where beauty | meets nutrition
Why Protein and Weight Loss Go Hand in Hand
A high-protein weight loss plan is the always a good way to go. And you know it’s catching on when it’s the focus of so many diets out there. So what’s the big deal? Here are a few reasons why you should make protein your new bestie, especially if you want to shed a few pounds.
Protein keeps you full
Because foods that are high in protein take longer to digest, you’ll fill up quicker and process it slower. Make no mistake - the processing part puts your body to work. A lot of work. And that means more calories burned.
Protein promotes muscle growth and repair
Especially if you’re active, this is one to pay attention to. Increasing your intake whenever you do any kind of exercise should go onto your to do list, but make it a must-do thing if you’ve just pumped some iron. It’s the best time to take advantage of all the nutrients protein offers, and that’s why so many gyms have protein shakes available. The only problem there is that while you do get a healthy dose of protein, more often than not you’re also getting slammed with sugar and possibly a lot of fat. You’re better off making your own shake at home. Bonus: it’s less expensive that way too.
Protein can kill the late-night snacking
If evenings are when you’re most likely to sabotage a day of healthy eating, a lack of protein may be to blame. Give a spoonful or two of almond butter a try for dessert and see how you feel. It may not be as sweet as chocolate, but it does the job and your waistline will thank you later.
Protein squashes the afternoon slump
Skip the fast high the vending machine provides and just plan your day a little better by incorporating some protein. Mixing it with a healthy carb like sweet potatoes will keep your blood sugar stable and make that oh-so-exhausting 3pm crash nonexistent.
Our advice? Pick some new sources of protein that excite you and eat up. Because grilled chicken breasts are so last season.
Good news chocolate lovers…chocolate is good for you!!! The raw and unprocessed kind, aka cacao, has even more benefits which are bundled up in our organic HALO Superfood Protein Powder.
Here are our top five reasons to eat more cacao (& chocolate).
Reason #1: It balances mood swings
Cacao boosts levels of feel good brain chemicals (aka serotonin) and promotes the release of calming hormones. A good dose of cacao is just what the Dr ordered to deal with stress, dull moods, hyper-sensitivity, and PMS.
Reason #2: It can prevent premature aging
Cacao is full of antioxidants that protect our cells from premature aging to keep us feeling and looking younger. It’s the same antioxidants you’ll find in green tea and red wine, but without the hangover or chance of spilling boiling water on yourself.
Reason #3: It helps with digestion
You can thank the fiber content in cacao for this. It stimulates digestive enzymes.
Reason #4: It protects your heart
An anti-inflammatory antioxidant in raw cacao can protect against cardiovascular disease and help improve blood circulation. It works to prevent hardening of the arteries and reduces the bad kind of cholesterol (LDL).
Reason #5: It’s a brain booster
Especially helpful if you’re a little forgetful. Cacao can enhance the flow of blood to the brain, which helps with learning and memory.
Move over gooey cookies and decadent cakes, it’s time to get down to business and make sure healthy habits are sticking. But before you start thinking that you’ll have to say goodbye to dessert, check out these options. We promise to satisfy your sweet tooth, but without compromising a healthy diet.
Mangos and Cherries
Fruits like mangos and cherries can kick the craving for candy and cupcakes because they’re higher in natural sugar. Fresh is always better than frozen, but in this instance consider the later. Just because it lasts longer that way.
Start by picking up the plain kind. It’s low in sugar but that’s a good thing, because the trick to this dessert is to control the sweet factor yourself. Start by adding in a natural sweetener like honey or agave, then complement it with a topping. We love it with pomegranate seeds.
Coconut Water and Strawberries
Coconuts are naturally sweet, not to mention a great source of electrolytes, so it’s a win-win all around. Add in a side of fresh strawberries sprinkled with a touch of unsweetened coconut shavings.
Besides being downright delish, dark chocolate can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by lowering bad cholesterol. Make sure to pick up a high-quality bar that is at least 60-70% pure cacao. Careful with your portion sizes though; limit it to two squares of your bar.
If you’ve got some healthy, can’t-live-without dessert ideas, we want to hear about them. Drop us a note below.
Sometimes the kitchen can be your worst enemy. You know...that moment when you wander around for a snack at 9pm and end up wrecking what was otherwise a successful day of making healthy choices. We realize just how frustrating that can be, so we’ve compiled some need-to-know tips for keeping yourself in check.
Tip 1: Maintain a Limited Pantry
Whatever your weakness may be, keep no more than one serving of it in your house at a time. That way you won’t feel like you’re totally depriving yourself, but you’re not sabotaging yourself either. It may impact your significant other or roomie, but the reality is you’re doing them a favor too.
Tip 2: Shop Wisely
If your housemate insists on keeping things in the house for him/herself that will tempt you, make a compromise. If s/he likes ice cream, buy a flavor that they like, but you don’t.
Tip 3: Drink Some Water
It’s easy to confuse thirst with hunger, so before you reach for something to eat, drink some H2O instead. Avoid other temptations in the kitchen by asking someone to get it for you. Or even better, keep bottled water with you.
Tip 4: Stay Accountable
Treat your kitchen like a restaurant: at some point, it closes all together. Set a cut-off time and hold yourself accountable. Or if that’s a challenge, ask your significant other for some help. You can even incentivize yourself for sticking to the plan with a little something special at the end of the week.
Tip 5: Time Dinner Accordingly
Even though finishing dinner 2-3 hours before bedtime is ideal, it’s not always realistic and may even leave you going to bed hungry - or heading to the kitchen for something to munch on. Plan your meal at a time that will keep you satisfied - but not stuffed - by the time you hit the sack.
Marble bathrooms can be so overrated. So when you’re talking about invaluable vacation time, we feel pretty strongly that unbelievable experiences are in order. A hotel room filled with luxurious, all-natural bath products is great, but we’ve got ideas that are even greater to inspire you.
Treehouses: your inner kid meets your adventurous grown-up self in a treehouse. Some are super chic with amenities like heated floors and infinity edge pools while others are more rustic. There are definitely neat hideouts worth looking into if you’re a nature lover.
Private Islands: gone are the days of needing super deep pockets to land a private island getaway. The uber lux choices are still readily available, where over-the-top features can include a resident conservationist or a chef who will quite literally follow you anywhere on the island to cook. But you still can feel like a millionaire without having beaucoup bucks thanks to AirBnb’s private island offerings.
Glamping: if roughing it is not your thing, but you still want a close connection with your surroundings, glamping may be right up your alley. Think luxury camping that doesn’t sacrifice comfort. Some of the coolest experiences we’ve seen include safari lodges, tipis, igloos, and caves.
River Cruising: Imagine having your very own historian onboard a small ship and a chef who picks up ingredients from wherever you go to provide a taste of regional cuisine. That’s just part of the river cruise magic. Because river boats are not nearly as large as traditional cruise ships, they have access to small ports throughout Europe and the Asia Pacific that large ships can’t get to. That means an even more authentic experience for you.
Craving some time to relax? When your brain is in overload and you’re ready to pull your hair out, it’s time to take a little step back and find some ‘me’ time. If you’re stumped on how to do it, we’ve got you covered with these won’t-break-the-bank ways to easily kick back and rejuvenate.
Essential oils are an all-natural way to soothe a variety of ailments, one of which is stress. Lavender is known for its relaxing effects, and is even said to reduce the levels of stress hormones in your blood. We love it in a bath, but rubbing a dash on your hands and inhaling works just as well.
Help Someone Else
Try pushing your stress aside by spreading some love to someone else. From the littlest of tasks to major ones, helping another person out is super rewarding. And in addition to that warm and fuzzy feeling, it’s likely to help get your mind off whatever is bugging you. Major win all around.
Think of this as an alternative to winding down the day with a glass of wine -- but without the extra calories. Green tea is chock-full of health benefits, but the most important one in this case is its anti-anxiety effects. We love it best served hot.
No need for anything fancy. If you've got a favorite space that's private, you're set. Take a seat, close your eyes, and take some deep breaths to clear your mind. A scented candle or two may kick the mood up a notch, but it's definitely not necessary.
You know that moment when you discover stubble on your legs when it seems like you just shaved them? It can be a total downer. That’s why we decided to test a few shaving routines to see what worked best. We found this strategy resulted in the smoothest, bikini ready legs.
Think of exfoliating like working with a blank canvas that you're getting ready to paint on. It takes a great base to get killer results. We love starting a shaving regime with Frank Body Coffee Scrub. Coffee is a great natural exfoliant, plus this one smells pretty awesome. Your legs will definitely wake up!
Shave with warm water. Water that's too hot will shock your legs, and water that’s too cool encourages goosebumps.
It only takes one dull razor to get yourself subpar feeling legs or worse, lots of nicked skin (that's oh-so-not sexy!) So choose your blades carefully. We think some men’s razors do an amazing job, so don't overlook those options the next time you're looking for a replacement.
Now that you've prepped your legs, found the right water temperature, and bought the perfect razor, it’s time for the main event. Lather up with your favorite shave gel, then go for soft, smooth strokes, making sure to take your time as you go. Nothing is worse than missing a spot after you've made such a great effort to get flawless legs.
Don’t forget to moisturize your legs before slipping into your skinny jeans or pajamas. And don't limit yourself to just creams. Coconut oil is an all-natural choice that's inexpensive, offers a subtle scent you just can't help but love, and has an impressive list of uses that goes well beyond just getting super soft legs.
We’re debunking the myth that the word ‘superfood’ is just trendy or a marketing ploy to make something more expensive. Superfoods actually are pretty super, and deserving of their name. And that’s because they’re packed with all sorts of nutrients that keep you feeling good. These are just a few of our can’t-live-without favorites.
You really can’t go wrong with any leafy green, but kale tops the list. That’s because it has a killer amount of virus-fighting antioxidants and is an awesome source of vitamins C, A, and K, not to mention fiber, iron, and calcium. There are even studies out there that connect the good stuff in kale (the list just keeps going!) with decreased cancer risk.
These little berries come with BIG benefits. You’ll want to incorporate goji berries into your diet especially if cold winter weather is heading your way. That’s because the vitamins may help boost your immune system. A possible side effect? Some high-quality sleep.
There’s more than double the amount of protein in spirulina than in a flank steak, but with no risk of clogged arteries, so keep this algae on your food list. A dose of spirulina can help you feel full longer, and provides an extra kick of energy (no excuse for skipping that workout now!)
The list of superfoods goes on, and what’s pretty cool is how special they each are in their own way. So stay tuned for our next installment, and be sure to start adding some of this goodness to your diet #theswheyway