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How to Keep Your Skin Soft and Moisturized All Winter Long

Written by Lisa Jillanza

The winter months are some of the harshest months on your delicate skin. But you can follow these tips to help protect your skin from the harshness of winter and your body will thank you for it.

Don't forget the sunscreen - Just because the temperature drops doesn't mean the ultraviolet rays have gone away. While the UVB rays are weaker, you shouldn't skimp on the sunscreen during the winter months. Dermatologists suggest using a cream or moisturizer with an SPF of 30 year round.

Turn down the thermostat , just a few degrees - Surprisingly people who spend most of their time outdoors aren't the ones with dry, peeling skin. It is just the opposite. Those people who spend their time indoors with indoor heat constantly are those who experience parched skin the most. If you can, turn down the thermostat a few degrees and use a humidifier to put some moisture in the air. This combination will help to replace some moisture in your skin and will alleviate parched skin.

Nutrients are key to quench dry skin - While many people believe that drinking an abundance of water will help quench dry skin, dermatologists suggest that getting the appropriate nutrients is more important than downing water when it comes to healing dry skin. Getting appropriate levels of omega-3 fatty acids through a diet rich in foods like salmon and halibut can help to combat skin dryness. The acid in these types of fish lessens inflammation and plays a huge role in strengthening the lipid layer, thereby helping your skin retain its natural oils.

Skip the long, hot baths - While a good long soak in a hot bath sounds like just what the doctor ordered after a day out in the elements, that hot bath is a big no-no when it comes to protecting your skin in the cold. Taking a bath that is warmer than your body temperature opens up your pores and releases the moisture that your body desperately needs during the winter. If you would like a bath over a shower, limit your time in the tub to about five minutes and be sure to use a creamy oil wash to give your skin that moisture back that it may lose.

Exfoliate those rough feet - While the logical cure for dry feet is to moisturize them, dermatologists suggest that exfoliating your feet should be the cure instead. A moisturizer cannot work if you continue to put it on dead skin. Once you get rid of those rough spots on your feet, then the moisturizer you use will take to your feet so much better. Try a crystal buffer while your feet are damp or a stainless steel file while your feet are dry for the best results.

Avoid licking those lips - Overusing lip balm is not the culprit when it comes to dry, cracked lips. Instead the culprit is more than likely the acid from your saliva left on your lips when you lick them. The skin on our lips is very thin and when that acid, which is used for digestion, is left on the lips for extended periods of time, dryness occurs. Make a conscious effort not to lick your lips when you are out in the elements and use a lip balm with softeners like shea butter or jojoba oil. Avoid minty lip balms as they may contain a drying menthol which will defeat the purpose of wearing the balm to begin with.

While these are only a few tips to protect your skin this winter, we hope that this is a good jump start for you and that the winter won't be as painful on your skin this year or in years to come.

 

Healthy Eyes: Getting the Nutrition You Need for Optimum Eye Health

Written by Lisa Jillanza

We've heard that there are certain foods you can eat to get healthier looking hair, stronger bones and to prevent diseases. But there are also foods and nutrients that many doctors recommend to help keep our eyes healthy for many, many years.

The eye is a highly complex organ made up of lipids, or fatty tissue. As light enters our eyes and breaks down into free radicals, these free radicals cause major damage to our eye's lipids. These free radicals cause the degenerative effects of aging and eventually the loss of vision over time.

Two of the major effects that these free radicals cause are macular degeneration and cataracts.

Luckily, free radicals can be neutralized by antioxidants because they help to slow down the damage done and wash the free radicals out of the body completely.

To get your share of antioxidants, doctors suggest eating your vegetables. Fresh fruits and green, leafy vegetables are chock full of antioxidants.

To keep your eyes healthy you need a regular dose of the antioxidants found in vitamins A, C and E. These antioxidants help to ward off the need for glasses or contacts and fight the negative effects of eye aging. Vitamin A can be found in carrots, Vitamin E can be found in nuts and sunflower seeds, and Vitamin C is found in green, leafy vegetables, citrus fruits, broccoli and sweet peppers.

By adding fish to your regular diet, you can also help to get the nutrition you need for healthy eyes. Experts suggest that with two servings a week of fish, you can add essential fatty acids to your diet, thereby improving your eye's health.

Keeping an eye on your sugar intake is also important in maintaining healthy eyes, as refined carbohydrates can spike your glucose levels, increasing your chances of acquiring macular degeneration.

Just by keeping these tips in mind and being cautious about what you eat, your eyes will be healthy well into your older years and your vision will only improve over time.

 

Get Motivated and Stay Motivated: Ways to Keep the Energy Flowing All Day Long!

Written by Lisa Jillanza

Let's face it, in today's rush-rush world we are always trying to cram as much as possible into our 24-hour day. Sadly, many people are turning to energy drinks and pills to help get them through their long days, when in actuality there are plenty of natural energy boosters that you could rely on to help you stay energized.

Just try these simple strategies to make sure that you wake up feeling refreshed, stay motivated throughout the day and be able to wind down and get a relaxed night of sleep.

Consistent wake-up time- Many people would think that sleeping in would actually give them all-day energy, but it is more harmful than it is helpful. Instead, opt for the same wake-up time everyday and get yourself into some light, whether you get your sunlight by actually going outdoors or just by opening up the blinds.

Reduce your carbs, add in more protein- While carbohydrates will give you that quick burst of energy, eating too many carbohydrates will actually drain you. Opt for getting a healthy mix of carbs and protein to feel more energetic throughout the day.

Skip your morning cup of joe- Instead of downing your coffee first thing in the morning, opt for having an afternoon cup of coffee when tiredness typically sets in. This caffeine burst at an appropriate time will also help to keep your energy flowing throughout your afternoon.

Avoid grazing and eat your meals at consistent times- Believe it or not, your body runs on the food schedule that YOU set. When you skip meals your body suffers by going into shut down mode, like it does when it is time to sleep. Keep your meals consistent and at consistent times to avoid the daily drain. Grazing should be avoided, too, as it leads to overeating and over hunger.

Relieve stress through meditation- Because it may be hard to carve out set times to simply relax and meditate, try to do it when you have a few free minutes throughout your day. Even simply three minutes of mediation can reduce stress hormones that create body tension and constricted blood vessels. Find a quiet spot, practice your breathing techniques and take a few minutes to rejuvenate through relaxation.

Power walk instead of power nap- While it may seem like a short little cat nap will help you through that afternoon slump, a short little power walk will be more beneficial. Get out for a brisk walk if you are able to and your body will thank you for it. If you can't get outdoors, sit by a window and bask in the daylight for some quick light energy.

Exercise to music- Exercise may be the most obvious way to increase your energy levels throughout the day, yet many people still avoid it. If you are having trouble getting the motivation to work out, try listening to music before exercising. Studies show that people who listen to music prior to and while working out, feel like they have exerted themselves less than those who don't listen to music while working out.

Wind down before bed- Whether you choose to watch a little tv or read a good book, take the time to wind down before catching those zzz's.

Sun Exposure: Naturally Heal Your Sunburn

Written by Lisa Jillanza

We have all been there before : a long day at the beach or outdoors turns our skin into a pretty bad case of sunburn! Instead of dealing with the affects for a few days or even a week after the burn, we offer these natural ways to help your skin heal and to help you feel better in no time.

Of course, there are plenty of sunburn treatment lotions out on the market, but anything that contains a high amount of vitamin E or contains aloe vera will help to alleviate the pain of sunburn. The vitamin E and aloe vera add nutrients to the skin that UV rays have unbalanced. The aloe vera also cools your skin, helping to reduce the pain.

You may also find some good sunburn treatments right in your kitchen cabinet. Vinegar, mustard, yogurt, tomatoes and avocado all contain that extra vitamin E that will help to cool your skin.

It doesn't matter how you decide to treat your sunburn, what's important is treating it the day that it occurs. Waiting to treat your sunburn will only prolong the agony and pain that you are dealing with, so treat your burn as soon as you can after getting out of the sun.

Eat Your Way to a Good Night's Sleep

Written by Lisa Jillanza

According to Men's Health Magazine, good old mom may have had it all wrong when she offered us a glass of warm milk to help aide our sleeping. The protein in milk could actually boost alertness rather than calm it.

Instead the magazine's experts offer the following snacks to induce “feel-good relaxation chemicals” thereby calming your nerves and slowing your brain down towards relaxation: nonfat popcorn, oatmeal with sliced bananas, one cup of plain yogurt with two tablespoons mixed nuts, sesame seeds, pretzels, 4-oz. glass of unsweetened cherry juice, and red bell peppers.

Not only is a good night's rest good for your overall well-being, but it is also helpful to keep a youthful appearance and will it will also help you to feel younger, too.

So, pass on the glass of warm milk tonight and opt for any of the above snacks for that peaceful night's sleep. Good night!