Adopt these 10 Healthy Habits to Lose Weight easily and feel confident all summer long.
We are so thrilled summer is approaching: lounging poolside with a pina colada in hand, diving under the salty waves at the beach. But, wait a second. There is one part of this image we are not so stoked on: bikini time. This season of swimsuits, shorts, and dresses is not one we want to spend stressing about covering up.
We are positive you look beautiful just the way you are, but we do believe in the value of feeling healthy and confident. Our philosophy on weight loss is that it should be done naturally, in a way that keeps you satisfied and full, not starved. You can think of these more as healthy lifestyle changes that we should all strive for to attain our most balanced, strongest selves. With our top 10 healthy habits to help you lose weight easily without depriving yourself. In fact, we actually recommend you eat (dark, organic) chocolate!
Lose Weight with these 10 Healthy Habits:
1. Sleep Soundly
Obtaining the full recommended number of hours of sleep each night (between 7-9 hours) is paramount to successful weight loss.
When you are overly tired, your body becomes lethargic which sends a signal to your brain that this exhaustion is actually due to lack of food.
Your brain thinks, “Uh oh, better send some hunger pangs to the stomach as a warning.” Hence, you crave more food, and often overeat, to provide you with energy.
2. Please Don’t Skip Meals
While you may think this is an effective way to cut back on your calorie intake, it actually backlashes every time. Calories are not a source of evil. If calories come from wholesome, real foods, you will be adequately nourished and have less cravings. Here’s the ugly downward spiral when you skip a meal:
You are essentially starving your body and causing your hunger to increase until it becomes an insurmountable force.
This often leads to eating double or triple the amount of food at your next meal.
3. Your Mother was Right: Breakfast is the Most Important Meal
Eating breakfast is necessary to balance your blood sugar and boost your energy.
When you sleep, your metabolism slows and does not increase until after you have eaten your first meal of the day.
To jumpstart your metabolism in the morning, eat at least 200 calories within two hours of waking.Try one of our Paleo Pancake Recipes to kickstart your day the healthy way!
4. Listen to those Cravings
Yes, self control and discipline is important when implementing a healthy diet. If you are craving several pieces of cake, it’s probably wise not to go there. (Unless you’ve just had a miserable week and need to let loose… in that case, heck, have at it!). What’s really important on a day-to-day basis, is that you do not deprive yourself so much that you regularly binge. Here’s how it works:
If you are really craving a chocolate bar, you should enjoy one chocolate bar. Dark, organic chocolate can actually lower stress and be a healthy source of magnesium.
Substituting carrot sticks or a granola bar won’t satisfy the craving and may result in you overeating by adding a chocolate bar anyway.
5. Make Healthy Swaps
There’s no need to dump out your entire pantry and fridge to start a healthy diet. Simple swaps can make an enormous difference.
Skip the butter in mashed potatoes and add flavorful vegetables and spices instead.
Switch your cow’s milk with almond or coconut milk.
Lose the fried foods and choose to bake or broil.
6. Keep it Interesting by Trying a New Healthy Food Each Week
Have you ever reached a diet plateau? Healthy eating does not have to be bland or boring. It’s crucial to be creative with your meals and have fun with them.
Don’t worry about the cost of organic, nutritious foods. Even Walmart and Target offer local and organic produce at affordable prices.
7. Exercise (Even Just a Little!) Ever Day
To lose weight, lower stress levels, and supercharge your brain, it is critical to exercise daily. With such busy schedules, we may feel it’s difficult to dedicate daily hours at the gym. Good news! We can have similar effects just by adding 20 or 30 minutes a day. Quick healthy habits to adopt:
Instead of driving to the store or work, ride your bike.
Recruit a family member or friend to take nightly strolls with you after dinner. Jump rope or do a series of yoga stretches at home. Anything to get yourself moving.
If you’re looking to drop more weight quickly, you will benefit from exercising vigorously for 60 minutes three to four times a week:
To ensure you stick to it, schedule specific times to exercise (in the early morning before work, at your lunch break, or on your way home from the office).
If you’d like to save time and money by working out at home, consider yoga videos, exercise equipment, and ankle weights from Amazon.
8. Keep a Food and Exercise Journal
Writing down your food choices and exercise progress keeps you on track and inspires you with evidence of how far you’ve come. It is easy to eat mindlessly, but physically writing it down brings awareness to the act.
At the end of the day, read over everything you ate that day. This self-reflection is eye-opening. You become your own personal nutritionist and coach.
Writing down how much you are exercising is equally important. You will begin finding more creative ways to add it into your schedule.
If you’d like a professional dieting journal, they are available at Amazon.
9. Watch Out for Sneaky Artificial Ingredients
Your body does not know how to process and break down artificial ingredients, so you end up storing them in your body as excess weight.
Always choose natural foods, including whole grains, fruits and vegetables and read labels.
Artificial ingredients and highly processed foods are empty calories that lack the fuel your body needs to function optimally.
10. Supplement with Vitamins and Minerals
Nourishing your body with proper vitamins and minerals is essential for safe, healthy weight loss.
Take a daily multivitamin.
B vitamins, especially B-12, can increase metabolism.
Vitamin D helps your body absorb calcium (needed to support your bones during all that exercise!).
Vitamin C boosts your immune system, decreases muscle recovery time, and helps your body recover from stress.
Try Drugstore.com or VitaCost to cut down on your costs.
See You at the Beach!
Adopting these simple healthy habits for life makes losing weight stress-free, so you can spend more time worrying about which of the many pool parties to attend and less about your bikini bod.
Get enviously smooth skin, speedy weight loss, and bounds of energy with coconut oil!
Lately, it seems like we just can’t read a health magazine without being hit by at least 8 coconut oil ads. In lotions, shampoos, face washes, you name it, coconut oil is making a serious splash in the holistic health world.
While its health and beauty magic has been used for ages, coconut oil has only recently earned a shining place in the spotlight of modern health news and social media.
We’ve been onboard the coconut train for awhile now, but wanted a deeper understanding of how and why this amazing oil brings such positive results.
1. Weight Loss
Coconut Oil for Weight Loss? You Can’t be Serious!
Well, we are. We’re not talking about those icky partially hydrogenated oils in fast-food french fries your mother warned you about. No, no. This is the real deal.
When you cook with coconut oil instead of other oils, you are essentially pushing your metabolism into gear. Chemically, coconut oil is made up of fatty acid chains that are either short or medium in length. Translated into English, that means: they are easier to digest, which increases your metabolic rate. Voila! A high metabolism leads to greater weight loss.
2. Better Energy
Coconut Oil Kick-starts Your Energy
When you’re feeling sluggish, your first thought for recovery may be: caffeine… lots and lots of caffeine. Before you fill up the coffee machine, consider this: coconut oil is an amazing source of energy that will last you longer.
Coconut oil contains medium-chain triglycerides, or MCTs, that travel directly to the liver and are turned into energy.It is a powerful and tasty addition to smoothies when you need that extra boost. Still craving coffee? We’ve been there. Add 1 teaspoon of coconut oil to your coffee or tea to enhance its energizing effects.
3. Better Digestion
Soothe Your Grumbling Belly – Coconut Oil Combats Digestive Problems
If you are sitting with a heating pad on your stomach, eagerly sipping chamomile tea, or hoping no one notices it’s your 4th trip to the ladies room, we feel for you. It may be time to retire your Pepto-Bismol and exchange it for coconut oil.
Health experts report incredible success when using the oil to treat patients with digestive issues, such as IBS and gas. The special fats in coconut oil help your body absorb nutrients that aid digestion.
On top of that, coconut oil is naturally antimicrobial, which means it can fend off parasites, bacteria and fungi that cause indigestion.
4. Improve Cholesterol Levels
Coconut Oil Can Help to Lower Cholesterol
The use of coconut oil is an effective, safe, and natural way to lower cholesterol.
One of the MCTs in coconut oil, lauric acid, has been shown to increase the good cholesterol in your blood and lower the bad.
Coconut oil can help to regulate the thyroid. If out of balance, the thyroid can contribute to higher levels of bad cholesterol in your body.
5. Better Brain Function
Coconut Oil Improves Brain Function
A groundbreaking study published in the journal, Neurobiology of Aging, concluded that the MCTs in coconut oil improved brain function in people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. Just one single dose had immediate effects.
Here’s how it works: as we get older, our brains have more trouble metabolizing glucose for energy. MCTs in coconut oil create ketones that can be used as fuel in the brain when glucose is unavailable.
6. Improved Skin & Hair
Beauty Booster: Coconut Oil Transforms Skin and Hair
Our Top 3 Tips to Add Coconut Oil to Your Beauty Routine:
Rub it directly on dry patches of skin for an instant smoothing effect. We tried it as a foot massage. Goodbye calluses, hello sandal-ready feet!
Save money and go natural by using coconut oil as makeup remover. We tried applying it around our eyes for eye makeup removal. It moisturized the surrounding delicate skin and left us fresh and bright-eyed!
Create your own hydrating hair mask. Use your hands to run the coconut oil through each strand and massage into your scalp. Leave in for 20 minutes for deep conditioning, or rinse out with shampoo for hair oh so smooth, soft, and shiny.
Where to Buy Coconut Oil
Now that you’re crazy for coconuts, we thought we’d share our favorite brands.
Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil, available at Amazon.
Spectrum Naturals Organic Coconut Oil, available at Walmart.
Garden of Life Extra Virgin Organic Coconut Oil, available at Vitacost
We live in a society where looking good, leading a happy life, and feeling our best is highly valued. Nowadays, one of the best ways to achieve these goals is to adopt a healthier lifestyle, which can be accomplished in many different ways. Some choose to make dietary changes that reflect a more organic, natural or nutritious way of cooking and consuming foods. Others may develop habits centered on herbal healing, organic gardening, homesteading, eco-friendly cleaning, and/or natural remedies and health.
To research and read up on how to make healthy improvements in your life, below you will find a collection of digital downloads and e-books that promote healthy living:
Natural Health & Beauty
1. Healthy Lifestyle: Ultimate Tips for Healthy Living by Jordana Atkins
Highlights tips on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle by focusing on battling everyday stresses, dieting, and positive thinking.
2. Holistic Beauty from the Inside Out: Your Complete Guide to Natural Health, Nutrition, and Skincare by Julie Gabriel
Listing what products to avoid, what foods to eat and natural recipes, this guide concentrates on holistic nutrition, natural skincare, stress-relief, and how to lead a healthy lifestyle.
3. Hands-On Healing Remedies by Stephanie L. Tourles
Teaches how to prepare all-natural, effective, safe recipes for skin and beauty that includes how to make herbal balms, salves, oils, and liniments.
4. Tips for a More Natural Life by Penelope Hoyt
As part of Hoyt’s Homemaking Made Easy series, Book 2 highlights tried-and-true tips on how to lead a more holistic, natural life.
5. 475 Herbal and Aromatherapy Recipes by Demetria Clark
Provides ways on how to satisfy life-, health-, family-, and household-related needs by using a natural approach.
Healthy Eating & Cooking
6. Gluten Free Diet for Beginners by Michael E. Reese
A clear and concise guide that explores various meals, recipes, and benefits related to a gluten-free diet. Also includes weight loss tips, and how to save money on gluten free products.
7. Paleo for Beginners: Essentials to Get Started with the Paleo Diet by John Chatham
Introduces the Paleo way of eating, which focuses on eating low-carb, high-protein meals that remove all processed foods from a diet.
8. Practical Paleo: A Customized Approach to Health and a Whole-Foods Lifestyle by Diane Sanfilippo
Concentrates on how to approach the Paleo diet, including 30-day meal plans tailored to specific health conditions, such as thyroid issues.
9. Paleo Canning Tips and Tricks including 25 Easy and Delicious Recipes by Jenna Davis
Canning techniques and recipes made with natural ingredients and paleo-friendly alternatives that include meat entrees, and jams/jellies made from ripe fruits.
10. Against the Grain: Delicious Recipes for the Whole Food and Grain-Free Diet by Katie Tietje
A guide highlighting grain-free eating with 30 recipes that includes breads and desserts.