Take the CEO Pledge – Year of Worksite Wellness

2014 is the Year of Worksite Wellness here in Minnesota! Ready to get involved?

Then join Chuck Runyon, CEO of Anytime Fitness, and take the IHRSA CEO Pledge!

So what’s the CEO Pledge, you ask?Continue Reading …

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This Friday: You’re Invited!

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More Than a Garnish: 7 Health Benefits of Parsley

Power to your plate: parsley is a pain reliever, blood pressure regulator and cancer defender. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Power to your plate: parsley is a pain reliever, blood pressure regulator and cancer defender. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Parsley adds much more than a splash of color to your plate. It also has big health benefits! Here at seven of them (via Care2.com):

  1. It’s rich in vitamins. Parsley is a good source of vitamins C, B-12, K and A, maintaining a strong immune system, increasing you bone strength and healing your nervous system.
  2. It protects your kidneys. Parsley helps flush out excess fluid from your body to support kidney function.
  3. It maintains healthy blood pressure. The folic acid in parsley is like a healthy elixir for your heart, and can help to control blood pressure when eaten regularly.
  4. It may reduce hair loss. Parsley’s essential oils, when massaged into the scalp, may reduce hair loss. No, we’re not suggesting you practice this right at the dinner table. But it speaks to the versatility of the herb. You can find parsley essential oil at health stores.
  5. It relieves joint pain. Parsley has many anti-inflammatory properties, which provide relief from joint pain when eaten daily.
  6. It relaxes muscles and aids digestion. Parsley’s anti-inflammatory nature also makes it an effective tool for relaxing stuff muscles and promoting digestion. To get the benefits, try drinking parsley tea.
  7. It may inhibit cancerous tumors. Scientists have found that parsley may help prevent the formation of cancerous tumors, so much so that they have labeled it a “chemoprotective” food.
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5 Healthy Home Remedies for Colds

Fact: eating two to four cloves of raw garlic for the first few days of an illness boosts your immune system, helping you to feel better faster. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Fact: eating two to four cloves of raw garlic for the first few days of an illness boosts your immune system, helping you to feel better faster. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

If you’re feeling, sneezy, achy and congested, these five recipes can offer relief (via Care2.com):

  1. For congestion: cayenne pepper drink. Heat one-half cup water in a tea kettle, then add one-fourth cup apple cider vinegar, one teaspoon maple syrup, three-fourths to one teaspoon dried cayenne pepper (depending on your ability to handle heat), and one to two tablespoons of lemon juice. Mix ingredients together well, and let them heat up, breathing in the steam as they do so. Take the kettle off the heat, and drink when it’s cool enough. Words to the wise: this is NOT a sipping drink, so wait for it to get cool enough that you can down it in a few gulps.
  2. For a sore throat or post-nasal drip: salt water gargle. Heat one-half cup water in a tea kettle, then stir in one-half teaspoon sea salt. When the mixture is cool enough, gargle about one tablespoon of it. Repeat every one to two hours.Continue Reading …
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5 Steps to Lower Alzheimer’s Risk

Push-ups stimulate blood flow to the brain, generating new brain cells, which are your body's most effective weapon against cognitive disease. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Push-ups stimulate blood flow to the brain, generating new brain cells, which are your body’s most effective weapon against cognitive disease. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Alzheimer’s disease is the sixth leading cause of death in the United States, affecting some 5.4 million Americans, according to Alzheimer’s Association. Lower your risk with this 5-step plan from Dr. Mehmet Oz and neurologist Dr. Majid Fotuhi (via www.doctoroz.com):

  1. Take a DHA supplement. Docosahexaenoic acid is an omega-3 fatty acid that makes up much of your brain tissue. This supplement will reduce inflammation, fight the plaque buildup associated with Alzheimer’s, and increases blood flow to your brain. Research has shown that taking 600mg of DHA supplement daily for six months can help your brain to function as if it were three years younger.
  2. Switch things up. Adding variety to your daily mental routine cross-trains different muscles in your brain to prevent memory impairment. Try putting your watch on your opposite wrist, using your opposite hand while brushing your teeth, doing your hair, eating or writing.Continue Reading …
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10 Red and Pink Superfoods for Valentine’s Day

The pectin in apples provides filling fiber. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Doctor’s orders: Apples are rich in pectin, a fiber that lowers cholesterol and helps keep you feeling full. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Show yourself some love this Valentine’s Day with these super healthy (and delicious!) red and pink foods (via The Huffington Post):

  1. Apples. They really do help keep the doctor away. The pectin in apples provides 4 grams of filling and cholesterol-lowering fiber per serving.
  2. Beets. Rich in vitamin C and folate, beets are also packed with antioxidants and fight inflammation.
  3. Red berries. These low-calorie, fiber-rich foods are an excellent source of vitamin C, and may help protect memory. Try making dark chocolate covered strawberries for the perfect Valentine’s Day treat–the cocoa is full of antioxidants!
  4. Cherries. The antioxidants in this sweet fruit are known to protect heart health and aid in post-workout muscle recovery. (For 7 reasons to eat more cherries, read our post here.)
  5. Cranberries. Loaded with vitamin C, cranberries can help your body to fight off infections more quickly and effectively.Continue Reading …
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13 Tips to Get More Sleep

Tip #11: Put socks on cold feet to fall asleep faster. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Tip #11: Put socks on cold feet to fall asleep faster. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Besides sapping your energy, experts agree that lack of sleep can increase your risk of developing cancer, heart disease, obesity and diabetes. Here are 13 tips for getting more shut-eye–and feeling more energized the next day (via The Huffington Post):

1. Set a specific bedtime for yourself. And be realistic. If you have to wake up at 7 a.m., staying awake until 1:30 a.m. each night probably won’t be enough.

2. Get ready for bed well before your bedtime. Sometimes, you can feel too tired to get ready for bed, resulting in an even later bedtime. To avoid this, try getting ready for bed well before you turn off the light.

3. Rest in darkness. Shut the blinds, block out any lights from your computer, clock or phone. Even a digital alarm clock’s tiny light can disrupt a sleep cycle, so it’s important to keep your room as dark as possible.

4. Stretch. Research has shown that people who have trouble sleeping can get more restful sleep if they stretch a few times per week.

5. Lower the thermostat. Studies show that the optimal range for sleep is between 60 and 68 degrees Fahrenheit. Continue Reading …

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10 Natural Ways to Ease Anxiety

Sipping on chamomile tea helps calm frazzled nerves and promotes relaxation. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Sipping on chamomile tea helps calm a nervous stomach and promotes relaxation. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Feeling nervous? Try one of these tips to feel calmer in minutes (via Care2.com):

  1. Sip chamomile tea. The chamomile herb relaxes nerves and can calm stomach discomfort.
  2. Chew on cardamom seeds. The cardamom spice has been used for centuries in the treatment of many physical and emotional ailments. (Bonus: it also freshens your breath!)
  3. Stop and smell the roses. Enjoy a cup of rose hip tea, spritz some organic rose water on your face (eyes closed), or enjoy the scent of a fresh rose bouquet to help you relax.
  4. Breathe deeply for five minutes. This is the single most effective way to calm frazzled nerves.
  5. Phone a friend. Telling a friend how you’re feeling and listening to their familiar voice will give you comfort and a fresh perspective.
  6. Enjoy a bowl of oatmeal. This whole grain releases serotonin, a feel-good neurotransmitter.Continue Reading …
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How to Recover From Colds and Flu Faster

When you've got a bad cold or flu, taking time off to rest helps your body to recover faster. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

When you’ve got a bad cold or flu, taking time off to rest helps your body to recover faster. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Colds and flu don’t have a cure, but there are things you can do to get over them more quickly. Here are 10 of them (via Prevention.com):

  1. Determine which virus you have. While cold symptoms are mostly respiratory, flu can be accompanied by fever, aches, chills and fatigue. If you think you have the flu, your doctor can write a prescription for an antiviral medication like Tamiflu, which can shave days off of your illness if you take it within the first 48 hours of symptoms.
  2. Rest and hydrate. Drinking water will thin the mucus secretions in your lungs, and rest helps your body fight off illness more effectively.
  3. Drink hot tea. All kinds of tea contain theophylline, which dilates the bronchi and bronchioles, reducing resistance in your airways. For an extra boost, add a teaspoon of honey. Honey soothes scratchy throats, and its antioxidants help fight off infections.Continue Reading …
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6 Pain-Relieving Foods

The anthocyanins in cherries are powerful inflammation-killing antioxidants. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Cherries are chock-full of anthocyanins, antioxidants that can significantly reduce inflammation and ease pain. (Image courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

Recent studies have shown that certain foods contain as much pain-fighting power as common pain medications like ibuprofen. Here are 6 of them to try (via AARP The Magazine):

  1. For back pain: red grapes. The resveratrol found in red grapes is a compound that blocks the enzymes that contribute to tissue degeneration, and preliminary research suggests it can also protect against the type of cartilage damage that causes back pain. To get your fill, snack on red grapes, or have a glass of wine. You can also get resveratrol in other fruits like blueberries and cranberries.
  2. For knee pain: ginger. In a six-week University of Miami study, patients with chronic knee pain reported less soreness upon standing after taking a ginger extract. Ginger relieves pain by blocking a key enzyme in the inflammatory process. To get the benefits, consume two to three teaspoons per day by adding it to a soup or stir fry, or drinking ginger-infused tea or fresh ginger ale made with real pieces of the root.
  3. For osteoarthiritis pain: soy. Soy’s pain-relieving secret lies in its isoflavones, plant hormones with anti-inflammatory properties. Research has found that adding 40 grams of soy protein to your daily diet can reduce osteoarthritis pain by 30 percent or more within two to three weeks. Tofu, soy milk and edamame are all good sources of soy protein.Continue Reading …
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