• John Cena Has Some Practical Fitness Tips That We Can All Use

    John Cena, wrestling star and Make-a-Wish legend, has one key wellness hack: remember that we're all overthinking it. "Move around some, make good choices, and just do it every day," says Cena. He carries that mentality beyond the gym—studying Mandarin, learning piano, and staying moisturized are also at the top of his list.

    As for his actual workout, here's what the WWE Superstar claims to enjoy: Doing 102 percent of his max for a clean and jerk, or "a 60-week squat protocol that leads up to a 105 percent rep max." This of course sounds insane, but given the way he looks, it's totally believable.

    Cena dispenses practical advice too, which he also shared with The Cut:

    We know the way to be healthier because we always tell ourselves, I need a trainer. Why? Because you're not moving around enough. Move around some, make good choices, and just do it every day, be consistent. The moment when you're like, Ah, I don't want to do this. Stop. And if you really don't want to do it — you haven't found the right thing yet.

    Read the rest over at www.esquire.com

  • The Case for Natural Makeup

    Is your medicine cabinet already stocked with the best in natural skin care? Time to take it to the next level and make sure your cosmetics are clean and healthy, too. Here, a few of our estheticians talk to us about why natural cosmetics are the way to go.

    First, it’s important to remember that 60 percent of what goes on our skin gets absorbed into your body (read more about skin care by the numbers). That’s more than half of every drop of body lotion, serum, lip gloss or concealer you put on. Just like skin care, cosmetics serve as a sort of conduit to your body—what type of ingredients they’re conducting is up to you.

    Pharmaca’s natural cosmetics lines ensure that these ingredients are actually good for your skin while doing their job. Take jane iredale’s Circle/Delete, an under-eye concealer that hides flaws while healing skin with avocado and cucumber extracts. “Many mainstream cosmetics companies have similar products that are full of chemicals,” says Beth Walker, esthetician in Boulder. “It may camouflage the skin, but once it’s washed away, the chemicals have probably created a whole new problem.”

    Instead of creating new problems, mineral foundations, like those from jane iredaleMineral Fusion, Antonym and ZuZu Luxe, actually serve as nutrition for the skin, says Beth. “It’s wonderful for sensitive skin, acne, rosacea, sun damage,” she says. Instead of exacerbating those conditions, it will actually treat the skin while providing coverage.

    “I love the fact that mineral foundations include zinc, which is especially good for healing acneic skin,” says Kathleen McCummings, esthetician in Seattle. Plus, she says, “It’s good for all skin types, it doesn’t tend to emphasize lines and wrinkles, and it gives you a complete, natural SPF!”

    “Knowing that our natural mineral makeup is talc free is another big bonus,” says Kathleen. “Talc is a known carcinogen and it’s at the base of all conventional makeup. You don’t want to put a product on your face that can potentially cause cancer.”

    Beth adds that lip glosses and lipsticks can also be full of unwanted ingredients. “They say we ingest something like a tube of lipstick each year, so choose something without petroleum or parabens. She loves PureGloss from jane iredale, which includes pomegranate oil and vitamin E to provide hydration along with shine and color.

    In the end, both Beth and Kathleen love the way natural cosmetics look. “People wearing natural makeup have a much more radiant look about them than people wearing mainstream foundations,” Beth says. She also loves the fact that they’re easy to use and many are cruelty free. “It’s guilt-free beauty!”

    www.pharmaca.com

  • HOW TO BUILD A CHARCUTERIE BOARD

    Mmm—meats, cheeses and more deliciousness! Charcuterie might just be the world’s most perfect party offering. Whether you’re plotting a breezy summer barbecue or dining indoors, a well-constructed Charcuterie Board brings crowd-pleasing tastes to the table every time.

    But before you start randomly merging all that goodness, get the lowdown on must-haves to turn a boring smorgasbord into a mouthwatering explosion of complementary flavors!

    Meat and Greet

    Fun fact: the word charcuterie originates from the French words for “meat” and “cooked” — and let’s face it, the meats are the stars of this tasty show. Cured prosciutto and salami with their rich saltiness pair well with crackers, cheese, and fruits like peaches, cantaloupe and watermelon. And add slices of savory chorizo sausageto appease the spice-enthusiasts in the room.

    Say Cheese!

    You can hardly go wrong when it comes to selecting yummy gourmet cheeses for your charcuterie board, however a variety of textures looks as appealing as it tastes. Serve up a soft Brie or semi-soft Gouda with a semi-hard Manchego; and offer one or two ultra-textural options like Swiss or Jarlsberg. Spice things up with a wedge of pepper jack, or add Gorgonzola blue cheese (bonus: they’re colorful!).

    Pro tip: be sure to put out cheese knives so guests can easily help themselves to the spread.

    The More, the Merrier

    True charcuterie gurus will tell you a board loaded with diverse complementary flavors is a successful board. Create irresistible pairing choices with unique jams (like this sweet-and-spicy Peachy Sriracha jam!), zesty cornichons, salty olives or a nuts like almonds or walnuts. Try drizzling Brie cheese with a bit of honey and a sprig of fresh rosemary for a sweet surprise.

    Lighten up a heavy medley with your favorite fruits. Fresh grapes, blackberries and sliced strawberries are always welcome onboard.

    Breaking Bread

    A natural charcuterie accoutrement is bread in all of its forms. Complete your board with Wine Sticks, pretzels, water crackers or slices of French baguette and you’ll be ready to enjoy this feast of flavors with hungry friends and family.

    Ready to get on board the charcuterie train? Bon appétit!



  • 5 BACKPACKS TO GET YOU READY FOR BACK TO CAMPUS & (ALMOST) CURE YOUR END-OF-SUMMER BLUES

    It’s almost time to head back to campus! Whether you’re going back to a classroom, or just like using the start of a new season to reset, you’ll want to do so in style! Somewhere between picking out cute stationery and planning your first-week outfits, don’t forget to snag the perfect backpack to make your statement this fall.

  • Get the scoop on Nekter Skoops

    Written by  on  in Featured Products, Happy & Healthy

    Got a sweet tooth? Us too. In fact, we’d scream for ice cream just about every day (twice on Mondays) if it weren’t for all that pesky cream…and corn syrup…and just generally uncool ingredients. So what’s an ice cream craver to do? Get the Skoop, that’s what!

    The skinny on these skoops: they’re free from dairy, soy, gluten, refined sugar, preservatives and artificial flavors – and even better, it’s so smooth and creamy, you’d swear it was your Nonna’s homemade gelato. Don’t have a Nonna? We’ll be your Nonna.

    We’d call it an indulgence, but with clean ingredients like cashew milk, honey, sea salt, Tahitian and bourbon vanilla, coconut sugar, and pure cocoa, we don’t think we could get away with it. Made in small batches in-store to ensure that “fresh factor,” this is one sweet treat that both die-hard foodies and devoted vegans can enjoy, no Nonna required.

    But wait, we can top that! No seriously, we’ve got toppings. Finish those Skoops with coconut flakes, vegan chocolate chips, chocolate drizzle, strawberries, blueberries, cacao nibs, gluten-free granola and more!

    Skoop is currently available at over 60 Nékter locations – to find the nearest Skoop location near you, visit locations.nekterjuicebar.com!

  • Pantry Makeover: Stock Up on Healthier Staples

    We’ve all been there. It’s 6:45 pm (or 7:45 or…10) and you’re wondering what on earth to eat for dinner. Here’s the good news: with a little planning, you can hunger-proof your pantry and make it easier to create fast and good-for-you meals with staples you always have on hand!

    A healthier pantry starts with some of the same basics that build a wholesome plate: whole grains, beans, nuts, seeds and healthy flavor boosters such as vinegar and low-sodium soy sauce.

    Whole Grains

    Whole grains are packed with nutrients and many are packed with fiber, too. Use brown rice, quinoa or bulgur as flavorful foundations for Mighty Bowls like this one with pinapple and ginger. Barley and brown rice are tasty, but take the better part of an hour to cook, so be sure to stock up on some quick-cooking varieties like bulgar or quinoa for busy days. (Frozen grains can be a lifesaver when you’re pressed for time too.)

    Don’t forget about whole grain pasta. Two ounces (dry) of whole wheat spaghetti or linguine, for example, can deliver about 6g protein, and it’s perfect for pantry meals like Puttanesca Pasta or Quick Italian Spinach and Pasta Soup.

    Beans

    Beans provide a shelf-friendly source of protein, fiber and phytonutrients. Cooking dried beans from scratch is easy (though it takes some time at the stovetop) and affordable, while canned beans are key for convenient meals on the fly. With plenty of beans in your pantry, you can whip up salads, burritos, Quick and Easy Veggie Chili or Simply Delicious Homemade Hummus.

    Nuts and Seeds

    They may be small, but nuts and seeds pack a powerful wallop of flavor and texture. Although they tend to be high in fat (and, therefore, calories), it’s primarily monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fat, and they can also offer fiber, protein and a host of vitamins and minerals.

    Nuts and seeds can work double duty, too. When you are making salad dressing, look to nutbutters and seedbutters as flavorful alternatives to other milder extracted oils. Tahini adds mellow, nutty flavor to Creamy Sesame Greens, while peanut butter makes a tasty sauce for recipes such as Sesame-Peanut Noodles.

    Flavor Boosters

    Don’t forget those indispensable ingredients that pull everything together! A short list includes low-sodium vegetable broth, no-salt-added canned tomatoes, low-sodium soy sauce, vinegars and your favorite dried herbs and spices.

    Read more on Whole Food's BLOG

    Stock up Now: 17 Healthier Pantry Staples

    Whole Grains

    • Brown rice, barley, quinoa, bulgar, millet, or rolled and/or steel-cut oats
    • Whole grain pasta

    Beans

    • Dried beans and lentils
    • Canned no-salt-added beans

    Nuts and Seeds

    • Raw almonds, cashews, walnuts, pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
    • No-salt-added peanut or almond butter

    Flavor Boosters + Extras

    • canned no-salt-added diced tomatoes
    • low-sodium vegetable broth
    • unsweetened plain soymilk
    • unsweetened plain almondmilk
    • mellow white miso
    • tahini
    • dried apricots, dates or raisins
    • Dijon mustard
    • a variety of vinegars or lemons and limes
    • your favorite dried herbs and spices
    • nutritional yeast
  • 4 Reasons to Add Barre Workouts to Your Fitness Routine


    If you are looking for a unique way to get fit, consider adding barre classes to your workout routine. Aficionados all over the country love the ways that barre workouts transform their bodies. With a focus on the core and small isometric exercises that tone the body until it is tight like a drum, barre classes have exploded in popularity over the last few years. If you are looking for something new to add to your fitness regimen, check out the following four reasons to add barre workouts to your fitness routine.

    1. Great for Your Core

    Fitness experts will tell you that that best thing you can do for your body is to strengthen your core. When your core is strong, it will improve your athletic performance and give you better workout results. Barre is one of the best possible core workouts. The focus on isometric exercises in barre workouts ensures that you get a total-body workout that forces your core stabilizer muscles to engage constantly. The effects of barre classes are cumulative for your core strength and endurance. When you make barre workouts part of your regimen, you will be able to hold core-centric poses like plank for minutes at a stretch.

    1. Improve Your Posture

    If you are like most people, your posture could use some serious improvement. Because many people spend a lot of time at their desks using computers, their posture is terrible. Even those who do not work desk jobs often have poor posture. Barre classes are the perfect workout for improving your posture. Many of the basic ballet movements that you perform during barre workouts require a straight spine to do them right. This focus on making your back straight during barre class will also make you more aware of how you are carrying your spine outside of class. With awareness of slumping, you will automatically adjust to hold yourself upright with good posture.

    1. Low Impact

    For anyone who has joint issues or simply wants to avoid them, barre workouts are perfect because they are low-impact. The gentle movements you perform during barre classes are very easy on the joints. The isometric nature of the movements makes them ideal for people looking for low-impact ways to get fit. As well as being good for your joints, the low-impact nature of barre classes means that your odds of being injured are low. The low-impact factor also makes barre workouts great for pregnant women.

    1. It’s a Blast

    One of the most important things you need to do if you want to stay in good shape is to look for fun ways to exercise. The fun you have is one of the primary attractions that barre workouts have to offer. The upbeat nature of barre instructors is legendary. When you combine that with the up-tempo music and the fun movements, you will have a smile on your face for much of your workout. Next time you are feeling a little down, a barre class will pick you up and get you super fit.

    Barre workouts are incredible. They will get you in shape like few other workouts. They are really fun, and having fun is half the battle when it comes to staying committed to your exercise routine. The core strengthening benefits of barre classes will also help you to perform better in the rest of your fitness pursuits. Greater core strength will also help you to get through all the mundane tasks of your life like vacuuming, doing laundry and walking the dog. Discover the fun for yourself by finding a local barre class today.

  • Natural Ways to Get Pests to Bug Off!

    Summer is in full swing and that means spending your days outside enjoying the weather. You’ve created the perfect gathering space. Your garden is in tip-top shape. You’ve mastered your favorite dishes on the grill. So don’t let pesky bugs ruin all your fun. Harsh chemicals and ugly traps can deter anyone from fixing their pest problem. We get it. And that’s why we’ve got great all-natural solutions to send those annoying critters marching one by one, hurrah, hurrah.

    Spray the Pests Away
    Try an easy, natural spray for all your pest control problems – from snails and slugs to flower-eating insects. We recommend choosing one that is OMRI certified, which means it is certified organic and non-GMO. You can also try an organic insect-killing soap to get rid of unwanted insects naturally without killing the good ones. If you want to go a step further, tackle multiple problems at once with an organic, all-in-one insecticide, miticide, and fungicide to kill all stages of insects.

    Read more on Orchard's Blog http://blog.osh.com/natural-pest-control/

  • Our Stress-Busting Top 5

    Stressed?  Here are some of our favorite supplements to help beat all types of stress!

    All stress is not created equal—there are times we need in-the-moment relief and periods of our lives that need more serious support. Here Ashleigh Putnam, naturopathic doctor at our Monterey store, gives us her top 5 ways to beat all types of stress.

    In the moment

    Bach’s Rescue Remedy, in any form, helps calm the emotional response to a situation. And Emotional Ally by WishGarden Herbs works quickly and can be used for in-the-moment stress management. It helps calm the mind, body and emotional state without being sedative.”

    Sleep-related stress

    Quietude by Boiron helps quiet a busy brain, allowing an individual to fall asleep or go back to sleep. It’s so gentle, yet effective, and has no chance of causing morning grogginess. I also like RelaxMax by Xymogen, which has GABA and L-Theanine. It’s a powder that’s easy to take if you wake in the night, and the dose can be tailored to your needs.”

    Adrenal fatigue

    Gaia Herbs Adrenal Health Daily Support helps the fatigue that can accompany stress, featuring rhodiola which increases oxygen to the brain and muscles, and holy basil and milky oat seed to help calm the nervous system. ADR Formula by Pure Encapsulations offers more robust, energizing support with Asian ginseng, eleuthero and licorice, which support adrenal gland function and the immune system.”

    Physical stress 

    “Try Magnesium Glycinate from Pure Encapsulations, Metagenics, Kal or Doctor’s Best—it will help relax the smooth and skeletal muscles, allowing for repair, and enhance blood flow. And Concentrace Trace Mineral Dropshelp nourish the muscles and replenish minerals that are often depleted in periods of extreme physical stress.”

    Overall support

    “B vitamins in their active forms will nourish the adrenals and help to decrease the stress response. I recommend Integrative Therapeutics Active B Complex ITI, B-Complex Plus by Pure Encapsulations or Stress B-Complex by Thorne Research.”


    Thanks to Pharmaca for the tips!

    www.pharmaca.com/blog

     

  • How to Create Floral Arrangements

    www.pier1.com/how-to-build-artificial-floral-arrangements#nav=left 

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