Health

  • Health and Wellness Books By Black Women That Will Improve Your Life

    *This post was originally posted on Wellanin Collective and has been partially reshared on this platform. It contains Amazon affiliate links that earn that site a small commission that goes towards keeping Wellanin Collective active.

    In a recent IG post, we talked about discovering some new titles for Black History Month. Well, we’re going to get you started. Here is a list of 12 wellness books by Black women that are designed to uplift and restore you. In this listing, you’ll find titles related to overall health, spirituality, wellness, healthy eating, fitness, and self-care. You’ll also find journals that will help guide you along the way.

    *Book descriptions are via Amazon

    Wellness Books By Black Women mommyrandr valerie pierre

    Vibrating higher daily is about making intentional day-to-day choices that lift us out of mindsets, habits, and lifestyles that don’t serve us and into ones that do. This book is an invitation to engage with everything that feeds our soul and raises our vibration and to simultaneously let go of the things bringing our energy down. Through poetry, mantras, and affirmations, Lalah Delia empowers us to live with higher potential and quality of being.

    BUY
    Own Your Glow: A Soulful Guide to Luminous Living and Crowning the Queen Within – By Latham Thomas

    Wellness Books By Black Women mommyrandr valerie pierre

    Own Your Glow is an inspirational, actionable, and wildly enriching companion for change. Celebrity wellness and lifestyle guru, Latham Thomas provides soulful principles that offer an illuminated path for examining life’s challenges, helping you curate your path to greatness while embracing your uniquely feminine attributes. Packed with rituals, meditations, and snackable lifestyle tips, Thomas provides a clear framework for harnessing your passion, developing spiritual fitness, and embracing true vulnerability. This guide is for anyone who wants to witness her own life transform and contribute to the positive change of the world around her.

    BUY
    Rachel Ama’s Vegan Eats: Tasty Plant-Based Recipes for Every Day – By Rachel Ama

    Wellness Books By Black Women mommyrandr valerie pierre

    Rachel Ama’s Vegan Eats offers brilliant plant-based dishes that make cooking and enjoying delicious vegan food every day genuinely easy—and fun. No bland or boring dishes, and forget all-day cooking. Rachel takes inspiration from naturally vegan dishes and cuisines as well as her Caribbean and West African roots to create great full-flavor recipes that are easy to make and will inspire you to make vegan food part of your daily life. Rachel’s recipes are quick and often one-pot; ingredients lists are short and supermarket friendly; dishes can be prepped ahead and, most importantly, she has included a song with each recipe so that you have a banging playlist to go alongside every plate of delicious food.

    BUY

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    Wellness Books By Black Women mommyrandr valerie pierre

    Are there any health and wellness books by Black women that have been helpful to you? Share in the comments below.
  • Seven Key Things You Need To Do In Order To Maintain Healthy Eyes

    Healthy Eyes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    The ability to see makes up a great part of how we view the world. Without sight, living can be limited. Yet few people ever see the need to care for their eyes. The eyes are often neglected until near/far-sightedness worsens or cataracts and glaucoma begins to limit vision.

    Despite being nearsighted since the second grade, you can count me in as someone who neglects her eyesight. Up until recently, it had been a decade since my last eye exam and I was wearing the same frames from 1997. Yeah, you read that right, 97. My mom got me some great Emporio Armani frames that set her back $500 plus. She told me in the store to never take them off and by 2018 aside from changing the lenses, I hadn’t. I think it’s safe to say she got more than her money’s worth.

    Thankfully, to my eyeballs credit, my prescription hasn’t changed much over the years hence my laziness to get a checkup. But that was the problem they had changed even if it was a little bit. My eyes had changed enough that I was straining to see. I forgot my 37-year-old eyes didn’t work the way they used to at 27.

    Not to mention, today’s technology doesn’t help matters as it creates conditions that degrade our eyesight. Along with millions of other people, I’m constantly looking at some sort of blue screen which steadily increases eye strain or even vision loss. Which means everyone needs to be diligent about their eye health.

    Maintaining healthy eyes naturally should be an important part of everyone’s life. Here are ways to keep your eyes healthy and sharp.

    An Eye-Healthy Diet

    Eye health starts with foods that improve eyesight. A diet of fresh fruit and vegetables. Dark green leafy vegetables like spinach, collard greens, and kale come loaded with lutein and zeaxanthin, carotenoids that help the eyes filter out harmful radiation. Carrots are a good source of beta-carotene that has protective effects on the eyes. Lycopene, bioflavonoids, proanthocyanidins, quercetin, and polyphenols are found in many brightly colored fruits and vegetables, including green tea.

    Antioxidants are effective in protecting the eyes from free-radical damage. Considering that most foods lack enough essential vitamins and minerals, supplementation with vitamins A, C, E, beta-carotene, and zinc can promote eye health. Bilberry, ginkgo Biloba and taurine help to improve night vision, enhance circulation to the eyes and support collagen production. Check out WebMD for a listing of foods that are good for your eyes.

    Include Omega-3 Fatty Acids In Your Diet

    Speaking of diets, in ancient cultures ate a diet that consisted of equal quantities of omega-3 and omega-6. Today’s diet leans heavily toward omega-6 but omega-3 contains DHA (Docosahexaenoic acid) and this particular fatty acid is praised for its many health benefits one of which includes eye health. While both are important, omega-3 is found in foods that are the least consumed. Fish such as sardines, salmon, herring, mackerel, trout, and tuna are the best sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Flaxseed also provides essential omega-3 oils but is versatile as it can be incorporated in almost any dish.

    Do Eye Exercises (Yes, it’s a thing)

    Eye muscles are constantly at work, but they experience a great deal of strain and fatigue when used through repetitive movements. These movements stem from reading, watching television, driving long distances, and working with computer screens. Eye exercises can help improve the elasticity of the eye muscles. Healthline lists a number of eye exercises to help you maintain your vision.

    Wear Sunglasses

    Wearing sunglasses protects your eyes from the sun’s ultraviolet rays, in addition to hiding your dark circled or bloodshot eyes. Now before you grab any old pair of shades make sure your sunnies can block 99% to 100% of UV rays. Also, you’ll want to look into frames with thick sides to keep the sun from hurting your eyes from the side.

    Keeping Blood Sugar in Balance

    High levels of glucose and insulin levels in the bloodstream are not only a recipe for diabetes, but they adversely affect eye health, particularly the small vessels that supply the eyes with the oxygen and nutrients the cells need to function properly. Keeping your blood sugar stable means eating fiber foods and less refined, high-calorie foods that raise blood sugar levels. While drugs help control blood sugar, they do not prevent the complications of blindness and neuropathy that affect so many diabetics Much of the problem is due to the lack of nutrients such as chromium, Gymnema Sylvestre, vanadyl sulfate and banaba leaf that can protect the eyes. Many diabetics do not have adequate levels of many vitamins and minerals that help enhance eye health.

    Take Device Breaks

    As I mentioned before, we spend a lot of time looking at computer monitors and phone screens for work and entertainment but what we have to remember is over time is our tv and phones contains blue light and too much exposure can affect our eyes. You can tell you’ve been looking at the screen too long when you’re eyes begin to notice you’re straining to see and your eyes begin to burn. Now because blue light travels all the way to the retina too much exposure can damage light-sensitive cells in the eye. This is why it’s crucial we take device breaks to give our eyes a rest, especially before bedtime.

    And the most important tip…

    Get Regular Eye Checkups

    Healthy Eyes mommyrandr valerie pierre

    I cannot stress enough how important it is to get your eyes checked annually, or when you find yourself straining to see. You will save yourself a lot of headaches and pain. And if you’re prescribed glasses for the love of humanity wear them. Yeah, you’re doing all of these things to keep your eyes healthy but if you aren’t wearing your glasses/contacts then you really aren’t doing shit as your eyes will get worse.

    *Extra Tip: Make sure to get glasses or contacts with a blue light filter and UV ray protection.

    Keeping healthy eyes and maintaining sharp eyesight is not as difficult as it may seem. Good eating habits, reducing eye strain, and keeping blood sugar in control will ensure that eyesight remains sharp without the macular deterioration that so many experience today.
  • 10 Tips For Taking Care of Yourself This Summer as a Stay at Home Mom

    Taking care of yourself this summer as a stay at home mom is just as important for yourself, as it is for your family. When you have a kid, your life may seem like it revolves around your child, and on some level, it does, especially during the summer months. Your schedule might be a little more hectic as you’re taking kids from one outdoor activity to another, or you start to go a little bonkers from staying indoors to beat the heat. And as a result, you may forget to take care of yourself.

    Here are some tips for taking care of yourself this summer as a stay at home parent

    Be sure to give yourself 6-8 hours of sleep

    Real talk, your sleep is important. It’s recommended that you get between six and eight hours of sleep a night, but as a parent, you’ll be faced with times when you’ll get less. Much less. So what’s the key to getting a good night’s rest? The most important thing (and I swear by this) is you must have a solid bedtime routine.

    This routine is more than hopping into bed at the same time every night and pulling up the covers. I’m talking about the steps you take that will send a signal to your body that it’s bedtime. My routine lasts about an hour cause I like to take my time. By the time I”m finished and get into bed I’m asleep in less than ten minutes.

    Another way that I make sure I’m well-rested is naps. Let’s face there are times you can get all the sleep in the world and still be tired during the day. I make no bones about my afternoon nap. It makes me feel refreshed. An hour to an hour and a half of sleep is a good way to make me feel like a new woman. So do yourself a favor and take yourself a nap whenever you can. Your mind and body will thank you for it.

    Make sure to eat and stay hydrated

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    Your health is just as important as your child’s health. Making sure to eat three meals a day to keep your energy up so you can keep up with your kid(s). It’s really easy to skip a meal when times get hectic, trust me I have and there wasn’t a time where it worked out for me. Missing a meal left me with headaches, not feeling like myself, and just plain ole angry.

    I also know during the summer you might not want to cook cause the heat outside and the heat in the kitchen isn’t fun. But Good Housekeeping has 60 quick summer dinner recipes that will have you in and out of the kitchen.

    And while you’re in the kitchen, make sure you’re drinking plenty of water. It’s summertime and you’re gonna be outside a lot more which means you need to prevent dehydration. How do you know you’re dehydrated? You’ll start to feel any number of things from thirst, headache, dizziness, and tiredness. You’ll also notice that your skin will feel super dry and your urine will be darker. To avoid this you should make sure you’re drinking at least eight or more 8-ounce glasses of water a day.

    Do an activity that would be considered good exercise

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    Exercise can help keep you in shape. If you’re stuck at home, you can do simple things like floor exercises or walk around the neighborhood. This can be especially helpful if you cannot afford a gym membership right now.

    But just because you’re exercising at home that doesn’t mean it has to be boring. There are tons of fitness videos you can follow right in your livingroom like yoga, pilates or even kickboxing. You can even involve your children too which might even lead to a nap afterward – although I can’t make any promises.

    As an additional tip, with it being summertime be on the lookout for any local free outdoor classes you can attend. But if you can afford a gym membership check out Classpass. This is my personal favorite as it allows me to attend different fitness classes all over the city. It’s my go-to for everything from candlelight yoga, barre class or a relaxing steam. Oh, and please before you start any workout regiment make sure you have the proper running shoe and don’t forget an SPF moisturizer of 30 or greater while outdoors.

    Take a family staycation

    Everything isn’t about venturing off to faraway lands. You and your family can have blast together at a nearby hotel. Make lasting memories with a little weekend poolside fun and rediscovering your neighborhood. It’s a great way for everyone to have a little escape without the big-ticket travel price.

    Keep your skin clean

    During the summer months, it’s imperative that you keep your skin clean. Sweat and dirt will clog your pores and can cause skin irritations or in worse cases infection. So you have to make sure your skin is cleansed and moisturized daily, or even twice a day.

    Now the thing to remember with your shower is that you don’t want the water too hot. I love hot showers year-round they soothe my body and make me feel rejuvenated. However, while hot water opens your pores to help you clean your skin but if it’s too hot water it will dry out your skin and can aggravate existing skin issues.

    Make it a good mix of hot and cool water. Taking a cool shower also has its benefits like increasing blood circulation and can even promote weight loss as you burn calories as you try to keep warm in the shower.

    Plan and delegate tasks to not overwork yourself

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    Feel frazzled and don’t know what day it is or can’t remember why you have a 9:30a appointment? Then it’s time to get yourself a planner. Mom brain is a serious thing. One minute you can remember your entire shopping list and the next minute you can’t remember where you left your coffee. This is why I suggest getting a planner. You don’t have to go crazy like some planner lovers unless you want to. It’s a fun hobby – but that’s another conversation. But you can get yourself a simple weekly planner to help you keep track of your appointments and other notes.

    Now that your day and week is planned out you can start to delegate other things around your home. It’s okay to want to be the super parent, but sometimes, a little help can reduce your stress, and also allow time for family fun. If you’re married or have a partner, get them involved if they aren’t already. Get them involved by bathing the kids or taking them to the park. If you have a child that is old enough assign them some chores.

    Remember, the key to running a household and raising children is to never overwork yourself.

    Log off the internet

    Social media can be addicting. It’s important for you to take breaks from time to time. Log off for a couple of hours, a day, a week, a month. It’ truly up to you. But the point is to reconnect with yourself, your family, those in your inner circle outside of Facebook. Also, while social media can be a fun place for laughs and memes it can also be very toxic, and that can lead you to feel sadness, frustration or even anger. It’s not healthy to have any of that in your life.

    Now, what happens if you have a hard time logging off social media? Well, there are plenty of apps that will monitor your social media usage and set timeframes when you can and can’t use it. The apps work as long as you don’t go tinkering with the settings or uninstalling altogether. You have to want to take a step back.

    Take up a hobby

    Now that you’re spending less time on social media you now have time to take up a new hobby or revisit a hobby you used to indulge in. I would recommend taking up a hobby that you’ve never done before as a way of trying new experiences. You can either take a local class as a way to meet people in your area with the same interests as you or you can watch how-to’s on Youtube in the privacy of your own home.

    Take some you time once a week without the kids

    Taking Care of Yourself This Summer valerie pierre mommyrandr

    You can’t always be cooped up in your house, and you can’t always have your children attached at the hip. Having your partner spend time alone with the kids or getting a babysitter will allow you to have a little bit of time to yourself. Even if it’s just an hour to yourself. As much as you may not think you need the alone time, trust me you do. The benefits of spending time alone will prevent burnout, stress, headaches, and losing patience just to name a few. You need time that is spent on you doing what you enjoying doing.

    Spend time with your partner

    For those in relationships spending time with your partner is crucial. Yes, I’m all about getting you time in but you also need to consider your partner and make some us time. I know you’ve had a long day of being with the kids and they’ve had a long day at the office. Both of you are tired. But as a couple, making time for one another is important. By fitting in a date night (it doesn’t have to be romantic, although it can be) you’re telling each other that you want to be together and are doing all you can to prevent the relationship from becoming strained over time.

    Do you have any tips for taking care of yourself this summer as a stay at home mom?
  • Holiday Stress Got You Down? Here Are Some Ways To Manage It

    holiday stress mommyrandr

    The holiday season is upon us, and with it comes the dreaded holiday stress. For many people, this means dealing with a lot more stress than usual. On top of your everyday stresses, you’re now faced with planning or attending holiday dinners, getting gifts for everyone, keeping the kids occupied on winter vacation, and of course, your in-laws. If you like your in-laws consider yourself lucky for one less stress in your life. For the rest of us, their visit cannot end fast enough.

    These overwhelming challenges undoubtedly make us feel stretched too thin as we’re pulled in multiple directions at once. Fortunately, there are things we can do to minimize stress from now through the new year.

    Ten Ways To Manage Holiday Stress:

    Don’t Be Afraid To Say No, And Mean It

    If you don’t want to host dinner, go to someone else’s for dinner, or simply can’t do something due to lack of time or funds just say, no. You in no way should feel obligated to do things that won’t allow you to maintain your boundaries. After you say no you’ll probably be pressured into doing whatever it is you don’t want to do, but stand firm. Let it be known that your no is your final answer and there is no going back on it. Putting limitations on what you will and will not do, in general, but especially during the holiday season will save your sanity.

    Unplug To Take Time For You

    The holiday season is hectic so taking some time for you to regroup is important. Let family and friends know that you’re going to be unreachable for a day or so. Unplugging from emails and social media will allow your mind and body to get back in sync with each other. Enjoy the time you spend alone rejuvenating yourself. No matter how you decide to spend the time, the important thing is you’re doing something for YOU.

    Treat Yourself

    The holiday season is about doing something for others but let’s not forget that it’s also equally important that you do something for yourself. In other words, treat yourself. Whether it be that luxury item you’ve been eyeing all year or a stack of new books or hobby materials. The point is, you’re showing yourself a bit of appreciation, after all, you earned it.

    Make A List Of Everything You Need To Do Starting With The Most Important

    There’s a lot more to the holiday season than just gathering with loved ones and opening presents. The behind-the-scenes work can be chaotic, overwhelming, and draining. So for this reason it’s best that you create a to-do list or use a planner to help plan your holiday calendar and to track your tasks. Writing down your tasks and checking them off as you complete them may seem like extra work but it will alleviate the stress of having to remember everything and rushing to get things done at the last minute.

    Don’t Set Impossible Goals

    Now that you have your to-do list and your planner ready try not to overfill it with goals and tasks. I know in your mind you have a lot of things you want to be done but you have to be realistic about your ability to actually do them. Trying to do too much in a small window of time is a sure-fire way to quickly burn yourself out. Set goals that make sense that you know can be completed without additional hassle.

    Try To Keep Your Regular Routine

    Following your normal routine will help you feel more relaxed and in control. When you don’t get enough sleep, eat right, or cram too much in a single day or week it can leave you feeling sad, stressed, and depressed. So take a look at your daily schedule and add your holiday to-dos in between. Don’t overflow your daily schedule even if your day is empty. Keeping your schedule light and flexible will help keep the holiday stress and chaos to a minimum.

    Maintain Your Boundaries And Stay Away From Toxic Relatives

    Just because it’s the holidays that doesn’t mean that you have to spend time with toxic relatives. If someone you wish to avoid is attending the same holiday dinner as you protect your boundaries and cancel. Dealing with toxic people is draining and the last thing you want to be is stressed because of someone’s negative views and disposition.

    Get Some Exercise

    Exercising helps to clear your mind and improve your overall mood. After a walk or jog around your neighborhood, you’ll feel more energetic and clear-headed. Hitting the gym is also a great place to release pent-up frustration. If getting out locally or even making it to the gym seems impossible, not to worry take a time out and give these health and wellness podcasts a listen.

     Set A Budget

    Setting a budget for the holidays is crucial. A lot of stress is centered around the lack of money or because you’ve overspent. Whichever your situation look at your financials and see what you can afford to spend and not spend. Keep track of this. Even if it means reducing the number of gifts you buy. Remember, it’s not about how many gifts you give but the thought you put into what you give. So instead of 5 gifts seek out one item. It could be something the person has been asking for or something that will compliment what they already have.

    Lastly,

    Live In The Moment

    The holiday season should be a time of joy and happiness. Be sure that you’re present and connecting. Living in the moment is how you’ll ensure that you and everyone else around you is truly basking in the holiday spirit.