CACAO BLOG

Getting and Keeping your Bikini Body... 10 Tips from a Naturopath

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

 

By Kirsten Swales

Naturopath, Medical Herbalist, Yoga Instructor & Foodie

The easiest way to get a Bikini Body?

Buy a bikini. Put it on your body. ;-)

The secret to gaining a body you are absolutely confident in to rock that said bikini?

The secret is there is no secret.

Good clean eating, a wholesome lifestyle and happy hormones will almost always get you there.

You'll likely find a "Top Ten" list of ways to achieve a bikini body in most summer issues of girly mags. But here's one that's a bit more in depth; a Naturopath's take on the top ten most important things you may wish to start (or continue) doing to help you achieve your health goals.

I always always say, we are all wonderfully individual, so what works for one may not necessarily work for another. We need to tune into our own bodies, and find what works for us.

 

1. Hydration

This always gets drummed into us, with the usual recommendation of "8 glasses per day". Different conditions require different amounts though. Mid-winter in Sweden vs Summer in the tropics - totally different needs. As an indicator, have a peek at the colour of your urine. It should ideally be a pale yellow to clear. If it's rather yellow, up your intake. Adequate water intake helps to regulate our appetites, and it is really easy to misinterpret hunger for actual thirst. I love to start my day by "drenching" my body with 1 litre of water. Your digestive system is at its emptiest in the morning and this has a nice flushing effect.

 

2. Find a Way of Eating most suited to you

So many "Current Trending Diets" out there. I actually don't even like to use the word "diet" as it implies restriction. When you find the style of eating that works for you it is not about restriction, it is about nourishment and sustainability. We should feel satisfied physically, mentally and emotionally from the food we eat. The physical, mental and emotional are all interconnected. When one is out of balance it affects the others.

Cravings are big here. We might think that cravings are a mental and/or emotional thing. Often they are actually a result of an underlying physical need, i.e. unstable blood sugar levels or nutrient deficiency. Craving chocolate around that time of the month? That's your body letting you know it wants some more magnesium. Correct the physical and the mental/emotional often resolves too.

 

3. Identify and resolve any food allergies or intolerances

Feeling "puffy"? Rings cutting off circulation one day but not the next? Poop sticking to the bowl? These are all indicators that there is some level of inflammation happening in the body. Often as a result of what we have consumed. I suggest keeping a food diary for a week, noting foods eaten and any symptoms if they occur. This can really help you to tune into your body that little bit more and identify any common triggers. When we have inflammation in the body, we tend to hold onto water. Think of a blister on the outside of your body...the water/serum helps to protect the underneath layer and helps it to heal. It can be really hard to lose excess weight with an inflamed digestive system.

 

4. You don't have to count calories, but calories do count

Here I am referring to the types of food you choose to eat. Eating 2000 calories worth of good fats, veggies, and proteins will have a huge difference in how you look and feel compared to eating 2000 calories worth of Big Macs. If you want to look and feel like a million bucks, don't eat from the dollar menu.

It really is a shame that healthy, whole foods are way more expensive than processed foods. But it is what it is, at least for now, and I choose to spend less other things so that I can afford the foods I want. Macadamias - I'm looking at you. Yum!

 

5. Sleep

In similar category to water I reckon, we all know we should be getting our 8 hours per night. But do we know why? When I know the reasoning behind what I am doing I am more likely to follow though. Insufficient sleep is known to cause changes in hormones like ghrelin (which increases appetite) and leptin (which tells us we're full). The result is that sleepy people tend to feel hungry and consume more energy than those who are well rested. Also, when we're tired we tend to reach for the more energy dense foods. The little "quick fix". And if we're feeling a little sooky along with tired, comfort foods seem like the only thing in the world that will make us feel better. Opposite in fact tends to be true.

 

6. De-Stress

Elevated stress levels cause elevated levels of our stress hormone cortisol. Cortisol inhibits insulin production in an attempt to prevent glucose from being stored, favoring its immediate use. Over time this leads to chronically high blood sugar levels and insulin resistance. Our cells become starved of glucose. Message sent to brain: eat more. So we do. And the excess glucose gets stored as body fat.

You can get your insulin resistance levels tested by having the Hba1C blood test. This test measures your response to insulin over the past three months.

 

7. Exercise

Exercise. Is. Awesome. Helps your mood, steadies blood sugar levels, improves insulin resistance, tones the bowel, regulates appetite, releases endorphins. I love exercise...to a degree! I love yoga and I love surfing. Find things you enjoy that also keep you moving. Ideally at a level of intensity suited to where you are at. If you are a bit stressed out and adrenally fatigued doing Bikram 5 times a week may be what you want but it is the opposite of what you need (I speak from personal experience. Bikram yoga 5 days a week, couldn't loose a gram. Cut back massively, rested, did a weight loss protocol, felt the best ever. And developed a six pack for the first time in my life).

 

8. Thyroid Health

Our thyroids play a huge role in our metabolism. Hypothyroid (underactive thyroid) being one of the biggest underlying causes of inability to lose weight. There are lots of different mechanisms that need to be working for us to have healthy thyroid function.

Often getting back a test result of TSH (Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) within range will come with the tick from the doctor that you're all good. But there is much more involved to it. Levels of TSH, T3 (triiodothyronine), T4 (thyroxine) and TPO (thyroid peroxidase antibody) all need to be evaluated to understand where your thyroid is truly at. You can do a little at home assessor by tracking your Basal Body Temperature for a few days. If it is consistently under 36.5 C you most likely have an unhappy thyroid.

 

9. Intermittent Fasting

I'm a fan of "intermittent fasting". I am also a fan of eating every day! Michael Mosely popularised the "5:2 diet": 500 calories on two non consecutive days of the week, regular eating the other five. Works for some. For others they often comment they tend to overdo it quite a bit on the regular days. You can achieve the same results if not better by fasting for 12 - 16 hours each day. May sound like a stretch, but remembering point 5 we are going to be aiming to sleep for 8 hours per night. So two hours either side and you have 12 hours right there. Think of it as having an 8 - 10 hour "eating window" during your days.

 

10. Dry Skin Brushing

I'll end with a simple one. Dry skin brushing. This one is great for removing dead skin cells and giving you a nice healthy glow. It also increases circulation to your skin, which encourages the elimination of metabolic waste. And with its stimulation of the lymphatic system it helps to release toxins acting as a powerful detoxification aid. Plus it may help to reduce the appearance of cellulite by softening any hard fat deposits beneath the skin and distributing them more evenly. Winning! ...when trying to re-make it a habit I put a little post-it note on the shower door so I will see it before I get in. Remembering once you're already wet is a bit late for dry skin brushing. ;-)

 

 

So those are the factors I would consider most important in achieving and maintaining your rockin' Bikini Body.

Very easy to say we should all "be happy with the body we have", but if you're not feeling well physically it's going to affect how you feel mentally and emotionally too. On the flip side, when your body is feeling good physically there's no stopping the mental and emotional vitality that comes with it too. It's not about the number on the scale, its about the health beneath the skin radiating out. Like sunshine. And what's great when the sun is shining? Bikinis!

 

Kirsten is a qualified Naturopath, Medical Herbalist and Yoga Instructor who is passionate about health.

She absolutely loves what she does. It makes Kirsten incredibly happy to not only care for and nourish her own body, but to share that knowledge and help her clients to do the same.

Kirsten’s dream is to help guide and empower as many of you as possible to achieve and maintain the same spectacular state of health and vitality as she does now!

Contact Info: kirsten@urbanremedies.com  www.urbanremedies.com

 

4 Reasons You Should Live Like a Mermaid!

Monday, July 06, 2015

Not feeling your best self? It could be time to recharge the Mermaid way! Mermaiding, (living the lifestyle of a Mermaid) can be so good for you in so many ways! From naturally boosting your mood, to giving your hair, skin and nails a natural healthy glow, to getting that no fuss, sexy beach hair we all dream of.  When you feel your best, you wake up feeling and looking beautiful, from the inside out! Find out how the girls at Cacao Bikini stay feeling fresh and naturally radiant by living the Mermaid Life!

1. The SALTY Ocean Naturally Repairs & Rejuvenates your Hair, Skin, Nails & Cuticles.

Want that bouncy, sexy surfer girl beach hair, full of body and weightlessness? Do as the mermaids do and jump into the sea and GET SALTY! Yes, it’s that simple, Sea Salt is naturally full of rich minerals and healing properties! Suffering from skin conditions? Sea Salt can also help conditions like eczema & acne by giving your pores a deep clean and promoting cellular regeneration.

2. SAND is a Great Natural Exfoliate and Body Scrub!

Want silky smooth skin? Exfoliating keeps our skin soft, cleans our pores and slows the ageing process so you stay looking youthful for longer and helps keep acne under control. The loose particles are perfect for removing dead skin cells, which over time, build up and can create discolouration and dull looking skin, regular exfoliation will help to prevent this. Take care on sensitive and delicate areas like your face, in these areas use less sand and don’t rub too hard. We recommend using an organic, cold-pressed coconut oil on your skin afterwards to keep your skin looking and feeling fresh and hydrated for longer.

3. Spending Time at the BEACH can Re-Energise you & Improve your Health!

Re-energise by reconnecting to the earth and its natural energy! Jump into the ocean, go for a swim or a surf, walk barefoot in the sand and take deep breaths of fresh sea air into your lungs!

By ‘grounding’ ourselves and reconnecting with the earth beneath your feet you can improve your health! This concept is otherwise known as ‘earthing’ as explained by Martin Zucker in his book “Earthing: The most important health discovery ever?”. How does it work? This process generates a powerful and positive shift in the electrical state of the body and the electro dynamics of blood & restores natural self-healing and self-regulating mechanisms by drawing upon the earth’s natural energy.

Suffering from muscle pain after those squats or massive surf sesh? This method has also been used by athletes for muscle recovery and to heal injuries, so surfer girls next time you go for a surf, take a bit of extra time to walk in the sand bare foot & soak up all that good energy from mother earth.

4. SUNSHINE Exposure Helps to Maintain a Good Level of Vitamin D!

Sexy, sun-kissed skin is not the only benefit you can get from sun exposure, it is also an excellent source of Vitamin D & for girls especially, Vitamin D is essential for maintaining good health. Studies have shown that Vitamin D absorption is a key factor in reducing breast cancer and also other types of cancers in women. It is also good for maintaining good teeth and bone health as well as aiding in good immune system support. However, as the saying goes, ‘everything in moderation’, this definitely applies here, so make sure you apply a good organic sun cream to guard against skin cancer, sunburn, skin ageing and sun allergies and try to avoid sun exposure during peak UV ray times, like midday.

 

By hitting the beach more often and adopting the Mermaid Lifestyle into your own lifestyle, you too can feel more happy, healthy and effortlessly beautiful! When you feel your best, you wake up feeling and looking beautiful, from the inside out!

Channel your inner Mermaid, think happy thoughts, take deep breaths, be positive, exercise, drink plenty of water, hit the beach, get salty, get sandy, get outside, get some sun and #LOVELIFEINCACAO!



***DISCLAIMER: This blog is for general information purposes only and information provided is merely a suggestion and in no way meant as medical advice.  While Cacao Bikini strives to provide up to date and accurate information at the time of publication, we do not give any assurance or warranty as to its accuracy.  Each person is different and therefore you should consider whether the advice given is right for you personally,  If you are unsure, you consult your medical or health care professional.  Act on this advice only after considering whether it is right for you and your unique situation, It is up to the individual user to take the necessary precautions and Cacao Bikini in no way will be liable for damages or harm arising from the use of any information in this blog. 

HOW TO GET A FIT AND HEALTHY BEACH BODY: 5 QUICK TIPS

Friday, February 13, 2015

By Ronaldo Fulieri

As a nutritionist, personal trainer and healthy chef I get asked frequently “what should I do to achieve a lean, toned and healthy beach body?” - It’s all about lifestyle and healthy life choices! Here are some tips and ideas you could use to stay in shape all the time, not only in summer:

1. Drink more water, watch your liquid calories

Drink a full glass of filtered water first thing in the morning.

Drink water in between meals, preferably 1-2 hours after eating.

Drink more green tea instead of coffee. Green tea has been proven to be powerful antioxidants, protect the skin against sun light damage and rejuvenate the skin from inside out. Plus it helps to eliminate excess fluid retention and increase fat loss.

Have a freshly squeezed juice with vegetable and fruit juice in the morning and

Drink green drinks like fresh green juices, smoothies, spirulina, chlorella and barley grass with stevia, instead of coffee for “pick me up” drinks. They are alkaline, full of chlorophyll, vitamins and minerals, perfect for cleansing and a better source of production of more energy.

Avoid alcoholic drinks if you are trying to lose fat fast or if you are fighting a disease. Remember alcohol is not a nutrient and it’s only empty calories. But if you are going to have a drink substitute high sugar alcoholic drinks for those with low sugar – for example Vodka, lime and soda or sparkling wine.

2. Eat less processed foods & more fresh wholesome foods

You should aim to slowly cut down on products that are highly processed.

Eat more low calorie vegetables, raw salads, beans, and wholesome foods instead of processed and dense calorie ones.

Eat salads for lunch and dinner with your protein of choice. Aim to keep your carbohydrate intake as a low GI option, for example, quinoa. Mix green leaves with a good variety of season vegetables and make yourself a home-made dressing.

Try to substitute or eliminate white bread if you use it daily. At least go for wholegrain, rye, sprouted bread and the ones with high fiber.

Have more foods with high omega-3 fats. Example: Chia seeds, linseed, hemp seeds, salmon, maca powder, etc; You can easily mix chia seeds or linseeds in your superfood smoothies too.

Eat more protein and less carbs for lunch, this helps to increase energy and control blood sugar levels in the afternoon. If you feel hungry 2-3 hours after lunch, then it’s time to have your portion of fruit.

1-2 tablespoons of raw cacao daily can give you good source of minerals, increase of energy and happy hormones – Serotonin.

3. Eat healthy snacks and keep sweets to once a week

Vegetable sticks with hummus or guacamole are a good option for an afternoon stack instead of crackers, bread or other refined carbohydrates.

A handful of nuts and seeds once or twice a day, preferably afternoon snack with your daily fruit snack 2- 3 serves.

Try to have sweet treats once a week only. That’s why they are called treats!

Reduce the consumption of soft drinks, sweets, lollipops and ice-cream after meals. These foods are empty calories and will not really help you to stay in shape.

4. Exercise and move your body

Exercise 3 times a week; this needs to be intense enough to make you break a good sweat.

Eat after exercise, preferably carbohydrates and protein. Try to stay away from fatty foods at these times, as they take to long to digest. After exercise you need simple and fast digestion foods. Example: a superfood smoothie.

5. Keep your mind happy and positive

Try healing techniques such as meditation and yoga if you have health challenges.

Be happy, move your body and think positively, that helps you stay emotionally, physically and spiritually healthy as well.

RONALDO’S SUPERFOOD GREEN SMOOTHIE

Makes 1 ½ -2 serves
  • ½ cup of water 
  • ½ of ice
  • ½ apple
  • ¼ of a cucumber
  • ½ lemon, juice
  • ¼ of avocado
  • 2-3 mint leaves
  • 1 teaspoon of honey or maple syrup or few drops of natural sweetener like stevia
  • 1 teaspoon of alkalizing green powder (barley grass, wheat grass, chlorella, etc)

For more recipes, tips and to connect with Ronaldo check out his facebook page and website!

www.facebook.com/RonaldosKitchen

www.ronaldofulieri.com

**Plus, Ronaldo is offering his cookbook “Ronaldo’s Kitchen – The Superpower of Nutrition” for free (normally $29.95) with any Cacao Bikini purchase over $100 for the whole month of February 2015, or until sold out!

(Your book will be posted to you automatically with your bikini purchase over $100)

HOW TO BIKINI SHOP FOR YOUR BODY SHAPE!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

HELLO SPRING and HELLO BIKINI WEATHER! There is a certain vibe in the air that comes with the change of seasons and those of us who live the bikini life know exactly what’s in store for the summer!  Pool parties, music festivals, beach days, surfing, swimming, tanning, road trips, discovering new beaches & surf spots, beach parties, summer romances and vacations to exotic islands … the list is endless and we are getting too excited!  It’s time to get bikini ready! So where do you start? Frills, no frills, tie up sides, hipster bikini, low cut, high cut, scrunch bottom, cheeky bottoms, Brazilian bottoms… don’t be overwhelmed, we are going to give you some quick tips to help you choose the perfect bikini for your body shape this summer!

1. Know your body shape

2. Choose a bikini style & colour that best flatters your body shape


PEAR SHAPE

Small top / Big bottom

GOAL: You want to make your bum look smaller so it’s more in proportion with your top half.

Bikini Bottom Style: Brazilian or Cheeky Bottom bikini with thin string over hips, with high cut, generally less coverage all over because LESS MATERIAL MAKES THINGS LOOK SMALLER! This will create the illusion of longer, slimmer, sexy legs. Opt for darker colour bikini bottoms to draw less attention.

CACAO BIKINI STYLE: Nalu Cheeky Bottoms & Island Escape Cheeky Bottoms in Pistachio or Black

*Pair with a light or bright coloured bandeau top or balconette style swim top like the Ocean Girl Swim Top by Cacao Bikini, for a wider looking top half that is more in proportion with your bottom half. To enhance your bust wear a top with frills top like the Ariel Swim Top.

Celebrity Pears – Kim Kardashian, Rihanna, JLo, Shakira

APPLE SHAPE

Larger bust, broader shoulders with narrow hips & less defined waist.

GOAL: You want to make your hips look bigger to balance out your larger top half and achieve that sexy hour glass look!

Bikini Bottom Style: Tie side with bows, ruffles or thick belt bottoms will all help to increase the appearance of your hips and balance out your bigger top half.  Choose a Brazilian or Cheeky Bottom bikinis to avoid saggy bum look.  Opt for light or bright colour bikini bottoms to draw the focus towards your bottom half. 

CACAO BIKINI STYLE: Brazen Cheeky Bottoms & Island Escape Cheeky Bottoms in Mango Yellow or Watermelon.

*For broad shoulders, pair with a bra style swim top like the Ocean Girl Swim Top or triangle top like the Ariel Swim Top in a darker coloured, supported bra bikini or triangle top.

Celebrity Apples – Angelina Jolie, Tyra Banks, Catherine Zita-Jones

HOUR GLASS SHAPE:

Bust & Hips nearly the same size, with a well defined waist, 9 inches or smaller than bust, curvy with full bust and shapely legs.

GOAL: To show off your sexy curves

Bikini Bottom Style: Similar to Pear shaped body types, Opt for a string bikini with knot ties rather than bulky bows, with little coverage, Brazilian or cheeky bottom bikinis, because less material makes your butt look smaller!

CACAO BIKINI STYLE: Nalu Cheeky Bottoms & Island Escape Cheeky Bottoms

*Pair with supported underwire bra like the Ocean Girl Swim Top
 or triangle swim top or bralette (coming soon to Cacao Bikini).

Celebrity hour glasses – Scarlett Johanson, Mariah Carey,

BOYISH / ATHLETE / SURFER GIRL SHAPE:

Small bust, narrow hips, undefined waist.

GOAL: You want to create the illusion of more curves.

Bikini Bottom Style: Tie up bikini bottoms with a bow, thick waist band bikini bottoms to create the illusion of sexy curvy hips.

CACAO BIKINI STYLE: Brazen Cheeky Bottoms
Nalu Cheeky Bottoms
& Island Escape Cheeky Bottoms

Celebrity Athletic shapes: Stephanie Gilmore, Sally Fitzgibbon, Alana Blanchard, Cameron Diaz, Gwen Stefani


See our quick reference guide below for how to bikini shop for specific body shape issues:

  • Long in the body: You want to attract the attention to your hips and breasts with a loud bikini, do this with large prints and thick waist bands. see Brazen Cheeky Bottoms
  • Short in the body: Low rise & Cheeky cut bikinis with small prints. See Cacao Bikini Cheeky Bottom Bikini range
  • Short legs: High cut, cheeky bikini bottoms to elongate your legs – see Cacao Bikini Cheeky Bottom Bikini range
  • Small Bust: Frills and bandeau styles – see Ariel Swim Top
  • Big Busts: Supported bras, thick neck straps and or underwires – see Ocean Girl Swim Top 
  • Broad Shoulders: Bra style wide straps, halter-neck that breaks up neckline to define and balance out dimensions, tie side pants to balance out shoulders. see Ocean Girl Swim Top & Mamita Swim Top
  • Big stomach: High waisted or belted bottom styles – see Brazen Cheeky Bottoms
  • Big thighs: Stay away from frills and tie sides, wear cheeky bottoms to elongate legs - see Brazen Cheeky Bottoms or Nalu Cheeky Bottoms 
  • Big bums: High cut, Brazilian style, cheeky bottom bikinis - see Cacao Bikini Cheeky Bottom Bikini range

Once you know how to bikini shop for your body shape, choosing a style that’s right for you will be easy and you can feel confident and sexy on the beach!  

Please leave a comment below, we'd love to hear from you! 

HAPPY SHOPPING MERMAIDS!

Shop now at CACAOBIKINI.com

#LOVELIFEINCACAO