Healthy Cove

Summer Living—5 Trends for a Happy and Healthy You

If you hop on Instagram, you’re going to find all kinds of tasty summer trends taking over your news feed. (Think avocado toast and nice cream recipes)

And you may have even seen some fishy trends. Seriously—mermaids are pretty big right now. Last year was all things unicorns, but now Ariel’s swimming into the scene, thanks to a wave of mermaid fitness classes and new Little Mermaid movies in production.

Fin-tastic workouts aside, here are five fresh summer trends worth checking out. Get ready to enjoy a healthy and fun season in the sun.

1. Visit the Farmer’s Market

If you live in the city, summertime means the Farmer’s Market is back in town.

Here are some of the delicious benefits of shopping at the Farmer’s Market

  • Fresh from the farm– How often have you purchased strawberries at the grocery store only to have them go bad in two days? I sure have. Most produce you find in stores are several days old before they even hit the shelves. But with farmer’s market produce, chances are they picked that plump peach that very morning. Mmm.
  • Organically grown– You can enjoy peace of mind with each crisp bite of that apple. This is because most farmers who participate in farmer’s markets use organic and non-GMO methods to grow their produce.
  • Supports local farmers– Buying produce at a farmer’s market gives local farmers the opportunity to keep their farms in business. You’ll make their whole day when you obsess over their fresh produce.
  • It’s really just a lot of fun– Not only do you get to cart home fresh fruits and veggies, but going to the farmer’s market can be a fun, social experience. Go with some friends, or take time to browse the local arts and crafts booths. You may end up going home with a jar of homemade apricot jam or some handcrafted jewelry.
  • Tastes amazing– Enough said.

2: Don’t Pass Up on ClassPass

This is probably the most flexible fitness membership you’ll ever find, and it’s quickly becoming popular in larger cities. When you have a membership with ClassPass you literally have access to all kinds of workout classes and studios nearby. There’s everything from rock-climbing and cycling, to barre and boxing.

Each month, you pay for however many classes a month you’d like. From there you can cherry-pick from thousands of classes which ones you’d like to attend. It’s a great way to get out of a fitness rut and try your hand at something new without paying a pretty penny. Plus, they offer a free trial period if you’re on the fence.

I actually just signed up for ClassPass myself a few weeks ago and it’s been so much fun to try out new studios and classes around Salt Lake City. So far, I’ve only dabbled in yoga, but I’ve gone to a serene candlelight yoga class, as well a few hot yoga classes. (I was definitely a hot mess after those ones.) I’m even trying a yoga class with live guitar later this week.

3: Get Real on Instagram

Have you ever felt like you were drowning in a sea of everyone’s best-filtered photos when you were browsing through your Instagram? That’s because you probably were.

But there’s been a shift. In fact, more than ever in the past year, users are changing the way they express themselves on Instagram by being more authentic and genuine with their content.

This is even true with influencers and models who have thousands and even millions of followers. They are finding that they actually connect better with their audience when they are being more real. Gone are the days of total perfectionism and placing your best filtered-foot forward. Frankly, perfect is boring and folks are more interested in real, unfiltered truth.

Show the Real Story

Instagram stories have made it even easier to document day-to-day realness. So why not show off that burnt pan of lasagna that made you laugh? Let everyone see your frizzy humidity hair and the pearls of sweat dripping down your face when you visit the Taj Mahal in India. Post a pic of your messy house that never stays clean. (Since you have rambunctious kids and you’re actually human.) Others will be able to relate.

The cool thing about this is that it gives you permission to really be true to yourself. Be uniquely you on your social media and love it! You’ve got a lot goin’ for you, so express the real you.

And when you fall in love with your flaw-some self, the rest of the world will too.

4: #Hashtag This

If you love scrolling through Instagram, there’s some interesting hashtags to check out. Going back to yoga, just for fun, look up #asana. Yogi’s worldwide are posting pics of their favorite yoga poses while they travel. You’ll find stunning pictures of yogis doing Warrior One, Dancer Pose, and handstands on the beach, on mountaintops, and even in window sills.

This is definitely a fun hashtag you could try out on your next summer vacay.

Here’s a handful of other entertaining hashtags to check out:

  • #eatyourgreens–You’ll never see food look so alluring and artistic.
  • #weinerdog–If you weren’t obsessed before, get ready to fall in love.
  • #bookaholic–Think beautiful books displayed in beautiful places. The book nerd in me drooled over this one.
  • #catsofinstagram–Meow.

For all the fitness lovers out there, here’s a list of popular hashtags that are worth checking out. This can help you feel connected to a community of other fitness-minded people.

  • #fitspiration
  • #letsmove
  • #movenourishbelieve
  • #workout
  • #fitfam

5: You Don’t Have to Live in L.A. to Try Out Gluten-Free

This has actually been a trend for quite a while, but it’s one that’s still quite popular.

For starters, what is gluten anyway?

In a nutshell, gluten is a type of protein that is typically found in foods like certain grains, pastas, cereals, and wheat. Basically, gluten acts like a glue to help foods maintain their shape or elasticity. It’s what gives bread that chewy, satisfying texture and also gives bread the ability to rise when baking.

So Why Is Gluten Free So Popular?

A gluten-free way of eating mainly came about as a solution for those who have Celiac disease or gluten sensitivity and have a hard time digesting foods made with gluten. However, many people are choosing to go gluten free, simply because gluten is typically found in many unhealthy processed foods. This includes desserts high in sugar and fat as well as fried foods.

Instead of eating processed foods, those who tout the gluten-free lifestyle choose some of these healthy alternatives:

  • quinoa
  • gluten-free flours
  • rice
  • buckwheat
  • fresh fruits and veggies
  • lean meats

Going gluten free can certainly be healthy if you are choosing healthy alternatives and you maintain a well-balanced diet that contains plenty of protein, carbohydrates, and fat. However, be aware that not all “gluten-free” processed foods you’ll find on the grocery store shelves are necessarily healthy. Instead of gluten, they may be packed with other unhealthy gluten-free varieties. The takeaway? Pay careful attention to food labels.

Try This Recipe for Gluten-Free Goodness

If you’re interested in eating more gluten-free meals, there are so many delicious and healthy options that make gluten free anything but boring. For your next Taco Tuesday, try out this scrumptious summer recipe by my friend Brielle (aka the Gluten-Free Queen) for Gluten-Free Fish Tacos with Cilantro Lime Sauce.

These mouthwatering tacos pack a punch with plenty of colorful veggies, charred tortillas with a hint of a smoky flavor, and a tangy and dreamy sauce that will have you dying for seconds.

Being Healthy Is Always in Trend

Enjoying a fun and healthy lifestyle doesn’t have to just be a summer trend. Choose your favorites and make healthy habits that last all year round.

East Coast Life Solutions are big advocates for self-care.  Self-care is not a one item fix, it is a combination of mind, body and spirit.

Check out our Offerings page at http://www.eastcoastlifesolutions.com

 

Coast Lifestyle, Healthy Cove

Heading to the Farmers Market

There are many reasons to get out and go to the market on the weekend.  East Coast Life Solutions will be at the Alderney Market this coming Saturday, May 5th.  See You There!

A favorite springtime adventure of mine is to tune up the bikes and ride with my wife to the local farmers market. We’re lucky to live in a neighborhood that hosts Friday evening open air markets where local farmers come to sell their goods. It’s a wonderful mixture of vegetables, fruits, cheeses, artisan breads, and local meats. Rounding out the blocked street with booths lining the sidewalk are everything from homemade candles, crêpe stands, and hot roasted coffee to other temporary shops selling handmade goods.

Farmers Market: Veggies

The first thing I notice is the colors. The greens are dark and shiny. The red peppers are vibrant and alive. The yellow squash naturally draws your eye while the cut beets radiate a luxurious purple. Vegetables are packed tightly into cardboard cartons and stacked on pitched boards showcasing the labor of the local farmers. It’s as much a visual sensation as it is flavor packed.

Most of our trips to the farmers market involve picking up items we can build a recipe around. We’ll find fresh arugula and come up with a clever summer salad. If the lamb looks good, we’ll grill chops that evening. And who doesn’t love making peach cobbler out of locally procured peaches and handmade granola?

For example, last summer we were on a mission, and the prize was homemade BLT sandwiches.

The BLT is a classic sandwich made with bacon, lettuce, and tomato on toasted bread with mayonnaise. The smoky saltiness of the bacon is complemented by the crisp lettuce and sweet tomato. Add creamy mayo to toasted brioche bread and you have one of my all-time favorite sandwiches.

We found romaine lettuce, Roma tomatoes, fresh sliced smoked fat back, and brioche bread that was still warm from that morning’s oven (we settled on store-bought mayo but it was still a good haul). Riding home, we built our sandwiches and couldn’t help but notice how much better these sandwiches were. Not only were they delicious, we knew exactly where our food came from. We met the farmers and butchers. We learned their story, and somehow this added to the experience.

Farmers Market

Eat Like a Local

Farm-to-table is a social eating movement that encourages people to eat both regionally and seasonally. Sometimes called “farm to fork,” it largely refers to food made from locally sourced ingredients, often natural or organic. The farm-to-table movement came as a reaction to the processed foods and use of preservatives in the 1950s. Consumers didn’t like not knowing where their food came from. They didn’t know their greengrocer. Butchers were replaced by cooler bins filled with plastic-wrapped meats. The human connection to eating was reduced to running to a supermarket and grabbing boxes of processed grains, eating vegetables grown with pesticides, and buying meats that were raised on hormones.

While grocery shopping became easier and was filled with countless options, consumers were being pushed further away from the farmers as goods were being shipped from around the world. In response to this global trend, people reexamined both their relationship with food and the community in which they purchased it.

Fresh Food Tastes Better

Local food is often more nutritious. Because it’s not shipped long distances, locally grown foods can be healthier and tastier. A study from the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture looked at 16 popular fruits and vegetables and discovered on average all of these foods traveled close to 1,500 miles before being sold. Unripe fruits and vegetables are much more resilient that ripe ones. To keep food from going bad during transit, fruits and veggies are picked before they are completely ripened and able to absorb the maximum amount of nutrients. This is why you’ll see green bananas at the store and you have to wait to eat them.

Farmers Market

The longer vegetables can remain on the vine or tree, the longer they have to convert sun and minerals into the ground into the produce. And that extra time produces more nutrients that taste better. That’s why a bright red tomato off the vine tastes better than the greenish one from the store.

By buying closer to home, you’re eliminating the steps between you and your food. This helps eliminate exposure to pollutants and contamination. Food grown in distant locations has the potential for food safety issues at harvesting, washing, shipping, and distribution.

Local Means Less Gas

Farm-to-table might not save you from eating too many local beans, but it definitely means less trips to the gas station. Considering that the average distance for produce to travel is 1,500 miles, it costs a lot of money to ship food. The average 18-wheeler semi-truck travels about 5 miles per gallon of gas. That means it’ll take 500 gallons of diesel fuel to cover the distance. While energy standards are getting better for large trucks, that’s still a lot of gas to move your vegetables.

Shopping locally won’t save the world, but it will help cut back on carbon emissions.

It’s Good for the Neighborhood

Shopping farmers markets and local merchants is good for the economy. The money that is spent on local farmers and growers all stays close to home and is reinvested with businesses and services in your community. Cutting out the middleman means that local producers don’t have to pay shipping charges. Taxes collected in the community stay in the community.Buying locally can improve the economic vitality of small farms and encourage others to start their own businesses. Buying locally can improve the economic vitality of small farms and encourage others to start their own businesses.

Farmers Market

Look at the Choices

It would be wonderful if strawberries grew year-round. Unless you live around the equator, you’re like the rest of us that wait until mid-summer to get our hands on local grown strawberries. But this isn’t a bad thing. Even areas with shorter growing seasons have interesting and exciting things to eat. This is why getting to know your local growers and producers can be exciting. Listen to them. See what they have to offer. And try the fruits and vegetables that are in season.Farmers Market

You wouldn’t go to Italy for the Kung Pao chicken, so why would you try to get produce out of season at the market? While this isn’t 100 percent practical for feeding your family, especially if you live in a large city or are under budgetary restrictions, a large component of farm-to-table is being conscious of your food choices.

Buy What You Need

An astonishing amount of food is wasted every year in the United States. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, an estimated 30–40 percent of all food supplies are thrown away each year.

This number corresponds to approximately 133 billion pounds, or $161 billion worth of food.

Food waste is the single largest component going into municipal landfills.