8 healthy living tips that will make you shop smarter

Article from BRIT + CO.

We know that living a healthy life can be a daunting task. It’s doubly hard when you need to make informed choices for a family. But here’s a simple place to start: Get smart about the ingredients that you put in, on, and around your body. From baking substitutes to laundry detergent, there are loads of ways to make healthy choices around your home.

1. Use sulfate-free laundry detergent.

It’s time to say “peace out” to tough stains, the smart way. Clean is essential, but sulfates aren’t. This stuff will give you a powerful clean without the sulfates to tackle your toughest stains.

2. DIY a turmeric face mask.

This vibrant-colored spice has a veritable laundry list of health benefits for your skin. It’s known for anti-inflammatory properties that can help treat acne, dark circles, rosacea, and eczema; plus it can minimize pigmentation and evens skin tone. Word is that it even helps reduce wrinkles. Mix one tablespoon turmeric, one tablespoon yogurt, and one tablespoon raw honey, then apply to your face. Leave on for 20 minutes, then rinse off and apply moisturizer. Natural beauty FTW!

3. Start the day with a mug of green tea and fresh lemon juice.

You’ve likely heard of the nutritional benefits of lemon water (psst: It’s known to boost the immune system, kick-start metabolism, and aid digestion), as well as the health virtues of green tea (you know, like improved brain function, lower cholesterol, and better blood flow). Turns out, these two nutrients are better together. When you add lemon juice to your cuppa, it makes the antioxidant properties of the green tea much more accessible for your body to absorb. Essentially, the lemon’s acid makes green tea’s superpowers that much more super. Cool, huh?

4. Use lavender essential oil to prevent and soothe mosquito bites.

Skip the chemical spray and opt for a more natural solution for that itchy, itchy bug bite. The antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties found in lavender can help fend off mosquitoes, as well as treat existing bites. Dilute the essential oil in a carrier oil (like grapeseed, olive, or jojoba oil) and put the mixture in a spray bottle for easy application. Or you can apply the undiluted oil directly to the skin for particularly buggin’ bites.

5. Try coconut oil as makeup remover.

The downside to long-lasting eye makeup? It’s so dang hard to remove at the end of the day! Coconut oil has natural properties that break down the water-resistant ingredients found in eye makeup. Plus, it’s also quite moisturizing. Here’s another perk: Coconut oil is much less expensive than name-brand makeup removers, which may have unseen harsh chemicals. Pick it up at your grocery store!

6. Use sunblock with zinc oxide.

When looking for a sunblock that *really* protects, reach for the mineral-based stuff. Zinc oxide blocks both UVA and UVB rays and starts working the moment you apply it. It’s lauded as the safest and most effective sunblock out there.

7. Substitute avocado for butter when baking.

Vegan or not, swapping out the butter is a good idea. When using avocado as a substitute, you’re basically replacing saturated fat with unsaturated fat (which is good!), as well as adding more vitamins, antioxidants, and minerals to your meal. The swap is one for one, so next time a recipe calls for a Tablespoon of butter, swap for a Tablespoon of avo, instead. Try this with muffins, cakes, cookies, and more — you’ll barely taste the difference.

8. Make dairy-free banana ice cream for dessert.

We’ll let you in on a secret: You can make creamy, healthy ice cream with just ONE ingredient — bananas! All you need to do is purée the frozen fruit in a food processor or blender. Then you can add other flavors as you see fit, like cinnamon, chocolate, nuts, or other frozen fruits. It’s bananas in so many ways.

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