Showing posts with label Health. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Health. Show all posts

Friday, June 8, 2018

The Master Cleanse Detox

The Master Cleanse Detox
Lemon Juice, Grade B Maple Syrup, and Cayenne Pepper mixed with water. Drink nothing, but the detox for at least 5 days. Nothing else. To avoid hunger, it is very crucial to make enough of the detox to drink every time you feel hungry.

Not only is this guaranteed to detoxify your body, removing impurities, but it works to help you lose weight. But the question on everyone's minds is - does it work? The answer is yes. Absolutely. Results vary, but there are results for everyone who does this. And if you decide to extend this detox it is key to take breaks in between for avoid malnutrition.

Friday, February 16, 2018

A great plant-based blueberry smoothie

Today I made a plant-based smoothie with blueberries, blackberries, Vita Coco coconut water, Silk coconut milk and NOW Foods coconut sugar. I am going to drink this before I workout today. I already tasted some and it truly epitomizes "amazing" in every sense of the word.

Ideally, it is the perfect pre and post workout drink and great for not just vegetarians and vegans, but anyone looking to enjoy something healthy and filling during and after your workout. 

When it comes to working out, I cannot eat before I workout, as it makes me feel a little nauseous. And when I work out, it is usually on an empty stomach or I'll drink one liter of Vita Coco coconut water. Sometimes just bottled water. 

I am open to ideas on what drinks I should make and try. I think tomorrow I will try a different drink. Maybe something with bananas in it. What do you think? 

Sunday, August 13, 2017

DIY Health: Vagina Detox

The other day I decided to try what is referred to as a vagina detox. As my period concluded for the month, I wanted to try something new. What is a vagina detox? Well, it is basically vaginal steaming using an array of herbs or to put it accurately an herbal steam facial for your vagina.

This type of treatment for your vagina has been used in ancient medicine. Although the results vary, they have been known to heal an array of issues such as anxiety, depression, irregular periods, bladder infections, yeast infections, infertility, vaginal cysts, hemorrhoids, and even scarring from childbirth. You can read about it here.

What was my motivation for trying a vagina detox? Just curiosity. I don't suffer from any problematic health issues at the present. I just wanted to see what this latest craze was all about.

So, what do you do exactly? You choose your herbs that you want to include in your detox. It is critically key to choose wisely, as if you make a bad decision, the result will be a consequence of your poor choice. You want to make sure that you use herbs that are most suitable for your individual health needs.

Basil, as well as rosemary are very common when doing this type of detox because they possess antimicrobial properties. I didn't really do research before I tried this, so I decided to go with: cardamom, saffron, dandelion, ginger, and black tea along with rosehip oil.

After you choose the herbs you want to use, you want to prepare your water. I am well aware not every woman owns a facial sauna or facial spa, so in case you do not; just use a pan. The water must be filtered, as this is what works best. Never use tap water and refrain from using any "hard water" or any water infused with minerals.

Once you have added your water, it is important to add your herbs. I also decided to add (as I stated previously up above) an essential oil into the mix, simply because they work as a natural serum for sensitive areas. When you look at your steaming medium, the water should be boiling, depending on what kind of medium you are using to do a vagina detox. If you use a facial spa or sauna, you only have to wait 5 minutes and if you use a pan, you may wait 15 minutes.

You want to squat over what you are using, so that your vagina makes contact with the steam. You will want to do this for 15-20 minutes, depending on your tolerance. For your first time, I wouldn't recommend going over 30 minutes. If you don't feel like your vagina is receiving any treatment, you can maximize your experience by wrapping a towel around your waist, covering your entire bottom area. This will create what is referred to as a "tent" so that no moisture will get out and will prevent any air from getting in.
After the time has lapsed, you will notice some cramping. Cramping is simply normal after doing a vagina detox because it is basically the uterus getting rid of the toxins or any stagnant blood. Very interesting to know. After the cramping went away, I endured a rather soothing sensation which was quite stimulating.

I really believe a vagina detox is very crucial to our health. As women, it is key to never neglect our important parts of who we are. The benefits are astounding and I am looking forward to trying my next steaming treatment very soon.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Love the skin you are in this Summer with the Beauty Infusion from NeoCell

Beauty Infusion by NeoCell.
Collagen constitutes for 30% of protein in the human body. One of the best collagen supplements in the world today is definitely the Beauty Infusion by NeoCell. So, what is it exactly? It is a refreshing, all-natural blend that promotes radiant beauty. Radiant beauty so powerful that it starts within before working its way out. As you may or may not be already aware, when collagen levels decline in the body, this can lead to loss of elasticity in the skin, the hair and the nails. This is all part of intrinsic aging. And when we are exposed to environmental stresses including DNA damage and oxidative stress this is extrinsic aging. Supplementing with Beauty Infusion works to deliver the right amount of collagen and recapture that luminous glow from the inside-out.

Each Beauty Infusion supplement contains 6,000 mg of Hydrolyzed NeoCell Collagen Type 1 & 3 as well as 120 mg of Vitamin C, 50 mg of Hyaluronic Acid, 50 mg of Alpha Lipoic Acid, and 24 mg of Potassium. On top of that, the Beauty Infusion is low in calories and in carbohydrates as it is flavored with natural fruit juice powders and a Sweet Yara blend of Stevia and Erythritol.

Currently, NeoCell offers three unique Beauty Infusion flavors. These flavors include: Appletini, Tangerine Twist and Cranberry Splash. Although they taste great alone, they are an incredible addition to any smoothie.

Collagen also works to restore joint deterioration, heal wounds, repair leaky gut syndrome, cleanse your liver, help with muscle recovery, boost your metabolism and even reduce cellulite and stretch marks. Collagen gravitates to new skin cells and works to correct, prevent and repair any type of skin damage by promoting tissue regeneration. This connective protein also helps with mental health too. And on top of all of these amazing remedies and uses, Collagen gives your skin both strength and shape. Amazing right?

Beauty Infusion is a healthy supplement that not only your taste buds will crave, but your skin will too. Also, it is free of synthetic ingredients and GMOs. You can find the Beauty Infusion by NeoCell at your nearest NeoCell retailer such as The Vitamin Shoppe, GNC, Whole Foods, Sprouts, Vitamin World, Plum Market and more. Feel pretty today, feel and look even more beautiful tomorrow.

Friday, May 13, 2016

U by Kotex introduces NYC's first ever period pop-up shop, The Period Shop

National Women's Health Week kicked off on Sunday. What better way to celebrate this amazing time of year than with sharing something that is history in the making. Today, U by Kotex opened up their very first ever pop-up shop in Flatiron, the Period Shop. Located in the heart of the big apple on 138 5th Ave., you are definitely going to want to visit the Period Shop, as it opens today. Next to Victoria's Secret, women can fully embrace the world of menstruation in more ways than one. With everything from a PMS-friendly comfort food bar to live performances to signature cocktails to even digital games and more, this is one of the best places to be today.

What started out as a suggestion, turned into a vision which later turned into reality, thanks to college student and choreographer Sarah Michelson. Not only yesterday did U by Kotex create the Period Calculator, a calculator that tracks and predicts your period and even ovulation. U by Kotex continues to empower women around the world and as a result, make a difference for women and their health. In fact, just by searching #periodprojects you will discover all of the concepts and contributions towards women's health.

“I think many people, men and women, are probably a little uncomfortable thinking or talking about menstruation,” said Representative Grace Meng, Democrat of New York told Roni Caryn Rabin of the NY Times recently. “We’re thinking of how we can change the conversation.”

The Period Shop is open today from 11 am until 9 pm. It is also open tomorrow from 11 am until 9 pm and on Sunday from 11 am until 6 pm. For more information about NYC's first ever period pop-up shop visit U by Kotex today. #UbyKotex

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Cheesy Vegan Penne Pasta

Cheesy Vegan Penne Pasta
As a lacto-ovo vegetarian, I am discovering a lot of creative new ways to cook some of those timeless dishes without the carnivore classic in them. Kind of like the bun without the hot dog, only with a veggie dog in between the bun. As there are so many alternatives to meat (which you can find here) there are alternatives to those dishes that possess them too. And although I am a vegetarian, where I enjoy dairy, eggs and honey, I find myself really intrigued by vegan eating. In fact, there are times where I will go on what I refer to as 'vegan binges' and I will eat vegan for months. Is it hard to be a vegan? Absolutely not. It is just a matter of not worrying about what you eat, but only finding good food to enjoy that is not only meat-free, but free of dairy, eggs and honey.
Recently, in the kitchen I decided to create a very creamy yet cheesy vegan penne pasta. Most penne is vegetarian; however, not all of it is vegan. A good vegan penne can be homemade and rustic, as it can be found in a lot of grocery stores. Whole Foods for instance. So, how do you make cheesy vegan penne pasta?
First and foremost, you are going to want to add water into your pan followed by your favorite herbs and spices. The secret to any amazing pasta is to season the water in the pan before actually cooking the pasta. Of course adding more herbs and spices is an option later. I have been doing this for years and will continue for the rest of my life.
For this particular dish, I favor simplicity. What I added to the water only consists of salt, pepper and oil. That's it. No more, no less. You can add whatever you would like. If you are searching for that epic heat, you can add a little cayenne pepper and jalapeno. If you are looking to transform your cheesy vegan penne into a classic Italian dish, you can add some basil and oregano. You can do a lot, but for this dish I decided to keep it simple.
In a separate bowl, you want to create a base. This is where the magic happens. You are going to want to add one cup of unsweetened Silk Coconut Milk followed by two tablespoons of Earth Balance's vegan butter. You are also going to want to add some Sari Foods Nutritional Yeast Flakes followed by a little more salt. In my quest in making an outstanding cheesy vegan penne pasta, I added some vegan protein powder by Purely Inspired. This added a great balance of taste, creating a fusion of flavor. Blend everything together and sit the bowl aside.
Keeping an eye on your pasta, continue letting it cook until you have reached your desired texture. If you love your pasta al dente, it is key to test the pasta every few minutes. Once finished, strain the penne and place it directly into a separate bowl. Add the ingredients from the bowl. Mix generously.

Take a plastic or styrofoam plate, add some aluminum foil and place the penne on to it so it. Why? Because doing this will keep it's heat locked into place, so it won't get cold.
For more nutrition, you can add more of the nutritional yeast flakes. I will say this, adding more to the dish sort of dries it out, but is great for vegan athletes who are looking for more nutrients in their cheesy hot bite. Although the dish will lose it's creamy texture, the taste will remain the same.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Rachel Kessler of Kessler Communications

Today we talk to Rachel Kessler, founder of Kessler Communications, LLC, a beauty, health and wellness public relations firm in New York City, about her health and wellness tips. Rachel has healed herself and came back strong from chronic autoimmune illnesses through these various health tips and lessons. She still maintains a gluten-free, grain-free, sugar-free, dairy-free diet for optimal wellness.

Throughout her healthcare public relations career she has worked on behalf of clients such as Pfizer, Bayer, Medtronic and Amgen, worked on celebrity campaigns with Angelica Houston, Bart Conner and Joe Montana, and launched products such as Listerine Pocketpaks, Cialis, and Celebrex. She has worked in pretty much every therapeutic area from dermatology, plastic surgery, men's health, urology, diabetes to cardiology, gastroenterology and psychiatry.

(Q) What is the greatest tip you can give someone for health and wellness?

I think that connecting mind, body and spirit is the most important way to radiant health. If the spirit is unwell, the body will follow. If the emotions are holding a secret deep inside the gut, cells, mind or heart, the body will most likely become sick.

Do what makes your soul sing, what makes your spirit soar. Dancing? Drawing? Swimming? Do it. Take care to meditate and do a digital detox when you can. If there are any wounds, confront them so healing can begin. Be grateful for every day and every small moment and memory. I keep a gratitude journal and every night write down all that I am grateful for from the day. Usually, for me, I find myself writing down that I'm grateful for something that has to do with food. But oftentimes it's things like beautiful connections. My family, my magical nephew. My brother, friends and clients.

My point is to make sure your spirit is happy and healthy and eventually the body will follow. I also think when it comes to diagnosing and healing that thinking in a creative, out-of-the box kind of way can be really helpful. Bringing an entrepreneurial and creative spirit into the practice of medicine and science can only lead to greater discoveries and more treatment options. My client ZO Skin Health, Inc. has done this well and created some incredibly innovative skin care products as a result. That has been my experience. Pray in a way that is meaningful to you, be grateful, connect, think with a wide and open mind.

(Q) Anything else

If you have any addictions-whether that means being a workaholic, being addicted to your phone and technology, being a maniac exerciser or something else, tackle it. The key to vibrant health is balance in all ways. Be mindful about balance. If your'e drinking champagne, drink green juice. If you're hooked up to your computer and phone for days, hook up with your friends or spouse at night. If you work non-stop, rest. If you're channel surfing, go surfing. Everything in moderation.

(Q) What do you do to care for your skin? It looks amazing.

One of our very favorite clients of all time is ZO Skin Health. The company is thriving and filled with integrity, incredible products, amazing people and a pioneering spirit. The skin care products are science-backed, luxurious and results-driven. I use only ZO Skin Health, Inc. products. My medicine cabinet is all ZO Skin Health products. Since I started using these products, my skin has become so much healthier and more radiant. The other day a dermatologist thought I was ten years younger than I am. I said no, it's my client's products! I am very proud of them and could not be more thrilled to represent them professionally and personally. I recommend ZO Skin Health products to anyone and everyone who will listen. I'm passionate about them. I also make sure to indulge in a facial with Ashley Witte at Parlour De Witte. She's a very gifted aesthetician in New York City. She lifts the cheekbones up, as well as the spirit.

(Q) What are some unusual things that you do to maintain radiant health?

A few years ago, I met Tracy Piper of the Piper Center She is very knowledgeable about gut health and diet, among other things and has now become a friend. Getting acupuncture and colonics with her is always very beneficial in all ways. She recently wrote a book called The Piper Protocol which outlines all of her secret insider tips that she shares with her celebrity clients. I go to the Russian Turkish Baths in the East Village and sweat.

I think sweating is a great way to detox, heal, and prevent illness and inflammation. In fact, that was the theory behind the Lakota Sweat Lodges. The term for sweat lodge is Inipi, which means "to live again." I'm also a fan of making homemade fish broths with ginger and drinking warm lemon water in morning. I like to drink a chlorophyll water called Night Water from Sakara Life at the end of the day. I also love doing Bikram Yoga. In fact a hospital client had a study on yoga and how it reduces inflammation for breast cancer survivors and I think it can benefit everyone who is prone to inflammation, has autoimmune issues.

Here is the study Native Americans used activated charcoal as a toothpaste and I'm a big fan of what I like to call "charcoal for sparkle." My doctor, Dr. Patrick Fratellone, is an integrative medicine doctor and always filled with interesting, innovative ways to heal and treat. I have learned a lot from him.

(Q) That is fantastic. What other tips do you have?

Even if you're a city girl like I am, you really need to take time out and connect with nature. I live and work in the East Village of New York City, but make time to go running on Sundays along the river, dip my toes in the beach at Coney Island, and sit under a tree in Thompkins Square Park. After that, you come back even more energized for your work and with more passion and focus. I'm also constantly going outside of my comfort zone. I was recently asked to give a speech. I abhor public speaking. And so I said yes.

That's also why I did the New York City Triathlon. The thought of swimming in the Hudson River seemed so wild, I had to say yes. And constantly learning and being curious about the world is healthy too. I also really do believe in the edict that you are what you eat. This mean I am one human-sized vegetable, obviously.

(Q) What have you learned recently that you want to share?

I recently read "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up." It's a New York Times bestseller by Marie Kondo. It talks about clearing away any clutter and removing any possessions that don't "strike joy." I was already very organized but after that exercise, things have opened up even more. A clutter-free space spawns a clutter-free and healthy mind. And that's always welcome!
(Q) What people have most influenced your choice to be in health and wellness field?

My paternal grandfather, Dr. Ernest Borek, was a Hungarian scientist, pioneer in nucleic acid methylation, and microbiologist. His pioneering activities in cancer research led to significant scientific discoveries. His story is quite remarkable. As a boy, he could not attend college in Hungary because he was Jewish. He could not speak English when he came to this country at the age of 14 and the family was so poor they rubbed sausage on bread to make them think they were eating meat for dinner. Yet he worked hard, both at learning English and earning money, and he rose to become a college professor at Columbia who taught others. His research penetrated some of the mysteries of cancer, made the front page of the New York Times, and won him a nomination for the Nobel Prize. He was the author of four popular books and over 125 scientific publications.

My father, Ronald Kessler, is an investigative reporter, author of 20 books, and a New York Times bestselling author. So basically when you take someone who has a brain for pioneering science and health and mix them with someone who has a talent for communicating and writing then --boom--a passionate health public relations person is born. My grandfather Ernest said something quite powerful in his book, and I think it applies to all we have talked about here. Observing things from all different sides, including science, healing, and health.

"Great contributions in science come from two sources. There are those who, by keen observation, see something never seen before by the eyes of man. And then there are those, the more gifted ones I think, who take something seen by all but see it differently and give it new meaning."—Ernest Borek in Of Microbes and Life, edited by Jacques Monod and Ernest Borek, 1971.

Catch up with Rachel at Kessler Communications.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

MeasuPro BPM-80A Digital Arm Blood Pressure Monitor

When it comes to health and wellness, I find it to be extremely important. In fact, I find it so important that when I was offered the chance to try the MeasuPro BPM-80A Digital Arm Blood Pressure Monitor, I was actually pretty stoked because I have never owned anything like this before. I want to also add that I find this device extremely vital, especially when you are aiming for longevity in your life.

But the real question is, does this work? So, what did I think? 


This amazing MeasuPro BPM-80A Digital Arm Blood Pressure Monitor device is extremely convenient, as you can check your vitals at-home. Also, it is quite efficient because you have instant access without having to make a doctor's appointment.
What I found really interesting was the user modes. This device has a two-user mode that is connected to one button, making it sublimely simple to work with. The LCD display is quite large, as well so it's visible to virtually anyone.  
The memory recall feature is outstanding. What I found incredible about this device is the fact that it stores up to 120 measurements with 60 records per user. This makes it very easy for those looking to keep track of their blood pressure.
The Smart IHB indicator has such an outstanding alert system, which tells you whether or not your heartbeat is in fact irregular. The graphical display bar is really easy to understand, as well.
My mother works in the medical field and it was amazing to have my blood pressure checked prior to this device to see how accurate the readings were. Well, guess what? This amazing MeasuPro addition has an accurate reading and matched the healthcare professional reading. Amazing right?

The cuff size is about 22 cm and designed to increase up to 32 cm. If your arms are bigger than 32 cm, you will not be interested in this device. This cuff is for small/medium-to-medium/large arms. If you have extremely small or extremely large arms, you will not be able to use this device.
If you are someone who follows the traditional method of visiting a medical professional, you may not find this device appealing.

If you are someone who simply doesn't want to spend over $50 on this device in spite of the $45 savings, then you may not find this great MeasuPro device appealing.
The MeasuPro BPM-80A Digital Arm Blood Pressure Monitor is available at Amazon for $54.99. The original price is $99.99, so this is a $45 savings. I think this is a great deal considering my mother works in the healthcare field and said this device is modestly decent. Would I use this device again? Yes. Would I recommend it to a friend? Absolutely. For more information about the MeasuPro BPM-80A Digital Arm Blood Pressure Monitor, simply visit Amazon today.

FTC: I received this product in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Sari Foods: Spirulina, Acerola, and Nutritional Yeast

Brandbacker is always full of surprises, when it comes to connecting bloggers with businesses. It was really great to be able to discover Sari Foods. Located in the heart of Las Vegas, Sari Foods Company has managed to bring ancient foods to modern life, empowering the conscious consumer. Recently, I had the opportunity to try the Spirulina, Acerola, and Nutritional Yeast. So, what did I think?


When it comes to nutritional value, these Sari Food additions have it. And because of this, they are extremely versatile. Whether you want to add them to your favorite dishes or create smoothies and shakes or simply use them on their own, they work incredibly.

Whether you want to boost your immunity or simply looking to lose weight, you are going to enjoy these products immensely. They are great for virtually every diet too.

Spirulina contains about 50-70% of protein and includes all of the essential amino acids. It has an array of benefits and is known to improve your entire digestive system. Spirulina is also known to help with arthritis and heart disease. It is also known to help prevent hair loss, as well.

The Acerola (Vitamin C powder) is great for an array of individual health issues. Whether you are looking to boost your immunity or treat any flu-like symptoms, this is perfect for that. With over 1,670 times more mg of Vitamin C than an orange, a little goes a long way. A Brazilian doctor recently engaged in a comparative analysis about antioxidant potency and Acerola was the highest scoring domestic fruit. It is also good for preventing cancer, cardiovascular and chronic diseases. Whether you want to treat Allergic Rhinitis or simply a common cold, Acerola will definitely do that.

As a huge source of potassium, as well as, complete protein, Nutritional Yeast is the perfect health addition to those who do not eat meat, dairy, or eggs. It is also gluten-free and sugar-free, as well. Do not mistake Nutritional Yeast with Yeast Extract, as the two are very different. This taste is very "cheesy" and light and resembles a beige to yellow color, whereas; the extract is very bold and strong and looks brown (i.g. Vegemite).A little bit of product goes a long way, which I really enjoy. You don't have to use a lot of these products to enjoy them.

On the plus side, I will say that the nutritional yeast is by far the best tasting I have ever tried. It has a very buttery yet cheesy flavor. When eating vegan, adding this with a little bit of avocado is like eating pleasantly healthy velveeta.

And speaking of vegan, if you are vegan, you will enjoy these additions for their versatility and their overall nutritional value and contribution to some of your favorite dishes. When it comes to Spirulina, the protein content is as big, if not bigger than using milk and/or meat as your source.

A little bit of product goes a long way, which I really enjoy. You don't have to use a lot of these products to enjoy them. I've used them everyday for several weeks now and they are a little over a half full.

These products are not only free of synthetic ingredients, they are free of genetically modified organisms (or GMOs) too.


The Spirulina powder contains an array of ingredients such as Protein, Calcium, Gamma-Liolenic Acid (or GLA), Omega 3, Omega 6, Omega 9, Iron, Beta-Carotene, Chlorophyll, Folate, and more. If you are allergic to any of these ingredients, you are obviously not going to be interested in the Spirulina powder.

The Vitamin C (Acerola) powder contains quite a few ingredients. Some of them include: Vitamin E, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Magnesium, Potassium, Calcium, Iron, Phosphorus, Aceronidin, and more. If you are allergic, you may want to refrain from using this product.

The Nutritional Yeast powder includes several ingredients. These ingredients include: Iron, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Niacin, Biotin, Zinc, Phosphorus, Molybdenium, Selenium, and more. If you are allergic or find yourself garnering a reaction to any of these ingredients, you are not going to want to use this product.

If you are going through antihrombics, fibrinolytics, or thrombolytics or any treatment that is anticoagulant related, it is key to consult your doctor before using Spirulina.

You can find Sari Foods Nutritional Yeast for $12.95, Spirulina for $23.95, and Vitamin C Powder (Acerola) for $29.95 at Amazon. Would I use these products again? Yes. Would I recommend them to a friend? Yes. For more information about the Sari Foods - Spirulina, Acerola, and Nutritional Yeast, simply visit Amazon right now.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

First Person: How I Lost 10 Pounds In 1 Week

Everyone stresses shedding those extra pounds, no matter what time of year it is. Whether it is after the holidays or in early spring, it is a huge goal for most people who are looking to not only look better, but feel better too.

With all of the endless diet crazes that range from incorporating healthy eating into an active lifestyle or fasting until the next binge, it's hard to tell which diets actually work and shed off the extra inches.

As a 34 year old woman, I recently found myself losing weight and although I could not believe that my method worked, I was not shocked. The reality is, our body needs certain things in order to speed up the process, but how did I lose 10 pounds in 1 week?

For my diet - I stuck with a vegan diet that consisted of cabbage soup, kale chips, kosher dill pickles, and tofu. I used no butter or margarine and relied heavily on olive oil, kosher salt, and pepper. I also substituted butter for Earth Balance butter, as it is vegan. Instead of having three huge meals, I would also have 8 meals that ranged from medium to small.

The key to really losing weight is to drinking nothing, but water. I would drink at least ten, 16 oz. water bottles a day. The amount increased as I worked out. Some days I would have a gallon. It is so important to keep hydrated. Avoid anything such as diet sodas or anything with artificial sugars. Every other day, I would drink a can of Zevia soda and would have a glass of Silk's Coconut/Almond Blend.

Often times I find myself snacking on something after 5 pm, however; with this diet I did not eat anything after 5 pm. Instead, I would substitute any cravings with one kosher pickle and more water. If I were hungry, I would eat something vegan with no carbs, as well as, no calories.

For my exercise - I would go to the gym for at least 1 hour, every day. Sometimes I would go twice. There are no days off. I would do at least 20-30 minutes of cardio followed by muscle confusion strength training, working almost every area of the body at once. Each day, I would change course and speed.

On some of the days, I would stay longer at the gym and often times, train full contact boxing and Muay Thai. I would also shadow box and do a lot of cardio/cross training workouts outside of the gym such as cycling, running/jogging, and even swimming. In fact, instead of driving or riding a bus or even catching a carpool, I would substitute that form of transportation by riding my bicycle or walking. Every single time I would drink a lot and made sure that I kept myself hydrated.

For my supplements - What people don't realize is the combination of drinking a lot of water and working out is great, however; what makes the weight loss amazing and practically instantaneous is taking supplements to support it.

Although everyone is different, for this particular diet I took Raspberry Ketone, Sibu Beauty's Sea Buckthorn supplement, Mexican Wild Yam, and believe it or not, NeoCell's Collagen supplement. If I felt like I needed more energy, I would take a caffeine pill and/or have a glass of Click's Espresso Protein which I would use Silk's Coconut/Almond Blend as the source. Although the protein is whey and non-vegan, taking just one glass a week shocked my body in fat burning mode.

After a week, I was 10 pounds lighter. Not only did I drop the pounds, I lost inches and of course, clothing sizes. It is the best feeling in the world, when you start feeling the loss and seeing the results that follow. They don't call it a diet (die-it) for no reason. Stick with this plan and you will start seeing results in due time. Just please do not go crazy and consult your doctor before doing it.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Meet Tim Mount, NeoCell's Brand Educator

Tim Mount, NeoCell's brand
Who is Tim Mount? He is a nutrition expert, an herbalist, a martial art instructor, and a fitness writer. He is also the brand educator to one of my favorite health & wellness brands, NeoCell. Recently, I caught up with the brand educator about health, fitness, and NeoCell. Here is what he had to tell me...

(Q) Hello Tim. How are you? Tell me a little more about yourself and your involvement with the NeoCell brand...

I have degrees as a Certified Clinical Nutritionist and Certified Clinical Master Herbalist, and I’ve been devoted to the natural health industry for over a decade. Originally, I began my career as a natural health professional consulting with clients to “nutritionally support” the healing of physical ailments. At the time I was also teaching a Sports Nutrition class at the college I graduated from – the Natural Healing Institute in Encinitas, CA. I had a serious ankle injury and was on crutches. A classmate, who works for NeoCell, gave me a bottle of Collagen Sport to try out. The rate of healing was so fast that I started looking into collagen more closely and was amazed at what I was finding in the literature! One thing lead to another and now I’m the National Educator for NeoCell. In addition to travelling throughout the country giving lectures on collagen, I write most of the blogs found on our website and produce many of the training video found on our YouTube channel

(Q) As a fan of NeoCell, I have to ask - what inspired you to get involved with NeoCell?

It was my own personal healing experience that got me hooked! I certainly don’t feel like a salesman when I lecture about collagen. I truly believe in our NeoCell product line and know that millions of others can have the same dramatic results if they learn about it and try it out.

(Q) I recently had the opportunity to read the latest blog post you made on NeoCell's blog titled "A Mother's Love" and I have to say that I was truly moved. You wrote this story years ago, which was interesting. Can you tell me more about that particular encounter with the homeless woman?

I’m glad you enjoyed it. I wrote it for myself about 10 years ago when I lived in San Diego. It was never published, but I was so moved by the experience that I didn’t want to forget it happened. I ran across it on my computer and thought it would be a fitting post for Mother’s Day. The encounter has taken on a new meaning for me, now that I’m in my mid-30s. I am a proud father of a beautiful toddler and can finally comprehend the woman’s selflessness and love for her child and grandchild. As a parent, there is nothing more important than our kids, including our own comfort and well being.

(Q) Is it true that you are also a second degree black belt?

Yes, I hold a second degree black belt in judo (Nidan) and I have crossed trained in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu for many years. I was a competitive athlete in my 20s, but due to several severe injuries (5 broken teeth, numerous concussions, MCL tear, and much more), I decided to teach others how to get injured – haha, just kidding – how to defend themselves, so I became a Certified Coach through the USJA. I ran my own club, Aztec Judo, out of San Diego State University for 6 years and taught the judo class at Team Quest for a while. I also taught a credited Self Defense class through the university and was the instructor for the official sexual assault prevention program as well. I spent years developing my program S.A.V.E.D. (Sexual Assault Violence Education and Defense) and wish I had more time today to teach it. Unfortunately, I have taken a sabbatical from martial arts coaching in order to focus on my family and career, but plan to get back into it once my daughter is old enough. Teaching children brought me great joy in life.

(Q) When working out, do you supplement using NeoCell? What are the benefits of using NeoCell products?

Absolutely! I consider collagen the most important supplement that I take for exercise recovery and weight training. I joke that I’ve injured every major joint in my body except my left hip, so I’m very protective of it! After retiring from judo I put a lot of focus on fixing my body. I didn’t want to be the guy in the wheelchair at age 50 because of the abuse I put on it in my younger years. Collagen is essential in preventing new injuries from occurring by strengthening my connective tissue. It also has done wonders healing my old injuries. I now live pain free and without exercise limitations. In fact, I’m training for an NPC Physique show in November. For anyone interested in following my progress, check out my blog and be sure to follow me for the latest pictures and updates. I plan to write a more extensive meal plan, training guide, and supplement routine on the blog in the near future, which will include an in depth discussion on the collagen and exercise.

(Q) For everyone reading this interview, what would you like them to know? What is next for Tim Mount?

In the short term, personally, I’m highly focused on my upcoming physique competition. Professionally, NeoCell has some very exciting things on the horizon which will keep me very busy! For future endeavors, I have found that as long as I follow my passions in life and put in the effort to become an expert, that opportunities present themselves without me seeking them out. I’m convinced that the natural health industry will continue to grow and more and more people will discover the benefits of NeoCell. Who knows what is in store!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Food Talk with Quest Nutrition

When it comes to enjoying high-quality ingredients without numerous carbohydrates and sugars, Quest Nutrition knows all about it. In fact, they are one of the highest rated health & wellness food brands in the world today. And guess what? I recently had the chance to speak with Quest Nutrition's Creative Director, Matt Cadiz. Here is what he had to tell me...

(Q) Hello Matt. How are you? Tell me a little more about Quest Nutrition...

Sarah, I’m doing amazing! Thanks for having me. In a nutshell, Quest Nutrition is all things clean, fun and delicious. Our mission is to end obesity without sacrificing flavor. We offer 14 delicious protein bar flavors for every taste bud, as well as Quest Cravings (peanut butter cups), Quest Pasta, and our newest family member: Quest Protein Chips!

(Q) That is amazing! I have to ask, what is the inspiration behind this brand?

Quest was inspired by leaders who wanted to bring value to peoples lives. We are serial entrepreneurs who wanted something that will benefit people, as a whole. Enter, Quest Nutrition! The spearhead to ending obesity.

(Q) You offer everything from low carb chips to low carb pasta to low carb candy bars to even low carb protein bars. I have to ask, what are your best selling products right now?

Our most popular sellers continue to be our Quest Bars: Cookies & Cream and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. We have yet to compare our Quest Protein Chips, but they are on their way to success.

(Q) When it comes to protein bars, you offer quite a selection. Everything from 'cinnamon roll' to 'apple pie' to 'lemon cream pie' to 'strawberry cheesecake' to even 'banana nut muffin' and much more. You even offer a 'Peanut Butter & Jelly' one, as well. I have yet to discover a protein bar, which is low carb to offer such an extensive selection. It's incredible.

I’m glad you mentioned PB&J, as it’s my favorite! Don’t forget, amongst all the low carb macros and nutrients, we offer a high value of protein as well! Famous for what we have, and don’t have sugars! We definitely do our best in Research & Development to give the best tasting products without sacrificing our macros.

(Q) I love that offer two different kinds of pasta, spaghetti and spinach fettuccine. This is perfect for those who are doing a high-protein, low-carb diet. They are also great for individuals with diabetes.

When we first released Quest Pasta we didn’t know how our customers would react, as it was left field of our Quest Bars. But they’re doing great and just another family member to our ever growing line of products. We try our best to have something for everybody.

(Q) The chips you offer are incredible. The flavor pairings are one thing, but the fact that they are low in carbohydrates is just something entirely special. When you created one of America's favorite foods on a healthier level, what was your mission?

Going back to our mission, it’s to eat cleaner, but NOT sacrificing taste or the feeling of indulging. It only made sense to replace just fun eating, with fun and healthy eating via Quest Protein Chips. It’s a snack for the perfect road trip, hike, or post gym. We definitely aim for convenience as the world has less time to prepare meals, and more time working on their personal growth.

(Q) What is Quest's Kitchen? Tell me a little more about this particular feature...

Quest’s Kitchen is where all the fun takes place! You can catch all our favorite fans creations on our Instagram: @questnutrition, as well as our “Cooking Clean” series on YouTube hosted by Cassey Ho. It’s a fun way to engage with our amazing fans and let them know we couldn’t have done it without them!

(Q) When someone approaches you and says "Matt, I don't know what I would have done without Quest Nutrition. Your products have allowed me to enjoy my favorite foods without the carbs." How does this kind of testimony make you feel?

Honestly, there were times when I wondered if people would appreciate what we were doing… and to see all the comments on social media and emails, it has motivated us even more to continue our quest (no pun intended) as it makes everything worth it! If not us, somebody would try to do this…Might as well be us – TEAM QUEST!

(Q) For all of those health and wellness enthusiasts, including food lovers and foodies that are reading this interview, what would you like them to know? What is next for Quest Nutrition?

Quest Nutrition is relentless and passionate in our mission! Y’all may think we don’t listen or read what you write, but we do! Continue to contribute your ideas because we appreciate you! 2014 is just the beginning. Make space in your kitchen for what’s to come. Let’s make conscious eating clean and fun, together!

For more information about Quest Nutrition, please visit Quest Nutrition today.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Soda Talk: Exclusive Interview with Zevia

Zevia is a naturally sweetened soda that has no sugar, no calories, and no artificial sweeteners. It is vegan, kosher, and gluten-free. Zevia is not only one of the greatest additions to ever grace the shelves of our local supermarket, it is one of my favorite sodas ever. Recently, I had the opportunity to speak with Paddy Spence, the CEO of Zevia. Here is what he had to say...

(Q) Hello Paddy. How are you? Great to speak with you. You are the brains behind this amazing brand.
Hey Sarah. I am doing great, thank you. I am so excited to be able to get on the phone today. How long have you been familiar with Zevia?

(Q) I first discovered Zevia when I was searching for the perfect soda alternative that was not only love in calories, but low in carbohydrates. I wanted something that was not sweetened with artificial ingredients such as Aspartame or Splenda. I noticed that when I would drink anything that was labeled diet, I would feel awkward, as if there were side effects to the sugar alternatives. Then, one day I took a stroll to my local supermarket to discover Zevia and ever since, I have been a big fan of the brand. The first flavor I tried was the Ginger Root Beer, which is one of my personal favorites right now. I was thinking to myself "this is so amazing, I have to contact the individual who created this soda."
That is so awesome.

(Q) There is so much that I find amazing about this soda. It's very low in carbohydrates, but there is still enough carbs to give you energy, as well, but the fact that it doesn't have the Aspartame or any of the sugar alternatives in it, is a huge plus for me. As much as I don't believe in brand or product belittling, I think it's evident that am not a fan of Aspartame.
I think, like you, that a lot of Americans are finding out that they are uncomfortable with Aspartame. We don't even know how much we are taking in because there are so many foods and beverages with Aspartame in them. In fact, a lot more than we can expect. That is one of the big benefits of having Zevia. From a no-sugar stand point, Zevia does not include Aspartame.

(Q) Stevia vs. Aspartame, the sweet dirty truth. It's evident that Stevia is natural and Aspartame is lab created. I wanted to ask you Paddy, what are the benefits and concerns of consuming both of these?
I think when it comes to Aspartame, it's less about having that one can of diet coke. Is that one can going to impact you? It's more about the quantity that one person is consuming. When you think about it, if you were to drink four cans of diet coke a day, over the course of one year, you are getting something like a kilo of Aspartame. So, huge quantities and I think that is where people really get concerned. The various health impacts that you see, whether it is concern over weight gain, etc. Recently, there was a big study that the University of Iowa conducted on menopausal women and they found that for folks who are consuming two cans or more of diet soda a day, there is an increase in cardiac arrest and stroke. So, things like that are important because this study consisted of thousands of people. So, pretty reliable data and I think that is where people are really getting concerned.

(Q) Wow, very interesting. There are a lot of problematic health issues when consuming this ingredient. I just want to say that I love the fact that you don't use this ingredient in your soda.
Well, thank you. I really appreciate that.

(Q) I have to ask, I notice that you use monk fruit in Zevia. Can you tell me a little more about this fruit?
Monk fruit is a fruit that is cultivated in parts of Asia and specifically parts of China and Thailand and like Stevia, it is a plant-based source of a sweetening ingredient that is 200 times as sweet as sugar with no calories. It is a really fantastic natural sweetener. It's a great compliment or accompliment to Stevia, so we use Stevia which is our primary sweetening ingredient which provides about 80% of our sweetening power and about 12% comes from the Monk Fruit and about 3% of Erythritol which is a sugar alcohol. So, it's really the unique blend of those three sweeteners that allows us to get a really nice, sweet product without the after taste.

(Q) That is amazing. And you know, there is no after taste which I was going to tell you, I absolutely love. When you drink other brands (and I won't mention any names) that do include Aspartame. You can definitely taste "it" and it isn't pleasant or something you want to taste.

(Q) Now I have a question, Zevia is a gluten-free which I absolutely love. I also love the fact that it is kosher, however; is it vegan-friendly? Is it free of genetically modified organisms (or GMOs)?
It is vegan and it is also non-GMO. Actually, if you look on our can, we have the vegan logo, the gluten-free logo, and the kosher logo. We are currently going through the non-GMO verfication process, so we are excited about that. We have been at it for a while, as there is a lot of documentation, etc. We are making great progress so we can use the logo and put on the can that we are non-GMO verified.

(Q) That is amazing. You know, I definitely wish you luck in that journey. It is definitely hard to brand a product like this, however; once everyone discovers what it is all about, it is definitely going to get recognized for what it is. It's already out there on the shelves. I mean, I discovered it and I am sure there are millions upon millions of people discovering this amazing soda as we talk about it. I must confess, I am a huge fan and I drink it religiously. It's like my favorite soda. Now, I have to ask you, what are your most popular flavors right now? Tell me a little more about your best sellers...
Well, the Cola is still our biggest seller, but we are really a variety in the brand. We currently have 15 flavors. Ginger Ale, Cream Soda, and Ginger Root Beer would be the next three, most popular. What is interesting is our fruit flavors are also extremely popular. There are some regional aspects to soda, as well. Dr. Zevia is very popular in Texas. With Dr. Pepper being born in Texas, Dr. Zevia is popular there. If you go into a retail store in Texas, there is a soda section and then there is a Dr. Pepper section. It's incredibly popular. Mountain Dew was born in the Southeast, so there are a lot of Mountain Dew drinkers in the Carolinas and in Tenessee, so that is an area where our Mountain Zevia sells really well. So, it's really neat to see regional pockets of preference. In the Northeast, it is a huge Ginger Ale market. People in New England particularly love Ginger Ale, so we sell a ton of that there. In addition to Ginger Root Beer and Cola, Ginger Ale and Cream Soda are our top sellers right now.

(Q) That is amazing. I have tried every single one of them and they are so amazing. You know, I really love the fruit sodas too. And they actually taste better than any diet fruit soda out there.

(Q) For all of those health enthusiasts and soda lovers that will read this interview, what would you like them to know? What is next for Zevia?
That is a great question. Well, one of the things that is next for us is getting out there into all of the locations where people buy soda. Today, you can find Zevia hidden in your natural products retail store and then in the supermarket and depending where you live, you may find us in Target or Costco, but there are a lot of places that sell soda where we traditionally haven't sold our product. Particularly places like convenience stores, restaurants, stadiums, etc. Starting this year, we became the first independent soda to sponsor a major league baseball team, so we are the zero-calorie soda sponsor for the Oakland A's. It's been pretty exciting. I have been to a few games this year and you can go into the stadium and buy a 16 oz. can of Zevia. That kind of thing is incredibly exciting and you are probably similar. Our fans go places outside of the home and they want Zevia. They go to the movies, they don't want a diet pepsi, they want a Zevia Cola. Some folks keep it in their purse and others request it at the movie theatre, so I think you are going to see our product in a lot more places. Single cans being sold in convenience stores and other places like that.
For more information about Zevia, please visit today.

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Smoothie Recipes: Raspberry Kale Smoothie

Add Raspberries, Kale, Beets, Spirulina, Flaxseed Oil, and Silk's Very Vanilla Soy Milk into a blender. Blend generously. Serve in a chilled glass. Although healthy, this vegan friendly drink is incredibly delicious too.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Smoothie Recipes: Silk Blueberry Smoothie

Fresh Blueberries, Flaxseed Oil, Silk's Blueberry Yogurt, Silk's Vanilla Soy Milk, Stevia, and Ice. Combine ingredients, blend, and serve. Simplicity at it's finest.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

GMO-Free List

GMOs (or genetically modfied organisms) are used to create genetically modified foods using various forms of mutagenesis and other genetic modifications. Although eating foods that possess GMO are not radically dangerous, there is evidence that they do play a role in causing an array of problematic health issues later on in life.  GMO foods have also been linked to the decline of farmers losing money and benefits.

I know a lot of my readers have told me that they are interested in knowing what food brands do NOT contain genetically modified organisms so I have decided to compose a list of food brands that are non-GMO.


May Wah
Field Roast
Amy's Kitchen
House Foods
Soy Dream
Whole Foods Organic
Trader Joe's Organic
Safeway Organic
Meijer Organic
Whole Soy
Pacific Soy
Soy Delicious
Wild Wood
Bountiful Bean
Organic Valley Soy
Small Planet
The Simple Soyman
Imagine Foods

Bolthouse Farms
Clover Stornetta Farms
Earth's Best
Nature's Path
Mom Made Meals
Garden of Eatin
Bob's Red Mill
Que Pasa
Zen Don
Healthy Times
Blue Sky
Organic Planet
Pure Indian Foods
Eden Foods
Seven Stars Farm

Hannah Max Baking
Cascadian Farms
Quinoa Gold
Frito Lay's Naturals
Annie's Naturals
Tropical Traditions
Kopali Organics
Chippewa Valley
Pacific Village
Gindstone Bakery
Rising Moon
Thai Kitchen
Ian's Natural Foods
Erivan Dairy
Berlin Natural Bakery
Jelly Belly
White Wave
Kirkland Organic
Muir Glen
French Meadow Bakery
Wisconsin Organics
Health Valley Organic
Tradition Miso
Hain Pure Foods
Lundberg Family Farms
Stremick's Heritage
Joseph Farms
Big Island Organics
Rising Moon
Late July
Seeds of Change
Follow Your Heart
Sweet Cloud
Dr. McDougall's Right Foods
Promised Land Dairy
Arrowhead Mills
Outta The Park
Rogue Creamery
Oakhurst Dairy
Carrington Farms
Divine Foods
Barbara's Bakery
Sunridge Farms
Grandma's Best
Harvest Moon
Kettle Chips
Emerald Valley
Simple Sweets
Uncle Matt's Organic
Seeds of Change
Newman's Own
Stonyfield Farms
Oregon Gourmet
Walnut Acres
Grindstone Bakery
Miso Master
Emperor's Kitchen
Purity Foods
San J

This list will be updated sporadically. In the meantime, check out my frequently updated vegetarian substitutes alternatives list.