Author Archives: hourglass

  • Try This (Not That) Food Substitutions

    5 smart food swaps for satisfying weight loss.

    Ready to shed a few lbs.? Reach for these 5 healthy (and tasty!) weight loss meals and snacks and watch the scale go in the right direction.

    #1 Try this: Spaghetti squash
    5 smart food swapsWhen prepared, spaghetti squash resembles a plate of spaghetti. A fun food trick, this low-cal option can be paired with similar sauces and seasoning—everything from marinara to sautéed veggies. Rich in carbohydrates, fiber, potassium and Vitamin C (to name a few), spaghetti squash makes a filling, guilt-free meal.

    Not this: Wheat pasta 

    Calories saved: 200 calories

    #2 Try this: Frozen fruit smoothie
    5 smart food swapsMake your own smoothie with one cup frozen unsweetened berries, 1/2 banana, 1/4 cup wheat germ and ice.

    Not this: Pre-made or canned smoothies

    Calories saved: 200 calories for each 2-3 cup serving






    #3 Try this: Dr. Praeger’s California veggie burgers
    5 smart food swapsThese convenient high-protein patties have ingredients you can see like carrots, zucchini, edamame and garlic. They also don’t have one very important thing: high-saturated fat. Layer on lettuce, tomato and grilled onion for an even more traditional burger feel.

    Not this: Beef burger

    Calories saved: 200 calories and 19 grams of fat
    #4 Try this: Scrambled whites with greens
    5 smart food swapsSkip the yolk and opt for egg whites only. Blend with 1/2 cup cooked spinach and mushrooms for a filling, protein-rich option (great for breakfast and dinner).

    Not this: 2 whole eggs

    Calories saved: 40 calories plus 100 milligrams of cholesterol and 13 grams of fat




    #5 Try this: Frozen fruit snacks
    5 smart food swapsRefreshing, satisfying and nutritious, frozen grapes, blueberries or bananas take on a creamy taste. Frozen treats also require slow eating which helps your brain catch up with your body. Keep them ready-to-go in your freezer so you can reach for them whenever you’re feeling munchy.

    Not this: Frozen yogurt or ice cream.

    Calories saved: About 200 calories and 14 grams of fat

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  • Body Wraps 101

    Body wrap questions answered

    Learn how to trim inches and invigorate your skin.

    Have 2015 self-improvement goals but getting there at a snail’s pace? The Spa Slender body wrap kit might be exactly what you need to jumpstart your resolutions. An effective and innovative solution, this all-in-one kit comes with everything you need to body wrap, including tools to track your results. You can expect a rejuvenated appearance, smoother skin, and a noticeable loss of inches while wearing the wraps (thanks to their instant slimming benefits.)

    Have a few questions? Here’s the scoop on the Spa Slender body wrap kit.

    Q: What’s included?

    It comes with everything you need: the Simply Slender Slenderizing cream, high quality cotton elastic wraps, a body measuring tape, inch-loss chart to track your results and an illustrated instruction book with step-by-step instructions. Remember, always drink plenty of water when using body wraps.

    Q: How does it work?

    The Simply Slender Slenderizing cream (formulated from a special blend of herbs, clays and minerals) pairs with the high quality cotton elastic wraps. When applied together, this special combo is a serious winner for enhancing your silhouette.

    Q: How often can I wrap?

    As often as you like! Have a special occasion? Feel free to wrap more than once in the day. For long-term use, it’s recommended that you do a series of 4-6 wraps, 3 days apart. The wraps are even machine washable for easy-care convenience.

    That’s a wrap! Remember to follow all included directions to achieve optimal results. Results are not guaranteed, but we think you’ll be pleased with what you see. Happy wrapping!

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  • The Dish on Delfin Spa

     Delfin Spa Skin Smoothing Cream and Apparel

    Do you know about Bio-Ceramic lined apparel?

    Delfin Spa’s skin-smoothing system is an innovative way to reduce the visibility of imperfections in the skin. This modern approach couples two powerful things: Bio-Ceramic lined gear and specially formulated cream.

    How does it work? The Bio-Ceramic lined apparel acts as a thermal agent to work with your body’s perspiration, which improves the effectiveness of the cream. The apparel also offers light compression. The pieces are comfortable and adjustable so you can wear them during workouts or under your clothing while you go about your daily life. Most of the items even feature an iPhone pocket for convenience.

    First, the lightly scented cream boasts a variety of botanical ingredients. Apply liberally and then slip on your Delfin Spa apparel. The algae, green tea and caffeine help to increase perspiration, particularly when working out, so you know your workout is working for you.

    Which body part do you want to target? All of Delfin Spa’s apparel is designed to:

    • Increase thermal activity and stimulate perspiration while you wear them
    • Offer light compression for instant slimming
    • Be comfortable and lightweight enough to wear during workouts or under your clothing

    Delfin Spa Skin Smoothing Cream and Apparel

    The tank top

    This open-bust tank keeps you cool with ventilation panels, moisture management and antimicrobial odor control.

    Delfin Spa Skin Smoothing Cream and Apparel

    The capris

    These stylish must-haves slim your tummy, thighs, hips and legs in sleek comfort.

    Delfin Spa Skin Smoothing Cream and Apparel

    The upper arm exercise bands

    The adjustable bands give your upper arms a slimmer silhouette the moment you put them on.

    Delfin Spa Skin Smoothing Cream and Apparel

    The tummy tightener

    Perfect for women who want to target loose skin and stretch marks in their tummy area.

    Delfin Spa Skin Smoothing Cream and Apparel

     The calf sleeves

    Comfortable compression and instant slimming for your calves.

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  • The 3 C’s of Cellulite: Control, Correct, Conceal

    Conquer your cellulite.

    Skin-smoothing tips to disguise dimpled imperfections.

    Oh, cellulite. Why do you exist? It’s safe to say everyone wants to banish cellulite from their body. So, what is it anyway? The unwelcome dimples are fat cells found underneath the top layer of skin that have squeezed between bands of connective tissue (or collagen). It’s genetic and likely linked to circulation, so if your mom has cellulite then you’re susceptible to it too.

    Since there’s no cure for cellulite, the best thing to do is accept it and then take action. We have a plan – the C’s of Cellulite: Control, Correct, Conceal.

    CONTROL

    Eating well plays a huge role in keeping cellulite in check. Fiber, whole grain foods, fruits and vegetables (lots of greens!) are key.  Some specific must-eats? Try asparagus (it contains anti-inflammatory properties), oranges (helps with blood circulation), berries (rich in antioxidants), fish oils (aids fat metabolizing) and spinach (good for collagen production)…to name a few!

    Also extremely important? Drink as much water as you can. H2O helps your skin in more ways than one, including in your body’s natural detox process and improving elasticity. And lastly, don’t forget that fundamentally cellulite is fat. Keeping off excess weight, exercising and toning are direct ways to keep cellulite at bay.

    CORRECT

    Use beauty products, exfoliations (look for caffeine as an ingredient) and body massagers that help stimulate circulation, break up fluids beneath your skin and more.

    One we love? L’or de la Mer by Skin QR Organics for cleaning, purifying and brightening. It uses fresh, active ingredients like seaweed, organic botanicals and marine and fruit extracts to help with skin cell regeneration, anti-aging and overall radiance. This body blaster scrub also has potent vitamins and minerals that stimulate circulation.

    For the ultimate cellulite-busting arsenal, try the Anti-Cellulite Collection by Skin QR Organics. It comes with all three of their bestsellers: the L'or de la Mer Anti-Cellulite Body Blaster Scrub with Seaweed, the Phat QR Body and Cellulite Massager and the NuElle Triple Action Anti Cellulite Firming Concentrate.

    CONCEAL

    When in doubt, reach for self-tanner. A quick spray tan equals instant camouflage. Many types of skin-smoothening shapewear are also designed to reduce the visibility of skin perfections by helping to smooth the silhouette of your legs, arms or buttocks.

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  • Mix and Match Meals

    Mix-and-match healthy meals.

    Drop 15 pounds without hunger.

    Need a little inspirational boost to meet your New Year's Resolution? We have just thing to do it: simple recipes for mix-and-match meals. Developed by Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD and featured in Health magazine, the 1,300 calorie-a-day plan features meals and snacks ranging from 170 calories to 400 calories. They boast key ingredients that are satisfying and scientifically proven to boost weight loss. Stick with it and you’ll drop 15 pounds in 6 weeks—without hunger.

    Honey-Pecan Oatmeal With Raspberries

    300 calories
    Prepare 1 packet of plain instant oatmeal with hot water, according to package directions. Top with 2 teaspoons honey, 2 tablespoons chopped pecans, and 3⁄4 cup fresh or frozen raspberries (thawed).

    Fresh Tomato and Feta Frittata

    300 calories
    Whisk together 1 large egg, 2 egg whites, 1⁄2 cup chopped tomato, and 2 tablespoons feta cheese, crumbled. Cook the egg mixture over medium heat (without stirring) in a small skillet for 4 minutes or until eggs are firm. Flip and cook other side for 2 minutes more. Serve with 1 slice whole-grain toast with 2 teaspoons trans fat–free margarine.

    Black Bean, Steak, and Avocado Salad

    400 calories
    Sauté 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper and 1 teaspoon olive oil in a skillet for 1 minute. Add 3 ounces thinly sliced steak and cook for 5 minutes. Add 1⁄4 cup canned black beans and sauté for another 3 minutes. Toss with 4 cups mixed salad greens, 1⁄4 diced avocado, 1⁄4 cup canned corn and 1 tablespoon of Italian dressing.

    White Bean and Basil Penne

    400 Calories
    Cook 1⁄2 cup whole-grain penne pasta, drain and set aside. Return pot to heat and add 1⁄2 cup canned white beans, 1 cup chopped zucchini and 1⁄4 cup spaghetti sauce; cook for 7 minutes. Stir pasta into sauce. Top with 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh basil and 1 teaspoon toasted pine nuts.

    Cashew-Coconut Shrimp Stir-Fry

    400 Calories
    Sauté 2 minced garlic cloves in 1 teaspoon peanut oil over medium heat for 1 minute. Add 2 cups of frozen stir-fry vegetables; cook for 5 minutes. Add 12 medium precooked frozen shrimp, 1⁄2 cup precooked microwavable brown rice and 1⁄3 cup light coconut milk; sauté 5–8 minutes more. Top with 1 tablespoon chopped cashews and 1⁄4 teaspoon light soy sauce.

    Southwestern-Style Chicken and Veggies

    400 Calories
    Heat 1 frozen meal, 300 calories or fewer (such as Kashi Southwest Style Chicken) and 2 cups frozen vegetables in microwave. Top warm vegetables with 1 tablespoon freshly-grated Parmesan cheese.

    Tuscan Tuna Sandwich

    400 Calories
    Mix 3 ounces light tuna in water (drained), 5 chopped jumbo black olives, 2 chopped celery ribs, juice from 1⁄2 lemon and 1 teaspoon olive oil. Place tuna mixture on toasted whole-grain bread and top with 1⁄2 cup mixed lettuce greens. Serve with 1 small orange on the side.

    Curried Lentil Soup With Pita

    400 Calories
    Stir 1⁄4 teaspoon curry powder into 1 1⁄2 cups low-sodium lentil soup (like Amy’s Organic Lentil Soup, Light Sodium) and heat in microwave. Top with 2 tablespoons low-fat Greek yogurt; serve with 1 whole-grain pita. Enjoy 1⁄2 cup grapes on the side.

    Mushroom and Walnut Fettuccine

    400 Calories
    Cook 2 ounces fettuccine and drain. In a skillet, sauté 2 minced garlic cloves in 1 teaspoon olive oil for 1 minute. Add 1 cup sliced mushrooms, 1⁄2 cup canned artichokes, chopped, and 3⁄4 cup halved cherry tomatoes; cook for 6 minutes. Toss with pasta and top with 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts and 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley.

    Dijon Chicken With Potatoes and Kale

    400 Calories
    Preheat broiler. Spread 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard on 2-ounce skinless piece of rotisserie chicken; place on foil. Broil for 7 minutes or until mustard is browned. Sauté 1 tablespoon olive oil and 2 minced garlic cloves in a skillet for 1 minute. Add 1 small potato, cut into wedges and 2 cups chopped kale; sauté for 15 minutes. Drizzle all with juice from 1⁄2 lemon.

    Crisp Bread With Parmesan and Fig

    190 Calories
    Top 2 crisp bread crackers (like Wasa Crackers) with 3⁄4 ounce shaved fresh Parmesan cheese and 2 dried figs, thinly sliced.

    Pistachios and Black Cherry Spritzer

    190 Calories
    Mix 1 1⁄2 cups of club soda with 3 tablespoons black cherry juice. Enjoy with 1 ounce pistachios (about 50 nuts).

    Green tea and a cookie

    170 Calories
    Stir 2 teaspoons honey into 1 1⁄2 cups brewed green tea, and enjoy with 1 whole-grain cookie (like Kashi Oatmeal Dark Chocolate).

    Apple slices and almond butter

    190 Calories
    Spread 1 tablespoon almond butter on 1 medium apple, sliced.

    Cereal-Yogurt Parfait with Pomegranates

    200 Calories
    Top 6 ounces fat-free blueberry yogurt (like Brown Cow Nonfat Yogurt) with 1⁄2 cup enriched whole-grain cereal (like Total) and 1⁄4 cup pomegranate seeds.

    Honey-Broiled Grapefruit With Walnuts

    170 Calories
    Preheat broiler. Cut 1 grapefruit in half and spread 2 teaspoons honey on top. Broil for 7 minutes or until the edges are golden. Top with 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts.

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  • Take the Stronger-You 90-Day Challenge

    The Stronger-You challenge

    Make your New Year's Health Resolutions a Reality

    If you’re like most of us, your New Year’s resolutions involve the promise of a healthier 2015. Did you vow to fit into that pair of jeans stashed on your top shelf? Or maybe you want to feel more energized?

    The difference between the desire to achieve your goals and making them a reality is as simple as our 90-day Stronger-You Challenge: 3 months of handpicked workouts and tips from the experts at Oxygen magazine. This three-month training program and meal plan is designed to burn fat, build muscle and transform your body so you can look and feel your best. It’s simple, effective and ready when you are.

    Check out the full 3-month plan to see step-by-step instructions and visuals on exactly what to do (and eat!) every day. Don’t forget: if you mess up, don’t give up. Forgive yourself and start over the next day.

    Month 1

    Burn fat and build muscle. You’ll begin with exercises using only your body weight. Every set and extended set will be taken to the point of muscle failure (that’s a good thing!).

    Get the Best Body Challenge: Month One workout.

    Month 2

    The next 4 weeks feature easy-to-use resistance bands and plyometrics—a body-boosting technique originally developed for Olympic athletes.

    Get the Best Body Challenge: Month Two workout.

    Month 3

    The home stretch! You’ll focus on a mix of dumbbell-based exercises and intervals of high-intensity cardio.

    Ready to begin? Don't put it off -- download the training plan below to get started right away. Good luck, and let us know how it goes! We’d love to meet the NEW YOU in 12 weeks.

    Get the Best Body Challenge: Month Three workout.

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  • Fill in the Blank: Your New Year's Resolutions

    New Year's resolution ideas

    Small Steps to Big Changes

    The holidays are winding down and a brand new year looms ahead. Are you making any New Year's resolutions? While some might find the practice cheesy or overrated, there's never a better time for a fresh start and to make some positive changes in your life.

    The hardest part about making New Year's resolutions is figuring out which goals are going to work for you. Some people go big or go home and make a grandiose plan that is almost impossible to follow through to the end. Some people make way too many goals that they can't juggle, and they fall off the wagon by late January.

    To make significant New Year's resolutions that will last, you have to find a balance. You have to do things that are challenging but won't leave you feeling exasperated. And you have to find a way to remain inspired for the whole year, not just January.

    The key is: small steps.

    Start out small. If you can succeed at something small, your success can blossom into something bigger. Set yourself up for success so you can gain momentum.

    So where to start? You can make several small goals that will lead to big changes in your life during 2015. Goals can be as specific or as general as you want, as long as you're inspired to become the person you want to be in the coming year. We've got a list; you fill in the blanks that best fit you. Post this list somewhere you won't forget it so you can remain inspired all year long!

    My 2015 New Year's Resolutions

    1. The bad habit I'm going to break this year is ________________________

    2. A new skill I'd like to learn is ________________________

    3. A person I'd like to be more like is ________________________

    4. A good deed I'd like to accomplish is ________________________

    5. I'd like to visit ________________________

    6. A book I'd like to read is ________________________

    7. I'd like to write a letter to ________________________

    8. A new food I'd like to try is ________________________

    9. I'm going to do better at ________________________

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  • 10 Tips for a Successful New Year's Resolution

    How to set goalsHow to Set Great Goals and Stick to Them

    It's that time of year again: time to start all over and make some new goals! One of the most common New Year's resolutions is making a change in health and wellness, but maybe yours includes making more time with your loved ones or leaning a new skill. Whatever it is, you'll want to look back in a few months and be proud of what you've accomplished.

    Make your New Year's resolutions stick with these ten tips:

    1. Set realistic goals

    This isn't the time to do something drastic if you want to succeed. Take some time and be thoughtful about what you can realistically accomplish. Break up your big goals into monthly or weekly objectives that won't be too difficult.

    2. Write it down

    Once you know what your goals are, write them down (and don't lose track of them!). There's something about writing down a resolution that makes you want to hold to it, like it's a commitment. Keep your commitment displayed somewhere highly visible, so you won't forget.

    3. Measure your progress

    Keep track of how you're doing; otherwise setting a goal becomes a bit meaningless. And since you've started the habit of writing things down, continue to log how you're doing on a regular basis (daily or weekly works best). Some goals you can measure include how frequently you work out, what you've eaten over the course of the day, and how you've spent your time in a given week.

    4. Use visual reminders

    What is going to motivate you day after day, week after week, month after month? Put up a picture or lay out a dress you want to put into; display whatever it is that is going to inspire you.

    5. Invest in yourself

    Sometimes making a change means making a financial investment; do it! Buy the equipment, sign up of the class, or do what it takes to keep you on track. You're worth it.

    6. Stay inspired

    Aside from a visible reminder, find ways to inspire yourself regularly. This can mean signing up for newsletters, joining a class or going to meetings, or finding other ways to be inspired by others' success.

    7. Make it a habit in your routine

    You aren't going to make much progress if you don't make room for your resolution in your schedule. Build a new habit by making room for it in your daily routine.

    8. Make it a team effort

    You'll much more likely to be successful and have a lot more fun if you enlist others to help you along with your resolution. Eat healthy meals with friends and family; have a workout buddy; do things that count with the people you care about.

    9. Take small steps

    Some people make the mistake of wanting to see all of the change at once. But you're much more likely to be successful if you take small, manageable steps. When you're feeling frustrated because you've plateaued or lost momentum, just do what you can at that moment. Take that morning walk; skip the dessert; write in your journal – whatever it takes to keep going.

    10. Treat yourself

    Congratulate yourself when you make progress – you've earned it! Do something that's meaningful but won't detract from your goals. For example, if you've lost weight, don't go get ice cream. Buy that dress smaller dress instead.

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  • 3 Looks to Bring in the New Year

    New Year's Eve party attireSexy Party Attire for a New Year's Eve Date Night

    The holiday season always comes and goes like a whirlwind, so before you know it, you'll be getting ready to celebrate the New Year! Whether you've been good at all those holiday parties, or even if you've put on a couple of extra pounds, you can still look like a bombshell when it's time to party on New Year's Eve.

    Here are some classic looks that you can't go wrong with this year. If you've got a date night for New Year's, make it an unforgettable one. Customize these looks to your personal preferences, and you'll be ready to party in style.

    1. Little Black Dress

    This one goes without saying on New Year's, but we'll say it anyway. If there is just one day a year where it's a good time to rock the LBD, this is it! For a little personal flair, add some flashy accessories or some brightly colored pumps. If you've got a full figure and haven't found the perfect dress that accentuates your curves, check out the Mae Dress by SWAK Designs. We love the way this dress naturally brings out curves using a combination of compression and ruching, all built right into the dress design.

    2. V-Neck Dress

    Whether it's black or a brighter color, a V-neck dress draws attention to some of the most attractive feminine features: your collarbone and chest. This is an especially breathtaking look if you're a pear shape and need to balance out the curves in your hips. You'll want to be sure you're sporting the right shapewear in order to wear a V-neck tastefully. The Simply Smooth Cami by Co'Coon paired with a plunge bra will create a slim and smooth midsection. If you need smooth control for your hips, thighs and butt to balance out that gorgeous top, the Control Freak Moderate Control Long Pear Leg Shaper by Wacoal is designed to provide sleek curves from your waistline to mid-thigh.

    3. Flirty Top with Leggings

    If your party plans are a little less formal, skip the dress and go for a sexy top with some leather and/or colored leggings. Lacy, lingerie-inspired tops can be flirty but not too racy. Be sure to wear the right bra (especially if you're planning on a lot of dancing). The Molded Strapless Bra by Elila is a great option for anyone full-figured who wants firm support without revealing straps.

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  • 4 Ways to Look Thinner in Winter Attire

    Cold weather fashion tipsHow to Be Slender and Sexy (Not Bulky) in Cold Weather

    It's the time of year to pull out some of your cozy favorites: soft sweaters, layered tops, leggings and tights. Yet just because you're bundling up doesn't mean you need to bulk up your figure. By selecting the right shapewear or figure-enhancing outerwear, you can still dress for winter while looking slender and sexy.

    The key to looking fabulous in your winter clothes is to know how to address your problem areas. You can look a few pounds thinner if you know these tricks. These shapers will address any issues you might wrestle with in winter attire.

    1. For Your Bust

    Being well endowed in your chest is an attractive feature, but you can run into trouble when you wear a button-down shirt (a fashion must-have!). You may find that the buttons gape and the shirt never seems to look like it fits quite right. While the right bra can help, what you really need is to shape your full torso.

    The solution to a large bust is a shaping camisole like The Candace Custom Lift Camisole by Flexees. You can achieve the results you want simply using this one light and smooth garment with a built-in bra. It provides the shape you want in the bust while smoothing out your midsection and back, helping all of your tops fit better without a fuss.

    2. For Your Hips

    If you carry your weight on your hips, you may always look stunning in your tops but have trouble with styles that highlight your lower half like pencil skirts. And traditional control-top tights just don't provide a solution to your problem.

    For all your skirts and dresses, you need a shaper that control your hips and thighs and not just your middle. The High Waisted Shaping Shorts by MeMoi SMX-108 is just the thing you need that firms up all of those trouble areas on your legs and thighs, as well as your waistline.

    3. For Your Midsection

    If you struggle with your tummy, sides or back, you may be tempted to layer up in the winter to conceal your problem areas. While layering done right can be stylish, too much can make you look like you're heavier than you really are!

    Instead of concealing with too many layers, choose one smart layer that instantly slims you. The Essential Womens 3/4 Sleeve Slimming Shirt by Slimmerz by Terri Gillespie is one of the most comfortable shaping garments we offer, which uses ruching instead of compression to make your waistline look slim and smooth.

    4. For Your Butt

    A bigger bottom can definitely be sexy, but you have to know how to accentuate it. Your choice in jeans can mean the difference between looking awkward and looking gorgeously curvy.

    If you've got the curves and haven't tried butt-lifting jeans yet, do yourself a favor. The AM to PM Butt Enhancing Jeans by Verox are designed with your natural shape in mind, using innovative stitching and seaming to provide a natural lift and emphasis on all the right areas.

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