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The Eyes Have It

Wanna know a secret? I don’t remember being all that into makeup as a teen or even in my twenties or thirties. At 48 though, I love me some lashes, high-quality brushes, and all the clean makeup I can get my hands on!!! Speaking of clean make-up, these three palettes from Savvy Minerals by Young Living are as clean as eyeshadow gets. Did you know the US bans only 11 common toxic ingredients found in personal care products? The EU bans 1,328. Another popular direct sales beauty company bans 1,500. Savvy Minerals by Young Living BANS 2,500!!! I love all…

One-Minute Cinnamon Coffee Cake

A few weeks back, Tom and I went out for brunch at an award-winning restaurant here in downtown Minneapolis. One of the menu items we oohed and ahhed over was a gluten-free cinnamon coffee cake. Oh my word, was it ever good. I bet Tom that I could make my own version that was just as good AND eliminate the sugar and carbs. So, I did. Cinnamon Coffee Cake Prep Time: 2 MinutesCook Time: 1 MinuteYields: 1 ServingA healthy alternative to cinnamon coffee cake. Dry Ingredients 1/4 c Blanched Almond Flour2 T Vanilla Protein Powder (I use this one)1 T Sugar-Free Sweetener…

How To Create Personalized Sign-Up Link

One of the things I think all new members need, as they get started on their YL journey is their sign-up link. It is more likely they will share with their mother, brother, sister, friend, co-worker, etc. if they have it. If they have to figure out how to find it, shorten it, and personalize it themselves, the likelihood of them doing it is slim to none. The simpler we can make the sharing process the more success we are going to have. Here is how I create personalized sign-up links using Bitly. I hope this helps!!!

How To Clean Your Makeup Brushes

Truth be told, I am not the hygiene queen when it comes to keeping my makeup brushes nice and clean. Which is why I am so excited about these two new products our company just launched -- Solid Brush Cleaner and Silicone Cleansing Pad. Now, I have no excuses for not cleaning my brushes. How To Clean Your Makeup Brushes Wet your brush, making sure to wet only the bristles and not the handleSwirl the bristles into the brush cleanerSwirl the bristles again against the surface of the cleansing padRinse the brushRepeat if necessaryReshape brush and lay flat to dry…

Dear Dad

Last week you gave us a scareBut with some tender-loving careYour heart is on the mend We all knew it wasn’t the endYou’ve got fish to catch, golf to playAnd family and friends to visit every dayWe’re all so glad you’re alive Celebrating seventy-five!!! Happy Birthday Dad!!! ????????????,Your Tessie Bird Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook and help me wish my dad a happy birthday.

Happy Easter 2019

We were blessed to have our little buddy Asher this weekend. Took him to an Easter egg hunt at the park yesterday as well as his first visit to the driving range. This morning we woke to a path of purple eggs that ended at his Easter basket. Breakfast, shower, and brushed our teeth twice and Asher was ready for church with his other grandparents. Tom and I went for a walk to a favorite breakfast spot/coffee shop, then back home to start cooking our Easter dinner. The Romero Family arrived around 3 pm for a traditional ham dinner. Afterward,…

Cheers to You

The sun is shining and it’s +70 degrees F in Minnesota. This is one of my all-time fave spring/summer after dinner drinks. Caffeine-free Zevia Cola (sweetened with Stevia) and a few drops Lime Vitality. If you want to liven up the party, a splash of vodka is yummy!!! Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

The Only Place I Want To Be

I was laying in bed with Asher last night — he was long asleep and I was just drifting off. Tom came in and said, “your dad had a heart attack.” All I heard was “heart attack” and “dad.” I thought he said his dad. I immediately sat up, and he handed me the phone, it was my sister. Then it clicked. My dad. My dad had a heart attack. He will be in the hospital through the weekend and on Monday they’ll do an angiogram to assess heart damage and then we will go from there. We’ve been hanging…

Soak Your Strawberries

Every year the Environmental Working Group (EWG) publishes a shopper's guide to pesticides in produce. The clean fifteen are those foods with the lowest pesticide residue and the dirty dozen the highest. When enjoying foods from the dirty list, buy organic when possible and always be sure to wash your produce. I use Thieves Fruit & Veggie Soak. I picked up these gorgeous organic strawberries (you'll notice they are #1 on the dirty dozen list below) from Costco yesterday. I gave them a quick bath and cleaned them up -- all ready for snacking on this week!!! Nearly 70% of…

Crying Over a Game of Dominoes

The other morning I found myself sitting at our dining room table crying over a game of dominoes. I wasn't sad per se. Well, maybe a little, but for the right reason. I had asked Tom if he had talked to his parents recently. He responded that he had. The obvious next question, was, well, how are they doing. His reply was what made me cry. When he had talked with his mom she had said something along the lines of the two of them (his parents) not getting along that day. Now, I realize that after being married for…

April 2019 HLWEO Rally Recap

April 2019 HLWEO Rally Recap Every quarter, tens of thousands of Young Living members come together for member-hosted rallies. From in-home meetings, to hotel gatherings, to "online" events like ours, we come together on the same day, to share our common passion...Young Living Essential Oils. Rally Livestream Celebrating 25 Years Dream 1000 New Market Opening Young Living Foundation Update 5x5 Zero Waste Goal New Products International Grand Convention When I Think of Young Living Barb SnodgrassMember Since March 2014When I think of Young Living, I think of health and healing because in the 5 years I’ve been a member that’s…

Goodbyes Always Make Me Cry…

...and saying goodbye to the yellow brick road was no different. Elton John put on a fantastic farewell show in Minneapolis as part of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour. I love that I got to experience it with my best friend and sister Camille and my son Brodrick Romero from the 14th row. At one point during the show, Sir Elton John had a heart-to-heart chat with the audience. He shared his struggles and encouraged the audience to never be ashamed to reach out for help. That made me cry too!!! Here's a Spotify playlist I made of most…

Two-Minute Banana Bread Muffin

Our grandson loves bananas, which means we often have an overly ripe one sitting on our counter. Lately, I've been craving banana bread and thought I'd try my hand at a two-minute "banana bread" type muffin. As the kitchen gods would have it, my first attempt turned out quite delicious if I do say so myself. I love sharing my daily life, healthy lifestyle tips, favorite finds, new (and old) recipes like this two-minute banana bread muffin, and fun shenanigans via Instastories. If you don't already, follow me on the gram. Two-Minute Banana Bread Muffin Prep Time: 3 minutesBake Time: 2…

Sixty-Hundred Dollars

“I love my grandma sixty-hundred dollars to the moon and back.” -Asher, 4 yo We spent our Valentine’s Day together playing Nerf guns, trucks, and hot tubbing. You know, every 4-year-old’s favorite things. And we wouldn’t have it any other way. What did you do to celebrate love??? Valentine's Day Coffee Made with Love Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

PSK At A Glance | Peppermint

PSK At A Glance | Peppermint Peppermint essential oil increases energy, relieves nausea, improves concentration, clarity, and focus. Peppermint is invigorating and stimulating. Peppermint essential oil also supports appetite control and healthy weight management and relieves occasional nausea and motion sickness. Peppermint essential oil can be used aromatically, topically, and internally. Vitality essential oils (white label) and their non-vitality (colored label) counterpart have the same essential oil inside the bottle. Vitality oils are labeled for internal use and non-vitality for aromatic and topical use. Testimonials "I put Peppermint in my diffuser necklace to help keep me alert throughout the day."…

PSK At A Glance | 15-Day Challenge

Peppermint increases energy, relieves nausea, improves concentration, clarity, and focus. [Continue reading...] Lemon supports the body's natural detox process and promotes emotional well-being. [Continue reading...] Thieves supports overall wellness, a healthy immune system, and is one of Young Living's most popular products. [Continue reading...] Citrus Fresh amplifies creativity and adds a clean fresh scent to any environment. [Continue reading...] DiGize provides relief from occasional heartburn and alleviates stomach discomforts. [Continue reading...] Raven maintains feelings of easy breathing while minimizing the effects of season changes. [Continue reading...] Valor balances emotional energy and instills courage, confidence, and self-esteem. [Continue reading...] PanAway reduces…

Healthy Brownies

Unbeknownst to me, Tom recently ordered some Paleo brownies online. And when they came, I said, "Honey, I can make these healthy brownies, probably better." He said the brownies he bought were dry and not very appealing. So, that was my challenge for this Saturday morning. To make a healthy brownie that was better than the ones he bought. I love sharing my daily life, healthy lifestyle tips, favorite finds, new (and old) recipes like these healthy brownies, and fun shenanigans via Instastories. If you don't already, follow me on the gram. Healthy Brownies Prep Time: 5 minutesBake Time: 30 minutesYields:…

Being Creative

Anytime, I feel my creativity waning, I take a step back and assess two things: How much time have I spent (1.) scrolling on social media and (2.) in silence? These two things alone have a dramatic effect on how creative I am. You've probably heard the famous Theodore Roosevelt quote, "Comparison is the thief of joy.” Comparison also steals your creativity. The more time we spend on social media scrolling (versus commenting, connecting, and conversing with others) the more likely our brain will get hijacked. And when our brain gets hijacked, we start assessing ourselves against others. Bottom Line.…

My Top 10 Amazon “Buy It Agains” for 2018 That Are Not Boring

207. That's the number of Amazon orders we placed in 2018. It doesn't include the orders we placed for groceries and other "must have them right now" items via the Amazon Prime Now mobile app. Our first order of the year was on January 3, 2018. It was for trash bags, dog food, and wind-up chomping teeth. Similar but not the same, we also bought dog poop bags, coffee filters, and emoji beach balls in January. As I scroll through our orders for the year, I see lots of toilet paper, books, and underwear (both men's and toddler sizes). We…
Read more » My Top 10 Amazon “Buy It Agains” for 2018 That Are Not Boring

I May or May Not Have BO

Hello, I'm Vanessa. I once had someone tell me they did not like my purple hair, said it was for the birds. My nickname is Birdie. I like ketchup but hate tomatoes. I've been known to leave up our Christmas tree well into February. My second toe is longer than my first, which according to my foot reading, means I am creative and bossy. I live in the Land of 10,000 Lakes but swimming in them gives me the heebie-jeebies. My ears do hang low, well my earlobes do anyways. Even though I adore coffee, I rarely finish a cup.…

If I Only Had Seven Good Years Left

I am about the same age today, that my mom was in this picture. She had seven "good" years left before the symptoms of Lewy Body disease started to show and would slowly take her life. I've thought about this a lot lately; am I living my life in such a way, if I only had seven "good" years left, would I have no regrets? Am I focusing on the people and things that really matter? Am I expressing my gratitude each day for blessings big and small? Am I saying yes when I mean yes and no when I…

What Are You Doing for Others

"Life's most persistent and urgent question is, "What are you doing for others?"" -- Martin Luther King, Jr. I don't know about you, but sometimes in the busyness of life, I often forget just how simple it can be to serve others. It doesn't have to take a lot of time or even money to be a difference maker in someone's life. I jotted down these 25 ideas in my journal today to keep them front and center. What would you add to the list? 1. Smile 2. Open/hold the door 3. Give a ride 4. Pay the tab 5. Be a listening ear 6.…

Only Dead Fish Go with the Flow

I once showed up at an event in a cute and trendy maxi-dress even though I was supposed to be wearing a branded t-shirt. I hate “most" t-shirts. They are rarely flattering, especially the unisex style with a high neckline. They make busty women like me, look like we have a uni-boob. When I turned forty, I gave up my battle with clothes, making the decision to only buy/wear clothes that flattered my body type and made me feel good when I wore them. Boxy t-shirts do not make me feel good. Before the event, I wrestled with the t-shirt in…

Home

Hello, I'm Vanessa I once had someone tell me they did not like my purple hair, said it was for the birds. My nickname is Birdie. Sometimes, The Bird. I am a Christ-follower, wife, mother, grandmother, business owner, city slicker, purple lover, and health nut. Learn more about me. Read My Blog I blog about healthy living; from food freedom to financial freedom and everything in between. My hope is to inspire you to live healthy, love intently, and lead purposefully. Oh yeah, and to have a little (or a lot of) fun along the way! Read my blog. Let's Be Friends…

You’re a VIP!

Hey there! Thanks so much for becoming a VIP. I am honored to be connected with you. I know you get tons of emails and your time is precious. That's why you'll only hear from me when I've got something super valuable to share. Let's stay connected on Facebook and Instagram too. In Health & With Gratitude, Vanessa

How I Healed from Adrenal Fatigue

How I Healed from Adrenal Fatigue Hello, I'm Vanessa. Christ-follower, wife, mother, grandmother, business owner, city slicker, purple lover, and health nut. I have two adult sons, one grandson, one furbaby, and one handsome husband. This is my story of how I healed from adrenal fatigue. My Passion is Helping Others Continually staying up-to-date with current research in nutrition, health, and wellness is my crazy obsession. For many years this passion, combined with my innate empathy and strong desire to help others, was my career. I worked as a fitness professional, coaching individuals in achieving better physical health through nutrition…

Beautiful Bottles

I had these custom 5-ml essential oil bottles with amethyst gemstone roll-ons made to give as gifts to our HLWEO team members. The minimum order size was more than I needed, so I'm selling the overstock in my HLHT Shop. • Purple is Pantone 16-3817 – Rhapsody• Amethyst gemstone roll-on varies in color• Cap is a matte silver Perfect for making essential oil blends. 10% off when you buy 10 or more bottles.

Beauty from Ashes

Our (court) order includes a holiday schedule. We get our little buddy on Christmas, they get him on Christmas Eve. When you say it that way, it seems so, oh, I don’t know, legal. Which it is and it isn’t. Anyways, a few weeks before Christmas I felt it in my spirit to invite them (his other grandparents) over to open presents with us on Christmas Day. And they said yes!!! It was everything I hoped it would be. Tom and I, our two boys (one of them is the daddy), my dad, our little buddy, and his other grandparents…

Mugs Matter

I love a good mug. Handle has to fit at least two fingers. Three is even better. Purple takes it to another level. However, what makes this mug my new favorite, besides the fact it was gifted to me by an amazing mentor and friend... Is that the purchase of this mug provides 56 meals for those who might otherwise go hungry. You see, extremely poor families in Haiti mix clay with water, oil and salt to create a clay cookie to fill stomachs of their desperately hungry children. By transforming the clay into mugs that can be sold, Haitians…

Just Say No

As of late, I’ve had several conversations with friends who are so overwhelmed because they can’t say no. I get that it feels good to be needed by others. However, saying no to one thing, actually means you are saying yes to something else. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Thanksgiving Blessing

On Thanksgiving, it’s only appropriate to share my favorite mealtime blessing, courtesy of my dad. “Father, Son, Holy Ghost, bless the one who eats the most.” Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Lady Lumberjack

Finished out our fall axe throwing season tonight with a third place win in our region and top 50 in the nation!!! Who knew I had a little lady lumberjack in me!!! Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Goin’ to the Chapel

Or should I say courthouse and we’re gonna get married!!! Yes, we did. Fifteen years ago, Tom Nikkola and I (without telling anyone) got married at the courthouse. With our witnesses, Best Man and Maid of Honor, and wedding party, Ken and Kim Wallisch, by our side we said, “I do!!!” Thank you, Ken and Kim, for standing up for us and your friendship that has stood the test of time!!! Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Sunsets are Proof

It’s been cloudy and raining pretty much every day since we moved into our new apartment. Which made last night’s sunset even more special, being it was the first we’ve seen. The sun moved quick as it was setting, but I think I caught a pretty good shot!!! “Sunsets are proof that no matter what happens, every day can end beautifully.” Kristen Butler Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Twenty-One Months Ago

On Tom’s 40th birthday, we learned of a little boy named Asher. We knew he was our grandson the moment we laid eyes on him. He came to us as if he knew too. In the past twenty-one months, we’ve become family, not only with Asher, but with his great-grandparents, who he lives with. Today, we entered the courtroom together, and our temporary order was moved to permanent record. We feel incredibly blessed and honored to be part of this little guy’s life. It goes without saying...we love him soooooo stinkin’ much. Thank YOU to everyone who has prayed for…

Lesson Learned

I just realized that Facebook has deleted all of my FB Live videos from the past few months. My #keto Costco haul is gone. My Mother's Day message is gone. My Wild Blueberry Scone recipe is gone. Coffee talk with Tom & Vanessa is gone. Along with many, many, more gone. Lesson learned. Always download your videos after posting if it's content you want to keep. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook. What You Need to Know About Keto Ebook   The keto diet has attracted many followers for good reason.  It's an effective tool for blood sugar management…

Someone Helped You

Tom and I were recognized for achieving a new rank at our company's annual convention last week. It felt weird to me for two reasons, one, he wasn't with me to walk the stage and two, the recognition really belongs to our team (not us as individuals). Every member of our team matters and adds value. Whether they are a rockstar recruiter, happy product user, powerful prayer warrior, or a leader themselves. I thank God for blessings us with an amazing business but even more so, for hand picking each one of these beYOUtiful people to be part of our HLWEO…

Flying Trapeze

They say you should "do one thing every day that scares you.” Surely this counts for a year of fear because this scared the shizzz out of me!!! My final swing from our 90-minute lesson today at Twin Cities Trapeze. P.S. I apologize for the butt shot climbing the ladder. Tom was recording. Go figure. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Quiet Please

On the final day of the convention, we had an impromptu gathering at a local SLC restaurant before the closing party. We initially made the reservation for 10, then called and made it for 20. When I arrived, the dining room was empty with the exception of those from our team who got there early. Within 10-15 minutes we had +50 gathered around several tables we pulled together. We filled "almost" the entire space. At our member appreciation dinner the night before, we introduced everyone to a fun dice game. As we ordered and waited for dinner, we decided to…

Man Up

When Tom and I met in the fall of 2002, Jacob and Brodrick were six and eight. In our almost 15 years of marriage, he has never referred to them as "my" kids. He has always loved them as "our" sons. Tom has been their rock, raising them to keep their word, be responsible, show respect, have integrity, use discernment, and be disciplined. He has shown them daily how to be a man of great character, a father, and a husband by loving, respecting, and sometimes even defending their mother. Our boys are beyond blessed to call Tom their dad. He didn't…

Social Media Break

I took a social media break while at our company's annual convention. Which may seem weird all things considered. With four workshops to teach over three days, I found myself in a place where I needed to just be present. I spent a lot of time with friends who fill me up and not with the masses. Can you say introvert? Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Just Say No

My middle name is perseverance. Actually, it’s Rae after my father and grandfather. But, that’s neither here nor there. Growing up, any time I asked my dad for something, didn’t matter what it was, his first response was always NO. It was often his second and third response too. I had to work for my yeses. In our business, many people take the noes they receive personally and quit. Not me. Every no I get means I am one step closer to a yes. And for that, I thank my dad. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Stretched & Scared

I'm sitting in a fancy hotel room in Park City all alone. If I weren't holding them back, tears would be falling down my face. Tom and I just got back from a beautiful hike, he ordered me coffee, then went to the gym. Tomorrow, we head to Salt Lake City as our team members arrive for our company convention this week. We are being recognized this year on stage for a new rank and I am a workshop presenter. Only, Tom won't be by my side. He's flying home on Wednesday to hang out with our little buddy, our grandson,…

Views

We've driven under this pedestrian bridge countless times going in and out of the city. It is "the" place where photographers hang out to take skyline pics of our beautiful city. And last night on our evening bike ride, after "missing" a turn on our path home, we ended up going over it. This morning, we found out the bridge is being torn down. It was more than worth carrying our bikes up several flights of stairs to get across the freeway. I mean...LOOK AT THAT VIEW!!! Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Basic Black or Navy & Lilac

...that is the question??? Black is 99% of the time my color of choice. It’s classy and elegant. The navy and lilac is FUN and a little less modest than I prefer, with it being low cut and some air vents on the side. And I am 47 after all. Help a sister out!!! P.S. Don’t mind my hair, I’ve had a hat on all day. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook. P.S. I went with the Navy & Lilac.

Let Your Light Shine

When I started blogging, I had no idea what I was doing or what to expect. I just knew I had a passion for helping people and I had value to offer. I loved on my readers, and they loved on me back. That is until I got my first mean comment. And then another. And another. At some point, when your online presence grows big enough, mean people will find you and, well, be mean to you. To say, "I wasn’t prepared," is an understatement. I had to decide how I would handle the mean people on the internet when…

We Got Into a Fight

...and everything is alright!!! I get upset when I feel I am not being understood. Tom gets upset when he feels he isn't being respected. I talk louder and he shuts down. When it comes to fighting, what we've learned after almost 15 years of marriage is the issue is never really the issue. This weekend we went for a bike ride, out and about exploring new bike paths around Minneapolis. As we navigated around a local lake, we got off the bike path and got on a busy street to go a different direction. Since I am slower than Tom,…

Two Things

1. Good morning The sun woke me at exactly 5:59 am. The earth is tilted in just the right position so that when the sun rises it shines right on my face. Not a shabby way to wake up I say. Much better than an annoying sounding alarm clock. Yuck. I love the morning hours. It’s often my most productive and creative time of the day. That is as long as I get enough sleep. Mornings are like a clean slate. And we get a new one every day or is it everyday? Love it. 2. I love this hat…

Sounds of the City

"Some people” might consider the sounds of the city stressful. As I sit here with my coffee, I hear... the light rail dinging its bell, the engines of buses and cars revving, sirens from emergency vehicles, construction workers pounding, the whir of air exchange systems. I am not “some people.” This is my peaceful and happy place. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Dine & Dash

On Mother's Day, Tom and I rode our new bikes to Uptown Minneapolis to have dinner at one of our favorite restaurants. As we approached, it was evident by the line out the door, there might be a wait. To our surprise, we were seated almost immediately on the patio. There was a young family behind us, mom, dad, two children. I'm guessing between 4-6 years of age. It was very clear, based on their very loud conversation, they were not happy with the service or the food. Shortly after we were seated, the woman called the server over and…

You Matter

You matter even more than you know. And someone, somewhere, is waiting for you to show up today!!! It’s not the whoIt’s not the doIt’s not the where, what, whyIt’s what you believe And this is what I believe. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

A Poem About Lilacs

Tom and I went for a bike ride this afternoon and came upon the most beautiful lilac bushes at a local park. I was inspired to write a poem about them. Stop and smell the lilacs.Count your blessings along the way.Stop and smell the lilacs.It will bring joy to your day.Stop and smell the lilacs.There's time to work and time to play.Stop and smell the lilacs.Take pause and pray. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Use Your Words

In the heat of a meltdown, tantrum, or overwhelm, three words that mommas everywhere have said to their whining toddler, "use your words.” Words carry meaning, express emotion, convey a message. We teach our children from the time they are little to "use your words.” Then school comes along, and they learn how to put their words into writing. To tell a story, share an opinion, sell an idea. Now, I am not a good writer or even a gifted writer. In fact, writing is a laborious process for me. It can take me days to craft a paragraph that…

Rest in Peace

It doesn't matter how you use them or if you diffuse them. If essential oils are in your home, then you have benefited from Gary Young's vision and relentless drive to heal the world. And while many have hopped on the bandwagon for profit, his was a higher calling. One of purpose. He isn't my father or even my friend. He is the man responsible for the modern day essential oil movement. A movement that has provided my family with the freedom to live life by design and not by default. There are no words for the gratitude that fills…

Give Up Being a Caterpillar

I am reading a book called Secrets of Six-Figure Women. The author interviewed women who make six-figure incomes (or more), in different industries with various backgrounds, and shares seven success strategies that are common among them. Strategy number one is that of INTENTION; a determination to act in a certain way. While most of these financially successful women denied money was their end goal, they also knew it would take dollars to make their dreams possible. And were DETERMINED to do so. When I started my business, our youngest son was a senior in high school. I graduated from college…

When You Have a Bad Day

Every once in a great while, I wake up with this weird feeling. My body is overcome with fatigue, it’s usually accompanied by a tension headache and my right eye gets watery. Always my right eye. When it occurs, I immediately know when I wake up. I get “the feeling.” Today, was one of those days. It started with my right eye watering. I chalked it up to sitting outside this morning and drinking my morning coffee. Only by mid-afternoon, the headache was in full swing. And at 5 pm instead of going for a bike ride as planned, I…

New Bike

I am pretty sure my mom was about my age when she decided she was going to take up bike riding. She went and got herself a nice 3-speed bike and then shortly thereafter my dad got one and they would go bike riding on the Gateway Trail. Today, I officially became my mother. Although my bike has a few more speeds and a basket to boot. Oh yeah, and Tom got a bike too!!! Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Pout Pout Fish

Listen, we all have pout pout fish in our life. They bring us down every time they swim around. I’m here to tell you, boundaries are a must with this type of fish. It’s not your job to change them or cheer them up. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

How To Have a Good Day

Over the weekend Tom and I stopped at the bookstore to peruse books (one of our favorite things), drink coffee (another of our favorite things), and do a little work (yep, we like to do that too)!!! Anyways, this is the book that Tom got. Fitting for him, wouldn’t you say?!?! This morning I picked it up...to see what the meditation is for today. It’s a good one. Real good. May 7th. Here’s how to guarantee you have a good day; do good things. Any other source of joy is outside your control or is not renewable. But this one is all you,…

Gotta Have Faith

Truth. I've been on day fifteen of my #100daystobrave since last Friday. I didn't want to post...just to post. I needed to ponder. So, day fifteen is about being BRAVE and not being afraid to ask God the things you really want to know. I couldn't think of a single question. Not on day fifteen, sixteen, or seventeen. I like to think I have a gift from God and what call a "child-like" faith. I trust He has me on the path I'm supposed to be on and my job is to not ask questions but to be obedient. So,…

Keep a Firm Grip

I know at least one of my friends needs to hear this today!!! I hope this verse blesses you as it blessed me last week when I was sick in bed. It won’t last forever. Join the Conversation Join the conversation on Facebook.

Cinco De Mayo & My Mom

Today has me thinking about my mom. I don't know anyone who wished they were Mexican more than her. She married a Mexican, had four Mexican children, loved Mexico and everything about its culture -- the people, especially the people, the food, the history. For their 25th wedding anniversary in 1994, my parents took their very first trip (of many) without kids to Zihuatanejo, Mexico. It would end up being their last trip, without kids that is, for we crashed it the next year and then every year after until my mom was too ill to travel. Mexico made my…

Sunsets & Superpowers

I put myself to bed tonight around 7:30 pm. With it being my first day back in the land of the living, I found myself pretty pooped. We live in a high rise apartment on the 26th floor with a partially obstructed view of the skyline. Which means I gotta get out of bed to see the sky in all its glory. Anyways, as I was lying here tonight, with our slider door open, listening to the sounds of the city, I could see the sky changing color. I was feeling extra warm and cozy and went back and forth…

I Like Big Butts

A few weeks back, shortly after picking up our grandson, he burst out into song in the car. "I LIKE big butts and I cannot lie..." He sang it with confidence, over and over and over. At three, he has no idea what he's singing, only that he LIKES to sing 8 words from the song (it's in a movie he watched). If only we would remain so innocent and LIKE what we want to LIKE, without caring what others think or say about us. Instead, we alter our LIKES to be accepted by or to impress others. Being BRAVE…

Do More

I've been pretty much laid up in bed since Saturday with an upper respiratory virus. Believe you me, this is NOT how I wanted to close out my April. At first, it made me quite mad actually. Mad, because I have a few projects that I am working on that need me to be at my best -- like my workshop presentation for our company convention in June and the re-launch of our business resources. I had to quickly re-channel that anger into GRATITUDE though, because, hello, I am able to run a multi-million-dollar business from my bed between hacking my…

Free Advice

Friend, stop saying mean things about yourself to yourself. Seriously, stop it. If we are going to do BRAVE things together and encourage each other with our uplifting words, we can't be hating on ourselves. Mmmkay?!?! Yes, I know, it's easier said than done, but guess what, you can do hard things. You are BRAVE. If I tasked you to make a list of everything about yourself that you LOVE alongside a list of everything about yourself that you loathe, which list would be longer??? If you're anything like me, this type of exercise makes you uncomfortable. I mean, it's…

Stinky Feet

Feet. Most of us have two of them. I despise them. I guess you could say I have the opposite of a foot fetish. You want to make me squeamish – put your feet on me. My feet are not little or cute. They're also not thaaaat bad either. I mean, I've seen some of the feet that come into the nail salon. Yikes! I take good care of my feet by getting regular pedicures and I always tip generously. Oftentimes, as I'm reclined back in the massage chair and Amy (she's the best at DK Diamond nails) is working…

Trust the Sparks

I recently came home from a conference FIRED up. I had pages and pages of notes that I had whittled down to ten ideas to pray on and implement. I put my blinders on and GOT. TO. WORK. Then boom. I get sick. I mean, I haven't been this sick since before we started our business in 2014. I don't have time to be sick, I have work to do!!! You see when God gives you an idea, it SPARKS something inside. And when you act on it, chances are pretty good the devil is going to attempt to stop…

Messes and Messages

The enemy loves to use our mistakes and torment us with feelings of guilt and shame. If you let him, he will remind you of every mistake you've made since you were like seven years old. But God. God wants to use our messes and make them our message. One of the biggest mistakes I made was getting married to an abusive man. I thought I could change him. All the signs were there before we walked down the aisle. I got myself in a huge mess that God and my family got me out of. Not only did this…

I Am…

It wasn't all that long ago that I was drowning by the weight of what others said about me. And if I was drowning then, today, I am swimming against a current getting stronger every day. I haven't arrived but I am making progress. Two things that have helped me, "I am" statements and worship music. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook. 

Youer Than You

A great philosopher by the name of Dr. Seuss once said, "Today you are YOU, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is YOUER than YOU." It takes courage to be different. But the truth is, you'll never succeed at being YOU if you're trying to be someone else. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Perfection, Procrastination, Fear

I'm an all or nothing type of gal. I also tend to be a wee bit of a perfectionist. Which means, if I can't give something my all, either I don't start or I never finish. Some of my friends might be surprised by this because I seem to get a lot of shiz done. And I do. But what you don't see are the post-it notes and journals full of ideas that never come to fruition. For me, procrastination comes disguised as perfectionism. And perfectionism is really just fear. I'm working on it. Are you a perfectionist? Join the…

Leaving on a Jet Plane

We were supposed to be leaving on a jet plane tomorrow for an all-expense paid trip to Banff, Canada. It's a trip we earned for being top leaders in our company. Only, Tom was going to fly home early, so that we didn't miss out on our weekly Thursday/Friday visit with our grandson. Initially, I agreed; flights were booked and a rental car reserved. As much as I love that Tom would make that sacrifice, it just didn't feel right. So, I listened to my inner voice and at the last minute decided not to go. And you know what,…

Nobody Is Ever Going To Want You

"Nobody is ever going to want you." Those were the final words that were spoken to me when I walked out on an abusive marriage for the last time. I had an almost 2-year old and a few days old baby. At the time, I didn't think of myself as being brave. Looking back, it was one of the bravest things I've ever done. You are braver than you know. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Brave Lady

Three years ago, this pretty lady joined our team. I had never met her in person or even talked to her on the phone. It wasn't until just a few months ago that we met for the first time. This weekend, I had the opportunity to spend three days with her at an event in Las Vegas. As we shared our stories with one another, I couldn't help but thank God for weaving our lives together. Seeing other people be brave makes me want to be brave too. Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Leadership Lies

One of the biggest lies about leadership is that there's such a thing as a "fearless leader." I mean, who coined that phrase anyways? Just because someone displays confidence, doesn't mean they don't also experience fear. The differentiator is in the choice to take action. Today is day one of 100 Days of Brave. It's a daily devotion for "unlocking your most couragous self." I asked three dear friends to join me on this journey, Kristin, Jennifer, and Brooke, and they said YES!!! The assignment for today is to TELL someone you committed to 100 Days of Brave and that someone is YOU!!!…

Confidence Problem

I get stopped all the time, when out and about, by women who compliment me on my hair followed by a, “I wish I could wear my hair short.” My response is usually the same, “why can’t you?” What I have found over the years is that a lot of women have a confidence problem. Which makes me kind of sad actually. I mean, if you don’t have the confidence to wear short hair, what else don’t you have the confidence for? Ladies, there’s a world out there full of opportunities to make an impact and change lives, but you’ve…

Easter Shoes

One of my favorite Easter’s, I was probably in middle school. I got Maybelline Great Lash mascara and a pair of pink Ked’s in my Easter basket. My mom loved a good theme, and my basket that year was all pink. When I saw these shoes, I immediately thought of her. She would have loved them. Do you have a favorite Easter memory? Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

Why I Blog

Way back when, what really seems like a lifetime ago, I was working as a fitness professional coaching clients; leading them to better health via nutrition and exercise. Meanwhile, my own health was failing. I found myself rapidly gaining weight and required multiple energy drinks to just get through the day. You could say I wasn’t living my best life. We re-prioritized our finances, which included selling our home, so that I could quit my job and make reclaiming my health a priority. During that time of self-discovery and healing from adrenal fatigue, I realized how much I missed helping people.…

Nickname

I once had someone tell me they did not like my purple hair, said it was "for the birds." My nickname is Birdie. Sometimes, The Bird or Tessie Bird. What's one of your nicknames??? Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook.

What Your Favorite Color Says About You

PURPLE RAIN. What is Prince’s 1984 album and the name of my hair color from Arctic Fox? Purple has been my favorite color for as long as I can remember. There used to be a purple house near my grandparent’s home that I dreamed of living in one day. As much as I love purple, I really don’t have “that” many purple things. Hard to believe, I know. According to the psychology of color, the colors we prefer, play out in our personalities. Imagine that. Here's What Your Favorite Color Says About You ❤️ You live life to the fullest and are…

Psychology of the High Five

Yesterday, I was looking for a “high-five” picture on a stock photo site I frequent, for our business. After several moments of frustration, Tom suggested I take my own. I went from searching for and taking a photo, down the “high-five” rabbit hole. I started researching the psychology of the “high-five” and the science that supports their use with kids, in business, on sports team, even with your spouse. There’s even a national “high-five” day. Who knew??? One psychology professor documented all the fist bumps and “high-fives” for an entire season for each NBA team in 2015. It’s probably not surprising to…

More Than Just A Car Seat

This morning after my workout, I sat in the car to do some work. After pecking away on my phone for a bit, I put the car in reverse and saw this over my shoulder. Pause. Park. Tears. More than just a car seat. A year ago today, I likely was doing the exact same thing. Working in the car on my phone after my workout. Only there was no car seat in the back. We didn’t know we had a grandson. Yet. In the last six months, we’ve made a lot of memories with our little buddy in this…

Do The Work

Since starting my business in 2014, I’ve only ever had one mantra. I have said it out loud and to myself multiple times a day. Over and over and over. “Do the work.” Head down, blinders on, focused on the goal. “Do the work.” As 2017 comes to a close, and I reflect on the assignment God has given me, I am thankful for His assistance, provision, strength, and blessing. And look forward to continuing to “do the work,” in 2018!!! Join the Conversation Join the conversation over on Facebook. What is your mantra?

How To Be Happy

At our company convention a few weeks ago, we had the pleasure of learning from happiness researcher, and author of The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Acher. I love learning from speakers who can present scientific research with humor and relevance. He had the audience laughing over graphs and even threw in the word unicorn. In my journey of healing from adrenal fatigue, I became interested in how our mindset matters when it comes to overall health. So this was right up my alley. Did you know, 90% of your long-term happiness is predicted not by the external world, but by the…

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What You Need to Know About Low Thyroid

Did you know low thyroid can lead to high cholesterol, depression, fatigue, cold hands and feet, hair loss, and reduced strength and stamina? These are just some of the symptoms. Statins and anti-depressants are among the most prescribed medications. But what if high cholesterol or depression are just the symptoms of low thyroid; not the real problem? Is it possible people are often treated for the wrong issue? Low thyroid affects one in seven. It causes fatigue, reduced physical performance, and can lead to symptoms of depression. Hypothyroidism often goes undiagnosed, yet it’s quite easy to identify and correct. About 12% of…

What You Need to Know About Supplements & Testosterone

Testosterone plays a role in muscle mass, bone density, depression, self-confidence, motivation, libido, sexual function, brain health, and more. In my article, What You Need to Know About Testosterone, I discuss why it's so important to maintain optimal testosterone levels, and what you can do with nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle choices, to support testosterone production. Whenever I get into a discussion on testosterone, I'm almost always asked about supplements to increase or optimize testosterone levels. There is not a definite answer on what works for everyone, but I’ll share a number options below. Each person is different, so it really comes down to personal experimentation. A…
Read more » What You Need to Know About Supplements & Testosterone

Are You a Badass?

When you envision a badass, who or what comes to mind? Your green-haired grandma, who won't take crap from anyone? Perhaps your friend who always finds a way to accomplish what he wants, no matter what obstacles he faces? What about your favorite leader, who seems to captivate the crowd with her confidence, while at the same time, inspiring you to become a much better version of yourself? There's a big difference between a badass, and an ass. A badass can move mountains, and moves people to become better versions of themselves. An ass just walks over them. Vanessa and I are always looking…

What a Man Needs from a Woman to Be His Best

What a man needs isn't much. And when his needs are met, he can handle ridicule, setbacks, failures, and major obstacles without taking his eyes off his goals and responsibilities. When his needs aren't met, there's little you can do to move a man. The woman in his life often holds the keys that unlock the door to his full potential. And his full potential makes her life better, enriches the lives of those around him, and makes his life more fulfilling as well.  What a Man Needs From a Women to Be His Best I'm not going to write on…

What You Need to Know About Testosterone

Worn out? Irritable? Gaining weight? Low libido? Memory problems? You and your doctor might not think about low testosterone, when you think about your symptoms, but you will after reading this. Many symptoms of low testosterone are similar to those of other conditions. Before you self-diagnose with Dr. Google, or get a prescription based only on how you feel, see if low testosterone might be the issue. How Common is Low Testosterone Some experts believe a quarter of 30-year-old men have low testosterone. A 2006 study found 39% of U.S. men, age 45 and older, were testosterone-deficient.[i] With about 40% deficient, most men are below optimal…

Why You’re Not Losing Weight on a Low-Carb Diet

“What?! Doesn’t everyone lose weight on a low-carb diet? What is this nonsense all about?” I can hear the pushback from the low-carb devotees already. Before you throw a low-carb cookbook at me, hear me out. I have written about the value of low-carb diets for years. A low-carb diet has been the starting point for almost every nutrition plan I have created. Though low-carb is effective for a lot of people, it doesn’t work for everyone. And for some, it works for a while, and then...doesn't. If you read those last couple sentences and thought, “That’s me!” then this…
Read more » Why You’re Not Losing Weight on a Low-Carb Diet

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5 Tips to Win a Weight Loss Contest

Weight loss is simple. But it is not always easy. It can feel lonely at times, as everyone around you seems to enjoy their unhealthy lifestyle choices. Weight loss can be frustrating, especially on the days you step on the scale and don't see the number change. To lose weight, you not only have to know what to do, but you have to stay motivated, week-after-week, to keep doing it. If you're nodding your head, a weight loss contest might be just what you need. Especially if the contest includes community, support, and guidance. I have a special passion for weight…

Solutions 4 Resolutions

[vc_row full_width="stretch_row" css=".vc_custom_1481155638986{padding-bottom: 5px !important;background-color: #963d83 !important;}"][vc_column][vc_single_image image="16441" img_size="full" alignment="center"][vc_column_text css=".vc_custom_1481158240580{margin-top: 0px !important;margin-bottom: 0px !important;border-top-width: 0px !important;padding-bottom: 35px !important;}"] Are you tired of making the same resolutions every year – to lose weight, eat better, exercise more – only to find yourself giving up, shortly after you got started? Stop starting over and join us for Solutions 4 Resolutions, an exclusive one-day event, where you will learn what it takes, once and for all, to live and lead your healthiest life. Solutions 4 Resolutions will equip you to master your mindset, reset your nutrition know how, enhance your lifestyle, and make movement…

Easy Peasy Shrimp Ceviche

A few months back my friend Angie brought the most amazing Shrimp Ceviche to game night. I helped myself to several servings and she took home an empty bowl. Meanwhile, the cheese and gluten-free crackers went untouched. That's a sign of a good recipe. I'm a simple cook. If you take a look at my recipes, I don't cook or bake anything that really requires any amount of work. Well except for my tamales. Those take a little bit extra effort in the kitchen. So, when Angie said how Easy Peasy the Shrimp Ceviche was to make, I was all…

Cranberry Pumpkin Bars

A very sweet member of our Healthy Living With Essential Oils team sent me a huge box of the most beautiful fresh cranberries. Her family owns a cranberry farm in Oregon and they are in the midst of harvest. One of the cool things about Oregon cranberry growers, is that they pursue natural pest control, flooding the beds of cranberries to repel harmful insects, instead of using harmful pesticides. When the fresh cranberries arrived, I quickly rinsed them and then put them in freezer bags for storage. I've got enough cranberries to enjoy for many months to come. And my…

Mexican Hot Chocolate

My paternal grandparents immigrated from Mexico, coming to the United States and eventually, settling in Minnesota at a young age. My grandma still in her late teens and grandpa in his early twenties, worked their way from Mexico to Minnesota via the railroad. I was in the 4th grade when my grandma died in her 60's. However, I have very vivid memories of her in the kitchen making flour tortillas at the kitchen table and offering us grandkids the most delicious hot chocolate. As a kid, I thought she had some super secret recipe, only to find out later in…

Saturday Snapshots: Lake Superior

Lake Superior is the largest of the Great Lakes of North America. The lake is shared by the Canadian province of Ontario to the north, the US states of Minnesota to the west, and Wisconsin and Michigan to the south. It is the largest freshwater lake in the world by surface area and third largest freshwater lake by volume. Source About 190 miles north of Minneapolis, MN, between Duluth and Grand Marais, you'll find the Encampment Forest. 2,000 wooded acres along Lake Superior owned by the residents of the Encampment Forest Association (EFA). The Encampment takes it name from the…

Working on our Divorce

Recently, Tom and I went to a conference, where we spent two full days setting goals for the 7 F's of life; faith, family, field, finance, fitness, friends, and fun. During the goal setting exercise for family, one of the presenters told his painful story of divorce, and made this bold statement, "If your aren't working on your marriage, by default, you are working on your divorce." If you are married, let that sink in for a minute. If you aren't working on your marriage, by default, you are working on your divorce. Yikes! That was a punch in the…

Give Yourself an Upgrade

You can still be original, while giving yourself an upgrade. Some people push back on the concept of personal development because they believe they’d need to become someone different. Personal development isn’t about becoming someone new, it’s just about becoming a better version of who you are. The iPhone is an iPhone, whether it’s the first iPhone, or iPhone 7. The iPhone 7 is just better. Apple is on the constant pursuit of improvement, which is why they were happy about launching the iPhone, but not satisfied with it “as is.” Think about personal growth as upgrading the true you, not…

What Happened to the Hype About Essential Oils?

A few years ago, essential oil posts seemed to be all over the internet. Pinterest boards, news feeds, and blogs were filled with claims about the use of essential oils. Today, the online buzz about essential oils seems to have quieted down. Have they lost their hype? Essential oils are not drugs. In the natural products industry, which essential oils are a part of, attaching a drug claim to a product is a major no-no. It’s an especially-big-no-no if you attach a drug claim to a product that you sell. The two largest essential oil companies happen to be network marketing companies.…
Read more » What Happened to the Hype About Essential Oils?

The Marshmallow Challenge

All work and no play, makes Tom and I, sort of duds. We are both very focused and driven people. Perhaps a bit serious. And also very competitive. Sometimes, competitive with each other. We've been working side-by-side in our network marketing business for almost two years. And what happens when two very focused, driven people work side-by-side, is fun often falls to the wayside. Last night I was laying in bed watching some funny YouTube videos. And came upon the Marshmallow Challenge. Tom had already fallen asleep and I was laughing so hard watching these videos the bed was shaking. Tom kept…

Meal Frequency. Why I don’t eat 5-6 small meals a day.

For as long as I’ve been passionate about health and fitness, the idea of eating 5-6 smalls meals a day to raise metabolism, has been a persistent myth. In my early years as a personal trainer, I unfortunately perpetuated this myth. Back then, I didn’t realize this idea centered more around marketing and selling meal replacement shakes and bars, than it did about real science. Today, I see it as one of the most frustrating myths that exists in nutrition. While those meal replacement bars and shakes do have a place in the nutrition plans of some individuals, for most people,…
Read more » Meal Frequency. Why I don’t eat 5-6 small meals a day.

7 Habits of Emotionally Successful People

Your emotional health is at the crux of your quality of life. Without happiness, hopefulness and well-being, it’s difficult to reach your full potential and embrace each day as it comes. Your emotional health is also intricately tied to your physical health, such that an emotionally imbalanced person will be at a greater risk of chronic diseases and acute illnesses like colds and flu. One study found, for instance, that happiness, optimism, life satisfaction, and other positive psychological attributes are associated with a lower risk of heart disease.1 It's even been scientifically shown that happiness can alter your genes. A…

5 Healthy Habits for a Healthy Gut

I want to preface this by saying that no two people are alike. Each of us has varying levels of digestive health. And when we talk about digestive health, we're really talking about a number of different components in the digestive process. Chew Your Food Digestion begins before we even put food in our mouth. It starts with the thought, smell or site of delicious food. Our nervous system is so amazing, that if we even sense the possibility of eating something, especially something appetizing, it stimulates hormones, secretion of saliva and other stuff that aids in digestion before we…

Social Jet Lag: A Common Sleep Disorder

I have social jet lag. Hey don't laugh, it's a real thing. You might even have it too. It's pretty common, actually. Social jet lag typically occurs when we stay up late on the weekend, only to find ourselves tired, unmotivated, and groggy on Monday. Some people call this a social life. Social jet lag is like regular jet lag without flying across time zones. In both cases, our circadian rhythm or internal clock, gets messed with. And it doesn't like to be messed with. It thrives on consistency and a schedule. Simply staying up until the wee hours on Friday and Saturday and then…

5 Unavoidable Phases on the Path of Success

Weight loss. Getting out of debt. Running a marathon. Building a business. Getting a Master’s degree. Learning a new skill. Each is a goal that requires new patterns, skills or habits to accomplish. Pursuit of goals like these, and many others, finds many people giving up somewhere between setting and achieving the goal.  Why is that? Why do people start a weight loss program every year, rather than sticking to it the first time and finding success? Why do so many people try a new skill, only to give up shortly after they begin?  Why do countless people give up on their…

Cruise to Lose

Fourteen days of international travel, including a 7-day Mediterranean cruise, and I come home 3 lbs. lighter.  I didn't go on the cruise to lose. I don't know anyone who actually does. However, I had countless well-meaning friends tell me to be prepared to gain weight in the face of all-night buffets and 24-hour room service. I posted a little bit about this on social media and many wanted to know "my secret". To be honest, I don't think there really is a secret. For me, it's all about a mindset. If I go on vacation and tell myself I am going to…

About Us

Hey there, we're Tom Nikkola and Vanessa Romero! We live in the heart of downtown Minneapolis, MN with our furbabies, a Shih Tzu named Gizmo, aka, the cutest dog in the world, and a Tabby Cat named Kirby, aka the fattest cat in the world. We have two adult sons who have left the nest, making us empty-nesters at the young ages of 40 and 46. We will leave it up to you to guess who is older. We are husband and wife, Christ followers, business partners, city slickers, entrepreneurs, purple lovers, and health nuts. We blog about all things healthy living.…

Landing Page Master

[vc_row full_width="" parallax="" parallax_image=""][vc_column width="1/1"][vc_column_text]Thank you for giving me the opportunity to explore Young Living Essential Oils with you. Why I got started using essential oils. As a healthy living blogger, essential oils fell onto my radar in 2013. On a quest to eliminate toxins from our home­, like those found in personal care and cleaning products, I kept seeing DIY recipes that called for essential oils. I was also looking for natural ways to relieve some common complaints my family was experiencing, like seasonal and pet allergies, tension headaches, and digestive discomforts. When it comes to essential oils, quality matters. Young Living, has…

5 Simple Tips to Slim Up for Summer

Summer is right around the corner. At least it’s supposed to be. Although yesterday, it was in the 40s here in Minneapolis and our pool is scheduled to open this weekend. So, here’s to hoping it warms up quick. At any rate, it’s about this time of year when people start thinking more about slimming and trimming up for summer. I'm not big on quick fixes, fasting or going on a restrictive diet, as it really isn’t the solution to long-term weight management or health for that matter. However, there are some seemingly simple or small changes that we can make that…

HLWEO Leadership Team

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About Healthy Living With Essential Oils

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Healthy Living With Essential Oils

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HLWEO Registration

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Amateur’s Guide to Libido

This is one of those topics no one wants to talk about. In a committed relationship, kissing and sex is an incredibly healthy activity. Sex is good for the immune system, can help lower blood pressure, has been shown to lessen pain, improves sleep, lowers stress levels, strengthens the relationship, improves mood and, specifically in men, reduces prostate cancer risk. As good as all of that sounds, and as great as sex often feels, to many adults, the thought of sex sounds like a chore. Amateur's Guide to Libido - Part One The desire for sex is driven by emotional, mental and…

We Ditched our Keurig and Why You Should Too!

We’re not addicted, we’re passionate. We love coffee. I like mine black. Vanessa likes hers Bulletproof™. We agree on the roast, it’s got to be dark and bold, with a little bit of a bite. If it’s just a bit smoky, that’s even better. In the busyness of everyday life, our morning cup of coffee is something we do together. It’s like having a rich conversation without saying a word. The key to enjoying that brief moment in time, is to make a consistently "great-tasting" cup of coffee. Until recently, I’d say it was more of a “good-tasting” cup of coffee. We've…
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7 Ways to Make Your Corporate Job Happier and Healthier

Are you frustrated with your current corporate gig? Is it possible that a change in your work environment might help you change the way you see your job? 7 Ways to Make Your Corporate Job Happier and Healthier If you see yourself sticking with corporate life for the long-run, here are seven ways you can make your work life a little better. You might even help change the culture where you work and make it better for others. 1. Request a stand-up desk for your workspace If there were only one recommendation I could offer to make your corporate environment…
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10 Easy Tips For How To Detox Daily

Toxins. They are in the air we breathe, the food we eat, the medications we take and the water we drink. Detoxification. The body’s way of metabolizing and removing toxins. It's a process, the body does naturally, all on its own. However, the capacity of the body’s detox process is not endless. When toxins build up in our body, we get can get sick. For excellent health, it's important to enhance our body’s ability to detox, while at the same time minimizing our exposure to common toxins. Our toxic burden then, is a result of the toxins we are exposed to and our body’s ability…

How To Get Rid of Hiccups Instantly

Do you ever get the hiccups? Have you tried everything to get rid of them only to still have hiccups? Every once in a while, I find myself with a bout of hiccups and, until recently, had a really hard time getting rid of them. While my hiccups are not nearly as obnoxious as Tom’s sneezes, they do get a little annoying for those around me. According to the Mayo website, hiccups could be set off by carbonated beverages, drinking too much alcohol, eating too much, stress or excitement, temperature changes or swallowing air. Actually, the Mayo says those can…

About Tom

Vanessa makes me a far better man than I could ever be if I were left to my own devices. We've been married since 2003. I left Life Time Fitness in February, 2015 and we've been working side-by-side ever since. Some people say they wouldn't be able to work with their spouse. I think that's sad, but I understand why they'd say that. Working together amplified any relationship issues we had. I chose to take it as an opportunity to learn how to be a better husband as well as a better business partner. I'm a "sometimes" opinionated health and fitness…

5 Things YOU CAN DO to Succeed at Being YOU!

It's hard to live a healthy life if you don't like yourself. You can never be anybody else, half as well as you can be you. If you want to tap your ultimate potential and live a life filled with passion and purpose, learn to succeed at being YOU!  5 Things You Can Do To Succeed At Being You 1. Stop saying or thinking negative things about yourself. No really just stop it. And if you do, counter it with a positive, not just one positive, but several. The reason for this, is our brain processes negative and positive information…

Dumbbell Dessert: A Lift Weights Faster Workout

“Do you realize we’ve been working out for the past two hours?” This question was fielded to me via JVB, my training partner and co-coach at The Movement Minneapolis. I checked the clock – she was correct. Our training session had taken on a rhythm of lift a little, chat a little. (Okay, a lot.) Lift some more, then take a break to refuel. I had to smile. In that moment, I truly relished the benefit of being self-employed and the boss of my own schedule. This particular session was an indulgence, and one that doesn’t get to happen often,…
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Coffee. Good, Bad, or Bulletproof?

My favorite part of the day begins shortly after I wake up. Our home is cold from turning down the thermostat overnight–there’s a little bit of a chill (Vanessa would say it's freezing), whether it’s winter or summer. Barefoot, I walk to the kitchen and make a cup of coffee. The warmth of the cup, the bitterness of the dark roast, and the idea of a new day, makes for an experience I look forward to every morning. I’m not alone in my affection for coffee. About 83% of US adults drink some form of coffee throughout the day. About…

I’ll Start My Diet on Monday

How many times have you said, "I'll start my diet on Monday?" Come on, admit it. Everyone knows that Monday is National "Start Your Diet Day". You make the declaration Friday, as you are heading out to happy hour with friends. You eat freely over the weekend, binging on your favorite junk foods, because Monday is when it begins. Then Monday comes. You oversleep and rush off to work without eating breakfast or bringing a healthy lunch with you. You are starving when... The coffee and donut cart rolls past your cubicle (do those really exist?) and the temptation is…

Why I Left Life Time Fitness

Enough people have asked me why I resigned from my position at Life Time Fitness that I thought I’d share my answer as a blog post. This way it limits rumors and gives me the chance to explain my departure and where I am headed next. To say the past couple months have been an internal struggle is an understatement. Was I confused? Was I dissatisfied? Or is there some other crazy reason why I’d leave the career I was so passionate about and a company I had worked at, for 12 years? If you’re looking for me to dish…

9 Health Benefits of Ghee

Whether you are a regular or new reader of Healthy Living How To, one of the things you might notice, is the use of "ghee" in my recipes. I often get asked by readers what it is and why do I use it. Today's post, 9 Health Benefits of Ghee, is for you. What the Heck is Ghee? When it comes to dairy allergies, the milk proteins, casein and whey are the common culprits. Ghee is actually butter, with not only the problematic proteins removed but also the milk sugar–lactose. Ghee is rich in butyric acid which is great for…

Young Living Sign-Up Link Generator

Are you a Young Living member who loves sharing your essential oils with others? Need a tool to quickly and easily create your personal sign-up link making it easy to share? In the boxes below, type YOUR member number in BOTH the "member ID" and "sponsor ID" boxes and voilà! Your personal Young Living sign-up link will be generated. Share this link with friends and family who are ready to get started with Young Living. When they click on your personal Young Living sign-up link they will be taken to the new member enrollment page with your member number already filled in.…

DIY: Sugar Scrub

SAY HELLO....to soft supple skin. It's winter here in Minnesnowta and everything is dry dry dry. I've been using this body scrub for a couple months now and not only love how it smells, I love how it makes my skin feel. So soft! Sugar scrubs exfoliate the skin, help increase blood flow, tighten the pores and promote a healthy gorgeous glow! This sugar scrub recipe has the added health benefits of Epsom salt... "Epsom salt is made up of naturally occurring minerals, magnesium, and sulfate, which can help improve health in numerous ways. A lack of magnesium—which helps regulate…

Essential Oil Events and Classes

Join us and learn about the many health benefits of essential oils! We host several classes each month in various locations around the Twin Cities area. Young Living Essential Oils 101 Essential Oils 101 is open to those not enrolled as a Young Living member. If you are a Young Living member and would like to attend, we encourage you to bring a friend. This 101 class covers the basics of essential oils, including: How essential oils are used How to determine whether an essential oil is high quality or not How to use some of the most common "everyday oils"…

Do You Have An Ant Problem?

Ants. First you spot one, then another and another. Before you know it, there is a whole mess of them. We all have ant problems from time to time. This is true for both insects and our thoughts. I know what you are thinking, what do ants have to do with our "thoughts". Hang with me, I am getting there. You see ANTs is an analogy for Automatic Negative Thoughts. And just like the insect, negative thoughts manifest and multiply, causing problems if we don't put a stop to them. ANTs are cynical, gloomy and complaining thoughts. They multiply all…

Essential Rewards FAQ

Essential Rewards is an "optional" monthly autoship program for wholesale members. When enrolled in ER you get reduced shipping on your monthly order, plus you earn points to use on future purchases. The minimum monthly purchase requirement is 50PV, you can cancel at any time and skip one month out of 12. When enrolling in ER, you pick the autoship date as well as the essential oils or products you would like to receive each month. Essential Rewards FAQ 1. Is it free to sign up for Essential Rewards?  Yes 2. What are the requirements?  You are required to spend 50 PV per month. For all of the…

The Best Investment I Made In 2014. I Hired a Personal Trainer.

I have a secret to share. I hired a personal trainer. I’ve spent the better part, of the past 12 years, immersed in health, nutrition and fitness. I worked for Life Time Fitness for five years as a Personal Trainer, Nutrition Coach and Regional Metabolic Specialist. I know how to exercise. But, in early 2014, as I launched my Young Living Essential Oils business, I found myself skipping workouts. After some prompting from Tom, I finally gave into the idea that this personal trainer, might need a personal trainer of her own. I reached out to our good friend Jen Sinkler, for…
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4 Reasons Why You Should Make New Year’s Resolutions (Even If You Might Not Achieve Them)

The media tends to paint a very grim picture of New Year’s resolutions. If you pay attention, you might be persuaded to skip the annual practice of setting new goals or resolutions. I suppose it’s easy to look down on resolutions, when only 8% of people achieve them. Don’t pay attention to the nonsense. Making New Year's resolutions can be one of the most powerful practices you can do for your finances, health, faith and relationships. Take a few hours. Talk with your significant other, if you have one. Put your laptop or iPad down and get out an old fashioned…
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3 Simple Tips for Surviving the Holiday Season Without Sabotaging Your Health

It’s 28 degrees F and the first winter storm is on its way here in Minneapolis, Minnesota. With the exception of the below freezing temps and early sunsets, I love this time of year. Halloween has come and gone, leaving behind the anticipation of Thanksgiving and Christmas. While the holiday season is filled with excitement, it is often the worst time of the year for people’s health. Overindulgence in alcohol, sweets and calorie dense meals is typical. But it doesn’t have to be that way. You can still enjoy the holidays without entering the New Year with an extra 10…
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Essential Oils: 50 Simple Recipes for a Healthy Body & Healthy Home

My friend Kyndra Holley and I have been hard at work on our first essential oils ebook.  We are so excited to present to you... Essential Oils: 50 Simple Recipes for a Healthy Body & Healthy Home Scheduled to release in early November, our new essential oils ebook will be available in .pdf format, as well as on Amazon, for Kindle and other e-readers. Essential Oils: 50 Simple Recipes for a Healthy Body & Healthy Home is an incredible resource for essential oil users of all skill levels. In this book, we show you just how simple it is to make healthy, natural…
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Essential Oils: 50 Simple Recipes for a Healthy Body and Healthy Home

My friend Kyndra Holley and I have been hard at work on our first essential oils ebook.  We are so excited to present to you... Essential Oils: 50 Simple Recipes for a Healthy Body & Healthy Home Released in November, our new essential oils ebook is NOW AVAILABLE in .pdf format. Look for it soon on Amazon, for Kindle and other e-readers. Essential Oils: 50 Simple Recipes for a Healthy Body & Healthy Home is an incredible resource for essential oil users of all skill levels. In this book, we show you just how simple it is to make healthy, natural and effective essential…
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Missing Blogger…Found!

Hello Healthy Living How To friends and family! It’s your long lost friend Vanessa! Have you missed me? I most certainly have missed you! Many of you have messaged and emailed, wondering where I disappeared to… Did I fall off the deep end? I am writing to you today, to tell you, I am alive and well, still living  and actively pursuing the healthy lifestyle I have been talking to you about for the past 4 years. However, my life has changed…both professionally and personally. On a personal level, about a year ago, we moved from the suburbs to a…

All About Avocados

The avocado comes from a tree native to Central Mexico. While it is common to refer to the avocado as a vegetable, botanically speaking it is a fruit. Avocados were known to the Aztecs as "the fertility fruit".[1] The most well-known variety of avocado is Hass. Commonly grown in California, the Hass avocado makes up about 95% of the avocado crop in the United States and is available year-round. Other varieties include Fuerte, also known as Florida avocados, Cocktail avocados which have no pit and there is even a Bacon variety. [2] Avocados have a smooth buttery texture and can…

10 Health Benefits of Turmeric

Turmeric, a cousin to ginger, is a well known spice. It is a staple in India and Indian cuisine, where over 90% of the world's turmeric originates. The turmeric plant contains many healthy compounds, however the compound most studied for its health benefits is curcumin. Curcumin, which gives turmeric its golden color, is a potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory. Dr. Bharat Aggarwal, perhaps the world's foremost expert on turmeric, discovered curcumin and its many health benefits, particularly its effectiveness against cancer. He oversees, conducts and analyzes studies at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston Texas. According to…

Husbands! The Perfect Mother’s Day Gift For Your Wife! {P.S. Flowers Are Lame}

Mother’s Day. The perfect gift from husband to wife is such a dilemma. I struggle with this day because you’re not trying to over-emphasize the relationship between you and her. You’re trying to show your appreciation for her as a mother. Your family could be the two of you and a child or children, or maybe you consider your family the two of you and your pets. Doesn’t matter. The day isn’t really about just the two of you, which makes gift-giving a challenge. There are fallbacks that are the typical gifts of the day, but that’s not you. Not…
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Walk This Way. Health Benefits of Walking.

Now that the weather is warming in northern part of the United States, it’s much more common to see people walking and hiking through neighborhoods and on local trails. Walking might be one of the most convenient and healthiest forms of exercise. In fact, when the number of steps people take per day is measured, those taking less than 5,000 steps are considered sedentary and at a higher risk for health consequences. Those who take 10,000 steps are considered active and have lower body weight, body fat and better health. While walking alone doesn't necessarily contribute to weight loss, there are benefits…

Caesar Salad with Cashew “Parmesan” Cheese

I'm far from being a raw vegan, but for whatever reason, lately, I have been drawn to recipes, tips and tricks alike, used in this style of "un"cooking. I think my new-found affinity is two-fold, for starters, raw vegan recipes are usually very creative and two almost always beautiful. So while my belief in the ideal nutritional intake differs from that of a raw vegan, I appreciate the commitment it takes to eat healthy real food. I recently stumbled on a recipe for a vegan dairy-free alternative to parmesan cheese that promised to be all that and a bag of…
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Eggs and Cholesterol. How Many Eggs Can You Safely Eat?

Eggs are among the most nutritious foods on the planet. However, eggs have gotten a bad reputation because the yolks are high in cholesterol. In fact, a single medium sized egg contains 186 mg of cholesterol, which is 62% of the recommended daily intake. People believe that if you eat cholesterol, that it would raise cholesterol in the blood and contribute to heart disease. But it turns out that it isn’t that simple. The more you eat of cholesterol, the less your body produces instead. Let me explain how that works… How Your Body Regulates Cholesterol Levels Cholesterol is often seen as a negative word.…
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Healthy Brain, Healthy Body

I admit, I didn't give brain health much thought, until my mother was diagnosed with Lewy Body Disease (LBD). LBD is a form of dementia closely related to Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease. Watching my mother's health decline, due to disease in her brain, has convicted me (even more), to be as healthy as I can -- which includes having a healthy brain. With thinness being glamorized, as a society, we focus way too much on weight and not enough on the actual physical health of our organs. In fact, some of the lengths we go to, to achieve thinness, actually…

Garlic Cilantro Mahi Mahi

We heart cilantro in this house. We like it in salsa, we like it as a garnish, we just like it. Period. And fish is a great light meal that doesn't have to be complex. The weather is warming and meals around here will become increasingly lighter. We still enjoy rotating a variety of dishes but fish is perfect for longer, sunnier days.  This one literally gets tossed into the oven to bake, covered with a delicious sauce that takes only minutes to assemble. Click HERE to Pin this Healthy Recipe! Garlic Cilantro Mahi Mahi Serves 4 Ingredients 4 Mahi…

Will We Ever Accept that Exercise is Often the Best Medicine?

For years, experts have known that in mild to moderate cases of depression exercise is as effective (or more effective) a treatment as prescription drugs. Yet, here we are in 2014, with still climbing obesity rates and higher than ever numbers of people taking anti-depressants – a 400% jump in the last 20 years. This past week, exercise as medical therapy got another round of press after The Atlantic highlighted the issue in their thought provoking feature “For Depression, Prescribing Exercise Before Medication.” Let me add, however, that we aren’t just missing the boat in terms of depression therapy. Research has shown time and again…
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Paleo f(x) 2014 in Pictures

Paleo f(x) is the largest Paleo conference hosted annually. This was our first year attending and we most definitely plan to attend again. We went to learn and to network with others in the Paleo community and I would say mission accomplished. I had the opportunity to meet and hang with many of my blogging friends for the first time. I plan to do a follow-up post to share some of what we learned at the various lectures and panels, but today's post is all about the pictures. The obligatory "selfie" of myself and my husband, Tom Nikkola, before taking…

The Invisible Health Benefits of Grounding

Sometimes the simplest things bring us the greatest health benefits. When is the last time you really felt connected to the earth? Today’s blog post is all about something called “grounding” and how it can help heal the body. What Is Grounding? When is the last time you walked barefoot on the earth? Between wearing shoes, living in a house, and maybe even thinking of the ground as “dirty” and avoiding it at all costs, there’s a good chance it’s been a while since you truly got in touch with the earth as humans have always been meant to do.…

Green Cauliflower Rice with Chicken, Mushrooms, Onion & Garlic

Have you ever seen a head of green cauliflower? Me neither. Until yesterday that is. Now, this is not to be confused with Romanesco which is a different variant of this cruciferous veggie. Green cauliflower, sometimes called "broccoflower", looks and tastes like white cauliflower, just with a gorgeous green hue. Our favorite way to enjoy cauliflower is to "rice" it and spice it up...by adding garlic, onion, mushrooms. Keep reading to learn about the health benefits of cauliflower and my basic recipe for healthy rice-a-roni. What’s So Great About Cauliflower? Cauliflower is an excellent source of Vitamin C and a good…
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6 Steps To Healthy Cholesterol

Contrary to conventional wisdom, cholesterol is not the enemy. The question on the lips of many Americans these days is, "How do I lower my cholesterol?" We've all been told that the secret to living a long, healthy, heart-disease free life is lowering your cholesterol. And believing that a low cholesterol count is the best way to prevent heart disease, doctors often prescribe medications like statins to keep these levels low. But these drugs can introduce a whole host of problems and may not even work. The truth is, your body needs cholesterol in order to function properly. So, it's not about having…

Fruit Juice. Just as Unhealthy as a Soft Drink?

Fruit juice is often perceived as healthy. That’s understandable, given that it is natural and has the word “fruit” in it. However… what many people fail to realize is that fruit juice is also loaded with sugar. In fact, fruit juice contains just as much sugar and calories as a sugary soft drink… and sometimes even more (1). Fruit Juice. Just as Unhealthy as a Soft Drink? The small amounts of vitamins and antioxidants in the juice do not make up for the large amount of sugar. Fruit Juice Isn’t Always What it Seems Unfortunately, food and beverage manufacturers aren’t always honest about what is in their products. The…
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8 Reasons Saturated Fat Is Good For You

Saturated fat is bad for you, right? If you asked 100 people that question, 99 would probably agree with you. We've wrongfully vilified this important nutrient for so long, people speak of saturated fat as though they’re certain it’s unhealthy. Most people don’t know that what they’re saying is completely false. Fortunately, people eventually realized the world wasn’t flat. Hopefully, with the vast number of review papers being published in respected journals, refuting the “saturated fat is bad” mantra, we’ll eventually get the truth out there about saturated fat as well. You can help by getting a better understanding of…

Paleo Flatbread

My name is Sylvie and I may or may not have a bread problem.  Ok, I do.  I do have a bread problem.  You see in Argentina, where I grew up, a meal is not complete without bread.  I'm not exaggerating one bit.  I remember running to the bakery for a bag of fresh bread many times with everyone waiting on me to get back to start dinner. My uncle used to joke that I would be happy eating only bread for dinner.  He also joked that I had so many health issues we could play bingo with my list of…

10 Things To Remember When You Feel Lost And Alone

“This morning I felt lost and alone as I was driving home after a brutal breakup with my boyfriend.  I turned on the radio and the Michael Jackson song ‘You Are Not Alone’ was playing.  A few seconds later, at the exact moment the chorus began, I passed a huge billboard sign with big black letters that read, ‘YOU ARE NOT ALONE!’” That’s the opening paragraph of an email I received today from a reader named Ella.  It made me smile because I love when life delivers seemingly coincidental, positive messages like that, right when we need them most. However,…
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The Bitter Truth About Sweet Drinks

Teens and adolescents, when left to their own devices, often make poor choices when it comes to the food and beverages they put in their mouth. Although kids have opportunities to buy junk food outside the home, most of the poor quality foods they eat are found in their home. Parents must understand the impact the foods and drinks they buy have on the health of their children. The Bitter Truth About Sweet Drinks A report by the Rudd Center for Food Policy & Obesity at Yale, called Sugary Drink F.A.C.T.S. (Food Advertising to Children and Teens Score), unveiled how much…

7 Ways to Spring “Cleanse” Your Kitchen

Nothing screams spring like a good, solid cleanse, both for your body and your home. This is typically the time of year I get the itch to ditch and clean out every square inch of my home, tossing clutter and broken toys {keep that low, my daughter might be listening}, vacuuming nooks and crannies, scrubbing surfaces, and reorganizing spaces to be more efficient. Spring is a perfect time of year to take stock of your surroundings and eliminate toxins. Your first stop? The kitchen! Here are 7 areas in the kitchen where you can take steps to make sure your…

The Dangers of Air Fresheners + 10 Natural Alternatives

You’ve probably seen the commercial: A mom walks into a teenager’s room, takes a sniff and tells him no “nice” girl would ever want him because his room smells like (shocker!) teenage boy. She tells him it’s time to “wash” his room and hands him a bottle of Febreze, which he proceeds to spritz on every stinking surface in the room, from his pillow to his bed. In the next scene a girl walks in, sniffs around, and decides the boy is all right. There’s so much wrong with this commercial, I could go on for hours… but I want…
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Lamb Chops with Mint Pesto

Using fresh herbs to make sauces such as pestos, can be a great way to add variety to a Paleo diet. You can mix and match combinations of nuts and herbs to accompany different proteins. For this dish, I choose to make a mint pesto, as mint and lamb are a classic pairing that you can never go wrong with. This dish is from the newly released cookbook, The Paleo Foodie. The Paleo Foodie brings readers gourmet yet simple to make Paleo meals with fresh and vibrant flavors. It is full of recipes that use fresh herbs and spices and have…

The 30 Best Veggies For Spring

We’ve mentioned before how important it is to eat in-season vegetables (preferably local). Since spring’s finally here, we thought we’d share the 30 best vegetables that are naturally ripe in the spring so you can add variety to meals and a sense of fun and adventure to your food shopping and prep. The 30 Best Veggies For Spring Asparagus This is one of the best veggies you can get, and it’s pretty limited. You should be able to find it around February through June, but it will vary based on where you live, of course. It’s great for bloating if you’re…

4 Healthy Tips for Traveling With Kids

My family has spent the last year traveling around South America with our two children (5 and 2). We are living in Argentina for a year and a half while my husband works and because our time here is finite; we travel whenever we can. 4 Healthy Tips For Traveling With Kids At first the idea of traveling with my 2 year old felt like I was signing up for a slow and cruel punishment, but our desire to see new and interesting destinations eventually trumped my fears about being trapped on a plane with a toddler. I’ve collected an extensive…

Chicken Meatballs in Onion Broth with Vegetables

Soup is one of those meals for me that is both filling and satisfying, yet is also emotionally comforting. The season doesn't matter, nor the weather really, although outdoor dampness can definitely spike the urge! This soup was inspired by a need for something a little lighter as the transition from winter to spring takes shape. But the chill in the air still called for a rich broth and a hearty feel at the same time. The combination of the dark onion flavored broth and the light chicken meatballs is a perfect pairing that left my family wanting seconds and…
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Natural Ways To Boost Your Energy

With the prevalence of energy drinks and coffee shops conveniently located all around us, finding an unnatural, unhealthy energy boost is easy.  You’ll certainly be wide awake and wired, but your health will pay the price too. So the question is -- what are some healthy, natural ways to boost your energy and stay awake and alert when you must? Natural Ways To Boost Your Energy Turn on all the lights. – Darkness promotes fatigue and laziness.  Turn on every light in the room or pull up the shades. Go outdoors. – Getting some fresh air outdoors is always a good way…

5 Questions Women Have About Weight Training

When it comes to women and weight training, there is much confusion. In my years as a personal trainer, the common concerns women have in the weight room are universal. Women want to be lean and fit yet fear getting big and bulky. As a result they lift light weights doing toning exercises that have little to no impact on their metabolism. Or worse yet, they steer clear of the weight room altogether, favoring the cardio machines and group fitness classes. If this is you, keep reading, as I answer five of the most common questions women have regarding weight…

Yoga For Beginners

There are many healthy reasons to add yoga to your exercise routine. Yoga improves muscle tone, physical flexibility, coordination, and strength, while the breathing practices may calm and focus the mind. Other beneficial effects might involve a reduction of stress as well as blood pressure and improvements in mood, and metabolism. There are numerous modern schools or types of yoga, each having its own emphasis --  physical postures and exercises, breathing techniques, deep relaxation, and meditation practices. Health Benefits of Yoga Yoga has been studied for its effects on depression, fatigue, anxiety, stress, physical fitness, blood pressure and glucose regulation all…

8 Amazing Health Benefits of Kissing

Kissing is a uniquely human trait that’s said to have emerged as a way to pass germs from one person to another, ultimately building immunity. But that’s rather unromantic, isn’t it? While it seems plausible that kissing would have an underlying biological function, there’s also no denying its role in bonding… or overall health. 8 Amazing Health Benefits of Kissing Kissing not only feels good, it’s good for you. It relieves stress and releases epinephrine into your blood, making it pump faster, which may result in a reduction of LDL cholesterol. Kissing may even be a novel way to receive certain…

How To Make Your Own Mayo

In our kitchen, we have ditched everything containing vegetable oil including mayonnaise. Most commercial mayo is made with soybean oil. They even sneak it into the mayo that touts "made with olive oil" on the label. As consumers are wising up to why soybean oil is not healthy, the mayo makers are now making versions with canola or other unhealthy vegetable oils. However, they can't fool me... You see, when our intake of omega-6 fats, commonly found in processed foods and vegetable oils like soybean, corn and canola oil, exceeds our omega-3 fat intake, inflammation occurs. A healthy balance of…

7 Ways Music Benefits Your Heart, Brain & Health

Who doesn’t love music? Whether it’s the music that we listen to on the way to work, while we workout, or the music we hear in a symphony or film, it can bring up our moods, tell us a story or even bring us down. Music has touched cultures all over the world since very early times in human history. Have you ever wondered how music might affect our health? I think music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music. ~…
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Children & Fevers: The Wet Sock Treatment

Caring for a sick child is a tough job. As parents, we want to do what is best for our children and we strive to ease any and all discomfort they might be feeling. When our little one comes down with a fever it can be scary for both the parent and the child.  We may find ourselves reaching for an over-the-counter fever-reducing drug to make things more comfortable. But is bringing down a fever with medication the best choice? Children & Fevers: The Wet Sock Treatment Why Does My Child Have a Fever? Body temperature is controlled by the…

5 Ways Sitting Wrecks Your Metabolism

If you’re like most people, you probably think you’re pretty active, especially if you try to compare to others you know. Your weekdays are filled with running around and all kinds of chaos. If you consider yourself active, you’d be among a majority of people who think the same way. In fact, about two out of three people (65%) of the American population admits that they get in at least as much activity as is recommended. At least this is what people say when they’re surveyed. However, when people’s activity levels are measured, only 5% of the population gets in…

7 Smart Ways To Deal With Toxic People

Surviving the ups, downs, and lightning storms of other people’s moodiness can be quite a challenge. It’s important, though, to remember that some moody, negative people may be going through a difficult stage in their lives.  They may be ill, chronically worried, or lacking what they need in terms of love and emotional support.  Such people need to be listened to, supported, and cared for (although whatever the cause of their moodiness and negativity, you may still need to protect yourself from their behavior at times). Don’t let toxic people rent space in your head. Raise the rent and get them…

Canola Oil: The Good, The Bad & The Ugly

Fats in the diet are extremely important. Without the right ones, our bodies can not function properly. However… there is a lot of confusion out there about the health effects of different fats and oils. One cooking fat that is heavily marketed as a healthy choice is canola oil. It is low in saturated fat and high in unsaturated fats, including Omega-3 fatty acids. The manufacturers call it the “world’s healthiest cooking oil” – although some experts disagree. This article takes an in-depth look at canola oil and how it can affect your health. What is Canola Oil? Back in the day, an oil called rapeseed oil…

5 Healthy Reasons To Use Cloth Diapers

Cloth diapering gets a bad rap. When I tell people I use cloth diapers on my son, many people have visions of clumsy diaper pins, big buckets of soaking diapers, and a big ole mess. But that's not the case at all. The new generation of cloth diapers are very user friendly and cute as can be! Here are 5 reasons you should give cloth diapers a try. 5 Healthy Reasons To Use Cloth Diapers Reasons to Use Cloth Diapers - #1 No Chemicals Disposable diapers are full of chemicals. Check out this study with lab mice that shows that disposable…

If Obesity Is A Disease, How Do We Find The Cure?

It finally happened. Obesity is now classified as a disease.  While there is enormous debate about this topic, I find myself on the fence, with both pros and cons in mind. The truth is, we do have a cure, not only for obesity, but for the other diseases related to it including diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, some forms of cancer, dementia and other degenerative diseases. The cure won’t be found in a pill, and it’s as political as it is scientific. The cure isn’t as well understood by medical experts as it is fitness enthusiasts. We’re really at a cross-roads…
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Reduce Morning Stress In 11 Simple Steps

If we fail to appropriately manage our time and health needs, mornings can be the most stressful part of our day.  Many of us deal with the dizziness of an unpleasant, hectic rush every morning in preparation for work or school, but it doesn’t have to be this way.  With a little sensible time management your morning stress can be drastically abbreviated.  Here are 11 simple steps you can follow to proactively reduce your level of morning stress. Lose an hour in the morning, and you will be all day hunting for it. -Richard Whately How To Reduce Morning Stress In…

DIY: Reed Diffuser

DIY: Reed Diffuser Ingredients 1 Diffusing Vessel8-10 Reed Diffusing Sticks1/4 c. Sweet Almond Oil15-20 drops Essential Oil Directions Using a funnel, add sweet almond oil to diffusing vessel.Add 15-20 drops essential oil.Insert diffusing sticks and stir.Let sticks soak for an hour or so, then turn over.Each day, turn sticks to diffuse oil.As scent dissipates over time, freshen up with additional essential oil.

A Beginner’s Guide: How To Ferment Vegetables

Culturing or fermenting raw vegetables can be a little intimidating. The process really is quite simple, but it seems like a lot to keep track of. What type of vegetables do you use? What do you culture/ferment with – salt, whey or freeze-dried culture? How do you make sure the culture doesn’t go bad during the fermentation process? How long, exactly, do those jars need to sit on my kitchen counter? And why bother culturing vegetables, anyway? Heath Benefits of Fermented Foods Consuming probiotics and fermented foods has numerous possible benefits. Chief among them, a healthier gut, which means more nutrients, vitamins, and…
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9 Reasons To Pass On Processed Food

Resisting the urge to drink that soda pop or eat those chips can be tough, especially if you have grown accustomed to eating these highly addictive foods as part of your normal diet. But once you understand a little bit more about how these and other processed foods affect your mind, body, and even your soul, it becomes easier to make healthier food choices that enrich your being rather than sap it. 9 Reasons to Pass on Processed Food According to a report from the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, modern day Americans are spending the majority of…

5 Reasons To Ditch Sugar For Happier & Healthier Kids

The sweetness that is sugar, also known as dextrose, maltose, corn syrup, glucose, or fructose is loved by the masses. Go to any celebratory occasion and you will likely see cake and soda as a focal point. My kids love sweet things, they always have. I try to stay mindful about sugar consumption in our house, but it's not easy. 5 Reasons To Ditch Sugar For Happier & Healthier Kids Sugar lurks in almost all packaged goods; crackers, breads, cookies, cereals, protein bars, and more. While I will never eliminate sugar completely from our home, I try to keep sugar…
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10 Popular Foods That Drain Energy And Pack On The Pounds

For an activity that most people do multiple times each and every day, eating is embroiled in confusion and controversy. Or rather, not the act of eating, but the choice of what to eat. With each meal and snack, you have an opportunity to give your body adequate and even extra nutrition. But many fall short of this goal. To be honest, the cards are very much stacked against you. Food advertising is everywhere and it promotes the most profitable products, which are typically not one in the same with the healthiest food choices. Processed foods in particular are literally designed to addict…
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How To Pick The Perfect Avocado

Did you know that avocados do not ripen on the tree? They ripen or "soften" after they have been harvested. Hass avocados are unique from some of the other varieties of avocados because they can change from a dark-green color to a deep purplish almost black hue when ripe. Although skin color can help in the initial visual selection of Hass avocados it is not always the best indicator for ripeness. Ripeness is ultimately determined by pressure. Color can sometimes be misleading as avocado "softening" can occur at a varying rate independent of color. Practice makes perfect. If it's your…

How To Free Yourself From Negativity

It isn’t easy to remain positive when negativity surrounds you, but remember that you have full control over what you choose to believe. You can effectively defend yourself against all kinds of negativity by adopting simple, yet powerful, beliefs that support a positive outlook in the face of seemingly negative circumstances. "There is little difference in people, but that little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative." ―W. Clement Stone When I was a teenager I was the primary target of an extremely persistent bully at my…

10 Health Benefits Of A Low Carbohydrate Diet

Low-carb diets have been controversial for decades. They were originally demonized by fat-phobic health professionals and the media. People believed that these diets would raise cholesterol and cause heart disease because of the high fat content. However… times are changing. Since the year 2002, over 20 human studies have been conducted on low-carb diets. In almost every one of those studies, low-carb diets come out ahead of the diets they are compared to. Not only does low-carb cause more weight loss, it also leads to major improvements in most risk factors… including cholesterol. 10 Health Benefits of a Low Carbohydrate Diet 1. Low-Carb Diets Kill Your Appetite (In a…
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Does My Child Need A Probiotic Supplement?

Probiotics are front and center in the holistic health spotlight right now. Walk down any health food store aisle and you will see countless probiotic supplement brands for adults and children alike. Supplements can be expensive, so does your child need a probiotic supplement? What Are Probiotics? Probiotics are the healthy (or friendly) flora that populate our digestive tract and help to support life (pro meaning for and biotics meaning life) of microorganisms. The healthy flora in our digestive tract help us to digest food, absorb minerals, eliminate toxins, and ward off viral and bacterial issues. Probiotics tell the immune…

Sometimes You Have To Just…Do It Afraid

Over the weekend we met up with some dear friends and went to the Mall of America's Nickelodean Universe -- an indoor amusement park. Let me just state for the record, I do not do rides. They have never been my thing (that's code for scaredy cat). I have been known to wait in line, get up to the front and chicken out. Yep, I am that person. This time it was different though. I didn't try to talk myself out of the fear. Instead I embraced it. I told myself everyone standing in line was afraid. I reassured myself,…

Why You Should Indulge In Dark Chocolate Daily

Why You Should Indulge In Dark Chocolate Daily written by Mark Sisson and originally published at MarksDailyApple.com, is syndicated with exclusive permission for Healthy Living How To. I hate making unpopular recommendations like “eat more butter” or “get some sun” or “drink a glass of red wine,” but I have to stick to the truth here, even if it hurts. And the truth is that you should probably be eating dark chocolate on a semi-regular basis because the stuff is pretty dang good for you. Before you log out, never to return again, give me a minute to explain myself... You were kids once. Your parents probably forced…
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5 Myths About Protein Intake

Higher-protein diets have consistently shown to deliver better weight loss results than low-calorie, high-carb, moderate protein diets. Fitness enthusiasts and body builders have known this for decades. But, even today, some conventional healthcare professionals express concern over increased protein intake. Often, this isn’t because those healthcare professionals have actually read research to show higher protein intake is bad. Instead, they’re just repeating what they’ve heard from other people they trust, who repeated it from someone else, and on down the line. In reality, higher-protein intake has been shown to be safe and effective for both health and weight management. In…

Why Sunless Tanning Is Dangerous

Spray tans are generally considered to be benign cosmetic treatments — but are they REALLY? Sunless tanners contain a lengthy list of chemical agents — up to 45 in the case of spray tanners. Many of these agents have never been studied for their long-term effects on human health, because the FDA does not systematically review the safety of personal care products. Since testing is voluntary and controlled by the manufacturers, many ingredients in cosmetic products are not safety testedat all. One of the main ingredients in spray tanning solutions is dihydroxyacetone, a color additive that darkens your skin by reacting…

Healthy Recipe: Guacamole

The avocado comes from a tree native to Central Mexico. While it is common to refer to the avocado as a vegetable, botanically speaking it is a fruit. Avocados were known to the Aztecs as “the fertility fruit”. The most well-known variety of avocado is Hass. Commonly grown in California, the Hass avocado makes up about 95% of the avocado crop in the United States and is available year-round. Other varieties of avocado include Fuerte, also known as Florida avocados, Cocktail avocados which have no pit and there is even a Bacon variety. Avocados have a smooth buttery texture and…

Top 4 Ways To Protect Your Child From Toxic Chemicals

After 9 months of caring for your developing baby by eating nutrient dense foods, it’s now time to bring your little peanut home. But did you know that the average home environment houses chemicals that interfere with brain development and hormone balance?  Top 4 Ways To Protect Your Child From Toxic Chemicals A new study published in The Lancet Neurology illustrates our new (and frankly scary) reality. Our exposure to the chemicals associated with autism, ADHD, behavior and developmental disorders has doubled in the last 7 years. As a result we are seeing an epidemic of autistic and neurologically affected children,…
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DIY: Lip Balm

In case you hadn't noticed I am all about essential oil these days. It was my one goal for 2014 -- to learn about essential oils and start to apply their use in my everyday life. Adding essential oils to DIY beauty products has many benefits -- first and foremost though -- you are avoiding the toxins found in your varied commercial beauty products when you make your own. From head-to-toe, the beauty industry is riddled with toxins masquerading as the latest greatest magic lotion or potion. I am not down with that. So, while there are healthy, alternative, natural and…

8 Things To Remember When Everything Goes Wrong

“The best way out is always through.” ―Robert Frost “Today, I’m sitting in my hospital bed waiting to have both my breasts removed.  But in a strange way I feel like the lucky one.  Up until now I have had no health problems.  I’m a 69-year-old woman in the last room at the end of the hall before the pediatric division of the hospital begins.  Over the past few hours I have watched dozens of cancer patients being wheeled by in wheelchairs and rolling beds.  None of these patients could be a day older than 17.” That’s an entry from my…
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Another Reason To Take Fish Oil Supplements

I’ve written to you before about the vast health benefits of fish oil, and today I’m going to give you a little more information. I’m a firm believer in the numerous ways fish oil supplements can contribute to a healthy lifestyle and protect you from disease. I think they are a foundational supplement that everybody, regardless of their age, weight, fitness level or overall health, should take. Fish oil can assist in weight loss, improve your skin and hair, reduce cholesterol, improve heart function, and increase brain function and memory, too. One study found a possible link between prostate cancer risk…

12 Baby Steps To Optimal Nutrition

What works for one person may not work for the next. When making changes, some people (like me) prefer to go all-in and change everything at the same time. But others prefer the longer, slower approach… making small changes, one at a time. Neither approach is better than the other, it’s just that people have different personalities and like to approach lifestyle changes differently. This article is for those who prefer the longer, slower approach. It explains how to adopt a healthy, real food based diet in 12 simple, easily manageable steps. You can do one step per week, one every two weeks, or one…

9 Healthy Reasons You Need To Hug Every Day!

Hugging helps the immune system, cures depression, reduces stress and induces sleep. It's invigorating, rejuvenating and has no unpleasant side effects. It is all natural, organic, naturally sweet, no pesticides, no preservatives, no artificial ingredients and 100 percent wholesome. There are no batteries to wear out, no periodic check-ups, low energy consumption, high energy yield, inflation proof, nonfattening, no monthly payments, theft-proof, nontaxable, nonpolluting and, of course, fully returnable. Hugging is practically perfect, with the only exception that it can't recreate the wheel. A famous quote by psychotherapist Virginia Satir goes, "We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We…

Oil of Oregano: 4 Health Benefits of Nature’s Antibiotic

Oil of oregano is nature's antibiotic. The powerful antioxidants in oregano oil have antibacterial, anti-fungal and anti-inflammatory properties, making oregano oil a beneficial natural alternative to many types of traditional medicine. Oil of Oregano: 4 Health Benefits of Nature's Antibiotic The main healing constituents found in oil of oregano include: Carvacrol - effective against candida albicans, the aspergillus mold, staphylococcus, campylobacter, klebsiella, e.coli, giardia, pseudomonas, salmonella, and listeria. Thymol - a natural fungicide with antiseptic properties. Thymol is an immune system booster and a shields against toxins. Terpenes - have potent antibacterial properties and give off a pine scent. Rosmarinic acid -  a stronger antioxidant than vitamin…
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10 Facts About Fluoride You Need To Know

If fluoride is really the panacea for dental disease that it’s been portrayed as, then why is it that the United States is one of the only developed countries that fluoridates their citizens’ drinking water? Hint: It’s not because the other countries aren’t aware of fluoride’s supposed “miracle” powers for your teeth … it’s because they fully realize that adding a known poison to your population’s water supply is probably not a good idea. Even in North America, water fluoridation has come under increasing scrutiny; since 2010, more than 75 US and Canadian communities have voted to end water fluoridation, and the issue…

4 Nutrient Dense Foods To Eat During Pregnancy

The responsibilities that come with having children begin before a baby is conceived. From birth plans to personal care products, new parents soon realize every choice is now made with the health of their new baby in mind. For a pregnant woman in particular, the dietary choices she makes have a profound effect on the growing fetus. Research has found that the foods a woman consumes during pregnancy can predict her baby’s likelihood of heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes and more. The Secret our Ancestors Knew Traditional cultures knew about the importance of nutrient dense foods for…
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DIY: Linen Spray

Friends don't let friends use Febreze. Ditch the toxins found in fabric refreshers and make your own. Linen spray is so simple to make, no recipe needed. Seriously, just add water and essential oil to a spray bottle. Depending on the size of your spray bottle do 4-10 drops (of essential oil). Shake and spritz. You can use whatever essential oils float your boat. Many of them are antiviral and antibacterial. Easy peasy. You can do this!!! P.S. This doubles as a bathroom air freshener.

30 Things To Stop Doing To Yourself

As Maria Robinson once said, “Nobody can go back and start a new beginning, but anyone can start today and make a new ending.”  Nothing could be closer to the truth.  But before you can begin this process of transformation you have to stop doing the things that have been holding you back. Here are some ideas to get you started... 30 Things To Stop Doing To Yourself 1. Stop spending time with the wrong people. – Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you.  If someone wants you in their life, they’ll make…

45 Years Of Love. What My Parents’ Marriage Has Taught Me!

On this day 45 years ago my parents were married in a small Catholic church in downtown St. Paul. The day was cold and it was snowing something fierce. My mom was in nursing school in South Dakota and my dad on leave from the Army. Their romance was a whirlwind, only meeting months earlier at another wedding. It was my mom's cousin who just happened to be my dad's military buddy. Their courtship didn't take place over the phone, online or via text messages, but by hand written letters. In fact, they only saw each other face-to-face a handful of…
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Top 10 Nutrition Facts Everyone Agrees On

There is a lot of controversy in nutrition and it often seems like people can’t agree on anything. But there are a few exceptions to this. Here are the top 10 nutrition facts that everyone actually agrees on (well, almost everyone…). 1. Added Sugar Is A Disaster We all know that added sugar is bad. Some think sugar is a simple matter of “empty” calories, while others believe it to cause diseases that kill millions of people each year. It is definitely true that added sugar (sucrose and high fructose corn syrup) contains empty calories. There are no nutrients in it and if you eat a lot of sugar then you’re likely to…

How To Dry Brush the Skin

The body has five major paths of elimination; the colon, kidneys, liver, lungs, and skin. Of these, our skin is the largest elimination organ. Up to a third of all body impurities are excreted through the skin. It releases a pound of waste each day and will be the first organ to show symptoms of imbalance or toxicity. If your skin cannot efficiently release toxins, you may experience rashes, acne, hives, itchiness, body odor, or even eczema and psoriasis. Dry skin brushing is an easy therapy you can add to your daily detox program. Consistent daily dry skin brushing is cleansing and eliminates more waste material than any soap…

Crispy Oven Baked Coconut Shrimp

This is one of those dishes that is incredibly simple, but somehow feels incredibly complex.  It’s literally just peeled shrimp, tossed with some eggs, then tossed in coconut and baked!  It’s only very slightly more complex than that, but that’s the general idea.  I had several friends over the day I made this one and … not only was it gone before I had a bite, it was unanimously declared the day’s favorite! Pin Crispy Oven Baked Coconut Shrimp [amd-zlrecipe-recipe:90] More recipes from DJ Foodie Click +1 Below. Do you love coconut shrimp as much as I do?

What Happens To Your Body When You…Carb Binge?

What Happens To Your Body When You Carb Binge written by Mark Sisson and originally published at MarksDailyApple.com, is syndicated with exclusive permission for Healthy Living How To. Another day, another co-worker’s birthday (and the obligatory cake in the break room). Elaine Benes was right: this is insanity. You’re into the healthy eating, so it’s easy to resist this stuff, right? You ignored the dirty looks when you turned down that piece of fudge-smothered bundt cake offered by your boss’s wife at their employee open house. You don’t mind gnawing on the few anemic carrot sticks left at the annual holiday party. Dessert just isn’t…
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Top 10 Health Benefits Of Coconut Oil

Coconut oil has become very popular in alternative health circles, despite the fact that for many years it was considered a "bad" fat due to its high saturated fat content. It turns out that the saturated fat in coconut oil is not the same as the saturated fat in other oils and coconut oil has some amazing health benefits. Coconut is rich in medium-chain fatty acids which cannot be stored in the body. Instead they get broken down and are used for energy production. The MCFAs found in coconut oil are lauric acid, caprylic acid and capric acid. All of the…

10 Healthy Tips To Push The Pause Button On Stress

Our modern-day high-tech, fast-paced lifestyles have elevated stress to epidemic levels. Our lives have become littered with psychological, physical, nutritional and environmental stressors, which in turn assault our body with chronic levels of stress hormones. Initially, there is some ebb and flow, however if stress becomes chronic bad things happen. Do you know how to push the pause button on stress? 10 Healthy Tips To Push The Pause Button On Stress Deep breathing. Take a deep breath. Hold it. Now let it out slowly. Try counting to 10 as you let out your breath. Feel the tension and stress flowing…
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What To Do About Fatty Liver Disease

The most common disease in America is something you've probably never heard of, but it affects 90 million Americans and is a major risk factor for diabetes, heart attacks, and even cancer. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease creates a whole cascade of issues including insulin resistance and pre-diabetes, and you don't have to be overweight to have it. How do you know if you have it? What’s causing it? And how do you fix it? Do you exercise, take drugs, change your diet, or take supplements to fix it? Watch the video below to learn more! What To Do About Fatty…

Ditch Your Toxic Toothpaste! 10 DIY Toothpaste Recipes

The message to brush, floss and gargle is hammered into us at a young age. For many the dental routine is performed religiously, often several times a day without thought for the safety of the products we are using. What many don't know is in our attempts to fight off tooth decay and bad breath we may actually be using dental products that not only don't live up to their promises for healthier teeth, but that may also be hazardous to our health. The common, questionable synthetic ingredients found in many toothpastes include [Source]: Sodium Lauryl Sulphate a foaming agent known to…
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Four Benefits Of Mustard That You May Not Know

The mustard plant comes from the genus of plants (Brassica) that contains such potent and nutritious members as horseradish, cress, kale, broccoli, and Brussels sprouts. This genus is loaded with amazing plants that are great for your health. This may be why mustard was long considered a medicinal plant (Hippocrates commonly used it in the fashion) before we turned it into the yellow stuff we put on our hot dogs. Here are some amazing benefits of mustard you may not have known. Four Benefits Of Mustard That You May Not Know Cancer-Fighting Powers Mustard seeds (like other members of Brassica)…
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Butter vs. Margarine – Why I Trust Cows Over Chemists

There is a massive amount of nutrition misinformation on the internet. Even the professionals themselves often say things that challenge common sense and don’t seem to have a scientific basis. For example, when they tell people to replace butter with factory-made margarine… The Difference Between Butter and Margarine Butter and margarine serve the same purpose. They are used for cooking, baking and as spreads. Butter has been a dietary stable for centuries. It is made by churning the fatty portion of cow’s milk until it turns into the final product… butter. That’s it. Margarine is totally different. It is a highly processed food that was invented…
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10 Ways To Gain Fame For Being A Good Person

"Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world." --Desmond Tutu What Do You Want To Be Known For? Lift others up.  Treat people with respect.  Be positive.  Be true to your values.  Do your best.  Do things that bring you in contact with your passions.  Take care of yourself, your family, and your friends.   Be the person that makes others feel special.  Be known for your kindness and honesty. This is how you gain admiration and fame for being a good person… 1.  Care about people. People…

This Is Your Brain On Gluten

"Over the last few years, we have seen the correlation of gluten sensitivity as a common initiator of multiple pathologies. From attention deficit hyperactivity disorder to hepatocellular carcinoma, from migraines to recurrent pancreatitis, from cardiomyopathy to numerous autoimmune diseases, we have seen the association of sensitivity to this protein of wheat, rye and barley with the initial manifestation of multiple pathophysiologies." Dr. Thomas O'Bryan This Is Your Brain On Gluten Video Notes The British Medical Journal tells us that translational research, research that is going to change the way doctors think, takes an average of 17 years before the doc…

5 Common Nutrient Deficiencies And What To Do About Them

5 Common Nutrient Deficiencies And What To Do About Them written by Mark Sisson and originally published at MarksDailyApple.com, is syndicated with exclusive permission for Healthy Living How To. For months now, I’ve received emails from Mark’s Daily Apple readers asking about iodine, selenium, magnesium and other vitamins and minerals, so I figured it’s about time to highlight these key nutrients, explain how and why some people find themselves deficient and provide my opinion as to what they can do about it. I also wrote this article to make the point that quitting grains, legumes, seed oils, and sugar is just part of the equation. There’s a whole lot more…
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Environmental Toxins Causing Early Puberty in Both Boys and Girls

Reaching puberty is a rite of passage that we've all been through, but children are now reaching it earlier than ever before, and while precocious puberty in girls has received most of the attention, we now know the trend applies to boys as well. In the 19th century, the onset of menstruation in girls occurred around the age of 15. Now the average age of the first period is around 12. Some girls develop breasts as early as age seven1 . According to a recent study in the journal Pediatrics2, boys are now beginning sexual development anywhere from six months to two…
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Growth Hormone For Your Brain – Now Available Without a Prescription!

We’ve all come to accept the notion that our brain will continue to shrink as we age. And nowhere is this decline more impactful than in the hippocampus, the brain’s memory center, one of the primary brain areas that’s first to decline in Alzheimer’s disease. Researchers measuring the size of the hippocampus using MRI scans demonstrate a clear correlation between shrinkage of the hippocampus and declining cognitive function. So, at least as it relates to the hippocampus, size does matter. Challenging the status quo notion that loss of hippocampal function is inevitable is new and exciting research showing that we have the potential to actually…
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Raspberry Swirl Cream Cheese Custard

Somewhere, early on in my experience with low-glycemic foods, I discovered that ice cream was a perfect tool for my new found way of life.  It was fairly easy to make, it was incredibly easy to portion and store in the freezer, a near infinite variety of flavors could be made, it was almost always excellent and it somehow seemed a fitting way to end each day!  I’ve made hundreds of flavors, but this one is easily in my top 10.  It takes a few extra steps, but … the contrasting swirls really make it worth it! Click Here To…

How To Hard Boil Eggs Using a Pressure Cooker

One of the most popular posts here at Healthy Living How To is How To Make The Perfect Hard Boiled Egg Using Your Oven. It was a Pinterest pin I saw floating around that I had to try out -- and couldn't believe it worked! After sharing with readers, I had a few mention you could also use a pressure cooker to hard boil eggs. Since my pressure cooker is one of my favorite kitchen cooking tools I knew I had to give it a try. Once again we have hard boiled egg success! Watch the video below and give…
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4 Toxic Ingredients Hiding In Your Personal Care Products

According to the Office of Cosmetics and Colors at the federal Food and Drug Administration, a cosmetic manufacturer may use almost any raw material as a cosmetic ingredient and market the product without an approval from FDA. "Personal care products are manufactured with 10,500 unique chemical ingredients, some of which are known or suspected carcinogens, toxic to the reproductive system or known to disrupt the endocrine system. Though some companies make products that are safe to eat, others choose to use dangerous ingredients like coal tar and formaldehyde, both human carcinogens, and lead acetate, a developmental toxin.” EWG’s Skin Deep Cosmetic Database…
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20 Ways Sitting In Silence Can Completely Transform Your Life

“Silence is a source of great strength.” ~Lao Tzu For over two years I spent one out of every four weeks in silence. At the time I was living at a Zen Monastery and every month we would have a week-long silent retreat. During this retreat we sat meditation in silence, ate in silence, worked in silence, and only communicated through hand gestures and written notes. At first living like this was hard, but over time I learned to grow to appreciate silence. By the time I left I learned that silence was my friend and teacher. What did silence teach me?…
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Dairy Intolerance: What It Is And How To Determine If You Have It

Dairy Intolerance: What It Is And How To Determine If You Have It written by Mark Sisson and originally published at MarksDailyApple.com, is syndicated with exclusive permission for Healthy Living How To. I often say that “dairy is fine and even healthy if you tolerate it.” But what exactly does that mean? How do you know if it’s “not okay”? You could be reacting poorly to the lactose, the casein, the whey, or all of it. You could just ditch all dairy forever more and be perfectly fine – but you shouldn’t eliminate a food group, especially one as delicious, nutrient-dense, and potentially rewarding as…
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7 Simple Ways To Stay Healthy

Sick and tired of getting sick and tired??  Want to improve your well-being, have more energy and maybe even live longer? Start working some of these fun immune boosters into your regular schedule, and you may be able to ward off illness better in the future. 7 Simple Ways To Stay Healthy 1. Singing Research shows that singing is an effective immunity booster – even if you’re off-key. So sing in the shower in the morning. Sing in the car during your commute. Sing at home when you’re doing the dinner dishes. But don’t sing at work. That would be weird. (Just sayin’.)…

Simplify! Everything You Need To Know

“Simplicity is the peak of civilization.” – Jessie Sampter A simple life has a different meaning and a different value for every person. For me, it means eliminating all but the essential, eschewing chaos for peace, and spending your time doing what’s important to you. Simpliticy. It means getting rid of many of the things you do so you can spend time with people you love and do the things you love. It means getting rid of the clutter so you are left with only that which gives you value. However, getting to simplicity isn’t always a simple process. It’s…

Surprising Foods with More Sugar Than A Krispy Kreme Doughnut

A major new report by Credit Suisse Research Institute1 explores the impact of sugar and sweeteners on humans' diets, with some shocking revelations and statistics. Worldwide, the average person consumes 70 grams of sugar and high-fructose corn syrup per day (that's 17 teaspoons), up 46 percent from three decades ago. Yet, in countries like the US, Brazil, Australia and Mexico, sugar consumption is actually much higher, averaging 40 teaspoons per person per day for Americans (compared to just seven for those living in China). And when children younger than 4 are removed from the mix, sugar consumption in the US rises…
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How To Order Young Living Essential Oils

  Hello Friend, This is the most non-salesy sales page you'll ever land on, I promise. I am not going to try to sell you essential oils. Because, after five years of building a team and our business, there's one thing I know for certain. Our business is not about selling the products but about building relationships with people. You can buy essential oils just about anywhere these days. Am I right?! Sure, I can tell you all the reasons why you should totally try essential oils and why I got started and how we use them in our home. However, I…

Healthy Recipe: Black Pepper Beef & Broccolini

I was once asked for “PF Chang’s” clone recipes.  I thought it was a cute idea, so I set out to create a batch of recipes based around those flavors and cooking techniques.  Here I present a really nice “Black Pepper Beef” -- a slightly sweet and spicy beef stir-fried with broccolini and finished with a glucomannan  thickened coconut aminos sauce (glucomannan is a naturally occurring fiber which comes from the “konjac plant”). The glucomannan is completely optional to the recipe, but that little tiny bit of fiber will thicken the sauce, allowing it cling to the beef and broccolini…
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14 Ways To Activate Your Internal Deodorant

Different types of body odor can come from the inside. Why not battle them there instead of external masking. Synthetic fragrances found in deodorants and antiperspirants are endocrine-disruptors and the beauty industry uses our insecurity to reinforce the idea that we stink. 14 Ways To Activate Your Internal Deodorant 1. Chlorophyll - a natural odor neutralizer and helps with all types of odor. 2. Plant foods - vegetables are hydrating, alkalizing, contain fiber, enzymes, chlorophyll, antioxidants. Wheatgrass and spirulina are so powerful, they have been known to eliminate morning breath. 3. Zinc - heavy duty body odor fighter, also used in many oral hygiene products.…

Top 9 Healthiest Foods to Eat to Lose Weight

Last week I wrote an article about the 7 unhealthiest foods in the diet, ones that you would do best to avoid. Now it’s time for the opposite… the foods that you can and should eat. Even if you banish the unhealthy modern foods from your diet, you can still eat an endless variety of healthy and delicious foods. 1. Meat This includes beef, pork, lamb, chicken and various other animals. Humans are omnivores. We have been eating meat for hundreds of thousands (if not millions) of years. Our species thrived eating a combination of animals and plants. The problem today is that meat isn’t like it used to be. It often lookslike meat,…

9 Surefire Ways To Get What You Want

In life, you don’t get what you want, you get what you work for. Here are some ideas for making it happen: 1.  Every morning ask:  “Is this what I want for myself?” Whenever the answer has been “no” for too many mornings in a row, you know it’s time to make a change.  If you follow this principle a lot of life’s big decisions are actually pretty simple. Long-term happiness is the settling of your soul into its most appropriate spot.  This spot contains the ideas, passions, people, and places that move you. Accept responsibility for making these things…

Can Coffee Really Improve Memory?

For some, it's the tradition of steeping tea leaves to brew the perfect cup of tea. For others, it's the morning shuffle to a coffee maker for a hot jolt of java. Then there are those who like their wake up with the kind of snap and a fizz usually found in a carbonated beverage. Regardless of the routine, the consumption of caffeine is the energy boost of choice for millions to wake up or stay up. Now, however, researchers at the Johns Hopkins University have found another use for the stimulant: memory enhancer. Michael Yassa, assistant professor of psychological…

Eat More Fat For A Healthy Brain

 Why An Anti-Inflammatory Diet Is Essential For A Healthy Brain "The focal point of many of our most debilitating ailments, particularly those that involve brain health, is inflammation. We’ve all experienced inflammation at some point (from a swollen joint to arthritis), but inflammation in the brain is both silent and deadly. In Grain Brain, I identify the role inflammation plays in a myriad of brain diseases, but what you need to know now is that because there are no pain receptors there, you won’t ever know if your brain is experiencing inflammation. So, you need to be proactive about maintaining…

How To Regain Your Health After Hashimoto’s And Hypothyroidism

My parents got divorced when I was 3 years old and I turned to food for comfort. By the time I was 6 years old I was in Weight Watchers. I was still chubby in middle school. By the time I graduated from college I was up to 240 pounds. After getting my cap and gown I decided that I was ready to start taking care of myself. I lost over 90 pounds in a few years with high amounts of exercise, low-calories and low-fat. I started feeling more confident and wanted adventure, so I packed my bags and moved…
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Healthy Recipe: Paleo Bread

Looking around the internet, there are several variations of Paleo Bread; a loaf of bread built primarily around nuts, aerated eggs and leavened by a chemical reaction occurring between sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and acid (apple cider vinegar).  Because I always like to give credit if the inspiration comes from another source, I like to credit someone.  In this case, I’ll give credit to Danielle Walker of Against All Grain fame!  Her specific paleo bread recipe served as the basis for this one, even as this is a fairly common ratio for Paleo Bread. Click Here To Pin Paleo Bread [amd-zlrecipe-recipe:87]…

Six Amazing Health Benefits Of Magnesium

Poor dietary habits, pharmaceutical drug use, and nutrient-depleted growing soils are among the most common reasons why many people today are dangerously deficient in the mineral magnesium, a necessary nutrient for the proper function of virtually all systems of the body. The good news, though, is that incorporating more magnesium into your diet does not have to be an burdensome chore, and doing so could drastically improve your health in ways you never before imagined. As it turns out, magnesium deficiency is linked to causing all sorts of chronic health problems that, if left unaddressed, will eventually lead to even…

Nanoparticles in Tattoos May Cause Cancer

I don’t know about you, but I’ve never gotten a tattoo and after reading this study I am glad I avoided them. If you’ve ever gotten a tattoo, or thought about it, chances are high that you weighed the artistic and social aspects of it far more than the health aspects. In fact, you may not even be aware that there is a health aspect to receiving a tattoo – other than the inherent risks of infection, allergic reaction or disease transmission if equipment is not properly sterilized. Research is increasingly showing, however, that there might be health risks involved, especially if your tattoo…

All About Jicama

Jicama, pronounced “hee-ka-ma,” is a root vegetable native to Mexico. It is a member of the morning glory family and is related to the sweet potato, but more closely resembles water chestnuts in color, texture and flavor. All About Jicama - Nutritional Highlights A cup of raw, sliced jicama, provides 46 calories, 0 g fat, 11 g carbohydrate, 6 g fiber, 2 g sugar and 1 g protein. The soluble fiber found in jicama, inulin, is a beneficial prebiotic food that stimulates the activity of healthy bacteria growth in the digestive system. Prebiotics are something many don’t get enough of,…

The Importance Of Vitamin D In Cancer Treatment And Prevention

There is a huge volume of research showing the relationship between vitamin D and cancer. The benefits of this vitamin, or hormone in this regard, apply to both cancer prevention and cancer survival. Here is a rundown on some of the studies carried out on vitamin D and cancer. Vitamin D & Types of Cancer Breast Cancer A report which looked at research findings from 1966 to 2004 said that vitamin D can lower breast cancer risk by as much as 50%. [1] Generally, vitamin D has been widely studied for its benefits on breast cancer prevention. However, more recent…
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The Harmful Effects of Cell Phone Use And How To Reduce Them

We all know it by now, cell phones emit radio-frequency energy. The one thing still up for debate is whether or not this radio-frequency energy is harmful to the human body, and if it is to what extent. Here is what we do know, radio-frequency is a form of electromagnetic radiation (EMR). EMR is a wave-like energy that is emitted and absorbed by charged particles. In the case of a cell phone, the phone emits the EMR (in the form of radio-frequency) and the human operating it absorbs it. EMR can be classified into one of two categories: (1) Ionizing…
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The Evidence Continues To Mount Against Chronic Cardio

The Evidence Continues to Mount Against Chronic Cardio written by Mark Sisson and originally published at MarksDailyApple.com, is syndicated with exclusive permission for Healthy Living How To. It’s been awhile since I did a post on chronic cardio. I had a good string of them going several years ago, and I thought I’d done a good job explaining why I was so opposed to excessive endurance training. Despite my attempts to clarify, though, I still receive a lot of questions and comments about cardio. People just have a tough time divorcing themselves from the notion that cardio – as much as you can cram into your schedule – is the key…
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7 Things To Stop Worrying About Today

As the Dalai Lama once said, “If a problem is fixable, if a situation is such that you can do something about it, then there is no need to worry.  If it’s not fixable, then there is no help in worrying.  There is no benefit in worrying whatsoever.” In other words, worry will not strip tomorrow of its burdens, it will strip today of its possibilities. How would your life be different if you stopped worrying and started truly doing what you are capable of doing?  Let today be the day you free yourself from worthless worry, seize the possibilities…

How To Eat Healthy, Lose Weight and Feel Awesome Every Day

Do you want to learn how to eat healthy? If you do this, you will lose weight without counting calories and feel better every single day. Given that healthy eating can prevent serious diseases like obesity, type II diabetes and heart disease, this advice may save your life. Literally. I don’t like to put a label on my dietary advice. It is based on scientific research, not ethics, religion or a preconceived notion of what a healthy diet should be like. But if you want to label it, call it a “Low-Carb, Real-Food” based diet (LCRF). What Does “Low-Carb, Real-Food” Mean? Let me start by explaining…
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Does Science Hold The Key To Happiness?

I think it’s safe to say we all want to live happy lives and experience happiness in its various forms on a daily basis. Of course, the concept of happiness can mean many different things to each person. Would you be surprised to know that the process of happiness and how to achieve a better level of happiness is backed by scientific research? In other words, there are things that you can do that will make you happier which have been backed-up by science! Well, if this is important to you, then I have a few examples to share with…

How To Cure A Sinus Infection Naturally

It’s been known since the last century that antibiotics have been proven to not help you recover from a sinus infection (sinusitis) any faster than a placebo. Still, Americans spend nearly $6 billion every year on health care costs related to sinusitis, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Imagine if you could put some of that money back into your pocket and address a sinus infection from a foundational level. How Sinus Infections Occur Sinus infections occur when the mucous membranes in your nose and sinuses become irritated by a cold, allergy, pollutants or exposure to dry or cold…

Medicines On Your Spice Rack

The most common herbs and spices, often added to our favorite dishes for flavor, also have considerable medicinal use. It is likely, these spices and herbs were originally added to foods for this very reason. Most herbal spices aid in digestion as well as prevent and relieve gas. Spices can be used to treat problems from headaches to infection. The next time something ails you, before going to your medicine cabinet, why not give one of these remedies a try. Medicines On Your Spice Rack Anise is very useful for breaking up mucous and is used for hard dry coughs where expectoration is…

5 Keys to Eating for Better Brain Health

Although many people may see the value in the grain- and gluten-free diet proposed by Grain Brain, getting them to take the final step, to actually make a nutritional change in their life, can often prove difficult. That’s understandable, because the first few days and weeks of making any lifestyle change are challenging. In this case, those who have trouble cite an inability to find gluten-free recipes, uncertainty over conflicting gluten-free food lists, reliance on dining out, or any other of a multitude of issues. So, I decided to write this blog post. 5 Keys to Eating for Better Brain…

Amazing Health Benefits Of Garlic

Garlic is well known as a natural health remedy that has long been used to treat various ailments. It is extremely easy to source in most countries and can be consumed cooked or fresh. It is most easily included in your food or can be eaten on its own. You don’t need to limit yourself to fresh garlic either. Garlic powder or dried garlic flakes are just as effective and super easy to keep in the cupboard for everyday use. As you will see from the list below, as well as being a tasty addition to almost every cooked dish,…

Five Reasons Why You Should Probably Stop Using Antibacterial Soap

A few weeks ago, the FDA announced a bold new position on antibacterial soap -- manufacturers have to show that it's both safe and more effective than simply washing with conventional soap and water, or they have to take it off the shelves in the next few years. About 75 percent of liquid antibacterial soaps and 30 percent of bars use a chemical called triclosan as an active ingredient. The drug, which was originally used strictly in hospital settings, was adopted by manufacturers of soaps and other home products during the 1990s, eventually ballooning into an industry that's worth an estimated $1 billion. Apart…
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New Science of Stress Reveals How You Think About Stress Matters

"The harmful effects of stress on your health on are not inevitable. How you think and how you act can transform your experience of stress. When you choose to view your stress response as helpful you create the biology of courage. And when you choose to connect with others under stress you can create resilience." Kelly McGonigal, PhD, and Health Psychologist  How You Think About Stress Matters We've all heard that stress is bad for our health. The statistics comparing stress and related health complications is staggering. But what if, just what if each and everyone of us could make stress…
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How To Manufacture The Best Night Of Sleep In Your Life

How To Manufacture The Best Night of Sleep In Your Life written by Mark Sisson and originally published at MarksDailyApple.com, is syndicated with exclusive permission for Healthy Living How To. Ah, sleep: is there anything quite like it? So easily discarded and discounted when nighttime attractions present themselves and yet so dearly missed and pined after the next morning. You’ve heard me say it enough, so I’ll keep it short. A good night’s sleep is the foundation for a healthy, happy, productive existence. Good sleep keeps us lean and thinking clearly. And without good, regular sleep, we just go through life in…
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Grain Brain and the Seven Super Supplements

A brain-healthy, Alzheimer’s-fighting diet, has properties that extend far beyond just decreasing your daily carb load. To truly provide your body with brain-boosting nutrients and vitamins that help stave off brain disease and other illnesses, you should consider a regular regimen of supplements. These seven supplements will go a long way towards helping you with prevention: DHA: An omega-3 fatty acid that represents more than 50% of the omega-3 fatty acids in the brain. Numerous studies link high levels of DHA with a decreased risk for dementia, Alzheimer’s and other brain diseases (view some of these studies here on my…

7 Sources of Stress You Tolerate Too Often

"The most wasted of all days is one without laughter." ―E.E. Cummings Life is to be enjoyed and appreciated, not endured and tolerated.  Which is why today is a perfect day to stop tolerating… 1.  People who are purposely difficult. Don’t let anyone’s negativity stop you from being happy.  Negative company will never give you a positive life.  Examine what you tolerate.  Every time you subtract negative from your life, you make room for more positive.  Happiness is found around encouraging, loving people. Learning to ignore certain people is one of the great paths to inner peace.  Life gets easier…

6 Reasons Why I Do Not Trust The Mainstream Health Authorities

The mainstream health authorities have an excellent track record of getting things wrong. Since the failed low-fat diet was born in 1977, rates of obesity and diabetes have skyrocketed. New evidence shows that this advice is not only ineffective, but downright harmful for a lot of people. However, despite the studies piling up, the major organizations and their guidelines show no signs of being about to change. Here are 6 reasons why I do not trust the mainstream health authorities. 1. Many of Them Are Sponsored by The Big Junk Food Companies In a perfect world, the people in charge of setting dietary guidelines and educating future and…
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Can You Guess…The Answer Key

On the Healthy Living How To Facebook page, as a FUN way to engage readers while at the same time educating about the healing power of food, I like to play a little guessing game that starts with CAN YOU GUESS... Can You Guess...The Answer Key CAN YOU GUESS...this super food is rich in Vitamin K2. This little known vitamin plays a role in preventing many serious diseases, including cancer, osteoporosis and heart disease. It also contains CLA, which has anti-cancer properties and supports weight loss. Finally, this super food is a source of butyrate which improves digestive health. ANSWER...Butter…

4 Natural Sweeteners That Are Actually Healthy

There are quite a few natural sweeteners that are perfectly safe to eat. They are low in calories, low in fructose and taste very sweet. Here are four natural sweeteners that are actually healthy. 1. Stevia Stevia is a very popular low-calorie natural sweetener. It is extracted from the leaves of a plant called Stevia rebaudiana. This plant has been grown for sweetness and medicinal purposes for centuries in South America. There are several sweet compounds found in Stevia leaves, the main ones are Stevioside and Rebaudioside A. Both are many hundred times sweeter than sugar, gram for gram. Stevia is very sweet, but…
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9 Unwritten Rules of the Gym

I love working out at a gym. Research has clearly shown the benefits of being around other healthy-minded people, and a gym or fitness center is probably the best place to find such a community. I’m sure there are plenty of horror stories from a few of you reading this, but overall, when you actually go on a regular basis, putting yourself in such an environment can be pretty powerful. A membership at a gym or fitness center is a voluntary choice to be part of a “club.” A membership has some privileges, but it also includes some rules. Some are clearly…