Posts tagged ‘vitamins’

June 12, 2013

Nailing Down Common Health Concerns

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Happy nails equal healthy YOU!

I recall having coffee with a coworker senior to me, when she looked down at my hands around my mug and said, “no moons.” Excuse me?  Up to that point, I didn’t know that you could tell a person’s B-12 levels by whether or not they had half moons on their nail beds. Go ahead; take a look at your nails… I’ll wait…

I was surprised that my coworker looked past my uneven fresh-out-of-acrylics short nails to observe my half moons, but we were discussing my lack of energy, chronic fatigue, and loss of memory that had transpired that year. I was a historically active, fit, energetic person about three years into my corporate career when I started feeling less energetic, and becoming frequently fatigued throughout my day. I couldn’t put my finger on the issue, but she did!

ImageLooking back it makes perfect sense. In college, although I was committed to my running and indoor cycling workouts, a proud regular of Bodyworks gym in Lubbock, Texas where I got my body in competitive shape for both Miss San Antonio USA and Miss Lubbock USA, I did not eat well. I shiver looking back at the mounds of canned fruit and vegetables I ate. Hey, I was on a college-kid’s budget, and canned food kept well for a long time. (That should have been a hint it wasn’t nourishing.) I cringe when I think about the bowls of cereal I ate for dinner. After all, whole grain cereal promised sweet dreams at the end of a long day, and milk warms the soul right? It was the perfect “go-to, readily-available” meal. Reek! I’m certain that four years of college and three years of making a name for myself in the corporate world (and in the Dallas, Texas social scene) didn’t leave me nourished, and the lack of vitamins and minerals probably started taking its toll on my body.

This same coworker directed me past the inadequate and “cheaper” supplements on store shelves toward Advocare nutritional company, headquartered north of town. High-quality supplementation and a nutritionist that I still credit to this day for my healthy relationship with food have allowed me to reverse any past damage and to propel my health and wellness into a place where I can flourish. We should all set ourselves up to flourish in life!

So, how do your nails look? For my acrylic nail-wearing glamour sisters, don’t despair. Simply take a look the next time you’re in for your “soak off.” If you don’t see half moons, let’s chat about how to get that B-12. Healthy levels of vitamins and minerals exude beauty through your skin, hair, nails, and attitude. You’ll have folks stopping and gasping in no time saying, “WOW—look at the vitamins and minerals on that girl!”

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Internal beauty shines brightly!

What are your nails trying to tell you?

Pale Nails: This could be a sign of impending anemia, congestive heart failure, liver disease, or malnutrition

White Nails: If the nails are mostly white with darker rims, this can indicate liver problems, such as hepatitis.

Yellow Nails: Hello, fungal infection! This can also be an alert to a more serious condition such as severe thyroid disease, lung disease, diabetes or psoriasis.

Blue Nails: Breathe, my friend! This is a sign that the body isn’t getting enough oxygen. This could also indicate an infection in the lungs, such as pneumonia.

Rippled or Pitted Nails: This may be an early sign of psoriasis or inflammatory arthritis.

Dry, Brittle Nails: Check out your thyroid if you have nails that frequently crack or split; However, cracking or splitting combined with a yellowish hue is more likely due to a fungal infection.

Finally… one close to my heart as a former nail biter: Biting your nails could be a sign of persistent anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder. Alas, good things can come out of the not so good, and I learned about ways to relax and create calmness through guided meditation and breathing exercises. I hope to visit with you more about ways to nourish your mental and emotional wellness with future posts. If you simply cannot stop biting your nails (or cuticle skin), it’s worth discussing with your doctor or wellness practitioner.

Since low Vitamin B-12 levels are common these days, here are other ways you can tell you may be low on this important vitamin:

Tingling hands and feet

Numbness

Memory problems

Feeling exhausted

Depression

Sensitivity to noise

Lots of brown spots

Bleeding gums

Burning sensation (possibly on thighs)

Legs hurt and “jump” at night

Pain, including bone pain in legs

Balance problems

Heavy menstrual bleeding or nose bleeds

P.S.: If you’re wondering why it was important that I mention my coffee shop friend was older than me, it’s because lately I’ve found those senior to me fascinating! I encourage everyone to get to know the senior citizens around them. They have the best stories and you could learn a thing or two from someone who’s been around the block a few times.

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My Grandma Lucy and I. She’s a hoot!

Joyfully and in health, Lacey

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June 4, 2013

The Healthiest Meal of the Day

So, I am not sure if you are aware, but I am a Team Beachbody Coach. Beachbody is the company that produces great workout programs such as INSANITY and P90X. But, we also have Shakeology, the healthiest meal of the day. I know, you are thinking, its just another shake, and there are tons of those out there. WRONG! This is so much more than that. With over 72 vitamins and minerals, this is a source of dense, whole nutrition that will increase your energy, lower your blood pressure, and keep you regular! It’s backed by the American Diabetes Association and is a 24 on the Glycemic Index. I take no other vitamins or supplements, just my daily Shakeology which I drink for breakfast. My hair is longer, my skin is clearer, and I am NEVER sick! My kids even love it. In fact, my oldest daughter always asks for Shakeology on testing days…she says she just feels better after drinking it. Shakeology is one  hundred percent natural and doesn’t have any added sugars, or chemically engineered vitamin sources. Everyone I love and care about drinks Shakeology, not because I sell it, but because I want them to live longer and happier. The other great part for me is that it curbs my sweet tooth. I get my daily chocolate fix in the morning, and then I have no trouble passing by a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup or chocolate cheesecake. 

If you want to know more about Shakeology and what it can do for you, feel free to reach out to me at danielle@daniellehinson.com or visit my website http://teamfitandfunky.com. Not only do you get Shakeology but you get something even better, ME as your COACH! I am there to ensure your questions are answered and your goals are being met. 

I look forward to hearing from YOU! Image

May 27, 2013

Green Energy—Yum!

green scene

Happy Memorial Day, Friends! It’s Brooke here with a few questions for you: Do ever have those days (or weeks) that you feel tired and sluggish, even after getting a good night’s sleep? Do you wish you had more pep in your step after lunch?  No, the solution’s not caffeine, although it does make my world go ‘round. Answer: Time to load up on the veggies and fruit! There are lots of ways to add green goodness to your life—you can grab some produce and munch away, create some amazing salads, throw some greens into your cooked dishes, or juice that precious goodness into a glass. But one of my favorite ways to enjoy the bounty of the earth is to make green smoothies.

The USDA’s recommended daily amount varies for each person according to caloric intake, metabolism, and physiology, but a good standard for someone consuming 2,000 calories a day would be at the very least 2-3 servings of vegetables (more if possible!) and about 1.5-2 servings of fruit per day. The average American gets only 1.5-3 servings of veggies and fruit—total!—a day.

pretty veggies

When you realize all of the amazing ways that fruits and vegetables can help you live a healthier, longer, more vibrant life, you will run—not walk—to your nearest grocery store or farmer’s market. They are packed with vitamins, minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, and energy from the sun. Studies have repeatedly shown that a healthy diet low in saturated fat, high in whole grains, lean proteins, veggies, and fruit reduces the risk of most chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes, and so on. Consuming the abundant vitamins and minerals found in vegetables and fruit helps improve our mood; boost energy; enhance immune function; maintain efficient digestion; impart radiant skin and hair; and reduce risk of chronic and lifestyle-related diseases. This is great news!

I love green smoothies for several reasons:

1) They appeal to my lazy side—with just a little prep work, I can throw everything into my blender and within 30 seconds, I have a pitcher full of happiness that supplies about 3 or 4 glasses throughout the day.

2) They are fun to drink—as I live my fit life, salads make up a good portion of my diet. But sometimes I get tired of dealing with all the fixings (my salads are always full of crunchy, tasty veggies, nuts, and fruit) and coming up with new ideas all the time. Smoothies are a nice change of pace.

3) They make me feel good—this can also be said of dark, green leafy salads as well as freshly juiced produce. I’m slightly embarrassed to say this, but when I first cleaned up my eating, this fresh energy from the abundance of raw vegetables was a new experience. I noticed this after eating a lunch of quinoa, black beans, avocado, and then a big salad (spinach, chard, arugula, etc. plus celery, carrots, green onions, zucchini, tomatoes, mushrooms, and almonds). I didn’t get the charge of caffeinated energy I knew so well, but my insides felt so light and clean, not heavy and bogged down.

heart veggies distressed

Digestion is the most energy-consuming function that the body carries out. That’s why you are so sleepy after stuffing yourself on a large meal—your body uses much of its available fuel to process what you just ate. Let me put it this way: meat can take 2-3 days to completely pass through your system (yikes!), a regular full meal can take 6-8 hours to digest, and most fruits and vegetables are out of your system in 2-3 hours. By consuming green salads or (especially) smoothies and juices, you are able to bypass much of this effort because the produce is mechanically broken down into smaller, more bioavailable parts. Almost immediately, your body begins to utilize the vitamins and minerals to repair and renew your body. This is why you feel so much better and full of energy within a day or two of adding dark green salads, juices, and smoothies to your menu.

cute vegetables

Here’s one of my favorite recipes. The fun part about smoothies is that the sky’s the limit on what ingredients you decide to use. A good rule of thumb when you are starting out is 1:1—1 green vegetable to 1 fruit. Ideally, you want to use more veggies than fruit. Green vegetables are virtually dripping with nutrients that you need for a radiant glow and optimum health. Also, fruit does contain sugar, even though it’s natural—so just be mindful of those luscious gems, especially if you are tightening up your sexy body. You’ll see, however, in my recipe below that I used more fruits than vegetables, mainly because I was out of more vegetables and my peaches were very ripe and had to go!

Sweet Greens

Note: Use organic produce when possible.

 smoothie ingredients_corrected

  • 2 c. spinach, raw
  • 1.5 c. water
  • 3-4 stalks of celery, roughly chopped
  • 2 peaches, small
  • 1 pear
  • mint, small handful
  • 1 banana (optional)

Add spinach and water to the blender and blend on medium speed. Add celery in handfuls as it is incorporated with the spinach and water, increasing speed to high. Add peaches, pear, mint, and banana. Add some ice to add thickness if you like. Pour in a glass and enjoy!

Makes 4-5 10-oz. glasses

Here’s to your brighter, healthier day—drink up!

Brooke

green smoothie_corrected

Lovely and tasty!