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Summer is Here, Are You Ready?

It’s that time of year again. The sun is shining, the snow has melted and the temperatures continue to rise. We have spent months hibernating with comfort foods and Netflix while blaming every snowflake for our lack of motivation. The dry air has played cracks and chips with our skin, the gloomy skies dropped our cheery dispositions and our typically vibrant fruits and veggies bin has been packed with potatoes and yellow squash. No matter, the long, cold months of dreary weather have finally ended, and we are ready to jump right back into our bikinis and backyard BBQs. Right? Well perhaps a few of the truly dedicated health enthusiasts, but if you are part of the 60% who gain around five extra pounds or more, you may need to kick your summer health into gear. Not to mention we need to repair that wind chapped skin and improve the sullen disposition. Take a look at why winter can get us down and ways we can make a strong comeback, fast!

Winter is a powerful force combining weather changes and dietary availability along with a good dose of instinct and evolution. A little weight gain is natural due to the demands of your body to store nutrients during a time when historically food was scarce. The lack of nutrient diversity and fresh produce also leads us to indulge in more carbohydrates while the chill in the air leads us to comfort foods and at times overeating. Our primal understanding of food shortage during winter can cause us to eat more than we need as a way of storing energy for later.

The addition of snow, sleet and bitter winds drives us indoors and can severely limit our range of motion and preferred forms of exercise. The cold causes muscles to tighten and blood pressure to fluctuate, so even if you brave the snow, your workout may still disappoint. Good to know the warm months ahead will encourage your summer health workout plan!

With the additional calories and reduced energy expenditure of winter, we naturally put on a bit more weight, but luckily, we have plenty of time to drop it. It’s time to get outdoors once more. If vigorous exercise is not in your constitution, keep in mind that 150 minutes a week is the recommended amount to maintain your health. That’s only 25 minutes a day, six days a week, and it can be as simple as a walk or a bike ride.

Along with getting your physical groove back, take a day to restock your kitchen and fill it with fresh produce and light, cool foods for green juices, smoothies and crisp salads. Stock up on your favorite nutritional supplements like Bone Broth Collagen + Protein in vanilla or chocolate and rev up before your next workout. Repair your gut after a winter of reduced nutrient variety by adding Healthy Gut powder in Mint or Peach Banana. With all the ripe fruits and vegetables flooding the markets, your shakes and smoothies are no longer restricted to water and non-dairy milks, even if they taste great! Try this morning blend to start your summer days off right.

Peach Berry Bliss

Place all the ingredients in your blender and mix until smooth and creamy. If you want to make it thicker, you can cut the orange juice and create more of a breakfast Buddha bowl, or you can add ice to make it slushier. Either way these flavors will keep you cool and have you excited to pack in your protein, collagen and digestive support.

It’s now time to get back that rosy, nourished skin and recover from any cellular damage caused from the dehydrating effects of the cold. Hopefully, you added in extra moisturizer over the winter, but if not, the skin is incredibly resilient and with regular care from within and without, you will be glowing in no time. Opt for a daily full body lotion and a skin specific facial cream. For extra nourishment, directly apply a face oil and choose liquid body wash over soap bars. Finally, be sure to give your skin what it needs at a cellular level. Look for things like collagen peptides found in Skin Boost Acai Berry and Collagen + Probiotics Matcha Green Tea. If you don’t feel like adding another powder to your morning smoothie, you can find the same rejuvenating power in Beauty Biotin & Collagen capsules.

As health and beauty are intrinsically entwined, what you do for one will often affect the other when operating from holistic principles. Getting these habits in place will help you rebalance your physical self, and now you must turn that same self-care inward. ‘Winter blues’ is more than a catchy phrase for a bad day. Seasonal depression has been well documented and researched and has a lot more to do with decreased daylight than the low temperatures. You may not be able to control the sunlight and the weather, but there are many ways to take care of your emotional health. You can use natural herbs and adaptogens like Ashwagandha, Rhodiola and Astragalus root in daily supplements like Healthy Inner Balance. Take up meditative practices even if it’s breathing techniques while stuck in morning traffic or walking barefoot in the park.

However you choose to get summer ready, be mindful to always put your health first and take your time.