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The Truth About Cholesterol + How To REALLY Protect Your Heart

Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the U.S. but the good news is, you can do something about it.

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However, in order to truly reduce your risk you have to be aware of the actual causes of heart disease. Time and again you’ll hear that cholesterol is the culprit but cholesterol on its own doesn’t cover everything.

Cluttered Veins

Focusing on lowering your cholesterol to combat heart problems ignores the bigger picture. So how do you make real changes to protect ourselves from heart disease?

Health Factors That Increase Risk

Heart disease and the risk of heart disease can be the result of too much damage to your heart. This seems like a no brainer, but your heart is subjected to stress and sometimes damage through the foods you eat, especially if you have a diet high in sugar.

  • Some of the most common risk factors for heart disease include:
  • Smoking
  • Poor diet
  • Low or no exercise
  • Drinking alcohol moderately or in excess
  • Obesity

As you can see, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is key to reducing your risks when it comes to heart attacks and lowering your cholesterol didn’t even make the list above!

Reducing Risk of a Heart Disease

Of course, there are other ways you can help increase your heart health and reduce the risk you’ll suffer a heart attack or heart disease. Here’s some of the best ways to improve your overall heart health.

  • Deep Breathing – taking the time to sit down, meditate and take some     deep breaths can do wonders for your health. Deep breathing relaxes     the mind and re-centers the body. Lowering your stress can be an important component of reducing risks to your heart over the course of your life.
  • Magnesium – this mineral helps aid the body in relaxation and it also is responsible for controlling your glucose levels.  You can use magnesium in a caplet form or you can ingest it via absorption. That’s right, you can take a bath and soak in magnesium.
  • Be More Active – if you have a sedentary job or one that requires you to sit at a desk for most of the day, try to get up and move more often.  When you frequently sit, you can actually disrupt your metabolism.  Getting up and moving keeps things working as they should.
  • Maintain Healthy Relationships – when you are in a good relationship, either with your partner or with the people around you, you tend to live a healthier life.  This is because people with strong relationships tend to have a greater sense of connection.  Having a variety of relationships and support can actually keep your heart healthy!

Obviously, these are just a few ways to keep your heart in top shape and reduce the risk of heart disease.  There are many other ways you can promote heart health.  Be sure to get enough vitamins, minerals and antioxidants in your diet. If you can, eat natural foods and avoid the junk.  If you use a little common sense, you can lower your risk of heart disease with just a few simple steps.

Researchers Found A New Belly Fat Fighter with Almonds!

Almonds are one of the more beneficial food sources out there for improving our health and fitness level and its medicinal properties have been known about for a long time.

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The nutrient and antioxidant-rich almond is also high in fiber, protein.and monounsaturated fats, among other healthy ingredients. This means this little nut can reduce the risks of developing many illnesses and conditions such as heart disease, colon cancer, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes, among others.

Weight loss and almonds

Almonds also help in lowering blood pressure and glucose levels, improving insulin production, strengthening bones and teeth, and restoring the health and complexion of our skin. Reducing the risk of developing  pregnancy-related birth defects and improving weight loss results are also included in almond’s long list of  healthy attributes.The wonders in almonds never seem to cease!

Almonds are great for pregnancy

Now there’s new research that reveals there’s even more to almonds than we original imagined.  Researchers uncovered one more additional perk to the magic of almonds- the ability to remove belly fat! In a recent Journal of Nutrition publication a new research study found strong evidence linking weight loss, especially in the stomach region, with almond consumption. In the study, 86 overweight research subjects were given a 12-week calorie-restrictive diet to follow. One group of subjects included a daily ¼ cup serving, or 35 grams of dry roasted almonds, lightly salted in their daily diet. The other test group followed a diet without any nuts included.The remarkable results has caused quite a stir! The group whose diet included the daily almond serving lost over  one percent of their stomach fat while the group without any nuts in their diet lost less than half a percent. In other words, almost nothing, despite following the same restrictive low calorie diet plan the other test group did, minus the all-important almonds.

This may have a lot to do with the high monounsaturated fat content in almonds, researchers say. Sister to the omega-3 and 6 polyunsaturated fatty acids, commonly referred to as the “good” fats contained in some foods, the monounsaturated healthy fats fill you up longer, reducing feelings of hunger. And they’re harder for the body to absorb, which means the caloric intake from almonds is reduced by 10 to 15%. Almonds also help boost the metabolism, improving how much and how fast the body can burn fat. The high fiber content found in almonds contributes to weight loss as well by regulating digestion and keeping things running smoothly and unobstructed. This allows the body to eliminate toxins more frequently.

Healthy Family Eating

Though the specific reason almonds seem so adept at eliminating tummy fat is still unclear, the evidence of their effectiveness in this area isn’t. What’s more, with so many other health benefits in almonds, we  should all be eating a healthy daily dose, regardless of whether we need to lose weight or not. There’s no telling what else there is  yet to discover about almonds and how the elements contained within little oval nut work their magic. What’s already been uncovered may only be the tip of the iceberg. Can’t wait to see what scientists discover next!

Blake Lively Shares Her Weight Loss & Fitness Goals for 2017 After Baby #2!

Getting back down to size after childbirth is a  struggle most  mothers can relate to, especially after baby #2. But for A-list celebrities the pressure can be overwhelming, especially if they’re under the gun with a new movie starting.

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Celebrity moms often fall under far more scrutiny post baby than most moms expect to encounter which is hard not to take personally. In Hollywood, image is everything, as they say, visually and otherwise, and there’s always someone younger and  more fit right around the corner ready to take your  place. Blake Lively has shared some of her own experiences with the public during both pregnancies,  and what it’s like facing the same struggles other moms do while under the harsh Hollywood spotlight.

After the birth of her first daughter, Blake worked hard getting back to fighting shape within 8 months of giving birth in preparation for a bikini scene as leading lady Nancy Adams in  the 2016 film  The Shallows. After following a soy and gluten-free diet to achieve her quick success, Blake shared her struggles with dieting restrictions  on Australia’s Kyle and Jackie O show. She described to the talk show co hosts and viewers how surprisingly difficult it was finding foods that didn’t contain either gluten or soy.  This unexpected setback didn’t seem to get in the way of her weight loss results, however. Lively received high praise for creating her toned and fit  post baby bikini body in time for the movie.

Healthy Blake Lively

This time around, Blake Lively is relying on a combination of rigorous workouts and a home delivered meal system to regain her pre-baby weight. Gearing up for the new year, Blake shared an  Instagram post with fans about her 2017 new year’s resolution to get down to her pre-pregnancy size and wear her favorite jeans again, a promise she vowed in her posting along with a picture shutout for Epicured, the home delivered meal plan she started.  Just two months after giving birth, Blake assured fans this was not a sales plug, but a recognition of  her commitment to herself to get back to a healthy food and fitness level.

Blake has also made her workout progress with personal trainer Don Saladino a focus of recent Instagrams. Saldano’s training program  pulls no punches and has Blake doing 30 to 75-minute alternating workouts 5 to 6 times a week, according to Saldan. He explained his approach of rotating rigorous upper and lower body, catch, throw,  and carry intensive training sessions with alternating daily workouts. This approach is designed to increase the heart and metabolic rate in order to burn more calories while also building overall strength and muscle tone, he explained in a recent interview. From the looks of follow-up instagram posts, this plan seems to be working!

Blake Lively Vogue

On the struggles celebrity moms face being in the limelight, Blake Lively offered  some recent insight into what she thinks about unflattering pics of famous moms after pregnancy and their more critical responses.In Lively’s view, pregnant women have a different kind of beauty to them than the standard Hollywood typically promotes and should be appreciated for its natural wonder. She wishes she were braver in embracing that natural radiance and beauty herself.

We second Blake Lively’s sentiments, whose own striking beauty resonates whether she’s a glowing 8-months pregnant, post-baby or back to her old  pre baby size, as I’m sure husband Ryan Reynolds would agree. Wishing her good luck on her journey, we look forward to future updates on her progress fitting back into those jeans!

Is Coconut the Key to Weight Loss?

Making healthy choices can be challenging, especially when new studies and trends hit the scene every year. You know how it is, one year its raw diet, the next it is all about detox. Sometimes it can be hard to keep up! One trend that looks to make it big in 2017 is coconut and we’re not just talking about the water.

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Of course, like most trends, there’s a lot of misinformation and false promises so it is important that you get the facts before jumping in with both feet. Leading experts and nutritional consultants seem to agree that coconut can have its share of benefits, but what are they?

Weight Loss with Coconuts

Making healthy choices can be challenging, especially when new studies and trends hit the scene every year. You know how it is, one year its raw diet, the next it is all about detox. Sometimes it can be hard to keep up! One trend that looks to make it big in 2017 is coconut and we’re not just talking about the water.

Of course, like most trends, there’s a lot of misinformation and false promises so it is important that you get the facts before jumping in with both feet. Leading experts and nutritional consultants seem to agree that coconut can have its share of benefits, but what are they?

The Benefits of Eating Coconut

The major benefits of coconut on your health are currently being studied, but some of the well known properties include:

Controlling Your Appetite​ – Coconut can help keep you from cheating on your diet but curbing your cravings and helping you stay “full” longer. It accomplishes this through the healthy fat components within that give you a boost of energy while staying in your system longer. It is a great combination that allows you to ward off cravings and stick to your diet.

Reduced Carbohydrates – Another great thing about coconut is that it is loose in carbohydrates which makes it     easier to lose weight. It also has an easy to digest sugar that allows you to digest smoothly and completely. In fact, unprocessed coconut is an amazing snack in and of itself. You can add it to shakes, smoothies and other recipes to help integrate a low carb option into your meals.

How to Get the Most Out of Eating Coconut

It is very important that you monitor your portion size when it comes to eating coconut. This is especially true if you’re adding it into your weight loss diet for the benefits. For one, coconut can have a lot of calories and there’s also a large amount of saturated fats. Be sure to keep an eye on how much you’re consuming in a day and try to keep it at less than 10% of your normal intake.

You may want to stick to a simple serving size per day in order to keep your calories in check. This can be a pre-measured amount or just a single serving, whatever is easier for you to remember.

When you add coconut to your diet it is important to understand the composition. Coconut can be high in fat and it contains a type of fat that is outside our normal consumption. This is because of the composition of coconut and the complex sugar chains within it. This complex is used to create energy rather than store energy and that is part of the reason coconut can be so effective when it comes to keeping us satisfied.

Keep in mind that scientists are still studying the fat-burning effects of coconut but the early results are promising. It is one of the reasons we’re sure that coconut will be one of the big food trends of 2017!

A Detoxing Bone Broth & Beet Winter Soup

If you are interested in nutrition and promoting a healthy lifestyle, you’ve probably researched the process of detoxifying your body. Maybe you’re already exploring detoxes or completing them as part of your own routine.

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When it comes to choose detox, the reasons behind it can be complex and varied. Many people choose to detox because they desire to rid the body of toxins in addition to leading a life that is healthy and pure. Natural and fresh foods may be incorporated into the detox process.

Antioxidant Beets soup

One of the best foods to add to your detox routine is beets. They truly are a super-food, but they can be an acquired taste. Beets have some amazing properties that help the detox process by cleansing the liver through antioxidants. In fact, beets can also encourage detoxing in the body’s natural detox organs – the kidneys, liver and gallbladder.

If you want to incorporate beets into your detox diet, one of the best ways to do this is through soup. The Russians and eastern Europeans were well aware of the beet when it comes to soup, they perfected Borscht. For detox, Borscht is the perfect solution and when you add a savory broth made from bones, all the better.

This recipe is so good, it will even win over the toughest beet critic. It has a savory bone broth that gives the soup a warm, hearty feel without overpowering the senses. Add the beets and you have the perfect detoxifying broth.

So how do you make this culinary wonder? Here’s the recipe.

Things You’ll Need:

  • Bone broth (beef), making it from scratch is best but you can also purchase it pre made)
  • Beets (2-3), peel and cut into small cubes
  • Yellow Onion Celery (3-4 stalks)
  • Fennel Carrots (4) Garlic (4 cloves)
  • Olive Oil you can add the final touches, the beets and broth.
  • Season to taste but be sure to taste it throughout cooking.
  • Lemon (1)
  • Sea Salt
  • Black Pepper


Heat one tablespoon of olive oil in a pan, warm it slowly and be sure it doesn’t get too hot. Once the oil is warm, add the onion, carrots and celery, all diced. Allow these to cook for a just a minute or two before adding salt, pepper and topping off with the fennel. Once this has cooked down, transfer to a stock pot or slow cooker.

Once the veggies have been added to the pot, mince your garlic and add to the mixture.

Now, let the soup cook on low for 4-6 hours, this brings out the best flavor. If you’re short on time, you can also turn the heat up just a touch and reduce the cook time to 1.5 hours. Keep an eye on the veggies and make sure they have cooked enough to be pierced with a fork. Once the veggies are soft, add another splash of olive oil and lemon zest.

Of course, you can adjust any part of this recipe to meet your own tastes. If you like more garlic, feel free to add it into your soup. Anything on this list can be added to match your own preferences. That is the beauty of this recipe! So grab a bowl and enjoy your new detox recipe!