New Diet Philosophy

“Don’t think of eating in terms of denying yourself; think in terms of nurturing yourself. Look at what you can add to your diet instead of what you need to take away.”
-Dayle Haddon

We dread necessary diets because we don’t want to deny ourselves certain foods. Make this process easier and more nutritious by focusing instead on adding healthy items that your diet is missing. Once you realize how great those nourishing additions make you feel, eliminating those bad foods will be a lot easier. Let’s add some more nurturing foods to our diets today!

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Photo | “Start diet today” by Alan Cleaver | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

CoQ10 For Your Heart

1017 copyIf you’re looking for a healthy heart supplement, look no further than Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10). CoQ10 helps to produce cell energy while fighting off harmful free radicals. In addition to promoting a strong heartbeat, CoQ10 also helps you to maintain healthy cholesterol and blood pressure levels too.*

It is recommended that you divide 100-300 mg of CoQ10 doses, daily. Like many supplements, CoQ10 is best taken with meals.

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*http://www.lef.org/magazine/mag2008/feb2008_Alleviating-Congestive-Heart-Failure-With-Coenzyme-Q10_01.htm
Photo | Heart | ©Dorte | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Diet Soda Does the Opposite

1004A University of Texas study has concluded that with every daily can of diet soda, a person increased their risk of being overweight by a shocking 41%! The sugar substitutes found in diet sodas (such as aspartame, sucralose and saccharin) could be to blame. Because these sweeteners provide zero calories, your taste buds relay to your brain that you’re consuming something, yet body doesn’t gain any energy. Studies show that these empty calories throw off your body’s ability to properly judge your consumption, which then causes you to overeat and finally, gain weight.*

Kick your soda habit and opt for the healthiest available alternative: water flavored with slices of detoxifying citrus fruit. If you’re craving carbonation, enjoy some mineral water in moderation. If you are in need of a caffeine boost, reach for some green tea, which, unlike diet sodas, can quench your thirst while offering up some cleansing antioxidants.

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*http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/07/11/diet-soda-health-risks_n_3581842.html
Photo | I’m on a diet. | ©Yeah I’m Kenny | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Fight Fatty Acid Deficiencies

1002If you’re experiencing mood swings, poor memory or even depression, a lack of omega-3 fatty acids in your diet could be to blame. Science has proven that omega-3 fatty acids are essential elements of a healthy diet. Not only do they enhance your brain health, but they can fight dry skin, poor circulation and fatigue as well.*

Do your best to incorporate at least one healthy omega-3 fatty acid into your diet each day. Some of the tastiest sources can be found naturally in salmon, halibut, tuna, flaxseeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, kale, spinach and brussels sprouts.

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*http://www.ivlproducts.com/Health-Library/Health-Concerns/Heart-Health/The-Health-Dangers-of-Omega-3-Deficiency
Photo | Tuna Steak + Salad | ©Robin Corps | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution Share-alike license

Magical Mangosteens

999Mangosteens are tropical fruit (the size of tangerines) that are both high in fiber and low in calories. Thanks to their high potassium content, mangosteens can lower your risk of heart disease by regulating your blood pressure and helping to control your heart rate. Xanthones, a powerful antioxidant found in mangosteens, can also fight pain, infections, skin disorders, fatigue and even allergies.*

When purchasing mangosteens (found in most Asian markets), look for fresh looking green stems and dark purple skin. Be sure to avoid blotchy looking skin. Gently cut the fruit lengthwise, similar to the way in which you would prepare an avocado. Mangosteens can be enjoyed raw, and because they are so sweet, they are perfect for dessert!

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*http://drlindsey.com/superfruit-mangosteen/
Photo | Mangosteens | ©Bob Richman | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Amazing Health Benefits of Jicama

998Jicama is a white, starchy root that thrives in tropical regions. In addition to providing your salads with a tasty crunch, jicama can also provide your diet with healthy doses of Vitamin C, iron, calcium and phosphorus. The nutrients in jicama promote heart health and weight loss all while lowering your cholesterol and giving your immune system a boost.*

For a fresh salad idea, add one cup of equal parts: chopped mango, strawberry and jicama into a bowl. Squeeze three tablespoons of fresh lime juice and top with some freshly chopped cilantro. Gently mix all of the ingredients together, serve and enjoy!

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*http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/01/jicama-recipes_n_4018561.html
Photo | Hacking Jicama. | ©Ian Brown | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Eat Some Leeks

989Leeks contain a flavonol, know as kaempferol, which may help lower your risk of heart disease and help fight cancer. Just like garlic and onions, leeks have anti-diabetes properties. In addition to being rich in folic acid, magnesium, and riboflavin, leeks are also packed with vitamins A and K.*

Quality leeks found at your grocer will be firm, with dark green leaves and white necks. Store refrigerated leeks in a plastic bag to help battle moisture. For a healthy cooking method, steam prepared leeks in a covered skillet with 3 tablespoons of broth for about 4 minutes.

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*http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=26
Photo | Leeks | ©Karen and Brad Emerson | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Stay Healthy with Shiitake Mushrooms

987If you are deficient in copper, then you run the risk of developing heart disease. Because your body can’t create copper internally, it’s your job to supply it through food and nutrients. Not only do Shiitake mushrooms contain 65% of your daily-recommended copper intake, but it’s one of the few metallic elements that also supply your diet with a necessary and healthy dose of fatty and amino acids.*

Seek out Shiitake mushrooms that are firm and plump; avoid wrinkled and slimy picks. At home you can cover and store fresh mushrooms in your fridge for up to a week. To prepare: wipe them clean with a damp cloth and then sauté them with onion and garlic for a tasty and healthy side dish.

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*http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?dbid=122&tname=foodspice
Photo | Shiitake Mushrooms growing on a tree | ©Mike | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Chewing Gum Can Be Harmful

IMG_0181Chewing gum’s common sweetener, Aspartame, has been linked to cancer, and the preservative BHT is considered toxic to your organs! In the past, chewing gum has been popular among dieters, but the truth is people who chew gum are more motivated to eat junk food and less likely to eat fruit. Not to mention, the excess air that you swallow when chewing gum can cause uncomfortable abdominal pain and bloating.*

You can kick your gum chewing habit the easy (and healthy) way with natural alternatives. For fresh breath all you have to do is chew on some parsley. And if you think you’ll miss the chewy texture of gum, just reach for some licorice root; not only is it all-natural, but it can prevent acid reflux and canker sores too!

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*http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2013/09/14/chewing-gum-cancer-risk.aspx
Photo | Chewing gum | ©Limarie Cabrera | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License

Find Your Perfect Pillow

982A good night’s sleep is your body’s chance to recover from the day and to replenish for an energetic tomorrow. If you wake up tired with a stiff neck, a poor pillow could be to blame! Finding your perfect pillow has to do with your sleeping style: side sleepers need a pillow that is 4-6 inches thick, back sleepers need about 4 inches of thickness, while stomach sleepers should seek out a pillow that is 3 inches thick.*

Stop straining when you should be sleeping! Based on your sleeping style, seek out the best pillow thickness in your house. Quality pillows range from $30-$200; if you’re going to make an investment in a new pillow, make sure it’s a healthy fit!

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*http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/01/best-pillow-buying-guide_n_1792810.html
Photo | Seven Pillows | ©snigl3t | Used under a Creative Commons Attribution License