Everyone wants the best for their children. When starting baby’s first foods, the doctor will usually recommend rice cereal but it’s not mandatory. For me, I did the research and learned infants stomachs produce very little amylase, the enzyme needed to break down starch which is why I decided to wait until around ten months to introduce grains. However, five to seven months seems to be a sweet spot where they have enough salivary amylase and if you give breast milk that contains amylase as well. So your little one can break down the starch. Just remember everything in moderation. It’s completely up to you to choose what foods are best for your little one.
So one of the first grains we did was oatmeal since we were beyond rice cereal and it’s less constipating. Here’s a delicious recipe to try that you can make in bulk, keep in the fridge and use for three to four days.
Lucky Vitamin is introducing MealEnders, a great tasting, low-calorie, stimulant-free signaling lozenge that help you avoid overeating and master portion control using a combination of behavioral psychology and sensory science.
This revolutionary product addresses the psychology of eating and helps breaking the behavioral cycle of overeating and snacking, but how does it work?
MealEnders uses a duo-sensory taste system as its active-taste formula rewards and resets your taste buds, distracting you from the temptation to overindulge. First, the delicious Reward Layer treats you to the sweet taste of dessert, a signal typically associated with the end of a meal. Then, the Inner Core’s Active Taste Layer releases a proprietary blend of gentle, cool tingling sensations on the tongue, which engage the trigeminal nerve, distracting your mind from the urge to continue overeating.
Unlike other diets or diet aids that focus solely on your stomach, MealEnders cue the cessation of eating by targeting the mind’s attention and the body’s reaction to sensations. By engaging your trigeminal nerve, MealEnders keep your mind occupied for up to 20 minutes, the so-called overeating zone, giving your natural satiety process time to kick in and catch up. When the MealEnders experience dissipates, your body’s natural signaling process of satiation will have begun.
MealEnders fit easily into your existing routine, helping you learn healthy portion control. A straightforward, common-sense way to assist you in reducing the amount of food you eat, MealEnders naturally transition you away from your desire to eat too much and help train the mind and body to eat healthy, right-sized portions.
Lucky Vitamin is happy to introduce to our customers a top-quality brand of personal care products which also offers unique herbal therapy essential oil candles : October Fields.
October Fields offers an exclusive lineline of eco-friendly, non-GMO, and vegan products created with the passion of cultivating awareness of healthy living. The company believes that healthy living should be transcended well beyond the original goals into a complete plant-based lifestyle brand for mind, body and home.
October Fields’ foundational roots run deep as organic garlic and herb growers. Since 2011 the company plants and harvests several varieties of garlic, culinary and medicinal herbs, fruit and nut trees, and the seed list continues to grow. October Fields retailing seasonal produce on-line has offered affordable accessibility of organic goods to consumers nationwide.
October Fields currently grows 3 varieties of garlic but is most renowned for its rare Romanian Red, which yields large bulbs and pungent, spicy cloves suitable for all culinary delights. The addition of 5 heirloom apple varieties, high bush blueberries, red raspberries, sea buckthorn berries and several nut bearing trees support the permaculture philosophy. Raised beds are home to over 30 culinary and medicinal herbs, which are hand harvested, dried and stored for year round retail or thoughtfully blended into balms, tinctures and teas. No matter the abundance nature provides, there is always a great appreciation for the care and positive energy that nurtured it.
October Fields grows without herbicides, pesticides or chemical fertilizers and its organic harvest is the result of sunshine, rain and gentle hands.
Okay, we did the impossible and made a plant-based version of mac and cheese that will knock your socks off. Plus, it’s vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free and packed with nutrients.
Instead of white flour pasta, we used organic brown rice pasta made with whole grain brown rice, which offers 4 grams of healthy fiber per serving. The plant-based “cheesiness” is from nutritional yeast. It’s produced from culturing yeast with sugarcane and beet molasses and provides a full spectrum of essential amino acids and a balanced variety of B vitamins.
Vitamin B supplements have been one of the top-selling products for many years. The importance of B vitamins is never in question and among all B’s, biotin (B7) seems to be one of the most popular ones, along with B6 and B12. Biotin is a vitamin needed by every living cell of your body and food sources include eggs, cheese, mushrooms, tuna, sardines, berries, and peanuts. When it comes to health benefits, biotin offers many but this incredible nutrient is also well-known to promote healthy hair, skin, and nails.
Biotin can help promote glowing, wrinkle-free skin and a variety of skin care products like massage oils and creams use this type of vitamin B in their formulas. On the other hand, lack of biotin may cause several skin problems including rashes, dermatitis, psoriasis, eczema and acne. Known as one of the best natural products to prevent hair loss and promote hair growth, biotin has the ability to improve hair condition as well. Many shampoos and conditioners contain biotin to improve problems like dry, brittle hair and hair fall. Biotin can also promote healthy nails and a good number of products targeted for “hair, skin, and nails” contain high amounts of this vitamin B. For many years, the cosmetic industry has been using biotin in a variety of nail products to promote beautiful and strong nails.
Biotin’s main function is carrying out metabolic processes of the body. When you eat, several reactions rely on biotin to properly breakdown the food, including proteins, fats and carbohydrates. If your body has sufficient levels of biotin, your body is able to breakdown food at a faster rate and the food will instantly be processed, improving overall digestion. On top of that, the combination of high biotin levels, increased metabolic rates, and efficient digestion is essential to help in weight loss.
Lucky Vitamin is introducing a premium brand of protein bars to our customers: FitJoy Nutrition.
FitJoy Nutrition offers a unique line of healthy and gourmet snacks that answer your call for less sacrifice and more freedom. The company creates joyful snacking and ensures all protein bars are gluten-free, non-GMO, and free from artificial sweeteners, colors and flavors.
FitJoy Nutrition believes you shouldn’t have to choose between healthy and happy but, far too often, you have to choose a side whether you realize it or not. Eating right, working out and making steps towards your goal should be a journey that gives you more satisfaction, not less. FitJoy Nutrition can help bringing the joy back into living a healthy lifestyle.
FitJoy began as a passion project by the company’s CEO, who, after being diagnosed with Celiac and a severe sensitivity to artificial sweeteners, wanted to develop a brand of on-the-go snacks that offered a gourmet taste experience to excite his inner foodie without interfering with his health. Like most meaningful endeavors, the journey wasn’t easy or straightforward but two and half years, thousands of man-hours, 100+ taste tests, two contract manufacturers, small wins and major setbacks, today FitJoy creates and develops a line of top-quality nutritional protein bars available in many delicious flavors.
You might not realize it, but certain foods may be the culprit to everyday problems such as daily headaches, joint pain, fatigue and digestive issues including gas, bloating or constipation. Did you know that often time these symptoms are your body’s way of telling you that what you are eating might be aggravating you? Even your food cravings may be a hidden sign of food sensitivities. If you’re an individual who is suffering from food sensitivities, an elimination diet, where you take out certain foods from your diet, could be a helpful tool to identify the causal factors.
This is an immediate immune-mediated response to a specific protein in food. This is what you would think of when you hear an individual say they are allergic to peanuts or shellfish. Common symptoms include itchy skin, hives, coughing or wheezing and swelling of the throat. Food allergies can be fatal and for that reason most of these individuals needs to carry epinephrine pens with them when they go out to eat.
Food sensitivities also refer to an immune-mediated reaction. While allergies are mediated by IgE antibodies, sensitivities are mediated by slower acting IgG antibodies. Typically food allergies occur immediately while sensitivities tend to be a delayed reaction occurring hours or days after ingesting the aggravating food. Symptoms may vary but typically include brain fog, fatigue, gas, bloating, constipation, mood disorders, joint pain and more.
Food intolerance occurs when the body can’t digest a food or food component properly. This type of reaction does not involve the immune system and is what you might think of when someone says that they are lactose intolerant. Normally the enzyme lactase is responsible for breaking down lactose into simpler sugars. If a person is lactose intolerant, this enzyme activity is low and the lactose sugar does not get broken down properly, which can give rise to symptoms of flatulence, pain and diarrhea. Unlike food allergies, individuals with food intolerances may be able to tolerate small amounts of these foods.
How to Perform an Elimination Diet
Before starting the diet you should consult your health care provider. Make a note of how you feel. Start at your head and work your way down towards your feet, jotting down any major or minor complaints. You can also work with your health care practitioner to help get a better understanding of which foods might be causing you problems.
The elimination diet is often times performed for a period of 3 weeks to 1 month. In general, adults and children can do an elimination diet. Make sure to pick out a time that works best for you where you can commit to completing the diet.
Below are the food groups most often recommended to avoid (this may vary person to person). When performing an elimination diet, choose one food group to avoid entirely. For instance if you think egg causes a problem, avoid eating eggs and anything that has egg in it. However, to rule out multiple possible culprits, I usually recommend people avoid all of the main culprits at the same time.
Since the elimination diet is a good time to help the body detox, it is also a good idea to avoid alcohol, caffeine, sodas and other sweetened fruit juices as well as any other foods you believe may be causing issues. Try to avoid processed foods, fast foods and simple sugars such as candy and sweets as well.
While on the diet, it is important to read the entire ingredients label before purchasing any foods. In order for the elimination diet to be successful, 100% elimination of these foods is a must. Don’t eat the foods whole or as ingredients in other foods. For example, if you are avoiding all dairy products, you need to check labels for whey, casein, and lactose so you can avoid them as well.
Once the elimination diet is finished, you will gradually reintroduce these foods back into your diet. It is best to do this one food at a time over a period of 3 days. You will want to eat that food during at least two of the three meals daily for those 3 days. The reason for doing this is because once you being to reintroduce foods back into your diet, you may notice your symptoms flare again. This is an important sign that means you are sensitive to that food. If you notice a reaction before the 3 days are up, stop eating the offending food. It is also important to wait until any reactions have subsided before re-introducing another food.
When reintroducing foods back into your diet pay attention to your energy level, any joint or muscle pain, skin condition, headaches, bowel function and gut symptoms or any symptoms you noted before starting the diet.
With new superfoods and alternative health products popping up in the media every day, it’s hard to know what the cleanest, most effective product innovations really are. Dr. Jeremy Wolf N.D., Lead Wellness Advisor at LuckyVitamin.com, breaks down the trends and how to be a savvy wellness shopper this fall.
HEALTHY BACK TO SCHOOL OPTIONS
Summer is over, which can only mean one thing. Back to school. And back to packing lunches. It’s estimated that the average family will use 500 Ziploc bags each year and according to one survey, around 2.79% of Americans use 21 or more bags within 7 days. That’s around 1,000 bags a year. Luckily LunchSkins has reusable dishwasher safe sandwich, snack and lunch bags that are a creative and environmentally friendly alternative. Another trend for the 2016 school year will be lunches that are gluten free, dairy free and include meat alternatives. More and more parents, children and families are embracing an allergen free or vegetarian/vegan lifestyle. As a result, I believe school lunches across the country will have more options for children with dietary restrictions.
The beetroot movement is upon us, I repeat, the beetroot movement is upon us. Since 2009 beet products have quadrupled. Beets have attracted a lot of attention as a “functional food” meaning they not only provide basic nutrients, but may help promote optimal health and reduce the risk of disease. While this vegetable’s popularity has only recently gained back momentum, its use dates back to ancient Roman times. So why has it become so popular again? Beets are a source of nitrates and provide a natural means of increasing nitric oxide (NO) availability. Beetroot is a rich source of phytochemical compounds that include ascorbic acid, carotenoids, phenolic acids, and flavonoids. Beets also contain a group of bioactive pigments known as betalains that are thought to have high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Beet products can be found in the forms of Beet Juice, Energy Bars, Sports Shots, Protein Powders, Veggie Packs, and Beet Crystals. LuckyVitamin carries a large selection of these products from top rated brands.
Let’s face it, trends in the natural beauty and personal care industry aren’t just for women. With more & more men growing beards, companies all over are outfitting all natural beard oil, washes, and balms for men. Beard oil works to soften and condition facial hair while moisturizing the skin to prevent dryness, itching and irritation. Badger’s, certified organic man care beard oil is one of my personal favorites. Beard wash is generally a combination of herbs, extracts and other ingredients intended to clean, moisturize and condition the hair and skin of the face. Lastly, beard balms offer a little hold for grooming but also condition the beard to help stop dryness, split ends, tangles and frizz. Use of these products can help any man turn their 5 o’clock shadow into the manliest of beards.
The term superfood describes nutrient-rich foods that are considered to be beneficial for one’s health and well being. There’s yet another superfood craze you may not have indulged in yet, but chances are after reading this you will! Pulses, which are another name for lentils, chickpeas, beans and dry peas, have become one of the most talked about superfoods in the health and wellness industry. Pulses provide protein and fiber as well as vitamins and minerals such as iron, zinc and magnesium. In fact, a ½ cup serving of black beans has one and half times the iron of a 3-ounce piece of steak. Pulses are also packed full of saponins and tannins, phytochemicals which may possess antioxidant and anti-carcinogenic benefits. An article from the Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that inclusion of pulses in a diet may be a beneficial weight-loss strategy because it leads to a modest weight-loss effect, although further research & future studies are needed. This summer, shop LuckyVitamin to incorporate your favorite pulses into your diet.
White flour is unfortunately a big part of most individual’s daily food consumption even though it provides little nutritional value. With more and more individuals following specific diets free of allergens or other restrictions, limiting white flour can make baking, cooking and eating out very difficult. Now it’s no wonder more companies are providing alternative flour options. These options include rice flour, coconut flour, buckwheat flour, almond flour, sorghum flour, amaranth flour and many more. LuckyVitamin has a large selection of alternative flour options from top brands such as Bob’s Red Mill, Nutiva, NOW Foods, Arrowhead Mills and more.
Activated charcoal has long been used by hospitals around the world as a safe and effective treatment for poisoning and drug overdoses. This ingredient is making its way to the beauty realm, from facemasks to shampoos, toothpowders and deodorants. These products use activated charcoal, which means the coal has been heated to increase its adsorptive power, increasing the rate at which molecules bind to a surface. Activated charcoal is great at trapping chemicals, absorbing dirt and oil, absorbing 1,000 times its own weight in moisture. Some great beauty products using activated charcoal include Piperwai Natural Deodorant, Dr. Sponge Konjac Facial Sponge, Level Naturals and Collective Wellbeing.
Berberine is a chemical that is found in a number of plants commonly used in botanical medicine practices. These herbs include barberry (Berberis vulgaris), oregon grape (Berberis aquifolium), goldenseal (Hydrastis Canadensis), and chinese goldthread (Coptis chinensis). Berberine is a yellow-colored alkaloid compound. Alkaloids are compounds found in plants that have physiological actions on humans. Berberine is believed to have anti-microbial actions against bacteria, fungi, viruses, and helminthes. It may also has anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties, and may even be beneficial against metabolic syndrome (a group of conditions that puts you at higher risk for stroke, heart disease and other health problems such as diabetes). With the increasing rise in metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and heart disease and the therapeutic potential of berberine, it is no reason that this chemical is trending upward. LuckyVitamin has a large selection of Berberine products from top rated companies such as Vital Nutrients, Douglas Laboratories and Biotics Research.
Wellness bloggers and celebrity chefs have been talking about this trend for some time now, and its popularity continues to grow. Bone broth, or stock, is made by boiling the bones from the animal of your choice (commonly turkey, chicken or beef) with vegetables and spices. Part of the reason it’s becoming so popular is because bone broth is easy to make, relatively inexpensive and packed with vitamins, minerals and proteins. Some of the benefits may include promoting strong bones and reducing joint pain and inflammation. It may also help inhibit infection and seal your gut to promote healthy digestion. While it’s best to try and make your own bone broth, Pacific Natural Foods, Kettle and Fire and Osteobroth are great sources of convenient pre-made broths.
Saturated fats get a bad rap. However, it’s important to remember that saturated fatty acids are classified by the length of their chains, such as short, medium or long chain fatty acids. Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) are a form of saturated fat with many proposed health benefits. There are three separate fatty acids classified as medium chain: caproic, caprylic and capric acid. MCT oil is one of the biggest growing health trends right now. It’s believed that because MCTs are more rapidly metabolized that they may increase energy expenditure (calories burned) leading to weight loss. It is also believed that MCTs have a lower calorie count and are not stored in fat deposits in the body as much as long chain fatty acids. Lastly, MCTs may provide you with a little extra energy to get you through the day. You can use MCT oil for a salad dressing or cooking oil, however, it does not have a very high smoke point (320°F). Other MCT sources include coconut oil, palm kernel oil, cheese, butter, milk and yogurt. Shop our large selection of top selling brands such as Nature’s Way, Now Foods, Quest Nutrition, Barlean’s and many more.
When it comes to fruits with health benefits, avocados are at the top of the list. They’re packed full of fiber, potassium and vitamins such as vitamin B6, B5, C, E. One of the most talked about benefits is the fact that it provides the body with “good” fats, also known as monounsaturated fats. These fats can help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood, which in turn can lower the risk of heart disease and stroke. One new and interesting use for avocado is avocado oil. Brands are using avocado oil to make all sorts of products, including cooking oil, avocado mayonnaise and avocado kettle chips. You can even find avocado oil in personal care products. Some great brands that use of avocado oil based beauty products include Peter Lamas, Giovanni, Now Foods and Baby Mantra.
We’re pleased to announce our new partnership with HowGood— a company that shares our passion for transparency in the food system and a mission to help shoppers to find products that meet their high standards. You’ll now find HowGood’s GOOD, GREAT, and BEST ratings on our most sustainable food products as well as information on why each positively rated item receives the HowGood stamp of approval.
HowGood was started back in 2007 by brothers Alexander and Arthur Gillett with the goal of finding ways to support and improve our food system. They spent their first five years partnering with industry experts, farmers, scientists, NGOs, and academics to develop a research framework that could be used to examine and rate the environmental and social impact of different foods. The company now has a database of over 170k rated items and a team devoted to researching the sourcing standards, production methods, and company conduct for each product. They look at over 60 different metrics for each item, including factors ranging from pesticide usage to labor conditions to processing practices, before assigning a rating to help shoppers make informed decisions.
Each product that meets the HowGood standards receives a GOOD, GREAT, and BEST rating, with each step up on the scale equating to extra measures that the company is taking to produce foods that are more responsibly sourced, environmentally-friendly, and wholesome. Those in the top BEST category are industry leaders in sustainability and are focused on making products that are good for consumers, their employees, and the environment. Now, using the HowGood ratings on our site you can easily identify trustworthy brands that are making a difference!
For more information on HowGood, visit their website or download their free app.
Stretching after a workout is vital to improving flexibility and especially in preventing injury. You put in all that hard work at the gym, so don’t blow it by not cooling down the right way. Help your body recover with these perfect workout-ending yoga poses.
Kneeling Crescent Lunge, or Anjaneyasana, is perfect for those with tight, closed hips (hello, anyone who sits at a desk all day).
TIP! Make sure your front knee does not extend forward over your toes.
Cobra, or Bhujangasana, is a great stretch for the abs and shoulders. This back-bending pose helps to open the chest and is good for building strength in the back.
TIP! Remember to keep your hips on the mat and your shoulders away from your ears.
Bridge Pose, also known as Setu Bandha Sarvangasana, opens your chest, shoulders, spine, and hip flexors. Marathon runners, take note, this pose helps alleviate some of the painful side effects of heavy marathon training, such as loosening up your hips.
TIP! For assistance with this pose, use a block under your lower back.
Childs Pose, in Sanskrit called Balasana, is a resting posture that stretches and opens the back to prevent tightness. Rest on your mat, with your arms by your sides and take long, deep breaths. You can hold this pose for 3 breaths or for a few minutes.
TIP! Increase the stretch by reaching your arms forward.
For sufferers of joint and arthritis pain, relief can be tough to come by. If soaks, clammy ointments and cold compresses aren’t doing the trick, it might be time to check out some homeopathic remedies that can help heal organically. Homeopathic medicines, which come in many forms and can be used systemically or applied topically, assist your body’s natural healing process to bring you fast, natural relief.
If there is one homeopathic treatment to carry on your person it’s everyone’s favorite all-natural anti-inflammatory, arnica! Derived from the arnica montana plant, arnica works on a cellular level by combining fast relief with active healing and reduces swelling, bruising and pain associated with injuries sustained as part of leading an active lifestyle. For common aches and pains, a little arnica goes a long way.
Rhus Toxicodendron, or as it’s more commonly known…poison ivy. Yup, I know, but hear me out! This homeopathic remedy is typically taken for joint pain that is worsened by cold, dampness and humidity. Whenever initial movement is difficult and painful, Rhus tox is likely to offer some fast (non-itchy, we promise) relief.
If what ails you is associated with dryness or acute inflammations, whether stiff joints or dry nasal passages, bryonia may be your answer. More specifically, this remedy assists with pain that results from tearing and is made worse by motion.
Recovery is the most important part of a workout. When you exercise, your body burns not only calories but also fluid levels, energy storage, amino acids, vitamins, minerals and nutrients that are essential in muscle preservation. Post-workout supplements are extremely important as they can help build muscle and, most importantly, keep your muscles healthy and ready for your next workout. So, here’s a quick guide of 5 supplements to use after your workout.
1. Whey Protein
The post-workout time-frame for nutrients to get into your muscles is very short and only whey protein is fast enough for the job. Whey protein isolate and concentrate are considered to be the best post-workout protein sources as it sends amino acids to muscle to quickly boost recovery and start muscle growth. Look for supplements which combines whey and casein as whey spikes muscle protein synthesis and casein keeps it going for longer and further enhances muscle growth.
2. Amino Acids
Branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) such as leucine, isoleucine, and valine are the most critical aminos for muscle growth and essential for proper muscle recovery. Leucine has been shown to be the main amino which starts the process of protein synthesis. Amino acids determine your rate of muscle recovery, allowing you to grow stronger and more durable with each training session.
Considered the best product to avoid dehydration and excessive loss of fluids from the body, electrolytes supplements contain high levels of the four main electrolytes that play vital roles in hydration and exercise performance: sodium, potassium, magnesium, and calcium. These important minerals are essential to be replenished in your body after your workout is completed. Sodium is responsible for maintaining fluids balance. Potassium can help prevent muscle cramps. Magnesium plays an important role in muscle relaxation, and calcium is required for normal muscle functions.
Creatine levels must be kept high inside muscle cells for optimal strength and energy. Post-workout is considered the best time to maximize creatine uptake, especially when it gets a boost from carbs.
5. Beta Alanine
This amino acid is now known to be critical for maintaining muscle strength and endurance. A great product to be taken after high-intensity workouts, beta-alanine supplementation may help to delay fatigue, increase anaerobic threshold, increase power, strength, and muscle mass.
There are many different causes of joint pain and people feel it in different areas of the body. Knees, ankles, hips, and elbows are the most common areas but luckily, with many options available, you shouldn’t have a problem finding a good supplement that works for you. We present you 4 supplements for joint health.
One of the most popular products for joint support, glucosamine has the ability to give relief for mild to moderate knee osteoarthritis as well as other joints too. A natural chemical compound in the human body, glucosamine levels drop as you get older and supplementation can help maintain healthy levels. If you struggle to feel the results, try liquid or powder form as some people may not absorb much from tablets and capsules.
Collagen supplements may provide beneficial effects on bone metabolism, especially in the calcium-deficient condition such as osteopenia. Collagen represents 90% of organic bone mass and cartilage consists of a single cell type made up of two major components: type II collagen which imparts tensile strength to the tissue and aggrecan that provides the ability of cartilage to resist compressive force. Regular synthesis ensures and maintains the biochemical characteristic of the cartilage but during osteoarthritis, this regulation is disrupted by the expression of pro-inflammatory molecules. These enzymes degrade aggrecan and collagen, resulting in the loss of cartilage and function.
3. Hyaluronic Acid
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring carbohydrate found in the human body in connective tissue, joint fluid, skin and cartilage. Responsible for maintaining the body joints lubricated as well as keeping your skin smooth and elastic, HA is also produced by the human body but production tends to deplete as we age, which may lead to several joint issues such as osteoarthritis. In order to replenish healthy levels of this important body fluid, hyaluronic acid supplements may be one of the best ways to minimize joint pain and discomfort.
The nutrient MSM (methylsulfonylmethane) is a naturally occurring sulfur compound found in all vertebrates, including humans. MSM is already well-known for its joint health benefits as it delivers sulfur to the body in a useable way. Sulfur helps maintain the structure of connective tissue by forming cross-linkages through disulfide bonds. Critical to good joint health, sulfur strengthens the tissues that make up the joint.