Tips for a Healthy Winter

The temperatures are dropping, and the dreaded time of cold and flu season is here. That means it’s time to increase your vitamin intake and catch a few more z’s. Follow these four tips to stay well this season:

  1. Focus on your diet. Start pumping your body full of foods that are rich in vitamin C and E, as they are believed to support a healthy immune system. Incorporating foods like oranges, broccoli, sunflower seeds and green pepper can help strengthen not only your immune system, but your overall health as well.
  2. Catch up on your sleep. Getting less than the recommended 7+ hours of sleep can inhibit your immune system. Catch a few more hours of sleep and you’re sure to start seeing improvements in other parts of your life, such as your mood, productivity and alertness.
  3. Prioritize exercise. Taking time to exercise can stimulate your immune system and positively impact your quality of sleep. By incorporating exercise into your daily life, not only will you be improving your immune system, but you will also experience improved mood and lowered stress levels.
  4. Stay hydrated. Drinking plenty of water benefits every function of the body, which includes keeping your immune system strong to fight off germs. Ginger tea is another great liquid to incorporate into your drink choices, as it is full of anti-inflammatory properties to help ward off and combat colds and the flu.

Exercise Your Mind This November

November is National Alzheimer’s Awareness Month. Here are five ways to keep your mind flexible and engaged!

  1. Get active. Get your heart rate up with some cardiovascular exercises that can increase blood flow to the brain and body.
  2. Open a book. Keep your brain working by learning new things, which is said to decrease chances of dementia. Join a book club, take a class at the local community center, research something of interest online.
  3. Fuel your mind. Eating a healthy, balanced diet can help lower the risks of cognitive decline. Diets that are lower in fat, higher in vegetables and incorporate more fish – which has omega-3 fatty acids that are crucial to brain function – will provide many benefits for your mind and body.
  4. Challenge your mind. Activate your mind with activities like putting together a puzzle or card games that will force your mind to think strategically.
  5. Focus on your mental health. Be aware of the stress in your life and learn how you can best manage it.

Halloween Safety for Pets

While you’re enjoying all the tricks and treats this Halloween, remember it’s not all fun and games for others. Each Halloween, there are dangers our beloved pets might face. Here are 5 tips and tricks I use to keep my pets safe:

Trick or treat candy is delicious, but not for your animals. Halloween is the perfect time to give into your sweet tooth cravings. During all of the celebrating, remember to keep any and all candies and treats up and out of your animal’s reach. All forms of chocolate, especially baking and dark chocolate, can be dangerous and even lethal to dogs.

Keep your pets inside. Sometimes, the “tricks” of Halloween can be targeted towards your animal. On Halloween, keep your animals inside and away from potential pranksters.

Decorative pieces should be kept away from your animals. The ingestion of small amounts of corn and pumpkin is safe for animals, but the ingestion of them when uncooked can lead to severe problems. Keep your house festive but keep it safe for all by keeping potentially harmful decorations away from your pets reach.

Six Foods That Fight Breast Cancer

October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Put on your pink and head to the grocery store to add these six cancer fighting foods to your diet.

  1. Turmeric. Turmeric is a common spice that comes from the turmeric plant, which is grown India, other parts of Asia, and Central America. It contains the chemical curcumin, which has anti-inflammatory properties. You can add a dash of turmeric to rice to make a bright and colorful side dish.
  2. Green tea. Green tea has antioxidants that inhibit the growth of cancer cells. Researchers suggest that one cup of tea may become part of breast cancer treatment plans one day.
  3. Blueberries. Resveratrol, a compound found in blueberries, has properties that slow down breast cancer stem cell growth. Add them to your bowl of oatmeal for a healthy breakfast.
  4. Salmon. Salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids and is considered a low mercury fish.
  5. Spinach. Spinach has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Carotenoids and glycolipids are two compounds found in spinach that inhibit growth in breast cancer cells.
  6. Walnuts. Walnuts have the highest antioxidant activity found in all nuts that are commonly consumed in the United States. Research suggests that walnuts may help reduce tumor growth.

5 Healthy Treats to Give Out This Halloween

Many parents would prefer opting for healthier alternatives for their children this Halloween season. Below is a list of healthy and fun treats to give to those trick-or-treaters on Halloween night that are bound to satisfy their sweet tooth.

  1. Try swapping out gummy worm packets with applesauce packs. Give those trick-or-treaters a quick and on-the-go treat to gulp down while they are on their way to the next house.
  2. Next, swap those Pixy Stix out for cheese sticks. Loaded with 20 percent of your daily recommended calcium intake and loads of cheese to string, this is a healthy go-to option for every trick-or-treater.
  3. Avoid giving out Swedish Fish and instead opt for organic fruit snacks. Swedish Fish are loaded with 23 grams of sugar, which is bound to give your little one cavities.
  4. Say no to candy bars this season and say yes to granola bars. Candy bars can be loaded with lots of sugars and fats that can lead to weight gain. Try choosing granola bars as an alternative.
  5. Skip the candy corn this Halloween season and instead give out pumpkin seeds. Candy corn contains artificial ingredients and sugars. Instead, try giving out pumpkin seeds this year and putting them into little decorative candy bags with other treats.

Five Ways You Can Dodge The Flu This Season

Did you know that one of out 5 Americans suffers from the flu every year? Here are five tips to avoid this nasty virus so you don’t get caught sniffling and sneezing:

  1. First and foremost, get a flu shot. The influenza vaccine is usually provided by your local pharmacy. It is advised to get your shot by the end of October because flu season peaks between November and March.
  2. Increase your vitamin C intake. Vitamin C strengthens your immune system and makes you less vulnerable to the virus. Orange juice, supplements, and leafy greens are all great sources of vitamin C.
  3. Wash your hands. Wash your hands with warm water and soap for 15 seconds every time you leave the bathroom and touch communal surfaces.
  4. Keep your work area germ-free. Store disinfectant wipes in your office. Be sure to wipe down objects that are commonly touched, such as your phone, keyboard, and mouse.
  5. Quit smoking. People who smoke are prone to having serious responses to the flu than those who do not smoke. Quitting smoking is not only a preventive measure for you, but for those who are around you as well.

Keeping Your Dog Healthy

From nutrition to exercise, you’d be surprised to know that dogs require very similar maintenance to humans in order to stay healthy. Looking to get a dog, or just want to make sure your buddy is being taken care? Here are some good tips for ensuring Fido’s health:

  1. Find the proper food. Your pet’s diet is so important. Even if you cannot afford the most expensive dog food on the market, try to check out the ingredients on the bag or do some research online before you buy. Processed foods are not good for anyone, even animals!
  2. Regular check-ups. It’s good to get your dog adjusted to their vet early in life, because they should be spending a good amount of time there! From keeping up-to-date on shots to flea medicine, make sure you’re seeing the pet doctor as often as you should be.
  3. Keep them active. Doing this, in turn, will also keep you active. Soit’s a win-win! Take your pup on walks around the neighborhood, or even throw the ball to them in the backyard if they like to play. This is especially important for high-energy breeds.
  4. Did you know dogs need vitamins and minerals too? Salmon oil does wonders for their fur and skin quality. You can also give them probiotics and antioxidants to help fight off sickness and stomach issues!

Being a responsible pet owner is important, and I hope you can use some of these tips to keep your dog happy and healthy for life!

Health Benefits of Sunglasses

For some people, eye health is not at the top of their priority list. Many possible ways you could damage your eyes are not always apparent! However, wearing sunglasses can provide many benefits you may not realize.

  1. Preventing eye conditions: UV rays are not only dangerous for your skin. UVA/UVB light can cause major issues, or even diseases, with your eyes. From cataracts to macular degeneration, throw on some shades to reduce the risk of any problems.
  2. Physical protection: Sunglasses are actually a great way to protect the outside of your eyes. From the sand at the beach to even dust in the air at home, outside elements can cause severe damage to the surface of your eyes.
  3. Decreasing risk of skin cancer: You read that right. Over 10% of all skin cancer diagnoses occur on the eyelid.

To fully enjoy the benefits of sunglasses, it’s important to purchase the right ones. For one, make sure the frames properly cover your face and eye area. You should also look for lenses that that block out 99-100% UV radiation. Keep your eyes safe this summer!

Must-Have Accessories in Your Closet

Some of the most important, yet overlooked, pieces in a wardrobe are accessories. It always so necessary to accessorize properly to have a well put together look. Not sure which ones to buy? Check out some of my must-have items in my closet:

Statement Necklaces. Probably my favorite on the list—sometimes a fun, chunky necklace is all you need to spruce up a plain outfit. You can pair plain metals with a pattern, or you can get a colorful one to wear with neutrals!

Fashion Belts. A good belt is obviously helpful in many ways, but a good-looking belt can really tie an outfit together. If you’ve got a tucked shirt, get creative and branch out with your belt choices!

Killer Shades. I’m a sucker for a stylish pair of sunglasses. Not only do they keep your eyes healthy and safe, but they also totally make you look put together!

A Good Bag. From leather to suede, finding your perfect purse is such a great feeling. It’s always a good idea to have a variety of sizes and colors in your collection.

Time to go shopping!

Tips for Staying Energized and Focused at Work

Let’s be honest, some days at work are just worse than others. Maybe you didn’t sleep well, or that caffeine headache just won’t go away no matter how many cups of coffee you’ve had. Here are some great tips for staying focused at work:

  1. Eat strategically—Eating a balance of carbohydrates and proteins; leafy greens for vitamin B and vitamin K, which improve focus and brain function
  2. Walk around—Walk to the furthest bathroom in the office, or just take a lap down the hall. Moving around is never bad for you!
  3. Balance your projects—Once you start to feel the burnout on one assignment, save your progress and switch to a new one.
  4. Take a call outside—Even if it’s cloudy, being outside gives you a vitamin D boost and stimulates your brain. It’s always nice to have a change of scenery!
  5. Control your coffee intake—Surprisingly, there are better/worse times to consume caffeine. Drinking smaller doses throughout the day is much more effective than chugging a venti first thing in the morning.