BIOHACKING WITH BULLETPROOF COFFEE AND MCT OIL

We’re constantly on the search for the holy grail of caffeinated beverages. Our Nespresso machine lights up our mornings. When we get new pods and seasonal flavors, our coffee station becomes our playground. Froth some oat milk, sprinkle some cinnamon and voilà- a perfect cup each time. But as we all know, sometimes you find yourself in the mood to experiment with new brands and trends. We tried bulletproof coffee on a whim and have become obsessed with the taste and energy it gives us.
Bulletproof coffee is frothy coffee elixir made with butter or ghee and coconut oil or MCT oil. Typically, it is drunk on an empty stomach as a breakfast substitute. We were skeptical to replace smoothie bowls and frittatas with a high-fat drink. Wouldn’t we be hungry and gain weight? The short answer is no. Healthy fats can help control blood sugar levels, keeping you fuller for longer. Consistent use can help your body burn fat, instead of carbohydrates and sugar, for energy.
Our favorite recipe that tastes great and gives us mountains of energy at 6 AM is shared below!
Ingredients:
  1 Vanilla Custard Pie Nespresso pod (8 to 16 oz coffee of choice)
  1 tablespoon of Ghee
  1 tablespoon of MCT oil
We chose to use ghee and MCT oil (an oil extracted from coconuts that is virtually tasteless and odorless). Studies show that MCT (Medium Chain Triglyceride) oil increases metabolic rate, curbs appetite, supports hormones, promotes mental clarity and supercharges exercise performance and endurance.
Directions:
  Blend all ingredients for 45 seconds. Pour into your favorite coffee mug and enjoy!
We also keep our fridges stocked with Super Coffee that contains 200 mg of caffeine and MCT oil, as a quick grab and go option. They are made with sugar free, lactose free, soy free and gluten free organic ingredients. Our favorite part is that we can sneak in an extra 10 grams of protein into our diets just by drinking our morning coffee!
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MY ACUPUNCTURE EXPERIENCE AND REVIEW

I couldn’t sleep well. When I slept, I would have nightmares/vivid dreams that made me reach for my concealer every morning to cover up dark circles under my eyes. It was exhausting, frustrating, and draining
I tried going to bed early and turning off technology an hour before bed. I limited my caffeine intake to ONE coffee a day and did my best to stay away from added sugars. Nothing helped.
After months, yes months, of trying, I began to adjust to the lack of sleep. I stopped fighting it and relied on shots after shots of espresso to get me through the day and pre-workout to get me through morning runs and yoga sessions. I was a walking, talking, caffeine-stimulated member of the undead.
Somewhere in a yoga studio in New York City, a newly relocated, surfing, Hawaiian ray of light (now a good friend of both of ours), suggested for me to give acupuncture a chance. I wasn’t a stranger to alternative medicine. Growing up I was fed concoctions of herbs, sweetened with honey, to cure pretty much anything ranging from sore throats to poison ivy. I figured that maybe a few needles could poke the insomnia right out of me.
 I was in.
After my first session, I felt lighter and happier. I committed to three sessions a week and worked with my acupuncturist to jot down notes on how I was feeling/sleeping. Five sessions in, the nightmares stopped. Eight sessions in, the vivid dreams went away. Acupuncture has since become a part of my self-care routine. My success has allowed me to cut down the frequency of sessions to once a week/every other week.

What I learned:

Inquire with your insurance company to see if they cover services. Luckily, my provider covered all costs besides a small co-pay fee.
Read reviews and check professional accreditations. Acupuncture is considered an invasive procedure. You want to make sure that your practitioner is certified, has undergone proper training, and has plenty of experience under their belt.
Consider and do your research on Chinese medicine. My practitioner gently suggested that I try a natural supplement made of dates, tart cherries, and herbs known to improve sleep. This was a game changer for me.
Don’t be afraid to try different acupuncturists. You are exposing your body and energy to this individual. To make the experience enjoyable and not awkward, make sure you find a professional that you vibe well with.
Drink a lot of water and eat a light, healthy meal after your session. You will be thirsty. I made sure to have coconut water on hand to replenish electrolytes, followed by a salad or RX bar.
You will most likely be laying with the needles for twenty to forty minutes. Stop thinking about the needles and enjoy the stillness. Take this time to meditate or simply relax.
 
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BENEFITS OF MEDITATION

Meditation practices have expanded beyond yoga studios. It’s hard to ignore the rise of downloadable apps and strange encounters where your boss asks your team to do five-minute guided sequences during meetings. The ancient practice has marked its presence in our modern world.
Simply put, meditation is a technique meant to increase mindfulness, concentration, focus and awareness. Consistent mediation practices leave you clear headed and increase your emotional IQ. By closing your eyes and shutting off the outside world, you focus your attention internally.
Shutting off your surroundings allows you to focus on your breath and notice what is going on inside your body. Whether you are a novice or an expert, most report that the precious minutes taken to themselves leave them calmer and less anxious. Experts claim that meditation can even increase sleep quality and pain tolerance.

We have adapted meditation into our everyday rituals.

Karen’s Meditation Routine
When: Before bed, when the body is relaxed. Keeping the location of your practice consistent allows you to fall into a calm mental state quicker.
Benefits Experienced: I wake up in the morning refreshed and with a clear head. I can easily push back my cup of matcha a few hours because I don’t feel like I need the caffeine boost. My intuition is enhanced and my mind is less scattered. I don’t forget things throughout the day, complete projects quickly and am less bothered by little nuisances.
Favorite Meditations: I am loyal to the Simple Habit Iphone app.
Soothing Sleep by Glenn Harrold
Chakra Cleansing Meditation by Alison Serour
Enjoy the Phases of the Moon by Liz Richards
Alena’s Meditation Routine
When: After a workout. When my body is wiped out after a good hit session or after a hot yoga class. I find it easy to concentrate and give into stillness when my body is tired and ready to rest.
Benefits: I don’t wake up in the middle of the night as frequently when I meditate. My dreams are clear and I experience less nightmares. I notice an immediate elevation in mood. The residual effects linger, making it easy to be more positive and grateful for little and big things in life.
Favorite Meditations: Spotify offers great options for guided meditations that I added to the end of my workout playlist!
Mindfulness and Acceptance by Deepak Chopra 
Letting Go Meditation (Alpha) by Donna D’Cruz
Guided Meditation: Deep Relaxation by The Honest Guys
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POPULAR 2020 PODCASTS

Podcasts can be a valuable resource for your personal growth. Stories teach lessons and broaden our perspectives on the world. They can be a good alternative to music playlists and can entertain you while you’re cooking, exercising, cleaning, or commuting to work. Our picks revolve around podcasts led by experts, influencers, and entertainers set out to inspire listeners with their stories. The following podcasts are guaranteed to distract you from tedious tasks, make you smile, laugh, and update you on new findings in the health and wellness space.
  1. The Good Life by Stevie and Sazan
  2. The Mind Body Green Podcast
  3. The goop Podcast
  4. Ted Talks Daily
  5. The Elevator
  6. DENtalks powered by DEN meditation
  7. Directionally Challenged
  8. The Happiness Lab
  9. Girls Gotta Eat
  10. Mind Massage
  11. Oprah’s SuperSoul Conversations
  12. Be Well by Kelly podcast
  13. Girlboss Radio with Sophia Amoruso 
  14. 2 Dope Queens
  15. Call Your Girlfriend
  16. The Cosmic Calling
  17. Relationship Advice with Chase & Sarah Kosterlitz
  18. Supernatural with Ashley Flowers
  19. Mile Higher Podcast
  20. Famous Fates
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30 MOST POPULAR MUST READ BOOKS

Lately we’ve been looking for new ways to relax and stay entertained while following the CDC’s quarantine guidelines. Once upon a time, we salivated over the idea of having a free morning or afternoon to catch up on cleaning, exercise, or old to-do lists. After we matched the lonely socks that our laundry machines hadn’t eaten, we decided to blow off the dust from our book shelves. Together, we compiled a list of some of our favorite reads, and other gems that we’ve long had our sights on.

Salt Fat Acid Heat: Mastering The Elements of Good Cooking by Samin Nosrat
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Antoni in the Kitchen by Antoni Porowski

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The First Mess Cook Book: Vibrant Plant-Based Recipes Eat Well Through Seasons by Laura Wright
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My Father’s Daughter: Delicious, Easy Recipes, Celebrating Family & Togetherness by Gwyneth Paltrow
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Bread Baking for Beginners by Bonnie Ohara
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Body Love: Live in Balance, Weigh What You Want, and Free Yourself From Food Drama Forever by Kelly LeVeque
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Pretty Happy: Healthy Ways to Love Your Body by Kate Hudson
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The XX Brain: The Groundbreaking Science Empowering Women to Maximize Cognitive Health and Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease
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Elevate Higher: A 21-Day Challenge to Detox Your Energy Field, Reset Your Vibration, + Attract Wild Abundance by Britt Deana & Tara Schulenberg
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Eat Pretty: Nutrition For Beauty Inside and Out by Jolene Hart
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Signs: The Secret Language of the Universe by Laura Lynne Jackson
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The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do In Life And Business by Charles Duhigg
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The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts by Gary Chapman
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Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown
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Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself: How to Love Your Mind and Create a New One by Dr. Joe Dispenza
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Calm the F*ck Down: How to Control What You Can and Accept What You Can’t So You Can Stop Freaking Out and Get On With Your Life by Sara Knight
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Over the Top: A Raw Journey to Self-Love by Jonathan Van Ness
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Open Book by Jessica Simpson
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Stay Sexy & Don’t Get Murdered by Karen Kilgariff & Georgia Hardstark
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Ghosted by Rosie Walsh
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All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover
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The Hypnotist’s Love Story by Liane Moriarty
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The One by John Marrs
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Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
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Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
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Brain On Fire by Susannah Cahalan 
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Room by Emma Donoghue
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Crazy Rich Asians Triology by Kevin Kwan
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Dark Places by Gillian Flynn
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The Circle by Dave Eggers
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