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Healthy Begins at Bedtime: Go to Sleep!

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Listen up, Sleeping Beauty: When it comes to health, QUALITY SLEEP just might be the most overlooked element there is. While optimized nutrition changes are an integral piece of vibrant health, sleep is another critical one to heal and restore your body.


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Restorative, blissful sleep is often hard to come by—but oh so critical to your health and well-being. Even more importantly, a LACK of sleep can cause serious damage, affecting your body’s ability to maintain:

MEMORY & FOCUS – Deep sleep helps with memory consolidation—where the brain processes events of the day, making memories and links. More quality sleep helps you remember and process things better. STAY SHARP: SLEEP!

WEIGHT LOSS – Poor sleep patterns mess around with your appetite, which control hormones. The rise in cortisol can cause adrenal fatigue and also make you hold fat around your middle. STAY SLIM: GO TO SLEEP!

RECOVERY – The sleeping body works hard repairing protein breakdown and damage caused by stress, ultraviolet rays, and muscle exertion. Your cells produce more protein while sleeping. STAY YOUNG & STRONG: SLEEP.

DISEASE PREVENTION – The connections to lack of sleep and heart disease, diabetes, and cancer are profound. Sleep also helps your body stay in a calmer state, reducing stress and anxiety. STAY CALM & SLEEP ON.

You can improve virtually every function of your mind and body by making a few small tweaks to your bedtime routine:

TIPS FOR HOW TO SLEEP BETTER:

  1. COZY COMFORT. A quality mattress, good sheets (we love Peacock Alley), soft blankets and cool temperature will reduce annoying distractions and help you relax.
  2. TURN OFF TECH at least 1 hour before going to bed. That type of light really affects your sleep….which leads me to:
  3. COMPLETE DARKNESS. If your room isn’t completely dark, consider a sleep mask. This will also increase your natural production of melatonin, a sleep inducer and cancer fighter.
  4. SKIP OR REDUCE CAFFEINE. Caffeine not only prevents you from falling asleep at night initially, but also decreases the amount of restful sleep.
  5. EASY ON THE ALCOHOL & SUGAR. Alcohol feels like a sedative at first as it slows motor and brain function, but as it’s metabolized acetaldehyde is produced, which acts like a stimulant.
  6. BATHS.  Bathing with Epsom salts (and lavender oil) is a great way to prepare for a restful night of sleep. An evening bath is a beautiful ritual that nourishes mind, body and spirit, and disrupts less healthy habits.
  7. EXERCISE. Fit in 20-30 min of moderate exercise daily, but several hours before bed. Try simple yoga stretches daily.  It can dramatically increase your sleep quality.
  8. CLEAR YOUR MIND. Hit the reset button on your mind. Before going to bed, journal. Try a guided sleep meditation from HeadSpace. If you can’t fall asleep after lying in bed for 15 minutes, get up and do something relaxing for 15-30 minutes before returning to bed.
  9. SLEEP ENHANCING SUPPLEMENTS like magnesium (CALM Tea). It is a great way to stay regular, quell anxiety, treat menstrual cramps, allay menopausal symptoms. Also, 300mg of passionflower or 320mg of valerian root extract before bed can relax and help you sleep better.

 

Bottom line? Get at least 7 to 9 HOURS of sleep every night. You really are NOT one of those people who only needs 5 hours of sleep. It’s just not possible. Good sleep helps you shed fat, keep disease at bay, and stay focused. When it comes to your overall health, focus, weight, and immunity, radiant GEMs know SLEEP IS WHERE IT’S AT! 


22 Healthy Snacks Teens Will Devour

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Don’t get in the way of a hungry teen looking for sustenance. Their growing bodies and brains need healthy snacks when they need them. So if you wait for them to start rummaging through the kitchen, you may have already lost the battle for healthy food.



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Teens will snack on what is in front of them, whatever it is. So keep a few options out or in the fridge and they’ll be sure to eat them up.

22 TEEN-APPROVED SNACK IDEAS

Healthy Snacks for Teens

  1. Organic stove-top popcorn with coconut oil and sea salt. Dee-lish.
  2. Sliced cucumbers and carrots marinated in lime juice and salt. Sooo good!
  3. Organic chips with fresh pico, salsa, guacamole and bean dip.
  4. Nachos with pinto beans and organic Mexican cheese
  5. Sunflower seeds. Pistachios are fun to eat. Toast your own pumpkin seeds.
  6. Turkey Muffins. Sounds weird, but they are yummy and easy to make.
  7. GEM Hummus Snack Pack, or make your own. Have you tried our “Ranch” dip?
  8. Sliced apples with organic almond or peanut butter.
  9. Always have Cutie oranges, grapes, or bananas for an easy grab.
  10. Make a smoothie! Blend 1 frozen banana with 1 cup almond milk, raw cacao and organic peanut butter for a yummy treat. Better yet, make a Sparkle Berry smoothie. They will love you!
  11. Speaking of The GEM, the Badass 3 Bean Salad is a big hit with the kids.
  12. Avocado toast with lemon, cayenne, and sea salt.
  13. Mini pizzas made with whole grain English muffins, fresh marinara, mozzarella.
  14. Lentil soup or turkey chili with all the fixings.
  15. Simple Mills crackers are yummy (and gluten free)!
  16. Kids love Sami’s Cinnamon Chips. These high-fiber, low-sugar snacks will disappear. Available at The GEM.
  17. Pre-make whole wheat or banza chickpea pasta and keep a clean and healthy Pomodoro sauce or pesto on hand for a quick pasta break.
  18. Keep grass-fed taco meat and whole wheat tortillas in the fridge for quick quesadillas. When buying tortillas or taco seasoning, look for brands that have simple ingredients. Mission or Taco Bell does not.
  19. Steam frozen organic edamame and add sea salt.
  20. Make-ahead yogurt parfaits in a small Mason jar! Mix Greek or Kite Hill yogurt with Marge (available at The GEM) or Kind granola and berries, and drizzle honey on top.
  21. Healthy protein bars. Look for ones like Clif, Perfect, and Vega with simple ingredients and no harmful chemicals.
  22. Special treat: Homemade cookies and brownies! Just use organic flours, whole butters, and real chocolates — or mixes that do the same like King Arthur or Immaculate Baking Company. A little goodness goes a long way. These treats should be treated as just that — treats.

 

Find one or two your teen likes and try out new ones every week. Keep a few on your shopping list, and they’ll never run out of options.


5 Ways to Tame a Teen Junk-Food Junkie

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Is your teenager slowly transforming into a junk food junkie? It’s a real threat to their health — and your sanity. At the very stage they need it most, they opt for junk instead of nutritious foods! The struggle is real.


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Nutrition affects the 4 As: athletics, academics, attitude, and appearance. Majorly important to teenagers — and they need to know it. Inflammatory junk foods such as fast food, sodas, potato chips, sweets, etc., cause seriously negative effects.

Junk Food Consequences

  • Acne.Teen Diet Nutrition Junk Food
  • Low energy, sluggishness.
  • Inability to focus/concentrate/ADHD (largely affected by artificial dyes and lack of good fats and proteins.)
  • Allergies! (Check out The Unhealthy Truth by Robyn O’Brien. Infuriating!)
  • Mood swings, anxiety, anger, hormones. (Food can be a big factor in managing mood.)
  • Weight gain or risk of obesity.

 

A change is needed! It’s a lot to take in. But if we can help them adopt a few good habits, we keep them thriving, healthy and happy — straight into adulthood.

I don’t suggest coming in full swing with kale chips and sprouted quinoa burgers. Start slowly. Remember it’s never too late to end junk food habits; but it does start with you.

5 Tips for Feeding Teens

  1. MODEL GOOD NUTRITION. Practice what you preach. Show your teens how to make healthier choices — like by having grab-and-go options always available — so they learn the connection between good food and good health. It may be hard, but modeling behavior is part of our job as parents.
  2. MAKE IT RELEVANT. For this to sink in, the nutritional message has to mean something to them. Be specific. Tell them how food affects their growth, their looks, their feelings, their academic and sports performance, or whatever seems to be the most important to the teen during that particular week. Tell your child that eating lots more green leafy vegetables and less dairy or sugar will eliminate breakouts, or skipping the french fries and milkshake might make for a better basketball game.
  3. EAT MORE QUALITY PROTEIN — at every meal.The growing teenage brain and body need protein. Protein gives the body the building blocks it needs to repair and renew, and it also serves as a source of energy and keeps them from craving sweets. Try wild fish, organic chicken, grass-fed beef. Nut butters are also good sources of protein — just make sure they are all natural and not loaded with sugars.
  4. CLEAN OUT THE PANTRY. Start out small with foods containing with artificial colors (banned in Europe) and sweeteners immediately. Artificial sweeteners are known to cause 93 unsavory side effects including brain tumors. Food colorings are known to cause tumors, ADHD, allergies, and lots of other problems. Even replacing superbad junk with organic, non-GMO junk is a non-toxic step in the right direction. But be thorough. Even the most unsuspecting of foods, like bread or tortillas, can have more chemicals in them than you can count — much less pronounce — so read the labels.
  5. EAT BREAKFAST — the most important meal of the day. This is so true for kids when it comes to brain development, daily energy levels, and ability to focus. Think protein-rich eggs, low-sugar smoothies, oatmeal, breakfast tacos. Fruit Loops are not an option. Sugary cereals and drinks have no place at breakfast — they give brains nothing to function with — and the accompanying sugar spike and drop makes kids cranky. Special note: Breakfast may be your only chance of the day to influence their choices. It also can be a great way to spend a moment with your kids — that you otherwise might not have!

 

Ultimately, good nutrition comes down to a lifestyle, not a week or so of regimented consumption (returning straight to their favorite junk foods). Armed with an understanding of this, teens can start making informed choices that will support them for the rest of their lives. Thoughts? Questions? Leave a comment!

 


5 Ways to Stay Shiny This Flu Season

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Happy cold and flu season! It’s that time of year during which we’re surrounded by a turbulent sea of germ-y sickness, just waiting to swallow you up.


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Want to stay above the virus-infested waters? Get your life raft in order. That means boosting your immune system and flooding your body with health and wellness. Then, you’ll be better equipped to combat illnesses and quickly dispense with any bug that you do catch. And we’ve got some super powered tips to get you there.

 

5 Ways To Stay Strong, Shiny, Bright and Well

Cold and flu season tips at the GEM Juice Bar Dallas

1. EAT GOOD STUFF. But don’t just focus on one nutrient. Sure, vitamin C helps keep your immune system strong, so include foods like orange, blueberries, peppers, and broccoli. But those should be just one part of a whole-food, plant-based diet featuring lots of in-season vegetables. Our made-from-scratch MVP Soup, with four to five servings of 13 different veggies, packs rich nutrients into a warm cup of ridiculous yumminess. Keep extra servings on hand for on-the-go nourishment.

2. DRINK YOUR JUICE. If you struggle to get the recommended eight servings of veggies each day, try juicing! Consume juices that consist of three parts vegetables to one part fruit. Our Ruby Slipper, a blend of carrot, beet, lemon, ginger, and cucumber packs a stress-busting combination that fortifies your immune system. A Green Glow has been known to cure all that ails you! Add turmeric and E3 boosts for a little immune-supporting punch.

3. FEED YOUR GUT. Good bacteria — key to healthy gut flora — diminish inflammation, supporting our immune system and preventing illness. Antibiotics, stress, and poor diet compromise this balance. So, during this season, make sure you’re consuming probiotic-packed foods, like sauerkraut or organic miso. Daily shots of raw ACV also help. But it’s imperative to add a probiotic supplement like Bio Kult — a great one that doesn’t require refrigeration.

4. DO SOME SHOTS. That includes Fresh Turmeric and Ginger. Make sure you get your dose of these two —the most anti-inflammatory, immunity boosting spices you can consume. Try daily Immunity Shots at The GEM. Or you can buy the Immunity Mix (turmeric, ginger, lemon) in 8-ounce bottles and make your own super-powered ImmuniTEA with raw honey at home. It’s SO good, too. And don’t forget Elderberry Syrup. This is an age-old remedy that not only works to keep you healthy, but it also tastes good! Buy it by the bottle, or in our Allergy Mix, which includes tart cherry and Bragg’s ACV to quell inflammation.

5. TAKE YOUR SUPPLEMENTS. While we do believe your diet must be clean and pristine to stay strong, immune boosting supplements and tinctures can provide the final gloss on ensuring your health for the season. If you do find yourself feeling a little under the weather, immediately down our Cold’s Cocktail, a tonic that helps push that cold on through. Our latest miracle, Counter Attack clears congested sinuses and pushes your cold on through with a badass blend of Vitamin C, Zinc, elderberry, probiotics, echinacea, amino acids. You gotta get some of this stuff!

 

To Recap: Your Cold and Flu Season Arsenal

Cold and flu season prevention The GEM Juice Bar Dallas

1. Good, clean food. MVP Soup and Bone Broth

2. Juice. Green Juice. Any of it

3. Probiotics

4. Shots like our Immunity and Allergy (Turmeric, Elderberry in bulk)

5. Supplements like Cold’s Cocktail and Counter Attack boosters

 

Stay healthy, my friends! And see you inside The GEM.


Get Lit. Let’s Do Shots!

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Back in the day, if you wanted a partner to do bar shots with, I was your girl! I’m older now, more responsible, and (slightly) smarter. But who doesn’t like a good shot  — especially one that gets you going — and keeps you going? Superfood healthy shots have become the new party trick.


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All of the fun; none of the hangover. Belly up to the bar and serve yourself some seriously potent GEM shots of immune boosting, energy inducing, detox supporting ingredients from nature’s saloon. Turmeric, ginger, elderberry, E3 live are just a few concoctions to help you get lit with health.

Organic Juice Shots

Below is a bartender’s guide to all that’s shot worthy inside the GEM. Standard pours include:

GINGER

For healthy digestion and immunity. This nutritional gem warms the body and boasts antinausea, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant compounds. Ginger helps support healthy metabolism and digestion. You can even add a shot to your tea!

TURMERIC

For Inflammation. Nature’s Advil. This orange root is a powerhouse of protection—even against heart disease. It is the “ANTI” food: Anti-cancer, anti-inflammation, anti-Alzheimer’s, anti-aging. Add turmeric to everything!

IMMUNITY SHOT: Ginger + Lemon + Turmeric + Adaptogenic Mushrooms

To cleanse, detoxify, and lessen inflammation. Feeling icky? This is our best-selling shot thought to lessen the symptoms of a cold. In addition to turmeric and ginger, Lemon is alkalizing and has a kick of vitamin C. The boost of mushroom tincture adds cancer-fighting compounds that can help reduce inflammation, pain and support metabolism.   

BRIGHT LIKE A DIAMOND/ E3 / Blue Magic

For detox, brain health, metabolism, energy. Bright Like a Diamond shot contains spirulina, ginger, cayenne. Blue-green algae (sold as E3 Live or Spirulina) boasts vitamins A, C, E, B12, and B6, calcium, magnesium, and iron. Some of this goodness comes from cyacyanobacteria — and that blue color signifies loads of antioxidants.

ALLERGY SHOT: Elderberry + Tart Cherry + Ginger + ACV

For allergy relief, joint pain. This combo works! It’s loaded with potent anti-inflammatory compounds. Elderberry has been used for centuries to quell allergies and fight off colds and flu. You can take Elderberry straight — it tastes amazing, and your kids will love it. ACV promotes healthy gut bacteria, balances blood sugar, reduces acid reflux, and helps lower cholesterol.

PERFORM: Beet Juice + Lemon

For recovery, stamina, liver detox, and athletic performance. Rich in natural chemicals called nitrates, beets are a miraculous addition to your daily routine. Your body changes nitrates into nitric oxide, which helps with blood flow and blood pressure.

 

Scared to shoot it straight? Add these shots to your Green Glow or even your Cameo. This time it’s ok to be overserved. Get a good mix of

shots, and round out your cocktail hour with a bang. Couple the Immunity Shot with the Perform. Or add one to your juice. Float a ginger shot into your hot tea. Just do it. Your only hangover will be shining bright. Cheers to your health!

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Cancer DOES Define Me

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Full disclosure. I’ve worked really hard over the last 9 years to put my cancer treatment and journey behind me. I am really a master, it seems, of compartmentalizing (almost all) experiences that were traumatic in my life. A great coping skill to eliminate emotional baggage. After fighting cancer, I liked to say, “I will not let cancer define me.” And I was adamant about it.

fighting-cancer-gratitude

But the truth of the matter is cancer has defined me. The experience truly made me who I am today. I can’t deny it. I am brighter, shinier, stronger. It is the reason The GEM is here. 

I came to this realization while recently attending a luncheon honoring a fabulous GEM friend and cancer survivor. This event raised millions for the fight against breast cancer — providing access to advanced diagnostic equipment, innovative clinical research, and most importantly, safe, quality, compassionate care for those fighting cancer. Awesome. The theme was about acknowledging all that cancer brings: anger, fear, hope, love, courage, commitment and acknowledging that together we are strong and together we can do it. I expected that. But as I pushed around the almonds on my banquet arugula salad, something rocked me like a hurricane.

I experienced something profound. And unexpected.

As I listened to the stories of others affected by cancer, I became overwhelmed by a sense of immeasurable gratitude. Gratitude for the experience fighting cancer brought me. For the incredible care I was afforded in Dallas. The love and care shown me by friends. This support system is the reason I survived. The reason I thrive.

CANCER CHANGED MY LIFE

Fighting cancer impacted my life in 3 three ways:

  1. Made me more grateful and mindful of the blessings in my life: My husband who is solid gold. My parents’ unwavering support. My cadre of Rockstar friends. My health. I FIND GRATITUDE in every moment. That kind of positive perspective changes the reality of things.
  2. Changed how I responded to conflict. I breathe deep and know I will GATHER MY PEACE. Because at the end of the day, is it really worth it to stress and blow over big and small stuff? Hell no.
  3. Transformed how I looked at FOOD, and the POWER of it on my physical and mental health. The GEM is the manifestation of my new view on all that nourishes me.

 

FIGHTING CANCER CONTINUES

To continue my cancer-free life, I now do these three things every day to launch a preemptive strike in the fight against the disease:

  1. Wake each morning to 32 oz. of water, deep breathing, and organic green tea. This routine includes listing three things I am grateful for. This changes my situational perspective. (Here’s one way you can use your morning routine to brighten your day.)
  2. Surround myself with shiny, happy people and places that lift me up. I find all of that
    inside The GEM community!
  3. Eat GREEN and CLEAN. Drink my celery juice first thing. By 11 a.m., I’ve already knocked back a kickass cup of MVP soup. (That means I’ve had seven servings of veggies before noon!). You can start by adding one extra green to every meal. It makes a big difference in my energy, mood, and waistline.

 

The truth is I’m grateful for what cancer has done in my life and the person I’ve become. Cancer does define me. And I’m proud of that. Thanks for allowing me to be honest. With you. With myself.


Celery Juice: Stalking Our Health; Making Us Better!

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I added something incredible to my morning routine — and I’m obsessed. Nothing fancy, just organic celery juice with lemon.

Odd, yes. But fresh, raw celery has lots to offer our health…and has been quietly hiding its potential for years! Celery is anti-inflammatory, detoxifying and gut-friendly. There are so many incredible health benefits, and they are magnified by JUICING. FOR REAL PEOPLE, I see the difference!

Now, I’m not saying you should toss your Green Glow altogether. Quite the contrary. Deep leafy green juice has its amazing properties and place in your daily juice routine. Save your Platinum, Flawless or Green Glow for later in the day! Here’s why you should be sipping this simple green juice every morning.

The benefits of celery go beyond the gut. From the thyroid to the liver, celery is the GEM that will make your health shine.

BENEFITS OF CELERY JUICE

GUT BENEFITS: Special nutrients in the fiber come alive when juiced. These nutrients promote optimal function of the digestive tract, relaxing and soothing the nerves damaged by unhealthy food choices, and lowering inflammation. That makes celery juice perfect for folks with IBS, Crohn’s, even colon cancer. The enzymes and mineral salts in celery help restore the HCL levels, so you better digest  and absorb food. I am here to tell you that things are moving beautifully on that front! The Medical Medium says that after just seven days, you could start feeling positive digestive effects! I agree!

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY: Celery contains a potent flavonoid that acts as an antioxidant and quells inflammation. It helps with JOINT PAIN, LUNG INFECTIONS, ASTHMA.

LOOK YOUR BEST: This wonder veggie as a natural diuretic, ridding your body of excess bloat AND reducing cravings. Also, the anti-inflammatory properties help clear up ACNE!!

THYROID SUPPORT: For thyroid-related issues, Celery is your girl! The mineral salts help fight and cleanse the body of the Epstein-Barr virus. Celery helps boost production of important thyroid hormones to help with hypothyroidism.

STRESS-RELIEF! The essential oils and minerals in celery, like magnesium, soothe the nervous system. Calm, anyone?

LIVER DETOX: Celery’s detoxifying properties work to remove bad bacteria, mold, viruses and other toxins from the liver. Also, the digestion support helps lessen the toxic burden on the liver.

HEALTHY HEART: The natural sodium helps lower blood pressure, reduce bad cholesterol, and lowers stroke risk.

HOW TO DRINK CELERY JUICE

Consume Celery juice first thing in the morning, on an empty stomach for maximum benefits when healing—then wait 15 minutes before you have anything else. These unique regenerating and healing properties can heal your gut, clear your skin, lower your blood pressure, and get you ready to party like a GEM rock star! DRINK YOUR (CELERY) JUICE!

SUPER ORGANIC NOTE: Celery is on the DIRTY DOZEN LIST, which means it’s sprayed with lots of chemicals and pesticides, so go organic, or GO TO THE GEM!