Superfood? It’s the Gift that Keeps on Giving…

Really a Superfood? It’s not unusual to hear someone declare, “Garlic is really good for you!” Yes, it is. But, here are a myriad of reasons why garlic is an incredible gift to our health.

Herb or Veggie?

Garlic is actually a member of the lily family, which starts as a bulb. It’s similar to onions and shallots, which are considered vegetables. Garlic also has leaves giving it further veggie credence. However, a herb is defined as a vegetable cultivated for medicinal or spiritual values. Hence, garlic must be a herb as well!

Good Stinky Breath and Skin

Garlic can be associated with bad breath, especially if you haven’t eaten any lately. Allyl methyl sulfide (ALM) is the compound that gives off the pungent odor when we eat it. During digestion, the sulfur passes into our blood stream.

The sulfur in garlic makes up vital amino acids used to create protein for cells, tissues, hormones, and antibodies. This is one reason why garlic helps boost our immune system.

When we sweat, the stinky ALM is emitted from our skin. This is beneficial because it helps release toxins. It also repels many types of insects, including some mosquitoes.

Red Tea Detox
Red Tea Detox

Beneficial Cancer-Repelling Compounds

Besides sulfur, garlic contains flavonoids, selenium, oligosaccarides, and arginine. All of these compounds have been linked to decreasing cancer-risk. Many fall into the antioxidant category.

Consumption of garlic has shown to decrease the risk of esophageal, stomach, prostate, breast, and colon cancers. In fact, most studies show the higher the quantity consumed, the lower the risk of developing the cancers mentioned earlier. Some components in garlic have proven to reduce the size and slow the growth of malignant tumors.

Immune Booster

T-Cells are produced in the thymus. The thymus is responsible for creating armies of white blood cells, which help fight infection in the body. Garlic has been shown to stimulate T-cells.

Studies done at the Mayo Clinic show garlic contains properties that help to boost the body’s levels of antioxidants, which work as a defense system against viruses.

Garlic consumption via food source or supplement is recommended for taming yeast infections. It is considered a powerful anti-fungal (along with Oregano, FYI.) Garlic also offers anti-bacterial properties. Some parasites and bacteria become defenseless against the chemical compounds in garlic.

Heart Lover

Garlic has proven to lower bad-cholesterol levels when eaten/taken on a daily basis. Additionally, studies have shown that garlic helps keep the aorta flexible. As we age, the blood vessel managing blood pressure can stiffen. Garlic can help keep your heart’s aorta from aging prematurely or from working too hard.

Clearly, the health benefits of garlic are immense. The best part, however, may be how it tastes mixed with a teeny bit of butter on a warm, just-out-of-the-oven, slice of healthy bread. Yum…

For more details about healthy foods and supplements, check out www.GetThrive.com

Turmeric Curcumin
Turmeric Curcumin

Are Children’s Birthday Parties Out of Control?

For many busy parents children’s birthdays look nothing like they did even a decade ago. As a child, your birthday probably happened at home, surrounded by family and maybe a few friends. You opened a couple presents, blew out the candles, and dug into a cake – homemade by Mom, of course.

Today’s birthdays bear little resemblance to the simple parties of times gone by. Modern children’s parties are action-packed affairs that require weeks (and even months) of planning.

Parents take on a laundry lists of tasks that include everything from shopping, baking, entertaining, preparing, planning, and – ultimately – exhaustion. Parties feature Pinterest-inspired favors and handmade decorations that would put a wedding reception to shame.

Fight for Your Right to Party!

To have a proper party today, you need a theme, color scheme, and personalized décor that complements your child’s age and interests. One family spent $40,000 on a Wizard of Oz-themed birthday party. Another featured 32 floral centerpieces and 300 costumes.

Check out this article on children’s birthday parties published by the Huffington Post.

The situation has become so dire, one family therapist was inspired to gather a few moms and launch a website to raise awareness about excessive children’s birthday parties.

The problem isn’t confined to the United States, either. One study found that parents in Britain spend almost $2 billion on children’s parties each year.

Read more about these studies here.
Fortunately, there are ways to strike a balance between over-the-top and too little fuss.

1. Scale Back on Gifts – A Mom’s Mantra

Everyone says they’re going to do it, but few people stick to their resolve. The truth is, the party is supposed to be for the child, but many end up being forMom and Dad. When a party becomes a status symbol, it’s time to cut back.

If the presents at your house have turned into small mountains, make a conscious effort to scale down. One popular modern mom mantra suggests buying a child just four gifts: something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.

By reducing presents to just four thoughtful items, you and your child can pause to truly savor the act of opening gifts.

2. Lower Expectations (Must Be This Tall to Ride…)

Many people experience a small bout of depression after the holiday season concludes. As children’s parties become bigger, more extravagant affairs, experts say the same phenomenon is emerging around birthday parties.

Experts speculate that the buildup and subsequent let-down surrounding just one day causes kids to experience a roller coaster of emotions. Consider slowly scaling back birthday celebrations so your child is not overwhelmed.

3. It’s Better to Give Than to Receive…

Turn your child’s birthday into an opportunity to teach him or her about helping others. Instead of accepting gifts from classmates or friends, ask invitees to bring an item of clothing or a book to donate to someone in need.

Other ideas include gathering toiletry items or clothing for domestic violence shelters, or assembling food and other supplies for your local humane society. Most community outreach organizations are always looking for food, clothing, and other items.

Other good ideas include visiting a nursing home to visit with residents and serving in a soup kitchen.

4. Pick One Big Gift (with Your Child’s Help)

As birthdays approach, many parents wander the toy aisles, trying to find gifts their child will love. Instead of wracking your brain for gift ideas, consider allowing your child to select one major gift with your help.

You may wish to shop online so your child can have fun browsing the Internet for ideas. Besides eliminating stress, online shopping can also save money. Many retailers offer exclusive Internet coupons and deals during various times of the year.

A child’s birthday should be a special day, but it doesn’t have to be overwhelming. By managing your child’s expectations and making a few adjustments, you can slow it all down and enjoy a more peaceful celebration with your birthday boy or girl.

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