Tips for Keeping Your Produce Fresh

featured image for tips for keeping your produce fresh

One of the biggest challenges when it comes to eating healthy is keeping your produce fresh until your next shopping trip. A lot of money and good food is wasted when it goes bad before the end of the week. Here are some tips for keeping your produce fresh.

How to store fruits and veggies

Green pears on a pink backdrop

Most refrigerators have a crisper drawer that is designed to help keep fruits and vegetables fresh. These drawers have a higher level of humidity than the rest of the fridge. This is due to the way the drawer is built with vents. Most fridges, depending on when it was made, also have humidity controls for the vents on the drawers. When it comes to fruits like apples, avocados, pears, and other melons, you should keep the humidity low. High humidity can cause them to ripen and go bad too quickly. However, most vegetables and berries should be stored in a crisper drawer at high humidity.

However, not all produce belongs in the refrigerator. Different types of root vegetables and squash should be kept outside the fridge. This includes things like potatoes, sweet potatoes, onions, yams, garlic, etc. Instead, these need to be stored in a cool, dry, and dark place outside the fridge. This can include a cupboard, a pantry, or even a root cellar.

Related: Healthy Alternatives for Your Meals

How to store leafy greens

A person holding a bowl of fresh spinach

Leafy greens include things like lettuce, spinach, and cabbage. With proper care and storage, these leafy greens should last a week or longer. Unlike fruit, leafy greens need to be sealed in a cool, dark place like the refrigerator. Many people seal them in plastic bags, but they also can be stored in glass containers and cloth bags. Before placing them in a sealed bag or container, rinse them thoroughly and wrap them in a paper towel or cloth. Rinsing them will also help to remove bacteria like E. coli that lives in the soil stuck to the surface of the greens. Even if they are prewashed, rinsing them again in cold water can help clean and make them crisp before storage.

When storing leafy greens in a crisper drawer, they should be kept in a high humidity setting. When filling these drawers, it is important to make sure that they are also not too full or too empty. The ideal crisper drawer will be about 2/3rds full. When too much is packed into one drawer, the produce becomes squished. This is especially harmful to leafy greens that can become wilted when squished.

Following these tips for keeping your produce fresh will help extend their lives for healthier eating. To help supplement your daily vitamins and minerals, a liquid multivitamin can be taken daily as well. Getting the proper amount of nutrients each day will help you to live a happy and healthy life.

Sources

https://www.unlockfood.ca/en/Articles/Cooking-Food-Preparation/How-to-store-vegetables-to-keep-them-fresh.aspx

7 Cold Weather Skincare Tips

Person walking in the snow - cold weather skincare

It’s no coincidence that colder temperatures bring with them dry skin, irritation, and break outs. The science behind winter dryness has to do with the density of water molecules in cold air versus warm air. Cold air has a lower density of water molecules, meaning there is less dew in the air replenishing the moisture in the upper layers of your skin. This lack of moisture has wide-ranging effects on your health, and your skin especially. By trying these 7 cold weather skincare tips, you can beat the dry-skin blues and have dewy, healthy skin all year round!

Use a Humidifier

To combat the lack of moisture in the air directly, make your first line of defense a humidifier! Simply heating cold air will not replenish the moisture in the air—you have to do it yourself. Humidifiers work by releasing water vapor to increase moisture levels. Using a humidifier can positively impact more than just your skin—it can also be used to treat respiratory problems like bronchitis, sinus issues, and nosebleeds.

Some things to consider: Overusing your humidifier can cause problems, particularly if you are not cleaning and maintaining it well. According to the Mayo Clinic, if it is not cared for properly humidifiers can breed mold or bacteria that are released into the air, potentially aggravating allergies and asthma. Additionally, if humidity is too high in your home, it can cause condensation on the walls and floors, triggering further growth of bacteria that again, might aggravate respiratory problems.

If you’re unsure about the use of humidifiers, check out this article about how house plants can act as natural humidifiers!

Turn Down the Heat

There’s nothing quite as nice as coming into a warm house after being out in the cold, just take it from literally any rendition of the song Baby It’s Cold Outside. Did you know, however, that cranking up the heat is drying out your skin even more? Indoor heating sucks moisture out of the already dry winter air, drying out your mucous membranes leaving you susceptible to dry lips, noses, and throats. Instead of turning up the heat all the way, keep it at a lower temperature—try 69-72 degrees. Turn on the humidifier and cozy up in a soft sweater or blanket if you’re feeling cold. This simple step will help out both your skin and your heating bill!

Adjust Your Shower

It can be tempting, during the cold months, to sit in a steamy, hot shower and to forget that it’s frozen outside. As nice as it might be, your personal sauna time could be sabotaging the glowing skin you want. The next time you shower, lower your water temperature to warm instead of hot and keep your shower time to 5-10 minutes. Long exposure to hot water will strip away your skin’s natural oily barrier, leaving it extra vulnerable to the harsh effects of the cold and wind.

Lemon, aloe, cucumber, and honey on a table - cold weather skincare

Use Gentle Skincare Products

Avoid products with perfumes or harsh soaps—instead reach for moisturizing cleansers that won’t strip your skin of its natural oils. Limit your use of exfoliants, that can aggravate already sensitive dry, flaking skin. Refrain from using products with drying effects like astringents and products with alcohol. Perfumes, fragrances and toners often contain alcohol because it helps the products to dry quickly, but the benefit of their dry-time can be detrimental to your already dry skin.

You might also consider adding a supplement to your regimen to promote the health of your skin from the inside. Try our Skin Rescue & Renew vitamin supplement to help maintain skin hydration and to fight the effects of aging!

Swap Lotions for Creams and Ointments

If you’re like me, your typical winter skincare regimen starts and ends with lotion application. Lotions are meant to replenish and lock moisture into your skin, and during warmer months they do a great job! During the colder months, however, dermatologists recommend switching out your lotion for a heavier-duty cream or ointment. The American Academy of Dermatology suggests looking for products that contain some of the following nourishing ingredients:

  • Oils (ex. Olive oil or jojoba oil)
  • Shea Butter
  • Lactic Acid
  • Urea
  • Hyaluronic Acid
  • Dumethicone
  • Glycerin
  • Lanolin
  • Mineral Oil
  • Petrolatum

Use Sunscreen Every Day

Sunburns and sunscreen are for hot days spent on the trail, at the beach, or on the lake, right? Wrong! Sun damage can occur at any time during the year, including on rainy or cloudy days, whether you’re directly in the sun or being exposed through windows. Dermatologists recommend that everyone wear broad-spectrum sunscreen every day of the year, regardless of season or weather conditions.

Girl in a scarf and hat - cold weather skincare

Wear Soft Fabrics

Dressing for the cold means bundling up with layers of clothing and heavy, sometimes scratchy fabrics. While it is important to stay warm and to protect your skin from the harsh temperatures, it is also important to make sure you choose fabrics that don’t irritate the skin. Fabrics like wool are fibrous and can be itchy, undermining the work you’ve done to protect your skin from irritation and dryness. If you’re going to wear a potentially irritating fabric, layer softer, breathable, more gentle fabrics beneath to act as a buffer. Natural fibers like cotton will help keep your skin healthy and glowing all year long!

Guide to Breaking Bad Habits

featured image for guide to breaking bad habits

Everyone has habits, whether good or bad. Many people focus on forming new habits like exercising and reading. However, to form new habits, old habits may need to be broken. Here is your guide to breaking bad habits. With hard work and determination, you can break your bad habits and focus on ways to live healthier and happier.

How bad habits are formed

Many bad habits are formed by chemicals in the brain. Things like smoking, drinking, texting, or scrolling through social media all trigger endorphins that make us feel happy for the moment. Even eating processed foods like fast food, soda, and pastries have this same effect. The problem, however, is that the feelings are temporary. You may feel happy at the moment because it feels or tastes good. However, once you have finished eating, drinking, smoking, etc. the negative effects can be felt as well. Almost every bad habit also has a trigger. Whether it is money, stress, and emotions, being around certain people, etc., you need to discover what these triggers are.

Don’t set yourself up for failure

A list of goals to check off

If you have a bad habit that you want to break, you need to start small. Trying to tackle too much at once can leave you feeling overwhelmed. This can quickly lead to you losing the motivation you once had to break your bad habit. One way to avoid this is to break your goal up into smaller goals. These goals should be ones that you know you cannot fail. It can even be as simple as just getting a small soda instead of a large with each lunch. Your goals can even be smaller or larger than this goal. The key is to know yourself and know what you are capable of. These goals may seem small compared to your long-term goal. However, each small goal accomplished leads you closer to your big goal.

To some, these little daily goals may seem pointless, but doing them will still leave you closer to breaking your bad habit than you would have been otherwise. Another way to help break your bad habits is to get things ready beforehand. Set a timer for yourself before logging into social media. Lay exercise clothes out or something for another activity to remind you to stay off the T.V. Another helpful tactic is to get clothes and lunches ready the night before to prevent you from running late to work once again. These are great ways to help yourself do what you need to do to break these habits and split up the work.

Related: Tips for Staying Motivated to Exercise

Reward yourself

The last tip in our guide to breaking bad habits is to reward yourself. Like mentioned earlier, a lot of bad habits like fast food and smoking, have their way of rewarding the mind. This can make it difficult to stay away from these things when it does not feel quite so rewarding. One way to help is to find other ways to reward yourself when you have accomplished your goals. Take a fun cooking class once you have cut out processed food or go see a movie with friends after limiting your T.V. time for a month. Whatever your goals, take the time to create a plan and dedicate yourself to executing it. The rewards are endless and far outweigh the effects of bad habits.

Sources

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/brain-wise/201904/the-science-habits

Tips for Staying Motivated to Exercise

featured image for tips for staying motivated to exercise

February is the month that many people begin to start slacking off on their New Year’s resolutions. Life gets busy and people lose motivation. Almost every year the most common thing many people want to improve is fitness. Many people might wonder, how do I stay motivated? Here are some tips for staying motivated to exercise. Maybe you will beat the odds and continue striving towards your fitness goals past February.

Why it is important

quote on a wall for motivation

First off, let’s talk about why exercise is important. As time has gone on, exercise and physical activity have become less common in the world. This is mostly due to the increase in technology. Nowadays, most people spend their time sitting in chairs at desks or on a couch. While technology is incredible and has made some great things possible, it also has its disadvantages. Elevators have replaced stairs, among other things. While there have been many medical advancements, exercise has been deemed one of the best preventative measures we can take for our health.

Related: How to stay in Shape When You Work a Desk Job

Start with small goals

One of the best tips for staying motivated to exercise is to start small. People are easily overwhelmed when they have a huge goal in front of them that they are so far from accomplishing. Instead, break your goal up into smaller goals. Don’t focus so much on the 40 pounds you are trying to lose or the six-pack. Focus on getting in a 15-minute walk every day for a week or a month. Once you start checking these little goals off your list, you will eventually end up with this big goal you have accomplished.

Make it a competition

One thing that motivates people is competition. People are usually willing to work harder when they know they are competing against others. You can even include prizes! This can either be bragging rights or a fun prize everyone pitched in for. Just remember to keep it friendly.

Exercise with friends

Exercising with friends is another great way to stay motivated to exercise. It is harder to slack off when you have someone else holding you accountable. Sometimes exercise can get boring after a while. However, having a friend to exercise with can also make it more fun and exciting.

Reward yourself

If you do not have a group to exercise or compete with, you can compete with yourself. Is there something you have been wanting like a new pair of shoes or a fun trip? Work for it! Write down your goals and the rewards you are working towards and give yourself a time frame. If you can accomplish your goals, then reward yourself with the prize you recorded. If you do not, re-evaluate, set new goals, and work towards that reward.

In the end, it really all depends on what works for you and motivates you to keep exercising. While some people may thrive off competition or working-out with friends, others may feel discouraged. Especially if they are not seeing the same results. Exercise at your own pace, but be sure to stick to it and don’t give up. You’ve got this!

Sources

https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/how-much-exercise-do-you-need

Healthy Habits for Your Hair

featured image for healthy habits for your hair

Healthy hair is something almost everyone strives for. While genetics do play a large role in the way our hair looks and feels, there are other things you can do as well. Here are some healthy habits for your hair to make part of your daily routine.

Wear hats in the sunlight

While sunlight is good for your body, too much can cause damage to your skin. The same is true for your hair. When planning to be out in the sun for prolonged periods, it is best to wear a hat to protect your hair. Signs your hair has been damaged by the sun include dryness, brittle strands, and even hair that has changed in color.

Brush your hair before you shower

After showering, wet hair can become more brittle. That is why it is important to be careful with it before it dries. Brushing out knots before showering or waiting until it dries can help. When you do brush your hair out, be sure to start brushing it from the bottom while holding it at the top. Once knots at the bottom are out, slowly work your way up to the top of your head with the brush.

Trim dead ends

Over time, the ends of the hair can become damaged. This is especially true if you dye it often, put heat on it, swim in chlorine, or even wash it too often. If hair becomes damaged at the ends, it may be time for a trim. If you are trying to grow your hair out, then try to avoid things that will cause this damage. Let your hair air dry after showering, wear a cap when swimming, and have your hair dyed using professional dye rather than box dye. One thing many people may not realize is that you also should not wash your hair every day. Only wash it every other day at most.

Get enough biotin

long healthy hair

Biotin is a B vitamin and is known to be one of the best vitamins for healthy hair. Some foods that contain biotin are eggs, spinach, plain yogurt, almonds, sweet potatoes, salmon, and pork chops. For hair growth, many people also take biotin supplements. Biotin is a water-soluble vitamin, so once your body gets all it needs, it flushes out any excess. This makes it easier to take without worrying too much about a vitamin overdose. Liquid Health’s Skin Rescue + Renew is a great option for a biotin supplement. Not only is it great for your hair, but for your skin as well.

Eat a well-balanced diet

Most importantly, you should make eating a well-balanced diet one of the most important healthy habits for your hair. Your hair needs other vitamins like vitamin A for hair growth, vitamin D, and vitamin E. Many people may struggle to get these vital nutrients every day, so supplementing them is an option many people choose. Multivitamins are great for helping make up for whatever your prepared meals are lacking.

Sources

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Biotin-HealthProfessional/

Worst Habits for Your Mind

featured image for worst habits for your mind

In recent years, more time and research has been spent on learning how to take care of our minds and mental health. Different studies have discovered the effects that certain activities or the lack of certain nutrients can have on our minds. Here are some of the worst habits for your mind.

Spending too much time alone

A man sitting alone

One of the worst habits for your mind is too much time alone. Humans are designed to spend time with others. It is built into our DNA. Without enough social interaction, the mind can suffer. This is not to say that alone time is not good for you. There are plenty of benefits to spending some time alone. Alone time can be beneficial when we are trying to focus on a project, think creatively, or even when we just need to recharge. However, too much time alone is damaging. Our minds begin to become self-critical and we can begin to feel extreme loneliness and even sadness. Finding the right balance can help keep our minds be healthy and happy.

Multitasking

Recent studies discovered that multitasking does more harm than good. One study even found a 15-point decrease in IQ in people who spent time multitasking. They put adults through a series of tasks to test memory and their ability to focus. The results were not great for those who were multitaskers. Now we know that your mind should focus on one task at a time. If you are working on a presentation or an English paper, keep away other distractions. This includes watching T.V., listening to music, or even switching from one task to the next.

Not enough sunlight

Sunlight is needed for vitamin D, which in turn can affect our minds and how we feel. Not only that, but research has discovered that vitamin D can even help protect adults from a decline in cognitive function. Spending 10-15 minutes in the sun without sunscreen each day can help your body get the vitamin D it needs. Taking vitamin D supplements is also a great option for those who work indoors all day.

Watching certain T.V. shows

While the research on this topic is limited, scientists do know that sitting on the couch watching TV is not good for you. A lot of it depends on what you watch, how you watch it, and how often. Watching a documentary while you work out for an hour will most likely be very beneficial. However, binge-watching a reality show by yourself for four hours on your couch will not be. While research has shown that people who watch more T.V. have less healthy brains, it is hard to know if it is directly linked to the T.V., the lack of social interaction, or the lack of physical activity.

Not enough sleep

Another bad habit for your mind is not getting enough sleep. When we do not get enough sleep, our minds suffer. It suddenly becomes more difficult to stay alert and focus on work and other day-to-day tasks. Not only that, but not getting enough sleep can also affect your short-term memory. For some tips to help you sleep, read the article, “Bedtime Routines for a Better Night’s Sleep“.

Sources

https://www.wonderopolis.org/wonder/does-watching-television-affect-your-brain

https://www.caltech.edu/about/news/how-social-isolation-transforms-brain-82290

Ways to Care for Your Feet

featured image for ways to care for your feet

Your feet are the foundation of your body. They help you get around from place to place and keep you balanced. However, many people do not take proper care of their feet. They tend to go unnoticed and are only taken care of when they are in pain. We should not wait until there is a problem, to take care of our feet. Make the health of your feet important. Here are just a few ways to care for your feet.

Wear shoes that fit properly

One of the worst things you can do for your health is to wear shoes that do not fit you properly. It can be tempting to wear poorly fitted shoes because of styles and trends. Pumps and other heels that are too high can damage your feet and cause bunions. Even flip flops, as comfortable as they are, can form bunions as well. Look for shoes that fit the arches of your feet, have enough room for your toes to stretch out, and are comfortable.

Wash your feet daily

Feet that are not clean can grow infections. To avoid this, make sure to wash your feet every day. When in the shower, scrub them with soap, making sure to get in between the toes. Do not forget to also dry them thoroughly after to avoid trapping any moisture between toes. Be sure to also change socks once or more each day.

Moisturize and massage your feet daily

After cleaning your feet, moisturizing them with cream can help prevent dryness. Not only that but massaging the cream into them can also help get the blood flowing in your legs and feet. This may help with a lot of different conditions.

Try Compression Socks

Many people with circulation problems wear compression socks. If your doctor prescribes it, give them a try. Compression socks are easy to come by and can be found at many stores in their clothing sections. They work by squeezing the legs, forcing blood to flow through tighter vessels.

Elevate your feet

Elevating your feet every so often is also a great way to help with blood flow. Not only that, but sometimes your feet just need to get off the ground and take a break.

Exercise regularly and eat healthily

feet sitting on a rock

Exercise is so vital for your health for so many reasons. It is even vital for the health of your feet. Getting 30 minutes of daily exercise can help with getting circulation to your feet. For people who spend most of their day sitting, getting up for a few minutes every hour can also help. On top of daily exercise, you should also eat healthily. Eating a well-balanced diet and getting the nutrients your body needs with a multivitamin are some of the best preventative measures you can take.

Sources

https://www.ipfh.org/foot-care-essentials/why-preventive-foot-health-is-important

https://www.kuakini.org/wps/portal/public/Health-Wellness/Health-Info-Tips/Out-and-About/How-to-Care-for-Your-Feet

How Legumes Affect The Body

large bags of beans in a market - health benefits of beans and legumes

Beans and legumes are some of the best foods to eat for many reasons. For starters, the fiber and protein they contain make them a very healthy food choice. In addition to that, beans and some other legumes are inexpensive and easy to prepare for a meal. These along with other factors we’ll discuss, make beans and legumes an amazing option for your diet. But how do these foods affect the body and are there any side effects? Continue reading to learn more about the health benefits of beans and legumes.

What Are Legumes

Legumes are a family of plants that produce a pod with seeds inside of it. These seeds are referred to as legumes. Some of the more commonly known legumes are beans, lentils, peas, chickpeas, soybeans, and even peanuts. Even though they are in the same family of plants, the nutritional value of some legumes may better than others, however, there are some health benefits that they share.

Health Benefits of Legumes

Nutrient Content

Beans and some of the other legumes are high in both fiber and protein along with other nutrients. Both of these are significant nutrients when it comes to losing weight. In addition to that, beans and legumes are also low in calories meaning you will have less to burn off. In fact, one study looked into the effects that beans and legumes have. In this study, researchers divided the participants into two groups. One of which would be on a high fiber and protein diet that consisted of beans and other foods, while the other was on a high fiber diet as well, but their diet had fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. At the end of the 4-week study, most participants lost some weight due to both being on a high fiber diet, but those in the bean group had more weight loss and less hunger than those in the standard fiber group. If you add extra exercise to this, you may be able to see an even more significant change. Be sure to check out one of our previous articles to learn about the Pros and Cons of Running.

Heart Health

The leading cause of death in the world today is heart disease. However, some studies suggest that a diet including beans and other legumes may be able to help reduce your risk of developing bad heart health. One review study looked at 26 different studies to see and their findings on how beans and legumes may correlate to heart disease. The researchers found that a diet that is rich in beans and legumes can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol, a risk factor of heart disease. In addition to lowering bad cholesterol, eating beans and legumes can be linked to a higher HDL (good) cholesterol and even help in reducing blood pressure.

Side Effects & Concerns

Digestion Problems

While legumes may be considered to be healthy foods, they do lectin, which can cause issues. Lectin is a protein that makes up around 10% of the protein in legumes. The reason as to why it is harmful is due to their resisting digestion. One lectin called phytohemagglutinin is found in red kidney beans. In high amounts, phytohemagglutinin is toxic and there have been incidents of poisoning from it. To avoid this, make sure you are not eating raw or improperly cooked legumes. To properly cook them soak them overnight and boil them at 212°F for at least 10 minutes. One thing to remember is that poisoning from beans and legumes is very rare and can be avoided by proper preparation.

Flatulence

For some people, beans and other legumes can cause flatulence (gas), stomach pain, and bloating. This comes from a fiber found in beans called raffinose. This can lead to digestion problems if it is taken in excess amounts. However, there are gas-prevention tablets and pills to help reduce pain, bloating and gas. In addition to that, soaking beans or simply ensuring that your dry beans are cooked thoroughly can reduce the content of raffinose by 76%. This offers just another reason to ensure that your beans and other legumes are thoroughly and properly cooked.

Getting Legumes Into Your Diet

Getting legumes into your diet is not hard as they are relatively inexpensive and can easily be prepared to eat, and added to a meal. Whether you cook multiple beans and legumes into chili or just have them as a side dish, it doesn’t matter as long as they are getting cooked properly and thoroughly.

Conclusion

There are many different health benefits of beans and legumes that can be received if you consume them. It is still important to remember that they can cause problems if not cooked properly. Even though it is rare, it can still happen with just a little negligence.

Sources

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3901975/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4016088/
https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article/100/suppl_1/437S/4576589

Tips for Fighting the Winter Blues

featured image for tips for fighting the winter blues

Many people have heard about the winter blues. However, did you know that there is a scientifically proved condition called Seasonal Affective Disorder? This condition affects many people each year, usually in the winter. Luckily, this condition typically does not last all year. There are also ways to help prevent it as well. Here are some tips for fighting the winter blues.

Exercise

One of the best things for mood and mental health is exercise. Daily exercise helps reduce stress and can help improve sleep. As a result, people are more alert throughout the day and have reduced feelings of tiredness. Fatigue and feeling tired all the time can lead to feelings of hopelessness and low self-esteem.

Vitamin D Supplements

One of the vitamins many people lack in the winter is vitamin D. We get this vitamin from exposure to the sun. Vitamin D is needed for a lot of things like healthy bones and teeth, a healthy brain, nervous, and immune system, and more. A vitamin D deficiency can cause autoimmune problems, cardiovascular problems, neurological problems, infections, issues with pregnancy, or worse. However, a vitamin D supplement is an easy way to make sure your body gets the proper amount of vitamin D that it needs.

Eat Healthily

Eating healthy is another great way to take care of our bodies and fight the winter blues. Everyone should try to eat a well-balanced diet. A healthy diet can help our bodies get proper amounts of vitamin D as well. We can get vitamin D from food sources like fish, eggs, beef, cheese, milk, etc.

Visit with a Therapist

Many people also benefit from meeting with a therapist when they are dealing with seasonal affective disorder. It may be helpful to know that what you are going through affects a lot of people every winter and that you do not need to deal with it alone.

Take a Trip Someplace Warm

Not everyone may be able to afford a trip every winter. However, it can be very beneficial if you can. Take a trip and spend time in the sunlight to let your body soak up the vitamin D. A hiking trip or something that involves a lot of moving around is a great way to get more exercise and more sunlight. Your body and mind will be thankful for the nice break.

Light Therapy

Man looking out the window with seasonal affective disorder

One of the tips for fighting the winter blues that many don’t consider is also light therapy. While it is important to be careful with this treatment, it can be helpful. Talk to your doctor about this form of treatment if you suffer from the seasonal affective disorder. Light therapy consists of sitting near a box of light that mimics outdoor light. It helps adjust your circadian rhythm, making it easier to sleep at night. Tackling your physical and mental health is the way to a healthy mind. Find what works for you and don’t allow the winter blues to control your life every year.

Sources

https://www.health.harvard.edu/blog/seasonal-affective-disorder-bring-on-the-light-201212215663

https://www.sleepfoundation.org/insomnia/treatment/light-therapy-insomnia-sufferers

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470658/

Should You Take A B-Complex Supplement?

man running through grassy mountains - B-Complex Supplement

There are thirteen essential vitamins that our bodies need on a daily basis, the b vitamins make up over 60% of these essential vitamins. B-complex supplements contain the b vitamins that make up that 60%. What exactly are these vitamins and who would benefit from a supplement containing them? Continue reading to learn more about who would benefit from a B-complex supplement.

What Are The B-Complex Vitamins?

Thiamine

Vitamin B1, (Thiamine) helps turn the food you eat into energy. It also plays a role in the growth and development of the cells found within your body. The NIH recommends that children get .5-1 mg of it, and adults get 1.1-1.2 mg each day. You can find it in many foods like whole grains and meats.

Riboflavin

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) states that “Riboflavin (also called vitamin B2) is important for the growth, development, and function of cells in your body.” It is also used to metabolize the foods you eat. Children need to get around 1 mg each day while adults need to get 1.1-1.3 mg daily. Foods like lean meats, eggs, low-fat milk, and certain vegetables contain riboflavin.

Niacin

In addition to cell development and metabolizing foods, Niacin can do other things. According to the Mayo Clinic, people use niacin to help control their cholesterol. Try to get 6-14 mg for children, and 14-16 mg for adults. Poultry, beef, pork, and fish all contain niacin along with nuts and legumes.

Pantothenic Acid

As with the other B vitamins, Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) is used to help turn the food you eat into energy. However, it is also used in the body to make and break down fats. Try and aim to get 2-5 mg for children depending on age and 5mg for adults. Mushrooms and meats contain adequate amounts while avocados potatoes and broccoli contain smaller amounts.

Pyridoxine

Vitamin B6 does many things. In fact, it is needed in the body to perform over 100 enzyme reactions that are involved in metabolism. In addition to that, Pyridoxine is needed for brain development and immune function during pregnancy and infancy. The recommended daily amount is .5 -1.3 mg for children and 1.3-1.9 mg for adults.

Biotin

Biotin (aka vitamin B7) helps the body metabolize certain foods. More specifically, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins. It also helps keep skin, hair, and nails healthy by keeping them from flaking and drying out. The NIH recommends that children get 8-25 mcg daily while adults get 30 mcg each day.

Folate

This vitamin is needed to help make DNA and other genetic material. It is also used in the body to help your cells divide to make new cells. Make sure you get the recommended 150 – 400 mcg for children and 400 mcg for adults each day to get these benefits.

Cobalamin

The last B vitamin, vitamin B12 helps keed blood and nerve cells healthy. As with folate, it also helps to make DNA. Try to get .9 to 2.4 mcg for children depending on their age, and 2.4 mcg for adults each day.

Who Would Benefit From A B-Complex Supplement

There are many people who would benefit from taking a B-complex supplement, as it is common for people to have deficiencies in these vitamins. Some people who are more common to have a deficiency are:

Vegetarians & Vegans

Vitamin B12 is the only b-complex vitamin not naturally in any plant foods meaning it can be hard for those who follow one of these lifestyles to get enough of it. That is why many health experts recommend a b12 supplement, or a B-Complex supplement to help provide this nutrient.

Pregnant & Breastfeeding Women

Due to pregnant and breastfeeding women also providing nutrients to their young children, it is common for them to develop deficiencies in many vitamins and nutrients. It is important that they get these nutrients because they need it just as much as their children do. They can get extra from a B-complex supplement, or a Prenatal supplement with these vitamins.

Elderly People

As humans age, it can become harder for the body to absorb enough B12 to avoid a deficiency. This makes it important to have extra of these vitamins. However, there are other common B-complex deficiencies such as B6 and Folate, making a B-complex supplement even better as it provides these nutrients.

What Can A B-Complex Supplement Do For You?

Some of the benefits of taking a b-complex vitamin supplement can include an overall boost in immune health, increased energy, better digestion, and appetite, and even improved cardiovascular health. These benefits are also more noticeable if you have a deficiency in any of these vitamins. Some common signs of deficiency across the b-complex vitamins are:

  • Digestive issues such as diarrhea
  • Skin conditions such as dry skin
  • Infections

It is important to ensure that you get enough of these vitamins to avoid a deficiency. If you are someone who falls into at least one of the groups mentioned above or is someone who does not eat enough foods containing the b-complex vitamins, you have an increased risk of developing a deficiency.

Possible Side Effects/Concerns

The B-complex vitamins are some of the water-soluble vitamins. This means you do not keep it in the body and get rid of it through urinating. This makes it harder to get too much through diet and supplementation. However, it is possible to overdose on these vitamins if you take a supplement and are already getting enough through your diet. However, overdosing on the b-complex vitamins is hard to do and extremely rare. Some signs of overdose on the b-complex vitamins are:

  • Blurry vision
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Exessive thirst
  • Diarrhea

Conclusion

When it comes to who should take a B-complex supplement, the answer is anyone who does not get enough of the vitamins in their diet due to a number of reasons. That way you can stay healthy just like everyone else. Here at Liquid Health, we manufacture our Mega Energy B-Complex supplement with all of these vitamins. Check out our website to learn more. Be sure to check out one of our previous articles to learn about Why Should You Wake Up Earlier.

Sources

https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Thiamin-Consumer/
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Riboflavin-Consumer/
https://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements-niacin/art-20364984
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Niacin-Consumer/
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/PantothenicAcid-Consumer/
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB6-Consumer/
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Biotin-Consumer/
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Folate-Consumer/
https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminB12-Consumer/

Pros and Cons of Running

featured image for pros and cons of running

Running has been a common form of exercise for years. It was one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways to help your body get a good sweat. However, many people are concerned about whether running is the safest and most beneficial form of exercise. Here are the pros and cons of running. Is this form of exercise for you?

Cons

Injury – While running can certainly improve our health, there is also a risk of injury. One of the most common injuries from running is called runner’s knee. This injury occurs when the kneecap is not properly aligned. This misalignment causes pain for people who run often. Some ways to help prevent runner’s knee are to stretch, wear proper fitting shoes, and strengthen the muscles that affect it. Most injuries come from pushing your body too hard. Be sure to give your body breaks. Take a few minutes during a long run or even take a day off after running for a few days. Some other potential injuries include iliotibial band syndrome, sprained ankles, shin splints, etc. Wearing appropriate shoes and learning proper form for running can also help prevent injuries. Keep your head forward, your shoulders back, and your feet aligned with your knees.

Too Much Sun Exposure – When running outdoors, too much sun exposure is a risk people take. To avoid this, people running outdoors should wear a 30 SPF sunscreen or wear protective clothing. You can also stick to running during times when the sun is low, like in the early morning or evening.

Pros

man and woman running along a sidewalk

Likely to live longerOne study concluded that people who run, even just a little bit, have a lower risk of death and even cardiovascular disease. Cardiovascular disease is a heart disease that makes it hard for blood to flow to the body. Heart disease is currently the leading cause of death among men and women. That is why exercise and taking care of our bodies is so vital.

Improves joint health – One of the common misconceptions is that running damages joints. This is not true. Studies have shown that running can improve the health of our joints. Supplements can also help improve joint pain. Liquid Health’s Optimum Joint provides high-quality natural ingredients to keep your joints healthy.

Lower blood pressure – Running, along with other forms of exercise, are great for reducing high blood pressure. It does this by helping the heart push more blood out efficiently. People who have high blood pressure are at a higher risk of blood clots, strokes, and other heart conditions. Maintaining healthy blood pressure is so vital for our overall health. Even if you do not have high blood pressure, it is a great way to prevent it in the future.

Improve circulation – Proper blood flow is vital for many bodily functions. When your circulation is not flowing properly, it can cause health problems like blood clots, Raynaud’s Disease, heart disease, and deep vein thrombosis. People with diabetes should be especially careful. Running is one of the best ways to get the body moving and the blood flowing throughout the body.

There are many pros and cons of running. It all really depends on what health conditions you already have and how careful you are. While there are many risks, running is a great way to improve circulation and cardiovascular health, some of the most common health concerns.

Sources

https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/326912.php#5

https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/articles/8765-preventing-running-injuries

Why Should You Wake Up Earlier

sunrise over fields - benefits of waking up early

One of the most difficult things you have to do each day is fighting the urge to sleep in and instead, climb out of bed. However, there are many amazing benefits that you can receive if you avoid hitting the snooze button and wake up earlier. So, why not receive these benefits by getting a jump-start on your day? Continue reading to learn about the benefits of waking up early and some tips to help you do so.

Benefits Of Waking Up Early

Sleep Quality

Those who go to sleep earlier, and in turn wake up earlier can get better sleep than those who stay up later at night, or those who do not have a set sleep schedule. This is because, when you go to sleep and wake up at the same time each day, your body sets an internal clock that can help improve the quality of your sleep. One thing that many people don’t do is follow their regular sleep schedule on the weekends along with the weekdays. This leads to your body feeling lethargic and extremely tired on Monday morning as you are not used to waking up early again. While it can be hard, and impossible at times, but it is important to consistently follow your sleep schedule to get the best sleep.

More Time

One of the best benefits of waking up early is having so much extra time in the day to get things done. In fact, if you go to bed earlier and set your alarm back just an hour each day, you will have an extra 15 days of time at the end of one year. There are many ways to use this time, one example is being able to take a longer shower, or get in a little exercise before you start the day. Other ways to use this time include:

Better Breakfast

The first thing that has more time in the morning can allow you to do is get a better breakfast. This is important because being able to sit down at home and eat an actual meal is better than eating a bagel on the way to work in many ways. To start, it is a healthier choice as you will be getting more nutrients than just a bagel provides. These nutrients can provide you with more energy than something quick and easy. Check out this article to learn about some Foods for Sustained Energy. Another reason to get a better breakfast is the cost that it will be. If you take the time to brew your own coffee and make your own breakfast at home, as opposed to getting it at a fast-food restaurant, you can save money every day.

Peace & Quiet

In addition to being able to get a better breakfast each morning, waking up early can allow you to get some peace and quiet before anyone else wakes up. This is especially true on the weekends when everyone else is sleeping in and waking up hours after you do. One way you can spend this time is by meditating. Meditating each morning can help you clear your mind and allow you to prepare yourself for the day ahead. Check out this article to learn about the Effects of Meditation on the Mind. If meditating is not for you, you can use this peace and quiet to read a book or just relax and have the house to yourself.

Morning Commute

If you have extra time during the weekday and have nothing else to do, or you already have eaten breakfast and meditated, you can leave early to get to work. That way, you can avoid the rush hour traffic of all the people who did not wake up early and get a jump-start on their day.

Productivity

If you wake up early and get to work early, you will have extra time in the morning to plan out your day and set your goals. One of the best reasons as to why waking up early is beneficial is that you can be more productive in the earlier hours of the morning. This is because you will already be awake and alert whilst everyone else in the office is still waking up with their morning coffee.

Tips To Help Wake Up Early

When you first start waking up early, you don’t want to set your alarm back an hour and wake up the next day at that time. That will not be beneficial for you as your body is not in the rhythm of waking up earlier. To do this properly, you need to set your alarm back 15 minutes each day until you reach your desired time. One thing to remember is to go to bed a little earlier too.

When you wake up early, you may just want to lay back down and go back to sleep until you would before, normally wake up. However, as previously mentioned, it is important to stick to your sleep schedule so you can get better sleep. To help yourself get out of bed, you can set your alarm to some energetic music and place it across the room. That way, when it goes off in the morning, you are going to have to get out of bed to turn it off. Another thing you can do is get a special alarm clock that mimics a sunrise whenever it gets close to the time you need to wake up.

Conclusion

There are many great benefits of waking up early. However, it will take some time and dedication to receive these benefits. If you find that you cannot fall asleep at night which is inhibiting your ability to wake up early, we here at Liquid Health manufacture our Sleep Well supplement to help. For more information on Sleep Well or any of our other products, please visit our website today.

Sources

https://www.sleepadvisor.org/benefits-of-waking-up-early/
https://www.goodnet.org/articles/7-reasons-waking-up-early-will-improve-your-day
https://www.lifehack.org/articles/productivity/this-why-productive-people-always-wake-early.html
https://www.sleep.org/articles/new-job-earlier-hours-wake-refreshed/
http://www.dailygood.org/story/159/10-benefits-of-rising-early-and-how-to-do-it/