The SparkPeople Blog The SparkPeople Blog is a blog brought to you by Topics included in the blog include the latest news in nutrition, fitness, and health, food features, and more. Should You Add Pond Scum to Your Diet? It might not seem appetizing at the beach, but there are claims that blue-green algae (otherwise known as pond scum) could deliver a powerful health boost. Fri, 18 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST 5 Ways Grocery Stores Are Helping You Get Healthier Today's grocery stores are more than just food and beverage repositories. Find out how your local supermarket could help you lead a healthier lifestyle! Tue, 15 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST 16 Ways to Grow Your Diet With Plants Want to ditch the dairy and incorporate more plants into your diet for your health? These 16 tips can help you get started today. Fri, 11 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST What Do You Wish People Knew About Being Overweight? People who have never been overweight or obese can't grasp the day-to-day struggles of living with those extra pounds. We asked some members to share their stories. Mon, 7 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST This Video About Healthy Eating Is so Funny Because It's Painfully True Frustrated by conflicting dietary news reports that seem to change daily? Fear not--you're not alone. This hilarious sketch about a time-traveling dietitian will brighten your day. Fri, 4 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST 40 Things to Do Instead of Eat When You're Bored Ever caught yourself snacking and realized you're not even hungry? If boredom is eating up your goals, try some of these fork-free distractions. Thu, 3 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST Can Sweat-Inducing Methods Really Accelerate Weight Loss? Do products that promote sweating and turn up the heat really help keep those pounds off for good? Let's find out if these four products really deliver and are even safe to try. Wed, 2 Aug 2017 00:00:00 EST 6 Fun-Filled Hula Hoop Exercises for Better Fitness Hula hoops have been around for years, but what was once a child's toy is now taking the fitness industry by storm as a fun way to get in some good exercise. Tue, 1 Aug 2017 12:00:00 EST 20 Amazing Zumba Songs to Kick-Start Your Dance Workout Zumba instructors and enthusiasts, here's your next playlist! Get your groove on while the pounds melt off. Mon, 24 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST Why Friendly Competition Should Be Built Into Your Action Plan In part two of Chris ''SparkGuy'' Downie's personal blog, he notes the importance of competition in self-improvement, citing one of history's more famous rivalries as an example. Fri, 21 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST 300 Pounds and Counting: Greg's Two-Year Transformation In just a little over two years, Greg has lost more than 300 pounds and gained a whole new outlook on life. How did he do it? It was simpler than he expected. Thu, 20 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST New Updates Bring Fun--and Magic--to SparkPeople Mobile Download newest update to SparkPeople Mobile and access new photo filters, stickers and magic! Wed, 19 Jul 2017 17:00:00 EST 8 Low-Impact Barre Moves You Can Do Anywhere Barre-based workouts are famous for their ability to make muscles quake with teeny, tiny isometric movements. See what they hype is all about with this workout from The Bar Method. Tue, 18 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST The Stock Photo Struggle: ''Why Don't SparkPeople's Images Look Like Me?'' Perhaps you're wondering why we consistently feature average-sized or even thin models in our article and blog images. The answer might actually surprise you. Mon, 17 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST 36 Easy, Breezy No-Cook Summer Recipes Step away from the stove! You can throw together these healthy, hassle-free summer dishes in minutes -- no oven required. Thu, 13 Jul 2017 12:00:00 EST Get Inspired & Get Your Steps With This 1-Mile Walk and Talk Goals and gratitude go hand-in-hand, especially as you work toward weight loss and a happier, healthier you. Join Jessica Smith for a fun and inspirational one-mile walk and talk. Wed, 12 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST Score Big on Amazon Prime Day Amazon is unloading deals every 5 minutes today for its Prime members--time to stock up! Tue, 11 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST Concert Pianist Gets the Spark She Needs to Play Carnegie Hall When Jeanne got the chance of a lifetime to perform at Carnegie Hall, she turned to SparkPeople for the support she needed to meet her goals and perform with confidence. Tue, 11 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST How a Plant-Based Diet Changed My Life What you choose to eat and how you choose to live is a big part of what makes you, you. Learn how one member changed her diet to a plant-based one to live her healthiest life. Mon, 10 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST 21 Ways Alexa Can Help You Lead a Healthier Life Got Alexa? If not, it's time to tap into the power of smart fitness technology! Discover 21 high-tech skills that will help you recharge your goals. Mon, 10 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST A Rant Against Unrealistic Diet Expectations From the wacky to the unhealthy, celebrity diets always seem to wiggle their way into the news. Read why our editor thinks they're problematic, plus discover a must-have product. Fri, 7 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST 25 Delicious Dishes to Make With Your Spiralizer Curious about all the spiralizer hoopla, but not sure how to get started? We've got more than two dozen ways to use this amazing and game-changing kitchen tool. Thu, 6 Jul 2017 00:00:00 EST What a Beach Boys vs. Beatles Rivalry Teaches Us About Competition Does the idea of competition intimidate or inspire you? SparkGuy thinks competition pushes us to be great! Discover how a musical rivalry inspired his blog post this week. Fri, 30 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST The 35 Most Popular Products Members Are Buying Right Now You love gadgets, music, food, athletic wear and other healthy living products almost as much as we do. We dug deep to discover your 35 most popular products to date. Wed, 28 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST 10 Calorie Comparisons That May Surprise You Even when you think you're making the right choices, hidden calories are lurking in some seemingly healthy foods. Check out these shocking comparisons! Mon, 26 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Does Hypnosis for Weight Loss Really Work? Is it a shortcut to skinny... or just a lot of hype? Find out whether weight-loss hypnosis really works, and what to look for if you're considering giving it a try. Thu, 22 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST What to Serve with Stuffed Peppers: 16 Scrumptious Ideas Is your stuffed pepper meal rotation feeling a little... stale? Liven things up with these scrumptious side dish ideas! Wed, 21 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Changes are Coming to Some of Our Smaller Apps Today, we'll be taking a few of our older, smaller apps out of the app stores so we can focus on improving the apps you love the most. Tue, 20 Jun 2017 11:00:00 EST Find Your Financial Freedom with Michelle McKinnon Senior wealth advisor and host of the ''$mart Women'' podcast Michelle McKinnon shares her top tips for finding financial freedom through planning, investing and budgeting. Mon, 19 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Gaga for Garbanzos: 20 Ways to Cook 1 Can of Chickpeas Looking for delicious ways to pack more protein into your diet? We've got 20, and they all have one thing in common: A single can of chickpeas. Mon, 19 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST One Member's Journey from 5Ks to the Boston Marathon When Kevin (MOBYCARP) joined SparkPeople in 2011, he never dreamed he'd run a marathon. Six years later, he's completed several, including TWO Boston Marathons. Fri, 16 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST 4 Hula Hoop Moves Your Inner Child Will Love Kristin Benton discovered hula hooping while trying to lose weight after her first pregnancy. Now, the founder of FXP Fitness shares four of her favorite hula hoop fitness moves. Tue, 13 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST 50 Things to Consider Before Giving up on Your Goals On the days when everything is going wrong and you can't imagine ever achieving your goals, you'll be happy you bookmarked this motivational list. Never quit on yourself again. Mon, 12 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Why Weight Loss Is Not 80% Diet and 20% Fitness Weight loss comes with a lot of blindly accepted truths, including that success is achieved through 80 percent diet and 20 percent fitness. SparkGuy doesn't exactly agree. Fri, 9 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST 6 Incredible Stories of SparkPeople Friendship & Success Bonds forged through the SparkPeople community happen every day, and, for many, those supportive networks are the glue that holds their ultimate dreams together. Thu, 8 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Low- or No-Calorie Drinks That Won't Sabotage Your Summer Diet These refreshing drinks are safe for summer or any time you want a low- or no-calorie beverage but don't want to wreck your diet. Drink up! Wed, 7 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Relieve, Restore and Reset Your Back with These 10 Products Back aches and pains brought on by the rigors of everyday life can become a thing of the past with these 10 products that help you stretch, soothe and strengthen your sore back. Tue, 6 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST 4 Exercises to Strengthen Your Feet Feet are the foundation of your body. And with over 100 muscles in your feet and ankles, they can greatly benefit from daily strengthening exercises. Mon, 5 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Start Summer With Socks, Santa and Squats With Schnauzers Remember when you hated getting socks as a gift? Not anymore. Meet the sock that your sweaty feet will love, plus an inspiring quote and the greatest, cutest squat challenge ever! Fri, 2 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST Announcing: New User Tagging and Notification Features Now you can be sure to never miss out on a conversation again. With the new user tagging features on our site, it's easy to stay in the loop! Thu, 1 Jun 2017 17:00:00 EST 5 Playground Exercises for Parents (and Kids at Heart) You do not have to belong to a gym, nor do you have to own any fancy workout equipment to get fit and healthy. In fact your local park may just hold the key to getting you fit. Thu, 1 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST 35 Girl Power Anthems to Energize Your Next Workout Girls just want to have fun--and get fit! Power up for your next workout with these sweat-inducing, heart-pumping feminist tracks. Thu, 1 Jun 2017 00:00:00 EST What a Mystery Illness Taught One Man About Weight-Loss Success For more than 20 years, Jim Curtis has battled a mystery chronic illness. During his searching for answers, he learned some important life lessons about success and weight loss. Mon, 29 May 2017 00:00:00 EST Running Gear That’s a Waste of Money Before you break the bank buying these so-called must-have running items, heed these tips from seasoned runners who wish they'd waited. Fri, 26 May 2017 00:00:00 EST 8 Ways to Add Some Flower Power to Your Next Workout Don't just admire the wildflowers on your way to the gym--boldly wear them instead. From sunglasses to shoes, we have you covered with pretty floral workout attire you'll love. Thu, 25 May 2017 00:00:00 EST 20 Incredible Ways to Make Chicken in Your Instant Pot Chicken is a healthy go-to ingredient, but the same old dishes can get boring. Mix it up with these 20 quick, easy and delicious Instant Pot recipes. Tue, 23 May 2017 00:00:00 EST 8 Ways to Make Scrambled Eggs Egg-citing Stuck in a scrambled egg rut? Break out of it with these egg-citing recipe ideas! Mon, 22 May 2017 00:00:00 EST Hit Your Goals Out of the Park with Didi Wong Didi Wong, a master practitioner of integrative wellness, life coach and yogi, knows a thing or two about setting goals and going after them. Mon, 22 May 2017 00:00:00 EST Achieve a Better Back With 5 Spine-Strengthening Moves Slumping, long hours standing and just generally being does a number on our spines as we age. Learn how to combat the effects with these six targeted moves. Fri, 19 May 2017 00:00:00 EST Busting 4 Myths About Low- or No-Calorie Beverages With so much hype surrounding low- and no-calorie sweetened beverages, how do you know what to believe? We break it down for you--and dispel the myths! Thu, 18 May 2017 12:00:00 EST