good

Gross But Good: Things Worth Getting Over The “Ick” Factor For

When we think of using a product or making a recipe; it’s only partially based on what we think our experience of that item will be. While that’s a factor – if you hate tomatoes then it’s unlikely you’re going to choose a huge tomato-based recipe – it’s not necessarily the whole truth.

Some of the time, we make choices about everything – from life, to wellness, to nutrition; because we like the idea of them. There’s something about them that we find appealing, that tickles our sense of adventure, makes us want to sample it. We’re halfway to the idea of enjoying it before we have even thought about what it will actually be like.

If things go one way, then, of course, they go the other. In this instance, that means we can convince ourselves that we won’t like something; purely because there’s something we don’t like the sound of. It’s the “ick” factor, the thing that makes us wrinkle our upper lip and think: “actually, I’ll give that a pass”.

It ranges across everything, from the food we eat to the items we use in our home; a whole range of things dismissed because we just don’t like how they sound. We don’t care if sauerkraut is meant to be good for you – the mere idea of it is gross; compost tea might be good for the garden, but those are two words that shouldn’t ever go together so we won’t think of it; as for vinegar Okay, so we’re jumping right into the deep end. This one is a two-parter. “Fermented” – as in, food that’s gone off? And then “cod liver oil” – which alone is bad enough to contemplate, but gone off cod liver oil?

While this attitude is understandable – no one can control their gut reaction to anything – it also might be preventing you from getting the best of life. So hold your nose and think about which of the following you might be able to handle, all in the pursuit of the huge benefits they contain…

Fermented Cod Liver Oil

It sounds bad, but it’s actually hugely beneficial for a myriad of reasons. If you have any aching joints, aren’t as supple as you’d like, or just want your skin to glow a little more, then cod liver oil alone is good for you. If you want to ratchet it up a notch, then fermented cod liver oil has all of the benefits of regular cod liver oil but even moreso.

Plus if you’re thinking that you have to swallow down spoonfuls of what is, in essence, rotten fish gunk, then don’t worry: capsules are the easy answer! They may be a little more pungent than the non-fermented variety, but take them holding your nose and store in an airtight container to avoid this.

Seaweed

Even if you’ve enjoyed sushi every now and again, the idea of deliberately consuming seaweed just doesn’t sound palatable. Part of this is in the name itself: it’s a weed. Who’d go out of their way to eat a weed?

Well, anyone who truly cares about getting the most out of their nutrition would! There are all sorts of goodness to be found in seaweed, from vital amino acids through to a boatload of the standard letter vitamins. There’s also good evidence that it helps to stabilize blood sugar, which is perfect if you want sustained energy for a workout.

Consuming seaweed isn’t as simple as loading up on as much sushi as you can eat. If you make your own sushi, that’s not as much of a problem – but store bought sushi is often packed with added sugar. It’s ridiculous, but true: a nice healthy snack that’s ruined by excess sugar. Even if you are making your own, it’s only a small amount of seaweed per time.

There are thousands of recipes online that are designed to make seaweed more palatable. Try it in a stir-fry or just add a few strips to a casserole; then you can start reaping the benefits.

Blood Sausage / Black Pudding

Well, we’ve gone from the quite disgusting and back to the extremely disgusting and weird, haven’t we?

There’s good reason for doing it, though! Blood sausage (which is also known as ‘black pudding’ – don’t be confused into thinking they are different things…) is pretty much what it says on the, er, sausage. It’s animal blood made into a consumable solid.

Don’t like the sound of it? You’re not alone; a lot of people have never tried blood sausage, but they’d still swear they don’t like it. That’s a real shame, given how good it is for you. Not only is it rich in iron, it’s rich in protein, low in carbohydrates, and relatively low in terms of calories.

The best method of cooking is to fry it, ideally in a beneficial oil like coconut or grass fed butter. The crispier it is, the easier you’ll find it to eat – when it’s soft, it’s particularly poor. So crisp it up by frying or using a halogen oven; then eat with some scrambled eggs for an incredibly nutritious breakfast.

Liver

So that’s the blood, what about the internal organs?

For many years, the idea of eating offal – that is, the kidneys or liver – of an animal was considered to be something that peasants did. The high members of society wouldn’t consume such things!

Well, more fool them: offal, and liver particularly, is incredibly good for you. It’s rich in three of the B vitamins – cyanocobalamin, riboflavin, and folate; as well as nutrients such as selenium and potassium.

If you fancy giving it a try, then the traditional liver and onions dish is probably the best way to go. Alternatively, if you’re good with pastry, then liver makes an excellent filling alongside a more succulent meat such as chicken.

What’re Your Thoughts

So there we have it; disgusting sounding food that is actually extremely good for you. It might be a mental hurdle to eat these foods for the first time, but when you leap over it, there will be no looking back.

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Guest Post: Reasons Why Yoga is Good for Your Health

Dealing with everyday stress seems to be more difficult today. Just as you’re about to finish a task at work, your boss assigns to you another project; meanwhile, your pet is sick, and your phone battery is dead. It looks like everything is going down in flames. Instead of allowing stress and anxiety to get the best of you, you can start developing your own strategies for handling stress and staying healthy. One of the best ways to do that is by hitting the mat and giving yoga a try.

Have a perfect posture

By spending a lot of time hunched over our computers we are ruining our posture since it is difficult to keep the spine in a perfectly upright position all the time. This means that our sedentary lifestyle puts a lot of strain on neck and back muscles, and modern technology, as well as hours spent in front of a computer, don’t make things any easier. Not only does a poor posture look bad, but it also causes back, neck, and other muscle and joint problems. Yoga improves your flexibility, it strengthens your neck and back muscles and helps you stand straight. You will soon notice that your posture is improved and that your back pain problems are gone.

Get Stronger

Strong muscles look amazing, but when you spend a lot of time sitting at a desk or in front of a TV, it becomes very difficult to keep that sculptured body. Strong muscles mean that you’ll stay healthy for a long time, you will improve your balance, and you will look amazing. As easy as yoga may seem at first, it’s very difficult, and before you know it, you will notice your body changing, becoming leaner and more muscular.

Improve Flexibility

Not only will you be getting stronger, but you will also become more flexible. Improved flexibility is something that happens over time. During your first classes, you might have trouble bending over, touching your toes, and doing a backbend. Still, if you are persistent and dedicated, you will soon notice your body becoming more flexible with every new class. As your flexibility improves, all your pains and aches will significantly diminish. You will also become more graceful, as you will have better posture and you will be moving with ease.

Fight Insomnia

People who suffer from insomnia have also noticed that the quality of their sleep is significantly improved after only eight weeks of daily yoga. What is more, a study found that even people who survived cancer started feeling less fatigued and could sleep better after doing yoga twice a week. Sleep issues are tightly connected to anxiety, and it is not uncommon that you find it difficult to fall asleep just because you cannot stop thinking about everyday problems and troubles. Breathing and mental exercises help your mind to relax too, and allow it to slow down, so you will soon discover that you’re sleeping better. Start using yoga accessories to help you focus better: find bundles of white sage on Sivana Spirit – the smell is lovely and it will help you relax.

Yoga is not only good for relaxation and finding a peace of mind, but it also represents an incredibly effective mind-body practice. By focusing on your breathing and keeping your body in the right position, you will find it easy to meditate and relax. The best thing is that pretty much anyone can do yoga – there are different kinds of yoga for you to choose from, and once you find the one that’s perfect for you, you will notice that you’re getting healthier with each day.

Diana Smith is a full-time mom of two beautiful girls interested in topics related to health and alternative medicine. In her free time, she enjoys exercising and preparing healthy meals for her family.

The Doctor Will See You Now

‘An apple a day will keep the doctor away,’ or at least that’s what the old saying preaches. But, should you be trying to keep them away, or should you be embracing them with open arms? Drum roll please because the answer is… you need to see your doctor more often if you want to maintain your health. That might be hard to digest, especially if you’ve spent your life eating apples. But, it’s the only way to know for sure that your body isn’t going to break down, and here are the reasons why.

They Are Experts

Thanks to the internet, everyone likes to think they are a qualified medical professional. Well, sorry to burst your bubble, but you’re not a doctor! You are, in fact, a layman with unbridled access to Google, and that’s not good. A quick internet search will tell you everything you think you need to know, yet you don’t have the knowledge to analyze the information. So, what do you do? You self-diagnose and self-medicate and stress about your situation until you finally book a check up. Honestly, there is zero point going through all of the hassles if you see a physician in the first place. They have years of knowledge and experience that can put your mind at rest and get you back on track.

Readily Available

If you look across the Atlantic, you will see a lot of problems with the UK’s NHS. One of the main issues is that waiting times for patients is skyrocketing. As a result, it’s harder and harder for citizens to see a GP in their hour of need. The same problem doesn’t exist over here. It isn’t because free health care doesn’t work: Obama was onto something with that one. It’s because of the amount of doctors available across the country. Most hospitals and clinics have doctors that are available at a moment’s notice as long as you make an appointment. A concierge physician will even visit you at your home if you can’t make time. Not only are they experts, but they are ready to offer expert advice on a regular basis.

Issues Don’t Always Flare Up

Your body is like a car. No, you’re not a mint condition supercar that can do 0-60 in less than five seconds. And nope, you’re also not a collector’s item! What you have in common is that there is more to you than meets the eye. So, everything might look and feel good on the outside, but there could be problems underneath. Until you pop the hood and take a look, there’s no way to know for sure. And, not to scare you, but these issues can be significant. The good news is that a doctor is usually on hand to take tests. Hopefully, you are fine and healthy, and you can go on your way. But, you don’t know until you feel the cold, hard metal on your chest.

Oh, and don’t worry about wasting their time. You’re paying for the consultation, so they can sit and listen for as long as you need!

Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

The Little And Often Approach To Good Health

When we make changes in our lives, the instinct is to seek a complete overhaul. It’s the ‘all or nothing’, ‘go big or go home’ idea. While this may motivate us initially, the problem is that the effect doesn’t last. We burn out before we even get started. But taking a ‘little and often’ approach to good health is more manageable, and easier to maintain.

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Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

Does Your Lifestyle Offer You Everything You Need For Good Health?

Most of us strive to enjoy a healthy lifestyle. But it can sometimes be difficult to define what that is exactly. Does it mean we should be heading to the gym three times a week? Or does it mean that all of our exercises should be integrated into our day-to-day activities? A healthy lifestyle is one that provides you with all you need to be healthy. And that could be different for everyone. Don’t forget – good health goes far beyond our physical fitness. So does your lifestyle off you everything you need for good health?

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Ally Gonzales is the creator of RunningSoleGirl. The go-to place for everything healthy lifestyle and conditioning for running. She’s a runner, speaks a total of five languages, and is a soon-to-be college freshman majoring in Exercise and Sports Science.

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