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These delicious chocolate peppermint cups taste like a delicious peppermint patty – only without inflammatory processed sugar and mystery food additives. Instead, coconut oil and coconut butter offer lots of healthy fats to keep skin hydrated.
Coconut Butter vs. Coconut Oil
This recipe calls for the use of coconut butter and coconut oil. Unsure what the difference is? Coconut oil is extracted from the coconut while coconut butter includes the meat of the actual coconut fruit. Nutritionally speaking, coconut oil is entirely made of fat while coconut butter has a little bit of dietary fiber from the meat. Coconut butter also includes some protein, potassium, magnesium and iron.
This recipe also uses lots of cocoa powder which is full of iron, magnesium and zinc for optimum metabolism and cell renewal. Last but not least, a scoop of our Raw Beauty Green Superfood Powder adds hormone-balancing adaptogens, gut-healthy probiotics and de-bloating digestive enzymes.
Raw Beauty Chocolate Mint Cup Recipe
Raw Beauty Chocolate Mint Cups - YouTube
Ingredients: 1/2 cup coconut oil
3-4 tbsp maple syrup
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 tbsp Raw Beauty
1 tsp peppermint extract
1/2 cup coconut butter
1. Combine melted coconut oil, maple syrup, cocoa powder and Raw Beauty in a bowl. Stir until smooth.
2. Pour 1/2 of mixture into cup molds and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
3. In a separate bowl, mix coconut butter and peppermint extract until thoroughly incorporated.
4. Next, add the coconut butter mixture to the refrigerated cups.
5. Finally, top with the rest of the chocolate mixture and refrigerate for another 30 minutes.
If you’re looking to show your skin some major TLC, look no further than therapeutic skin coach, Hayley Wood. Her specialty? Intuitive facials. I recently put her services to the test. Scroll down to see the video or read below to learn how it went down.
Why Is It Important To Get Facials?
“I have compare facials to a really good dental cleaning,” Hayley tells us. “You can do the brushing and the flossing at home, but it’s really important to get integrative care and analysis from a professional who knows what to look for in terms of preventative care.”
How Often Should We Get Facials?
In a perfect world, once a month would be ideal. Our natural cell turnover is every 28-31 days so this allows you to synch to your natural rhythm. If you have an inflammatory condition like acne, you might want to come in more often to get the regenerative skin cycle functioning optimally. However, if monthly facials are’t in your budget, Hayley suggests at least getting a quarterly facial to keep your skin in peak condition.
What Is An Intuitive Facial, Exactly?
When she worked as an esthetician at a spa, Hayley had to follow the same protocol for every person. In her independent practice, she wants to give a more integrative approach. “When people ask me, what makes you different as an esthetician? I describe myself as a therapeutic skin coach. I give people homework. I coach them. I’m super supportive with whatever they’re going through. It’s honestly like a therapy session when you get a facial with me. We get to know what’s causing any stress. Then, I help you remove whatever those blocks are to achieve the best skin.”
But Hayley also helps her clients develop their own intuition in caring for their skin. “When somebody has a skin concern they usually can tune into what that root cause is. A lot of times, I just help empower them to do that.”
Before My Appointment
After booking my appointment, I receive an intake form. I expect it to ask about my problem areas and skincare routine, but this thing is seriously thorough. It asks what I do for a living, where I grew up, if I’m on hormonal birth control, what my diet is like, how much sleep I get, what my fitness routine includes, etc. Only at the very end does it ask about my current skincare routine. Then, best of all, it asks what are my skincare goals?
I explain that I’ve been breaking out on my cheeks and chin and even as I’m filling out the detailed life inventory, I start to pick up on the different stressors and changes that my skin may be reacting to.
My Intuitive Facial Experience
On the day of the facial, I walk into Hayley’s space and immediately dig the vibe. She has one of those swoon-worthy green filled spaces I only thought existed on Instagram. She gives me a moment of privacy to remove my shirt and get settled on the table under a blanket which has a warm heating pad to make things extra cozy.
Over the next hour Hayley steams, cleanses, tones and moisturizes my skin with different all-natural skincare products. Most are OSEA but I recognize the smell of a Living Libations oil in the mix, too. She takes a look at my skin and my areas of concern and says that it looks more like congestion than acne. “Most of the time, it’s a lowered immunity that causes blockages in our lymphatic system that creates the kind of congestion you’re experiencing.”
When we get to extractions Hayley encourages me to communicate my needs if it ever gets to be too much and reminds me to breathe throughout. She definitely gets in there but is much more gentle with her touch than I ever am when attempting extractions at home. (My homework from Hayley includes not attempting this anymore!)
We do some exfoliating next with an ultrasonic spatula and a microdermabrasion treatment followed by an intuitive facial specialty: yin and yang rolling. The roller is similar to a jade roller in design but each end has a different texture. One side works on an excess of yang, such as infection or surface blood flow that needs to be pushed out. They other side works on an excess of yin including deep set wrinkles, scarring or hyperpigmentation. (I have an excess of yang.)
Next, Hayley gives me an incredibly relaxing lymphatic facial massage. “When you get a nice facial massage, you realize how much tension you hold in the skin. This is just me breaking up any of the muscles that are constantly working, giving them a break and a little love so we can get some good oxygen flow in there.”
After massaging my face, she gets me set up with a LED light mask which makes me feel a little bit like a DJ at a rave. Hayley puts on red light first to promote fresh collagen and cellular repair in the skin. Then, she briefly switches on a blue light to oxygenate the skin and to help with any residual infection. As the light mask does its thing, I get to enjoy some gentle yin raking across my scalp and also a nice hand and arm massage.
Finally, she uses a cooling device on my skin to calm any inflammation before she sends me back into the world. She reminds me to drink lots of water, change my pillowcase and avoid sugar or other inflammatory foods for the rest of the day. My intuitive facial is complete!
Intuitive Facial Video
We Got An Intuitive Facial And It Was A Game Changer - YouTube
Intuitive Facial Results
When I return to the office my coworkers are amazed that my skin looks so calm. They even ask if we did extractions.
That day, Hayley emails my intake form back to me with in depth comments for all of my responses. True to promise she gives me homework. I get a simple morning and evening routine to follow with specific product recommendations. She also touches on many lifestyle changes that will encourage holistic skincare, like eliminating stress and not self-shaming your skin when it’s out of balance.
Over the next few weeks, there is a noticeable difference in my skin. It’s much smoother in texture and feels less congested. In fact, it reminds me of the effortless skin I had in college.
In her appointment follow-up, Hayley recommends coming back in 4 weeks for another facial, so I do. Frankly, I can’t imagine intuitive facials not being a seasonal part of my skincare routine going forward.
PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) is a hormonal imbalance that can result in cysts on the ovaries and a variety of other symptoms including irregular cycles, weight gain, acne, and even facial hair.
It’s important to know that it comes in several forms. Knowing which type you have is key to knowing the right treatment protocol for you. Every type of PCOS is given the same name, even though the root causes are actually quite different. Often, in mainstream medicine, every type of PCOS is managed with the same suggested treatment – even though these treatments only work for some women, some of the time.
Different types of PCOS all have different symptoms – not all women with PCOS are overweight, or have acne, or have excess hair growth. This confusion can delay diagnosis, and therefore delay proper treatment and support.
The Three Types
This is the most common PCOS type. High insulin levels stop ovulation in its tracks, causing irregular cycles and symptoms. The insulin resistance is brought about by diet. The symptoms are weight gain, acne, hirsutism, mood swings, and lack of periods. Women with this kind of PCOS are usually considered borderline diabetic.
This kind of PCOS can be seen in women who are at a normal weight, or even underweight. They may not feel they have any of the classic symptoms of PCOS. The inflammatory response that stops ovulation and causes irregular cycles comes from the body’s response to foods like gluten, dairy, sugar, or soy. It may also come from overexposure to endocrine disruptive chemicals, like chemical lawn spray or dry cleaning chemical.
There are multiple influences that can cause suppressed ovulation and irregular cycles. It could be an over-reliance on artificial sweeteners (I’m talking too much Diet Coke or Stevia-based products). Or, it could be due to poor diet, especially if you’re eating very little, only vegan, only raw, or no carbs whatsoever. The lack of ovulation will cause symptoms, but it won’t necessarily look or feel the same as the insulin-resistant type.
This type is common for women who have been on the pill or other hormonal birth control for a long time. They will come off and see their periods do not return. The synthetic hormones shut down communication between the pituitary gland and the ovaries in order to prevent pregnancy. Often, this can be challenging to bring back online.
It is possible to have a combination of these types of PCOS, as I did, or for the root cause to change and develop over time.
The two most commonly prescribed treatments – Metformin and the birth control pill – are not very effective at helping women. Metformin is only effective for women with insulin-resistant PCOS. Even then, due to its risks, short term use should be paired with changes to diet and lifestyle.
I assist many women with managing and controlling their PCOS symptoms using the FLO Living protocol when Metformin does not work. The birth control pill just acts to mask the problems with PCOS. It may suppress symptoms short term, but they will return when you stop using it. Even worse, they could be exacerbated. The pill happens to amplify many of the root causes of PCOS, including insulin-resistance and inflammation.
The FLO Living protocol works for all of the types of PCOS I’ve mentioned here to address the root causes by stabilizing blood sugar, eliminating endocrine disruptors, and improving estrogen metabolism.
Read more about The FLO Living protocol and Alisa’s tips for hormone balancing here.
Yes, yes, you’ve heard about balancing your hormones but do you know why and how to actually do it? Hormonal expert, Alisa Vitti, debunks popular myths on hormone health and shares how to live prosperously by syncing up with your natural flow.
There are so many signs that women aren’t taught to look for! And the symptoms are often sneaky. On the more obvious, physical front: period problems are absolutely an indication that something is off with the endocrine system. In fact, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recently declared the menstrual cycle as the fifth vital sign in determining your overall health. But period problems can take a lot of different forms: irregular periods, painful periods, heavy bleeding, no bleeding — all of these variations are indications that something is wrong with your hormones.
The major signs women tend to ignore are often written off as “PMS.” Here’s the big secret: PMS is not normal! If you’re feeling bloated, fatigued, irritable, anxious, moody at one time of the month or another, you’re not living in what I call ‘FLO’, and you’ve got to fix that issue with the right lifestyle tools. You can check to see what your hormone levels might be by answering 7 questions on this period evaluation tool.
What causes our hormones to become unbalanced?
Estrogen dominance is at the root of countless conditions like hormonal acne, endometriosis, ovarian cysts, fibroids, PCOS, and more. It happens when there’s just too much estrogen in the body in relation to progesterone. This can be a direct result of the foods we eat, the products we use, stress, disrupted gut microbiome, micronutrient deficiencies, poor sleep, and other environmental factors. It can be very hard to completely avoid estrogen excess, because we are surrounded by endocrine disruptors. Luckily, knowing how to eat and live in a hormonally-supportive way can help you avoid the toxins that lead to estrogen dominance and the subsequent issues that result from it.
What should we know about the way diet effects our hormone health?
Food is everything when it comes to hormonal health! The right foods can help support the thyroid, the adrenals, and the metabolization of estrogen through your elimination organs. Foods like leafy greens, complex carbohydrates, and colorful, vibrant veggies can completely rehabilitate an imbalanced endocrine system.
Of course, much of our hormonal dysfunction stems from eating the wrong foods. Sugar is the number one enemy when it comes to hormonal harmony. When you eat a lot of sugar or carbs and there’s a ton of glucose in your system, your body sends out lots of insulin to deal with this. Over time, this disrupts ovulation and causes a hormonal imbalance and leads your fat cells to secrete estrogen. The more sugar you eat, the more fat cells you create, and the more estrogen they secrete. This hormonal imbalance is a root cause of common issues like PMS, cramps, irregular cycles, acne, along with PCOS and infertility issues. If you have insulin-resistant PCOS then having excess glucose in your bloodstream will cause inflammation, which leads to many chronic health issues.
What are the worst offenders to avoid?
Just one coffee in the morning will throw off your whole endocrine system for an entire 24 hours. Caffeine messes with your blood sugar and cortisol levels, and your body won’t be able reset until you go to sleep and wake up the next morning. Caffeine also depletes essential micronutrients and minerals that we need for happy hormones.
Soy (the processed kind found in so many packaged foods) is terrible for women with estrogen-dominance hormonal imbalance conditions because of the phytoestrogens it contains. Processed soy is anything that substitutes like soy milk, soy meat, soy cheese, soy yogurt. Fermented, organic, unprocessed soy is tempeh, miso, and tamari.
Can you tell us a little about Cycle Syncing?
In my research I found that the right foods can offset and nourish the hormonal ratios present in each phase of the menstrual cycle. It not only brings them back to optimal levels but also maintains ideal hormone ratios for the long term. This is the Cycle Syncing Method, that I created and have been pioneering for the past 15 years. It was made popular through my bestseller, WomanCode and the the much beloved MyFLO period improvement and biohacking app. You can get much more information on what foods and activities work for each phase by downloading the MyFLO app.
To start though, here are the four phases of your menstrual cycle and a few tips on how to support your hormones at each phase:
Eat fermented foods.
Do a fun new group fitness class that challenges you and is cardio focused.
Ovulatory: Eat raw foods.
Do a mix of something strenuous and social and that’s HIIT focused.
Luteal: Eat root veggies.
Focus on pilates and power yoga.
Menstrual: Eat proteins and fats.
Focus on walking and stretching.
There are so many reasons to avoid all forms of hormonal contraception:
Hormonal birth control acts just like an antibiotic in your gut, destroying the essential microbiome balance. Repairing a damaged microbiome, while not impossible, takes time. The impact of the pill on the microbiome will last long after you stop taking it without concentrated, focused actions to replenish good gut bacteria.
Hormonal birth control also prevents the absorption of micronutrients, vitamins and minerals. It robs your body of B vitamins, magnesium, and vitamin C in particular. This has short and long term impacts on your health. Once you’re micronutrient deficient, and unable to absorb what you need even from additional supplementation, you are set up for poor physical and mental health. It takes a nutrient dense, targeted diet to replenish your body’s reserves and repair the avenues of absorption.
If you are prescribed the pill for cramps, PMS, or other common period problems, you should know that those issues result from hormonal imbalance and inflammation in the body. The pill does not treat these root causes — it’s only a Band-Aid solution. Once you come off the method, the problems will return and potentially have worse symptoms than before, as well as becoming harder to treat and resolve. It’s better to tackle these problems head-on and not wait until you’d like to conceive or suffer the long-term health consequences.
What forms of birth control should we use for optimum hormone health?
Condoms! They allow you to forgo synthetic hormone exposure and they actually work. When used correctly and consistently they are about as effective as the Pill at preventing pregnancy and they prevent bacterial and viral infections. Your lady parts are very sensitive and prone to picking up bacteria or viruses. STD’s can impact your fertility as well as being super uncomfortable and unpleasant. If you want to be a mom at some time in the future – use condoms today! It’s the best way of protecting your vaginal environment and keeping your reproductive organs healthy.
A few more natural options:
The diaphragm. A new one-size-fits all diaphragm just came to the US! Caya is available by prescription, but you no longer need to find a doctor who knows how to do a fitting.
The sponge. Even though you can still buy the sponge at RiteAid or CVS, you never hear about them anymore. I don’t know why, because it’s a great natural alternative contraceptive. You do use spermicide with this, but you could choose a natural option like ContraGel.
The copper IUD. If you want something more permanent, then this is a very effective and safe option. There are risks with the implant, and many women report having increased cramping and bleeding while it’s implanted.
What changes have your clients experienced by using the FLO Living method?
The success stories have truly been awe-inspiring. Women have put every kind of menstrual disturbance into remission – from PCOS, to fibroids, endometriosis, to ovarian cysts, PMS, to synthetic birth control syndrome. Women have lost weight, cleared painful cystic acne, and restored their energy and moods. Women have been able to improve their fertility as well! Most importantly, reclaimed their health and happiness.
When I was in my early 20’s and struggling with major symptoms of PCOS myself, I dreamed of a place that would have been able to help me with my issues. The FLO Living Hormone Center was created because I know first hand how overwhelming it can feel when your hormones are off balance to know what to do that is really going to make a difference. The FLO Living Hormone Center takes care of women from all over the world through our digital health programs. I’m proud that we have a huge community that we call the #FLOsisterhood.
If people want to learn more, what resources can they turn to?
Let me be the first to admit that I was skeptical.
What Is Whole30?
Whole30 is a very popular elimination you typically see all of your friends attempting after new years. The official rules say that for 30 days you cannot consume any added sugars (real or artificial), alcohol, grains, legumes, dairy, sulfites, or MSG. Basically, you’re sticking to fruit, meat and vegetables.
As if being restrictive weren’t a challenge enough, Whole30 has one other important stipulation. If you cheat and eat one of the forbidden foods, you have to start all over again.
Say what!? Again, I was skeptical. What kind of healthy diet doesn’t allow a person to eat beans or quinoa? Why is there no grace and understanding that sometimes in the middle of a big diet you just can’t resist the baked goods someone brought to the office?
A Registered Dietitian’s Take on Whole30
“Whole30 is essentially an elimination diet – or an anti-inflammatory diet,” says HUM Director of Education, Sarah Greenfield. “I’m a huge proponent of this way of eating. I think it’s really healthy to try something new and take out foods. What you do in that time period is decrease inflammation in your body. Then, when you reintroduce things you can figure out if certain foods don’t agree with you.”
Anticipated Challenges & Benefits
Though I love getting lots of greens into my diet, I also am a verified sugar addict and have been known to Postmates Shake Shack for dinner semi-frequently. Still, I consider myself more of an intuitive eater and was curious to see what results I’d see on a stricter regimen.
You need look no further than the Whole30 website to find endorsements by doctors, dietitians and acupuncturists who say the diet will help you lose weight, beat fatigue, and help with all sorts of other ailments. Basically, a miracle diet.
For myself, I was looking for clearer skin, better digestion, improved sleep and more energy.
Whole30 Diet Review – Before & After Has Us Shook! - YouTube
The first few days of Whole30 I was afraid at any given bite that I was breaking the rules and would have to start all over. After the first week though, I got into a groove with foods I was allowed to have.
The first two weeks my skin continued to break out – in fact, it was breaking out even MORE than usual. But by the end I only had a few blemishes here and there instead of all over.
I thought the worst part of Whole30 would be banning sugar and alcohol. But, I was surprised at how easy it was to just substitute something else in and still feel satisfied. If I craved sweets, I had a piece of fruit and that did the trick. At bars I ordered a seltzer or hot tea. Just having something in my hand was enough.
In fact, the best part of Whole30 was something I hadn’t anticipated at all: saving a ton of money not drinking. Not to mention sparing myself from hangovers all month long. I’m so used to alcohol being a part of my social life on weekends but it was really refreshing to know I can still go out with friends and have a good time without racking up a big expensive bar tab and suffering the next day.
The Final Results
Woah! I don’t know about you but I was definitely impressed with the transformation. Without adding any additional workouts to my routine (I typically do a few yoga classes a week) I saw way more definition in my arms and waist. Here were the numbers to show the proof:
Though I still had a few blemishes here or there, my skin cleared up significantly and my energy, digestion and mood all felt like they were functioning optimally. For me, this experiment was a huge success and I’d recommend it to anyone looking to try something new in their diet.
No grains, legumes, dairy or added sugar – what’s left?
For anyone wondering what the heck is left to eat on this restrictive thirty day challenge, I got you. Here’s everything I eat in a day – Whole30 style. For the video recap, scroll to the bottom of this post!
Morning Matcha Latte
Having a matcha latte first thing in the morning helps me ease into the day. Lately, I’ve been making mine using hot water, matcha, coconut butter, cinnamon and sea salt. I also like to incorporate a serving of HUM, depending on what I’m in the mood for. For example, Big Chill is a great one to incorporate if you’re having a hectic week and want to stay relaxed and focused. You just twist the ends of the capsule apart over your blender and mix with everything else!
This sweet potato smoothie bowl is seriously delicious and blissfully Whole30 compliant. As a bonafide sugar addict, I was most afraid of not being able to eat sweets but recipes like this satisfy my sweet tooth with the natural sugars in fruits and vegetables. Check the labels to make sure all of the other ingredients used are unsweetened! Here’s the recipe so you can enjoy this drool-worthy treat.
Ingredients: 1 frozen banana
1/2 steamed then frozen sweet potato
1/2 cup of warm water
2 tbsp unsweetened almond butter
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
1/4 cup unsweetened coconut shreds
dash of cinnamon
pinch of sea salt
Directions: Place the frozen banana, sweet potato, warm water, almond butter, pumpkin pie spice, cinnamon and sea salt in a blender and combine until smooth. Top with coconut shreds and more cinnamon.
Hiding at the bottom of this lunch bowl is a bed of greens topped with roasted broccoli and brussels sprouts. I also meal prepped some meatballs just by seasoning grass fed beef and cooking with a little ghee. There’s also some sauerkraut for a gut-friendly probiotic. (Again, I double checked at the store to make sure it didn’t have any added sweeteners!) Finally, half an avocado.
Because I’m not able to eat grains on Whole30, I find it really important to focus on getting healthy fats and proteins and other sources of carbohydrates. Too little of any of these macros and I don’t feel totally satiated.
Larabars to the rescue! They are also easy to carry around in your bag if you’re out running around. To stay Whole30 compliant, just make sure you get one that doesn’t have peanuts or chocolate chips. (I’m a big fan of the coconut flavor, personally.) That said, I try to mix things up and not rely too heavily on these as they are still rich in natural sugars. I alternate these with cut up veggies and guacamole or some type of fruit.
Pasta is definitely something I miss on Whole30! These carrot noodles are from the frozen section of Trader Joe’s and super convenient to throw together. I also got the tomato sauce canned from there. (As always, read the label! All of the ones that came in jars had added sugar, but this canned one was safe.) The meat sauce brings it together into a really feel good, childhood favorite with a healthy spin.
I also try to get a serving of something green in with most meals so I did a simple side salad of arugula and avocado. Yum!
Find relief using this easy technique from Chinese Medicine.
How Does It Work?
Borrowed from Chinese Medicine, awakening these acupressure points is traditionally said to help restore the flow of qi, or energy, through the body’s meridians. If you’re skeptical, rest assured that Western Medicine can at least agree that these pressure points can help relieve tension, improve circulation and stimulate endorphins. So the next time your head is pounding, try these five pressure points to relieve a headache.
Third Eye Pressure Point
Using your index and point finger, press the space between the eyebrows where the bridge of the nose meets the forehead for one minute. You can either press straight on, or massage the area in a circular motion. This pressure point stimulates the pineal gland which is responsible for producing melatonin. Studies show significant relief for migraines is possible through melatonin regulation.
Bright Lights Pressure Point
Using both index fingers, find the brow bone just above the inner corners of the eyes. Apply pressure equally on both sides, or stimulate one side at a time for one minute. This pressure point is not only great for relieving general headaches, but also for easing eye strain and providing allergy relief.
Facial Beauty Pressure Point
To locate these pressure points, guide your index finger to the bottom of your cheekbones alongside each nostril. Press and hold for one minute, or massage the area in circular motions. Along with headaches, the facial beauty pressure point can help relieve toothaches, sinus pain and congestion.
Gates of Consciousness Pressure Point
Interlace your fingers behind your head and stretch the thumbs to press the hollows on the side of your neck at the base of your skull. Use your thumbs to massage the point while you breathe deeply. This pressure point is also great for relieving neck pain and anxiety.
Wind Mansion Pressure Point
Another great one for stiff necks! To stimulate this pressure point, place your hand on the back of your head and use the thumb to find the center hollow under the base of the skull. This pressure point is also great for calming nerves. To truly feel the benefits, you can also try holding an ice cube to this pressure point. Doing so is said to release endorphins into the bloodstream and restore balance to the body.
Get to know this essential vitamin for your nervous system, metabolism and energy.
What Is It?
Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble vitamin that the body needs to produce red blood cells, synthesize DNA and maintain optimum neurological function. It also helps the body with its metabolic functions – including turning food into energy.
Pretty great, right? Here’s the catch: our body doesn’t make B12 on its own so we have to get it from our diet or supplement.
Vitamin B12 Deficiency Signs
A deficiency in B12 can be tricky to peg because there are so many varied symptoms. It’s also an incredibly common deficiency. In fact, one study found B12 deficiencies to be a worldwide problem.
The subtler symptoms include fatigue, weakness and difficulty thinking. (Basically, if everyday feels like a Monday you might be deficient in B12.)
More notable symptoms include joint pain, numbness or tingling in the hands or feet, difficulty walking, shortness of breath, a swollen tongue, yellow skin, depression, anxiety – or even paranoia and hallucinations.
Because B12 is found in animal proteins, vegetarians and vegans will want to include it in their diet using fortified veg-friendly foods or by taking a daily supplement.
Supplementing Vitamin B12 is also a good idea for anyone over the age of 50. As we get older, our bodies become less efficient at absorbing B12 through through digestion so supplementing ensures you get a proper dosage.
A few lifestyle factors which may also deplete your levels of B12 include chronic alcohol consumption or stress. One good thing to note, because B12 is water soluble, the body will automatically flush out any it doesn’t need.
Dietary Sources of B12
Vitamin B12 is available in all animal protein sources. It is richest in organ meats like liver, kidney, giblets. Then, the next highest concentration of B12 is in fish and seafood. Mussels, clams, oysters, mackeral, tuna, roe, crab, sardines, tuna and caviar all have lots of B12. Finally, an adequate dose of B12 is in eggs, poultry, milk and other dairy products.
Vegetarian options include fortified nutritional yeast, nut milks or vegan meat substitutions. To make sure you get enough though, we highly recommend a daily supplement such as our B12 Turbo.
“I owe 50% of my beauty to my mother and the other 50% to Erno Lazlo.” – Audrey Hepburn
And she wasn’t the only one. Greta Garbo, Marilyn Monroe and Jackie O all turned to trusted beauty guru Erno Lazlo for their customized skincare routines. Here at HUM, we’re excited to be sharing an Erno Lazlo treat with every order shipping out while supplies last. We chatted with their Chief Marketing Officer, Kristy Watson, to learn more about the legacy behind this iconic beauty brand and their secrets to achieving red carpet worthy skin.
The Erno Lazlo brand has such a rich history. How did it start?
We were founded by a doctor, Dr. Erno Laszlo back in 1927. He was a true pioneer and ahead of his time. He came over from Hungary, spent some time in Hollywood but decided New York was more his speed. He opened a member only Institute on 5th avenue and quickly became the ‘go-to’ doctor to many famous faces.
Could you name drop a few?
In the early days, before there were “influencers” we had an authentic following. Marilyn Monroe, Jackie O and Audrey Hepburn were some of our most famous faces. It’s fun to flip through our archives or even browse through the timeline on our website. It’s so unique and special. Our brand has always been about empowerment and in today’s world it’s as important than ever. When you feel good about your skin, it shows, boosting your confidence. We love that!
What advice would Erno Laszlo give to his clients?
It’s so simple, but so true. He believed if you do nothing else you have to wash your face. It’s the first step to stop your skin from looking tired and worn out. We are still educating women on this today and inspire them with our cleansing oil and bar double cleanse ritual. I never forget to do this in the morning and before bed. It’s the one step in my ritual I will never stop doing.
He also believed in skincare rituals and was big on customization. I think what is so interesting is that our brand DNA has over 90 years of history but is so relevant today with the K-Beauty craze. Many of the same philosophies they have, Dr. Erno Laszlo introduced a long time ago and we continue to be inspired by our true DNA every day.
8 hours of sleep, a lot of water, exercise, acupuncture and a morning and evening skincare ritual I am so very proud of. Before working at Erno Laszlo I did the first four but this brand has taught me so much about taking time for yourself and how much fun skincare is.
I’m obsessed with scents and textures and love a great mask both morning and night. The time I put into my ritual is worth every minute. My advice? Take that extra 5 minutes. You are worth it!
How do you balance tradition and innovation?
I love this question! As I mentioned earlier, we were ahead of our time. We were talking double cleanse and educating on cleansing oil way before cleansing oil was even a thing. We had a famous sea mud cleansing bar that still is a top seller. We introduced a Powder Mask (also known as our rubber mask) in the 1980’s, again way before masking was having a moment. We had influencer marketing, authentically at the inception and offered women confidence and beautiful skin the minute we were founded. We believe in rituals and taking a moment out of your busy day for yourself. All of this continues today. We just tell the stories through different platforms and introduce products that round out our collection. There is so many amazing ingredients and innovative technologies today that we have in our new launches and we tell the stories on social first and continue that one-on-one conversation. It’s different, but also the same.
What historical beauty trends are you glad have been left behind in the past?
Those crazy alcohol products. I remember having acne and thinking that my alcohol-based toner would burn it all off. It was so strong and intense and well, it didn’t burn it off. I’m so happy my 13-year-old niece has better education and choices. I also think skincare is so much more fun today than it was when I was growing up. You can walk into Sephora and discover an ingredient or a product you didn’t even think existed and then get amazing results. It’s a great time for discovery!
What’s a skincare trend you’re excited about?
I just can’t get enough of all the masks I keep trying. Oxygen masks, 5-minute masks, eye masks, rubber masks, hydrogel masks, sleep masks, neck masks. I mean we have a mask for every occasion. And I feel like I use them for every occasion or every non-occasion. There is something special about all the ones I have been using – especially our new eye masks. Instant under eye lift. I don’t know what I did before we launched them!
Could you tell us about the two products we’ll be including with orders this month?
Both these serums are powerhouses and are driven by results!
Our White Marble Radiance Emulsion is my favorite to layer under my SPF in the AM. It gives skin a boost of radiance and evens skin-tone and texture. It’s made with fruit-derived super-antioxidants to protect skin as it boosts cell renewal for the “what’s your secret” healthy glow.
Transphuse Rapid Renewal Cell Protocol is a must after double cleansing my skin at night! It targets fine lines and wrinkles – I seriously saw results after using for one week! It’s made with cutting-edge ingredients like plant stem cells called RapidGen to reinforce the structure and strength of skin. Both these serums are like a vitamin boost to your skin. You can use them in the AM and/or PM.
Always remember you get the most of your serums and moisturizers when you apply to dry clean skin (so cleanse your skin before). I love recommending people apply serums over entire face (avoiding eye area) and on neck. Women often forget about their neck – don’t!
Meet Jackson Smith, spin instructor at Bespoke. Jackson was recently dubbed one of Classpass’s best instructors in Los Angeles. His students rave that he is a bright light who will also kick your booty into shape. We caught up with Jackson to learn more about his morning routine and fitness tips.
Q&A with Jackson Smith
Why did you become a spin instructor?
Well, before I was teaching spin I was an actor working in Los Angeles, as well as a manager at Starbucks. To be honest, I wasn’t really happy with where my life was going. I could see my passion for acting starting to dwindle and I had no real desire to climb higher at Starbucks. The real defining moment for me was when I lost my best friend to his suicide. It affected me so intensely that I realized I didn’t want to spend my life chasing a dream that I wasn’t fully committed to. I decided to make a change and try my hand at becoming a spin instructor, having taken classes for 7 years, and going off of the encouragement of my friend and fellow instructor Gayle Fuller. Now here we are!
What does your morning routine look like?
On most days I like to wake up around 7:30 or 8:00 am and I immediately meditate. It helps me to recenter and get a better grasp on what I need to do in the upcoming day. I use guided meditation apps like Headspace because they help me stay on track and give me different ways of approaching my own thoughts. Then I eat breakfast, usually with some sort of protein (eggs and turkey bacon typically), some sort of healthy fat (avocado or almonds), something full of fiber (black beans or veggies normally), and some sort of starch or carb (usually hash browns or wheat toast). Breakfast is typically my biggest meal of the day and it’s where I try to consume the most calories, giving me the necessary fuel for my day. Then, after I eat, I’ll make my playlist for the class or classes I’m teaching that day, then it’s on to the gym.
What is challenging about teaching spin?
To me, the most challenging part of my job is trying to make every class experience different yet consistent. I always incorporate similar things in class because people react well to what they know and what they can expect, but I also try and keep my riders on their toes by keeping it fresh and exciting.
The most fun part?
The most fun part of my job is engaging with the riders. Making friendships, building connections, affecting people on a emotional level, creating a group of superstars who show up for one another, hold each other accountable, help each other push and achieve fitness goals they never thought they could, and most importantly, lift each other up when they need it the most. We’re all there for each other, and helping build that sense of community is what I love the most.
Favorite artist to ride to?
Madonna, hands down.
Favorite post-ride fuel?
Protein shakes!!! And peanut butter, obvi.
One guilty pleasure you have…
I am a big fan of the Real Housewives franchise and I am proud of it! I don’t have drama in my personal life so I get my fix from TV.
One pro tip you have for novice riders:
Learn to let go. If you go into that room super serious and ready to JUST burn calories, you’re denying yourself the opportunity to let the mind and soul get a workout as well. Release a little, let your hair down, relax into the music, and let your heart take you higher. Then the REAL work can begin. Of course we’re there to get more fit physically, but that’s a given. Give yourself the chance to get everything possible out of the class. You owe it to yourself simply because you are worth it.
Follow Jackson Smith on Instagram or book a class with him at Bespoke to get inspired.