Diet Articles

Brain Food Recipe Review: Sweet Potato Latkes

Monday, March 17th, 2014

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First of all, I love sweet potatoes.

My God, do I love sweet potatoes.

Second of all, sweet potatoes are packed with carotenoids which, in addition to giving them their orange color, also act as antioxidants that protect cells from damage and help form Vitamin A — the vitamin important for sprouting new neurons and helping those neurons find each other and form new connections.

So, naturally I had to try this Vegetarian Times recipe for sweet potato latkes (which are sort of like pancakes).

You can see the entire write up over at Vegetarian Times: Sweet Potato Latkes, but below is my summary (and review).


Brain Food Recipe Review: Chocolate Banana Milkshake

Monday, February 24th, 2014
Copyright: Alicia Sparks

Copyright: Alicia Sparks

Looking for a sweet little morning or mid-afternoon pick-me-up without the guilt of a ton of sugar or calories and some serious brain boosting?

I highly recommend this chocolate banana milkshake!


The Dark Side of Chocolate

Tuesday, February 4th, 2014

As I mentioned during February’s Monthly Meditation, Valentine’s Day has never really been my thing; however, that doesn’t mean there aren’t some lessons we can learn from all the lovey-dovey-ooey-gooiness spewing out this month.

Today?

The benefits of dark chocolate, specifically how some studies suggest:

  • Dark chocolate can help lower your blood pressure.
  • The antioxidants within dark chocolate can help fight off free radicals, which are connected to health ailments like heart disease.
  • Dark chocolate can help boost serotonin and endorphins.

Bonus?

Some sources believe the copper, zinc, and iron in dark chocolate can promote cell growth, which in turn helps your hair and skin!

Benefits of Dark Chocolate

Keep in mind, not all dark chocolate is equal. The higher the cacao percentage, the better. If you’re not sure where to start — and you’re new to dark chocolate — try 72%.

So, what are you asking your siggie other for Valentine’s Day this year? Better yet, what are you getting yourself!


Food and Exercise as Antidepressants

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

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How many of you eat when you’re stressed, anxious, panicky, or depressed?

Now, how many of you exercise when you’re experiencing those same feelings?

I didn’t conduct any formal poll, but I’m willing to bet more of you raised your hands for the first question than the second.

(After all, according to the CDC as of 2010, the percent of Americans 20 years old and older who are overweight, including obese, is 69.2%.)

Basically, more than half of American adults are overweight or outright obese.

Geesus Ayche.


Junky Desks Might Cause Junky Diets, One Study Suggests

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

Do you do your best work at a clean desk? Or, do you prefer a little mess?

What about those of you who work from home, or frequently have lunch in your office? Does a clean or messy work environment influence what you choose for lunch?


15 Ways to Nourish Your Mind and Body On Bad Weather Days

Wednesday, January 8th, 2014
Alicia Sparks | All Rights Reserved

Alicia Sparks | All Rights Reserved

For some of us, it’s hard to get out of bed on these cold, dreary winter days…

…much less get out of the house!

Still, we have to take time to nourish our bodies and minds, weather (pun intended — I’m here all night!) the sun’s shining, the clouds are bursting, or — in most of the east coast’s case lately — snow is swirling all around us.

Because so many of us are used to nourishing our minds and bodies outdoors (walking our dogs, heading to the yoga studio, meditation walks in the park), taking care of our minds and bodies indoors might seem challenging.


Last Minute Shopping? 5 Mind and Body Holiday Gift Ideas

Friday, December 20th, 2013

Greetings last minute holiday shoppers!

Well, I can only assume you’re shopping last minute, if you’re reading this post today :)

Don’t worry, I’ve put a few things off ’til the last minute, too.

(It’s been a rough season, to say the least.)

Fortunately, I’ve had time to come up with this list of mind and body gift ideas for your loved ones…

…or maybe for yourself!

(After all, who says you can’t treat yourself this season, too?)


Running Away From My Grief–Literally

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

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Some of you might remember I lost my father to cancer a few weeks ago. Since then, I’ve lost my grandmother–his mother–too.

As you can imagine, so much loss, so quickly, has taken a toll on my emotional and mental health; in turn, it’s taken a toll on my physical health. My diet has gone to CRAP (hello emotional eating!) and finding the motivation to do any sort of physical activity–even restorative yoga!–is incredibly difficult.


5 EASY Ways to Start Scarfing Almonds TODAY

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

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I don’t know anyone who doesn’t like almonds, and if I do, they’ve kept it a secret from me–as they should.

I LOVE ALMONDS.

Mostly, because hello, they’re delicious, BUT there are plenty of health reasons, too, and some of them are specific to our brains.

They’re packed with Vitamin E, riboflavin, and L-carnitine so they can help boost brain activity and slow cognitive decline; they’re alkaline forming which can help increase your energy; and some say almonds can help prevent neurological conditions.

So, how do you go about adding these little crunchy bits of magic to your diet? You don’t have to be a culinary genius, that’s for sure.


So, I’ve Been Treating My Body Like Crap. Guess How That’s Working Out?

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

Gray Flowers

As some of you might know, a close family member of mine was diagnosed with malignant ascites recently.

I’m only mildly embarrassed to admit it, but my physical health has gone to crap since we found out.

(Mildly, because, honestly, my mind has been elsewhere and I don’t actually feel guilty for that.)

I haven’t hit the track, I haven’t practiced yoga (much less gone to a yoga class)–I haven’t even worked out at home. I’ve eaten any ol’ thing I could get my hands on (some of it just because there was no time or other options; some of it because I was stress eating) and to be frank, I can’t remember the last time I had a full glass of water.

Maybe Sunday.

The point is, I’m falling apart physically–during a time when it’s especially important to hold it together–and it’s causing me to fall apart mentally.


 
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