If You’re Having a Case of the Mondays: Robert Waldinger on What makes a good life? Lessons from the longest study on happiness

Having a case of the Mondays? Or maybe you’ve just been doing some thinking on how you can be happier. Feeling unfulfilled, lonely, stressed out? You need to watch this TED Talk.

What keeps us happy and healthy as we go through life? If you think it’s fame and money, you’re not alone – but, according to psychiatrist Robert Waldinger, you’re mistaken. As the director of a 75-year-old study on adult development, Waldinger has unprecedented access to data on true happiness and satisfaction. In this talk, he shares three important lessons learned from the study as well as some practical, old-as-the-hills wisdom on how to build a fulfilling, long life.

Zak Detox Deodorant: Natural Deodorant Review

If you’ve ever used a natural deodorant, you’ll know why I was a little skeptical when I received a sample of Zak Detox Deodorant, a 100% natural deodorant that claims to provide up to 24-hours of protection.

Zak Detox Deodorant

I’m an active person – working up a good sweat several times per week, running around campus for work, cleaning a two story apartment with very steep stairs – and have always relied on clinical strength deodorants to keep me looking (and smelling) good. The crystal deodorants just don’t cut it for me. Because I was coming into this with a bias, I really wanted to make sure to put Zak Detox Deodorant through a thorough investigation to give it a fair shot. So to test it out, I wore it on a lazy day, to a hard workout, and out to a farmer’s market in 90 degree heat.

In a nutshell, here’s how Zak Detox Deodorant stacks up!

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The Benefits of Fish Oil

Over and over again I’ve been told by doctors, chiropractors, dermatologists, homeopaths, that if you’re looking to take just one supplement per day, you should take fish oil.

Fish oil is exactly what it sounds like – oil derived from the fatty layers of cold water fish – and contains two types of Omega-3s: EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid) and DHA (docosahexaenoic acid). Your body cannot make either of these which is why consuming them is so important! (For more in-depth information, check out Dr. Weil’s Vitamin Library)

Fish oil can be taken in either capsule or liquid form, as well as of course eating fish such as salmon, tuna, and sardines. Personally, I’ve found that I’m more likely to actually consume my fish oil when it is in liquid form – especially when it’s the Barlean’s Fish Oil with Vitamin D in Mango Peach. My husband will even swallow a spoonful and has even described it to me as “melted Hi-Chews.” Aside from the taste, I also prefer the thicker, creamier texture to the oily texture of typical fish oil supplements. One of my favorite holistic health doctors, Dr. Andrew Weil, suggests taking 700 to 1,000 mg of EPA and 200 to 500 mg of DHA daily, so I’ll take 2 teaspoons in the morning and two in the evening which provides me with 880mg of EPA and 560mg of DHA.

Okay, so now you know what to take, why is fish oil so important? While there are a million different benefits, here are my top three favorites.

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Avoid “Text Neck” by Stretching Your Fascia

A few weeks ago I was at a spin/yoga combo class at Endorphin and had the great fortune of being led by Steph Maes, who also happens to be a massage therapist. When the yoga portion had finished she said that there was one more thing she wanted to share with us – how to stretch the fascia to relieve tension and prevent “text neck.”

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Lauren Roxburgh stretching her fascia via GOOP.

You’ve seen those people who over time develop a hunch in their upper backs, reminiscent of bending over a book, keyboard, or phone. This is “text neck,” and as it turns out, you can prevent it! Aside from getting your eyes off of your screen and practicing correct posture (check out the Greatist’s Ultimate Guide to Good Posture here), you can also combat the effects of habitual technology use by stretching your fascia.

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Beginner’s Guide to Dry Brushing

As someone who both has to work hard for good skin and likes to keep things natural, I’ve done a lot of research on easy, affordable, and non-toxic ways to keep skin healthy and glowing. After coming across an article a few years back about how model Miranda Kerr swears by the method I bought myself a brush and have never looked back!

Helena from the Brooklyn Blonde sings dry brushing's praises.
Image via Helena from the Brooklyn Blonde, who also sings dry brushing’s praises.

Basically, dry brushing is exactly what you’d think it is: stroking a dry natural bristle brush across your skin, preferable before a shower or bath. Here are some of the benefits as mentioned by health guru Kris Carr:

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The Alkaline/pH Diet

Last year when my mom was in town she was reading The pH Miracle and asked me if I would eat an alkaline diet with her. Since she also offered to prepare all of our food and I was already familiar with the concept from Kris Carr’s Crazy Sexy Diet (see her video on being pH-abulous below) of course I agreed!

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Use BurnThis to Burn Through Your Goals

I recently posted about starting a Mind/Body/Spirit Challenge, and obviously that includes a fitness goal. Sometimes it’s hard for me to stick to my healthy eating routine because my fiancé has the metabolism of a 12 year old – and the palate of one too. When I’m cooking him up a big plate of spaghetti, it’s sometimes hard to stick to a salad. That’s where BurnThis comes in!

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Touted as “a pinstagram just for fitness,” this awesome app will leave you feeling excited to continue towards you goals. You can share your own pictures and add a caption like “Pumped on Pilates” or “#fitfam,” follow your favorite users, and even complete challenges to win prizes! The best part is that it’s an incredibly positive and diverse group of people who you can rely on to keep you on track. Whether you’re looking to gain muscle or lose weight – or want to join me on my mission to see my abs! – there’s motivation for you on BurnThis. So what are you waiting for? Head over to the App Store to see why I am so happy to be a BurnThis Ambassador!

Spring Cleaning for the Mind, Body, & Spirit: Part One

Every year I use Lent as a chance to do a sort of spring cleaning for my mind, body, and spirit. Of course for me, the spirit part comes first, but even if you are not particularly religious, this time of year can be a great opportunity to start living your ideal life. My dad is all about this and has instilled in me the idea that everyone can live their ideal life, no matter their circumstances, as long as they know where they want to go and keep trucking down the path to get there.

MindBodyGreen agrees: “Knowing that you don’t have to wait to start living the lifestyle you want is not only refreshing, but liberating! You get to create your life, right now.”

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Sweet Potato & Five Spice Muffins

One of the recipes of Gwyneth Paltrow’s I’ve always wanted to make are her Sweet Potato & Five Spice Muffins. I finally found myself with all the ingredients and decided it was time to give them a go!
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I woke up starving and still needed to cook the sweet potatoes, so I had a three berry and spinach smoothie for breakfast instead and saved these guys for a mid-day snack. They turned out pretty darn delicious, so I was happy to find the recipe already published online so that I could share it with you!

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