Archive for December, 2011

Closing out 2011 – Thank you from Daily by Morin

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New Year's Eve | December 31, 2011

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As we say goodbye to 2011 and usher in 2012, I want to say a HUGE heartfelt and sincere thanks to all Daily by Morin fans. I appreciate your support and can’t wait…for 2012. Expect big things from me, let’s hop on this crazy and fab ride together!

Xoxo,

Morin

Find Your Perfect Skin Exfoliant

Every woman worth her Beauty Mint membership knows that exfoliating at least once a week is key to soft, smooth, baby like skin. Find the right exfoliant for your skin from this quality list!

1. Tracie Martyn Enzyme Exfoliant
“Everyone wants glowing, radiant skin around the holidays with all the parties and events,” says facialist Tracie Martyn. She should know, her New York salon appointment book is packed with names like Kate Winslet and Penelope Cruz. “If your creams are not working and you’re wondering why, you need to exfoliate more before moisturizing.” Tracie’s Enzyme Exfoliant ($85,http://amzn.to/t42Yv3) is a mild yet potent formula made of a gentle blend of exotic essential oils and alpha-beta hydroxy acids.

Courtesy Tracie Martyn

2. ExfoliKate
Hollywood a-listers like Lauren Conrad and Evan Rachel owe their glowing complexions to Kate Somerville’s cult favorite face scrub ($65,http://rstyle.me/gbiakwcypw) which is both a chemical and physical exfoliator. Try it as part of this 3-step process: “First, slough off the dead layers. Then steam in a hot bath or shower to replace moisture. Finally, lock it in with a good moisturizer while skin is still damp.”

Courtesy Kate Sommerville

3. Glytone Cleanse Exfoliating Gel Wash
New York City dermatologist Cybele Fishman says exfoliants with glycolic acid are preferable to those with harsh grains. “The latter may strip your skin of the oils it needs now more than ever.” We love this oil-free gel ($27,http://rstyle.me/iqyegcypw), which contains just enough glycolic acid to leave skin smooth without stripping it.

Courtesy Peter Thomas Roth

 5. Soap and Glory Flake Away Body Polish

This smoothing body polish ($18;http://rstyle.me/e4ci9ucypw) combines the dynamic duo of sea salt and sugar. It’s also dosed with a sweet, not cloying, rose and strawberry scent.

Courtesy Soap & Glory

 6. Meaningful Beauty Glycolic Treatment Pads
Designed to exfoliate and rejuvenate the skin, these handy disposable pads ($33 for 30 pads;http://amzn.to/syRSQ1) whisk away dull skin, revealing a brighter, more glowing complexion one swipe at a time.

Courtesy Meaningful Beauty

7. Neutrogena Microdermabrasion System
Neutrogena’s at-home system ($20,http://rstyle.me/erfmfkcypw) features single-use puffs and a battery-operated microdermabrasion applicator. Each puff is pre-dosed with ultra-fine crystals and mild purifiers for gentle exfoliation and cell turnover. Oh, and did we mention the price?

Courtesy Neutrogena

 

Referenced article here: http://bit.ly/uIdAE2

 

Get Your Prettiest Party Skin

As you head out on the town this winter season, make sure your skin has a radin “sun-kissed” glow with these great products perfect for any outfit.

It may be sub-zero outside, but chances are you’ll be baring some serious skin at holiday parties. Here are our foolproof ways to shimmer and shine in all of the season’s prettiest, skimpiest cocktail dresses.

If You’re Wearing…A Plunging V-Neck 

Courtesy Gregg DeGuire/WireImage

Feeling daring like Jennifer Aniston? Add subtle shimmer to your chest and decollete with a dollop of Victoria’s Secret Shimmer Lotion ($14, http://amzn.to/rLIgwK).

 

If You’re Wearing…A Backless Dress

Courtesy INF

Because our back tends to be out of sight, it’s no surprise that things can get a little dicey. If you opt for a plunging number like Lea Michele, a few spritzes of Murad Clarifying Body Spray ($37, http://rstyle.me/e3th96cypw) will quickly dry out pesky blemishes with its potent blend of retinol and salicylic acid. Even better? The spray works upside down, so you can easily target hard-to-reach zones.

 

If You’re Wearing…A Micro Mini

Courtesy INF

Skip black tights and bare it all like Nikki Reed. (A flash of leg is a welcome surprise in winter months.) Nip + Fab Cellulite Fix ($18,http://rstyle.me/fvqqrkcypw) tightens skin with proven cellulite fighter caffeine; a line of Charlotte Ronson Face & Body Glow ($18,http://rstyle.me/e4c4aicypw) along the center of your shins adds slimming dimension.

 

If You’re Wearing…A Shoulder-Baring Dress

Courtesy Charles Eshelman/WireImage

A high-collared dress like Kate Bosworth’s accentuates delicate bone structure—and highlights awkward tan lines. Even things out with a wash of streak-proof gradual sunless tanner like Jergen’s Natural Glow Daily Moisturizer ($8, http://rstyle.me/en5k8scypw). The updated formulation lasts twice as long as the original.

 

If You’re Wearing…A Strapless Dress

Courtesy Christian Augustin/WireImage

You don’t have to be half-naked to look fully sexy. Emma Stone’s collarbones are elegant and alluring—and yours can be too, especially with a light dusting of Urban Decay Sparkling Body Powder ($20, http://rstyle.me/feccbycypw), which leaves behind a fine shimmer, not chunks of glitter.

 

Referenced article here: http://bit.ly/s0gYd2

 

Using the Right Winter Moisturizer

During the winter, the wind and dry air can wreck ravage on your skin. Make sure you’re keeping your skin appropriately conditioned by running through this winter skin checklist.

All lotions are not created equal. Just answer five quick questions to determine your perfect cream.

Determine Your Skintone

Courtesy Peter Thomas Roth and Laura Mercier

Are you very fair? If so, Nashville based dermatologist Michael Gold recommends a moisturizer with a mild amount of lactic acid…gently exfoliate, but not irritate.

Do you need SPF year round due to the climate in your area? “We all need SPF year round!” says Gold. Try the Laura Mercier Flawless Skin Moisturizer with SPF 15 (http://rstyle.me/f9jcgecypw, $50), an SPF/moisturizer duo.

Do you have hyper-pigmentation? Gold says, “The use of a prescription strength hydroquinone will fade dark spots. But add a high level SPF over it.” The De-Spot Skin Brightening Corrector (http://rstyle.me/fseg62cypw, $75) is an effective over the counter alternative.

Determine Your Acne Factor

Courtesy Priori

Do you break out at the slightest sight of oil? “Serums with acne fighting ingredients like Priori’s Perfection Gel ($48;http://rstyle.me/gf94wcypw) can offer moisture and break down oil,” says Gold.

Do you suffer from hormonal breakouts? Track your fluctuating body rhythms and adjust your skin treatments accordingly. If your skin is acting up near the end of the month, switch to an oil-free moisturizer or a face cream with salicylic acid. Gold also recommends adding a topical spot treatment when breakouts occur.

Do you have cystic acne i.e. deep, hard blemishes? “Time to get your dermatologist involved—He or she can prescribe an oral and/or topical treatment,” says Gold. In the meantime, hypo-allergenic and non-comedogenic products won’t irritate inflamed skin.

Determine Your Skin’s Maturity

Courtesy St. Ives

Are you concerned with wrinkle prevention not repair? Celebrity facialist Tracie Martyn recommends a light moisturizer that contains active ingredients like hyaluronic acid.

Are you starting to see fine lines? “It’s important to promote collagen repair,” says Martyn who advises uses moisturizers with strong antioxidents when those first tiny creases start to appear.

Are you starting to see fine lines? “It’s important to promote collagen repair,” says Martyn, who suggests rich moisturizers.

Are you losing elasticity? Do you notice drooping skin? Choose products with increased levels of collagen and elastin like St. Ives Collagen Elastin Facial Moisturizer ($5;http://rstyle.me/bui38icypw). Top off your regular hydrating routine with an active anti-aging serum but only at night—they can cause slight peeling and mild exfoliation so you don’t want to layer them under foundation.

Determine Your Moisture Level

Courtesy L'Oreal, Courtesy Koh Gen Do


Does your skin become drier as the temperature drops? L’Oreal Paris consulting dermatologist Gervaise Gerstner recommends slathering on heavier moisturizers in the colder months. “Serums can also give skin additional hydration.” We love Chanel Hydramax + Active Moisture Gel Cream (http://rstyle.me/q3a6cypw, $67) which is both a serum and moisturizer.

Are you shiny year round? Avoid heavy weight creams, but don’t skimp on moisture altogether. “I like a lightweight serum like L’Oréal Paris Youth Code Intense ($25,http://rstyle.me/p6apcypw).”

Do you have an oily T-Zone? See above. Just skip lotioning along the forehead and nose.

Determine Your Skin Sensitivity

Courtesy Rodin

Do you experience extreme sensitivity to cold? New York City epidermologist Isabelle Bellis suggests soothing raw skin with a gentle milk cleanser rather than a foaming soap or gel. It allows the skin to naturally rebalance moisture levels

Do you experience redness and broken capillaries? “Try face oils in the morning and creams at night,” says Bellis. “Face oils protect the capillaries and they provide an extra barrier of protection since they don’t penetrate as easily,” she adds. We love Rodin’s Oil Lusso Face Oil ($140; http://rstyle.me/bukkyicypw).

Do certain products inflame your skin? Try cutting down on exfoliation. “Each time you exfoliate, you rip away a layer of protection and expose your capillaries to the harsh winter environment. Once a week maximum in normal conditions. In the winter, try every other week,” says Bellis.

Referenced article here: http://bit.ly/srQmMG

 

Russell Brand files for divorce from Katy Perry

Russell Brand just filed for divorce from Katy Perry. I actually thought this marriage would last! He confirmed the news in a statement saying, “Sadly, Katy and I are ending our marriage. I’ll always adore her and I know we’ll remain friends.”

Who do you think opted to end the marriage? Katy? Russell? Both?

Top Style Moments of 2011

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Fashion, style | December 30, 2011

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2011 was a year filled with red carpet hits that hit the Facebook and Twitter-sphere within moments. Which style trend was your favourite?

 

The Royal Wedding

Over 2 billion people watched the nuptials of Prince William and Catherine Middleton on April 29, 2011, and what a wedding it was! The bride emerged in a custom Sarah Burton for Alexander McQueen dress that is forever etched into the memories of millions.

Beyonce’s Baby Bump Reveal

Beyonce made her entrance at the 2011 MTV Video Music Awards in August wearing a one-shoulder Lanvin gown while clutching her newly-sprouted baby bump. The mom-to-be later took the stage in a sequined Dolce & Gabbana tux for her performance of “Love On Top.” “I want you to feel the love that’s growing inside of me,” she said before unbuttoning her jacket and patting her belly.
Pippa: The World’s It Girl

If the Royal Wedding made Catherine Middleton a Duchess, then it made Pippa Middleton a star. The younger sister and maid of honor to Catherine wowed the world in a form-fitting Alexander McQueen gown for the Royal Wedding, and both the paparazzi and fashion fans have followed her every move since.
Remembering Elizabeth Taylor

The world lost a screen legend on March 23rd, when Elizabeth Taylor passed away in Los Angeles at the age of 79. Taylor, an AIDS activist and two-time Academy Award winner, was known for her collection of both jewelry and husbands.
J. Lo: Back and Better Than Ever!

After taking time to start a family and live privately, Jennifer Lopez triumphantly returned to the spotlight this year. With a stint as judge of American Idol, a new CD with hit singles, a line with Kohl’s, a campaign with Tous, and the #1 spot on People magazine’s Most Beautiful People list, this woman won’t let anyone get in her way of making it to the top!
The Biggest Haircut of the Year

Even halfway around the world in Madrid, Jennifer Aniston set American beauty, fashion, and entertainment press on fire when she debuted her new above-the-shoulders haircut during a press call for Just Go With It in late February. Fans debated if they liked it or not, and Aniston’s legacy of trendsetting styles continued.
Stage Style Stars: Nicki Minaj and Katy Perry

Nicki Minaj and Katy Perry have been brightening up the 2011 concert circuit with their cartoon and candy-inspired stagewear. This year, they managed to outdo even themselves with Katy Perry’s candyland couture and Nicki Minaj’s Barbie looks becoming more and more over the top.
Alexander McQueen Breaks Records 

The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Costume Institute in New York houses a fashion exhibition every spring, and this year the late British designer Alexander McQueen was its subject. The exhibition, entitled “Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty,” included over 100 pieces from McQueen’s archives, spanning from his post-graduate collection in 1992 to his last collection named Angels & Demons, which showed on the runway after his February 2010 death. The exhibition drew 661,509 visitors from May through August, making it the eighth biggest show on record at the Met.

 

Missoni for Target Sells Out


Missoni’s capsule collection for Target caused a shopping frenzy! The 400-piece line made its debut at the opening of a Missoni for Target pop-up shop in New York, but the store had to shut down almost immediately because it completely sold out. After the collection finally made its way to Target.com in September, record-breaking crowds crashed the site, leaving shoppers to raid their local Target stores and scour eBay for what was left of the zig-zag striped pieces.

Emma Watson Ends Harry Potter On Top!

2011 saw the end of the Harry Potter film franchise, and Emma Watson made sure to go out with a bang! The actress hit the red carpet on her Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 press tour in July in chic cropped hair and a series of dramatic designer looks by Oscar de la Renta, Rafael Lopez and Bottega Veneta (shown).

Referenced article here: http://on-msn.com/tkM5Gu

 

What Are You Doing New Years Eve? by Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Good morning! What are you doing New Year’s Eve? Let Zooey Deschanel and Joseph Gordon-Levitt answer that for you. Love this!

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=aSq1cez_flQ]

Top 10 Celeb Hair Makeovers of 2011

Let’s take a look back at the celeb world in 2011 to see who took a dramatic turn with their looks. Which celeb was most daring this year?

Blake Lively
The Gossip Girl star went auburn in late April for her role in the upcoming film Hick. In June, Lively lightened her strands back to blond. “I love it,” she told InStyle.com on her ever-changing ‘do. “When I play a character I love to completely transform, and changing up my hair color is a way I feel like I can disappear behind them.”
Jennifer Aniston
Aniston chopped her long layers into a one-length bob while promoting her film Just Go With It in February. The cut, courtesy of Aniston’s longtime hairstylist and friend Chris McMillan, is the first time she has had above-the-shoulders strands since her famous Rachel shag in the ’90s.
Katy Perry
Katy Perry went back to her blond roots in July, then revealed a new lavender hue at the VMAs in August. “It was such an exciting challenge to custom-create Katy’s color for the VMAs,” her colorist Rita Hazan said. “She is always willing to take risks to achieve a groundbreaking look.”
Dianna Agron
The Glee actress cut her blond waves into an edgy shag in August. “It feels more like me than ever,” she told InStyle.com exclusively. “I love it! I don’t miss blow-drying my hair, I don’t miss the maintenance, and it’s just fun to switch things up.”
Evan Rachel Wood
In June, Wood debuted her new pixie crop at the True Blood season four premiere party in Los Angeles.
Rose Byrne
In September, the Bridesmaids star chopped her chestnut strands into an above-the-shoulders bob with thick, arched bangs.

Carrie Underwood
Carrie Underwood debuted pitch-perfect bangs that hit just below the brow in late September.


Hilary Duff
Mother-to-be Duff lightened her tawny brown strands at the end of March.


Drew Barrymore
In April, Barrymore traded her two-tone ombre for blazing red. “We had been talking about going red for a few months, and since Drew has been auburn before, we knew it would look good,” her colorist Tracey Cunningham told InStyle.com exclusively. “It wasn’t a spur-of-the-moment decision. When Drew changes her hair color, she really commits to it.” History repeated itself in early November, when Barrymore went back to her ombre roots and snipped her strands into a long bob.

 

Jennifer Lawrence
For her role as Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games Lawrence switched her sunny blond for a deep brown in May.

 

Referenced article here: http://on-msn.com/tctUKu

 

Alessandra Ambrosio announces her pregnancy on Facebook!

Congrats to Alessandra Ambrosio on her 2nd pregnancy! Who looks this amazing in a bikini while pregnant?? Supermodels having superbabies..love it! That means she’ll only have 6 months to get ready for next year’s Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show! Can’t wait to see how amazing she looks!

Hear more from her at: https://www.facebook.com/ale.ambrosio

12 Foods with Healing Powers

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Diet, Health | December 29, 2011

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If you’re going to eat, you may as well eat foods that enhance your body. Check out these foods that have great restorative effects to help you be in peak shape…at all times

1. Kiwifruit
This tiny, nutrient-dense fruit packs an amazing amount of vitamin C (double the amount found in this fruit), has more fiber than apples and beats bananas as a high-potassium food. The unique blend of phytonutrients, vitamins and minerals found in kiwifruit helps protect against heart disease, stroke, cancer (commandments to prevention) and respiratory disease. Kiwifruit’s natural blood-thinning properties work without the side effects of aspirin and support vascular health by reducing the formation of spontaneous blood clots, lowering LDL cholesterol and reducing blood pressure. Multiple studies have shown that kiwifruit not only reduces oxidative stress and damage to DNA but also prompts damaged cells to repair themselves.

In Chinese medicine they are used to accelerate the healing of wounds and sores.
How much: Aim to eat one to two kiwifruit a day while they’re in season, for the best taste and nutrition. California-grown kiwifruit are in season from October through May, and New Zealand kiwifruit are available between April and November.

Tips: Kiwifruit contain enzymes (what are those?) that activate once you cut the fruit, causing the flesh to tenderize. So if you’re making a fruit salad, cut the kiwifruit last.

The riper the kiwifruit, the greater the antioxidant power, so let them ripen before you dig in.

2. Cherries
In Chinese medicine, cherries are routinely used as a remedy for gout, arthritis and rheumatism (as well as anemia, due to their high iron content). Plus they’re delicious.

Cherries boast a laundry list of healing powers. For starters, they pack a powerful nutritional punch for a relatively low calorie count. They’re also packed with substances that help fight inflammation and cancer. In lab studies, quercetin and ellagic acid, two compounds contained in cherries, have been shown to inhibit the growth of tumors and even cause cancer cells to commit suicide. Cherries also have antiviral and antibacterial properties.

Anthocyanin (what’s that?), another compound in cherries, is credited with lowering the uric acid levels in the blood, thereby reducing a common cause of gout. Researchers believe anthocyanins may also reduce your risk of colon cancer. Further, these compounds work like a natural form of ibuprofen, reducing inflammation and curbing pain. Regular consumption may help lower risk of heart attack and stroke.
How much: Aim for a daily serving while they’re in season locally. And keep a bag of frozen cherries in your freezer the rest of the year; frozen cherries retain 100 percent of their nutritional value and make a great addition to smoothies, yogurt and oatmeal.

Tip: Buy organic, since conventionally grown cherries can be high in pesticides.

3. Guavas
Guavas are a small tropical fruit that can be round, oval or pear-shaped (see more photos). They’re not all that common, but if you can track them down, it’s more than worth it. Guavas contain more of the cancer-fighting antioxidant lycopene than any other fruit or vegetable, and nearly 20 percent more than this popular fruit.

Lycopene protects our healthy cells from free radicals that can cause blocked arteries, joint degeneration, nervous system problems and even cancer. Lycopene consumption is associated with significantly lower rates of prostate cancer; and men with prostate tumors who consumed lycopene supplements showed significant improvements. Lycopene has also been found to inhibit the growth of breast cancer cells, and research suggests that this antioxidant may also help protect against coronary artery disease.

Guavas are also packed with vitamin C and other antioxidants. Serving for serving, guava offers more than 60 percent more potassium than a banana.
How much: Aim to eat fresh guavas as often as you can when you can find them in stores. They’re not commonly available in the freezer section, and most guava juices are processed and sweetened, so they don’t provide the same superior nutrition that the whole, fresh fruit does. One to two guavas a day is a good goal.

Tip: Opt for the red-fleshed variety if you can; both are loaded with antioxidants (cancer-fighting foods), but the red type has more than the white-fleshed apple guava.

4. Beans
Beans are a miracle food (find others). They lower cholesterol, regulate blood sugar and insulin production, promote digestive health and protect against cancer. If you think of fiber, protein and antioxidants, and immediately think whole grains, meat and fruit, then think again—beans offer all three in a single package.

An assortment of phytochemicals found in beans has been shown to protect cells from cancerous activity by inhibiting cancer cells from reproducing, slowing tumor growth. Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health reported that women who consumed beans at least twice a week were 24 percent less likely to develop breast cancer, and multiple studies have tied beans to a reduced risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and breast and colon cancers.

Beans deliver a whopping amount of antioxidants, which help prevent and fight oxidative damage. In fact, the USDA’s ranking of foods by antioxidant capacity places three varieties of beans (red, red kidney and pinto) in the top four—and that’s among all food groups. They also contain tryptophan, which can help regulate appetite, aid in sleep and improve mood. Many are also rich in folate, which plays a significant role in heart health. You’ll also get decent amounts of potassium, magnesium, vitamin B1 and B2, and vitamin K. Soybeans are a great source of omega-3 fatty acids.

In Chinese medicine, various types of beans have been used to treat alcoholism, food poisoning, edema (particularly in the legs), high blood pressure, diarrhea, laryngitis, kidney stones, rheumatism and dozens of other conditions.
How much: Aim for a minimum of two servings of beans per week.

Tip: Adzuki and mung beans are among the most easily digested; pinto, kidney, navy, garbanzo, lima and black beans are more difficult to digest.

5. Watercress
Not only is watercress extremely nutritious (nutritional value), it’s about as close as you can get to a calorie-free food. Calorie for calorie, it provides four times the calcium of this staple drink. Ounce for ounce, it offers as much vitamin C as an orange and more iron than another superfood. It’s packed with vitamin A and has lots of vitamin K, along with multiple antioxidant carotenoids and protective phytochemicals.

The nutrients in watercress protect against cancer and macular degeneration, help build the immune system and support bone health. The iron helps red blood cells carry oxygen to your body’s tissues for energy. The phytochemicals in watercress battle cancer in three ways: killing cancer cells, blocking carcinogens and protecting healthy cells from carcinogens.

In Chinese medicine, watercress is thought to help reduce tumors, improve night vision and improve digestion. It’s used as a remedy for jaundice, urinary difficulty, sore throat, mumps and bad breath.
How much: Eat watercress daily if you can. In some regions, it’s more widely available during the spring and summer, when it’s cultivated outdoors. But since it can also be grown hydroponically (what’s that?), you can find it year-round in many grocery stores and at your local farmers market.

Tips: You can cook it, but watercress is better for you when you eat it raw. Tuck it into a sandwich in place of lettuce.

Bing bonus: Get recipes using watercress.
Toss it with your favorite vegetables and eat it in a salad.
Watercress is great in pesto—just replace the basil with watercress—and soups.
Use watercress as a wonderfully detoxifying ingredient in juice or smoothies.

6. Spinach
You already knew spinach was good for you (nutritional value), but did you know just how good? Spinach protects against eye disease and vision loss; it’s good for brain function; it guards against colon, prostate and breast cancers; it protects against heart disease, stroke and dementia; it lowers blood pressure; it’s anti-inflammatory; and it’s great for bone health. Spinach has an amazing array of nutrients, including high amounts of vitamin K, calcium, vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, magnesium and iron.

A carotenoid found in spinach kills prostate cancer cells and prevents them from multiplying. Folate promotes vascular health by lowering homocysteine and has also been shown to reduce the risk of developing colorectal, ovarian and breast cancers. The vitamin C and beta-carotene in spinach protect against colon cancer in addition to fighting inflammation, making them key components of brain health, particularly in older adults.

Spinach is loaded with vitamin K (one cup of cooked spinach provides 1111 percent of the recommended daily amount), which builds strong bones by helping calcium adhere to the bone.
How much: Fresh spinach should be a daily staple in your diet. It’s available in practically every grocery store, no matter where you live. Aim for a few ounces, raw or lightly steamed, every day.

Tips: Add a handful of fresh spinach to your next fruit smoothie. It’ll change the color but not the taste. Conventionally grown spinach is susceptible to pesticide residue; stick to organic.

7. Onions
Onions get a bad rap for their effect on the breath (find an antidote), but that’s not the only part of the body where they pack a wallop. Onion consumption has been shown to help lower the risk of prostate and esophageal cancers and has also been linked to reduced mortality from coronary heart disease. Research suggests that they may help protect against stomach cancer. Onions contain sulfides that help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, as well as a peptide that may help prevent bone loss.

Onions have super antioxidant power. They contain quercetin, a natural antihistamine that reduces airway inflammation and helps relieve symptoms of allergies and hay fever. Onions also boast high levels of vitamin C, which battles cold and flu symptoms. Onions’ anti-inflammatory properties help fight the pain and swelling associated with osteo- and rheumatoid arthritis.
How much: For all the health benefits onions provide, it would be ideal to eat one a day. However, if that’s not doable for you, add a few onions to your weekly grocery list and try to eat a little bit every day. All varieties are extremely good for you, but shallots and yellow onions lead the pack in antioxidant activity. Raw onions provide the best nutrition, but they’re still great for you when they’re lightly cooked.

Tip: Onions should be stored at room temperature, but if they bother your eyes when you cut them, try refrigerating them for an hour beforehand.

8. Carrots

Carrots are a great source of the potent antioxidants known as carotenoids (what are they?). Diets high in carotenoids have been tied to a decreased risk in postmenopausal breast cancer as well as cancers of the bladder, cervix, prostate, colon, larynx and esophagus. Conversely, diets low in carotenoids have been associated with chronic disease, including heart disease and various cancers. Research suggests that just one carrot per day could reduce your risk of lung cancer by half. Carrots may also reduce your risk of kidney and ovarian cancers. Nutrients in carrots inhibit cardiovascular disease, stimulate the immune system, promote colon health, and support ear and eye health.

Carrots contain calcium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, fiber, vitamin C and an incredible amount of vitamin A (other foods rich in vitamin A). The alpha-carotene in carrots has shown promise in inhibiting tumor growth. In Chinese medicine, carrots are used to treat rheumatism, kidney stones, tumors, indigestion, night blindness, ear infections and more.
How much: Eat a serving of carrots each day and enjoy them year-round. Carrots are good for you whether they’re raw or lightly cooked. For the best nutrition, go for whole carrots that are firm and fresh-looking. Precut baby carrots are made from whole carrots and tend to lose important nutrients during processing.

Tips: Remove carrot tops before storing them in the fridge, as the tops drain moisture from the roots and will cause the carrots to wilt. Buy organic; conventionally grown carrots frequently show high pesticide residues.

9. Cabbage
Cabbage is a powerhouse source of vitamins K and C. Just one cup supplies 91 percent of the recommended daily amount for vitamin K, 50 percent of vitamin C, good amounts of fiber and decent scores of manganese, vitamin B6 and folate. How many calories per serving? It offers 11 percent more vitamin C than oranges.

Cabbage contains high levels of antioxidant sulforaphanes that not only fight free radicals before they damage DNA but also stimulate enzymes that detoxify carcinogens in the body. Researchers believe this one-two approach may contribute to the apparent ability of cruciferous vegetables to reduce the risk of cancer more effectively than any other plant food group.

Cabbage builds strong bones, dampens allergic reactions, reduces inflammation and promotes gastrointestinal health. Cabbage is routinely juiced (find out how to make it) as a natural remedy for healing peptic ulcers due to its high glutamine content. It also provides significant cardiovascular benefit by preventing plaque formation in the blood vessels. In Chinese medicine, cabbage is used to treat constipation, the common cold, whooping cough, depression, irritability and stomach ulcers.
How much: The more cabbage you can include in your diet, the better.

Tips: Try raw sauerkraut. It has all the health properties of cabbage, plus some potent probiotics, which are excellent for digestive health. Use the whole cabbage; the outer leaves contain a third more calcium than the inner leaves. Both are nutritional stars, but red cabbages are far superior to the white variety, with about seven times more vitamin C and more than four times the polyphenols.

10. Broccoli
You’ll find it difficult to locate another single food source with as much naturally occurring health-promoting properties as broccoli (benefits). A single cup of steamed broccoli provides more than 200 percent of the RDA for vitamin C (again, more than oranges), nearly as much of vitamin K, and about half of the daily allowance for vitamin A, along with plentiful folate, fiber, sulfur, iron, B vitamins and a whole host of other important nutrients. Broccoli contains about twice the amount of protein as steak (more high-protein foods).

Broccoli’s phytochemicals fight cancer by neutralizing carcinogens and accelerating their elimination from the body, in addition to inhibiting tumors caused by chemical carcinogens. Studies show evidence that these substances help prevent lung and esophageal cancers.

Phytonutrients called indoles found in broccoli help protect against prostate, gastric, skin, breast and cervical cancers. Extensive studies have linked broccoli to a 20 percent reduction in heart disease risk. In Chinese medicine, broccoli is used to treat eye inflammation.
How much: If you can eat a little broccoli every day, your body will thank you for it. If you can’t swing it, aim for eating it as regularly as possible. Like many other vegetables, broccoli provides fantastic nutrition both in its raw form and when it’s properly cooked.

Tip: Steaming or cooking broccoli lightly releases the maximum amount of the antioxidant sulforaphane.

11. Kale
Kale is highly nutritious, has powerful antioxidant properties and is anti-inflammatory (get nutritional facts). One cup of cooked kale contains an astounding 1,328 percent of the RDA for vitamin K, 192 percent of the RDA for vitamin A and 89 percent of the RDA for vitamin C. It’s also a good source of calcium and iron.

Kale is in the same plant family as another cruciferous superfood and contains high levels of the cancer-fighting compound sulforaphane. The indoles in kale have been shown to protect against breast, cervical and colon cancers. The vitamin K in kale promotes blood clotting, protects the heart and helps build strong bones by anchoring calcium to the bone. Kale has more antioxidant power than another leafy green and is extra-rich in beta-carotene (containing seven times as much as does broccoli), lutein and zeaxanthin (10 times the amount in broccoli). In Chinese medicine, kale is used to help ease lung congestion.
How much: Like cabbage, the more kale you can eat, the better. A daily serving is ideal.

Tips: Kale’s growing season extends nearly year-round; the only time it’s out of season is summer, when plenty of other leafy greens are abundant. Steam or sauté kale on its own, or add it to soups and stews. Kale is also a great addition when it’s blended in fruit smoothies or juiced with other vegetables.

12. Dandelion
The same pesky weed known for ruining lawns (see photos) has a long history of being used as a healing herb in cultures around the globe. One cup of raw dandelion greens provides 535 percent of the RDA of vitamin K and 112 percent of the RDA for vitamin A. Dandelion greens are also a good source of vitamin C, calcium, iron, fiber and potassium. Among all foods, it’s one of the richest sources of vitamin A and one of the best sources of beta-carotene.

Dandelion has been used for centuries to treat hepatitis, kidney and liver disorders such as kidney stones, jaundice and cirrhosis. It’s routinely prescribed as a natural treatment for hepatitis C, anemia and liver detoxification. As a natural diuretic (find others), dandelion supports the entire digestive system and increases urine output, helping flush toxins and excess salt from the kidneys. The naturally occurring potassium in dandelions helps prevent the loss of potassium that can occur with pharmaceutical diuretics.

Dandelion promotes digestive health by stimulating bile production, resulting in a gentle laxative effect. Inulin (what’s that?) further aids digestion by feeding the healthy probiotic bacteria in the intestines; it also increases calcium absorption and has a beneficial effect on blood sugar levels, therefore being useful in treating diabetes. Both the dandelion leaves and root are used to treat heartburn and indigestion. The pectin in dandelion relieves constipation and, in combination with vitamin C, reduces cholesterol. Dandelion is excellent for reducing edema, bloating and water retention; it can also help reduce high blood pressure. On top of all that, dandelion contains multiple antidiarrheal and antibacterial properties.

In Chinese medicine, dandelion is used in combination with other herbs to treat hepatitis and upper respiratory tract infections such as bronchitis and pneumonia. The sap from the stem and root is a topical remedy for warts (find more natural remedies).
How much: How much dandelion to incorporate into your diet boils down to availability and personal preference. Dandelion greens are considered a specialty item in some areas and therefore can be difficult to find. They also have a pungent taste, and people tend to love or hate the flavor.

Tips: Use the root in soups or sauté it on its own. If the raw leaves are too bitter for you, try them lightly steamed or sautéed.

Referenced article here: http://on-msn.com/tzO2ya