Have you tried yoga? With its increasing popularity, more and more people are trying yoga. Maybe you've tried it, but did you know that aside from the obvious benefits of increasing strength, yoga has many other health benefits? It creates awareness of your mind/body connection. It even taps into your body's ability to heal itself.
Weight loss makes it into most people’s New Year’s resolution lists at the beginning of each year or as we head toward bathing suit season. For those of you who are trying to lose weight, there are a few things you should watch out for that could get you off track.
Make sure you get 7-8 hours of sleep a night. The October edition of the American Journal of Epidemiology reports that women who don’t get enough sleep a night are at a higher risk to gain weight. In fact, women who got less than five hours of sleep a night were one third more likely to gain 33 pounds over the next 16 years. Try to get to bed a little earlier and create a quiet, dark sleep environment.
The holidays can be a stressful time, but a large part of it may be self-inflicted. By changing how you set yourself up during the holidays, you can change your experience. The best gift you can give yourself is some much needed rest.
You know how much sleep you need in order to feel rested. If you are under times of stress, you may need a little more sleep. In general, you need at least 7 hours of good sleep a night to feel regenerated. So go to bed early enough tonight to get as much sleep as you need!
Come back daily to get more tips on how to survive the holidays!
Do you feel like the holidays completely derail your healthy train? The holidays can be tricky. It can be hard to make healthy choices when it seems you are surrounded by temptation! Here’s the good news! I’ve compiled a few tips and tricks that will help you get through Thanksgiving and the holiday season without regret!
If you are like me, changing your sheets is not your favorite chore! Have you ever wondered how often you actually should change your sheets? The best rule of thumb is to change your sheets weekly. Every time you sleep you shed dead skin cells, hair and bodily fluids. This can cause bad odors, stickiness and a fertile breeding ground for bed bugs, fleas, dust mites and other parasites. Dust mites can cause allergies, so it’s best to keep your sheets clean. Wash your sheets in hot water to make sure that all the dead skin cells and dust mites are gone.
Do you reach for that bag of potato chips or a handful of Oreos when you get stressed? Eating these kinds of foods may be worse for you than when you eat them when you are not stressed! Stress can even upset the way your body handles both healthy and unhealthy foods.
The Research on Stress and Diet
A new study from Ohio State University has revealed that stress affects the way your body processes food. A stressful day can actually lower your metabolism and increase your insulin.
Light plays a big part in alertness and energy. Bright light wakes up your brain, especially blue light. Sunlight contains UV light and blue light. Light helps regulate our wake/sleep cycles. Just fifteen minutes in the sun can help you feel less sluggish. Leave your blinds open or step outside to absorb some light!
Blue light can help keep you awake, so find a light bulb in the healthy spectrum and put it in your desk lamp if possible. You can also use red light to keep you awake, but be aware that it can cause more of an edgy alertness. Blue light causes more of a calm alertness. For example, red light is more like drinking coffee, while blue light is like drinking a cup of green tea. Blue/turquoise light, which is from 465 nm to 495 nm, is the healthiest form of blue light.
Bright light is a great way to wake up in the morning. A study found that people who were exposed to bright light were more alert and had more activity in the parts of their brain that dealt with cognitive processing. Getting outside for a walk in the morning is a great way to combine more than one energy boosting tip!
A bonus to getting early sunlight is that it helps you sleep at night!
Other health benefits to getting outside in the sunshine include enhancing your mood and memory, and increasing your vitamin D levels, which can help fight depression.
Black Cohosh is commonly used to treat menopausal symptoms. It is an adaptogen, which means that it helps bring the hormones into balance. If they are too high, it brings them down; if they are too low it brings them up. It also contains estrogenic substances and binds to estrogen receptors. It also acts on serotonin receptors and may relieve hot flashes and improve mood.
The benefits of Black Cohosh include:
How to use Black Cohosh:
Duke, J. A. (1997). The Green Pharmacy. Emmaus, PA: Rodale Press.
Find a Vitamin or Supplement: Black Cohosh. (2016, May 6). Retrieved from WebMD: http://www.webmd.com/vitamins-supplements/ingredientmono-857-BLACK+COHOSH.aspx?activeIngredientId=857&activeIngredientName=BLACK+COHOSH&source=2
Geller, S. E. (2007, January 8). Botanical and Dietary Supplements for Menopausal Symptoms: What Works, What Doesn’t. Retrieved from US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1764641/
Gottlieb, B. (1995). New Choices in Natural Healing. Emmaus, PA: Rodale Press.
Pedersen, M. (1998). Nutritional Herbology. Warsaw, IN: Whitman Publications.
Red fruits and vegetables contain phytonutrients such as ellagic acid, anthocyanins, lycopene and more. These phytonutrients may help regulate blood pressure levels, lower bad cholesterol, and reduce tumor growth. Anthocyanins are powerful antioxidants that help prevent cell damage, help keep your heart healthy, and reduce the pain from arthritis and gout. Lycopene may help reduce the risk of some kinds of cancer, such as prostate cancer, breast, colorectal, endometrial, lung and pancreatic. The best way to get your daily dose of lycopene is in cooked tomatoes with a small amount of fat, such as a marinara sauce with a little olive oil in it.
Do you ever go to bed and then just lie there and watch the minutes tick by? One of the reasons you may be having trouble sleeping is that your bedroom might not be a healthy sleeping environment. In fact, The Journal of the American Medical Association indicates that behavioral changes may treat insomnia better than drugs. Try making your bedroom a sleep only zone.
I am a Duke Integrative Medicine trained Health Coach located in Charlotte, NC. I hold a B.S. and M.A. in Wellness Management. I have a passion for health and for helping others achieve the healthy life they desire.