13 Curcumin And Turmeric Benefits: An Impressive Healing Spice

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Turmeric is a spice belonging to the ginger family. It is commonly used in Asian food, such as curry. The vibrant yellow-orange color and zesty flavor make a delicious and healthful addition to a variety of dishes.

Curcumin is a yellow chemical produced by the turmeric plant. It is loaded with antioxidants!

Many studies show that turmeric is more effective than many prescription drugs. And, because turmeric is all-natural, it comes without the bothersome side effects of prescriptions.

Turmeric is one of the most impressive nutritional dietary supplements available. So read on to learn what makes this spice so unique.

13 Curcumin And Turmeric Benefits

1. A Powerful Anti-Inflammatory

When our body experiences long-term inflammation it can lead to a host of diseases. In fact, it’s now believed that most Western chronic diseases involve ongoing inflammation. This includes cancer, metabolic disorders, Alzheimer’s, heart disease and many other diseases.

Amazingly, the curcumin in turmeric is a powerful anti-inflammatory, as strong as effective as some pharmaceuticals without the side effects (1).

2. Can Help Prevent And Treat Cancer

Cancer is a horrible disease caused by out-of-control growth of abnormal cells.

Encouraging research studies show that curcumin may help prevent and treat different types of cancer. (2)

3. A Natural Painkiller

Results of a study in the European Journal of Pharmacology show that curcumin turns on the opioid systems in lab animals. This our body’s natural pain-killing response.

The U.S. Army Institute of Surgical Research recommends that burn victims be treated with all-natural curcumin instead of addictive opioids. This trend away from prescription opioids is a very good one if you ask me.

4. May Reverse Depression Symptoms

In one study, curcumin was shown to be as effective as prozac in treating patients with depression. (4) And, once again, without the side effects.

Evidence also suggests curcumin increases the brain’s serotonin and dopamine levels. (5, 6).

5. A Natural Treatment For Arthritis

Arthritis is a common condition that causes pain, inflammation and stiffness in the joints.

In a study published in Phytotherapy Research in 2012, patients with rheumatoid arthritis were given curcumin. It was found to be more effective than an anti-inflammatory drug for treating their arthritis symptoms. (7)

6. May Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease

Alzheimer’s is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that destroys the memory. One feature of Alzheimer’s is the buildup of Amyloid plaques. Research shows curcumin can help wipe out these plaques. (8)

7. Lowers Heart Disease Risk

turmeric benefits
Curcumin my lower the risk of heart disease.

Heart disease kills more people worldwide than any other disease.

There are many things that contribute to it, but curcumin may help reverse some of these processes. (9)

The endothelium is the lining of the blood vessels. It is essential in maintaining proper blood pressure and blood clotting. Studies show that curcumin can improve endothelial function, which is essential in preventing heart disease. (10)

8. A Powerful Antioxidant

Antioxidants protect our bodies from damage caused by free radicals. Curcumin is a potent antioxidant that can counteract free radicals. (11)

Curcumin can also activate the body’s antioxidant-producing enzymes. (12)

9. Lower Blood Sugar And Reverse Diabetes

Biochemistry and Biophysical Research Communications published a study in 2009 out of Auburn University that found turmeric can help reverse Type 2 Diabetes.

Furthermore, the study noted that curcumin is 200 times more potent than Metformin (a leading diabetes medication) when it comes to initiating AMPK, which improves insulin sensitivity. (13)

10. Can Help Heal The Gut

Over time, taking prescription drugs can damage the stomach floral and intestinal lining causing a host of gastrointestinal issues.

A review of all the studies assessing curcumin’s ability to manage inflammatory bowel disease found many patients improved so dramatically by taking curcumin that they were able to stop taking prescription steroids they’d been taking prior. (14)

11. Regulates Cholesterol

A 2008 study published in the journal Drugs in R & D found that curcumin was as effective or more effective at treating symptoms of high cholesterol than Lipitor. (15)

12. Reduces Risk Of Childhood Leukemia

Children under 5 are more susceptible to leukemia. However, in Asian countries there is a lower incidence of leukemia, likely related to diet. For example, curry is a popular dish there and curry contains turmeric.

Research shows that consuming turmeric may reduce childhood leukemia (12).

13. May Increase Longevity

Because turmeric is rich in antioxidants and helps prevent and reverse many serious diseases, it may add years to your life (or life to your years).

Either way you look at it, turmeric and curcumin are great choices if you’re searching for an anti-aging supplement. So read on for info about how to get the most benefits from this amazing spice.

How To Use Turmeric

turmeric benefits
Curcumin is used to flavor many dishes, including this vegetable curry.
  1. Add it to your food. Popular in curry dishes, it’s also a great way to spice up soups, eggs, meat and veggie dishes.
  2. Take it as a supplement. I recommend taking one with black pepper, which contains piperine. The piperine greatly enhances the absorption of the turmeric, like as much as 2000%. Here’s an example of a turmeric curcumin supplement with piperine.
  3. Drink turmeric tea. Here’s a simple recipe, courtesy of realsimple.com:

 Replace the water with coconut or almond milk if you prefer, and modify according to taste, adding spices such as cinnamon, ginger or cayenne and natural sweeteners.

  • 1-2 cups of boiling water
  • Add 1-2 teaspoon of ground or freshly-grated turmeric (preferably USDA certified organic to avoid contaminants and pesticides) to the boiling water. If too strong, use less turmeric. Simmer for about 10 minutes along with any additional spices. If using freshly-grated turmeric, simmer for a few minutes longer.
  • Strain the tea into a cup and add lemon, milk or honey to taste.

The Takeaway

In closing, turmeric has some awesome health benefits such as reversing diabetes and depression, preventing Alzheimer’s, cancer, childhood Leukemia, and managing cholesterol and pain just to name a few. It’s also easy to take as a supplement or use to flavor your food or beverages.

I hope you enjoyed reading about curcumin and turmeric benefits because it really is an amazing spice!

Also, if you liked this you may want to check out:

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Delicious Detox Vegetable Soup: The Ultimate Comfort Food!

detox vegetable soup
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Are you sick of eating salads for lunch in an effort to be healthier this year?

Do you long for comfort food that not only nourishes your body, but also your soul?

Then you might want to try this Delicious Detox Vegetable Soup.

There’s not much I enjoy eating more than a bowl of piping hot soup, brimming with colorful veggies in a flavorful broth. Even people who don’t normally crave soup (like I do) reach for this nourishing comfort food, especially when it’s cold outside.

So this detox vegetable soup is perfect to eat anytime. And, best of all, it’s loaded with colorful, antioxidant-rich veggies.

It even has one of my favorite healthful ingredients, apple cider vinegar. But you’ll never even know it’s there. It’ll be our little secret. 😉

You can add beans, shredded chicken or beef if you want a powerful protein boost. Or, just eat some beef jerky or, my personal favorite, a big blob of nut butter. However, even though I’m a meat-lover, I find this soup to be hearty and sustaining all on its own. So you may not find it necessary to add an extra protein source.

Just call it your meatless main dish.

detox vegetable soup
Max approves of Delicious Detox Vegetable Soup.

Also, feel free to add extra veggies. If you have some leftover vegetables in the fridge, throw them in too. Make it your own!

The more, the merrier!

Also, I like to make this in my Crock Pot. But, you can also make it in a stock pot on the stove top. It turns out great either way.

Please note that the broccoli should be added towards the last 30 minutes of cooking time to prevent over cooking.

Nobody likes soggy broccoli. Unless you do, in which case you can add your broccoli sooner.

As you can see, this isn’t rocket science friends. It’s based on your personal preference.

I tend to like my veggies more crisp tender. But if you prefer mushy, then go for it!

Just keep in mind that the longer the veggies cook, the more the nutrients seep out.

But I figure if we’re comparing eating smushy, mushy veggies to eating no veggies, the mushies are gonna win every time

So, here we go with the recipe. I hope you enjoy it!

Delicious Detox Vegetable Soup: Lori Geurin

Delicious Detox Vegetable Soup: Lori Geurin

Ingredients

  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3 to 4 cups red or green cabbage, sliced thin
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 cup green beans, fresh or frozen
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 15-ounce can diced tomatoes
  • 8 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt or sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • pinch of cayenne pepper, optional
  • 4 cups broccoli florets, fresh or frozen
  • fresh baby spinach, optional

Instructions

  1. Clean, peel and slice all the vegetables.
  2. Add all ingredients, except the broccoli florets and baby spinach, to the crock pot or large stock pot.
  3. If using a crock pot, cook on low for 5 to 6 hours.
  4. Add the broccoli florets during the last 30 minutes of cooking time and cook until crisp tender or to your liking.
  5. Serve the soup over a generous bed of fresh baby spinach. The spinach will wilt when you pour the soup on top of it.
  6. Feel free to add chicken, beef or beans to the soup for a healthy serving of protein.
  7. Enjoy!
http://www.lorigeurin.com/delicious-detox-vegetable-soup/

The Takeaway

This Detox Vegetable Soup is full of fiber, antioxidants and deliciousness! It will fulfill your veggie requirements for the day (if you eat as much as I do), and help flush toxins out of your body.

Do you love soup? What other comfort foods do you like?

Please leave your comments below and get the conversation started. I love hearing from you and do my best to respond to all of your comments. Thanks friends!

If you enjoyed reading this, you might also enjoy:

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Pink Himalayan Salt Benefits That Boost Your Health

Pink Himalayan Salt

Pink Himalayan salt is a wonderful alternative to table salt. And, best of all, it’s packed with some pretty amazing health benefits.

I first heard about pink Himalayan salt a few years ago from my doctor. I’d just learned I had Lyme disease after months of severe pain, fatigue and autoimmune issues.

I’d lost a lot of weight. Consequently, my muscles were wasted and my body depleted. So the doctor instructed me to start adding pink Himalayan salt to my food, and I did. I only wish I’d known sooner about this amazing pink salt. It tastes so much better than the white stuff.

So prepare to be impressed by this life-giving pure, pink salt!

What Is Pink Himalayan Salt?

Himalayan salt has been around for ages. We’re talking over 4 billion years….when planet Earth was first formed (1)!

Did you know people have used it over thousands of years as a natural medicine?

In the Himalayas it’s known as ” white gold”.

Other names for it include:

  • rock salt
  • pink sea salt
  • Himalayan sea salt
  • Himalayan crystal salt

Also, it is now widely known as the purest, most nutrient-dense salt you can buy.

Pink Himalayan Salt Nutritional Information

According to The Meadow, this special salt has the following electrolytes, trace minerals and elements. They’re listed in alphabetical order for your viewing pleasure. (Ready, set, go!) (2)

  • actinium
  • aluminum
  • antimony
  • arsenic
  • astatine
  • barium
  • beryllium
  • bismuth
  • boron
  • bromine
  • cadmium
  • calcium
  • carbon
  • cerium
  • cesium
  • chlorine
  • chromium
  • cobalt
  • copper
  • dysprosium
  • erbium
  • europium
  • fluorine
  • francium
  • gadolinium
  • gallium
  • germanium
  • gold
  • hafnium
  • holmium
  • hydrogen
  • indium
  • iodine
  • iridium
  • iron
  • lanthanum
  • lead
  • lithium
  • lutetium
  • magnesium

    pink Himalayan salt
    Himalayan salt is rich in trace minerals, electrolytes and elements.
  • manganese
  • mercury
  • molybdenum
  • neodymium
  • neptunium
  • nickel
  • niobium
  • nitrogen
  • osmium
  • oxygen
  • palladium
  • phosphorus
  • platinum
  • plutonium
  • polonium
  • potassium
  • praseodymium
  • protactinium
  • radium
  • rhenium
  • rhodium
  • rubidium
  • ruthenium
  • samarium
  • scandium
  • selenium
  • silicon
  • silver
  • sodium
  • strontium
  • sulfur
  • tantalum
  • tellurium
  • terbium
  • thallium
  • thorium
  • thulium
  • tin
  • titanium
  • uranium
  • vanadium
  • wolfram
  • yttrium
  • ytterbium,
  • zinc
  • zirconium

Did you make it to the end of the list? Wowzers – Nice work, friend! 🙂

As you can see, pink Himalayan salt is “mineral dense”. And this makes it incredibly beneficial to your health.

Where Does Himalayan Pink Salt Come From?

Pink Himalayan Salt
The Himalayas

The salt is mined in the Khewra Salt Mines in Pakistan. These mines are located in the foothills of the Himalayan Mountain Range. Also, it’s the second largest salt mine in the world.

The salt from these mines range in color from transparent to shades of white, pink and red.

The mine incorporates 25 miles of tunnels on 11 levels dug into the mountains.

Pink Himalayan Salt Versus Table Salt

Pink Himalayan salt is a healthier choice compared to table salt.

First of all, Himalayan salt is incredibly pure and mined by hand.

In comparison, commercialized table salt is highly processed and stripped of its minerals. Most table salt also has anti-clumping agents added. These are bad for your health.

Even worse, many table salts go through a bleaching process and have other toxic additives which are known to be harmful to humans.

Even many sea salts, which were once viewed pure and healthy, contain an increasing amount of toxins due to the pollution in our oceans.

The ‘Salt Wars’

Salt has been blamed for many modern-day ills, such as heart disease, stroke and high blood pressure. However, despite what you may have been told, salt is vital to our health.

In fact, there are real risks to severely limiting your salt intake. These include insulin resistance, death from heart disease, increased LDL and triglycerides, and increased risk of death from diabetes. (8)

Please note that it is essential to get enough potassium in your diet to balance out your sodium intake. This is especially true for those who eat lots of processed foods and very little vegetables.

The Amazing Health Benefits Of Pink Himalayan Salt

1. Improves Respiratory Problems

Halotherapy is a natural treatment for those with respiratory issues. It loosens mucus and has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial effects. It’s especially effective for people who have bronchitis (3).

2. Improves Sleep

pink Himalayan salt
Eating pink Himalayan salt may improve sleep quality.

Research shows that low-sodium diets cause disrupted sleep (4). I’m not saying to go crazy with the salt, but a high-sodium diet is related to longer sleep patterns with fewer wakings.

3. Detoxification

Taking a detox bath with pink Himalayan salt is invigorating. It also stimulates your circulation. First, dissolve 1 pound of salt in a hot bath. Next, soak in the tub for 20 minutes. You can also add essential oils if you like.

Most of all, be sure to drink plenty of water to move the toxins out of your body.

4. Balances pH

Having a well-balanced pH is essential for good health. When your acid-to-alkaline ratio is in proper balance it boosts your immune system. Because Himalayan salt has over 84 trace minerals and elements, it helps keep your pH in balance.

 5. Improves Digestion

You can make your own “sole”, which is a drinkable solution of Himalayan salt and purified water. Also, according to Dr. Sircus:

Daily use of sole is believed to stimulate the peristalsis of the digestive organs, balance the stomach acid, support the production of digestive fluids in the liver and pancreas, regulate the metabolism and harmonize the acid-alkaline balance (5).

Here are directions on how to prepare sole.

6. Air Purifier

pink Himalayan salt
Pink Himalayan salt lamps draw impurities out of the air.

Pink Himalayan salt lamps are all the rage. They can make the air you breathe cleaner. In addition, the dust and allergens in the air are drawn into the salt lamp (6). You can buy them on Amazon. Brilliant!

In addition, other health benefits of using pink Himalayan salt include: (7)

  • Increased bone strength
  • Reduced leg cramps (like a Charley horse)
  • Lowering the incidence of sinus problems
  • Promotes vascular system health
  • Promotes healthy blood sugar
  • Encourages a healthy libido
  • Circulatory support
  • Reduces common signs of aging
  • Regulates water levels in the body for maximal functioning
  • Promotes cellular energy creation
  • Encourages increased absorption of food in the intestinal tract
  • Promotes gall bladder and kidney health in comparison to chemically-treated table salt

The Takeaway

Using pink Himalayan salt instead of table salt is a healthy choice. When used in moderation, it can greatly enhance the flavor of your food and boost your health. For example, it can improve digestion, purify your air, balance pH, improve your sleep and detoxify your body.

I’m really glad I made the switch to Himalayan salt and think you might too.

Have you ever tried it? What did you think? Please leave your questions and comments in the comment section below, and get the conversation started.

If you liked this you might want to check out:

For a more in-depth explanation about the ‘Salt Wars’ you may want to watch this video featuring Dr. Mercola. He also talks about the health benefits of Himalayan salt.

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5 Good Reasons To Drink Coffee Every Day For Better Health

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By contributing author– Rudy Caretti (biography below)

“So, you love coffee? You are not the only one. Fortunately, an everyday dose of coffee in the right quantity is attributed to various health benefits.

5 Reasons To Drink Coffee Every Day

1. Coffee helps you perform better during workouts.

You may already know, but most supplements taken by athletes contain coffee extracts such as caffeine. There is a scientific reason behind this. Caffeine has several effects on the human system that causes one to do better during physical activity. When taken 30 minutes before any physical activity, black coffee promotes the release of endorphins. These hormones are responsible for our happy moods and adrenaline. These two hormones cause the body to respond positively to any training, leading to better results.

Besides, caffeine alters the way the nervous system responds to pain. This causes the body to endure more strenuous reasons to drink coffeesituations. In this case, your muscles will tolerate longer sessions of intensive endurance- and strength-building exercises.

In a nutshell, caffeine can propel one to train harder, thus improving their results. No wonder scientific research has found coffee can improve athletic performance by about 11-12%.

2. It is loaded with minerals and antioxidants.

The red berry is one food substance packed with many essential nutrients. If you prepare your cup rightly, you are sure to ingest these into your body.

Also, some of the nutrients obtained by drinking coffee include:

  • potassium
  • magnesium
  • niacin
  • riboflavin
  • pantothenic acid

Coffee also contains more antioxidants than a single serving of fruits and vegetables combined.

3. Coffee can keep diseases at bay.

Research shows coffee can help keep dangerous diseases away. Some of these diseases have claimed the lives of many people. Others do not have any known cure. Luckily, one can lower their chances of contracting such ailments by drinking coffee. Some of the said ailments are listed below.

  • Parkinson’s disease: According to Mayo Clinic, “Parkinson’s disease is a progressive disorder of the nervous system that affects movement. It develops gradually.” A 2002 report published in the Annals of Neurology showed those who drank java daily lowered their chances of suffering from Parkinson’s by 32% and 60%. This finding was unique to those who enjoyed caffeinated coffee only.
  • Diabetes II: A study by Harvard School of Public Health researchers looked at information collected over 4 years on people with diabetes II and some without. The study was divided into 3 sections. The researchers were interested in finding the relationship between type 2 diabetes and the kind of diet the study subjects were eating. The results showed that among the 7,269 subjects, the people who took at least one cup of coffee each day for those 4 years decreased their chances of developing diabetes II by 11%.
  • Cardiovascular diseases: Contrary to the popular belief that caffeine in coffee can lead to high blood pressure and consequently endanger your heart, research has shown the effect is dismal. Regular intake will not only cause the blood pressure risk to disappear, but also lower your chance of developing heart disease by 20%. This finding was upheld by a Korean study published in 2014. The study found that taking coffee in moderate amounts reduces one’s disposition to coronary artery calcium (CAC). CAC is a key indicator of possible cardiovascular disease.

With the burden of such ailments off your shoulders, you are likely to lead a long, healthy and happier life. No wonder, another benefit you could be enjoying by simply sipping your cup of Joe is the possibility to live longer.

4. It makes your skin and hair blossom.

As mentioned earlier, coffee is packed with many antioxidants and minerals which could help keep your skin healthier and glowing. When the body is getting rid of various toxins successfully, one part that is likely to blemish is your skin. Also, the vitamins and minerals cause your hair to grow faster. Also, did you know you can treat your hair with a cool brew of a strong pot of coffee to make it shiny, stronger and healthier?

reasons to drink coffee5. Coffee improves your mental health.

Good mental health is a result of a combination of several factors. However, the most important one is happiness. Most benefits of coffee discussed above work together to make you a happier person. In this regard, you are likely to enjoy better mental health. There are other ways, however, coffee could be good for your mental well-being.

Based on a 2011 Harvard study, people who enjoyed at least 4 cups of coffee daily lowered the risk of falling into depression by 20%. Depression is one of the many mental disorders that can deprive one the joy of leading a fulfilling life.

The Takeaway

In conclusion, coffee is a delicious beverage many of us enjoy each and every day. There are many reasons to drink coffee including health benefits for our skin, hair, mental health and disease prevention.

For more about coffee, you might like you check out: reasons to drink coffee


Author, Rudy Caretti, has more than 15 years of experience in the coffee industry, a passion that started in Italy within the family business and brought him to found Gimoka Coffee UK and G Coffee Pod with a group of friends, who share the same passion.

Since he roasted his first batch of coffee seeds as a teenager, he was fascinated by the many ways it can be processed to get the many distinctive flavors we all love.

As a coffee connoisseur, Rudy has always been aware of the vital role coffee plays in people’s social life. And he is especially active through the company’s social media and blog. He loves sharing his knowledge with readers around the world, writing and posting articles that range from the coffee brewing techniques to raising awareness of the importance of responsible production to help protect the rights of farmers and protect the environment.

Facebook | Twitter | Google+

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Top 20 Best Healthy Snacks

healthy snacks

Who can deny that snacking is an American tradition (at least in my family it is)? What we graze on during the day has a big impact on our health.

Do you have a favorite snack food? Chips, Oreos, Cheetos or Twinkies perhaps? No judgement here. My snack choices haven’t always been perfect either.

Just some food for thought….

As you probably guessed, the best snacks are those packed with nutrients and protein, which fuels the body until the next meal. These snacks are full of flavor, and dare I say, even fun to eat!

I used to teach preschoolers, what can I say? 🙂

20 Healthy Snacks

  1. Nut Butter

    Peanut butter, peanut butter, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways….but, I digress.

    Seriously, who can resist the creamy, nutty confection that is peanut butter?! And don’t forget the lesser known nut butters: hazelnut, cashew, almond and walnut.

    According to the Harvard School of Public Health Nutrition Source, several large studies over the past few years “have shown a consistent 30 to 50 percent lower risk of heart attack, sudden cardiac death or cardiovascular disease associated with eating nuts several times a week.”

    Plus, 2 tablespoons of peanut butter has 7 grams of protein and 180 mg of potassium. Just make sure to check out the ingredient list and avoid added sweeteners and trans fats, especially “partially hydrogenated oil”. Also, don’t bother buying the “low-fat” nut butters. Manufactures of these products simply replace the fat with sugar.

  2. Cottage Cheese

    Once considered a “diet food”,  cottage cheese is now a fan favorite of weight lifters, other athletes, and health foodies alike. This is no surprise considering the whopping 28 grams of casein protein in each cup of cottage cheese.

    A summer favorite of mine is eating a sliced tomato, straight from the garden, topped with cottage cheese and plenty of Himalayan Pink Sea Salt. Sounds weird, tastes great! You also might like to try cottage cheese with fresh pineapple. Delish!

  3. Berries

    healthy snacks
    Berries are a low-sugar, antioxidant-rich snack.

    Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, cranberries, gooseberries and elderberries just to name a few…They are colorful, juicy, sometimes sweet, and full of vitamins and antioxidants (1).

    Enjoy a cup of berries with a splash of cream for a decadent treat.

  4. Whey Protein Shake

    Whey protein can help you gain muscle, lose fat, and increase strength (2). I sometimes drink one as a meal replacement and I’m amazed how long it satisfies my hunger. You might like to try My Favorite Peanut Butter Protein Shake.

    Most people tolerate regular whey protein concentrate, but if you have digestive symptoms you might find that isolate or hydrolysate is better suited for you.

  5. Hard-Boiled Eggs

    Eggs are incredibly nutritious (3). Like, the perfect food. They are high in protein, healthy fats and amino acids.

    They’re also high in cholesterol, but despite what you may have heard in the past, eating high-cholesterol foods does not increase cholesterol for the majority of people (4).

  6. Plain Greek Yogurt

    It’s creamy and rich in protein and probiotics. It can also cut the appetite and help with weight loss (5).

    You may want to add berries, other chopped fruit or nuts to raise the vitamin and fiber content.

  7. Cheese

    Cheese has many vitamins and minerals, including calcium, zinc and vitamin K2. Eating it can help prevent osteoporosis and heart disease (6). And the fat in cheese can help you feel full longer, preventing cravings and helping you make it to the next meal.

  8. Jerky

    Jerky is meat, such as veal, beef, turkey or venison which is dried and cut into strips. It is low in carbohydrates and high in protein.

    The healthiest kind is made at home. But the kind you see at the grocery store has all sorts of added preservatives and sugar so please keep this in mind.

  9. Dark Chocolate

    healthy snacks
    Dark chocolate is full of antioxidants and makes the perfect snack.

    Are you surprised chocolate made it to this list of healthy snacks? Pretty cool, huh?

    Studies have shown that dark chocolate eaters have a lower risk of heart disease (7). Eating chocolate can also improve brain function.

    Choose dark chocolate with a 70-85% cocoa content (minimum). Any less and you’re looking at a lot of sugar.

  10. Deli Rollups

    Simply take a slice of meat, such as turkey and a slice of cheese. Roll it up, and voila! Another favorite is spreading cream cheese on the turkey and wrap it around a dill pickle. You can slice it first, or simply eat it like this.

  11. Canned Tuna

    Another high-protein snack, tuna is a great choice if you’re on the go. Just be sure your office buddies are cool with the smell if you decide to pop open a can in the afternoon.

  12. Veggies And Hummus

    If you’ve never tried hummus I encourage you to give it a try. Some might say it’s an acquired taste, but I’ve loved it from my first taste and make my own from home.

    I throw some white beans, garlic, lemon juice, cumin and olive oil in the blender and it makes the most delicious hummus in no time.

    Here’s a similar recipe you might like to try:  Super Easy Hummus

  13. Protein Bar

    Homemade ones are the best, in my humble opinion. But if you like to have prepackaged ones on hand I recommend you try the Luna, Kind and Quest ones.

  14. Kefir Smoothie

    Kefir (pronounced like “Kiefer Sutherland” the actor in 24, love that show) is full of tummy-loving probiotics and protein.

    On its own, kefir is tart (and perhaps a little “gloppy”), and many prefer to drink it in a smoothie.

    I love this handy Mix-And-Match Kefir Smoothie Chart for creating tasty smoothies, chock full of delicious flavor and nutrition.

    (You can read more on probiotics in What Are Probiotics And Where Can I Find Them? and 7 Reasons To Take Probiotics)

  15. Seeds

    Pumpkin, sunflower, hemp, flax and chia seeds give you quick, long-lasting energy and satiety. They can be eaten by themselves or in smoothies, oatmeal or granola. One serving of pumpkin seeds (pepitas) has 7 grams of protein.

  16. Bean And Cheese Mini Quesadilla

    Smash 1/3 cup of black beans and spread it on a small tortilla. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese and 2 tablespoons of salsa. Warm in a skillet or pop it in the microwave for a few seconds just until the cheese melts.

    This is a tasty mini-meal/snack that stays with you.

  17. Milk (2% Or Whole)

    Milk is a great source of high-quality protein, as well as vitamin D, calcium and B12. It is linked to higher bone density in humans (8).

    Do not, I repeat, do not worry about the fat in whole milk. As long as you drink a serving size you’ll be fine. The fat keeps you satisfied longer. More importantly, growing research shows a myriad of health benefits of consuming full-fat food versus low-fat (10).

    According to Dr. Mercola, “Accumulating research is showing, however, that this switch to low-fat has not only caused rates of chronic disease to skyrocket; it’s also been making people fat.”

    Please keep in mind, some people are allergic to the sugar in milk, lactose. If you’re lactose-intolerant you’ll want to stay away from milk and other dairy products. There are dairy-free milks on the market, such a coconut, soy and cashew milk which should be fine for you to drink.

  18. 4-Ingredient Peanut Butter Energy Bites

    Liv over at Healthy-Liv.com posted this easy recipe for these incredibly yummy energy bites.

    I just made them for my family to enjoy. But let me warn you, it’s hard to eat just one!

  19. Frozen Grapes

    The perfect sweet treat!

    The anthocyanins and resveratrol in grapes reduce inflammation and lower your risk for disease (9)

  20. Homemade Guacamole And Tortilla Chips

    My personal favorite. 😉 I can eat an entire bowl of freshly made guacamole all by myself…it’s that’s good! (Not that I’m recommending you do this, just keepin’ it real.)

    Here’s my favorite recipe:

Quick And Easy Guacamole

Quick And Easy Guacamole

Ingredients

  • 3 to 4 medium avocados
  • 1/4 to 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 to 2 firm tomatoes, diced
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • sea salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut the avocados open lengthwise. Remove the pit with a large knife. Scoop out the flesh into a bowl.
  2. Mash the avocado flesh with a fork, to your liking.
  3. Chop and stir the other ingredients.
  4. Enjoy the guacamole right away.
  5. Store in the fridge, tightly covered with plastic wrap to help prevent browning (if you have any leftover)
http://www.lorigeurin.com/top-20-best-healthy-snacks/

The Takeaway

There are so many delicious snacks to choose from. And the best ones are those that help you become the healthiest, strongest version of yourself.

What are your favorite healthy snacks? Please share below in the comments.

Also, you may want to check out this video below for more great healthy snacking ideas.

This post contains affiliate links. You can read our Affiliate Policy here.


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22 Essential Tips To Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

avoid holiday weight gain

Many people experience weight gain during the holidays.

With colder weather, comfy sweaters and family gatherings it’s easy to pack on a few pounds.

Please tell me I’m not alone here.

But you can still enjoy the holidays and avoid holiday weight gain by following these essential tips.

22 Tips To Avoid Holiday Weight Gain

1. Eat a protein-rich snack before you go out.

If you arrive at a holiday party famished you’re likely to overeat. Avoid mindless snacking by choosing a healthy snack, such as the one of the following:

  • Greek yogurt and berries
  • a handful of healthy fat-rich nuts, such as almonds, pecans, cashews, or walnuts
  • an apple with peanut butter, or other nut butter
  • a protein shake, like My Favorite Peanut Butter Protein Shake
  • hard-boiled eggs
  • string cheese
  • jerky
  • hummus and veggies

2. Stay active.

Many families enjoy sitting around and watching parades, Christmas music specials or ballgames during the holidays.

While there’s certainly nothing wrong with these traditions, all this inactivity can lead to weight gain. This is especially true if we’re also eating too much rich food (1)

Rather than lounging around all day, consider:

  • taking a family walk, either outside or inside a mall
  • going ice skating
  • building a snowman with your kids
  • going sledding

These activities will burn calories while giving you the opportunity to bond with loved ones.

3. Pay attention to portion sizes

With all the delicious foods prepared during the holidays, it can be tempting to overeat.

But, people who eat larger portion sizes tend to gain weight more than those who don’t (2).

Makes sense, right?

Read food labels to discern correct portion sizes. Use measuring cups and spoons to measure your food.

4. Get adequate sleep.

Did you know that not getting enough sleep can lead to weight gain and a slowed metabolism (3, 4)?

When we don’t sleep enough we tend to eat more and exercise less. Our hunger hormone levels increase and this raises calorie intake.

5. Don’t hang out by the food at a party.

If you linger by the delicious dishes and desserts, the temptation to indulge is greater.

But if you step away from the food and focus more on talking to people you’ll save calories, and you just might have more fun. 😉

I’m reminded of the phrase, “Out of sight, out of mind”.

The same thought applies to your pantry at home. Throw out the junk food so it’s not there tempting you to eat it.

avoid holiday weight gain
Shake it off! Reduce holiday stress.

6. Keep stress under control.

The holidays are stressful sometimes.

There are people to see, presents to buy and wrap and recipes to make.

But it’s important to keep our stress levels under control.

When we are chronically stressed, our levels of cortisone go up. This can cause us to eat more and gain weight (5).

Focus on activities that reduce stress, such as exercise and deep breathing techniques.

I found an app that helps you focus on reducing stress. It’s called Calm.

7.  Prep a healthy dish to share.

Bringing a healthy dish to holiday gatherings can give you something healthy to eat even if everything else is rich or sugar-laden. This can help you keep your healthy eating goals in check.

It also gives others the opportunity to try a delicious and healthful recipe!

8. Use a smaller plate.

Using large plates often leads us to consume more calories. If not kept in check, this can lead to weight gain (6).

Using a small plate helps you control portion sizes and reduce overeating.

9. Avoid processed food.

This includes most foods packages, boxes or bags of food.

Processed foods are often stripped of nutrients. And most have added unhealthy fats, sugar and preservatives.

10. Keep a food diary.

Write down everything you eat, or use an app to help you.

If you’re like me, I often underestimate how much I eat in a day.  Keeping a food diary helps me stay on track with my goals and be more aware of what I’m putting in my mouth.

My favorite app is MyFitnessPal. You might like to try it.

11. Weigh yourself weekly.

Okay, so there are conflicting viewpoints when it comes to weighing yourself. Some people weigh a few times a week. Some never.

It’s good to keep in mind that weight fluctuations are normal day-to-day.

But, many people find it helps them stay accountable and makes them more aware of their progress if they weigh weekly (7).

12. Watch your beverage and alcohol intake.

Soda, juice, alcohol and other beverages are full of empty calories and sugar. These factors contribute to weight gain (8).

The best thing to drink?

You guessed it….water!

13. Take smaller bites and chew your food thoroughly.

Eliminate distractions, such as electronics, and eat mindfully, savoring each delicious bite (9).

14. Keep a consistent workout routine.

Stick to your regular fitness routine as much as possible. Consistent training produces better results.

And that leads me to tip, #15.

15. Stay positive even if you get off track.

Don’t beat yourself up or stress about it. Simply restart your commitment a healthy life and get back on track.

Simply focus on your health and fitness goals and keep moving forward with your plan.

It might help to use Motivational Quotes And Power Phrases.

16. Drink a glass of water before meals and snacks.

Sometimes we think we’re hungry when our body just needs water. Drinking water fills us up and helps prevent overeating (10).

17. Leave a few bites of food on your plate.

Are you a member of the “clean plate club”?

It’s okay to admit it, I used to think I had to clean my plate too.

Try leaving a few bites of food on your plate. You probably won’t even miss them and the calories you’ve saved add up and can help prevent weight gain.

18. Eat loads of veggies.

Filling up on plenty of fresh vegetables and fruits can help prevent obesity (11). They’re filled with vital nutrients and vitamins as well as healthy fiber.

19. Lift weights.

Building muscle is one of the best ways to increase your metabolism and burn more calories.

A great way to build muscle is by doing a kettlebell workout.

You may want to check out 20 Reasons To Try A Kettlebell Workout to learn more.

20. Fill up on fiber.

Eating more fiber fills you up faster which can prevent you from eating as much and gaining weight (12).

Fiber-rich foods include:

  • fruits
  • vegetables
  • nuts
  • seeds
  • legumes
  • whole grains.

21. Buddy up.

Find a friend who has similar health goals and give each other accountability.

Having someone to work out or swap health recipes can help you stay on track.

22. Avoid sugar and simple carbs.

Eating too much sugar is a common cause of weight gain and obesity (13).

When you come face to face with the desserts this holiday season, focus on selecting only your favorites and leaving the rest.

This will save you from sugar overload and help keep your blood sugar in a manageable range.

The Takeaway

What are ways you try to stay healthy during the holidays?

Please leave your comments below. I’d love to hear from you!

If you enjoyed this, you may want to read:

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