Happy Monday friends! Craig and I are en route to New Hampshire, a little work and a little play, but definitely some time to unwind, recharge and disconnect (is that actually possible, we shall see). I can’t wait to hear how all of you made out in last week’s challenge. Honestly I had fun trying some new recipes, the roast chicken I made from The Beauty Chef was probably my favorite because it was SO good and really easy. I made a modified version of the smoothie bowl recipe as well and it was delicious. I made a few over the weekend too so I will share some recipes soon. I also took a spin class on Sunday and loved it. If you’re new to the wellness challenge, get the lowdown here. Don’t forget to comment with your progress from the previous week to be entered into my monthly and massive end of year giveaway. I’m really impressed with all of your commitment to this, it’s keeping me motivated!
Jess Ann Kirby looks for healthy new recipes to try this week as part of her 2018 wellness challenge

This Week’s Challenge: Hydration + Probiotics

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One of my goals for 2018 is to drink more water. I know, sigh. This has been a goal every year since I started making goals. And I always fail. I am the WORST about staying hydrated. The thing is staying hydrated and drinking enough water can have incredible health benefits. It can help with everything from energy levels and brain function to preventing headaches and improving your skin. The typical recommendation is eight 8-ounce glasses per day. You can also get fluids from beverages like juice (and yes even coffee) as well as fruits and veggies, but alcohol and sodas will have the opposite effect. Be careful with juices as they can contain a lot of sugar. In addition to drinking more water I’ve recently started taking probiotics (please note I am not a physician and you should consult your doctor if you’re unsure about taking probiotics). Probiotics can be good for your digestive system, immune system, gut health and skin. I’ve been struggling with hormonal acne (more on that soon) and both of these things, hydration and probiotics can help with that. So this week’s challenge is to stay hydrated and incorporate probiotics.


-Reusable water bottles. Having water with you at all times will almost certainly force you to drink of it. When I’m home I fill up a large bottle, I have this glass bkr bottle and a few S’well bottles. I make sure to bring one if I leave the house, particularly if I’m going to work out. I like the 32 oz bkr because if I drink one full bottle that’s already half of my daily requirement.

– Eat more fruits and veggies. Foods like cucumbers, tomatoes, radishes, spinach, strawberries, watermelon and grapefruit have a high water content.

– Drink Kombucha – Kombucha is a probiotic beverage. I’ve tried MANY and honestly haven’t really liked any (a lot of them taste like fake sugar to me). I recently discovered Aqua ViTea and I’m addicted. They have a ton of really great flavors and it’s pretty easy to find (they have a product locator on their homepage).

– Probiotic supplements. I recently started taking The Beauty Chef Glow Powder and Collagen Inner Beauty Boost. It’s too soon to report back on it but I like the taste which is half the battle.

-I also add Vital Proteins collagen powder to a glass of water once a day (the lavender lemon).

-Foods with probiotics. There are some great ways to get probiotics from foods incuding, apple cider vinegar (add it to a dressing, recipe or water with lemon), tempeh, miso, kimchi and sauerkraut.

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Jess Ann Kirby recommends Beauty Chef inner glow beauty powder as a great supplement to your diet