Top 5 Foods That Cause Bloating

Feeling bloated?… There are foods that can trigger your gut into “bloat mode”. Some are on all the “bad-food” lists, however, some of these foods are actually healthy and nutrient-dense. Many women can have sensitivities to certain healthy foods when it comes to their gut.

Every gal is unique! What works for one person, may not work for another.

Here are some foods that have been shown to throw many guts into disorder. Your challenge is to determine which foods may be affecting you and decide, for yourself, which should be avoided, minimized, or just eaten in moderation.

Processed Foods

Processed food – the big bad wolf.

Processed foods can be quite sneaky. Obviously, the sweet roll in the vending machine is processed food. But is an organic nutrition bar in the vending a processed food too?

How do you know it’s processed? Typically, anything packaged, boxed, wrapped, or frozen, has at least some processing done to it.

However, just because it has been processed, doesn’t mean it’s to be avoided. Reading labels is your best defense against processed foods that contain preservatives, allowing the food item to exist in their package for years.

If there are ingredients that you need a science degree to understand or there is no “best by date”, then the food most likely has preservatives that are not beneficial to your health.

Tip – Read the labels of any bagged, boxed, or frozen food that you eat for the next week. If there is an ingredient that you have a question about, look it up and read about it. You might be surprised about the things that go into food (even food that says natural or healthy on the package).

Fried Foods

Fried and fatty foods can also be really hard on your stomach. Many people don’t have an easy time digesting them, leading to gas, bloating, and stomach cramps. If you have medical conditions like gastritis or acid reflux, these high-fat foods can cause a lot more discomfort for you.

Tip – Save your fried foods for the occasional treat, not as a regular occurrence.

Artificial Sweeteners

If you have ever eaten something that claimed to be “sugar-free” chances are high that it used artificial sweeteners. Even “natural” lemonade in the healthy section of the grocery store, may contain un-natural or artificial sweeteners.

Some alternative sweeteners are more natural, like Stevia and Monk Fruit, and might be very gentle on your stomach. But, it is important to avoid sweeteners like sucralose, sorbitol, maltitol, and aspartame.

“The body reacts to artificial sweeteners differently than it does to sugar — the healthy bacteria that live in the gut, for example, change when these compounds are around.”

– Alice Park

Tip – Choose the versions of sweets with real sugar or natural sweeteners, instead of “diet” or “sugar-free”.

Cruciferous Vegetables

Wait…I thought cruciferous vegetables were good for me?….

You might be wondering why cruciferous vegetables are on the “naughty list” in terms of bloating and digestion…

Even though these vegetables are a genre of food that is nutrient-dense and usually good for you, they may not always kind to your gut.

I’m not going to sugarcoat it… these veggies may give you gas, make you bloated, and cause abdominal pain, especially if consumed raw. However, this is the puzzle that you need to figure out for your own body. Do what works for you.

Cruciferous vegetables include broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, kale, bok choy, arugula, Brussels sprouts, collards, watercress, and radishes.

These veggies contain raffinose — a sugar that remains undigested until bacteria in your gut ferment it, which can produce gas and make you bloat.

The other day a friend of mine was telling me she didn’t understand why after she ate raw veggies – “a healthy food” – she became super bloated and felt yucky. If a cruciferous veggie was in the mix, then it was most likely the culprit.

If you have a lot of gas and bloating, monitor to see if there is a relationship between eating these types of vegetables and bloating. If you see a connection, try eating cruciferous vegetables in moderation.

Every gal is unique, so do what is right for you and your digestion. If a certain food makes you bloated, avoid it. There are a lot of foods out there that can take the place of the food that are causing you digestion issues.

Just because you may have been raised with an adult telling you to “Eat your broccoli!” doesn’t mean you have to now. Carve your own path, mama.

Spicy Foods

Lastly, let’s chat about spicy foods.

Again, spicy foods aren’t necessarily bad for you, but if you have gut issues and cannot figure out the cause, notice how you feel after eating something spicy (especially at night).

Capsaicin is an ingredient in hot chili peppers which has its pros and cons.

Studies have found that capsaicin can increase your metabolism, which increases the rate at which you burn fat stores. It has also been shown to promote heart health.

However, it is also linked with digestive issues. Ingesting too much capsaicin can lead to irritation of the mouth, stomach, and intestines.

Tip – Try lowering the spice in your food slowly, gradually moving from hot to medium, then mild.

Not only does following this list of good and bad foods for your gut help your digestive health, but it can help you have a more balanced diet.

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5 Easy Grounding Techniques To Reduce Stress

Grounding is a technique that helps you balance your physical, emotional, mental energy and reconnect them to bring you into a present, calm state. It allows you to make some space between yourself and any stress that may be bottled up or anxiety that has been lingering.

Sometimes grounding is also called earthing, which is a therapeutic technique that involves doing activities that “ground” or electrically reconnect you to the earth. Practicing grounding typically engages one or more of your 5 senses but focuses mostly on physical connection with the earth.

Here are some easy grounding techniques using the 5 senses to help reduce stress, ease anxiety, and bring a sense of balance to your beautiful self.

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What sounds bring you peace and calm?

Sound can be a grounding technique, as it can shift you into a different state of mind, allowing for a clearer perspective.

The sound might be white noise like the sound of your bedroom fan or maybe the sound of water. Listening to the rain, a creek, waves crashing, or even a fish tank circulating water can help to soothe the mind and bring calm to the body.

There are also many noise machines available that can mimic sounds of nature and white noise. Some women find these especially effective in their nighttime-sleep routine as they wind down and allow the mind to release the stress of the day.

Other people prefer music for their grounding, but make sure it isn’t loud or too fast-paced, as this may actually increase a stressful mind or worsen your anxiety.


Sight can be used for grounding by looking at a peaceful, or inspiring nature scene.

This can be something you are actually able to look at or just something you can imagine in your mind. You don’t need to hike a mountain to look at beautiful nature. Sometimes just stopping and focusing on a grouping of plants, the bark of a tree, or the details of a blooming flower can bring your mind into a state of grounding.

Not able to get outside easily? No problem. Try visually diving into artwork on the wall (it doesn’t have to be in a gallery), a nature scene on your computer, or even something that is colorful (such as a cool coffee mug) near you. Getting yourself visually into another mindset and allowing your mind to have the freedom to think differently for a few minutes can have a grounding effect.


Smell is an easy way to reduce anxiety. It can instantly change your mood and bring you into another frame of mind. Anchoring with a scent or a smell that you find calming, by using aromatherapy with oils or candles, can be very effective. Many scents are known for soothing the senses and helping with anxiety, like lavender, chamomile, and ylang-ylang.

Try experimenting with different blends of essential oils specifically designed to reduce stress and anxiety. Aromatherapy candles can awaken the senses of smell and sight, through the flickering for the mesmerizing flame and the scent of the essential oils within the candle.

Try to put candles or oil diffusers in different areas of your home and office so you can access them easily.


Wake up your taste senses by tasting something invigorating like tart lemon, briny pickle, or spicy pepper. To use taste for grounding purposes, it needs to be something that immediately awakens this sense, brings you into the present, and pulls you away from your stress for a moment.

As you allow the taste of the food to bring you into the present, give yourself permission to dive deeper into the experience of the taste. How does it feel and what thoughts are coming into your awareness? Be sure to breathe and let yourself absorb the moment and feel the change of your state from the taste.


Touch is one of my favorites when it comes to grounding. Standing or walking on the earth is an easy way to practice grounding, through earthing, and begin to relax your mind and body. If you can, get outside on your bare feet, stand or walk on either dirt, grass, or sand so you are touching the earth.

Connecting to the Earth’s natural electric charge has been shown to stabilize physiology, and reduce inflammation, pain, and stress. It has also been said to improve blood flow, energy, and sleep. Many people experience a greater sense of well-being after they have spent time grounding.

Other great options for touch include touching any object near you, feeling warm or cool water, touching natural things such as a tree, grass, or rock.

Remember that you can take small actions to ground yourself and the results can add up to a better sense of calm, less stress, and reduced anxiety in a short amount of time.

3 Easy Ways to Reduce Stress & Anxiety Through Journaling

Have you ever felt like you were so filled with stress and anxiety that you literally could not make any decisions to move in any direction? Many women find that using journaling is an effective tool to decompress and allow some of the pressure and “steam” to release.

If you have considered journaling, but it seems like “one more thing to do”, or it appears complicated and confusing, or maybe you just have questions on how to even do journaling effectively…

…Do you write whatever you are thinking? Is it meant to be used as a diary? Do you write about gratitude or use writing prompts?

The answer is: yes to all of it!

One thing that can help you decide what type of journaling will work for you, is to figure out what kind of stress or anxiety you have, and how it is affecting you.

Do you have moments of extreme stress that are trigger-based? Or a general sense of dread when you think about certain things or the future?

Certain forms of journaling can help a lot with different issues relating to your stress and anxiety.

Brain Dump for Generalized Anxiety

If you find yourself super stressed out by the end of the day, due to stress build-up, or waking up at night, then using journaling at the end of the day, may help reduce your stress and calm anxiety.

Doing a brain dump or stream of consciousness style of journaling can be an effective practice when you’ve had a day full of multiple stress triggers, or if you just feel worn out.

A Brain Dump is where you get just write about whatever is on your mind. Let your thoughts flow to the paper, bouncing around to different topics as often as you want to. You can even add doodles if that helps express your feelings or thoughts.

For many women, generalized stress or anxiety is worsened when they bottle up anxious thoughts and hold them inside.

When thoughts can be put onto paper or electronically ( if you journal on your computer or iPad) it can provide a relaxing and freeing feeling.

Scripting About Your Future Plans

If your anxiety or stress has specific triggers, especially when it comes to venturing into the unknown or moving forward to achieving enormous goals, then scripting is a great way to write in your journal.

This is often used in the Law of Attraction and manifesting, but you don’t need to have that as a goal or be spiritual to benefit from scripting.

Scripting is a type of writing where you write down what you want to achieve, but as if you already have it.

If you want to buy a house, you don’t write that you want to buy a house but write a journal entry as if you already bought your dream home. Where is it? What is it like? How big is it? How do you feel now that you have it?

Daily Journaling for All Forms of Stress

woman sitting on gray chair while writing on table
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Regardless of what type of stress you have, whether it is a job, family, co-workers, financial, or health-related, daily journaling can be a welcome relief. Some days you might feel like doing a brain dump, other days you might be inspired to write about a specific experience you had that day.

Remember, that however you journal, your writings are for you. Write without judgment, journal with love for yourself, and allow yourself to have freedom within your writing.

5 Tips To Lose Weight Without Obsessing!

Most women are on some type of diet, whether it was to lose weight, gain muscle, for health reasons, or just out of curiosity to try the newest eating trend.

If this is you, you might also have experienced the obsession that often happens.

Obsession with the “right” ingredients in the foods you eat, obsession with weighing and measuring, obsession with numbers and burning the right amount of calories through workouts, and the list goes on…

But is it possible to lose weight without all the obsession?

Yes! But you need to have the right mindset going into it, and avoid some of the obsessive habits that tend to occur when you want to lose weight.

Wherever you are at in your health journey, remember that you have everything inside of you to accomplish your health goals!

If you’re currently on a weight loss path, check out my newest (FREE) cheat sheet, which has 5 effective strategies to Lose Weight Without Obsessing, made just for you!

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Remember that small changes can add up to big results over time! Harness your inner power, Busy Beauty!

Becky Dyroen-Lancer

3 Healthy Habits That Decrease Stress & Boost Gut Health

There are some amazing daily habits and rituals that can help decrease your stress levels and improve your mental health that are easier than you may realize. But did you know that decreasing stress can also help out your gut health? Stress can actually reshape your gut’s bacteria composition which may affect digestion and what nutrients the intestines absorb. Adding to the drama, stress can also increase gas production within the gut. Ugh!

It’s time to reduce stress, Busy Beauty!

Check out these 3 habits that can help reduce your stress and bring your gut some relief.

Exercise…but not what you think

Let’s get this one out of the way… stress levels decrease with exercise.

There, I said it. Before you sigh and skip ahead, let me say that you do not need to have a rigid workout routine or do exercise that you dread in order to check this box.

Your daily exercise habits can make an actual difference in how much stress you hold onto on a daily basis, BUT the type of exercise your chose to do needs to fit into your life and be something you actually look forward to. It is difficult to sustain exercise if you hate it or it causes a bunch of stress within your schedule.

Exercise needs to decrease your stress, not cause more of it!

If you dread working out, then you have not yet found the right workout for you. We are made to move and there is an exercise out there that will fit into your life. Its just a matter of finding it.

“The body benefits from movement, and the mind benefits from stillness.”

– Sakyong Mipham

Look for an exercise that reduces your anxiety, helps release stress, and allows you to clear your mind, either during the exercise or during the cool down.

Do what is right for you, without judgement. Even if it is not “typical exercise”, if it gets your body moving and fits into your life, then that is the exercise your should stick with. Rotating types of exercise can also keep you from workout burnout.

Perfectionism is not Perfect

Stressed black woman using a laptop

Nobody is perfect. Many people joke about how they are perfectionists and everything needs to be done exactly how they envisioned. But when all is said and done, if you are a perfectionist, you might find that it may be negatively impacting your life.

Now is the time to be aware if your expecting perfection or feel like a failure just because you didn’t accomplish everything on your list or do it exactly perfect.

Flexibility is key, because no human being is perfect. We don’t live in a black or white world – we live in a world of colorful hues. Try to find your balance. Give yourself permission to explore a comfortable place where you know you work hard and have responsibilities, but you also let yourself be open-minded about the results. Beating yourself up over imperfections can be a major self-inducted stress bomb.

Give yourself a break and let the “inner-coach”, not the “inner-critic” have a voice.

Stress lowers serotonin availability in the body, which regulates mood and emotion. Although serotonin is known as a brain neurotransmitter, it is estimated that 90 percent of the body’s serotonin is made in the digestive tract. More stress equals less serotonin. Ladies, we need our serotonin levels up! So, let some of the perfectionism go.

Avoid Overuse of Social Media

While using social media definitely has its merits, it can also be a addictive habit that might be actually causing stress and chipping away at your healthy mind-set.

If you are someone that just checks in every once in a while or when you get occasional notifications, it’s probably not a negative habit for you. If you check social media throughout the day and get notifications constantly, this may be causing stress that can build up by the end of your day.

Try taking a few days to reduce the time you spend on your social media, just to see if it changes your stress levels. Give yourself a time frame to spend each day on social media.

Depending on your regular use you can decide what less time would be. For example, if you spend time on social media throughout the day, maybe try just checking in for a 30 minute allotment during the day, rather than a having constant interaction. Or try setting a timer and giving yourself a set amount of time to scroll through your social media, until the timer goes off. This will also help give you a sense of the amount of time you spend as you get pulled into the social media vortex.

You can also try to silence your alerts, so you don’t have your social media grabbing you attention throughout the day.

Remember that small changes, over time, can add up to big results. Reducing your stress, even by a little bit throughout the day, can minimize your overwhelm, support your gut health, increase your positive mindset, and allow you to live a healthier life.

Would you like my latest HEALTH CHEAT SHEET?

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Top 10 Gut-Friendly Foods For Super Busy Women

Have you dealt with digestive issues, bloating, difficulty losing weight, heartburn, fatigue, or brain fog? These are symptoms that many women have experienced dealing with an imbalanced gut.

There are many factors that play into the health of your gut, however, the easiest place to begin improving your gut health and gut microbiome, is with what you eat (or don’t eat).

The gut plays a large role not just in your digestive health, but is also interconnected with your other major systems, such as your immune system. 70% of your immune system is housed within the gut.

There are strong links between your gut and your brain, so if you struggle with fatigue, brain fog, or focusing issues, it might actually be starting with your gut.

Ready for 11 of the best foods that you can eat for your gut and digestive health?

By adding these 11 foods into your diet can help you create a healthy, well-balanced diet that makes you feel amazing, gives you energy, improves your immune system, helps reduce bloating, supports weight loss efforts, and minimizes brain fog all at the same time.

The best foods for your gut contain higher amounts of nutrients, like fiber, probiotics, prebiotics, protein, and many different vitamins and minerals. Of course, some foods on this list you might still be sensitive to if you have conditions like Crohn’s, IBS, or gastritis, so add the foods that work best for your body.


If you are not allergic or sensitive to dairy, yogurt is one of the best foods to add to your daily routine. Look for yogurt with live cultures, such as Greek yogurt, as it contains a good amount of probiotics to help your gut microbiome. Just a small serving of yogurt a day is all you really need, and you will get that gut-friendly bacteria along with calcium and protein as an added bonus.

Tip – Get the unsweetened varieties of yogurt, then sweeten it yourself with honey or another type of natural sweetener. It will be less processed and you can avoid unhealthy sugars.

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Next up is another type of probiotic in kimchi. If you have never heard of this before, it is a type of fermented vegetable that is popular in Korean cuisine. Many fermented foods will help to balance out of the good and bad bacteria in your stomach and improve your digestive system. Plus, it has many other vitamins and minerals, and a good amount of fiber.

Tip – Kimchi tastes great when served with meat or fish. If you are not a big meat eater, try it with your eggs.

Apple Cider Vinegar

“Apple cider vinegar has long been a staple in recipes and in home remedies. Some believe it is an age-old secret and a fountain of youth ingredient that you already have in your kitchen.”

Amy Leigh Mercree

This has become a trending topic in recent years, so it’s probably something you are familiar with. There are numerous health benefits to apple cider vinegar, which is why it is so highly regarded, especially in the alternative and natural health space. But for gut health, it also has some unique benefits.

Apple cider vinegar can help create more hydrochloric acid, which is a type of acid in your gut that allows you to digest carbs and fats more effectively. It is also great for people with GERD or acid reflux.

Tip – Take a shot of apple cider vinegar every morning, mixed with a small amount of water, to get your digestion on track from the start.


Another type of fermented vegetable that is amazing for your gut health is sauerkraut. It is made from cabbage that is fermented and can be put alongside many dishes, like sausages, meats, even other vegetables. It provides probiotics and is also a good form of dietary fiber. Sauerkraut contains vitamins C and K, potassium, calcium and phosphorus.

For best results, be sure to grab the raw sauerkraut in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Canned sauerkraut will still be able to provide some benefits, however, heat used in the canning process does kill the good bacteria living in your sauerkraut, it only happens at 115°F (46°C).

Tip – Top any savory dish with some sauerkraut. I even like to eat it right out of the jar!

Fish and Fish Oil

Both fish and fish oil are really good for your gut, and the rest of your body. If you have been dealing with digestive issues, adding a serving of fish to your day can help tremendously. You can also use fish oil supplements if you prefer and aren’t a big fan of eating fish.

In addition to the gut benefits, fish and fish oil also contain omega-3 fatty acids, and protein, all of which are great for your health.

Tip – Enjoy salmon or another fatty fish a few days a week to increase the fish oil in your diet.


If you have ever tried Ginger-Ale or ginger tea for an upset stomache?..

Then you are already aware ginger can be great for nausea and gut issues. But in addition to helping when your stomach is already hurting, ginger also helps digestion on a more regular basis. Ginger comes in many forms, such as fresh, sliced, pickled, powder, tea, frozen, and in supplements. This makes it easy to add to your diet.

Tip – Have a cup of ginger tea each evening to settle your stomach.


When it comes to nuts, most of them have a good amount of vitamins and minerals, but almonds are best for your gut. They contain probiotic properties, therefore a handful of almonds or almond butter is going to improve your digestive health.

Tip – Dip your apples in almond butter as a healthy snack.


Next to yogurt, kefir is probably one of the healthiest and best forms of dairy for your gut health. It is a cross between milk and a liquid yogurt, with many different live strains of good bacteria to help improve your digestion.

Tip – Improve your gut health by using kefir for your morning smoothie instead of regular milk.

Sprouted Grain and Sourdough Bread

When it comes to bread, you don’t need to skip it entirely to improve your gut, unless you are sensitive to wheat or gluten. However, you do want to choose the right varieties to help your digestion. This includes both sprouted grain bread and sourdough bread.

Sprouted grain bread is much less processed and contains more of the actual whole grains it promises. It is much gentler on your stomach than other types of wheat bread. Sourdough bread is ideal if you have a sensitive stomach, but still want bread. Many people with IBS can still eat sourdough.

Tip – Enjoy a piece of sprouted grain bread with avocado and egg for a well-balanced breakfast of carbs, fiber, fat, and protein.

Bone Broth

It’s time to start trading the regular broth for bone broth! This is so amazing for your health, containing dozens of vitamins and minerals, and collagen to help your bones and skin. You can use bone broth in your soup and other dishes, or just heat it up and drink like you would regular broth.

Tip – Add bone broth to your gravy or soup to make it more flavorful and nutritious.

Anti-Inflammatory Foods

Lastly, there are foods that are known for being anti-inflammatory, which can also help your gut if you struggle with gas and bloating. An anti-inflammatory diet focuses on fruits and vegetables, foods containing omega-3 fatty acids, whole grains, lean protein, healthy fats, and spices.

Some anti-inflammatory foods already mentioned include almonds and fish oil. More anti-inflammatory foods that are good for your gut include:

Flax seeds

So enjoy adding these gut lovin’ foods into your diet bit by bit. Remember that small changes can add up to long-term big results. You’ve got this, Busy Beauty!

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How To Naturally Bolster Your Immune Health and Feel Confident

If you have been feeling like you want to bolster your immune health recently, you’re not alone. Many gals still feel exhausted from the first wave of COVID hitting our world, but now there are the more contagious variants.

Now, more than ever, you can build your immune health with many productive and effective methods. If you’re trying to make moves away from playing “defense” with your immune health practices and want to move toward natural, pro-active methods that can actually make a difference in your preventative health, then focusing on adding in easy and natural practices to improving your immune health is a smart place to start.

Immune Boosting Herbs

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There are an abundance of herbs that have a plethora of immune health benefiting characteristics.

Herbal supplements are considered as foods, not drugs, by the FDA. This means they are not required to have the same rigorous testing, manufacturing, labeling standards or regulations as over-the-counter or prescription drugs. So check your labels to make sure your are getting a quality herbal product.

Some herbs are known to be “pro-active medicine” to help your body fight off viruses. Other herbs give you some relaxation to wind down at the end of a long day, which indirectly supports the immune system.

Products made from plants which are used to treat diseases or to maintain health are called herbal products or botanical products. A more technical term is phytomedicines. A product made from plants which is used primarily for internal use is called an herbal supplement.

Herbs come in many forms: dried, chopped, capsule, powder, bath bomb, or liquid, and can be used in many different ways to promote and enhance a healthy life. You can start by adding just one herb into your life, whether it be through a supplement, topical, or diffuser, and see if you like the effects.

Some of the herbs that are at the top of the list for natural immune health include Elderberry, Echinacea, Ginger, Garlic, Ashwaganda, Reshi, and Holy Basil.

Elderberry is a very popular herb that has risen into the spotlight in the past few years due to its immune boosting properties. The berries and flowers of elderberry are loaded with antioxidants and vitamins that are known to help support your immune system. Today, many women take elderberry supplements to treat cold and flu symptoms and help bolster their immune systems.

Elderberry is a powerful berry high in vitamin C, but it also features unique antioxidants that support our immune health.

– Dr. Axe

Another well known immune booster is Echinacea, also known as the coneflower. It stimulates the immune system to produce natural killer cells and other sickness-fighters. Many women take it at the first signs of a cold to help reduce symptoms.

It is fairly easy to add ginger and garlic into your favorite dishes to get additional immune support with your meal.

Ashwagandha and reishi both stimulate your infection fighting white blood cells. While holy basil activates the immune system and also fights viruses.

Take Your Vitamins (But Buy High Quality)

Lets face it, it is challenging to get all the immune supporting nutrients from our daily food intake, even while following a superfood plan. Getting the optimum vitamins and minerals that you need just through food is a lot of tracking… who has time for that?…

Taking high quality and super effective vitamins and minerals is the easiest way to be sure that you are getting all the nutrients that your body needs to reach an optimum, natural, and super-charged immune system.

But which vitamins and minerals are really important?…

Start with a high powered multi-vitamin, and then go from there to meet your specific health goals.

If you’re looking for anti-inflammatory remedies, try turmeric with black pepper to tame inflammation or Glucosamine Chondroitin for joint health.

For a brain boost try B vitamins like B6, B12, and B9 (folic acid), which all play a role in brain health. You can even add green tea into you day which naturally contains both L-theanine and caffeine, as well as antioxidants that may help your brain power and physical well-being.

Take a good look into the ingredients on the vitamin labels to be sure there are not a bunch of extra additives or sugars in the vitamins you’re considering.

$$ Value TIP $$: Check out the amount of vitamins per bottle and the daily recommended dosage. For example, a bottle of 80 gummy-vits may seem like a good deal, but they may have the daily dose at 4 gummies per day, so it is really only 20 days worth of supplement!

Essential Oils For Immune Health

Essential oils can be used for so many things, from getting better sleep, to improving your immune system, to reducing your anxiety… all which support your immune health.

There are also blends that are great for your skin, treating minor cuts, promoting relaxation, and also enhancing the immune system.

My favorite “go-to” essential oil for stress relief and relaxation is lavender. I use it in many areas of my life to give me a moment while I inhale the lavender aroma and let go of any built up stress. I’ve even added it to homemade playdough to keep the kids peaceful as they play.

Another one of my favorites is Thieves oil for immune support. I use this in my oil diffuser to fill my environment with health promoting scents. I even dilute it and spray it on my face mask before I go into public environments. The smell is soothing and I feel like I have a little extra protection in crowded public spaces.

If you would like more shortcuts to better immune health, grab my IMMUNE HEALTH Cheat Sheet. This FREE cheat sheet will give you 6 smart strategies to help you bolster your immune system and help your body naturally fight viruses! Click HERE to get it today!

3 Surefire Ways You Can Boost Your Immune System

As schools get ready to re-open after a turbulent year (let’s not sugar coat it… it was “chaos”), short summer, and many students returning to campuses after more than a year, we find ourselves in the midst of the rise of the Delta Variant of COVID-19.

Many of us just feel weary, and “so done” with this virus and the havoc it has caused our lives and society. That being said, we have to remember that we are strong and we can bolster our immune systems to help protect us from rogue viruses and their evil alter-egos.

However, it can be frustrating trying everything you know to do to keep your immune system strong, like taking supplements, exercising, masking, sanitizing, and social distancing and still wondering if it is actually making a difference.

This may have you wondering what else can be done to super-charge your immune system, so you can have a better peace-of-mind. Here are a few of the options to consider.

Action #1 – Reduce Small Stressors

One of the first things that could be affecting your immune system is the accumulation of small stressors.

You may think: ” I don’t have enormous amount of stress in my life” or “I can manage my stress”.

However, stress does not always appear in a large form, or in what we might consider an “immune system killer”. It may be many small stressors that can build into one major stress filled reaction causing your immune system to be less effective.

This stress can come from working through a chaotic daily schedule that has you going non-stop, trying to maintain a large to-do list, or from dealing with the issues of other people in your home and family.

At this point you might be thinking – “All the above is not going to change!”… But what if you could reduce a few of the stress points within you workplace, to-do list, home, schedule, or interactions? Or maybe you can take some time within your day to “let go” of some of the stress that you are holding tight within yourself. Check out the following action steps that might give you some relief from stress build up.

ACTION STEP 1: Try journaling to help flush out the stressors that could be in your life (that you may not have realized were a problem). You can identify them and then work through them at your own pace to help reduce the impact on your immune system. Taking just a few minutes to have quiet time and let it all out on paper, can in itself, be a stress releasor.

ACTION STEP 2: Not into writing?…No problem. Taking 10 minutes of breathing, meditation, or prayer can be just as effective. Find a calm, quiet space and time within your day and sit still. Take deep breaths while noticing the muscles in your body. Start by relaxing your facial muscles and travel down the body from there.

To help clear the mind, find a phrase, word, or thought that you can repeat with every breath. My words are “abundance” and ” gratitude”. I inhale Abundance and exhale Gratitude. Find the words that are relevant for your life.

Action #2 – Hydrate To Improve Your Immunity

Tired of hearing people say “drink more water”? It seems too easy, but many of us don’t get enough water within our day. Hydration is a major element in keeping your body running smoothly, especially with your immune system.

If your body does not have the proper hydration, then it cannot function at its highest levels. This puts stress on your organs, on your weight loss efforts, and on your immune system. It is basically having to work without the key components it needs to function.

You may think that you are getting enough hydration, but remember, your body needs plain filtered water to keep it going (coffee doesn’t count – and I LOVE coffee!). Make sure that you are getting as much, if not more, water as you are other hydration options and beverages.

ACTION STEP: Find a water bottle that you love, preferably metal or glass, and keep it by your side throughout the day. This will be a visual reminder to drink-up. You will also have a better idea of how much water you’re getting by how many times you are filling up your water bottle.

Action #3 – Better Sleep Boosts Immune Health

One aspect of daily routines that people tend to overlook, especially when it comes to the connection between your body and your immune system, is sleep.

Although you may be getting enough hours of sleep, is it quality deep sleep?

Is blue light inadvertently hindering your melatonin production? If you feel like your sleep could be better, try using blue light blockers at night. They can help your natural melatonin kick in sooner and give your body what it need to get restorative sleep.

Many women have found that tracking their sleep quality with a sleep tracking app has made a big difference in how they look at their sleep cycles.

ACTION STEP: Try tracking your sleep with a sleep monitor system found on most fitness trackers. It can help determine if you are getting deep sleep and how much. If you are not getting solid deep sleep, it might be having an affect on your immune system. Data with action is power!

Remember that making small changes can add up to big results over time. Making sure that your immune system is functioning at full throttle, will help you to feel more confident during this pandemic “round 2”.

You have the power to super-charge your immune health! Stay strong, Busy Beauty!

How To See The Warning Signs To Avoid Burnout

Do you know the signs of burnout? People often say they have “burnout” just to describe any feeling of being stressed, overwhelmed, or overworked. Burnout can be mild to extreme and is an actual state of emotional and mental exhaustion.

I remember when I was feeling extreme effects of burnout in my job. I would pull into the parking lot and call my friend, so she could give me a pep talk to get me to walk in and fulfill my commitment. My job had a time line, and those last few months seemed to last forever.

I got through my contract and finished my job successfully, but as I look back, I realize I should have never committed to the last annual contract. I had major burnout, which radiated stress through the fabric of my life.

If you don’t take steps to deal with the early signs of burnout, it can lead to a lot of negative consequences in your personal and professional life. Here are some warning signs to be aware of to help prevent burnout.

Simple Tasks Seem Complex

When you complete the same task several times, you know approximately how long it takes you to complete and how difficult it is. But when you suddenly take 2-3 times longer to finish that same task or you find it difficult to focus long enough to ever get it done, that may be a warning sign that something is wrong.

Don’t ignore these moments when it is hard to do even the simplest of things, that you usually breeze right through. It can be a sign that something else is going on.

Easily Triggered

There are many reasons to have mood shifts or behavioral changes, like stress and anxiety, but burnout can also be added to this list.

It is important to be aware of changes with your mood, attitude, or behaviors concerning a possible area of burnout.

Are falling back into unhealthy habits? Or you are getting irritable and angry at your loved ones at the drop of a hat?

Sometimes, when you face burnout, the stress can overpower your logical thinking and it becomes harder to keep your cool, especially if you work from home.

Increase in Mental Health Stress

When you have burnout or overwhelm, you might notice extreme exhaustion or anxiety that can wear you out. It is important to be aware of increased mental stress that seems to be getting worse, whether you are getting treated by a mental health professional or not.

Talking to a professional can help to ease some of the mental stress and anxiety. You are a stronger woman if you chose to seek mental health, not weaker. Do what is right for you.

Lack of Energy or Excessive Fatigue

Have you noticed that it takes all your energy just to do simple tasks that are associated with the area of burn-out? Energy comes in many forms, but when you’re dealing with burnout, it can be tough getting rid of negative energy. Sometime it can feel like negative energy is enveloping you and it is difficult to escape.

Negative energy can cause mental and physical drain. If you have ruled out physical reasons for the fatigue or energy loss, it is time to consider your mental health and see if you might leading toward burnout.

If you are noticing any signs of burnout, try to observe your situation and see if there is anything you can do to help relieve even a little bit of the stress. Seek other options for your future, even if it is long term.

Sometimes the hope of a change can be enough to pull you through a rough environment that is causing burnout in your life, or consider seeking a mental health professional to ease your stress. Stay strong my sister!

How To Reduce Gut Bloat By Doing This One Thing…

Dealing with gut bloat, digestive issues, difficulty losing those pesky pounds, and trying to balance nutrition can feel like a high-wire act sometimes. It seems like society is shouting so many different rules and opinions, which change depending on which expert is speaking.

Some people advise cutting out meat, while others promote eating more meat through low-carb and Paleo diets. This happens with just about everything, from carbs and sugar, to how much protein and fat you need and whether a vegetarian or vegan diet is a good idea.

However, one thing remains true which everyone agrees is essential as part of a successful health journey is to drink more water.

While it is good to have as much water as you can (within reason) throughout the day, by adding one simple thing to your water, can boost the immune system, jump-start your gut health, beat the bloat, and promote weight loss.

This simple magical element is adding…LEMON.

Yes, lemon! Adding lemon to your water is a simple, easy and effective way to boost your gut health which in turn can generate multiple health benefits that will help you to give your body love and support.

Gut Health Benefits of Lemon Water

Lemon water is one of the easiest ways to give your gut some love anytime of the day, whether you prefer a mug of warm lemon water or cold lemon infused water.

“Each morning before you put anything in your stomach, you should drink a warm cup of lemon water to activate your digestive system.”

~ Dr. Oz

Drinking lemon water can give your gut a jump-start in the morning and makes sure that your digestive system functions smoothly.

The citric acid within lemons helps to keep general digestive problems at bay. It will interact with the other essential enzymes in your stomach and stimulate the secretion of gastric juices.

From helping you to lose weight to improving your digestion, you will notice the positive impact it has on your body very quickly!

Lemon Water Has Tons of Nutrition

Lemon water is loaded with nutrients, including many vitamins and minerals. One of the best vitamins is vitamin C.

Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant, which protects the cells against free radicals, and has the potential to reduce gut inflammation and boost the immune system.

Lemon water is extremely low in calories, with a small amount of sugar as well. It has a lot of potassium, copper, and magnesium, along with some fiber, thiamin, vitamin B6, and vitamin E. These are all nutrients from the lemons themselves, so the more concentrated your lemon water is, the more of the vitamins and minerals you will be consuming each day.

It is Great For Digestion

If you have been having difficulties with bloating, constipation, and other digestive issues, then lemon water is the perfect addition to your daily routine.

Drinking more regular water in general can really help improve your gut health to get things moving and decrease abdominal cramps and other digestion issues.

However, when you add in some lemons to your water, you are giving your gut an extra little boost. The reason it helps so much is because there are digestive juices inside your stomach, similar to the structure of lemon juice. They work together really well, so while you might be concerned the acidity of lemons would make you feel ill, it usually has the opposite effect.

Immune System Booster

Nearly 70 percent of your immune system is housed in your gut.

Lemon water is ideal for giving your immune system a nice boost through elevating your gut status. Lemon water has a good amount of lemon juice, which as you know, is an excellent source of vitamin C. This is the vitamin that helps keep you healthy and will help to prevent cold, flu, and other immune system illnesses.

Within the gut there are certain cells that spend their lives excreting massive quantities of antibodies into the gut, which elevates your immune system.

Your Skin Will Thank You

The vitamin C in lemon water is not only good for your immune system; it can also support your gut!

This can have a big impact on the appearance of your skin, including spots, inflammation, eczema and rosacea. The gut microbiome influences your overall health, especially your skin.

Beginning your day with a glass of lemon water has numerous benefits, including elevating the amount of collagen in your skin. Collagen helps to produce fewer wrinkles, and the vitamin C from the lemon can also fight off toxins that can cause breakouts.

Weight Loss Jump-Start

Drinking lemon water can boost your weight loss efforts when combined with other healthy gut practices.

Lemon water can also help to raise your metabolic rate, which helps you burn fat much faster.

Lemons also have diuretic properties, which help in detoxifying the body, thereby helping burning fat.

How to Make Lemon Water

There are two ways to make lemon water: Warm lemon water and cold infused lemon water.

Contrary to popular belief, just putting a few lemon slices or wedges into a glass of water does not mean you are drinking lemon water. While this is a great way to make water taste good when you are trying to hydrate and drink more water, you won’t get the same health benefits as making real lemon water. This is because it isn’t just the flavor of the water, but the concentration of the lemon juice that gives your gut the health benefits.

You need the actual juice of a lemon in order to get all the vitamin C and other nutrients.

In the morning, to boost your metabolism, try to drink at least one small cup of warm lemon water. Then the rest of the day, enjoy your cold pitcher of lemon water or infused water with lemons.

Easy Lemon Water Recipe

To make a single glass of lemon water, you need a mug, juice from ½ lemon and warm water. Add the lemon juice to your empty glass first, using a lemon reamer or handheld juicer to extract as much lemon juice from it as you can. Fill your mug up with warm water and enjoy!

For a stronger brew, add the actual lemon to your mug and let it steep for about 3-5 minutes and remove. This will increase its concentration.

SUCCESS TIP ~ make sure you do not add boiled water as this would destroy some of the therapeutic properties of lemon.

Infused Lemon Water 101

Creating infused lemon water is an easy process with all those amazing gut-health benefits!

The trick here is to slice the lemons just right. Slicing the lemons in thins sections will allow more of the lemon juice to hit the water, giving you all those nutrients. You don’t want to use lemon wedges, because so much of the lemon is covered in the rind, where not much of the actual lemon juice is released into the pitcher of water. This won’t taste as concentrated as when you use lemon slices.

How to Make Infused Water

Before getting into some recipe combinations, let’s discuss the basic steps to making infused water. It is really easy to make, and when you start finding your own flavor combinations, it can be a lot of fun too! Here are the basic steps to making infused water:

Use a Glass Cup or Pitcher – While you can put your infused water in a plastic container, glass is highly recommended. This makes it taste fresher for longer, and plastic has some health disadvantages. However, it is more important to make sure whatever container you use, is food-safe. Mason jars are great for smaller amounts of water, as well as tall glass pitchers.

Gather Your Ingredients – When choosing the ingredients for the infused lemon water, try to use fresh produce that isn’t visibly bruised. Also avoid produce that is a little older. You should try to get produce close to being ripe, then make the water quickly. Fresh fruits and vegetables, organic if possible, are good for infused water. The same goes for herbs; try to find them fresh.

Prepare the Produce and Herbs For infused water, you want to get as much of the nutrients from your fruits and veggies as you can, which usually means the juice and zest. As you know with lemons, you want to slice them but also use as much juice as you can.

For these, the recommendation is to first cut the lemon in half, then add as much lemon juice to the container as possible. Then slice each half thinly, and add those to the pitcher.

With most produce, you can slice it up so you get as much of the juice or inside of the produce as possible. Muddling herbs can be good in order to release the vitamins and minerals. Add all the prepared ingredients to the pitcher or cup, then cover with water.

Add Lemon Zest
Another great thing to do when you are making lemon water is to add some lemon zest to the glass or pitcher of water. The zest from a lemon comes from the rind. The rind not only has a lot of lemon flavor, but it also contains quite a bit of vitamin C and other nutrients. Use a zester to add a little bit of lemon zest to every glass or pitcher you make.

Leave the Water Overnight – After everything is added to the pitcher, you want to leave it overnight. The infusing process doesn’t happen quickly. If you can, leave it out on the counter for an hour or so, then place it in the refrigerator overnight. Remember also that you can use the same pitcher or cup multiple times. Keep the fruits, vegetables, and herbs in the container, and when the water is empty, refill it a few times to keep getting those nutrients and the yummy flavor.

Tips For Drinking Lemon Water Daily

close up photography of citrus
Photo by Aleksandr Slobodianyk on

Before finishing up, there are just a few more things to know about lemon water and adding it to your daily healthy habits. Here are some additional lemon water tips for your gut-loving life!

Drink Lemon Water in the Morning
Start your day with a mug or glass of lemon water first thing in the morning on an empty stomach (before your coffee or tea).

Lemon is a strong detox agent. Consuming your amazing lemon water first thing in the morning will flush out all the toxins from your system.

Try it Between Meals to Fill You Up
Another way to drink more lemon water is to enjoy it between meals. When you are hungry for a snack, drink a full glass of lemon water first, then decide if you are still hungry. You may find that it is enough to keep you full until your next healthy meal, helping you to lose weight and get all those nutrients at the same time.

Make Infused Water the Night Before
Infused lemon water is good for getting a lot of concentration from the lemons and other ingredients. Making it the night before lets the fruits, veggies and herbs release their nutrients, but it also makes it convenient for you to pour a glass when you wake up the next morning.

Enjoy your lemon water and all the awesome that it brings to your day. Remember small actions can add up to big results!

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