Protect Your Skin This Summer with These 10 Tips

Protect Your Skin This Summer with These 10 Tips

Cue the Beach Boys music, grab your surfboard, and get ready for some sun-kissed skin and long summer nights!

Summer is just around the corner, and while most of us have been working hard to get beach body ready, it’s just as important to make sure our skin is summer sun-ready.

The sun’s ultraviolet (UV) rays can not only cause pain-inducing sunburns, but they can prematurely age the skin! This can leave behind wrinkles, a loss of skin elasticity, and reverse all the hard work you’ve put into maintaining a youthful appearance – but fear not. We have a solution.

10 Tips to Save Your Skin from Sun Damage

  1. Sunscreen. Yup, this is probably the most common knowledge of them all, but how do you know which SPF to use? A higher sun protection factor (SPF) (think SPF 30 and above) will generally better help prevent sunburn and protect against skin cancer.
  2. UVA vs. UVB. There are two different types of sun rays that can cause skin damage, long wave ultraviolet A (UVA) and short-wave ultraviolet B (UVB). UVA rays can penetrate deep into the skin’s thickest layer, while UVB rays usually burn the top layers of the skin. Make sure you’re using a sunscreen that protects against both UVA and UVB rays (30+).
  3. Check out your shadow. Have you heard of the Shadow Rule? If your shadow is shorter than you the sun’s rays are typically at their strongest, so you should try to find shade to avoid excess skin damage.
  4. WARNING: Did you know that some medications directly interact with direct sunlight? These medications can include certain types of antibiotics, anti-inflammatory medication, antifungals, blood pressure meds, and chemotherapy drugs. Not sure if your prescription makes the list? Check out the label on your medicine bottle. There should be a prominently displayed caution, if necessary.
  5. Cover up. We understand that you want to soak in those sweet warm rays (and hey, a tan wouldn’t be too bad either), but you may want to accessorize that bikini or swim trunks with a hat, sunglasses, or additional clothing. These extra pieces can help protect your body from damaging rays. And, don’t forget to wear sunglasses with lenses that have a high level (99% to 100%) UV protection to provide extra safety for your eyes and the surrounding skin around them.
  6. Beware water and sand. Yes, it’s summertime, so chances are you’re not going to avoid the beach altogether but be wary about too much time exposed to the water and sand. These surfaces can reflect the sun’s rays which can lead to a lobster-like sunburn. Not fun for anyone.
  7. Reapply. Sunscreen is not a one-and-done type of protection plan. For optimum protection, WebMD suggests reapplying at least every 80 minutes or sooner if you’re swimming or sweating a lot. And with the hot weather, we’re guessing you will be.
  8. Check the time. Did you know that the sun’s UVB rays are the strongest between 10AM and 4PM? Try to limit your time in the direct sunlight during these hours.
  9. Rub, don’t spray. Spray sunscreens are great, but if you don’t take the time to fully rub in the sunscreen you could be missing areas of your body that you thought you had covered. Not to mention that you may also be left with streak lines that will become noticeable if areas around the line burn from lack of sun protection.
  10. Invest in a Sun Sensor. Did you know there are sun sensors out on the market that you can easily stick onto your skin and they measure your exposure to the sun? These super helpful little stickers let you know via a connected app when you should find some shade and tracks your exposure to UV over time. Check out this article from Allure to see what they suggest.

Have fun this summer and use these tips to help protect you and your loved ones from unneeded sun damage.  

How do you and your family and friends plan on spending your summer time? Share your comments with us in the section below!

References:

  1. Bauer, Amber. “10 Tips for Protecting Your Skin from the Sun.” Cancer.Net, 30 July 2018, cancer.net/blog/2015-07/10-tips-protecting-your-skin-sun.
  2. “How To Protect Your Skin From the Sun.” WebMD, WebMD, www.webmd.com/melanoma-skin-cancer/how-to-choose-susncreen#1.
  3. Rosenstein, Jenna. “7 Ways to Protect Your Skin From the Sun.” Allure, Allure, 8 Aug. 2016, www.allure.com/gallery/how-to-protect-your-skin-from-the-sun.

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Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos from The Wild Cow

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos from The Wild Cow

“It’s important for food to be satisfying as well as good for our health. This recipe features whole foods packed with essential vitamins, minerals and healthy fats, along with bold flavors and contrasting textures that make food exciting. Everyone loves tacos, and whether you’re an omnivore, a vegetarian, a vegan or anything in between, it’s clear that eating less meat in favor of more plant-based, locally sourced, and minimally processed foods [have] many health benefits and is more environmentally conscious. Plus, cooking more meals at home is a great way to make sure you’re eating quality ingredients, and it’s a great way to spend time with family and friends. Next time you’re in Nashville, come by The Wild Cow and try some more of our vegan food!”

Chef Ryan Toll

Chef and General Manager, The Wild Cow


The Wild Cow is located at 1896 Eastland Ave in Nashville, TN 37206. Open Sunday through Thursday from 11am to 9:00pm, excluding Tuesdays, and Friday and Saturday from 11am to 10pm. The Wild Cow is closed on Tuesdays. For the menu and additional details, please visit thewildcow.com.


Sweet Potato and Black Bean Tacos from The Wild Cow

Photography provided by The Wild Cow

Ingredients

For the Dish

  • 8 corn or flour tortillas
  • 1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds

For the Mashed Sweet Potatoes

  • 3 sweet potatoes, sliced into 1-inch chunks
  • 2 tablespoons Earth Balance or another vegan butter substitute
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the Black Beans

  • 2 cans black beans, not drained
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 teaspoons coriander
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the Lime Slaw

  • 1/2 a head of green cabbage, thinly shredded and tossed in 1 T salt to wilt
  • 1 bunch of cilantro, thick stems removed and coarsely chopped
  • 2 limes, juiced

For the Jerk Sauce

  • 1 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup Bragg’s aminos or soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 lemons, juiced
  • 1 jalapeno, seeds removed and minced
  • 1/2 a white onion, minced
  • 1 medium-sized ginger root, peeled and minced
  • 1 head of garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon allspice
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper

Method

Step 1:

  • Fill a large pot with water, cover, and set on medium high until it’s at a rolling boil.
  • Add the diced sweet potatoes and replace the cover. Boil until tender but not mushy (10-12 minutes).

Step 2: 

  • Strain out the water and transfer the sweet potatoes to a large bowl. Add the Earth Balance or vegan butter substitute, brown sugar, and salt. Mash until mixed but still chunky.
  • Add the black beans to a pot with the cumin, coriander, cayenne, and salt and cook on medium heat for 15 minutes.
  • Add the shredded cabbage to a large bowl and mix with the cilantro and lime juice. Season with salt to taste.

Step 3:

  • Blend all the ingredients for the jerk sauce in a blender until smooth.
  • Toss the pumpkin seeds in a little olive oil and salt and toast in a pan until slightly browned.

Step 4: 

  • Warm your tortillas on a pan or over a flame and keep warm until your ready to assemble the tacos. When ready, add sweet potatoes, black beans, lime slaw, jerk sauce, and toasted pumpkin seeds and serve.

Step 5:

  • Enjoy!

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The Art of Being Present

The Art of Being Present

There is a well-known quote that has been credited to Chinese philosopher, Lao Tzu, that says:

If you are depressed you are living in the past.
If you are anxious you are living in the future.
If you are at peace you are living in the present.

Whether or not that is the direct translation of the quote or a slight modernization of it, the meaning behind what is being said is worth exploring further.

The art of being present is hard for many. Why else would there be novels and movies revolving around the idea of a character who yearns to have made a different choice, or self-help books that emphasize the importance of being in the now rather than worrying about the future or consumed by the past?

But it’s hard. It’s hard to just flip the switch in your brain that also allows us the ability to feel nostalgic over memories or the ability to daydream about the future. Hard, yes. But impossible? No.

There is a difference between remembering the past versus being consumed by it.

There is a difference between a nervous excitement over the future versus a feeling of terror or panic.

Being present is possible and it really just means training yourself to be in the now. The whole “take-things-one-day-at-a-time” is great advice because no day is guaranteed to anyone.

Why worry about the past? You can’t go back and change anything. The past is gone and the only thing you have is the now. Now flip it. Why worry about the future? It’s not promised to you. All anyone has is the now.

The would-ofs, could-ofs, should-ofs, and the what-ifs of life should not take precedence over this exact moment here and now. Mental health can be improved by a change in mindset. For some, that means meditation. Allowing yourself to slow down, practice controlled breathing, and take some time to be present.

For others, it means practicing more gratitude. By taking the time to acknowledge all that you’re grateful for and all that is going right in your life, you can start developing the habit of focusing on the good rather than the bad. This can be as simple as writing down three things you are grateful for each morning or every night before bed.

And because there is no one cure-all way to be more in the present, you may find the solution that works for you is speaking with a friend, a family member, or a healthcare professional that can help find a method that best fits you.

Mental health is just as important as physical health (if not more!), which is why we are happy to bring attention to it and partner with NAMI throughout the month of May. If you’d like to learn more about Mental Health Month, please visit https://www.nami.org/mentalhealthmonth.

And remember to fully live for today!


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Have You Heard of HIIT by LAF?

Have You Heard of HIIT by LAF?

Short on time but still looking to get a solid workout in? Then it’s time to turn to HIIT by LAF®. If you aren’t sure what HIIT stands for, it’s short for high-intensity interval training – and it’s definitely something you should be adding to your workout routine.

If you’ve never heard of HIIT training, or you’re looking for a group setting to help give you that extra encouragement and push, then HIIT by LAF® is the right thing for you.

What is HIIT by LAF?

HIIT by LAF is a workout that is designed for almost every level of fitness, age, and goal type. These high-tech and high-energy workouts are led by motivating, certified fitness coaches who set the pace and vibe of the room. Each workout is 50-minutes long and comprised of a variety of functional exercises, core training, cardio interval training, and strength training.  Wearing optional heart rate monitors, participants are led through five heart rate training zones, with each zone representing variations in levels of intensity that may result in participants burning up to 1,000 calories per workout, including calories that may burn even after the workout ends (results may vary).

Intense? Yes, but don’t let that word scare you away.

HIIT helps burn more calories in a shorter amount of time and if you manage to stay within the “fat-burning” zone during your workout, it can leave the body burning more calories even after the workout is over. This special “fat-burning” zone varies from individual to individual, so it’s important to know your resting heartrate and your max heartrate in order to gauge your different zones.

Different Zones?

This is where MYZONE comes into play. A heart rate monitor that takes your workout to the next level.

MYZONE uses wireless and cloud technology to accurately and conveniently monitor physical activity. It monitors heart rate, calories and time exercising that converts into MYZONE Effort Points (MEPs*), with a focus on rewarding effort.

Heart rate training zones are a range of values expressed as percentages of maximum heart rate (HR max). The HIIT by LAF workout incorporates 5 heart rate training zones. If you’re interested in signing up for HIIT by LAF® classes on a regular basis, the MYZONE heart rate monitor is available for purchase at an additional cost.

Each zone is identified by zone color, heart rate percentage range, zone description, and the target amount of time that should be maintained in each zone to achieve the greatest benefits of a HIIT workout. Utilizing these zones in relation to the exercise benefits of each one aids in the development of the best programming to maximize endurance, calorie burn, and fat loss.

* MEPs (MYZONE Effort Points) are earned based on the effort exerted by the participant. Time spent in each Heart Rate Zone earns different numbers of MEPS:

  • Grey = 50-59% – Earns 1 MEP/minute
  • Blue = 60-69% – Earns 2 MEPS/minute
  • Green = 70-79% – Earns 3 MEPs/minute
  • Yellow = 80-89% – Earns 4 MEPs/minute
  • Red = 90-100% – Earns 4 MEPs/minute

Who is HIIT for?

HIIT is for anyone and everyone looking to take their fitness to the next level. HIIT is for moms, runners, professionals, athletes, and beginners. For moms, it’s a great escape. For runners, it’s the motivation and methodology necessary to prepare for the next run or race. For professionals, it’s the time-efficient workout when health and well-being are important, but time is tight. For athletes, it is the real-time feedback, ability to track progress and interval training necessary to improve performance. For beginners, it’s the push—the education and encouragement—necessary to reach an entirely new level of fitness.

Is HIIT Safe?

It depends on the underlying condition of the patient/client and their baseline fitness level or physical activity status. HIIT is not for someone with a prior heart condition, who is sedentary and has not gone through proper supervised exercise testing first.

Anyone who has been very active has no cardiac risk factors, and has been screened by his M.D. about his cardiovascular fitness can definitely try HIIT and enjoy the benefits in our time-crunched environment.

The response above provided by Dr. Myla Subbarao, MD, FACC, and volunteer with the American Heart Association.

Check out our Living Healthy podcast episode on HIIT training by clicking here!

If you’re interested in learning more about HIIT by LAF®, visit welcome.lafitness.com/hiit-by-laf/.


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Tomato Avocado Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing from Water Grill

Tomato Avocado Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing from Water Grill

“Healthy and fresh food should be food that not only is good for your body, but it should also be flavorful. This salad is a great example of that. It’s made with seasonal tomatoes, field fresh watercress and ripe avocados. The dressing is light and fresh tasting and ties it all together.”

Chef Brian Okada

Culinary Director , Water Grill


Water Grill is located at 615 J Street, San Diego, CA 92101. Open Sunday-Thursday 11:30am-11pm, and Friday-Saturday 11:30am-Midnight. For the menu and additional details, please visit http://www.watergrill.com/.


Tomato Avocado Salad with Poppy Seed Dressing from Water Grill

Photo Credit: Courtesy of King’s Seafood Company

Ingredients

For the Tomato Avocado Salad

  • Heirloom Tomato – 7oz (approximately 1 each, cut into 6 wedges)
  • Avocado – ½ each (cut into 4 slices)
  • Poppyseed Dressing – 1 fl oz
  • Watercress – ½ oz (approximately ¼ bunch, tops only)
  • Black Pepper – pinch
  • Maldon Salt – pinch

For the Poppy Seed Dressing

  • White Wine Vinegar – 6 fl oz
  • Poppy Seeds – ½ oz
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil – 6 fl oz

Method

Step 1:

  • Place the wedges of tomato around the center of a low profile bowl.
  • Add the avocado.
  • Top the tomato and avocado with the poppyseed dressing and sprinkle with Maldon salt and fresh ground black pepper.
  • Place the watercress over the center of the tomato and avocado salad.
  • The tomato and avocado should be visible below the watercress.

Step 2:

  • Enjoy!

Featured Recipes

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