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What are the Benefits of Turmeric and Curcumin?

What are the Benefits of Turmeric and Curcumin? 0

What is it?

Turmeric is a yellow colored spice that has been used in dishes native to India for thousands of years. The root of the plant is harvested, cleaned, and dried. It is then turned into a powder. It has a spicy kick that lends itself to being a common seasoning used in food. Besides its culinary uses, turmeric has been used for textile dying and even health remedies. Turmeric contains what is known as curcumin. You can only find a small percentage of curcumin in turmeric. However, in 1815, it was able to be isolated from turmeric and became an important player.

 

When you have turmeric and curcumin both working in your body, you will find many health benefits. These spices have properties that help to create a better overall feeling of wellbeing. Here are some of the beneficial properties and health benefits of turmeric and curcumin:  

Anti-Inflammatory

Curcumin has been found to have strong anti-inflammatory properties. Curcumin blocks Nf-kB. This molecule is related to inflammation and is suspected to be the major factor in several chronic diseases.

Increases Body’s Antioxidant Capacity

Oxidative damage has been believed to be one of the many causes of several diseases. Turmeric contains the ability to boost the body's natural antioxidant enzymes.

Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Heart disease is the largest killer in the world. One of the causes of heart disease is inflammation. Due to the fact that the spice has strong and natural anti-inflammatory properties, it limits this problem. Another cause of heart disease is oxidative damage. Turmeric's strong antioxidant property goes a long way with fighting and preventing heart disease.

Aids in Disease

Cancer is a horrible disease that affects many. Cancer is characterized by an uncontrolled growth of cells. Though there are many different types of cancer, they all have this in common. Curcumin can not cure cancer but it does help affect the development and growth of the cancer cells at a molecular level.

Can help Alzheimer's Disease

This spice has been found to cause improvements in the pathological process of the disease. It has been found to slow down and in some cases even reverse the effects of Alzheimer's disease. Inflammation and oxidative damage are both key players in the disease. This spice helps to counteract both of these issues.

There are many other health benefits of turmeric and curcumin. This spice has properties that are tremendously beneficial for your overall wellbeing. You can reap the benefits of it by adding it as a spice to your food or making it a regular part of your supplement routine.

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The Best Spotify Playlists for Your Workout: Part Two

The Best Spotify Playlists for Your Workout: Part Two 0

We shared with you in our last blog the top Spotify playlist for yoga, lifting, and running. As promised, here are the best Spotify playlists for spinning and CrossFit:

Spinning

Spinning is an insanely difficult workout that burns an intense number of calories in a single workout. If you are in a class, it is helpful to gain motivation from the people around you. You instructor is there to help keep your legs pumping. But what happens if you are spinning from home? Having the perfect background music can help you keep going even when your legs are starting to feel like noodles. Here are some great Spotify playlists for spinning.

  • This playlist created by Spinning Workout, has 3 hrs. 42min of songs to keep your legs pumping. Check it out
  • This playlist was also created by Spinning workout. It has the top songs for spinning for 2017. 37 of them to be exact. Check it out
  • Created by Marcel Tholen, this playlist has over 22 hours of music. Everything ranging from Rihanna to Duck Sauce. All that you need to keep your workout going. Check it out

CrossFit

CrossFit’s nature of using workout techniques from a wide variety of sports is ideals for getting an amazing workout. This workout will help to increase more than one area of your physical fitness. This workout needs the right songs to motivate. Here are some of the top Spotify playlists for CrossFit:

  • This playlist created by Flitr Sweden has a great list of music that will let you experience the tunes of Sweden as well as some other artist. Check it out
  • Created by Spotify, this playlist has a great for keeping you pushing through the toughest workouts. It has over 1 hour worth of songs. Check it out  
  • This playlist was carefully crafted by Faeni Mogavero. It has music from Fall Out Boy, T.I. and many more. You will no doubt find something you like on this 12-hour long playlist. Check it out   

Above all, when choosing the music for your workout, make sure that it reflects the factors that you need. If you need a song that is going to help you relax, a quick tempo song may not be the best fit. And if you need something that is going to pump you up, ocean sounds, though delightful, will not give you what you need.
The Best Spotify Playlists for Your Workout: Part One

The Best Spotify Playlists for Your Workout: Part One 0

Music can be what distinguishes a bad workout and a good workout. It can be exactly what you need to go that last rep or run that extra mile. Being able to find the perfect playlist to motivate you can keep you moving through the workout is essential. That being said, not every song is great for every workout. Different workouts need motivation from different locations. Here is the best Spotify playlist for you based on your workout.

Yoga

Yoga is an incredible workout that requires mental strength as well as physical. It helps to reduces stress and anxiety while also toning and stretching muscles. When it comes to creating the ideal environment for Yoga, choosing the correct background noises is important. Here are some of the top playlists on Spotify for all the Yogis out there:

  • Created by Yoga Girl, This playlist contains a variety of music from East Forest to Drake. This playlist is 1hr 10 min long and contains 17 songs. Check it out
  • Created by Spotify UK, This playlist is meant to allow its listeners to sink into deep tranquility. It is 30 songs and is 4hr and 31 mins. Check it out
  • Created by Yoda Music, This array of songs is meant to help create a sense of please can allow you to absorb all the spiritual aspects of your yoga workout. Check it out

Running

Running is a workout that requires its participants to really focus on their endurance. When your mind and body are telling you to stop, you need to push through and keep moving. This endurance capacity can be greatly motivated or discouraged based on music. Here are some of the top playlists on Spotify for runners:

  • Created by Filtr UK, this playlist has what you need to keep pushing your body to take one more step. Containing everything from Sia to Pitbull, you will be able to keep pushing through this 3 hr. 32 min playlist. Check it out  
  • Created by Spotify, this playlist is meant to be your metronome. Keep in pace in while listening to this 3 hr. 23 min playlist. Check it out
  • Created by Filtr Espana, This playlist is created to help you stay motivated and on track. This playlist contains music from Meghan Trainor, Justin Timberlake, and many more. Amongst the 70 songs you are bound to keep moving. Check it out

Lifting

Lifting is one of those workouts that require you to really put mind over matter. As you complete your final reps and your limbs are starting to shake, the last thing you want to hear is a song that makes you want to relax and stop. What you need is a song that will help keep up your energy and motivation. Here are some of the best playlists for lifting:

  • Created by Jeremiah J Wilt, this playlist is full over 300 song to help motivate you to do that extra rep. Check it out
  • Created by Nick Keali’i Jorgenson, this playlist has over 12 hours of music ranging from Eminem to Childish Gambino. Check it out
  • Created by Lance Vesper, this playlist has over 100 songs to keep you going through your workout. Check it out

No matter the workout, having the right playlist is what you need to aide in you reaching your fitness goals.

Coming soon: Playlists for Spinning and CrossFit!
Get SMART About Your Fitness Goals

Get SMART About Your Fitness Goals 0

You won’t get anywhere without setting calculated, meaningful goals. We can all say we want to go to the moon, but without the right preparation, planning, or training we won’t ever get there. Making goals with working out or weight loss work the same way. That’s why you should create SMART goals. This stands for specific, measurable, action-oriented, realistic, and time-bound. These restrictions allow you to give yourself goals that you’re better equipped to achieve.

 

Specific

If your goals are too broad, you won’t be able to determine how well you’re doing. If your goal is just to “work out” and you go to the gym once every two months, then congratulations, you’ve completed your goal and “worked out”, but you haven’t really achieved any meaningful goals. And we’re guessing that wasn’t what you meant when you made your goal. Make your goal specific to push yourself further and really get the best results. Instead of “work out”, try “run on the treadmill for 30 minutes”.

 

Measurable

Giving yourself an end goal that can actually be measured yields far better results than those that are broad. Your goal may be to lose weight. Well, weight is certainly something that can be measured, so give yourself a number that you can continuously check yourself against and gauge your progress in relation to it. If your goal was to “lose weight” and you lost 5 pounds, that would technically fall into the completion of your goal. But by giving yourself a measurable goal, like 30 pounds, you can see how much that 5 pounds really contributes to your true intention and how far you still have to go.

 

Action-Oriented

Goals that are action-oriented may involve a specific event or an action to take place in order for you to feel like you’ve completed this goal. Having a concrete action-oriented goal is also a great way to make sure your journey or progress along the way is making you prepared for this goal. For example, your action-oriented goal may be that you want to run a 5k. Every step that you take towards that goal, whether it be increasing the duration of your running time, running on different terrain, etc. will have the endgame of a 5k in mind. You then know which actions you need to take to complete this goal, which leaves you better prepared to complete it successfully.

 

Realistic

Oftentimes, when we create goals for ourselves we really shoot for the stars. Which isn’t always a bad thing! But, if your goal is to drop 7 pant sizes in less than a month, you’re probably setting yourself up for failure. Part of the reason why we don’t always achieve our goals is because we set an unrealistic goal to start with, and get frustrated when we don’t see ourselves obtaining it. Really think about your goal, and prepare for any setbacks or unexpected turns. Be honest with yourself, do you see your goal as something that is realistic and achievable given the circumstances, time frame, etc.? If so, you’ve gotten yourself onto the path for success, go for it!

 

Time-Bound

The most important part of a goal is arguably the time-bound aspect of it. If there is no sense of urgency, what incentive do you have to push yourself to complete this goal right now? ‘I want to lose 10 pounds, but I have as much time as I want to do that, so I’ll skip the gym today’. If your goal is to lose 10 pounds in 8 weeks, however, you would definitely think twice about skipping that gym day (and we hope you wouldn’t!). Creating a goal that is time-bound will give you the push to achieve your goals, because it makes you responsible and accountable. If you haven’t lost 10 pounds in 8 weeks, you can clearly see that you did not achieve your goal.


Now that we’ve talked about SMART goals, let’s see what one actually looks like. Some examples would be:

Lose 20 pounds by June 1st.

  • 20 pounds is measurable, June 1st is time-bound and specific.

Complete a 5k by the end of the year. 

  • Completing a 5k is action-oriented and specific, the end of the year is time-bound and realistic.

Fit into your old skinny jeans within the next two months.

  • Your old skinny jeans are specific, the next two months are time-bound.

 

A SMART goal is simultaneously all 5 of these components in one simple phrase. Here’s a visual example.

smart-goal-example

 

We think you probably get the idea now. An organized, well crafted goal instead of a broad unrealistic one makes all the difference in achieving your goals. So go create some SMART goals for yourself on your fitness journey and immediately see the better path it puts you on. 

Simple Steps for Digital Detoxing

Simple Steps for Digital Detoxing 0

We've all heard how great detoxing can be for your body, but have you ever heard how a "digital detox” can change your life? Detoxing is everywhere, but you can apply this health craze to other parts of your life, and reap benefits other than physical health. A digital detox is exactly what it sounds like, removing digital technology from your life for a short period of time and instead relying on other sources. We’ve become so reliant on unnecessary technology, it really puts things in perspective to take a break!

If this thought seems too scary (which for many, it may be!) you can take small steps to reduce the amount of time you use digital devices.

 

1. Designate one hour a day as your browsing time.

Whether it’s to peruse social media, catch up on some blogs, or what have you, internet browsing takes up most of the time on our digital devices, no matter your age. Figure out a stretch of time when you can catch up on whatever it is you don’t want to miss. Maybe the best time for you is when you get home and want to unwind after work, or maybe when you first get up in the morning and need something to scour as you eat breakfast. But this designated hour is the ONLY hour you can be browsing your feed. That also doesn't mean you need to spend the full hour refreshing your feed, but make sure to limit yourself to no more than an hour or else you won't see a difference.

 

2. Do it the old-fashioned way.

Instead of using an e-book, use a physical book. Instead of Pinterest-ing recipes, use a cookbook. Get your news from a, you guessed it… newspaper (or magazine)! Exposing yourself to less blue light (emitted from digital screens) can do wonders for your health, including helping you sleep better at night.

 

3. Get moving!

For anyone that's tried to run and scroll through their feed at the same time, you know it's difficult. If you feel tempted to play around on your phone just because, try to perform activities that make it difficult for you to do so. Go for a run or a hike, go see a movie or a play, and not only will you be unable to pull out your device, you won't feel the need to because you’ve found another task to occupy your mind.

 

4. Be social, without the media.

Instead of texting your friends because you have something to fill them in on, make plans to get together and spend some time face-to-face. You'll feel closer, and better yet, you can find other things to talk about that don't have to do with a post you saw on Instagram today. Face-to-face conversation sparks more discussion than texting, so you’ll actually end up getting a lot more out of the conversation.

 

5. Find a different outlet for the same purpose.

If you find yourself missing social media because of the self expression you feel from it, you can try a different form. Instead of tweeting, try journaling. Instead of Instagramming, try making a piece of art (it doesn't have to be great!). You'll ultimately be left with the same sense of expression, just with a different audience: yourself! In the end, we place too much on others’ perception instead of valuing our own. We might find our enjoyment of something comes from others acknowledging we did it, but the truth is, we should learn to enjoy these things for ourselves instead of needing an audience!

Hacks to Move More

Hacks to Move More 0

Most of us don’t get the chance to spend an entire day being active and moving around, because of, y’know, responsibilities, so it’s important to figure out ways you can still get moving for your health. We have tons of excuses: we’re too busy, we don’t have workout equipment, we don’t have the time or patience. The truth is, if you’re serious about getting more active and fit you can find creative ways to get going. 

 

Set a timer. Have an alarm on your phone set to go off every hour, two hours, or whatever you prefer, that will alert you to get up and do some exercising. This will make sure you get consistent movement throughout the day. Make your goal something like 20 burpees, 10 jumping jacks, 10 pushups. Make sure they’re exercises you can realistically do, or find a place to do. If you find yourself unable to do them because of the setting, you’ll just start skipping these workouts, and you’ll never get moving. Even if you’re unable to get in these workouts, the least you can do is take a quick break to get up and walk around for a few minutes, and a few minutes of walking is far better than a few minutes of sitting!

 

Take the long way. Most of us rush around on a constant crunch for time trying to find the shortest routes, but you’ll actually get more movement in if you take the long way. Instead of the elevator, take the stairs. Instead of grabbing that front-row parking spot, park at the back of the lot. It can actually add up to make a huge difference in your day. Sure, it takes more time, but nothing comes without a little extra work. 

 

Multi task. There are tons of things we do that can easily be done while moving, yet we continue to sit down and do them. Instead of sitting down to have a snack, go for a walk and eat at the same time. Instead of sitting down to watch tv, get up and do some jumping jacks. You can even make some progress and get things done by moving around. Clean! You almost never sit when you’re cleaning, and you’ll get the benefits of both a clean living space and some movement into your day. Get something else done while you move.

 

Distract yourself. The truth is, some people just do not like working out. But that’s okay! There are ways to make it more bearable. The best way to do this is to distract yourself with something you are interested in, because it gives you incentive to continue. Maybe you don’t always have the time to catch up on your favorite show, there’s a book you really wanted to read, etc. Treat yourself to a new show or audiobook while you work out. Since this is something you are actually interested in, it’s a good distraction from the physical workout. It’ll also make your workout less boring (a huge complaint). Music is fun, but there’s not a lot of mental stimulation going on. A good audiobook, tv show, or movie will engulf your mind and get you invested. Time will go by quicker, you won’t be as bored or focused on the discomfort of working out, and if the chapter or episode is really good, you won’t want to stop your workout until it’s finished!

 

DIY your equipment. Another common barrier from working out is that you may not have any equipment like weights. Weights are just that — weight. You don’t need special barbell or shape to get the same workout, you just need some equivalent weight. Get creative and use things you already have. You can use cans of food or pots and pans, or if you go grocery shopping, use a basket instead of a cart to get in a quick arm workout. You’ll no longer be able to use this excuse when you can use things you already have!