If you want to get in shape but can’t afford a gym membership or kettlebells and dumbbells, we have great news for you. Resistance bands are the way to go! Affordable, space-efficient, highly portable and even more effective than a set of dumbbells, these bands are known to improve strength and balance by working in a full range of motion, targeting muscles that you may miss with weights. So, let’s look at 6 resistance band workouts you can do anywhere.
1. Band Pull Apart
This exercise targets chest, triceps, and upper back. Simply stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and head facing forward. Hold a resistance band in front of you with your arms extended straight out. Leave a little bit of band left at the ends and pull the band apart by bringing your shoulder blades together so that the band touches your chest. Slowly return to the starting position by bringing your arms back down in front you at eye level. Repeat slowly and under control, up to 10 reps.
2. Lunge with Biceps Curl
Place the center of the band under the instep of your left foot and position your right foot about two feet behind you. With an underhand grip on the band’s handles, perform a biceps curl while bending your knees to lower into a lunge position, repeating up to 20 times, then switch legs.
3. Donkey Kicks
A great exercise for legs. Get down on all fours holding the ends of the band with your hands and loop it around your foot. Kick your leg straight back while raising your foot slightly towards the ceiling against the resistance of the band. Hold for a couple of seconds at the top and slowly lower to starting position. Repeat as many times as you can and up to 15 reps per leg.
4. Squat with Overhead Press
Stand in the middle of the band with feet parallel and shoulder-width apart. Hold handles at shoulder height, with palms facing away from you and elbows bent. Squat deeply while pressing your arms directly over your head. Keep your weight on your heels and resist the band as you return to standing position. Repeat about 10-15 times.
5. Glute Bridge
An easy and effective exercise. Tie a band around your legs right above your knees. Lie on your back with your feet on the floor, bending your knees to 90 degrees. Rise up with your hips until your shoulders, hips and knees align, contracting your glutes through the entire movement.
6. Lateral Band Wall
This exercise targets hips, glutes, quadriceps, and hamstrings. Just place the band around your ankles and get into a squat position with your thighs parallel to the ground and feet slightly wider than hip-distance apart. Step out laterally to the left against the band, remaining in the squat position with your hands in front you in an athletic stance. Alternate sides and step to your right against the band. Step out five times on each side and repeat up to 10 reps.
Aromatherapy is so much more than cleverly named and pleasant smelling candles. When practiced correctly, and to the fullest, aromatherapy has the potential to not only enhance and elevate moods but positively alter fundamental brain functions in amazing ways.
With another summer firmly in our rearview, and with several months of colder weather and darker days ahead, now is a great time to unlock the full slate of healing and rejuvenating benefits aromatherapy can offer. Whether you work in an office or stay at home with your littles, get through these hectic times with these essential oil blends that will have you feeling laser-focused and ready to conquer the world (or just back to school season).
Memory & Concentration Blend
This blend uses rosemary essential oil which is known for boosting memory and concentration. Throw in some lemon essential oil to heighten the senses and you’ve got yourself a dynamic pairing that will keep you on point all day.
Pour the carrier oil (jojoba) in a glass dropper bottle or a roller bottle. Then add your essential oils. With essential oils it’s important to remember that a little goes a long way. Just add a drop or two and rub on your temples.
Crunchy Concentration Blend
Calling all bohemians! Sandalwood is the star of this earthy blend that provides a sense of clarity and pairs well with the calming effect of patchouli.
Finding a good supplement can be difficult. With so many different products and brands available, one might find it complicated to choose the right one. Plus, recent reports on supplements are making this task even more difficult.
According to the World Health Organization, a variety of supplements available in a number of retailers including large, national chains do not contain the ingredients listed on their labels. In other words, some products, particularly fitness supplements, are fake and contain phony ingredients. This adulteration of herbal products is a threat to consumer safety as these supplements may be contaminated or substituted with alternative plant species and fillers that are not listed on the labels.
So, how can you tell if your fitness supplements are unhealthy? How can a regular customer check if the product they are buying contain additives, unhealthy fillers, or harmful ingredients?
Checking for verification labels should be the first thing to do. Look for the USP certification label which ensures that the product has been tested and looked at by the U.S. Pharmacopeial Convention, which verifies that the listed ingredients do indeed exist, and that there is no contamination. Plus, a NSF label is a certification that the product is what it claims to be.
Additionally, find a brand known and certified for good practices. A lot of top-quality brands embrace DNA barcoding for authenticating herbal products through testing of raw materials used in the manufacturing of the products.
Lastly, avoid cheap, conventional brands sold at large chain stores as those seem to be the most “fishy” when it comes to providing consumers with safe, high quality herbal products.
If asked, “what’s your largest organ?” it’s doubtful that “skin” would be in most people’s top 10 (or even top 100) guesses – but it’s true. And what you apply TO your skin can greatly affect not only how you look, but how you feel.
Feel the glow by following our clear skin commandments…
1. Drink water
This is not only about downing eight glasses a day but starting your morning right with hot water and lemon. It helps aid digestion and is a better alternative to coffee.
2. Practice self-care
Take time for self-care. Take that yoga class you’ve been meaning to for ages. Planning time for self-care can reduce stress-inducing hormones that wreak havoc on your skin.
Help cover any nutrient gaps with supplements. A daily multivitamin with nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, zinc, selenium and chromium all play an essential role in reducing excess sebum, helps build collagen and repairs skin cells.
4. Eat a balanced diet
A well-balanced diet high in antioxidants and omegas will do your skin (and your health) a world of good. Start stocking up on blueberries, oranges, strawberries and sweet potatoes – all great sources of the types of antioxidants that help fight acne and result in radiant skin . Acne has another enemy in the form of Omega-3s. Consuming salmon, nutsand olive oil help reduce inflammation, a root cause of those pesky blemishes.
Get plenty of “beauty sleep.” Less sleep lowers circulation, which could leave you looking pale and washed out. Your body’s cellular renewal occurs at night, so the night time really is the right time to apply as many nutrients and hydrating ingredients as it needs.
Mix together everything except the aloe and vitamin E oil until a paste forms. Apply to skin and leave on for 10 minutes or until dry. Remove using a warm cloth. Follow up by applying the aloe vera and vitamin e oil to prevent overdrying.
A multivitamin is one of the best supplements anyone can take on a regular basis. These products contain all the essential vitamins plus important minerals to maintain good health. Plus, some multis add a few extra ingredients such as omegas and herbs that can maximize results, offering an even more complete product. If you are still unsure, let’s talk about 5 signs you should start taking a multivitamin.
1. Deficiency Symptoms
If you take a blood test and the results show that you are deficient in a certain nutrient, a multivitamin is the best way to restore optimal levels. Some vitamins and minerals are extremely important for good health. For example, vitamin D and vitamin B deficiency can significantly affect your body as well as the lack of some minerals such as iron and calcium.
2. Feeling Tired
If you are always feeling tired or have had a lot of stress for a long time, a multivitamin can help you tremendously. Multivitamins contain every B vitamin which can promote a boost in energy levels as well as a decrease in anxiety and stress, which burns these nutrients quickly.
3. Often Sick
If you are often sick, seem to catch a cold every single month, or spend most of the winter battling the flu and cold, an uptake in vitamins should help you. Multivitamins help boost immunity as they contain vitamin C, a strong antioxidant known to enhance the immune system, as well as vitamin E, which can help reduce allergy symptoms.
4. Poor Diet
If you are unable to eat a healthy and well-balanced diet, a multivitamin can minimize the damage. Of course eating a good diet is ideal but for those who don’t eat many fruits and vegetables, these supplements can at least provide the minimum required amount of vitamins and minerals to cover off nutrients you are not getting from food and keep you in better shape.
5. Chronic Illness
If you have been diagnosed with an illness of any kind, a multivitamin will likely to be recommended by your health caretaker. Inadequate levels of some vitamins can lead to chronic illness and when you are battling disease, your body needs the most nutrients possible to get you back to full health.
No matter who you are, good sexual health pays off in a big way, and Sinclair’s business is empowering their customers to discover life-changing intimacy and pleasure. So much more than product and price, Sinclair Institute is the world’s trusted destination for amazing products, reliable information & tips, and service & satisfaction that no one else can deliver.
Everyone knows the health risks of regular table salt. For decades, the medical profession has urged us to limit our intake of the flavorful additive. But what you may not know is that all salt is not created equal.
Still not convinced why you should make the switch? Before you get all salty, read below…
Nutrients, nutrients, nutrients
Himalayan salt is so much more than its pretty pink hue. Packed with 84 minerals and trace elements, including calcium, magnesium, potassium, copper and iron, it’ll make the transition away from standard table salt seamless. Plus, it’s naturally occurring without chemical processing or refinement. Due to the high mineral content, you actually get less sodium per serving, too. Wins all around.
It’s a culinary thing
Gourmet cooks recommend the exquisite taste of wholesome, natural, pink Himalayan crystal salt for cooking and curing. Compared to table salt, it’s more easily metabolized by your body. Ready to elevate your grilled veggies? Trying cooking on a Himalayan salt slab. Your taste buds will thank you!
Look at the source
Currently, our oceans and waterways are polluted with toxic chemicals. So it’s safe to say that Himalayan salt is a healthy alternative compared to sea salt. About 250 million years ago, the Himalayan mountain range was covered by a primordial ocean. When the ocean floor rose, it created a salt lake that evaporated and formed the salt range across most of Asia where one of our favorite Himalayan salt brands are from. Some believe it to one of the purest forms of salt around.
Remember, everything in moderation – even Himalayan salt. Before you go dousing your food with it, remember to limit your sodium consumption to no more than 2300 mg per day, and if you suffer from high blood pressure, keep it under 1500 mg.
We often take the ability to move about freely for granted until joint pain flares up. When your daily life is constantly interrupted by sore wrists and creaky knees, finding fast relief is a top priority. Popping a pain reliever can make the pain bearable and help you power through the day, but relying on them is not great for your health, and ultimately only masks the root problem. Luckily, there are several, drug-free options to find pain relief from irritated joints and even help determine what the root cause of your issues could be.
1. Take supplements
This seems like the obvious step, but if you haven’t tried a supplement for chronic joint pain—get on that! Glucosamine and chondroitin are incredibly popular for treating pain and swelling associated with joint pain and comes without any known risks. Omega-3 fatty acids are also helpful in preventing and easing joint pain, which is why many people take fish oil supplements regularly. If you’re vegetarian or not into the fishy aftertaste, consider alternatives like flaxseeds, chia seeds or supplements derived from algae.
While there’s not much scientific proof that acupuncture directly improves joint pain, a 2013 review showed some evidence that this alternative treatment can alleviate pain, swelling and stiffness. Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese practice that aims to balance the energy in the body to help address a range of disorders and encourage pain relief. It’s an excellent wellness practice that can do many things for your overall health, even if your joints are not directly improved as a result.
3. Go swimming!
Swimming uses strengthening movements and helps develop flexibility without the high-impact that can irritate and worsen joint pain. Studies show that not only does swimming prevent further damage to joints that high-impact exercises can bring, but can actually improve your joints by strengthing them without irritation.
4. Take up a Tai Chi practice
Similar to the rationale behind swimming, Tai Chi is a great way to strengthen muscles around your joints without the high-impact of other physical activities. A Tai Chi practice can actually expand your range of motion to improve flexibility in the joints and aiding pain relief.
5. Anti-inflammatory diet
Keeping a diet rich in Omega-3s and anti-inflammatory foods can be a great way to find pain relief. While this is not an immediate solution to the problem, eating an anti-inflammatory diet can help address the root cause of inflammation in the body instead of acting as a band-aid. Foods like fish, green leafy veggies, and turmeric tea are excellent staples to an anti-inflammatory diet.
Finding an ability to deal with your thoughts and feelings regarding pain is a crucial step to finding relief that not many are willing to take. The idea of facing your pain can be intimidating, but making the choice to be mindful and practice acceptance can change the way we feel about it. If we can increase our pain tolerance, the more willing we might be to take additional steps towards healing. Using meditation to relax and reduce stress can have a diminishing effect on inflammation and swelling as well.
7. Get up and move throughout the day
There are more benefits to exercise than just weight loss! Regular movement helps maintain flexibility in your joints—preventing and easing joint pain. Like I mentioned earlier, try low impact exercises like swimming, or gentle practices like Tai Chi to keep your joints flexible and strong. If you work in an office and can’t jump in a pool midday, making time to get up and walk around a bit is better than sitting still!
When it comes to joint pain, over the counter pain relievers will mask the pain, but will not address or help treat the root cause. Have you tried any of these natural remedies? What are some of your go-to joint pain relief techniques?
Some people may get confused when looking for omega-3 supplements as some products contain the term 3-6-9 on their labels. What’s the difference? Do we really need 6s and 9s or isn’t just the omega-3 enough? Understanding the omega 3-6-9 doesn’t have to be difficult. So, let’s present you a quick essential fatty acid guide.
What is it?
Omega-3 (Alpha-linolenic acid) is an essential fatty acid that plays an important role in all sorts of bodily processes.
Where are they found?
Fatty fish such as salmon, sardines, and herring, grains, seeds, nuts, and oils such as flaxseed, wheat germ, canola, and hempseed.
What health benefits they provide?
Reduce cholesterol and risk of heart disease, improve joint mobility, enhance brain function, maximize fat-loss, and control high blood pressure.
What is it?
Omega-6 (Linoleic acid) is an essential fatty acid that is necessary for optimal health.
Where are they found?
Olive oil, grapeseed, pistachios, raw nuts, chia seed oil, pumpkin seeds, hempseed oil, green leafy vegetables, broccoli, and kale.
What health benefits they provide?
Promote brain health and assist in healthy growth and development, fight inflammation, reduce arthritis as well as nerve pain, supports bone health, and lower risk of heart disease and high blood pressure.
What is it?
Omega-9 (monounsaturated oleic and stearic acid) is a non-essential fatty acid produced naturally by the body. However, this production requires omega-3 and 6 and if you lack these fatty acids in your diet, you must obtain omega-9 from food sources.
Where are they found?
Avocados, almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, cashews, pistachios, olives, and olive oil
What health benefits they provide?
Regulate cholesterol levels, enhance immune function, promote joint healing, and provide anti-inflammatory properties.
It’s important that you eat twice as much omega-6 as omega-3 but because omega-6 fats are commonly found in widely used vegetable oils, not a lot of Americans are deficient in omega-6s. In fact, most people consume way more omega-6 than omega-3 which isn’t good. Keep the ratio 2:1 by ensuring that you are getting enough omega-3s from food sources or supplements.
Whether oil pulling is a staple in your morning routine or the mere thought of swishing oil for 20 minutes makes you gag, this ancient, Ayurvedic technique is buzzing in the wellness community. So what exactly is oil pulling? It’s taking roughly a tablespoon or two of oil (traditionally sesame, sunflower or coconut) and swishing it in your mouth for up to 20 minutes prior to brushing your teeth. Many seemingly miraculous health claims have been touted about the practice, such as its ability to draw out toxins from your body, relieve TMJ symptoms, help digestion, prevent heart disease, whiten teeth, increase energy…the list goes on.
While there is a lot of anecdotal-based support for this remedy, the problem with oil pulling is that there is little scientific evidence to back up the claims—as there are only a handful of studies completed on the topic. It’s great to stay in-the-know when it comes to health and wellness, but it’s always important to do your research and make an informed decision with the help of a doctor before jumping on trends.
What oil pulling could do for your health
Studies show that a decrease in plaque and gingivitis symptoms can be noticed after 7 days of oil pulling, but naturally, these results will vary from person to person. Many have reported whiter teeth and sensitivity relief as the common and most noticeable effects of using this remedy daily.
Oil pulling is a great substitute for conventional mouthwash because it can eliminate bad bacteria without taking the good bacteria along with it. Still looking for a minty-fresh feeling after you brush? Add a drop of peppermint to the coconut oil promote better breath.
What oil pulling probably won’t do for you
While there are some apparent benefits of oil pulling, the jury is still out on its other supposed health benefits. There is no scientifically confirmed evidence that it can pull toxins from your body, balance hormones, prevent heart disease, etc. For now, we have only the testimonies of oil pulling advocates as we await new scientific studies to test this ancient, natural remedy.
It’s extremely important to remember that oil pulling is NOT a substitute for flossing or brushing. Like mentioned above, it can be a more holistic alternative to mouthwash, but nothing replaces the mechanical actions of brushing and flossing.
So…is it worth a try?
For now, it seems like the best way to find out if oil pulling will work for you is to try it! Most dentist’s philosophy seems to be “there’s no real risk so give it a try if you enjoy it,” just remember to NOT neglect your regular flossing and brushing. Another warning is to be very careful not to inhale oil down the wrong pipe, as it can cause lipoid pneumonia if it gets into the lungs.
Personally, I’ve used coconut oil for my sensitive teeth and it’s been helpful at providing some pain relief. My teeth seem whiter, but I’ve also stepped up my overall dental care routine, so that could have (obviously) played a role in that! In addition to sensitive pain relief, I prefer oil to mouthwash as it does leave a fresh feeling without the harmful chemicals and lingering aftertaste.
How To Oil Pull
If you think oil pulling can benefit you, here are a few tips to get started:
Oil pull first thing in the morning, before eating or drinking or even brushing your teeth
Swish 1-2 tablespoons for 10-20 minutes. You can start with a short amount of time to build up your tolerance.
Spit out into a trash can, never your sink! It can clog drains.
Brush your teeth and floss as normal after. You can oil pull a few times a week or every day if you want!
Like many natural remedies, it will take some time and regular practice before you see results. Are you an oil pulling advocate or not? Let us know why below!
Filed Under: Home at 12:01 am | By: Mauricio Matusiak, Senior Editor
It’s pretty well known that Mason jars are a staple piece for crafting, but you might be surprised by the incredible number of ways you can use them. Mason jars are simply storage containers, but with a little bit of creativity, there are so many things you can do with them. Since we can’t list them all, we selected our 5 favorite ways to use Mason jars.
1. Indoor Herbs
Mason jars are normally used to store everything from raw food to leftovers but how about using them to grown herbs inside your home? You can hang several Mason jars on the wall or place them on the kitchen counter, creating your little herb garden indoors. Grow oregano, parsley, dill, chives, basil and pretty much any herb in these beautiful and practical jars.
2. Beverages and Drinks
Mason jars can be used for all types of beverages and drinks in a unique and stylish way. These jars can be used for fun beverages for kids. Just make a hole in the center of the lid and use a straw to serve them chocolate milk, smoothies, yogurt, fruit-infused water and pretty much any other beverage. Get extra creative painting the jar with your favorite color or adding your name or favorite sports team. Plus, it works for adult drinks as well! You can make fancy drinks such as mojitos, caipirinhas, or pina colada and serve your friends in a non-traditional way.
3. Home Décor
Decorating Mason jars are a simple, affordable, and unique way to personalize your home exactly the way you want. These jars can be used for food storage, bathroom storage, in your office as pencil/pen containers, in your living room as candle holders and so much more. You can also decorate them to match your home color/style as well as personalize them for special holidays such as Christmas, Fourth of July, Easter, etc.
4. Yogurt Storage
If you make your own homemade yogurt, Mason jars are an excellent choice to store them. Instead of culturing homemade yogurt in the crockpot or yogurt maker, you can do it in mason jars as they stack and store well in the fridge and are also easy for traveling.
5. Table Centerpiece
Mason jars make perfect table centerpieces. With so many sizes and models available, you can be sure to find the perfect jar to add some flowers or any ornaments to enhance your table. Perfect to be placed on smaller coffee tables and counter tops, mason jars can literally fit anywhere in your home.
Place coconut oil in a quart sized pot and melt until liquid. Pour into glass bowl and combine with remaining ingredients. Stir together until well mixed and place in a quart sized Mason jar. To use, scoop out a small amount and add a little water for a creamier like texture. Give some extra love to areas that need some extra exfoliating like knees, elbows and feet.
Fermentation is essentially one of the oldest forms of food preservation but did you know that consuming fermented foods can provide a lot of health benefits? When you eat fermented foods you obtain probiotics known to promote a healthier digestive system as well as enhance your immunity. Even better, some of these foods are easy to ferment at home. So, let’s present you 7 fermented foods that are easy to make at home.
Make your own yogurt. Known for its probiotic content, yogurt is perhaps the most popular fermented food. Super easy to make, there are a lot of yogurt recipes available online from the conventional ones made with milk and acidophilus to the alternative ones such as soy or coconut yogurt.
Sauerkraut is made from fermented cabbage, caraway seeds, dill or other spices, and contains natural prebiotics as well as vitamins and is known to improve overall digestion. One of the easiest fermented foods to make, sauerkraut simply requires that you add the ingredients into a clean jar and ferment for a few days.
Another popular choice, kombucha can be easily made at home. Kombucha products can be pretty expensive but you can save money by making your own sugar-tea solution fermented by bacteria and yeast commonly known as SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast).
A traditional Korean sauerkraut made through the process of lacto-fermentation, Kimchi is an easy-to-make great source of probiotics. It is made in a base of cabbage but contains peppers and a variety of vegetables rich in antioxidants
Kefir contains about 10 times more probiotics than yogurt as this ancient healing beverage is known to boost the immune system and regulate digestion. If you do not tolerate dairy, you can make an alternative version of water or coconut kefir.
6. Fermented Juice
Delicious, healthy and easy-to-make, fermented apple juice is a probiotic rich drink made from fresh apples. You can find several different recipes on how to make a probiotic sparkling apple juice loaded with vitamins and minerals.
Organic cucumbers, salt and water. Simple and easy-to-make, pickled cucumbers contain probiotics as well as gut healing properties along with sources of minerals like silica which aids the health of the hair, skin, and nails.