Monthly Archives: August 2013

Less of Stress

Though we believe in keeping ourselves externally healthy, this week we want to focus on some simple suggestions that can help us maintain a healthy mind and spirit—the well being of our insides! Without a doubt, the biggest factor that affects us is stress. So, how does one strive towards a stress-free life (or at least a life that isn’t dictated by it)?

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Here are some thoughts and helpful tips.

  1. Morning cup of tea. Though this may be difficult, swap out your morning coffee with some ginseng tea. A chemical compound in ginseng is said to soothe anxiety.
  2. Eat a healthy diet. Though obvious, it’s worth noting, feeding your body the right foods is essential for managing stress. During stressful situations, people have a tendency to skip meals. Try to avoid this at all cost.
  3. Blow off steam. It’s recommended we exercise least three to four times a week for at least 30 to 45 minutes each session.
  4. Turn on the jams. Listening to music is proven to reduce stress-induced conditions such as high blood pressure and elevated heart rate.
  5. Sit up straight. Good posture helps you take in more oxygen and perform better during stressful activities that may be time consuming—such as deadlines.
  6. Plant it. Studies have shown that people working near plants reacted 12 percent faster and were less stressed. Plus it can liven up your workspace.
  7. Encouraging others. Whether writing a letter or emailing a friend, social support has been proven to lower stress.
  8. Pick up a hobby. Research has found that repetitive activities can help calm your nerves. Instead of watching a movie, grab some knitting or the guitar.
  9. Rest. A proper amount of rest will make it easier to cope with whatever challenges life throws your way tomorrow. Most people need at least seven to eight hours of sleep every night to function at their best.
  10. Just breathe. As simple as it sounds, using deep breathing can be one of your greatest weapons against stress. By closing your eyes and breathing deeply and quietly for as little as three to five minutes, a natural sense of decompression will follow.

 

Photo: greensubmarinediydesign

Glorious Greens

When it comes to leafy greens, it’s not a surprise that some offer more nutrients than others. While we may have preferences when it comes to our salads or green smoothies in the morning, it’s important to examine which greens can benefit us the most and perhaps the least.

Kale and chard are loaded top resources for beta-carotene, which is a powerful antioxidant that helps repair your skin while also renewing it—which may give your skin a youthful glow. Also, the darker the greens, the more fiber and rich in minerals (iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium) and vitamins (K, C, E and some B vitamins), they are. In addition, darker leafy greens are the richest sources of lutein, which has had mounting evidence to decrease risk of wrinkles!

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A specific green that follows closely to such goodness is spinach and it’s brimming benefits of the aforementioned lutein, potassium, fiber and folate. While these things can keep a heart healthy and in good shape, the folate is a notable and vital nutrient for DNA repair, which means, spinach definitely can help keep your skin looking it’s very best.

So when out at the store seeking your fighting greens, make sure to look for the freshest bunch. Pass by any greens with brown spots, yellowing edges or limp-looking leaves and instead, look for crisp, lively greens with vibrant hues of green. It’s also recommended that you only wash them right before preparing or eating them to keep the available nutrients at it’s best.

 

Photo: wholefoodsmarketcooking.com

Royal Goodness

Known as a miraculous super food, royal jelly is buzzworthy in its powerhouse abilities to benefit your skin. Royal jelly is a 100% natural product that is derived from the secretions of male worker bees and is commonly used in a variety of skin care products.

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This substance consists of mostly water, protein and sugars (fructose and glucose) and also includes healthy fats, salts and amino acids–fully packed with antioxidants, minerals and proteins and is a nutrient that is sure to rejuvenate.

Because it’s main qualities protect the skin (especially from damaging effects from ultraviolet radiation from the sun), this nutrient has been a main contender for researchers and skin experts, especially since the amino acids found in the jelly is notably a basic ingredient in collagen (it powerfully maintains the skin’s firmness by supporting the skin’s connective tissue and protects the skin from harmful radiation—from damaging rays). What this means is that this jelly essentially protects us from unwanted discoloration of the skin and inevitable outcomes such as wrinkles, age spots etc.

Additionally, clinical research has found royal jelly to be effective in managing eczema, neurodermatitis and impetigo. Royal jelly benefits goes beyond skincare and into internal health too. Taking royal jelly (as a pill, or eaten as fresh jelly) may also lower bad cholesterol (LDL) and raise good cholesterol (HDL) which ultimately can help prevent aging which domino effects into lowering the risk towards a multitude of other potential health problems, such as heart attack and stroke.

There are many benefits to using royal jelly for the skin—and all skin types, including dry, irritated or sensitive skin, as well as oily and acne-prone skin, can benefit from using royal jelly. This is surely just the beginning as you can tell from a long list of what royal jelly can do for you!

 

 

photo cred: chacha.com

Tea Time

Many of you are coffee drinkers, which I can appreciate but my mornings are usually somewhere in the outdoors, doing anything active followed by an unwinding meets energy-inducing cup of tea. Ever since I could remember, I was a cup of tea over Joe kind of girl and over time I’ve been able to also find and experience the benefits tea itself provides, besides its preferred flavor.

Granted there are a multitude of different kinds of teas, but the kind that may be most beneficial (and favored by yours truly) is green tea. Not only does this tea do a powerful job at relaxing you, it’s also jam-packed with inflammation-fighting antioxidants all the while reducing risk of skin cancer. A trick to ensuring the power of green tea is boosted and even lasts longer is to add a squeeze or three of citrus!

If you happen to be an avid tea drinker (or if you’re not) the tea bags itself can be of use even when it’s done being used for your steaming mug. A way to help reduce puffiness of the eyes is to chill damp tea bags in the fridge and then lay them on for about 10–15 minutes. Green tea contains tannins, which act as an astringent when applied to skin, which helps the eyes.

I’ll be sure to touch on the other pros when it comes to other kinds of teas, but for now this is my schpeel on the green. But if anything, the benefit of having a cup of tea undoubtedly forces us to slow our days down and to take a moment to rest—to just be. In the long run, this above many other things is better for our health, and yes, most likely good for our skin too.