Is Your Yogurt on the Naughty List?

I don’t know about you, but I feel really good about myself when I start my day off with a bowl of  yogurt. I considered my bowl of Greek yogurt as my “healthy meal” of the day, and didn’t worry about what I consumed for my other meals, because my yogurt made up for the other bad stuff I ate throughout the day! However, my scale begged to differ.shutterstock_154277930 I was shocked when I stepped on the scale for the first time, a few months after I began my yogurt “diet” and saw that I had gained weight! Quite a bit of it! I thought I was being healthy! However, like most foods, there is a right way and a wrong way to do yogurt. I came to the sad realization that one “good” meal a day doesn’t mean that the rest of my meals can be Happy-Meals.

While yogurt can be a great snack for weight loss due to its high protein content, here are 6 mistakes you can make while eating yogurt that can thwart your progress:

1. Not Measuring Portions- Previously, when I bought yogurt, I assumed that one container was one serving size and never thought to double-check this with the label. Even when I bought the larger containers to save money, I never stopped to check how much of it I should actually be eating per serving. Its important not to assume a serving size based on gauging portions with your eyes, especially if you’re eating from a large container. Aim for 6 ounces to 1 cup per serving size.

2. Counting Calories vs. Counting Protein- While counting calories is essential when trying to lose weight, doing so with yogurt could be misleading you. Rather than only focusing on the amount of calories per serving, make sure you’re getting around 12-15 grams of protein. For example, rather than choosing the 100 calorie yogurt with 6 grams of protein, go for the one that has more calories, but also more protein, so you feel full longer.

shutterstock_2211729343. Parfait Does Not Equal Yogurt- “It has yogurt, so its healthy… right?” Not necessarily. In fact, parfaits with full-fat yogurt and lots of granola can do more harm than good. For one thing, the granola breaks up the yogurt, leading you to believe you are eating less yogurt than you actually are. Also, a lot of packaged parfaits have artificial flavors and contain fruit that is far from fresh. I know the parfait looks much more appetizing than a regular packaged yogurt, but in the long run the parfait isn’t doing your weight-loss efforts any favors.

4. Adding Too Many  Extras- So you’ve got your yogurt serving size down, but are you accounting for the cereal, honey, or fruit you are adding to it? All of these things can be great, healthy additions, just make sure you are adding them in modest amounts. It’s important to clarify whether you want your yogurt to be a snack, or a full-on meal. If it’s just a snack, make sure it is 200 calories or less.

5. Using Yogurt as Your Probiotic Source- While getting your daily dose of probiotics is important, make sure you aren’t choosing a yogurt just based on its probiotic claims. There are other lower calorie and fat sources for getting your daily probiotic intake, like supplements. There is no need to start loading your diet with yogurt just to get your probiotic fill.shutterstock_98051684

6.  Making Fat-Free a Priority-  Usually, a fat-free yogurt will overcompensate in other areas, like sugar. Yogurt is a healthy fat, however, the added sugars are not. Go for a yogurt with less than 18 grams of sugar, and make sure that it is not the first ingredient listed on the label! Overall, you want to be sure you’re getting enough protein and not too much sugar.

Stocking Stuffers You’ll Want to Give and Receive

Although it is not yet Thanksgiving, many people have completed most of their Christmas shopping. Others, like me, haven’t started ticking off their Christmas list obligations yet. Whether you finished your shopping before Halloween or you’re waiting until Christmas Eve night to begin, check out EFI’s favorite stocking stuffers for 2014. Each gift was hand-picked with care and experience by a member of the EFI team, creating a comprehensive stocking stuffer list for every member of your family.

 

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For The Body:

  • Nutrex Spriulina Pacifica– As one of the most nutritious, concentrated whole foods known to humankind, one 3 gram serving of Hawaiian Spirulina Pacifica provides 60% protein and an excellent source of Vitamins A, K1, K2, B12, Iron, Manganese, and Chromium as well as a rich source of health-giving phytonutrients such as carotenoids, GLA, SOD, and phycocyanin

 

 

  •  Dr. Ohhira’s Probiotics- Modern lifestyles are hard on the body. In addition to supporting digestion, Probiotics are essential for immune system function, and your gut is your first line of immune defense. Keep your family and yourself healthy over the holidays!

 

 

  • Oxylent– A 5-in-1 daily multivitamin and  refreshing drink. Instead of swallowing pills or tablets, add a packet of Oxylent to water and enjoy a sparkling drink that delivers vitamins, minerals, electrolytes, amino acids, and antioxidants with easy absorption and great taste.

 

 

  • Soverign Silver– Topically, colloidal silver is the instant choice for use on minor cuts, scrapes, burns, abrasions and anything that you don’t want to get infected. It can be used in place of almost any antibiotic, both for topical use and internal use. Another great way to make sure your family stays well throughout the stressful holidays.

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  • Chia Omega– The pioneering product line that stands out by combining Chia Seed Oil with synergistic ingredients for specific health goals. Providing support for cardiovascular health and healthy cognition plus additional benefits, CHIA OMEGA is the plant-based Omega-3 supplement people are searching for. Try one or all four of the CHIA OMEGA formulas.

 

For The Skin:

  •  Pacific Shaving Company– Using safe, natural and organic ingredients, these shaving products have you covered before, during and after your shave.

 

 

  • Dr. Ohhira’s Kampuku Beauty Bar– The Beauty Bar merges the revitalizing power of natural ingredients, ancient Japanese fermentation skills, and modern science to create a clarifying, balancing, and rejuvenating beauty bar gentle enough for the entire family. With no scent and no detergents, this soap works wonderfully on all skin types.

 

 

  • Hyalogic Episilk Facial Mist– This light mist with Hyaluronic Acid refreshes and lightly moisturizes the skin while not clogging pores or leaving oily residues. A perfect “pick-me-up” for your skin!

 

 

  • Eco Lips– Organic, Gluten-free, Non-GMO, Cruelty-free, smooth & soothing lip balm for your dry, winterized lips.

 

 

For The Treat-Filled Tummy:

 

  •  Vega Maca Chocolate Bars– A chocolate indulgence you can actually feel good about! Dark chocolate combined with 4,000 mg of maca, renowned for its ability to balance, invigorate and energize.

 

 

 

For Your Pets:shutterstock_215720035

 

  • Leashes by Liz– A family owned small business that makes handmade leashes, collars and pet accessories perfect for the furry friend in your life! The brightly colored, braided leashes are sure to make a statement on your next walk or trip to the dog park!

 

 

 

For Your Wardrobe:

  • Izzie and Olin– Gorgeous jewelry and accessories that are handmade with quality pieces, many of which are reclaimed finds from vintage pieces. This one of a kind jewelry line will make you and your loved ones look like a million bucks, without having to spend it!

 

 

 

Defending the City: Harnessing the Ancient Wisdom of Bees for Whole Body Health

How do you protect a highly congested city of 60,000 people from disease?

With spit of course.

Sound weird?

Well it is kinda cool because this is exactly what bees do to protect their busy and crowded hives.

A typical honeybee colony is comprised of 20,000 to 60,000 bees all living and working in one incredibly congested hive. Due to the crowded nature of their environment, bees need to be especially vigilant about protecting their colony from disease. Just one tiny pathogen could spread infection throughout the entire hive.

For millions of years, bees have been perfecting the art of self-protection using a sticky substance known as propolis to coat and sterilize the interior of their hives.

Derived from the Greek words pro, “in defense ofand polis “city”, propolis was named when ancient beekeepers noticed that bees often built a wall of propolis at the entrance of their colony. Because bees have to enter through this “propolis gate”, the bees are cleansed of microbes as they enter the hive.

What is Propolis?

Propolis, also known as “bee glue”, is a substance derived from tree saps, flowers, and other botanical ingredients that surround the bee colony.  Certain types of trees secrete saps with antibiotic and antifungal properties in order to seal their wounds and protect themselves from infection. Medicinal tree saps have been used as therapeutic remedies for centuries; some of the most famous being the biblically significant Frankincense and Myrrh.

Bees take these powerful resins and blend them with their own waxes and saliva to create propolis, which they then use to coat their hives. In the hive, propolis protects against pathogens and diseases, as well as protecting the colony against harsh environmental factors, such as rain and frost.Essentially, the bees borrow the medicine of the trees and re-purpose it for their own defenses.

Called “nature’s penicillin”, bee propolis offers antibacterial, antiviral,antiseptic, antifungal and antibiotic-properties. Due to these capabilities, propolis sterilizes the environment in the hive to ensure the colony’s survival from generation to generation. A number of scientists have noted that the inside of a bee hive may be more sterile than a hospital!

Honey bees also use propolis to embalm any insects or animals that may invade the hive. Though any trespasser would be immediately killed by bee stings, the carcass of the body would be too heavy for bees to remove from the hive. Thus, the corpse is “embalmed” with propolis in order to prevent its decay and potential contribution to infection.

Interestingly, the ancient Egyptians also used propolis in mummification when they noticed this unique benefit.

Active Compounds in Propolis

Over 200 different active compounds have been identified in propolis, although potency and composition varies depending on the types of plants and trees in the region where the propolis is collected. Among these components are antioxidants, polyphenols, vitamin A, B vitamins, essential oils and amino acids. In general, propolis consists of approximately 55% resins, 30% beeswax, 10% ethers and aromatic oils and 5% bee pollen.shutterstock_204971626

Health Benefits of Propolis

Just as the bees “borrowed” the medicine from the trees, humans can harness the power of propolis for our own healing. Utilizing the healthful wisdom of bees, we may defend our own “cities” against microbes and disease with propolis supplementation.

Natural Antibiotic Properties

Propolis has the highest antimicrobial capabilities of any bee product. The methods of antimicrobial activity are thought to be a synergistic effect of all compounds present. When propolis is administered, pathogenic bacteria are no longer able to reproduce and the body’s natural defenses to that pathogen are strengthened.

Propolis inhibits harmful bacteria without destroying your body’s friendly bacterial population, or creating bacterial resistance. Propolis has been proven to have inhibitory effects on some strains of drug resistant bacteria, such as MRSA and H.pylori, and has shown a synergistic effect when combined with standard antibiotic usage.

For those of you who know that there are different classes of bacteria, it has been suggested that propolis is more active against gram-positive pathogens, but many gram-negative bacteria are also inhibited.

Natural Anti-fungal Properties

Just as propolis protects the beehive from fungal infections, it can do the same in the human body. Propolis has been shown to have fungicidal effects against Candida albicans, Candida glabrata, Candida krusei and Trichosporon spp. A recent study suggests that propolis treatment is as effective as the antifungal medicine nystatin for treatment of oral yeast infections. Data also suggests a boost in the fungicidal activity of macrophages by propolis stimulation. I recently reviewed some natural support for fungal infections such as Candida.

Antiviral Properties

Various studies have shown propolis displays anti-viral activity against small pox vaccine virus, influenza virus, herpes simplex virus, rift valley fever virus, and avian influenza virus. Two separate studies have also shown propolis treatment to be effective against HPV. Studies on antiviral capabilities of bioflavonoid extracted from propolis did not show as strong of an effect as propolis itself, suggesting a synergistic effect of all of the compounds in propolis working together on antiviral activity.

Nature’s remedies are much more dynamically orchestrated than a pharmaceutical drug – often acting beneficially in multiple areas at once whereas pharmaceutical regimens tend to target a very specific area at once.

Anti-Inflammatory

Inflammation is the body’s natural healing response to harmful stimuli such as pathogens, irritants and free radicals. The high concentration of bioflavonoids and cinnamic acid derivatives present in propolis act as powerful anti-inflammatory agents by fighting infectious agents which may be associated with less pain and a reduction in both acute and chronic inflammation. Caffeic acid phenethyl ester (CAPE), a constituent of propolis, has been shown to possess immune-modulatory and anti-inflammatory capabilities.

Antioxidant

Compared to pollen and royal jelly, propolis exhibits the highest antioxidant activity. The antioxidant activity of propolis correlates well with its total concentration of polyphenols. Active free radicals are involved in almost all the cellular degradation processes and leads to cell death and the resulting oxidative stress is thought to conttibute to the development of chronic and degenerative diseases.

Hyperglycemia and Diabetes

Propolis may reduce blood sugar levels in both animal and human test subjects with diabetes. Another study with diabetic rats showed propolis to have effects on altering the metabolism of blood lipids, leading to decreased lipid peroxidation and concurrent oxidative stress.

Dental Health

Recent dentistry research has displayed evidence that propolis may protect against dental caries and other forms of oral disease due to its inhibition ofStreptococcus mutans enzyme activity and its inherent antimicrobial properties. Studies conducted with propolis added to toothpastes and mouthwashes showed plaque-cleaning, plaque inhibiting, and anti-inflammatory effects.

Colitis

Propolis has shown inhibitory action against H. pylori, associated with gastric ulcers and colitis. It has been used alone or in combination with antibiotics for in the prevention and treatment of gastric ulcers. The CAPE from propolis also may reduce “insults” to the colon, and also may be associated with lower levels of inflammatory chemicals, resulting in decreased inflammation of the colon.

Tissue Repair and Wound Healing

Topical applications of propolis have been shown to speed up tissue repair in subjects with second-degree burns by stimulating collagen production, enzyme systems and circulation. The anti-inflammatory properties of propolis also reduced local swelling and irritation. Propolis ointments have also been used against cold sores and herpes simplex skin lesions.

Immune Boosting

Flavonoids and phenolic acids in propolis display immune-modulating effects by increasing antibody production and macrophage activity, which builds the body’s resistance to disease.  Bee propolis not only prevents the onset of infection, but helps to rapidly clear them from the body which protects us from cellular deterioration.

Borrowing from Nature’s Laboratory

Nature is the world’s finest laboratory with millions of years of live study. Bees are one of the most interesting species in their social behavior, their class hierarchy, and the health benefits of their honey, pollen, propolis and more. Unfortunately, with the rise of genetically modified crops and the use of pesticides, it is feared that some bee species are in trouble of extinction, and colonies have been mysteriously disappearing.

It would be a shame to lose the ability to leverage the unique health benefits bees offer us humans, and propolis is one of those unique gifts.

Interested in taking Propolis? Check out our Propolis Plus product here!

Co-written by: Alex Charles and Dr. Alexander Rinehart

References:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21741176
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22175043
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21716710
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21423687
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22123329
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20819020
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19682876
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19472427
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19021816
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18610553
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18057795
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17177657
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16621403
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16629510
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15629260
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15516726
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14617683
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12064745
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11714876
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11746834
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9651052
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/8216454
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/1593279
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1292560/?page=1
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22425940
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11766101
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12939048

Treat or Trick?

The day that kids and dentists everywhere have been waiting for has finally come… Happy Halloween! Regardless of whether or not you have a sweet tooth, the conspicuous presence of candy in every store and on doorsteps can be quite tempting. In a country where we are bombarded with sugary sweets year-round, what’s one day a year of excess… right? My philosophy on Halloween candy is to not settle for low-quality candy, but to indulge in a few treats that allow you to make every calorie count. Notice I said this is my HALLOWEEN candy philosophy….I don’t recommend eating sugary goodies everyday of the year.

You can avoid wasted calories and preservatives this Halloween by trying some of the following:

  • Dark chocolate instead of milk chocolate; aim for greater than 60% cocoa
  • Home-made cookies and sweets
  • Treats made with real fruits; for example- strawberries dipped in dark chocolate
  • If you need some good old fashioned candy, go for the fun-size packs instead of the full size candy bars; you will consume about 30-50% fewer calories
  • Candy with nuts or dried fruit, like chocolate covered almonds

If you’re feeling really crafty, try one of my favorite candy recipes: Home-made Reeses

16 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
2 tbsp butter, softened
1.75 oz confectioner’s sugar (1/4 cup+2 tbsp), sifted

Melt half the chocolate either in a double boiler (the safer method) or in the microwave (the more dangerous, but easier/lazier method).

Distribute the melted chocolate into the 12 muffin tins only barely filling the bottom of each cup. If the chocolate does not lie flat, drop the pan repeatedly on the counter, and it will flatten and smooth itself out. Place the pan in the freezer for 15 minutes.

In the meantime, whip the peanut butter, butter, and confectioner’s sugar together with a hand mixer until mixed and light. Taste it and make sure the sweetness is to your liking. Place small tablespoons of peanut butter into each cup, then drop the pan repeatedly on the counter again, so the peanut butter layer is flattened out. Place in the freezer for 15 minutes.

Melt the last 1/2lb of chocolate, and portion small spoonfuls of chocolate into the cups, one cup at a time, immediately dropping the pan repeatedly on the counter to flatten each cup. In my experience of making these, the chill from the peanut butter will harden up that top layer of chocolate very quickly, so you must flatten out the tops immediately after you pour the chocolate into each cup. Place the peanut butter cups in the freezer for 15 minutes to set the top layer of chocolate.

You can either refrigerate them for a peanut butter cup with more bite, or leave them at room temperature for a softer, creamier bite. Just peel the wrapper off, and enjoy!

My last piece of advice is to avoid consuming candy or sweets that contain any of the following:shutterstock_114242275

  • Partially hydrogenated oils/ trans-fats
  • Artificial sweeteners
  • Artificial colors
  • Ingredients such as TBHQ and DATEM (preservatives)

And always remember to brush your teeth after eating sweets of any and all kinds!

Soda: Scarier Than Halloween

Before you reach for that afternoon pick-me-up soda, read this article originally published on http://www.vox.com

Drinking soda regularly can age the body just as much as smoking regularly, a new study finds.

A team of public health researchers, led by the University of California San Francisco’s Elissa Epel, looked at the cellular impact of regular soda consumption (diet sodas were excluded). Specifically, they looked at the length of study participants’ telomeres: the caps at the end of chromosomes that, as they describe it, “protect the genomic DNA from damage.”

Telomeres naturally get shorter as we get older. But separate research has shown that certain behaviors, such as smoking, can also cause shrinkage. And shorter telomere length is associated with a higher risk for heart disease and some cancers.

Epel and her team used the federal National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and found that those who drank more soda tended to have shorter telomeres. They found that each daily 8-ounce serving of soda (two-thirds of a can of Coke) was equivalent to an additional 1.9 years of aging. A daily 20-ounce serving (the standard, plastic bottle size for sodas) was associated with 4.6 years of additional telomere aging — the same damage researchers have previously found among regular smokers.

This is just one study and, as the researchers write, research into telomere’s associations with health conditions is a “relatively new field.” But it’s part of a growing body of research showing that soda, albeit, delicious, is terrible for our health.

This article was written by Sarah Kliff, and the original can be found here

Take Your Diet From S.A.D. To Glad!

Is your diet S.A.D.?

If you are a typical American and consume high levels of over-processed simple carbohydrates and refined sugars, then your diet is sad in more ways than one. The Standard American Diet (S.A.D.) is lacking in essential nutrients and therefore is the largest cause of obesity and death. Unfortunately, so many people fall victim to this way of eating for a reason- its usually cheap and convenient. They don’t call it “fast” food or a “value” mean for nothing! However, taking the easy route in the present is likely to lead to painful, expensive diet related chronic diseases in the not so distant future.

Do yourself a big favor and take your diet from S.A.D. to glad by eating whole, real, non-processed foods. Foods like fruits, veggies, and grains contain high levels of antioxidants and other nutrients, making every calorie worth something useful to your body. I am going to talk about 5 nutrients to add to your diet that will make your body happy and healthy!

1. Potassium is a nutrient that your body literally can’t live without. It keeps your heart beating and is linked to lowering blood pressure and reducing the risk of osteoporosis. Increased consumption of Potassium can shutterstock_208930381also decrease your risk of diabetes and heart disease. The recommended daily intake of Potassium is 4700 mg in order to keep your nervous system and muscles functioning properly. Not consuming enough of this nutrient can lead to muscle cramps, constipation, and fatigue. Here are some helpful ideas on how to reach your recommended daily dose:

-One small baked potato with skin = 738 mg

-1 medium banana = 422 mg

-1 cup cooked spinach = 740 mg

-1/2 cup cooked beats = 259 mg

 

2. Calcium helps maintain healthy bones, assists in nerve transmission, and helps our blood clot. While Calcium is the most abundant nutrient in our body, our body doesn’t naturally produce it (meaning we need to get all that we need from our food and supplements.) shutterstock_208382878Not getting at least 1000 mg/day can lead to osteoporosis and bone fractures. Try these snacks for reaching your daily calcium goal:

-1 cup collard greens = 357 mg

-1/4 cup diced Swiss cheese = 261 mg

-1 cup nonfat milk = 293 mg

 

3. Iron is an essential protein building block that is involved in everything from carrying oxygen through the body to building muscles. Women are more likely to suffer from a deficiency, which can cause fatigue, memory loss, muscle loss, and difficulties regulating body temperature. shutterstock_208672210The daily recommended intake of 18 mg for women and 8 mg for men can be a problem for vegans and vegetarians, since meat is higher in protein content. However, meat is not the only way to meet your daily Iron needs.

-10 clams = 2.62 mg

-1/2 cup edamame = 2.25 mg

-1 cup lentils = 3.3 mg

-4 oz beef sirloin steak = 2.4 mg

-1 cup cooked broccoli = 1.5 mg

 

4. Vitamin D is the only vitamin that we can both consume and make ourselves. Our bodies create Vitamin D in the form of a hormone when our bodies are exposed to sunlight. This nutrient is especially important to athletes because it can reduce inflammation/pain, risk of fractures, and increase muscle protein. shutterstock_208969237Even if you’re not an athlete, your body needs and uses Vitamin D to protect your bones, regulate cell growth, decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease, and help maintain correct levels of calcium. In order to get your daily recommended dose of 18 mcg, try:

-3 oz light canned tuna in water = 3.8 mcg

-1 cup fortified orange juice = 3.4 mcg

-1 cup fortified milk = 2.9 mcg

CHIA OMEGA + D3 supplement

 

5. Fiber is a non-digestible carbohydrate that moves throughout our bodies and helps to promote digestion, prevent constipation, and reduce cholesterol levels. Both soluble fiber and insoluble fiber are important for our health. While insoluble fiber helps move food through the digestive system properly, soluble fiber can help lower glucose and cholesterol levels in the blood. Dietary fiber is not found in processes grains like white flour, so an estimated 60% of Americans with S.A.D. diets typically are starving for fiber. shutterstock_209106397It is recommended that women consumer 25 g of fiber per day and that men consume 38 g. Make your sad diet glad:

-1/2 cup black beans = 6.1 g

-1 medium pear = 5.5 g

-1/2 cup fresh raspberries = 4 g

-1 medium baked sweet potato with skin = 3.8 g

How to Avoid Holiday Traffic… In Your Gut

With all of the traveling, eating, drinking, and celebrating that comes with the summer holidays, chances are you’re going to get stuck in more than one kind of traffic jam this weekend. While I can’t offer you any tips about how to stay out of traffic on the highway, I can give you some advice on how to avoid jam-ups in your digestive system. 3flg010USASo, if you prefer to experience fireworks and explosions from afar, not inside your belly, try the following tips for a happy and healthy Fourth of July:

  • Drink lots of water: It is easy to get dehydrated in the summer heat without even realizing it, and dehydration is one of the leading causes of constipation. Your goal should be to drink half your body weight in ounces of water per day. For example, if you weigh 160 pounds, you should drink at least 80 ounces of water per day.

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  •   Keep your body moving: Exercise stimulates the natural contraction of intestinal muscles, thus aiding in elimination and detoxification. Try going for a 10 minute walk immediately after finishing a meal to assist the natural flow of digestion.

 

 

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  • Invest in a high-quality probiotic: Look for a non-freeze-dried probiotic that is dairy, gluten, soy, and egg free. shutterstock_193048010

 

 

 

  • Chew your food thoroughly: Rather than swallowing your Fourth of July hot dog or burger whole, take the time to completely chew your food. This will make for an easier digestion process and allow you to enjoy your food in the meantime.

 

 

  • Take a Epson salt bath: After wrapping up the day’s activities, give your body a chance to relax. A warm bath will relax your body (watch out for sunburns!) and the Epson salt will aid in a gentle detoxification. Soak for about 20 minutes.shutterstock_121099396