Back to School, Back to Lice (Ugh!)

Lots to think about as the kids head back to school…but is head lice one of them? Unfortunately, yes. An estimated 6 to 12 million infestations occur each year in the U.S. among children 3 to 11 years of age.

Don’t worry…we’ve got everything you need to prevent and treat those creeping critters this school year. Long Island-based Fairy Lice Mothers line contains no toxic chemicals, and is safe (and effective!) for children, pregnant women, and those with allergies. (Just a heads up: the new generation of so-called Super Lice have become resistant to toxic chemicals in conventional treatments, anyway, so a natural line of prevention/treatment is most definitely the way to go!)

  • MagicHalo Shampoo ($14.99): A registered homeopathic treatment, MagicHalo relieves itching and helps prevent reinfestation.
  • MagicHalo Conditioner ($11.99): Moisturizes the hair and scalp, while also preventing lice. Sulfate free.
  • MagicMint Detangler ($9.99): Keep lice away! This unique lice fighting tool can be used as a preventative; safe enough to use every day.
  • MagicMousse ($14.99): 99% effective in removing lice and easing nit removal. 
  • MagicBox ($29.99):This kit is the all-in-one way to prevent and eliminate lice. Includes MagicHalo Shampoo, MagicMousse, and the MagicWand for removing nits.
***All Fairy Lice Mothers products will be 15% off in September for Back to School.***

EO for Skin, Body and Hair

We’re thrilled to bring you the entire EO line of hair and skin care products. What started in Brad Black and Susan Griffin-Black’s garage back in 1995 has grown into a full array of products covering everything from bath, body and hands, to face, hair and baby, and their wildly popular, budget-friendly Everyone line. Everything EO does, including becoming the first personal care company to be certified non-GMO by the Non-GMO Verified Project in 2011, is driven by how Brad and Susan can most authentically impact the personal care industry.

What We Can’t Get Enough Of
We love the top-quality EO products for their gorgeous scents (all essential oil-based, they’re soothing but not overpowering). Plus they are really effective—the conditioner leaves hair super manageable, the hair gel is light (but holds!) and the moisturizing lotion gives us baby-soft skin all over.

**All EO and Everyone products are 20% off for Grateful Card members for the entire month of September**

Start the school season right, with personal care products you can feel grateful about!

STAFF CHALLENGE: Feeling’ Good with ACV

Inspired by a customer who, along with her husband, collectively lost more than 20 pounds drinking Apple Cider Vinegar, several of us on staff have joined the ACV craze. We dove into the research around ACV and found the key to the vinegar’s success as weight loss tool: Acetic acid. It seems the acid blocks the absorption of starch, so any starches (read: carbs) you eat are not digested. Hence, the weight loss! An added ascetic acid bi-product: if the starches are not being digested, your blood sugar is not being spiked, which can help control appetite.

Wanna join us?

(Note: much of the research around ACV indicates that you need to be patient if you want to see improvements. This is not an overnight fix…but we would be skeptical of if it was, wouldn’t you?!)

To Shoot or Swig?
There are many ways to take your ACV, but those of us on staff are divided between these two:

  • Take a 1oz shot of the stuff 30 minutes prior to each meal. (This can be hard on the gut for some; experiment and see what it does for you.)
  • Mix anywhere between a tablespoon and an ounce of ACV with 6-8oz of water and sip it 30 minutes before each meal

If you give it a try, post on Rising Tide’s Facebook or  Instagram and let us know how it goes. We can’t wait to hear what ACV does for you!

NEW: Rising Tide Branded Supplements

We’re so proud to introduce our line of Rising Tide branded supplements. Made with only clean ingredients, and meeting the highest standards in the industry, these supplements—some 120 to date—represent 41 years of Rising Tide’s commitment to providing the best possible products for our customers.

Why, you ask, did we get into the supplement business? As you may know, the supplement industry has been going through some changes. One-time innovators like Solgar, Country Life, Twin Labs and others have sold out to larger, publicly held companies, drastically diminishing their standards. Since we have reduced our stock of these products, we sought to fill the gap using a transparent company that lets us bring you third-party tested, researched and affordable supplements we can be proud to label with the Rising Tide name.

We’re offering a full line of supplements, something to meet every one of your health needs:

  • Vitamins
  • Minerals
  • Probiotics
  • Protein powders
  • and More!

**ALL RISING TIDE BRANDED SUPPLEMENTS ARE 20% off ALL THE TIME for our Grateful Card members!**

Come check them out today…and please let us know what you think!

Plant-Based Grilling for the Fourth

For omnivores, a traditional July 4th BBQ means burgers, hot dogs, and other meaty treats. Think out of the (butcher’s) box this summer, and you’ll be healthier for it.

You might have heard: grilling meat at high temps can cause nasty, carcinogenic heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) to form. That char you love so much on your grilled chicken? Once your meat reaches that level of blackness, the protein has literally transformed into a whole different, cancer-causing chemical.

All You Need Is a Few Good Marinades
If meat IS on your summer grilling menu, there are ways to reduce its harmful byproducts. The simple act of marinating can reduce the concentration of HCAs by up to 99%! The trick is to choose a marinade without added sugars (store-bought commercial barbecue sauces are the worst), preferably one that’s thin and vinegar-based (beer and olive oil can also cut down on carcinogens). As an added bonus, add some herbs from the mint family (basil, mint, rosemary, sage, savory, marjoram, oregano and thyme); they’re rich in antioxidants that can counteract any carcinogens created by grilling. Check this out for more on safer meat grilling.

Or better still…go veggie this 4th! Grilling provides a smoky twist to seasonal produce (and man, is this season’s produce amazing).
And we’re not just talking veggies…grilling fruits is healthy way to soften, sweeten and bring out all their lovely juices. Having friends over? Provide a whole bunch of fruits (peaches, plums, pineapple, bananas and more) and let each person kabob and grill their own picks.

When deciding which fruits and veggies to throw on the grill, keep in mind the Dirty Dozen—those items plagued with the greatest amount of harmful pesticides.

NY Times Grilling Essentials

Tips for Grilling Veggies 

How to Avoid Mistakes When Grilling Veggies

Best Fruits to Grill

Amazing Grilled Fruit Recipes

 

 

How to Avoid Ticks This Summer

A mild, rainy winter has led to an extra tick-y season here in Long Island and other places around the country. Unfortunately, ticks bring with them the possibility of contracting conditions such as Lyme Disease (which can be treated if caught early) and Powassan virus, which currently has no treatment.

Our resident Wellness guru, Jen, has some important tips to help you stay tick-free this summer.
1. Wear lightly colored clothing to make ticks more visible.
2. Tuck pants into socks to minimize skin exposure.
3. Run a lint roller over your body and clothing before heading outdoors.
4. Take/eat garlic, Brewer’s yeast, and Vitamin B6 to make you less appealing to ticks.
5. Use DEET-free insect repellents. Otherwise known as N,N-diethyl-meta-toluamide, DEET has been shown in studies of rats to kill off the neurons in the brain that control muscle movement, learning, memory and concentration when treated with a dose equivalent to that a person would use. Children could be at a greater risk here, as their skin absorbs the DEET more readily. Opt instead for essential oil-based repellents containing powerful oils such as lavender, lemongrass, rose geranium, eucalyptus and citronella.

Rising Tide’s TOP PICKS for Avoiding Ticks:

If you DO find a tick on yourself or someone else, follow these tips for removing it.

See what the Town of North Hempstead is doing to manage their tick situation (naturally!) this summer.

Self Care for the Women You Love

Kicking off on Mother’s Day (May 14), the 18th annual Women’s Health Week is led by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office on Women’s Health. The goal? To empower women to make their health a priority, and to encourage women to take steps to engage in radical self care. Now that’s something we can get behind.

Studies show that women who exercise regularly, eat right, get sufficient sleep and find satisfaction in their work and personal lives have a lower incidence of depression, anxiety and illnesses, such as heart disease.

But where to start? Most women we know are busy working, caring for their families, looking after their homes and finances…the list goes on.

The good news is that even the simplest of activities can go a long way toward caring for #1:

* Exercise: Do whatever feels good to you. Even 10 minutes of stretching can have amazing benefits for your body and mind. According to the experts, we should be gunning for 30 minutes of physical activity most days–more if you want/need to lose weight.

* Sleep: Seven to eight hours/night is considered optimal. Signs your not getting enough sleep? You’re always hungry, your memory is shot, you’re more impulsive/easily irritated, your emotions are all over the place, and you catch every cold that blows your way. To set yourself up for a good night’s sleep, avoid ALL screens for at least an hour before bedtime.

* Breathe: Spend 5 minutes a day, inhaling and exhaling, slowly and deeply. It’s amazing how something so simple can make you feel SO much more relaxed.

* Eat more real, whole foods: Shoot for an 80/20 style of eating. You don’t have to be good all of the time; just most of the time! (While you’re tweaking habits, why not try something new altogether. If you’re a meat eater, start planning Meatless Mondays. If you don’t eat meat, tweak some other area of your diet–swap coffee for matcha; start the day with an antioxidant-rich drink or a plant-based protein packed smoothie.)

Get Your Check up
And don’t overlook perhaps the most basic of all self-care activities: your annual well-woman check up, one good way to ensure you stay healthy and disease free. May 15 is National Women’s Check Up Day. If you can’t see your doctor by then, at least schedule your appointment for a month or two down the road. And take this checklist when you go; it’s a good reminder of the kinds of things to share and/or ask of your doc.

Once you’ve tackled your medical physical, look at some other ways to prioritize yourself, and feel great, body, mind and spirit. Check out this blog post on www.tinybuddha.com for a whole bunch of ways to kick start a new self-care regime. Ease into it by picking one activity from each category. When you get really good at those, add another three. Before you know it, true self care will be part of everything you do.

It’s All About MOM!

May is all about the WOMEN. Women’s Health Week kicks off on May 14th, which is (not coincidentally!) also Mother’s Day. What a great time to show the moms in your life how much you care.

At Rising Tide, our whole mission is to nourish our community with the products we sell and the knowledge we share. Who better to nourish than the mamas in the community we love? Here are our Top Picks for Mother’s Day gifts this year, many of which we’ve put on sale just for the moms:

1. GIVE A PLANT. Fresh from L.I.’s North Fork, Marion Gardens organic plants are the perfect gift for anyone with a green thumb. (Get extra props for doing the actual planting with your mom…the gift of quality time!). We’ve got all kinds of herbs ($5.99-$7.99) and veggie/fruit plants ($3.99).

2. GIVE GOOD SOAK. We’ve got amaaaaaazing Himalayan Salt soaks (and a Coconut Salt Scrub) from Evolution Salt Co. (ON SALE $10.19-$12.79). Himalayan Salt is said to be the cleanest salt on the Earth, with the most health benefits (among them: promoting healthy pH balance in the cells, regulating sleep, preventing muscle cramps, and supporting respiratory health…all great stuff.) We’ve also got Evolution Salt Lamps (ON SALE $33.99), perfect for Mom’s bedroom or anyplace she could benefit from improved air quality (and a warm, orange glow!).

Equally delicious, EO Products makes an Epsom Soak (in lovely scents like Eucalyptus & Citrus, Geranium & Sweet Orange and Juniper & Cedarwood, all with the healing power of Epsom Salt to help mom relax and unwind. (ON SALE $10.59)

3. GIVE GOOD SCENTS. Diffusing essential oils will transform a mom’s very surroundings. The SpaRoom AromaMist aromatherapy diffusers (ON SALE $50.99) pair perfectly with and Body Care blends (Renew, Comfort, Freshen, Love Potion) by essential oil masters Aura Cacia (ON SALE $7.69-$9.39).

4. GIVE THE GIFT OF YOUTH. We all want to look as young as we feel, and to get there using the cleanest ingredients. The Age Defying Kit by Andalou Naturals–the first Non-GMO Project Verified beauty brand–is packed with super antioxidants to support skin wellbeing and give skin a softer, smoother appearance. Contains 5 skin essentials: Apricot Probiotic Cleansing Milk, Blossom + Leaf Toning Refresher, BioActive 8 Berry Fruit Enzyme Mask, Super Goji Peptide Perfecting Cream and Resveratrol Q10 Night Repair Cream. (ON SALE $16.99/kit)

5. GIVE A GIFT CARD. A Rising Tide gift card will gift your mom access to all the healthy foods, supplements, and clean personal care products she needs to look, feel and BE great. There’s no better gift for every mom in your life.

This Year, Hack Your Easter Basket

To gift an Easter basket to someone who loves you is one of the holiday’s simple pleasures. And it doesn’t need to be stacked with all kinds of avoidableshigh fructose corn syrup, food dye, sugar, sugar, sugarto be something special. We’ve got everything you need to create a thoughtful Easter basket that’s plenty sweet, but with a healthy twist.

Chocolate
Start with the main event. When it comes to Easter chocolate, don’t settle for less than the best. We’ve got organic Lake Champlain Chocolates in every shape and form: chocolate bunnies, chocolate, peanut butter and caramel Easter eggs, chocolate carrots, and milk and dark chocolate truffles and more. Everything is beautifully wrapped and ready for its Easter close up.

Candies & Other Treats
Equally delicious (and still made without any preservatives or chemical food dyes) are organic lollipops and gummies from Yum Earth, and organic jelly beans from Surf Sweets. Mint and Red Velvet Snowballs (in the case near the Deli) by local baker Pleasant Petites are colorful (and tasty!) enough to grace the prettiest Easter basket, and are Vegan, gluten free and organic. Colorful candy coated chocolate peanut candies by Sunspire can be found in our Bulk section, as can organic trail mixthe crunchy nuts and seeds cut nicely through all the sweet treats. Go a little crazy and add a few pieces of fruit—oranges or small containers of organic pomegranate arils are bright and fresh and packed with disease-fighting antioxidants.

Colored Eggs
Add a rainbow of colors with hardboiled eggs decorated with a non-toxic dye kit by Color Kitchen; then get creative serving up the leftover eggs. We’ve also got colored frosting and rainbow sprinkle kits for beautiful Easter cakes cupcakes.

Surprise Items
Lastly, personalize the basket with some fun, non-edible items. For small children, stickers, erasers, stuffed bunnies, watercolor paints and coloring books, small puzzles and Play Doh (comes in an egg!) are always a hit. Treat tweens and teens to chemical-free Pogo Lip Balm from Eco Lips in fun, bright colors; colorful stainless steel water bottles from Hydro Flask and Life Factory, spring-themed candles from Big Dipper Wax Works, and our favorite Easter basket add-in: our top-selling flossing toothbrush from SoFresh.

Once you’ve assembled your healthier Easter basket, gift it to someone you love…and have a wonderful Easter!

New Wellness Manager to Serve You Better

Please help us welcome Jennifer Musgrove to the Rising Tide staff! A Nutritional Consultant and Supplement Buyer for over 15 years, Jennifer is extremely knowledgeable about holistic wellness, and passionate about sharing what she knows with our customers.

Jennifer is also a certified Holistic Health Counselor, a licensed Massage Therapist for 17 years, a certified Labor Doula, and the proud mom of an awesome 12-year old girl.

Welcome her aboard…we’re so happy to have her!

The Art of Cleaning (and Greening!) Up

It’s almost spring…time to RENEW, to dig out from the piles of dirt and clutter we accumulated over the winter and get everything glowing again.

Are your cleaning products as healthy as your diet? According to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit environmental research organization, 53 percent of cleaning products they reviewed contained lung-harming ingredients; 22 percent have been shown to cause asthma. In addition, carcinogens like formaldehyde and chloroform were found in several cleaners.

DIY Cleaning
In an effort to minimize the negative effects of chemical cleaners in your own home, common household items can be great substitutes. Here are some must-haves to keep in your DIY cleaning supplies arsenal. Stock up on the basics, then use these simple recipes to create everything you need to make your house sparkle, naturally.

Lemon: Super effective against household bacteria (and smells fresh and lovely!)

Olive Oil: Makes a great base for leather furniture cleaner and more

White Vinegar: Safely cuts through grease, and removes mildew, odors and stains

Baking Soda: The ultimate green cleaning weapon—cleans, deodorizes and scours

Tea Tree Oil: An excellent natural disinfectant and natural mold fighter

Make These Products Extinct
Once you’ve greened up all your necessary products, let’s dump the ones the EWG says we don’t need anymore, EVER. These include:

  • Air fresheners (open windows instead, or diffuse your favorite essential oils)
  • Anti-bacterial products, which can spur the rise of antibiotic resistant superbugs. Good old soap and H2O does the trick every time!
  • Fabric softener or dryer sheets. Instead, use wool dryer balls or add a little vinegar to the rinse cycle.
  • Drain cleaners (use a plunger or snake instead) and oven cleaners (make an inexpensive paste of baking soda and water).
Better Products Abound
Not a DIYer? The good news is there are safer versions of all your favorite household cleaners. We’ve got a whole bunch of eco-friendly household supplies on sale this month, including Ecover Dish Tablets, Biokleen Stain and Odor Remover, Earth Friendly ECOS Dishmate Dish Liquid, and Seventh Generation Auto Dish Powder and Gel. For more info on safer household cleaning products, check out the EWG’s Guide to Healthy Cleaning, a database of more than 2,500 everyday household cleaning products.

Love Up Your Heart!

February is all about HEARTS: the ones that say “I love you,” and the ones that let us live a life we love. In honor of American Heart Month, our focus is on what we can all do to reduce our risk of developing heart disease, still the No. 1 killer of both men and women in the United States.

That’s the bad news. The good (we think GREAT) news is that research increasingly shows that with the exception of a small genetic component, heart disease can largely be prevented by changes to your LIFESTYLE…and these are changes you can easily implement. One step at a time…

Here are 5 heart-friendly lifestyle fixes to choose from in 2017, adapted from a blog post by Dr. Mark Hyman, one of our favorite functional medicine doctors. For the complete post, click here.
1. Eat a Healthy, Whole Foods Diet. Aim for 8-10 servings of colorful fruits and veggies each day.
2. Steady Your Blood Sugar. Stabilize blood sugar by eating protein, healthy fats and healthy carbohydrates at every meal. Avoid processed sugars.
3. Increase Your Fiber Intake. Work your way up to 50g of fiber (veggies, nuts, seeds, and low-sugar fruits like berries) per day.
4. Avoid processed, junk foods. That includes sodas, juices and diet drinks.
5. Get Out and Move! Research shows 30-45 minutes of cardiovascular exercise at least five times/week can benefit your heart.

To go along with these lifestyle hacks, there are also a few supplements that are naturally good for your most vital organ. One of our favorites at Rising Tide is Ubiquinol (the reduced form of CoQ10, and the form your body naturally uses). Studies show that supplementing with CoQ10/Ubiquinol plays a critical role in the creation of cellular energy needed by important organs like the heart and brain. It’s also super important if you’re taking statins, which are known to lower natural levels of ubiquinol in the body and heart. We love the ubiquinol products by Bluebonnet, now in smaller vegetarian softgels for easier swallowing.

Another great heart-healthy supplement is the mighty Pomegranate, shown to prevent—and in some cases reverse—cardiovascular disease. A growing body of evidence suggests that the compounds in pomegranate known as punicalagins are cardioprotective due to their powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. We like Pomegranate Complete by LifeExtension, which includes aspects of the whole pomegranate plant—even the seeds and the flowers! Just one softgel provides equivalent antioxidant content of approximately 24-30 pomegranates!

Make 2017 the year you get serious about your heart. We promise, any changes you make to help your heart will be beneficial for the rest of your parts, too!

Valentine’s Gifts with Heart

Shopping for the ones you love is easy at Rising Tide Market. We’ve got a wide array of gifts that everyone can feel good about. Here are some of our top picks:

Great scents:

Give Great Skin:

Oh, Man:

  • Everyman Jack Beard Oil, Shave Cream and a Manual Chrome Razor ($ -$)

Sweets for Your Sweet:

 

Rising Tide Offers a HOT New Breakfast Option

At Rising Tide Market we love OATMEAL! So we are so excited to bring it to you all—hot, organic, and super tasty—every morning of the week. You won’t find a better, healthier breakfast for these chilly winter mornings.

Besides it’s obvious charms, oatmeal is itself a superfood, with tons of studies to back up its benefit as part of a whole foods diet. First, oats are loaded with all kinds of nutrition—vitamins, minerals and anti-inflammatory antioxidants—and are a great source of healthy carbs. Filled with soluble fiber (making you feel fuller, longer), your morning oatmeal can also reduce your levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol and promote the growth of healthy bacteria in the gut. If that is not enough (!), oats can also reduce blood sugar levels, lowering your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

WOW! We always liked the taste, but now we know oatmeal is the real deal.

Plus we make it extra specially delicious by providing a whole collection of organic superfood toppings:

  • raisins
  • dried cranberries
  • shredded coconut
  • toasted walnuts
  • coconut sugar
  • chia seeds
  • hemp seeds
  • cacao nibs

Style your oatmeal as you like it, and enjoy. It’s here waiting for you.

NEW to the Deli: Rising Tide SuperShots

At Rising Tide, we’ve been juicing for as long as we can remember. Then Jerry and Ashley went to Denmark last fall and fell in love with a new kind of juicing—concentrated health shots, bursting with nutrition in a super compact package.

These shots tasted—and made them feel—GREAT (you’ve gotta love the Danes!) and plans to bring them to Rising Tide were under way. Our resident health mixologist (A.K.A. Brian) concocted three SuperShots power packed with Antioxidants, Anti-Inflammatories and Immunity Boosters like GINGER, TURMERIC, BEET, CAYENNE, ORANGE, LIME, APPLE and PEAR—each one delicious, 100% Organic, and a mighty addition to a wholesome, whole foods diet.

Choose from these pure SuperShots of vitality at Rising Tide Market:

  • Sweet ‘n Hot SuperShot: beet, ginger, apple & lemon
  • Hot A.F. (hot and fabulous) SuperShot: turmeric, ginger, orange juice, lemon juice and cayenne pepper
  • Serenity Now! SuperShot: turmeric, pear, carrot & lime

Throw one back today. You’ll be happy you did! Now available in the Deli case. $3.99-$4.99/2oz shot.

Great Guts!

Your body contains about 100 trillion bacteria – more than 10 times the number of cells in your entire body. The type and quantity of microorganisms in your gut—widely considered to be our body’s “second brain”— interact with your body in ways that can either prevent or encourage the development of all kinds of conditions (and can affect your mood, skin, immune system, digestion, etc.). Studies also show a direct correlation between probiotic intake and weight loss, possibly due to the effect probiotics have on hormones and proteins related to appetite and fat storage.

The ideal ratio between the bacteria in your gut is 85 percent “good” and 15 percent “bad.” Maintaining this optimal ratio is essential…but not always easy. Lifestyle and environmental factors like stress, pollution, processed foods and more can throw gut flora out of whack. Fermented foods (krauts, yogurt, kimchi, kefir, kombucha, etc.) can help to right some of those gut disparities.

If you find you’re not getting enough of these foods, opt for a probiotic supplement (best taken just before, during or after a meal). Make sure your supplement has a minimum of 3-50 billion CFUs (Colony Forming Units), and that it targets your specific health concerns.

Here’s some more to consider when choosing an effective probiotic supplement, according to natural health expert Dr. Joseph Mercola:

  • Make sure it’s a reputable brand that you can trust
  • Make sure the package is resealable. Is it being stored as directed on the product label?
  • Ensure that it does not contain any bioengineered ingredients (GMOs)
  • Confirm that the product is manufactured according to current Good Manufacturing Practices (cGMP)
  • How many different strains of bacteria does it contain? Look for a product with multiple strains to work throughout your gastrointestinal tract
  • Look for valuable strains, including species of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacteria. Some of the more important strains include:
    • Lactobacillus acidophilus and Lactobacillus plantarum that reside in the small intestine or the upper GI tract among your immune cells.
    • Bifidobacterium lactis, Bifidobacterium longum, and Bifidobacterium bifidum that reside in the large intestine or the lower bowel, which are also critical areas for health.

One brand we love here at Rising Tide is Garden of Life; all of our Garden of Life Probiotics –including the Dr. Formulated products, customized by brain health expert and best-selling author of Grain Brain, Dr. David Perlmutter–will be on sale for 20% off the original price during the entire month of January.

Make 2017 The Year of the Gut!

5 Steps to a Healthier 2017

We love the idea of starting the year off on a healthy, positive note. Resolutions to eat better, work out more, call mom every week…they often fall by the wayside despite our best intentions (roughly 75% of people stick to their goals for at least a week, while less than half are still on target six months later). The problem is often that the resolutions we make are too broad to commit to. Studies show the more specific your goals the better (not: I’m going to work out more, but: I’m going to start running for 20 minutes, 3x/week). Another way to improve your resolution stick-to-it-ive-ness? Ask a friend for support. Better yet? Support each other.

Here are a few easy habits to change in 2017 to improve overall health and vitality. Keep it manageable; start with just one, then add in more once you’ve got the first one nailed.

Eat fermented foods. The process that turns fermented foods into probiotic powerhouses also boost levels of good bacteria in your digestive tract, improving the health and balance of your body’s collective microbiome, or bacterial community. A healthier microbiome, in turn, has been shown to aid in digestion, increase immunity, prevent disease, and—according to some preliminary studies—reduce blood pressure and keep you slim.

As we are completely taken with cultured foods of all kinds, naturally we are stock our shelves with them, as well. Check out our dairy case for all kinds of probiotic-rich goodies: krauts, kefir, yogurt, gut shots, kim chee. We’ve also got kombucha on tap, and a whole range of probiotic supplements that will provide similar health benefits.

Resolution: Eat 1 tablespoon of raw sauerkraut with each meal.

Hydrate.  It’s been said that Water is life. That’s because our bodies are composed of roughly 60% water, so when we’re dehydrated – and most of us spend our days dehydrated to some degree – we affect the performance of the majority of our body. Nearly all of our systems do not function as well without the proper water intake. So start 2017 with a goal to hydrate better. Water is the ideal; carry a bottle with you to remind you to drink throughout the day (our favorites are from Hydro Flask and Life Factory; we’ve got both here in the store). Tired of regular water? Try infusing with organic fruits and herbs. Want to alkalize your tap water? We’ve got New Wave Alkaline Filter Pitchers that raise the water’s pH by adding the perfect balance of naturally ionized magnesium, potassium, calcium and sodium.

Take a break from water with the mild, sweet, refreshing taste of coconut water, known as a high-electrolyte beverage, and thus a super hydrater. Harmless Harvest  is our favorite, made from 100% certified organic Thai coconuts.

Resolution: Instead of worrying about how many ounces you need in relation to your body weight, etc., try something new: Drink when you’re thirsty.

Get outside. Yup. Even in the winter. Even in the SNOW. There is a laundry list of reasons why spending time outdoors can improve your life: it increases concentration, it can reinvigorate a stale exercise routine, get you some much needed Vitamin D—but we think the most important reason is that being outdoors makes you FEEL BETTER. It improves your MOOD, which will set you up for all other good things to come your way. Dress properly, stay hydrated (yes, you can dehydrate, even in the cold weather) and enjoy the beauty of Mother Nature’s sleep cycle.

Resolution: Vow to get out for 30 minutes, 3x/week. Walk the dog, snowshoe, take a forest walk, go for a run.

Meditate. Download one of the popular meditation apps, or just sit quietly for a few minutes each day and focus on your breath. It’s that simple, and offers a host of whole body benefits (reduces stress, minimizes symptoms of anxiety and depression, improves sleep, increases focus, to name a few). Don’t miss out on a more relaxing 2017.

Resolution: Meditate for 5 minutes, 2x/day.

Eat more superfoods.  This word gets thrown around a lot so it doesn’t mean much…except to single out foods that are nutrient dense (have a dense concentration of vitamins, minerals, good fats, healthy enzymes—generally with fewer calories) and help to treat, lower the risk of, or prevent specific health conditions. Our favorite easy way to get more superfoods? Throw them in the blender. Yup, your morning smoothie is a convenient receptacle for all those antioxidant packed foods we know we should be eating, but never get around to. Sunfood makes an incredible line of raw (read: pure and unadulterated), delicious superfood powders that turn an ordinary smoothie into a true powerhouse breakfast. Choose from Acai, Moringa, Camu Camu, Goji Berry, Maca, and Mixed Berry Smoothie Mix (contains many of the above superfoods, plus banana, cacao, and brown rice protein). If you’d rather DIY, our Bulk Section contains a bunch of superfoods—chia, hemp, goji berries, cacao nibs—that are great both in smoothies and in baking, hot cereals, salads and more.

Resolution: Eat two “superfoods” each day (not sure which foods actually qualify as such? Chances are if you think they’re super, they are). Here’s a pretty thorough list to use as a cheatsheet. 

Nature’s Meds for Cold & Flu

Prepping, cooking, cleaning…stressing! It’s easy to get We can’t do much about the bugs we’re exposed to—but we can strengthen our immune systems to protect us against annoying offenders. When it comes to blasting bugs, naturally, we defer to our resident supplement guru, Steve Josepher. These are Steve’s immune-boosting Go-To’s for the winter months:

  • Oscillococcinum (“Oscillo” for short) by Boiron is the best choice flu symptoms like body aches, headache, fever and chills. This homeopathic flu fighter has none of the side effects of Tamiflu (nausea, vomiting) and REALLY works. Steve recommends 6 full vials in a 2-day period, as soon as your symptoms start. Good for ages 2 and up.
  • When it comes to the flu or any other nagging illness, Elderberry Syrup works like a charm. Elderberry is the queen of berries, shown to boost immunity, decrease mucous production during colds, and fight the flu. We like Black Elderberry Syrup by Gaia—gentle enough for kids but potent enough for adults. Or try Elderberry Force by New Chapter. These capsules sourced from an Austrian elderberry are made into a simple, pure, highly concentrated product.
  • We get Vitamin C year round from fruits and veggies, but this time of year, you’ll want an extra slug of the stuff. Do you bring a water bottle to work? Do your kids bring one to school or after-school sports? Steve swears by Truly Natural Vitamin C Powder by Healthforce. Each 1.5 tsp dose added to water imparts just a hint of flavor, but packs a full 302 mg of food source, naturally occurring, absorbable, vitamin C complex made from acerola berries.
  • You can’t underestimate the role Vitamin D plays in maintaining our immune system. Since we absorb our Vitamin D from the sun, our levels are dramatically lower in the cooler months, when most colds and flus hit. We’ve got all kinds of D products, for kids and adults. One of our favorites is from Bluebonnet Nutrition, and is available in drops, chewables and softgels.  Click here for more on Vitamin D and how much we need for optimum health.
  • Mushrooms are awesome! Of the 140,000 species of mushroom-forming fungi, about 100 are being studied for their health-promoting benefits. This is mainly due to their high concentration of beta-glucan, a powerful antiviral agent and immune system modulator. A mushroom devotee, Steve chooses Host Defense by MyCommunity, a 17-species formula that features some of the Top 10 health-stimulating mushrooms out there (maitake, reishi, cordyceps and more). Take two a day for killer immune support.

As always…if you  have any questions about how to stay healthy this winter (or anytime!), just ask Steve or any of our other Supplement experts. There is always someone here to help!

Digestive Support for Your Holiday Feast

Prepping, cooking, cleaning…stressing! It’s easy to get caught up in a Thanksgiving whirlwind that can leave you overwhelmed and run down. Add a huge meal into the mix and you can find yourself with digestive distress and reduced immunity that can really lay you out.

We get it (we’ve been there!), and we’ve got a plan to help you cope better over this Thanksgiving holiday.

Tackle Immune Support

Along with the magic of the holidays comes a healthy dose of added stress. Adequate sleep, a daily meditation or yoga practice, a healthy diet, and a little bit of “me” time can all go a long way toward helping you keep it together this time of year.

A daily probiotic can also mitigate the effects that holiday stress can have on your health, giving you the extra oomph to fight off seasonal colds and flus.  We can’t say enough about Healthy Trinity Probiotics by Natren (and are offering them for 20% off—we’re looking for converts!). Take one or more daily, and eat probiotic rich foods (experts recommend 1-2 tablespoons of raw, unpasteurized sauerkraut with every meal. We love the Hawthorne Valley kraut, available in Original and Turmeric flavors).

Digestion: Before, During and After a Big Meal

Let’s be honest, eating delicious home-cooked foods is a huge part of the Thanksgiving holiday.  Just take it easy. Keeping your eating in check on Thanksgiving is the only foolproof way to feel great at the meal’s end.

BEFORE

Want a little insurance? Take some digestive bitters before your meal. We like Chamomile Digestive Bitters by Urban Moonshine. Available both in travel-friendly spray and tinctures, Chamomile Digestive Bitters are crafted from exceptional blends of certified organic herbs and roots, and have a nice soothing taste. Take before your meal to optimize digestion, or afterwards to relieve heartburn, or soothe gas and bloating.

DURING

Another way to optimize digestion of a big meal is to take digestive enzymes with the meal itself.  Enzyme deficiencies can result from factors including age, diet and lifestyle, and can lead to a bunch of uncomfortable symptoms including gas, bloating, indigestion and irregularity. Take 1 or 2 digestive enzymes with your meal for assistance in breaking down proteins, carbohydrates and fats. We love (love, LOVE!) DigestGold Enzymes, and we’re offering 20% off in anticipation of our Thanksgiving feasts.

AFTER

While probiotics can boost immunity anytime, they also make great post-meal curatives. Each Healthy Trinity probiotic capsule contains a minimum of 30 billion colony forming units (cfu) of three super strains of bacteria known to target the gastrointestinal tract. Pop a few of these babies after the big meal and you’ll be yourself again in no time!

When it comes to promoting a sweet night’s sleep, we sip Yogi Kava Stress Relief tea before bed—the Kava calms the body and mind, and we’re hooked on the combo of cinnamon, sarsaparilla and carob flavors. Mmmmmm.

Try not to overeat this thanksgiving. And drink lots of water, especially if you’re having alcohol. (If you drink a little TOO much alcohol, pick up some PartyTime, an herbal hangover treatment that supports the liver and makes for a better morning after).

Here’s to eating AND being merry this holiday season. Happy Thanksgiving!

 

Stress Less This Holiday Season

Ask Steve, one of Rising Tide’s Supplement Buyers, how to minimize stress over the holidays and he’ll tell you to take two minutes to stop and BREATHE. Excellent advice, for sure, and we should all be doing a whole lot more of it. This is especially true when the pace of life picks up around the holiday season. Shopping, cleaning, cooking, parties, visiting with family–these can all amp up our stress quotient to the point where we’re fatigued, irritable and even physically ill with colds and other bugs.

In addition to remembering to breathe, there are a whole bunch of other tools to help you mitigate stress levels when things get loopy. Adaptogenic herbs should be way at the top of any stress-busting list. These botanicals (Rhodiola, Holy Basil and Ashwaganda, to name a few) improve the health of your adrenal system, the system that’s in charge of managing your body’s hormonal response to stress. They’re called adaptogens because of their unique ability to “adapt” their function according to your body’s specific needs, strengthening the body’s response to stress and enhance its ability to cope with anxiety and fight fatigue – slowly and gently. We’ve got adaptogens both in single herb varieties or as more broad-based adaptogenic formulas (our favorites are Gaia’s Adrenal Health and Stress Care by Himalaya).

Another great stress reducer is the amino acid L-theanine, a derivative of green tea (minus the caffeine). Known to increase the levels of dopamine and GABA in the brain (without any of the agitation caused by caffeine), l-theanine is safe to use for both kids and adults, and the feedback we get from customers is remarkable. Stuck on line at the mall? Pop an L-theanine with lemon balm by Life Extension and feel a wave of calm wash over you. Really!

L-theanine can also get your mind in the right place for sleep–something we can all use a bit more of if we want to keep stress at bay. One of our top-selling sleep formulas is Tranquil Sleep by Natural Factors. A combo of L-theanine and melatonin (the hormone that controls your sleep cycles), Tranquil Sleep will help you fall asleep quickly, sleep soundly through the night, and wake up feeling refreshed, without any of the potentially harmful side effects caused by pharmaceutical sleep aids.

Whenever you need a hit of peace, you can also look to Bach Flower Remedies. A safe and natural method of healing discovered by Dr. Bach in 1920s England, the flower remedies gently restore the balance between mind and body. Rescue Remedy, the most popular of the Flower Remedies, is actually a combo of five remedies, uniquely designed to help us get through stressful situations by helping us to relax, get focused and CALM DOWN!

As you can see, we are full of ideas to help you de-stress naturally this holiday season. A couple of other tips you can tackle on your own: spend some time outdoors (the sunlight is a mood elevator), say no to too many obligations (that cookie swap can happen without you this year) and don’t squeeze in more holiday than you can handle (less is more!). When you need a little crutch, your natural medicine chest will have everything you need to make this holiday season the most chill one ever.