Real eFood Articles

The Sweet Side of Paleo Life – 5 Paleo-Friendly Desserts

It’s no secret that the Paleo way of eating is unlike most diets out there. While many diets are hallmarked by a strict set of calorie counting and deprivation, the Paleo lifestyle is all about gaining the maximum nutrition and benefits from everything you eat, and feeling satisfied instead of deprived. As such, it is no wonder that the Paleo diet has plenty of room to include desserts and snacks. The difference with a Paleo treat is that Paleo treats are free from harmful ingredients like grains, sugar, dairy, processed foods, and white potatoes. Instead Paleo treats are made with healthy, nutrient dense foods like healthy fats, nuts, seeds, and fruits that satisfy your sweet tooth and nourish your body. If you are new to the Paleo lifestyle, or just looking for some fresh ideas for Paleo treats, check out these treats and enjoy!

1. Paleo Parfait. Layer fresh berries with whipped coconut cream and top with chopped nuts for a delicious parfait that’s perfect any time of the day. In addition to a sweet taste, you’ll get plenty of antioxidants, fiber, and healthy fat.

2. Chia Pudding. Mix up this filling pudding by adding two tablespoons of chia seeds to a cup of almond or coconut milk. Add extra flavor by including cinnamon, unsweetened cocoa, or a dash of maple syrup. This treat will give you a creamy taste along with protein, fiber, and the all-important omega 3 fatty acids.

3. Faux Ice Cream. A frozen banana blended with scoop of almond butter will provide you with a snack that’s remarkably similar to ice cream, but without all the inflammatory damage caused by dairy and sugar. Plus, bananas give you a healthy dose of potassium and almond butter provides a great source of vitamin E.

4. Coconut Flour and Almond Meal Baked Goods. A host of recipes for Paleo baked goods are available, but opt for ones that involve blending coconut flour and almond meal. You’ll get cookies, cakes, and quick breads that give you protein, fiber, and healthy fat while they satisfy your craving for sweet.

5. Fruit Bars. If you need a quick snack, it’s hard to beat a homemade fruit and nut energy bar. Blend equal parts cashews and dates together in the food processor, stir in dried fruit of choice, form into bar shape, and your all set with an antioxidant, vitamin, and healthy fat packed snack!

Introduction to the Dukan Diet

Lose Weight with the Dukan Diet

Obesity is a common problem these days, and nearly all of us are tired of those tough diet plans with boiled and grilled food. But there are a few diet programs that are easy and linked with our day to day lifestyle. One of them is the Dukan Diet which has versatile and different phases that are actually a low carb diet that has provided satisfactory outcomes to numerous dieters.

Dukan Diet Attack Phase

The first phase in which the dieter is allowed to eat lean proteins apart from one and half liters of water and one and half tables spoon of oat bran daily. The approved list of 72 rich protein foods such as fish, poultry, soy and eggs add diversification to the food and helps in weight reduction initially which motivates the person to continue further.

Dukan Diet Cruise Phase

This phase incorporates vegetable in the diet which includes 28 veggies along with similar quantity of water and oat bran as mentioned above. These vegetables are those which do not have starch such as spinach, lettuce, green beans but not those starchy corns, carrots, or peas.

Dukan Diet Consolidation Phase

The basic aim of this phase is to maintain that new weight and avoid chances of any regain. Foods that were not introduced in the earlier phase are then gradually allowed along with two celebration meals a week. One day is also dedicated to the protein diet.

Dukan Diet Stabilization Phase

This phase continues throughout your life. Once you are set with your diet pattern, you only need to maintain your same weight. The rules which should be followed are three tablespoons of oat bran, taking stairs instead of elevators, a 20 minute brisk walk daily and protein diet once a week. Unlike other hectic diet plans that need constant calorie counts and limited food portions, this diet plan allows you to eat as much as you want - provided to stick to the 100 prescribed foods and adopt a healthy lifestyle.

Diet Rules

  • - You can eat as much as want, but only allowed food items.
  • - You must drink 1.5 liter of water daily. Avoid dehydration as over working of kidney due to high protein diet may damage them.
  • - You should include 1.5 tablespoons of oat bran per day in any form you like - as porridge, in yogurt, or any other form.
  • - Indulge in a 20 minute walk in your daily routine.
  • - If satisfactory results are not seen during first five days proceed to cruise phase.
  • - The regimen, if followed properly, has great results and ultimately is a healthy diet plan which avoids hi-carb foods.

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Lose Weight While You Sleep

Lose Weight While You Sleep

Lack of sleep weakens your immune system, increases your risk of chronic diseases and improper functioning of the brain, leading to turbulent emotions and impairment of cognitive abilities.

Sleep-deprived individuals experience constant yawning, irritability, sluggishness and sleepiness, and they are at a higher risk of suffering accidents, such as trips and falls. Overall, lack of sleep affects the physical, emotional and mental health of individuals.

Inadequate sleep hampers the immune system from producing antibodies, cells and other substances that combat infections, leading to vulnerability to sicknesses and longer recovery times from illnesses.

Sleep deprivation affects cognitive functions, including concentration, memory and creativity. Long-term sleep deprivation may cause hallucinations, particularly in patients with systemic lupus erhythematosis or narcolepsy. Individuals who suffer from manic depression tend to suffer mania when they do not sleep properly.

Sleep-deprived people commonly exhibit micro sleep or falling asleep for a few seconds or minutes without being aware of it, which is a dangerous effect when driving. People with chronic sleep deprivation may suffer imbalance, coordination problems and inability to make sound decisions. They are also at risk of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and other chronic illnesses. Less than five hours of sleep each night leads to a 15-percent higher risk of death from any cause.

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Introduction to the Low GI Diet

When our body works to break down carbohydrates, our insulin levels increase. The increase in insulin is unhealthy and leads to tiredness and hunger causing us to want to eat more often. Our body absorbs different types of carbohydrates at different rates.

When we eat often, our blооd ѕugаr lеvеl rises ԛuісklу whісh can lead to heart dіѕеаѕе аnd wеіght gаіn. It also саuѕеѕ our body to store fаt, аnd thus іnсrеаѕеs thе еxtrа wоrk lоаd on the раnсrеаѕ. Thе increase іn thе іnѕulіn causes thе blооd ѕugаr level to decrease which lеаdѕ tо hуроglусеmіа. The glусеmіс іndеx сhаrt hеlрѕ to find fооdѕ according tо thеіr саrbоhуdrаtе lеvеl, thеіr еffесt on thе blood ѕugаr lеvеl, tо achieve hеаlthу аnd permanent wеіght loss, аnd tо rеduсе hеаrt dіѕеаѕеѕ.

The еаѕіеѕt way tо соntrоl thе blооd sugar lеvеl іѕ рrореr dіеt wіth thе rіght amount hіgh аnd low glусеmіс food at the right tіmеѕ.

Whу іѕ thе glycemic іndеx chart іmроrtаnt?

Thе glycemic іndеx chart іѕ a diet guіdе , but it must nоt be thе basis fоr an overall diet. The glусеmіс іndеx сhаrt соntаіnѕ the lіѕt of all lоw, medium аnd hіgh іndеx glусеmіс fооdѕ. It іѕ suggested bу nutritionists tо hаvе low glусеmіс foods whісh do not іnсrеаѕе thе blооd sugar level.

Low glycemic food such аѕ bеаnѕ, vеgеtаblеѕ, grаіnѕ mаіntаіnѕ lоw blood sugar lеvеl. Such foods reduce the risk of type 2 dіаbеtеѕ, саrdіоvаѕсulаr diseases, cancer еtс. Low GI foods do nоt spike іnѕulіn lеvеls like high GI fооdѕ. Researchers have found thаt the higher the numbеr on the GI scale, the hіghеr the blооd gluсоѕе level would be whісh lеаdѕ to thе rаріd іnсrеаѕе in the insulin in оur body. Whеn оnlу low glусеmіс іndеx fооds are eaten соntіnuоuѕlу, it саn reduce blооd ѕugаr levels.

Summаrу:
1. The GI value is only applied tо fооdѕ that соntаіn саrbоhуdrаtеѕ.
2. If thе ԛuаntіtу оf саrbоhуdrаtеs is hіgh in a fооd thеn thе fооd соntаіnѕ a high vаluе оn the glycemic іndеx.
3. Choose foods that are low on the scale for a healthy diet.
4. If you are dіаbеtіс thеn аѕk a dосtоr, nutrіtіоnіѕt, or dietitian bеfоrе starting the Low GI Diet bесаuѕе sometimes lоw glусеmіс fооdѕ саn rеduсе blood ѕugаr levels too muсh.
6. Nutrіtіоnіѕts suggest thаt hіgh glycemic fооd ѕhоuld nоt bе left out of your diet bесаuѕе some foods аrе low іn саlоrіеѕ and are hіghlу nutrіtіоuѕ like wаtеrmеlоn, роtаtоеѕ etc. Carrots are considered a hіgh GI food, but іt is lоw in calories and hіgh іn nutrіеnts.
7. The glусеmіс іndеx ѕhоuld nоt be thе fіrѕt criteria іn сhооѕіng thе best аnd most аррrорrіаtе fооd fоr оur body.
8. When thе low glусеmіс іndеx food іѕ suggested by dіеtіtіаnѕ then саnnеd, сооkеd оr drіеd fооd ѕhоuld be eaten because іt іѕ hіghlу fіbrоuѕ food whісh increases thе blооd ѕugаr lеvеl ѕlоwlу. High fіbеr fооd аllоwѕ our bоdу to dіgеѕt fооdѕ vеrу ԛuісklу. Fruіtѕ аrе good sources оf vіtаmіn C аnd роtаѕѕіum.

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Lose weight and build muscle with the Ketogenic Diet

Low-carb vegetables

The main objective of low carb, Ketogenic diet plan is to improve health by switching the metabolism to burn fat rather than burning glucose or sugar. This is gained through a metabolic stage called ketosis. Ketosis is a normal process in which body cells burns ketones which are molecules used to make energy instead of depending on carbohydrates or sugar. When the body is in a Ketosis metabolic state, the lipid energy metabolism is complete or intact. The body will start breaking down your body fat to get the fuel required for everyday functions. Ketogenic diet helps to build muscle, and usually adopted by the athletes and wrestlers.

Benefits of ketosis

1. Utilization of fat fuel
Ketosis helps in increasing the body’s capability to utilize fat fuel. During high carb diet, the body usually supposes an outside source for energy provision. But in the state of ketosis, the body becomes efficient at activating the inside fats for energy.

2. No need for oxidization
During the ketosis process, your body moves towards protein sparing effect assuming you are consuming a sufficient amount of protein (0.7 gram of per pound of body weight per day) and calories. Also in this process the body prefers ketones over glucose. Since the body has abundant quantity of fat, there is no need to oxidize the protein to produce glucose through gluconeogenesis.

3. Low level of insulin
This process lowers the insulin in the body which is reason behind greater lipolysis and free glycerol discharge as compared to typical diet plans in which insulin level is around 80-120. Insulin has a lipolysis-blocking effect constraining the use of fatty acid as energy. Also, when insulin is low, useful hormones are released in the human body. These hormones include growth hormone and other powerful growth related factors.

4. Squash the appetite
Another hidden secret behind Ketogenic diet is that when in the state of ketosis, ketones due to high protein intake seem to subdue the appetite. On the other hand, a high carb diet increases hunger levels. This is because you have lot of fat intake on a Ketogenic diet which contains 9 calories per gram. It’s not necessary to be hungry on a reduced calorie diet. Ketosis is a valuable process the human body developed as an altered system when food is unavailable. The Ketone body condition has been observed as a cure to many diseases and prevents the body from infections. It has now been used to treat medicinal condition such as epilepsy, autism, cancer and diabetes etc.

Introduction to the Cabbage Soup Diet Plan

Cabbage Soup Ingredients

The cabbage soup diet guidelines are simple. That's a reason this eating plan has remained popular for many years. It's more than just eating cabbage soup. You eat specific foods each day for seven days. The promise is that you can lose 10 pounds in a week. How can eating cabbage soup help you lose weight?

Cabbage soup is low calorie filler so you don't get hungrу. You саn eat аll thе саbbаgе soup уоu wаnt at аny time. Sіnсе its lоw іn саlоrіеѕ, you're nоt going to gаіn аnу wеіght eating саbbаgе ѕоuр. Thеn thе оthеr foods you еаt leave оff whаt іѕ оftеn the саuѕе оf wеіght gаіn. Thе foods are mоѕtlу lоw carbohydrate selections with lіttlе fаt. Sо the rеаl trісk іѕ thе limited selection оf fооdѕ allowed in addition to the soup.

Seven Dау Cаbbаgе Diet Ingredients

Eасh dау уоu саn еаt аll thе саbbаgе ѕоuр уоu wаnt.

Day 1 - Eаt аѕ muсh fruіt as уоu want but no bananas.

Dау 2 - Eat frеѕh, raw оr сооkеd vеgеtаblеѕ but nо fruіt.

Dау 3 - Eаt аll thе fruits and vеgеtаblеѕ уоu wаnt.

Dау 4 - Eat uр to еіght bаnаnаѕ plus аll thе ѕkіm milk уоu want.

Dау 5 - Eat beef оr chicken аnd tоmаtоеѕ.

Dау 6 - Eat аll thе bееf оr chicken уоu wаnt and vegetables.

Day 7 - Eаt brown rісе, unѕwееtеnеd fruіt juice and vеgеtаblеѕ.

5 Foods to Avoid for Healthy, Younger-Looking Skin

Food is the fuel for the engine of our body, and one cannot deny the fact we are what we eat. Some foods are beneficial for our health, but there are a few that simply ruin the physical fitness and skin.

How healthy your skin is, how young and vibrant you look, whether you have acne problems or not is heavily reliant on your diet. It is a fact that genetics, environmental factors and other lifestyle choices play an important part, but it would be hard to find a dermatologist or skin specialist that would not consider food a factor in deciding about your skin condition and diseases. Below are five foods that must be avoided for healthy and vibrant skin.

1. White bread
White bread is a common breakfast across the globe. It has been used in numerous recipes. A recent Australian study has revealed the fact that high glycemic foods such as cakes, white bread and pasta have been linked to an increase in acne. Therefore one should stick to whole grain breads and pasta. Whole wheat oat is rich in anti-oxidants and has been found to treat acne.

2. Candies
The sweet little candies which all of us love to munch frequently have high sugar content, and over-eating sugar causes wrinkles and dull skin. Candies actually damage your collagen and elastin that is the most important fiber that keeps your skin firm and youthful. Damaging it causes dryness which leads to wrinkles and sagging. This means in order to reduce wrinkle and combat aging avoid deserts and candies.

3. Chips
Loaded with refined and saturated carbs, these little crispy and crunchy snacks increase the inflammation of DNA and collaging injurious oxidative stress. As the time passes by you will notice more wrinkles, fine lines and aged appearance. These refined carbs are the main cause of increased acne complaints in adults.

4. Juices and Sodas
Juices and sodas are the most common summer drinks. But most of us don’t know how harmful these drinks are for our skin health. These are only sugar delivery vehicles. These sodas and juices are high in sugar content but also lack fiber which makes a more negative on our skin. Fiber is significant for preventing blood sugar swipes that prematurely age skin.

5. Fast Food
From nearly two decades, almost the entire population of the world had become crazy about those fast food outlets. These are not only destructive for our health but also leave an effect on the skin. Most of us are not aware of the fact that their high GI and saturated fat laden menus can leave you with spots and pimples. Western diets contain more traditional fried foods that are disastrous for the skin health.

10 Foods to Eat for Healthy and Beautiful Skin

The quality and composition of nutritional elements in an individual’s daily dietary routine contributes to health and nourishment; which resultantly is evident externally not only in form of physical fitness, but also the quality of skin and hair, we know that certain types of foods have targeted impact on a particular aspect of the body. The particular diet that is necessary of skin health can make your skin vibrant, supple, firm, and clear. Below are 10 additions to your diet that promise to provide healthy and beautiful skin.

Water

Water is the basic most crucially important element that plays most significant and effective role in improving skin condition. How water helps:

  • Keeps skin hydrated
  • Reduces blemishes
  • Washes out toxicants from bloodstream
  • Nature’s greatest Anti-oxidant
  • Slows aging and wrinkling process
  • Prevents dryness
  • Keeps skin firm
  • Moisturizes skin internally and externally

Strawberries

Strawberries contain more anti-aging vitamin C per serving than oranges or grapefruits do. Foods rich in vitamin C lead to fewer wrinkles, less age-related dry skin and similar problems. Vitamin C fights those free radicals which cause damage to skin cells and break down collagen, which leads to formation of fine lines. Strawberries can be consumed for smoother, better-hydrated skin.

Green Tea

Green tea contains inflammation-fighting antioxidants. Drinking green tea reduces the risk of skin cancer. Adding citrus juice in generous portion can inhibit the digestibility of the tea which results in slowly releasing longer lasting benefit. It helps with hydration and stress release, whereas stress can aggravate skin problems. It also protects skin by reducing sun-damage and wrinkles

Pumpkin

The orange hue of pumpkin is due to carotenoids. These pigments have wrinkle fighting properties. It helps in neutralizing the free radicals that accelerate aging process of skin. Pumpkin contains vitamins C, E, and A, and those powerful enzymes that help to cleanse the skin, skin-saving antioxidants, and hydrant agents.

Pomegranate

Pomegranate is one of the most antioxidant-rich fruits. Its juice contains more inflammation-fighting antioxidants than red wine or even green tea. It can be consumed or crushed, dried and applied as scrub.

Eggs

Egg contains 69 different proteins and albumin, which have skin toning properties and slows the wrinkling process by maintaining elasticity. These are especially beneficial to oily base skin. Egg whites are high in collagen and vitamin A. You can also whisk it and apply as facial mask.

Dark Chocolate

The base ingredient of chocolate is cocoa bean. Cocoa hydrates skin, making it firm and suppler. Dark chocolate contains a high level of flavonols which is a potent type of antioxidant. But its composition should be at least 70 percent cocoa. If applied topically, the caffeine in chocolate will temporarily reduce facial skin puffiness.

Yogurt

The protein content of milk is doubled in yogurt form. Yogurt helps to keep skin firm and elastic and improve complexion.

Walnut

Walnuts contain omega-3 essential fatty acids which improve skin elasticity. These nuts contain minerals that boost collagen production. They are very useful for skin complexion and texture. Walnuts can also be ground-up and applied as exfoliant for softer skin.

Kidney Beans

Kidney beans are high in zinc and low zinc consumption results in skin blemishes. Zinc holds healing properties. About four ounces of these beans a day can be as effective as antibiotics against acne vulgaris.

HOW THE MEDITERRANEAN DIET CAN HELP YOU LOSE WEIGHT

The Mediterranean Diet has been given attention by the media in recent years because so many celebrities have achieved weight loss by following this diet. Those who live around the Mediterranean Sea need to stay active and to achieve this they need a diet that has a high emphasis on remaining active. They eat small portions, reduce the amount of red meat they eat, enjoy the food they eat and eat to stay active. Mediterranean diet contains chicken, cheese, fish and small amounts of eggs are its sources of protein. The diet allows for minimal amounts of saturated fat.

People have the belief that the Mediterranean Diet contains a ‘’slow’’ food diet because those who are interested in it had to cook their food at home and not eat at the restaurants. Eating at restaurant means you will eat fast food that has an excess amount of saturated fat which prevents normal weight loss and encourages weight gain. This diet helps you to lose weight quickly as it emphasises eating a small quantity of healthy diet. The foods allowed on this diet are very similar to a heart-healthy diet that keeps you healthy all year round. The diet can also help you lose weight quickly and at the same time you will enjoy the food that you eat.

If you want to help yourself to lose weight, and remain healthy, the Mediterranean Diet provides an excellent and numerous health benefits and heart healthy diet. Red wine and olive oil make up significant parts of the Mediterranean diet, and they help to keep you healthy. Olive oil raises levels of HDL cholesterol because it is high in monounsaturated fats. The HDL cholesterol is the good form of cholesterol that is increased with the presence of olive oil and the level of the bad cholesterol, LDL is reduced. Saturated fat will give an opposite effect by increasing the degree of the bad cholesterol and reducing the level of the good cholesterol thereby causing impairment in health conditions.

The only real source of saturated fat in the Mediterranean diet is cheese but is very low in the amount found in this diet. The Mediterranean diet is very high in monounsaturated fat that makes it an excellent healthy diet. The cardiovascular system needs a moderate amount of Red wine for optimal function. This is the amount that we find in the Mediterranean diet, and it is the amount that is recommended in our diets. The role of wine in the cardiovascular system is made possible because of its antioxidant and weight loss content derived from grapes whose content is use in making red wine. It protects the heart, the brain and also can prevent cancer formation.

The Mediterranean diet is a healthy diet that places emphasis on plant-based foods like vegetables and whole grains that are known to have a significant content of fiber. Fiber functions in the digestive system. It also functions in the reduction of cholesterol levels and function in the cardiovascular health. Those heart healthy diets that contain a high amount of fiber usually contain a small number of calories and will provide you with the feeling of fullness preventing you from eating more calories and at the same time not going hungry are suitable for weight loss. This is why Mediterranean diet is excellent for weight loss.

Another advantage of Mediterranean Diet is that it allows an individual to eat great-tasting food. A healthy diet like Mediterranean diet allows you to cook and enjoy the food that you eat and not gorging yourself on other kinds of foods from the restaurants like fast foods. Mediterranean diet helps to change your eating habits and as such, you will be successful in your weight loss program if you keep to the guidelines of the diet. There are many books about cooking that you can find helpful. These books contain recipes that concern Mediterranean diet that are very inexpensive and readily available.

If you do not expect immediate gratification, and you are willing to leave your impatience behind, you should be ready to continue your regular exercise and weight loss regimen. The easy approach is the Mediterranean Diet which functions in several ways. You should be careful not to let the expectations from other diet plans put you off balance. Other diet plans make a lot of promises that make you think you will start noticing the weight in moments, but do not work that way. Even if it appears to work, you will regain your lost weight soon after you stop the program. If all diet plans were honest about their expected results, the Mediterranean Diet would look much better by comparison.

How to Re-Grow Hair Naturally Through Diet

While there are certainly a number of hair growth products on the market today that promise to re-grow hair that might even work, they don’t help you solve the underlying causes of your hair loss. Working with your body to provide it with the proper amount of vitamins, minerals, and other essential nutrients is the best way to re-grow your hair naturally and safely.

1. Essential Fatty Acids

These are necessary for a number of body functions, including hair growth. One way they do this is by promoting hair growth. To make sure you’re getting enough of these essential fatty acids, try eating more walnuts, avocado, flaxseeds, and fish.

2. Vitamin C

Vitamin C will help boost your body’s collagen production. Collagen is what protects and builds up the hair, but its production decreases over time, so it’s important to get more vitamin C in your diet to maintain proper collagen production. Citrus fruits, red peppers, and strawberries are some foods that are high in vitamin C.

3. Biotin

This B vitamin is one of the most well-known for being essential to your scalp and hair health. It also helps build up your nails. To increase the amount of biotin in your diet, try nuts, oats, brown rice, eggs, avocados and cheese.

4. MSM

MSM, which is short for Methylsulfonylmethane, helps produce keratin in the body. Keratin is one of the most important proteins that hair is made up of. A recent study showed that 100% of the people who participated had improved hair growth within just 6 weeks of taking MSM supplements. To get MSM naturally through foods, try leafy vegetable like cabbage, Swiss chard, and watercress.

5. Iron

Iron is another important part of the hair growth process. Iron deficiencies also cause a number of other problems throughout the body. Because your body needs vitamin C to properly absorb iron, make sure you are also getting enough vitamin C. Some foods that contain iron include berries, green leafy vegetables, cashews, leeks, and blackstrap molasses.

6. Essential Minerals

Some of the essential minerals necessary for hair growth include silica and zinc, so make sure you’re eating foods that contain high levels of them. Foods that are high in silica include mango, cucumber, celery, beans, and asparagus. Foods that are high in zinc include eggs, Brazil nuts, fresh oysters, pecans, and pumpkin seeds.

7. Iodine

One of the causes of thinning hair is an underactive thyroid gland. To help reduce or eliminate the effects of an underactive thyroid gland, choose foods that are rich in iodine and avoid drinking tap water which contains harmful chemicals that prevent iodine from being absorbed by your body. Most sea vegetables are high in iodine including kelp, dulse, nori, wakame, and kombu.

Conclusion

By giving your body what it needs to grow hair, you will allow it to grow more hair more effectively and naturally. By covering your head in products, you may see some temporary results, but many of these products also have harmful chemicals and compounds that can damage your body. Instead, work with your body to re-grow your hair naturally.

8 Foods That Can Get Rid of Wrinkles

Before you start covering your skin in expensive anti-aging and anti-wrinkle products, take a minute to consider the saying “You are what you eat.” The truth is that good skin care starts from within. By adding these 8 foods to your diet, you can reduce wrinkles and improve your skin.

1. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are full of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps your body produce more collagen, the compound that helps make your skin plumper and firmer, effectively reducing wrinkles. Another important ingredient in tomatoes that helps the skin is lycopene. Lycopene helps protect the skin against UV damage, and is essential for your blood to circulate properly, which also helps your skin glow.

2. Blueberries

Most berries, particularly blueberries and raspberries, contain a huge number of antioxidants which are an important part of repairing skin cells that are damaged, which can lead to wrinkles. Adding just half a cup of blueberries or raspberries to your routine can help reduce wrinkles as they pull all of the toxins out of your body that are causing them.

3. Kefir or Yogurt

Kefir and yogurt are both high in probiotics, which can have a profound impact on your skin and greatly reduce the appearance of wrinkles. This is because of the live probiotics that many of these products contain which have been linked to solving skin problems such as acne, rosacea, and psoriasis. Be sure to look for kefir and yogurt products that are fresh, natural, and unprocessed that have high quantities of live cultures for best results.

4. Fish

There are many fish that are high in omega-3 fatty acids, especially wild-caught salmon, sardines, and the Atlantic Mackerel. These omega-3 fatty acids are great for your whole body, and work in a special way with your skin to reduce wrinkles. They help to moisturize your skin from the inside which will help your skin have a healthier glow and naturally reduce wrinkles.

5. Nuts

Walnuts, hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios, and peanuts are all high in omega fatty acids that work to moisturize your skin the same way fish do. Walnuts have the most omega-3 fatty acids, while other nuts like almonds contain other important vitamins and mineral. Almonds, for example, contain high levels of vitamin E which has anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce skin irritation that causes wrinkles.

6. Avocados

This fruit not only has important omega fatty acids. It also has a compound known as glutathione which has a number of anti-aging properties. Glutathione is one of the best compounds for detoxifying your whole body, which will help your body begin to repair itself, reducing wrinkles as your skin is able to regenerate damaged cells.

7. Honey

Honey is a great antioxidant that you can use to replace sugar in nearly anything. Regular sugar causes inflammation in your skin which can lead to cellular damage and wrinkles. Honey, on the other hand, actually fights against inflammation which will help reduce wrinkles. Not only can you eat honey to benefit from it, but you can also use it as a natural face mask.

Intro to the Paleo Diet

The paleo diet is one of the latest dieting fads out there, but you may not be aware of all that it entails. Paleo is actually short for paleolithic, and this diet has also been known as the caveman diet because it takes a look back at how the earliest humans ate.

Loren Cordain, PhD was the one who developed the paleo diet back in the 1970’s. He determined that we should be eating similarly to the earliest humans because that is how we were genetically designed to eat. Additional research on the diet has revealed that much of what we eat today we have simply adapted to use the way our bodies were supposed to use foods that are part of the paleo diet.

Advantages of the Paleo Diet

Balances out fat. Many people have too much of the unhealthy types of fat and not enough of the healthy types such as omega-3 fatty acids. The paleo diet already has the right balance of unhealthy and healthy fats and is rich in omega-3 fatty acids.

More healthy protein. Because the paleo diet focuses mainly on lean meats, it means that you’ll be getting a lot more healthy protein. Larger amounts of protein can help increase your metabolism, make you feel full for longer, and will build more muscle mass.

Less carbohydrates. While carbohydrates are good for people that are extremely active like athletes, the average person simply does not use enough energy to need to have a diet high in carbohydrates. This leads to extra calories and weight gain. The paleo diet limits carbohydrates and lets you get the slow-burning energy from protein sources instead.

More vitamins and minerals. Because the paleo diet encourages you to eat as many different types of fruits and vegetables as you can as they come into season, you will be able to get all of the necessary vitamins and minerals that these foods contain that you just can’t get in processed foods.

There are too many other advantages to the paleo diet to list including improving skin complexion, lowering risk of heart disease, increased energy, lowering sugar intake, and better digestive health. Numerous studies on the paleo diet have suggested that it can help correct a number of health concerns.

Paleo Diet Food Options

The main focus of the paleo diet is lean meats, which include: chicken, turkey, pork, buffalo, fish, and seafood.

You are also encouraged to eat a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables that are in season. The vegetables that you choose should be non-starchy such as asparagus, lettuce, cabbage, broccoli, green beans, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, and spinach.

Tree nuts are another great addition to the paleo diet because of their high protein content. This includes almonds, cashews, walnuts, pistachios, and pecans. Peanuts, however, are actually legumes and are not included in the paleo diet.

Eggs are the only animal by-product that are included in the paleo diet. All other dairy products including milk, cheese, and yogurt are excluded.

When cooking, there are a several types of oils that you can use which are part of the paleo diet such as olive, coconut, grapeseed, and walnut.

BMI and Weight Loss: What Does It All Mean?

There is a lot of buzz going around about weight loss, and a lot of different words that get thrown around. BMI is a word that gets tossed around quite a bit, but not everybody knows exactly what that is or what it means.

What does BMI stand for?
BMI stands for body mass index, and it uses your current weight and height to determine which of four general categories you fall into: underweight, normal or healthy, overweight, or obese. By putting your height and weight into a BMI calculator, you will be given a number. You can then see where you fall on the BMI scale.

Underweight: 
If your BMI is less than 18.5, you are considered to be underweight. Keep in mind that being underweight is just as unhealthy as being overweight. If you feel that you are eating normally and still aren’t able to gain weight, you may need to consult a doctor to determine if there is a medical reason for you being unable to gain weight. Your doctor can also advise you on how you can get up to a healthy weight in a healthy way.

Normal or Healthy: 
If your BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9, you are considered to be in the normal or healthy range. At this range, there’s really nothing special that you need to be doing except to continue to make healthy choices in regards to diet and exercise. Even if you are on the higher end of this scale, you do not necessarily need to lose weight.

Overweight: 
If your BMI is between 25 and 29.9, you are considered to be overweight. Being overweight has been linked to a number of health concerns, the worst being heart disease and diabetes. For that reason, if you fall in this range, it is important that you begin to make healthy lifestyle changes that will help you to begin to lose weight. Now is the perfect time to begin eating healthy foods, and exercising more often.

Obese: 
If your BMI is 30 or above, you are considered to be obese. Falling in this range means that your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and cancer has gone up significantly. It is extremely important that you see a doctor as soon as possible so that you can begin a diet and exercise regimen. Studies have shown that obesity can cut a person’s life expectancy down by 8 years. If you feel as though you are eating healthy and getting plenty of exercise but are still gaining weight, it may be due to a hormonal imbalance or other medical problem that you can consult your doctor with.

Conclusion: 
BMI is a great way to indicate where you are in terms of your weight loss. Since people at different heights and builds have different normal weights, BMI is a way to quickly determine if you are in the right range. Once you have discovered where you fall on the BMI scale, you can then decide what your next step is, whether you need to gain or lose weight, or keep on the path you’re already on. If you are on a weight loss program, tracking your BMI can help you check your progress.

Why Do a Sugar Detox?

If you’re like most people, you understand the negative effects that sugar has on your body, like rotting your teeth, causing diabetes, leading to weight gain, and many others. However, what most people aren’t talking about are all the benefits that you can enjoy by doing a sugar detox and removing all of the processed sugars that are lingering in your body.

Weight Loss:  Processed sugars contain fructose, which encourages the body to produce an excess of insulin which in turn stores as much of the sugars on hand as possible. These sugars are stored as fat. So, by going through a sugar detox, you can get these processed sugars out of your system which in turn allows your body to shed those extra pounds that it was storing them as.

Improved Brain Function:  If you feel mentally sluggish and that “brain fog” that many people talk about where it seems like doing any thinking is too much work, it could be because of an excess of fructose and other processed sugars in your bloodstream. These processed sugars prevent important chemicals from reaching the brain and can also promote fat storage in the brain, both of which slow down your brain function. Getting these out of your system can help clear your mind.

Improved Complexion:  You may not realize that there is a connection between your complexion and the sugars you have stored in your body, but numerous studies have shown a definite link between eating sugar and bad complexions. When you do a sugar detox, you can help your body clear up your complexion and have the best looking skin of your life.

Settle Your Stomach"  One of the main causes of stomach upset and bloating is an inflammatory response that happens when you eat processed sugars that are not compatible with your body’s system. This triggers an inflammatory response which results in both an upset stomach and bloating, as well as other digestion issues. Throughout a sugar detox, you will experience less and less of these unpleasant digestive problems as the fructose is removed from your system.

Eliminate Sugar Cravings:  Research has found that sugar is up to eight times as addictive as cocaine. In the same way that drug addicts have to get all traces of the drugs out of their systems, it is vitally important that people with sugar addictions get all traces of it out of their system. By detoxing your body from sugar, you remove it from your system and your body learns to live without it which means your sugar cravings can be effectively eliminated.

Conclusion:  If you’re looking to improve your health, one of the best things you can do for yourself is to get everything out of your body that is causing harm. Simply cutting down or even avoiding sugars may not be enough because of what you already have in your body. This is why going through a sugar detox program is an important step for you and your health.

The connection between diet and hair loss - Iron Deficiency

It will come as no surprise that hair loss can be a huge blow to a person's confidence and self-esteem.

There are a wide range of factors that can contribute to hair loss including: genetics, stress, disease, malnutrition and more. Here, we'll focus on dietary causes of hair loss so that the reader can attempt to reverse the process and possibly begin to regrow hair.

Today, we'll focus specifically on the connection of iron deficiency and hair loss. Keep in mind that an iron deficiency doesn't necessarily mean that a person is not consuming enough iron. Even if iron is being taken by way of oral supplement, it may not be properly absorbed by the body. Your doctor can tell you if you're iron deficient when you have your blood tested.

Many studies have shown a link between iron deficiency and hair loss. According to WebMD the recommended levels of ferritin are 18-270 mcg/L for men and 16-160 mcg/L for women. As you can see this a wide range. You may test at the low end of this range and still be losing your hair as a result of an iron deficiency. Ferritin is one level by which to test iron in your blood. The others are beyond the scope of this article.

The following symptoms are associated with iron deficiency:

Hair loss
Brittle nails
Headaches
Depression
Apathy
Dizziness
And others

Daily iron supplements should not be taken without consulting your physician. Furthermore, I don't believe supplements should be taken in pill or shake form. The answer to a vitamin or mineral deficiency should be a change in diet first (unless there is an extreme case and there are major health risks.)

Vegan foods that are high in iron content are:

Spirulina
Tahini (sesame seed paste)
Pumpkin seeds
Legumes (beans, nuts, and peas)
Spinach
Kale

Also consider your ability to absorb the iron that you are consuming. Having a good source of vitamin C at the same time as your iron-rich vegetables will increase the amount of iron you body absorbs.

Gluten-free, Vegan Muffin ‪‎recipe‬ designed for ‪weight loss‬ and ‪‎building muscle‬‬

I ate these muffins exclusively for two days straight and lost 4 pounds. I know my weight fluctuates from day to day, but I hit a new low after two days. Just to make sure, I did it the next week and hit another low.

I designed the recipe to provide an excess of the amino acids necessary for weight loss and building muscle. The dark chocolate and vitamin C were added to lower cortisol levels.

Ingredients:

2 1/2 cups almond meal
1/2 pound strawberries
1/2 pint blueberries
2 medium sized bananas
1 tablespoon honey (replace with maple syrup for a vegan recipe)
5 grams dried seaweed
1 tablespoon olive oil
5 ounce baking square unsweetened dark chocolate
2 tablespoons almond butter
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 tablespoon flax seed meal

I use a blender to dice all of the wet ingredients into a smoothie before adding them to the flour.

Dice strawberries and add honey. Let them set for a few minutes and then mash or chop with blender

Add blueberries and bananas chop with blender

Finely chop seaweed and add the the mix with the olive oil

Chop in blender

Melt chocolate in microwave for 90 seconds

Preheat oven to 425℉

Add chocolate and almond butter

At this point my blender doesn't mix the ingredients very well

Empty contents of the blender into a large mixing bowl

Add flax seed meal

Mix in almond meal

Fold in walnuts

Grease or line muffin pan

Add baking powder and mix

Spoon the mixture into the cups and put it in the oven quickly

Once in the oven, lower the heat to 275℉ for 45 minutes or until they pass the toothpick test

The benefits of Zinc: burn fat, build muscle, anti-aging, reduce hair-loss, and fight acne

Zinc is often a forgotten mineral, but it plays an important role in proper immune system function and hormone regulation. Studies have shown that a lack of zinc will cause a decrease in metabolism. In addition, an increase in zinc production leads to higher levels of fat burning hormones. Zinc is essential for cell repair which is vital for rebuilding muscle after a workout and it is well known in the bodybuilding community that zinc increases testosterone. Now we know why Casanova ate oysters for breakfast.

Because zinc is essential for cellular repair, it is good for the hair and skin as well. Repairing hair follicles quickly as we age slows or reverses hair loss. Repairing skin cells quickly can help to fight sun spots and wrinkles.

There are types of acne that are caused by zinc deficiencies. Also, as many of us already know, acne is also caused by tiny bacterial infections. A boost in your immune system from increased zinc intake will help your body fight off these bacteria from the inside-out.

Foods that are high in Zinc

Oysters
Crab
Peanuts
Dark Chocolate
Watermelon Seeds
Pumpkin Seeds
Squash Seeds
Roast Beef

Avoid alcohol if you are trying to increase your zinc levels. Your doctor can tell you if you're zinc deficient with a blood test. As always, we view supplements as a last resort and only when instructed by a physician. If you have a vitamin or mineral deficiency, it's time for a change in diet.

A Gluten-Free, Meat-Free Pizza that's high in Protein, Iron, and Zinc. Really?

Gluten-free Pizza Recipe

I was craving pizza and had to try something. I used the gluten-free flour that we use in our muffins. It's a mixture of sunflower seed flour and pumpkin seed flour. That's where the iron, zinc, and most of the protein comes from. It's a work in progress. Here's what we have so far:

Ingredients:

1 cup pumpkin seed flour/meal
1/2 cup sunflower seed flour/meal
3 tbsp flax seed meal
1/4 cup water
2 tbsp olive oil
2 minced cloves garlic or garlic powder
1 tbsp cayenne pepper
3 tbsp tomato sauce

Optional:

Sun-dried tomatoes
Roasted peppers
Fresh veggies
Shredded cheese
Grated cheese
Herbs/Spices

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
In a large bowl, mix pumpkin seed flour, sunflower seed flour, and flax seed meal.
Oil a cookie sheet.
Stir in water, oil, garlic, cayenne pepper.
Add sun-dried tomatoes, roasted peppers, grated cheese, and herbs to suit your taste.
After stirring make a ball with the dough.
Kneed the dough by folding it over it self for about two minutes.
Adding more water, oil, or flour will change the texture to make it easier to work with.
Place the dough on the oiled pan.
Using only your fingertips, press the center of the dough to flatten and work your way to the outside.
It will soon resemble a pizza.
Make sure it is fairly thin all the way around to allow even baking.
Put tomato sauce in the center of the dough and spiral it around to the edges with the bottom of the spoon.
Add shredded or grated cheese, fresh veggies, and/or herbs.
Bake for 25 minutes.
Half way through, I like to separate it from the pan and spin it to keep it cooking evenly.
Cut in six slices and serve.

Enjoy!

Omega 3 and exercise for proven weight loss results

An eight week study done at the University of South Australia linked Omega 3 supplementation and exercise with greater reductions in weight. They studied patients that were obese or overweight and found that subjects that took Omega 3 and exercised saw the greatest reduction in body weight. The subjects in that group did 45 minutes of cardio and took an Omega 3 supplement. No other changes were made to their diet. The resulting weight loss was more pronounced in women. Other studies have shown that low levels of Omega 3 fatty acids can cause obesity. View Study

As always, we suggest eating your nutrients when possible unless an immediate health issue exists. The following foods are rich in Omega 3 fatty acids:

Sardines
Salmon
Walnuts
Flax Seed
Grass-fed Beef
Soybeans
Halibut
Scallops
Shrimp
Olive Oil
Kidney Beans

What to eat and when to curb cortisol spikes: Tips to lose weight and build muscle.

Curb your Cortisol Infographic

As discussed in a previous post, cortisol is released in stressful situations. Many people do not realize that cortisol is causing them to store fat and burn muscle. This happens daily whether stress exists or not. It can be curbed using the tips listed in our previous post, but cortisol is somewhat predictable at certain times:

First thing in the morning
Second half of the evening
After a workout

What can you do? Plan your meals and workout routines around these windows. Avoid the foods that increase cortisol production at these times. For example, skip that morning cup of coffee until you've had sufficient time to wake up and feed your body what it needs to lower cortisol.

What does your body need during these periods? Everything :)

Protein will provide the amino acids necessary to switch your body from a catabolic to an anabolic state. Meaning that instead of feeding on existing muscle, you will create new muscle.

Simple sugars will spike your insulin release which counteracts cortisol. Insulin release after a workout is also believed to release Human Growth Hormone.

Vitamins C and E have been found to lower cortisol levels.

As always, we recommend getting your nutrients from natural sources and not supplements. This is why our first product launch is made from fruit, nuts, and seeds. All of the details regarding the launch will be on our Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Testosterone and cortisol combat each other. Both are increased in the morning upon waking up. Increasing testosterone will lower cortisol levels. Training in the morning will relieve stress and be more productive than workouts at other times. Scheduling your workout for later in the evening is the next best thing.

Some of us dread the thought of waking up early to train before work. There are some simple things to do in the morning to start your day right:

Yoga power poses (Warrior series, et. al.)
Squats
Lunges
Push-ups
Pull-ups
Curls
Chair dips
10 Minute ab workout
Short cardio session
Yoga flexibility poses

Try to increase the intensity of your morning workout routine as it becomes easier. It should be quite easy to find enough variety when the workout is 20 minutes or less.

"Pay yourself first" by starting your day with a focus on being healthy and happy. A healthier and happier you will more successfully and productively help others.

Foods that Lower Cortisol Levels:
Vitamin C Rich Foods
Avocados
Dark Chocolate
Salmon
Spinach
Almonds
Pistachios
Walnuts
Black Tea

Foods to avoid:
Caffeine and Other Stimulants
Excess Sugar
Refined Carbohydrates
Animal Fat/Cholesterol
Grapefruit

How Much Protein to Eat to Maximize Results from Exercise

Protien Intake Infographic

If you’re like most people, you don’t want to spend extra time in the gym. Sadly, because many of us are not taking in enough protein, that’s exactly what we’re doing. Whether you’re trying to burn fat or build lean muscle, ensuring that you get enough protein is vital to maximizing your results. If you’re not maximizing your results, YOU ARE WASTING TIME WORKING OUT!

Burning Fat
If your goal is to burn fat, you’re most likely trying to burn more calories than you consume. This energy deficiency will help to burn fat. However, if you’re not eating enough protein, you could be breaking down muscle. Less muscle burns fewer calories during the day. You should be eating .82-.91 grams of protein per pound of lean body mass.

Building Muscle
Most bodybuilders will tell you that protein is the key to building muscle. There are conflicting views as to how much to eat and where to get it. Typical bodybuilders need .59-.82 grams of protein per pound of lean body mass. The range is wide because it depends on your meal plan and experience. More seasoned weight lifters need less protein because they are less likely to experience massive gains in muscle mass. If you’re not consuming enough protein, you’re breaking down your muscles to be rebuilt at the same size and strength. Why?

Lean Body Mass
Lean Body Mass = Total Body Weight – Body Fat
Lean Body Mass = Total Body Weight – (Total Body Weight x Body Fat Percentage)

Solution
Eat plenty of protein throughout the day. Find protein-rich snacks to have in between meals. Make sure to eat protein after a vigorous workout. Protein powders are very popular and possibly effective. However, we always recommend getting your nutrients from natural food sources so that your body can break them down naturally. All-Natural, Protein Muffin

Reference
Dietary protein for athletes: From requirements to optimum adaptation. Phillips SM, Van Loon LJ. J Sports Sci. 2011;29 Suppl 1:S29-38

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