October 2011

Top 10 Super Foods For Your Skin

chocolate, dark chocolate

The thought of aging skin strikes fear in the hearts of many women; young and old, everyone is looking for the fountain of youth. The number of people turning to plastic surgery, fillers and injections is rising by the day; but healthy skin can be achieved through what I like to call a great skin diet. Increasingly studies are finding links to between nutrients found in food and wrinkle reductions and acne prevention; and having struggled with bad skin for years, and turned it around with nutrition, I can say with certainty that the foods we eat affect our skin tremendously.

The clear skin secret isn’t found in expensive creams, they are found in nature’s bounty; here are the top complexion cures that are found in the most unlikely place- your neighborhood supermarket.


Cocoa is a natural skin hydrator; making it firmer and more supple. Dark chocolate contains a high level of flavanoids, a very potent type of antioxidants. To maximize your flavanoid intake, make sure your chocolate is 70% cocoa. Chocolate can be applied topically to reduce inflammation; an affect likely cause by the caffeine content in chocolate.


Yogurt is an excellent source of protein; and the protein you get from eating dairy helps skin become firmer, therefore it is more resistant to lines and wrinkles. Greek yogurt is especially beneficial; as its protein content is double the amount of regular yogurt. A single serving a day will help you achieve a smoother complexion.


Poms are packed with polyphenol antioxidants, which serve to fight free radicals and regulate blood flow to the skin. One pomegranate or 2 glasses of pure juice daily is more than enough to see result.


Walnuts, like most nuts, contain omega-3 fatty acids which can improve skin elasticity. But they stand out from the rest because they are also loaded with copper, which helps t boost collagen production. Topically, ground walnuts can act an effective exfoliant.


Women who consume colorful vegetables tend to report fewer wrinkles, especially around the eyes. The carotenoids, found in yellow and orange foods, have been shown to decrease the skins sensitivity to the sun.

Sunflower seeds

This little seeds boasts a ton of Vitamin E, which keeps skin supple by protecting the top layer from the sun. A handful daily is all that is needed to see results.


Eating edamame may help your complexion in a big way. Soy contains minerals and protein that have been shown to reduce hyper-pigmentation. Soy milk is also a great option; however, there is much debate over the consumption of processed soy products. If this is of concern to you, just opt for edamame beans only.

Kidney Beans

Studies show the correlation between blemished skin and low zinc levels; and kidney beans are very high in the mineral. Topical zinc treatments are shown to be as effective against acne as antibiotics.


Steel cut oats are less processed than other varieties, so therefore it vitamin level is much higher. And it takes the body longer to break it down, which helps to stabilize blood sugar. Spiked blood sugar is linked to elevated levels of androgens, which are a hormone that contributes to wrinkles.

Green tea

It wouldn’t be a clear skin foods list without the mention of green tea. Green tea is very high in the antioxidant EECG, which can dramatically reduce redness. Green tea is also renowned for its anti inflammatory properties. One cup a day should help with redness and inflammation.

Eating for clear skin will not only benefit your skin, but your entire body.


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Grab Another Cuppa.

coffee cup, tea cup, green tea

For years coffee has had a bad reputation, always playing second fiddle to the anti oxidant richness of tea; but recently the merits of coffee have been gaining notoriety.

Since my days as a Starbucks barista, I have been 100% a coffee girl; yes, I drink tea and I enjoy it, but as far as my morning caffeine delivery, a dark and lovely brew is the only thing that will suffice. Because of the always timely 3 pm caffeine withdrawl headache, I’ve always thought that I was doing something bad to my body by consuming it in, what I perceive as moderate amounts- 2 or 3 cups a day.

Well our day has come coffee lovers, and its here to stay!

A new study says that drinking coffee may lower women’s risk of depression. Women in the study who drank two to three cups of caffeinated coffee a day were 15 percent less likely to develop depression over a 10-year period compared to those who drank one cup of coffee or less per week. I’m not surprised;  if I haven’t had my cuppa by 1:30 in the afternoon I begin to feel sad. But in all seriousness, the new study is just the latest to suggest coffee consumption has a great many health benefits. Earlier work has found an association between drinking coffee and a reduced risk of breast cancer, prostate cancer and stroke.

Women who drink five or more cups of coffee a day are 57 percent less likely to develop estrogen receptor-negative breast cancer than women who drink less than a cup a day, according to a study published this month in the journal Breast Cancer Research.

And the benefit that hit home the most for me was that coffee can also improve brain function in mice, according to a 2010 study in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease. In that study, researchers gave caffeinated coffee to mice that were engineered to develop Alzheimer’s disease. The mice that were given coffee either had the disease progression slow, or the disease never developed at all. The finding suggests coffee could be a treatment for people with Alzheimer’s disease. Having lost my grandmother to this devastating disease, I vowed to do whatever possible to reduce my risk; and who knew my daily coffee was helping me on quest!

As with most things, moderation is key; 1 to 3 cups of coffee a day is enough to reap the benefits without experiencing jitters and all around caffeine induced scattered-ness.

So now we can drink, coffee, to our health!



The Lady Comp Natural Birth Control Device

*This article is written under the assumption that you are practicing safe sex. Being proactive about birth control is secondary to being proactive about disease prevention.

birth control pill, sexual health

Sex, we all love it; it’s great for our bodies and minds. But for those of us who aren’t ready for the pitter patter of little feet, sex comes with the responsibility of protecting against unplanned pregnancy.

For years I was on the pill and things were great; I was never subject to any side effects. There were no changes to my weight, my skin was great and my moods weren’t affected. But after a breakup, I went off the pill; then things rapidly hit the skids. I spotted for almost two months straight, my moods were likened to those of Cruella DeVille and my skin broke out- despite my best efforts to eat healthy and exercise. Alarmingly, my experience isn’t in the minority; and nor is it among the most severe. It’s funny how women have just accepted the fact that we HAVE to be on the pill; and with that we accept the side effects of coming off of it.

But what happens when the pill can actually hurt you?

The pill Yasmin and its sister pill Yaz have been in the news for some time now; as fears over the staggeringly high percentage of blot cots occurring in women who take these two pills have been surfacing; with girls as young sixteen experiencing life threatening clots caused by this brand of birth control. And although my experience wasn’t quite as harrowing, it would seem that we females aren’t left with much choice.

Until now.

natural birth control devices

Something new on the market that has really caught my eye is called the Lady Comp. This all natural birth control device employs not one hormone! Based on your morning temperature, taken orally, the fertility computer determines your fertile days and shows when you are ovulating by recording, analyzing and storing your menstrual cycle data. It monitors your daily status of fertility and will alert you on the days when intercourse may lead to pregnancy: on the day you ovulate – and the five days before ovulation. And, I know what you’re thinking, does it work? I mean the margin for error is what I would call VERY narrow; but the answer is YES, a loud and resounding yes; the Lady Comp is 99.3% effective- that’s right up there with the pill and condoms.

But you mama wannabes aren’t left out; the Lady Comp doubles as a fertility monitor. So when the time comes, the Lady-Comp can then be upgraded to a fertility monitor with the Lady-Comp Baby planning software.

When I first heard about the Lady Comp, it gave me butterflies. I consider everything that goes into my body, from the food I eat to the supplements I take- even when I’ve had one too many cocktails, I’ve considered the hangover that will follow. But there has always been something about birth control that gives me reservations; especially after the experience I had coming off of it. So to find a product that makes natural family planning the real deal, as opposed to archaic and ineffective, is something that I think we should all be very excited about.

The Lady Comp was given a 0.7 in what is called the Pearl Index. The Pearl Index is the most common technique used in clinical trials for reporting the effectiveness of a birth control method; a Pearl Index of 0.7 means that this 100-percent natural method is 99.3 percent safe and effective.

Regardless of how you feel about natural birth control, and regardless of whether you are on the pill, the patch or the ring, this is worth taking a look at. Whenever possible we should endeavor to minimize the amount of drugs entering into our bodies. This benefits us in so many ways; improved skin, stabilized weight and mood control that comes from leaving our bodies to be. The Lady Comp is an amazing tool that empowers women to take our reproductive health seriously, the way nature intended.


Superfoods and Your Skin

superfoods for skin

First things first – skin health starts from within. Your body is like a finely tuned car – if you put good fuel in, you get good performance out. If you eat fries and greasy junk food all the time, your body simply cannot obtain the vitamins, minerals and proteins it needs to operate well. Instead, not only will you feel sluggish and tired but long term your health is going to suffer. This poor diet is also reflected in your skin. Your skin is like a mirror on your body’s health. Not getting sufficient nutrients means that your skin’s cell renewal is slowed down. This can leave your skin looking any combination of dull, dry, flaky, patchy, greasy, and spotty. In addition, not drinking enough water will leave your cells dehydrated which in turn leaves your skin looking parched and without its youthful plumpness.

One of the very best things you can do for your skin is to eat super foods. Super food nutrition and super food skincare go hand in hand. Super foods, such as blueberries, soy beans and green tea, are invaluable at fighting off free radicals that damage your skin, and they also provide your body with essential nutrients and anti-oxidants which keep your skin looking fresh and healthy. Browse through the pages on our site to find recommended super foods for the skin and super food recipes to keep your skin in tip top shape.

Simply speaking, the better your diet, the better your skin will look and the better you will feel. Through eating the right foods for healthy skin, you will also be eating the right foods for good health. With your improved diet, you will have more energy to put into your exercise routine and, in turn, your workouts will be more effective. It’s an upwards spiral towards peak body and skin health!



Oven Roasted Immunity


As the weather cools off, it is a reminder that cozy fall recipes are in vogue. I used to be one of those people that mourned the loss of summer. But now as the end of hot weather and skimpy clothing makes way for sweaters and ciders, I am reminded that fighting colds and flu’s becomes extra important as we weave between fall and winter.  When the temperature drops we need to work harder to protect our immunity; and there are so many key nutrients in the bounty of fall and winter produce; especially in beets.

I love beets; and it would seem that I am not alone in this subscription. This little crimson jewel boasts a whopping 18 vitamins and minerals. In ½ cup boiled, sliced beets, you get 3.1 mg of vitamin C — to promote immunity and tissue repair. Beets also provide 68 mcg of folate per 1/2 cup; folate is essential in promoting red blood cell function and becomes even more important during pregnancy, as it helps prevent certain types of birth defects. Beets offer 259 mg of potassium; and potassium helps regulate your mineral and fluid balance, leading to healthy energy levels, muscle function and blood pressure; and it helps to eliminate those pesky leg cramps. And if they were already chocked full of goodness, beets are also an excellent source of magnesium, providing 19.6 mg of this bone-building mineral.

So in addition to being incredibly versatile in the kitchen, beets are  also amazing for our bodies.

Roasting beets with fennel is nothing short of perfection. You see, as fennel cooks it becomes sweet- a savory type of sweetness that compares to nothing. Cooking them down creates a complex and rich sweetness that pairs so well with the earthiness of beets! And this recipe is beyond easy, most of the cooking time centers around the amount of oven time it requires. I found myself with butterflies in my stomach waiting for my beets and fennel to finish roasting; what can I say, the chef in me is easy to please! This healthy recipe is a friend to you during this cold and flu season; and it’s easy too!