How Coffee Lovers Can Drink Their Coffee And Lose Weight Too

Are you a coffee addict who is also trying to lose a few pounds?

I understand where you are coming from because I absolutely love coffee and have researched reasons why coffee is the nectar of the gods…which can also help you lose some of those extra pounds.

Coffee fuels millions of people every day and is a daily ritual that can mean the difference between a monotone existence or a super-charged, productive life.

What if I told you that there was a way to make coffee in a way that might help you lose those few pesky pounds? Check out these easy ways to elevate your coffee allowing it to give you more than what the humble ground beans have to offer on its own.

Collagen Peptides

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Collagen is a protein responsible for healthy joints and skin elasticity. As we age, our existing collagen breaks down, and it gets harder for our bodies to produce more. In recent years, collagen supplements have become popular to help support the collagen within the body.

Many collagen supplements are hydrolyzed, which means the collagen has been broken down, making it easier for you to absorb. Consuming collagen has a variety of health benefits, from losing weight to relieving joint pain to improving skin health.

Adding collagen peptide powder to a beverage, such as coffee or a smoothie, is an easy way to help boost the collagen in your body, which may help you feel more satiated and less hungry.

While suppressing hunger won’t directly help you lose weight by itself, it can make it much easier to avoid unhealthy food cravings, because you have a feeling of fullness rather than hunger.

Try adding a scoop of collagen peptide powder to your coffee in the morning to boost your coffee’s weight loss benefits!

Java Burn Supplement

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If you want to take your coffee to the next level as a vehicle for weight loss, then you might want to give Java Burn a try.

Java Burn is a metabolism enhancer which is totally tasteless and dissolves instantly into your coffee…

And it works just as well regardless of what kind of coffee you drink or what you like to put in it.

Java Burn is a natural proprietary, patent-pending formula, that when combined with coffee, can increase both the speed and efficiency of metabolism. It is an easy add-in that can make a difference in your weight loss journey.

MCT Oil

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MCT oil is a supplement made from a type of fat called medium-chain triglycerides and is usually made from coconut or palm kernel oil.

It can help your body make ketones, which is an energy source for your brain that doesn’t have carbs. Some say drinking it will make your mind clearer.

By simply adding MCT oil to your coffee, you may experience improved more fullness, elevated cognition, and healthy weight loss.

Try adding 2 Tablespoons of MCT oil in your morning brew. It helps control hunger cravings and improves cognitive performance to keep you sharp all day.

Organic Coffee Beans

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For coffee snobs (I being one of them), there may be a concern that “organic” means less flavor.

With the recent popularity of organic coffees, many coffee roasters now offer organic varieties of their coffee which rivals some of the most popular blends available.

According to Equal Exchange Fair Trade, conventional coffee is among the most heavily chemically treated foods in the world. It is steeped in synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides.

Organic coffee is grown without synthetic fertilizers or chemicals, which means cleaner beans, air, land, and water.

The coffee is grown with only organic fertilizers, like coffee pulp, chicken manure, or compost. In addition, organic coffee beans are richer in healthful antioxidants.

So how does this help in weight loss? Chosing organic vs non-organic coffee, will reduce the ingestion of all of the above mentioned “yuck” that non-organic coffee may have in it. A cleaner system is a more efficient system. Less toxins in the body can mean a reduction in silent inflammation, which may help in your weight loss efforts.

Let’s just say, there is no down side to organic coffee. It can be tricky to find it at the big coffee chains, but when you home brew, give high quality organic coffee a try and see what it can do for you!

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Enjoy your coffee, my friend. Whether you try one or many additions to make your coffee even more amazing that it already is, be sure to soak up the moment, inhale the aroma, boost your weightloss efforts, and let your coffee elevate your life.

4 Traps That Women Need To Avoid When Trying To Lose Weight

This is where the phrase “nothing changes if nothing changes” really comes in. In order to achieve different results in your wellness or weight loss journey, changes in routine and mind-set are a must. How you view those changes and act on them, will determine your success. When you are on a weight loss journey, choices are everything. Here are a few mistakes that can be avoided with the right choices and mind-set.

Mistake #1: Not Having A Morning Plan

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Let’s start with your morning plan. This is often the easiest for people to adjust, and it can make such a drastic different in your lifestyle.

Everyone has daily routines, some routines are well planned and others develop on their own. It is important to have a morning plan, in order for you not to slip into a weight-loss pitfall.

Take a look at how your morning routine typically runs and see if there are any negative or unhealthy points within that routine. Once you identify these points, start with changing just one thing. It might be as simple as choosing a healthy option for breakfast like a smoothie or whole grain toast, rather than a donut or sweet roll.

You know your routine better than anyone. Find where you want to start making the changes.

Mistake #2: Consuming Low Nutrient Foods

While you definitely don’t need to “diet” in order to lose weight, you do want to be sure your meals are balanced and nutrient-dense. Analyzing what you currently eat will help you determine what changes you might make to your meals.

Think about what you can add to your meals to be healthier, instead of take away. Perhaps you love pasta, and want to add a side salad, while reducing the amount of pasta you eat. You might add banana slices or berries to your cereal, or you switch from an iced mocha to a coffee you make at home in a protein shake.

Often times low nutrient foods can also cause bloating and gas, due to their high carb or sugar content. They are easy to grab, but can leave you feeling ho-hum…

If you want some short-cuts to easily add in foods that will beat the bloat, check out my FREE Beat The Bloat Cheat Sheet HERE!

Mistake #3: Not Moving Enough

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Non-movement is the enemy of weight loss.

Think of your lifestyle to consider whether or not you are moving your body any more than you were before you began your weight-loss journey. To be in a calorie deficit, it requires making small changes to your diet and your workout routine.

Find new ways to add more movement and exercise more, like going for a walk in the evenings, sneaking in a mini workout in the morning, or finding new fitness classes in your area or online.

Adding small actions throughout your day like taking the stairs, doing “kitchen counter push-ups” while waiting for your food to cook, or taking the dog for a quick additional 10 minute walk can make a difference.

Mistake #4: Choosing Calorie-Dense Foods

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In addition to your diet and exercise, think about other healthy habits you can adapt into your life to help with your weight loss lifestyle. Try to identify if there are points within your week that can be adjusted into healthier actions.

Maybe you replace your Friday night burger, pizza and beer night with a cycling class then sushi, or you host family dinner at home on Sunday nights instead of going to your usual restaurant meal. You might start taking a walk every evening after dinner, or journal what you eat each day to stay accountable.

Adding health-promoting actions and keeping a positive mind-set will be your keys to success. Whether you want to lose 5 pounds or 100 pounds, small changes over time develop into routines that can change your life.

The Secret That Can Help You Lose Those Pesky Pounds, If You Are Over-40

If you are over-40 and have been trying to get into better shape, but are frustrated to see that little progress has been made, you are not alone. When you’ve tried every new diet, and bought every book, loosing those pesky pounds can seem impossible sometimes.

It might be something other than diet that’s keeping that extra weight on. If any of that sounds like your situation, then it could be your metabolism. Once we move into the 40-something zone, metabolism can slow down, making it extra difficult to lose weight. Let’s talk a little about metabolism…

What is Metabolism

Metabolism is the name given to the chemical procedure carried out by the body when it converts the food you eat or the fat that your body has stored into energy. Even if you are lying very still, the body requires and energy source to keep all its involuntary functions going.

There are several factors that play a major role in dictating how many calories it will take to keep body functions moving and make it possible for you to repair cells. Age is a major factor to consider in metabolism.

When women get older (and wiser), the metabolism tends to slow down. That is why gals over-40 tend to gain weight quicker than their younger counterparts.

A slower metabolism means that the body won’t quickly burn calories or metabolize the fats stores in your body. This is why it is easy to end up gaining a few inches over time. The higher your metabolism, the more calories the you will burn and the easier it is to lose weight and keep it off. More on that in a bit…now let’s talk about sleep and metabolism are connected.

The Power Of Sleep

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Every process in the body, including sleeping, burns calories. During sleep, the body makes all of the repairs and replaces cells that have become too damaged or weak to go on. During these rest periods, the food or fat your body has collected is converted into their most basic parts to be used to nourish the body and build new cells.

In general, the number of calories that it takes to make this happen, is called the metabolic rate. However, many gals over-40 have a difficult time getting quality sleep, which can cause their metabolic rate to become sluggish….

For many of us gals, sleeping through the night disappeared years ago…

We now survive by grabbing a really strong coffee to jump start our day. We have more responsibilities than ever before, including kids, work, and relationships…

Daily we find ourselves yawning by 10am, grabbing more caffeine and hoping we will have some energy to do something productive after work.

And then we look forward to “relaxing” at night, hoping that this will be the night that we can get a solid night’s sleep…

Sound familiar? Girlfriend, it can be tough, and I get it.

We’ve all been there before.

But what if you were actually able to sleep through the night and wake up rested?

I found a 10-second, easy, and practical routine that put an end to my hormone imbalance, quickly…without forcing me to make groundbreaking changes to my lifestyle…and resulted in better sleep, more energy & motivation, and got my body to stop holding onto those pesky pounds.

It has been a life changer for me, because I actually sleep through the night which has helped my metabolic rate tremendously. The supplement I use is called Hormone Balance, which contains DIM, Calcium D-Glucarate, Broccoli Extract, and Bioperine. Give it a try… It may just give you your best year ever!

3 Secrets to Sleeping Through the Night If You’re A Gal Over-40

Do you ever have a difficult time falling asleep even when you’re exhausted? Or, even worse, do you wake up in the middle of the night with a racing heart and swirling mind?

If you are a gal over-40, there are a few factors in play. Hormone imbalance can play some serious tricks on your sleep patterns.

Not to mention, WE ARE BUSY! Busy and stressed, which also adds to our sleep issues.

Many of us are more tired and overwhelmed than ever…

The good news is that there are strategies that we can implement, that can make a big impact on the quality of our sleep. Here are a few tips to help you get your much needed ZZZ’s.

It’s Time To Balance Those Hormones…

As we get older (and wiser), our estrogen levels can get a little wonky which can negatively affect our sleep patterns.

A few years ago I was struggling with 3am wake-ups on a nightly basis, heart racing and mind swirling – thinking of all to problems I needed to solve and a bunch of “what ifs”…

This was due to stress and serious “over-40” hormone imbalance. This was such a regular occurrence, that I named this 3am waking hour, “The Hour Of Dread” because rarely did I have any good thoughts flowing through my head in the middle of the night.

If you have these 3am wake-ups, you totally understand what I’m talking about…

Well, one day I was telling my sister, a Holistic Health Coach, about my sleep problems and she told me it was that most-likely my hormones were in over-drive and were not settling down at night.

She said that sleep can get interrupted when estrogen levels spike, causing an imbalance between estrogen and progesterone levels, also known as estrogen dominance. She recommended that I take a combination of DIM and Calcium D-Glucarate.

I had not heard of either of these supplements when she told me about them. So here is to 101 about them and why they work…

DIM helps naturally settle down estrogen dominance in order bring estrogen and progesterone into alignment. Studies have shown that the DIM (Diindolylmethane), a compound commonly found in cruciferous vegetables, can have a positive effect on our over-all sleep quality.

Calcium D-glucarate supports your liver to detox extra estrogen within its phase 2 detoxification process.

Why does Phase 2 Detox matter?…

Phase 2 Detox is important because it is a detox pathway that flushes out nasty toxins which can keep hormones from going into over-drive.

So now I sleep through the night…YES, actually sleep! 

I take a supplement called HORMONE BALANCE daily which is made up of DIM, Calcium D-glucarate and Bioperine. It has seriously changed my life. Check it out!

Eat Dinner Earlier

You may not realize that eating your last meal or snack close to settling down for the night can actually have an impact on your quality of sleep. It is in a different category than a hormone imbalance, as it has to do with digestion. However, eating close to bedtime may cause you to wake up during the night or cause restlessness as you are trying to fall asleep.

Experts recommend waiting at least 3 hours after you’ve eaten to go to bed for quality sleep.

When we eat close to bedtime, the body springs into action to digest food. During sleep, the only job that the body should be doing is healing and regenerating itself. So start to notice the length of time between your last meal of the day and your head resting on your pillow. Data is power. You can start making small adjustments in your life that can add up to real results.

Establish a Night-Time Routine

Establishing a night-time routine will prep your body and mind to get into “sleep-mode”. It can be as easy as a cup of tea, a moment of mindfulness, or a soothing bath.

Try beginning your night-time routine at least 30 minutes before you hit the pillow. This allows the mind and body to connect and start to wind down.

As part of my evening routine, I dim the lights in the house as a visual signal to my brain that its time to begin settling down. I also love to light a candle (or 2 or 3…) to add calming visual and scent elements to my space.

Find what works best for you to begin getting your mind and body into a calm place in order to maximize your sleep efforts and ritual.

Remember that small changes over time can add up to life-changing results.

Eat Less Naturally With Intermittent Fasting’s “Eating Window”

We’ve all been there. Counting calories. Tracking macros. Exercising daily. Weighing way too often to track progress…and so on…

Hey, I get it. We as 40-somethings are just trying to shed those irritating extra 10 pounds that are stubborn as all get out!

If you’re ready to take a break from all the tracking and are considering other options to losing weight “naturally”, then intermittent fasting might be a solution for you.

Intermittent fasting is basically choosing certain times for eating each day, or “eating windows” that allow for longer periods of non-eating, which allows the body to process food more efficiently.

Because you consume your calories within a certain time frame, you tend to eat less in a 24 period. Once you get your mindset clicked into the intermittent “eating window”, it gives you freedom.

Freedom from all the tedious calorie counting and exercise tracking. Freedom to relax into your life, enjoy the food within your “eating window” and the freedom to stop all the stress and self-judgement having to do with food and counting calories.

Intermittent Fasting is Not Starving Yourself

Intermittent fasting is NOT a way to starve yourself and just eat as little as possible. It is important and necessary to still be eating an adequate amount of calories for your body, it just happens to be within a shorter eating window.

Many people start with the 16/8 schedule where you fast for 16 hours, and eat for 8 hours. This still gives you a good amount of time for 2-3 meals and a snack or two.

Keep your meals within this shortened window, and you will notice that not only do you tend to eat less overall, but your body adjusts your hunger and fullness levels to this window as well.

Have a Kitchen “Closing” Time

Another simple way to shorten your eating window with intermittent fasting is to have a kitchen cut-off time.

Just like a restaurant, this is a time during the evening when your kitchen is closed, and you no longer run back for more snacks or nighttime treats.

People who like to stay up late, watching TV or burning the midnight oil with work projects, are more likely to go and grab those late night snacks. While there is nothing wrong with it, it could make it harder to burn calories naturally and make it harder to sleep with digestion issues.

Research has shown that having a 3 hour window of non-eating before bed, allows the body to have optimum digestion and metabolism for higher quality sleep. This may prevent problems like heartburn at night and even insomnia.

Mindful Eating

Learning how to adapt intuitive and mindful eating into your lifestyle can be a big game changer. Start to observe how your body feels during different times of the day.

Do you get light-headed or brain-foggy if you go too long without eating? Do you have a habit of snacking when you’re bored instead of being actually hungry? Do you get sweet cravings every afternoon?

The more you understand about your body and what motivates you to choose certain foods, the easier it will be to follow these cues and choose the best foods to eat during your “eating window”. You can also determine what the best time during the day to plug in your “eating-window”.

Every woman is unique. You need to find what works for you. It is good to begin by modeling a time-frame that is generally successful for most people like the 16/8 intermittent fasting schedule.

But…It is important to find the best time frame that works for you and your lifestyle. Maybe you shift hour lengths a little longer one way or the other. It is also important to determine how to place your eating window within your day so you can have the best benefits from it.

Remember small changes can add up to big results. Move forward with love for yourself.

If you are dealing with those stubborn pounds or just want to reduce that bloated feeling you get sometimes, you will love my FREE BEAT THE BLOAT CHEAT SHEET. Click HERE to get yours today and find quick solutions to reduce bloat and feel like yourself again.

4 Surefire Ways To Reduce Stress To Positively Effect Your Diet

When you start looking at ways to reduce your stress levels, you probably focus on how much work you are doing, what your daily responsibilities are, and whether or not you practice good self-care. These are all very important, but don’t forget about the simplest choices you make every day that could be impacting your stress.

A common one has to do with your diet, where some foods can protect the body from stress, while others may add stress to the body’s function. In fact, your diet has a much larger impact on your stress levels than you might expect, and your stress can determine what your food choices end up being. This is a continuous stress-nutrition cycle that starts with focusing on proper nutrition to fuel your body.

Defend Against Nutritional Deficiencies

The first thing that can happen if you have a diet with nutritional deficiencies, is that your body will not be prepared to deal with stress. These deficiencies can affect not just your physical health, but your emotional health as well.

For example, did you know that a lack of folate, a B-vitamin that is needed to make red and white blood cells in the bone marrow, can affect your mood and lead to extreme tiredness and lack of energy? You can get folate from foods like eggs, asparagus, spinach, and avocado.

Some other nutrients you need to help balance your mood and fight stress naturally are:

Omega 3 fatty acids – Healthy fats are still important! You can get your fatty acids from healthy sources of fats like salmon, tuna, walnuts, and olive oil.

Vitamin D – Do you know why you feel more energized and happier during sunny days? It is the vitamin D from the sun’s UV rays. IF you live somewhere that is cloudy and rainy a lot, or it is the winter where there isn’t much sun, you will need to supplement vitamin D through your food. You can get it from foods like fatty fish, eggs, dairy, and fortified cereal.

Fiber – For more fiber, eating more fruit, avocados, and whole grains is usually a good place to start.

Calcium – While many people get their calcium from dairy and yogurt, you might not be someone who can eat a lot of dairy. In this case, you can get it from foods like almonds, sesame seeds, tofu, and kale.

Iron – You also want to make sure you have enough iron. Iron can help with your mental health, as well as balance your energy levels. Get iron from red meat, turkey, some nuts, and seeds like pumpkin seeds and almonds, broccoli, and dark chocolate.

Protein – You get protein from many of these same foods, including meat, poultry and fish, dairy, cheese, eggs, and nuts.

Life is About Choices – Emotional Eating

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Another link between stress and nutrition is that you can often “help” the stress and emotions with food. The problem here is that many people go for more unhealthy foods. Food can be a drug that helps one instantly feel better at the moment but may have long-term negative effects. If you know that you are an emotional eater, try to fill your pantry and fridge with foods that will build you up nutritionally, rather than pull you down. Rather than having donuts in the pantry ready for a stressful binge, try to replace them with a healthier sweet treat, like a protein cookie, or chocolate-covered nutrition bar. If salty snacks are your “binge food” get single-serving snack bags, to help you control the amount you eat when under a stress snack attack.

Be Mindful of Unhealthy Habits from Stress

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Having a glass of wine at the end of a long day to de-stress is ok! It is when it turns into a bottle, then a bottle every night that you might need to determine if there are other ways to de-stress before you grab the glass of wine.

We all know having too much stress in life can further encourage unhealthy habits. When you don’t get time to de-stress, it is easy to dive into “not caring” because of feeling overwhelmed. This can not only lead to vitamin deficiencies and emotional eating, but eating unhealthy foods, not getting enough exercise, sleeping too much or too little, excessive alcohol, smoking, or abusing drugs. Life is about moderation. If you see yourself having excess in any of these categories, it may be time to step back and re-think what method you are using to de-stress.

The Healthy De-Stress Cycle

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Stress eating can be a vicious cycle that is very hard to get out of. Once you start going to unhealthy foods to deal with your stress, you may feel that temporary “food high”, but it is hurting your body and mental health in the long term. The best thing you can do is notice when you fall into the cycle. Recognize the triggers that send you to stress-eat or stress-drink. Try to get a plan for those moments when “you just don’t care” and fall into the unhealthy stress cycle. Have your healthy stress food ready and avoid even having the big-time junk foods around.

Adding any form of physical exercise to your life can help reduce stress. Exercise can re-set your body and mind, and give you a different perspective. If exercising seems overwhelming, start off with just a 10-minute walk once per day, then increase it by 5 minutes each week. You might also try meditative breathing or basic yoga to let go of built-up stress. Within a couple of weeks you can easily build a de-stress routine into your life that will give you multiple health benefits.

4 Powerful Strategies To Move Forward and Accomplish Your Goals

How often have you set a goal for yourself, something you wanted to follow through on or accomplish, but then stop short of completion? Maybe it was in the form of a New Year’s resolution, or a weight loss goal, or maybe it was just a weekend to do list. No matter how big or small a goal, as long as it is realistic, healthy, and achievable, there are a few things that you can do to help motivate yourself to complete it.

Clearly Define Your Goal

When you set a goal, it is important to understand exactly what you intend to accomplish by fulfilling your goal. If the goal is unclear or murky, you may not be able to see how or why it should be accomplished. Try writing down your goal and clearly state it to yourself. Work on the wording and make clear parameters. If the goal is too vague, you will not feel a sense of accomplishment, because you may not be able to track when it is done.

For example, stating a goal that says, “I want to lose weight”, but not having any other defining structure to it, makes that goal tough to follow through on. However, a goal stated, “I want to lose 1 pound a week for 8 weeks”, is a goal that causes you to set up action steps to move forward with that goal. This type of goal is very defined and you would be able to track the progress and completion of the goal.

Determine Your Micro-goals

So, how do you get from point A to point Z. Once you have defined and determined the goal’s priority in your life, then you can decide the micro-goals, or steps, you need to take to accomplish you goal. A micro-goal is one tiny goal that moves you forward towards the goal completion. Everyone has different ways of viewing goals, so you will need to decide how many micro-goals you want or need to keep your motivation elevated towards goal accomplishment. An example of a micro goal, might be taking the stairs instead of the elevator everyday for a week to help in your journey towards better health. Every time you take the stairs, you have accomplished a micro-goal. Each micro-goal that is achieved will give you a sense of accomplishment, no matter how small. This type of motivation is extremely important to keep you moving forward and on the right track.

Give It Priority

With each goal, whether a micro-goal, macro-goal, or dream goal, you need to determine its priority in you life. If it is very important for you to accomplish the goal, then it needs to jump to the top of the priority list. Be sure that your goal has realism built into it. If it is a goal that totally disrupts your life and those involved in your daily routine, then it may be difficult to accomplish. If your goal is a big one, such as a diet overhaul, make sure that those affected by your goal are aware and onboard too. Making plans for success of your goal, can keep you moving forward.

Keep A Positive Mind-Set

As you are traveling on the journey towards your goal, it is important to keep a positive mind-set. Whether you achieve every micro-goal or not, during your day, celebrate the victories rather than focusing on the failures.

There is a term called “Stinkin’ Thinkin’”. It is when your self talk becomes negative and results in grumbling, which can tumble into a downward spiral of “failure” thinking. Monitor your self talk and make sure the inner voice is staying positive. There is always a positive thing that can be said about any situation. If you fail at a micro-goal, try to avoid the inner voice going into “stink in’ thinking’” and instead find the positive and encourage yourself. There is enough negative in the world, your inner voice doesn’t need to be negative too.

See How Much You Can Accomplish

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Lastly, you will notice that you can accomplish so many more goals than you ever thought possible. There is a wonderful domino effect that happens when you start crossing items off your list and celebrating your micro-goals during your journey. Each time you do this, you see what you are capable of. You will feel excited and inspired to get through the next stage.

Trust in yourself more by staying positive, having faith, and working really hard to hit each micro-goal. The more you do this, the more your mind-set will start to change and your goals will get accomplished.

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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Sound

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

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

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.

Taste

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

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
Photo by LinkedIn Sales Navigator on Pexels.com

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.

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