Category Archives: Health

SomaSole Is Helping Me Get My Body Back {Giveaway}

Now that I’m done having kids, it’s time to take my body back. Since starting to grow our family, I’ve put on 40-50 pounds. And I know it’s not just the fact that I’ve carried 3 kids, but being a stay-at-home mom for the last 5 years has played a role too. I may be chasing kids all day, but there’s very little time to get a dedicated workout in. Who has time for the gym? I certainly don’t. And busy days usually mean quick and unhealthy meals. It’s time to take control and SomaSole™ is helping me do it.

SomaSole Is Helping Me Get My Body Back | #SomaSole #FinesseFitness

~I received a sample to help facilitate this post. This post also contains affiliate links, in which I will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

Being a stay-at-home mom means kids are in my face ALL day. There’s no time for me to have a little peace and quiet, or simply time for myself, but with the help of SomaSole I can make time.

SomaSole, from Finesse Fitness, offers a portable resistance training workout. It comes with its own carrying bag, making portability as easy as ever. Take it to the park, the gym, while traveling, or even to the backyard, which is what I do. When the kids want to spend some time at their backyard “park,” it gives me the opportunity to make time for myself. I take my SomaSole outside and in between playing with them, get a workout in.

My recipe for a quick workout includes a beautiful day, happy kids, water, and of course, SomaSole! Oh, and some good ‘ol A/C for afterward because goodness gracious it is HOT outside.

SomaSole Is Helping Me Get My Body Back | #SomaSole #FinesseFitness

SomaSole Features:

  • The thickness, width, and anti-snap exterior of the Link (resistance bands) make them safe on the skin. So say goodbye to rubbery resistance bands that pinch then skin when it rubs.
  • The Link attaches to carabiner anchor points on your feet, eliminating the fear of resistance bands slipping out from under your feet.
  • Offers a combination of stretching, strength building, and dynamic exercises for a full gym-style resistance training.
  • Includes a variety of exercise cards for quick reference.
  • Comes with carrying bag for easy portability.

Finesse Fitness has also introduced its newest in the line of portable full-body workouts. Right now on Kickstarter, Finesse Fitness has reached its goal of $30,000 for its portable home gym bundles.

Built to fit anyone’s lifestyle or fitness level (even a stay-at-home mom’s), the bundles consist of meticulously designed equipment created with high-quality and durable materials, including the full SomaSole set.  To provide a full workout experience, Finesse Fitness bundles come with a mobile app platform where users can download or stream workouts, connect with their trainer, plan workouts, and give and receive support from the community.

There’s still time to get in on the Kickstarter campaign and lock in a super early bird special of $149, plus 3, 30 minute shoot-around sessions with NBA legend Metta World Peace!

SomaSole Is Helping Me Get My Body Back | #SomaSole #FinesseFitness

Backpack:

  • SomaSole™ Foot Harnesses (2)
  • Link™ Resistance Bands (2 SHORT, 1 LONG)
  • FreeWheel™ Instability Sliders (1)
  • FitStrap™ Bodyweight Trainers (2)
  • Adjustable Handles (2)
  • Small Door Anchor (1)
  • Trigger-Point Ball (1)

Duffel:

  • SomaSole™Foot Harnesses (2)
  • Link™ Resistance Bands (2 SHORT, 1 LONG)
  • Stem™ Dynamic Workout Bar (1)
  • FreeWheel™ Instability Sliders (2)
  • FitStrap™ Bodyweight Trainers (2)
  • Adjustable Handles (2)
  • Full-Door Anchor (2)
  • Small Door Anchor (1)
  • Foam Roller (1)
  • Trigger-Point Ball (1)

While you join the Kickstarter campaign and wait for those shoot-around sessions with Metta World Peace, I have your chance to win a SomaSole set! Enter using the giveaway form below.

Where will you take SomaSole?

Connect with : Kickstarter | Facebook


~GIVEAWAY~

SomaSole Is Helping Me Get My Body Back | #SomaSole #FinesseFitness

One lucky winner will receive a SomaSole set from Finesse Fitness!

This giveaway is open to residents of the US, ages 18+ and ends on August 2, 2018 at 11:59 pm est.  Random winner will be notified via email and must respond within 24 hours or prize will be forfeited. Sponsor is responsible for prize fulfillment.

 

 

*I received a sample to help facilitate this post. This post also contains affiliate links, in which I will receive a small commission for your purchase at no additional cost to you. As always, opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Weight Loss Doesn’t Have to Be Trial and Error | HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test

The hardest part of any diet or lifestyle change is the ability to actually stick with the plan. And when you try your hardest and follow it through and through, but nothing changes – no mood change, no more energy than you had before, no weight loss – it is so crushing. All that effort for nothing. The reality is, food and exercise regimes are not one size fits all and our DNA has a lot to do with it. With the HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test, you can learn exactly what will work for you so you can avoid the heartache of unsuccessful nutritional changes.

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss

~I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

We’ve all been there. We want to lose weight. We choose a new diet and exercise routine. We stick with it, as hard as it may be. And nothing. The results just aren’t there. Whyyyyyy? Why me? Because of our different genetic markers, what works for me, may not work for you. The key to a truly healthier lifestyle is understanding how our genetic markers affect and react to different aspects of food, nutrition, and exercise.

That’s where the HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test comes into the picture. Forget all of the different diet fads and exercise regimes. To be successful, you need to first determine how your body reacts to certain foods and exercise. The HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test is a scientifically-based weight-management test that identifies your genetic makeup and provides diet and exercise strategies uniquely tailored to your specific group. No more trial and error. Get results the first time around.

 

My boyfriend recently got the opportunity to try the HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test and last week got his results. All I can say is WOW! Talk about a lot of info and AHA! realizations. His results were a total of 72 pages, including details on how his body reacts to food, nutrients, exercise, and his overall ability for weight loss.

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss

Ability for Weight Loss

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightlossMy boyfriend has tried a few different things to lose weight over the years and like most of us, nothing really worked. The first thing that struck me in his HomeDNA results is that based on his genetic markers, his ability to loss weight with diet and exercise is LOW (the results even list the specific genes used in coming to this conclusion).

Well, no wonder it’s been so hard for him. Even so, this doesn’t mean he can’t lose weight. He just has to work harder than others may have to and will truly have to make a permanent lifestyle change to lose the weight and keep it off.

Food

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightlossThe food results go into great detail about what types of food should be eaten, how much should be eaten, and if counting calories, the suggested calorie intake per day. You will learn how your body reacts to different food groups, like proteins, fats, and carbs. In my boyfriend’s case, his body utilizes protein and carbs normally, but utilizes fats at a lower rate, meaning a high-fat diet isn’t going to do much for him.

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss

Nutrients

One of my favorite things about the HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test is that based on your results, you’re given a sample menu and even details about which specific foods would benefit your diet and which won’t. A lot of this has to do with how your body processes different nutrients.

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss

Exercise

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightlossDid you know there are two components to exercise? Cardio AND resistance training (build that muscle). I’ve seen some people focus solely on one or the other, which may be okay for their specific needs, but that’s not consistent for everyone. In my boyfriend’s HomeDNA results we learned that for him to be successful in losing weight, he needs to hit the weights more. His body has an enhanced response to strength training, which will help reduce his body fat.

It doesn’t mean he can simply forego cardio altogether. Cardio may not help him when it comes to fat loss, but it is still beneficial to his overall fitness. In particular, high intensity cardio is the most beneficial for him. And just like the results lay out a food plan, there’s an exercise plan too.

In the past he has done a combo of both cardio and resistance training, but focused more on the cardio side. Now knowing what he does, he can adjust his exercise routine to be more beneficial and add more strength training so he can burn the fat.

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss

So, the results you get from this genetic testing is a lot to take in and process, and quite frankly can take you a while to fully get a handle on. I do most of the cooking at home and do the grocery shopping, so I’ve been trying to get a handle on the custom meal plan and foods that have been laid out for my boyfriend. I want to be as supportive as I can and I’m still trying to get things all in order.

Reading through and deciphering why your body reacts the way it does can be overwhelming, but in the end you have a better understanding of what works for you when it comes to weight loss. I love the fact that there’s a full 7 day custom menu plan to help give a kick start and an easy to follow custom exercise plan that details what gym machines to use, what gym classes to take, what to do at home, and on what days and for how long. And it’s all tailored to your DNA and genetic makeup.

Weight Loss Doesn't Have to Be Trial and Error | #HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test #weightloss
This is just one page of the custom exercise plan.

 

My boyfriend is just getting started on his new lifestyle change, so he’s still working to see what types of results he gets, but just having the knowledge of what is supposed to work and what isn’t, is a big relief because he knows all of his hard work will pay off this time.

Savings Alert!

The HomeDNA Healthy Weight Test is available for purchase online or can be found in-store at CVS and Rite Aid. When purchasing online, use promo code HW50 and you’ll save $50 off the cost (valid through April 30th). That makes it just $69!

Do you struggle with weight loss and want answers?

Connect with : Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

* I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

How to Know Your Breastfed Baby is Eating Enough + Giveaway

As if breastfeeding weren’t hard enough, if you’re not pumping there’s no way to tell how much your baby is actually eating. So how do you know she’s getting enough? This was the same question I asked myself as I breastfed my daughter (my first breastfed child). There are clues that us moms can look at get the answer, but if you’re still not sure, I have a solution that will ease the concern.

How To Know Your Breastfed Baby is Eating Enough + Giveaway | #EatSmart #babyscale #giveaway #breastfeeding

~This is a sponsored post on behalf of EatSmart and The Hopping Bloggers. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

I feel saddened when I see stories in the media where an infant has died because the mom wasn’t producing enough breast milk. It brings up the question, just as I have wondered myself, when exclusively breastfeeding how do you know your baby is getting enough milk? Without going too far into the topic because it’s not the focus of this post, but many moms are pushed to breastfeed because “breast is best.” But if a mother isn’t producing enough milk to feed her child and the child just isn’t benefiting from it, then “fed is best,” even if that means switching to formula.

For those mom’s who choose, or plan, to exclusively breastfeed (I did this with my second child and plan to do the same with my next), you may think the only way to know your baby is getting enough food is by weighing in at the doctor’s office. This is certainly one way of knowing, but when you have a newborn the last thing you want to do is go to the doctor multiple times a week for a weight in. So here are some things you can look for at home to ensure your baby is eating enough.

How To Know Your Breastfed Baby is Eating Enough + Giveaway | #EatSmart #babyscale #giveaway #breastfeeding

Know What to Expect

It is typical for newborns to lose some of their birth weight in the first week. For breastfed babies, a 7-10% weight loss is normal during that time, and it can take 2-3 weeks for the baby to put that weight back on. So don’t be surprised if your newborn sheds a little weight in the first week.

Feeding Pattern and Satisfaction

One thing to look for is your baby’s feeding pattern. When first latching on, your baby will suck in a rapid manner, which helps release the milk. Once the flow is started the baby will start a more slow, pulling pattern and then swallow. If you don’t notice the slower pulling motion and then swallowing, but more of the rapid sucking, it may mean baby isn’t getting enough milk.

Another thing to look for in the feeding pattern is how often your baby wants to feed, and if he seems full and satisfied after. This can be a little difficult for some because some babies want to feed ALL the time, whether they’re getting enough milk or not.  Once in a routine, most babies feed 8-12 times per day.

Personal experience: During the first week of breastfeeding my daughter, she wanted to feed all the time and for long periods of time at that. She never seemed fully satisfied. In addition to breastfeeding, I was supplementing with formula because I was concerned she wasn’t getting enough milk from me, but that too seemed to be an issue. After talking with the pediatrician, she determined my daughter was tongue-tied and sent us to a specialist. My daughter ended up getting her tongue clipped. The little piece of skin under her tongue (not getting all medical terminology here) was holding her tongue too tightly and she wasn’t able to stick her tongue out enough to get a good latch and sucking motion. So in this case, it wasn’t that my milk supply was low, but was actually a simple fix.

Soiled Diapers

How To Know Your Breastfed Baby is Eating Enough + Giveaway | #EatSmart #babyscale #giveaway #breastfeedingAnother thing to look for is how many soiled or dirty diapers your baby has each day. After a few days of being in a routine, babies should have 6+ pee diapers and 4+ poop diapers. These are figures I’ve been given by my kids’ pediatrician, but I don’t think my kids ever had 4+ poop diapers per day. As long as they were going regularly, I didn’t worry and the pediatrician didn’t seem to either. So as long as your baby is soiling diapers regularly, I wouldn’t be concerned.

Outgrowing Clothes

Is your baby continually outgrowing his clothes? If so, he’s gaining weight and is getting enough milk. My kids didn’t last in newborn sizes for very long. In fact, the newborn outfit my daughter wore home from the hospital was the only time she wore it. And ever since then both of my kids have been wearing clothing that’s larger than suggested. For example, within the first month I’m pretty sure my kids were already wearing size 3 months and it just continued from there.

Gaining Weight

The most obvious sign that your breastfed baby is getting enough milk is from verifiable weight gain. Sometimes these other signs are difficult to assess, but actual weight gain on the scale is unquestionable. But like I said earlier, when you have a newborn, the last thing you want is to be at the doctor’s office every few days for a weigh in. So why not measure and monitor this at home?

How To Know Your Breastfed Baby is Eating Enough + Giveaway | #EatSmart #babyscale #giveaway #breastfeeding

You can with the EatSmart Precision Baby & Pet Check Scale.

  • Track baby’s growth between doctor’s visits (from newborn to toddler).
  • Measures in pounds or kilograms.
  • Measures in 0.5 ounce increments, up to 44 pounds (20 kg).
  • Easy to clean platform.
  • Deduct the weight of a toy, diaper, or blanket with the Tare function.
  • Save and track weight with the Memory function.

How To Know Your Breastfed Baby is Eating Enough + Giveaway | #EatSmart #babyscale #giveaway #breastfeeding

I even have the chance for one of you to win an EatSmart Precision Baby Check Scale, so you can track your breastfed baby’s weight gain at home. It doesn’t get more definitive than numbers on the scale! Enter using the giveaway form below.

Connect with : Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Instagram


Enter to win an EatSmart Precision Baby & Pet Check Scale! #giveaway #EatSmart

One lucky winner will receive an EatSmart Precision Baby & Pet Check Scale!

This giveaway is open to US Residents, ages 18+ and ends on March 15, 2018 at 11:59 pm est.  Random winner will be notified via email and must respond within 24 hours or prize will be forfeited. Sponsor is responsible for prize fulfillment.

 

 

*This is a sponsored post on behalf of EatSmart and The Hopping Bloggers. As always, opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Medications You Can Take While Pregnant

One of the worst things about pregnancy is getting sick. You can’t just go to the store and pick up any over the counter medication you want, but there are some medications that are safe for you to take. This list of symptoms and medications you can take while pregnant will help when that time comes.

Medications You Can Take While Pregnant | #pregnant #sick

~I am not a medical professional and the info provided here is info that was provided to me by my OB/GYN. If you have questions or a serious illness, please visit your doctor.~

I’ve gotten sick at least once with every pregnancy, including right now with my third. And while I’ve been through it before, I still find myself looking online and asking my doctor what is safe to take.

Luckily, this time around my doctor gave me a list of medications that are safe to take while pregnant. This was the first time in three pregnancies that I’ve received a list like this and it has been a lifesaver. It has saved me from finding incorrect information online and also saved me additional visits to my doctor.

I know I’m not alone, so I want to share with you this list of acceptable medications to take while pregnant.

No matter what, don’t ever take Aspirin, Advil or Motrin while pregnant.

Nausea/Vomiting

  • Pepto Bismol
  • Emetrol

Remember that nausea and vomiting are typical in pregnancy, but anytime you experience excessive nausea/vomiting, call your doctor. If you’re unable to keep liquid down for more than one day, are weak or dizzy, you need to make a visit to your doctor.

Cold/Flu

  • Aches/Pains – Tylenol
  • Congestion – Sudafed
  • Coughing – Robitusin
  • Sore Throat – Chloraseptic/Cepacol Lozenges; Listerine gargle

One of my favorite home remedies for a sore throat is hot/warm honey chamomile tea. Add a teaspoon (or more) of honey to the steeped tea and you’re good to go. Adding a little lemon helps too. This has been my go-to for a sore throat for all three pregnancies.

Medications You Can Take While Pregnant | #pregnant #sick

If you have a fever over 101 degrees, are coughing up a lot of phlegm, or have no improvement in 2-3 days, you need to make a visit to your doctor.

Heartburn/Gas

  • Mylanta
  • Maalox
  • Tums
  • Rolaids

If you experience severe abdominal pain, you need to make a visit to your doctor.

Allergies

  • Benadryl
  • Zyrtec
  • Allegra
  • Claritin

Constipation

  • Senakot
  • Psyllium
  • Konsyl Easy Mix – stool softener and natural laxative
  • Milk of Magnesia/Colace – Take twice a day if stool is hard. It takes one week to be effective.
  • Include salads/leafy greens in your diet and drink plenty of water.

Diarrhea

  • Kaopectale
  • Pepto Bismol
  • BRAT Diet – bananas, rice, applesauce, tea or toast

Headaches

  • Tylenol (regular or extra strength), two tabs every 4 hours

Hemorrhoids

  • Konsyl Easy Mix
  • Preparation H or Anusol
  • Tucks

Leg Cramps

  • Oscal 500 mg or similar over the counter calcium, twice a day
  • Massage area and apply light heat.

Dental

  • It is okay to see your dentist:
    • Get x-rays with abdominal shield
    • Receive novacaine
    • Take antibiotics and/or pain meds
  • Gum bleeding is common. See your dentist if it persists.
*I am not a medical professional and the info provided here is info that was provided to me by my OB/GYN. If you have questions or a serious illness, please visit your doctor. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating

Do you have a picky eater on your hands? I certainly do and getting him the nutrition he needs is a challenge I’ve been experiencing for some time now. He has his favorite foods, the only ones he’ll eat, and they do not include any form of fruits or vegetables.

At this point I have absolutely no idea how his little body is even growing. So anytime I come across something I think he’ll enjoy and will give him the nutrition he needs to grow, I’m first in line to give it a try. Our newest addition to his diet is Daily Sunshine by Beachbody.

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating | #Beachbody #DailySunshine #pickyeater #nutrition

~I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

Beachbody is known for quite a bit – P90X, Insanity, and the 21 Day Fix workout programs, as well as Shakeology nutrition shakes. But adults aren’t the only ones who need to keep their fitness and nutrition up. Kids, and especially picky eaters like my son, may have the fitness aspect down, but are lacking in the nutrition department. That’s why Beachbody created Daily Sunshine, a nutrition shake for children!

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating | #Beachbody #DailySunshine #pickyeater #nutrition

The first thing to tackle is taste because we all know that’s most important when it comes to our picky eaters. Daily Sunshine is available in two kid-friendly flavors, strawberry banana and chocolate, and I’d say these are a pretty good start to getting my son to try one. He’s not too keen on chocolate in general, but loves strawberry banana flavors so I knew he’d try it. The chocolate is going to waste either, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

Each Daily Sunshine shake is a perfect blend of fruits and vegetables, plant based protein, and healthy fats. It’s literally a 3-in-1 power shake for kids.

Daily Sunshine Features:

  • Non-GMO
  • Soy-free
  • Dairy-free (vegan)
  • Gluten free
  • Low glycemic
  • Contains no artificial flavors, sweeteners or preservatives
  • 4 out of 5 pediatricians approve the formula

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating | #Beachbody #DailySunshine #pickyeater #nutrition

My son actually likes smoothies and shakes when they have the right flavors in them, but mixing up a smoothie every day can be pretty tiring. Daily Sunshine takes nutritious shakes to the easiest level ever. All you have to do is add a packet of Daily Sunshine to 8 oz. of water, and mix it up in the shaker cup.

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating | #Beachbody #DailySunshine #pickyeater #nutrition

In a matter of minutes my picky eating son has a nutritious shake that’s he loves, and that I love giving him. He’s been enjoying one either in the mornings before school, or as an after school snack. I’m starting to think he only needs one in the morning because his afternoon energy has been through the roof lately.

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating | #Beachbody #DailySunshine #pickyeater #nutrition

Not Just for Kids

Oh, and Daily Sunshine isn’t just for kids either. If you want to get on the healthy action, there’s absolutely no reason you can’t. We got a combo pack that includes both flavors. I already mentioned my son isn’t a big fan of chocolate, but he loves the strawberry banana. So, to make sure nothing goes to waste, when he gets his shake, I get one too. He takes the strawberry banana and I take the chocolate. It’s a really great way for us to actively partake in healthy nutrition together.

How to Enjoy Daily Sunshine

There are so many ways to enjoy Daily Sunshine – the quick and simple shake method with 8 oz. of water or milk (my son likes his in milk); blended into a smoothie (I sometimes mix the chocolate flavor into a peanut butter and banana smoothie); or however you want to incorporate it into the day. If you’re kids don’t like shakes or smoothies, think outside the box too. Try adding it to pancakes or muffins, or something with a similar taste so it blends easily.

Daily Sunshine is a Nutritious Solution to Picky Eating | #Beachbody #DailySunshine #pickyeater #nutrition

Purchase Options

I’m going to be honest. I personally find Daily Sunshine to be pretty pricey, but on the other hand, can I really put a price on my son’s health? I mean, he actually likes it!

  • Daily Sunshine Sampler (2 packets of each flavor – 4 total) = $19.99
  • Daily Sunshine Combo Pack (12 packets of each flavor – 24 total) = $129.99
  • Daily Sunshine Strawberry Banana OR Chocolate (30 serving bag) = $129.99
  • Daily Sunshine Shaker Cup = $6.95

Do you have a picky eater?

Connect with : Website | Shop | Facebook

Connect with : Website | Facebook | Twitter

*I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, my opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand.  Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Peachy Green Smoothie + Alkamind Boost

Mornings are about to get really rough for me. My son starts school tomorrow and that not only means early mornings for him, but early mornings for me too. Ugh! I like being able to sleep in if I want to. There’s no doubt I’ll rely a lot on my morning coffee, but after a couple of hours I’m going to be in major need of an energy boost. With some assistance from Alkamind Daily Greens, I’m confident my Peachy Green Smoothie will be the perfect pick-me-up I need.

Peachy Green Smoothie + Alkamind Boost | #smoothie #recipe #AlkamindDailyGreens

~I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

I’ll be the first to admit that when I’m rushing around and have what feels like the longest to-do list ever, I don’t always reach for healthy snacks. But with school starting and early mornings beginning soon, I need an easy way to implement healthy, energizing snacks into my day. That’s exactly what my Peachy Green Smoothie is, with a little extra superfood boost from Alkamind Daily Greens.

Peachy Green Smoothie + Alkamind Boost

Ingredients

  • 1 cup fresh or frozen spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 1/2 cup fresh, frozen or canned peaches
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt (peach or vanilla flavor works well too)
  • 1 packet Alkamind Daily Greens
  • 1/2 cup ice

Directions

  1. Combine the packet of Alkamind Daily Greens into the milk until well mixed.
  2. Blend all ingredients and the milk mixture in a blender.
  3. Enjoy!

*Note: If you skip step 1 and go straight to blending everything, you may find the Alkamind Daily Greens don’t completely incorporate, and you’ll end up with dry flaky-like textures in your smoothie.

Peachy Green Smoothie + Alkamind Boost | #smoothie #recipe #AlkamindDailyGreens

Why is Alkamind Daily Greens a nice boost to my smoothie? Because it includes 27 nutrient-dense alkaline superfoods that help improve energy, increase weight loss, boost immunity, create better digestion, and gently cleanses and detoxifies. All of that in one little packet!

Peachy Green Smoothie + Alkamind Boost | #smoothie #recipe #AlkamindDailyGreens

Plus, Alkamind Daily Greens already has a peach flavor to it, so it’s a perfect fit for my Peachy Green Smoothie.

How do you stay healthy and energized on long days?

Connect with : Shop | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

*I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, my opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand.  Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Sparkling Peach Iced Super Tea

I hope you’ve been enjoying the month of August just as much as I have. Did you know August happens to be National Peach Month? If the past few weeks haven’t been as peachy as you thought they’d be, check out this super easy Sparkling Peach Iced Super Tea recipe. It’s the perfect way to close out the month!

Sparkling Peach Iced Super Tea | #Tetley #supertea #peach #drink #recipe

~I received a sample to help facilitate this post. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

Before I get to the actual recipe, you’re probably wondering what makes tea a “super” tea. A main ingredient in this recipe is one of Tetley’s vitamin-infused Super Teas, Immunity Peach & Orange Super Tea. It’s packed with 20% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C, which helps to support the immune system. It’s a “super” tea!

Sparkling Peach Iced Super Tea | #Tetley #supertea #peach #drink #recipe

And with cooler weather starting to roll through, I know I need all the immune system support I can get. Even better that I can get that extra support in a delicious beverage! Okay, so on to this delicious recipe!

Ingredients

  • 1 teabag of Tetley Immunity Peach & Orange Super Tea (with Vitamin C!)
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/3 cup of ginger ale
  • Glass of ice

Instructions

  1. Bring cup of water to a boil .
  2. In a cup, pour the boiled water over 1 Tetley Immunity Peach & Orange Super Tea teabag, and let it steep for 5 minutes.
  3. Remove the teabag and allow the tea to cool.
  4. Once the tea is cool, pour it into the glass of ice.
  5. Top it off with ginger ale and enjoy!
Sparkling Peach Iced Super Tea | #Tetley #supertea #peach #drink #recipe
Click on the recipe card to see a how-to video!

 

The recipe was voted as this year’s Super Summer Sipper by fans of Tetley’s Facebook page, and I can see why. I love the taste! It combines the sweetness of peaches with the bubbly fizz of ginger ale, and the extra immunity boost is a great perk.

To help you get started on this super easy and delicious recipe, print this $1.00 off coupon for Tetley Super Teas!

What peachy good recipes have you tried lately?

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*I received a sample to help facilitate this post. My opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand.  Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

7 Ways to Add More Plants into Your Meals

As a parent, it’s not only important that my kids get the proper nutrition they need, but that I do too. I need the energy to keep up with them and generally want to be a healthier person. One way to help with this is to add more plants into my diet. And with the help of Sara Siskind, Certified Nutritional Health Counselor, I’m making this happen. She has offered to share some tips with me and you on ways to add more plants into our meals without having to sacrifice our favorite foods.

7 Ways to Add More Plants into Your Meals | #SaraSiskind #healthyeating #pistachiochewybites #SettonFarms

~I received samples to help facilitate this post.~

1. Simple Swap Outs

When making a sandwich, swap out the bread with lettuce or a collard green wrap. The same goes for sushi. Request the sushi be wrapped in cucumber (this is called a naruto roll) rather than rice. Easy swaps can add more nutrients into your diet while also saving calories throughout the day.

2. Mix It Up

Think outside the box when preparing vegetables and get out of the habit of eating the same foods over and over (I struggle big time with this). Mix it up! Puree carrots, cauliflower, spinach, or squash into your favorite meals. Some ideas include soups, sauces, lasagna, and meatballs. You won’t even taste the difference, but you will be incorporating a lot of vegetables into your meals.

7 Ways to Add More Plants into Your Meals | #SaraSiskind #healthyeating #pistachiochewybites #SettonFarms3. Don’t Forget Breakfast

Breakfast is a meal we often forget to add vegetables, but it’s easy to turn regulat eggs into a fancy vegetable omelet. You can also try spreading avocado (my favorite) on your toast instead of butter, for more fiber and less calories. Add a tomato and onion on top for an extra veggie boost. Keep chopped vegetables in your refrigerator at all times so it’s easy to toss them into any snacks or meals.

4. Smoothies

Fruit smoothies are a terrific way to easily sneak in greens. Blend in a handful of spinach or kale with zero compromise to how good your smoothies taste. If you first wash, dry, chop, and freeze your greens, you will not only reduce spoilage and waste, but also make it easier to whip up a cold refreshing smoothie. (I absolutely love this idea!)

5. Add Some Protein Crunch

7 Ways to Add More Plants into Your Meals | #SaraSiskind #healthyeating #pistachiochewybites #SettonFarmsGreens don’t have to be plain and eaten by themselves. Chop up and add some nuts like Setton Farms Pistachios or even Pistachio Chewy Bites, for an added crunch and protein. The same applies to quinoa or rice. You can also sprinkle pistachios over yogurt or oatmeal for extra protein and heart healthy fats. The possibilities are endless – smoothies, trail mixes, granola, cheese. If looking to cut back on calories, pistachios are a good way to go as they are the lowest calorie nut, at a whopping 49 nuts per serving.

My boyfriend and I are really big pistachio fans, so this is an easy tip for us. The Pistachio Chewy Bites are delicious too. I’ve even been throwing some in my purse for when I need a simple, healthy snack on the go. The Pistachio + Blueberry Cranberry Chewy Bites are all-natural bite-sized bars, packed with over 50% heart-healthy pistachios, antioxidant-rich cranberries, coconut, and a touch of maple brown rice syrup. Perfect for a tasty crunch when and where you need one.

7 Ways to Add More Plants into Your Meals | #SaraSiskind #healthyeating #pistachiochewybites #SettonFarms

6. Switch Out Pasta

Up your nutrients by switching your wheat pasta to vegetable pasta. Spiralized zucchini, butternut squash, and even sweet potato comes out amazing! You’ll even find them served in restaurants as a gluten-free alternative to pasta. Top it with your favorite tomato sauce and a little cheese for a comfort food fix without the guilt.

7. Make Your Own Crunchy Snacks

Craving salty pretzels or fried potato chips? You can easily make your own crunchy snacks by baking chopped kale, thinly sliced sweet potatoes, or beets with a touch of olive oil and sea salt. Many markets are even carrying them pre-made for easy snacking on the go.

How will you add more plants into your meals?

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Connect with Sara Siskind: Website

*I received samples to help facilitate this post. My opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand. Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand.  Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Try It Tuesday: Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder

Try It Tuesday: Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder | #TryItTuesday #charcoalpowder #activatedcoconut #teethwhitening #NaturePhil
~This post contains affiliate links, in which I will receive a small commission for your purchase.~

Okay, so it’s been a while since my last Try It Tuesday and I’m still on a mission for whiter teeth. Last time it was Oil Pulling and this time it’s Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder. I had seen various videos floating around social media, and while brushing my teeth with black charcoal didn’t look too appealing, I thought I’d give it a try anyway. Here’s how it has gone!

What?

Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder – All Natural & Organic Teeth Whitening Formula: $14.98 on Amazon

Try It Tuesday: Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder | #TryItTuesday #charcoalpowder #activatedcoconut #teethwhitening #NaturePhil

When?

The results I’m going to show you are after one week of using this product. The directions say to use it twice a day, every day. But I found that I was basically brushing my teeth four times a day and it was causing my gums to become very sore.

You’re probably wondering why I was brushing my teeth four times a day, right? See, you have the option to brush your teeth with your usual toothpaste after brushing with the charcoal, and because I wanted my mouth to feel minty clean, I chose to do that. Hence brushing my teeth what seemed like four times a day.

It was just too much on my gums. Maybe I was brushing to aggressively. I’m not sure, but after three or four days, I reduced my use of the charcoal powder to just once a day.

Try It Tuesday: Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder | #TryItTuesday #charcoalpowder #activatedcoconut #teethwhitening #NaturePhil

How?

Twice a day, brush your teeth using the Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder. As I just mentioned, you have the option to brush your teeth with your regular toothpaste afterward, which I did.

Simply wet your toothbrush, dip it in the charcoal powder, brush, and rinse. That’s it!

Try It Tuesday: Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder | #TryItTuesday #charcoalpowder #activatedcoconut #teethwhitening #NaturePhil




Results

Well, it’s obvious that I couldn’t get a picture in the same light on both the 1st day and 8th day (I wanted to get my full 7th day in before taking a picture). With that being said, it’s hard to tell from the comparison picture if I actually got any results.

Try It Tuesday: Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder | #TryItTuesday #charcoalpowder #activatedcoconut #teethwhitening #NaturePhil

But in person, I think it’s actually working. I certainly don’t see a drastic difference, but the yellowing of my teeth seems to be slowly fading away. I will say, however, I didn’t get the instant results after one use like many others I’ve seen try an activated charcoal powder.

No instant results here!

My boyfriend has also been trying this charcoal powder and he swears by it. He had some yellow staining on his front two teeth and they are almost completely gone (the staining, not his teeth). As usual, I’m sure results vary per individual and use.

Do I Recommend?

Yes, I would recommend Nature Phil Activated Coconut Charcoal Powder. I will continue to use it myself, and because of my subtle results so far and my boyfriends results, I think it’s worth trying. Just don’t expect results after one use.

Tips

  • Brush with toothpaste afterward. With the charcoal powder there’s no minty fresh feeling and the charcoal really doesn’t have a taste (not that I was trying to taste it, but you know what I mean).
    • The charcoal also leaves small black particles lodged in your gums here and there, as well as a general black/gray tint to the gum border along your teeth. My understanding is this is normal no matter which brand of activated charcoal you use. To help rid of that, brushing with toothpaste afterward helps a bit.
  • It’s not necessary, but I used a different toothbrush for brushing with the charcoal powder and brushing with toothpaste. It just made me feel better because some of the charcoal will be left behind on the toothbrush. (My boyfriend used just one toothbrush for both.)
  • The charcoal is going to splatter all over the sink. And wall. And mirror. I recommend trying to brush close to the sink and cleaning up every day after brushing. And maybe even brushing without a shirt on because it may splatter on your shirt too.

Have you ever tried charcoal powder for teeth whitening? I’d love to hear about your experience and results!

Check out previous Try It Tuesday’s:

10 Day Foot Mask | Oil Pulling

*I am in no way, shape, or form a dental health expert and am strictly sharing my experience with this charcoal powder. For dental facts and emergencies, it’s best to consult your dentist. This post contains affiliate links, in which I will receive a small commission for your purchase. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

From Grief to Joy: Giving Hope to Infertile Couples

From Grief to Joy: Giving Hope to Infertile Couples | #infertility #IVF #eggdonor

Today I have a guest post on the topic of infertility, and the option of egg donors and IVF. This is not something I personally know anything about, as I have not had to deal with infertility myself, but I’m happy that my guest poster has graciously agreed to share some information about the options of egg donors and IVF treatment, for those readers who are going through infertility themselves. While I have no experience with it, I do have friends who struggle with infertility, so I’m happy to have this topic covered today.

Regardless of the life plans we make, the unexpected is bound to happen. Finding out your eggs aren’t viable for conception – or you’re unable to carry a pregnancy to term – is about as unexpected as it gets. Women struggling to get pregnant never imagine they’ll hear from their doctor that they are infertile. However, a couple’s dream of having a child and family reaches far beyond their diagnosis. This is why the egg donation process gives hope to couples struggling with infertility.

Emotional Turmoil

The emotions following such monumental news can be very intense. Negative emotions such as grief, anger, a sense of inadequacy, hopelessness, and depression are normal responses in such a stressful situation. Many couples seek professional counseling to deal with the resulting shock and emotional fallout.

Choosing Donor Eggs – a New Hope

For couples coping with infertility, choosing IVF using donor eggs can be a solution leading towards parenthood and a happy family. Nevertheless, the thought of a future child not being genetically connected to the mother can be quite challenging to deal with. So, coming to terms with the decision to use this method is very important for the mother’s overall well-being. In some cases, feelings of resentment towards the partner might develop as he would be the biological father to the child – thus having a ‘closer’ or ‘more real’ bond. Biological connection doesn’t equate to a stronger bond, however!

But this, too, is a normal part of the grieving process, and doesn’t make you a bad person in any way. Some couples even decide to use donor sperm as well. Honest and open communication between the partners is imperative for making a healthy compromise.

Choosing the Right Donor

Finding the right donor is perhaps the hardest and lengthiest step of the process for many couples. The criteria which are important to each of the partners may differ significantly. Therefore, it could take up to a few months for the couple to reach a mutually acceptable decision. Some women may also choose a close relative to be the donor, so they feel genetically closer to the future child.

Fresh or Frozen Donor Egg Cycle

Though largely similar, there are some key differences, including pros and cons, between these two methods.

Fresh donor egg cycles require the donor to be localized in your area and available at your convenience. This considerably limits the pool of available donors. Next, the donor’s medications, costs of travel, as well as other relevant costs make this method much more expensive than a frozen donor egg cycle. However, it offers slightly better chances of a successful pregnancy.

On the other hand, frozen donor egg cycle offers a substantially larger donor pool – at the fertility clinic, you are able to choose a donor from a national egg donor registry. Frozen donor eggs are more available and easier to obtain, plus all costs regarding the donor are already factored into the price of the cycle. This makes this method significantly cheaper than fresh.

Legal and Ethical Concerns

It is important to have all legalities on paper before implantation. Thankfully, if using a donor egg bank, they take care of this for you. Otherwise, you need a lawyer to draft a contract regarding the donor’s rights and involvement in the child’s life.

Quick Overview of the Implantation Process

After the initial interview, you will undertake several tests to determine if your uterus can carry a pregnancy to term. If all is well, you may begin the journey of donor egg IVF. Depending on the donor egg cycle you’ve chosen, the process of implantation differs.

In a fresh donor egg cycle, you and your donor are brought to the clinic and undergo a cycle synchronization treatment before the donor’s eggs are extracted, fertilized, and implanted into your uterus.

In a frozen donor egg cycle, the cryopreserved eggs are transported to your clinic where they are thawed and fertilized with the sperm of your partner or donor. After a period of 3 – 4 days, the most viable embryos are implanted inside your uterus.

The Big Moment and Happily Ever-After

After two weeks, you’ll be called back to the fertility clinic to take your HCG pregnancy test. This period of ‘calm before the storm’ can be accompanied by mixed feelings of anxiety, hopefulness, eagerness, or even a sense of impending doom if prior IVF treatments weren’t successful. Proper counseling and emotional support from your partner is vital to prepare yourself for the final outcome, whatever it may be. Nonetheless, when all is well and you are preparing bottles or cleaning up after your bundle of joy, you won’t be spending time thinking about genetics.

From Grief to Joy: Giving Hope to Infertile Couples | #infertility #IVF #eggdonor

The journey to parenthood can be long, hard, and costly – both emotionally and financially – but it pales in comparison to the immeasurable happiness and fulfillment of having a child. The latest advancements in medicine offer hope to many couples who might otherwise give up on their lifelong dream of becoming parents. There’s always hope!

*This is a guest post. Infertility, egg donors, and IVF treatment are not something I have personal experience with. Should you have serious questions about any of these, please consult with your physician. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.