nutrition

5 Reasons to Eat Healthy

At Massage Envy Central Florida, our purpose is to help you live the best life you can. Whether you need help relaxing and revitalizing your body with a massage, or want to take care of your skin with one of our Murad Facials, we are here to join you in the path to better health.

Today, we are going to explore how proper nutrition is going to help you achieve your health goals and feel great. Here are five reasons eating right should be part of your daily life:

It protects your bones 

When you eat healthy food and get the recommended amount of calcium, vitamin D, and folic acid, you will build a strong skeleton. This will also help you prevent osteoporosis and fractures int he long term.

It makes you happier 

Recent studies found have that eating more fruits and vegetables can lead to feeling calmer, happier and more energetic.

It strengthens your immune system

Research has found that if you are getting your recommended daily dose of fruits and vegetables, you will boost your immune system and save at least five sick days.

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Picture by Ania M. Taken from Flickr.

It results in clearer skin 

Scientists explain that you may be able to eat your way to a clearer complexion if you avoid over-eating certain foods such as sugary foods, dairy, and processed grains.

It soothes sore muscles 

What you eat greatly affects how quickly and how well your body will recover after a workout. For example, protein is vital in helping your muscles recover so if your body is not receiving the appropriate amount of protein it needs, it won’t recover well.

More Reasons to Eat Fruit!

backgroundNot only is fruit a yummy snack, it also has numerous health benefits to keep your body healthy!

Cherries are great for calming your nervous system, while grapes help relax your blood vessels. Preaches are filled with potassium, fluoride, and iron which are all essential nutrients your body needs. Apples can help your body fight against infections, and oranges contain lots of vitamin C, which also help keep away sickness. Watermelon can help control your heart rate which helps your body perform better. Bananas are a great energy source and are way healthier than coffee when you need that extra boost. If you suffer from arthritis pineapples contain many nutrients which are known to help fight against it. Strawberries are good for fighting cancer and aging. Along with this, mangoes are known to help prevent several kinds of cancer.

Mix them up in a fruit salad, or try a cool and refreshing smoothie! Either way, be sure to include plenty of fresh fruits in your diet. For more health tips, visit our pinterest http://pinterest.com/massageenvycf.

Top 10 Lean Proteins

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This month is our National Nutritional Month! Start choosing lean proteins over foods high in fat to start down your path to wellness. Here are the Top 10 Lean Proteins to include in your diet.

  1. Quinoa – a heritage grain that has a fluffy texture
  2. Skyr – Icelandic-style yogurt is made from nonfat milk
  3. Egg Whites – the clear, white part of the egg
  4. Nut butters – peanut, almond, cashew, or another nut butter
  5. Oatmeal – breakfast meal that has an interesting texture
  6. Soy – vegan-friendly lean protein alternative
  7. Black beans
  8. White meat chicken
  9. Daily catch – fish
  10. Sunflower seeds

These proteins are sure to help build lean muscle mass and cut higher fat and calorie meats. Paired with a regular workout schedule and massage appointment your health will be in tip top shape. For more information, visit http://www.massageenvy.com.

Tips to Staying Healthy

National Nutrition month is coming to an end, but don’t let your healthy ways stop there. If you participated in National Nutrition month, keep it up! If not, it’s never too late to start. Here are a few tips to help you stay on track or to help you jumpstart your healthy routine.

Drink plenty of water or other calorie-free beverages. Sometimes our brains can confuse hunger for thirst. Next time you feel a craving coming on, drink an ice cold glass of water first to curb your appetite, rather than filling up on unnecessary calories. Also, water is a natural detox helping to flush out toxins and keeping bowel movements regular.

Enjoy your favorite foods, in moderation of course. Often times completely cutting out our favorite guilty pleasures will only cause us to binge on them later, ruining all the healthy eating you’ve been doing.  Instead do not completely deny yourself a chocolate chip cookie or that slice of pizza. As long as you’re doing it in moderation you can still enjoy your favorite snacks.

Eat several mini-meals a day. Studies show that people who eat 4-5 smaller meals throughout the day have more success shedding extra pounds. Grazing throughout your day will help to keep your metabolism humming and will actually help to burn more calories and also curb cravings.

Include fiber in your diet. Fiber has many benefits such as aiding digestion, preventing constipation and lowering cholesterol –and also helping with weight loss. Women should make sure to get 25 grams daily, while men need about 38 grams. Oatmeal, whole grains, beans, fruits and veggies are all rich in fiber.

Get enough sleep. When your body is sleep deprived it overproduces the appetite stimulation hormone ghrelin and under-produces leptin, the hormone that lets our brain know we are full. Getting enough sleep will not only keep you from doing unnecessary snacking, you will feel more well rested making you more inclined to exercise.

Limit alcohol to weekends. Alcohol contains empty calories, which our bodies to not use very well and often get converted directly into fat. A five-ounce glass of wine contains about 125 calories and a bottle of beer has about 153 calories. To help to limit your intake of alcohol, try just allowing yourself to indulge in a glass or two of your favorite alcoholic beverage on weekends only. Red wine even has heart healthy benefits!

March is National Nutrition Month

The month of March is National Nutrition Month! This campaign was designed by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to help jumpstart people into getting healthy. While healthy habits should be practiced all year long, if you haven’t been so dedicated now is the perfect time to start. Bikini season is right around the corner so why not join the movement and get in shape just in time! There are many ways to replace your unhealthy habits with smarter choices for a healthier body.

The theme for National Nutrition Month this year is “Eat Right with Color”. The more colorful your plate, the more nutrients you are getting and also a better balanced meal. Be sure to load up on lots of lean protein, such as chicken or fish. Green leafy veggies are also a great source of vitamins and fiber. Whole grains should be incorporated into your diet as well as yummy fruits such as blueberries, strawberries, bananas and mango. You can splurge every now and then with your favorite treats, but always remember portion control!

 

Shed pounds and stay fit by adding at least 30-40 minutes of exercise into your daily routine, taking a break about once a week. Regular exercise is paramount for your overall health. It improves heart health, decreases risk of disease and improves strength and well-being. Go for a brisk walk or run in the morning before heading into the office or swim laps in the pool. Taking a scenic bike ride or go for a hike. Dancing and yoga are also good sources of exercise and burn lots of calories. As long as you are staying active your body will thank you!

Why not let National Nutrition Month jump-start your diet and fitness routine now? It’s never too late to start and you’ve got nothing to lose– except a few pounds of fat and some bad eating habits of course!

Vibrant Skin from the Inside Out

Like the average American, do you tend to wake up around 6am every morning in order to run around prepping lunch boxes, speeding to work, gulping down coffee, bringing kids to practices, and walking the dog until 11pm rolls around and you plop into bed exhausted?

Life can be stressful and busy, but with the right balance of sleep, exercise, stress management and diet, you can learn a few simple steps that will rejuvenate your skin making you look and feel better!

According to Dr. Murad, your skin is connected to every one of your organs. By making your body healthy, you make your skin healthy. “Topical skincare addresses approximately 20 percent of the skin, the epidermis. The remaining 80 percent, the dermis, responds by feeding the skin from the inside,” says Dr. Murad. “Eating a diet rich in raw fruits, vegetables and healthy fats, such as those found in nuts and olive oil, will promote healthy, hydrated cells.”

At the same time, a regular exercise routine can benefit your waistline as well as your skin– “Exercise builds muscle and attracts water to our cells,” Dr. Murad says.

Also, sleep deprivation may cause skin to appear sallow and dry, so getting your ideal amount of sleep is extremely important. Remember that everybody requires a different amount of sleep (for adults, it’s usually between 7-9 hours).

Lastly, environmental factors play a huge part in the health of your skin. We’ve all been lectured about the importance of sunscreen… Dr. Murad suggests wearing an SPF 15 everyday.

6 Easy Mood Boosters

1. Make a gratitude list.

“The most effective way I know of to shake a bad mood is to brainstorm everything possible that you’re grateful for and write it down,” says Amy Wood, PsyD, author of Life Your Way. She suggests starting with broad strokes, like being thankful the sun is shining or that you’re breathing. “You’ll find that once you get the ball rolling, more and more ideas will come to you. Studies actually show that it’s impossible to feel gratitude and unhappiness simultaneously. That’s why this strategy works so well, and so quickly!”

2. Practice mindfulness.

“If you’re in a slump, you may also be stuck ruminating about the past or worrying about the future. Both of these thoughts are nonproductive,” says Simon Rego, PsyD, director of Psychology Training at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx. Instead, he suggests practicing mindfulness, which involves being present in the moment without judgment. “Try taking five minutes and eating your meal in a mindful way, paying attention to how it looks, smells and tastes with each bite, before swallowing it. Or take a quick mindful walk, considering the sights, smells, sounds and temperature with each step.” By focusing on the present, you’re less likely to dwell on the outside circumstances that are making you unhappy.

3. Practice a random act of kindness.

According to Dr. Rego, doing nice things for other people will make you feel good about yourself. Try holding a door open for someone else, offering a compliment or smiling at a stranger. These acts of kindness lead to positive thinking about yourself, and usually garner a positive response, like “thank you,” which can easily put a smile on your face, he says.

4. Have A Laugh

“Set up a YouTube channel with your favorite comedy sketches and comedians,” suggests Cory Bank, PhD, founder of StompStressAway.com. “Have it saved so that if you’re in a bad mood you can take a three-minute break and infuse some humor into your day.” Belly laughter will make your endorphins kick in within minutes. Plus, he notes, “you’ll feel better when you take a short break from your day-to-day reality.”

5. Eat An Orange

According to celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak, foods packed with vitamin C, like citrus fruits, green peppers and broccoli, are proven to cheer you up. In fact, a study published in a 2010 edition of Nutrition found that vitamin C therapy can help improve the moods of patients who are hospitalized for long-term or critical care. Dr. Sams also stresses the importance of vitamin C (as well as other antioxidants, like vitamins A and E) when it comes to boosting your mood because it helps stabilize free radicals in the body, which are known to accelerate aging and increase the risk of heart disease and cancer. When these highly reactive atoms are neutralized, it prevents them from also damaging brain cells, resulting in better health and improved mood.

6. Just Breathe

Sure, we do this all day long, but breathing in a certain way has the power to relax us as well as lift us out of a slump. Dr. Sams is an advocate of diaphragmatic breathing. “Take a five-count breath in, and a five-count breath out. The goal is to manage your breath, instead of having your breath manage you.” When you breathe into your diaphragm as opposed to just your chest, which many of us do when we’re feeling stressed, you will absorb a lot more oxygen into your system. “Our brains thrive on oxygen—it’s very powerful in boosting your mood.”