, makeup and dirt buildup, causing clogged pores. On the other hand, over-washing or using harsh cleansers is another cause for concern, as these approaches can strip natural oils and lead to increased sebum production, increasing the likelihood of developing clogged pores.

Genetics: You Have An Oily Skin Type

Genetic predisposition plays a role in skin type and its characteristics. Those with naturally oily skin are more prone to excessive sebum production and, consequently, clogged pores. Essentially, if oily skin runs in your family, you might find yourself more prone to issues related to excess oil, such as whiteheads, blackheads and enlarged pores.

Sebum Overproduction

Sebum, the natural oil produced by sebaceous glands, is essential for keeping the skin hydrated and healthy. But, when produced in excess, it can lead to a greasy look and feel. Plus when excess sebum mixes with dead skin cells or pollutants, pores frequently end up blocked and clogged. Skipping makeup removal before bed? That's practically an open invitation for clogged pores. Leaving makeup on too long traps sebum and dead skin against your skin, preventing their natural shedding process and leading to unwelcome clogs.

Neglecting regular exfoliation can allow dead skin cells to build up and clog your pores. Ideally, the natural process of skin shedding involves the removal of dead skin cells from the surface. However, if these cells are left to accumulate on the skin's surface and within the pores, they mix with sebum and other substances to form clogs. 

Hormonal Fluctuations

You might have noticed that at different times, your skin seems to behave differently. Often, this is linked to hormonal shifts that occur alongside puberty, the menstrual cycle, pregnancy or menopause. During these times, your body experiences changes in hormone levels, which can lead to an increase in sebum production, which as mentioned earlier, is a key factor in the development of clogged pores.

External Pollutants

Daily exposure to pollutants, dirt and makeup can contribute to clogged pores. These external pollutants accumulate on the skin, mix with sebum and dead skin cells and further exacerbate pore blockage. 

Stress 

Though it may not seem obvious, the connection between stress and clogged pores, specifically acne, is well documented. A study from the Archives of Dermatology observed a direct correlation between stress levels and acne severity. During certain times, your body experiences changes in hormone levels, which can result in increased sebum production. As mentioned earlier, this heightened sebum production is a key factor in the development of clogged pores.

Whether you're in your teens and 20s, or in your 50s and beyond, it’s helpful to consider these factors when pinpointing the reason for a sudden outbreak of clogged pores. Dealing with clogged pores is a bit like solving a puzzle — it's different for everyone and changes over time. If you're keen to dive deeper and discover effective methods to unclog your pores, be sure to check out our comprehensive guide on how to decongest clogged pores. There, you'll find detailed skin care strategies and tips for maintaining clear, healthy skin.

You can also visit your local Eminence Organics Spa Partner to get a personalized and professional routine to assist with your clogged pores or any other skin issues.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:05:47 -0500 Anthia
Herb Flavor Profiles for DIY Tea Blending https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herb-flavor-profiles-for-diy-tea-blending https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herb-flavor-profiles-for-diy-tea-blending Herb Flavor Profiles for DIY Tea Blending

As herbalists, many of us create infusions (teas) with health and wellness in mind, choosing herbs based on what constituents they can provide us. As tea enthusiasts, we also care about the tea-drinking experience and the synergistic way that the flavors and aromas of different herbs can join together when put in hot water. It is this synergy that comes into play with tasting notes. Tasting notes are the descriptive language that connoisseurs use to help us understand the nuances at play in each cup: a set of terms to describe visual cues, aromas, taste, sensations, and more. I can’t tell you why ‘tangy, lively, and refreshing’ are the flavor notes in my everyday go-to drink-it-all-day herbal tea, but knowing those terms helps steer me toward other herbs and spices that work well together when making my own herbal tea blends.

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Wed, 14 Feb 2024 11:05:08 -0500 Anthia
Deep Dish Pizza https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/deep-dish-pizza https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/deep-dish-pizza The post Deep Dish Pizza appeared first on Diethood.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 10:32:07 -0500 Anthia
How to stay consistent with working out https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-stay-consistent-with-working-out https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-stay-consistent-with-working-out Sharing tips on how to stay consistent with working out, even when life gets in the way. 

Hi friends! How’s the week treating you so far? I hope you’re having a great one. I have two podcast interviews this morning (new episode will be up tomorrow!) and am looking forward to coffee with a friend this afternoon.

For today’s post, I wanted to talk a little bit about workout consistency. When I do my annual survey, this is always a common theme. It can be SO hard to stick with a routine, and I wanted to share some tips.

Staying consistent with a workout routine can be challenging, especially when exercise isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Despite the undeniable benefits of regular physical activity, finding the motivation to lace up your sneakers and GO can be a struggle. If you’ve ever grappled with incorporating exercise into your daily routine, you’re not alone. In today’s post, I’m sharing tips and strategies to help you stay motivated and committed to your workout goals.

How To Stay Consistent With Working Out

Start Small and Build Gradually:

Kickstarting a consistent exercise routine doesn’t mean diving into hour-long intense workouts from the get-go. Begin with manageable durations and intensity, gradually building as your fitness level improves. This approach makes the process more sustainable. Start with just 10 minutes and see how you feel.

Set Realistic Goals:

Trim down your fitness goals into smaller, achievable milestones. Setting realistic expectations prevents overwhelm and allows you to celebrate victories along the way, keeping you motivated for the long term. Check out this post for tips on goal setting!

Choose Activities You Enjoy:

Exercise doesn’t have to be a chore. Opt for activities you genuinely enjoy, whether it’s dancing, hiking, or a favorite sport. When you look forward to your workout, staying consistent becomes much easier. Don’t feel like you *should* only do a certain type of workout. The best workout is the one that you’ll actually do. This means that it’s something you enjoy and look forward to. There are a million types of exercise out there, which means the perfect one for you absolutely exists.

Track Your Progress:

Keep a workout journal or use fitness apps to track your progress. Seeing improvements, no matter how small, serves as a powerful motivator and helps you stay accountable to your goals.

Recruit a Workout Buddy:

Enlist a friend or family member to join you in your fitness journey. Having a workout buddy not only adds a social aspect to exercise but also provides mutual encouragement and support.

Mix Up Your Routine:

Monotony can lead to boredom and decreased motivation. Spice up your workouts by incorporating variety—try different exercises, classes, or outdoor activities to keep things interesting. Here are workouts you can try for free!

Eliminate Barriers and Distractions:

Identify potential obstacles that may hinder your workout routine and find ways to eliminate or mitigate them. Whether it’s laying out your workout clothes the night before or scheduling exercise during less hectic times, removing barriers fosters consistency. Think about your biggest barriers and create a gameplay to overcome them.

Create a Home Gym Setup:

Consider establishing a home gym setup to make exercise more accessible. Having a dedicated space with essential equipment can eliminate excuses related to travel or time constraints.

Hold Yourself Accountable:

Set regular check-ins and assessments to evaluate your progress. Holding yourself accountable reinforces your commitment to staying consistent and allows for adjustments to your workout plan as needed.

Prioritize Long-Term Health:

Remind yourself of the numerous benefits of consistent exercise, ranging from weight loss to improved mental well-being. Prioritizing long-term health over short-term challenges can serve as a powerful motivator.

Staying consistent with working out is achievable with the right mindset and strategies in place. By starting small, setting realistic goals, enjoying the process, and incorporating these tips, you’ll be well on your way to making exercise a sustainable and rewarding part of your routine. Remember, the journey to a healthier you is a marathon, not a sprint! Give yourself time and grace as you work to achieve your goals.

So, tell me, friends: do you struggle with consistency? What do you think is the biggest thing that keeps you from sticking to a routine?

If you’re looking for phased strength training plans that were created to burn fat, build muscle, keep boredom away, and are flexible to work with your life, check out Fit Team! You can try it for 7 days free here. 

xo

Gina

The post How to stay consistent with working out appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 10:31:55 -0500 Anthia
152: The Truth About Seed Oils with Udo Erasmus https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/152-the-truth-about-seed-oils-with-udo-erasmus https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/152-the-truth-about-seed-oils-with-udo-erasmus Today I’m so thrilled and honored to welcome Udo Erasmus to the show. I’ve been a fan of his for years (decades?!) since I discovered Udo’s Oil, which I first started to become interested in a healthier lifestyle. He’s a wealth of knowledge and I enjoyed our conversation so much; I hope you’ll take a listen.

We talk mostly about the elephant in the room: seed oils!

Are they actually *bad*?

Why are some seed oils better than others?

How do we get an ideal balance of Omega 3s and 6s? Why is it important?

Super fascinating stuff. Stay tuned for another interview with him where we discuss his 8-step process ????

Here’s a bit more about Udo and his background:

The legendary Udo Erasmus is the co-founder of Udo’s Choice line, which can be found in Whole Foods and other health food stores worldwide. Udo designed the machinery for making oils with health in mind and pioneered flax oil, a billion dollar industry. However, Udo walked a difficult path tobecome the man he is today. Being a child of war, Udo’s life began with intense struggle. As an adult, he got pesticide poisoning in 1980, leaving doctors at a loss regarding treatment. Deciding to take his health into his own hands, Udo began researching, and his discoveries led him to a passion for finding the answers to life’s big questions which would hopefully one day bring him and the world peace.

Today, Udo is an acclaimed speaker and author of many books, including the best-selling Fats That Heal Fats That Kill, which has sold over 250,000 copies. He teaches at events hosted by Tony Robbins and Deepak Chopra, has keynoted an international brain health conference, and has traveled to over 30 countries to conduct thousands of live presentations, media interviews, and staff trainings impacting more than 25,000,000 lives with his message on oils, health, peace, nature, and human nature. Udo has an extensive education in biochemistry, genetics, biology, and nutrition, including a master’s degree in counseling psychology.

You can connect with him on his website and on Instagram.

 

More resources from this episode:

Join us for Fit Team! This is my online fitness community and you can try it free for 7 days.

I love love love the meals from Sakara LifeUse this link and the code XOGINAH for 20% off their meal delivery and clean boutique items. This is something I do once a month as a lil treat to myself and the meals are always showstoppers.

If any of my fellow health professional friends are looking for another way to help their clients, I highly recommend IHP. You can also use this information to heal yourself and then go one to heal others, which I think is a beautiful mission. You can absolutely join if you don’t currently work in the health or fitness industry; many IHPs don’t begin on this path. They’re friends who are passionate to learn more about health and wellness, and want to share this information with those they love. You can do this as a passion, or start an entirely new career.

You can use my referral link here and the code FITNESSISTA for up to $250 off the Integrative Health Practitioner program. I highly recommend it! You can check out my review IHP Level 1 here and my review of Level 2 here.

I’m still obsessed with my sauna blanket. This is one of my favorite ways to relax and sweat it out. I find that it energizes me, helps with aches and pains, I sleep better on the days I use this, and it makes my skin glow. Link to check it out here. You can also use my discount FITNESSISTA15 for the PEMF Go Mat, which I use every day, and the red light face mask, which is a staple in my weekly skincare routine.

Get 20% off Organifi with the code FITNESSISTA. I drink the green juice, red juice, gold, and Harmony! (Each day I might have something different, or have two different things. Everything I’ve tried is amazing.) I’m currently obsessed with the shilajit gummies!

Thank you so much for listening and for all of your support with the podcast! Please be sure to subscribe, and leave a rating or review if you enjoyed this episode. If you leave a rating, head to this page and you’ll get a little “thank you” gift from me to you. 

The post 152: The Truth About Seed Oils with Udo Erasmus appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 10:31:55 -0500 Anthia
7 Ways You Can Modify Yoga Poses for Low Back Pain https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-ways-you-can-modify-yoga-poses-for-low-back-pain https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-ways-you-can-modify-yoga-poses-for-low-back-pain 7 Ways You Can Modify Yoga Poses for Low Back Pain

Because you shouldn't have to suffer through your practice.

The post 7 Ways You Can Modify Yoga Poses for Low Back Pain appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 09:43:06 -0500 Anthia
Fall Asleep Faster With This 20&Minute Yin Yoga Practice in Bed https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fall-asleep-faster-with-this-20-minute-yin-yoga-practice-in-bed https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fall-asleep-faster-with-this-20-minute-yin-yoga-practice-in-bed Fall Asleep Faster With This 20-Minute Yin Yoga Practice in Bed

Swap your mat for your mattress. 

The post Fall Asleep Faster With This 20-Minute Yin Yoga Practice in Bed appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 09:43:05 -0500 Anthia
The Benefits Of Silk Pillowcases For Skin And Hair https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-benefits-of-silk-pillowcases-for-skin-and-hair https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-benefits-of-silk-pillowcases-for-skin-and-hair Woman sleeping on a silk pillowcase

The Benefits Of Silk Pillowcases For Skin And Hair

Written By (old):
Libby Wright

We all know that beauty sleep is a real thing. Getting enough hours in dreamland can benefit your health in several ways, many of which show up on your skin. Besides the obvious reduction in dark circles and the rejuvenation that can come with quality sleep, there are many other beauty perks that can be attributed to a healthy sleep schedule. Skin repairs and regenerates overnight, so the skin care products you apply before bed can be extra effective during a nice, long slumber.  

Part of good sleep hygiene is the environment created in the bedroom, from temperature to humidity levels, scents and bedding — and silk pillowcases are having a moment right now because they offer unique beauty benefits. These luxurious bedding essentials are not only a treat for the senses, but also offer a range of advantages for your hair and skin. Let’s explore how silk pillowcases can level up your beauty routine and enhance your overall well-being while you sleep!

What Is Silk? | How Silk Pillowcases Benefit Skin | How Silk Pillowcases Benefit Hair | Additional Benefits Of Silk Pillowcases | Vegan Silk | How To Choose And Care For Silk 

What Is Silk? 

Silk is the strongest natural fiber used in the world of textiles. It consists mainly of a protein called fibroin, which is what certain types of insect larvae secrete to make their cocoons. Most of the world’s genuine silk comes from Bombyx mori larvae, which are worms that live on mulberry trees. These days, silkworms are bred and silk is manufactured in factories, but the basic process used to make the fabric has stayed very close to its origins, dating back to ancient China thousands of years ago. Prized for both its softness and durability, the fabric is considered a luxury by many and is used to manufacture everything from scarves to dresses, lingerie and curtains.

The benefits of silk for the skin have long been understood but have only become mainstream in the last few decades. Because silk is more expensive to manufacture than synthetic fabrics and other natural materials like cotton, silk bedding was considered extravagant. These days, thanks in part to social media trends, silk pillowcases have become more popular and their price points more attainable. 

How Silk Pillowcases Benefit Skin

Gentle To The Touch 

If you’ve had the pleasure of feeling silk in person, then you know that it has an incredibly gentle and soft feel. No wonder it provides such a delicate touch to your skin as you sleep! Unlike other common bedding fabrics that can cause irritation (linen and polyester, among others), silk pillowcases offer a smooth and soothing surface that minimizes friction (aka tugging on the skin as you toss and turn). This reduces the risk of skin irritation, which is especially helpful for those with sensitive skin or those with inflammatory skin conditions like eczema or acne

Reduce Facial Wrinkles And Sleep Lines

That smooth texture allows your skin to slide easily against the pillowcase, reducing the formation of sleep lines and wrinkles. With regular use, silk pillowcases can help maintain a more youthful and refreshed appearance and let you wake up to fewer creases etched into your forehead or cheeks. While your facial wrinkles won’t reduce overnight, you may wake up with a smoother-looking face thanks to a reduction in the sleep lines that other fabrics can cause. This is especially true for side and stomach sleepers!

Help Maintain Skin Hydration 

Silk pillowcases provide moisture-preserving properties for skin. Not only does this textile help maintain the natural moisture of your skin and prevent excessive drying, it’s less likely to absorb moisture from the skin — including any skin care products you loaded up on before hitting the sheets. This can be especially beneficial for those with dry or sensitive skin, especially in winter months. By allowing more of the hydration to stay on the skin and not get wiped away, silk pillowcases contribute to a healthier and more radiant complexion.

How Silk Pillowcases Benefit Hair

Reduce Frizz And Breakage

Because silk is naturally smoother than other fabrics, resting your strands on the soft surface of silk pillowcases minimizes friction against your hair, reducing frizz and breakage. Unlike cotton or other rough fabrics that can cause hair to snag and tangle, silk allows your hair to glide gently as you sleep, keeping your locks smooth and manageable.

Retain Moisture In The Hair

Just like on the skin, silk helps the natural oils stay in your hair, preventing dryness and promoting healthy, hydrated strands. By preserving moisture, silk pillowcases can help reduce hair damage and promote overall hair health. And since you spend about one third of your life with your head on the pillow, this can make a big difference in the moisture and hydration levels of your hair.    

Prevent Tangles And Bedhead

Tossing and turning during sleep can lead to tangled hair and messy bedhead in the morning. The soft and smooth surface of silk pillowcases allows your hair to glide effortlessly, minimizing tangles and helping you wake up with a smoother mane. 

Body second

Additional Benefits of Silk Pillowcases

Hypoallergenic Properties

Silk is naturally hypoallergenic, making it an excellent choice for anyone with sensitive skin or allergies. Silk pillowcases are less likely than cotton or synthetic fabrics to harbor dust mites, bacteria and other allergens, providing a cleaner and healthier sleep environment. That being said, there are a lot of other spots where these nasty things can hide. Make sure you regularly wash your sheets and that you add a mattress protector to the mix. 

Temperature Regulation

Silk has the ability to regulate temperature, keeping you cool in hot weather and warm in colder climates. And unlike cotton and flannel which are known to absorb moisture like sweat, silk does not. This can contribute to a more comfortable and restful sleep, allowing your skin to rejuvenate overnight

Longevity, Durability And Comfort

In addition to their luxe feel and many benefits, silk pillowcases are also known for their durability and longevity. With proper care, they can retain their luxurious feel for an extended period, making them a worthwhile investment for your beauty routine.

Vegan Silk

There are vegan alternatives to silk that can emulate the luxurious texture of traditional silk without relying on silk-producing insects. Plant-based alternatives include Tencel, which is derived from the pulp of eucalyptus trees and provides most of the same benefits of silk, including the soft, slippery feel, durability and hypoallergenic properties. Other plant-based silks come from pineapple fiber, banana fiber and bamboo.

Tips for Choosing And Caring For Silk Pillowcases

Types of Silk to Look For

When selecting silk pillowcases, opt for high-quality mulberry or charmeuse silk. These varieties are known for their smoothness, durability and superior quality.

Washing and Care Instructions

Silk pillowcases require gentle care to preserve their softness and luster. It is recommended to hand wash them using a mild detergent or machine wash on a delicate cycle with cold water. Avoid the use of bleach or harsh chemicals that may damage the silk fibers. Air drying is the best method to maintain the integrity of the silk fabric.

Have you experienced the numerous benefits of silk pillowcases? Leave a note in our comments or join the conversation on social media. 

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 09:42:57 -0500 Anthia
Mountain Rose Herbs Takes Big Steps in Herbal Industry Transparency https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/mountain-rose-herbs-takes-big-steps-in-herbal-industry-transparency https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/mountain-rose-herbs-takes-big-steps-in-herbal-industry-transparency Organic, sustainably sourced herbs in a sunny field.

In a hyper-connected world full of consumption, how do we make the best choices when purchasing products? How do we determine the impact of our decisions based on our values? Now more than ever, we are faced with businesses greenwashing customers, and as a result, consumers have become detached from where things come from or how they have come to be. Terms like “natural” or “therapeutic” are used with reckless abandon and we are given minimal information to make the best choices for our bodies and our planet.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 09:42:49 -0500 Anthia
Nourishing Herbal Broths https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/nourishing-herbal-broths https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/nourishing-herbal-broths Mug of hot homemade herbal broth.

I am a firm believer in broths for their gut-supporting, extremely tasty, and nourishing qualities. You can pack so much nutrition in each little sip. Adding a myriad of herbs to our broth base is the perfect vehicle for incorporating wellness into our modern lives.

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Thu, 08 Feb 2024 09:42:48 -0500 Anthia
Fire Zodiac Perfume Recipe with Essential Oils https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fire-zodiac-perfume-recipe-with-essential-oils https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fire-zodiac-perfume-recipe-with-essential-oils Fire Zodiac Perfume Recipe with Essential Oils



Over the past few months, I have been working on an elemental perfume series. I first tapped deep into the soil to find inspiration for an Earth Goddess blend. From there, I dove into the sea to create a whimsical Mermaid Blend made with “juicy” ylang ylang and brisk bay laurel. Then I soared amongst the clouds to create a blend with “go-with-the-flow” vibes that was crafted with ravensara and coriander. The last stop on this aromatic journeywas to be fire, and I had been waiting patiently for inspiration to strike me. Boy did it ever! My community was hit with a bad ice storm that resulted in hundreds of fallen trees and dangerous conditions. I was stuck at home without electricity or internet for several days and was fully reliant on my wood-burning stove for heat, cooking, and entertainment. During this time, I became deeply reacquainted with fire. 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 06:26:16 -0500 Anthia
Natural Ways to Support Menstruation + Tea Blend https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/natural-ways-to-support-menstruation-tea-blend https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/natural-ways-to-support-menstruation-tea-blend Natural Ways to Support Menstruation + Tea Blend

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When your moontime calls, listen to your body. She’s calling for nourishment and rest. Calling you back to yourself and your wise woman within. Back to the cycle of the moon within you—your womb, your hormonal cycle, your psyche. Give yourself permission to find a little quiet time to yourself. Soak in some extra self-care. Sip herbal infusions.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 06:26:16 -0500 Anthia
For Life: A Tool to Measure Corporate Social Responsibility https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/for-life-a-tool-to-measure-corporate-social-responsibility https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/for-life-a-tool-to-measure-corporate-social-responsibility For Life: A Tool to Measure Corporate Social Responsibility

 

For over a decade, Mountain Rose Herbs has worked closely with Fair for Life (FFL), a Switzerland-based, fair trade certification program that seriously ups the ante on fair trade practices, making life-changing improvements in labor relationships both externally and internally. The mission is clear in this program statement: Fair for Life’s vision is a world where trade, through ethical, fair, and respectful partnerships, is a driving force for positive and sustainable change benefiting people and their environment.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 06:26:15 -0500 Anthia
Fermented Rice Water Hair Treatment with Herbs https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fermented-rice-water-hair-treatment-with-herbs https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fermented-rice-water-hair-treatment-with-herbs Fermented Rice Water Hair Treatment with Herbs

Fermented rice water has a long history of use in Asia as a hair rinse. When we soak or cook rice, we capture the natural inositol from the grain in the water. Inositol is a form of sugar that our bodies naturally produce to provide structure to our cells, and is also found in some foods, including grains and legumes like rice. Inositol-rich rice water, especially when fermented, also carries proteins, vitamins, minerals, and amino acids believed to support a healthy scalp, hair strength, and shine. Want to take it up another notch? Infuse rice water with hair-loving herbs! 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 06:26:13 -0500 Anthia
Stir Fry Sauce: Oyster Sauce &amp; Hoisin Sauce Substitute + Stir&Fry Recipe https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/stir-fry-sauce-oyster-sauce-hoisin-sauce-substitute-stir-fry-recipe https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/stir-fry-sauce-oyster-sauce-hoisin-sauce-substitute-stir-fry-recipe Stir Fry Sauce: Oyster Sauce & Hoisin Sauce Substitute + Stir-Fry Recipe

We are big stir-fry and Asian food fans at my house, and I love a really good stir-fry sauce. But I struggle with the high fructose corn syrup and the way-too-many-preservatives-and-ingredients-I-can’t-pronounce problem in most bottled sauces. Also, the presence of seafood and/or gluten are issues for my vegetarian and gluten-free family members. And finally, for many households like mine, it’s hard to get through an entire bottle before the contents spoil. All of this means I refuse to purchase pre-made stir-fry sauces and the oyster or hoisin sauce that is so common (and delicious) in my favorite Asian sauces. I wanted to create an easy-to-use substitute that packs in the umami goodness I love about these sauces.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 06:26:13 -0500 Anthia
6 Reasons To Add Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant To Your Routine https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/6-reasons-to-add-strawberry-rhubarb-dermafoliant-to-your-routine https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/6-reasons-to-add-strawberry-rhubarb-dermafoliant-to-your-routine strawberry rhubarb dermafoliant

6 Reasons To Add Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant To Your Routine

Our Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant has earned its status as a skin care staple. Celebrated for its efficacy, this gentle rice-based exfoliator leaves your complexion looking more refined, bright and polished. Here are six reasons why beauty editors, celebrities and makeup artists call this a favorite — and why it should be a part of your routine.

6 Reasons To Add Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant To Your Routine

1. Beauty Editor And Celebrity Reviews

Beauty experts test tons of products. Even with a bevy of other exfoliators to grab their attention, beauty experts agree that our Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant is the key to beautiful skin. Refinery29’s beauty editors call it the perfect pick to keep skin in tip-top shape between spa visits. Westworld star Thandiwe Newton also swears by it, saying: “Completely natural and organic, smells divine and is gentle enough (but properly effective) to use morning and night.” Celebrity makeup artist Pati Dubroff includes Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant in her skin care arsenal, revealing to NewBeauty that it is a must-have for her A-list clients.

2. Made With Natural Ingredients

With the addition of water, Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant transforms into a creamy yet polishing paste that sloughs away dead cells and buffs the skin’s texture, revealing a smooth, flawless-looking complexion. This popular exfoliant is infused with natural ingredients that work together to cleanse and polish the skin. Strawberries containing salicylic acid gently exfoliate and remove impurities to brighten the skin and shrink the appearance of pores. Rhubarb, another key ingredient, is an excellent source of ascorbic acid and vitamins that minimize the visible signs of aging. Chickpea flour reduces the appearance of pores while lactic acid plus rice gently slough off dead skin cells to improve skin texture for a rejuvenated appearance.

3. Dermascope Aestheticians' Choice Award Winner 

Over the years, the Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant has won its share of awards. In 2021, over 73,000 votes were cast by licensed aestheticians and industry professionals, selecting our the exfoliant as “Favorite Exfoliating Scrub” at the Dermascope Aestheticians' Choice Awards. It also won “Best Facial Exfoliator” at the Spa & Wellness Mexicaribe Product Awards in 2020 and “Best Exfoliating Products for Sensitive Skin” at The Zoe Report Awards in 2020. The accolades received by the Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant from industry experts and professionals speak volumes about its quality and effectiveness. This widespread recognition leads us to delve into what makes it so special: the Dermafoliant's innovative blend of both physical and chemical exfoliation methods. 

4. Uses Both Physical And Chemical Exfoliation

The acclaim garnered by the Dermafoliant is largely attributed to its distinctive formulation. This exfoliant uses both physical and chemical exfoliation to offer your skin a dual-action polish. The physical exfoliation is thanks to the inclusion of rice flour that buffs and smooths texture. Rice acts as a soft exfoliant, enhancing and refining skin texture, and effectively soaks up surplus oil. Additionally, adzuki flour plays a role in revitalizing and illuminating the skin, while oat flour offers hydrating benefits and contributes to a smoother skin appearance by eliminating surface dirt and impurities. At the same time, lactic and salicylic acids remove dead skin cells via chemical exfoliation, revealing flawless-looking skin. Lactic acid specifically hastens the exfoliation process, promoting the emergence of new skin cells for a glowy complexion. This formula also contains a Biocomplex2, a booster of antioxidants, Coenzyme Q10 and alpha lipoic acid to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. 

5. Multiple Ways To Exfoliate 

Designed to activate when combined with water, the Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant is what you call a powder-to-paste exfoliant. To use correctly, dispense a small amount of dry powder to your hand, add a few drops of water and rub your hands together. When you add water, you’ll see the texture transforming. You can either use it on its own as a paste or if you prefer, mix this in with a cleanser. It’s customizable and totally up to you! 

6. Naturally Scented

Beyond its adaptable application, the Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant also stands out for its delicious natural fragrance. This daily-use cleansing exfoliant is infused with the enticing aroma of strawberries and rhubarb. Plus, strawberries are an excellent source of Vitamin C, flavonoids and ellagic acid which all combine to promote a radiant-looking appearance.

Product Reviews: What Do Customers Say?

From its enticing scent to its remarkable results, this best-selling product is a favorite for many. But don't just take our word for it — our customers have a lot to say about their experiences with this product. One customer, Jennifer, states: “Love this stuff! I have been using this product for about 9 months. I turned 50 and realized I needed to start a good skin care routine ... This was recommended by a friend. My skin looks amazing!”

Another customer, Bethanne, says: “I have been hunting down something like this for a long time and had high hopes when a friend told me about this line of products. I bought this and have used it for a couple of months now and I am sold! It's not too abrasive. It smells delicious. I don't have any sensitivity issues with it. It's 100 stars!” 

After hearing these reviews, we’re eager to get yours too. Is Strawberry Rhubarb Dermafoliant part of your skin care routine? We’d love to hear what you love about it! Share your thoughts with us in the comments below or join the conversation on social media.

Updated By

Thea Christie
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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:37 -0500 Anthia
From Soil To Skin: Why Eminence Organics Uses Regenerative Farming Practices https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/from-soil-to-skin-why-eminence-organics-uses-regenerative-farming-practices https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/from-soil-to-skin-why-eminence-organics-uses-regenerative-farming-practices Soil at Eminence Organics' Farm

From Soil To Skin: Why Eminence Organics Uses Regenerative Farming Practices

At Eminence Organic Skin Care, we’ve always known that nourishing your skin starts with the seed. Eminence Organics has prided itself on practicing green initiatives that reduce the company’s carbon footprint since its inception in 1958, long before the word “organic” became commonplace. You may be familiar with our commitment to using natural, organic ingredients, but we've also always used regenerative farming to cultivate a richer, healthier earth. Regenerative agriculture is a promising approach that focuses on enhancing and sustaining the farm's entire ecosystem, particularly soil health. Join us in exploring why we are at the forefront of this eco-friendly movement.

What Is Regenerative Farming?

While regenerative farming has only recently gained widespread attention, it has deep historical roots. This method incorporates techniques such as rotating crops, applying natural compost, and supporting a varied ecosystem. It's a way of farming that cares for the Earth just as much as it cares for the crops it produces. 

While regenerative farming nourishes the earth and promotes healthy crop growth, it also addresses a broader environmental challenge: The critical task of reducing its carbon footprint. The agricultural sector, including forestry and other land use, accounts for nearly 25% of all human-made greenhouse gas emissions, with CO2 being the primary contributor to climate change. However, agriculture is also positioned to help resolve this crisis by creating a sustainable, carbon pollution-free future. This might seem contradictory, but as the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change explains, utilizing agriculture's mitigation potential is essential for emission reduction. A promising approach is regenerative agriculture, which focuses on improving and sustaining the farm's entire ecosystem, particularly soil health. 

Agriculture

Regenerative farming, though recently gaining widespread attention, has deep historical roots. Traditionally, farmers instinctively used methods that honored and preserved the earth's natural balance. This approach lost prominence with the Industrial Revolution, which modernized agriculture but at the cost of environmental health. Now there's been a resurgence in regenerative farming, highlighting its increasing relevance and necessity in contemporary agriculture. Let's examine the key differences between regenerative farming, known for its use of natural fertilizers and soil-enriching compost, and the methods used in conventional farming.

Regenerative Farming Vs. Conventional Farming 

In the world of farming, traditional, regenerative techniques are making a major resurgence. So, what’s the difference?

Regenerative farming:

  • Incorporates natural and organic fertilizers 
  • Includes compost, which fortifies soil
  • Implements gentle tilling when necessary
  • Maintains weed cover
  • Uses crop rotation
  • Champions biodiversity

Conventional Farming:

  • Relies on synthetic pesticides and fertilizers
  • Rarely includes compost 
  • Requires/ Uses frequent tilling
  • Removes weeds 
  • Uses monoculture or polyculture 
  • Focuses on high-crop yield

Our Regenerative Farming Mission

From the beginning, the Eminence Certified Organic Farm, nestled between the Danube and Tisza rivers, has been committed to regenerative farming. Our farmers practice crop rotation and natural composting and encourage biodiversity, which revitalizes the land. These techniques ensure the ingredients used in our products are grown in a way that is both environmentally sustainable and supportive of the local ecosystem.

Regenerative Farming Techniques We Love

Composting

An all-natural way to fertilize! We let our organic waste break down into nutritious compost that can be added back to the soil. 

Winter Weed Cover

Weeds aren’t all bad. Winter weed cover provides nutrients for spring crops and helps soil retain water. 

Crop Rotation

A different field is given time to rest each season, allowing the soil time to replenish much-needed nutrients.

Fallow Fields

Each season, a different field is given time to rest, allowing the soil time to replenish much-needed nutrients.

Companion Planting

We place plants near their friends! Consider planting bug-repelling calendula near bug attractants like tomatoes to provide natural protection.

Enhanced Soil Quality

With minimal tilling and enriching nutrients, regenerative farming enhances soil quality, leading to healthier, nutrient-rich crops at the Eminence Certified Organic Farm.

Improved Water Conservation

Efficient water use is a hallmark of regenerative farming. Techniques reduce water usage, enhance soil water retention and minimize harmful runoff.

Diversity in Ecosystems

Crop rotation and pesticide avoidance foster a variety of plant life and support local wildlife, promoting balanced ecosystems and cleaner air.

Addressing Climate Change

Our dedication to nature goes hand in hand with our commitment to planet Earth. Regenerative farming plays a crucial role in capturing carbon emissions and fostering the growth of robust crops, significantly contributing to climate change mitigation.

Community Engagement

Eminence's farm is part of a global network of sustainable farms, contributing to new economic opportunities and ecological restoration.

We’re committed to finding organic, Earth-friendly solutions in every aspect of our business. You can learn more about our green initiatives here. What things do you like to do to help the planet? Let us know in the comments below or chat with us on social media.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:36 -0500 Anthia
Valentine&apos;s Day Gift Guide For Every Occasion https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/valentines-day-gift-guide-for-every-occasion https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/valentines-day-gift-guide-for-every-occasion

Valentine's Day Gift Guide For Every Occasion

It’s almost Valentine’s Day and love is in the air. We’ve gathered the best skin care gifts to help you celebrate the most heartfelt day of the year. Whether you’re going on a date night, gifting your friends or treating yourself, read on to find out how to make the occasion extra special. 

Fall In Love With These Date Night Gift Ideas

We recommend prepping for the most romantic night of the year with the Monoi Age Corrective Exfoliating Cleanser. The exotic scent of monoi will help set the mood, and the combination of physical and chemical exfoliants will refine the skin’s texture to reveal a fresh, youthful-looking complexion. In fact, 93% of users saw refined skin in just two weeks!*

Next, spoil your sweetheart with the best-selling Apricot Body Oil, a gift that’s sure to heat up your date night. This aromatic oil can be used for body massage, as well as all-over moisturization, to deliver a big dose of hydration. A few drops will leave the skin feeling irresistibly soft and smooth. 

Our heavenly Mangosteen Body Lotion is a treat any day, but extra blissful on Valentine’s Day. Formulated with a unique Lactic Acid Complex, this lightweight formula absorbs quickly and gently resurfaces to reveal bright, radiant skin.      

The Arctic Berry Radiance Peptide Radiance Cream is the gift that keeps on giving. An all-powerful daily moisturizer, this cream helps reveal radiant, smooth, even and luminous skin long after the special day. One customer, Stephanie Q., left a review on our website saying: “You will absolutely notice a difference after using this product. It's called a ‘radiance cream’ and says it will 'reveal your radiance naturally and discover smooth, even and luminous skin' ... and that is exactly how I would describe my skin the morning after using this product. It's magical.”

Product picks first

Monoi Age Corrective Exfoliating Cleanser Arctic Berry Peptide Radiance Cream

Product picks second

Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum Camellia Glow Solid Face Oil

Body second

Best Friends Forever: Gift Your Friends With Great Skin

Showing love to your friends is always a fun way to celebrate Valentine’s Day, and why not spread joy with a thoughtful gift that will help them love themselves and their skin? 

One great way to do that is with a product or two that will have them glowing. Our Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum will do that and more. Made with our Botanical Hyaluronic Acid Complex to deeply hydrate for visibly smoother and softer skin, this lightweight gel-cream works on all skin types, giving an extra boost to dry and dehydrated skin. 

And while we’re on the topic of glowing skin, let’s shine a light on the Camellia Glow Solid Face Oil. After three weeks of use, 87% of users experienced a healthier-looking skin glow.** This replenishing face oil melts into the skin, leaving the complexion rejuvenated and softened. Camellia oil is highly moisturizing and, when combined with marula oil and hemp seed oil, can revitalize skin that looks dull or fatigued. Give the gift of soft, radiant skin. That’s what friends are for. 

If a luminous and silky-looking complexion is on your BFF's list, we recommend gifting the Turmeric Energizing Treatment. Formulated with turmeric, citrine gemstones and zeolite, this powder-to-mousse formula works as an exfoliant, a warming powder and a mask that awakens the skin and draws out impurities. 

Finally, if you want to give a gift that includes a bit of everything and lets your friends discover their Eminence Organics favorites, the Must Have Minis Starter Set is packaged perfectly for gifting. It features miniature versions of five of our best-selling products packed into a convenient zippered faux suede pouch that’s perfect for travel. This starter set includes a mini cleanser, exfoliant, moisturizer, facial concentrate and eye serum. It’s a complete skin care routine that’s suitable for all skin types.

Body third

Treat Yourself This Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day doesn’t always have to be about spoiling somebody else. Why not pamper yourself and feel beautiful in your own skin? If you’re spending the night in, do it with a routine that will send you off to sleep feeling great. 

The Birch Water Purifying Essence is a nice place to start. After cleansing your skin, dispense a couple of drops in your hands or on a cotton pad and pat the lightweight essence onto your face. As well as restoring moisture levels, birch water purifies the skin while botanical collagen improves the look of elasticity and protects the skin’s barrier function. This first step in your self care routine helps the skin better absorb and retain the benefits of subsequent products. 

For the next step in your night of pampering, treat your skin with a blend of results-oriented actives and ingredients that impart intense moisture and protection. Our Rosehip Triple C+E Firming Oil is a deeply hydrating facial oil that fights the signs of aging, smooths the look of wrinkles and infuses the skin with Vitamins C and E. Plus, it's perfect for all skin types.  

Next, bring comfort and serenity to dry, dull-looking skin with a rich slow-absorbing mask. A luxurious step in your routine, the Kombucha Microbiome Leave-On Masque contains ginger and pre, pro and postbiotics† to visibly renew the appearance of the skin while supporting your moisture barrier. Ideal for all skin types, this mask helps the skin appear vibrant, hydrated and healthy.

To finish off your routine and drift into a luxurious night’s sleep, slather your body with the with the ultra-rich Monoi Age Corrective Night Body Cream and wake up to softer, smoother and more youthful-looking skin.

Do you need help choosing gifts for your loved ones or yourself? Visit your nearest Eminence Organics Spa Partner for all of your Valentine’s Day shopping needs! 

*In vivo results after 14 days

**Associated with a significant decrease in transepidermal water loss after 21 days of twice daily application

†Does not contain live probiotic cultures

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:34 -0500 Anthia
What Is My Skin Type And Will It Change With Age? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-my-skin-type-and-will-it-change-with-age https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-my-skin-type-and-will-it-change-with-age Mature woman posing for photo

What Is My Skin Type And Will It Change With Age?

What is your skin type? If you’re unsure, there are some tests that can help you determine what type of skin you have. Once you’ve figured it out, the next question might be whether you’ll be blessed (or cursed) with that same skin type for your whole life. While some experts believe that your skin type is genetically determined and permanent, others suggest that skin type can evolve over time due to factors like age, hormonal shifts and changes in your environment. Read on to find out more about how your skin can evolve over time and what that means for the health of your complexion. 

What’s My Skin Type? 

Knowing what type of skin you have is an important part of the long-term health of your body’s largest organ. Not only is it a factor when you’re choosing what skin care products to use to keep your skin looking its best, it can also have an effect on the way your skin feels and how it should be treated for best results, comfort and overall skin health. 

There are five different skin types, each with its own set of issues. Let’s dive a little deeper:

Normal

Normal skin is known to be healthy and balanced. Your complexion looks and feels evenly hydrated with consistent oil levels and uniform texture. Consider yourself one of the lucky ones! 

Dry

If you have dry skin, your complexion doesn’t produce enough lipids to moisturize and protect itself. It can feel tight, uncomfortable and even flaky in areas of the face. On a positive note, dry skin is known to have smaller pores. On a less positive note, fine lines and wrinkles tend to be more obvious on dry skin. And, in case you’re wondering, dry skin is different than dehydrated skin — which is a skin condition and can affect people of all skin types.

Oily

Oily skin is characterized by sebaceous glands that produce too much sebum — aka the oily substance that protects your skin from drying out. Because of these overactive oil glands, your pores appear larger, your skin can look shiny and you’re more prone to breakouts.

Combination 

A combination skin type can be tricky to navigate. With oil glands that are active in the T-zone (your forehead, nose and chin) and less active everywhere else (hello, dry cheeks), combination skin means that your skin requires more targeted care, not a one-size-fits-all product. 

Sensitive

Sensitive skin can produce a range of different symptoms — redness and irritation high among them. Reacting to factors like lifestyle choices, chemical ingredients or environmental stressors, sensitive skin responds negatively to irritations. It’s a skin type that requires a little extra TLC to keep it calm. 

Am I Stuck With My Skin Type? 

So is your skin type permanent or can it change due to factors like aging, stress or moving to a new climate? Can you do anything about the skin type you’re dealt? The jury is still out on this. According to Women’s Health: “The general assumption is that your skin type is definitive. Once you’ve determined that you have dry, oily or combination skin — and built your skincare routine around it — you won’t have to worry about any changes. The reality: Skin is susceptible to shifts due to a number of factors, including environmental and hormonal changes, stress levels, diet, medications and other health issues..” 

There is a difference between your skin going through temporary shifts and your skin type permanently changing. “Your skin type is genetically determined and that is not something that changes with the season,” says NYC-based dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD. According to him, “the only exception is that oily skin can become dry skin with age.” After menopause, this change may occur as your sebaceous glands become less active. (This happens because of natural hormonal shifts.)

How Do I Know If My Skin Type Has Changed? 

It is essential to observe your skin often and pay attention to any issues that seem different than what you’re used to. If products you’ve used forever suddenly stop working, it might be time to reevaluate things and possibly switch up some of your routine. Examine whether anything changed with your environment or your health. Have you moved from a cold climate to somewhere warm and humid? Has menopause begun or are you suddenly under a huge amount of stress? Regardless of the cause, your “new” skin requires a different type of care. Paying attention and looking into products that are better suited to these new paint points can help with this shift in your skin and its needs. 

Skin Changes With Menopause

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, as hormone levels plummet with menopause, your skin can become dry, slack and thin. At the same time, as levels of female hormones drop before and during menopause, some women develop teenage-like acne. But because a menopausal woman’s skin is thinner and drier, common treatments for teenage acne are often too harsh. This is the right time to visit a dermatologist to find out what your specific skin is doing and how to best treat it. 

To add insult to injury, sagging, slack skin can suddenly develop larger pores as skin loses elasticity and ability to snap back. "Pores are openings in the skin's surface — the path oils and sweat take when they exit your skin — and pore size is determined by genetics, but pores can become larger due to loss of elasticity, age and damage to the support and tissue around them," says Rachel Nazarian, MD, a board-certified dermatologist in New York City. "And pores, like any hole, can fill up, and stretch out if filled with too much stuff, or for too long — and like the rest of skin, can sag and bag." 

While this “new” skin type might seem to be totally different from the skin you’re used it, it’s hard to pinpoint whether your skin has changed type or has simply evolved into a new condition we’ll call “menopausal.” Regardless, it’s a big shift and your products and routine should evolve to reflect your current needs.  

Skin Changes With Climate 

In the winter (or with a move to a colder climate), skin can feel drier than you’re used to. Again, it’s unlikely that this means your actual skin type has changed. Chances are, your skin is experiencing dehydration and irritation brought on by cold weather (not to mention wind and dry air from indoor heat). These skin issues can be tricky to navigate but often only require a change in skin care products, rather than a whole new skin identity! 

When experiencing dry, dehydrated or irritated skin from the winter air, we suggest a few tweaks to help replenish and nourish your complexion. One option we love for dry skin is the Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant that can hold hundreds of times its weight in water. When applied to the face, it draws moisture into your skin, providing long-lasting hydration in a dry climate, which is just what your winter skin is craving. 

The Stone Crop Whip Moisturizer is another great staple for all skin types. Crafted with hydrating stone crop, Vitamin C-packed lemon and corn germ oil, this rich hydrator improves the appearance of dark spots and offers major moisture, which can be a huge relief when winter air is wreaking havoc.

Just as cold, dry air can cause your skin to completely rebrand itself, warm summer air, humidity and things like sun and salt water can cause skin issues of their own. Again, this is not about a change in skin type as much as it is a reaction to your environment. Usually, this is a temporary shift that will shift back when the weather changes — or that your skin will acclimate to once the first shock of the change subsides. With the warmer months, your skin can become a little oilier. But don't use that as an excuse to skip the SPF. Find one made for your skin's needs.

From our Beyond Organic line, the Echinacea Recovery Cream softens and restores normal to oily skin. This creamy leave-on moisturizer is made with echinacea, yarrow herb and aloe vera to revitalize and reduce the signs of irritation. Eminence Organics Lead Skin Trainer Natalie Pergar also recommends the Lavender Age Corrective Night Concentrate. Formulated with argan oil, jojoba oil and shea butter, this concentrate is very moisturizing and helps your skin adapt to changes the weather might be causing. 

Product picks first

Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum Echinacea Recovery Cream

Body second

Which Skin Type Is Best?

While no skin type is “bad” or “good,” there are definitely characteristics that can be seens as both pros and cons to each. Dry skin, for example, can get tight and flaky, especially in the cold winter wind or after too much sun. But that same dry skin is less prone to acne in most cases, since oil production is associated with bigger pores and other telltale signs of the condition, board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Kristina Collins tells Byrdie

Oily skin, on the other hand, is often associated with a softer, more supple complexion. Lines and wrinkles are not as quick to form and don’t look as pronounced on an oily complexion. According to Healthline: “Oil provides moisture and a plump look to the skin … genetically, dry skin tends to be thinner … and fine lines and wrinkles appear more exaggerated.”

While combination skin can be a little tricky to treat, once you get the hang of it (and figure out which parts of your face respond best to which products), you can look at it as the best of both worlds. 

Sensitive skin can be a real pain — literally and figuratively. Irritation, tightness, itching and redness are no joke and can be uncomfortable if not addressed. Like combination skin, once you learn about how your own personal skin responds to certain ingredients and treatments, some of the issues can be reduced. Often sensitive skin is responding to its environment or damage to its protective barrier. Knowing that can allow you to alter your regimen to keep things calm and mitigate irritation. 

Knowing your skin type is essential for healthy, beautiful skin and helps you decide on the right skin care routines and products. Need help deciphering your skin type? Visit an Eminence Organics Spa Partner and an esthetician can professionally diagnose your skin type and recommend products that will help it look and feel its best. 

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:32 -0500 Anthia
What Is Desincrustation? Unclogging The Truth About Congested Pores https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-desincrustation-unclogging-the-truth-about-congested-pores https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-desincrustation-unclogging-the-truth-about-congested-pores a woman at the spa

What Is Desincrustation? Unclogging The Truth About Congested Pores

Desincrustation, a term familiar to skin care experts but less known outside the spa world, is a process for deeply cleansing pores and preparing the skin for extractions. This technique involves applying a unique solution to help unclog oily or congested skin, which is particularly beneficial for acne-prone or oily skin types. By removing blockages that could lead to acne, desincrustation is essential for addressing problem skin. Read on and find out more about the specifics of desincrustation and how it benefits the skin.

What Is Desincrustation?

Desincrustation is a deep cleansing treatment that's effective in preparing oily or congested skin for extractions. It uses alkaline-based products to soften and break down sebum and keratin inside the skin's follicles. Often accompanied by a gentle massage, the technique removes built-up sebum, debris and other impurities, keeping pores clear and reducing acne. This key treatment leaves the skin with improved skin texture and health, making it an ideal choice for oily or congested skin. Now, let's explore the advantages desincrustation offers, which extend far beyond its immediate cleansing effects.

The Benefits Of Desincrustation 

Desincrustation offers numerous benefits for skin care, particularly for those with oily or congested skin types. In summary, this treatment:

  • Softens & Breaks Down Sebum: Desincrustation helps break down the sebum that accumulates in the pores and contributes to the formation of blackheads and whiteheads. It prepares the skin for extractions by dilating pores and softening sebum.
  • Enhances Skin Care Absorption: Desincrustation prepares the skin for subsequent treatments. By thoroughly cleansing and opening up the pores, the treatment ensures that skin care products penetrate deeper and work more effectively. 
  • Improves Skin Texture & Appearance: Desincrustation is much more than a cleansing process; it plays a crucial role in enhancing the skin's overall appearance. By effectively removing impurities and excess oil, this treatment can lead to smoother-looking skin. It directly addresses and reduces skin congestion, paving the way for a visibly clearer, more vibrant skin tone. 

Desincrustation enhances skin texture and appearance, but it's not for everyone. Let’s look at when this treatment should be avoided.

woman looking at mirror

When to Avoid Desincrustation

For spa professionals, it's critical to conduct a detailed skin assessment before proceeding with desincrustation. This treatment is not recommended for certain skin conditions due to the risks of exacerbating skin issues. Key conditions include: 

  • Cystic & Inflammatory Acne: The intense cleansing process can aggravate these conditions, leading to increased inflammation.
  • Rosacea: The treatment's intensity might intensify the redness and sensitivity associated with rosacea.
  • Irritated Skin or Open Wounds: Desincrustation can cause further irritation or even infection in these cases.
  • Eczema & Psoriasis: The process might trigger flareups or worsen symptoms in these skin disorders.

Understanding these exceptions is essential for ensuring the safety and effectiveness of the treatment for each Client. Be sure to connect with an Eminence Organics Team-member for comprehensive training on using this professional product.

Professional Tips for Effective Practice

Desincrustation is a key technique for spa professionals to master, offering a path to improved skin health and appearance for Clients. Understanding and applying this method effectively can make a significant difference in your Clients’ skin.

  • Start with a thorough cleansing to remove surface dirt and oil.
  • Choose a desincrustation solution. Apply 2 to 3 pumps directly to the area to be treated using a fan brush or fingertips and leave on for 3 minutes. Remove any excess gel with warm water. If your Spa does not perform extractions or if extractions are not appropriate for the Client, the Desincrustation Gel can still be used as a second cleanse on the main areas of congestion to help break down sebum that accumulates in pores.
  • Be cautious not to overdo the massage to prevent skin irritation.
  • Ensure complete removal of the solution and follow up with hydration.
  • Advise your Clients on post-treatment care, including avoiding harsh soaps and unnecessary face touching.

Why Pores Love Charcoal & Black Seed

As a spa professional, you may be wondering about the typical ingredients in desincrustation products. Charcoal has long been celebrated for its properties as a tried-and-true detox ingredient for the skin, useful for targeting congested pores. Its ability to absorb impurities and unclog pores makes it an essential ingredient in skin care, particularly for desincrustation treatments.

Another potent ingredient is black seed, or Nigella sativa, known for its antioxidant properties and omega fatty acids. In desincrustation treatments, black seed is valued for its ability to cleanse deeply, even out skin tone and reduce pore clogging, complementing the effects of charcoal.

When combined in desincrustation treatments, charcoal and black seed offer a powerful dual-action approach to skin care. Charcoal works to detox and clear the skin of impurities, while black seed targets the appearance of dark spots and pore congestion. This synergistic effect leads to a more comprehensive and effective treatment for achieving clear, balanced skin. Together, charcoal and black seed are a formidable pair in addressing skin congestion and impurities. These ingredients are not only beneficial in professional spa treatments but also in complementary at-home skin care products, allowing for consistent care in managing pore congestion and maintaining skin health.

Have you seen the transformative effects of charcoal and black seed in your spa treatments? Share your experiences with us in the comments below. Find out how to become an Eminence Organics Spa Partner here.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:31 -0500 Anthia
The Power Of Yoga For Glowing Skin https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-power-of-yoga-for-glowing-skin https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-power-of-yoga-for-glowing-skin A woman doing yoga

The Power Of Yoga For Glowing Skin

Written By (old):
Alisha Whitley

Yoga is celebrated for its stress-busting and strength-building abilities. But did you know that it can also benefit your complexion? “Yoga glow” is a thing and, if you practice regularly, you’ve probably noticed the effects of exercise on your skin. Dr. Genieve Burley tells City Fit: “Moving your body is medicine. It allows for detoxification by flushing all of the organs, it increases respiration, it lubricates joints and strengthens muscles. Breathing and moving in yoga can help to balance hormones and move waste stagnating in the intestines.” All of this leads to healthier, happier skin.  

Yoga and exercise pair beautifully with self care rituals that extend to skin care. Combining different self-care practices helps you boost your wellness by creating a holistic routine. A face mask or quick morning skin care routine encourages you to spend some quiet time focusing on yourself, much like yoga. Here is a closer look at the power of yoga for glowing skin, on and off the mat, as well as some complimentary skin care rituals you can include to feel renewed.

On The Mat: 5 Yoga Poses For Healthy Skin

Yoga benefits for the skin start on the mat. Dendy Engelman, MD tells SELF: “Yoga causes vasodilation (enlargement of the blood vessels), which leads to increased blood flow to the skin. This allows for more oxygen and nutrients to come to the skin’s surface, creating a cutaneous flushing or glow. Want that coveted yoga glow for yourself? Whether at home or in the studio, here are five yoga poses to inspire your practice and give you a glowing complexion.

Tadasana (Mountain Pose)

Yoga Tadasana Standing Pose


With its focus on deep, rhythmic breathing, this simple standing pose helps alleviate stress and improve oxygen flow. According to NDTV: “Getting in more oxygen through controlled breathing helps the body to release harmful toxins and keep the skin healthy and glowing.” By enhancing blood circulation, tadasana improves lymphatic drainage which brightens the complexion and reduces puffiness around the eye area.

How To Do Mountain Pose: 

  • Stand comfortably with your big toes touching and heels slightly apart
  • Press the soles of your feet into the floor and engage your thighs, drawing them inward and upward
  • Lengthen your tailbone toward the floor and draw in your belly
  • Keeping your chin parallel to the mat, draw your shoulders back and down
  • Soften your eyes and throat and let your arms hang beside your torso
  • Optional: Raise your hands into a prayer position in front of your chest
  • Close your eyes
  • Inhale and exhale deeply for 5 breaths

Uttanasana (Standing Forward Fold)

Uttanasana Forward Fold Yoga Pose


Inversions are one of the best exercises to bring blood flow to the face and increase oxygen supply to skin cells. If you don't have an opportunity for an entire yoga practice, take at least five minutes and turn upside down — it's anti-gravity and gives the skin a healthy-looking glow.

How To Do A Standing Forward Fold:

  • Stand in Mountain Pose with your hands resting on your hips
  • Slowly exhale and bend forward from your hips (not your waist)
  • Bend your knees as much as you need to relieve tension from your lower back
  • Allow your head to hang heavy
  • If possible, bring your palms to rest on the floor or against the back of your ankles; if not, cross your arms in front of you, holding your elbows
  • With each inhalation, slightly lift and lengthen your torso; be mindful to avoid rounding your back
  • Inhale and exhale deeply for 5 breaths

Parivrtta Sukhasana (Simple Seated Twist)

Seated Twist Yoga Pose

A healthy gut is essential for healthy skin. Dendy Engelman tells SELF: "Toxins not cleared from the body often get deposited in adipose fat tissue and in the skin, which can lead to acne, discoloration and accelerated aging." Parivrtta sukhasana is a gentle, seated twist that assists in digestion and toxin removal by increasing circulation and energy to the stomach, small intestine, large intestine and liver.

How To Do A Simple Seated Twist: 

  • Sit on the floor in a cross-legged position (if your hips are tight, you may need to sit on a block or pillow)
  • Align your head, neck and spine and lengthen your tailbone toward the floor
  • Place your right hand flat on the floor behind you
  • Place your left hand on the outside of your right knee
  • As you exhale, gently twist to the right and gaze over your right shoulder
  • On each inhale, lengthen your spine; on each exhale, twist more deeply
  • Practice this for 5 breaths, then switch sides

Matsyasana (Fish Pose)

Yoga Fish Pose


Another yoga pose for better skin is matsyasana, or fish pose. By gently stretching the throat muscles, fish pose helps flush your thyroid and parathyroid glands, thereby keeping hormones in check. Additionally, matsyasana has great anti-aging benefits. The Social says: “This pose gives a good stretch to the muscles of the face and throat which makes it one of the beneficial exercises to reduce the appearance of a double chin.”

How to do Fish Pose: 

  • Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor
  • Lift your hips and tuck your hands beneath your buttocks, palms down
  • Draw your forearms and elbows in tight towards your body
  • On your inhale, press your forearms and elbows into the floor and gently arch your back to lift your torso up and away from the floor
  • Elongate your spine by firming your shoulder blades and lifting your chest higher
  • Gently tilt your head backward, letting the crown of your head rest on the floor
  • Keep your legs engaged
  • Inhale and exhale for 5 breaths

Bhujangasana (Cobra)
Cobra Yoga Pose


Stress is one of the worst offenders for skin woes. Genieve tells us: “Emotional stress takes a huge toll on your hormones and your skin. When you live in harmony with work, friends and commitments, your stress is reduced and your skin can glow.” Cobra pose helps reduce tension, stress and fatigue by opening your lungs and energizing your body. This pose, and others in yoga, help your wellness by lowering cortisol (the “stress hormone”) and reducing oxidative stress. An added benefit?  This also minimizes and prevents the visible signs of skin aging brought on by dehydration and loss of elasticity. 

How to do Cobra Pose: 

  • Lie on your belly
  • Stretch your legs out behind you with your knees touching and the tops of your feet resting on the floor
  • Spread your hands on the floor beneath your shoulders and hug your elbows into your sides
  • Press your feet and thighs firmly into the floor
  • On your inhale, gently straighten your arms to push your chest forward and up off the floor. Arms may still hold a bend if you have reduced flexibility. 
  • Slowly roll your shoulders back and away from your ears to elongate your neck
  • Hold for 5 breaths

Exercise is crucial for a healthy body, healthy mind and glowing skin. There are a few more ways that you can reach these goals for optimal results.

Off The Mat: Healthy Body, Healthy Skin

The benefits of yoga for the skin are just one aspect of overall wellness. Yoga Teacher Becky Stefani appreciates the value of yoga but also maintains a nourishing skin care routine as an essential part of her approach to health and wellbeing. You can watch her skin care routine below.


In addition to enjoying a yoga session, our Lead Skin Care Trainer, Natalie Pergar, believes a scalp massage or a holistic skin care routine also offers relaxation benefits. Watch this In The Mix video to learn about the benefits of different wellness activities. 

Tip 1: Embrace Yoga Principles 

Yoga isn’t just about poses. It has principles that you can bring into your daily life for benefits for your skin and wellbeing. One of yoga’s core principles is the five niyamas (observances) which are tools for cultivating happiness, humility, self-discipline and inner strength. The niyamas are the second limb of the “Eight Limbs of Yoga.” You can find ways to practice them in everyday situations in life.

The first niyama, Shaucha, means “purification” or “cleanliness.” According to Yoga International, shaucha offers techniques for cleansing the body and mind, creates the foundation for bodily health and acts as the pathway to deeper states of meditation. 

The second is Samtosha (contentment). This refers to looking to yourself for contentment and happiness rather than yearning for the things you don’t have and coveting the possessions of others. You can practice this through gratitude and by not blaming yourself for circumstances beyond your control.

Have you ever tried to break a bad habit? Or free yourself of particular thoughts? The third principle is Tapas (self-discipline), a yogic practice of intense self-discipline and will power. This principle involves disrupting habitual thought and behavioral patterns to better your life and breakthrough discomfort. For example, wanting to adopt dietary habits that support your skin and body’s health. Genieve says: “We have layers of the epidermis in the gut and in the skin, so what we put in the gut will reflect on your skin.” A diet rich in plant-based foods and antioxidants can help to minimize wear and tear on your skin caused by environmental stressors like the sun, seasonal changes and pollution. 

The fourth principle is Svadhyaya, the study of the self, and the practice of self-reflection and self-study. Unlike the Western understanding of self-study, which carries the concept of psychoanalysis, yogis have a different interpretation in mind. As Yoga International states: “Like the waves of the sea, it is said that individual awareness is never separate from the infinite consciousness in which it has its being. Each mind is a wave in a vast expanse of consciousness. Individual minds have distinctive qualities, preferences and colorings, but they are not entirely autonomous. The aim of svadhyaya is to bring the experience of that immense Consciousness, the Self, to awareness.”

And lastly, Ishvara Pranidhana is the 5th principle, often translated as “surrendering to God.” Regardless of your beliefs, think of this as either devoting one's work to a higher power or ridding oneself of ego-focused desires. The Niyamas give ethical guidelines that lead to inner peace, which reduces stress and affects the skin positively for a healthy, clear complexion.

Tip 2: Wind Down With A Skin Care Mask


Regular facial masking will keep your skin soft and supple. Plus, masks treat any type of skin issue you may have: aging skin, oily skin, dehydrated skin, problem skin, uneven skin — never fear, there’s a formula for it. With so many options out there, it might seem overwhelming to choose the right face mask. That’s why we’ve collated a face mask guide to narrow down the options for your specific complexion. 

We suggest including a face mask in your self-care routine once or twice a week, perhaps while meditating or during a gentle yoga session. Masking should occur after cleansing and toning. These steps ensure you have clean skin before locking in the nutrients from a mask. 

When masking, it’s also fun to play around with mixologies that layer and blend a variety of treatments. Our face mask guide provides recommendations on how to mix and match your masks depending on your concerns. So, unroll your mat, get into the lotus position and let your skin absorb the benefits of a mask.

Tip 3: Adopt Meditation

Meditation is a part of yoga that teaches you mental relaxation and concentration. The goal is to break free from digressive thinking so that we are not held hostage to our emotions and merely react. Neuroscientist and Waking Up meditation founder Sam Harris breaks down the practice to these beginner meditation instructions:

  1. Sit comfortably, with your spine erect, either in a chair or cross-legged on a cushion.

  2. Close your eyes, take a few deep breaths and feel the points of contact between your body and the chair or floor. Notice the sensations associated with sitting — feelings of pressure, warmth, tingling, vibration, etc.

  3. Gradually become aware of the process of breathing. Pay attention to wherever you feel the breath most clearly — either at the nostrils, or in the rising and falling your abdomen.

  4. Allow your attention to rest in the mere sensation of breathing. (There is no need to control your breath. Just let it come and go naturally.)

  5. Every time your mind wanders in thought, gently return it to the sensation of breathing.

  6. As you focus on the breath, you will notice that other perceptions and sensations continue to appear: sounds, feelings in the body, emotions, etc. Simply notice these phenomena as they emerge in the field of awareness, and then return to the sensation of breathing.

  7. The moment you observe that you have been lost in thought, notice the present thought itself as an object of consciousness. Then return your attention to the breath — or to whatever sounds or sensations arise in the next moment.

  8. Continue in this way until you can merely witness all objects of consciousness such as sights, sounds, sensations, emotions and even thoughts themselves as they arise and pass away.

  9. Don’t fall.

Meditating for just a few minutes a day can relieve stress in our daily lives, which in turn can help our skin. If we look at severe skin issues and cases of psoriasis, one study tested the hypothesis that stress reduction methods based on mindfulness meditation can positively influence the rate at which psoriasis clears in patients. The results supported this hypothesis. Scholarly articles also state: “As part of the total care of the psoriasis patient, physicians are urged to augment traditional psoriasis treatment regimens with stress-reduction strategies, such as biofeedback, meditation and self help approaches.” 

Product picks first

Firm Skin Acai Exfoliating Peel Facial Recovery Oil

Body second

Tip 4: Skin Rejuvenating Product Ideas

Equally important to your health is treating your skin from the outside in. Genieve tells us: “We need products that are packed with nutrients and made with natural ingredients, like plants. Our skin recognizes elements from nature, not synthetics.” Natural and organic products filled with vitamins, minerals and antioxidant-rich ingredients are extremely beneficial for a healthy and youthful-looking complexion. 

Yoga Journal’s beauty experts recommend our Firm Skin Acai Exfoliating PeelFacial Recovery Oil and Rosehip & Lemongrass Lip Balm to keep your skin looking healthy and youthful. Packed with antioxidants sourced from acai berry, grapefruit and goji, the Firm Skin Acai Exfoliating Peel leaves your skin looking tighter and firmer. To feel calmer and more balanced, follow up with the hydrating and revitalizing Facial Recovery Oil, formulated with clary sage oil and ylang ylang. Finally, complete your mini stress-relieving skin care routine with the Rosehip & Lemongrass Lip Balm, an all-natural SPF 15 formula that defends dry lips.

Do you have any favorite mask mixologies or products to enhance your wellness and reveal your healthiest skin? We’d love to hear them! Share them with us in the comments below and join the conversation on social media. 

This article was originally written in August 2018.

Updated By

Thea Christie
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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:29 -0500 Anthia
Which Lotions Are Best For Dry Itchy Skin? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/which-lotions-are-best-for-dry-itchy-skin https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/which-lotions-are-best-for-dry-itchy-skin Woman scratching arm

Which Lotions Are Best For Dry Itchy Skin?

Is the skin on your face and body feeling itchy? This could be an annoying and uncomfortable side effect of winter dryness or something else entirely. Read on to uncover the root cause of your issues and learn about skin care solutions to ease the discomfort you may feel from dry, itchy skin. 

What Causes Itchy Skin? 

Figuring out the cause of your itchy skin can be a bit of a scavenger hunt since there are all sorts of possible culprits. Some of these issues are environmental — like seasonal changes (especially in winter), bug bites or irritants like poison ivy — while others are allergic reactions to things like foods or animals. Others still can be blamed on skin conditions like dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis. 

Weather 

Itchy, dry skin is very commonly caused by weather and environment. In the winter, when the air gets dry and cold, we often exacerbate things by turning up the heat and taking long, hot baths. This combination can do a number on the skin. And it’s not only in the winter. Any seasonal change can disrupt the epidermis and lead to inflammation. A vacation to the arid desert can suddenly rob the skin of moisture, as can hot sun (and sunburns) or other abrupt changes in air temperature and moisture levels.

Allergies

Another common issue that can show up on the skin is an allergic reaction. Certain foods and medications, pet dander and fabrics could send your skin into the red zone. It may feel itchy and dry and can also develop hives, rashes or a burning feeling. Other symptoms like swelling of the face or airways can be dangerous and you should consult with your doctor if you’re concerned. 

Age

Wisdom comes with age. Unfortunately, so does dry skin. Over time, the skin’s stores of hyaluronic acid diminish as a result of the body’s natural aging processes. This naturally-occurring substance, which attracts and retains moisture, is crucial for keeping skin soft and supple. Without lipids or sebum, dry skin cannot stay lubricated, leading to the skin barrier becoming compromised. Since skin also becomes thinner with age, this can be a recipe for disaster. 

Other Lifestyle Factors

Skin that feels or looks dry can also be caused by lifestyle factors. Dehydration can happen when you’re not consuming enough fluids, and this can show up on your face. Everyone is susceptible to dehydrated skin because, unlike dry skin (which is lacking in oil), dehydrated skin (which is lacking in water) is caused by external factors like what you eat and drink. 

Not enough liquid in your diet can lead to dehydrated skin. This can show up as dark circles under the eyes, flaky patches, dull skin and sensitivity. An unhealthy diet can also lead to dehydrated skin. Fresh fruits and vegetables, plus healthy fats like wild-caught salmon, nuts, avocado, olive oil, eggs and meat from grass-fed animals, can make a big difference. These foods include essential fatty acids and mono and polyunsaturated fats that contribute to both your skin and your overall health.  

Skin Conditions

Some common conditions that cause the skin to feel dry and itchy include dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema. Dermatitis can exist in many forms and can show up on the skin as dryness, itching, rashes and sometimes swelling. Causes include environmental triggers, stress, hormonal changes and irritation from things like detergents and certain ingredients in beauty products, contact with irritating plants like poison oak, poison ivy and certain grasses.

Eczema is a chronic skin disorder that includes itchy, scaly rashes. Causes aren’t easy to pin down (many blame irritants that can cause the immune system to overreact). Triggers can include stress, food sensitivities, temperature changes and contact with certain chemicals or preservatives. 

Psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that causes skin discoloration and irritation in the form of scaly, dry and itchy skin on the hands, feet, neck, scalp and face, among other areas of the body. 

If you’re concerned that your dry, itchy skin is more than just a reaction to the weather or inherent factors, relying solely on skin care or skin care products may not be the solution. We recommend seeing your doctor for diagnosis and products to help treat these conditions.

Products To Treat Dry, Itchy Skin 

If your dry skin is not due to a medical condition, it can still cause discomfort as well as further issues. Dry skin can become irritated, especially when it’s accompanied by itching. Skin on the face and body can become raw and red, and can even crack. This is why it’s important to treat dry skin and to make sure it’s done with the right products. 

Body

Since harsh product ingredients trigger dry and itchy skin, it’s important to be aware of what you’re using on and near your body. From laundry detergents to body washes, lotions, facial cleansers and treatments, there are lots of opportunities to make matters worse. At Eminence Organic Skin Care, we’ve always been committed to creating products that contain no harsh chemicals.

When it comes to the body, removing dry skin with a scrub or exfoliant is the first step. Once the skin is buffed and the top layer removed, it’s much easier for the moisturizing and hydrating products to get absorbed. Our Stone Crop Revitalizing Body Scrub is a great option for full body exfoliation. It uses both natural cane sugar granules and mineral-rich sea salt to exfoliate the skin, plus stone crop for moisture and antioxidants from lemon peel and green tea. 

Our Coconut Sugar Scrub is another product that uses sugar cane granules to exfoliate and buff the top layers of skin, while coconut oil deeply hydrates and replenishes.

Once the dead skin has been buffed away, the skin on the body is ready for moisture. The Stone Crop Body Lotion is formulated with stone crop, lemon and bioflavonoids to enrich, support and moisturize the skin’s appearance.

To combat itchy skin at night, our Monoi Age Corrective Night Body Cream does the trick. This ultra-rich body lotion locks in moisture to reveal firm, velvety looking skin by morning. Lightly fragranced with monoi, this body cream helps alleviate itchiness due to dry skin.

For something a little more lightweight that is still heavy on the moisture, try our Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Body Lotion. It contains aloe, panthenol and hyaluronic acid to deeply hydrate, preserve moisture in the skin and protect the skin’s moisture barrier. All of this, plus a delicious scent and creamy feel.

And finally, if you want to leave it to the professionals and get a good baseline moisture reboot that you can extend at home, a body wrap is a great option. The Mango Enzyme Body Wrap contains active enzymes and vitamins that infuse the skin with hydration and gently exfoliate to leave a refreshed look. You’ll leave the spa with skin that feels smooth and hydrated.  

Product picks first

Coconut Sugar Scrub Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Body Lotion

Product picks second

Stone Crop Oxygenating Fizzofoliant™ Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Hydrator

Body second

Face

As mentioned, dry, itchy skin on the face can be traced back to a number of causes, but if you’re looking to add moisture and bring the softness, bounce and glow back to your dry complexion, we have some suggestions.

Before nourishing the skin with a moisturizer, an exfoliating treatment can help remove the top layer of dry, itchy skin and make it easier for your products to absorb. Avoid exfoliating if the skin is irritated or feeling sensitive, but if you’re just a little tight and rough, a gentle exfoliator is a good first step. We love the Stone Crop Oxygenating Fizzofoliant for this. With its light fizzing action, this revitalizing formula gently invigorates the skin and removes impurities to reveal a beautiful, brighter-looking complexion that’s ready for a dose of hydration. 

Another treatment that will help get the skin on your face ready to receive the moisture is our Calm Skin Chamomile Exfoliating Peel. It contains chamomile, to balance the look of skin, and lactic acid, which exfoliates and offers intense hydration. Plus, it’s gentle enough to use up to three times a week. 

Oil-based ointments, creams and lotions that are rich in essential fatty acids can compensate for dry skin’s lack of oil and lipids. They lubricate the skin’s surface as well as fortify the skin’s moisture barrier to replenish and seal in much-needed moisture. “When choosing moisturizer for dry skin, aim for a heavier formula and look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid ... " explains Dr. Hooman Khorasani, a quadruple board-certified dermatologic and cosmetic surgeon in New York City. “Other ingredients to look for include shea butter and lactic acid, which provide hydration and exfoliation.”

Our Coconut Age Corrective Moisturizer includes deeply moisturizing coconut oil and shea butter. Shea butter, in particular, is an excellent emollient for the skin, as it’s high in triglycerides and fatty acids which restore and retain moisture.

Some other deeply hydrating options include the Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Hydrator. It contains powerful ingredients like panthenol, which reinforces skin hydration and prevents moisture loss by protecting the skin moisture barrier and our Botanical Hyaluronic Acid Complex, a unique blend of multi-weight hyaluronic acid and marshmallow root that deeply hydrates and preserves moisture in the skin. The Firm Skin Acai Moisturizer is a nourishing option for aging skin. It contains deeply hydrating shea butter and seabuckthorn berry oil for maximum moisture. 

If you’re looking to target the neck and face overnight, use the Monoi Age Corrective Night Cream for Face and Neck as it reduces the look of fine lines and wrinkles, so you’ll wake up with a more rejuvenated appearance. Customer, Dana C., is a fan, saying in a review on our website: "This cream ... is my favorite. First, the texture is so soft and smooth, thick but not too thick, it smells heavenly, goes on and absorbs perfectly and moisturizes so well, my skin is still soft in the morning. I'm almost 60, was a sun worshiper in my youth and have never found a moisturizer that worked well until this one."

Facial moisturizer should be applied both morning and night. Applying it on damp skin (after a spritz of a mist or toner or just out of the shower) can help the moisture absorb more efficiently.

Are you looking to add some hydration to your skin and not sure which products will work best for your unique complexion? Visit your local Eminence Organics Spa Partner to find out how. 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:27 -0500 Anthia
Ultimate Guide To The Eco&Friendly Everything Shower https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/ultimate-guide-to-the-eco-friendly-everything-shower https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/ultimate-guide-to-the-eco-friendly-everything-shower a shower head

Ultimate Guide To The Eco-Friendly Everything Shower

Ever wondered how to turn your daily shower into a spa-like retreat? The "Everything Shower" goes beyond a quick wash. This popular wellness TikTok trend has encouraged us to transform the regular shower into a luxurious, multi-step experience. But, in this era of environmental consciousness, we need a sustainable twist. Enter the "Eco-Friendly Everything Shower." This approach combines the rejuvenating experience of the Everything Shower with eco-friendly practices like using natural, sustainable products or water conservation methods. In this guide, we will explore how to transform your shower routine into an indulgent yet environmentally responsible ritual.

What Is An Everything Shower?

This ritual is more than just cleansing; it's a therapeutic spa session that you give yourself at home so that you can unwind and pamper yourself from head to toe — think a nourishing hair mask, facial cleansing and all-over exfoliation — to nurture every inch of your body. Keep in mind, the Everything Shower isn't all about spending every minute under the flowing water or soaking in the tub. That would rack up quite a water bill and isn't exactly eco-friendly. Instead, it's about creating a personal spa experience right in the comfort of your home both in and out of the shower over the course of 1-2 hours.  

Rather than rushing through a shower while on autopilot, we’re going to show you how to turn the ordinary shower into a relaxing wellness ritual. But before we dive into the steps, you may want to know how to turn the Everything Shower into an eco-friendly routine.

The Benefits of an Eco-Friendly Everything Shower

Incorporating eco-friendly practices into your Everything Shower is much easier than it sounds. You might consider using water-efficient showerheads, for example, which are designed to minimize the amount of water used. Or you could simply take shorter showers, turning off the water while shampooing. That way you significantly cut down on water consumption, which is not only good for the environment but can also reduce your water bills. 

You might also want to think about the skin care products you purchase. One of the steps in this routine is exfoliating your body. If you’re using plastic loofahs to apply exfoliating washes, these are surprisingly pretty high on the list of waste culprits because they can't be recycled. Luckily, the humble washcloth is a fantastic swap and, chances are, you've already got a stash of these at home. When they've lived their best life, you can either compost them if they're 100% cotton or repurpose them into handy cleaning rags.​ Something else you could do is replace disposable plastic razors with metal safety razors. It's a one-time purchase where you only need to replace the metal blades — recyclable and cheaper in the long run.

Product picks first

Kombucha Microbiome Foaming Cleanser Herbal Eye Make-up Remover

Product picks second

Arctic Berry Peptide Radiance Cream Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum

Body second

Step-by-Step Guide to an Eco-Friendly Everything Shower

Below, our Product Support Team has shared a detailed guide on conducting an environmentally-conscious Everything Shower.

Pre-shower Steps:

Set The Atmosphere

Before diving into the Everything Shower, transform your bathroom into a sanctuary by setting the right atmosphere. Lighting candles and incense and selecting your favorite music helps to create a serene environment. Choose relaxing music, like a gentle acoustic playlist, tranquil nature sounds or even your favorite mellow artist. 

Cleanse Your Face

You’ve set the mood but, before you step into the shower, you need to cleanse your face thoroughly to remove the buildup of oil, dirt or grime on your skin. The Product Support Team recommends the Kombucha Microbiome Foaming Cleanser (suitable for all skin types) in tandem with the Herbal Eye Make-up Remover. Crafted with targeted micellar technology, this liquid-to-foam cleanser refreshes the look of the skin without over-stripping moisture. At the same time, the Herbal Eye Make-up Remover is formulated to gently remove makeup. 

Do A Pre-shower Hair Mask 

After cleansing your face, give your hair and scalp some attention by using a hair oil treatment, massaging a generous amount right into the roots to nourish and strengthen the scalp. Then, apply a deep-conditioning mask for the ends of your hair, which often need extra attention. Let both sit for around 15 to 20 minutes while you continue to prep for your shower.

Dry Brush

Before you jump into the shower, take a moment for dry brushing. It's an incredible way to get your circulation going and give your skin a little wakeup call. Using a dry brush with a handle is perfect for those hard-to-reach areas like your back. You can read the full guide to dry brushing here.

Shower Steps:

Body Scrub

Now for the fun part! Once you're in the shower, smooth and exfoliate the skin across your entire body by using a body scrub, something gentle like our Stone Crop Revitalizing Body Scrub. This resurfacing exfoliant contains hydrating stone crop as a key ingredient and lathers into a creamy foam to brighten the appearance of your skin.

Shampoo, Conditioner & Hair Mask

Give your hair the royal treatment by using your favorite shampoo and conditioner plus a second hair mask. These steps are like a spa experience for your hair, providing intensive moisture and repair.

Second Cleanse

One of our secret skin care strategies for healthy-looking skin is double cleansing. To provide your face with the ultimate nourishment, perform a second cleanse — this time in the shower using the Stone Crop Gel Wash. This cleanser is designed for all skin types and hydrates your complexion thanks to the inclusion of stone crop and shea butter ingredients. 

Face Mask & Shave

Apply the Citrus & Kale Potent C+E Masque and leave it on for at least five minutes before rinsing off. This mask is formulated with citrus fruit oils (lemon and grapefruit) that tone and refresh the skin. It is a source of naturally occurring Vitamin C that helps protect the skin against the visible signs of aging. While the mask works its magic, use the time to perform the next step of shaving leg and body hair, if desired. During the masking or shaving step, consider switching off the water to save more; this simple action can make a big difference. 

Body Wash 

Finally, for the grand finale of your shower routine, it's time for a thorough body cleanse. This step ensures you wash away any remaining shaving cream or any other residue. 

Post-shower:

Body Oil Or Moisturizer  

After your shower, it's time to wrap yourself into a fluffy robe, secure your hair with a soft towel, then reach for a hydrating body product. Our Apricot Body Oil is an ultra-hydrating product that moisturizes using ingredients pressed from grape seed and jojoba. You can also use the Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Body Lotion to smooth and brighten the skin. These products can be used on their own or layered together. 

Hair Serum And Leave-in Conditioner 

Next, turn your attention to your hair care and apply a nourishing hair serum to your scalp. Follow this up by working a leave-in conditioner through the ends of your hair. This step is essential for maintaining healthy, luscious locks after your shower.

Hydrating Serum For The Face

Serums will help give your skin that extra boost of moisture. You’ll love our Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum that deeply hydrates for a smoother-looking complexion. This formula also contains a unique Botanical Hyaluronic Acid Complex that deeply hydrates and preserves moisture in the skin.

Facial Moisturizer 

Finally, it's time to lavish your skin with a good facial moisturizer. The Arctic Berry Peptide Radiance Cream helps your skin appear luminous and hydrated thanks to its exclusive Peptide Illuminating Complex.

Visit your nearest Eminence Organics Spa Partner to make sure you have everything you need for the ultimate Eco-friendly Everything Shower.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:26 -0500 Anthia
What Is Skin Flooding? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-skin-flooding https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-is-skin-flooding

What Is Skin Flooding?

Written By (old):
Libby Wright

TikTok told me to” seems to be enough of an excuse to try new beauty trends these days and we’re here for it. The platform has taught us about skin cycling, the ancient art of gua sha, the pros and cons of slugging and how to look like a glazed donut (in a good way), among many other skin care hacks and beauty shortcuts. And while these trends are not all ideal for all skin types or beauty goals, many of them are full of benefits. With over 4.2 million results on TikTok (and counting), skin flooding is one of the newest skin care trends to flood our feeds. Let’s see what it’s all about. 

What Is Skin Flooding? | How To Perform Skin Flooding | Is Skin Flooding For Everyone?

What Is Skin Flooding? 

Skin flooding involves layering moisturizing products in a particular order to provide deeper, longer-lasting hydration. The purpose of the exercise is to quench dehydrated skin, with the help of the star of the show: hyaluronic acid. Essentially we’re loading up the skin with a combination of humectants (aka substances that attract water) and then doubling down on moisturizing serums. The last step is locking everything in, all with the goal of achieving hydrated, plump and glowy skin. This ritual can be done before bed to let it really sink in or in the morning to prep your skin for the day. It involves four simple steps: gently cleansing your skin, spritzing on a mist, applying a serum (or two) and then locking it all in with moisturizer.

A Guide To Skin Flooding 

Step 1: A Gentle Cleanse

For best results, you’ll want to start with a gentle face wash that cleanses your skin without stripping it of natural oils. This will leave a perfect skin canvas, ready to receive the onslaught of moisture coming its way. Some good options for a gentle cleanse include our Stone Crop Gel Wash which cleans away impurities without drying out the skin. As well as the hydrating and nourishing stone crop plant, it contains chamomile, which revitalizes, calms and balances the appearance of skin, prepping it for the tsunami of moisture coming for it. Another great option for this step is the Coconut Milk Cleanser. This gentle cream cleanser uses rich coconut milk, coconut oil and calendula oil to nurture skin for a dewy, fresh finish. 

Our Lemon Grass Cleanser is another gentle option. The olive oil, sunflower and flax seed in this mild formula gently remove impurities from skin while organic and Biodynamic® herbal ingredients help calm and soothe dry skin. 

Step 2: Prep The Skin With Moisture 

Applying skin care products like moisturizers and serums on damp skin is always a good idea. According to Byrdie: “Moisturizers absorb water more effectively with a water source to draw from, so damp skin is more effective in this step.” Keep the skin moist after cleansing or double down by spritzing the face with a face mist, toner or essence. A great option is the Stone Crop Hydrating Mist, which is full of nourishing ingredients, including that stone crop again. Another option we love is the Birch Water Purifying Essence.

Product picks first

Lemon Grass Cleanser Stone Crop Hydrating Mist

Product picks second

Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum Marine Flower Peptide Night Cream

Body second

Step 3: Double Up On Serum

Now that the skin is ready for the main event, let’s open the floodgates with not one, but two serums! The first one should be heavy on the hyaluronic acid, aka the molecule that attracts and holds water. This moisture magnet is the molecule around which skin flooding was built.

The Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Serum is ultra hydrating thanks to our unique Botanical Hyaluronic Acid Complex that preserves and replenishes moisture in the skin. It also contains other hydrating ingredients like cica and marshmallow root. A thin layer on damp skin will get the flood started. A second layer works too if you want to be extra. More is more when it comes to this routine. 

Layering another serum on top of the hyaluronic layer(s) is the next step in flooding the skin with moisture. We recommend the potent hydration found in our Stone Crop Serum. If hyaluronic acid is the star of the skin flooding trend, stone crop is a great supporting character for its intense hydrating properties. 

Step 4: Lock It In With More Moisture 

Once your serums have absorbed, it’s time to apply a moisturizer to really lock in the hydration. There are a few options that will work for this step. If you’re flooding your skin during the day and hoping for a glass or dolphin skin effect, then your final step can include a moisturizer with SPF. The Lilikoi Daily Defense Moisturizer SPF 40 adds hydration while it protects. Another really moisturizing SPF is our Radiant Protection SPF Fluid. This all-mineral sunscreen goes on smooth and leaves skin with a dewy look and feel.

If you’re more into skin flooding as a nighttime ritual, you have a few options. To stay on the hyaluronic acid train, finish up with our Strawberry Rhubarb Hyaluronic Hydrator. This lightweight gel-cream hydrates and locks in moisture. Our customers love it too. Self-proclaimed skin care junkie, Katie, left a review on our website calling it: “The best skin care product in the universe,” and continuing, “I have tried every product on the market. NOTHING compares to this! ... The hydration and glow it gives is equivalent to what you normally need 4 products to do ... It’s my absolute favorite step. The glow it gives daily makes you look fresh out of a facial!”

The Marine Flower Peptide Night Cream is a richer option that adds yet another heavy-handed dose of moisture and locks in the benefits of all the products preceding it. 

If this trend is reminding you a bit of slugging, you’re in the same wheelhouse. Layering up products and then sealing them in is the basis for both trends. So as a last step, instead of a traditional moisturizer, why not go with the Kombucha Microbiome Leave-On Masque. Melt it in your hands, and evenly roll it over the face. Containing shea butter and beeswax, the mask will act as a coating to lock in hydration and prevent moisture evaporation from the skin. You will wake up with a glow!

Body third

Is Skin Flooding For Everyone? 

Like with many viral beauty trends, skin flooding has a target audience. While it’s not irritating and doesn’t involve active ingredients — making it safe for most skin types — it might not be ideal for sensitive skin because it increases product penetration and might just be A LOT. Give it a try but go slow at first. Acne-prone or oily skin might not respond as well as drier skin types because layering multiple moisturizing products could lead to breakouts. That said, the genesis of this idea — applying products to clean, damp skin for maximum absorption — is a takeaway that we can all get behind. 

Are you ready to give this skin trend a try but not sure where to start? Visit your local Eminence Organics Spa Partner to get started. 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:24 -0500 Anthia
Is Charcoal Good For Your Skin? The Truth Behind The Trend https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/is-charcoal-good-for-your-skin-the-truth-behind-the-trend https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/is-charcoal-good-for-your-skin-the-truth-behind-the-trend Woman put charcoal skin care on face

Is Charcoal Good For Your Skin? The Truth Behind The Trend

As natural skin care ingredients gain popularity, charcoal has become increasingly recognized for its ability to detoxify and purify the skin. But does charcoal live up to its reputation? You may be surprised to learn that this ingredient is very effective in reducing excess oil and impurities from your skin, which helps to eliminate buildup and tackle pore congestion — like blackheads. It also gives your skin a matte finish, taking away the unwanted shine that comes with oily skin, leaving it looking clear and refined. Let’s take a closer look at charcoal in skin care, examining its benefits and effectiveness.  

Types Of Charcoal In Skin Care

Derived from natural sources like coconut shells, bamboo and oak, charcoal is renowned for its ability to detoxify and balance the skin naturally. In the context of skin care, we're looking at two main types: activated charcoal and binchotan charcoal. Let's explore the most common benefits and claims about charcoal's effectiveness in more detail.

Activated Charcoal

Activated charcoal is derived from natural materials, such as coconut shells or oak wood, and is effective in reducing comedones, which can be partly attributed to its capacity to absorb excess oil and prevent pore clogging. Its porous texture means it's often used for deep-cleaning the skin. 

Binchotan Charcoal

Binchotan isn't as well-known in Western skincare, but it’s a traditional Japanese form of charcoal, deriving from the high-quality Ubame oak wood. It also detoxifies and balances the look of the skin. It is acclaimed for its ability to adsorb — rather than absorb — impurities. This means that impurities on the skin are sucked up and stick to the charcoal’s surface. This adsorbing action makes activated charcoal a popular choice for refining and balancing oily or blemished-looking skin. Now that you know the types of charcoal to look for in your products, let's take a look at its benefits.

What Are The Benefits Of Charcoal In Skin Care?

Charcoal is beneficial in treating pore congestion, a condition often marked by the accumulation of debris, dead skin cells, makeup and other impurities in the pores. You might have congested pores if you notice symptoms such as:

  • Excess oil
  • Enlarged pores
  • Blackheads
  • Whiteheads
  • A distressed or dull appearance
  • Rough, bumpy, uneven skin texture

Charcoal can help with:

Managing Sebum & Enlarged Pores To Remove Impurities

For those with oily or acne-prone skin, activated charcoal can help manage the overproduction of sebum, which is responsible for enlarging pores. Enlarged pores tend to get clogged with oil, dirt and dead skin cells, potentially leading to uneven skin texture. By drawing out oil and debris, charcoal may reduce the likelihood of pores becoming clogged. 

Balancing The Skin Through Oil Regulation

By effectively eliminating debris and excess sebum (the culprits behind clogged pores), charcoal aids in creating a smoother and more refined-looking skin texture. This makes it particularly advantageous for those with oily or combination skin types

Detoxification & Deep Cleansing

One of the central claims is that charcoal can act as a magnet for impurities, drawing them out of the skin's pores. This is based on its highly porous structure, which gives it a large surface area for trapping impurities. This detoxifying property helps improve skin health by removing trapped dirt and reducing congestion by getting rid of bacteria and oil from the pores. 

Exfoliation & Brightening

Activated charcoal is known for its exfoliating power due to its fine, gritty texture, which makes it ideal for use in facial and body scrubs. Regular exfoliation helps remove dead skin cells, making the skin appear more radiant and refreshed. This texture allows it to gently but effectively polish the skin's surface, helping to remove dead skin cells and reveal a brighter, smoother-looking complexion.

Is Charcoal Good For Skin? Considerations & Recommendations

While the benefits of charcoal in skin care are numerous, it's important to approach its use with certain considerations in mind, as different skin types and sensitivities can have varied responses to charcoal-based products.

Skin Type & Sensitivity

Not all skin is created equal; naturally, this means different skin types have distinct needs. Those with dry or sensitive skin might find charcoal products a little intense, as they could exacerbate dryness or cause irritation. But, this doesn't mean they're off limits. It's important to do a patch test and to introduce any new product gradually to see how your skin reacts. Many find that with the right frequency and product formulation, charcoal can be a beneficial addition to their routine, regardless of the skin type.

Proper Usage & Frequency

Skin care is not one-size-fits-all and this is especially true for charcoal products. The key to harnessing the benefits of charcoal without overdoing it lies in understanding proper usage and frequency. This includes considering other products in your routine, how often you're using charcoal-infused products and in what form it is used. 

So, back to the burning question — is charcoal good for your skin? It appears that when used correctly and with consideration for individual skin types, charcoal can indeed benefit skin, from aiding in the reduction of imperfections to polishing the skin's surface. Skin care success relies not on a singular ingredient, but on a thoughtful regimen tailored to your skin's unique needs. If you're considering introducing charcoal into your routine, do so with an informed approach. Visit a professional esthetician for an assessment and take the time to understand your skin's requirements and how it responds. After all, the best skin care routine is one that makes you feel comfortable and confident in your skin.

Have you ever used charcoal on your skin? Let us know in the comments below. Visit an Eminence Organics Spa Partner and an esthetician can professionally diagnose your skin type and recommend products that will help it look and feel its best.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:54:22 -0500 Anthia
Weekly Astrology Forecast, January 28&February 3: Playing Within Possibility https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-january-28-february-3-playing-within-possibility https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-january-28-february-3-playing-within-possibility Weekly Astrology Forecast, January 28-February 3: Playing Within Possibility

As the last planet comes out of retrograde, it's time to look ahead.

The post Weekly Astrology Forecast, January 28-February 3: Playing Within Possibility appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:10 -0500 Anthia
All Planets are (Finally) Direct. Here’s What That Means for You. https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/all-planets-are-finally-direct-heres-what-that-means-for-you https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/all-planets-are-finally-direct-heres-what-that-means-for-you All Planets are (Finally) Direct. Here’s What That Means for You.

With no retrogrades for the next few months, the only thing that could possibly get in your way is...you.

The post All Planets are (Finally) Direct. Here’s What That Means for You. appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:09 -0500 Anthia
A 20&Minute Yoga Practice for an Intense Side Body Stretch https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/a-20-minute-yoga-practice-for-an-intense-side-body-stretch https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/a-20-minute-yoga-practice-for-an-intense-side-body-stretch A 20-Minute Yoga Practice for an Intense Side Body Stretch

A creatively challenging sequence that flows from one side stretch to another.

The post A 20-Minute Yoga Practice for an Intense Side Body Stretch appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:08 -0500 Anthia
Elmo Asked Everyone How They’re Doing. The Responses Are…Telling. https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/elmo-asked-everyone-how-theyre-doingthe-responses-aretelling https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/elmo-asked-everyone-how-theyre-doingthe-responses-aretelling Elmo Asked Everyone How They’re Doing. The Responses Are...Telling.

What ensued has been labeled everything from "trauma dumping" to "emotional intelligence."

The post Elmo Asked Everyone How They’re Doing. The Responses Are…Telling. appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:07 -0500 Anthia
12 Things Yoga Students (Desperately) Want Teachers to Know https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/12-things-yoga-students-desperately-want-teachers-to-know https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/12-things-yoga-students-desperately-want-teachers-to-know 12 Things Yoga Students (Desperately) Want Teachers to Know

A glimpse at some of the things your students wish they could tell you…but don’t.

The post 12 Things Yoga Students (Desperately) Want Teachers to Know appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:06 -0500 Anthia
11 Things to Ask Yourself Before Commenting On Social Media https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/11-things-to-ask-yourself-before-commenting-on-social-media https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/11-things-to-ask-yourself-before-commenting-on-social-media 11 Things to Ask Yourself Before Commenting On Social Media

A cheat sheet for online etiquette.

The post 11 Things to Ask Yourself Before Commenting On Social Media appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:05 -0500 Anthia
How to Make Sense of the “Sitting Meditation Pose” Clue in Thursday’s New York Times Crossword https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-make-sense-of-the-sitting-meditation-pose-clue-in-thursdays-new-york-times-crossword https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-make-sense-of-the-sitting-meditation-pose-clue-in-thursdays-new-york-times-crossword How to Make Sense of the “Sitting Meditation Pose” Clue in Thursday’s New York Times Crossword

Spoiler alert: The answer is five letters and in Sanskrit.

The post How to Make Sense of the “Sitting Meditation Pose” Clue in Thursday’s New York Times Crossword appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:04 -0500 Anthia
The Week in Yoga: An Olympic Athlete Talks Visualization, a NYT Crossword Clue for Meditation, and Elmo’s Compassion Goes Viral https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-week-in-yoga-an-olympic-athlete-talks-visualization-a-nyt-crossword-clue-for-meditation-and-elmos-compassion-goes-viral https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-week-in-yoga-an-olympic-athlete-talks-visualization-a-nyt-crossword-clue-for-meditation-and-elmos-compassion-goes-viral The Week in Yoga: An Olympic Athlete Talks Visualization, a NYT Crossword Clue for Meditation, and Elmo's Compassion Goes Viral

Where yoga was in the world this week.

The post The Week in Yoga: An Olympic Athlete Talks Visualization, a NYT Crossword Clue for Meditation, and Elmo’s Compassion Goes Viral appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:03 -0500 Anthia
What the New Moon in Aquarius Means for You https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-the-new-moon-in-aquarius-means-for-you https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/what-the-new-moon-in-aquarius-means-for-you What the New Moon in Aquarius Means for You

It's time for some truth-telling. Starting with what you tell yourself.

The post What the New Moon in Aquarius Means for You appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:02 -0500 Anthia
Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 4&10: Choosing Your Expansion https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-february-4-10-choosing-your-expansion https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/weekly-astrology-forecast-february-4-10-choosing-your-expansion Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 4-10: Choosing Your Expansion

Only when you choose to see the shadows can you also know the light.

The post Weekly Astrology Forecast, February 4-10: Choosing Your Expansion appeared first on Yoga Journal.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:49:00 -0500 Anthia
Does Working Out in a Hoodie Increase Weight Loss? You Might Be Surprised https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/does-working-out-in-a-hoodie-increase-weight-loss-you-might-be-surprised https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/does-working-out-in-a-hoodie-increase-weight-loss-you-might-be-surprised Does your gym clothing impact the results of your workout? Whether it’s cardio or strength training, here’s what happens when you’re working out in a hoodie.

The post Does Working Out in a Hoodie Increase Weight Loss? You Might Be Surprised appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:21 -0500 Anthia
Cardio for Weight Loss: 8 Best Exercises for Calorie and Fat Burn https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/cardio-for-weight-loss-8-best-exercises-for-calorie-and-fat-burn https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/cardio-for-weight-loss-8-best-exercises-for-calorie-and-fat-burn How effective is cardio for weight loss? And how much do you need to do to see significant results? We have the answers to your questions.

The post Cardio for Weight Loss: 8 Best Exercises for Calorie and Fat Burn appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:19 -0500 Anthia
The Power of Pre&Workout: What It Is, and How to Use it Safely https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-power-of-pre-workout-what-it-is-and-how-to-use-it-safely https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-power-of-pre-workout-what-it-is-and-how-to-use-it-safely Looking to take your workouts to the next level? Discover the benefits of pre-workout and how you can safely incorporate it into your overall fitness and nutrition routine for maximum results.

The post The Power of Pre-Workout: What It Is, and How to Use it Safely appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:16 -0500 Anthia
Recipe: Protein&Packed Banana Bread in a Mug https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-protein-packed-banana-bread-in-a-mug https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-protein-packed-banana-bread-in-a-mug With 33 grams of protein and a healthy dose of energizing carbs, this easy banana bread in a mug recipe is the perfect pre-workout or post-workout snack.

The post Recipe: Protein-Packed Banana Bread in a Mug appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:15 -0500 Anthia
How to Use a Smith Machine — And What to Absolutely Avoid https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-use-a-smith-machine-and-what-to-absolutely-avoid https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-to-use-a-smith-machine-and-what-to-absolutely-avoid The Smith machine may have its critics, but with these expert tips on proper use, you can learn how to use it for real gains.

The post How to Use a Smith Machine — And What to Absolutely Avoid appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:13 -0500 Anthia
7 Recipes: A Week of Healthy Dinner Ideas for the Family https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-recipes-a-week-of-healthy-dinner-ideas-for-the-family https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-recipes-a-week-of-healthy-dinner-ideas-for-the-family Check meal planning off your to-do list this week. We picked 7 healthy, easy weeknight dinners to feed — and satisfy — your whole family.

The post 7 Recipes: A Week of Healthy Dinner Ideas for the Family appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:09 -0500 Anthia
Hunger or Cravings? How to Listen to Hunger Cues https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/hunger-or-cravings-how-to-listen-to-hunger-cues https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/hunger-or-cravings-how-to-listen-to-hunger-cues Understanding hunger cues is critical to your overall wellness, but it’s not as easy as it sounds. Learn to decode your body’s hunger signs with these smart strategies.

The post Hunger or Cravings? How to Listen to Hunger Cues appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:07 -0500 Anthia
Meet Coach Devon, 2023 AHA National Leaders of Impact™ Award Winner https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/meet-coach-devon-2023-aha-national-leaders-of-impact-award-winner https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/meet-coach-devon-2023-aha-national-leaders-of-impact-award-winner Devon is being recognized by the American Heart Association for contributions to his community after learning the importance of heart health and CPR while helping his client, Mark, recover from a cardiac arrest.

The post Meet Coach Devon, 2023 AHA National Leaders of Impact™ Award Winner appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:05 -0500 Anthia
Recipe: Jalapeño Popper Bean Soup  https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-jalapeno-popper-bean-soup https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-jalapeno-popper-bean-soup For a make-ahead meal prep option for lunch or dinner, we love this Jalapeño Popper Bean Soup, which delivers equally on spice and comfort.

The post Recipe: Jalapeño Popper Bean Soup  appeared first on Anytime Fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:43:03 -0500 Anthia
151: Gut health with Hannah Aylward https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/151-gut-health-with-hannah-aylward https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/151-gut-health-with-hannah-aylward So excited to have Hannah on the podcast and we’re chatting about gut health.

Here’s what we discuss:

– Tips for optimal gut health

– Food sensitvities

– Eating for optimal digestion

and more!

 151: Gut health with Hannah Aylward



Here’s a bit more about Hannah and her background:

Hannah Aylward is a Certified Holistic Health Coach, gut health specialist, and the founder of HAN, her functional nutrition practice taking a root cause approach to repairing the gut for real. After struggling with her own chronic digestive issues for years, Hannah dove headfirst into the latest in gut health research, seeking answers to her bloating, food sensitivities, and pain. With her science-backed formula, Hannah has overcome her own digestive issues and helped hundreds of other women around the world do the same.

Today Hannah leads her all-women team of functional practitioners who have served over 500 clients globally. HAN’s mission is to help clients transform their gut health and overcome their never-ending digestive issues with functional nutrition, targeted supplementation, and advanced lab work. Now referred by doctors across the U.S., HAN’s signature and highly sought-after Healin’ Guts + Shakin’ Butts Program has brought her clients life-changing results such as getting off of thyroid medication and antidepressants, reversing lifelong food sensitivities, healing leaky gut and brain fog, weight loss, and much more!

Connect with her on Instagram and check out her website.

More resources from this episode:

Join us for Fit Team! This is my online fitness community and you can try it free for 7 days.

I love love love the meals from Sakara LifeUse this link and the code XOGINAH for 20% off their meal delivery and clean boutique items. This is something I do once a month as a lil treat to myself and the meals are always showstoppers.

If any of my fellow health professional friends are looking for another way to help their clients, I highly recommend IHP. You can also use this information to heal yourself and then go one to heal others, which I think is a beautiful mission. You can absolutely join if you don’t currently work in the health or fitness industry; many IHPs don’t begin on this path. They’re friends who are passionate to learn more about health and wellness, and want to share this information with those they love. You can do this as a passion, or start an entirely new career.

You can use my referral link here and the code FITNESSISTA for up to $250 off the Integrative Health Practitioner program. I highly recommend it! You can check out my review IHP Level 1 here and my review of Level 2 here.

I’m still obsessed with my sauna blanket. This is one of my favorite ways to relax and sweat it out. I find that it energizes me, helps with aches and pains, I sleep better on the days I use this, and it makes my skin glow. Link to check it out here. You can also use my discount FITNESSISTA15 for the PEMF Go Mat, which I use every day, and the red light face mask, which is a staple in my weekly skincare routine.

Get 20% off Organifi with the code FITNESSISTA. I drink the green juice, red juice, gold, and Harmony! (Each day I might have something different, or have two different things. Everything I’ve tried is amazing.) I’m currently obsessed with the shilajit gummies!

Thank you so much for listening and for all of your support with the podcast! Please be sure to subscribe, and leave a rating or review if you enjoyed this episode. If you leave a rating, head to this page and you’ll get a little “thank you” gift from me to you. 

Home

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:38:17 -0500 Anthia
Pecan pie protein oatmeal https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/pecan-pie-protein-oatmeal https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/pecan-pie-protein-oatmeal Hey hey! How are you? Now that we’ve finally made it through what felt like an extra-long and slow January, I found myself thinking about to the holidays. Do you miss them already as much as I do?

Time really seems to fly between Thanksgiving and Christmas. I always find myself wishing I had taken more time to slow down and enjoy the season, although I’m not sure if it even would’ve possible! Which brings me back to this post. Amid all the holiday scrambling, I’m always especially grateful for a quick, easy, and healthy meal… like tasty pecan pie oatmeal that’s practically bursting with pecan pie flavor.

Pecan Pie Protein Oatmeal

The few days leading up to a big holiday, I tend to take it a little easier on the indulgent food. This usually has a lot to do with the fact that I’m too busy scrambling around before the festivities to make anything truly exciting. I try to focus on protein and produce (eat like a PRO!) with more simple eats that I can quickly put together. It’s usually a lot of scrambled eggs, soups, smoothies, oatmeal and salads.

That doesn’t mean that it’s totally boring. A great example: this pecan pie protein oatmeal. It has the flavor and texture of delectable pecan pie baked oatmeal, but comes together much quicker!

Pecan pie protein oatmeal breakfast

How to make pecan pie protein oatmeal

I’ve made this a few times over the last few weeks. It’s packed with protein, the texture is amazing (I’ll tell you my secret trick!). And it has the perfect amount of pie-like sweetness on top. Not to mention it makes meal prep a breeze!

So here’s why these oats have been so awesome lately:

Soaked oats

a little soaking action overnight.

Regular ol’ rolled oats have been feeling extra grainy/chewy lately. So I started soaking them overnight before cooking. I just cover them in water and let them sit overnight. Then rinse and drain before boiling.

It makes the texture super soft, fluffy and creamy. They taste the same way restaurant oats taste, which are usually loaded with milk and butter in the cooking process.

protein breakfast ideas

Another bonus from soaking: it makes them easier to digest. I was listening to The Model Health Show (<— fave podcast if you haven’t checked it out!) and one of the speakers was discussing lectins and how they can make certain plant-based foods more inflammatory. Lectins are the plant’s protective response to keep predators or humans from eating it, and can cause inflammation in the body. Soaking, fermenting, and pressure cooking are all effective ways to reduce lectins.

Pecan pie oatmeal recipe

So back to the protein and pecan pie aspect of this breakfast recipe. While the oats are boiling, I’ll add in 1-2 egg whites and a little almond milk. I’ll stir it around as it’s cooking – the eggs cook very quickly – and then when I remove the pan from heat, I’ll add a little bit of cinnamon, vanilla extract, and sea salt.

Pecan topping

Pecan Topping

For the pecan pie topping, I heated up 1 tablespoon of butter in a saucepan. And after it was melted, I stirred in 1 teaspoon of coconut sugar, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup, and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon. When everything was smooth, I added 1/4 cup Georgia pecans. It took about 30 seconds to fully coat the pecans. And then everything was poured on top of the oats.

You guys.

Pecan pie protein oatmeal recipe

It was so dreamy and delicious. And since it had added bulk from the egg whites, it kept me full and satisfied for hours. I need all the energy I can get packing suitcases and carryon bags.. especially when the temperature is supposed to vary by 30 degrees each day.

Feel free to add a bit of nut butter, like almond butter, on top for an extra bite of healthy fats, protein, and flavor!

Any awesome oatmeal or breakfast hacks? What’s your favorite Thanksgiving dessert? I love ALL PIE, but I especially love my nana’s homemade coconut cake.

xo

Gina

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:38:16 -0500 Anthia
Friday Faves 2.2 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/friday-faves-22 https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/friday-faves-22 Hi friends! Happy Friday! How are you? I hope you’ve had a wonderful week. It’s been a bit of a wild one over here. I had to get my first mammogram after a potentially concerning spot showed up on my last ultrasound – it was NOT a picnic, but I’m extremely thankful for good results. Aaaand Liv broke her finger! We’re headed to ortho today but I’m hoping she’ll just have to splint it for a little while.

What do you have going on this weekend? We’re headed to a military event and are going to do a family hike in between the festivities. The weather has been a DREAM this week, so we’re taking advantage of it. I hope you have a fun and lovely weekend ahead, too.

Friday Faves 2.2

(Played hooky on Monday and went to the gem show with madre!)

It’s time for the weekly Friday Faves party! Here’s where I share some of my favorite finds from the week and around the web. I always love to hear about your faves, too, so please shout out something you’re loving in the comments section below.

Friday Faves 2.2

Random/life:

Second ear piercings! Liv has been wanting to get her second piercing for a while, so we told her she could go for it. We picked up one of her friends to join us (for moral support), and headed to Rowan, the new piercing spot at La Encantada. All of the earrings are hypoallergenic, and all of the piercers are registered nurses. It was very cute and Instgrammable.

Liv asked me if I would go first, so I said yolo and got my second piercings done. (I originally had them done in elementary school but let them close.)

getting ear piercings

It didn’t hurt at all – I was shocked!!

Our “afters”:

second ear piercings

I can’t believe how much I like having a second piercing. It’s fun to have a lil extra sparkle.

We went as a family to the Wildcats game last night and it was a blast. Liv has an intense dance schedule so we haven’t made it to any games this season. We let her ditch one night (she had a newly broken finger, after all) and cheered our hearts out, ate all the game foods, and enjoyed the evening together.

Wildcats game

This label maker. I know, it’s a weird thing to be excited about. Buuuut I got this on Prime Day and LOVE this little thing. It’s been helpful for labeling items in the pantry and also the hangers for dance competition costumes! Check it out here.

Meg’s baby shower!

We got to celebrate this mama and my new baby nephew on the way. We had appetizers at Commoner & Co., played games, ate cake, and watched her open all of the amazing gifts. I can’t believe how much better baby clothes are now!! The fabrics have gotten a major upgrade and are so incredibly soft.

Meg’s baby shower | Friday Faves 2.2

These teacher coasters! I ordered them for the girls’ teachers for teacher appreciation to pair with a Starbucks gift card. LOVE how they tuned out!

Teacher coasters | Friday Faves 2.2

Read, watch, listen:

Valentine’s Gift Guide for Him is live!

Be sure to check out this week’s podcast episode here.

A parenting goal for the teenage years.

Fashion + beauty:

New lip balms! The texture is silky smooth and they give the lightest bit of color. I try to use nontoxic makeup and skincare as much as possible, but lip products are especially important since you essentially *eat* what’s on your lips. Check it out here and you can use CLEANFORALL20 for 20% off your first order. I’m happy to help with any recs, too!

beautycounter lip balms

This skirt. It was in my recent RTR Unlimited shipment and I’m thinking about keeping it. Skirts don’t often fit me well – my torso is short and they’re often too tight in the waist – and this fits and matches so many tops and sweaters.

plaid skirt | Friday Faves 2.2

( I wear it with these loafers or these Amazon flats!)

Fitness, health, and good eats:

Barre strength workout with dumbbells.

Simple but delicious air fryer chicken. (Ps I’m in the market to swap out our air fryer for one that doesn’t have the nonstick coating. If you have a stainless steel or glass one you love, please lmk!)

Caramel chocolate truffles. YUM

Happy Friday, friends! What’s something you’re loving this week?
xo

Gina

The post Friday Faves 2.2 appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:38:15 -0500 Anthia
January book recap https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/january-book-recap https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/january-book-recap Sharing the books I read in January and if I’d recommend adding them to your collection!

Hi friends! How was the weekend? I hope you had a great one! We were in Phoenix for an awards ceremony, and hiked at Camelback before heading home.

For today’s post, I wanted to share a recap of the books I read in January. I really wanted to hit the ground running with books, enjoy some fun reads, and I finished five books last month. They were a mix of fiction and nonfiction, and I enjoyed all of them.

Here’s a recap for the month:

January book recap

Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing

I was hesitant about this one because I love Friends and love Matthew Perry dearly. I’d heard some people say that this made them like him LESS, and I didn’t want that. The good news is that for me, it did the exact opposite and I found myself loving him even more. I think many of us grew up watching Friends, and feel connected to all of the characters. Even though I was in 5th or 6th grade when it started, I watched almost every single episode, starting with the very first one. My wise 11 or 12 year old self recognized that it was something special.

This book is heartbreaking, as can be expected, and gave a true glimpse into the struggles that addicts face. Addiction took over his life, sabotaging his relationships, affecting work, and impacted his mental health. It was also devastating to learn that all he really wanted was a wife and kids. He had *everything* but also at the same time, he felt like he had nothing. I recommend listening to the Audible version so you can hear it in his own voice. 8/10

From Amazon:

“Hi, my name is Matthew, although you may know me by another name. My friends call me Matty. And I should be dead.”

So begins the riveting story of acclaimed actor Matthew Perry, taking us along on his journey from childhood ambition to fame to addiction and recovery in the aftermath of a life-threatening health scare. Before the frequent hospital visits and stints in rehab, there was five-year-old Matthew, who traveled from Montreal to Los Angeles, shuffling between his separated parents; fourteen-year-old Matthew, who was a nationally ranked tennis star in Canada; twenty-four-year-old Matthew, who nabbed a coveted role as a lead cast member on the talked-about pilot then called Friends Like Us. . . and so much more.

In an extraordinary story that only he could tell—and in the heartfelt, hilarious, and warmly familiar way only he could tell it—Matthew Perry lays bare the fractured family that raised him (and also left him to his own devices), the desire for recognition that drove him to fame, and the void inside him that could not be filled even by his greatest dreams coming true. But he also details the peace he’s found in sobriety and how he feels about the ubiquity of Friends, sharing stories about his castmates and other stars he met along the way. Frank, self-aware, and with his trademark humor, Perry vividly depicts his lifelong battle with addiction and what fueled it despite seemingly having it all.

Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing is an unforgettable memoir that is both intimate and eye-opening—as well as a hand extended to anyone struggling with sobriety. Unflinchingly honest, moving, and uproariously funny, this is the audiobook fans have been waiting for.

The Paris Daughter

Kristin Harmel has become one of my favorite WWII historical fiction authors. She does an incredible job intertwining various characters, storylines, and perspectives. While this one wasn’t my *favorite* I loved the ending and how everything came into place. It was an unexpected ending for sure. 7/10

Here’s the synopsis from Amazon:

Paris, 1939: Young mothers Elise and Juliette become fast friends the day they meet in the beautiful Bois de Boulogne. Though there is a shadow of war creeping across Europe, neither woman suspects that their lives are about to irrevocably change.

When Elise becomes a target of the German occupation, she entrusts Juliette with the most precious thing in her life—her young daughter, playmate to Juliette’s own little girl. But nowhere is safe in war, not even a quiet little bookshop like Juliette’s Librairie des Rêves, and, when a bomb falls on their neighborhood, Juliette’s world is destroyed along with it.

More than a year later, with the war finally ending, Elise returns to reunite with her daughter, only to find her friend’s bookstore reduced to rubble—and Juliette nowhere to be found. What happened to her daughter in those last, terrible moments? Juliette has seemingly vanished without a trace, taking all the answers with her. Elise’s desperate search leads her to New York—and to Juliette—one final, fateful time.
An “exquisite and gut-wrenching novel” (Lisa Barr, New York Times bestselling author) you won’t soon forget, The Paris Daughter is also a sweeping celebration of resilience, motherhood, and love.

Allergies: Disease in Disguise: Healing your Allergic Condition Permanently and Naturally

I’ve become extremely focused on allergies over the past 9 months, especially since I realized that my eye issues were a combo of autoimmune-type inflammation and allergies, from the environment and food. Once I got my allergies under control, my eyes stopped flaring (knock on ALL the wood…). As I was reading, I realized that I was using some of the strategies in this book, and she explained it in a way that made so much sense.

Allergic reactions don’t always depend on a single allergen, but are the result of histamine load — the compound effects of what you’re doing. This is why I’m ok with a tiny bit of fermented food, but if I have a lot of fermented food, plus more high histamine food, and I’m stressed, and I pet a hairy dog, and it’s windy with pollen outside, I’ll flare. I’ve been trying to pay more attention to my histamine load, and have eliminated my food sensivities, which has made a huge difference.

Something else that resonated with me: anti-histamines don’t solve the problem. When we’re having the histamine response, a flare is the sign that there’s a fire in the body. The anti-histamine is simply removing the smoke alarm; it doesn’t extinguish the fire.

While I don’t agree with everything in the book (she recommends a high carb, low protein, mostly raw diet), I learned a ton and would highly recommend it if you’re a fellow allergy sufferer. 9/10

From Amazon:

Allergy is generally misunderstood. Left untreated it can lead to serious degenerative disease. Asthma, migraines, arthritis, ulcers and obesity have all been linked to allergy. Fatigue, irritability, body aching, digestive problems, and other vague ailments are typical of allergy. Dr. Bateson-Koch provides insight into why allergy is becoming more common, how it relates to environmental factors, food additives, diet, digestion, body chemistry, addiction, yeast, molds, parasites and childhood illnesses-and why enzymes are the key to healing. Following her program, you won’t have to give up your pet, get allergy shots, rotate foods, keep diet diaries or cook allergy-free recipes for the rest of your life. You will not only recover and enjoy an allergy-free life, you will gain invaluable understanding of health and well-being.

Don’t Make it Weird

I’ve followed Colleen for years, and was so excited for her book. Her content always cracks me up and inspires me, so I pre-ordered this as soon as I could. Definitely check out the Audible version so you can hear it in her voice. I highly recommend this one if you work in the online space in any capacity, especially if you’re struggling with creating content and putting yourself out there. 9/10

From Amazon:

Have you ever actually engaged with someone’s lame dance video on Instagram? Probably not, if you’re being honest. Gimmicks just don’t work, but the pressure of having an online presence can make people do weird things.

Eventually, you have to call bullsh*t. The good news is that when you cut out excuses and ditch the self-sabotaging performances, you can learn to be a real human on the internet.

In Don’t Make it Weird, Colleen teaches you how to bring your whole personality—the messy, awkward, and mundane—to your online presence to create true connection and community. And, of course, to sell to people without making it weird.
Whatever it is you want to do, you can. Just Don’t Make it Weird.

The Room on Rue Amélie

This was another Kristin Harmel novel, and it’s definitely in my top five of her books. It was heart wrenching, hopeful, and beautifully written. I definitely wept at a beautiful and satisfying ending. I definitely recommend it if you’re into historical fiction. 9/10

From Amazon:

When newlywed Ruby Henderson Benoit arrives in Paris in 1939 with her French husband, Marcel, she imagines strolling arm in arm along the grand boulevards, awash in the golden afternoon light. But war is looming on the horizon, and as France falls to the Nazis, her marriage begins to splinter, too.

Charlotte Dacher is 11 when the Germans roll into the French capital, their sinister swastika flags snapping in the breeze. After the Jewish restrictions take effect and Jews are ordered to wear the yellow star, Charlotte can’t imagine things getting much worse. But then the mass deportations begin, and her life is ripped forever apart.

Thomas Clarke joins the British Royal Air Force to protect his country, but when his beloved mother dies in a German bombing during the waning days of the Blitz, he wonders if he’s really making a difference. Then he finds himself in Paris, in the shadow of the Eiffel Tower, and he discovers a new reason to keep fighting – and an unexpected road home.

When fate brings them together, Ruby, Charlotte, and Thomas must summon the courage to defy the Nazis – and to open their own broken hearts – as they fight to survive. Rich with historical drama and emotional depth, this is an unforgettable story that will stay with you long after the final minute.

Ok friends: what was the best book you read last month? What’s on your TBR list right now?

xo

Gina

The post January book recap appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:38:14 -0500 Anthia
Valentine’s Day Gift Guide For Her https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/valentines-day-gift-guide-for-her https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/valentines-day-gift-guide-for-her Sharing my top picks for Valentine’s Day gifts for the gals in your life, or ideas for your own personal wish list! Please share any of your ideas in the comments!

Hey hey! Happy Monday! How was the weekend? We went to Phoenix for a fancypants event for the Pilot’s work, went on a family hike, and tried the Original Chop Shop for the first time. I hope you had a fun and relaxing weekend!

For today’s post, I’m sharing some Valentine’s Day gift ideas for her! Whether you’re shopping for someone special, or sharing this list with your partner, there are tons of great ideas here. Please share any gift ideas in the comments below or anything that’s on your personal wish list!

Gifts for the fitness fanatic:

Our favorite wireless headphones. The Pilot and I both have these and love them! They’re awesome for travel and workouts.

An Oura ring makes an amazing gift

My favorite yoga mat and mat towel

A cute yoga tank

The best workout leggings

A Beyond Yoga set

A sauna blanket! My liiiiiiiiiiiife. I use this magical creation 2-3 times per week and it feels amazing. I sleep so well and it makes my skin glow. Use FITNESSISTA15 for 15% off!

The red light face mask makes a perfect Valentine’s gift, too. You can use FITNESSISTA15

The best crosstraining sneakers

– or my fave barefoot sneakers

TRX suspension training system

A theragun

-A lululemon belt bag

Makeup and skincare gifts:

This gorgeous bath oil set

Our bestselling vitamin C serum

This gorgeous makeup brush set

A gift box from one of my fave little shops

Dyson airwrap!

Fashion finds, accessories and jewelry:

A Static Nails set. When I didn’t get dip powder for 6+ months, this was the only thing I used. It’s the only polish I’ve found that lasts 5+ days!

The cutest pink Dunks

Comfy boyfriend joggers

A nontoxic perfume

-These slides

Extra lovely things:

– A Daily Harvest subscription. I love these for quick and easy lunches and breakfasts! Use the code FITNESSISTA for up to $40 off your first box

Sakara goodies! Their meals are AMAZING and I also love the snacks, bars, and beauty chocolates. Use XOGINAH for 20% off sitewide. 

A silk sleep mask or pillowcase

Book of the Month subscription! This brings me joy every single month

The BEST chocolate. (And I eat a lot of chocolate lol. My Thrive link gets you 40% off your first order)

The coziest soft cardigan

A custom family portrait

In the Wild throw blanket or get this version for $60!

The best pajamas. I have multiple pairs and they’re so soft and cozy. Lates by Kate are my other go-tos!

– These cute slippers

This birthstone pendant

Kindle paperwhite!

For the new mama:

Joggers or cute pajamas

A gorgeous robe (on sale)

Personalized name necklace.

– A meal delivery from a service she loves. Another plug here for Sakara because it’s so amazing!

– An offer to come over and help her out with anything she might need (playing with older kids, holding the baby while she takes a shower or stares at the wall, help with errands or grocery pickup)… and actually do it ????

So tell me, friends: do you celebrate Valentine’s Day? Anything on your list?

What are your plans?

We usually keep it low-key but my favorite traditions are writing something I love about the kids on hearts on their doors Feb 1- 14. I also make them little Valentine’s gift baskets.

xoxo

Gina

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The post Valentine’s Day Gift Guide For Her appeared first on The Fitnessista.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:38:14 -0500 Anthia
Bacon and Egg Bake https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/bacon-and-egg-bake https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/bacon-and-egg-bake The post Bacon and Egg Bake appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:32:14 -0500 Anthia
Loaded Baked Potatoes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/loaded-baked-potatoes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/loaded-baked-potatoes The post Loaded Baked Potatoes appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:32:14 -0500 Anthia
Baked Battered Shrimp https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/baked-battered-shrimp https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/baked-battered-shrimp The post Baked Battered Shrimp appeared first on Diethood.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:32:13 -0500 Anthia
Elimination Diets: A Guide for Athletes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/elimination-diets-a-guide-for-athletes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/elimination-diets-a-guide-for-athletes Elimination diet guide for athletes

This elimination diet guide breaks down the evidence for a variety of elimination diets plus their benefits & risks for athletes and active individuals.

The post Elimination Diets: A Guide for Athletes appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:31:02 -0500 Anthia
Simple Vegan Chocolate Truffles https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/simple-vegan-chocolate-truffles https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/simple-vegan-chocolate-truffles vegan chocolate truffles

Need an easy chocolate treat for the holidays? With natural sweetness from dates, these festive vegan chocolate truffles deliver!

The post Simple Vegan Chocolate Truffles appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:31:01 -0500 Anthia
Why New Year Resolutions Fail https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/why-new-year-resolutions-fail https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/why-new-year-resolutions-fail why new year resolutions fail

Learn why many New Year resolutions fail, plus how to reframe your resolutions to be realistic, practical, and successful!

The post Why New Year Resolutions Fail appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:31:00 -0500 Anthia
Evidence Based Benefits of Manuka Honey https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/evidence-based-benefits-of-manuka-honey https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/evidence-based-benefits-of-manuka-honey manuka honey strengths

Is this honey all it's cracked up to be? Read about the evidence based benefits of manuka honey and ways to use it orally or topically!

The post Evidence Based Benefits of Manuka Honey appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:59 -0500 Anthia
Almond Banana Pancakes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/almond-banana-pancakes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/almond-banana-pancakes almond banana pancakes

Whether you need breakfast to feed the whole fam or you're food prepping for the week ahead, these almond banana pancakes won't disappoint!

The post Almond Banana Pancakes appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:58 -0500 Anthia
Rosemary Potato Salad with Split Peas https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/rosemary-potato-saladwith-split-peas https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/rosemary-potato-saladwith-split-peas

With a plant protein boost and flavorful herbs, this split pea rosemary potato salad is an elevated and nutritious version of a classic.

The post Rosemary Potato Salad with Split Peas appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:57 -0500 Anthia
Low FODMAP Pre&Workout Snacks https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/low-fodmap-pre-workout-snacks https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/low-fodmap-pre-workout-snacks low fodmap preworkout snacks and bars

These low FODMAP pre-workout snacks, including a variety of low FODMAP bars, will provide the energy you need to fuel activity without digestive distress.

The post Low FODMAP Pre-Workout Snacks appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:56 -0500 Anthia
Should you eat before a morning workout? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/should-you-eat-before-a-morning-workout https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/should-you-eat-before-a-morning-workout

You’re not hungry when you wake up, but are starving right after exercise or later in the day. You read about fasting in the media, consider it, and then hear it’s not great. You feel like you should eat before training, but social media has made you fearful of carbs. No matter why you’re questioning if you should eat before...

The post Should you eat before a morning workout? appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:55 -0500 Anthia
Low FODMAP Electrolyte Drinks, Energy Gels &amp; Energy Chews to Fuel Performance https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/low-fodmap-electrolyte-drinks-energy-gels-energy-chews-to-fuel-performance https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/low-fodmap-electrolyte-drinks-energy-gels-energy-chews-to-fuel-performance low fodmap electrolyte drinks and energy gels

Fuel your endurance activities with these low FODMAP electrolyte drinks, energy gels, and energy chews that provide quick and easily digestible energy.

The post Low FODMAP Electrolyte Drinks, Energy Gels & Energy Chews to Fuel Performance appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:54 -0500 Anthia
Preworkout Gingerbread Energy Balls https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/preworkout-gingerbread-energy-balls https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/preworkout-gingerbread-energy-balls gingerbread energy balls

These preworkout gingerbread energy balls satisfy cravings and energize training sessions, helping you power through the holiday season!

The post Preworkout Gingerbread Energy Balls appeared first on Kelly Jones Nutrition.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:30:53 -0500 Anthia
Financial Analyst Loses 30 Pounds in Six Months with Diet&to&Go https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/financial-analyst-loses-30-pounds-in-six-months-with-diet-to-go https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/financial-analyst-loses-30-pounds-in-six-months-with-diet-to-go Hailey Nelson Lost 30 Pounds

Name
: Hailey Nelson
Hometown: Hatfield, PA
Age: 32
Occupation: Financial Analyst
Meal Plan: Mediterranean
Favorite Meal: Chicken Teriyaki Rice Bowl
Start Date: mid-February
Starting weight: 211
Height: 5’5”
Pounds Lost: 30
Activity Level: Daily 30-minute strength training workouts and treadmill walks
When I get a craving, my go-to trick is: I love the 70-calorie Fiber One Brownies. They’re so good, and the perfect size!

Anything worth doing is worth doing with consistency, diligence, and patience. Just ask Hailey Nelson, a 32-year-old financial analyst who has shed 30 pounds since starting her weight loss journey with Diet-to-Go in February.

“I’ve lost about a pound a week since starting the program, so it’s obviously working,” Hailey said, adding that she appreciates the consistency. “It’s not as fast as I want, but I also know losing 60 pounds in five months isn’t realistic. It’s not a quick fix.”

And it’s Hailey’s commitment to reaching her ultimate goal of 150 pounds, something she knows will happen one small step at a time, that keeps her going. Hailey’s daily routine includes eating her Diet-to-Go breakfasts, lunches, and dinners and, if she has a craving, enjoying her Fiber One brownie in the evening.

“I’m in such a great routine. It’s easier every day,” Hailey said.

She also maintains a consistent fitness routine, which she started in February alongside her Diet-to-Go meal plan, that involves a simple strength-training routine during her lunch hour and a 2- to 3-mile walk on her treadmill in the evenings.

“It’s ingrained in me now,” Hailey said. “I even feel weird if I skip a day, but I don’t get in a funk. I just get right back into it.”

That mindset also carried into her vacations, where she found she could maintain her weight even if she didn’t lose any just by staying consistent every other day in her life.

Hailey’s hard work culminated in an incredible feel-good moment in July when she visited a friend she hadn’t seen for a few months.

“The minute I walked in, she said, “Oh my, have you lost weight?!’” Hailey said. “It was the very first thing she said to me. That made me feel really good and was so nice. It can be hard to notice yourself, so having someone else notice is really great.”

Hailey said Diet-to-Go has made it easy for her to keep going. She regularly uses the myDiettogo online portal to check the calorie counts of her weekly meals, change meal plans, substitute meals, and check delivery dates.

“Substituting is really easy, and I enjoy going through the substitution meals. I’ve found meals I’d never even had, which allowed me to try new things,” Hailey said. “I also log in to the portal and write down my calorie counts so I can add up calories to see if I have room for a brownie or something.”

Hailey said keeping track of the calories is also extremely helpful when facing the most significant challenge she has with her weight loss: getting together with friends or dining out with her fiance.

“My fiance sometimes wants to get takeout or go out to sushi on the weekends,” she said. “So, I let myself have a cheat meal over the weekend, and then recalculate which Diet-to-Go meals I am going to move or skip to accommodate for the calories I had in my cheat meal.”

The key, she said, is leniency.

“I want to be able to treat myself sometimes, but I don’t want to go overboard,” Hailey said. “If I start seeing I’m not making as much progress as usual, I back off altogether.”

Hailey said that as a DIY person, she appreciates that Diet-to-Go has all the tools she needs to keep herself on track.

“I appreciate Diet-to-Go because it really has got me to a point where I can maintain this daily lifestyle, and I haven’t given up yet,” she said. “I think that’s amazing.”

She said she hopes her success story inspires others to understand that losing weight — and keeping it off — is a marathon, not a sprint.

“I’m in it for the long term,” Hailey said. “Even if it takes me a whole nother year, I know that’s realistic. And that’s what I’d tell others: Stick with it for the long run. If you do, you’ll really see a difference.”
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:34 -0500 Anthia
Living with Type 2 Diabetes? Foods to Eat and Foods to Avoid https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/living-with-type-2-diabetes-foods-to-eat-and-foods-to-avoid https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/living-with-type-2-diabetes-foods-to-eat-and-foods-to-avoid Living With Diabetes

Healthy eating plays a significant role in whether you may develop type 2 diabetes — and a recently published study confirms that further.

According to a study conducted by researchers from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, a considerable rise in people living with type 2 diabetes globally directly results from poor diet. The study found a link between people’s consumption of refined wheat and grains and overprocessed meat — and lack of eating whole grains — correlated with the increase between 1990 and 2018. In fact, the researchers said poor carbohydrate quality was the most significant factor in people developing type 2 diabetes in the 184 countries included in the study.

In addition, the study found that type 2 diabetes incidences affect more men than women and younger adults than older adults.

The study demonstrates just how essential it is to improve the quality of your food. If you have prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, changing your diet is critical to improving your health. With that in mind, we rounded up three food groups you should eat regularly and three you should avoid as much as possible.
 

3 Types of Food to Eat Regularly

 

Fiber-Rich


Dietary fiber plays a critical role in nutrition because it separates the good carbs from the bad carbs. Plus, including foods packed with fiber — and eating about 25-35 grams daily — slows down your bloodstream’s sugar absorption.

Examples of fiber-rich food include:

  • Dried beans
  • Peas
  • Lentils
  • Whole grains
  • Seeds
  • Nuts
  • Fruits
  • Vegetables

Heart-Healthy-Packed


People with type 2 or prediabetes face an increased risk of developing conditions like heart disease, high blood pressure, and kidney disease. That means eating foods packed with heart-healthy, unsaturated fats is so vital.
 

Examples of heart-healthy fat foods include:

  • Fish (i.e. salmon, mackerel, herring, trout)
  • Avocado
  • Olive oil
  • Seeds
  • Nuts

Lean Protein-Filled


High-quality, lean protein helps your metabolism run more efficiently. That, in turn, may help you get to or maintain a healthy weight.


Examples of lean protein include:

  • Fat-trimmed, white-meat chicken
  • Low-fat dairy
  • Seafood
  • Eggs
  • Tofu
  • Tempeh
  • Chickpeas
  • Edamame
  • Black beans
  • Quinoa
  • Couscous

 

3 Types of Foods to Avoid as Much as Possible

 

Sugar-Filled


Sugar is in so many foods many of us eat regularly. While eating a small amount of sugar is unlikely to do much harm, eating it regularly can be detrimental to your health, especially if you have type 2 diabetes, because it boosts the risk of developing heart disease, can cause weight gain, and can even impact your skin and mental wellness.

Examples of foods with too much sugar:

  • White bread
  • Granola
  • Pasta sauce
  • Salad dressing
  • Baked goods
  • Candy
  • Canned and dried fruit
  • Condiments
  • Sweeteners (i.e. honey and maple syrup)
  • Juice
  • Soda

Full-Fat Dairy


Dairy packed with fats is a no-go for people with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes. Many nutritionists say that those excess fats can interfere with insulin and may be higher in carbs than you expect.
 

Examples of full-fat dairy foods include:

  • Whole milk
  • Butter
  • Cheese
  • Sour cream

Saturated-Fat-Packed


Whereas lean protein with unsaturated fat is good for you, foods with too much saturated fat are the opposite. That’s because they may boost cholesterol levels and contain haem iron, which scientists suspect contributes to a greater risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
 

Foods with too much saturated fat include:

  • Red meats
  • Sausage and bacon
  • Cured meats
  • Cheese
  • Cake
  • Biscuits
  • Butter


Building a diet plan that avoids the foods you shouldn’t eat and provides you with the ones you should be can be challenging — and that’s okay. We’re here to help! Our Balance-Diabetes meal plan includes diabetes-friendly food that our chefs and nutritionists designed to help you balance blood sugar naturally.

We control the menu for calories and nutrition to ensure it’s heart-healthy, with healthy, restaurant-quality meals delivered right to your door. In fact, U.S. News & World Report recently named our meal plan the best for people with prediabetes and type 2 diabetes.
 

Ready to get started? Check out a sample menu today!
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:33 -0500 Anthia
How Do the Most Popular Diets Rank for Heart Health? https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-do-the-most-popular-diets-rank-for-heart-health https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-do-the-most-popular-diets-rank-for-heart-health Heart Healthy Diets

Skim any social media feed related to weight loss, and there’s a good chance you’ll see it chock full of everyone from fitness influencers to celebrities touting a diet that helped them shed pounds in record time. Here’s the thing: Many of those diets — such as very-low-fat and very-low-carb — may indeed help you lose weight, but that doesn’t mean they’re good for you.

That’s according to a recent report from the American Heart Association (AHA) and published in Circulation. The comprehensive report ranked the most popular diets in relation to their heart healthiness based on the AHA’s recommendations, which involve eating:
 

  • Lots of fruits and veggies
  • Whole grains
  • Lean, unprocessed protein found in nuts, fish, seafood and nonfat dairy
  • Olive and vegetable oil


And limiting your consumption of:
 

  • Processed foods
  • Foods with added sugars
  • Alcohol


The report ranked the most popular diets in four tiers based on how heart-healthy they are. Here’s a deeper look:
 

The Most Heart-Healthy Diets - Tiers 1 and 2


The Mediterranean and DASH diets are among the highest-ranking diets in the report. Both focus on eating whole grains, vegetables, lean protein, beans, legumes and low-fat dairy.

Developed by nutritionists and chefs, Diet-to-Go’s Mediterranean meal plan delivers a delicious menu rich in whole, heart-healthy foods right to your door. It helps you adopt the Mediterranean culture around food, too, which aims for you to focus on enjoying your food without worrying about dieting. That means you’ll get mouth-watering meals like Cinnamon Walnut Oatmeal for breakfast, Turkey Meatloaf for lunch, and Baked Salmon with Pineapple Salsa for dinner — no cooking involved!

Also high on the list are the pescetarian and vegetarian diets. Pescetarian diets allow you to eat fish but not meat, while vegetarian diets are plant-based.

Diet-to-Go’s Vegetarian meal plan is adapted from our No. 1-rated Balance Menu, delivering you calorie-controlled, nutritional meals controlled for sodium, carbs, fat, and cholesterol. Our vegetarian plan includes breakfasts like Egg Pot Pie and Cherry Almond Bars, lunches like Spanish Stuffed Peppers and Mushroom Ravioli, and Dinners like Black Bean Chili and Asian Soy. We’ve been helping people lose weight and eat healthy with our Vegetarian Menu for over 30 years!*
 

The Least Heart-Healthy Diets - Tiers 3 and 4


Ketogenic and paleo diets ranked among the worst for heart health in the report. The ketogenic diet generally restricts you to about 30 net carbs per day, while the paleo diet includes fish, eggs, nuts and seeds, and some fruits and vegetables — the food available to humans of the Paleolithic era.

The report highlighted how restricting carbs to less than 10% of daily calories cuts out heart-healthy foods like many fruits and vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, which have nutritional qualities essential to a balanced diet.

The report noted that these diets offer benefits like cutting out refined grains and added sugar and encouraging eating veggies like asparagus, cauliflower, and broccoli. However, their focus on fatty meats like bacon and steak can lead to an increase in LDL cholesterol, the so-called “bad” cholesterol that can increase the risk of heart disease.
 

Bottom Line


Studies show that the best, healthiest diet is the one you can stick with long-term. At Diet-to-Go, we believe in a common-sense approach to healthy eating that allows you to enjoy the foods you love in smaller quantities.

Our most popular Balance Menu has been helping people achieve their goals for over 30 years. Our chefs and nutritionists designed a restaurant-quality, mouth-watering meal plan to control for calories and portion size with heart-healthy foods that include lean protein and lots of fruits and veggies.
  

 

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:33 -0500 Anthia
Examining the Link Between Stress and Weight Gain https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/examining-the-link-between-stress-and-weight-gain https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/examining-the-link-between-stress-and-weight-gain Stress and Weight

Traffic. Work. Groceries. Bills. Stress is a part of life — and most of us face it daily. Thankfully, we tend to be proficient in managing all those common day-to-day stressors.

But when stress gets overwhelming, it can make maintaining a healthy weight very challenging. Below, we examine the link between stress and weight gain and provide some methods for managing stress better, which is particularly helpful if you’re trying to lose weight.
 

The Physical Process Stress Causes


The World Health Organization defines stress as a “state of worry or mental tension caused by a difficult situation.” Every time we encounter something challenging, our adrenal glands release a hormone called cortisol and adrenaline to release glucose into our bloodstream. This process happens to help us “escape” the situation. As soon as the “danger” is over, our blood sugar drops and the adrenaline wears off, causing cortisol to work to boost your energy supply again.

This powerful chemical reaction is necessary to help us go about our daily lives, but it can also cause cravings as our blood sugar levels spike and drop. Many of us tend to cope by snacking, causing our bodies to store the excess sugar as fat.
 

The Effect of Stress on the Metabolism


Cortisol is also the hormone responsible for slowing down your metabolism. A 2015 study found that women who had experienced one or more stressful situations 24 hours before eating a high-calorie meal burned 104 fewer calories than those who hadn’t.
 

Unhealthy Behaviors Linked to Stress


The link between stress and weight goes beyond the physiological, too. Researchers have also linked stress to unhealthy habits that include:

Poor Diet: The more the stress piles on, the more drained we feel, and the less likely we are to plan in advance. This tends to lead us to “convenient” eating with things like fast food and junk food.

Emotional Eating: If you find yourself reaching for the bag of potato chips between meals or scouting the refrigerator late at night during especially stressful times, you’re likely eating emotionally. This is a common stress response, as overeating may provide us with temporary relief while simultaneously making weight loss more challenging.*

Meal Skipping: On the flip side, you may find that more stress causes you to eat less, particularly if you’re managing many challenging things at once. You may forget to eat a meal because you’re too busy, or you may not feel like eating at all. Then, you may overeat later to compensate for the calories you missed out on earlier in the day. Either way, maintaining a healthy weight is even more of a grind.*

Exercise Avoidance: When you’re stressed from something going on in life or the many things on your to-do list, exercise may be one of the first things to take the back burner. Exasperating the issue is that many of us sit behind a desk all day or spend hours in traffic getting to and from work, meaning less time for getting much-needed movement in.

Sleep Disturbances: Stress and sleeplessness go hand-in-hand. No matter how exhausted you are, there’s a good chance you can recall plenty of nights where you laid awake in bed with your mind’s wheels spinning. Not getting enough rest can create an extremely unhealthy cycle, as the resulting exhaustion during the day may slow your metabolism and reduce self-discipline when it comes to eating right and exercising.
 

How to Crack the Stress-Weight Cycle


No matter how much you have on your plate, breaking the stress cycle is more than possible. It’s also vital to prioritize yourself; doing so will help you maintain a healthy weight while making stress more manageable. Here are some straightforward ways to help you crack the vicious stress-weight cycle:
 

Schedule Your Me-Time


Me-time is a trendy way to describe the time you set aside for yourself. This can be time for exercise, meditation, journaling, reading, you name it. Give yourself at least 30 minutes of me-time daily, and treat it like you would any other appointment or meeting. Block the time out in your schedule, and stick to it.
 

Practice Mini Stress-Relief Strategies Throughout the Day


Whether it’s taking an hour to do yoga, 30 minutes to go for a walk, 5 minutes to meditate, or 10 seconds to take a deep breath, incorporating mini stress-relief activities can work wonders toward improving your ability to cope with stress. Any of these activities will lower your cortisol levels, which might also help you maintain a healthy weight.
 

Prioritize a Healthy Diet


The things you put into your body matter — and they matter in a significant way. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to avoid dehydration. Choose wholesome foods packed with nutrient-dense calories to keep you full and focused. If you struggle to find the time to properly plan your meals, consider a healthy meal delivery service like Diet-to-Go.

At Diet-to-Go, our mission is to make healthy eating easy. We deliver chef-crafted, restaurant-quality meals directly to your door. We do all the planning and prep, so all you have to do is heat and eat!

Do you have a coping method you use to manage stress? Help others by sharing it in the comments below!
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:32 -0500 Anthia
5 Practical Steps to Keep Loneliness at Bay https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/5-practical-steps-to-keep-loneliness-at-bay https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/5-practical-steps-to-keep-loneliness-at-bay Keep Loneliness at Bay

If you've ever felt lonely, you know how challenging navigating it can be. Many things cause loneliness, including some that you may not even realize are to blame.

Examples include:
 

  • Life events: Sometimes, life events like moving to a new city, breaking up with a significant other, or dealing with the death of a pet or loved one can cause loneliness.
  • Your personality type: Introverted people are less likely to expose themselves to social interactions and may be more prone to feeling lonely.
  • Social media: A decline in real-life social interactions due to social media has many people feeling more isolated in the modern era. Additionally, people often get sucked into social media and place a high priority on their social interactions rather than in real-life ones.
  • Mental health challenges: Cognitive distortion, or thinking inaccurately, causes some people to focus on the negative and worst possible outcomes, leading to a guarded outlook that can be isolating and off-putting to others. Anxiety and depression also may be at play as someone struggling with either may be less apt to connect with others.


Whatever is causing it, loneliness is a very powerful emotion that can have detrimental effects on your mental and physical health. In fact, a 2019 article from the National Institute on Aging noted that researchers have found that social isolation and loneliness put you at various risks, such as:
 

  • Heart disease
  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Weaker immune system
  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Cognitive decline
  • Alzheimer's disease


In addition, it's important to note that it's just as possible to feel lonely surrounded by family and friends as it is if you live alone.

That's why finding ways to combat loneliness and participating in meaningful, productive activities can have a powerful impact on your health and weight loss journey.

Take these five practical steps to keep loneliness at bay.
 

1. Explore the Emotion Behind It


Fighting a strong emotion like loneliness may be your default coping method. However, denying you feel alone or trying to suppress it won't make it go away. And the longer you pretend it doesn't exist, the more likely the feeling will grow. Instead, take some time to sit with the emotion and acknowledge that it's there. Try envisioning it like you are outside yourself, and accept that you're an actual human with genuine emotion. Write down the reasons why you feel lonely to explore what's going on in your life and see the potential for changes to mitigate it.
 

2. Write Out an Ideas List.


After you've explored what's causing your loneliness, the next step is to write out activities that may help you counter and deal with the emotion. That could entail many things unique to you, but here are a few examples:
 

  • Planning a monthly outing with friends.
  • Joining a neighborhood walking group.
  • Find online forums for activities you find interesting.
  • Exploring social media for groups with similar interests and attending their events.
  • Talking on the phone to a friend or loved one.
  • Volunteering for a cause that's dear to you.
  • Engaging in a coping activity you enjoy, such as walking, sewing, baking, gardening, or reading.
     
3. Take the First Leap.


Once you've written out your plan and ideas, now you can take the leap and try one or more of your ideas. Reach out to an old contact for a phone conversation. Explore Facebook Groups or MeetUp for activities. Google volunteering opportunities near you. Ask a local college or learning center about in-person classes for things like cooking or baking. Head to a rec center and sign up for a fitness or yoga class. There are many fun activities you can try!
 

4. Keep the Momentum Going.


After you've tried an activity from your list, write about your experience there. If it was enjoyable, keep the momentum going by signing up to attend regularly. If it wasn't for you, pick another activity from your idea list and give that a try. Eventually, you'll find something you love and make some new friends in the process!
 

5. If All Else Fails, Seek Professional Help


If you've taken all the above steps and find your loneliness isn't improving, talking to your doctor or finding a therapist may be a good idea. Mental health professionals can help you understand if your loneliness is chronic, related to past traumas, or caused by distorted thinking patterns. They can also help you with tangible coping mechanisms related to your individual situation.



Ultimately, combatting loneliness with actionable steps can work wonders in alleviating the feeling and helping you connect with others — and that's essential to ensuring it positively impacts your overall health.
 

What do you do when you feel lonely? Help others by sharing in the comments below!



 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:31 -0500 Anthia
Size 10 Again: Retired Teacher Drops Over 40 Pounds https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/size-10-again-retired-teacher-drops-over-40-pounds https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/size-10-again-retired-teacher-drops-over-40-pounds Lara

Name
: Lara
Age: 55
Occupation: Retired teacher
Meal Plan: Balance 1,200
Favorite Meal: Bistro Chicken Salad
Start Date: May 2023
Starting Weight: 200
Height: 5’9”
Pounds Lost: 42
Activity Level: Daily walks; easing back into running
When I get a craving, my go-to trick is: I have a little taste of a sweet, like the Diet-to-Go brownie that comes with the Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup meal, while keeping my goals in mind.
My favorite app for tracking weight loss is: I record my weigh-in results on my calendar.


When 55-year-old Lara recently fit comfortably into a pair of size 10 pants she’d held onto for years, it was a powerful moment for her.

“I tried on all my clothes again and thought, ‘Ok, you’re almost there. Keep going!’”

While the moment was impactful for Lara, she also used it as a reminder that she was fewer than 10 pounds away from her goal weight. Her resolve to keep going was even more solidified after she saw a full-length photo of herself after three months of hard work and diligence.

“Taking the photo, I was like, ‘Whoa!’ I don’t have a full-length mirror, so seeing that was amazing!” she said. “I’m almost here, but not here yet. I just have to keep going. I do enjoy feeling I’m getting close.”

And a few weeks later, in mid-September, she did indeed reach her goal weight.

Lara recently retired from a 28-year career working for the Dept. of Corrections, where she worked as a teacher with both youth and adult men. In 2019, she also became the legal guardian of her 7-year-old granddaughter.

“I have to push to have energy with her around,” Lara said. “We do swimming and tae-kwon-do. She’s so fun.”

Lara also used to spend a lot of time running, and every year, she races in a January half-marathon.

“This past January, I was so slow, but I finished it,” she said, adding that she weighed about 200 pounds at the time. “I also took my retirement trip to Kauai. I loved it, but because I felt so big, I was self-conscious. I was mad at myself for being so big during this special thing.”

Those were the catalysts that pushed Lara to make a change. She’d tried dieting in the past but ultimately decided to try Diet-to-Go after reading a Sports Illustrated article about the program’s many benefits.

“My first week, I thought, ‘This can’t be 1,200 calories; it’s too much food,’” Lara said. “I didn’t think I’d lose weight, but I did think, ‘This is heaven!’ I loved the taste. There were so many meals that at the end, I thought, ‘Wow, that was really good!’”

Lara set her mind to stick with it and focus on her three nutritious, portion-controlled daily meals, a far cry from the previous diet she’d tried that gave her six small meals and snacks all day — something she said was never sustainable for her because unhealthy snacking has always been one of her most challenging struggles.

“Diet-to-Go helped me with my snacking problem,” she said. “The meals are bigger, so I don’t have the urge to snack. I’m able to focus on my meals and really concentrate on how I feel.”

The portion sizes and nutritional content also aided Lara when she traveled, such as during a recent trip with her granddaughter to Legoland.

“I was able to navigate the food better because I’m learning about what a meal should be and how to keep this sustainable,” she said. “It’s helped me avoid splurging and going crazy.”

Lara said her weight loss has significantly impacted her confidence and energy levels, too.

“I do feel more like myself. When I have the extra weight, I don’t want to do anything, feel anything,” she said. “For me, I have to be a certain weight…I have improved confidence. There is very little I feel super strongly about, but this is one thing.”

The weight loss has also given her the boost she needs to turn her daily walks into daily runs again, something she really wanted to do.

“It’s become a comfort, something that’s doable,” Lara said. “It just helps me feel stronger and happier.”

Asked what has been the most crucial factor contributing to her weight loss, Lara said it’s Diet-to-Go.

“Diet-to-Go brings meals to your home, gives you the structure, and takes away the prep work,” she said. “It limits your focus, and once you get in the habit, it’s super easy.”

Lara advises others to try it, hang in there, and keep moving forward one day at a time.

“I always tell my granddaughter, ‘You can do hard things,” she said. “I say the same to others. You are important enough to do it. You do so much for everybody else; you can do this for you, and it’s worth it.”
 
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:31 -0500 Anthia
10 October Fruits &amp;amp; Veggies with Recipes to Match! https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-october-fruits-veggies-with-recipes-to-match https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-october-fruits-veggies-with-recipes-to-match Fall Fruits and Veggies

People embrace October for all sorts of reasons — cooler temperatures, the stunning golden, brown, and red fall colors, the comfort of returning to a steady routine after the hustle and bustle of summer, and, of course, the seasonal produce!

Fall is the peak season for a wide range of fruits and vegetables — affording plenty of opportunities to enjoy the crisp deliciousness raw or as the star in healthy, scrumptious recipes for all meals.

Below, we highlight five seasonal October fruits and five seasonal vegetables, along with some flavorful recipes to go along with them. Enjoy!
 

Autumn Fruits

 

1) Pumpkin

Pumpkin
We’re starting our list with the most obvious fall produce, the notorious pumpkin, and, subsequently, pumpkin spice. And it’s notorious for good reason: researchers at John Hopkins University found that pumpkin spice’s powerful scent triggers nostalgia and pleasant, cozy memories. But pumpkin is more than just the seasonal star of coffee shop lattes and chain restaurant pies. Pumpkin is also rich in vitamin A and chock full of vitamins that boost immunity, protect eyesight, and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. However you enjoy it, it’s worth adding as an autumn diet staple.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Whole Grain Pumpkin Spice Waffles
Pumpkin Overnight Oats
Healthy and Easy Pumpkin Soup
 

2) Apples

Apples
Ah, juicy, crisp, clean apples. What’s more fall than that? Apples are good for your heart and hut health, an excellent source of vitamin C and fiber and may even help prevent cancer. There are more than 7,500 apple varieties — yes, you read that right — giving you ample ways to enjoy this delicious fall fruit. Plus, there’s something special about booking an apple orchard trip with the family and picking them yourselves. Make a day of it!
 

Recommended Recipes:


Cinnamon-Apple Pork Chops
Healthy Apple Muffins
Spelt Salad with Apples, Cheddar and Scallions
 

3) Cranberries

Cranberries
Cranberries may elicit thoughts of the holiday season, but you can actually enjoy them best during the autumn months. Among their numerous health benefits is their helpfulness when it comes to treating urinary tract infections (UTIs). Cranberries may help stop bacteria from sticking to urinary tract walls, which can, in turn, help treat and prevent infection. They’re also helpful for cardiovascular health and promoting oral health. When you know how to prepare them properly, they have a unique, tangy taste that can elevate desserts, breakfasts, and side dishes alike.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Healthy Cranberry Coffee Cake
Cauliflower Cranberry Superfood Salad
Cranberry Orange Energy Bites
 

4) Pears

Pears
If you’re struggling with inflammation, then you’re going to want to add pears to your diet. They’re excellent for that; some reviews have even found they reduce diabetes and heart disease risk. Pears, like apples, have many varieties (about 3,000) — most with a soft, butter-like texture that even elicited them the nickname “butter fruit.” Pears are versatile in cooking, too, adding a nice flavor to savory dishes and desserts.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Roasted Pears with Bacon and Blue Cheese
Healthy Pear Oatmeal Crumb Bars
Pear and Prosciutto Pizza
 

5) Star Fruit

Star Fruite
You may be a bit surprised to find a tropical fruit on this list but, believe it or not, star fruit production is highest from October and December in addition to April to June. If you’ve never tried this bright yellow fruit, it’s got a unique, waxy texture and comes in two varieties — sweet and sour. It’s got anticancer and anti-inflammatory properties and an immunity-boosting ability that’s perfect for the cold season. Just be sure you know which one you’re buying, or you might get a lip-twisting surprise when you bite into it!
 

Recommended Recipes:


Star Fruit Salad
Star Fruit Chips
Low-Carb Grilled Salmon with Starfruit Salsa
 

Autumn Vegetables

 

6) Beets

Beets
Ah, beets. Many of our childhoods included cold, canned beets dumped alongside some chicken and rice — an unfortunate usage that deterred many people from these actually tasty vegetables. In fact, beets can help improve blood flow and improve exercise performance as they are packed with fiber, iron, vitamin C, potassium, and more. When prepared well, beets can be a delectable side dish that will make those childhood memories feel like nothing more than a dream.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Honey-Roasted Beets
Colorful Beet Salad with Carrot, Quinoa & Spinach
Dark Chocolate Beet Brownies
 

7) Brussels Sprouts

Brussels Sprouts
Love them or hate them, brussels sprouts made a comeback in the last decade, often adorning the appetizer section of many upscale and trendy restaurants. There’s a good reason for that. Besides potentially helping you stave off several types of cancers and other health issues like high cholesterol and diabetes, brussels sprouts taste amazing when roasted or caramelized. You can find them just about anywhere and pair them with pork, chicken, or beef — or serve them as a standalone dish.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Roasted Brussels Sprouts With Garlic
Kung Pao Brussels Sprouts
Brussels Sprouts Pasta Carbonara
 

8) Cabbage

Cabbage
A heavy head of cabbage without browning and wilting leaves is just the thing to look for in October. Like all vegetables, cabbage has tons of vitamins and nutrients, and it is particularly helpful in keeping inflammation in check, improving digestion, and helping with heart-related things like keeping blood pressure and cholesterol levels low. Cabbage is also the staple of any good slaw, but it’s also quite the ingredient to add to other dishes, too.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Napa Cabbage Wedge With Sesame Ranch
Healing Cabbage Soup
Butternut Apple Cranberry Sandwich with Pickled Cabbage
 

9) Cauliflower

Cauliflower
Cauliflower is a versatile, nutty-flavored vegetable that has become a staple in gluten-free, vegan, and vegetarian diets due to its ability to replace things like pizza crust and potatoes. Among its many health benefits is how helpful it is in preventing colon cancer and boosting immunity (hello, fiber!). Look for it fresh with a firm head, no dark spots, bright green leaves, and a sturdy stem.
 

Recommended Recipes:


Crispy Cauliflower Tacos
Cauliflower Gratin with Manchego and Almond Sauce
Curried Cauliflower Soup
 

10) Broccoli

Broccoli
Most of us may have started out hating broccoli as children, only to slowly but surely develop a taste for its fresh taste and crisp texture the older we got. Broccoli is helpful for keeping blood sugars stable. Its antioxidants prevent cell damage in your eyes. It reduces inflammation and may help prevent cancer and support heart health. The nutritional benefits are staggering, as is its ability to elevate countless dishes, whether as the main or as a scrumptious side.
 

Recommend Recipes:


The Best (Roasted) Broccoli of Your Life
Broccoli Stir Fry
Broccoli and Potato Soup



 

Whether you’re a fan of the fall season or not, you’re sure to find something you enjoy on this fun list. Pick out a few recipes for some healthy weekend dishes to go with your Diet-to-Go meals — you’ll be glad you did!

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:30 -0500 Anthia
Treadmill Fails That Are As Hilarious As They Are Alarming https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/treadmill-fails-that-are-as-hilarious-as-they-are-alarming https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/treadmill-fails-that-are-as-hilarious-as-they-are-alarming Treadmill Fails

Ah, the treadmill — this stationary piece of equipment gives fitness enthusiasts the ability to walk or run anytime — rain, snow, or shine.

It certainly can be a valuable part of your exercise repertoire, offering a reliable way to boost cardiovascular health, strengthen leg muscles, boost stamina, and maybe even lose weight.

But let's face it. The treadmill can be pretty damn boring. Add in that its functionality clearly baffles some people, and you have a recipe for some hilarious blunders.

We scoured the web to find the 10 funniest treadmill fails, from crashing into weight sets to Taylor Swift's epic slip to an unexpected flashing — and everything in between. Enjoy!
 

The Bubble-Trouble


We're truly, truly trying to understand how he thought this was a good idea. Like, the science just doesn't support it. But hey, that's one way to maximize your use of equipment!
 

The Nobody-Noticed


She definitely didn't notice your epic fall, but she did notice your biceps. We're actually pretty astounded at how smoothly he pulled that off, and if he was trying to show off to land a date, it just might have worked!
 

The Double-Whammy


When you're trying to run way faster than you should on a treadmill, it's probably a good idea NOT to have a weight set waiting in the wind. Hopefully, he was already too dazed from whacking his head on the way down to feel the effect of the full 400 pounds crashing down on him.
 

The Rocket-Launcher


See! This is why treadmills have an age requirement — they're meant for walking and running, not launching yourself across the room.
 

The Who-Knew


While we're on the topic of age requirements, this kid clearly wasn't prepared for a moving platform connected to a stationary object — and the pain that came with it. This one is probably going into the core memory bank.
 

The Flash-Dash


We're betting this wasn't exactly the kind of "showing off" he had in mind when he ambitiously set the treadmill speed to 10.0. Next time, bud.
 

The Selfie-Spill


You know how it can be kind of obnoxious when people are distracted with their phones, posting selfies, and not paying attention to their surroundings? Karma.
 

The Jean-Drop


Hopping on a treadmill in jeans and clogs could be at the center of odd or dedicated. Either way, keep the speed under 2.0 — there's a reason running shoes and workout clothes are a thing.
 

The Cheese-Chug


We're never a huge fan of using a treadmill for something other than its intended application, but this guy gets some serious creativity points. Sometimes, you just need to get that snack in quickly.
 

The Taylor-Tumble


Swifties everywhere gasped in horror at this one. Thankfully, the epic, mid-celebration collapse didn't impact her ability to continue creating the platinum albums her fans adore.


 

What’s your favorite treadmill fail gif? Share in the comments below!

 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:29 -0500 Anthia
New Research Indicates How Cholesterol Types Impact Heart Disease Risk https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/new-research-indicates-how-cholesterol-types-impact-heart-disease-risk https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/new-research-indicates-how-cholesterol-types-impact-heart-disease-risk Cholesterol Research


Heart disease is the leading cause of death in adults, and doctors for nearly 100 years have studied risk factors to try and mitigate their patients' risk. One of the primary factors they analyze is cholesterol — HDL, or "healthy," cholesterol to indicate protection, and LDL, or "lousy" cholesterol to indicate a higher risk.

However, a recent review of previous studies shows that it's actually more complex than that. The analysis, published in April's edition of the European Heart Journal, found that cholesterol gathers together in "balls," which are unique combinations of small and large particle HDLs and LDLs.

"Having lots of Small Particle LDL increases risk for heart attacks, and Large Particle LDL may not be a major risk factor," said Dr. Gabe Mirkin in a recent post. "Having lots of Large Particle HDL helps to prevent heart attacks and lots of Small Particle HDL may not help to prevent heart attacks."

Mirkin, a fitness guru, longtime radio host, and sports medicine doctor with more than 50 years of practice, added that people who may be at risk for heart disease should ask their doctors for a blood test measuring for LDL and HDL cholesterol, non–HDL-cholesterol and cholesterol particle size.

"Both a high (>90) and low HDL (<35) cholesterol are associated with increased risk," Mirkin said.

By learning your cholesterol details, you can work with your doctor to create a plan to lower your chances of getting the disease. In addition to measuring LDLs and HDLs, you can do several other things to mitigate your risk of getting heart disease.
 

1. Create a weight loss plan if needed.


If you have a high BMI, losing weight is one of the best things you can do to lower your risk of getting heart disease. Your weight relative to your height determines your BMI, also called body mass index. BMI is helpful because it shows whether you're underweight, at a normal weight, overweight, or obese. You can also use our Free Diet Analysis to learn your BMI and get meal plan recommendations from our team of nutritionists.
 

2. Enjoy healthy, wholesome foods regularly.


Consistently eating nutritious meals is vital to living longer. Your meals should contain a balanced portion of protein, whole grains, and fruits and vegetables. If you need help figuring out where to start, Diet-to-Go can help! We offer four menus crafted by chefs and designed by nutritionists. Our Mediterranean menu, particularly, provides a diet high in healthy fats, Omega-3 fatty acids, fruits, vegetables and nuts. Studies have found that a Mediterranean diet can lead to weight loss, as well as combat heart disease and stroke, and avoid Type 2 diabetes and premature death.
 

3) Quit nicotine.


Nicotine is the addictive substance found in cigarettes, vape devices, snuff, some gums, and more. Scientists say nicotine increases your heart rate and blood pressure and may also harden your arterial walls. Quitting nicotine is essential to heart health.
 

4) Exercise at least five days a week.


Whether you go out for a 20-minute walk, sign up for a fitness class, head to the gym, play a sport, or just do something light like cleaning or gardening, regular exercise can help keep your resting heart lower during the day, which, in turn, can decrease your heart disease risk.
 

5) Don't drink alcohol every day.


Drinking alcohol excessively can potentially increase your blood pressure and cause weight gain. While the occasional beer, glass of wine, or cocktail is fine, try not to drink every night.
 

Bottom Line


Knowing your specific type of cholesterol, whether HDL or LDL, and its particle size is an excellent first step to determining your heart disease risk factor. Talk to your doctor about your options and what tests are available to you.

In the meantime, try putting the tips above into regular practice so they become a part of your daily life. Doing so will go a long way toward ensuring your heart stays healthy and strong for years to come!
 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:28 -0500 Anthia
How &quot;Skinny Dave&quot; Lost 45 lbs with Diet&to&Go https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-skinny-dave-lost-45-lbs-with-diet-to-go https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/how-skinny-dave-lost-45-lbs-with-diet-to-go


Name: David Rockwell
Age: 56
Occupation: Healthcare Administration
Meal Plan: Balance-Diabetes
Favorite Meals: Breakfast: Whole Wheat Waffles with Blueberry Cream Cheese; Lunch: Lemon Herb Chicken; Dinner: Chicken Parmesan
Start Date: May 2023
Starting Weight: 247
Height: 5’11”
Pounds Lost: 45
Activity Level: Walking on a treadmill 30 minutes (about 2 miles) a day
When I get a craving, my go-to trick is: 100-calorie snacks like pretzels and nuts
My favorite app for tracking weight loss is: myFitnessPal

When 56-year-old healthcare administrator David Rockwell went to see his doctor for an annual checkup in May, he knew walking in that he might not get good news.

“I was very cognizant that I had high blood pressure and all the other things that tend to go with being obese,” David said.

Sure enough, his bloodwork showed he faced many health issues, including high cholesterol and blood sugar. His doctor immediately talked about prescribing him several medications.

“I knew I didn’t want to live my life like that,” David said. “I knew what I had to do, so I made a commitment to do it. I called my doctor after and said, ‘Hey, give me a few months. I’m going to make a concerted effort' to make a major lifestyle change."

After some prayer, personal reflection, and a bit of Googling, David found Diet-to-Go’s Balance-Diabetes meal plan and placed an order.

“I was kind of scared that, ‘Oh, I’m going to do this diabetic-friendly meal program, and it’s going to taste super bland,’ but I was so wrong,” David said. “Everything was well-seasoned, fresh, and it was so delicious.”

Within three months, David, at 5’11” tall, shed 45 pounds, weighing in at 202.
 

Facing (and Overcoming!) Challenges Along the Way


David kicked off his weight loss journey in May, right at the start of summer, a time that wasn’t without its challenges.

“One of the challenges of trying to eat healthy and get on track with weight loss is when you get together with family,” David said, adding that he went on two vacations with his family over the summer. “There are a lot of things that are really delicious that are also really bad for you or not the best for when you want to get back in shape.”

But during his annual family vacation to Chincoteague Island, Virginia, David said having his Diet-to-Go meals was a lifesaver.

“We rented a house, and I brought them with me and put them in a fridge so when everyone was eating greasy burgers, I was eating a healthy meal,” he said.

Things got a bit trickier during an August trip to Disney World when David was unable to bring his meals and faced “the mecca of all kinds of wonderful, super delicious food that is also super bad for you.”

“Going into it I knew, and I tried to make better choices,” David said. “I can only imagine the old days where I wouldn’t have cared at all. I did try to make wise choices, but it’s hard when there’s really not any healthy choices to be had.”

During the week-long trip, David gained back 9 pounds of the 25 he’d lost, but he wasn’t about to let it deter him.

“I worked so hard, and I was like, ‘No way am I going to give up,’” he said.

He also said beginning his weight loss journey in the summertime, a time when he, like most Philadelphia natives, loved to partake in ice cream, was rough.

“To start a weight loss program in the summertime, it’s kind of a killer,” he said. “The thing of it is, there have been a few times that I have had a small ice cream cone, and it hasn’t killed me. I do believe you can do everything in moderation.’
 

‘Extremely Satisfying’ Meals with a Sprinkle of Fitness


When David started Diet-to-Go, he was concerned he wouldn’t feel full and satisfied. He’d also tried another meal delivery weight loss program in the past and it only lasted a couple of days due to the low-quality food.

“I can’t stress enough that the meals from DTG have all been extremely satisfying,” David said. “I have not ever had a time where I’m like, ‘I’m so hungry, I could eat five of those meals.’ Every now and then, I do like to have a couple of snacks. But they’re within the calorie count for the day. I have learned some new positive habits.”

He also was concerned they’d taste like “diet food,” and he wouldn’t be able to stick with it long term.

“I’m the guy who’s had a long life of going to Wendy’s, McDonald’s, Chipotle, Taco Bell, and just fast food in general. You wouldn’t catch me eating broccoli,” David said. “Now, I sit down and think, ‘Oh wow, I love this.’ It’s opened my eyes to all sorts of new meals. My taste buds have completely changed.

David also joined a local fitness club and built 30 minutes of walking on the treadmill into his daily routine. He uses myFitnesspal to log his calorie-burn and Diet-to-Go meals, which are already loaded into the app’s library.

“You burn off a certain number of calories and [myFitnesspal] integrates that into it,” David said. “That does allow me to eat a bit more…instead of 1,500, for example, I can eat 1,600 or 1,700.”

David also completely cut sugary beverages like soda and lemonade from his diet.

“I made a big lifestyle change of not drinking anything but water, unsweetened iced tea, and unsweetened coffee,” he said. “Sugary drinks are just, wow, so bad for you. That in itself is just such a huge change, and it’s one pretty simple thing you can do.”
 

A Support System and Some Serious Motivation


David’s family and friends have reinforced his commitment every step of the way, even when they were on vacation.

“When I brought my meals, nobody said anything,” David said. “I said to my siblings, ’You guys are going to think I’m weird,’ and they said, “No! No. We’re so proud of you.”

And an even more powerful motivation for David was the compliments.

“For me to walk in and my mom and sister and whoever else was there to say, ‘Oh my gosh, David, wow! I can tell you lost weight! You look great!' And my close friends and family have been calling me Skinny Dave! It’s a motivator. If I’m feeling this much better at 10 pounds, I knew I’d feel even better losing 20 pounds!”

His returning energy was also a significant factor in his success.

“I have all this energy now, sometimes to the point where it’s annoying, like, “Ah! I just wanted to sleep in on Saturday, and I can’t sleep in!’” David laughed.
 

Bottom Line: It’s All About Great Food


David said his favorite thing about Diet-to-Go is that it’s not a fad or yo-yo diet — it’s something you can stick with and learn from to make a lasting lifestyle change.

“It’s not some weird, ‘Oh I’m eating diet food.’ It’s normal food,” David said. “A lot of these entrees, if they came served on a fancy platter, you’d never know the difference. These are gourmet meals, seasoned so well, presented so nicely, the portions, everything.”

David added that Diet-to-Go has taught him about proper portion size and nutrition.

“People tend to make it just about calories, but you also have to look at what you’re ingesting,” David said. “Do you want to have all your calories by eating a [burger] and large fries? Or do you want three really nice, wholesome, square meals a day that have protein and vitamins and minerals?”
David said he plans to carry the lessons he learned from Diet-to-Go into his life for good by making better choices at restaurants and with meals in general.

“I just can’t recommend [Diet-to-Go] enough. It’s the truth,” David said.
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:28 -0500 Anthia
7 Realistic, Can&Do Tips for a Healthier Holiday Season https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-realistic-can-do-tips-for-a-healthier-holiday-season https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-realistic-can-do-tips-for-a-healthier-holiday-season Tips for a healthier holidday

A quick Google search will yield all sorts of articles sharing all the ways you can stay healthy and keep your diet going strong during the holidays.

But how realistic are they?

The truth: not very — at least not if you want to enjoy your time with friends and family without severely restricting yourself (and possibly driving yourself mad).

With that in mind, we put together a list of seven realistic, can-do tips to enjoy the holiday season with as much healthfulness as possible — but not too much to make it miserable!
 

1) Don’t skip your usual meals.


Eating regularly throughout the day ensures your metabolism is working and your body gets the necessary fuel. It also helps keep your appetite in check so your eyes aren’t bigger than your stomach at holiday meals or parties. Whether you’re on a Diet-to-Go meal plan or doing it solo, be sure to enjoy breakfast and lunch as usual before heading out for the big holiday dinner.
 

2) Schedule (and prioritize!) your fitness.


Yes, the holiday season is a busy time. And yes, it can be very challenging to squeeze in some exercise. Treating it like you do any other important meeting or gathering is critical. Break down how to get the recommended 150 minutes of exercise a week and pencil it in. Regular exercise is excellent for your mental health and burning those extra calories you’ll likely munch down throughout the season.
 

3) Indulge — but don’t overindulge.


If you’ve ever tried to be the person at the party waving away delicious sweets or trying to stand as far away from the food spread as possible for fear of giving into temptation, you know how utterly miserable it can be. Simple solution: Don’t do it. Grab a smaller plate from the buffet line and fill it up instead so you can indulge in the deliciousness without going over the top. Or, pick a few foods ahead of time and enjoy those, rather than trying every little thing set out.
 

4) Practice mindful eating.


Mindful eating involves being fully conscious of the size, texture, color, smell, and taste. It’s truly an excellent way to slow down and deliberately enjoy your food in a way you may never have before. Experts say it also can help you feel full quicker, contributing to a healthier weight and, in this case, helping you avoid overeating.
 

5) Take laps around the room or stand instead of sit after eating.


A cozy seat on the couch or at the table can be pretty darn appealing when you have a full belly. Here’s the thing: You can get your digestion system going simply by moving after eating. Instead of plopping down, walk around the room or stand. Not only can this help you avoid eating even more, but it also gets the blood flowing and your metabolism started. Win-win.
 

6) Practice self-compassion.


Despite all your best efforts, there will be moments you go overboard. And, you know what, that’s okay. Forgive yourself, and don’t hold onto it. Beating yourself up or feeling guilty gets you nowhere and is likely to end in a cycle of self-deprecation. Take a deep breath, tell yourself you’ll do better next time, and move on with your day.
 

7) Create a concrete plan for the season and beyond.


New Year’s resolutions may be overrated, but they can also help, particularly if you put a plan in place well before the holiday season even starts. Create SMART goals around your holiday parties and get-togethers that allow you to enjoy yourself. Then, carry that momentum into the new year by adapting them into a full-blown plan for whatever health goal you want to achieve.

The holiday season should be fun and full of food, family, and friends. Follow these easy tips to enjoy them without going over the top. You’ll be glad you did come the new year!
 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:27 -0500 Anthia
Top 2 Ways To Help Manage Type 2 Diabetes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/top-2-ways-to-help-manage-type-2-diabetes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/top-2-ways-to-help-manage-type-2-diabetes Managing Type 2 Diabetes


Type 2 diabetes happens when too much sugar in the bloodstream disrupts the body's ability to process it correctly, leading to immune, nervous, and circulatory conditions like heart disease, nerve damage, eye and hearing impairments, skin conditions, sleep apnea, and long healing times.

If you are living with Type 2 diabetes, there's a good chance you know how critical a healthy lifestyle is to manage the condition.
 

A Nutritional, Healthy Diet


Eating a balanced, well-rounded diet is one of the most important ways to manage the condition. Several studies point to how a poor diet consisting of refined sugars and unhealthy fats is directly correlated with a significant rise in people with Type 2 diabetes.

Unfortunately, getting proper nutrition can be challenging, particularly since your diet is likely one of the factors that led to your Type 2 diagnosis. Thankfully, Diet-to-Go can help with the eating part! Our Balance-Diabetes menu aims to help you control blood sugar naturally with meals that are:
 

  • Calorie-controlled and nutritionally balanced
  • Heart-healthy — controlled for sodium, carbs, fat and cholesterol


In fact, U.S. News & World Report named us on its list of the Best Diabetic Meal Delivery Services for 2023, saying our "Balance-Diabetes plan…is designed for people who have diabetes or prediabetes and are using food to help control their condition. It suits most diabetics and follows the American Diabetes Association's recommendations."

If you know you want to eat better but aren't sure where to begin, many of our customers have found success with losing weight* and managing their diabetes with our meal plans.
 

Regular Exercise (Particularly in the Afternoon)


Activity is helpful for everyone, but you really need to make it an essential part of your life if you want to manage your Type 2 diabetes better.

While getting 20-30 minutes (or more!) of fitness is a good idea any time of day, you may be among the many people who find it nearly impossible to fit a workout into your busy mornings.

That may be even less of a bad thing than you realize. In fact, a recent study published in Diabetes Care found that afternoon exercise elicits the most prominent results for controlling blood glucose levels. In addition, the researchers found that of the 2,400 study participants (people who were considered overweight or obese and had Type 2 diabetes), those who regularly exercised in the afternoon were also more likely to stop having to take their medications.

So, if waking up at the crack of dawn to work out isn't your particular cup of tea, that's more than okay. Here are some fun afternoon exercise ideas, the kinds of activities perfect for doing after work or early in the evening:

  • Go for an hour-long walk: Choose a different path or park and prioritize going at least four days a week. Making it into a meditation walk has the added benefit of helping you manage stress, another essential lifestyle factor for people with Type 2 diabetes. If you go right after leaving work, you can use the time to miss rush hour!
  • Sign up for an evening fitness class: You'll likely be in good company at any number of evening fitness classes, whether it's yoga, cycling, dancing, or kickboxing. Most fitness classes tend to be busier in the evenings, allowing you to make new friends and stay motivated!
  • Do a water activity: If you live near a lake or reservoir and the weather is suitable for it, things like kayaking, paddle boarding, wake-boarding, canoeing or swimming are an exciting, fun way to get in a fitness session — often without even thinking about it!
  • Turn on a YouTube video at home: Whether you just walked in the door after a day at the office or shut down your computer in your home office, a YouTube video workout is an excellent way to unwind and transition from work mode to relaxing mode.

Need more inspiration? You can find many other fitness ideas and insights in the Exercise Tips section of our blog.

When you take steps toward improving your eating and exercise habits, you'll likely see the effects of your diabetes taper down, too. Be sure to schedule regular checkups with your doctor and learn how to track your A1c levels. You should also manage your stress levels, avoid nicotine products, and limit alcohol.

With a positive mindset and a sprinkle of determination, you can make these high-priority tasks a regular part of your life — and will likely see your health improve as a result!

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:27 -0500 Anthia
Tips to Stay on Track While You Travel https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/tips-to-stay-on-track-while-you-travel https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/tips-to-stay-on-track-while-you-travel Travel Tips

The busy holiday traveling season is right around the corner.

And, if you’re like the millions of Americans who plan on hopping on a plane and heading home for the holidays or on a vacation, it doesn’t mean you have to give up on your weight loss goals.

Below, we lay out 7 ways to stay committed to your healthy eating and fitness routine even when the bags are packed and you’re ready to go.

Kitchen

1) Book Accommodations with a Kitchen


Nothing can pack on the calories faster than eating out every meal. In fact, a 2010 study found that the average restaurant serves portion sizes that are 2-3 times what U.S. Dietary Guidelines recommend.

If you’re not staying with family, get a room or rental that includes a kitchen or kitchenette. That way, you can cook more meals on your own, cutting back on the calories and oversized portions.




Pack Smart

2) Pack for Success.


Amid the gifts for grandma, knit sweaters, snow boots, and winter gloves, make sure you’re also tossing in all the gear you need to keep up your fitness routine. Travel-size yoga mats, gym leggings and shirts, sports bras and sneakers should all make their way into your suitcase.

In addition, be sure to place healthy snacks and an empty water bottle in your carry-on bag. Having items like individually wrapped almond packs, granola or protein bars or even a piece of fruit will help ensure you bypass all the candy bars, potato chips, and soda pop on display at every airport convenience store. You can fill your water bottle after passing through security.

Fitness Center

3) Use that Hotel Pool or Gym


Most hotels offer a pool and fitness center as amenities. Don’t ignore them. Commit to starting your day off with a 45-minute workout or winding down in the evening with a few laps in the pool.









Stay Active

4) Attend Active Outings.


Traveling for fun doesn’t have to just mean lounging around the poolside. There are plenty of activities that are fun and involve movement. Examples include sightseeing, walking tours, and destination sports.









Stay Hydrated

5) Stay Hydrated.


Drinking plenty of water while traveling is critical to keep you energized and on track. That’s especially true if you’re headed to a place with a drastic change in climate compared to what you’re used to, such as up to the mountains for a ski trip.









Dine Wisely

6) Dine Wisely.


There’s a good chance that you’re going to end up at a restaurant while traveling, even if you do book a place with a kitchen. Be sure to look at the menu online in advance. Try to pick restaurants that include healthy menu items and have a calming atmosphere. When ordering, opt for broth-based soups, salads, and menu items that don’t include words like “loaded” or “fried.” Eat This, Not That offers a comprehensive guide to help you make healthy choices when eating out.





Have Fun

7) Have Fun!


Vacationing is meant to be a blast! Use these tips to stay on track, but don’t become so rigid that you can’t enjoy your trip. If you’ve been on a weight loss plan* for some time, take a moment each evening to celebrate your continued success and all the little wins at the end of each day.








 

Do you have a travel hack you leverage to stay committed, even while traveling? Share in the comments below!

 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:26 -0500 Anthia
The Science on Mindfulness and Weight Loss https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-science-on-mindfulness-and-weight-loss https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-science-on-mindfulness-and-weight-loss mindfulness with weight loss

So, you’re starting on a weight loss journey. If you’ve read up on how to do it successfully, chances are you’re setting SMART goals and creating a comprehensive plan to succeed.

You’ve probably chosen or signed up for a healthy meal plan like Diet-to-Go. You may have registered for a gym membership or joined group fitness classes. You likely have a food journal or app and may have shared your plan with loved ones to foster accountability.

And yes, these things are undoubtedly essential to meeting your goals.

But one overlooked thing that you may not have even considered that can play a vital role in ensuring your success lasts for life is the practice of mindfulness.

Mindfulness involves addressing more than just what you eat and how much you work out. It means exploring, understanding, and controlling the emotional and mental reasons behind your unhealthy eating habits — and it’s pretty darn important. In fact, a systematic review of how mindfulness impacts weight found that people who practice mindfulness have a much greater chance of maintaining a healthy weight.

Another study found that mindfulness training directly impacts a person’s ability to continue making healthy choices once they start a weight loss plan. Another systematic review of 19 studies found that “significant weight loss was documented among participants in mindfulness interventions for 13 of the 19 studies.”

But how do you incorporate mindfulness into your daily life — and how do you leverage the skill to stay on track with your weight loss efforts? Below are six simple first steps to help you incorporate mindfulness into your weight loss journey.
 

Practice Calming Your Mind Through Meditation


Before you can use mindfulness for weight loss, you need to learn the basics. Apps like Headspace, Calm, and The Tapping Solution provide an excellent starting point to teach you meditation techniques and how to calm your mind. This skill is essential because it helps you see things more clearly, enabling you to make better choices and gain a deeper understanding of yourself.
 

Engage in Body Scanning


Body scanning is when you take a moment, close your eyes, and mentally scan your body from top to bottom. As you do this, you should note any physical sensations, whether comfortable or irritating. It may seem silly at first, but body scanning gives you a deeper connection with your body and shows you physical areas where stress manifests, which may contribute to emotional eating.
 

Identify Your Triggers


Calming your mind and scanning your body are the first steps to incorporating mindfulness into your weight loss journey. Another critical element is taking time to learn about what triggers emotional eating, defined as using food to deal with feelings instead of to satisfy hunger — and a common culprit of weight gain. One way to do this is by keeping a food journal to identify the emotions you felt while eating a meal or snack. From there, analyze your entries and look for patterns. Knowing those patterns means you can look for ways to break them.
 

Practice Mindful Eating


How often have you found yourself mindlessly snacking on a bag of chips or grabbing a handful of cereal while walking around the kitchen in the past? You don’t have any way to keep track of how many calories you ate, and worse still, you may not even remember eating them! Mindless eating can truly wreck your ability to lose weight. Commit to mindful eating by only eating when sitting down with the plate in front of you. Eliminate distractions while eating, focusing instead on the food itself — how it looks, its smell, texture, and taste. Pay close attention to how your body feels as you eat it, which will allow your brain to trigger your body when it's full so you don’t overeat and enjoy your food.
 

Try Mindful Movement


On the flip side of mindful eating is mindful movement, defined as only engaging in physical activities you enjoy. As you exercise, whether walking, playing a sport, cycling, etc., be hyperaware of the physical sensations. Remind yourself how blessed you are to be able to move like that, and find joy in what you’re doing.
 

Accept Yourself


Take these steps for even a week, and you’ll quickly notice just how much you learn about yourself. Journaling about it along the way can help you gain even more understanding. Ultimately, mindfulness is about getting in touch with yourself, identifying your triggers, and reshaping your approach to food and fitness. Learning to accept yourself through mindfulness plays a significant role in adjusting the behavior that will make your success a permanent part of your life.
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:25 -0500 Anthia
10 Weight Loss Affirmations to Keep You Going Strong https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-weight-loss-affirmations-to-keep-you-going-strong https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/10-weight-loss-affirmations-to-keep-you-going-strong Affirmations

When you start out on a journey to lose weight, it can feel daunting. You have to choose a plan that supports a whole new lifestyle. You have to change your eating and drinking habits, get educated, set a timeline, and measure your success along the way. You may even incorporate fitness into the mix, which brings a whole new level of complication.

And, most importantly, you have to fully, 100% commit to that plan. That means creating a new pattern and doing it, one day, one small step at a time.

But no matter how difficult the journey seems, it’s always worth it in the end. You will gain a new lease on life and enjoy the profound satisfaction of making a change for the better.

Getting there is challenging, but one very effective way to keep going when the going gets tough is through positive affirmations. Positive affirmations are statements or phrases that we say to ourselves with the goal of moving toward the many things we are capable of accomplishing.

With that in mind, we're sharing positive affirmations; mantras related to weight loss — things you can repeat in your head in the morning when you wake up, before you go to sleep at night and especially during all those difficult moments in between.
 

1) I love and accept myself.


You may not look or feel the way you want yet, but you should be proud of the current you who is working to get there.
 

2) I choose what I put in my body.


There’s one thing no one can take away — and that’s the power of choice. No one will force you to eat or drink anything you don’t want to.
 

3) I am worthy.


You deserve to be the best version of yourself, and, more importantly, you have the power to get there.
 

4) I will focus on the activities and people that fulfill me.


Food is meant to nourish our bodies, not to be a catch-all outlet for everything from celebrating to dealing with our emotions. Let the event and your friends or family be the real appeal. Food should be secondary.
 

5) I am patient.


Nothing worth having comes instantly. Remember, the light at the end of the tunnel is there; it’s just going to take time and consistency to reach it.
 

6) I deserve to look and feel my best.


Worthiness plays a major role in the ability to move forward. You DO deserve it and believing that will get you there.
 

7) I embrace my confidence.


Self-assurance doesn’t come naturally to everyone. But repeating to yourself that you are confident is one big step towards tenacity.
 

8) I enjoy the way exercise makes me feel.


Whether you’re going on walks every day, doing a fitness video a few times a week or have a full-blown gym membership, focusing on the way your body feels during and after exercise is a surefire way to keep moving forward.
 

9) I am learning, even when I have a setback.


Every time you make it through the day having successfully achieved your goals, you’ve learned something! That same rule applies to when you make a mistake or things don’t turn out quite the way you’d hoped. As long as you’re learning, you’re winning!
 

10) Following a healthy food plan is easy.


With Diet-to-Go, healthy eating is as easy as clicking, ordering, delivery and heating. We take the thinking out of it with our chef-crafted meals that are ready to go and balanced for nutrition and portion size. No thought required. Just heat, eat and get on the fast track to achieving your goals!*

Ultimately, a big part of getting to where you want to be starts with a positive mindset. There are going to be times when that’s easier said than done. Repeating positive affirmations to yourself during those moments will help you keep on keeping on!
 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:25 -0500 Anthia
Being Fit Earlier in Life Means Reduced Cancer Risk Later https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/being-fit-earlier-in-life-means-reduced-cancer-risk-later https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/being-fit-earlier-in-life-means-reduced-cancer-risk-later Being Fit Earlier in Life

Life gets complicated as we age. Our time becomes more limited as the responsibilities pile up, we have kids, we focus on building our careers, you name it.

The more complicated it becomes, the more challenging it can be to fit in exercise and focus on taking care of our physical health. You may have prioritized fitness, working out at least four or five days a week in your younger years, only to have it fall by the wayside as you age. You know that science says fitness can prevent cancer and other diseases, but it feels nearly impossible to do it consistently.

If that rings true to you, there may be some good news. A recent study found that being fit earlier in life is associated with a reduced risk of getting nine cancer types later in life.

The study, published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, was unique in that it analyzed 33 years of data. Researchers followed more than 1 million Swedish men between the ages of 16 and 25 from 1968 to 2005, monitoring their cardiorespiratory fitness, and found that the higher it was when they were young, the more likely they were to see a reduced risk of liver, lung, and esophageal cancer later in life, to name a few.

That’s strong evidence for the importance of promoting exercise and an active lifestyle among children, teens, and young adults — and it also reiterates how vital it is for adults of all ages to prioritize fitness.
 

Tips for Getting Daily Exercise


There’s no time like the present to reincorporate fitness into your daily life. If you have struggled in recent years to fit it into your everyday life, following these tips may help:
 

1. Walk, run, or cycle to work.


If you live within 5 miles of the office, consider getting up earlier and commuting on foot or a bicycle. It’s a simple, straightforward way to fit in 30 minutes (or more) of exercise. As a bonus, it’s good for the environment, too!
 

2. Schedule fitness time like you schedule appointments and meetings.


Most of us live and die by our calendars, whether for work or our personal lives. Set up and schedule your exercise time or fitness classes just like you would any other important meeting or appointment. This is a foolproof way to ensure you have to get them in.
 

3. Play with the kids.


If you have children at home, create time for you all to play together as a family. Go for a walk or bike ride. Join them when they play virtual reality games. Walk around the building while they’re at their sports practice. Find any way to get moving while they are!
 

4. Always have workout clothes nearby.


You never know when you might have a free moment to fit in 20 to 30 minutes of exercise. Whether traveling or rushing between appointments and finding yourself with a (shocking!) free window of time, having workout clothes in the car or suitcase will ensure you can take advantage of it!
 

5. Turn a get-together (or even date night!) into something active.


Exercise is way more fun when you have someone to do it with you. Consider suggesting to a friend or your partner an outing that involves doing something active, such as ice skating, rollerblading, walking, cycling, hiking, or running. The minutes fly by when you have a loved one to share them with!
 

6. Sneak in mini-workouts throughout the day.


You’ve probably heard that taking breaks while at work goes a long way toward improving productivity and mental health. Well, the same goes for fitness! Use your breaks (or add more) to fit in a 5-minute “mini workout” where you do some weight lifting or take a few laps around the building. Movement counts no matter when you do it.
 

7. Change your mindset.


It’s tempting to view exercise as a chore, something you have to do but don’t want to. Try to alter your mindset to focus on the positive, what you enjoy about it, or the powerfully good feeling of challenging yourself. When you think about working out as a fun activity, you’re likelier to stick with it.

Exercising at any time in life can go a long way towards keeping you healthy and whole as you get older. Bring back your younger self by leveraging these tips to revitalize your fitness and make working out a part of your daily routine again!
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:24 -0500 Anthia
Recipe Roundup: 8 Scrumptious Salads for Every Season https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-roundup-8-scrumptious-salads-for-every-season https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/recipe-roundup-8-scrumptious-salads-for-every-season Scrumptious Seasonal Salads

It’s a combination that goes back over a century: salads and healthy eating. Most healthy diets incorporate salads regularly, and most salads are part of a healthy diet.

And in case you’re among the many people who make the mistake of thinking salads get boring, think again. Salads are delicious year-round, as long as you are open to trying a bit of creativity!

We rounded up eight of our favorite salad recipes — two for every season — to showcase that a bit of culinary flair is all it takes to keep them from getting boring (and you enjoying them!) year-round.
 

Winter

Wheat Berry Salad

 
Wheat Berry Salad

Serves: 4
Calories: ~350

Root vegetables and wheat berries are very wintery. This Wheat Berry Salad delights the taste buds by pairing the savory taste of roasted squash and shallots with the tart, nutty flavors of wheat berries atop a base of kale. Top it with some dried cranberries, walnuts, pecorino cheese, and apple cider vinaigrette for a winter-themed essence that will wow your taste buds every time.

Get the recipe at Love and Lemons.



Ultimate Winter Salad

Ultimate Winter Salad

Serves: 4-6

If ever there’s a time when a salad is appealing, it’s after the holiday indulgence. That’s why this Ultimate Winter Salad recipe is perfect. It leverages the creamy flavor of butternut squash mixed with Brussels sprouts and kale for a taste bud-blowing feeling that you won’t soon forget. It’s fresh, colorful, and packed with seasonal flavor.

Get the recipe at The Pioneer Woman.


 

Spring

Strawberry Spinach Salad

Mouthwatering Strawberry Spinach Salad

Serves: 6
Calories: ~320

Think of springtime, and you undoubtedly think of colors — flowers blooming, green trees, birds chirping. Bringing that vision (and those feelings) into a salad means taking advantage of the bright colors that remind us winter’s cold days are behind us. Enter this Strawberry Spinach Salad, made with fresh spinach, crunchy onions, soft feta cheese, and, of course, juicy strawberries. A creamy poppyseed dressing ties everything together for a delicious explosion of spring right in your mouth.

Get the recipe at The Recipe Critic.



Romaine Lettuce with Green Goddess Dressing

Romaine Lettuce Salad with Green Goddess

Serves: 4
Calories: ~250

You'll love this one if you’re even remotely a fan of crunch in your salad. Its base is naturally crunchy, bright green romaine lettuce topped off with a sprinkle of breadcrumbs — with creamy Green Goddess dressing to bring it all together. You can lighten up the dressing by swapping the sour cream for Greek yogurt while enjoying the complimenting flavors of radish and shallots. You’ll love it!

Get the recipe at A Couple Cooks.


 

Summer

Cucumber Radish Salad

Cucumber Radish Salad

Serves: 4
Calories: ~75

Nearly every summer barbecue includes a light salad dish — and you can be the star of your next one with this simple Cucumber Radish Salad recipe. Its cool cucumber base, crisp radishes, and tangy lemon dressing are perfect for hot summer days or alongside a hearty burger or bratwurst at the neighborhood cookout.


Get the recipe at Downshiftology.




Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad

 
Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad

Serves: 8
Calories: ~330

Sometimes, you need a little carbs in a salad. If you’re a pasta lover but don’t want to go overboard, you’ll love this light Summer Vegetable Pasta Salad recipe. It’s a fun, colorful medley of crispy vegetables atop a bed of bow-tie pasta and tossed in an easy-to-make vinaigrette dressing. You can serve it at a neighborhood potluck, bring it camping, or enjoy it as a side on a warm summer evening. ›

Get the recipe at Budget Bytes.


 

Fall

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad

Serves: 4
Calories: ~160

If ever there was a recipe that screamed autumn, it’s this Sweet Potato Salad. It’s a crisp combination of roasted sweet potatoes, arugula, and feta cheese with a bright, tangy tahini dressing that brings it all together. Assemble it in a large bowl and top it with avocado slices and a spritz of lemon for a showoff dish people will be lining up to try out.

Get the recipe at Love and Lemons.




Fall Harvest Salad

Fall Harvest Salad

Serves: 6
Calories: ~490

Want to pack all the fall flavors into one salad? You’ve come to the right place with this Fall Harvest Salad recipe. It’s got everything — apples, figs, pomegranate, kale, goat cheese, and pecans. Mix it all and top it with a delicious homemade harvest dressing, and you’ve got a seriously scrumptious autumn salad perfect for crisp evening dinner enjoyment.

Get the recipe at Foolproof Living.



Whether you’re looking for savory or sweet, crisp or tangy, you can find a seasonal salad to keep your diet light, fresh, and on track year-round.
 

 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:23 -0500 Anthia
Morning Exercise Provides a Host of Benefits https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/morning-exercise-provides-a-host-of-benefits https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/morning-exercise-provides-a-host-of-benefits Morning Exercise

Exercising at any time of day can go a long way toward boosting your physical and mental health. However, a recent study found that people who worked out in the morning, specifically between 7 and 9 a.m., had a lower body mass index (BMI) and tended to be thinner than those who exercised later in the day. The study, published in the journal Obesity, followed more than 5,200 participants over three years and also found that the morning exercise group tended to eat healthier throughout the day.

Several other studies have yielded similar results, finding that morning workouts may:
 


That’s a pretty heavy body of evidence promoting the benefits of morning workouts. So, how do you go about making the time for early-day exercise?
Here are a few tips.
 

1) Start the night before.


Few things are more challenging than forcing your exhausted, unrested body out of bed early in the morning to head to the gym or outside for a walk or run. Becoming a morning workout person starts with getting a full night’s sleep. That means going to bed at a reasonable hour, limiting screen time before bed, and allotting 7-9 hours to rest.

You should also get your gym clothes ready to go the night before so that all you have to do is slip them on the next morning. Once they’re on, you’re way less likely to skip the workout.
 

2) Break it into bits.


Like anything involving successful weight loss, taking one small step at a time toward your goal is a much sounder way to follow through. Instead of trying to wake up an hour or more before your usual time, wake up just 15 minutes earlier. Will the workout be shorter? Yes. But that’s okay. Add 15 minutes every few days, stretching your exercise time accordingly until you hit your sweet spot.
 

3) Your alarm clock placement matters.


Oh, how easy it is to roll over and smack a sounding alarm or press your mobile phone’s side button to get in a few minutes of zzz’s. Unfortunately, this can quickly become a morning workout killer. Instead, place your alarm clock or phone across the room to force yourself to get up and out of bed to address it when it goes off the following day. You’ll be surprised how just the act of getting out of bed can push you to keep going.
 

4) Enjoy a cup of coffee before you leave.


Believe it or not, putting a little pep in your morning step with caffeine is not necessarily bad. Don’t go overboard or anything, but a little coffee or caffeinated beverage can give you just the boost you need to make it out the front door and onto the gym. Be sure to bring a water bottle and sip on that, too. (Hydration is critical for efficient workouts.)
 

5) Write down your motivation and keep it visible.


There will be mornings when you’re struggling to find the motivation to get out from between those warm sheets. Having your goals written out and visible from the bed can work wonders towards giving yourself the kick you need to get the heck up anyway. Put them on a poster and hang it on the wall, or write them on something visible on your nightstand. And when those I-don’t-feel-like-it mornings strike, read them. You’ll be up before you know it.
 

6) Do something you enjoy.


No matter what time of day you exercise, doing something you enjoy is critical to continuing it. Many places offer early-morning fitness classes. Some people find that the serenity and quiet of a sunrise walk or run set the perfect tone for the day. Others enjoy the unique morning atmosphere of a traditional gym. Try a few different things, find what works best for you, and keep you coming back.
 

7) Revel in the after-feeling.


One of the best feelings of accomplishment is the one you get every single day after exercising. When you wrap up at the gym, outside, or at the fitness class, take a minute to enjoy how you feel. Note how much energy you have as you take a shower or how much better breakfast tastes. After that morning routine, you’ll find lots of hidden gems — enjoy the heck out of them.

Ultimately, exercising any time of day is hugely beneficial to your health. If you’re willing and able to create a morning fitness routine, you have the chance to enjoy the numerous benefits that come with it.
 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.

 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:23 -0500 Anthia
Satisfy Your Valentine’s Sweet Tooth with These Sweet Recipes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/satisfy-your-valentines-sweet-tooth-with-these-sweet-recipes https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/satisfy-your-valentines-sweet-tooth-with-these-sweet-recipes Valentines Day

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner. If you plan on busting out the cooking skills for a quiet night in with your sweetheart, adding a delicious, light dessert at the end of the meal will show them you’re next-level. Or, perhaps you want your kiddos to take the dessert of the year to their Valentine’s Day class party.

Either way, you can’t go wrong with our list of eight healthier Valentine’s Day dessert recipes to satisfy your sweetheart’s sweet tooth.

Pavoloas with Strawberries

Pavolas with Strawberries and Cream


Servings: 6
Calories: 269

Don’t let the uber-complicated, elegant appearance fool you. These fancy-looking, pretty pavlovas are light and easy to make. They’re just the thing to serve at the end of a heavy Valentine’s Day meal.

Get the recipe at Woman’s Day.




Nutella-Strawberry Cheesecake Bites

Nutella-Strawberry Cheesecake Bites


Servings: 10
Calories: ~150

Bite-sized and beautiful strawberry halves with a 3-ingredient Nutella topping make for a fun, eloquent dessert or evening snack. They taste like a Nutella-themed cheesecake, and you can pipe on the topping in unique ways to make them look even fancier.

Get the recipe at The Kitchen is My Playground.



Chocolate Dipped Fruit

Chocolate Dipped Fruit Tray


Servings: 4-6
Calories: ~50-100

Nothing says romance quite like a tray of chocolate-dipped strawberries. This timeless Valentine’s Day treat is a go-to for new flings and longtime partners. This year, kick things up a notch by mixing in some additional chocolate-dipped fruits like apples, pears, kiwis, pineapple, and bananas.

Get the recipe at Created by Diane.



Valentine’s Frozen Yogurt Bark

Valentine’s Frozen Yogurt Bark


Servings: 9-27
Calories: 70

Bust out your creativity gloves with this cute treat featuring frozen yogurt and fruit. You can cut the strawberries into heart shapes while you whip up this easy recipe a day in advance (to give the bark time to set in the freezer).

Get the recipe at Fork and Beans.




Love Monster Energy Bites

Love Monster Energy Bites


Servings: 16
Calories: 157

While you may want to save these little guys for the kids, they are a delight. They’re also perfect if you don’t like baking (but want the whole baked goods vibe). Simply bust out the food processor and combine peanut butter with healthy ingredients like chia seeds, honey, oatmeal, almonds, and vanilla extract. Then, use M&Ms and candy eyeballs to decorate a giggle-worthy dish the kids will truly love.

Get the recipe at The Creative Bite.



Fluffy Berry Mousse

Fluffy Berry Mousse


Servings: 10
Calories: 430

Naturally pink and elegant looking, this Fluffy Berry Mousse makes for a decadent-tasting dessert perfect for serving after a romantic Valentine’s Day dinner. It leverages sweetened berries alongside cream cheese, cranberry juice and sauce, and whipping cream for a fresh taste your partner will, without a doubt, relish in.


Get the recipe at Confessions of an Overworked Mom.



Clean Chocolate Mug Cake

Clean Chocolate Mug Cake


Servings: 1
Calories: 145

If you’re in a bit of a hurry but still want to make something with that wow factor to impress your date, then these Clean Chocolate Mug Cakes are just the thing. If you prep the ingredients in advance, you can whip up these chocolatey delights in fewer than 10 minutes in the microwave. You can even use Valentine’s Day-themed mugs to serve them in!

Get the recipe at Amy’s Healthy Baking.



Heart Pancakes

Heart Pancakes


Servings: 20
Calories: 118

Kick the day off on a positive note with breakfast in bed featuring these traditional buttermilk heart-shaped pancakes topped with creamy Nutella and a tart raspberry sauce. Since you’ll be making the pancakes from scratch, it’s a surefire way to impress your partner and show them how much you care.

Get the recipe at The Gunny Sack.



 

Making your sweetheart or kids a delicious Valentine’s Day-themed dessert is one of the best ways to show them how much they mean to you. Try one of these fun recipes this year to make it one of their best yet!



 

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Author: Caitlin H
Diet-to-Go Community Manager

Caitlin is the Diet-to-Go community manager and an avid runner. She is passionate about engaging with others online and maintaining a healthy, active lifestyle. She believes moderation is key, and people will have the most weight loss success if they engage in common-sense healthy eating and fitness.
 

 
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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:22 -0500 Anthia
7 Lifestyle Tips to Lower Bad Cholesterol https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-lifestyle-tips-to-lower-bad-cholesterol https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/7-lifestyle-tips-to-lower-bad-cholesterol Lifestyle Tips to Lower Cholesterol

Cholesterol plays a vital role in your body, ensuring your blood cells can replicate and you get essential vitamins.

But high cholesterol levels can have the opposite effect, increasing your risk of serious diseases that lead to strokes, heart attacks, and even death.

High cholesterol is also a significant contributor to an increased chance of developing Alzheimer’s and dementia, according to a recent study published in the journal Neurology. Researchers analyzed 11,571 participants with a mean age of 71 and found a 19% increased risk of Alzheimer’s in those with blood levels that varied the most over 12 years. The study also found that participants with the highest variations had a 23% increased risk of Alzheimer’s.

“Reducing and keeping cholesterol and triglycerides low is a likely way to reduce dementia risk,” said Dr. Gabe Mirkin in a recent blog post analyzing the study results. Mirkin is a fitness guru, longtime radio host, and sports medicine doctor with over 50 years of practice.

“Highly motivated people can lower their blood cholesterol with lifestyle changes,” he added, citing a 2019 study that found that even as little as six weeks on a healthy diet and exercise program lowered participants’ cholesterol levels by up to 40%.

With that in mind, we rounded up seven lifestyle tips you can implement immediately to lower cholesterol levels and possibly add years to your life.

1) Choose white meats and lean protein.


Skinless turkey, chicken, and fish like salmon or tuna are much better options for your main protein than red meats. Red meats tend to have much higher levels of saturated fat, which can raise bad cholesterol levels if you eat them too often. But if you do opt for steak or burgers, try to go with lean cuts as often as possible.

2) Snack on fruits, vegetables, and nuts.


Packaged, ultra-processed foods like potato chips, cookies, candy, and crackers are major culprits driving up cholesterol levels. Fill your refrigerator, cupboards, and work desk with healthier options like air-popped popcorn, nuts, and fresh fruits and vegetables — all of which are excellent sources of filling nutrients like soluble fiber and unsaturated fats.

3) Pack your diet with whole grains and beans.


Food options like whole grains, beans, quinoa, and oats should be continuous diet staples. You can prepare them in various ways, and they work as side dishes to go with your lean protein. These food items are also filled with soluble fiber to even out the cholesterol levels that reach your bloodstream, which can ultimately help lower your bad cholesterol.

4) Switch to low-fat dairy products.


If you’re a fan of yogurt in the morning or a bowl of ice cream in the evening after dinner, no problem! One important change you can make is to opt for low-fat versions of things like milk, cheese, yogurt, and ice cream instead of the traditional, full-fat versions, which tend to contain higher levels of saturated fat.

5) Use oils instead of butter or margarine.


Cooking with butter or margarine is a standard norm in most kitchens. Unfortunately, they both add loads of saturated fats to your meal, which can easily boost your bad cholesterol levels. Whenever possible, switch to things like olive or sunflower oil. Oils tend to be higher in unsaturated fats and can help lower your cholesterol significantly the more regularly you use them.

6) Opt for more vegetarian meals.


Vegetarian meals use non-animal options for protein sources, pretty much eliminating the high levels of saturated fats you can get from red meats. Try to make vegetarian meals a few times a week (or more, if possible). You can find many vegetarian recipes to try online, or opt for a meal plan that delivers them right to your door!

7) Get in more movement.


Daily exercise is an essential part of a healthy lifestyle. This can be anything from going to the gym for an hour a few times a week to building daily walks into your schedule to trying at-home workouts with trainers who offer routines on common sites like YouTube! The sky’s the limit when it comes to exercise. The key is to get out there, try new things, find one you like, and stick with it.

Ultimately, getting better nutrition and daily exercise can go a long way toward lowering your bad cholesterol, which can, in turn, lower your risk of getting heart disease or Alzheimer’s. If you need help eating healthier, we can help! Our meals are heart-healthy and balanced for nutrition. Customers looking to lower cholesterol have especially found success on our Mediterranean Diet meal plan, which includes a menu rich in whole foods like vegetables, fruits, nuts, beans, grains, fish, and lean meats.
 

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:29:21 -0500 Anthia
Fat&Burning Workouts and Supplements: A Perfect Duo for Results! https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fat-burning-workouts-and-supplements-a-perfect-duo-for-results https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/fat-burning-workouts-and-supplements-a-perfect-duo-for-results Embarking on a fitness journey can feel like navigating a maze of choices, but fat-burning workouts and supplements stand out as a dynamic duo that promises transformative results. Understanding the synergy between targeted exercise routines and potent supplements becomes paramount in this exhilarating quest for a leaner and healthier self. Discover the role of supplements as sidekicks in your journey and the power of fat-burning workouts to enhance metabolism and torch calories. Integrate high-intensity interval training (HIIT) and cardiovascular exercises into your routine, and explore how strength training can boost metabolism. Choose the right supplements that align with your fitness goals, and time their intake strategically to amplify their impact. Stay hydrated, support digestion, and make informed choices for optimal results. Embark on this transformative journey and unlock the magic of the perfect duo: fat-burning workouts and supplements.

The post Fat-Burning Workouts and Supplements: A Perfect Duo for Results! appeared first on Health and Natural Healing Tips.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:17:11 -0500 Anthia
5 Mistakes to Avoid When Caring for a Senior Loved One https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/5-mistakes-to-avoid-when-caring-for-a-senior-loved-one https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/5-mistakes-to-avoid-when-caring-for-a-senior-loved-one Transitioning into a caregiver's role for an elderly family member is challenging. To ensure the best care, it's crucial to understand common missteps that caregivers often make. From handling everything on your own to overlooking the caregiver's wellbeing and recent health concerns, learn from expert advice on how to avoid these mistakes and provide comprehensive care for your senior loved one.

The post 5 Mistakes to Avoid When Caring for a Senior Loved One appeared first on Health and Natural Healing Tips.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:17:11 -0500 Anthia
Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla: The Dreamiest Herbal&Infused Ghee Recipe https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/ashwagandha-lavender-and-vanilla-the-dreamiest-herbal-infused-ghee-recipe https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/ashwagandha-lavender-and-vanilla-the-dreamiest-herbal-infused-ghee-recipe

Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla: The Dreamiest Herbal-Infused Ghee Recipe

Recipe and Photography by Marion Hearth of Goddess Ghee

Glass jars containing Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla: The Dreamiest Herbal-Infused Ghee Recipe.

Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla herbal-infused ghee.

Preparing herbal-infused ghee recipes is a wonderful way to enjoy herbs and easily incorporate them into your daily rhythm.

There are several methods to craft medicinal ghee, but in this recipe, we’ll follow a simple formula: infusing dried herbal powders into hot ghee, followed by cooling and whipping the herbs and ghee together. Beware of herbal-infused ghee recipes that cook the herbs with the butter during the ghee-making process; this method burns the delicate herbs and spices.

This article features a recipe for Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla-Infused Ghee. Ashwagandha is a strengthening tonic herb and calming adaptogen that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine to fortify health and nurture a long life. Its nutty, musky flavor is complemented by lavender’s floral aroma and vanilla’s stirring warmth in this ghee.

Note that any herbal powders and ground spices can be infused into ghee—this recipe can be adapted to incorporate all kinds of herbal combinations!

For more in-depth medicinal ghee methods (including using fresh plants from your garden) or to learn how to make amazing ghee at home, check out Goddess Ghee’s Online Class: Crafting Culinary + Medicinal Ghee.

Herbal-Infused Ghee created by Goddess Ghee

Ghee infused with cacao powder is poured into jars at Goddess Ghee.

Glass jars containing Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla: The Dreamiest Herbal-Infused Ghee Recipe.
Print

Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla Herbal-Infused Ghee Recipe

This herbal ghee is calming, nourishing, and warming to the heart and body. It’s perfect as a pre-bedtime evening tonic blended with hot milk, water, or tea. It can also be taken by the spoonful or spread on top of toast anytime your spirits need soothing. **Note that infusing herbal medicines into ghee can increase their bioavailability (absorption), so you’ll want to be aware of this when formulating a dose that is right for you. Serving size is between 1 Tsp. and 1 Tbsp. depending on need.
Course Condiment
Keyword Ashwagandha, Ghee, Lavender
Servings 1 pint

Equipment

  • Small saucepan
  • Mason jar with lid

Ingredients

  • 16 ounces ghee - Make it fresh or purchase from a high-quality source such as Goddess Ghee.
  • ¼ cup ashwagandha powder (Withania somnifera)
  • 1 tablespoon lavender powder (Lavandula spp.)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean powder (Vanilla planifolia)

Instructions

  • Heat the ghee in a small saucepan over a medium flame (unless you’ve just made fresh, hot ghee) until it’s hot and translucent.
  • Turn off the heat.
  • Whisk in the powdered herbs and let them steep with a lid on until the ghee comes to room temperature (around 75°F). The ghee should start to turn from clear to opaque and become thicker but still be thin enough to pour.
  • If the mixture cools too much (gets hard), you can put it back on a low flame until it’s warm enough to stir again.
  • If you’re in a hurry you can speed up the cooling process by setting the saucepan in a shallow bowl of ice water and slowly stirring the ghee until it thickens. (Be careful not to get any water in the ghee.)
  • Once the herb and ghee blend has cooled, use a whisk and whip the mixture until the herbal powders are suspended in the ghee. Then pour the herb-infused ghee into a clean, dry mason jar. Cover with a lid and place the jar in the fridge to continue cooling. This will help the herbs stay suspended in the ghee without separating.
  • When the mixture becomes solid, you may take it out of the fridge and let it come back to room temperature. You’ll want to keep the lid on so that condensation doesn’t enter the jar during the process. At this point, your herbal ghee is “cured” and will stay solid below 80°F.
  • Store in a cool, dark place such as the pantry or medicine cabinet.

Notes

Goddess GheeRecipe provided by Goddess Ghee, a mama-founded & women-run small business in the heart of the Appalachian Mountains near Asheville, NC. Goddess Ghee believes in the wisdom that “food is medicine,” and they honor the ancient Ayurvedic ritual of crafting grass-fed ghee as a medicine as well as a delicious food. They are committed to making the highest quality ghee that is commercially available and offering unique herbal ghee potions. You can purchase Goddess Ghee via their online shop and follow them on Instagram for ghee inspiration, new ghee releases, and class offerings.

Meet Our Contributor:

Marion Hearth

MARION HEARTH birthed Goddess Ghee in 2015 after she asked herself, “What am I already creating that I can make more of to share with my community?”. Ghee was the obvious answer. Marion had been making ghee each moon cycle since the birth of her first baby just two years earlier, and ghee was the one staple in her kitchen that she didn’t let run dry. Marion began selling at farmers markets with a baby wrapped on her back and a toddler running around – not imagining that Goddess Ghee would one day be in kitchens and home apothecaries around the country.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla: The Dreamiest Herbal-Infused Ghee Recipe appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:06:02 -0500 Anthia
Risks of Using AI in Herbalism https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/risks-of-using-ai-in-herbalism https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/risks-of-using-ai-in-herbalism

Risks of Using AI in Herbalism

Written by Juliet Blankespoor
Art by Astra Intergalactica

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of a robot in an herbal apothecary.

An AI-generated image of a robot in an herbal apothecary.

Like it or not, artificial intelligence (AI) is now interwoven into the basic technology we use daily. Like all technology, it’s only as helpful or harmful as the intentions of the people using it. Mostly, we hear about the dangers of using AI and how it can be used in nefarious ways, yet it also offers promising solutions to some of the world’s most complex problems. In this article, we’ll primarily explore the risks of using AI in herbalism, especially herbal education.

As a seasoned herbalist and longtime plant enthusiast, I’m concerned about how machine learning will affect herbal medicine’s ancient and nuanced practice. The richly woven world of herbalism challenges this electronic emissary in unique ways. So, let’s explore why AI may not be the ideal guide for blossoming herbalists and why traditional learning grounds, like the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, continue to be vibrant havens of wisdom.

I’m certainly no authority on artificial intelligence, but I’ll use my research and outlook as an expert herbal author and instructor throughout this article. And as a reformed technophobe–who lived off the grid in my twenties with no running water, electricity, or a phone, let alone a computer–who now owns a technology-based business, I have a unique perspective.

Here, we’ll explore how AI platforms might complement formal herbal education and research and how artificial intelligence can support small herbal businesses. I’ll share what to look out for when learning about herbalism and my tips for finding trusted herbal teachers, authors, and schools. Finally, I’ll share my favorite herbal resources so you know where to find dependable information.

There is an inextricable link between learning herbal medicine from AI and unreliable Internet sources: both can be inaccurate, untrustworthy, and fragmented.

When applied to search engines, artificial intelligence looks for expert sources to find the most accurate information. Unfortunately, most of the highest-ranking sites covering a specific health condition or herb are not written by experienced herbalists. And AI can take liberties in populating information. In its current iteration, artificial intelligence sometimes fills in the gaps with falsehoods.

I put this to the test, asking a popular emergent AI to write my bio, and it inserted fallacies sandwiched between accuracies: it gave the wrong title of my book and misreported my herbal education. Disconcertingly, the human mind is befuddled about reliability when truths are intermingled with falsehoods. And our nation’s educational system isn’t renowned for teaching critical thinking and how to fact-check from non-biased sources. We already know how easily swayed humans are to misinformation, especially when falsehoods are sprinkled with veracity.

We tried the same experiment with another herbalist author, and the AI supplied inaccuracies about her history and current employment. I know an AI doesn’t have a genuine personality, but I couldn’t help feeling like it was eerily confident while delivering cavalier falsehoods. Artificial intelligence can be trained to have a persona, or “voice,” which can make them feel all the more human and make actual humans more vulnerable to manipulation.

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of Juliet Blankespoor.

An AI-generated image of Juliet Blankespoor, founder of Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

Popular medical or gardening sites are often the first places AI will pull its herbal information from. The authors of these articles are typically not experts in herbal medicine, let alone herbal aficionados. Instead, they rely on cursory research from other non-experts and search engine optimization expertise (which brings their article to the number one spot). Compounding the issue, AI may pull from many sources, resulting in a smorgasbord of details with apparent holes in knowledge and even inconsistencies.

Now that we’ve established the risks of using AI in herbalism due to populating data from unreliable sources, let’s discuss how this relates to online research in general. Suppose you’re conducting herbal research using the highest-ranking results from search engines (which have already used AI in their algorithms for years and will continue to rely on it more in the future). In that case, you’ll find spotty information that lacks vital details, such as the proper plant part used, the most effective preparations, and safety considerations. Machine learning will also miss the most common confusions and questions the general public will have. For all these reasons, it’s crucial you seek herbal information from trusted sources.

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of a computer chip intertwined with herbs.

An AI-generated image of a computer chip intertwined with herbs.

The drawbacks of relying on AI to learn herbalism include a need for more safety information and personalized guidance.

Artificial intelligence collects data, analyzes patterns, and provides information based on these patterns. However, when it comes to herbalism, the nuances and complexities of the field can often be lost in translation. Take, for instance, the herb elderberry (Sambucus nigra var. canadensis). While machine learning could correctly tell you that elderberry has antiviral properties, it might fail to warn you that the raw seeds contain cyanogenic glycosides, which can cause digestive distress if not correctly prepared.

Preparing a potent calendula (Calendula officinalis) oil or tincture, for instance, requires an understanding of not only its properties but also how to extract its medicinal benefits efficiently. An AI might suggest using only the petals, neglecting the flower heads’ green bases (involucres), where most of its anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial resins reside. It could also fail to mention that calendula is unsafe in pregnancy due to its stimulating effect on the uterus. This is because artificial intelligence pulls its data from the highest-ranking site, which almost always does not come from an herbalist. Try searching for “calendula’s medicinal properties” and clicking on the top result: you’ll likely land on a popular hospital system or basic popular medical information site. These articles are written with SEO in mind and are typically not written by experts in the field.

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of comfrey tea.

An AI-generated image of comfrey tea shows some inaccuracies.

Here’s another example: an AI might suggest using comfrey (Symphtum officinale) tea internally for wounds, not indicating that internal consumption of comfrey can be toxic to the liver due to the presence of pyrrolizidine alkaloids. Likewise, artificial intelligence might suggest using St. John’s Wort (Hypericum perforatum) for depression without explaining that it can interact dangerously with many prescribed drugs, including hormonal birth control and many psychiatric medications.

Herbalism is not merely a catalog of plants and their effects. It demands a deep understanding of different herbs and how to utilize them effectively and safely. It also includes the nuances of humans’ constitutions and how an individual herb might affect an individual based on whether their body runs hot or cold, warm or dry. Experienced herbalists also know where to find the most up-to-date information on drug-herb interactions. This level of comprehension and wisdom is born from years of hands-on experience and learning, something an AI can’t replicate.

Watch out for the potential pitfalls of AI and manipulative herbal education tactics.

I recommend avoiding sites that don’t include sources or citations when discussing scientific information. Also, steer clear of sites (or AI responses) that are absolutist (present perspectives in a black-and-white, oversimplified manner) or overly sensationalist. Herbalists who blame all of an individual’s disease or ill health on one’s thinking or one’s diet are often not considering the complete picture: genetics, epigenetics, environmental pollution, mental disorders, systemic marginalization, limited access to essential resources, or the simple fact that bodies are fallible and mortal.

This isn’t to say that the mind and diet don’t affect health. Instead, I caution you to avoid herbalists and natural health experts who don’t consider the full scope of factors affecting health and wellbeing.

Another red flag: authors who frequently present themselves as the sole “owner” of information on specific remedies. These charismatic natural health “experts” align themselves with their followers by sharing unique and “secret” information. They present themselves as benevolent and generous imparters of previously unrevealed remedies or “cures” despite the alleged threat to their platform from authoritarian government agencies or the censoring medical establishment. (I’m not saying censorship or greed-based policies aren’t real, but if it’s always happening, and the “expert” is the humble superhero saving you from medical authoritarianism, it’s a classic cult-leader manipulative tactic, which is sadly present in the natural health community.)

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of an elephant in a field of lavender.

An AI-generated image of an elephant in a field of lavender includes purple ears.

Machine learning is only as reliable as the humans supplying and using the information.

Now that we’ve established the risks of using AI in herbalism, let’s look at how you can find reliable herbal medicine information on the Internet.

First, here’s the type of information a reliable herbal source will include:

  • The scientific name of an herb
  • The plant part(s) used
  • If an herb is rare or endangered
  • Dosage and preparation (including the best preparations for specific constituents in a given herb)
  • How long a person can safely consume an herb (examples include: every day, only for two weeks, only take as needed)
  • Safety information such as possible side effects, drug-herb interactions, and which types of people should avoid a particular herb (such as pregnant people, young children, people with diabetes, etc.)
  • If it’s a wild-gathered herb, it will include identifying features and possible look-alikes
  • Sources and citations
The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of ginseng growing near a stream.

An AI-generated image of ginseng growing near a stream displays an odd root structure.

Here are some of my favorite sites and organizations for reliable herbal information:

  • Blog Castanea
    Our very own blog! Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine’s blog is written primarily by Juliet Blankespoor and Meghan Gemma, along with a lovely smattering of trusted guest herbalists. You’ll find beautiful and engaging materia medica, herbal recipes, and lists of our favorite herbal medicine resources, all written with our signature silliness and botanical obsession.
  • Aviva Romm, MD
    Dr. Aviva Romm—an MD, herbalist, and midwife—is a legendary herbalist and is widely considered one of our nation’s top experts on holistic medicine. Her work focuses on hormonal health, women’s health, childbirth, stress, supplements, and sexuality. If you’re looking for a trusted source that marries Western medicine, social justice, intersectional feminism, and holistic health, look no further!
  • Tieraona Low Dog’s Blog
    Dr. Tieraona Low Dog is an award-winning author, integrative medicine physician, and Indigenous herbalist who teaches and writes about traditional healing, earth connection, herbal medicine, supplements, and medicine making.
  • Herbs with Rosalee
    One of the best blogs for beginning herbalists, Rosalee de la Forêt writes about herbs in an approachable manner. You’ll find an extensive library of trusted articles about herbs, recipes, and podcasts featuring detailed explorations of one herb.
  • Kitchen Curandera
    Felicia Cocotzin Ruiz is an inspiring kitchen curandera, Indigenous foods activist, and natural foods chef. Her blog features basketfuls of delectable herbal and wild foods recipes. Don’t miss her *gorgeous* book, Earth Medicines: Ancestral Wisdom, Healing Recipes, and Ancestral Wisdom from a Curandera.
  • Mountain Rose Herbs Blog
    This treasured herbal supplier also has a fantastic blog—featuring plentiful body care, beverage, and other herbal recipes. Their catalog doubles as an herbal publication with delightful articles, and they even have a podcast, Herbal Radio.
  • American Botanical Council
    If you’re looking for a scientific and detailed approach to herbal medicine, ABC is a longtime trusted source with searchable databases. The council publishes the quarterly Herbal Gram, focusing on medical herbalism and the herbal industry.
  • American Herbalists Guild
    The AHG is the leading professional association for herbal practitioners in the United States. Membership includes a journal written by diverse herbal experts and engaging recorded lectures on herbal medicine topics.

 

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine’s curated lists of trusted herbal resources (personally vetted herbal books, podcasts, organizations, and publications):

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of mushrooms growing in a forest.

An AI-generated image of mushrooms growing in a forest.

The benefits of structured learning with experienced and trusted herbalists remain the best way to learn herbal medicine.

Herbalism is more than just a list of plants and their properties—it’s a dance with nature. This intimate tango is born of years of patient practice and tangible touch, a duet that AI can’t quite master.

If your passion for plant medicine runs deep, I highly recommend finding an herbal instructor, either in-person or online. Despite its advanced algorithmic learning, AI can’t replace the invaluable mentorship traditional herbalism schools provide. For example, the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine offers a comprehensive approach to learning. We not only teach the science behind herbs but also their traditional uses, safety precautions, and the best preparation methods. This holistic approach helps students grasp the why and how of herbal medicine, not just the what.

Our instructors come from diverse backgrounds, offering a well-rounded perspective that includes traditions from around the globe. Our approach to herbal medicine is bioregional: we encourage cultivating your own medicine and relying on the abundant (often invasive) healing herbs growing right outside your door.

You’ll also receive expert feedback on your coursework, ensuring that you grasp complex subjects like botany and herbal therapeutics. Our staff is available every day of the week to answer medicine-making, gardening, or foraging questions. This invaluable guidance cannot be provided through machine learning or artificial intelligence. Of course, we are not the only herbalism school, and others may be a better fit due to your professional goals, finances, location, or wanting an in-person instructor.

We have created the most comprehensive list of herbal schools for this very reason. Picking the right school can be daunting, so we created a guide to help you get an herbal education.

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of a botanical illustration of chestnut.

An AI-generated botanical illustration of chestnut features many inaccuracies.

Real-life herbalists vastly outperform artificial intelligence as a source of herbal instruction.

One of the benefits of formally studying herbal medicine is a well-thought-out curriculum that leads you through the journey from novice to expert. An excellent teacher will start with basic concepts and core skills and build upon that foundational knowledge deliberately.

Established herbal programs offer feedback along with ways to help you refine and integrate learning. For example, at the Chestnut School, we provide review questions at the end of each module. After successfully reviewing the material, you move on to a quiz and experiential projects to infuse the learning deep into your body and mind. Educational courses that are intentionally designed ensure your education is thorough so you can safely use herbs at home or embark on an herbal profession, depending on your goals.

Artificial intelligence can complement this learning type but cannot replace it. It falls short without the nuances of offering tailored feedback and a thorough curriculum. Here are a few examples of how personal instruction aided our students’ journey as burgeoning herbalists:

“The education and guidance I received from the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine gave me the confidence to start my own practice making tea blends, tinctures, and other products. I feel empowered to offer my clients advice to improve their health naturally.” ~ Rita L.

“I have always been intimidated by experimenting in the kitchen, but after finding the Hibiscus Ice Cubes so easy and a delight, it created a spark within to do more. I ended up making countless recipes, which created so much joy, confidence, and laughter within the home and helped with my overall mental well-being. As an individual who identifies as BIWoC, this past year and the events that occurred on 6 Jan have made it quite difficult to find peace and hope. These projects have been a lifesaver during this time, and I am so thankful for the unexpected joy that this has brought into my home.

I cannot wait to build upon my skills in your other courses and am beyond grateful for the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine. This course has been a completely amazing and transformative experience. It has touched my life in a way that has been completely unexpected, and I have already been able to apply my knowledge thus far to help bring joy and wellness to those in the marginalized communities that I serve.” ~ Nicole D.

The risks of using AI in herbalism. An AI-generated image of a robotic herbalist.

An AI-generated image of a robotic herbalist who appears forlorn and confused. This robot should enroll at Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine. 

Despite its downsides, AI has valuable applications in herbal businesses, including search engine optimization (SEO) and copywriting.

For any small business, time is often in short supply. If you want your customers or clients to find you on the Internet, it’s imperative you pay attention to SEO, as it gives you a leg up with search engines. As part of your SEO strategy for herbalism, you’ll need to know what people are searching for and which words they use. You’ll then need to incorporate these terms into your website, social media, and blog. You can use AI for SEO.

In full disclosure, we used AI to help us create the outline for this article and find the key terms people would be searching for (I’d like folks to be able to find and read my articles!). We even used a few snippets of AI-generated writing as a jumping-off point. And, if you haven’t guessed yet, Astra Intergalactica—in tandem with Chestnut’s resident AI expert Amanda Lael Davis—created the AI-generated imagery adorning this blog.

In our grand ballroom of the digital age, finding harmony is vital. Let’s keep in mind that the soul of herbalism thrives on a more personal connection— with the plants, the Earth, and each other.

Meet The Green Mastermind Behind Blog Castanea

Juliet Blankespoor

JULIET BLANKESPOOR is the founder, primary instructor, and Creative Director of the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, an online school serving thousands of students from around the globe. She's a professional plant-human matchmaker and bonafide plant geek, with a degree in botany and over 30 years of experience teaching and writing about herbalism, medicine making, and organic herb cultivation. Juliet’s lifelong captivation with medicinal weeds and herb gardening has birthed many botanical enterprises over the decades, including an herbal nursery and a farm-to-apothecary herbal products business. 

These days, she channels her botanical obsession through her writing and photography in her online programs, on her personal blog Castanea, and in her new book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies. Juliet and her family reside in a home overrun with houseplants and books in Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Risks of Using AI in Herbalism appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:06:02 -0500 Anthia
Calendula Tulsi Chai Recipe https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/calendula-tulsi-chai-recipe https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/calendula-tulsi-chai-recipe

Calendula Tulsi Chai Recipe

Written and Photographed by Juliet Blankespoor

Preparing the Calendula Tulsi Chai Recipe.

Preparing the Calendula Tulsi Chai recipe.

The following Calendula Tulsi Chai recipe is a special excerpt from my book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies—a detailed herbal reference, decadent cookbook, and garden manual all in one. It’s written for home gardeners and anyone looking to bring the healing benefits of herbs into their garden, kitchen, and apothecary. Copies can be purchased wherever books are sold. You can find more details on the book and its accompanying bonuses at the Healing Garden Gateway.

This calendula tulsi chai recipe is wonderfully spicy, warming, and immune-boosting.

Few beverages are as warming to the body and heart as chai, a spiced tea blend that originated in the Assam region of India at least 5,000 years ago. The blend traditionally features cardamom, cinnamon, ginger, star anise, black pepper, and cloves. My herbal take on classic chai is loaded with immune support and tastes fantastic with the additions of semi-sweet astragalus, earthy calendula, and enlivening tulsi.

Hands holding a cup of processed astragalus root.

A jar of processed astragalus root.

Astragalus, calendula, and tulsi are herbal tonics for the lymphatic, nervous, and immune systems. The Calendula Tulsi Chai recipe will help ward off colds and flu during winter months. The aromatic botanicals in this chai—cinnamon, cloves, peppercorns, and ginger—keep the blood and lymph moving and are especially helpful for those who feel cold or sluggish. These pungent spices may be too heating and drying for those who run hot and have the potential to aggravate heartburn, peptic ulcers, and gastrointestinal heat. During warmer weather, dilute the concentrate with ice and your choice of milk for a refreshing summertime beverage.

Preparing the Calendula Tulsi Chai Recipe.
Print

Calendula Tulsi Chai Recipe

The following recipe for Calendula Tulsi Chai is a special excerpt from my book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies—a detailed herbal reference, decadent cookbook, and garden manual all in one. It’s written for home gardeners and anyone looking to bring the healing benefits of herbs into their garden, kitchen, and apothecary. Copies can be purchased wherever books are sold. You can find more details on the book and its accompanying bonuses at the Healing Garden Gateway.
Course Beverage
Keyword Calendula, Chai, Tulsi
Servings 4 cups

Equipment

  • Medium pot with lid

Ingredients

  • 5 cups water
  • 4 medium cinnamon sticks (Cinnamomum verum) or substitute 20 grams cinnamon bark chips.
  • 12 slices dried astragalus root (Astragalus propinquus) or substitute 10 grams cut and sifted astragalus root.
  • 1 ½ tablespoons cut and sifted dried ginger root (Zingiber officinale)
  • 2 teaspoons hulled cardamom seeds (Elettaria cardamomum)
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns (Piper nigrum)
  • 2 small star anise pods (Illicium verum)
  • 2 whole cloves (Syzygium aromaticum)
  • cup whole dried calendula flower (Calendula officinalis)
  • 1 tablespoon packed dried tulsi leaf (Ocimum tenuiflorum)
  • ¼ cup organic cane sugar, honey, or stevia, to taste - Optional

Instructions

  • In a medium pot, combine the water with the cinnamon, astragalus, ginger, cardamom, peppercorns, star anise, and cloves.
  • Bring to a boil, covered, and turn the heat down to simmer for 20 minutes.
  • Turn off the heat and add the dried calendula flowers and tulsi leaves; stir.
  • Infuse, covered, for 20 minutes, and then strain.
  • If you prefer sweet chai, add the sugar after straining; stir well.
  • Let cool, and store the chai concentrate in the refrigerator. Use within 4 days.

Notes

For an iced chai:
Pour the concentrate over a large cup of crushed ice with your choice of milk or cream.
For a hot chai:
Dilute the concentrate with an equal part water and warm on the stove. Serve with your choice of milk or cream.

To learn more about the medicinal uses of the herbs in my Calendula Tulsi Chai recipe, visit our articles on:

Calendula

A closeup of calendula flowers.

Calendula (Calendula officinalis) is one of the easiest herbs to grow and a highly versatile medicinal plant. It has been used internally and topically for centuries to heal wounds, burns, and rashes. Learn more about calendula.

Tulsi

Tulsi growing in the sunlight.

Tulsi (Ocimum tenuiflorum), also known as holy basil, is revered for its spicy aroma, myriad medicinal uses, and enlivening nature. It is one of the most versatile medicinals when starting your home herbal apothecary. Learn more about tulsi.

Astragalus

A closeup of pressed astragalus root.

Astragalus (Astragalus propinquus) root is an immunity booster with a sweet, beany flavor (it is in the legume, or bean, family, after all), making it easy to sneak into the diets of picky eaters. Learn more about astragalus.

Meet Our Contributor:

Juliet Blankespoor

JULIET BLANKESPOOR is the founder, primary instructor, and Creative Director of the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, an online school serving thousands of students from around the globe. She's a professional plant-human matchmaker and bonafide plant geek, with a degree in botany and over 30 years of experience teaching and writing about herbalism, medicine making, and organic herb cultivation. Juliet’s lifelong captivation with medicinal weeds and herb gardening has birthed many botanical enterprises over the decades, including an herbal nursery and a farm-to-apothecary herbal products business. 

These days, she channels her botanical obsession through her writing and photography in her online programs, on her personal blog Castanea, and in her new book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies. Juliet and her family reside in a home overrun with houseplants and books in Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Calendula Tulsi Chai Recipe appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:06:01 -0500 Anthia
Jewelweed: Student Business Spotlight https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/jewelweed-student-business-spotlight https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/jewelweed-student-business-spotlight

Jewelweed: Student Business Spotlight

Interview by Meghan Gemma
Photography courtesy of Jewelweed

Jodi McKee, owner of Jewelweed herbal apothecary.

Jodi McKee, owner of Jewelweed health and wellness boutique.

An Interview with Jodi McKee of Jewelweed

We recently had a conversation with Jodi McKee for our Student Business Spotlight series. Jodi is the proprietor and herbalist behind Jewelweed, a small-batch herbal apothecary and healing venue located just outside of Minneapolis, MN. The shop was named in honor of the local wildflower that grows prolifically nearby. Jewelweed offers an exclusive in-house seasonal line of handcrafted products made with organic or locally-grown and wildcrafted plants. They also stock a beautiful array of goods sourced from small makers and artisans, including herbal remedies, flower essences, essential oils, green beauty products, incense, tea and drinking cacao, and so much more.

Our Student Business Spotlight is a series featuring Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine graduates, their work, and the wide variety of professions herbalists can choose from. Jodi is a graduate of our Online Herbal Immersion—1,000 hours of our personal mentorship in sustainable herbalism and herbal career building.

Jodi, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you were first called to work in the field of herbal medicine?

I’m a mother of three boys and that’s where it all began for me. I was 25 when my oldest son was born (he’s 27 now), so I was very young and had never encountered anything other than traditional Western medicine. He was born three weeks early and was sick all the time. He had RSV and we had a lot of hospital stays, 911 calls, and tons of emergency room visits for his asthma and allergies. I did everything the doctors suggested up until he was five. Then there was a moment when I knew I needed to figure out something different. And so I started looking for alternative treatments. I found a brochure for an herbal class. I went to the class, and the teacher—Lise Wolff—ended up becoming my long-term mentor and friend. I brought my son to see her and through a combination of diet, lifestyle changes, and herbs, his health turned around in a year. My son never had allergies or asthma again. It was big.

Then I went on to have two more boys. My kids have now been raised on natural health and herbs have become a lifestyle for us. Herbal medicine is a little bit unusual where we live and so as a young mother, I was always showing my friends the plants they could use for bruises and this and that— the things that we all know and use as herbalists. That’s how I started in herbal medicine and those were the early roots of Jewelweed.

An interior view of Jewelweed herbal apothecary.

An interior view of Jewelweed.

Please tell us about your herbal business. What does it offer your community?

Jewelweed is a little retail shop. It’s 600 square feet and located in Wiseta, which is a suburb of Minneapolis on Lake Minnetonka. We sell high-quality, small-batch herbal remedies, flower essences, essential oils, and green beauty products, along with our favorite books, teas, and crystals. The shop is an invitation to explore what healing is for each person who comes in. I want it to feel like a safe and accessible place for people to engage with their healing.

How did you know opening Jewelweed was the right career move for you?

From a really young age, I wanted to have a store. I used to set up garage sales in my yard and sell rocks that I found. When I grew up, I got a degree in accounting. Later, I went into design work and remodeling and had my own little design studio. I also had a store that sold home furnishings. While it was fun, and I loved the work and the people I worked with, it just stopped feeling fulfilling. So I sold that business and took some time off. That’s when I studied with the Chestnut School. From there, I just couldn’t get the idea of an herbal store off my mind. Yet I’d never been to a store like the one I wanted to open.

To be honest, opening Jewelweed was the scariest thing I ever did. It was also the most fun, and I really felt called to do it. I was never 100% sure it was the right career move because it was terrifying, and I didn’t know if anyone would come. But now I know it was the right move. I just listened to that internal voice, my calling, and to what felt really fun and exciting. And that ended up being Jewelweed.

Nature organizing kits at Jewelweed herbal apothecary.

Nature organizing kits at Jewelweed.

What do you love most about running Jewelweed?

I love the people that come in. It’s like a sitcom—you don’t know who’s going to walk in the door. And I love the relationships that happen—people who come in offer what they know, and I offer what I know, and we both end up better for it. We have regulars, we have new people, we have people who come in every summer or winter when they’re in town. I love the herbal match-making: introducing people to plants and stones and seeing what sparks their curiosity or interest. I feel lucky to witness and be a part of this. At the same time, I’m an introvert, so it can be exhausting. But it’s fun at the same time. My customers enrich my life so much. I get to share what I love with them, and we all walk away better. It’s really healing for me, and I hope it’s healing for them.

What are some of the challenges you’ve encountered running an herbal business?

Running a retail store is a lot of work! We’re open six days a week and on our feet all day, interacting with people. Which, as I said, can be both joyful and exhausting. So I really have to balance my life in other ways, like having plenty of quiet time at home. Maintaining that balance is so important and always on my mind.

Jewelweed smoke bundles.

Jewelweed smoke bundles.

The logistics of owning a business are also a big deal. I have a business degree and experience running businesses (Jewelweed is actually the fourth business I’ve started), and it’s still a lot. There are so many things to manage: the website, the store floor, payroll, social media, marketing emails, keeping up with technology, etc. Learning all these different pieces and integrating them into the different aspects of my business can be overwhelming at times, even for such a little shop. I’m lucky I have good help, so I don’t have to learn and do everything myself. When I first opened Jewelweed, I thought I was just going to be selling my herbal remedies and hosting classes, but in the last year, I haven’t been doing these pieces I love as much because I’m just running the business end of the shop. My intention for the coming year is to get more help where I need it so I can get back to why I opened Jewelweed—which is connecting with people and plants.

What inspired you to study with us at the Chestnut School? How has your herbal education, especially the business training inside our programs, supported your business?

I’ve already owned several businesses, so I started Jewelweed with a lot of business experience under my belt. But what drew me to the Chestnut School was Juliet Blankespoor’s style and her eye for beauty. I know it sounds crazy, but when I saw her photos of the plants and how beautiful everything she does is, I knew I was going to take her program as soon as it became available. It was life-changing to realize how important beauty is and how beauty itself can be healing, especially when beauty is backed up by wisdom and truth. Juliet really showed me how to present my business in a beautiful, accessible way. That spirit is so present in Jewelweed and allows me to combine my design training with my herbal training and running a shop. Jewelweed is a place where beauty comes alive and people who visit can feel it and experience it.

A Jewelweed gift box filled with items to nourish the heart, mind, and body.

A Jewelweed gift box filled with items to nourish the heart, mind, and body.

What are three herbs that are essential to your herbal practice/business and why?

Well, one, of course, is jewelweed (Impatiens capensis). When I was thinking about what to name my store, ‘jewelweed’ just immediately came to mind. It grows everywhere where I live—all around my house, along the lake, and right across the street from my shop. I just love jewelweed because its flowers are so tiny, and you really have to look for it—it’s not loud or in your face. That’s how I am—I don’t like to be the center of attention. Jewelweed was also a plant that really helped me in my last pregnancy. I was having some trouble with my kidneys and I was designated as high-risk. I needed to go to my OB and a nephrologist constantly. So I went to see my local herbalist and teacher, Lise Wolff. She put me on drop doses of jewelweed, and within a couple of weeks, my kidney numbers regulated, and I didn’t have any trouble with the pregnancy whatsoever. My son is 17 now, and he’s been working in the shop with me since he was 12.

The second herb is yarrow (Achillea millefolium), and I always tell people that it was one of the first plants I worked with. When my boys were little, they were always getting hurt. So they always had yarrow in their bag, and they used it all the time. Even their friends would ask for it. It’s such an amazing blood remedy and a powerful healer for bruises and cuts. And it works fast. Plus, it’s really accessible and it grows everywhere. When Jewelweed first opened, yarrow was the plant I always loved to introduce people to.

The third herb is tulsi (Ocimum tenuiflorum), a plant I learned more about from Juliet than anybody else. The first summer I was in the Chestnut School, I ordered seeds and grew it. I like to say I had a love affair with tulsi—I was eating pesto and drinking the tea every single day, and I was talking to everybody about how it’s the best plant! It’s really special and so uplifting. If I could only plant one herb, it would be tulsi because I cannot live a summer without holy basil in my garden.

Jewelweed journals.

Velvet-covered Jewelweed journals.

Do you have any words of wisdom for those just starting their herbal education? What advice do you have for budding herbal entrepreneurs?

What I like to tell people who come into the shop feeling overwhelmed because there are so many herbs, is to just learn about what’s in their yard or neighborhood. To just go be with the plants themselves and figure out what’s around you. For people who aren’t comfortable with wild plants or weeds, I suggest they start in their garden. That’s why I love Juliet’s teachings; she makes everything beautiful and accessible—the wild weeds and the plants from the garden. So you don’t have to start with 50 plants, just start with one plant, or two plants, or three. And if that’s all you learn your whole life, that will be fine. Personally, I always like the plants that are around and aren’t too expensive. I love plantain (Plantago spp.) as a first plant. I love yarrow and even some of the grocery store herbs like thyme (Thymus vulgaris) and rosemary (Salvia rosmarinus). Everybody can get them.

It’s similar when starting a business. What skills do you already have? What’s available to you and easy to learn? What’s natural and easy to get started? When I started my business, I didn’t jump right into Jewelweed. I began teaching classes and selling medicine out of my house. I wanted to see if people were interested and wait before making a big investment. From there, my vision grew more and more. I feel so excited that the landscape of herbalism is changing and that up-and-coming entrepreneurs, maybe people reading this, are the future.

The Lucid Dreamer's Toolkit by Anima Mundi is sold at Jewelweed.

The Lucid Dreamer’s Toolkit by Anima Mundi at Jewelweed.

What do you think is next for you on your herbal journey?

There are a couple of things—something for myself and something for my community. For me personally, I’m just entering the menopausal years. So I’m working with plants in that way. I want to be able to teach others what I learn and experience in my own body. Also, I’m excited for this time in general. My last son will go to college next year and I’m asking what will that look like for me. What do I get to do?

My broader focus is returning to the reasons I started Jewelweed in the first place—I want to create community around plants and healing. I want to talk about the idea that we’re all healers, and there are plants right outside our front door that can help us heal. If we understand that, we can care for the plants and the land a little bit better and then see how the land’s health reflects the health of our own bodies and families. What I’m saying without saying it is: if people quit spraying their yards, if we quit poisoning our plants and our water, we can use them. And so I’m hoping to help people make the connection between their own health and the health of the world around them.

An interior view of Jewelweed herbal apothecary.

An interior view of Jewelweed health and wellness boutique.

We’re so proud of our students!

We hope this interview inspires you to check out Jodi’s products and support a small woman-owned herbal business. And perhaps you’ll find some ideas for your own herbal business. You can connect with Jodi on Instagram @jewelweed.shop and via the Jewelweed website. To see what our other graduates are up to, check out our Student Herbal Business Directory.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The post Jewelweed: Student Business Spotlight appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:06:00 -0500 Anthia
The Medicinal Benefits of Ashwagandha https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-medicinal-benefits-of-ashwagandha https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/the-medicinal-benefits-of-ashwagandha

The Medicinal Benefits of Ashwagandha

Written by Meghan Gemma
Photography by Juliet Blankespoor

The roots of a freshly harvested ashwagandha plant.

Ashwagandha’s pungent roots, which possess a notoriously musky aroma, can be profoundly renewing for your health.

If you experience overwhelm in your life—whether from insomnia, anxiety, or burning the candle at both ends—the medicinal benefits of ashwagandha bring many blessings. Ashwagandha calms and heals your nervous system, refreshes sleep cycles, invigorates immune resilience, and infuses your entire being with strength. 

This charismatic herb heralds from India, the Middle East, and Northern Africa. Ashwagandha’s medicinal use in the Western world is thanks to the traditional healers of these regions, who cherish its healing root for countless ailments. 

Among herbs, only a venerated few are true vitality tonics and nourishing rasayana restoratives. Ashwagandha—whose name means ‘essence of the horse’—is one of these, and its medicine is revered in the ancient traditions of Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani, and Indian folk healing.

Its pungent roots, which possess a notoriously musky aroma, have been enthusiastically adopted by Western herbalists in recent years for their adaptogenic qualities. When taken over time, ashwagandha can be profoundly renewing for your health.

Ashwagandha’s medicine is calming, centering, and strengthening.

Psst…If herbal profiles like this tickle your botanical fancy, you’ll find more detailed monographs on our blog, including calendula, passionflower, pine, witch hazel, violet, goldenrod, and more.

Ashwagandha's papery husks peeled back to reveal its fruit.

Ashwagandha’s papery husks peeled back to reveal its fruit.

How to Identify Ashwagandha

Scientific Name: Withania somnifera

Botanical Family Name: Solanaceae, nightshade family

Other Common Names: Indian ginseng, winter cherry, asgandh (Hindi)

Range: Native to the drier regions of India, Sri Lanka, the Middle East, and northern Africa, ashwagandha has naturalized throughout southern Eurasia and many parts of Africa. It is now cultivated in temperate and subtropical climates around the world.

Botanical Characteristics: In its native range, ashwagandha is a small evergreen perennial with woody stems and a shrub-like appearance. In temperate regions, it grows as an annual in the herb garden. The leaves are softly silver-green, alternate, and elliptic, with glabrescent (smooth) surfaces and slightly hairy undersides. The star-shaped flowers are a subtle shade of yellow-green and give way to bright scarlet berries that ripen late in the season, earning ashwagandha the nickname “winter cherry.”

The fruits are encased in papery brown husks (the persisting remnants of the calyx) and resemble tiny tomatillos. Belowground, ashwagandha’s roots are cream-colored and fleshy, exuding a bracing scent when chopped or crushed.

The developing fruit of an ashwagandha plant.

The developing fruit of an ashwagandha plant.

Culinary & Edible Uses of Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha’s roots possess a curious flavor—they’re pungent, nutty, and sometimes said to taste of malted milk balls. Traditionally (and less favorably), their scent has been likened to horse sweat. This comparison is unflattering, but don’t let it dissuade you from trying ashwagandha, which can be prepared in a number of delicious ways.

In Ayurveda, ashwagandha is classically powdered and paired with healthy fats, such as ghee or warmed whole milk with honey. The addition of cinnamon (Cinnamomum verum), cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum), and vanilla powder (Vanilla planifolia) is enticing to the taste buds. Try this Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla-Infused Ghee for a medicinal treat.

Ashwagandha can also be stirred into hot chocolate, blended into smoothies, or steeped with chai herbs. The powdered roots can be used to make adaptogenic snack balls when combined with ghee, ground toasted sesame seeds, nut butters, and/or other powdered herbs like shatavari (Asparagus racemosus) and eleuthero (Eleutherococcus senticosus).

You can even make cookies, like these adaptogenic snickerdoodles from Asia Suler of One Willow Apothecaries. Just substitute an equal amount of ashwagandha powder for the ginseng powder in her recipe.

Glass jars containing Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla Ghee filled with 

Ashwagandha, Lavender, and Vanilla Herbal-Infused Ghee. Try the recipe. Photograph courtesy of Goddess Ghee.

The Medicinal Benefits of Ashwagandha

Parts Used: Root

Preparations: Tea (decoction), tincture, powder, capsules, medicated ghee, infused milk, goo balls

Powder Dosage: 1-6 grams daily

Tincture Ratios and Dosage: Dry (1:4 60%) 2-4 ml up to three times per day (fresh root tincture not recommended due to high bioactivity)

Tea Ratios and Dosage: Decoct 1-2 teaspoons dried root per 1 cup water up to three times per day

Herbal Actions:

  • Adaptogen
  • Anxiolytic
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antioxidant
  • Anti-tumor
  • Aphrodisiac
  • Immunomodulator
  • Nervine
  • Neuroprotective
A person holding a branch of ashwagandha with developing fruit.

The developing fruit of an ashwagandha plant.

Ashwagandha is an ancient rasayana and adaptogenic herb that repairs the body from stress, anxiety, and insomnia.

An adaptogen and Ayurvedic rasayana, ashwagandha rejuvenates the body at the deepest levels and nurtures a long life. It’s said to impart the strength of a stallion to its imbibers, and its musky roots spell out this signature—they’re known to bear the scent of horses drenched in wild sweat, racing across the plains.

This vital energetic makes ashwagandha especially useful for states of weakness or fatigue, such as depletion from stress, anxiety, overwork, poor sleep, or chronic illness.1,2 The roots work to repair the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and are esteemed for their ability to aid recovery and convalescence—they’re indicated for debility of almost any kind.3 For this reason, ashwagandha is supreme across the arc of our lives: it’s safe for children, revitalizing for adults, and maintains health for elders. Unlike most adaptogens, which are stimulating in nature, ashwagandha is calming and nourishing—it restores us to health from weakened states.

Ashwagandha is a preeminent herb for insomnia, as its species name somnifera implies. It’s not overtly sedative but instead helps restore healthy sleep cycles and replenish bone-weary nervous systems.4 It must be taken tonically for these benefits to build over time, and I recommend combining ashwagandha with other calming adaptogens like milky oats (Avena sativa) and reishi mushrooms (Ganoderma spp.)

Ashwagandha’s strengthening and balancing qualities extend to the immune system, where it shines as an immunomodulating ally. It both nourishes and energizes depleted immune systems and, conversely, quells overactive immune responses that trigger allergies, rheumatoid arthritis, and other autoimmune conditions.5

In Western herbalism, ashwagandha is used as an herbal adjunct to chemotherapy and radiation for building strength and immune resilience in cancer.1 In India, ashwagandha has been a folk remedy in cancer protocols. Preliminary research attributes the anti-tumor properties to steroidal lactones, known as withanolides, found in the roots.6

No materia medica on ashwagandha would be complete without mention of its aphrodisiac and fertility benefits. Taken over time, the root can refresh and balance hormone levels, enhance circulation to the reproductive organs, improve sperm count and motility, and increase libido.3 In one notable pilot study, 25 women given 300mg of high-concentration ashwagandha root extract twice daily for 8 weeks reported significant increases in sexual function, including increased lubrication and orgasms.7

A steaming cup of ashwagandha tea.

It’s traditional to ingest ashwagandha in fat-based preparations, such as medicated ghee or milk.

Ashwagandha’s medicinal benefits are most effectively extracted in delicious milk or ghee-based preparations.

It’s traditional to ingest ashwagandha in fat-based preparations, such as medicated ghee, dairy milk, or nut or seed milk. This is because many of ashwagandha’s medicinal compounds are fat-soluble (they need to be extracted in a fatty medium). Other aspects of ashwagandha’s medicine are water-soluble, so mixed water/milk decoctions, like this ashwagandha latte recipe from Banyan Botanicals, are also appropriate.

Precautions and Contraindications: While ashwagandha is often used as an Ayurvedic and Unani pregnancy tonic, there are reports that it can cause miscarriage.4 For this reason, avoid ashwagandha in pregnancy. Those sensitive or allergic to nightshade family (Solanaceae) plants might have similar reactions to ashwagandha. Ashwagandha may enhance the effects of barbiturates and is contraindicated with some thyroid medications.8 Consult with your healthcare provider if you are taking these medications. Only use the roots. Do not use the leaves, stems, or berries internally.
Surface sowing ashwagandha seeds.

Surface sowing ashwagandha seeds.

How to Grow Ashwagandha

If you can grow tomatoes, you can likely grow a healthy harvest of ashwagandha, as these Solanaceae cousins prefer similar conditions in the garden. Ashwagandha loves heat, semi-arid soils, and an early indoor start to the season (in frost-prone areas).

Zones: 3-7 (grown as an annual); 8-13 (can be grown as a small, shrubby perennial)

Soil: Ashwagandha prefers warm, dry, well-drained soils and will even tolerate drought. It fares best in average garden soil (no need to pile on the compost) and will grow sizable roots in a single growing season throughout the temperate world.

Propagation: Ashwagandha is a light-dependent germinator, meaning its seeds require direct sunlight to sprout. Therefore, sow them on the surface of the soil and lightly tamp them in. The soils must be warm for germination to occur, so starting the seeds indoors or in a greenhouse (much as you would tomatoes) is helpful. Plus, you’ll get a leg up on the growing season, which can mean larger roots to harvest in the fall.

Siting and Garden Care: A warm-weather native, ashwagandha delights in sunshine. Plant in full sun, or select the brightest spot in your garden. If you grow lavender (Lavandula spp.) or rosemary (Salvia rosmarinus), ashwagandha will likely relish a place in their neighborhood.

Space plants 2 feet (0.6 m) apart and consider companion planting with herbs and flowers that deter pests. A few suggestions include marigolds (Tagetes spp.), nasturtiums (Tropaeolum majus), calendula (Calendula officinalis), thyme (Thymus vulgaris), and peppermint (mentha x piperita). In the case of mint, plant it in pots throughout the garden unless you’re ready to embrace its exuberant proclivity to spread.

In areas where ashwagandha grows as an annual (i.e., most places in the temperate world), try cultivating at least a few plants to obtain a good harvest. I often grow a dozen plants (or more) to feel confident of a robust supply and not fret if I lose a plant or two throughout the season.

Ashwagandha eaten by flea beetles.

Ashwagandha eaten by flea beetles.

Problem Insects and Diseases: Flea beetles will be the bane of your ashwagandha’s existence if they’re a nuisance in your area. They feast willfully on the leaves and can cause the plants’ demise. Using row cover helps immensely, at least until the plants have reached a mature size. Alternately, wait until your ashwagandha starts are larger and hardier before transplanting them to the garden.

Harvesting: Dig ashwagandha roots in the fall before the first frost. Wash and chop the roots right away, spreading them on screens or loose-weave baskets to dry. Make sure to dry them in a warm, ventilated space out of direct sunlight.

Once dry, the roots can be stored, tinctured, or powdered. Note that the powder will degrade more quickly than the whole, chopped roots. Therefore, you may wish to powder ashwagandha in small batches, as needed.

Asia Suler holds a freshly harvested  ashwagandha plant.

Asia Suler holds a freshly harvested  ashwagandha plant.

References

  1. Stansbury J. Herbal Formularies for Health Professionals, Volume 3: Endocrinology. Chelsea Green Publishing; 2018.
  2. Hoffman D. Medical Herbalism: The Science and Practice of Herbal Medicine. Inner Traditions/Bear & Co.; 2023.
  3. Sinadinos C. The Essential Guide to Western Botanical Medicine. Christa Sinadinos; 2020.
  4. Lad V, Frawley D. The Yoga of Herbs: An Ayurvedic Guide to Herbal Medicine. Lotus Press; 1986.
  5. Winston D, Maimes S. Adaptogens: Herbs for Strength, Stamina, and Stress Relief. Inner Traditions/Bear & Co.; 2007.
  6. Skenderi G. Herbal Vade Mecum. Herbacy Press; 2003.
  7. Dongre S, Deepak L, Sauvik B. “Efficacy and Safety of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) Root Extract in Improving Sexual Function in Women: A Pilot Study.” BioMed Res Intl. 2015.
  8. Mills S, Bone K. The Essential Guide to Herbal Safety. Elsevier Health Sciences; 2005.

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The course curriculum is designed to help you succeed as a professional herbalist.

Are you ready to fall in love with herbs? The Immersion covers herbal materia medica, medicinal herb gardening, wild food and medicine foraging, medicine making, botany, plant I.D., healing histories, herbal career guidance, and more in 166 videos, 186 lessons, and a gorgeous 1,600-page printable course manual.

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Juliet Blankespoor

JULIET BLANKESPOOR is the founder, primary instructor, and Creative Director of the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, an online school serving thousands of students from around the globe. She's a professional plant-human matchmaker and bonafide plant geek, with a degree in botany and over 30 years of experience teaching and writing about herbalism, medicine making, and organic herb cultivation. Juliet’s lifelong captivation with medicinal weeds and herb gardening has birthed many botanical enterprises over the decades, including an herbal nursery and a farm-to-apothecary herbal products business. 

These days, she channels her botanical obsession through her writing and photography in her online programs, on her personal blog Castanea, and in her new book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies. Juliet and her family reside in a home overrun with houseplants and books in Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The post The Medicinal Benefits of Ashwagandha appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:05:59 -0500 Anthia
Herbal Gift&Giving Guide https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herbal-gift-giving-guide https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herbal-gift-giving-guide

Herbal Gift-Giving Guide

Written by Meghan Gemma

Of the Forest Non-Alcoholic Festive Bitters by Xálish Medicines.

Of the Forest Non-Alcoholic Festive Bitters by Xálish Medicines. Photograph courtesy of Xálish Medicines.

Give the perfect herbal gift to your loved one

Giving a great gift is an art. Giving an herbal gift is to know and love the plant person in your life. To help you find the perfect present, we’ve compiled an herbal gift-giving guide featuring special items from small makers to please your herbally-inclined loved ones.

For fun and ease, we’ve grouped these gifts into categories suited to unique plant personas. Shopping for an herbalist who cherishes culinary traditions? See our selections for the Herbal Kitchen Witch. Excited to share something special with a magical friend? Pick a present from our list for the Herbal Ritualist.

Note that we do not receive any compensation for promoting the products and businesses featured in the Herbal Gift-Giving Guide. We simply love these makers and are excited to share them with you!

*Links in purple denote BIPOC and/or LGBTQIA2S+-owned businesses
*Links in brown denote Chestnut graduate-owned businesses

Herbal Astrology Oracle 55-Card Deck and Guidebook by Anima Mundi Apothecary.

55-card oracle deck and guidebook written by Adriana Ayales of Anima Mundi Herbals and illustrated by Josephine Klerks. Photograph courtesy of Anima Mundi Herbals.

For the Home Apothecary Angel

These gift suggestions go out to all the home medicine makers and artisanal remedy collectors. Even the most savvy and experienced herbalist loves to sample the soulful concoctions of other crafters. These are among our favorite small apothecaries to support.

  • Ancestrally-inspired remedies from Xálish Medicines. Everything in this shop exudes spirit and healing. Choose from an extraordinary selection of oxymels, herbal honeys, adaptogenic powders, flower essences, plant wands, elixirs, and tea blends.
  • Top-quality, homegrown bulk herbs from the magnificent gardens at Kestrel Herb Farm, including anise hyssop, ashwagandha, chamomile, and reishi mushrooms.
  • Flower essences from the magical shelves of One Willow Apothecaries. You’ll find a numinous number of interesting essences, including Sister Ivy for setting boundaries, Opium Poppy for powerful protection, Mimosa for joyful inspiration, and Ghost Pipe for ancestral healing.
  • Apothecary angels will also appreciate simple yet special staples: raw local honey, glass Mason jars, craft brandy and other spirits, and local beeswax. A few of these items gathered together (or paired with any of the other gifts in this guide) make a thoughtfully themed gift bag or basket.
Mirrors in the Earth Complete Healing Collection by Asia Suler.

Mirrors in the Earth Complete Healing Collection by Asia Suler. Photograph courtesy of Asia Suler.

For the Herbal Ritualist

If your loved one relishes the ritual arts, offer them a gift that enhances intuition, inspires ceremony, and creates connection with the plants. These are the books, boxes, and tools that enliven our own experience of herbal magic.

  • The evocative and culturally-rich Earth Medicines book by Felicia Cocotzin Ruiz. This volume of breathtaking beauty and plant ceremony can be enacted in every herbalist’s kitchen and apothecary.​​​​​​​​
  • Beautiful card decks for connecting with plant allies. We especially love the rainbow-hued art and stirring descriptions of the Dirt Gems Deck & Guidebook created by Anne Louise Burdett and Chelsea Iris Granger. Equally adored is the traditional, astrologically-nuanced wisdom in the Herbal Oracle Deck by Adriana Ayales of Anima Mundi Herbals.
  • Intuitive Gift Boxes from Jewelweed Shop. These personalized boxes feature herbs, candles, cards, journals, and other healing tools. Simply describe a theme and the person the gift box is for, and Jewelweed’s staff will put together an extra-special package that will be shipped straight to your loved one.
  • Mirrors in the Earth by Asia Suler. This keepsake and guide is a ritual initiation into your personal connection with the plants. Readers will emerge transformed, with pockets full of jade-green insights about the natural world and how we are our own healers.

Need more book recommendations? See our list of the Best Herbal Medicine Books for Herbalists.

Green Man Plant Perfume by Fat and the Moon.

Green Man Plant Perfume by Fat and the Moon. Photograph courtesy of Fat and the Moon.

For the Aromatically Enchanted

Fragrance imprints deeply in our memories. An aromatic gift will leave a lasting impression on your loved one. Here are the scents and plants that we love to wrap up for our own cherished friends and beloveds.

  • Plant hydrosols from Ash Sierra of Ritual Botanica. These are the most sensational hydrosols we’ve ever laid our noses on. Our favorites include the Tulsi Rose and Florida Water hydrosols. Get ready to inhale heaven.
  • Botanical perfumes from Fat & the Moon. The jasmine and cedar notes in their Persephone Emerges perfume evoke the heady scents of a summer garden, while their Green Man perfume featuring clary sage and vetiver is deeply warm and comforting. Both scents are available as perfume sprays or spreadable balms.
  • Roses! A bush or two, rather than a bouquet. If your scent-ual loved one has a green thumb, consider bestowing them with a fragrant antique rose to grow and tend. For a divine selection of organically-grown roses shipped right to your door, we recommend the online shop at Angel Gardens.
Winter Mint Ghee Seasonal Blend by Goddess Ghee.

Winter Mint Ghee Seasonal Blend by Goddess Ghee. Photograph courtesy of Goddess Ghee.

For the Herbal Kitchen Witch

Magic is made in the herbal kitchen—from culinary confections to potent medicines. Whether your plant pal is more herbal foodie or medicinal alchemist, these gifts will inspire their creative process and take their table to new hawthorn berry heights.

  • Vibrant single-origin spices from Diaspora Co. It doesn’t get much fresher than their Pragati turmeric, Baraka cardamom, Sannam chili, Kaveri vanilla, and Anamalai cacao.
  • We also love the exquisite spice selections from our friends at Spicewalla. Try their Haute Chocolate and Golden Milk collections for warm winter afternoons by the fire.
  • Hand-crafted herbal bitters from Woodspell Apothecary. Every herbal table needs a bottle of bitters, and these are among the best and most beautiful. We recommend the Spellbound Bitters, featuring a dreamy blend of lavender, lemon balm, and anise hyssop.
  • Decadent medicinal and culinary plant powders from Anima Mundi Herbals, including their gorgeously gift-worthy blue butterfly pea powder, Euphoria joy + mood powder, and rose powder.
  • Small-batch, grass-fed ghee from Goddess Ghee. You can choose from Classic Ghee, Brown Butter Ghee (my favorite), and over a dozen herbal blends, including Sweet Lullaby, Lunar Cacao, and Wild Ramp.
The Healing Garden: Cultivating & Handcrafting Herbal Remedies by Juliet Blankespoor.

The Healing Garden: Cultivating & Handcrafting Herbal Remedies by Juliet Blankespoor. Photograph by Meghan Gemma.

For the Gleeful Gardener

Know a green thumb you can’t wait to gladden with a gift? Try one of the suggestions below for a plant-centered present that will make their gardener’s heart glow.

Plus, with their copy of the book, your dear one will receive access to the Healing Garden Gateway, an exceptional online bonus overflowing with invaluable material: video tutorials, printable charts and worksheets, recipes, and a hand-picked list of herbal resources they’ll definitely want in their back pocket.

Marigold Wrap Top by Needlebone.

Marigold Wrap Top by Needlebone. Photograph courtesy of Needlebone.

For the Botanical Beauty

Adorning ourselves with botanically-inspired beauty can be pure pleasure. Does your special plant person have a penchant for pampering? Here are a few of our top picks for adding something singular to their wardrobe or skincare ritual.

  • Beauty Fruit Face Mask & Scrub from Heilbron Herbs, featuring raw honey, roselle hibiscus, marshmallow, aronia berry, and calendula. This vitamin C-rich scrub is food for your face (and it tastes like jam!).
  • Clothing, prints, and cards inspired by herbal flora and crafted by Karalyn Wysocki of Needlebone. Try the Monarch and Milkweed Tee, Marigold Wrap, or the Ephemerals print.
  • Have a dashing darling? Give them a jaunty plant-dyed beret from Maggie Pate of Nade Studio. Choose from a rainbow of natural colors, including violet, sky, cherry, charcoal, and luna.
Herbal Immersion course manuals.

Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online herbal programs. Photograph by Amanda Davis.

For the Plant-Passionate Person in Your Life

Do you know someone exceptional who wants to become an herbalist? The gift of an herbal education will put them firmly on the plant path and provide years of meaningful learning. Consider an Online Herbal Program with yours truly. We offer the most beautiful and detailed online programs in sustainable, professional herbalism anywhere in the world. Choose from our 1,000-hour Online Herbal Immersion, 150-hour Online Medicine Making Course, and our seasonally available 375-hour Online Foraging Course.

  • The Online Herbal Immersion was designed for the truly green-hearted plant person. The program covers medicinal herb gardening, foraging, medicine making, herbal materia medica, plant identification., herbal entrepreneurship, and so much more in 167 videos, 186 lessons, 183 recipes, and a 1,500+ page printable course manual!
  • The Online Medicine Making Course provides our expert guidance on the art (& science!) of handcrafting your very own herbal remedies—tinctures, teas, syrups, honeys, oils, salves, and so much more!
  • The Online Foraging Course teaches everything you need to know to confidently identify, harvest, and prepare wild food + medicine by going deep with 21 of the most abundant and nourishing plants on the planet.
The People’s Medicine Reclamation Project.

Rootwork Herbals People’s Medicine Reclamation Project. Photograph courtesy of Rootwork Herbals.

For the Heart of Gold

Would your herbal beloved rather give than be given to? For the generous green soul, consider a donation-based gift that supports plants and plant people around the country. We’ve listed a few suggestions below, but also consider local gardens, schools, and initiatives!

  • Make a donation in your loved one’s name to Mountain Gardens, the plant sanctuary and home of the late and great Joe Hollis. Joe’s gardens are one of the largest collections of medicinal plants anywhere in the world and have been an educational destination for decades. Donations help keep this paradise thriving!
  • Contribute to the People’s Medicine Reclamation Project. Your donations support the BIPOC community with free access to herbal medicine, individual consultations, and educational opportunities with the People’s Medicine School. They also sustain the Jane Minor BIPOC Community Medicine Garden, where BIPOC folks can freely access land, food, and medicine.
  • Support the United Plant Savers, an extraordinary organization dedicated to research, education, and conservation of native medicinal plants and their habitats. In lieu of a donation, you can gift your heart of gold a United Plant Savers Membership, which includes the Journal of Plant Medicine Conservation and access to numerous other benefits and discounts.
Eight glass jars of Hibiscus Chutney.

Hibiscus Chutney makes an especially nice stand-in for cranberry sauce on the holiday table. Photograph by Sarah Snyder.

Delicious homemade recipes make great herbal gifts

Perhaps you want to try your hand at something homemade? We share several decadent recipes on Blog Castanea that make gorgeous gifts when packaged and paired with appropriate accouterments.

Meet Our Contributor:

Meghan Gemma of Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

MEGHAN GEMMA is one of  Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine's primary instructors through her written lessons, and is the principal pollinator of the school’s social media community—sharing herbal and wild foods wisdom from the flowery heart of the school to an ever-wider field of herbalists, gardeners, healers, and plant lovers.

She has been in a steady relationship with the Chestnut School since 2010—as an intern and manager at the Chestnut Herb Nursery; as a plant-smitten student “back in the day” when the school’s programs were taught in the field; and later as a part the school’s woman-powered professional team. Meghan lives in the Ivy Creek watershed, just north of Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Herbal Gift-Giving Guide appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:05:58 -0500 Anthia
Herbal Compound Butters for Festive Feasting https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herbal-compound-butters-for-festive-feasting https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/herbal-compound-butters-for-festive-feasting

Herbal Compound Butters for Festive Feasting

Recipes and Photography by Sarah Snyder
Other text by Juliet Blankespoor & Meghan Gemma

Herbal compound butters slathered on homemade bread.

Flavored culinary butters add thrill to any cuisine.

Rich and sultry, compound butters generously lend a delectable flavor and silky texture to almost any dish. They can be slathered onto baked roots, fresh bread, and crackers or used to roast veggies or meat. Fruity, sour, and sweet butters are delicious with pancakes, muffins, or waffles. When you set the table with buttery herbal spreads, every occasion instantly feels special—from Sunday brunch to your best friend’s birthday dinner.

Despite compound butter’s stodgy-sounding name (borrowed from the French, beurre composé), flavored butters reliably add thrill to any cuisine. You may be familiar with compound butters if you’ve ordered steak at a swanky restaurant. After grilling meat or fish, the chef melts a melon ball-sized pat of compound butter on top, the flavor percolating in a pool of lavishness.

Compound butters can be frozen, giving you an elegant method of preserving fresh culinary herbs, especially those that don’t dry well like chives, cilantro, or parsley. Use the butter immediately or roll into logs, wrap in wax paper, and freeze for later use. Simply slice off a round when you’re ready to use the butter, or thaw out smaller portions to have on hand in the refrigerator.

If you avoid dairy, try one of the many non-dairy “butters” or, for a sweet butter, try coconut manna. These plant alternatives will have a different consistency than butter—you might not be able to roll them into a log, and instead, can serve them in a small bowl.

A bowl of Herbes de Provence herbal compound butter.

A bowl of Herbes de Provence herbal compound butter.

A bowl of Herbes de Provence herbal compound butter.
Print

Herbes de Provence Herbal Butter

This savory butter is exquisite served simply with warm bread. It’s a lavish accompaniment to roasted meats and root vegetables, baked winter squash, and primavera pasta dishes.
Course Condiment
Keyword Butter
Prep Time 5 minutes
Servings 1 cup

Equipment

  • Mixing bowl
  • Sturdy spoon

Ingredients

  • 1 cup salted butter (1 cup = 2 sticks butter)
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 2 teaspoons dried sage
  • 2 teaspoons dried lavender
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

Instructions

  • Bring the butter to room temperature.
  • Add all the ingredients to a bowl and mix with a sturdy spoon until combined.
  • Store in the refrigerator or freeze for later.
A bowl of pomegranate molasses compound butter.

A bowl of pomegranate molasses compound butter.

A bowl of pomegranate molasses compound butter.
Print

Pomegranate Molasses Butter

Elevate your breakfast toast and tapas trays with this smooth and fruity spread. Add it to baked goods for an unexpected kiss of flavor. Melt it on top of muffins still warm from the oven. Pair it with your favorite fresh bread.
Course Condiment
Keyword Butter
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings 1 cup

Equipment

  • Mixing bowl
  • Sturdy spoon
  • Strainer

Ingredients

  • 1 cup salted butter (1 cup = 2 sticks butter)
  • 1 pomegranate
  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon orange zest
  • 1 teaspoon molasses

Instructions

  • Bring the butter to room temperature.
  • Peel the pomegranate and separate the seeds.
  • Leave half of the pomegranate seeds whole.
  • Chop the remaining half of the pomegranate seeds and drain the excess juice using a strainer.
  • Add all the ingredients, including whole and chopped pomegranate seeds, to a bowl and mix with a sturdy spoon until combined.
  • Store in the refrigerator or freeze for later.

Learn more about the ingredients

For information on the medicinal benefits of herbs featured in these compound butter recipes, visit our articles on:

Basil

Basil (Ocimum basilicum, Lamiaceae).

Basil (Ocimum basilicum) is best known for its culinary uses, but it is also a versatile medicinal. Learn more about basil.

Lavender

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia).

Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) supports healthy digestion and soothes the nervous system.  Learn more about lavender.

Sage

Garden Sage (Salvia officinalis).

Garden Sage (Salvia officinalis) & White Sage (Salvia apiana) are versatile medicinal & antimicrobial herbs. Learn more about sage.

Looking for more feast-worthy recipes?

Try making our Hibiscus Chutney—it’s the ultimate herbal twist on cranberry sauce—and these show-stopping Herbal Finishing Salts (see pic below).

A close up of herbal finishing salt made from fresh sage, rosemary, orange zest, and juniper berries.

Meet Our Contributors:

Sarah Nicole Snyder is holding a woven basket full of freshly picked strawberries.

SARAH SNYDER grew up in a small wooded town outside of Charlotte, NC. She studied music in college before moving to Asheville, NC to study pastry arts. Here she developed a love for plants, gardening, medicine-making, and homesteading. She worked as a photographer, pastry chef, and journalist before coming to Chestnut School for social media.

Most days you can find her reading with her dog and a mug of tea, getting the perfect shot of her garden, trying out yet another craft, or wrangling chickens back into the yard.

Juliet Blankespoor

JULIET BLANKESPOOR is the founder, primary instructor, and Creative Director of the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, an online school serving thousands of students from around the globe. She's a professional plant-human matchmaker and bonafide plant geek, with a degree in botany and over 30 years of experience teaching and writing about herbalism, medicine making, and organic herb cultivation. Juliet’s lifelong captivation with medicinal weeds and herb gardening has birthed many botanical enterprises over the decades, including an herbal nursery and a farm-to-apothecary herbal products business. 

These days, she channels her botanical obsession through her writing and photography in her online programs, on her personal blog Castanea, and in her new book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies. Juliet and her family reside in a home overrun with houseplants and books in Asheville, North Carolina.

Meghan Gemma of Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

MEGHAN GEMMA is one of  Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine's primary instructors through her written lessons, and is the principal pollinator of the school’s social media community—sharing herbal and wild foods wisdom from the flowery heart of the school to an ever-wider field of herbalists, gardeners, healers, and plant lovers.

She has been in a steady relationship with the Chestnut School since 2010—as an intern and manager at the Chestnut Herb Nursery; as a plant-smitten student “back in the day” when the school’s programs were taught in the field; and later as a part the school’s woman-powered professional team. Meghan lives in the Ivy Creek watershed, just north of Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Herbal Compound Butters for Festive Feasting appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:05:58 -0500 Anthia
Botánica Cimarrón: Student Business Spotlight https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/botanica-cimarron-student-business-spotlight https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/botanica-cimarron-student-business-spotlight

Botánica Cimarrón: Student Business Spotlight

Interview by Meghan Gemma
Photography courtesy of Botánica Cimarrón

Star Feliz, owner of Botánica Cimmarón small batch apothecary and creative wellness company.

Star Feliz, owner of Botánica Cimarrón small batch apothecary and creative wellness company.

An Interview with Star Feliz of Botánica Cimarrón

Do ancestral herbal traditions inspire you? Are you intrigued by medicine that’s place-based, plant-based, and spiritual? Remedies that are cultural and rich? This is the kind of herbalism practiced by Star Feliz (they/them) of Botánica Cimarrón.

Star is a clinical herbalist, full-spectrum doula, spiritual guide, and Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine graduate. They practice Afro-Taino Caribbean and Western herbalism, drawing creative inspiration from their ancestral lineage and a big imagination for an earth-healing future.

 

The world needs more earth- and community-centered herbalists.

 

Botánica Cimarrón is the community vessel for Star’s vision: a small-batch apothecary and ritual arts container that sells expertly formulated bespoke medicines and spiritual tools. It’s also a local resource for herbal classes and accessible healthcare.

Star recently shared an interview with us for our Student Business Spotlight—a series featuring Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine graduates, their work, and the wide variety of professions herbalists can choose from. Star is a graduate of our Online Herbal Immersion Program—1,000 hours of our personal mentorship in sustainable herbalism and herbal career building. If you are interested in the wide variety of herbal careers you might pursue, see An Herbalist’s Salary and Career Opportunities and Learn How to Become an Herbalist.

Botánica Cimarrón Elixir Collection

Botánica Cimarrón’s elixir collection.

Star, will you tell us a little bit about yourself and how you were first called to work in the field of herbal medicine?

I’m a Dominican-American artist, herbalist, and spiritual guide. The beginning of my path in herbalism started with my mother and grandmother and the herbal infusions we made together. When I was 19, I lived and worked on a permaculture farm, and that’s where I truly began to listen to the plant spirits, deepen my self-study, and honor my ancestral gifts for healing.

Please share with us about your herbal business, Botánica Cimarrón. What does it offer your community?

Rooted in ancient Afro-Taino wisdom, Botánica Cimarrón is a creative wellness company focused on healing marginalized people’s relationship to the earth through innovative lifestyle products and learning experiences that ensure our thriving futures. Everything is formulated and handmade in ceremony with the earth & stars. Botánica Cimarrón is based in Los Angeles, the unceded territory of Tovaangar.

Star Feliz creates powerful, ethically sourced, and lovingly handcrafted spiritual tools.

How did you know this was the right career move for you?

The signs were everywhere. My soul feels the most alive when I’m creating and close to nature. For many years before starting my own brand, I experienced firsthand the powerful healing effects my medicine had through working as a community-based herbalist, doula, and organizer. I never imagined this would be a career, but step by step, I’ve built a path for myself based on a sacred calling.

How has your herbal education, especially the business training inside our programs, supported your business?

Before I started at the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, I was already a practicing community medicine-maker, but I didn’t realize how much I was truly craving a learning structure until I delved into the coursework. The impact was so measurable! It was helpful to have new materials for reference and confidently move through blocks in my practice.

Botanica Cimarron's Alcoholado and Rainbow Serpent Oil

Botánica Cimarrón’s Healing Alcoholado and Rainbow Serpent Oil are available in their online shop.

What inspired you to study with us here at the Chestnut School?

I was attracted to the self-paced curriculum. It meant that I had the flexibility to lend my full energy to the mutual aid project I was involved with at the time, the Lenapehoking Freedom Fighters Herbal Care Kits, without having to choose one or the other.

What do you love most about running an herbal business? What are some of your challenges?

I love sharing this ancient knowledge with people in new and innovative ways. It helps that I get to work with some of the most amazing people in the world — people who work for the earth’s healing are the most open-hearted. The challenging part is the fast pace and often overwhelming amount of work that needs to be done for a business to keep running. Especially when you’re starting out as a team of one.

Botánica Cimarrón’s Rainbow Serpent ritual oil is formulated with real snake skin, gemstones, herbs and flowers, essential oils, and gold dust.  

What are three herbs that are essential to your herbal practice/business and why?

Hibiscus – Potent fire medicine.
Moringa – A tree of life. Deeply nourishing.
Licorice – A brilliant activator within any formula.

Do you have any words of wisdom for those just starting their herbal education who are interested in starting a business? What advice do you have for budding herbal entrepreneurs?

Community is crucial (both personal and professional). If you don’t already have a community, focus on building one. And don’t skip over the boring legal, structural, backend, and other organizational building blocks!

Botánica Cimmarón's Green Gold Oracle deck

Watch the Botánica Cimarrón website for a new extended edition of  Green Gold: An Ancestral Plant Spirit Oracle Deck.

What do you think is next for you on your herbal journey?

I’m looking forward to writing more, plus teaching and studying in the tropics for periods of time. I’m working on an extended edition of my publication Green Gold: An Ancestral Plant Spirit Oracle Deck, so look out for that!

We’re so proud of our students!

We hope this interview inspires you to check out Star’s online shop and support a small, earth-centered herbal business. Perhaps you’ll find some inspiration for your own herbal business. You can connect with Star on Instagram @botanicacimarron and via the Botánica Cimarrón website.

To see what our other graduates are up to, and the wide variety of businesses they run, check out our Student Herbal Business Directory.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

The post Botánica Cimarrón: Student Business Spotlight appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:05:57 -0500 Anthia
Winter Spiced Herbal Bitters for Digestive Health https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/winter-spiced-herbal-bitters-for-digestive-health https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/winter-spiced-herbal-bitters-for-digestive-health

Winter Spiced Herbal Bitters for Digestive Health

Recipe and Photography by Sarah Snyder
Other text by Meghan Gemma

A bottle of winter spiced bitters surrounded by the ingredients.

Everyone can benefit from a bottle of herbal bitters!

Paradoxically, bitter herbs make life sweet, as they have a profound effect on our enjoyment of food—one of life’s great pleasures. You might also say they improve our relationship with food, as many digestive woes can be corrected simply by adding herbal bitters to the diet.

Herbal bitters benefits include:

  • Improve symptoms of digestive turmoil, including gas, bloating, cramps, indigestion, nausea, constipation, and even post-meal crankiness
  • Curb sugar cravings
  • Promote the growth of healthy intestinal flora
  • Facilitate detoxification through their support and stimulation of the liver

It’s optimal to ingest bitters twenty minutes before eating, but if you forget, simply take them when you begin to eat. Try keeping your bitter tinctures on the kitchen table as a reminder. Bitters must be tasted to exert their medicinal effects. A few drops are all that’s needed.

The following herbal bitters recipe is an excerpt from our FREE Winter Seasonal Guide.

Sprinkled with snow dreams and frosted by starlight, the Winter Seasonal Guide is an ode to tending ourselves and our loved ones through the dark moons of winter, a guide for burnishing ourselves to brightness with the plants at our side.

It burns with three complementary candles:

  • The Winter Apothecary. A tour of essential herbal wisdom for winter health and levity.
  • 7 Healing Herbs for Winter. A materia medica spotlight on seven botanicals embodying the season’s herbal spirit.
  • Herbal Recipes for Wintertime. A collection of festive, warming, and health-enhancing recipes.

A bottle of winter spiced bitters surrounded by the ingredients.
Print

Winter Spiced Herbal Bitters Recipe

These spiced bitters are so delectable you’ll want to drink them straight! Bitter mugwort, cardamom, and orange peel get the digestive juices flowing, while cacao and hawthorn add mouth-watering antioxidants. Take a few drops on the tongue 20 minutes before a meal to stoke the digestive fires, or add a splash of bitters to an aperitif for a delicious twist.
Course Medicinal
Keyword Bitters
Prep Time 10 minutes
Servings 2 cups (approximately)

Equipment

  • 32 oz. glass jar
  • Glass dropper bottles - Optional

Ingredients

  • ½ cup dried hawthorn berries (Crataegus spp.) or double the amount of fresh berries
  • 2 Tbsp. cacao nibs (Theobroma cacao)
  • 2 Tbsp. dried orange peel (Citrus x sinensis)
  • 1 Tbsp. hulled cardamom seeds (Elettaria cardamomum)
  • 2 tsp. cut and sifted dried mugwort leaves (Artemisia vulgaris) or double the amount of chopped fresh leaves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (Cinnamomum verum)
  • 2 cups brandy or vodka

Instructions

  • In a 32 oz. glass jar, combine all herbs and spices.
  • Cover with alcohol of choice. Brandy makes for a smooth and drinkable blend, while vodka provides a stronger and more medicinal extraction.
  • Store in a cool, dark place for six weeks, shaking often.
  • After six weeks, strain out the herbs and store your bitters in a glass jar in a dark cabinet. Best used within one year.

Looking for more medicinal recipes for wintertime?

Find more herbal allies for the chilly season on our blog, including our articles on:

Two hands over a wooden table, pouring a herbal tincture into a beaker.

Goldenrod Tincture Formula

This goldenrod tincture blend is a helpful internal remedy for congestion due to seasonal allergies, head colds, or sinus infections.

A person holds a woven basket full of pine needles.

Mighty Pine Tops Tea

This tea recipe combines pine tops with dried peppermint and catnip for relief from sinus and lung congestion.

A spoon sits in a small jar of medicinal garlic sauce.

Medicinal Garlic Sauce

We almost always have a batch of this sauce on hand. It’s a convenient way to add fresh garlic to dishes just before serving.

Meet Our Contributors:

Sarah Nicole Snyder is holding a woven basket full of freshly picked strawberries.

SARAH SNYDER grew up in a small wooded town outside of Charlotte, NC. She studied music in college before moving to Asheville, NC to study pastry arts. Here she developed a love for plants, gardening, medicine-making, and homesteading. She worked as a photographer, pastry chef, and journalist before coming to Chestnut School for social media.

Most days you can find her reading with her dog and a mug of tea, getting the perfect shot of her garden, trying out yet another craft, or wrangling chickens back into the yard.

Meghan Gemma of Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

MEGHAN GEMMA is one of  Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine's primary instructors through her written lessons, and is the principal pollinator of the school’s social media community—sharing herbal and wild foods wisdom from the flowery heart of the school to an ever-wider field of herbalists, gardeners, healers, and plant lovers.

She has been in a steady relationship with the Chestnut School since 2010—as an intern and manager at the Chestnut Herb Nursery; as a plant-smitten student “back in the day” when the school’s programs were taught in the field; and later as a part the school’s woman-powered professional team. Meghan lives in the Ivy Creek watershed, just north of Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Winter Spiced Herbal Bitters for Digestive Health appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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Wed, 07 Feb 2024 05:05:56 -0500 Anthia
Storing Dried Herbs and Herbal Preparations for Freshness and Longevity https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/storing-dried-herbs-and-herbal-preparations-for-freshness-and-longevity https://fhslifestylemagazine.com/storing-dried-herbs-and-herbal-preparations-for-freshness-and-longevity

Storing Dried Herbs and Herbal Preparations for Freshness and Longevity

Written by Meghan Gemma and Juliet Blankespoor
Photography by Juliet Blankespoor

Correctly drying and storing herbs ensures you will have more potent medicine.

Fresh herbs can be bundled together and hung on a wooden rack to dry.

Which are the best herbs to start your home herbal apothecary? Which medicinals can I easily grow to dry and store? Where do I buy dried herbs?

Whether you grow your own herbs or purchase them from a bulk supplier, storing dried herbs properly will ensure they enjoy a long life filled with potency and freshness. In this article, we’ll share the basic rules of thumb for storing dried herbs (and tinctures, infused honeys, herbal oils, salves, and powdered herbs), plus we’ll impart our tips for finding the best high-quality bulk herbs to use in your home apothecary. 

To learn about starting your own herbal medicine chest, visit our article on The 10 Best Herbs to Start Your Home Herbal Apothecary. And if you’re looking for high-quality sources to purchase your bulk herbs, along with medicine-making supplies, you’ll find details below.

Ready to grow an herb garden where you can gather and dry the freshest medicine on the planet? Check out our Medicinal Herb Gardening Hub—it’s loaded with articles to set you up on the green path, including:

Storing dried herbs in a dark cabinet extends their shelf life.

Dried herbs last longer if stored in a dark cabinet or hutch.

What is the best way to store dried herbs for freshness and longevity?

In general, you’ll want to store dried herbs and other medicinal preparations in airtight glass jars inside a cabinet, on a dark shelf, or anywhere out of direct sunlight. A location that is cool and dry will further increase the shelf life of your remedies. Keep your medicines out of the reach of small children and always label each bottle, as it’s all too easy to forget the contents of an unmarked medicine over time!

Dried leaves and flowers will typically last one to two years, and roots can last two to three years.

If you store dried herbs correctly, you’ll find the following to be a useful guideline:

  • Dried leaves and flowers have a shelf life of 1-2 years
  • Roots, seeds, and barks can last 2-3 years

Use your senses—smell, sight, and taste—to determine the vitality of stored herbs. If an herb looks vibrant and has retained most of its flavor and/or aroma, it’s still good medicine!

Storing dried herbs in glass jars prolongs their freshness.

Label your jars of dried herbs with the name of the plant, the part gathered, and the date they were stored.

Where can I find high-quality dried herbs?

To source the most vibrant herbs, look first to small herb farmers and medicine makers (and even some top-notch larger suppliers). When purchasing herbs, we recommend sourcing them in this order when possible:

Local Growers and Small Sellers. This is an opportunity to visit local herb farms and see their medicine for yourself (plus you’ll be supporting small businesses and your local economy). Some growers even offer you-pick herbs. To find sources near you, see Rosalee de la Forêt’s List of Sustainable Herb Farms and Ethical Wildcrafters and our List of Bulk Herb Suppliers.

Local Medicine Makers. Check with your local apothecaries and medicine makers for freshly stocked bulk herbs and tea blends. Feel free to inquire where they source their herbs!

Mail-Order and Online Sellers. This is a straightforward option for purchasing bulk dried herbs online or by catalog. Check out our Sources of Bulk Herbs and Medicine Making Supplies list.

Dry Your Own Herbs. For a tutorial on drying fresh herbs from your garden, check out Mountain Rose Herbs’ article on How to Harvest, Dry, & Store Herbs from the Garden.

A person pours freshly made herbal tincture into an amber glass bottle.

Storing freshly made tincture in an amber glass bottle will extend the medicine’s shelf life.

How do I store tinctures and other herbal preparations? And how long do tinctures last?

Like dried herbs, other herbal remedies will benefit from storage in a cool, dark space—a cabinet, hutch, pantry, wooden pie safe, or the like. Below you’ll find nuanced storage details and shelf life expectancies for:

Amber glass are the best bottles for storing herbal tinctures.

To prevent ink from running due to dribbles from the bottle, place clear packing tape over your labels.

Storing Herbal Tinctures

Properly stored tinctures—prepared with high-percentage alcohol (50% or higher)—can last for years, even decades. We store our tinctures (and syrups, vinegars, oxymels, infused oils, and simple syrups) in amber glass dispensing bottles with polyseal caps. These bottles have several helpful attributes:

  • The brown glass excludes light, which can degrade medicine over time.
  • The inside of the polyseal cap is resistant to solvents, as it is manufactured for chemical storage. While I don’t like that the inside of the cap is plastic, I haven’t yet found a better system.
  • The bottles are a small investment, but they are washable and reusable—I have dozens that have been with me for over a decade.

As an alternative, people often store their medicine in glass canning jars. If you go this route, be aware that alcohol and vinegar will corrode canning lids over time, contaminating the medicine with plastic compounds. To prevent this, use natural waxed paper as a barrier on the inside of the lid.

Finally, make sure to store your alcohol-based tinctures some distance from the stove and potential kitchen fires as they are very flammable.

Four jars of vinegar infusing with various herbs.

To protect your medicine from potential contamination due to corroded canning lids, place a layer of natural waxed paper on the inside of the lid while your herbs are infusing in vinegar.

Storing Herbal Vinegars

Vinegar-based extracts have a shorter shelf life than alcohol-based tinctures and should generally be used within six months to one year when prepared with fresh herbs (and ideally refrigerated), and one to five years for vinegars prepared with dried herbs. As with alcohol tinctures, we prefer to store vinegar extracts in amber glass bottles with polyseal caps.

Storing Herbal-Infused Honeys

Herbal honeys made from dried herbs have a very long shelf life—decades to perhaps centuries, or even millennia! We store infused honeys in glass jars of varying shapes and sizes. If you prepare honey from fresh herbs, the water weight will dilute the honey and its shelf life will be much shorter. We recommend refrigerating herbal honeys made from fresh herbs. Some of our favorite honeys to infuse include:

  • Hawthorn, berries (Crataegus spp.)
  • Angelica, root (Angelica archangelica and other Angelica species)
  • Elecampane, root (Inula helenium)
  • Elderberry, fruit (Sambucus nigra var. canadensis and Sambucus nigra)
  • Schisandra, berries (Schisandra chinensis)
A person holds a honey dropper over a jar of elderberry infused honey.

Elderberry-infused honey is a delicious stand-alone remedy, or it can be transformed into a medicinal herbal syrup.

Storing Herbal-Infused Oils and Salves

Herbal-infused oils and salves will typically last two to three years when refrigerated and one year unrefrigerated, depending on the stability of the oil used. Using dried herbs will greatly increase the shelf life of your herbal-infused oils.

Storing Powdered Herbs and Capsules

Herbal powders have a shorter shelf life than cut and sifted herbs (loose teas and bulk herbs) because the plant material is ground to such a fine consistency. Use powdered herbs within 6-12 months, storing them in the refrigerator or freezer for maximum freshness.

Clean jars and bottles waiting to store dried herbs and herbal preparations.

Herbal Storage & Shelf Life Chart

To wrap up our review on storing dried herbs and the longevity of different herbal preparations, here’s a handy chart to guide you in keeping your medicinals fresh and potent. We hope that this information will be helpful in nurturing your well-being and that of your community for years to come. Happy medicine making!

Meet Our Contributors:

Meghan Gemma of Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

MEGHAN GEMMA is one of  Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine's primary instructors through her written lessons, and is the principal pollinator of the school’s social media community—sharing herbal and wild foods wisdom from the flowery heart of the school to an ever-wider field of herbalists, gardeners, healers, and plant lovers.

She has been in a steady relationship with the Chestnut School since 2010—as an intern and manager at the Chestnut Herb Nursery; as a plant-smitten student “back in the day” when the school’s programs were taught in the field; and later as a part the school’s woman-powered professional team. Meghan lives in the Ivy Creek watershed, just north of Asheville, North Carolina.

Juliet Blankespoor

JULIET BLANKESPOOR is the founder, primary instructor, and Creative Director of the Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine, an online school serving thousands of students from around the globe. She's a professional plant-human matchmaker and bonafide plant geek, with a degree in botany and over 30 years of experience teaching and writing about herbalism, medicine making, and organic herb cultivation. Juliet’s lifelong captivation with medicinal weeds and herb gardening has birthed many botanical enterprises over the decades, including an herbal nursery and a farm-to-apothecary herbal products business. 

These days, she channels her botanical obsession through her writing and photography in her online programs, on her personal blog Castanea, and in her new book, The Healing Garden: Cultivating and Handcrafting Herbal Remedies. Juliet and her family reside in a home overrun with houseplants and books in Asheville, North Carolina.

Interested in becoming a contributor?

 

© Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com, 2011-2024. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine and chestnutherbs.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Want to take a deeper dive into medicinal herbs and their uses?

Our 1,000-hour Herbal Immersion Program is the most comprehensive handcrafted online herbal course available, covering botany, foraging, herb cultivation, medicine making, and therapeutics.

The Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine online Herbal Immersion Program.

The post Storing Dried Herbs and Herbal Preparations for Freshness and Longevity appeared first on Chestnut School of Herbal Medicine.

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