After falling in love with other healthy living blogs and realizing she may have the material to start her own, Alyssa created her health, fitness, and lifestyle blog, Life of bLyss, to chronicle everything “blyssful” in her life (get it? Alyssa + bliss = blyss?). Alyssa’s blog covers her favorite tips and tricks, experiences and misadventures, and her life working in the fitness industry.
According to the CDC, about 600,000 people are affected by heart health in the United States every year.
So what can we do to prevent these issues and help improve our hearts? Instead of just cutting out bad foods, become knowledgeable of which foods are good for your heart so you can make them a part of your families daily diet.
If you’re in search of a natural detox that doesn’t involve drinking tons of weird concoctions then we have great news! There are plenty of deliciously satisfying foods with surprising detox-friendly properties that will help you boost your energy levels while cleansing your body at the same time.
“A simple jump rope can help you get in shape. To find the right rope length, step on the center of the rope and pull the ends up—the handles should come up to your armpits. Keep your knees soft, spine tall, abs pulled in and elbows by your waist. Gaze forward and begin bouncing with both feet—you only need to come up a couple of inches off the floor for the rope to pass under your toes. Jump as long as you can, then jog in place to recover before jumping again.”- Phyllis Bodie
While both of these physically and mentally relieving forms of fitness provide therapeutic values, choosing whether yoga or Pilates fits you best typically depends on a number of factors. For starters, you should know what kind of health benefits you are striving for. Are you someone who is looking for more of a strength and flexibility training program, or are you searching for more mentally focused exercises that can work to relieve stress? Knowing which areas yoga and Pilates focus on as well as what their workouts entail are key when deciding which one will accommodate your fitness needs.
If you already haven't figured out whether fish are friend or foe when it comes to maintaining a healthy diet, it's time for you to make a new companion. Seafood is always an excellent addition to any meal, bursting with a wide variety of nutrients that can also account for a remarkably high protein meal. Fish are typically rich in essential omega-3 fatty acids, and, according to the Harvard School of Public Health, eating multiple 3 ounce servings of fatty acid fish per week can reduce the likelihood of cardiovascular complications by 36 percent. So, where should you look for a health dinner?
One of the more incredibly abundant seafood options when it comes to healthy benefits, chowing down on some salmon a few times a week can offer you everything from boosting your brain to helping your heart. Salmon is packed with a long list of nutritional amenities, such as vitamins A, B, D and E, high quality protein as well as being loaded with omega-3 fatty acids. The good types of fat contained in a serving of salmon can reach up to three times the minimum recommendations for omega-3 fatty acids, which will in the long run provide better overall heart health, boost your immune system and strengthen your synapses in your brain.
Often marketed as a luxury seafood of delicacy, oysters can be just as rich in health enhancing qualities. First off, they are low in calories, which means that you can eat a greater portion with less calorie consequences and feel full quicker, which can help boost your metabolism. They are also an excellent low fat-high protein combination, with servings containing anywhere between 10-16 grams of protein with only 3-4 total grams of fat per 3 ounce serving.
While most tunas are often found to have the highest levels of mercury among the different kinds of seafood, albacore tuna are mainly caught in northern waters which generally tend to have lower mercury levels and more omega-3 fatty acids counts than other types of canned tuna. Albacore tuna is also a great low fat entree choice, with just one can only amounting to 8 percent of your total fat recommendation.
There's a rule of thumb when it comes to seafood: the smaller the fish, the lower the amount of mercury, which is good news for lovers of these small little guys. Sardines are often overlooked for their abundance in health benefits, and each can includes 35 percent of your daily recommendation of calcium, 15 percent for iron and 10 percent for potassium.
Fish to avoid
There are plenty of other types of fish that might taste just as delicious, but are nowhere near as healthy for you as the other types of seafood listed above. Mercury levels are one dynamic to look out for when it comes to choosing seafood, and fish such as grouper, marlin and swordfish might be considered more expensive and appetizing choices. However, it's strongly suggested that you don't eat more than three servings of these fish per month. Other types of seafood to keep an eye on are fish that tend to live for a long time, which leaves than more susceptible to mercury exposure and other diseases from the sea. Orange roughy is often included on many seafood restaurant menus, but this is a fish that can more often than not be found to live for more than 100 years! Bottom dwellers such as monkfish and catfish are also documented to live long lives while eating scum at the bottom of the sea, so be sure to limit your monthly servings of them as well.
Implementing a high protein meal diet has always been a top priority for those looking to add a little lean to their muscle and burn some belly fat. While the daily recommendation for protein intake equates to 60 grams, determining how to spread out your protein consumption throughout the course of the day can get tricky. For those who often find themselves guessing on which meal to incorporate protein to, a recent study suggests how to properly distribute your intake so that you see the results you're looking for.
Researchers from the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston analyzed how consuming the majority of your protein intake either at the beginning or end of your day may not be doing your body justice. The importance of protein ranges on a number of levels, such as promoting efficient weight control, strengthening bone density and, of course, adding a little mass to your muscle.
In order to find out how your protein intake should be distributed throughout the day, the researchers took two separate groups of healthy adults to settle this health inquiry once and for all. Two diets were established that featured different portion sizes of protein being provided with each meal. One of the groups was given a diet that consisted of 30 grams of protein at each meal, while the other subjects were administered a meal plan that pertained to 10 grams at breakfast, 15 grams at lunch and 65 grams at dinner.
Muscle protein synthesis rates were then measured for all the participants every 24 hours after their daily diets were completed. The researchers decided to give all of the volunteers a 90 grams a day, because a meal plan that is significantly higher in protein content can provide an actively healthy adult with better muscle metabolism. After analyzing the daily protein synthesis rates provided by the subjects, the colleagues determined that those who exercised an evenly distributed protein diet of 30 grams per meal were able to achieve 25 percent greater muscle protein synthesis rate than those who had their meals slowly progress in protein content throughout the course of the day.
The study was led by Dr. Doug Paddon-Jones, a scientist whose expertise resides in muscle metabolism for the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston. Paddon-Jones called out the typical protein diet that is commonly used by people today, explaining that equality is everything when it comes to dividing up your protein content for the day.
"Usually, we eat very little protein at breakfast, a bit more at lunch and then consume a large amount at night," Paddon-Jones said in a statement. "So we're not taking enough protein on board for efficient muscle building and repair during the day, and at night we're often taking in more than we can use. We run the risk of having this excess oxidized and ending up as glucose or fat."
Alternative ways to get protein
While everyone can help pump up their muscle mass by increasing their protein intake, sometimes you don't have time to sit down and eat a hearty protein meal to get the daily recommendation that you need. That's why Naturade Pea Protein is a simple and effective method to consuming 40 percent your daily protein requirements, all in an 8 ounce glass of your favorite beverage. By adding two scoops to a glass of water, you will be packing a healthy plant-based protein that can offer your body all the essential qualities of protein, such as building muscle, maintaining proper metabolism and lowering blood pressure. If you need protein in a hurry, Naturade Pea Protein will have you covered.
Summer is finally here! Time to take advantage of all the glorious sunny weather, plethora of spirited activities and ideal vacation destinations before it's too late. While this is definitely the season to cherish the outdoors, it's also important to remember that all that time spent outside will leave your immune system more susceptible to allergens and unwanted germs. Here are a few tips on keeping you healthy and active this summer instead of spending the season bedridden and fatigued.
Adjust your diet
It's no coincidence that the healthier you eat, the better you will feel. Knowing which foods you consume to help boost your immune system is the ultimate weapon in avoiding certain ailments, and it all starts with ingesting essential vitamins and minerals. Antioxidants are the key toward eliminating reactive oxygen species, free radicals and other damaging molecules from entering your body and prompting infection. Your best source for antioxidants come from colorful fruits and vegetables, such as strawberries, carrots, cherries, tomatoes and blueberries. All these foods possess beneficial phytonutrients that can break down and devour invading germs. In addition to receiving excessive sunlight, implementing more vitamin D through the foods you eat is another component of achieving a healthy immune system. The best ways of getting adequate levels of vitamin D besides being out in the sun include:
- Canned tuna
- Low-fat milk or yogurt
- Fortified tofu
Summer is when you essentially have no excuse not to receive plenty of physical activity and exercise. With indoor and outdoor access available, summer is the ideal time to finally achieve that New Year's resolution and get back in shape. And if you need any more motivation, exercise is a strong companion for a healthy immune system. While you're out there running around, stimulating blood flow and cardiovascular activity as well as flushing out excess bacteria from your lungs, all this activity is sending antibodies and white blood cells traveling throughout the body at a quicker rate, leading to better prevention of illnesses. On top of increasing immune ability, exercise leads to more effective sleep and stress reduction, two other traits that can keep you feeling fresh and lively. Some easy summer activities that can keep your heart pumping and immune system thriving can include:
- 30 minutes of walking
- 18 holes of golf
- An hour long bike ride
- Rollerblading or biking instead of driving to work
- Jogging with your pet to the park
- Partaking in a few hours of tennis per week
Get your eight hours
As advocated by the National Sleep Foundation, eight hours is the magic number when it comes to getting an efficient night's rest. Besides avoiding waking up on the wrong side of the bed, sleep is essential for aiding your line of defense against disease. While you are asleep, your immune system releases proteins called cytokines, which work to fight against symptoms of infection or inflammation. When you are consistently not receiving the recommended quantity of sleep, cytokine production is reduced, making it easier for you to become sick. Frequent exercise during the day will help your body achieve quality sleep at night for those who tend to endure restless nights of tossing and turning.
Symbiotics Colostrum Plus
An efficient and easy way to provide your immune system with proper assistance is by taking two capsules of Symbiotics Colostrum Plus a day. Colostrum Plus boosts immune factors with Proline-Rich Polypeptides (PRPs) which serve as an immune system stabilizer.* Colostrum's dual action—in the bloodstream and in the GI tract, helps maintain healthy intestinal flora in a normal GI tract.* Symbiotics Colostrum Plus is a uniquely helpful supplement providing Lactoferrin, Immunoglobulins and Proline-Rich Polypeptides (PRPs).
For those who have yet to experience the immunity supporting properties of colostrum, it is time to get acquainted. Colostrum is the pre-milk produced in the mammary glands of all mammals to give their newborn the support to transition from the protected environment of the womb into our biologically active world. Colostrum possesses a number of essential components: immunoglobulins, lactoferrin and proline-rich polypeptides work to balance your immune system and at the same time, keep you feeling like being active after intense exercise. Of all the incredible qualities of colostrum, it is the naturally occurring growth factors that can provide support that athletes seek – prolonged stamina and strengthened muscles. Here are a few reasons why the growth factors make colostrum a must-have supplement for your body:
What they are
Growth factors are essentially naturally occurring hormones abundant in colostrum. They serves to stimulate cellular growth within the body. Activating cellular activity is important because it provides an opportunity for the body to maintain a balanced immune defense. Some of these factors can include smoothing out muscle cells and promoting communication between immune cells to support a normal, healthy body. They also assist with the maturation of cells, specifically helping bone morphogenetic proteins.
How they work
In a nutshell, growth factors act as chemical messengers that provide quicker communication between various cells within the body. Let's say that your skin is irritated. Growth factors will act as the body's messenger service, issuing signals to skin cells to work together with fibroblasts to return to a normal functional state.
Why you need it
As we continue to age, it is harder for our bodies to continuously produce or obtain growth factors. Everything from the immune system, to energy levels, to skin starts to show signs of wear the older we become, which is why adding colostrum to your diet will help keep your body feeling and looking younger. Steady contribution of growth factors may help ease early aging side effects.
An excellent source of growth factors is Symbiotics Colostrum Plus. Symbiotics Colostrum Plus has been tested in laboratories to verify the absence of artificial hormones, pesticides and antibiotics, so you can rest assured your body is receiving a full-on natural product. It is never too late to start seeing and feeling the effects of the natural growth factors in colostrum.