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  • 10 Reasons to Eat Chia Seeds

    Who doesn't remember the Chia Pet? Those things were so much fun! Sprinkle some chia seeds onto your animal of choice and within a week they've grown hair! Amazing! But who would have thought that those very seeds are packed full of super healthy vitamins and minerals!

    chia-seeds

    Chia seeds come from the desert plant Salvia hispanica, which is grown in Mexico. The seeds date back to the Mayan and Aztec cultures which it's said these seeds were used for supernatural powers.

    Now you will probably not gain any supernatural ability, but what you will gain is some powerful nutrients! Here are the top 10 reason why everyone needs to add chia seeds to their diet!

    1. Packed full of omega 3 fats- The chia plant is one of the richest plant-based sources for Omega-3 fatty acids. They actually contain more Omega-3 than salmon!
    2. Great Source of Fiber- With 10 grams of fiber in only 2 tablespoons, chia seeds are an excellent source of fiber!
    3. Weightloss- Chia seeds absorb lots of water and expands in the stomach, which as a result increases fullness and causes you to eat less.
    4. Great for Hydration- Chia seeds are popular with athletes because when chia seeds absorb water they turn into a gel-like substance keeping us hydrated for longer periods of time.
    5. High in Antioxidant- Chia seeds contain high amounts of antioxidants that contribute to fighting off diseases like cancer.
    6. High Quality of Protein- One of the highest quality of protein, chia seeds beat out the rest of the plant family with a 14% protein content. This can also help in reducing food cravings.
    7. Lower the Risk of Diabetes- Chia seeds slow down how fast our bodies convert carbohydrates into simple sugars, which can help with controlling blood sugar levels.
    8. Add to Any Dish- You can easily add chia seeds to any meal to always get the extra nutrients, whether it's mixed in with your yogurt, salad, cereal, sauces, rices, the combinations are endless!
    9. Calcium- Among all the other great nutrients, chia seeds also have a high calcium content with an amazing 18% of the RDA in a single ounce!
    10. Improve Exercise Performance- A recent study showed that chia seeds can be partly replaced with Gatorade or other sports drinks as a way of carb loading for athletes.

    So chia seeds are definitely worthy of being called a "superfood". So give them a try, you won't regret it!

     

    Shop Chia Seeds→ http://goo.gl/W1FPXW

     

     

  • 10 Benefits to Breastfeeding

    August is National Breastfeeding Awareness Month! The breastfeeding campaign, funded by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, hopes to empower women to commit to breastfeeding by highlighting new research showing that babies who are exclusively breastfed for six months are less likely to develop ear infections, diarrhea and respiratory illnesses, and may be less likely to develop childhood obesity.

    breastfeeding

    I have been breastfeeding exclusively for about 3 months now, and I am so happy I stuck with it and didn't give up. It's probably one of the best decisions I've ever made. So in honor of Breastfeeding Awareness Month, I made a list of benefits on why you should breastfeed (for at least 6 months), the list is much longer but these are just some of my favorites! So if you're deciding whether or not to breastfeed your baby, here are some deciding factors for you!

    1. Breastfeeding provides warmth and closeness:The physical contact during breastfeeding provides an awesome bonding experience with you and your baby, plus the warmth of your body gives baby a comfort like no other!
    2. Faster recovery time after delivery:Whether you have a c-section or natural delivery, breastfeeding releases a hormone in the mother called oxytocin, which causes the uterus to return to its normal size more quickly.
    3. Helps with losing the baby weight:Mothers burn many calories during lactation as their bodies work hard to produce more milk!
    4. Protects your baby from many illnesses:Numerous studies from around the world have shown that stomach viruses, lower respiratory illnesses, ear infections, and meningitis occur less often in breastfed babies and are less severe when they do happen.
    5. Keeps mom healthy:Breastfeeding has been proven to decrease the chances of getting various cancers such as breast cancer or developing osteoporosis in the future. It also helps with postpartum depression, and may lower your cholesterol!
    6. It's customized just for your baby:The amazing thing about breast milk is it's designed just for your baby, something formula can't do. Babies receive the most complete and optimal mix of nutrients & antibodies. I like to call it, "liquid gold".
    7. It's convenient and endless:Where ever you go, your milk goes. You will never forget it or have to go to the store to buy more. The beauty of breastfeeding is the fact that whatever happens, whether you get stranded on an island, you will always have food for your baby! It also makes those late night feedings much more easier. Plus you can lay down and take a snooze while you feed them (just make sure they are secure and safe)!
    8. It's sterile and the perfect temperature:You don't have to worry about your baby getting a hold of bacteria and it's always just the right temperature!
    9. Smarter babies:Breastfed infants develop higher IQ's, and have improved brain and nervous system development.
    10. It's FREE!This is my favorite one! As we all may know, formula is NOT cheap. On average, you will spend about $1,700 a year on formula! That's not even including the price for bottles and water for formula.

    These are only a few reasons as to why I love to breastfeed, but there are MANY more health benefits that would make this blog tremendously long.

    I know breastfeeding isn't easy at first, TRUST ME, It took me about 4 weeks to finally get a hang of things (my baby was having terrible latching issues which meant lots of pain!) But once you and your baby get comfortable enough with it, it really is the best feeling in the world! For those who have issues with milk production or even latching problems, I strongly urge you to reach out to a lactation consultant near you, they were the main reason why I didn't give up and what helped my baby latch correctly.

    Hope this helps! Questions? Ask them in the comment section! :) Or tell me what your favorite thing about breastfeeding is.

    -Abby

     

     

     

  • Tips to Staying Sane with a Newborn

    I have learned first hand that becoming a mother for the first time is no easy task. I knew having a baby wouldn't be easy from the beginning, but you can't quite grasp the feeling until you have fully experienced it. While I was on maternity leave, I felt like I was going to lose my mind. Only sleeping about 2 hours at a time, trying to calm a crying baby when you have no idea what's wrong, trying to get the hang of breastfeeding and going through all that pain, and even just trying to find time to eat myself was a challenge. The list goes on and on, and if you're a new mom, you know what I'm talking about!

    Mom-Baby-lg

     

    I've listed some of my top favorite tips in order to keep your sanity with your newborn. I hope this can help other new moms out there that suffered with the same issues I did!

    • Don't be afraid to seek help: This tip was my savior. Even if you're a breastfeeding mom, that doesn't mean you have to do it all!  Have your spouse do the diaper changes, or clean the house and do the dishes/laundry. I'm lucky to have a guy who will happily do all of that for me, but even if it's one of your family members or even a friend. A little bit of help goes a long way and will certainly keep you from breaking down or going crazy!
    • Relax! As crazy as it seems, your baby will usually know how you're feeling (especially if you're breastfeeding). Stressing out can make your baby cry uncontrollably, and when you don't know why they're crying, this can make you even more stressed! So try and relax (when you relax, baby relaxes) and enjoy this time you have with your new baby.
    • Make time for yourself: I cannot stress this enough! Once you have a baby you feel like you'll never have a life again! I felt like I'd never leave the house. Even if it's just going outside for a few minutes to get some fresh air, or taking a relaxing bath. A little bit can definitely help to keep your sanity!
    • Make time for you and your spouse: Along with making time for yourself, your relationship is just as important. You'll find yourself so hung up on your adorable new baby that sometimes you'll find your relationship has been set aside. Have a family or friend watch the baby for a night so you two can have a romantic date night.
    • Accept that the first few weeks are the worst: There's no sugar coating this one folks. Usually the first 2-4 weeks are the worst, recovering from labor, trying to get the hang of breastfeeding, not ever sleeping, problems facing your baby, postpartum hormones, and even mixed emotions upon becoming a mother. Understand that EVERY new mom goes through this, and that there's light at the end of the tunnel! Know that no matter what, you have a bundle of joy that puts all their trust in you and loves you no matter what. :) Just enjoy your new beautiful life with your new baby!

    Hope these tips help! :) Enjoy $5 off on your first order when you use code: SOCIAL at the checkout!

     

    -Abby :)

  • The New Craze: Oil Pulling

    Have you heard of this popular phenomenon called oil pulling? More and more people are discovering it and learning the amazing benefits having to do with oil pulling. Lets start with the basics if you have no idea what oil pulling is.

    What is Oil Pulling?

    Oil pulling is used with either coconut oil, sesame oil, or sunflower oil. It's really whatever one you prefer the best. It is a practice done 1 to 3 times a day, where you simply place a spoonful of oil into your mouth, and swish around for 20 minutes. Make sure NOT to swallow the oil when your 2o minutes is up, for there are toxins and bacteria that gets drawn from your mouth and could harm you. Just spit out all the oil and if you want you can gargle water just to make sure you got it all out. As simple as that! But why do this? There are many benefits to oil pulling!

    coconut-oil

    What are the Benefits of Oil Pulling?

    • Teeth Whitening (free from bleach and abrasive chemicals that break down enamel and cause teeth to chip or break)
    • Reduces Insomnia
    • Eliminates Bad Breath
    • Relieves Headaches and Hangovers
    • Increases Energy
    • Clears Sinuses
    • Helps with Tooth Pain
    • Helps Bleeding Gums
    • Increases your Metabolism
    • Heals Arthritis Pain
    • Detoxifies the Body
    • Clears Acne

    How Does Oil Pulling Work?

    While you're swishing, move your chin up and down as if you're chewing. This helps draw out a lot of saliva and activates digestion. Through this action, poisons are drawn from the blood through the mucous membranes in the mouth. Toxins that pass through the salivary ducts into the saliva and oil mixture in your mouth will cause the oil to become thicker and white half way through your oil pulling session. Essentially, oil pulling draws out the disease and harmful elements from the body and eliminates them through the mouth.

    So give oil pulling a try! We suggest doing your oil pulling in the shower, that way it's a time saver for you and if you happen to spill (this has happened to me a few times) it won't matter! Watch our video on oil pulling too to learn more!

    Click to shop coconut oil

    If you've never shopped at HealthDesigns before, use code: SOCIAL at the checkout and save $5! :)

  • Why Everyone Should Just Stop Drinking Soda

    All of us have probably enjoyed a soda at least once in our lifetime. It should be common sense that soda isn't that great for your health.  In fact, there's many negative effects that soda does to our bodies that a lot of us don't even know about.  Here's just some things you may not have thought about or known about on how soda can impact our health and should make you think the next time you're about to pick up that Dr. Pepper.

     soda

    • Obesity- This is probably the most obvious one, but one we still need to think about. The relationship between soft drinks and body weight is so strong that researchers have calculated that each additional soda consumed, the risk of obesity increases 1.6 times! That's a good enough reason right there to stop drinking these sugar filled beverages.
    • Reproductive issues- Some sodas are actually coated with BPA, which is a resin found in plastic bottles. It is linked to causing cancer and many reproductive problems such as premature puberty.
    • Asthma- Sodium benzoate, found in soda, is used as a preservative in foods. These preservatives add sodium to the diet and reduces the availability of potassium. Some reported reactions to sodium benzoate include recurring asthma and eczema.
    • Accelerated Aging- As if soda side effects couldn't get bad enough, here's one that'll really make you think! All sodas contain phosphates, or phosphoric acid, a weak acid that gives colas their tangy flavor and improves their shelf life. Researchers found that excessive levels of phosphoric acid caused lab rats to die in a full five weeks earlier than the rats whose diets had more normal phosphate levels. This is even more disturbing since soda companies have been increasing the levels of phosphoric acid in their products over the past few decades!
    • Tooth Decay- Sugar and acid in soft drinks easily dissolve tooth enamel and can also create many cavities!
    • Osteoporosis- Again with that familiar word, phosphoric acid, this chemical has also been associated with bone breakdown and an increased risk of osteoporosis, so if you have a choice between soda and milk, I'd stick with the milk for your bones sake!

     

    Think those are terrible? Well there are even more negative effects that soda can have on the body like diabetes, kidney issues, heart disease, and even breast and colon cancer! Even though you may be craving a soda at the time, just think about how much it really does effect your health, and how a satisfying taste is not worth all the risk!

     

    Are you a first time customer to HealthDesigns.com? Save $5 with code: SOCIAL at the checkout! :D Happy shopping!

     

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