5 Surefire Ways (Backed by Science!) to Boost Energy Naturally

elderly energyEnergy drinks have gotten a bad rap for the past few years. Consumption of caffeinated energy drinks such as Red Bull have been linked to an increasing number of emergency room visits and have been associated with serious health conditions such as heart attack, irregular heartbeats, and debilitating headaches.

As the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) is still carefully scrutinizing the health effects of energy drinks, it may be best to put down those energy shots for now and choose the natural route instead if you’re looking into having an instant energy boost. We list down 10 science-backed tips below!

  1. Hit the gym for a quick session of mild to moderate exercise.  This study by researchers at the Stockholm University found out that employees who devote at least a few hours each week to exercise tend to be more productive and were sick less often.
  2. Fuel up with complex carbs and always pair it with protein as much as possible. Foods that are rich in complex carbs such as whole grains (rice, wheat, corn, oats) , nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables releases glucose (primary fuel for your brain) gradually into the bloodstream. Slow glucose release prevents the dreaded sugar crash which often results from eating simple carbs from highly processed foods. Pairing carbs with protein can also help avoid extreme fluctuations in blood sugar levels which can hamper down energy levels.
  3. Have a quick power nap. This study has found a relationship between habitual napping and moderate improvements in motor performance. In addition, this NASA study found out that napping pilots had 34 percent increase in cperformance and 100 percent increase in alertness than non-napping pilots.
  4. Take the time to go out. A series of studies revealed that getting outside for a quick nature fix can actually do wonders to your energy levels. Aside from feeling less sluggish, people who spend more time outside also tend to be more resilient to physical illnesses.
  5. Take a cold shower. Researchers have hypothesized that a 3-minute cold shower can actually reverse symptoms associated with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).

Lifestyle Coaching at the Washington Wellness Center

Making changes in your lifestyle can be hard work.  But when a healthy lifestyle becomes a priority, the benefits of increased energy, feeling and looking better, and controlling chronic disease makes all the hard work worthwhile.

A Wellness Coach can help by providing you with the tools to start and sustain meaningful changes, as well as provide support to overcome obstacles. Let us give you the support, education and commitment that you need.  Call us today to schedule your appointment to meet with a Wellness Coach at 319-466-0026 or fill out this contact form today. We want to help you reach your health goals and continue living a healthy life for years to come!

Exercise Your Way to Beating the Blues!

Have you been feeling down lately? Being unhappy is certainly normal and is almost always a part of life. However, chronic depression is actually debilitating as it can also lead to a host of problems such as loss of appetite, dwindling energy levels, feelings of helplessness, and inability to maintain close relationships. In some cases, long-lasting depression may even lead to extreme levels of anxiety.

Science Says “Let’s Get Physical!”

The advice that exercise can do wonders to your mood is nothing new. Your grandma has probably told you countless times that all you need is a bit of sunshine or you ought to spend more time outdoors to feel better and stop feeling bad about everything. It looks like science would agree to what grandma has to say after all!

First, this 2013 study found a connection between running and significant reduction of anxiety. In fact, a prospective, randomized controlled research trial in 2007 concluded that

“..the efficacy of exercise in patients seems generally comparable with patients receiving antidepressant medication and both tend to be better than the placebo in patients with major depressive disorders. Placebo response rates were high, suggesting that a considerable portion of the therapeutic response is determined by patient expectations, ongoing symptom monitoring, attention, and other nonspecific factors.”

In addition,  let’s not forget endorphins. They’ve been constantly mentioned whenever the topic of exercise comes up. The mood-lifting effects of endorphins that are released during exercise have been studied and discussed for decades. Also, a  2011 study figured out that apart from endorphins, exercise improves mood levels by altering brain chemistry.

Holistic Psychotherapy at the Washington Street Wellness Center

At the Washington Street Wellness Center, we incorporate physical activity in our holistic psychotherapy services that aim to help clients cope with anxiety, depression, trauma, grief, and loss.

Let us help you beat the blues! Get in touch with us today by calling 319.466.0026 or by filling out this contact form today to schedule an appointment. We look forward to your visit!

Simple, Everyday Tips for More Youthful Skin

It’s common to assume that shy of discovering the real-life fountain of youth, the only way to preserve youthful skin for life is to go under the knife. However, it’s actually possible to make a marked difference to the skin’s tone, firmness and luster from head to toe simply by remembering a few simple rules and tips. These are the simple skincare secrets the experts are every day trying to get out into the open, which when combined really can make a world of difference.

All Moisture is Good

For example, there’s a time and a place for the expensive creams and serums that cost a king’s ransom – there’s also a place for the basic stuff too. In a nutshell, there is no such thing as bad moisturizer when it comes to the standard creams and lotions that cost next to nothing – just as long as they’ve been approved as safe, of course.

Garbage In, Garbage Out

If you eat and drink garbage, this will show across every inch of your skin. By contrast, flood your body with all the good things it needs and you will literally shine from the inside out.

Water…And Plenty Of It

It’s a proven fact that most people don’t drink nearly enough water. Dehydration leads to dry, cracked, saggy and blotchy skin – consider water your fab freebie for looking after your skin!

Sleep Well, Sleep Regularly

Good sleep doesn’t mean working yourself to death all week and sleeping until 4pm at the weekend. Instead, it means consistent sleep every single night, which your skin will thank you for.

Get Out and About

And finally, your skin will only ever be as healthy as your body as a whole, which in turn means that you cannot expect to benefit from younger looking skin if you don’t keep yourself in shape. Exercise and daily movement in general are of paramount importance for healthy and younger looking skin, so get out and about as often as possible.

Let us help you retain naturally youthful skin! Get in touch with us today by calling 319.466.0026 or by filling out this contact form to schedule an appointment. We look forward to your visit!


Are You Listening to What Your Body is Trying to Tell You?

Have you ever thought of your body as machine? It is actually similar to one except what’s so awesome about it is that it knows how to fix tiny glitches. In addition, it has the ability to send out little signals conveying that something is wrong and it might need a little help from you!

Unfortunately, most of us are so caught up with work, school, social media, and other distractions that modern living tend to bombard us every day. A heightened sense of self-awareness is required to help you figure out what your body is actually trying to tell you. Such awareness may take time, skill, and practice; therefore we think that you might need a little help from the Washington Street Wellness team. We’re more than happy to oblige!

Cracks at the corners of your mouth

You are most likely to have Vitamin B deficiency. Also known as cheilitis, this symptom may be your body’s way of telling you that you’re not getting enough B vitamins. Thus, it may be best for you to increase your intake of egg yolks, red meat, liver, sweet potatoes, legumes, wheat germ, and other foods that contain nutritional yeast/brewer’s yeast (beer, anyone?).

Chapped Lips

The likelihood of dehydration is high if you frequently have chapped lips. If you’re always reaching out for your lip balm to soothe chapped lips, you might want to drink up and increase your water intake. In addition, consider eating foods that contain essential fatty acids which in turn help you retain more moisture such as sardines, anchovies, and avocados. Other symptoms of dehydration to look out for include dry skin, infrequent urination, dark yellow urine, and headaches.

Frequent colds and flu

It’s normal to catch a cold or flu twice or thrice a year. However, if you’ve been frequently declaring in your Facebook or Twitter that you’re currently under the weather, your immune system may actually need some assistance from you. Your immune system’s central command system is in your gut and an imbalance of gut microbes may be driving your immune system in haywire. The good news is you can help your friendly microbes in defending the fort by consuming probiotic-rich foods (foods which contain tons of good bacteria), most of which are fermented. These include sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, yogurt, kefir, and kombucha. Moreover, you might also want to increase your intake of prebiotics (foods that nourish your good bacteria) such as onions, garlic, green bananas, and leeks.


This condition is a general term for the appearance of skin redness that is often accompanied with itching, tiny vesicles or papules, weeping, crusting, and in some cases, scaling. By and large, the most common trigger of eczema is food allergy or intolerance. This happens because any type of food that your body doesn’t tolerate well will lead to chronic irritation in the gut. If this type of inflammation in the gut is left unattended, it could create fissures in the spaces in between cells and allow for the invading bacteria to leak into out of the intestines, travel into the bloodstream, and manifest itself through skin rashes.

If you’re regularly experiencing eczema, consider avoiding the most common triggers of food intolerance/allergy for a certain period of time and reintroduce them one by one while monitoring closely for skin reactions.

Foods which tend to trigger eczema include dairy products, eggs, soy, corn, yeast, wheat, chocolate, and foods that are rich in gluten.

There’s a lot more subtle signs that may mean something is wrong with the most awesome machine ever invented. So you’re still not sure where to start? Let us help you out! Get in touch with us today by calling 319.466.0026 or by filling out this contact form to schedule an appointment. We look forward to your visit!