Tag Archives: Health

What Are The Benefits Of Intermittent Fasting?

Hey feel more gooders! This post will touch on various aspects of Intermittent Fasting. Not sure what that is, keep reading! What are the benefits of intermittently fasting?

What is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting (also commonly referred to as time restricted eating) is a method of eating in which you only eat within an 8-hour window. The most common window is eating in between 11am-7pm and fasting from 7pm-11am.

What are the Benefits of Intermittent Fasting?

  • Increased hormone function
  • Decreased inflammation in the body which contributes to chronic health conditions
  • More thorough recovery from rigorous activity (ex: Crossfit, marathon training, etc.)
  • Can reduce insulin levels + blood pressure
  • Helps brain function
  • Benefits neurons on a way that protects memory + learning
  • Reduction in visceral body fat
  • Increase in lean body mass alongside consistent exercise

Source: An Intro to Fasting

Second to thermoregulation (if you were to jump into an ice-cold ocean and your body is fighting to maintain warmth), digestion is the most taxing bodily process that it participates in. And think–we do this on a daily basis, several times a day. It’s no wonder why our energy lags and we feel less than 100%.

How Do You Start Intermittent Fasting?

This can look different for everyone, depending on your chosen window of fasting,  what your schedule is like, etc.

A good entry point to fasting is to wait until 11am to eat your first meal. Making sure you are hydrating upon waking (lots of water) will help your body facilitate detox and feel full.

I like to describe fasting as a spectrum. On one end, you have the most extreme, exact way of IF fasting in which you don’t have any fluids besides water until 11am, and then eat like clockwork starting at 11am and ending precisely at 7pm.

Modification:

On the other end of the intermittent fasting spectrum, you have the approach that I’ve found works well for me: drinking a morning coffee (i add a few tablespoons of Laird Superfood powder), water and some elixirs in the morning.

I’m not doing a by-the-book fast here, but it’s somewhere on the spectrum. It allows me to be giving my digestive tract a break from digesting meals while also allowing me to have a little fuel in me for morning workouts (some days I do 5am Crossfit workouts at our gym).

Is Intermittent Fasting a Fad, or is it Here to Stay?

From my understanding, knowledge accruing and anecdotal lectures from a few professional athletes I follow, fasting is a practice of our ancestors. At that time, it was just how daily life was, as they didn’t have a pantry a few feet away for frequent snacking. They often hunted + foraged for their meals and they only ate after they sought out and located that food.

So, they were forced by the limited availability of food to eat this way. Turns out, there are a a lot of positive health implications to giving your digestion a break during a chunk of the day.

I can see how and why this would be viewed as a fad, but I see it as an ancient practice that is surfacing again, as we look back to our ancestors for some insight on wellness.

Is There Anybody That Should Not Fast?

Totally! Remember that the way you eat is your decision; and it’s one that should be made based on what feels best to you. If you adhere to the parameters of your MD, naturopath or functional medicine practitioner, you should discuss this with them, consider their feedback and make the best decision for your unique genetics, goals,

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Rebl Jane Stress Fighter Supplement Review

With an active (sometimes nonstop-feeling) lifestyle of CrossFit, drinking heaps of coffee, outdoorsing with our black lab Kona, my energy levels get expended and my adrenal health I’m sure suffers at times.

Also, life has been extra full lately. All the good stuff, but nonetheless, demanding a lot from me. We recently became homeowners for the first time, got engaged, are planning a budget-friendly wedding, started a new full-time position for a start up coffee shop here in Kansas City, all in addition to trying to keep myself healthy, fit and our dog active and happy.

It’s a lot. I don’t always get enough sleep and I often am poor at managing my stress + keeping my mind clear.

I know that I can’t expect my body to be go-go-go all the time without repercussions. Eventually, I will bonk.

Howeverrrrrr, it’s so dang cool that there is an herbal product like this one that can help support my body so that I can keep up this pace and not bonk.

I’ve been a big fan and advocate for herbal healing and using herbs to supplement and elevate a healthy lifestyle for many years now. I prefer that approach over taking anything artificial, hands-down. Exploring natural methods is always my first route.

I’m so glad to have been introduced to this product, Stress Fighter, and company Rebl Jane because sometimes this populated world of supplements is challenging to navigate. It’s tough to find products that truly apply to your own goals and body. Also, not all supplements are created equally, most are full of artificial crap, and there is a sea of them; many of which using marketing tactics to convince you that there product is good.

Just like with any other supplement that contains real + natural + pure ingredients, the fact is not a drastic reaction where you feel it immediately. Natural herbal healing is slow, true and effective. The upside is that it is safe, free of adverse side effects and achieves actual healing verses being a band-aid on your health issues. Rebalancing your hormones and body’s stress response takes some time if you want to achieve balance and feeling truly good.

I’ve been taking this product as directed and I am about a month in. Going along with the aforementioned life happs for us, my plate is probably as full as it’s ever been. It has been a perfect time to test out a supplement that helps me deal with stress.

Stress Fighter contains natural plants (herbs) that are adaptogenic in nature. If you aren’t yet familiar with adaptogenic foods, GET FAMILIAR! Adaptogenic foods and those that help your body adapt to stress and maintain a healthy state of balance/homeostasis.

Why should you care? Well, because a body that is less burdened by stress is healthier. Your hormones levels with self-regulate more efficiently, your sleep will be more fulfilling, unicorns will run through your house while doing your laundry. Okay, maybe not that last part, but you get the point. Lowering stress makes EVERYTHING better for you. Your health will skyrocket if you master your stress-fighting toolbox.

So, what most people probably want to know about a product they’re interested in is…..”does it work?” or “do you notice a difference?” or “would you buy more when you run out?”

My answers to those:

-Yes. Also, it’s one piece of a puzzle that also includes movement, a healthy mind and good nutrition (focusing on anti-inflammatory foods)

-Absolutely. It feels like a secret (health) weapon.

-Yes, I would.

Just like any other supplement, I believe that the key is to take it in addition to drinking plenty of water, listening to your body and adding it into an already-mindful way of eating and fueling your body. I don’t treat my body like crap and then expect one supplement to solve all of my problems. I truly treat it like a supplement that can add to and elevate my already healthy lifestyle. Doing it that way, I can tell it works well. It gives me an added edge. I can keep up my fast pace, but still feel vital, capable and healthful.

Schwartz Bioresearch Review

This is a review of Schwartz Bioresearch Probiotic, Phytoceramides and L-Carnitine Tartrate.

Schwartz Bioresearch

Overall Rating: 3-stars

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Phytoceramides

About:

“Each one of our premium formulas is created by a team of highly experienced professionals to ensure the greatest benefits are achieved.

Key Health & Beauty Benefits

Our superior Phytoceramides with Biotin act by replacing the skin’s lost Ceramides. They add essential elements into the skin to combat the natural effects of time which, if untreated, eventually results in aged skin. Phytoceramides may also stimulate the body to synthesize collagen – its primary function is to plump up the skin and maintain its natural elasticity for supple, radiant and youthful skin.

Natural and Allergen Free

Using only the latest technologies we are able to develop products free of GMOs, allergens, and other harmful additives.”

Probiotic (40 Billion CFU)

About:

“Schwartz Bioresearch Probiotic 40 Billion CFU’s is a powerful blend of 4 scientifically studied Bifidobacterium and Lactobacillus strains and 40 billion colony forming units (CFU’s).

High Quality Strains to Guarantee Potency until Expiration

We guarantee high-quality, shelf stable probiotic strains which maintain at least 10 billions CFU until expiration date and survive harsh stomach acids to reach the intestinal tract where they exert their greatest benefits. Most probiotics have weak strains that don’t survive the shipping and storing processes, let alone stomach acids and bile. Some manufactures are even offering probiotics with a coating full of chemicals so the weak strains won’t die in the stomach. We are some of the very few who can guarantee potency until expiration date, the strength of our probiotic lies in the high quality strains we work with, not in artificial coatings.

Made Only with Natural Ingredients

Schwartz Bioresearch Probiotics are Vegetarian and Gluten-Free. Our supplement is FREE of lactose, soy, wheat, nuts, iron, sugar, chemicals and artificial colors.

Each Lot is Extensively Tested 

The potency, purity and content of each batch of probiotics are extensively analyzed by professionals before its release. The ingredients in our products are 100% natural, and we use no binders or fillers of any sort.

Long Shelf Life & No Refrigeration Necessary

Our high-quality probiotic supplement is shelf stable and doesn’t need refrigeration; and it has a guaranteed shelf life of 18 months from the date of manufacture.”

L-Carnitine Tartrate

About:

“Doctor Formulated L-Carnitine Tartrate for Heart and Muscle Health

Schwartz Bioresearch L-Carnitine Tartrate 1000mg is superior from all others. Carnitine burns fat, promotes cardiovascular health, speeds up muscle recovery and boosts physical performance. Our supplement is designed to deliver definite results.

Excellent Results

The use of our L-Carnitine Tartrate will cut down the recovery time between high intensity exercises, boost cellular energy and burn fat, constituting an infallible fat burning combo. High levels of muscle L-Carnitine decrease lactic acid production, aiding in fast muscle recovery.”

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My Experience:

I just completely geek out over the entire process of putting good things into my body. Along with that comes a lot of troubleshooting in terms of helping my body become balanced (hormones, sleep patterns, etc.).

Schwartz Bioresearch is a brand I had yet to hear about, but I am intrigued by what they are doing. Here are my general thoughts about supplementing with specific vitamins + minerals + compounds to achieve a desired goal:

  1. There is a space for it.
  2. Nothing makes up for a nutrient dense diet packed with a lot of organic, raw foods.
  3. Long term balance will be achieved through habitual dietary changes, but can be expedited in the short term with supplements that target specific deficits.

Basically, I view the Phytoceramides and L-Carnitine Tartrate products (naturally occurring substances and amino acids in the body) as a way to specifically target the resiliency of my integumentary system (hair + skin + nails) and aid my exercise recovery + optimize cellular metabolism. Short version, I’d look to improve my skin + hair + maximize power output + burn more body fat + perform better by taking these.

I don’t think that taking a supplement like this is something I could get behind all the time, but I think the timing of this post is appropriate.

Let’s be really real. Most of overdid it a bit over the holidays. Even if we made a few paleo desserts + meals and kept it mostly clean, it likely varied from the everyday grind that normally keeps us functioning at a high level. Because of that time we enjoyed, it’s going to take a bit more momentum + more gusto to get that train rolling just as fast.

A time like this is when I’d integrate these supplements. L-Carnitine Tartrate to ramp up my workouts and recover faster, the Probiotic to help my gut proliferate good bacteria and Phytoceramides to strengthen my drier-than-usual winter hair and keep my skin vibrant.

I wish the probiotic contained a few more strands in it, making it more of a complete probiotic supplement. Overall, I felt pretty happy with how these products performed, as they’ve helped catapult me into the New Year. My skin and hair both feel noticeably healthy and I’m feeling closer to being my normal self after struggling with an upper back injury for several months now. I know these supplements played a role in that.

A finishing note about the product quality–I’m itching to learn more about the sourcing and development of these products, I’m not completely sure how they are in regards to being non-GMO + organic. It appears that Schwartz Bioresearch is committed to creating products that are “vegetarian and free of gluten, lactose, soy, wheat, nuts, iron, sugar, chemicals and artificial colors.” (at least their probiotic is listed that way), which is encouraging.

I have noticed that delineating and comprehending the quality of a supplement starts to get trickier the further away from whole food based it becomes. The more isolated it becomes, the tougher it is to be sure of the origin. Make sense?

I enjoyed giving these products a try. Feel free to check out the Schwartz Bioresearch website and see if they are a good fit for you.

 

Seaweed Bath Company Review

This is a review of the Seaweed Bath Company’s body cream, shampoo and conditioner.

Seaweed Bath Company

Overall Rating: 3-stars

About Seaweed Bath Company:

“The Seaweed Bath Co., LLC is dedicated to fighting dry, flaking and scaling skin naturally with our combination of specific species of seaweed with high-quality, all-natural ingredients that help manage severely irritated skin. Since launching in October 2010, The Seaweed Bath Co. has brought happiness to thousands of loyal customers.

The Seaweed Bath Co. is the vision of Adam Grossman, a long-time psoriasis sufferer, who created his seaweed-based cosmetic products to take control of his own irritated skin without the use of prescribed medications or harsh chemicals. Seeking to improve the lives of other sufferers, Adam founded The Seaweed Bath Co. to share his remarkable all-natural seaweed bath products with the world.

In the continuing development of The Seaweed Bath Co.’s innovative product line, we spend countless hours listening to the needs and concerns of our valued customers who are in search of natural ways to treat and soothe their irritated, scaling, flaking and red skin.

The Seaweed Bath Co. sustainably hand-harvests wild bladderwrack seaweed off the coasts of Maine and Nova Scotia. We combine our bladderwrack with the highest quality natural ingredients from around the world. These ingredients are both known to be moisturizing and pH-balancing. In fact, many of the ingredients used in our seaweed-based products have been used for centuries by Asian, African and European cultures to improve the skin’s health and well-being.

Our mission at The Seaweed Bath Co. is to improve the quality of life for severely irritated skin sufferers by offering a constantly-expanding line of high-quality, affordable, all-natural cosmetic products that have soothing, pH-balancing and moisturizing properties.  Additionally, The Seaweed Bath Co. provides opportunities for psoriasis and eczema sufferers to discuss and share information about skin conditions, all-natural products and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. We invite you, your family and your friends to join our psoriasis and eczema blog as we lead conversations on a variety of topics, including natural alternatives for the management of psoriasis and eczema.”

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Balancing Argan Shampoo

About:

“Our combination of bladderwrack seaweed with soothing argan oil and essential nutrients naturally cleanses and clarifies your hair and scalp while maintaining healthy moisture and shine. Vegan. Made in the USA. Never tested on animals.

Ingredients:

Eucalyptus & Peppermint Scent: Aqua (water) with Fucus Vesiculosus (bladderwrack seaweed) Extract, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe), Sodium Laurylglucosides Hydroxypropylsulfonate (corn & vegetable derived), Decyl Glucoside, Sodium Cocoyl Glutamate, Vegetable Glycerin, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Oil, Hydroxyethylcellulose (plant derived), Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Babasuamidopropyl Betaine, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Citric Acid, Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E), Polyglyceryl-10 Laurate, Eucalyptus Globulus (Eucalyptus) Essential Oil, Sodium Benzoate (natural version), Potassium Sorbate, Dimethicone, Gluconic Acid (plant derived), Mentha piperita (Peppermint) Essential Oil.”

Balancing Argan Conditioner

About:

“Our combination of bladderwrack seaweed with soothing argan oil and essential nutrients naturally cleanses and clarifies your hair and scalp while maintaining healthy moisture and shine. Vegan. Made in the USA. Never tested on animals.

Ingredients:

Eucalyptus & Peppermint Scent: Aqua (Water) with Fucus Vesiculosus (Bladderwrack Seaweed) Extract, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice, Cetearyl Alcohol, Glyceryl Stearate, Stearylkonium Chloride, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Oil, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Cocos Nucifera (Coconut) Oil, Persea Gratissima (Avocado) Oil, Panthenol (Pro-Vitamin B5), Hydrolyzed Barley Protein (gluten-free), Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Olea Europaea (Olive) Oil, Vegetable Glycerin, Citric Acid, Gluconic Acid (plant derived), Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E), Sodium Benzoate (natural version), Potassium Sorbate, Eucalyptus Globulus (Eucalyptus) Essential Oil, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Essential Oil.”

Eucalyptus & Peppermint Body Cream

About:

“Our Wildly Natural Seaweed Body Cream combines the nourishing properties of seaweed with a variety of natural ingredients, including Shea Butter, Kukui Oil and Argan Oil, to soften and moisturize dry skin.

Ingredients:

Eucalyptus & Peppermint Scent: Aqua (Water) with Fucus Vesiculosus (Bladderwrack Seaweed) Extract, Caprylic/Capric Triglyceride, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, Vegetable Glycerin, Stearic Acid, Butyrospermum Parkii (Unrefined Shea) Butter, Argania Spinosa (Argan) Oil, Aleurites Moluccana (Kukui) Oil, MSM (Methyl Sulfonyl Methane),  Stearyl Alcohol, Hyaluronic Acid, Glyceryl Stearate, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Seed Butter, Polysorbate-80, Tocopherol (Natural Vitamin E), Phenethyl Alcohol,  Eucalyptus Globulus (Eucalyptus) Essential Oil, Panthenol, Xanthan Gum, Allantoin, Aloe Barbadensis (Aloe) Leaf Juice, Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Essential Oil.”

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My Thoughts:

I’ve been able to review and experience the Seaweed Bath Company before, and it’s neat for my journey through the world of natural products to circle back around to this brand again. They’re a company that is pretty conscientious about their ingredients (above average) and their products perform very well.

In my dreams, my very own product line would be chock full of peppermint–in every single product. So needless to say, I love the refreshing effect of this shampoo + conditioner combo. The shampoo is perfectly clarifying while still leaving a nice shine throughout my hair. Performance-wise, the conditioner is pretty darn perfect. It’s creamy and rich & a little goes a long way, even in my tangly, often sweaty hair.

This body cream consists of the same eucalyptus + peppermint scents that the hair products do, and I just love it. It wakes up your senses to rub this cream all over your body. It absorbs into the skin well, provides a good amount of moisture and leaves skin smelling clean and minty.

If I could improve anything with these products, I would clean up the ingredient list just a bit. The ingredients are pretty good, but they are not all organic and some of them are clearly added for texture, consistency & shelf stability. My experience with hair products is that it is VERY hard to find the perfect marriage of performance and top-notch ingredients. The Seaweed Bath company does a good job of creating some above average products whose ingredients are plant derived and cleaner than most hair products you’ll find.

This brand is very accessible; I’ve seen them at Sprout’s Farmers Market, Whole Foods, Natural Grocers and other smaller health food retailers. You can also find them online on numerous healthy product meccas like Iherb.com, Vitacost.com and even Amazon.com.

Use my iHerb code SDG314 to get a discount on your order!

 

 

Garden of Life Dr. Formulated Probiotics Review

This is a review of Garden of Life’s Dr. Formulated Probiotics.

Garden of Life Dr. Formulated Probiotics

If you’ve followed my blog for a while, you’ve likely noticed that I sing the praises of this brand as much as I breathe. Okay, okay……not that much. But, I am a believer in what this brand does. I use their products daily and have been a lucky beneficiary of the health benefits they provide.

I was lucky enough to tour & hang out in their headquarters earlier this year in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida and was blown away by the people, the passionate minds behind these products, and their commitment to quality.

Garden of Life teamed up with renowned Dr. David Perlmutter to create this line of products health that hone in on the mothership of all absorption: your digestive system. These probiotic supplements are unparalleled in the world of probies. They even ship them cold so that they retain their longevity.

Blah, blah, blah, right? Maybe some of you just want to hear the answer to: “Why do I need to take these and what are they going to do for my body?”

The short answer:

Probiotics will help you become healthier, get leaner, have clearer skin, sustain more energy and absorb more of the good food you’re eating. Better absorption means more health. I’ve lived it.

The longer answer: (I’ll offer this up because it left a lasting impression on me (something I learned from one of many lectures at the Garden of Life headquarters):

“Probiotics” is not JUST a buzz word. Your body NEEDS them to function optimally.

-The standard American diet, pharmaceutical drugs, etc. have diminished our bodies’ good bacteria population in the gut. The effect on human health is profound.

-Supplementing the diet with probiotics is key is returning this good bacteria population back to a point where the digestive system can assimilate, absorb and process nutrients as it’s supposed to.

-“At Garden of Life, we are greens, we are probiotics. It’s who are are.” -Sherri Gunn, Garden of Life.

-“So much more can be done with health & prevention.” -Dawn Jarvis, Garden of Life.

-There are trillions of microbial organisms in your body. You help the good microbes thrive by eating a rich, whole food based diet that limits processed foods.

-A natural, whole food diet without pesticides, GMOs helps heal the gut.

-Good bacteria in the gut helps protect against the bad bacteria. So, we need the good bacteria.

-Digestive health is responsible for absorption of all of the food we eat, which contributes to our overall vitality. That’s why gut health is such a focus.

If you made it this far reading this post, I am here giving you a virtual hug. Thank you. I know it’s a lot.

But, I say all of this to say: probiotics can REALLY help you in myriad of ways. I am a huge proponent of them. I use them and I feel a difference when I do.

Thanks for supporting ROO! Here’s to our health–cheers!