5 Foods To Feel Sexy On Valentine’s Day – By Keri Glassman

Eggs, ginger, pomegranates… do you ever think of these foods as sexy? Spa Week’s very own Whole Living Expert, Keri Glassman, is back to help you get sexy for Valentine’s Day from the inside out. (Remember when she challenged us to ditch artificial sweeteners for two weeks? That was trés sexy for your bod!). Keri, who has been all over NBC’s TODAY Show lately, has just launched her very own line of healthy, gourmet home-delivered meals, Nutritious Life Meals. We’re so happy to see all of Keri’s continued success and we’re even happier that she was able find the time to offer Spa Week Daily these sexy food tips.

By Keri Glassman

Let’s face it… we all want to look sexy for our significant other, especially on Valentine’s Day. You’ve finally gotten the dress you wanted for a romantic dinner, but what can you eat to ignite the big night? Here are some foods that will make you look and – more importantly – feel sexy!

(Don’t be a slave to the stove. For more Keri at home, you can order Nutritious Life Meals to have all these sexy ingredients delivered fresh to your table.)

1. Chocolate

The relationship between chocolate and Valentine’s Day is undeniable. Although it may start innocently (how sweet, a box of chocolates!), it all too often ends with feelings of remorse (did I really eat 23 mini chocolates – in thirty minutes?!). To incorporate chocolate into your romantic escapades and still feel sexy, think of combining a small dark portion with an exotic fruit or berries. [Nutritious Life Meals Pick: Pistachio-crusted chocolate dipped figs.]

2. Pomegranates

The look and smell of a fresh-cut pomegranate is a great aphrodisiac! Pomegranates are rich in polyphenols and antioxidants that help blood flow through your veins — a key component to good sex. Incorporate pomegranates into your V-Day by adding a spoonful to your morning oatmeal for a sexy-day kick start. Or, for dinner, try salmon with a pomegranate sauce. Salmon is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids – essential fats that are heart-healthy and have been shown to improve mood. The meal will provide a total mind and body boost – perfect for a passionate night! [Nutritious Life Meals Pick: Filet of Salmon with Spiced Pomegranate Sauce.]

3. Ginger

Beating the bloat is one of the best (and easiest!) ways to ensure you feel svelte and sexy all day long. Many foods tout flat-tummy benefits, but ginger also helps fight inflammation – and is extremely versatile! Try incorporating ginger into your day by shaving some fresh ginger into your morning omelet or sipping on a cup of ginger tea. [Nutritious Life Meals Pick: Ginger Poached Apple with Mascarpone Cheese.]

4. Eggs

It’s important to start your V-Day off with a meal that makes you feel healthy, satiated, and oh-so-sexy. Eggs are a breakfast staple  for good reason – they promote brain health and have even been shown to aid in weight loss. Making breakfast in bed for your guy might not be a bad idea – eggs are a good source of L-arginine, an amino acid that has been shown to be effective in treating erectile dysfunction. Keeping eggs on the menu will definitely help keep you feeling sexy and satisfied. [Nutritious Life Meals Pick: Portobello Mushroom, Shallot & Parmesan Cheese Egg Bake with Fresh Papaya.]

5. Oranges

This citrus fruit claims many health benefits, but did you know it can also amp up your appeal? It’s true! Researchers from the Smell and Taste Treatment and Research Foundation found that the scent of an orange increased male arousal by up to 20%. Try serving your sweetheart a dressed up meal by adding orange zest to your favorite dishes! You can also keep it simple (and still sexy) by plating orange slices. Just be sure you’re prepared for the passion it ignites! [Nutritious Life Meals Pick: Filet of Halibut with Spicy Orange Sauce.]

6 Tricks to Surviving Finals Week the Healthy Way

December not only brings holiday cheer and home cooked meals with relatives, but for those of us in the throes of higher education, it means… FINALS. A time when college folks bury their heads in books and pull all nighters trying to remember everything they learned in the past semester. (We certainly don’t miss those days!) With all that stress, it’s easy to resort to making unhealthy choices, which only result in a short-term gain. Follow these simple tips to survive finals week and in the end you’ll be healthier for it (and hopefully get those straight A’s):

1. Go bananas!

Bananas are rich in potassium and magnesium, which help deliver oxygen to the brain to keep your mind sharp. Avoid energy drinks and sugary foods that make you crash. Put down the Skittles!

2. Light a rosemary candle

Turn your dorm room into an at-home spa by lighting some aromatic candles. Natural scents have a direct path to the brain and increase oxygen flow. Rosemary is recommended for increasing memory and help disguise that mysterious odor you’ve been trying to identify for months.

3. Stay awake with peppermint or cinnamon

Feeling yourself dozing off? Put the Red Bull and your friend’s Adderall down… that is no good for your body. Try taking a whiff of peppermint or cinnamon to awaken your senses! Check out some of the other health benefits of cinnamon from Dr. Wendy Bazilian’s Cinnamon Challenge.

4. Do some simple yoga moves

Before you hit the books, hit the mat. Yoga helps you concentrate and stretch out those other muscles you aren’t flexing by sitting at your desk for hours. Try the Warrior III Pose (pictured above), and these 5 yoga moves to stretch out the stress.

5. Get a massage

Your brain can only absorb so much information, so take a study break at the spa. Getting a massage creates chemical changes in your body that reduce pain and stress. It can also help you avoid getting sick while your body is under a great amount of stress. After a 50 minute massage, you’ll feel refreshed and ready to face those exams. Check out our December Spa Deals for some options near you.

6. Get 8 hours of sleep

You may think your brain is turned off while you’re sleeping, but it’s working just as hard. A process called memory consolidation occurs during sleep. While your body may be resting, your brain is busy processing the information you obtained throughout the day. There’s no point in cramming for a test if you aren’t going to retain anything!

And remember…

Good luck!

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This Beauty Secret Has Us in a Pickle

Cleopatra. Her name resonates opulence and glamour. She will forever be associated with a handful of women (Marilyn Monroe, Elizabeth Taylor, Helen of Troy, Marie Antoinette… Kim Kardashian?, etc.) who have earned a reputation for extravagant indulgences and making powerful men fall to their knees. Cleopatra’s secret? Pickles! She attributed her good looks to bathing in warm milk and a daily diet of pickles. For centuries, people all over the world have believed in the power of pickles. In ancient Egypt, everyone from peasants to Pharohs consumed pickles for their nutritional value and because they were thought to enhance beauty. Even Roman emperors believed they could boost the physical and spiritual strength to their troops.

In honor of the historical and healthy pickle, join us in celebrating National Pickle Day!
Pickles have their own day because they are healthy, low-calorie (the average dill pickle has just 15 calories) and are rich in fiber, antioxidants, and vitamins (including Vitamin C). Cucumbers used to make dill pickles contain ascorbic acid, known as caffeic acid and Vitamin C. These nutrients help improve skin’s health and reduce irritation, while vitamin C can boost your  immune system. In addition, research has also shown that vinegar can help with weight loss.

Need another reason to add pickles to your diet? They’re the favored snack of Snooki! Convinced? We thought so!

Happy National Pickle Day!

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Lose Weight by Accident With Sarah Jenks: Put the Fork Down

By Sarah Jenks

Most women can finish a meal in 7 minutes or less. Though this may seem like a talent of efficiency, it is actually the direct cause of most women’s weight gain.

When we rush through our meals, we don’t give our bodies a chance to taste, smell and enjoy our meal. And when we don’t enjoy our meal, our digestion power decreases, our metabolism lowers and we are left unsatisfied by our meal. Makes sense right?

And when we’re not satisfied, we just want to keep eating and eating.

So, I want you to start putting your fork down in between every bite. Even if you eat like crap this holiday season, gift yourself this one habit.

I promise that you will enjoy your food more, eat less, and lose weight.

Give it a shot, and I’d love to here how it’s working out for you in the comments below.

Sarah Jenks, founder of theBreathtakingBride.com, helps women fall in love with their bodies and lose weight through exploring the emotional reasons of why we eat. Sarah believes that you can talk about the benefits of broccoli until you are blue in the face, but real change won’t happen until we pull back the veil of fad diets and calorie counting to reveal the true cause of our over eating. Feeling lost about weight loss? Visit her website to download her free guide: “What to do if you feel fat, hopeless and ready to give up.”

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Lose Weight by Accident: #1 Super Food for Your Super Svelte Figure

By Jamie Dougherty

Remember a few weeks ago when I was talking up some sweet love for the sweet potato?  Though I still love those suckers, there is a particular super food that has taken first place on my plate as of late.  Say hello to kabocha squash!  “Excuse me?” you say.  “What is this thing I can barely pronounce?”  KA-BOW-CHA is a Japanese squash and quintessential super food that rocks in all types of delicious dishes.  First, a quick super food definition:  A super food is an unprocessed edible that packs a powerful nutritional bang for its caloric buck.  With its high Vitamin A, Vitamin C and potassium content, kabocha is not only a super food but one that will make your immune system and heart say thank you very much!

Now, where can you find said squash that will svelte-ify your figure?  Being a Fall food, right now kabocha can be found at most farmer’s markets.  Look for ones with a rich green color and firm skin with minimal blemishes.  If the markets have closed for the year, try your local grocer or health food store.  Next, how do you cook it?  Just like you would a butternut squash.  Throw it into soups and curries, mix it into a pilaf or with beans or just straight up roast it.  I actually love eating roasted kabocha as a snack. Absolutely flippin’ awesome!

So, next time you are looking for a super food to hit that sweet, starchy spot, grab a kabocha squash.  Your body and taste buds will be mighty pleased!

In the comments let me know your thoughts on super foods and how you like to get them into your diet.  Come on ladies, sharing is caring! (And it feels good too.)

Jamie G. Dougherty, founder of JamieLiving.com, gives women the secrets to feel amazing in their bodies and create the balance they crave between their busy schedules and eating well. Jamie believes that though kale and brown rice are good foods to put on your plate, until we truly learn HOW to eat rather than just WHAT to eat we will continue to be carb-craving, super-frazzled, stress-out ladies. If you ever feel hungry, stuck and unsatisfied with your food be sure to visit Jamie’s website to get her FREE 5-Step Guide to Fabulous.  Seriously ladies, get ready for Jamie to rock your world!