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Category: Mind Gym
The Myths and Truths of Anti-Aging Vitamins
Photo Credit: Pexels

Various vitamins that claim to be the “fountain of youth” are everywhere in today’s beauty and healthcare market.

From skin creams to supplements, many products claim to be packed with the goods to keep you looking great and the signs of aging at bay. How good are they, though, at preventing these effects of aging?

This article offers some truths surrounding anti-aging vitamins to make you a bit more informed on essential ingredients and to help you sidestep mythic claims.

Vitamins

Marketers might state that a wide variety of vitamins can help slow the effects of aging. There are, however, only a handful of vitamins that have been shown to have positive effects.

Here are some of the winners:

Vitamin A

Vitamin A is one of the most popular ingredients in many wrinkle-fighting potions. This antioxidant is amazing in that it helps to boost the skin’s thickness, which is important because one of the realities of aging is that our skin begins to thin and makes us more prone to wrinkles.

Vitamin C

Prevalent in citrus fruits and some vegetables like tomatoes, vitamin C has been shown to help in combating the free radicals that make us age so quickly. Keep those vitamin C levels high, and you can help keep aging away.

Vitamin E

Considered an antioxidant powerhouse by some, vitamin E helps to reinforce cell membranes and also boosts the associated enzymes. It may also help combat the effects of free radicals and, in the right dosage, might even be able to reduce skin damage from the sun.

Minerals

Minerals also have important benefits in preventing the impacts of aging. If you are looking to boost your mineral intake in hopes of looking younger, you might want to try the following:

Zinc

Zinc has been shown to have remarkable curative properties. It also gives us unrivaled protection for the sun as it shields its harmful rays.

Copper

This mineral is noted for its impact on collagen and elastin production. With copper at play, your skin can be both firmer and appear fuller to diminish the appearance of thinning, sagging skin.

Selenium

Similar to copper,Selenium can add to skin’s elasticity. At the same time, selenium can help your skin sidestep the hardening associated with oxidation.

How To Add These Anti-Agers To Your Life

Incorporating these various vitamins and minerals into your regimen can be accomplished in several ways. You can try them in:

Foods

Many of the foods we eat come packed with these essential vitamins and minerals. Grains, for example, come filled with antioxidants like vitamin E and selenium.

Meanwhile, vegetables like sweet potatoes and kale are abound with vitamin A, and vitamin C is prevalent in citrus fruits. Eating a balanced diet can ensure that you are giving your body access to these essential age-fighters.

Supplements

You can also seek out supplements that target specific antioxidants. Zinc comes in a supplement form, for instance, as does collagen peptide (a swap for that essential copper peptide).

Not to mention, you can take a combination supplement that pairs several of these key ingredients, but be mindful of the actual contents. Keep in mind as well that some of your supplements may be covered by your insurance plan, which can save you money in the long run. 

Topical Cream

Another avenue is to seek out a prescription topical application. One popular example is retinol and its various versions, as its potent concentration of vitamin A can make it a super skin booster.

If you choose an over-the-counter cream, however, buyer beware: you again need to be very knowledgeable about the contents and concentration of the product. It is also important to keep in mind that topical applications often have the lowest antioxidant absorption into the skin, so they might not produce the same effects that a stronger dosage would.

None of these vitamins or minerals come with the promise that they will keep you looking younger; however, the good news is science is on our side. As research does suggest they can have an overall impact on slowing the aging process and potentially improving your overall skin tone and condition.

Tap into these truths and see what they can do for you.

Author Bio: Christian Worstell is a health and lifestyle writer living in Raleigh, NC.

5 Ways Exercising Boosts Your Sex Life

It’s no surprise that there are many benefits of consistent exercise.  Working out is a vital part in staying healthy (both physically and mentally), promotes weight loss, and boosts energy.  But along with a healthy diet and the right amount of sleep, exercise can be part of a balanced lifestyle that leads to…. wait for it… better sex.

Curious? Let’s dive deep into ways exercise really does boost your sex life!

Body Language

If you like to be adventurous in the bedroom, sex oftentimes involves holding unusual positions for a given amount of time. Don’t forget, sex is exercise. If we want it to keep feeling good for both ourselves and our partner, the muscles we need for it should be worked and toned regularly. If your workouts include manipulating your own bodyweight, strengthening the pelvic muscles, and weightlifting, you could see an improvement in your ability to hold the positions you’re used to – and even the new ones you and your partner have talked about — leading to more frequent, and comfortable sexual encounters. 

Additionally, sex can get your heart racing in more ways than one, but let’s make sure it’s not because you don’t have enough stamina – exercising should not only significantly improve your ability to hold positions but allow you to be intimate for extended periods of time.

Improved confidence

Body confidence comes with better health and fitness. Feeling better about your body can also improve your personal sense of self-worth and your ability to overcome challenges you may have thought impossible. Working out regularly challenges participants to overcome mental and physical obstacles, and often boosts mental health and confidence along the way.

Scientifically speaking, regular exercise also boosts the production of endorphins, which increases your happiness and self-esteem. Remember, confidence is sexy. You might be surprised with how often people crave more confidence in a sexual partner.

Increases Blood Flow

Consistent bouts of exercise can help increase your libido and lower the amount of erectile dysfunction that you could encounter. According to one study conducted by the University of California, exercise helps improve “reliable sexual function” while also making you more likely to experience orgasms — and better ones. Ladies who regularly work out are more likely to be turned on than their counterparts who don’t work out. The increased blood flow that comes from working out sets us up to have easier, more intense climaxes with heightened sensitivity in our nether regions.

Reduces Stress and Anxiety

Exercising is a great way to cope with stress and anxiety. If you’re feeling overwhelmed with something, working out can help you work through it and lower your overall stress levels. The reason for this has to do with our bodies natural reaction to stressors, called the Fight or Flight response. When our bodies are triggered, we feel stress or anxiety which is meant to fuel our fight or flight response. For instance, if you receive a stressful email at work that triggers you, our natural response is stress which is meant to give us energy to be extremely active and survive. If we do not act upon our triggers and manifest them into a workout or another healthy release, we will feel built up anxiety or stress.

If that’s not enough of a reason to workout, remember… no one is ever “in the mood” when they’re stressed out. If you have a lot on your mind, and the idea of sex sounds like a chore, exercising can help clear your mind, lower your stress levels, and in turn, boost your mood.

Also note, that exercise reduces symptoms of depression. So, if you or your partner are struggling with dark moods, exercise can help you feel better, and see the world in a more positive light, and likely help your relationship.

Helps You Sleep Better

Sleep and sex are closely related and there are a few different reasons for this. In an article published on The Conversation, sex therapist and author, Dr. Laurie Mintz, writes, “It is now clear that a hidden cause of sex problems is sleeplessness and that hidden cause of sleeplessness is sex problems. Additionally, Dr. Mintz explains, “Conversely, a good night’s sleep can lead to a greater interest in sex, and orgasmic sex can result in a better night’s sleep.” The reason for this is that sleep helps reduce stress, anxiety, and depression, causing you to feel more relaxed and able to get in the mood, while also improving energy levels; effects that are boosted by consistent physical activity.

Keep It Up!  

Once you get in your workout groove, don’t stop! The only way you will see results in the gym, and in the bedroom, is with consistency. And it’s likely that the reason you are drawn to exercise is not initially for its sexual benefits, but for its ability to boost your mood, promote weight loss, and an overall better quality of life and well-being. The benefits of working out are endless, but remember that physical, mental, and sexual transformations take time. Turn your exercise into a habit, and your body (and your partner) might just reward you in more ways than one.

Guest Post by: Stephanie James
Commit to Self-Care to Improve Your Mental Health

This article was written by Brad Krause

You may already be committed to a diet and fitness routine for your physical health. But have you thought about adding some self-care to enhance your mental health? Basic self-care, like learning to relax and staying organized, can help you feel less stressed, anxious, and depressed. Here are some self-care steps you can start to take better care of your mental health.

Kick Clutter Out of Your Life

Did you know that too much stuff in your home and mind can be bad for your mental health? Research has shown that having too much clutter in our home and work environments tends to overstimulate our minds, resulting in stress, anxiety, and decreased focus. To get clutter out of your home, you may want to take a few hours to go through and downsize what you have. If you’re short on time, you can hire a professional home organizer for the job, but this can cost $40-$50 an hour. If you’re left with items you want to keep, but don’t have space, you can find an inexpensive self-storage unit where you can store your belongings until you decide to keep or discard them for good. The average cost for a self-storage unit in the DC area in the last six months is $116.61. To get rid of mental clutter, try calming yoga, journaling, or even meditation.

Sit Back and Relax Every Now and Then

With all the hustle needed to succeed at work, school, and home, it can be tricky to find time to relax. Throw a health and fitness routine into the mix, and relaxing can seem like less of a priority. But taking time to relax is essential for maintaining positive mental health. You can start by penciling your relaxation sessions into your schedule. Make it a daily habit, just like your cardio or healthy eating. During your downtime, try to disconnect from the outside world. Spend these minutes doing something that brings you joy. Maybe soak in a hot bath, schedule a massage, or read a funny book. As an added bonus, laughing can enhance your mental health and help you feel happier, so definitely work some comedy into your calming routines.

Find Healthy Ways to Manage Your Stress

The effects of stress can be damaging to your mental health. Stress management is one of the top forms of self-care you can practice, but you have to make sure you are coping in positive ways. Turning to alcohol or other substances will only make stress and mental health issues worse. Exercise is a great stress reliever, so make sure you are sticking to your regular fitness routine even when you feel tense. A few minutes of an intense workout can blast that tension away and leave your brain filled with endorphins that will keep you feeling happy. For those times when you find yourself stressed and need those feelings relieved fast, try these 10-minute stress reducers. Chew some gum, step outside, or simply focus on your breathing to instantly melt your stress away.

Make Sleep a Top Priority

The single most important self-care step you can take is such a basic one: improving your sleep. Getting seven to eight hours of sleep each night is essential for preserving proper brain function and emotional balance. So if sleep is not a priority in your life, you need to make some changes. You can wake up feeling energized by following some sleep-boosting tips. Just like relaxation and fitness, you have to set aside enough time to sleep. This includes an hour or so to relax before hitting the bedroom, which should be kept dark, cool, and quiet. You should also avoid caffeine, spicy foods, and heavy meals in the late afternoon and evening hours. Finally, if you find yourself still having sleep issues, take a look at whether you may need a new mattress.

When it comes to working on your mental health, self-care can be just as important as exercise for your body. So make self-care a prerogative in your life. Get yourself organized, learn to relax, and never feel guilty for taking time to take proper care of yourself.

Photo Credit: Unsplash

A Set Back Can Be A Great Set Up For A Great Comeback

If you are going to attract exactly what you want in life, it is important you learn how to sharpen your focus and follow through. A comeback is necessary when we pigeonhole ourselves. The problem with goals setting and why goals may go by the wayside has to do with how we approach our goals. If we don’t have a realistic plan or know how to handle obstacles we may not be able to bounce back if we are derailed. Setting a goal opens a door to a new adventure. We must have strategies for how we will handle obstacles along the way. Without a game plan and a sound approach a goal remains just that, only a goal. The fact is that many of us get derailed. Our goal does not always happen at the very time we said it would. We start out of the gates strong, fizzle out, maybe dust ourselves off once or twice, only to find yourself once again setting the very same goal. What is that determines the fate of your goals? It is one thing to set a goal and another thing to be able to execute it from beginning to end. It is also another thing to know how to make a comeback if you do get derailed. What needs to shift and change in order for you to keep moving ahead and not lose sight of your vision?

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What To Do When Faced With Uncertainty & Change

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate can not drive out hate; only love can do that.

Martin Luther King, Jr.

We must all learn to live beautifully and be kind to one another even when there is uncertainty and change. We tend to scramble when everything is in a flux. The very nature of our existence is in a flux. Things keep changing whether we are aware of it or not.

So how can we live wholeheartedly in the face of impermanence? Is it possible for us to increase our tolerance for instability and change?

Life is not always going to go your way! This is why it is so important to practice discipling your mind. The challenge is to notice the emotional tugs things have on you. Stay with the feeling for 1.5 minutes without the story line. This is also a somatic technique that is good to work on during meditation. How long can you endure the discomfort or struggle with sticking to this exercise without letting your mind shift into stories. Many times our emotions make a very wrong story or miscommunication right. So keep in mind perception is very relative to how you feel in the moment. Be aware that most stories we tell without facts are not even true?Read More

Shift Your Mind To Shift Your Body: 10 Mindsets & Solutions For Weight Loss

Everywhere you go there is someone talking about weight loss or wanting to lose weight. We can read about how to do it hundreds of articles and blogs online. There are endless fitness professionals now calling themselves weight loss coaches. We follow them and respect their advice, but we still don’t seem to be able to conquer our goal to get lean, slim down, reduce fat or lose weight. The reason has less to do with dieting and exercise and more to do with your MINDSET.Read More