We’ve all had those nights where we just can’t fall asleep, we end up tossing and turning the night away only to get up more exhausted than we were when we first got into bed. Try one or all of these five tips for a peaceful nights sleep:
Related: 4 Ways to Fight Sugar Cravings
No caffeine after noon
Caffeine can live in your body 8-14 hours after consuming it. Caffeine’s effects vary from person to person, but in general, if you are having trouble sleeping, try completely eliminating it for a month and see if that improves your sleep. Also consider sneaky sources of caffeine such as chocolate and tea. Switch to water and herbal tea.
Relaxing Exercises 2 hours before bed
As it gets later in the day try and decrease stimulation as much as possible. Do something you find relaxing, such as reading, practicing gentle yoga, taking a bath or talking about your day with a friend or your loved one.
Try a relaxing bath
Combine ½ cup Epsom salts with a few drops of an essential oil, like lavender, in hot water. Soak for 20 minutes. The magnesium contained in Epsom salt is absorbed through the skin and promotes feelings of relaxation. Water and salt cleanses energy from the day.
Meditation = A short, well needed vacation
Meditating for about five minutes daily can relieve stress and depression. Find a comfortable spot in a quiet place, concentrate on your breath, and feel those anxieties begin to disappear.
Sip some herbal tea.
Green tea has a great source of L-Theanine, which is a chemical that helps relieve stress.
Being healthy means eating healthy and sometimes it’s not very easy to do. Habits are difficult to break. Our goal is to introduce a set of healthy habits which hopefully will provide you with the positive results you are looking for. They say “it takes 21 days to make or break a habit” and if you’re vegan curious, VeganSmart has created a short term, plant-based 21 day regiment intended to help you get and keep good eating habits. You can train your body and mind to avoid processed and unhealthy foods and to jump start a healthier eating lifestyle. The vegan cleanse is a growing trend in health and wellness. Will you try it? Check it out below:
7 day cleanse – leading into a 14 day cleanse, leading to a 21 day cleanse
Start omitting all the animal flesh in your diet.
Day 1- 3:
VeganSmart smoothies 1 to 2 times a day as a supplement to help keep your energy up.
Drink coconut water as often as you like.
Drink fresh green vegetable juices on an empty stomach as often as you like. (Aim for at least two or three times a day. But make sure it’s on an empty stomach.)
Drinking it first in the morning insures your stomach is empty, so having the green juice first thing is recommended.
To curb the appetite, sip on Lemon Blast all day. ESPECIALLY days 7 – 14 (recipe below).
Optional versions of the VeganSmart smoothies are offered below as well.
Eliminate all alcohol, all dairy products, breads and pastries, red meats and chicken from the diet.
Only vegetables, non-refined carbohydrates, nuts, seeds and flax seed or olive oil.
Follow previous eliminations and suggestions.
Think no whites (no sugar, or flour products). Only consume carbohydrates in grains like Quinoa or Millet.
No candies or chocolates.
The rest of the diet should consist of only fruits and vegetables (steamed or raw), and raw nuts and seeds.
Only eat fruit on an empty stomach and give it at least 20 minutes to digest before eating any other food.
Never mix green juices with any food and especially not fruit.
Fruit and green juices should only be consumed on an empty stomach.
Continue previous eliminations and add VeganSmart smoothies as a supplement for extra support and energy.
Continue sipping on the Lemon Blast all day.
Drink coconut water as a snack.
Drink up to 32 oz or more of green vegetable juice for breakfast every day from Day 7 on.
Cut out all carbohydrates from the diet. Diet should consist of only fruit and raw or steamed vegetables, nuts and seeds. Eat fruit and raw or steamed vegetables as many times a day as you need to.
I suggest doing variations of different salads with no dressing. Cut out any refined oils.
Try flax seed oil or olive oil only very lightly drizzled on salads.
Day 11- 14:
Consume only raw fruits and vegetables, no oils, nuts, or seeds, – only raw fruits and vegetables.
Continue to sip on Lemon Blast all day.
Drink coconut water as a snack.
Have your green vegetable juices and your VeganSmart smoothies.
Use avocado and lime mixed together as a dressing or use hummus as a dressing.
Day 14 – 21:
Cut out all solid foods at this point.
Start incorporating one tablespoon of either flax seed oil or coconut oil every day now to get your fat content.
Breakfast – 32oz of green juice
Mid Breakfast – give the green juice at least ½ an hour to digest. Then add a VeganSmart Smoothie to supplement.
Again; remember to sip on Lemon Blast all day – and coconut water for snacks.
Lunch – Green Veggie Juice, wait 30 minutes and then add a Vegan Smart Smoothie as a supplement.
Dinner –Green Veggie Juice (If you decided to do the green juice, drink it first and wait ½ an hour before drinking any coconut water or having a VeganSmart Smoothie to supplement)
VeganSmart Smoothie Options:
Fresh or non-pasteurized coconut water (recommend Harmless Harvest Raw Coconut Water)
1 -2 tablespoon Flax Seed
1-2 tablespoon Chia Seed
Fresh or non-pasteurized coconut water (recommend Harmless Harvest Raw Coconut Water)
2 tablespoons Cocoa Nibs
1 tablespoon Flax Seed
1 tablespoon Chia Seed
Fresh or non-pasteurized Coconut Water (recommend Harmless Harvest Raw Coconut Water)
1 -2 tablespoons organic Flax Seed
1-2 tablespoons Chia Seed
1- 2 tablespoons Goji Berries
Lemon Blast Recipe
Fresh organic squeezed Lemon Juice
Tumeric Root Juice (optional)
Cayenne Pepper or freshly juiced organic Ginger Root
Green Veggie Juice Recipe Options
1. 2 bunches organic Spinach and 1-2 organic Green Apples.
2. 1 bunch organic Dandelion Root, 1 bunch organic Red Chard, juice of 1 organic Lemon, 1 organic Fennel Bulb, 1-2 stalks organic Celery, 1 bunch organic Cilantro, 1 organic Green Apple (optional.)
3. 1 bunch organic Black Kale, 1 bunch organic Spinach, ½ – 1 bunch organic Swiss Chard (use sparingly – strong flavor), 1-2 organic Green Apples, 1 organic Fennel Bulb, 1 bunch organic Cilantro.
Salad Suggestions (all certified organic):
Arugula, Avocado, Quinoa, Cherry Tomatoes, Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds.
Black Kale, Tomatoes, Avocado, raw Pumpkin Seeds.
Mixed Greens, raw Almonds, Hummus, Carrots, Tomatoes, and Chia Seeds.
No PEANUTS (contain a toxic mold).
Almonds, Cashews, Brazil Nuts, Walnuts, Pine Nuts.
Chia Seeds, Flax Seeds, Sunflower Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds.
Caution: As with any dietary supplement, consult your healthcare practitioner before using this product, especially if you are pregnant, nursing, anticipate surgery, take medication on a regular basis or are otherwise under medical supervision.
We all tend to hit that sugar low some point in the afternoon when you lose focus at work and sometimes right before bed. You might’ve ditched the old school sweets and traded them in for some dark chocolate and maybe even some almond/nut butter only to find yourself now getting hooked on those superfoods. Here are 5 different ways you can curb those sugar cravings:
Coconut water can serve as a delicious treat. Pour your coconut water over ice then add a little lime juice. This combination isn’t only refreshing but will help curb your sugar craving while providing hydrating potassium and mood-boasting magnesium.
Chocolate Almond Milk
Unsweetened chocolate almond milk with a cinnamon stick can be the perfect low calorie 8oz option to treat your sweet tooth.
Chia Seed Pudding
You’ve probably been a witness to the new chia seed pudding craze that’s been taking place. Popular for good reason, chia seed puddings are a great way to make you full and regulate your blood sugar levels. Make your pudding by soaking 3 tablespoons of chia seed in 12oz of unsweetened vanilla almond milk for 15 minutes. Then, add a little cinnamon and ground vanilla bean for a sweet touch.
If you’re not a fan of green juice, we’d like to tell you that you’ve been missing out. Green juice is the most power packed option of them all. Some veggies are naturally sweet when juiced and it’ll help trick your taste buds into thinking you’ve had something sweet. If vegetables juices are new to you, you can add 1/2 an apple to sweeten it up a bit more. Green juices are the perfect remedy for a sugar craving.
If your fitness plans aren’t giving you the results you need then you may be missing something from your routine, resistance training. Here are three reasons to debunk the myth that lifting weights is just for men, it’s for you too ladies:
More effective toning When we tend to think about weights the first thing that pops into our minds are people who body build and this stereotype is incorrect. Yes, you can weight-lift to gain in size and muscle but you can also use resistance training to help you burn more calories effectively during and after exercise.
Bone Health As we get older we’re at risk of losing muscle mass and bone mass. Resistance training is a great way to stop the loss and helps to keep up your balance, coordination and so much more.
Stress Relief Any form of exercise is a great way to relieve stress. When you exercise you’re boosting your feel-good endorphin’s which can help distract you from your daily worries and can even help you to improve cognitive function and memory. So go ahead ladies, let’s feel strong and determined and get to lifting!
Many of us are workaholics and rarely take enough breaks throughout our day or in life. However, breaks are extremely important towards our productivity, whether it be a small break during work or a bigger break like a vacation. Here are four reasons breaks are good for you:
Related: 5 Foods That Boost Your Energy
When we’re working on a task for a long period of time our brains pay less attention to the task across that period of time. Just like our bodies, our brains also need some time to relax and recharge. Breaks allow us to stay functional throughout the day.
We push naps on children but we then forget about ourselves. Naps are important to help boost your memory. Something as little as a ten minute nap can boost your alertness and get you back on track with the rest of your day.
If all of your energy is all gone, having a snack break can help you make better decisions. A healthy snack can help get your glucose levels back up and boost you back up when you’re mentally depleted.
Vacation are important
Vacations aren’t just for fun, they’re important to help keep you healthy. Not only can a vacation help reduce your stress but it can also improve your concentration when you return back to work and you may even find an increase in your overall job satisfaction.
So that next time you feel like getting up to take a break, go for it. Stay focused and productive.
Check out this Cranberry & Nut Energy Bar Recipe!
The next time your energy plummets don’t just run for the caffeine. There are many other options aside from coffee that can work well to give you a boost of energy. Here are 5 energy boosting foods:
Water: Water is responsible for moving all nutrients in the blood that we use for energy. Water also helps to get rid of waste and build-up that may lead to fatigue. The less water you have the harder it can be to metabolize your food and turn it into fuel. So always drink plenty of water throughout the day (minimum of 8 glasses a day.)
Quinoa: Quinoa is a gluten-free grain that has more protein than any rice or other grain. Quinoa can be a great replacement for wheat or refined carbs. Switching out a grain for quinoa can help your energy levels rise.
Celery: It may not be the most appetizing of the vegetable group but because it’s so light and full of water it can keep you hydrated and its fiber can help keep you regulated. You can even dip your celery in nut butter or almond butter to add healthy fats, protein and more energy boosting qualities.
Beans: Beans are a great source of energy. The body digests beans slowly so they’ll keep you full for longer while providing adequate energy that lasts and are packed with fiber to help you digest.
Spinach: Is there one thing spinach isn’t good for? Spinach is a nutritional powerhouse and can increase your energy levels. Spinach is packed with phytonutrients working as antioxidants that fight against free radicals all while nourishing your body.
Did you know? Not getting enough of your beauty rest could take a toll on your metabolism. Here are a few things you may be doing to slow it down:
Not Getting Enough Water: Your body needs fluids to perform all of its functions. When it’s not performing those functions as well, it’s not burning as many calories. Something else to keep in mind: A lot of the calorie burn from drinking water comes from your body working to bring cold water to 98.6 degrees—so drinking hot water with lemon or hot tea all the time won’t be as good at boosting your metabolism as cold water will.
Skimping on Sleep: People who are sleep-deprived on a regular basis tend to weigh more than those who get a good night’s rest most nights. Why? Research shows it can throw the hormones that control appetite out of whack, making you hungrier and causing you to eat more. Striving to get a good seven hours, no matter how hard it may be, will do wonders for your health and metabolism.
Cutting out caffeine: Sometimes caffeine gets a bad rap but it can actually give your calorie burn a slight boost. This doesn’t mean that you should start knocking back the stuff like water but if you’re already drinking green tea or coffee most days, keeping it a part of your routine could help your metabolism run at top speed. Check out how our SuperFan Brittany Rowley debunked the caffeine myth!
Too Much Cardio: You know that exercise is crucial for keeping your metabolism fired up, but if you swear by running or indoor cycling—and only running or indoor cycling—you’re not building the lean muscle that’ll really give your metabolism a boost. Start incorporating strength training into your workouts to up your calorie burn even more.
One of my favorite ways to workout is by doing high intensity interval training. It instantly gets your heart pumping and your sweat dripping and will keep your body burning calories for up to 48 hours after you finish! Who wouldn’t be a fan of that? Many gyms now offer HIIT classes and I recently found my new favorite spot to workout! It’s called The 12, where you perform four series of mini workouts at your peak performance! You go as hard as you can for a bunch of short bursts and you walk out of the class feeling like a rock star! So if you’re looking for the next great way to whip your body into shape for bikini season, try HIIT! You will be sore, but you won’t be sorry!
Tips from Naturade:
Never go into any workout without warning up, doing so may result in injury. Do warmups that will get your heart rate up and prepare your body for work.
Use a timer with sound
Time your intervals to ensure that you’re staying on track and working to your full potential.
Bring the intensity
It’s called “high intensity interval training” for a reason! During active periods make sure you are working as hard as you can while maintaining proper form and during your rest intervals make sure you are powering up for your next set.
In order to get the most out of your workout you need energy to burn. For high intensity, quick workouts, eat something that is easily digested 20-30 minutes before you train. A smoothie or shake with VeganSmart can power you through HIIT workouts! Learn How to Build the Perfect Smoothie
Don’t have a personal trainer? No problem. There are so many simple things you can do to get fit and healthy on your own. Try these 4 things:
Related: 6 Power Foods You Should Be Eating
What you eat is always the most important. Trainers and nutritionists alike will stress the importance of meal prepping to ensure that you’re getting enough healthy nutrients throughout the day without cheating yourself.
Our phones are always in the palm of our hands, so why not make them useful to our health. Of course this app won’t replace having a trainer, but it is the next best thing. Try one of these Top 10 Fitness Apps to Keep You Motivated!
We know you’ve been seeing this acronym everywhere and its for good reason! Swapping out your long and moderate workouts for a high intensity interval training will help you get fitter sooner as long as you put in work!
When they told us to eat our veggies as children, they were just trying to prepare us all for the real world. Having enough vegetables on a daily basis is extremely important to your diet and staying fit. You should be consuming at least 2-3 cups of vegetables daily.
Try this healthy recipe for meal prep: Vegan Lettuce Wrap Recipe
It’s been going around recently that caffeine is NOT good for you. Let’s put that myth to rest. TOO MUCH caffeine is bad for you. In moderation, it serves to activate brain functions, stimulate your nervous system and help it fire better, helps you focus, gives you clarity, and boosts your metabolism. These are all benefits of drinking caffeine, but don’t be fooled, not all caffeinated drinks are good for you.
Related: Stuck in a Fitness Rut?
Those sugary frappucinos definitely are not good for you. The same goes for concentrated energy drinks. Pass on those as well. Opt for simple drinks like unsweetened teas and coffee. My drink of choice is a plain Americano. However, when I’m feeling like I want something a little more decadent, I’ll steam unsweetened almond milk to make a creamy vegan latte!
Most coffee shops offer milk alternatives, so next time you go out for coffee, ask your barista what vegan options they have! Look for drinks that are low in refined sugar and remember, everything in moderation!
P.S. You can add 1 scoop of our VeganSmart for a protein boost!
Try this Proto-Mocha-Latte Recipe from Vegan Health and Fitness Editor, Austin Barbish.