lifestyle

LUCID LOVE

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The moment we choose to recognize our experiences in the world as lessons of love, life turns into a lucid dream. This recognition can come from the depths of our hearts or from spiritual awareness—brought about through the senseless suffering caused by our minds. Either way, the main difference between a nightmare and a lucid dream is a shift of our perception grounded in love. In the dream of life, there are many mountains to climb every day, and they might crumble, the dust might blur our vision, fear might replace our hope, but if we have faith and recognize our own essence, WE will never fall again. 

Much Love!

Valeria 

CALLING FOR FITNESS AND SPIRITUALITY

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My six o’clock client was not a regular. A fellow female trainer had had to leave due to an emergency, and asked me to take her client that day. I filled in for her as a substitute trainer.

Steve was a fifty-seven-year-old businessman who seemed to be under a great deal of stress. I could tell this just by being around him for a few seconds. He gave me a serious, almost intimidating impression, and breathed heavily. We were introduced in a hurry by the other trainer as she ran out the door.

Steve looked at me with an expression of quiet impatience. He was in good shape and looked strong. His chest area was well developed, leading me to think he must have been lifting heavy weights for years. I could tell he was very proud of his chest.

Before I could ask him about his training routine, he gave me the workout for that day. His program had only four exercises: barbell bench press (155 lbs — 12 reps), incline chest press (50 lb dumbbells — 12 reps), floor push-ups (20 reps), and incline dumbbell flies (20 lbs — 12 reps). If you understand something about muscle-group training, you will notice that Steve’s workout had only chest exercises.

I looked at his program and said enthusiastically, “Great! Let’s do it!”

I set up the barbell and began the first workout on the list. I was ready to spot him if he needed it, standing close to the bench behind his head. As he ended each rep, I cheered him on by saying things like, “Great job, Steve. You’ve got it! Nice work! Keep the energy! You can do it! Wonderful! You are doing it right! Don’t give up! One more left! Nicely done!”

In truth, I was talking to myself. I needed to hear my own enthusiastic words, given the day I’d had. I noticed something unusual when I took a glanced quickly at Steve’s face to make sure he was okay. He was looking at me and smiling as he lifted the heavy weight. He’d finished lifting without saying a word, but he smiled. I didn’t exactly understand the reason for his happiness, but I was glad his serious and stress-filled expression was gone.

 

Considering he was a new client, I didn’t feel comfortable enough to begin a conversation about my early insights into fitness and kindness. Nonetheless, I asked him trivial questions, which he didn’t answer. I don’t know about you, but I enjoy interacting with others when I’m with them. I like separating things: There is a time to be fully alone, and a time to be fully with others. In a trainer/client relationship, there are moments to focus on the exercise, moving and breathing properly, and also moments when we can talk.

 

Steve’s behavior was making me feel incredibly awkward. Concerned but trying to stay cool, I followed him around with my cheerful chatter. His behavior didn’t change. The studio was quiet; there were only a few people working out with their trainers. No one seemed to notice how uncomfortable I was around Steve.

Once again in my life, I felt stuck. I didn’t want to stay there, but I couldn’t leave. I tried to stay calm and do my job well.

We went through the workouts. In the end, Steve was sweating, still with a smile on his face. Before we said goodbye, he asked for my name again, then mentioned that he liked my training style. He also inquired if I could train him from that day on. I politely explained to him that my schedule couldn’t fit another client.

In truth, if my heart had not begun to guide me toward fitness and spirituality, I would have accepted his offer. 

Much love!

Valeria Teles

 LIFE OR BODY TRANSFORMATION?

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Diana was next. We met at five in the evening.

She came in ten minutes early and hustled past me on her way to the locker room, saying, “It’s been another busy day. Give me the hardest, most beast-mode circuit you’ve got, Valeria.”

My energy was very low at this point. I really didn’t want to train another client, especially a high-energy person like Diana. She was thirty-four years old and exercised every day in the morning before she went to work. Her jogging sessions lasted an hour. She usually met me in the late afternoons for her weight training.

Today was an upper-body session. While she lay under a sixty-five-pound loaded barbell, doing twelve reps of military presses, I asked her, “What is the most important thing in life to you, Diana?”

She was so focused on her reps that I wasn’t sure she’d heard me. As usual, she was having a serious conversation with the barbell. We didn’t tend to talk much. Her workout mood had always been to get the job done as well as possible and then leave the studio.

A few seconds later, she put the bar back on the rack. The next exercise was ab work, and she knew it. We had the circuits programmed in advance. She moved briskly to the yoga mat on the floor to do a set of twenty reverse crunches.

Her breathing was heavy. The circuit was intense. She was never happy with anything light or easy. I was still waiting for an answer to my question as I kept track of the number of reps, but I didn’t ask it again.

On the floor, while doing a quick stretch—bending her knees close to her chest while keeping her legs together—she said, “The most important thing to me is to keep moving forward through the days. When I wake up in the morning, I have a to-do list in my mind. I just go through it naturally. It’s a clear, focused, and precise daily plan I accomplish by the end of the day.” She finished her answer by the assisted pull-up bar, after fifteen reps.

Diana had been moving fast for the last thirty minutes. She performed all her exercises with the same focus and precision as she checked off her to-do list.

“Do you like your job?” I asked.

She was so focused on her spider plank ab work that her favorite movie star would have gone unnoticed had they walked by us. Sitting on the mat, wiping her face, she said that she got her job done, made great money, and was proud of herself. She worked out hard in one of the best fitness clubs in New York, and could afford my high personal training fees. She laughed and added that she ate out all the time, traveled, went out with friends for drinks; serious relationships and love were too complicated to give attention to.

You know that feeling when there’s nothing you can say to someone because they’re too busy listening to their own thoughts? That’s how I felt.

After we finished the workout, I reflected on how Diana’s life was not that different from her to-do list. It was programmed. She’d been in a cycle of living according to rehearsed habits, and her life had turned into a running race with no finish line or winners, an existence driven by nonstop actions. There was no space left to even think about love.

Diana followed the exercise program and ate clean while training with me. She achieved the fit and athletic look she wanted in three months. Her body composition transformed, but I wish her life had, too.

Much Love!

Valeria Teles

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! A RE-CREATION OF OUR DREAMS

WISHING YOU JOY, PROSPERITY, AND PEACE FOR 2018! 

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If we can walk, we can dance,

If we can dance, we can laugh,

And when we laugh, life becomes a RE-creation of our dreams! 

Here is one of my favorite timeless poems. It inspires willpower, kindness, faith, self-love, and more.

IF...

If you can keep your head when all about you   

Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,   

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

But make allowance for their doubting too;   

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,

Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,

And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream—and not make dreams your master;   

If you can think—and not make thoughts your aim;   

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

And treat those two impostors just the same;   

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken

Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,

And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings

And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings

And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

To serve your turn long after they are gone,   

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,   

Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch,

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,

If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,   

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,   

And—which is more—you’ll be a Man, my son!

By RUDYARD KIPLING

Warm wishes,

Valeria 

TURN EXERCISE INTO A SPIRITUAL ACTIVITY

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It's important to be aware that fitness can become a dangerous addiction, even when we practice our deepest spiritual understanding on a daily basis. I caught myself overtraining after spending days in meditation. As this demonstrates, we can never underestimate our habitual tendencies. Although spiritual knowledge—coupled with the guidance of our own hearts—can prevent exercise from becoming an unhealthy practice, it is my belief that we still need to surround ourselves with those who are on the path to “true health.” By doing this, we can create the environment that will allow us to practice our virtues consistently.

Finding the most enjoyable way that you can to unite your body and mind can turn any exercise session into a spiritual activity. Since everyone is unique, here is a simple solution: bring the heart into everything you do! 

 

Much Love!

Valeria 

THE SPIRIT OF GRATITUDE

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Thanksgiving celebrates the spirit of gratitude.

It's an acknowledgment of love.

Appreciation of truth.

The gracefulness of life.

Recognition of "God."

Responsiveness to peace within.

Thankfulness for the divine GIFTS we share in our HEARTS.

 

May this time of the year remind us all of what really matters in life!

 

Much Love,

Valeria 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

HOW WE LOVE MUSIC...

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“...Yes, there are two paths you can go by, but in the long run
There’s still time to change the road you’re on...”  - “Stairway to Heaven” by Led Zeppelin

Did you know that the songs we listen to are interconnected with our personalities?

For example, the genres that Explorers favor more than other Roles – namely, electronica (68%), hip-hop (49%), pop (74%), and reggae (35%) – may most frequently match the Explorer mood: energetic and in the moment. Whether it is a fast-driving techno beat or a reggae groove, Explorers may look for music that is more textural than intellectual, evoking an immediate, visceral response.

Here is a summary breakdown from recent studies:

Blues fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle, and at ease

Jazz fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, and at ease

Classical music fans have high self-esteem, are creative, introverted, and at ease

Rap fans have high self-esteem and are outgoing

Opera fans have high self-esteem, are creative, and gentle

Country and western fans are hardworking and outgoing

Reggae fans have high self-esteem, are creative, not hardworking, outgoing, gentle, and at ease

Dance fans are creative and outgoing but not gentle

Indie fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard working, and not gentle

Bollywood fans are creative and outgoing

Rock/heavy metal fans have low self-esteem, are creative, not hard-working, not outgoing, gentle, and at ease

Chart pop fans have high self-esteem, are hardworking, outgoing and gentle, but are not creative, and are not at ease

Soul fans have high self-esteem, are creative, outgoing, gentle, and at ease.  ... READ MORE...

Much Love! 

Valeria

Source: blog bufferapp and 16personalities.

ARE YOU LISTENING TO YOUR HEART?

How do you know that you are listening to your heart and not your habitual self?

We can’t stop the flow of thoughts. They will always polarize our minds. However, the nature of our thoughts, and the degree to which they command our attention, can change radically depending on lifestyle and spiritual practice. Here is my list of eleven signs to let you know if your heart is becoming master over your mind: You…

Live without judgment. When you look at yourself in the mirror or make a mistake, you are kind or even playful. This extends to how you see and treat others. 

See others as fellow souls. When engaging with others, you feel joy. You appreciate their uniqueness. There is a feeling of a deep connection you can’t explain. You recognize them as fellow souls. Your don’t wonder how each person will benefit you; your relationships are free of ego.

Live in the moment. Wherever you are and whatever you are doing, there is a magical quality to it. Your thoughts focus on the now. Memories come when called to assist you with what is happening in the present. This is especially helpful when engaging with others. You feel a much stronger desire to be present when with others.

Live serenely. In the heart’s reality there is no time, space, or fear. Anxiety is linked to fearful thoughts about the past or the future. Without these limiting conceptions about who you are, you feel free and calm.

Live simply. Your life is simple and your mind is clear. Because you know much about the nature of existence, you also know that there is no reason to complicate anything.

Enjoy silence. Because your heart is in touch with different levels of reality, it demands silence from your mind. Those who listen to the heart treasure quietude.

Revive in joy. Passion and excitement are replaced by joy. Passion is often linked to desires and pursuits of temporary achievements, while joy is rooted in renewal, love, and acceptance of what is.

Appreciate nature. Feeling at home in nature is a sign that your heart is in control, at least in that moment. Nature’s spirit is the same as the essence of who you are.

Experience Oneness. You feel the deep connection between you and everything in the universe, including all suffering.

Stay playful. You become almost child-like at times, but your presence and words are as deep as old age.

Practice compassion. You are someone who rejoices in helping others because you recognize that life is essentially suffering, but you are joyful and peaceful because you know who you are! 

Much love!

Valeria 

Sauerkraut Superfood!

The health benefits of sauerkraut are numerous, including improved digestive health, heart health, energy-boosting properties, immune system support, bone support, and even protection against certain cancers. 

Sauerkraut has excellent anti-cancer properties

Fermented foods like sauerkraut are packed with good bacteria, the kind that transform fiber into a fatty acid known as butyrate. Butyrate is a powerful weapon in the anti-cancer arsenal. In fact, studies show that this substance can protect against colon cancer. 

If you are looking to get an energy boost, add some sauerkraut to your menu

Cabbage is chock-full of iron, which helps your body increase its energy production by revving up metabolism and increasing circulation. Metabolism is the holy grail of energy, and with improved circulation, your organs and cells receive higher amounts of oxygen. Additionally, the iron levels present are a key component of anemia prevention. 

Give your digestive system a boost with a healthy serving of sauerkraut

The probiotic content in sauerkraut assists with digestion as well as helping to maintain a healthy digestive tract. The live bacteria rivals and even beats the pricey probiotic drinks and supplements found in the health sections of grocery markets. Freshly made is the ideal way to reap these benefits. 

Sauerkraut can boost your immune system, and also support heart health

Immune system health is critical if you want a well-tuned, smoothly running body, and sauerkraut can be your immune system’s best friend. In a study published in the British Journal of Nutrition, researchers found that the exact same probiotics, such as those in sauerkraut, increased levels of the immune system antibody IgG3 up to 66 percent!

Another study mirrored those results, adding that the juice from sauerkraut performed like an antifungal and antibacterial agent to cure infectious diseases.

Your heart is another beneficiary of the health-boosting properties of sauerkraut. A study published in the medical journal, Food and Function, showed that the probiotic content was a powerful heart-health protector. Sauerkraut was found to reduce cholesterol and triglyceride levels, while at the same time increasing heart-healthy antioxidants.

Gotta LOVE it! :)
 

Source: The Raw Food World

Every Minute Of Exercise Lengthen Your Life

At a dinner party, someone was cheerily justifying the piles of money he spends on a personal trainer. He feels so great that it’s worth every cent, he exulted, “And the best part is the return on the time! Every minute you spend working out comes back to you, because you’ll live that much longer!”

Here is the math by Tom Anthony who holds a Harvard physics degree:

Computing years of life gained after age 40

Running for two hours a week should gain you about four years of life. “So that is roughly 100 hours per year for your remaining 40 years or 4,000 hours in total for all 40 years. In one year, there are 24 hr/day X 365 days = 8,760 hours. So four additional years is 8,760 hr/yr X 4 yr = 35,040 hours of life gained. To gain these extra hours, you expended 4,000 hour of running. So the payback ratio is 35,040 hours gain/ 4,000 hours expended = 8.8.

Running for an hour gives you 9 hours of extra life.
Brisk walking for an hour gives you 2.9/8 X 9 = 3.2 hours of extra life.
Biking for an hour at less than 10 mph gives you 4/8 X 9 = 4.5 hours of extra life
Rope jumping for an hour gives you 10/8 X 9= 11 hours of extra life
Calisthenics for an hour gives you 8/8 X 9 = 9 extra hours of life

Source: Common Health

Popcorn and Fitness

I eat homemade popcorn 2-3 times a week. I add grass-fed butter and Himalayan salt to it. It's a fun and delicious snack!

If you’re looking for healthy foods to snack on, try adding popcorn to your list. This “king of snack foods” packs more healthy antioxidants than many fruits and vegetables. Popcorn is a naturally high-fiber whole grain food that can be eaten without the guilt of many other snacks you’d enjoy while watching the latest basketball game on your wide screen. In addition, researchers have recently discovered that popcorn contains large quantities of polyphenols, antioxidants that can reverse damage done to the body by unstable molecules called free radicals. Ninety percent of these healthy polyphenols are found in the hull of the popcorn, so steer toward freshly-popped as opposed to processed. The results—unlike the popcorn—should be taken with a grain of salt. As with other foods high in antioxidants—such as red wine and chocolate—moderation is key. Avoid dousing the popcorn in salt or butter. And keep eating your fruits and vegetables. Unlike popcorn, they are also filled with important vitamins and minerals.

Popcorn Benefits Breakdown:

- Popcorn is a whole grain fiber and is roughage, meaning that it helps to keep you regulated.
- Popcorn has more iron than eggs, roast beef, codfish or milk. So, eating a few handfuls of popcorn can be just as good as drinking a glass of milk or having a roast beef sandwich, especially if you are trying to increase your protein intake.
- Popcorn provides your body with calcium, not as much as you’d get from milk. But still, since many of us are trying to increase our calcium intake, it’s good to know that popcorn has this important healthy item.
- Popcorn is high in vitamins: thiamine, riboflavin and niacin, as well as, all of the B Complex vitamins. All of which the body needs since our bodies do not produce vitamins on their own, and we have to supply it with them.
- Popcorn provides protein. Since we all know that increasing our intake of protein is one way to help us build muscle, then knowing that eating popcorn can help us with that is a great thing.
- Popcorn is low in calories. One cup of unbuttered popcorn is only 25 to 55 calories per cup making it a dieter’s dream!

Source: Men's Fitness

RIPPED DIET - Lose Fat Fast!

The ripped diet is super simple but not easy to follow. You need to do it exactly like this or it won't work. But if you do it, you will lose as much fat as you want!  

Here it goes:

RIPPED DIET PLAN

MEAL 1

Probiotics in the morning before breakfast. (I recommend Garden of Life - 1 pill a day)

- 4-5 egg whites (boiled) with fibrous veggies (spinach, lettuce, tomatoes, peppers...) 

MEAL 2

- 04 oz lean protein (chicken, white fish, white meat turkey) with 1-2 cups cooked fibrous vegetables of your choice 

MEAL 3 - snack or dinner

Non-fat meal recipe:
- 4 tablespoons Greek yogurt - fat free
- 2 scoops Tera's Whey (chocolate is my favorite)
- 1 teaspoon spirulina
- 1 teaspoon matcha green tea
- Liquid stevia - from sweet drops
 

MEAL 4

- 04 oz of fatty protein (lean cut beef, salmon, or lamb) with 1-2 cups cooked fibrous vegetables

P.S.: No alcohol, no sweets, no fruits, no extra oils can be added (if you cook with oil it needs to be coconut oil and very, very little), and no carbs (you can have 02 oz of boiled sweet potatoes on the days you workout legs or 04 oz of extra thick oats made with unsweetened almond milk).

Drink a gallon of water a day.

Adding lemon to your meals helps - you can also add soy sauce for taste. 

Sleep 7-8 hours.

TRAINING

You need to work out twice a day.

Workout 1  (in the morning; preferably on an empty stomach)

- 45 minutes or 1 hour of low impact cardio:  walk on the treadmill - full incline -  speed of 2.5  - max 3.0 (DO NOT HOLD ON TO ANYTHING - free hands!)

Workout 2 (late afternoon or night)

- Strength strength training: you won't be able to lift as heavily, but it can still be intense. Several reps for every exercise - 1-2 hours training.

Do this and you will have a ripped body in the making! 

Contact me if you need help or have questions! :)

 "Fit - Healthy - Vibrant"

Get the movement started! 

 

Coconut Oil and Your Health

I have recommended coconut oil as the best versatile oil you can use. It’s perfect for cooking because of its high heat tolerance. Other oils become rancid when they are heated or mix with oxygen. In fact, they can actually go rancid within a few hours of being produced. When this rancid oil enters your body, it can lead to disastrous health effects.

You won’t have to worry about this with coconut oil, as it does not easily go rancid. Coconut oil is a complete saturated fat, which makes it very stable against heat damage. It is the ONLY safe oil you can use for cooking – olive oil is also a good oil but only when used cold, drizzled over salads or mixed into cold sauces. Due to its stability, it has a long shelf life of two or more years – the longest of any cooking oil.  

So whenever you need to cook or sauté your food, choose coconut oil. It’s great for frying (even though I don’t recommend frying foods), as well as baking, and is a wonderful substitute for shortening, margarine, or butter. When you bake with coconut oil, you’ll find that your muffins, pastry, or bread will be lighter and have a mildly sweet and enticing fragrance.

But that’s not where coconut oil’s convenience ends, because it also has numerous uses outside the kitchen. Coconut oil can actually replace over a dozen beauty products found in your beauty kit, such as your:

- Makeup remover: Apply a small amount on a moist cotton ball and wipe all over your face.
Facial scrub:  Make a gentle facial scrub by mixing coconut oil with baking soda, or with oatmeal and a dash of cinnamon.
- Lip balm:  Apply a small amount of coconut oil to your lips. You can also make your own lip balm using coconut oil as a base ingredient.
- Carrier oil for essential oil:  Use it to dilute potent essential oils that may be too harsh when applied to your skin in concentrated amounts.
- Shaving cream:  Apply a thin layer on the area to be shaved, and then shave as usual.
- Body scrub:  Mix equal parts organic cane sugar and coconut oil in a glass jar, and then scrub on your dry skin before bathing.

Coconut oil is heaven to me! :)

Source: The Coconut Oil Miracle - Book  and Dr.Mercola

Ripped Abs - My Power Green Recipe

Yogurt can give you flat abs? Yes! 

In a recent study, people who ate 18 ounces of yogurt a day, in conjunction with cutting their total calories, lost 22 percent more weight and 81 percent more belly fat than dieters who didn't. They also retained one-third more calorie-torching lean muscle mass, which can help you maintain weight loss. Fat around your waist produces the hormone cortisol, which tells your body to accumulate even more belly fat. When you eat yogurt, the calcium signals your fat cells to pump out less cortisol, making it easier for you to drop pounds, while the amino acids help burn fat. 

I eat three tablespoons of Greek yogurt for lunch every day (as a snack too!). Well, this is not just plain yogurt. See my recipe below.  

This meal gives me extra energy and keeps me full for a long time. It's loaded with high-quality protein and antioxidants. I am amazed at how good it makes me feel and "look," haha. Make sure not to add sugar or fruit. 

YOGURT GREEN-POWER RECIPE FOR FLAT ABS
- 3-4 tablespoons Greek yogurt - plain or zero  (I use zero)
- 2 scoops Tera's Whey  (Chocolate)
- 1 teaspoon spirulina
- 1 teaspoon matcha green tea  
- Liquid stevia - from sweet drops (as much as you like)


Optional: 1 tablespoon ground flaxseed meal
Mix all ingredients well and enjoy!

Lean body guaranteed! 

"Fit – Healthy - Vibrant  -  Get the movement started!" 

My Excuse to Eat Peanut Butter

A recent study showed that peanuts and peanut butter eaten in the morning have an effect on blood sugar throughout the day in women who are at high risk for type 2 diabetes. Not only did consuming 1.5 ounces of peanuts or peanut butter at breakfast help to decrease blood sugar spikes early in the day, effects were also seen hours later when participants showed more even blood sugar control following a high carbohydrate lunch in the absence of peanuts or peanut butter.

Also, peanuts are a good source of magnesium.
Magnesium has been shown to play a role in risk reduction for diabetes due to its positive effects on the release and effectiveness of insulin in the body. Peanuts contain 12% of the daily value for magnesium, making them a “good source” according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). In one study, individuals fed peanuts on a daily basis for three weeks, not only had a higher intake of magnesium, but blood magnesium also improved to above recommended levels.
 
One study showed that low magnesium intake is linked with an increased risk of diabetes. And in another study low magnesium intake was also linked to high type 2 diabetes incidence.
 
Magnesium also plays a role in metabolic syndrome, inflammation, and insulin resistance in people of all ages. Studies show an association between magnesium deficiency and insulin resistance in children, as well as inflammation and metabolic syndrome in middle age and older adults.

This is a GREAT excuse to eat peanuts and peanut butter EVERYDAY! I am totally using this one. Especially because I am allergic to almonds !!! :(

"Fit – Healthy - Vibrant  -  Get the movement started!" 

Tips to Avoid Toxic Chemicals

 

Eighty-four thousand chemicals are legal for commerce in the US, all essentially unregulated. In 2011, chemicals accounted for more than $763 billion in revenue. As an example, the six billion pounds of BPA produced every year generates about $8 billion in profits for its manufacturers.

Roughly 13,000 chemicals are used in cosmetics alone, of which only 10 percent have been evaluated for safety, and new ones are introduced every year. Ordinary household products can be major sources of chemical exposure that add to your body’s toxic load.

Within such a dysfunctional system, you are the best one to keep your family safe. Although no one can successfully steer clear of ALL chemicals and pollutants, you can minimize your exposure by keeping a number of key principles in mind.

- Eat a diet focused on locally grown, fresh, and ideally organic whole foods. Processed and packaged foods are a common source of chemicals such as BPA and phthalates. Wash fresh produce well, especially if it’s not organically grown.

- Choose grass-pastured, sustainably raised meats and dairy to reduce your exposure to hormones, pesticides, and fertilizers. Avoid milk and other dairy products that contain the genetically engineered recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH or rBST).

- Rather than eating conventional or farm-raised fish, which are often heavily contaminated with PCBs and mercury, supplement with a high-quality krill oil, or eat fish that is wild-caught and lab tested for purity, such as wild-caught Alaskan salmon.

- Buy products that come in glass bottles rather than plastic or cans, as chemicals can leach out of plastics (and plastic can linings), into the contents; be aware that even “BPA-free” plastics typically leach other endocrine-disrupting chemicals that are just as bad for you as BPA.

- Store your food and beverages in glass, rather than plastic, and avoid using plastic wrap.
Use glass baby bottles.

- Replace your non-stick pots and pans with ceramic or glass cookware.

- Filter your tap water for both drinking AND bathing. If you can only afford to do only one, filtering your bathing water may be more important, as your skin absorbs contaminants. To remove the endocrine-disrupting herbicide Atrazine, make sure your filter is certified to remove it. According to the EWG, perchlorate can be filtered out using a reverse osmosis filter.

- Look for products made by companies that are Earth-friendly, animal-friendly, sustainable, certified organic, and GMO-free. This applies to everything from food and personal care products to building materials, carpeting, paint, baby items, furniture, mattresses, and others.

- Use a vacuum cleaner with a HEPA filter to remove contaminated house dust. This is one of the major routes of exposure to flame retardant chemicals.

- When buying new products such as furniture, mattresses, or carpet padding, consider buying flame retardant free varieties, containing naturally less flammable materials, such as leather, wool, cotton, silk, and Kevlar.

- Avoid stain- and water-resistant clothing, furniture, and carpets to avoid perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs).

- Make sure your baby’s toys are BPA-free, such as pacifiers, teething rings, and anything your child may be prone to suck or chew on—even books, which are often plasticized. It’s advisable to avoid all plastic, especially flexible varieties.

- Use natural cleaning products or make your own. Avoid those containing 2-butoxyethanol (EGBE) and methoxydiglycol (DEGME)—two toxic glycol ethers that can compromise your fertility and cause fetal harm.

- Switch over to organic toiletries, including shampoo, toothpaste, antiperspirants, and cosmetics. EWG’s Skin Deep database can help you find personal care products that are free of phthalates and other potentially dangerous chemicals.

- Replace your vinyl shower curtain with a fabric one.

- Replace feminine hygiene products (tampons and sanitary pads) with safer alternatives.

- Look for fragrance-free products. One artificial fragrance can contain hundreds—even thousands—of potentially toxic chemicals. Avoid fabric softeners and dryer sheets, which contain a mishmash of synthetic chemicals and fragrances.

Source: gutdoctor