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Powerful Anti-Aging Secrets

Yes, aging is inevitable. Over the years, gray hairs start to pop up, you start noticing lines in your forehead that were never there before, and you slow down a little physically. The good news is just because it’s bound to happen doesn’t mean you can’t do anything about it. Just use this secrets 🙂

anti-aging fruit citrus

Eat Real Food

 Enough of the processed stuff. If you want to age gracefully, fill your body with foods that will fuel you — not weigh you down.

“I’m talking food your grandmother would have recognized as food,” says board-certified nutritionist specialist Jonny Bowden, Ph.D. “Avoid GMO foods as much as possible — which is almost all soy and corn — eat organic when you can, concentrate on grass-fed beef and wild fish, and eat just about every nut and berry and low-sugar fruit, like grapefruit, that’s in the supermarket. Also, eat fat! It’s the ultimate energy and performance food.” And for more ways to optimize your diet, try eating more of the 40 Best Heart Foods to Eat After 40.

Woman Getting a Facial Anti-Aging

Step Up Your Facial Game

If you’re a facial connoisseur, there’s a good chance you choose the same thing every time: Once you find your go-to treatment, it’s hard to stray away. When it comes to getting rid of wrinkles and fine lines, though, it never hurts to step up your facial game.

“Facials can totally rejuvenate your skin and offer plenty of anti-aging benefits,” says Lisa Guidi, owner of Erase Spa in New York City. “Don’t be afraid to try something new: Our facials are as gentle as our signature Silk Peel, which exfoliates and infuses the skin with corrective solutions, or as powerful as our Jet Peel, which deep cleans your pores and hydrates your skin.” And for more ways to get heavenly skin, check out The 30 Best Ways to Have Your Best Skin.

Take Advantage of Adaptogens

Adaptogen supplements are becoming super buzzy, whether it’s Asian ginseng for enhanced brain power or ashwagandha for stress relief. As you age, they’ll keep you strong both mentally and physically so you can take on the clock with grace.

“Keeping the blood moving well and nourished keeps everything flowing well,” says Mona Dan, Chinese traditional medicine expert and founder of Vie Healing in Beverly Hills. “When the blood is deficient, we immediately can see it in our skin, hair, and nails. The same way vitamins nourish blood streams, adaptogens do, too. Not only do they benefit the external self, but they will also keep your nervous system more relaxed, helping you keep a youthful glow.” And for more up-to-the-minute health advice, see here to learn What It’s Like to Be Allergic to Sounds—And What to Do About It.

Woman Eating Yogurt Anti-Aging

Ditch the Daunting Diet

How much of your life have you spent worrying about the food you’re putting your body? It’s probably a lot. And when it comes to aging gracefully, a strict diet isn’t going to help you.

“Stop thinking about what you shouldn’t eat and focus on what you need to eat to be healthy. Try three main meals and three small snacks — like fruit, nuts, or cottage cheese — every day so that you eat something every three hours,” says New York City-based facial plastic surgeon Dr. Michelle Yagoda. “This will regulate acid levels, keep your bowels moving, and rev up your metabolism.”

Yoga Bridge Pose Anti-Aging

Perfect your bridge pose.

You know yoga is healthy, but you probably don’t know just how much good it can do in the anti-aging department. As you get older, aches and pains can become a norm. Luckily, adding poses like bridge post, chair pose, cat/cow pose, and child’s pose into your daily routine can fight it off, keeping your body young.

“Though there’s more studying to be done, it would seem that yoga goes a bit beyond standard exercise when it comes to chronic low back pain — and potentially other aches and pains of the body,” says Dr. Adam Lipson of IGEA Brain & Spine. “It works an array of muscle groups and also helps protect the body from injury and improves circulatory health. With any luck, it will one day become yet another weapon in the pain treatment arsenal for people everywhere.” And if you’re constantly on-the-go, Here’s the Best Way to do Yoga on An Airplane.

Prunes in Bowl Anti-Aging

Eat Prunes to Keep Your Bones Strong

Prunes aren’t just for regular bowel movements, OK? The fruit — which is actually just dried plums, by the way — do more than just help keep your bathroom schedule consistent.

“Though we spend way too much time counting our laugh lines as we age, it might be more important to think about what’s going on inside,” says Bonnie Taub-Dix, RDN, creator of BetterThanDieting.com and author of Read it Before You Eat It. “As we age, our gastrointestinal tracts may become more sluggish and constipation could make you feel old even when you’re young at heart. Prunes can certainly help to ‘move’ you, so to speak, especially when consumed with water or other fluids, but they’ve also been shown to help improve bone strength: The National Osteoporosis Foundation estimates that over half of Americans age 50+ have either osteoporosis or low bone mass.”

 

Amazing Anti Aging Creams

If you are looking to recapture your youthful look and feel for softer, more touchable skin, ToLB Retinol Cream Anti Wrinkle Moisturizer is one of the most well-known ingredients for its anti aging effects. Whether you are looking to stop the signs of aging, or help your skin retain its youthful look and feel, this Retinol Cream is your choice for a soothing, softening feeling that your skin will truly fall in love with.

I would highly recommend Tree of Life’s Retinol Cream Anti wrinkle moisturizer! I am 30 years old and have been using this product a few weeks now and have noticed my forehead wrinkles, crows feet, and smile lines are all getting noticeably fainter. My husband even noticed without me saying anything about using it. It is very moisturizing and sinks into skin fast. I noticed big changes in the appearance of my fine lines within one week. Hope this helps! 🙂

 

Are Oats Actually Gluten-Free?

One of my good friends has Celiac disease, and I have a minor freakout every time she comes over and food is involved. Why? Because once I literally almost killed her.

Okay, that might be a bit of an exaggeration. But I’m still scarred by the time I offered her a muffin I made with almond flour that I thought was gluten-free…until I realized that I had no idea if the oats I threw in for texture were GF, too. Cue me forcibly yanking back the muffin I offered to her and tossing it straight into the trash like the horrible, gluten-packed food it was. Or might have been? I actually don’t know.

That’s because when you go to buy oats at the grocery store, there are some packages of oats labeled “gluten-free” and others that aren’t.

Gluten is protein found in wheat, rye, barley, and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). And it’s very obviously present in bread and crackers. But oats aren’t any of those…so what’s up with that GF label?

It turns out that I was right-ish about oats. They’re inherently gluten-free, says Jessica Cording, a New York-based R.D. But—and this is a big but—cross-contamination with wheat is really common, she says. Say if your oats were processed and packaged in a factory that also deals with wheat products, odds are pretty high that there was some contamination.

Oat can even be contaminated in the field since they often grow side by side with wheat, says Beth Warren, R.D.N., founder of Beth Warren Nutrition and author of Living a Real Life with Real Food. 

So, if you grew and picked your oats yourself and rolled them out with no wheat around, you’re probably totally cool to serve them to someone with a gluten allergy or intolerance. But if you plan to buy them at the store like everyone else, it’s important to check the label for a “gluten-free” stamp to make sure it’s actually free of gluten, Warren says.

A few safe bets:

BOB’S RED MILL GLUTEN FREE OLD FASHIONED ORGANIC ROLLED OATS

Bob's Red Mill Organic Gluten Free Old Fashioned Rolled Oats

Bob’s Red Mill is a gluten-free grain staple—and their rolled oats are organic, too.

QUAKER OATS GLUTEN FREE 1-MINUTE QUICK OATS

Quaker Gluten Free Quick 1-Minute Oatmeal

“Affordable” and “gluten-free” don’t always go together. These Quaker oats are the happy exception—and they cook in just a minute.

ARROWHEAD MILLS GLUTEN FREE STEEL CUT OATS

Arrowhead Mills Organic Steel Cut Oats Gluten Free

Yes, even steel-cut oats can be contaminated with gluten. Try this GF version from Arrowhead Mills, which comes in a resealable bag to make sure your oats stay fresh longer.

How to Use Healing Clay

If you are trying to learn how to use healing clay, then you have probably heard about the wonders that it can do you for you. Healing clay is effective in countering cellulite, acne, skin sensitivities and irritants.

Clay is part of the Earth’s soil, a natural substance formed by billions of years of non-stop life evolution. So the secret to staying young and looking healthy is in one of life’s oldest minerals. No surprise there.

There’s so much to appreciate about clay, one of its eternal beauty benefits is its healing ionic properties which takes away deep-seated impurities in the body. Healing and cosmetic clays come from the ash coming from volcanoes, mud from thermal lakes and the floor bed of the saltiest seas. Also the fact that this kind of curative clay will never run out seems to be a good sign.

Benefits of Bentonite Healing Clay

The Aztecs were quick to pin down that this mineral-laden mud miracle can invigorate the body just by body-wrapping or soaking in it for a few minutes each day. Today, we reap the benefits of healing clay by applying it directly on our faces and sore spots.

So what’s so good about healing clay? And why should you start using it now? Here are some quick facts:

  • It creates an internal cleansing environment by luring out positively-charged contaminants within the reach of its ionic pull.bentonite
  • It energizes the body by bringing on homeostasis. Bentonite Clay has an alkalinity of 9.7 pH
  • It rejuvenates blemish-damaged facial skin layers by initiating cellular repair
  • Controls skin sebum production
  • It doesn’t leave off a filmy coating after use. Non-oily and non-greasy.
  • Draws blood flow towards the cheeks and T-Zone by constricting the skin and underlying tissues.

Healing Clay is Well-Worth the Price

You don’t have to shell out a lot of money on expensive creams and cleansers just to stay flawless. All you have to do is to stay on the natural path and make slight, but doable changes to your overall beauty routine. In fact, healing clay is an affordable yet healthy alternative to today’s line of expensive beauty treatments and one of those reasonably priced healing clays you can buy is the Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay.

How Often Should You Use the Bentonite Healing Clay on Your Face?

A weekly healing clay treatment will replenish your skin’s natural reserves. But using the clay mask daily and leaving it for about an hour will give you great supple skin. You can achieve this natural dewy kind of glow even without a hint of BB cream or any concealer if you are consistent with your cosmetic clay mask use.

Applying Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay on your face can be one of the most relaxing things you can do every day. After placing a thin coat, you can slather on a thicker layer if that’s what you prefer, once it begins to tighten, you can wash it off before its starts flaking. Don’t wait for it to totally dry out. Once you get the clay mask off, you will instantly notice how your skin feels smooth and velvety.

For first–timers, try the clay mask once a week and see how your skin reacts; you can increase the frequency of use if you’re getting the results you want.

There are a variety of Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay recipes available online, but let’s start with a basic clay recipe before you start mixing in your own concoctions like adding in your favorite essential oils and herbal extracts. Keep in mind though clay becomes activated through contact with metals or liquid, so keep it dry at room temperature and avoid the container getting moist.

Basic Clay Mask Recipe

What you’ll need:

  • 1-3 tablespoons of bentonite clay or Aztec Secret Indian healing clay
  • 1-3 tablespoons or apple cider vinegar or water
  • Non-metallic bowl and spoon for mixing

Directions:

Mix the bentonite clay powder and water until you reach a chunky to lumpy consistency. You may also use apple cider vinegar, a natural cleanser and anti-microbial gent, putting it into your DIY face mask will make the clay paste more potent in absorbing oil and dirt. If you have sensitive skin, create your first mixture with the water and leave out the apple cider vinegar for the mean time.

Apply the healing clay gently on your face using your fingers, a cosmetic sponge or cotton ball. You may also liberally spread the clay mask down your neck line as well.

Relax and leave the clay mask on for about 20 to 30 minutes. You will feel a tinBubblingClayMaskgly, pulsating sensation on your skin; this is the clay paste at work, making your skin contract while it absorbs the trace minerals. At the 15 minute mark, the clay mask will start to dry.

Rinse off the mask just before the clay mask starts to flake into a hard shell, don’t wait for it to completely dry. You can rinse the clay mask off by using water. You may also try doing it spa style by rinsing it gently with warm water and then putting on an aloe vera salve to break down the flakes gently. When everything is washed off, you can finish your healing clay facial treatment by placing a warm steamed towel on your face.

Get that Beautiful Glow

The big pay-off here is that you will feel rejuvenated and great right after, and you will notice your skin will have a pink flush which is just natural as the clay mask will increase the blood circulation in your face. If you’re suffering from acne, you can give your enlarged and clogged pores a break by getting all that oil under control. And regardless of your skin-type, you can apply healing clay every day, and you don’t have to worry about any residue build-up nor will it dry out your skin.

As long as you know how to use healing clay you will keep your skin refreshingly beautiful!

The Best Shoulder Workout To Reshape Your Arms

Whether you’re looking forward to rocking a spring triathlon or the new halter in your closet, you’re going to want your arms to be on point. And when it comes to a strong, sculpted upper body, focusing your training on your shoulders will give you the best bang for your buck. . .physically and aesthetically.

Made up of four distinct muscles—the anterior deltoid, medial deltoid, posterior deltoid, and trapezius—the shoulders are the most mobile, “do-it-all” joints in the entire human body, says Mike T. Nelson, Ph.D., an exercise physiologist and adjunct professor of human performance at Carrick Institute in St. Paul, Minnesota. In fact, says Nelson, your shoulders are actually less a joint and more a “symphony of tissues.” And as one of the most muscular and metabolically active areas in your upper body, they have the biggest impact on your overall exercise performance and metabolic rate.

Improved fitness performance and higher calorie- and fat-burning potential are all amazing, but looking hot in a tank top is another fun payoff. A set of sleek shoulders completely reshapes and defines your entire upper half, improving your posture, chiseling your arms (because the moves inherently recruit other muscles like your biceps and triceps), and making you look and feel super-strong. “It flips a little switch in a lot of women. We stand a little taller, walk a little prouder, carry ourselves with a bit more oomph,” says certified strength and conditioning specialist Kourtney Thomas, owner of Kourtney Thomas Fitness in St. Louis. And that boost will come in handy wherever you and your tank top are heading this spring.

For shoulders that are as powerful as you are, try this routine created by Thomas. By mixing mobility work with hit-’em-hard moves designed to sculpt and shape from every angle, it crosses everything off your list in 30 minutes flat. Twice a week, perform the following exercises, in order, as instructed.

Resistance Band Shoulder Rotation
resistance band shoulder rotation 

Grasp one end of a resistance band in each hand. Hold the band in front of your waist, your hands six to eight inches wider than your shoulders and your palms facing your body (a). Keeping your arms straight and core tight, slowly raise the band directly overhead (b) and then lower as far as you can behind you (c). Pause, then slowly reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep. Do 10 to 12.

Scapular Wall Slide
Scapular Wall Slide 

Stand with your back, butt, and head against a wall; bend your elbows to 90 degrees and raise them out to shoulder height, with the entire length of your arms pressed into the wall, palms facing forward (a). Slowly straighten your elbows to slide your arms up the wall (b). Pause, then reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep. Do 10 to 12.

Dumbbell Lateral Shoulder Raise
Dumbbell Lateral Shoulder Raise 

Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet hip-width apart, arms straight at your sides and palms facing each other (a). Brace your core, then raise the weights out to shoulder height, arms straight but keeping a slight bend in the elbows (b). Pause, then slowly reverse to return to start. That’s one rep; do 10 to 12. Rest for 30 seconds, then repeat for three or four total sets.

Seated Dumbbell Overhead Press
Seated Dumbbell Overhead Press

Hold a dumbbell in each hand and sit on an incline bench with your back flat and straight; bend your elbows to 90 degrees and raise them out to shoulder height, palms facing forward (a). Bracing your core, press the weights up and together until your arms are straight but not locked (b). Pause, then slowly reverse the movement to return to start. That’s one rep; do six to eight. Rest for 90 seconds, then repeat for three or four total sets.

Dumbbell Standing Rear-Delt Raise
Dumbbell Standing Rear-Delt Raise 

Hold a dumbbell in each hand and stand with your feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent; hinge forward to lower your torso so your arms hang directly from your shoulders, palms facing each other (a). Keeping a slight bend in your elbows, brace your core and raise the weights out to shoulder height (b). Slowly lower back to start. That’s one rep; do 10 to 12. Rest for 30 seconds, then repeat for three or four total sets.

Inverted Row
Inverted Row 

Get underneath a bar in a squat rack (the higher it is, the easier the exercise will be); place your hands more than shoulder-width apart and extend your feet in front of you, so your body forms a straight line from shoulders to heels (a). Keeping your body flat and core tight, bend your elbows and pull your shoulder blades together to raise your chest to the bar (b). Pause, then slowly reverse the movement to start. That’s one rep; do as many full reps as possible. Rest 10 seconds, then repeat, doing three or four total sets.

Is It Bad To Crack Your Back?

It’s the end of the day and your back is stiff AF. You’re basically walking around like Frankenstein.
So you give it a good crack—and ahhhhh, sweet, sweet relief.
But you can’t help but wonder: Is it bad to crack your back?

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN YOU CRACK YOUR BACK?

Our joints are made up of tendons and ligaments, and we have cartilage in between that helps everything glide and move smoothly.

When you apply pressure to your joints by twisting or cracking your back, it releases gas (that’s the popping sound you hear).

Every once in a while, that’s okay, but cracking daily can cause the cartilage to wear out, leading to pain or possibly tendon and ligament tears.

WHAT YOU CAN DO INSTEAD OF CRACKING YOUR BACK

Gentle stretching and exercising are safer ways to relieve tension. A warm shower can also help—once you step out and dry off, slowly bend forward at the waist and hang toward the ground for 15 to 30 seconds.

If the tension is centered in your upper back, foam-roll for five minutes a few times a week: Lie on back with feet flat, knees bent at 90 degrees, and the roller placed underneath shoulders, perpendicular to body. Lift butt and wrap arms like you’re giving yourself a tight hug. Use feet to slowly roll up and down.

Source: Armin Tehrany, M.D., orthopedic surgeon and founder of Manhattan Orthopedic Care

WTF Is The Pegan Diet And Can It Help You Lose Weight?

There’s nothing cuter than a shih poo—except maybe a maltipoo. Or a puggle. Or a goldendoodle (We like dogs, sue us). Case in point: hybrids can be pretty great, and (luckily) they’re not limited to Very Good Boys. Enter, the pegan diet, a mix of the popular paleo and vegan eating plans.

Hold up, aren’t paleo and vegan diets total opposites? Kind of—the paleo dietprioritizes meats while vegans nix animal products altogether.

But the two eating plans do have some common ground: They both hinge on the idea of skipping the processed food aisle and eating closer to nature (a.k.a., eating more whole foods, lots of fruits and veggies, and less pre-packaged stuff)—and the idea of produce-forward eating is definitely gaining a following.

Now that we’ve established peganism as a real thing, here’s everything else you need to know:

OK, what is the pegan diet?

Some quick background on the pegan diet: It’s relatively new, and first became a thing in 2014 after Mark Hyman, M.D., director of the Cleveland Clinic Center for Functional Medicine, referenced it in a blog post describing his own diet.

In the same blog post, Hyman pointed out that Lebron James had recently tried a paleo diet, and Rich Roll, a man who completed five Iron Man marathons in seven days (y tho?), followed a vegan lifestyle—so he thought merging the two, while still considering one’s own personal needs, seemed like a good idea.

The pegan diet has a few rules (you know, as most diets do). Mascha Davis, R.D., a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dieteticsbreaks it down like this: Eat five or more cups of vegetables, four servings of carbohydrates, three servings of proteins, two servings of healthy fats, and one dairy substitute every day. (Easy to remember: 5-4-3-2-1.)

You’ll spread this out over three meals a day, plus two snacks. Also, meat and fish can be part of the diet, but only small amounts, and you’re allowed one “cheat day,” along with two desserts and two alcoholic drinks per week. Sounds pretty doable, right?

Here’s where it gets hard: You’ll have to skip dairy and some grains, make more plant-based meals, and avoid all of that pre-packaged goodness you might turn to for convenience, which is all pretty time consuming, to say the least.

“It might work for health-conscious individuals who enjoy whole foods and are motivated to improve their diet, as well as spend the time it takes to meal prep and select whole, unprocessed foods,” says Davis. But, like any diet, it might not be sustainable for most people long-term, she adds.

The pegan diet menu

That 5-4-3-2-1 method sounds pretty easy, but, like we said before, pegans follow a fairly strict list of foods they can and cannot eat. Here’s a more detailed look at how it shakes out:

PLANTS: EAT ‘EM ALL!

A majority of the pegan diet consists of fruits and veggies, like apples, grapefruit, and peaches, along with pretty much every vegetable—as long as it’s within or below the 55 to 69 glycemic index range, says Brigitte Zeitlin, M.P.H., R.D., a dietitian at B Nutritious. You can check out the Harvard Medical School’s list of foods’ ranking on the glycemic index to see if your favorite produce makes the cut.

PROTEIN: GO. FOR. IT.

Roughly 25 percent of a pegan diet contains lean animal protein, such as chicken, eggs, fish, and lean beef. As a nod to its paleo heritage, that protein should be grass-fed and free of antibiotics.

FATS AND GRAINS: HEALTHY AND WHOLE, PLEASE.

Heart-healthy fats like avocado, olive oil, and most nuts are good to go, says Zeitlin. And whole grains like oats, quinoa, amaranth, millet, and wild rice are also up for noshing—basically, anything that doesn’t contain gluten (more on that later).

STARCHY VEGGIES: SADLY, NO.

That means beets, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, regular potatoes, and parsnips are out; they’re too high on the glycemic index for this diet, says Zeitlin.

DAIRY, SUGAR, SOY, AND LEGUMES: NAH.

If you’re following the pegan diet to a T, you can forget about yogurt, granola, edamame, and peanuts, says Zeitlin. These foods are all off limits because they can be hard to break down, which can cause gas, bloating, and sometimes constipation, she says.

GLUTEN: HARD PASS.

The only grains pegans avoid are ones that contain gluten—so any form of wheat is off limits. That means your beloved pasta—even the whole-grain kind—is a no-go, along with varieties like spelt, semolina, barley, and rye.

Cool, but will it help me lose weight?

It’s a hard… maybe? The pegan diet is loaded with fiber-packed vegetables and satiating fats, helping you feel fuller longer, which can also help you lose weight, says Pam Bede, R.D., sports dietitian for Abbott’s EAS Sports Nutrition. That’s because you’ll feel less inclined to fill up on sugary treats that make your blood sugar surge and crash, she says. Plus, you can eat a ton of vegetables without overdoing it calorie-wise, and those fiber-rich snacks help quiet hunger pangs.

But really, any diet will help you lose weight if you’re eating fewer calories than you’re burning, says Davis, so the most important part of any meal plan is liking it enough to stick to it. “You have to enjoy it and be able to maintain the diet to sustain the weight loss,” says Davis.

Before you start priming yourself (and your grocery list) for this trendy eating strategy, you should know that you might feel highly restricted when you get started, says Bede. She says she wouldn’t recommend it to athletes or super-active people because they might accidentally skimp on workout-boosting protein, calcium, and iron or other nutrients you need to keep your body running at its peak.

And honestly, even if you’re not training for a marathon, the pegan diet can still do a few not-so-great things to your body:

  • Slashing dairy can deprive your body of so much calcium and vitamin D that you may need to start supplementing with vitamins.
  • Cutting way back on carbs can cause glucose cravings (hello, cookies and cake!), which can lead to you eating all the carbs.
  • Nixing legumes and not eating enough meat can limit muscle-building protein and energizing iron in your diet, which can really eff-up your workouts.

What Is The Lectin-Free Diet?

Keto, paleo, gluten-free. There’s always an “it” diet that pops up every year, sporting an extensive list of can and can’t-eat foods that makes grocery shopping a minefield.

  • Lectins are proteins in plants that potentially cause inflammation and weight gain
  • A California cardiologist first promoted the idea of cutting out lectin foods for weight loss and better health
  • But lectins are found in lots of otherwise-healthy foods, including vegetables, beans, grains, nuts, and seeds.
  • Experts agree that most people might miss crucial nutrients if they try a lectin-free diet

In his book, The Plant Paradox, Steven Gundry, M.D., a cardiologist and heart surgeon based in Southern California, claims that any food with the plant protein lectin is your worst enemy when it comes to weight loss.

But here’s the thing about lectins: They’re found in foods you’ve always thought good for you—like whole grains, squash, tomatoes, beans, nuts, and a lot of animal proteins. And that’s just the short list.

Gundry claims that humans weren’t intended to eat foods containing lectins and that eliminating those foods can decrease inflammation, boost weight loss, and lead to an overall healthier lifestyle. But is this really legit? We talked to Gundry and a few experts to find out.

So, what are lectins?

Lectins are proteins naturally found in many foods, especially grains and beans. They like to bind to carbohydrates, which can help cells interact and communicate with each other.

In plants, lectins play defense, Gundry tells WomensHealthMag.com. They’re how plants protect themselves against being eaten. By making insects and animals feel sick to their stomach, lectins discourage them from eating lectin-filled plants again.

“Anytime a diet starts to take out a massive amount of food groups, it’s a little faddish by nature.”

In humans, Gundry says that eating lectins provokes an inflammatory response—which can lead to weight gain and other serious health conditions, such as leaky gut and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

What is the lectin-free diet?

“The lectin-free diet takes out high lectin foods like grains, quinoa, legumes, and nightshade vegetables like tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant,” says registered dietitian Amy Goodson.

Also on the do-not-eat list: dairy, out-of-season fruit, and conventionally-raised meat and poultry. Womp, womp.

Instead, the diet suggests you load your plate with low-lectin foods like leafy greens, veggies like cauliflower, broccoli, and asparagus, mushrooms, nuts and seeds, millet, pasture-raised meats, and wild-caught fish.

Can it actually help you lose weight?

Gundry says that he’s personally lost 70 pounds on a lectin-free diet, and that he’s put many of his patients on this plan as well. “The amazing thing is when people change nothing except removing major lectins, they start losing weight and they still are eating lots of calories, but we’re not storing it as fat anymore,” Gundry says.

He also cites a 2006 study that indicates that a lectin-free diet can have a positive effect on people with cardiovascular disease and metabolic syndrome (a group of conditions indicated by increased blood pressure, high blood-sugar levels, excess body fat around the waist, and abnormal cholesterol levels).

However, other experts are skeptical about how effective it is. “Anytime a diet starts to take out a massive amount of food groups, it’s a little more faddish by nature,” says Goodson. “The benefits of eating whole grains and vegetables, which provide vitamins, minerals, and fiber, significantly outweigh the risk that a small amount of lectin will cause GI issues.”

“We should eat more, not less produce.”

Plus, most foods with lectins can be super beneficial for weight loss, says Samantha Cassetty, R.D. For example, one 2017 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition linked whole grains with weight loss. And another study published in the same journal found that people who consumed pulses over a six-week period (a.k.a. beans, lentils, chickpeas) lost significantly more weight than those who didn’t consume any pulses.

However, Leah Kaufman, R.D., has seen weight-loss success in patients with IBS through eliminating certain lectin-containing foods via a low FODMAP diet, which cuts out foods like beans and starchy vegetables.

Goodson does admit that lectins can be troublesome in high quantities, or when you eat lectin-rich foods raw. “But I don’t know who eats chickpeas or quinoa raw,” she says. In fact, simply soaking beans and grains overnight and cooking them reduces the amount of lectins that can cause GI distress. Peeling and de-seeding nightshades can help too.

Plus, there are many different types of lectins. Some are anti-microbial and may have anti-cancer potential (woot!), while other lectins aren’t so good for you. But research is a little iffy on both sides. “The majority of research [on lectins] have been animal and in vitro studies, not studies in humans,” says Goodson. So take the findings with a grain of salt.

Should you ditch lectin?

While going lectin-free may help some people, it likely won’t solve everyone’s stomach issues. “It’s not one of those things that should be applied globally,” says Goodson. “If you’re having serious issues, talk to your doctor or see a registered dietitian.”

Plus, only 10 percent of Americans get the recommended daily amount of fruits and vegetables, says Goodson, so we should eat more, not less produce. “If you look at the benefits of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains for heart health and lowering disease risk, I’m going to argue that a little bit of fruit and vegetables are going to help people versus harm them,” says Goodson.

9 Foods That Will Give Your Skin A Totally Natural Glow

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could all skip the Instagram filters and have glowing Valencia skinIRL?

It turns out a beauty junkie’s best friend is, in fact, the farmer’s market. Foods rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and other nutrients can have some pretty surprising, glow-up-worthy effects on your complexion that, when paired with sun protection and a regular skin-care routine, can go a long way toward giving your skin that I-just-had-multiple-orgasms glow.

Start eating these nine foods to get that #nofilter look 24/7:

Citrus fruit
oranges citrus fruit cut sections

Oranges, grapefruit, lemons, and limes make for an amazing cocktail. But they’re also the ticket to Perfect Skin City.

Vitamin C helps your skin produce skin-smoothing collagen, says Mirela Mitan, Ph.D., CEO and founder of MMXV INFINITUDE skin care. “Intake of this vitamin is a key element to improving skin’s overall texture,” she says.

Plus, vitamin C is an antioxidant that can protect against sun damage, fine lines, and hyperpigmentation, she says. So, you should eat it AND slather it on your face in a serum.

Blueberries
blueberries

Their deep purple (not blue, actually!) pigmentation hints at their high antioxidant content—specifically, cancer-fighting anthocyanins and inflammation-fighting bioflavinoids. Mitan says eating blueberries can help rid the skin of toxins (like free radicals) from the inside out.

Green Tea
green tea

When it’s hot, green tea releases catechins, a type of antioxidant with proven anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties that may help increase blood flow to the skin, says Bonnie Taub-Dix, R.D.N., creator of BetterThanDieting.com and author of Read It Before You Eat It: Taking You from Label to Table. (The tea’s antioxidants start to degrade as it cools, so drink it while it’s hot.)

And those benefits are very real: A 2007 study in The Journal of Nutritional Biochemistryfound that drinking two to six cups a day can help prevent skin cancer (although don’t use that as an excuse to skimp on wearing sunscreen).

Safflower Oil
safflower oil

The omega-6 fatty acids found in safflower oil serve as ultra-rich moisturizers. And safflower oil is a natural emollient, meaning it provides a barrier to keep moisture in and can help heal skin—great news if you have dry skin. A 2018 study found that it has some anti-inflammatory effects, too.

Bone broth
bone broth

Celebs and influencers who swap their morning coffee for bone broth might be onto something, since it’s super rich in collagen, the most abundant protein in the body, found in the skin, bones, muscles, and tendons.

And while the collagen you eat doesn’t turn into straight collagen in your skin, a small study from the Journal of Skin Pharmacology and Physiology found that consuming collagen can actually boost skin elasticity and hydration—helping skin look healthier and more supple.

Spinach
spinach

You could probably build a fortress against the Big C with these leaves. A study published in the International Journal of Cancer found that eating spinach and other green leafy veggies is associated with a decreased risk in squamous cell carcinoma (the second most common form of skin cancer).

According to Mitan, spinach’s vitamin E and beta-carotene content protects skin cells from free radical damage (which can cause skin cancer and signs of aging like hyperpigmentation and fine lines). Plus, the water in greens penetrates cell membranes—which makes for plumper and less wrinkled skin.

Sweet Potatoes
sweet potatoes

Like oranges, sweet potatoes are also loaded with vitamin C, which smoothes out wrinkles. In fact, a study in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that volunteers who consumed about four milligrams of C (that’s about half a small sweet tater) daily for three years decreased the appearance of wrinkles by 11 percent. Their high beta-carotene content is essential for that youthful glow, says Taub-Dix.

Tomatoes
tomatoes

Lycopene, the phytochemical that makes tomatoes red, helps eliminate skin-aging free radicals caused by ultraviolet rays. Your body gains the most sun-shielding nutrients when the vegetable is heated (now’s a great time to have pizza or pasta with marinara sauce, says Taub-Dix).

Just a half-cup of cooked tomatoes or pasta sauce has 16 milligrams of lycopene; along with ample sunscreen, that daily dose should help keep you out of the red.

Canned tuna
canned tuna

Your favorite sandwich melt has a little secret: selenium. This nutrient helps preserve elastin, a protein that keeps your skin smooth and tight. The antioxidant is also believed to buffer against the sun (it stops free radicals created by UV exposure from damaging cells).

Taub-Dix adds that tuna’s high omega-3 fatty acid content helps preserve collagen, fight inflammation, and keep skin firm. Three ounces, or half a can per day, can help.

Arugula Salad: Mango, Macadamia, Avocado.

This Arugula Salad recipe has been a fan-fave since 2011! It is a personal fave as well. Tropical flavors of sweet mango and salty, crunchy macadamia nuts mingle with spicy arugula lettuce and buttery avocado. This simple-ingredient salad is so flavorful that it barely even needs dressing. But if you want to add some, I think a drizzle of good extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice is just perfect. (Dressing suggestion in the recipe.)

I love this salad on a busy day as lunch, or as a dinner salad topped with tempeh bacon or skillet chickpeas.

Some tips for this salad:

– Use a mango that is nice and ripe. You want the sweet juices to really absorb into the arugula – and help soften it a bit.
– Use macadamia nuts that are roasted AND salted. That salt really goes a long way in this salad. You can add them whole, or chop them up into macadamia nut bits.
– If you just cannot find macadamia nuts – they can be hard to find sometimes – use salted and roasted cashews instead. Those are the best sub, I have found. Chopped Brazil nuts work well too.
– Be generous with the avocado! (Good advice for any recipe, really…)
– If your arugula is too large or long/stringy, break out your culinary shears and cut the arugula up.

…Culinary shears and more cooking goodies are in the kitchen section of my HHL store.

And really, I don’t really think this salad needs dressing. But go with your taste buds on this one.

 

Arugula, Avocado, Mango, Macadamia Salad

Arugula, Avocado, Mango, Macadamia Salad

This simple and flavorful salad combines salty, crunchy macadamia nuts with sweet mango, avocado and arugula. Vegan.

Ingredients

    • 1 large mango, cubed
    • 1 avocado, sliced
    • 1/2 – 1 cup macadamia nuts, salted and roasted (chopped or whole)
    • 5-6 cups or arugula
    • a few pinches of pepper – salt optional
    • Optional add-ins: onion, carrots, hemp seeds, chickpeas, tempeh bacon..
  • Simple Dressing Suggestion:
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 1-2 tsp maple or agave syrup

Instructions

  1. Whisk together the optional dressing, set aside.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, toss the salad ingredients together. Add dressing as desired. Toss again.
  3. Serve right away.