Category Archives: health

Your Day

By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” – Benjamin Franklin

 MARTIAL ARTS TRAINING

Planning Your Day

 Fiercelybeautifulblog.com

By Craig Ballantyne

Let’s face it. As someone who wants extraordinary results in every area of your life, there are always going to be obstacles in your way. Two of the most common are overcoming procrastination and keeping control of your daily schedule.

The good news is that we conquer both with one solution. And that’s simply by planning your day.

So let’s allay your fears and stresses about the seemingly complex task at hand. Planning makes success simple.

Don’t get me wrong, it doesn’t make success easy, but it makes it simple. There is a big difference between the two.

Easy means little effort. And we both know that success takes hard work. Simple means that the path to success has already been tread, and we just need to follow that path. But, of course, there’s a path that has been tread to the top of Mount Everest, too, and we know that isn’t easy.

All paths to success take planning. In our recent discussions about “Operation 2X,” our plan to help you achieve twice the results over the rest of the year, ETR Publisher Matt Smith said, “You cannot have a 2X day when you don’t plan. That includes planning kids/family activities. 2X happens only when you lead. It only happens when you’re proactive and are actually pushing things forward. 2X only happens when there is intention.”

So what does that mean?

You need to:

  •     Plan your day/schedule
  •     Block out your time for specific tasks
  •     Get ONE big thing done first thing in the morning for momentum
  •     Prioritize your to-do list
  •     Make a commitment to contacting the right people
  •     Eliminate unnecessary communication
  •     Avoid getting sucked into emails
  •     Set daily deadlines
  •     Stick to your schedule (this is where things often go wrong)
  •     Set up your environment for maximum productivity.
  •     Institute a strict sleeping schedule
  •     Surround yourself with competent people who can do some work for you.

Or you can say, “Oh, I don’t want to be that rigid. I want a flexible, spontaneous lifestyle.”

And that’s fine, but the fact is you’ll fail at almost everything you want to do in life. PERIOD.

Your choice.

You must have total control over your working conditions and those that can interrupt it. It must be made known that your work time is do-not-disturb time.

This will disappoint others but it will protect your time and is essential to your success. Make this decision. Separate work from play. Commit. Stay focused.

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Remember… you get freedom from structure.

You don’t get freedom from a 4-hour work week. That’s false freedom, or as your parents described it, “Laziness.”

So listen…

If you’re struggling with your schedule, go back and do a “time journal.” Then ruthlessly plan your work day.

The more work you can get done during work hours, the less time you’ll have to steal from your family, friends, fitness, and fun hobbies by working when it’s not “work time.”

That’s what is meant by getting more freedom from structure.

You can work hard a good many hours and still have a life. Most people don’t have a balance problem, they have a time-wasting problem.

You must find your Magic Time to get more done in less time.

You must also set an end to your day. Do a brain dump and then shut your working mind down. Go spend time with your family. Don’t answer email at all hours of the day. Set limits. Know what you should be doing at all times, and do it.

The more structure you have in your work day, the more you plan, the more you will accomplish — and the closer you will get to achieving a 2X day — and life.

Remember these words of wisdom from Dave Kekich:

“Cherish time, your most valuable resource. You can never make up the time you lose. It’s the most important value for any productive happy individual and is the only limitation to all accomplishment. To waste time is to waste your life. The most important choices you’ll ever make are how you use your time.”

So always be prepared. Plan ahead. If you do, and if you get focused, you can dominate your days and own your life in 2017.

If you need help, I’m your man.

Click here to discover how to work in-person with me on creating your Perfect Days

About the Author: Craig Ballantyne is the founder of EarlyToRise University and the author of The Perfect Day Formula. His straightforward, sometimes “politically-incorrect” advice has helped millions of people transform their lives both physically and financially. Craig’s secret weapons for success include his personal commandments, his 5 pillars, and his Perfect Life vision. Click here to learn more from Craig so that you can get more done, make more money, and live the life of your dreams.

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Music is Good For Your Brain

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Avocados

 

10 Health Benefits of Avocados

By Marry Spencer

Avocado is most popular for being a good source of good fat. But it’s also brimming with other nutrients, and has a relatively low calorie count.

If you’re not familiar with all of the health benefits of the avocado, here are just a few:

1. Nutritional Value

Aside from being the only fruit that contains monounsaturated (good) fats, avocados also contain 7 grams of dietary fiber and 2 grams of protein per serving, as well as 485 grams of potassium and 16% of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C.

2. Better Cardiovascular Health

Because of this superfood’s ability to lower bad cholesterol, it can easily improive your heart health. According to one study, avocado has properties that can lower low-density lipoproteins (LDLs), also know as bad cholesterol.

3. Healthy Eyesight

Avocado is brimming with nutrients that improve eyesight, including cartenoids such as beta carotene, zeaxanthin, and lutein, which can prevent age-related macular degeneration.

4. Cancer Prevention

Avocados are packed with phytochemicals and antioxidants that have been proven to fight off cancer cells.

Read about 6 more health benefits of avocados.

Shark Habits in Your Life

Why You Need Shark Habits in Your Life

By Dan John

In 1977, at our first team meeting with the Utah State University track and field team, Coach Ralph Maughan outlined a few things that continue to shape my life.  At the time, he was addressing state and national champions and one Olympian.

Three statements stood out:

“Make yourself a slave to good habits.”
“Little and often over the long haul.”
“Lift weights three days a week, throw (or hurdle or jump or . . . ) four days a week, for eight years.”

Each of these is true. They are right.

For now, let’s look at the first one: “Make yourself a slave to good habits.”

Most people are blind to their habits. I was talking with my friend, Cameron, and she noted on a recent international trip she was surprised how often she had music on at home. She woke up to music, dressed to music, drove to music and worked to music.

On this trip, she had no music. In the hotel, she couldn’t just flip the switch or tune to her favorite stations. The lack of noise is what caught her attention. She was so used to having the background noise, she never noticed until there was quiet!

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Most people have habits. Lots of them. The television is on during meals, the radio is playing in the car and the route to most places is so ingrained we don’t even notice these as habits. Add a construction reroute and the whole day might take on a new meaning.

  • Reaching for a snack: habit.
  • Mindlessly staying up for another lousy comedy: habit.
  • Surfing the web endlessly: habit.
  • Checking social media at a restaurant: habit.

The bulk of your life is made up of habits. If you’ve been driving for years, you might not even remember the checklist of starting a car and maneuvering out of the garage and down the street. If you actually THINK about driving, you might recall how many steps there are to the process. It will grind your gears if you are using a manual transmission, when you actually stop to think about the left foot, right foot, hand shift and one hand driving required to accelerate.

Coach Maughan said good habits.

I don’t necessarily wish to correct him. Coach Maughan played professional football for the Detroit Lions, made the Olympic team as a hammer thrower, won the national championship as a javelin thrower and won two Purple Hearts and the Bronze Star at the Battle of the Bulge.

Again, I’m not correcting Coach, but adding to his legacy.

When I look at the vast expanse of time-wasting stuff in life, I think this: get rid of it.

The term we use is “shark habits.” One bite . . . and it is gone.

Fill out the form. Check the box. Don’t let the bride wonder whether or not you’re going to the wedding, RSVP!

Low on gas? Fill it up!

I first heard the concept of shark habits — one bite! — from Robb Wolf. He was speaking to a military group and told them to take a roll of duct tape into their bedrooms and cover up all the little dots of light that infiltrate the rooms. These little warning lights for fire alarms, CO2 alarms, alarm clocks and all kinds of power outlets are causing some sleep distress.

The upside is this: you only have to do it once.

Once. One bite. That is a shark habit.

Daily Shark Habits

I use shark habits in much of my professional and personal life. When I open an email, I answer it. Always. If I don’t have time to deal with the messages, I don’t open the email program.

I believe in only touching postal mail once. I go through the mail and discard the junk in the garbage (sadly, most of the mail is junk). If it requires attention, I deal with it immediately.

I fail on this sometimes. Oddly, when I do forget to do something like, renew my annual business application, I lose the form and it costs me hours of backtracking, waiting on hold, and dealing with unhelpful people at the state office.

During my hour on hold, I recommit to shark habits.

Shark habits are the ultimate in “Do This.” For anything that can be done swiftly, DO IT NOW.

One bite.

There is a shark habit that has worked well for years with my medical team: when the nurse asks, “Do you want to set up the next appointment?” I always say, “Yes.”

I usually don’t have my calendar with me. No . . . I don’t know what I’m doing six months from now on a Tuesday at 1:30. But, yes, I take that appointment!

My doctors now text, email and call to remind me about the appointment, so I let them use their time and energy to get me there.

If you’re an athlete, shark habits are pretty simple and obvious to the experienced participant.

  • Buy the shoes.
  • Buy the equipment.
  • Renew the membership.
  • Send the check for the event.
  • Get the flight, the rental car and the hotel.
  • Show up!

For someone new to a sport, this list can be a bit of a burden as they try to sort through all the options, especially equipment. If you don’t believe me, talk to a cycling enthusiast if you doubt how many options there are.

But as the years go on, the membership renewal automatically shows up and you simply have to click “Renew.”

As the years go on, you will have friends to share rides and meals. It gets easier and easier to show up as the shark habits begin to take over so much of the early effort to get things done.

Shark habits eliminate clutter.

I read an article years ago that stated something that shocked me: the average person only eats fourteen foods a week. Think about that: only fourteen foods. At a workshop, I was told one of the keys to better nutrition was to list the foods you eat each week — not the portions nor do you seek the carbohydrate load, the micronutrients or the quality of the food. Simply, we were asked to list the foods.

Armed with this information, I decided on two things to make my family’s health better: a shopping list and a weekly menu.

I still have the shopping list on my fridge — here you go:

Meat
Poultry
Sausage
Bacon
Fish
Shellfish (if you can eat it)
Canned tuna
Salmon
Eggs (buy them in the five-dozen containers)
Heavy cream, for coffee
Real butter
Cheese
Salad greens and everything you can eat raw!
Lemons and limes to sweeten drinks and squeeze on fish and salads
Herbs and spices
Olive oil
The best in-season fruit

There’s also a little box for basic toiletries and household supplies.

When I shop, I load up on what we need for the menu for the week. There is never the question, “What should I eat?” The answer is already in the pot!

I do this with weekly chores, monthly chores, and yearly chores, too.

I take this seriously. I found a black polo shirt that travels well, doesn’t wrinkle and looks good.

I bought 16 of those shirts.

Why 16? That’s all the site had in my size. They are all the exact same look and design.

I own two pairs of expensive jeans that guarantee I can squat in them. I own four pairs of shoes with the term “Free” in the name and I can honestly tell you that the price is far from free.

Why? Why wear the same thing on every road trip, talk, and gathering?

Among the reasons, I find “no one really cares what I wear” to “it takes me about a minute to pack for a ten-day trip.” It comes down to this: I pull them out of my closet, pop them in my lightweight, compact carry-on, and I am ready to go.

Shark habits save time. Shark habits save mental overload.

An important point: Shark habits don’t judge whether or not something is important, unimportant, trivial, or the key to life, living and the universe.

I think weddings are VERY important, for example.

As the father of the bride, I had to make a phone call to a family member a few weeks ahead of my daughter’s wedding.

“Are you guys coming to Kelly and Andrew’s wedding?”
“Well, yes, you must know we’ll be coming.”
“Why didn’t you RSVP?”
“Well, you know we’ll be coming!”
“Okay…how many?”
“Oh, I don’t know who will show up…maybe the kids, maybe their kids, sometimes they bring friends.”

The reception was a sit-down meal and every guest cost enough money to feed a family of four at a chain restaurant. The difference between two guests and twenty from one family was information I could have used to plan better.

Letting the bride know whether or not you’re coming is important.

Lots of things we do each and every day are important. Many of these you probably never even think about.

Tim Carr, one of the smartest men in education, teaches Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs with a fun story.

Imagine you are going scuba diving. You go because it allows you to be one with nature, enjoy the beauty and frolic on a beach holiday after months of hard work saving money to fly to this paradise. During the dive, a very hungry shark or sea monster shows up and you hide behind a rock, keeping the rock between you and this denizen of the deep. You suddenly notice that you are running out of air and need to get back to the surface. The pang of lack of air trumps the danger, the danger trumps the beauty and…

You just learned the basics of Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Everything here was important:

Hard Work
Vacation
Beauty and Bliss
Protection
Air

The shark in this story teaches us about shark habits and importance: most of the things you do are important. Perhaps filling out a form is not important to you, but it’s important to the poor person who has to figure out how much food to buy or how many chairs to set up.

Fill it out. Be part of the solution, not the problem.

Shark Habits and Health

I have talked in depth about how shark habits can make a huge difference on your physical health. See the doctor, go to the dentist, floss your teeth and you know the rest. Shark habits will do wonders for health, longevity, fitness and performance.

Equally important, shark habits will do wonders for your mental health.

Shark Habits and Longevity

One day at the Pacifica Barbell Club, Dick Notmeyer asked me a question. Now, to understand Dick, a man who changed my life by teaching me the Olympic lifts and the lessons of hard work and perseverance, you first have to realize that often when he asked a question, he wasn’t expecting an answer.

He had the answer.

“By percentage, what do think the keys to a long life are?”

He went on to explain that probably 50% of surviving into the triple digits, or close to that, would be genetics. Everybody seems to know a guy who lived to 105 smoking cigarettes and drinking moonshine. There are families that just live a long time.

Forty percent seems to be lifestyle and that’s something we can improve upon or ruin.

And, sadly, 10% is luck. If you had left a minute later, you could have been in that accident or would have been the one-millionth customer and won the prize. It happens. There’s no training for improving your luck.

The secret to living a long life might simply be “Don’t die.” Good advice, but hard to quantify. There seems to be three things . . . and maybe a fourth . . . that lead to longevity:

  • Don’t smoke.
  • Wear your seat belt or helmet.
  • Learn to fall and recover from a fall.
  • The fourth? Never say, “Hold my beer and watch this.”

I often tell people that since I don’t commute, the most dangerous part of my day, statistically, is showering. After 55, nutritional decisions don’t matter nearly as much as safety precautions against falling or collisions.

Certainly, your teenage child’s eating and drinking habits and decisions in the early 20s concerning beer and pizza will have an impact on that 50-something body, but after 55, NOT getting broken trumps any magic food or supplement. Safety in the shower, walking on ice, and double checking for traffic are far more important than getting the right vitamins.

Bill Gifford’s book, Spring Chicken, and website offers some simple advice to increase longevity:

Caloric restriction leads to a longer life. Intermittent fasting does the same thing . . . easier.

Exercising 100 minutes a WEEK adds seven years to life.

So…
Start fasting.
Start walking.

To improve your time here on this marvelous planet, there are some simple steps of both prevention and promotion that can keep you living longer.

The corollary to Coach Maughan’s famous insight would be this:

Make yourself a slave to shark habits.

Practice taking things off the table, clearing the clutter, checking the box. Become more proactive. To summarize shark habits, learn to take things off the table, then put them away.

The longer I coach, the more I realize performance is the easiest of the four basic things we work with in fitness — Health, Longevity, Fitness and Performance. Performance comes down to assessing adherence to principles, trying one’s best to shark habit the bulk of life and flitting through some programs now and again to address specific issues.

Sure, there’s a lot there. There is a need for mastery of a lot of areas, but, overall, it comes down to:

Did you do the job?

If not, why not?

If you got cluttered with stuff that could have been handled with shark habits, shame on you.

If we didn’t practice the right things, shame on me.

About the Author: An All-American discus thrower, Dan John has also competed at the highest levels of Olympic lifting, Highland Games and the Weight Pentathlon, an event in which he holds the American record. Dan spends his work life blending weekly workshops and lectures with full-time writing, and is also an online religious studies instructor for Columbia College of Missouri. To read more of Dan’s articles, click here.  

Your Diet and Your Body

Obviously, your body type is closely related to how you look.  But did you know that which types of foods you eat and your ability to excel at athletic activities are related to your body type?  Don’t worry, there is no “right” body type and each one has its positive aspects.  Also, we want to note that whichever body type you have does not mean how you look now will forever be the way you look.  Sure, drastically changing your body type is a challenge, but provided you’re willing to work hard enough, you are actually in control of your own destiny.

Before we get to that, let’s first go over the three primary terms used to describe body types and what characterizes each of them.

ecto

1. Ectomorphs

Ectomorphs are generally identified as having thinner limbs and thin bone structures. They tend to have fast metabolisms and the immensely frustrating ability to eat plenty of carbohydrates without showing it. If you’re trying to visualize what an example ectomorph looks like, think of most long distance runners – long, thin, and lithe.  Ectomorphs tend to constantly burn calories.  For them, putting on muscle mass is a constant struggle.  They have to force feed themselves and oftentimes eat far more than they have any interest in doing (while this may sound like a blessing to some, for many ectomorphs, it is a point of constant frustration).

meso

2. Mesomorphs

Think of M to stand for in this case Medium as Mesomorphs have a medium bone structure and fall in between Ectomorphs and Endomorphs. Generally, this body type is characterized as an athletic build with a naturally higher percentage of muscle mass than ectomorphs.  This body type is ideal for explosive sports.  In sticking with the Olympian analogies, you can think of Mesomorphs as your thickly muscled sprinters – not built to go long distances but rather built to generate a lot of power in a short amount of time.  Also, people with this body type tend to have higher testosterone and growth hormone levels, which as a result allows them to maintain low levels of fat.

mendo

3. Endomorphs

At the other end of the spectrum, endomorphs have larger bone structures as well as naturally higher levels of body mass and fat mass.  Exemplary endomorphs are the shot-putters on the Olympic field. In stark contrast to ectomorphs, endomorphs tend to have a harder time burning excess calories and therefore, are likely to carry both more fat and muscle.

Once you’ve identified which body type category you belong to, how should you eat? The following chart shows in simple guidelines to follow:

 

% of Calories from Dietary Sources
  Ectomorph Mesomorph Endomorph
Carbohydrates High (~55%) Medium (~40%) Low (~25%)
Proteins Medium (~25%) Medium (~30%) Medium (~35%)
Fats Low (~20%) Medium (~30%) High (~40%)

Important to note is that when you eat is almost as important as what you eat.  If you’re exercising frequently, then your overall ability to eat high carbohydrate foods regardless of your body type will go up – especially if you eat carbohydrates within a short time period before or after exercise.

To be clear, this is not how to eat for one specific goal but rather a general methodology to work toward moderate muscle gain or weight loss – what will change is simply the amount of calories consumed. For someone who is trying to put on muscle (be it an ectomorph or endomorph) these general dietary splits remain true, however, the amount of calories consumed needs to be increased.

Lastly, it can’t be stressed enough that these are guidelines, not hard and fast rules. Put these guidelines into practice as a starting point and start watching how your body responds. Use your results to iterate to achieve the desired goals.  No two people are alike so no two responses to a diet will be exactly the same.  Test, learn and adjust your way in order to achieve your goals.

While eating for your body type will help with staying healthy, you will probably still have gaps in your nutrient intake. Find out how WellPath can help fill your nutritional gaps and help you reach your health goals.

Measure Your Life

How Will You Measure Your Life

By Craig Ballantyne

Clayton Christianson’s book, How Will You Measure Your Life, barely needs reading beyond the title to make an impact. It’s a question I ask myself all the time and one that I’ve taught my coaching clients to use as well. Recently one of my top students emailed me her thoughts on how she uses this mindset to focus on what matters.

“Craig, at one point you referenced a question… something along the lines of ‘in from 5 years — or 5 months — from now, will this problem matter? Will it affect you or anyone else?’ It’s one of my grounding questions. Other ways that help me through tough times and to stay focused are:

1. Gratitude — I’m grateful for the situation no matter how bad because there will always be a lesson for me as long as I stay open to it
2. Be the Light. Give. You can’t out give the Universe.
3. This too shall pass… that’s my mantra these days.”

What I Learn About Happiness

There is only one way to happiness and that is to cease worrying about things which are beyond the power of our will.” – Epictetus

3 Secrets to Happiness

By Craig Ballantyne
One morning, a friend called me in distress about her relationship with her boyfriend. There was one misunderstanding after another, and now they weren’t talking. After 20 minutes we worked out a plan and I’ll share it below. But it got me thinking about how easy it is for us to slip from what I call, The Simple & Happy Life Plan.

The source of this plan, one that has made me happier and less stressed than any other resource, is called, The Art Of Living.

It’s a series of short lessons translated from the ancient Stoic philosopher, Epictetus, and it gave me the 3-C Formula for life:

  • Control what you can

  • Cope with what you can’t

  • Concentrate on what counts

I take this to mean:

  • You can only control your thoughts, words and deeds. What you say, how you think, and what you do can make a situation better or worse, so choose wisely

  • You can’t control other people or their moods, or the weather, or traffic. That means we must be prepared to cope with the wild and wacky ups-and-downs of friends, family, and yes, even the weather. Always remember: You control your reaction. You can raise your voice, or you can be calm. It’s your choice.)

  • You must concentrate on what counts. Focus on what really matters in life, not the things that won’t matter in 3 months, 3 weeks, 3 days, or 3 hours from now.

But wait, what really matters?

The answer, according to science from Harvard University, is that we must focus our time and energy on people and experiences — these two things matter more than anything else in life when it comes to our happiness.

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In a study that started all the way back in 1938, and has since tracked over 700 people (including JFK!), if you want to be happy, don’t chase money or fame. Instead, spend more time with others that you love.

The most important factor in happiness, long-term health, and wellbeing is:

The strength of your relationships with your family, friends, and spouse.

The study has also led to other interesting findings such as:

  • The #1 thing you can do for your health is to avoid smoking.

  • Alcohol was the primary cause of divorce.

  • Alcohol abuse often precedes depression.

But most importantly…

“The people in the strongest relationships were protected against chronic disease, mental illness and memory decline — even if the relationships had ups and downs. Those good relationships don’t have to be smooth all the time,” said Dr. Robert Waldinger, the current leader of the research study.

“Some of our octogenarian couples could bicker day in and day out. But as long as they felt that they could really count on the other when the going got tough, those arguments didn’t take a toll on their memories.”

So what does the Harvard study suggest we do?

Well, it’s the same sort of plan I gave my friend to help her relationship… (yep, I’m a regular ol’ Dr. Phil here, ha!)

The Plan for My Friend to Regain Her Happiness & Relationship

  1. Stop trying to have the difficult conversations via email. You must talk things through face-to-face. When he gets home tonight, go for a walk. We communicate — and understand one another — better in person, especially when the conversations are difficult.

  2. Once you sort out the issue, do something new together. The Harvard study recommends livening up stale relationships with long walks or date nights. My good friends, Bedros and Di Keuilian, go out every Tuesday for a date night. It’s one of the foundations of their strong marriage.

  3. Don’t ignore conflict. The old saying about “Never go to bed mad” is great advice that stands the test of time. This goes for family relationships, too. According to the Harvard study, we should “reach out to the family member we haven’t spoken to in years — because those family feuds take a terrible toll on the people who hold the grudges.”

No one’s perfect, myself included, and we won’t ever live a life free of conflict, but as long as we work to strengthen the relationships with our loved ones, and focus on people and experiences, we’ll live a long, satisfied, and healthy life.

That’s what it’s about, not money in the bank, job titles, or hours spent at work.

About the Author: Craig Ballantyne is the editor of Early to Rise (Join him on Facebook here) and author of The Perfect Day Formula. His straightforward, sometimes “politically-incorrect” advice has helped millions of people transform their lives both physically and financially. Craig’s secret weapons for success include his personal commandments, his 5 pillars, and his Perfect Life vision. Click here to learn more about how you can implement his 3 secrets to success and live your Perfect Days.

10 Herbs for an Easy Kitchen Garden

HEALTHY

10 Herbs for an Easy Kitchen Garden

By Chef Gui 
I don’t have a green thumb. In fact, my thumb is probably brownish and rotting, I’m so bad at growing herbs. But this is easy stuff to grow. If I can do it, trust me, you can too.

WHICH HERBS TO PLANT

(In descending order of most common use)

Note: Remember, use fresh herbs at the very end of the cooking process or they will lose their flavor.

Once harvested, rinse them in cold water, wrap them in a damp paper towel, and store in a Ziploc bag in the refrigerator.

#1 BASIL – Sweet and peppery

You’ll use basil everywhere. With Mediterranean vegetables, with chicken, beef, fish, or tofu. In tomato sauce, stir fries, curries, whole-grain pasta, or just mixed within your salad. And, of course, you’ll want to make pesto.

#2 CILANTRO – Bright and citrusy

Cilantro is reminiscent of Mexican and Asian cuisines. So you’ll use the leaves with tacos, guacamole, Asian coleslaw, salsas, soups, and fresh salads.

#3 PARSLEY – Fresh and grassy

Parsley is so versatile you can use it pretty much everywhere. Especially delicious with peas, cucumber, lamb, beef, chicken, or fish. Sprinkle over salads and load up my Tabouleh recipe with it (page 74 of Eat More, Burn More)

#4 MINT – Sweet and cool

Mint is so refreshing (one of the reasons toothpaste is minty!) so use it for summer salads, especially paired with watermelon, tomatoes, cucumber or Greek yogurt. And of course, it makes for a great garnish on sorbets or fat-burning desserts.

#5 OREGANO – Pungent and peppery

Italian style! Use the leaves, chopped or not, and load up tomato sauces, fat-burning pizza.

Click here for 5 more herbs you should grow in your kitchen. 

7 Healthiest Nuts to Eat

7 Healthiest Nuts to Eat

From MSN.com

You know you need to eat your fruits and veggies, and that whole grains are good for you. But you might be missing out on another hugely beneficial food group: nuts. Nuts are the often-forgotten superfoods of the plant world. Nuts have been linked to everything from heart health to cancer prevention, and they could even help you live longer. One study found that people who eat a handful of nuts a day were 20 percent less likely to die of any cause.

They’re also the perfect snack: All nuts contain healthy fats, protein and fibre — the perfect combo for helping you feel satiated — and there’s absolutely no prep work involved. Just grab a handful and go. Keep in mind that because nuts are high in fat, they could go rancid easily, so it’s best to store them in the fridge.

Not sure which ones to choose? Here’s a list of some of the healthiest nuts.

My #1 Fat Burning Dressing

My #1 Fat Burning Dressing

By Chef Gui Alinat

The following question came to me from a reader who read my article on homemade salad dressings.

QUESTION:
“Your recipe doesn’t follow your 1 part acid + 3 parts fat formula. In fact, it seems like just the opposite. Why?”

RESPONSE:
In my article, I give my readers a 1 part vinegar to 3 parts oil ratio for a really tasty salad dressing. It’s a good formula to get started if you’re interested in getting rid of store-bought salad dressing, and making your own. So that you can control exactly what goes into your body, and short-circuit nightmare ingredients that leads to weight gain (like high-fructose corn syrup or cane sugar for instance).

I also talk about other aromatics you could add to make a salad dressing your own. That’s part of my Eat More, Burn More philosophy: empowering home cooks to create dishes like chefs do.

My salad dressings vary from day to day as I make them up while respecting the 1:3 ratio. But sometimes, I take the liberty to change that ratio, depending on my tastes, or what I’m trying to achieve.