Tag Archives: nutrition

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Holiday Spices With Surprising Health Benefits

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Spices are a great way to season food without extra sugar or salt. What’s more, research suggests that many spices may offer a variety of healthy benefits, from fighting inflammation to helping prevent Alzheimer’s. Load up on these classic flavors in your holiday dishes for a healthier season!

 

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Nutmeg

Nutmeg has long been used as an at-home health remedy to treat indigestion and, when applied topically, to treat acne. It’s relatively high in magnesium–a mineral which has been proven to help treat insomnia in elderly patients, and which may help improve duration and quality of sleep. Macelignan, another compound found in nutmeg, has been shown to have a neuroprotective effect, which hypothetically means it may help stave off Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative diseases. Just be careful, as consumed in too large of quantities (like, downing a whole shaker quantities) nutmeg can be toxic!

 

Cinnamon

For many, the warm scent of cinnamon is synonymous with the change of seasons. This fragrant flavoring has been linked to several health benefits. Studies suggest it helps lower blood glucose levels in diabetics and pre-diabetics, making it a potentially important tool in helping high-risk patients manage their glycemic levels. Manganese, a mineral found in cinnamon, plays an important role in overall blood sugar regulation. Cinnamon’s antimicrobial properties help with oral health and fighting bad breath, and in preventing bacterial growth in food and beverages.

 

 

Ginger

While ginger’s usefulness in helping relieve nausea and indigestion is widely known, it’s worth noting that this spice offers a number of other benefits too. It’s been shown to help relieve and prevent allergies. Ginger also offers anti-inflammatory benefits, and has been shown to effectively ease joint pain in arthritis sufferers.

 

Keep in mind that the amount of these ingredients typically used in recipes is relatively small–incorporating them in isn’t necessarily a magic bullet. It is, however a great–and tasty–step toward a diet that makes you feel better. For more tips tailored to your metabolism and needs, we encourage you to request an appointment with our wellness experts.


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girl eating healthy Halloween treat

Healthy Halloween Handouts

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At the Advanced Health and Wellness Center of New Jersey, we’re all about healthy lifestyle choices. And while a little bit of candy every so often isn’t such a bad thing, neither is offering something a little different this Halloween. Edibles aren’t the only option. There are lots of great treats out there that promote healthy habits and active lifestyles at candy-comparable price points–especially if you stock up early. For best results, we recommend offering several options. Here are some ideas to get you started:

Seed Packets

Seed packets are an inexpensive gift with the potential to provide a long-term educational benefit. Gourds, squashes and–of course– pumpkins are great seasonal picks. Bonus? Pumpkins pack a nutritional punch.

Light Up Wearables

LED lights aren’t just fun–they’re a great way to help keep kids safer. With the days getting shorter, it’s important to make sure your kids are visible at dusk. Lights designed to clip on to shoelaces, backpacks, etc. are a cute, creative, and calorie-free handout.

Sweatbands

Headbands and wristbands are colorful, retro accessories great for dress up and inspiring future athletes. Plus? They’re less likely to pull or snap the way those rubber bracelets that have also been trending tend to, which means lower risk of injuries.

Frisbees

Frisbees and mini frisbees are a great way to encourage and foster active play. They’re inexpensive, too–right now you can get a set of 72 on Amazon for under $10.

Want more ways to improve your health and well being this holiday season? Request an appointment today!


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man happy about weight loss

Five Ways To Kick Off Your Weight Loss Plan

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Forget beach bodies–weight loss achieved by adapting real lifestyle changes has way more rewards to offer. It also takes time, which is why getting started now on some healthy habits will come in handy as things get busier in the fall.

Start Slow

Quitting pizza and TV time cold turkey can backfire. Instead, set weekly goals, i.e. eat healthy at least four nights a week, and go for one thirty-minute walk a day. Then, build up from there. Better yet, find ways to makeover some of the unhealthy habits you love. Watch your favorite tv shows while you jog or walk on the treadmill or do push-ups. Investigate recipes for more diet-friendly pizzas (like these–oh my, that caramelized onion and fontina slice looks amazing!).

Find A Team

Social support helps us stick to–and stay with–a weight loss program. Groups like Weight Watchers are one way to find this support; additionally, many clinics offer weight loss groups. It’s also just as effective to start with friends or family! Programs like DietBet even let you start a betting pool that pays participants who meet certain goals (just make sure you set reasonable, longer term goals based on percentages of weight instead of pounds).

Try An App

There are tons and tons of amazing apps out now to help users manage their fitness, nutrition, and weight loss goals. We suggest one that integrates both a calorie counter and activity tracker. MyFitnessPal allows users to set weight loss goals and provides a daily calorie allowance based on these goals. To add calories, users can select from an extensive library of meal items, scan barcodes, and add meals manually. Exercise can be entered manually or you can integrate a fitness tracker. It also offers access to a great–and very supportive!–community of fellow app users. You can find more great apps here.

Call The Doc

As a general rule, go see a physician prior to beginning any new weight loss program to make sure your routine is safe given your medical history, etc. They may also be able to re-adjust other medications you are taking that contribute to weight gain.

Get Tested

Genomic testing can provide information on what diet and medications will work for your body. It is a great tool for anyone struggling with weight gain. Certain genetic factors may make you more vulnerable to putting on the pounds, but some may also offer keys to keeping them off longer.

If you’re ready to lose weight and keep it off, we encourage you to request an appointment with our wellness experts today!


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woman yawning suffering from fatigue

Six Ways to Fight Fatigue

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Frustrated by fatigue? You’re not alone–most of us experience periods of fatigue at some point in our lives. Read on for the inside scoop on how to rediscover your energy.

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Rule Out Medical Causes

If you experience severe, persistent fatigue, it’s important to see a medical professional immediately. Fatigue can be symptomatic of more serious conditions–if it’s your body’s red flag, then it’s important to heed it. Fatigue can also be caused by mental illness, such as depression, which left untreated can make it harder to take steps like those below–leaving you stuck in a rut.

Sleep

According to the CDC, insufficient sleep is a public health epidemic. You probably know at least some of the big tips for getting better sleep: go to sleep and wake up at a set time, avoid nicotine, avoid caffeine or alcohol, don’t eat big meals before bed, etc. There’s a good summary of why we don’t here— and we get it. If you have small children, are in a financial situation that requires you to work long hours or deal with a crazy commute, 7-8 hours may be out of reach. But for the rest of us: make sleep a priority. You aren’t being selfish–sleep deprivation decreases cognitive function, makes you more dangerous on the road, and has all sorts of nasty side effects that hurt others around you.

Exercise

Take it from a fitness convert: those people insist a morning workout really does energize you are right. If at all possible, try to get a run, jog, or brisk walk in before you begin your day or at lunch.

If you don’t have time for a full-on workout, regular jaunts may do the trick. Take five and go for a quick stroll around the neighborhood, or take a longer lunch hour hike. If you’re worried your boss or manager may see these as shirking work, perhaps leave this somewhere easy to find. Better yet, bring any of the various studies on the relationship between exercise and creativity to a supervisor or HR representative in person and negotiate how you can make walk breaks part of your routine. Fitness bands, like those from Fitbit and Jawbone, sync with your smartphone and allow you to set walking alarms to make sure you move every hour or two. To reap the most benefits, make sure your walk is fast enough to work as cardio. You can find a great guide for how to do this here.

Nutrition, Supplements and Vitamins

You are what you eat. A soggy fast food burger is about as energizing to eat as it is to look at. Think you’re eating fairly well, but still always sleepy? Try consulting with a professional nutritionist. They can run tests and use your medical history as well as lifestyle to recommend a customized plan that works for you without controlling your life. Remember: they’re people, too, and don’t just know how to eat well, but how to prepare meals that are easy and tasty. What’s more, they can recommend quality supplements and vitamins, using science to steer you clear of the “snake oil” solutions.

Drink Up!

Up to 75% of US adults may be chronically dehydrated. And guess what–if you feel fatigued often, chances are, you may be one of them. Dehydration is a common cause of fatigue. Need help drinking your fill? Check out this article for some great tips!

Visit a Wellness Center

Wellness centers are great resources for holistic treatments for fatigue. At centers like ours, we have experts who can provide nutritional consults, genomic testing and all kinds of other ways to diagnose the causes of fatigue and treat them in a way that’s appropriate to your needs.


Good health requires balance. Physical fitness, nutrition, sleep, pain management, and stress relief all contribute to a healthy, sustainable lifestyle. At the Advanced Health and Wellness Center of New Jersey, we help patients struggling with weight loss, fatigue, fibromyalgia, and other conditions using holistic techniques. Request an appointment and get started on a path towards comprehensive wellness.