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Kevin Gardner

I get that articles about almond milk are usually written by healthier people than me, but let me throw in my two cents.

Almond milk has been used for years as a substitute for cow milk and is readily available in stores or can be made at home with the use of a blender. Almond milk with its many health benefits is a great option for those who have cow milk intolerance or vegans. Almond milk is low in fat but high in energy and contains minerals like phosphorus, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, potassium and a number of nutrients including vitamins E and C.

While almond milk has many health benefits it’s important to note that it doesn’t provide as much calcium or protein as cow’s milk, so there is a trade-off there. One cup of almond milk has one gram of protein while one cup of cow’s milk has eight grams and two milligrams of calcium versus 300 milligrams in cow’s milk. Commercial almond milk has dietary additives that add protein and calcium and may be thickened with carrageenan.

Heart health

Since there is no cholesterol in almond milk, it is ideal for a strong and healthy heart. Recent studies have suggested that consuming almonds helps reduce significantly the possibility of coronary heart disease. Many cardiovascular ailments can be traced to bad cholesterol levels. Almond milk is rich in potassium that acts as a vasodilator meaning it widens the arteries that reduces the strain and tension on the heart.

Kidney health

Certain minerals can be harmful to the kidneys in excessive amounts such as potassium and calcium. Almond milk contains much less phosphorus and potassium than soy and dairy products. People with acute or chronic kidney problems should try to limit the intake of foods that contain these minerals in high amounts and almond milk is ideal in this regard.

Skin Health

Keeping your skin in top conditionrequires different types of minerals and vitamins. Almond milk contains plenty of vitamin E, which is beneficial in maintaining good skin health. Along with vitamins, almond milk also has antioxidants, which help in repairing damaged skin. Both the almond milk that is sold commercially as well as the milk that is made at home contains these vitamins. In addition, it can be used to wash the skin and for the best results, rosewater can be added.

Muscle strength and blood sugar

Although almond milk only contains one gram of protein per serving, it contains plenty of B vitamins and iron, which are important for muscle growth and healing. Almond milk is very low in carbohydrates, so it will not cause a noticeable rise in blood sugar level, which reduces your risk of developing diabetes. The sugars aren’t stored as fat and the body will use the carbohydrates for energy.

Almond milk does not contain lactose or cholesteroland can be made by using a blender to grind the almonds with water after soaking them overnight. This is the simplest and easiest way to make the delicious and nutritious milk. It has a creamy texture and nutty flavor that is similar to cow’s milk. This is what makes it a popular choice for those with dairy intolerance or vegans.

Almond milk can also be purchased commercially. These drinks will have additional nutrients added to enrich the content of the product and come in different flavors such as vanilla, chocolate or plain. For health reasons, it’s better to choose almond milk without any sugar added. Most brands are also enriched with minerals, vitamins or protein. If you are not eating dairy products, it may be beneficial if you choose products enriched with calcium to make up for any deficiency. Almond milk is very low in fat so you can add almond milk to your diet without any fear of putting on weight.

Kevin Gardner

Bone broth has been touted as a miracle food for years. The claims surrounding it seem to be at odds with science, but there is no doubt that there are some benefits to adding it to your diet. Here are three ways you can enjoy what bone broth has to offer you.

Boost Your Immune System

Remember when you got sick with a cold or the flu, and you were prescribed chicken soup to make you feel better? There's a scientific reason for that. It appears that chicken - the meat and the bones - contain properties that may help reduce inflammationand fight off infection.

While this study is for chicken soup, bone broth is an equal substitute. You'll still be using plenty of vegetables and chicken parts, except you'll be using the bones more than the meat. But the warmth of the liquid and the nutritional value can help you, especially when you're feeling ill and you don't want to eat anything.

The best way to prepare your broth is to use organic foods. The lack of chemicals and pesticides make it more likely that your body will be absorbing wholesome, healthy nutrients. Jordan Rubin, author of "The Makers Diet"has been eating organic food most of his life. He swears by it, and claims he was able to turn his life around thanks to following an organic diet.

So if you're going to make bone broth, make sure you grab organic ingredients. It's a little more expensive, but, in the long run, it's actually much cheaper than buying cough medicine. The benefits of over-the-counter drugs are temporary. The benefits of bone broth will last a lifetime.

Enjoy More Energy

Kobe Bryant swears by bone broth.This iconic athlete has passed on his obsession to his teammates. Now the Los Angeles Lakers drink bone broth after their workouts, not just for nutritional benefits, but because it gives them a lot of energy.

The Lakers' chef takes eight hours to prepare enough bone broth to feed 30 people, which may be more like 60 or 90 if you consider the appetites of athletes. They take it after workouts to recover the nutrients in their body that they've lost. It's like a sports drink, but better. Kobe even has some as a pregame meal.

When you need energy, just have a cup of bone broth. Eight ounces can help you get your to-do list done without feeling that 2:30 pm "crash" that's common in our society today.

Lose a Bit of Weight

Bone broth is often touted as an aid for weight loss. Even Prevention recommends itin one of its diet plans to jump start your weight loss. Why is that?

Bone broth helps reduce your appetite, thus ensuring you eat less. Eating less translates to weight loss, but you don't want to starve yourself. The key is to use bone broth as a part of your weight loss plan, without ignoring the rest of your daily nutritional needs.

You'll still need fruits, vegetables, protein and plenty of water. But bone broth can provide a natural appetite suppressant while also providing you with vitamins and minerals. People usually take a multivitamin while on a diet, because their nutrition is lacking. But if you find the right diet, you won't need one.

What about all of those articles and experts saying bone broth does nothing for you? Well, remember that everyone's body is different. While there are no scientific studies that definitively conclude that bone broth is a super food, there are countless people out there who have been drinking bone broth for years. They can tell you, without a doubt, that the health benefits being touted are real.

However, the benefits are not instant. You will have to take bone broth for a few weeks before you start to notice any changes in your diet. There's no time like the present to start, so go find a recipe and get cooking.

Kevin Gardner

It's a common obstacle when you're trying to get in better shape – you need to work out, but you feel like there's not enough time in the day. When your daily schedule is already packed, it's difficult to add an hour-long exercise routine.

But there's no rule saying that you need to work out for half an hour or more each time. If you know what to do, you can get a great workout completed in 20 minutes or less, making it easy to stay active with minimal changes to your schedule. Here are three great simple, fast fitness routines that you should consider when you want to work out but you're short on time.

1. Running with Intervals

High-intensity interval training(HIIT) is a popular option for working up a sweat without spending an hour on your cardio. With HIIT, you could complete your workout in 10 minutes or less. All you need to do is switch between periods of high and low-intensity exercise.

You can give HIIT a try with any cardio you like, but this routine uses running. First, you should warm up to get the blood flowing and loosen up your muscles. After that, go through a series where you switch between jogging for 45 seconds and sprinting as fast as you can for 15 seconds. Depending on your current physical condition, you could do this for anywhere from five to 15 minutes.

Feel free to adjust the periods of jogging and sprinting as necessary. If you're unable to sprint for the full high-intensity period, then shorten it. If you're doing it easily, then extend the high-intensity period and shorten the low-intensity period.

2. Circuit Training with Resistance Bands

Circuit training essentially blends cardio with resistance training. You perform typical resistance exercises, such as pushups and squats, but you rest little or not at all in-between them.

Bodyweight exercises are a common choice for circuit training, because it's easy to go from one exercise to the next without delay. To add another element to the workout, you can incorporate resistance bandsinto a circuit routine. These can make certain exercises tougher and assist you in others. For example, if you want to know how to do more pull ups, consider using a resistance band to help with each rep and allow you to do more.

For a five-exercise resistance band circuit, try 20 reps each of set of pull ups, lunges, push ups, squats and bicep curls. Repeat this circuit three to four times for a full workout.

3. Jumping Rope

A jump rope is more than just a playground toy, as it's also an excellent way to do some quick cardio. You could just jump rope for 15 minutes straight, but you'll have a more exciting and effective workout if you try different jump rope moves.

When it comes to jump rope moves, you have your standard jump, jumping on alternating feet, jumping with alternating high steps, switching your feet as you jump and going from side to side as you jump. If you're especially good with a jump rope, you can give double jumps a try.

For a jump rope workout, choose a few moves you want to do and switch between them every three to five minutes. For example, you could start with four minutes of basic jumping, four minutes of side to side jumping, four minutes of alternate leg jumping and close it out with one minute of double jumps.

You can certainly get a solid workout completed in a short amount of time. All you need to do is stay active the whole time and be creative with your exercise choices. Give the routines above a try or use them as inspiration to set up a routine that's entirely your own.

Doug Dougie

One of the big secrets that elite athletes and even high performing gymgoers understand is that it’s not enough to just work hard in the gym when you are working out. Taking care of your body between those sessions is where your muscles actually grow stronger, and where those adaptations are taking place that will ensure that you are coming back to the gym or the playing field tomorrow a little stronger.

Here’s some simple things you can do to help make sure that you are making the most of your recovery so that you can crush it the next time you walk into the gym:

Get lots of sleep tonight. Hands down sleep is the biggest performance aid there. From improving cognitive function to decreasing rate of perceived effort getting more rest is the ultimate way to be a better athlete. And when it comes to recover? Well, you better believe that a well rested athlete is going to be a more recovered athlete. In terms of enjoyment, and how more sleep can positively impact every single aspect of your life, getting more pillow time is a no brainer.

Hit up an EMS machine. Okay, so this is one isn’t going to be as obvious as getting more sleep, but a few different studies with swimmers, runners and even non-athletes have shown how effective that using an EMS machine can be for clearining lactate from our bloodstream, encourage muscle growth and repair, and even kickstart CNS recovery. I take my Marc Pro EMS machine with me everywhere that I go—especially on days where I don’t have enough time for a proper warm-down or when I am on the road. You can get the same benefit of active recovery sitting down, and perhaps most critically, you can target exact muscle groups that are in need of TLC that are difficult to hit with your usual warm down.

Drink more water. Like sleep, this is another one of those “yeah, I know” things that most people still manage to overlook. Just how prevalent is dehydration? With NCAA division 1 athletes—people who literally know better—researchers found that well over half of them were dehydrated when they were spot-checked for hydration intermittently over the course of their season. Water, like sleep, affects your cognitive function, and makes your practices and gym sessions harder than they should feel. And of course, with your body being made mostly of water your systems require it to help deliver much-needed nutrients and minerals to damaged muscle and tissue after working out.

In sum: working out all the time and pushing our bodies to the very limits of what they are capable of is tough, not only physically, but also mentally. In order to give yourself the best chance to test those limits more often—and as a result, see a cascade of improvement much more quickly than you would otherwise—follow these three simple steps to a quicker and more thorough recovery.