3 Up-And-Coming Superfood Trends

Food trends change just as quickly as fashion trends these days, and today’s superfoods are no exception. Although they might sound unusual at first, to be fair, so did kale, quinoa, and coconut water at one point. These 3 foods can help anyone, health nut or not, achieve a better diet and overall healthier lifestyle:

 

Sumac

Superfoodly lists sumac as the top “most under-the-radar superfood you will find,” and considering its antioxidant measurement, it’s not that surprising! At 312,400 per 100 grams, sumac’s antioxidant content outranks kale by almost 200 percent.

 

What does all of that mean, exactly? It means that sumac has been lab-tested in attempts to quantify its “total antioxidant capacity,” measured against how well the sample of sumac protected vulnerable molecules from oxidation by free radicals. In other words, how well the sample will protect your cells from free radicals, which are molecules produced when our bodies break down food or are exposed to harmful substances.

 

Although eating 100 grams of sumac would be a challenge, because its Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) is so high, that means that eating even a little bit will go a long way. You could use it as a natural salt substitute, or sprinkle it on salads, pasta, or rice. Anything that would taste good with a little lemon could potentially complement this spice.

 

Baobab Fruit

You’ve heard of acai, but now, get ready for the baobab fruit. It’s extremely versatile given its mild taste. Although, on its own, baobab has a slightly sweet and sour taste, when mixed with other foods, it often goes unnoticed, meaning that you get all of the benefits at no additional sacrifice to your taste buds.

 

Not only does its ORAC rank at 40% higher than acai, but it also has 6x as much vitamin C as oranges, twice the calcium of milk, and high counts of potassium, phosphorous, and fiber. Be careful with that last one, though, unless you’re in need of a natural laxative.

 

Chia Seeds

Chia seeds have become pretty popular in recent years, and for good reason! Health food enthusiasts are extremely enthusiastic about this seed, given that they possess more omega-3s than salmon. They’re great for athletes, too, because of their ability to help hydrate your body. And, because the chia seeds take time for your body to break down, they create a lasting effect.

 

Raw vegans like chia seeds for their high protein content and the fact that they contain all nine amino acids. Whether you pick black or white chia, you can’t lose: their ORAC values are 9,800 and 7,000, respectively.

Current Health Trends For Women

The year 2018 is filled with fresh new ideas and hot health trends that will make your life better in different and exciting ways. Here are just a few that should appeal to you:

Wearable Tech Gadgets

Devices frequently used today can be added to clothing! Google has been collaborating with Levi Strauss & Co, the jeans manufacturer, to develop clothing that interacts with tracking devices. The sensitive surfaces will show how many calories you burn while running, give weight and other readings, check sleep patterns, and even make a phone call!

The Advanced Technology and Projects group (ATAP) of Levi’s, a company of firsts for more than 150 years, has been working on a conductive yarn and woven multi-touch fabric that senses touch gestures able to swipe a hand over jeans or the sleeve of a jacket to silence a phone, play a song, and more.

Now they have created the “smart clothing” Commuter Trucker Jacket, known as Project Jacquard, with Jacquard technology woven right into the sleeve. Officially announced at Google’s annual developer conference, but not announced was a timeline for when any smart clothes, using a special yarn that has to work on existing industrial looms, would be available commercially on a global scale.

Worn on stage was a normal-looking jacket custom made by London tailors with 85 percent cotton and 15 percent Project Jacquard. Waving a hand over the arm, a display showed information such as a phone call picked up by tiny electronics in the flexible snap tag connecting the Jacquard Threads in the cuff, looking like part of the jacket, to the mobile device. The tag also houses a battery which lasts up to two weeks between USB charges.

Nut-Milk Yogurts

Kite Hill has blended its almond milk with live active cultures and 10 grams of almond protein to create new plant-based yogurts. Enjoy creamy yogurt made with Madagascar vanilla beans by itself or with added mouth-watering peaches, strawberries or blueberries.

Healthier Noodles

More alternative pasta options will appear in 2018. Ancient Harvest’s Supergrain Pasta, Green Lentil, and Quinoa Penne will taste like and have the texture of regular noodles but have fewer simple carbs, have 14 grams of plant-based protein and seven grams of fiber per serving, be gluten-free and non-GMO, and offer more nutritious nutrients.

Caution

It is always wise to check with your doctor before trying any unusual foods or other products to make sure that they fit in healthily with the medications you are taking and the particular physical ailments that you have.

 

Top 3 Questions You’re Embarrassed to Ask Your OB-GYN

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For first-time and veteran mothers alike, pregnancy can bring up a variety of questions that might feel a little awkward asking out loud. The good news is that most women have had those same questions at some point and that there are answers from trained professionals.

 

Here are some questions about pregnancy you may have wanted to ask but felt too nervous to do so:

 

How Likely Is a Bowel Movement During Delivery?

This fear comes up frequently with new mothers, to the point where they can become so fixated on not having a bowel movement that it inhibits their ability to push.

 

It’s actually extremely common to have a bowel movement during labor, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of. There’s a simple reason why it happens: the same muscles a woman uses to push a baby out of her uterus are the same ones she uses when having a bowel movement. With the added weight on her colon and rectum as the baby moves through the birth canal, it’s a very natural bodily reaction.

 

While it may seem embarrassing, keep in mind that childbirth is a very private affair. Doctors are not only undaunted by this, but generally expect it. They’re trained professionals and their primary concern is making sure the mother and baby are healthy throughout the entire pregnancy and delivery.

 

Will My Vagina Be Stretched After I Give Birth?

Not really. Believe it or not, vaginas have muscle memory. The vagina is also made to accommodate childbirth; in other words, it stretches during childbirth and then contracts to its normal size. If a woman wants to strengthen her pelvic floor muscles, there are Kegel exercises, though make sure to check with a doctor first before trying them.

 

Why Does Sex Hurt After Birth?

Having a baby is hard work! With childbirth comes natural trauma to the vaginal area, and it needs time to heal. It’s natural for the sex drive to decrease, given how exhausting caring for a newborn can be. On top of that, if mothers choose to breastfeed, that can change her hormone levels as well, particularly her estrogen levels. This can lead to problems with lubrication. One potential solution is to use a lubricant, as well as giving the body time to adjust postpartum.

 

If the pain continues to exist months after birth, however, it’s best to speak to a doctor to make sure there aren’t any lasting issues.

Do You Fear Period Sex?

Do You Fear Period Sex | Dr. Lori Gore-GreenFor some people, the beginning of a menstrual cycle means the end of sexual intercourse until the cycle has passed. This mindset should be reconsidered, however, when all the benefits of sex during your period are taken into consideration.

1. Reduced Risk Of Pregnancy

When you strip away the passion, pleasure, and excitement, sex is ultimately designed for procreation. Any form of vaginal penetration by a penis that results in ejaculation has the chance to cause pregnancy. Due to the nature of a woman’s menstrual cycle, there is a reduced risk of pregnancy from sex, although not an entirely eliminated risk. Sperm can live inside of a woman’s body for up to five days, so if you have sex near the end of your cycle, you can still conceive a child once your menstrual cycle ends. The safest time to enjoy a reduced risk of pregnancy is to have sex near the beginning of your period.

2. Natural Pain Relief

Sex brings an incredible amount of pleasure that, when done properly, results in an orgasm. Orgasms are fun and enjoyable, but they also play a pivotal biological function with regards to the brain. This is especially true in women. The female orgasm causes the brain to release a healthy dose of endorphins which are chemicals that spread through the body to promote a boost in overall mood and help to relieve pain. A 1985 study shows that a woman’s pain tolerance increases drastically after an orgasm. So, having sex can help relieve the pain of menstrual cramps and other pains commonly associated with that time of the month.

3. Sleep Aid

Endorphins aren’t the only biological substances released by the female brain during an orgasm. The hormone known as prolactin is also released during an orgasm. Prolactin is a hormone that helps to calm the body and prepare it for a long, restful sleep. This is why people tend to become lethargic and sleepy after sex that causes an orgasm.

4. Ease Of Penetration

Some women have issues with vaginal dryness that causes difficulties during sex. The benefit of engaging in sex during a period is that this issue is almost entirely alleviated. There is more than enough lubrication present during this time of the month to allow for easy penetration and increased pleasure because of the lubricated sensation.

A Healthy Work-Life Balance Can Improve Your Overall Health

A Healthy Work-Life Balance Can Improve Your Overall Health _ Dr. Lori Gore-Green (1) (1) (1)We’re all overworked and tired, and many of us struggle with the idea of carving out personal time.

“Work-life balance” is a phrase that we hear often, but it isn’t something that we’re all experiencing. Employees struggle with scheduling, work hours, and finding support. Many businesses encourage and promote balance, asking that workers gain control of personal stressors, and juggle priorities, poor management, technological demands, and physical or psychological challenges. Established balance means defined career ambitions, and a well-managed personal schedule, which includes hobbies, family, and leisure. It also indicates an ability to increase one’s level of engagement and productivity at work, and opportunities to fully participate in your on social and family life.

It’s in a company’s best interest to treat their employees to a greater sense of workplace wellness. A line drawn between work and home translates to conflict-reduction, company productivity, and it bodes well for a company’s reputation. Such businesses have higher employee retention rates, which means continuous in-house expertise and fewer time-consuming training sessions. These better-balanced individuals opt to take fewer sick days, and they don’t compromise efficiency or productivity.

Also, while men struggle as much as women to maintain a work-life balance, reports show that women still bear a more substantial load than men in balancing work and family, according to Pew Research Center. Despite progress seen in recent decades, approximately 68 percent of Millennial mothers find it difficult to get ahead at work, compared to just 19 percent of Millennial fathers.

Enabling healthy habits, such as healthful meals, regular exercise, and sleep can fuel success within an organization and foster a greater sense of wellbeing.

Share Your Needs | Employee needs should be met, but that can only take place if you voice your needs. Speak with your HR consultant and communicate how your job can help you to accomplish your goals better. Inquire about flexible scheduling, possible solutions, and childcare.

Exercise | Exercise doesn’t merely trim the fat; it helps to reduce stress. Many employers have an onsite facility for employees to enjoy. Others have membership discounts to local gyms. Try to take advantage; it could do wonders for your health and your attitude. Studies show that workers are up to 13% more productive working from home than working at the office.

Be Vigilant | You don’t want to burn out, and the best way to keep that from happening is being aware of your job performance, monitoring your stress, and taking care to prevent physical exhaustion and error rates.

Embrace Telecommunication | If your job allows any work-from-home days, be sure to take advantage of those days. While it may be a challenge for some to be productive from home, others meet the challenge without difficulty.

Less Busy Work, More Efficiency | Being productive and working more isn’t the same thing, and we know this. Extended work hours tend to mean that employees grow more irritable, anxiety, and depression. Rather than working more hours, better manage the hours that you work, which should help address performance concerns.

Prioritize Health Initiatives | Long hours often means compromised health. By that, I mean, people often sacrifice fitness and health in favor of goals. To correct this, try to take time out of your busy day to workout quickly, and be sure to take time to visit the doctor.

Decorate Your Workspace | As you attempt to strike a balance between home and work, be sure to bring in images of your loved one, and personalize your workplace. If you create a more comfortable workspace, you’ll find that it’s easier to execute ongoing tasks.

Boost Creativity | Developing interesting creative projects helps to foster a better sense of balance. By taking a creative break, you’ll be able to better focus on your duties following the break.

If you know of other ways to achieve work-life balance, be sure to share!

9 Natural, Vagina-Friendly Ingredients You Should Look For In Soaps

Dr. Lori Gore-GreenBuying lotions, perfumes, and soaps for your body is already an adventure of trial and error. With that in mind, you have to be even more discriminating if any of that product will come into contact with your vagina.

When purchasing new products, seek those with certain natural ingredients, which won’t be harmful to that delicate area.  The wrong ingredients will affect bacterial balance and/or pH balance and can lead to vaginal dryness,  a yeast infection, or cause an unpleasant stench.

Search for the following ingredients, and steer clear of harsh chemicals when you’re reviewing soaps or beauty items that might be used near or around your vagina.

Aloe Vera Gel: Aloe is very good anti-inflammatory and moisturizer, which can be applied for dryness, and can help to lubricate dry vaginal tissue.

Yogurt: Yogurt can help with infections, odor, and can encourage bacterial balance.

Lemon Leaves: Lemon leaves, because they’re anti-allergic, antibiotic, antimicrobial, is frequently used to eliminate odors and maintain acidic pH.

Essential Oils: Use Chamomile, Lavender, Or Tea Tree Oil: Natural essential odors can be non-hormonal remedies, treating vaginal dryness, or even vaginal atrophy, or muscle cramps.

Baking Soda: In a low quantity, baking soda can help to balance the pH level in your body. It can also reduce odor.

Apple Cider Vinegar: The acidic qualities of apple cider vinegar can restore the acidic quality of the vaginal flora. Adding a few drops to your bath water can help to resolve a number of issues, among them odor issues.

Coconut Oil: Pure coconut oil can soothe irritated tissue, ease itching, and rejuvenate dryness. Quick reminder, coconut oil shouldn’t be used in combination with latex condoms, as it can damage it, putting users at risk of pregnancy and/or infection.

Olive Oil: Olive oil has unsaturated fatty acids, and it can enhance hydration without disrupting the vaginal microbiota.

Honey: Honey is a natural moisturizer, and it’s a humectant and emollient.  It draws moisture from the atmosphere and seals it in the skin. Honey should be diluted with water if you’ll be putting it near your sensitive area.

Be mindful of the concentration of these ingredients, because too much of a good thing can impact vaginal health. If you have any thoughts on other natural ingredients that can be good for the vagina, please feel free to share. 

 

The Search For The Pregnant Woman’s ‘Breakfast Of Champions’

The Search For The Pregnant Woman's "Breakfast of Champion" | Dr. Lori Gore-GreenFibrous and folic acid-filled ingredients are ongoing essentials for pregnant women, and these items should be featured on the plate bright and early in the day –during breakfast.

Add color and nutrients to your plate through the inclusion of leafy vegetables, whole wheat, succulent fruits, and rich seasonings early on and pregnant will see the benefits throughout the day. This is the best way to incorporate foods that are healthy and tasty. Afterall, there’s not enough that can be said about starting off one’s day with a gratifying, low-sodium, and yummy meal.

Expectant mothers are always in search of a delicious, well-balanced “Breakfast of Champion” to enjoy throughout a pregnancy. A fair way to execute that perfect healthful meal is to highlight flavor with herbs and spices, not with salt and sugar.

You can bake, grill, and broil your way until an early morning meal that’s healthier. Focus on eating things that are hyper nutritious, green, natural, and if possible, organic,and divert your attention away from calorie counting. Additionally, lean proteins, healthy fats, and healthy carbs (vegetables and whole grains) are definitely necessary for everyone, especially pregnant women.

Read on to visit the names of five quick and easy recipes that you may want to try out in order to brighten up your morning:

Smoky Red Pepper Crispy Egg Toast

“Add a kick of spice to your mornings by spreading paprika and roasted red pepper hummus onto your egg toast.” Read the recipe here.

Spinach and Prosciutto Frittata Muffins

“These tasty bake-and-take egg cups are packed with protein. Make them on a Sunday, then heat and eat all week.” Read the recipe here.

Peach and Toasted Almond Greek Yogurt

“Topping Greek yogurt with fresh peach slices, toasted almonds, and a sprinkle of brown sugar adds a natural sweetness that’s almost guilt-free.” Read the recipe here.

Italian Baked Eggs

“Marinara cheesy baked eggs can be made in just 10 minutes for a complete breakfast.” Read the recipe here.

Overnight Oatmeal

“As easy in the morning as the instant variety, this home cooked and hearty oatmeal will give you the energy you need to power through your day.” Read the recipe here.

Never skip breakfast, even if you’re in a rush. In addition to trying out one of the aforementioned meals, you should be sure that stay hydrated, start small with something like a hardboiled egg, and try to drink a smoothie or juice.

Lupus & Pregnancy: 8 Important Things To Know

Lupus & Pregnancy- 8 Important Things To Know| Dr. Lori Gore-GreenLupus is a chronic inflammatory disease that isn’t discussed nearly as much as it should be.

This condition is a complication whereby an individual’s immune system attacks your organs and tissues. The joints, skin, blood cells, brain, kidneys, lungs, and heart, are touched by inflammation.

Unfortunately, lupus can be challenging to diagnose. The symptoms and signs can be difficult to distinguish, although there’s a distinctive sign of lupus that isn’t found in all cases, which is a facial rash resembling a sprawled-winged butterfly across each cheek.

Lupus can uniquely impact pregnant women. So, if a woman with lupus happens to become pregnant, there are many precautions that she must take, as there are potential risks to both the mother and child. It’s important to speak with one’s physician early and often, but more than that, it’s important to think about medications, it’s important to chat with an obstetrician, and significant to discuss delivery methods during the early stages of pregnancy or even ahead of pregnancy.

According to Doruk Erkan, MD, MPH of the Barbara Volcker Center for Women and Rheumatic Disease, there are ten points to consider to optimize the outcome for who are pregnant while having lupus. Read on for a paraphrasing of eight of those crucial pointers:

  1. Successful pregnancies are possible when one has lupus. Educating oneself and taking professional advice is essential for lupus patients, who are more likely develop complications than non-lupus patients. Rheumatologists and obstetricians experienced in managing high-risk pregnancies are necessary for discussion. Also, consultation with a Neonatal Intensive Care Unit as well as other advanced facilities is essential as a child may require specialized care. It’s also important to lean on the support of family, who may ease impending challenges.
  2. Consider what might be the right time to conceive. Ideally, conception should occur when you’re at peak health, and at least six months after disease activity, particularly that involving kidney disease. Visit with your doctor for blood tests and complete physical examination.
  3. Lupus flares can take place during pregnancy and following delivery. Thankfully, a majority of these flares aren’t life-threatening and can be treated with steroids.
  4. One can identify lupus flares during one’s pregnancy by looking for patchy hair loss, redness across cheeks and the nose, fatigues, body aches, and fever. Pain and swelling in the joints are also generally reported. The retention of fluid usually leads to the swelling of ankles, feet, and hands.
  5. For some patients, complications appear in the form of pre-eclampsia, HELLP syndrome (Hemolysis, Elevated Liver Enzymes, Low Platelets), hypertension, urinary tract infections, diabetes, and renal insufficiency. Frequent urination, headaches, abdominal pain, and blurry vision are additionally experienced. The heightened risk of pregnancy loss should also be acknowledged.
  6. It’s important to note that lupus patients give birth to healthy children, who don’t face an increased risk of mental retardation or congenital disabilities. It’s important to consult your physician about undergoing regular ultrasounds to monitor intrauterine growth retardation (IUGR) and low birth weight.
  7. Discuss any medication with your with your doctor to ensure that it won’t worsen your lupus or cause damage to your child. Consult about steroids, blood thinners, anti-inflammatory drugs, and other medications.
  8. Mothers with lupus can breastfeed, and if they find it to be a challenge, they shouldn’t hesitate to reach out to a trusted health care professional, who will likely advise against breastfeeding if a mother is on azathioprine, cyclosporine, cyclophosphamide, methotrexate, or mycophenolate mofetil.

Beyond the items listed above, lupus patients should also discuss the possibility of vaginal delivery as an option for delivery ahead of giving birth. Broach vital topics on birth control options, child care, and other necessary issues.

Maximize Your Days Off & Improve Your Outlook

4 Ways to Maximize Your Days Off & Improve Your Outlook | Dr. Lori Gore-GreenScheduling your workout routine and developing your diet are essential for you and your body. More than that, you need to direct attention inward and make sure you’re doing things on your R&R days to improve yourself.

Your health, outlook, physical wealth, psychological health, and overall well-being depend on your ability to rest and recover. Those rest and recovery days, though few and far between, prepare you to propel forward and do what you need to do during the rest of your week.

Exercise and Move Around

Yes, you do indeed deserve some time to relax into your couch and binge a few episodes of your favorite show. However, it’s also important that you don’t don’t just sit still the entire time. Metabolic waste, muscle stiffness, hydration, and delayed onset muscle soreness become an issue. Active recovery demands that you increase circulation and hydrate during your day off because your body needs it. Alleviate tightness by doing light exercise or low-impact activities for thirty minutes or so. Try something relaxing, such as yoga or cycling, which can build strength and improve flexibility.

Massages

What’s more relaxing than having someone rub the soreness from your joints? Seek out a certified massage therapist, especially a sports massage therapists, who can tend to tight areas. Treat target areas, such as piriformis and the thoracic spine to mobilize muscles. There are neurological benefits to a massage, it readying the body to rid itself of metabolic waste and encouraging the body to heal from recent activities.

Snack Smart

Rather than reaching for bags of popcorn or other carb-loaded snacks, find your way to the grocery store and pick out nutritiously-smart superfoods, such as blueberries and almonds. Improve your metabolic process with dark-colored fruits, cruciferous vegetables, and leafy greens. These things and hydration will help with everything from digestion to metabolism.

Soak

Relieve your stress by taking a long soak in the bath with some Epsom salt, which will lower cortisol levels and reduce bloating. Additionally, a hot soak can burn up to 140 calories an hour, and it can reduce blood sugar by 10 percent –incredible!

 

If you have any thoughts or tips for how on how to maximize your R&R days, please share!

5 Foods to Increase Your Vagina Health

Increase Your Vagina Health | Dr. Lori Gore-GreenThere are many factors to your vaginal health. What you may not realize is that food is one of the largest and easiest to control factors. Whether it’s a smell that you would prefer not to have, dryness, or just not feeling very fresh, food just might be the answer. Taking the time to add certain healthy foods to your diet can greatly improve your well being down there.

So which foods should you be eating and for what reasons?

  1. Garlic

Consuming garlic is a great way to combat vaginal infections. This includes the dreaded vaginal yeast infection. The reason garlic helps heal is because it has strong antibacterial properties. This helps give your body the edge it needs to fight bacterial and fungal infections. Look for ways to incorporate more garlic into your daily diet to not only cure but prevent vaginal infections.

  1. Cranberry Juice

Cranberry juice is highly beneficial for your feminine well-being. Drinking a glass (or two!) of cranberry juice helps your body work hard to fight against harmful bacteria. This makes it a viable option for curing and preventing issues like Urinary tract infections. However, be sure to choose an all natural, no sugar added cranberry juice. High sugar content and unnatural dyes can do the opposite of helping cure your problems.

  1. Flax Seeds

Flax seeds contain phytoestrogens which help increase estrogen levels in the body. This can help your body keep your feminine area healthy. It may also aid in added wetness if you’re feeling a little drier than you should down there. Because flax seeds contain these fantastic phytoestrogens, they are great for your overall female upkeep as well. They are definitely worth taking advantage of!

  1. Kale

Kale is rich in kaempferol which has been shown to help reduce the risk of ovarian cancer. Other healthy foods that contain kaempferol include broccoli, Brussel sprouts, and green tea. Incorporating these healthy foods into your daily diet is a huge step to taking care of your vagina and overall female health.

  1. Greek Yogurt

Leaving the best for last, Greek yogurt might just be the greatest food you can eat for your vagina! Greek yogurt contains live and active cultures. This good bacteria makes it a super star for helping keep your pH balanced down there. Overall this will aid in keeping your vagina feeling fresh and healthy. If you’re experiencing itchiness, dryness, or just general discomfort, try adding more Greek yogurt to your diet!

It is absolutely vital to take care of your vagina and overall female well-being. Simply adding these five beneficial foods to your diet will go a long way in helping you take care of your own beautiful body today.