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Antioxidants to Fight Pre-Mature Aging
Posted By on March 17th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think – Issue 78
antioxidant- apple

Antioxidants can help preserve your youthful appearance. While there are plenty of expensive treatments, procedures and products out there, you don’t need to spend a lot of money to look young. By consuming foods that contain antioxidants, you can reduce the premature signs of aging. What are Antioxidants? Antioxidants are substances that help to counteract the damage caused by the process of oxidation in the body. These nutrients are found in the form of vitamins, minerals and enzymes, and are known to help reduce the development of chronic illnesses, boost immune function and decrease pre-mature aging. When oxidation occurs due to environmental pollutants, toxins or exercise, harmful molecules called free radicals are produced. These compounds are chemically active atoms, that have a charge due to an excess or deficiency of electrons. When atoms have one or more unpaired electron, they scavenge the body looking for electrons they can use in cells, proteins and DNA (genetic material) causing damage throughout the body. Antioxidants donate this missing electron to stabilise the atom and reduce damage caused by the oxidative process. How do They Slow Pre-Mature Aging? The oxidative process is the same within the body as it is for foods. This process is what causes peeled apples to turn brown and iron to rust. As free radicals are created in the body during this process, they can damage healthy cells and even cause cellular death damaging otherwise youthful, healthy skin causing the visible signs of aging including fine lines and wrinkles. Antioxidants Read More »

DIY Popsicle Recipes
Posted By on March 10th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think - Issue 77
Popsicles

Popsicles are a great way to cool off, and to get in a few servings of fruits. Make these DIY popsicles at home to welcome Spring. White Peach and Strawberry Fizz Popscicle 1 ½ cup sliced strawberries ¾ cup thinly sliced white peach segments 1 tablespoon fresh mint, thinly sliced 1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest 3 cups sparkling white grape juice Directions: Pour the sparkling grape juice into a large measuring cup, and allow to settle for at least 5 minutes to reduce some of the bubbles before adding to the mold. Thinly slice the strawberry and peach pieces so they easily fit into the popsicle mold, however are large enough to be seen. Set aside. Add a small amount of mint and lemon zest to each popsicle mold. Add the slices of fruit, alternating so they can be seen when unmolded (about 3-4 slices of each). Fill each popsicle mold with the white grape juice, leaving about 1/4 inch of space from the top of the mold (the liquid will expand slightly as it freezes). Gently tap the molds on the counter top to remove any air bubbles. Insert the popsicle sticks, then freeze for at least 6 hours, or overnight. Watermelon Kiwi Popscicle Ingredients: 3 cups watermelon puree (about 1/4 to 1/2 a watermelon) 1/2 cup fresh blueberries 1/2 cup chopped fresh strawberries 1 kiwi, peeled and sliced 1 peach or nectarine, diced small handful fresh cherries, pitted and chopped Directions: Cut the watermelon into chunks and then puree Read More »

3 Meatless Monday Main Dish Recipes
Posted By on February 24th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think – Issue 76
meatless monday

Meatless menus can be tricky. But it’s well-known that diets rich in whole natural foods including raw fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean proteins support overall health, and longevity. If you are considering taking a step towards a healthier lifestyle, or simply would like to try out a few meatless meals, here is are 3 vegetarian main dish recipes you can use to increase your intake of fruits, veggies and meatless protein sources. Ricotta Stuffed Squash Naturally sweet, easy to make and super healthy, this stuffed squash pairs well with a bed of quinoa, lettuce or just on it’s own is simply delicious. Ingredients: 8 yellow squash 2 tablespoons coconut oil 1 purple onion, finely chopped 1 fresh clove garlic, minced 1 (10 ounce) package frozen chopped spinach, thawed 2 eggs 2 cups ricotta cheese 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese 1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon low-sodium Italian seasoning 1 pinch ground black pepper 1 (26 ounce) jar spaghetti sauce Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Trim off ends of squash; cut squash in half (lengthwise). With a teaspoon scoop out seeds and part of the pulp leaving shells about 1/2 inch thick. Steam squash shells over boiling water until crisp-tender (about 5 minutes). Plunge into cold water, drain well and set aside. In a small frying pan over medium heat, melt one tablespoon of the coconut oil. Add onion and garlic and cook until they are done. Squeeze the spinach to Read More »

How-To Beat the Mid-Day Energy Slump
Posted By on February 17th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think - Issue 75
mid-day-energy slump

Energy that lasts all day isn’t just a myth. You can get through the entire day without reaching for sugary foods, coffee or energy drinks just to get to 5 pm. Here’s how to maintain energy levels and avoid energy slumps that can leave you fatigued. What is the Mid-Day Energy Slump? Starting out the day with energy is easy, but by mid-afternoon a sharp energy decline can set in. This familiar energy low is often referred to as the mid-day slump, and many people experience it. If you are one of the millions of people who wants to take a nap in the afternoon but simply can’t, you aren’t alone. While there are many reasons for a loss of energy in the afternoon, including lack of sleep, hectic schedules, poor food choices and other causes, an energy drink or sugary food option will only leave you looking for more of the same types of foods in order to just make it through the day. But there are ways to increase energy levels that won’t leave you, or your waistline wishing you’d made different choices. Eating for Energy As you start to feel energy levels become depleted, it can be difficult not to reach for that quick fix. But instead of grabbing for an unhealthy food choice for fast energy like those with simple sugars, bright colours and shiny packaging (soft drinks, candy and donuts) try to choose a healthier option that will offer your body lasting energy sources like Read More »

4 Reasons You’re Not Losing Weight
Posted By on February 10th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think - Issue 74
losing weight

Losing weight isn’t easy, and it takes time, dedication and a commitment to reach your goals.   And many people, weight loss can become a challenge after just a few weeks following beginning a new diet. This is often due to the slowing of progress that many people experience when they first start out called a weight loss plateau. If you have started out strong, but have found that the weight has just stopped coming off, here are four reasons you might not still be seeing results. 1. You Eat ugar. Sugar offers a short burst of energy, but it also causes blood sugar spikes that may be slowing your weight loss. Sugary foods may also be downright addicting. Researchers recently tract the brain activity of 106 high school students and found that those who consumed sweeter beverages experienced a greater activation in the brains pleasure center than those who consumed lower-sugar beverage. Choosing low-sugar options may help reduce the internal reward system from being activated when you consume those not-so-good-for-you sugary foods, and reduce mental stimulation causing you to want to eat shortly after a sugary snack. 2. You Skip Breakfast. Eating small meals throughout the day can help maintain steady blood sugar levels to help keep you from reaching for sugary foods for weight loss success. Not only that, but by eating in the morning you also stimulate your metabolism and give your body energy from healthy foods to sustain you from the start of your day. Eating Read More »

300 Calorie or Less Dinner Recipes
Posted By on February 3rd, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think - Issue 73
calorie-pot-pie

Calorie counting doesn’t have to mean you’re obsessively walking around with your weight loss journal. You can keep calorie in check by just keeping a few of these 300 calorie dinner recipes on hand. They’re delicious, easy to make and ready in just a few minutes to help make maintaining your weight loss easy, and guilt-free. Chicken, Potato, and Leek Pie A pot pie can often hit calorie highs of up to 900 each. This satisfying substitution for your favorite comfort food comes in at just 298. Ingredients: 1 slice smoked bacon, chopped 1 1/2 cups cubed red potato 1 cup chopped carrot 6 skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into bite-sized pieces 3 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour 3 cups sliced leeks (about 2) 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 teaspoon pepper 2 cups fat-free, lower-sodium chicken broth 1/2 (14.1-ounce) package refrigerated pie dough 1 tablespoon fat-free milk 1 large egg white Directions: 1. Preheat oven to 450°. 2. Cook bacon in a large Dutch oven over medium heat until almost crisp, stirring frequently. Increase heat to medium-high. Add potato and carrot to pan; sauté 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add chicken; sauté 3 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring occasionally. Stir in flour and next 3 ingredients (through pepper); sauté 1 minute, stirring frequently. 3. Slowly add broth to pan, stirring constantly; bring to a boil. Cook 2 minutes or until slightly thick, stirring occasionally. Spoon mixture into a 1 1/2-quart glass or ceramic baking dish. Top with dough, folding under and Read More »

How to Use At-Home Workout Equipment to Skip the Gym
Posted By on January 27th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think - Issue 72
workout equiptment - foam-roller

At-home gym equipment is an easy way to skip a gym workout. Sometimes going to the gym seems like the worst idea ever, and we all have those days! But you can still get a full body workout right in the comfort of your living room. It’s a great option for days that the journey to the gym sound more exhausting than the workout. Here are a few easy-to-do exercises, that work your whole body with just a few pieces of equipment. Foam Roller Butterfly Lift: Lie on your back with the outer edges of your feet on the roller. Put your soles together and bend your knees into the butterfly position. Press your feet into the roller and lift your hips to the ceiling. Hold for 5-10 seconds and then lower back to the start position. Repeat 10-12 times. Shell Curl: With your hands shoulder-width apart on the floor and a roller below your knees, keep your back flat and abs tight. Raise your hips and pull your knees toward your chest. Hold and then return to starting position. Repeat 10-12 times. Rolling Lunge: While in the lunge position, place your back foot on top of the roller and keep your leg straight. Bend your front leg at the knee and lower, while moving the foam roller up to your shin. Repeat 10-12 times. Exercise Ball Backside Boost: In the push up position with shins on top of the ball lift one leg up and hold for 3 seconds. Read More »

9 Ab Workouts for a Bikini-Ready Body Without Crunches
Posted By on January 20th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think – Issue 71
abs-workout-bikini-body

Abs that look great in a bikini start during the winter. Who doesn’t want those perfectly sculpted abs you see gracing the covers of magazines? If you want them though, you’ve got to work for them. And you can’t have bikini ready abs unless you get started on them right now! The summer season may seem far off in the distance, but the reality is those fit, tight & toned abs take time to develop.  And if you’re ready to get working on your washboard, we’ve got ab exercises you can do without having to fit 100 crunches a day into your routine to get there. You can do these ab exercises 2-3 times a week in the convenience of your own home. Grab some dumbbells and an exercise ball, and skip the crunches. 1. Standard Plank: Start in a push-up position making sure your hands are under your shoulders. Tighten your abs, and keep the weight over your shoulders. Hold for 1 minute. Repeat 3 times in a 30 minute circuit. 2. Side Plank: Lie on one side with forearm with your elbow to support your upper body, and keep your legs straight. In the position, lift your hips off the floor. Hold for 1 minute, and then switch sides. 3. Plank Walks: In the plank position with abs tight, bend one arm to bring the elbow to the floor, bring the other arm down. Push back up to start position, and repeat.  Do these for 1 minute. 4. Read More »

7 Natural Sore Throat Solutions
Posted By on January 20th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think – Issue 71
gargle

A sore throat isn’t just irritating, it can be down right painful and the first sign of an illness. At the first signs of an infection use any one of these 7 natural sore throat remedies to reduce the pain, and irritation and reduce the duration of the oncoming illness. Alone simply mixed with water any of these top 7 will work, but you can also mix any combination of them together for maximum results. 1. Cayenne: This hot spice blends with water and lemon juice to make a sore throat elixir to speed the healing of a sore throat. The natural antioxidant properties of this pepper makes it effective for reducing congestion along with clearing out bacteria and viruses that can cause common infections. 2. Sage: This curative herb works well with a drizzle of honey in hot water to ease sore throat pain. Just steep the herb in hot water for 10 minutes and strain out the leaves. Add a touch of apple cider vinegar for added cleansing benefits as a gargle. 3. Ginger: This sweet root herb provides compounds that soothe inflamed tissues of the larynx. Mucous membranes in this area may also benefit from candied ginger candies. Ginger tea is also a great option for those with common respiratory infections, or a sore throat. 4. Water with Lemon: Just a squeeze of lemon an warm water delivers powerful anti bacterial and antioxidant properties that can help reduce the duration of a common infection. The lemon juice adds Read More »

Shoulder Sculpting Workouts That Bring Sexy Back
Posted By on January 13th, 2014 in Vitaminfix Think – Issue 70
shoulder workout women

Shoulder muscles that are lean and toned help develop a sexy body shape that makes strappy dresses pop, and turns others in the gym green with envy. Even if other areas aren’t as tight or lean, strong and sexy shoulders make the body look more sculpted and leaner overall. As the winter months continue, it can be difficult to keep up a workout routine. But by building up shoulder and arm muscles you can maintain a wider body appearance that makes the waist look smaller. So this winter, focus on shoulders and arms! Here are some easy at-home exercises you can do on nights you want to skip the cold and the trip to the gym. Grab some dumbbells and resistance ropes and spend just a few minutes on building those sexy, sculpted shoulders! Alternating Dumbbell Press: Sitting on a backless chair, lift the weights so the elbows are at the same height as the shoulders. Lift one arm up straight, but don’t lock your arm, hold for 3-5 seconds, and lower to starting position. Do 12-15 reps 3 times during the workout. Straight Arm Side Raise: While standing with dumbbells at your side, slowly raise the weights up until your arms are horizontal, and in line with one another. Hold for 3 seconds, and then lower. Do 12-15 reps 3 times during the shoulder workout. Squats with Shoulder Press: Stand with feet shoulder-width apart and dumbbells at your side. Squat down and bring dumbbells toward your shoulders. As you stand up Read More »