Detox is an important part of losing weight, improving your health and removing disease.

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What’s so hot about hot springs? 5 Reasons to go for a soak

Hot springs are full-steam ahead on being the #1 luxury that vacationers prioritize when picking their holiday destination. Why? Not only are they great for post-ski socializing, they work wonders for your body, physically and mentally. Japan and Europe have known about the healing powers of hot springs for thousands of years, but Canada is also home to some of the best sources of balneotherapy–the therapeutic use of water for relieving pain, stress, skin woes and more.

Our lodge in British Columbia is fortunate enough to be located in Ainsworth, home of a large healing hot spring pool that was first visited by the Ktunaxa First Nations peoples, who recuperated in the hot water after a long day of hunting, fishing, and gathering roots and berries. Mountain Trek guests have unlimited access to this marvel of nature during their stay, and here’s why it’s important to take advantage of soaking in the hot mineral waters.

What is a hot spring?

A hot spring is an all-natural body of water that is warmed geothermally. One way to classify a hot spring is that it must be well above the temperature of the surrounding earth, and usually hot springs hover around the 100 degrees Fahrenheit mark. The temperature of a given hot spring depends on the heat supplied at depth (sometimes from a magma chamber), the rate at which the water flows, and if there is a mixture of cooler groundwater into the flow of hot water.

Where are they found?

Hot springs truly are the world’s original spa – interestingly, the term ‘spa’ originates from the town of Spa, Belgium, made famous for its hot springs. Typically, hot springs are found where there is volcanic activity or magma chambers, or where there are fault lines in the Earth.

Therapeutic Benefits

Hot springs have an especially high mineral content, because heated water can hold more dissolved solids. This means they contain everything from calcium, magnesium, silica, lithium, and even radium. In other words, they’re a multivitamin for the skin. The heat in hot springs envelopes and helps soothe aching muscles, and the minerals present in the water get soaked up by the skin, stimulating certain bodily processes.

Here’s how the combination of these minerals and the hot water help us:

Musculoskeletal problems: Documented in Chinese and Japanese history, hot springs have been used to aid with swollen joints, arthritis, muscle fatigue, ligament damage, and more.

Eczema: Chronically dry, flaky skin, otherwise known as eczema, is a skin condition that affects up to 15% of Americans and Canadians. Regularly soaking in hot springs has been found to reduce eczema itching and redness.

Nasal Congestion: The heat of the water, combined with sulphur, makes for a winning way to combat nasal congestion caused by the common cold, allergies, or even chest congestion.

Circulation: Sodium bicarbonate and calcium found in mineral hot springs help with good circulation in the body. This can have numerous positive impacts, including lowering blood pressure. The weightlessness that comes with floating in the water also helps improve circulation.

Relaxation: Never to be underestimated, is the power of de-stressing and relaxation. A stressed state can lead to all kinds of health complications, such as high blood pressure, depression, and an increase in the output of the stress hormone, cortisol. When cortisol is released in stress-induced doses, our hormones are thrown off balance, which affects our mood, immune system and metabolism. Long story short, if you’d like a faster metabolism and the ability to shed those pesky pounds, you’ve got to make sure your hormones are balanced.

In regards to the different minerals in hot springs and how they help our health, here’s the lowdown:

  • Magnesium: aids with clear complexion, and healthy-looking skin
  • Potassium: eliminates toxins and promotes healthy skin
  • Sodium: decreases inflammation in swollen joints, and can help the lymphatic system
  • Sulphur: helps with respiratory problems and skin inflammations

Don’t hesitate another moment–hurry over to a healing hot spring; the rewards you’ll reap are thoroughly worth it. Or, come visit us and use ours!

What’s so hot about Hot Springs? Reasons to go for a soak

What’s so hot about Hot Springs?It’s been coming up more and more in our day-to-day reading, for tourism, spa facilities, or general health and wellness; steam from Hot Springs’ benefits is fogging up general discussion. It seems as though our original spa encounter is making an encore to the centre stage for a healthy, enjoyable activity.

Our British Columbia location, besides having that spectacular view out over Kootenay Lake and to the Purcell Mountain Range, has the added bonus of the all-natural soak: hot springs are featured literally just a stone’s throw from our lodge, and guests have unlimited access to this marvel of nature during their stay at the Mountain Trek Alpine Lodge. For this reason, and the surge in hot springs popularity, we wanted to know: just what is so hot about hot springs, anyway?

What is a hot spring?

A hot spring is an all natural body of water that is warmed geothermally. One way to classify a hot spring is that it must be well above the temperature of the surrounding earth, and usually hot springs hover around the 100 degrees Fahrenheit mark. The temperature of a given hot spring is dependent on a few different factors; the heat supplied at depth (sometimes from a magma chamber), the rate at which the water flows, and if there is a mixture of cooler groundwater into the flow of hot water.

Where are they found?

Hot springs truly are the world’s original spa – interestingly, the term ‘spa’ originates from the town of Spa, Belgium, made famous for its hot springs. Typically, hot springs are found where there is volcanic activity or magma chambers, or where there are fault lines in the Earth. This being the case, there are hot springs all over the world; USA, Australia, New Zealand, Iceland, Japan (those going on the Mountain Trek Adventure Trek to Japan later this month are going to surely going to enjoy these), and Canada, including even right here in our own backyard at our British Columbia location.

Therapeutic Benefits

Due to the folklore and health benefits of hot springs, it is no wonder they are a popular tourist destination, and increasingly more so these days, as well as being used regularly as a form of therapy or for rehabilitation.

Hot springs have an especially high mineral content, because heated water can hold more dissolved solids. This means a given hot spring can contain everything from calcium, magnesium, silica, lithium, and even radium. Like a multivitamin for the skin! Sulphur in particular explains that pleasant aroma springs can sometimes have – dissolved sulphur in the water is converted to hydrogen sulphide by way of bacteria, explaining this harmless but undesirable ‘rotten egg’ smell that some hot springs are blessed with.

The heat in hot springs envelopes and helps soothe aching muscles, and the minerals present in the water get soaked up by the skin, and stimulate certain bodily processes. So how exactly do the combination of these minerals and this hot water, help us?

Musculoskeletal problems: Documented in Chinese and Japanese history, hot springs have been used to aid with swollen joints, arthritis, muscle fatigue, ligament damage, and more.

Eczema: Chronically dry, flaky skin, otherwise known as eczema, is a skin condition that affects up to 15% of Americans and Canadians. Regularly soaking in hot springs has been found to reduce eczema itching, redness, and cover.

Nasal Congestion: The heat of the water combined with sulphur makes for a winning combination to combat nasal congestion, whether this is due to common cold, allergies, or even chest congestion.

Circulation: Specifically, sodium bicarbonate and calcium found in mineral hot springs help with good circulation in the body. This can have numerous positive impacts, including lower blood pressure. The weightlessness that comes with floating in the water also helps for good circulation.

Relaxation: Never to be underestimated, is the power of de-stressing and relaxation. A stressed state can lead to all kinds of health complications, such as high blood pressure, depression, and an increase in the output of the stress hormone, cortisol. When Cortisol is released in stress-induced doses, this can mess with our hormonal balance, which in turn, unfortunately affects just about everything, including our mood, our immune system, and our metabolism. As in, the key to a faster metabolism and being able to shed those pounds, is having balanced hormones, not stressed, unbalanced hormones. So whatever your method of choice, whether you relax with hot springs, a good book, or both, make sure you do invest in yourself through stress reduction and relaxation.

Conversely, let’s look at it from the perspective of the different minerals present in hot springs, and how they help our health:

  • Magnesium: aids with clear complexion, and healthy looking skin
  • Potassium: eliminates toxins and promotes healthy skin
  • Sodium: decreases inflammation in swollen joints, and can help the lymphatic system
  • Sulphur: helps with respiratory problems and skin inflammations

And depending on the hot spring you are visiting, there are likely many more minerals present in the water. As a word of caution, hot springs can sometimes be too hot for those with very high blood pressure, certain heart conditions, and less robust immune systems, such as pregnant women, seniors, and kids. These people should take special precaution if they choose to delight in one of nature’s most sacred playgrounds.

Something we have been enjoying for thousands of years, hot springs have made it to the top of our activity, relaxation and health list for a reason! I don’t know about you, but I think it’s time to go for a soak…

Easy Ways to Digital Detox

Easy Tips for Digital Detox

"Digital detox" is a buzz phrase we're hearing more of lately but what exactly is it and why should we do it? After all, isn't technology meant to improve our lives, helping us keep more connected and freeing up time so we can concentrate on other things?

It's true technology has vastly improved certain aspects or our day-to-day but our relationship to digital devices is changing at a rapid pace and it's important to notice the specific impacts on your life. And to do this, we need to take a step back and discuss toxins, detoxifying and the role of digital media and devices in all of this.

What is Toxic Load? 

A toxin isn't just a form of poison that enters your body. Toxic load can also be mental or emotional. It is the result of stagnation through repetition. When there is a build-up of patterns that block energy, we become inflamed and constricted – we lose the natural flow state of expansion and contraction. This could be the increasing pattern of attention span interruption or multi-tasking at work, due to the constant repetitive information signals to our brain from our digital devices. It could be the build up of bio-waste and chemical compounds in our body due to the repetitive sitting we do, which limits circulation and elimination. Even our social world can become stagnant if we are not going deeper than social media for our heartfelt interactions.

Why is Detoxifying Important?

Detoxifying is the process of supporting a flow state in our whole being. When we take a break from ongoing patterns and habits, we recalibrate and become "lighter of being." Our mind, body and emotional states are interconnected. By taking a break from incessant incoming info bites, not only does our mind get a break from vigilance, but our stress hormone Cortisol gets a chance to lower, which in turn supports sleep, appetite and energy levels. When we move our body (ideally 10,000 steps a day), our circulation, lymph drainage and elimination organs (liver, kidney's, intestines, lungs and sweat glands) release waste and unhealthy chemicals. And on an emotional level, having an intimate conversation with someone we trust allows the weight of our concerns to be released.

What's the Best Way to Digital Detox?

Digital detox goes beyond just spending less time in front of your iPad, phone or computer. There are other aspects that can be incorporated to ensure a full detox experience. Here are three easy ways to do it: 

  1. Electronic Devices: Shut all electronics down one hour before bed. This will allow your Cortisol to drop and will support better sleep. Take that hour to do some restorative yoga, have an Epsom salt bath, or give and receive a massage, all of which aid in toxin release and deep regenerative sleep.
  2. Move More: It's not enough to be away from your devices for awhile and then just sit there waiting for the chance to check them again. Get up! Dance, walk, skate, swim. Keep the blood pumping, Breath deep. All of this will help your elimination system, decrease inflammation and increase a flow state.
  3. Eat Veggies: It may seem odd to mention food when discussing digital detox but the fact is by eating more vegetables, which contain more fiber and antioxidants, you're helping your elimination system and supporting a lean and clean body. In other words, the more veggies you eat, the more you'll want to move around, meet friends in person, get outside, and generally enjoy a fuller life.

Of course, the best way to digital detox is to take a break from your day-to-day life and immerse yourself in nature. Click here to learn more about how Mountain Trek supports digital detox through its program. 

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The Detox Food Myth – Our Nutritionist Weighs In

Detox Food Myths

There has been a lot of talk lately about “detoxing foods” – super foods that cleanse everything from your liver to your spleen. In fact, take a walk through any health food store and you’ll notice a lot of products bearing the word “detox.”

Recently the well-respected Guardian newspaper in the UK did an exposé about a lot of these foods and claimed that detoxifying is a myth – that the word should only ever be applied to someone suffering from life-threatening drug addiction.

And yet, at Mountain Trek, we use the word “detoxify” often – in fact, it defines one of the five paths of the program, which also include nutrition, fitness, sleep and stress reduction. So what is the difference between the modern day media’s use of the word “detox” and the way it’s used at Mountain Trek?

To discover the answer, we spoke with Mountain Trek’s nutritionist Jennifer Keirstead about the differences between detoxifying foods and detoxifying your body.

Jennifer Keirstead, Nutritionist at Mountain Trek1. Thanks so much for speaking with us, Jennifer. Our first question is whether there’s such a thing as a food the detoxifies?

I think there are certainly foods that can help our bodies in the process of being healthy. I like the idea of eating to nourish ourselves. A diet full of colour, variety, more fresh and less packaged foods. These foods, when eaten regularly, help keep us healthy all year round.

2. We hear a lot about “detoxing teas” and “super foods” that clean out the body. Are there really examples of detoxing foods?

Fresh foods, with lots of colour, are abundant in nutrients, making them both nourishing and satisfying. Some of my personal favourites include: leafy greens, cilantro, parsley, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, apples, berries, garlic, and ginger. I like the idea of buying local and in season, to increase the freshness and nutrient density of my food.

3.Why do you think there a fad around foods that detoxify right now?

I think everyone loves trying something new. We get bored because we’re used to having so many options. This is another reason why eating seasonally makes sense, we can get the variety we really crave. Those fresh summer strawberries only have a small growing window, you truly enjoy and savor them when there not available everyday. Besides, our lives are busy! When we stop for a minute to reflect, chances are we all feel like we need to detoxify from some part of our jam-packed life. I think just the word “detoxification” itself can be comforting. It can make us feel like we’re being proactive in reducing the amount of lifestyle stress we often expose ourselves too.

4. What is a better way to detoxify your body?

I like to look at detoxification as a whole body and lifestyle process. If we could take into account all the different areas in which we may need to make adjustments. These include increasing physical activity, enjoying dry saunas, eating nourishing, whole foods on a regular basis, and addressing all that mental clutter through practices like meditation, yoga, or getting out into nature. All of this helps relieve toxic stress and a toxic lifestyle.

5. What are 5 examples of food to avoid because they are very toxic to your body?

I believe so much in moderation. Some of the things we might truly enjoy from time to time, may not always be the best for our body. Enjoying indulgent foods in balance helps supports realistic expectations, and can still be part of a healthy, yet sustainable, lifestyle. Excessive amounts of caffeine, alcohol, sugar, and processed foods can have a toxic effect on us both mentally and physically. Try and make these things an occasional part of life, and remember it’s what you do MOST of the time that matters.

What are your thoughts about detoxing foods? Feel free to leave your comments below.

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5 Surprising Health Benefits of Massage

Benefits of Massage

Every guest who visits Mountain Trek enjoys the complimentary massages that are offered in the evenings but most would say they're part of the program so as to help people relax and ease sore muscles from snowshoeing all day. While that's definitely a key reason why we include Swedish massages as part of our all-inclusive retreat package, there are many other benefits to massage therapy that you may not know about.

Here are five surprising health benefits of massage therapy:

It helps your body release toxins

Release toxins with massage

Your body is designed to flush harmful chemicals, viruses and other toxins via the kidneys, liver, lungs, intestines, skin and lymphatic system. We can help it with this task by drinking lots of water, eating healthy foods, doing exercise, and, yes, getting a massage! A massage helps drain toxins through the lymphatic system, which clears your body of cellular waste.

It lowers cortisol levels

Massage for good health

Human touch is a powerful tool. By physically interacting with another person, you are socially validated and that has physiological impacts: it lowers your levels of cortisol (stress hormone) and releases dopamine. If you don't have the opportunity for daily physical interaction with a loved one in the form of a hug for example, the skin-on-skin contact offered by a massage therapist is the next best thing.

It boosts immunity

massage to lower cortisol

In 2010 a study was published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine that determined the effects of a single session of Swedish massage on neuroendocrine and immune function. It was recorded that Swedish Massage Therapy increased oxytocin levels within participants, which helped decrease hypothalamic, pituitary & adrenal activity and enhanced immune function. The authors also concluded that massage boosts patients' white blood cell count, which help defend the body against disease.

It soothes anxiety and depression

massage

As mentioned above, human touch in a safe, friendly environment has positive physiological impacts. Not only does it lower cortisol levels but it can ease negative moods. According to a 2005 study published in the International Journal of Neuroscience,women diagnosed with breast cancer who received massage therapy three times a week reported being less angry and less depressed.

It improves sleep

Massage for better sleep

Not only does massage encourage relaxation but it can also help lead to a restful sleep. That's why we prefer to offer our Swedish massages in the evenings at Mountain Trek – by easing muscle pain and encouraging your body to relax, you're then set up for a deep, restorative sleep. [fbcomments]

The Importance of Digital Detox and How To Do It

How to Digital Detox

Recently we’ve had many journalists asking about our digital detox program at Mountain Trek. As many of us become addicted to our smart phones, tablets, wristbands and smart watches, laptops and anything else with a screen, it’s that much more important to remember to take time away from all things digital. That’s why it’s so great to visit Mountain Trek because we’re immersed in the most beautiful natural environment in North America – one in which it’s impossible to get cell coverage for large parts of the day because we’re hiking in mountain landscapes.

Why are we hearing so much about digital detox these days?

Why is digital detoxing important?

So why are we hearing more and more about digital detox lately? According to the latest polls conducted by research corporation Ipsos, 40% of adults feel the need to ‘disconnect” and 71% of respondents claim they’re spending less time connecting with people face-to-face due to gadgetry. Aside from the negative social ramifications, this digital dependence also comes with health costs: digital screens can contribute to visual fatigue, headaches, and strain of the body from being stationary for so long. Also the intense white-blue back light of our screens raise our “wake-up” and stress hormone Cortisol, often overriding our sleep inducing hormone Melatonin. Other studies have found that technology contributes to higher stress, strains on relationships and family and attention disorders.

Why are digital devices so addictive?

Why are devices so addictive?

If you can’t help but check your smart phone immediately after waking up and then continually throughout the day every few minutes, you’re not alone. Our bodies actually crave the results of shared information via our screened devices – we’re hard-wired for it! This is why: hundreds of thousands of years ago when the ancestors of homo sapiens walked the earth they developed physical reactions to information. When knowledge was shared (or the promise of knowledge) that could make life easier and ensure survival, their brains were flooded with dopamine, the feel-good hormone.

The same is true today. Research shows that our prehistoric brains still flood us with dopamine when our smart phones “ping” to let us know there’s potential knowledge or survival tools waiting for us to discover. Each tweet, text or email is a little gift-wrapped packet that might make a difference to our survival. At the same time our Limbic brains are reassured that we’re socially connected. It’s the perfect formula resulting in us feeling “good” every time we receive a notification through our digital device.

Why is this addiction so dangerous?

Why is a digital addiction so dangerous?

The problem with this scenario is that our brain is actually being fooled: very few of us receive survival tools via our Twitter or Facebook feeds and, overall, our social media interaction is incredibly shallow. This leads to “solitarism” – a buzzword you’ll be hearing a lot more of in the coming years as people suffer loneliness despite being “connected” via multiple social media streams.

How does Mountain Trek support digital detox?

While there is WiFi in the Mountain Trek lodge, we ensure guests do not use their smart phones and devices in the common areas and we do not have a television, radio, nor any news media on site. This is because our aim is to lower the stress hormone Cortisol in your body so you can reclaim the health benefits of a raised metabolism. In other words, we want our experience to be all about you and your own health and that means there isn’t a lot of external stimuli pulling you away from your goals.

Here are our top 6 ways to enjoy digital detox during the days when you’re not enrolled in the Mountain Trek program:

Plan with intent

Having a plan in place sets yourself up for success. Be clear about what you’ll give up, for how long, and when. If you’re agreeing not to check email in the evening, be clear about exactly what hours and what days this takes effect. Going into this with clear intention will also allow you to monitor very clearly your own reactions to digital breaks, and plan for responses of how to deal with any jonesing. Develop your plan, and stick to it. As you tally your victories, you can expand your goals.

Start slow

If you’re checking your email every 10 minutes, a week away without your Blackberry may induce heart palpitations. If you’re going to your son’s soccer game, for example, make a point and a plan to leave your cellphone in the car with the intention of not checking it for those 2 hours. Start slowly, and gradually, and this will be the key to breaking any dependence.

Tell friends and family

You don’t want them to think you’re MIA – to avoid unnecessary worry and to enlist support, let your friends and family in on your digital detox plan. And who knows, maybe they’ll even join you on that walk in your National Park, and you can both go tech free for the afternoon!

Learn from your detox

The goal of a detox isn’t to see how long you can go without doing something, only to breathe a sigh of relief at the end and jump back into old patterns wholeheartedly. Use the tech detox not only to see that you can live without your gadgets and the world won’t stop, but also to learn about yourself, what you like doing when monitors and screens aren’t involved, and with this, you can integrate new hobbies and patterns into your every day.

Plan alternatives

When you decide to stop or reduce online time, you will create a void in your time. Filling the void with enjoyable activities is key to beating any gadget addiction. This is where our helpful hints list “7 Fun Things you can do Instead of checking Your Email” can be helpful.

Create a tech-free zone

Pick a space in your home, preferably in a public area like your living room. This will encourage more ‘live’ conversation, more gadget-free activities, and less ‘auto-pilot’ of entering the room and turning on the computer or TV. Alternatively, have a family agreement to turn off the modem or WiFi at a certain time in the evening.

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Why Mountain Trek Is The Perfect Girls Getaway

Girls-Get-Away-2

Mountain Trek is just starting its season and what an incredible one it has been. The weather has been absolutely stunning: we’ve enjoyed lots of sunshine with clear blue skies and stunning views of the mountains, lakes and rivers in this beautiful area of British Columbia.

This is an excellent time of year for you to visit Mountain Trek because it’s a chance to really launch into recreation, relaxation and retreat. You work hard all year and now it’s time to consider taking some space for yourself: start thinking about leaving behind the stresses and worries of your job, your child-rearing, or whatever it is that occupies so much of your time, if even for a little while. It’s a great thing to reward yourself with a healthy vacation but imaging bringing along your girlfriends so you can all help support and encourage each other to get in shape and have fun!

Here are four reasons why you and your girlfriends should book a Girls Getaway to Mountain Trek:

#1. The kids are away. Time to play

Leave the children at home and enjoy this perfect opportunity to get away from your day-to-day and spend some much-needed time with your friends getting fit during the day and getting pampered at night with our massages, saunas and world-famous hot springs.

Girls-Get-Away-1

#2. Have the outdoors all to yourself

Can you imagine having the mountains all to yourself? The south-central region of B.C. is perfect because unlike areas such as Banff, Whistler and every national park in the United States there are fewer tourists around. We’ll go on such iconic hikes as Idaho Peak and Fry Creek and it will be just you, your friends and some of the most stunning mountainous views in the world.

Girls-Get-Away-3
#3. Get on track for the year

Take time out for yourself to learn healthy routines and indulge. What better way to get into a healthy mindset than to visit Mountain Trek and disover all the ways to shed stress and be healthy. Come to Mountain Trek, eat delicious meals, boost your vitality and metabolism, become more active and get your year back on track with all your closest friends by your side.

Girl's Get Away at Mountain Trek

#4. Have a guaranteed support network when you get home

Sometimes the hardest part about attending Mountain Trek is leaving. It can be difficult to incorporate the healthy aspects of the program when you get back to your day-to-day but if you and your friends all return from the fitness retreat at the same time, you’ll be there for each other and help each other through those moments when it’s tough to stay on track. You’ll have a fitness friend, a confidante and someone to share recipes with.

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How to Take Better Care of Your Skin. Start Now!

Skin-Care-2

Our skin is our suit of armour against all the elements of the world and so it’s important to take care of it. It’s also the artistic canvas we present to those around us and so we tend to have a lot of guests at Mountain Trek asking how to improve theirs so they appear younger and healthier. Of course, the longer answer to this question is to be healthier and act younger by exercising, eating nutritious food and taking care of yourself. However, there are other things you can do for your skin specifically that will help. This doesn’t mean slathering on lots of store-bought lotion, however, as many of those products contain hormones that affect our inner functions. Here are six easy, no-nonsense tips that will help your skin retain its youthfulness.

1. Protect yourself from the sun

It goes without saying that one of the most important ways to take care of your skin is to protect it from the sun. Not only will this prevent wrinkles from forming, it will also slow down the formation of age spots and other more serious problems such as skin cancer. For the most complete sun protection:

  • Seek shade. Avoid the sun between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., when the sun’s rays are strongest.
  • Wear protective clothing. Cover your skin with tightly woven long-sleeved shirts, long pants and wide-brimmed hats. Also consider wearing special sun-protective clothing, which is specifically designed to block ultraviolet rays.
  • Use sunscreen. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of at least 15. Apply sunscreen generously, and reapply every two hours — or more often if you’re swimming or perspiring.

womens skin care

2. Don’t smoke

Aside from all the other negative affects of smoking, it also makes your skin look older and contributes to wrinkles. It narrows the tiny blood vessels in the outermost layers of skin, which decreases blood flow. This depletes the skin of oxygen and nutrients that are important to skin health. Smoking also damages collagen and elastin — the fibers that give your skin strength and elasticity. In addition, the repetitive facial expressions you make when smoking — such as pursing your lips when inhaling and squinting your eyes to keep out smoke — can contribute to wrinkles. If you smoke, the best way to protect your skin is to quit: ask your doctor for tips or treatments to help you stop smoking.

3. Treat your skin gently

Daily cleansing and shaving can take a toll on your skin. To keep it gentle:

  • Limit bath time – Hot water and long showers or baths remove oils from your skin. Limit your bath or shower time and use warm — rather than hot — water.
  • Avoid strong soaps – Strong soaps and detergents can strip oil from your skin. Instead, choose mild, natural cleansers.
  • Shave carefully – To protect and lubricate your skin, apply shaving cream, lotion or gel before shaving. For the closest shave, use a clean, sharp razor. Shave in the direction the hair grows, not against it.
  • Pat dry – After washing or bathing, gently pat or blot your skin dry with a towel so that some moisture remains on your skin.
  • Moisturize dry skin – If your skin is dry, use a moisturizer that fits your skin type but be wary of most of the brands on the shelves – they contain many additives and hormones that negatively impact your body. Sometimes the best moisturizer is natural food oils, such as coconut oil applied sparingly.

skin care

 

4. Eat a healthy diet

A healthy diet can help you look and feel your best. Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins. The association between diet and acne isn’t clear — but some research suggests that a diet rich in vitamin C and low in unhealthy fats and processed or refined carbohydrates might promote younger looking skin.

5. Manage stress

Uncontrolled stress can make your skin more sensitive and trigger acne breakouts and other skin problems. To encourage healthy skin — and a healthy state of mind — take steps to manage your stress. Set reasonable limits, scale back your to-do list and make time to do the things you enjoy. The results might be more dramatic than you expect.

6. Smear food on your face

This can be fun! A lot of people, especially women, like to use masks to help rejuvenate the skin on their face and bodies but as will commercial moisturizes, a lot contain hormones and other additives that can be harmful over time. Here are four fun ideas for giving yourself a fancy spa facial at home:

  • Vinegar has been used as a skin toner by the Greeks and Romans for centuries. After you wash your face, mix 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar with 2 cups water as a finishing rinse to cleanse and tighten your skin
  • Mash up a ripe banana into a smooth paste and use that as a face mask and apply to your face and neck. Let it set for 10-20 minutes then rinse off with cold water. It’ll leave your skin looking and feeling softer.
  • Create a facial that both exfoliates and moisturizes by mixing the juice from 1 lemon with 1/4 cup olive oil or sweet almond oil.
  • If you don’t have any aversion to dairy, then make a mask by mixing 1/4 cup powdered milk with enough water to form a thick paste. Throoughly coat your face wit hthe mixture, let dry then rinse with warm water.
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9 Ways to Get Beach Ready & Cure the “Muffin Top”

Beach-Body

Now is the time of year when many of us look in the mirror and wonder where our beach bodies went over the course of the winter. The fact is a number of factors combined with a more sedentary lifestyle during the winter months can lead to the dreaded “muffin top” in which our body spills out over our bathing suits. Thankfully there are some easy steps to follow that will help you lose weight, keep fit and look great in that swim suit. Below are a nine tips for curing the muffin top.

Walk-10,000-steps-a-day

Walk 10,000 steps a day, take the stairs or join a gym.

Take-Breaks

Take two 1-minute breaks in the work day to close eyes and breathe deeply.

Test-your-food-sensitivities-

Test for food sensitivities.

Power-Down-Electronics

Power down electronics 1 hour before bed and remove all electronics from bedroom.

Avoid-Alcohol

Reduce alcohol consumption to 1-2 days per week.

Avoid-Plastics-and-Soy

Minimize use of Soy, plastic food wrappers, pesticides, and petrochemical cosmetics.

Infrared-Sauna

Infrared Sauna 1-2 times per week at Day Spa or Health Club to release toxins.

Chew-your-food

Chew food to liquid state and add Probiotics to build intestinal flora.

Fibre-rich-diet

Switch to low Carb/high Protein and Fibre rich diet.

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