Summer Skincare Tips

Summer is in full swing. Personally, summer means heading to the beach, lake or any body of water to relax as fast as I possibly can. If you’re anything like me, tanning is a summer activity I look forward to‒what can I say? I love the summer glow. Unfortunately, with the warm weather and cloudless skies my skin is at a greater risk for sun damage. I’m not alone‒whatever your plans are this summer, chances are your skin is at risk too.

The sun emits UV rays, which can negatively impact your skin by accelerating the aging process, creating sunspots and burning the surface of your skin (and we all know how painful that can be). Driving, biking, swimming, running and even walking outside without the proper protection can leave your skin vulnerable to sun damage.

Don’t worry, I’m not here to scare you and tell you to never leave the house again. I am here to share Cooper Spa Dallas’ recommendations to prevent skin damage this summer while still maintaining healthy and glowing summer skin.

Sunscreen

A tale as old as time. “Don’t forget sunscreen,” the phrase I heard from the moment I packed my bags for the beach as a kid to my senior year in college‒it’s physically impossible for me to forget sunscreen now. Although it’s a simple answer, the key is being able to apply it correctly.

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Cooper Spa Dallas recommends wearing sunscreen with SPF 30-50 when in the sun, and reapplying it ever 2-4 hours following your first coat (as well as our Cooper Board Certified Dermatologist). When applying, make sure to use approximately two tablespoons worth of sunscreen on your entire body 30 minutes before going outside.

The key to full protection lies in the application of the sunscreen, making sure to fully cover your face, from your hairlines to your ears and lips. Follow these suggestions and your risk of sun damage this summer will plummet.

Self-Tanner

The desire to attain the perfect summer tan is a trend that has been around for decades and self-tanner is changing the game. For some, tanning is a summer ritual, laying out with music, friends or even a good read. While tanning leaves a temporary summer glow, it also leaves lasting skin damage.

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Self-tanner gives you the glow you’ve been searching for without the harmful effects of UVA and UVB. UVA rays play a part in actively aging the skin while UVB rays burn the skin and cause skin cancer. Self-tanning is a healthy alternative to lathering yourself in tanning oil and baking in the sun.

SkinScopeLED

Cooper Spa Dallas recommends having an evaluation of your skin and current sun damage. Cooper Spa uses SkinScopeLED technology to take an in-depth look into the current state of your skin, pinpointing sun damage and giving you recommendations on how to better prevent further damage.

Having a SkinScopeLED evaluation is a unique way to understand the state of your skin and how to prevent future damage. Our Cooper Clinic Dermatology offers head-to-toe skin cancer screenings. Learning how to take better care of your skin to prevent disease is important to your health and quality of life, make sure that you know how.

Blog provided by Afton Guedea, Cooper Aerobics Marketing intern and Student at the University of Oklahoma.

A Summertime Treat[ment] You Can’t Live Without

The summer season is finally upon us, which calls for long days, hot weather and relaxing by the pool–but are your feet ready? If the answer is no, “what in the world?” or anything in-between, Cooper Spa Dallas is a must stop for you this summer. The seasonal Lemongrass Ginger Pedicure is designed to rejuvenate your feet, leaving them with the ideal summer glow throughout sandal season!

As this summer’s marketing intern at Cooper Aerobics, I jumped at the chance to experience and write about Cooper Spa’s seasonal pedicure. I assumed I would get a run-of-the-mill pedicure instead, I received a relaxing full-body experience that left me ready to soak up the summer sun–and treat myself to some new sandals (but don’t tell my parents).

Containing healthy properties for the skin, lemongrass is a natural toner and is known to soothe irritation and strengthen your skin tissue. These properties combined with the refreshing Qtica products used by Cooper Spa causes a lemongrass ginger scent to fill the air in the salon area–cleansing your senses and leaving them revitalized and ready to beat the summer heat.

Spa Pedi 1

Triple Soak

Marcia, my nail technician, began soaking my feet in a warm lemongrass ginger triple fresh soak. She applied a gentle sugar scrub, exfoliating my legs and feet, after removing my previous polish, which has been there for an embarrassing length of time. The clean scent cleared my senses, and relaxed me from head to toe.

Mask

The callus remover and pedi file came next, which is normally torture for my sensitive and ticklish feet but ended up being a therapeutic break from the bustling week of my brother’s wedding and back-to-back graduations I had endured at the beginning of the summer. The cuticle work came next–cuticle remover and oil–followed by a lemongrass moisture mask.

I know what you must be thinking, “a mask for your feet?” Don’t worry, you’re not alone. I thought the same thing. My doubts ended when Marcia covered my entire right leg up to my knee then my left, wrapped them in warm towels and let the mask do its work. When the towels were removed and the mask was wiped away, my legs and feet never looked so hydrated and healthy!

Massage

A wave of relaxation hit me as Marcia removed the mask and replaced it with lotion accompanied by a soothing massage. The light yet intentional pressure released more tension. As the leg and foot massage ended, Marcia applied the Zoya nail polish named Joey, a light pink shade of polish I had chosen at the beginning of my treatment. I was immediately drawn to this shade because it was the perfect color to compliment my summer glow.

At the end of the treatment ended, my toenails perfect for sandal season and I felt ready to take on the summer. You too can be the envy at every summer pool party when you treat yourself to a 60-minute lemongrass ginger pedicure to achieve healthy, hydrated and glowing feet.

I can only hope my senior year at the University of Oklahoma will be as relaxing as the summer seasonal pedicure, but I have a feeling that football season will be a bit more stressful.

Enroll in Spa Rewards and start earning perks today—rewards can be used toward spa services, exclusive offers and more! Learn more at cooperspa.com/Rewards.

Blog provided by Afton Guedea, Cooper Aerobics Marketing intern and student at the University of Oklahoma.

How to Pick Your Summer Produce

Summer is finally here and grocery store produce aisles are full of fresh and vibrant pineapples, peaches, melons and more. But how do you pick the most quality produce? Use these tips from Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services to ensure you select the best fruit available.

  1. Know what fruit is in season.

Produce picked in season is often the most flavorful. If you are unsure what grows when, check the U.S. Department of Agriculture website.

  1. Local fruit may be riper.

Since local produce does not have to travel as far, it can grow for the full season and be picked during its prime.

  1. Buy fruits at multiple levels of ripeness.

This way you will have fresh ripe fruit that remains flavorful and fresh until your next trip to the store.

Read on for specific tips on how to select and enjoy seasonal favorites.

Happy woman buying fruit in grocery

Pineapple

  • A ripe pineapple’s rind is golden yellow throughout the entire fruit. If it is green, it is not ripe yet and if it is orange, it means the pineapple is overripe.
  • The base of the fruit should have a sweet smell. If there is a faint vinegar-like smell, the pineapple may be overripe.
  • To cut a pineapple, cut the top and bottom off first. Next, slice the sides off the fruit with a sharp knife. If little brown pits are left on the sides, use the edge of a peeler to pull them off. For easier, more efficient cutting, look at this unique kitchen gadget that does all the hard work for you.

Watermelon

  • Look for a discolored yellow spot where the melon was resting on the ground; this indicates the melon had plenty of time to fully ripen in the patch. The same is true for all other types of melons.
  • Thump the watermelon. If it sounds deep and hollow, it is good to go. If the thump produces a dull sound, it is not quite ripe.
  • A ripe melon should be dull in appearance (not shiny) and fade lighter towards the stem.
  • If a piece of the stem remains, it could indicate the melon was picked before it was truly ripe.
  • If purchasing watermelon already cut, look for dark red flesh with all black seeds (no white seeds).

Cantaloupe

  • A ripe cantaloupe has a sweet aroma.
  • Press the stem of the cantaloupe with your thumb – it should give a little under the weight of your finger.
  • Melons should feel heavy, even considering their small size. Remember, the heavier the melon, the juicer it will be.
  • Store ripe cantaloupes in the refrigerator to prevent further ripening.

Peach

  • A ripe peach should be vibrant in color. Some areas of the fruit may be discolored, but there should not be any green spots.
  • Press your thumb into the fruit, the more the fruit gives, the riper it is.
  • Store peaches at room temperature with the stem facing down. Stacking peaches on top of each other or with other fruit may cause bruising.
  • Peaches last longer when placed in a sandwich bag and storing them in the refrigerator.
  • To easily remove the skins of peaches, place in boiling water for approximately 20 seconds, then place in ice cold water. Use a knife to remove the skin.

 

Beat the heat with these fresh and fruity summer recipes:

 

Article provided by Haley Billings, intern and dietetic student at Oklahoma State University, and Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services.

Categories: Cooper Updates

Preserve Your Summer Glow

The sun is out and summer fun is in full swing. With additional sun exposure summertime brings, it is important to be aware of ways to properly protect and prevent damage to your skin.

While beauty is more than skin deep, we must not neglect our skin—the body’s largest organ. Our skin provides an important barrier and immune protection plus hydration and vitamin-producing functions. Cooper Clinic Preventive and Cosmetic Dermatologist Kejal Shah, MD, FAAD provides her tip to keep your skin glowing long after summer is over.

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  1. Seek Shade

When you’re outdoors for extended periods of time, Dr. Shah recommends seeking shade under trees, umbrellas or other shaded structures whenever possible. It’s especially important between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. when the sun’s harmful UVB rays are the strongest. However, even while in the shade you still receive quite a bit of exposure to the sun’s ultraviolent (UV) rays according to The Skin Cancer Foundation.

  1. Avoid Sunburns

Depending on your skin type, it may feel near impossible to avoid getting a sunburn in summertime. Dr. Shah recommends the following practical ways to prevent sunburn.

  • Wear sunscreen all the time. Apply one ounce—or the equivalent to two tablespoons—of broad-spectrum sunscreen with SPF 30 or higher to your entire body 30 minutes before going outside.
  • Wear a broad-brimmed hat.
  • Wear UV-blocking sunglasses along with ultraviolet protection factor (UPF) clothing to help block UV radiation from penetrating the fabric.

Even the glass in your car or home is incapable of completely blocking the penetration of UV radiation. UVA rays penetrate more through the glass than UVB, increasing the risk of skin cancer as well as premature aging. “Consider adding tinted UV-protective film to windows in your car, house and office,” says Shah.

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  1. Refrain From Tanning

UV radiation, whether from the sun or a tanning bed, is a carcinogen. The light used in tanning beds is UVA, which penetrates the skin deeper and causes skin cancer and premature aging of the skin. Using a tanning bed increases your risk of developing:

  • Squamous cell carcinoma by 70 percent
  • Basal cell carcinoma by 30 percent
  • Melanoma by 75 percent (in people who first use a tanning bed before age 35)

Dr. Shah advocates self-tanning products as an ideal alternative if you’re looking to achieve the perfect summer glow. Keep in mind they do not protect your skin from UV rays and should not be a substitute for sunscreen.

  1. Practice Preventive Measures

Using a hand and full-length mirror:

  • Start by examining your face, specifically your nose, lips, mouth and ears.
  • Moving to your scalp, use a blow dryer to expose each section beneath your hair.
  • Check the palms and backs of your hands, not neglecting to check between your fingers and under your fingernails.
  • Continue up your wrists to examine both the front and back of your forearms.
  • Standing in front of the full-length mirror can assist in checking your upper arms and armpits before you conclude with inspecting your neck, shoulders, back and legs.

Dr. Shah encourages you to see a dermatologist annually for a full-body skin examination to identify potential skin problems before they negatively affect your health. Cooper Clinic’s board-certified dermatologists perform a meticulous screening for cancers, pre-cancers and atypical moles. Our highly trained physicians also discuss past sun exposure, sun protection measures and family history of skin cancer in order to best treat and prevent further damage.

For more information or to schedule a comprehensive skin exam at Cooper Clinic Dermatology, visit cooperclinicdermatology.com or call 972.367.6000.

Categories: Cooper Updates

Keep Calm & Care For You

While stress in day-to-day life looks different for everyone, it can manifest itself in similar ways, taking emotional, mental and physical tolls on our bodies. Cooper Spa General Manager Lisa Boyle delves into her favorite indulgent spa services and products to help relieve and manage stress on all levels. spa massage

Specifically for helping with stress management and relaxation, Boyle recommends an 80-minute Swedish massage with the primary focus to relax the entire body by using long, gliding strokes in the direction of blood returning to the heart. The Swedish massage technique decreases levels of the stress hormone cortisol, as well as the hormone which triggers cortisol level spikes, arginine vasopressin.

A multitude of spa services address emotional, mental and physical ways that stress takes its toll on the body. While some treatments are more effective for stress reduction, the overall feeling of being cared for, nurtured and pampered is the key to relaxation, promoting feelings of whole body wellness. “Receiving any type of spa service helps create both mental and physical health benefits,” says Boyle. “Physical contact is necessary to our well-being, one component that all spa treatments offer.” Studies have shown that spa services such as massages, facials and skincare treatments increase sleep quality and help boost the immune system. Additional health benefits these services provide include stimulating the lymphatic system to rid the body of toxins, helping the body to release serotonin, relieving chronic pain, promoting cell regeneration and improving circulation and posture.

Cooper Spa offers a variety of retail products which incorporate aromatherapy and muscle tension relief to help manage stress in the comfort and convenience of home. On days when you can’t seem to fit a trip to the spa into your busy schedule, Boyle recommends the Sonoma Lavender Neck Pillows and Heat Wraps. “These products help to soothe achy muscles with calming scents of lavender and other essential oils. Heating them in the microwave and placing them wherever you are most tense helps relax and revive the muscles.” Another personal favorite product of Boyle’s is the RAD Roller massage tools line, designed to release muscular pain, flush out toxins, relieve trigger points and help mobilize joints.

No matter what kind of stress you find yourself dealing with, self-care is the first step in the right direction to help you manage stress and feel your best.

For more information or to book a service at Cooper Spa, visit cooperaerobics.com/Cooper-Spa-Dallas or call 972.392.7729.

Catching the Cauliflower Craze

Have you caught the cauliflower craze yet? Starring as the nutrient-packed main ingredient in many recipes today may be reason enough to make cauliflower your next favorite vegetable. GettyImages-915331568.jpg

Cauli-Power Nutrients

Packed with powerful health benefits, cauliflower is a part of the cruciferous vegetable family which is among the top ten brain-healthy foods. Beyond its brain benefits, its unique plant compounds may also reduce risk of heart disease and cancer. Just one cup of cauliflower provides more than 75 percent of your daily recommended vitamin C intake. It is also a good source of vitamin K, B6, potassium and manganese.

One cup of raw cauliflower contains:

  • 25 calories
  • 0 g fat
  • 5 g carbohydrates
  • 5 g fiber

It’s easy to prepare, inexpensive and extremely convenient. Traditional ways to eat cauliflower include:

  • Steamed
  • Roasted
  • Sautéed
  • Raw
  • Added to stir-fries, soups, casseroles and salads

 

A “Sneaky” Starch Swap

Helping reduce calories and carbohydrates (not to mention expand your veggie palate), cauliflower can replace starches in many recipes as a weight loss friendly food.

One cup of cooked rice:

  • 240 calories
  • 45 g carbohydrates

One cup cooked cauliflower:

  • 30 calories
  • 5 g carbohydrates

 

By making this substitution, you save eight times the amount of calories and carbohydrates!

This amazing veggie contains three times the amount of fiber than white rice, which promotes fullness, an important aid in weight control. Cauliflower also contains 92 percent water content by weight, which, like other water-packed, low-calorie foods such as fruits and veggies, can also help with weight loss.

 

Local grocery stores now offer a wide range of cauliflower-based products, so you don’t have to go out of your way to find an array of conveniently fresh and frozen items.

Mix up your menus by adding these items to your grocery list:

  • Cauliflower rice, grated cauliflower that can replace white or brown rice.
  • Cauliflower mash, pureed cauliflower and used instead of mashed potatoes (see recipe below).
  • Cauliflower pizza crust and tortillas are made from pulsed cauliflower for a low-carb version of pizza, wraps, tacos or burritos.
  • Cauliflower hummus uses cauliflower to replace chickpeas in recipes.
  • Cauliflower mac and cheese, risotto or couscous utilizes cooked cauliflower that is mashed and used as a guilt-free way to replace these carbohydrate-rich foods. Try preparing these with lower fat milk and cheese, along with your favorite spices.

 

You can purchase many of these items pre-made such as seasoned cauliflower rice, mash and even pizza crust, but beware of added sodium and fat that can creep in. It is ideal to buy a bag of fresh or frozen riced cauliflower, which can be added into delicious homemade recipes with a few easy steps.

 

Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes Recipe

Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

1 large cauliflower, cut into small pieces (about 1 pound)

3 garlic cloves, chopped

2 (14 oz.) cans low-sodium chicken (or beef) broth

2 Tbsp. chives, chopped (or green onions)

2 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped

 

Instructions:

  1. Combine cauliflower, garlic and broth in a large saucepan. If the broth does not cover the cauliflower, add water to cover.
  2. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer until cauliflower is fork tender, about 15 minutes.
  3. Drain cauliflower and garlic, reserving 2 Tbsp. broth.
  4. Hand mash or transfer to a food processor and pulse until smooth, adding broth if necessary to moisten mixture.
  5. Season with salt and pepper; add chives (or green onions) and parsley and stir. Serve hot.

 

Nutritional analysis:

88.7 calories

1.8 g fat

124 mg sodium

13.8 g carbohydrates

4.3 g fiber

8.2 g protein

 

For more information about Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services, visit cooperclinicnutrition.com or call 972.560.2655.

Blog provided by Elana Paddock, RDN, LD, CDE, and Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services.

Categories: Cooper Updates

Get Cracking with the Benefits of Pistachios

February 26, 2019 Leave a comment

Did you know that pistachios are one of the world’s oldest nuts, tracing back to biblical times?

Pistachios have a long history as amazing sources of healthy fats, protein, fiber and antioxidants. Pistachio lovers have many reasons to crack open these little green gems.

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Three Reasons to Love Pistachios

Heart Health

  • Research suggests that eating 1.5 oz. per day of most nuts, including pistachios, may lower risk of heart disease.
  • Pistachios are low in saturated fat (2 g per 1 oz. serving) and a vegetarian source of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Pistachios contain antioxidants that fight inflammation and may help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol.

 

Weight Management

  • With 3 g of fiber and 6 g of protein, pistachios can help manage weight by reducing overall caloric intake.
  • Serving sizes of pistachios are larger than any other nut with one serving size containing 49 kernels (1 nut = 4 calories).
  • Pistachios are often portioned in convenient 1.5 oz. single-serving bags which promote smarter portion control.

 

Blood Sugar Management

  • Pistachios and other tree nuts have been shown to lower the risk of Type 2 diabetes.
  • Research has shown that consuming about 2 oz. of pistachios a day as a replacement for carbohydrate foods may reduce HbA1c, a long term marker of blood sugar control.
  • Adding nuts to a carbohydrate-rich meal can reduce blood sugar spikes 1-2 hours after eating.

 

Nut-rition Breakdown of Pistachios

(1 oz. serving or 49 nuts)

  • 160 calories
  • 13 g total fat
  • 2 g saturated fat
  • 8 g carbs
  • 3 g fiber
  • 6 g protein

Get Cracking with Pistachios

  • Grab an individual bag or portion out 49 nuts as a mindful snack.
  • Make your own trail mix with pistachios, pumpkin seeds, chopped dried apricots and dried cranberries.
  • Toast raw pistachios and other mixed nuts with an array of spices.
  • Top salads, yogurt and oatmeal with a handful of pistachios.
  • Toss a few pistachios into a cold pasta dish.
  • Prepare a pistachio-crusted fish, such as salmon.
  • Add crushed pistachios to homemade guacamole.
  • Mix a serving or two of pistachios into baked goods like granola bars, high fiber muffins and wholesome cookies.

For more information about Cooper Clinic Nutrition Services, visit www.cooperclinicnutrition.com or call 972.560.2655.

Blog provided by Cooper Clinic Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Elana Paddock, RDN, LD, CDE.

Categories: Cooper Updates, Nutrition