Learn How to Get a Cheap Gym Membership

Enrolling in a gym or fitness center can be a major decision, one that requires self-discipline, determination and responsibility. Many individuals waste their income by registering for gym memberships and then using them very rarely. Before enrolling, ensure that you have reviewed the various gyms in your town and selected the facility, area and price that is right for you. Some gyms give discounts through your insurance firm or company. Once you locate a gym, you will learn the ways a gym membership can boost your life.

First of all, doing exercise at a gym can boost your overall health. In addition to aiding you to shed fat and calories, cardiovascular exercise also assists to enhance your heart and protect against risky health conditions like cardiac arrest, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, stroke, some tumors, type 2 diabetes and also obesity. Cardiovascular exercise can also help you sleep through the night more soundly, ease emotional stress, have a better attitude and increase energy. Gyms give a wide array of cardio options through both equipment, like the treadmill machine, elliptical machine and stationary bike, and group workout classes, like cardio boxing, aerobic dance and group indoor cycling. At a gym, you can also get the help of a personal coach, who can guide you on the perfect techniques and methods to achieve your fitness goals.

Cardio exercise machines at the gym will help you to burn calories and fats. Strength training will aid you build lean muscle mass, because it tones and sculpts your body, that will aid improve your metabolism. The weight-training equipment at the gym can simplify your workout while also letting you focus on whichever part of the body you’d like. For example, the leg press will enhance and tone your quads and glutes, the lat pull down equipment will strengthen the back, the chest press will work your chest and the front of your shoulder area and the overhead press device will work the front, top and side of the shoulders.

Gyms and fitness centers provide options for interacting with new people and boosting your community of buddies. Most of these amenities tend to have sociable environments as most folks are there for the same reason, giving everybody something in common. You’ll find the group physical fitness classes particularly friendly, as they generally concentrate on a certain activity, such as boxing, dance and also core work, and attract like-minded individuals.

Together with doing exercise, your membership advantages can normally be rounded out by extra services. Everyone knows that gym services and apparatus are very expensive. So it is smart to have gym membership and enjoy these costly facilities. Today, many gyms have specified yoga studios, lap pools, saunas and steam rooms. Your establishment may also provide an onsite spa that provides massage therapy, facials, manicures and pedicures. Some areas give tanning and child care services, and some fitness centers have some sort of juice bar and sports wear shop on the building.

What is Bio-Availability & How is it Important For Your Health Now?

What important fact is often left out of eating healthy? Bio Availability. Bioavailability means how easy (or able, at all) it is for your body to use nutrients in foods. If you’re reading ingredient lists, watching for fresh and raw foods and making healthier choices, you’re on the right track for better health. However, foods and ingredient lists can only publish the amount of nutrients in the foods…NOT how well your body can use them. This can create a pitfall for consumers looking for better health.

Educate yourself on bioavailability with this article for the healthiest choices!
The most common example of misleading nutritional content (what’s on the label doesn’t match what your body can actually use) are milk products. Everyone’s heard over & over that “milk is a great source of calcium”…why, just look at that nutrition facts label. There can be up to 30 percent of your daily value in just one serving. However, that’s not the whole story.

The calcium in animal products, including milk, isn’t very bioavailable. There may be more total calcium in milk than there is in spinach, but if you don’t have the ability to absorb or process it, it won’t do you any good. So if you’re looking for calcium, reaching for dark leafy greens offers your more easily available calcium than plain milk.

Why don’t products mention bioavailability in numbers on their labels, if it’s so different and important?

Because it’s too hard to pin it down. Each person has a different selection of enzymes, helpful bacteria, harmful bacteria, a different level of acidity in the stomach throughout the day, and many other factors that can improve, inhibit, or just change the bioavailability of the nutrients they eat. To add even more unpredictability, some nutrients are more bio-available when consumed with others, like fat-soluble vitamin E requires a healthy fat for your body to use it. No fat? No E. That’s why the best thing to do is educate yourself independently, and know what foods generally have a better shot at the nutrient you want being maximally bio available. When you know what you want and you know the bio availability, you’ll know what to eat and how to eat it.

Quick tips include:
Mincing garlic or onions for recipes and waiting 10 minutes before using it to release all the healthy allicin. (Allicin is good for cholesterol, blood pressure and reducing heart disease risk factors)
Cooking tomatoes releases & makes more bioavailable the carotenoids, so go ahead and enjoy red sauces, soups and stews with tomato.
Cabbage & related vegetables like cauliflower and broccoli are best raw. If you must cook broccoli, a light steaming can work because boiling these veggies makes the healthy glucosinolates come out into the water where they’re not consumed. Also, cooking can deactivate the enzyme myrosinase, which is a cancer-fighter.

Some foods work together to boost bioavailability.
For example, E and A are fat soluble vitamins. They’re also found in lots of tasty salad ingredients. To get the most out of your salad, add a little healthy plant fat at the same meal. Avocado slices, crunchy nuts, chia seeds, or olive oil based dressings are all good ideas. (Skipping low fat dressing is recommended) Oatmeal and orange juice at the same meal activate phenols for heart and artery health. Berries and grapes also increase the useful amount of free-radical fighting anti oxidants you can use. (Various berries like blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries etc all also enhance each other when eaten together.)

Other foods already have the combination of nutrients that boost bioavailability inside them from the start. A good example of this is the chia seed. It has calcium, but also magnesium and boron. The trace mineral boron helps your body get the calcium where it needs to go: into your bones. Micro-nutrients such as trace minerals are substances you only need a tiny bit of, but they are important none-the-less. Magnesium is very important for good health, getting the right amount of magnesium in your diet from foods can help with bone health, diabetes, heart health, nervous system health, 300 different enzymes use it, and helping to digest protein.

Keeping your beneficial bacteria (probiotics) healthy increases bioavailability in many foods.
Probiotic bacteria, the “good-guys” always getting press in yogurt ads, help you break down foods for use as energy, kill off bad bacteria that would harm you & help move food through the digestive system. Probiotic bacteria eat something called ‘prebiotic fiber’. This is soluble fiber. Soluble fiber does not add calories to food because your body cannot break it down…however good bacteria can. By feeding them this specific type of fiber you can encourage all of their positive activities. Chia seeds are the only seed with so much soluble fiber you can see it with the naked eye. When you soak chia seeds in filtered water at a ratio of 9 parts water to 1 part seeds, you’ll see they make a thick clear gel within 15 minutes. Because the gel has no flavor, you can add it to yogurt, oatmeal, soup, dressing, smoothies, jelly, pudding, ice cream, or anything you already like to eat. Was the food low in fiber? Add some chia gel and the fiber content is taken care of.

Automated Vending Control Over Pharmaceuticals & Accountability

Experts estimate that at least 10% of the general population will have a problem with dependency on drugs or alcohol at some point in their lives. Unfortunately, hospitals have learned that their nurses and tech staff are not immune to addiction and dependency issues any more than others despite their extensive medical training. Nurses, in particular, have more direct access to controlled pharmaceutical substances than almost any other medical professional.

According to Kimberly New, a medication security consultant and executive board member of the National Association of Drug Diversion Investigators, “Nurses are the No. 1 care provider with regular access to controlled substances…We detect a lot more nurses than pharmacy staff diverting medications in inpatient settings.”

Long term care facilities are most susceptible to the problem of diversion, or theft of controlled substances by nurses. Unlike 80 percent of hospitals, medication dispensing in these facilities lacks automation. Instead, each time a nurse requires a medication for a patient, he or she typically removes it from a locked supply cabinet and manually charts the removal recording vital information such as date, time, the name of the patient, and the nurse responsible for its removal. When shifts change, the incoming nurse verifies the totals with the outgoing nurse. This process is rife with opportunity for cover up of unauthorized access to controlled substances as well as simple human error.

UCapIt, a division of Intelligent Dispensing Solutions, is developing innovative vending solutions to prevent diversion. With a medical supply vending machine like UCapIt’s lockers or their pharmaceutical vending machine that looks more like a traditional vending machine, care facilities are better able to control access and inventory of medications and supplies.

The benefits of this new generation of medical vending machine services are undeniable. Medical professionals face daily challenges of restricting access, accounting for inventory and ensuring that product doesn’t expire before it is used.

Automation can help address each of these issues, in particular with the issue of diversion and theft. A pharmaceutical vending machine restricts access to personnel who use an authorized pin number, bar code scanner, or biometric such as a fingerprint to access the machine’s contents. Transactions are recorded automatically and available to inventory managers and nursing supervisors via the Internet. A pattern of diversion of medication by nurses quickly becomes obvious.

Diversion of pharmaceutical supplies by nurses can be addressed and prevented by secure vending automation. A pharmaceutical vending machine or medical vending machine automates transactions and provides detailed records of access.

Weight Loss Plans And Creating One For Yourself

Weight Loss Plans And Creating One For Yourself

Many folks desire to shed pounds. They always say they’re going to do it eventually, but they never do. In some cases, people can’t find the time or motivation, and in other cases, they’re too lazy to put in the necessary effort. If you think you fall into this category and you really want to shed those pounds, read this article for helpful advice.

Reducing your daily caloric intake will be an effective means of weight loss. A good technique is to lower your caloric intake by 500 calories.

When you’re trying to lose some weight, you shouldn’t use shakes or weight loss bars. Such items are highly dense in calories and will not satiate your need for actual food. After consuming these, you will often still feel hungry. They also have a lot of sugar that can boost blood sugar and increase unhappiness.

Going to a party doesn’t require you to stop dieting for the day. If there are fruits or vegetables available, consume these instead. This way, you can still participate in the festivities without sabotaging your weight loss success. Don’t fuss over your weight loss goals during a party, just try to get around it.

Drinking a small shake fortified with protein can help stave off hunger. Mix some protein powder with water and you have a snack that is nutritious and won’t make you gain a bunch of weight.

Yogurt is a great food to eat for weight loss. Make sure you select a low fat product or a plain yogurt. You can eat plain yogurt with plenty of foods such as a salad mixed with vegetables. Think about putting your own fruit into plain yogurt to steer clear of added sugar found in commercial products. Yogurt has great calcium content, which is good for your bones and is a delicious snack.

Even if you have to get up 15 minutes early in the morning, taking the time to eat a healthy breakfast before starting your day is essential. When you’re in a hurry, you could easily be tempted to get a breakfast pastry as you go to work. However, these contain empty calories. By eating a simple yet nutritious meal of oatmeal, fruit, whole-grain cereal or low-fat yogurt at home each morning, you eliminate the need to stop at that coffee shop or fast-food restaurant for a calorie-laden breakfast.

Keep track of how many calories you eat each day. Calculate your daily needs and document how many calories you are consuming each day. If you know your caloric needs, then it will be easier to decide how many calories you should have in each meal.

You must have a set schedule for your workout regimen. Everyone can make a resolution, but without a dedicated workout time, it is easy to get lazy. Pick a regular time each day that you will always work out.

Lots of people proclaim that they want to get in shape, but they never actually do it. This is due to things like problems with time or problems with motivation. You don’t have to let this reason from stopping you. The advice provided in this article can help you begin your weight loss plan, and also finish it.

Best Cure For Hair Loss

The result is a head full of lustrous and healthy hair that you could be the proud owner of. Herbs can be a nice alternative to use if you are not interested in using medicated treatments in an effort to regrow hair. While this may have been a contributing factor for some it certainly was not the cause for most.

Alopecia in women is often caused by pregnancy, stress, fatigue, or chemical treatment but may also be hereditary. Eat healthy and exercise to improve your body’s nutrition and general well being. Each parents have been known to carry the thin hair gene. Discuss your Female hair thinning problems with a qualified professional.

When they face the problem of hair loss and dandruff, they can spend any amount of money to cure the problem. I also encourage everyone I come in contact with to do their own research and make their own comparisons. Multi-vitamins are very effective female hair loss products because they can help ensure that women get the necessary nutrients which are necessary in order for the hair to grow and stay strong. Stress can be a factor that can lead to hair thinning in females.

Even just the concept of this will doubtless be enough to scare you. As DHT accumulates it slowly shrinks the hair follicle to a point where it can no longer support new growth. Good thing there are some effective ways that a woman can explore when it comes to fixing hair loss and promoting its normal growth.

But as you can tell depending on why you are suffering from hair loss will need to be determined. Many women are shocked to discover how much their hair can start thinning after giving birth, but there are various treatments that help to combat thinning hair and return hair to its normal thickness. Although there are few times when hair loss is considered normal in a women like after the baby born or during menopause, but still it is disturbing for women.

Most of the drugs known to do this only effects a small minority of patients. The Oil of Emu has been heralded in cosmetics because of its ability to repair skin as well as its anti-wrinkle, anti-bacteria and anti dht hormone hair loss properties. This is actually not the case – what happens is that during pregnancy, the natural shedding process slows down. Women are also at a greater risk of having thyroid disease which often requires radio active treatment.

A fetus demands a very high level of biotin and often takes it from the mother. If you are pregnant and expecting to give birth soon, you should know more about this condition now before it happens to you. There is nothing that can be done to speed up the resting post pregnancy hair growth period.

3) Medication containing high doses of vitamin A such as those for supplementing diets, blood pressure, gout treatment, contraceptives, and antidepressant. Minoxidil is known to be effective against pregnancy hair loss and never only helps your hair re-grow but additionally improves its thickness and texture. It provides protein that the strands need in order to grow. It is my experience that the topical products are not very effective if you are dealing with male or female pattern balding unless they are taken along with an oral tincture or supplement.

There are several causes for this and if you take suitable action it does not have to be permanent. Unknown to others, some drugs may also cause hair fall. Although you may believe it is emotional or physical stress or both, there may be other factors contributing as well. The best way to deal with this is to visit you’re physician.

How To Lose Weight Fast Without Diet Pills Or Exercise!

Let’s get REAL! If you are still struggling to lose weight, then I have the solution for you!

Article Body >> I have always been what most would consider a “big girl”. In January 2014, I weighed 180 lbs (around 82 kilograms), which is quite overweight for a woman my height. I wasn’t always this weight though. In my teenage years, I weighed only 140 pounds and I felt much healthier and happier.

I strived desperately over the years to get back to this weight. But with a stressful and busy work life, I struggled to do so. Nothing seemed to work for me. I tried everything from diet pills to exercise machines I saw advertised on TV. I even tried crazy diets like the acai berry diet, and the green tea diet. They didn’t do anything for me. I was still overweight and considered myself ‘fat’.

That all changed in March 2014 though. I lost a staggering 23 pounds in only 21 days using an extreme diet I found online called The 3 Week Diet. I came across this diet after I read a news article about a famous Victoria Secret model who was using this exact same diet to lose loads of fat in preparation for photo shoots. If it worked for her I thought, shouldn’t it work for me?

I immediately started searching on Google and managed to find the official 3 Week Diet website. There, I watched a video by a professional nutritionist who revealed step-by-step what was needed to lose weight quickly. I was shocked, because noon had ever told me this information before! I had visited personal trainers, dieticians, and doctors, and in all these years, noon had ever told me these dieting secrets!

The next day I began the program. At first I thought it would be really difficult and that I would have to starve myself to see any progress. Boy was I wrong! I pretty much ate whatever I was eating before, but I made sure to eat it at the specific times when my metabolism was burning a thousand times faster than usual. I also made sure to include the secret fat burning foods listed in The 3 Week Diet with every meal. These things combined made the fat literally melt right off my body! How did I know what times my metabolism was burning fat and what foods to include in my diet? Well, Brian from The 3 Week Diet had laid it all out for me as soon as I joined the website. It couldn’t have been easier!

On the first day alone, I lost 2 lbs (around 1 kilogram). The next day, I lost a massive 3 lbs! By the end of the first week I had lost around 10 lbs (4.5 kilograms)! That was much more than I had anticipated. I thought I would lose around 5 lbs max! But 10 lbs in only 7 days! That was life changing! I continued to follow the diet for the entire course of 21 days, and by the end of the diet I had lost an earth-shattering 30 lbs of 100% pure body fat!

My dreams had come true! I was now closer to my ideal body weight than ever before! I felt slimmer, sexier, and healthier! My belly fat had shrunk, my butt was firmer, my thighs were tighter, and my cheeks were no longer round and chubby! Some people barely recognized me! I loved my new body and it was all 100% thanks to The 3 Week Diet. It changed my life!

I am continuing to do The 3 Week Diet and the fat is still dropping off! I’m aiming to get down to 140 lbs and I am probably going to get there in less than a couple weeks! This diet has been one of the best experiences of my entire life. I didn’t have to starve myself, I didn’t have to take any unhealthy diet pills, I didn’t have to work my butt off at the gym, and I didn’t have to eat bland boring food! The 3 Week Diet is really the only solution out there today if you are looking for a system which shows you how to lose weight fast.
It worked for me, and I know it will work for you too.

How To Be Gluten-Free In The Office

Eating gluten-free is something that involves your entire life. You can’t just eat gluten-free at home. You have to eat gluten-free at the office, when you eat out and when you visit others. One of the most difficult places to keep to a gluten-free diet is the office. With all the candy, doughnuts and homemade treats people bring into the office sticking to your gluten-free diet will be a challenge. You also have to worry about cross contamination.

Start with talking to your office manager or human resources department. Communicate your needs clearly and offer reading materials about gluten-free diets to those who would like to learn more. Be prepared to explain your needs clearly.

Ask for some gluten-free counter, shelf and refrigerator space. If necessary, and allowed, you could create a gluten-free kitchen in your office with a mini fridge, microwave, toaster and a small table.

Bring your own meals, snacks and drinks a whenever possible and label everything clearly. Make sure everything you bring is sealed completely to avoid cross contamination. Bring your own condiments and never share.

If you tire of eating frozen or pre-packaged meals at the office set aside a portion of your dinner from the night before and package it for lunch. Bring your own paper plates, plastic utensils, paper napkins and zip lock baggies to keep in your office. You may want to keep these in a locked drawer.

Eating out with co-workers or clients should be something you enjoy but it can be a problem if you need to eat gluten-free. Do your own research and find restaurants that offer gluten-free options. If they say yes then your research is not done. You’ll need to find out if they use separate pots, pans, plates, cups, etc. for gluten-free guests. Ask if their staff has been trained to accommodate gluten-free diners and if they use a separate preparation area for these types of dishes.

Many offices have the tradition of bringing in food for staff or to celebrate certain milestones like birthdays. You won’t have to miss out if you bring in gluten-free goodies on those days and take the opportunity to share your how delicious gluten-free food can be with your colleagues.

If you are struggling to transition to a gluten-free lifestyle consult with a nutritionist who can help you create a plan that will work for you.

© 2014 Gretchen Scalpi. All rights reserved. You are free to reprint/republish this article as long as the article and byline are kept intact and all links are made live.

Can Drinking Milk Be Harmful? Dairy Facts Revealed

People always wonder about the health benefits and concerns with dairy. In the past, there have been drastic trending weight-loss programs designed to exclude dairy products from daily diets, like the Paleo Diet. Many people on the program lost weight, but in the long-run, their bones suffered. Dairy products provide sources of calcium and are essential for bone health, as most of us already know, but can dairy be harmful?

In the ‘80s and ‘90s, experiments on the benefits of drinking milk were conducted in Sweden to examine the relationship between bone fractures and mortality in men and women. Three large countries in Sweden participated in ain a study about milk nutrition facts, including about 61,433 women aging from 39-74 and about 45,339 men aging from 45-79. The people who ran this study concluded that higher milk intake was associated with higher fracture rates in women and higher death rates in men and women. Does this experiment regarding the benefits of drinking milk offer a reliable source to follow? That is questionable. No two people are exactly alike. Some of the people who took the experiment could have been lactose intolerant, some, some of the people could have genetically inherited bone issues that caused fractures, and some of the people could have suffered health issues that had absolutely nothing to do with their sources of calcium intakecalcium intake.

Although the Swedish study is trying to prove that dairy is bad for our diets, we have to keep in mind how nutritious dairy is for our bodies. Cow’s milk contains all the proteins, fatty acids, and micro-nutrients needed to nurture a growing calf. Human muscles, cells, and organs are very similar to a calf’s, which means that dairy products are a great of a source of nutrients for humans as they are for baby calf. A single cup of milk (244 grams) contains Calcium, Vitamin D, Riboflavin (B2), Vitamin B12, Potassium, Phosphorus, Vitamin A, Vitamins B1 and B6, Selenium, Zinc, and Magnesium. All of these nutrients come in a glass that is filled with about 146 calories, 8 grams of fat, and 13 grams of carbs. Do the pros outweigh the cons calorie wise? Absolutely. If the vitamins and minerals are not convincing enough, consider the fact that one of the benefits of drinking milk is that milk is the best source of calcium. Many people, especially women, lack the proper amount of calcium in their diets. Including dairy products in your everyday diet will lower your risk of calcium deficiencies and insure that you are receiving substantial sources of calcium. With this said, it seems logical that dairy is extremely beneficial for bone health. Many mainstream health organizations recommend that people consume 2-3 servings of dairy per day in order to provide enough calcium for their bones.
The bottom line is dairy products are known to have a large impact on health, and the benefits of drinking milk strongly outweigh the consequences. Can dairy products kill you? Possibly. If you intake too much dairy, like some of the participants in Sweden’s study did, you will face major health concerns. At the same time, if you intake too much of any food, no matter what kind of food it is, health concerns will rise. The key to great health is knowing what your body can and can’t tolerate. Balancing every food group––including dairy––in your daily diet in moderation is the key to a long, healthy life.

Better Skin From Within – Choosing Nuts & Seeds for Skin Health & Appearance

When you think of better skin, do you think of creams, powders, laser-treatments or masks? Most people do, but those are treatments that only focus on the exterior of the skin. Providing the right cleanliness, sun protection & moisture level to skin while avoiding irritants are all important parts of making your skin look and feel great…however, have you considered improving your skin from within?

The outside methods aren’t the only ones you can use to achieve better skin health. By consuming the right foods, you give your body the building blocks it needs to form strong, elastic and healthy skin from the inside out. Your skin is a complex organ requiring proteins, oils, vitamins and minerals in order to look its best. There are cell membranes (formed from fatty acids), collagen, elastin (the fibers that give skin a snap-back quality), cell pigments, and hydration levels to keep an eye on. It sounds complicated, but adding tasty nuts & seeds to the menu can make it easy for you.

Anti-Oxidants – what are they & how do they work to save your skin?
Antioxidants are the substances you need to protect yourself from free-radical damage. The best way to get your anti-oxidants, is to eat them. Since you really “are what you eat”, the right foods supply lots of free radical fighters. To learn how both work, you need to know: what are free radicals?
These bad molecules can be a byproduct of normal metabolism. Free radical damage can also be caused by exposure to pollutants in your environment, food or drink. Since your skin is the barrier between you & the outside world it gets exposed to all kinds of threats throughout the day that it fends off. Everyone is exposed to free radicals as a part of daily life, so it’s important to know what they do and how you can minimize their effects on you.

Free radicals are formed when a molecule has an unpaired electron and becomes unstable. When a molecule is unstable, it will steal an electron from the nearest item it encounters. (usually a cell in your body) Then, the molecule that was robbed becomes a free radical itself, scavenging for a spare electron to use so that it will be stable again. They can damage almost anything they come into contact with, which is why the immune system sometimes creates them, and uses them as a weapon against invaders it deems harmful. Because free radicals can create chain reactions by stealing electrons from the molecules that make up your cells, they can cause inflammation, cell damage, and signs of early aging. It’s in your best interest to fight free radicals with anti oxidants.

Omega 3 Oil-
Omega 3 is the oil usually associated with cold water fish and heart health. However, if you don’t like fish or are worried about pollutants, the good news is you can get it from plants too. Chia seeds are actually the highest plant source of omega 3s, as well as the easiest, because they don’t taste like anything. Unlike sesame or poppy, you can sprinkle chia onto any food you already like to eat, get your omega 3 oil, and not change the flavor at all. This is especially important, as you should try to get some omega 3 oil every day, and using chia helps ensure you won’t be bored or quit…because it’s too easy to use on such a variety of foods. Flax seeds & walnuts are also a great source for omega 3s, but you’ll have to like their flavor.

What does omega 3 do for you?
ALA, the simplest of the omega 3s (which your body cannot produce, so you must consume it) has been studied to reduce skin redness & help it retain moisture which, as you know, helps erase fine lines. This oil is important for cell membranes, which are what the cell uses to hold in the proper amount of water. Healthy membranes equal healthy moisture-levels in your cells. You’ve seen all the moisturizer commercials, now you can moisten your skin from within.

Vitamin E-
Your body can’t make this vitamin, so you have to get it from the foods you eat. Vitamin E is an anti-oxidant. There are supplements available, but it’s best to avoid synthetic E, for health purposes. Natural E, like that found in popular foods such as avocados, nuts, chia seeds, mangoes, sweet potatoes and even spinach is your best choice. When you want E, the almond is your top choice of nut. You only need about 15 mg per day for skin health—that’s a super small amount that’s easy to get from food.

Almonds are number one, but if you don’t like them, don’t worry because apples, tomatoes & hazelnuts (yes your favorite hazelnut-chocolate spread may also have E!) have E as well. E is a fat-soluble vitamin. This means it can only be absorbed by the body if there’s a bit of healthy fat around when you eat it. That’s why it’s a good idea to make sure there’s a healthy fat around when you eat tomato, spinach, sweet potato or apple. The other foods on the list like almonds, peanuts, and avocados already provide their own healthy plant fats, so you don’t need to combine them with anything else to get your E.

Zinc –
This mineral is an anti-inflammatory. You already know that excessive inflammation is no good for skin, but zinc has been studied to help accelerate the renewal of skin cells when there’s a damaged cell. This is important for the look of skin because outside influences like UV rays from the sun & pollution in the air can cause skin damage or irritation. Zinc also powers up the immune system’s T-Cells which fight off threats like bacteria or viruses that would try to hurt your skin. It has been studied to help fight acne & skin problems in general, helping them heal faster when there’s enough zinc available in the body.

Most plant-sourced zinc is difficult for your body to use. It’s abundant in red meat & fish, but what if you’re a vegetarian? It’s in eggs too, as well as some fortified milks & cereals. Pumpkin seeds, chia, sesame, lentils (beans are also seeds), cashews & quinoa all have plant based zinc. Keep in mind that plant based zinc is less bio-available than zinc in red meat, fish, shellfish and shrimp, although the topic of soaking seeds is being researched to increase bio-availability of the zinc. Always ask a doctor if you should supplement (zinc vitamins are inexpensive & tiny) especially if you have a skin condition you’d like to fight.

You already know fiber benefits your digestion & cholesterol levels, but did you know it can benefit your skin too? Fiber, especially soluble fiber, helps to slow down the body’s conversion of carbohydrates into sugars. This reduces insulin spikes, which in turn, reduces inflammation. Inflammation (specifically repeated episodes of it) affects most skin conditions AND how skin ages. Keep inflammation down to keep your skin looking fresh.

Foods that spike insulin include sugars & white flour (a starch that changes into sugar right away during digestion) Foods that are high in white flour or sugar are usually also low or 0 fiber foods. Keep your insulin levels even for steady energy & reduced inflammation by eating fiber rich foods at every meal. Beans are a type of seed, but no one wants black beans or split peas at breakfast. Oatmeal & bran are 2 good options at breakfast, especially if you consider all the fun, fast new ways to make oatmeal tasty. What about yogurt? Or smoothies? The chia seed has 2 kinds of fiber to help you: soluble & insoluble. In the case of low-fiber yogurt, a spoon-full of chia transforms it into a high fiber snack without changing the flavor.

Magnesium –
Magnesium works together with two other minerals to improve over-all health as well as skin health. It aids in the absorption of calcium, especially when paired with the trace mineral boron. The chia seed has all 3 of these minerals in one tiny package. Magnesium is essential for enzymes that repair skin cell DNA and for regulating the proper amount of fatty acids to help build healthy cell walls. It also may reduce histamine-driven skin allergies.
You can supplement with magnesium pills, but a healthy menu can easily include magnesium rich foods so your body can naturally absorb this healthy mineral. Dark leafy greens are #1 for magnesium, but Brazil-nuts, sunflower seeds, chia seeds, sesame seeds and lentils are also a good source. Brazil nuts may not be that common, but sunflower seeds can add great crunch to salads, lentils are great in soups & stews, and tahini (sesame seed paste) is an interesting ingredient to spice up recipes.

Protein –
Most people think of protein for muscle building, exercise improvement or weight loss, but, it’s essential for healthy, younger looking skin. There are 20 amino acids you need for good health. Your body can make all of them except for 9. These 9 acids you need to consume in the foods you eat, which is where the term ‘complete protein’ comes from. Your body transforms the amino acids into proteins for faster & healthier fingernail growth, hearty hair follicles, and resilient skin. Collagen & elastin are protein based fibers that give skin it’s bounce-back elastic quality for a youthful look.

Quinoa (a grain), chia (which has complete protein, like that in meat), peanut butter, hemp seeds, soy (but watch out for plant estrogens), black beans with rice (wild or not) and spirulina are all rich in protein. Of course, meat, eggs & milk have it too. Enough protein will combat bags under the eyes, as well as help balance blood sugar because it is metabolized slowly.

A varied meal plan with lots of colorful healthy plant foods enriches your health and your skin…but did you notice the one seed that falls into every category for skin-health related nutrients? Only the chia seed fits in near the top of each category. It’s also the only item without a flavor of its own. The value of chia lies in its ability to be added to almost any other food you’re already enjoying without changing the flavor. The tiny, unobtrusive seed can be used at every meal to boost your skin & overall health.