Category Archives: Health & Wellness

What is the Keto Diet?

what is the keto diet

As the most popular diet in America, the Keto diet has gained serious traction among those looking to drop pounds or gain muscle. Odds are that you, or one of your friends or family is trying this low-carb eating strategy right now. Or, perhaps you’re interested in starting the Keto diet but you have too many unanswered questions to know for sure.

Keep reading to learn more about the Keto diet, how to get started, and what all you can and cannot eat to be successful on it.

What is the Keto Diet?

The Keto diet is an extremely low-carb, high fat diet that puts sends your body’s metabolism into a state called “ketosis.” As you reach and maintain ketosis your body burns fat instead of easy-to-access carbs. It also converts fat into ketones in the liver which has been shown to increase energy to the brain. The standard Keto diet (SKD) recommends that your daily macronutrients should be 75% fat, 20% protein and only 5% carbs.

Benefits of the Keto Diet

The Keto diet was originally developed to help with seizure control, but research has shown more than 20 benefits to “going Keto.” The first and most popular reason to try this diet is for weight loss, and it’s true, many individuals experience impressive weight loss by following this low carb plan. However, there are many other benefits to following the Keto diet including blood sugar control, cardiovascular health, and brain function.

4 Tips To Start a Keto Lifestyle

Ready to get started? The internet is full of blogs and websites dedicated to helping beginners, but here are 4 basic tips you’ll need to know:

Eliminate Most Carbs

This one is obvious, and easier than you may think. The best way to set yourself up for success is to research Keto foods and stock your shelves with them, ensuring undetected carbs don’t thwart your progress.

Increase Your Fat Intake 

It may seem counterintuitive to what you learned in high school health class, but you cannot be successful on Keto without increasing your fat intake. A few great fat sources include coconut oil, avocados, cheese, fat bombs, and lean meats.

Monitor Your Macros

To get into ketosis, you need to monitor your macronutrients to ensure you are hitting your numbers. Staying faithful about logging your food, at least until you get the hang of it, is key for being successful on Keto.

Check Your Ketones 

No one loves peeing on a strip, but ketone test strips are a great asset for beginners. Believe us, when it turns the right color to indicate you are in ketosis, you’ll probably do a little happy dance in the bathroom.

Supplements to Support Your Keto Lifestyle

Want extra help jump-starting your Keto lifestyle? Check out these 3 supplements to learn more.

Bone Broth Protein Pure by Ancient Nutrition

Jumpstart your ketosis with gut-friendly Bone Broth Protein Pure by Ancient Nutrition.

This supplement is free from sugar and sneaky carbs and full of the wealth of nutrients found in  a warm mug of bone broth.

Doctor Formulated Keto Meal from Garden of Life

Garden of Life‘s Doctor Formulated Keto Meal makes following a Keto diet easy and delicious. Simply mix two scoops in water or add to a smoothie to help you meet your macros.

Keto Metabolic from Douglas Laboratories

Keto Metabolic from Douglas Laboratories features a refreshing strawberry-lemonade flavor that can be mixed with water to help you feel full, stay focused, and reach your goals.

Are you living the Keto lifestyle? Share your strategies and secrets with us in the comments section below.

Do Genetics Dictate Your Health?

genetics-social-square copy

You exercise, eat healthy, take supplements, and do your best to reduce the stress in your life. Anyone looking in from the outside would say you are definitely a “healthy” person. But, are all those things you do for your health enough? How much of your health is prewritten in your genes, and is there anything you can do to change what’s to come? Let’s dig a little deeper.

What are Genetic Disorders?

If you remember from high school Biology class, each of us is made up of perfectly coded sequences of DNA, otherwise known as “genes.” Copies of genes are passed down from parent to child almost exactly, with a few tweaks here and there known as mutations. The good, the bad, and the ugly are all written in our genes before we are even born. It’s the reason you inherited your mother’s beautiful red hair, or your father’s nose that you think is too big. Unfortunately, it’s also why you may be at risk for a number of genetic disorders such as:

  • Heart Disease
  • Cancer
  • Diabetes
  • Autoimmune Disorders
  • Mental Illness
  • Obesity

Can I Avoid Getting Sick?

Just because a genetic disorder such as heart disease runs in your family, it doesn’t necessarily mean you will get it. What it means is that you are more at risk for developing such a disease, particularly if you don’t take care of your health. Some lifestyle choices that greatly increase your odds of falling victim to a genetic disorder include:

  • Smoking
  • Alcohol Abuse
  • Unhealthy Diet
  • Chronic Stress
  • Obesity

Improving Your Health

The good news is that by paying attention to your health you can help avoid falling victim to the flaws that live inside your genes. Lifestyle choices play a major role. Here are ways you can improve your health and stay on top of genetic dispositions before they become an issue.

  • Regular Checkups – Getting a physical every year is important for discovering any issues before they become a problem. Make sure your doctor is aware of your genetic history so they can look for signs of those issues.
  • Watch Your Diet – We’re not talking about starving yourself to lose 10 pounds. We’re talking about making a day-to-day choice to eat clean, whole, healthy foods. The best diet is a well-rounded one made up of plenty of lean proteins, dark green vegetables, and whole grains. A daily multivitamin is also an important part of a healthy diet, so make sure you are getting all the nutrients you need everyday. In addition, supplements by trusted brands such as Metagenics are formulated especially with your unique genetics in mind to help support your overall wellbeing.
  • Exercise – Just 150 hours of moderate physical activity a week can make a huge difference in lowering your chances of developing a genetic disease such as obesity, diabetes, or heart disease.
  • Gut Health – Keeping your gut healthy is a key component of overall health. Probiotics can help you with that. You might also want to try an occasional cleanse or detox program.

Your genes don’t have to dictate your health. You can outsmart them with healthy lifestyle choices. Here’s to your health!

Daily Tips That Make Skin Care for Acne and Anti-Aging Easy

skin care for acne and anti-aging

Skin care is a hobby and preoccupation for a growing number of people. Whether we’re fighting skin blemishes or trying to preserve the health and appearance of our skin as we grow older, skin care is a challenging and rewarding process that we all can take part in. 

Your skin is your body’s largest organ, and careful observation of its appearance will reveal that it’s never exactly the same at any given time. Your complexion fluctuates, dry patches come and go, and the appearance of health and vitality can be there one minute and gone the next. So whether you’re trying to clear your skin from troublesome acne, or simply trying to maintain your epidermis’ youthful glow, here are some means and methods with which to address acne and anti-aging. 

Stabilize Your Diet and Nutrition

Diet and nutrition have almost as much to do with skin health as any other factor. Micronutrients like vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids are integral for the health and attractive appearance of your skin. All of these and more can be found in a widely varied diet of high quality whole foods, with plenty of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and grains. Processed foods should be kept to a minimum, as should any foods that include ingredients or preservatives that you can’t easily pronounce when reading the side of the container. When at all possible, make your own meals from scratch. 

In addition to your meals, consider supplements that can go beyond the nutrition found on your dinner plate. Moringa, Jojoba, & Rose Hip Oil by Desert Essence and Gentle Cleansing Wash by MyChelle Dermaceuticals are perfect examples. The former can soothe skin irritations, such as acne, as well as prime and preserve healthy skin. The latter can gently remove harmful oils and other impurities which inflame the skin during acne breakouts, or can simply work as a makeup remover or general cleanser for all kinds of skin types. 

Providing nutrition directly to the skin surface, as in these two examples, can work faster at improving skin health than generalized nutrition taken in through diet. However, you should probably do both!

Stay Hydrated

Drinking plenty of water is important for the health of your skin, because water makes up most of the weight of our skin. It’s water that allows nutrition to reach skin cells, through the blood in the capillaries, and water composes part of the barrier found around the body of cells that make up your epidermis. Simply put, without water your skin can’t be healthy, so make sure you drink plenty of it! 

Hydration is especially important when it’s very cold or very hot, or when the air is dry. Hydration is also necessary before, during, and after exercise, or any other time your temperature is elevated. You can hydrate your skin from the outside with a high-quality lotion made of natural ingredients, as needed, but especially right before bed. This is a great tip for general skin care, as well as acne and anti-aging.

Wear Sunscreen

Protecting your skin from the sun will work wonders for its appearance. Wrinkles and fine lines are most often the result of damage that ages the skin, causing it to lose its softness and elasticity. Sun damage is the worst culprit for many of us. Even if you go outside in the sun for only a few minutes each day, this time adds up! You should strongly consider getting in the habit of applying sunscreen to your face, at least, whenever you go outdoors during the day. 

All of these methods will help you improve your skin quality, especially if you have chronic conditions like acne. For those without acne, these techniques will help you improve the health and appearance of your skin, reducing the signs of aging for life.