Monthly Archives: January 2017

5 Food Rules to Make a Home Run on Game Day 

EVENT: Sports Nutrition Workshop Series  
WHERE: KareBoost Health (107 Cedar Grove, Suite 100, Somerset, NJ 08873)
TIME: Tuesdays at 6:30pm on February 14, March 14 and April 4, 2017
            If you want your kids to be active, encouraging them to play a sport is a great start!  Making sure your kids are getting the nutrition they need is key on game day and training days.  As you probably already know, it is hard to do anything on an empty stomach!  Having a plan for healthy eating will help your kids to have the energy they need to be active.
            1) Have a good breakfast!  For breakfast, start the day with a mixture of carbohydrates and protein.  Oatmeal with milk, eggs with toast or a smoothie with fruit and yogurt are choices that will provide immediate energy and a long-term source of fuel. 
            2) Do not forget about lunch.  Sure, the idea of running around on a full stomach is unappealing; however, remember that most student athletes compete after school.  By the time they are at the game, lunch will have been a few hours ago and breakfast will be long past.  For lunch, focus on carbohydrates for energy and protein to stay strong.  Fruit, bread, lean protein and low-fat dairy are all good choices to include with lunch.  Just try to avoid fatty foods, like French fries and pizza, as they slow digestion. 
            3) Pay attention to food safety.  If you are sending your athlete to school with perishable foods like yogurt and deli meats, pack their lunch in a cooler.  Nothing is worse than food poisoning on game day! 
            4) Stay hydrated.  While food is important fuel, do not forget about hydration!  Drinking water throughout the day is the best way to stay hydrated.  Encourage your children to keep drinking water during and after the game.
            5) Time meals carefully.  Lastly, time meals so that your child eats a regular meal about 2 to 3 hour before game time, giving them enough time to digest.  A light snack, like nuts or a granola bar, can be eaten 30 minutes to an hour before competition.  Meals should be filling and well rounded, but there is no need to overeat or load up. 
Come Check out our first Sports Nutrition Workshop on Tuesday, February 14, 2017 at 6:30pm!
Kara Unal JD, RYT
Greg Bing M.Ed., Certified Personal Trainer
KareBoost Health

5 Reasons to Think Positive

EVENT: Finding Your Happiness with Guest Speaker, Diane Lange.
WHERE: KareBoost Health (107 Cedar Grove, Suite 100, Somerset, NJ 08873)
TIME: Thursday, February 9, 2017 at 7pm 
            We have all of heard of the “Power of Positive Thinking”, but perhaps you have wondered if there is any scientific basis to it, and if so, how you can apply it to your daily life.  Today we will explore how thinking positively can actually affect your health and happiness. 
1.      Gratitude influences your brain.  In a 2008 study, scientists found that being thankful influences your hypothalamus, the part of your brain that influences sleep, eating and stress.  Gratitude also stimulates the part of the brain associated with dopamine production, which is responsible for the creation of new learning pathways.
2.      Kindness leads to happiness.  Whether you volunteer for a charity or offer to help out a friend in need, caring has benefits for not only the recipient but also the caregiver.  People who volunteer on a regular basis report better psychological wellness, such as fewer symptoms of depression and higher life-satisfaction.
3.      You are what you think.  A part of your brain called the Reticular Activation Sytems (RAS), influences the way you look at the world.  When you take action and make changes, you refine your RAS to accommodate these actions.  If you continually take positive actions, such as volunteering, your view of the world begins to change.
4.      Happy Hour really is happy!  It is easy to put friendships behind work, family life and other responsibilities.  But people who have one or more close friendships appear to be happier, and having people you can confide in helps relieve feelings of stress and depression.  Calling a good friend, even for a few minutes once a week, can greatly influence your health. 
5.      Exercise is uplifting.  If you are having a hard time feeling positive or finding something to be grateful for, try moving.  Exercise has been found to have a large clinical impact on depression.  Even a short walk or some gentle movement can greatly affect your mood.  Find a form of exercise you look forward to doing- even a gentle hatha yoga class will do wonders for your body and mind.
Incorporating small changes can lead to big results, and having a source of support can help you make these changes.  If you are looking for holistic health services, check out KareBoost for yoga classes, nutrition counseling and more! 
Come Check out our Positive Psychology Event: Finding Your Happiness with Diane Lange!!
Kara Unal JD, RYT
Greg Bing, M.Ed., Certified Personal Trainer
KareBoost Health

5 Reasons to Introduce Your Kids to Yoga

Check Out Family Yoga on Wednesdays (7yo and Older)

Also, Check Out Kids with Parents Yoga on Saturdays (2-7yo)

Perhaps you have seen how a regular yoga practice has strengthened your body and calmed your mind, and you are wondering if these benefits could translate to your children.  Kids can also benefit from developing a yoga practice, and children’s yoga classes are becoming increasingly available.  

    1) Increase mind-body awareness.  Introducing kids to yoga and mindfulness early can reduce anxiety and increasing concentration in school.  Even teaching young children simple breathing techniques begins to cultivate a calm and disciplined mind.   

    2) Develop strength and flexibility.  Yoga can help kids to develop body awareness and introduce healthy habits.  For children that do not enjoy competitive sports, yoga is a wonderful alternative physical activity.  The internal focus of yoga can provide a welcome relief from the constant pressure children face to do well in school, sports and all of their activities.  

    3) Yoga is for life! As they grow, your children can integrate their yoga practice into daily life, and can take it with them into college, work and beyond.  You do not need much room or a team to do yoga, and the practice can change as they change.  

    4) Find an age appropriate class.  Offerings can range from teen yoga to yoga for very small children.  In general, teenagers 15 and older can attend adult classes, but if your teen is new to yoga, seek out a beginner class or gentle yoga.  For younger children, look for classes that are shorter in duration and fun.  All classes should teach an awareness of the breath, and both strength and flexibility will be incorporated.  

    5) Bring your practice home! Chances are your children will want to participate in something they see you enjoying so much.  Observing you practice yoga is much more powerful than you telling them to do something because it is good for them.  

    Consider introducing your children to yoga, and remember that yoga is about so much more than asana, or poses.  Providing a way for your children to learn to ground themselves and reflect on their inner world is a powerful tool that will serve them well into adulthood!  

Come Check out our Family Yoga Classes   with Kara on Wednesdays that are great for parents and kids 7 years and older, and we have a Kids Yoga with Parents  (2-7yo) on Saturday afternoons.

We also have Glow in the Dark GlowGa Family Yoga once a month.

Kara Unal JD, RYT
KareBoost Health

Family Exercise Ideas for Every Season

Exercise for Every Season

Experts agree about the many benefits of exercise, and exercising as a family can be a great way to get healthy and spend quality family time together. Here are some exercises you can do as a family in each season:


In many parts of the country, cold, ice, snow, and early darkness can make exercising more difficult. However, there are indoor exercise activities that can be good options. For example:

  • Walking indoors: Any decently sized indoor area can be a place to go for a walk.
  • Take the stairs: Taking the stairs instead of riding the elevator might seem like a small thing, but small things can add up.
  • Housecleaning or other chores can burn more calories than you might think and leave you with a boost in mood and sense of accomplishment.
  • Do an exercise DVD together instead of watching a movie.

Of course, cold weather doesn’t mean you can’t get outside. Here are some fun outdoor family winter activities:

  • Build a snow person
  • Go ice skating
  • Go sledding


As the weather warms, spring offers more opportunities for outdoor activity. Be sure to take advantage, and maybe try some of these things:

  • Go for family walks
  • Keep taking the stairs instead of the elevator
  • Wash the family cars together
  • Plant and tend a garden
  • Ride your bikes instead of driving whenever possible


Summer can be a great time for physical activity. Here are some ideas:

  • Go for a family hike
  • Keep doing family bike rides
  • Explore a new, active hobby together
  • Participate in an organized sports league or club


The changing leaves signal winter will soon be here, but autumn is still ripe with opportunities for exercise. Here are a few ideas:

  • Enjoy the changing leaves with a fall foliage hike
  • Rake leaves together
  • Go apple picking

Come brainstorm with our Health Coach on different ideas for your family
Greg Bing, M.Ed., Certified Personal Trainer
KareBoost Health

Steps Together at KareBoost Health: Karma Yoga to Help Families in a Medical Crisis

WHERE: KareBoost Health (107 Cedar Grove, Suite 100, Somerset, NJ 08873)
TIME: Thursday, January 26, 2017 at 6:15
Join our Karma Yoga Class for Children and Families for a Good Cause!
100% of the proceeds will be going to Steps Together, a 501(c)(3) registered non-profit organization.
            Please join KareBoost on Thursday, January 26th, 2017 at 6:15 pm for a Karma Yoga Event to benefit Steps Together, a 501(C)(3) nonprofit dedicated to inspiring our community to pay their blessings forward and support families facing a medical crisis.  Steps Together, based in Hillsborough, provides financial assistance, including medical expenditures, pharmacy expenses, living expenses and utilities to assist families impacted by a medical crisis.  With the assistance of Steps Together, families can focus on treatment and healing without becoming overwhelmed by healthcare costs. 
            Here are some words from a family who benefited from Steps Together: “Imagine a community that embraces you, loves you, prays with and for you, celebrates with you, grieves with you, worries with you, encourages you, listens to you, comes together for you, just plain cares and loves you.”
            The Karma Yoga event will include a gentle yoga class for children and adults, appropriate for all levels, a raffle with a chance to win prizes at KareBoost, and refreshments.  Suggested donation is $20 and all proceeds benefit Steps Together.  Please join us on Thursday, January 26th, 2017 at 6:15pm to support and learn more about Steps Together. 
Kara Unal, JD, RYT
KareBoost Health

GlowGa: 5 Fun Ways to Add Joy Into Your Yoga Practice!

EVENT: GlowGa Yoga Event – Come Glow in the Dark 
WHERE: KareBoost Health (107 Cedar Grove, Suite 100, Somerset, NJ 08873)
TIME: Friday, January 27, 2017 at 7pm
            GlowGa, or glow in the dark yoga, is taking off as a fun, colorful way to practice yoga.  If you are curious and want to give it a try, here is what to expect.
Lighten Up!  GlowGa is practiced under black lights with glow in the dark bracelets and multi-colored glow in the dark tape.  Change up your usual studio practice for this fun, creative yoga party!
Loosen up.  If you are a serious yogi, GlowGa is all about enjoying your practice and switching up the pace.  If you are tired of your typical yoga routine, this is a refreshing way to have fun with your practice.
Beginners Welcome.  Maybe you would love to try yoga, but are a little hesitant to step into a studio class.  This is a perfect opportunity to try out a yoga class in an upbeat, supportive environment. Plus, no one can really see you!
Fun for the whole family.  If you love yoga and you would like your kids to try it out, GlowGa is the perfect opportunity.  Kids will love putting on glow in the dark tape and bracelets and engaging in a yoga party!  Kids of all ages are most likely to stick to something if it is enjoyable, and will have an opportunity to discover yoga in a fun environment with GlowGa.
Movement should be fun!  While it is important to learn alignment and safety in yoga poses, ultimately yoga and movement should be enjoyable.  It feels good to move!  If you are growing restless with a gym routine, adding in fun movement events such as GlowGa can really shake up your routine.
If you are intrigued and want to try GlowGa,
KareBoost is hosting a GlowGa event with Sarah, one of our awesome yoga instructors, teaching the class on Friday, January 27, 2017 at 7pm.  All ages and levels are welcome, and the focus is on having fun through movement and engaging your creativity! 
Kara Unal JD, RYT
KareBoost Health

Three Factors to Consider When Setting Goals with Children

Just like adults, children can take charge of their lives, and make positive change by setting goals.  Although children tend to have shorter attention spans, they can still reach long term goals. You as a parent can help by providing a little bit of structure and guidance to help kids set good goals, and can help your children make working on long term goals part of their daily routine!
The best place to start with helping kids set the right goals for them is for parent and child to talk about WHAT YOUR CHILD WANTS to achieve, and just as importantly, WHY YOUR CHILD CHOSE THAT GOAL.  The emphasis is on three things here. “What”, “Why”, and “Your Child”.
What does your child want to achieve? Goals exist to achieve specific things, so what does your child have their sites on? Take the time to talk with your child about what it is they want to achieve, and what is involved with pursuing that goal.  Especially with younger children, goal setters often don’t know the full scope of what more ambitious goals entail.  Help them understand what exactly it is they are pursuing, and how they will get there.
As importantly, why does your child want to reach that goal?  To reach a long-term goal, you need to have a passion for the project.  Something needs to keep you coming back day after day.  Talk with you kids about their goals so you both better understand why they want to do what they are setting their mind to.  When you both understand why a goal is important, it help children be more motivated, and maintain their motivation longer, and parents are better able to support their children when they know what is motivating their child!
Your Child
This is really an extension of the why question.  It is important to understand if the child is motivated by an internal desire to achieve a goal for their own reasons, or if they are considering some external motivation, such as impressing or pleasing friends, teachers, or parents (shudder to think!), and putting this desire ahead of their other wants and needs.  Sometimes the reality of childhood is that parents and teachers are the primary providers of motivation, and left to their own devices would not be capable of or inclined toward certain projects, but the point here is to make sure even if someone else is suggesting the goal, that the child sees the goal as their own, and that they are doing it for themselves, not simply to please another.
By working with your child to explore these three important factors, you will ensure that time spent working on goals will be well spent, and as rewarding as possible for you and your child.  Having a clear understanding of what your child wants to achieve, and how you as a family will be able to go about it prevents goal from floundering when unexpected things happen.  Understanding the why clues us in on the motivation behind a goal, which allows us to work with passion, stay focused, and avoid wasting time on goals children are only pursuing half-heartedly.  The why element is especially important since children live in a world where the expectations of teachers parents and friends often carry more weight than the adult world, but still would not be enough to carry them to a year-long goal they felt lukewarm on to begin with.  Looking at that more positively, understanding motivations allows you to engage with your children on a goal in the ways that will be most inspiring and motivating to them!
Greg Bing, M.Ed., Certified Personal Trainer
KareBoost Health
Come Check out our New YOU Resolutions Workshop Series.  Our dietitian and Parent Coach will talk about Stressing less at Family Meals on Tuesday January 31, 2017 at 6:30pm

Mother’s Weight While Pregnant May Affect Child’s Lifelong Cardiovascular Health

Check out our New YOU Resolutions Workshop Series:   
TIME: Every Tuesday at 6:30pm in January 2017
LOCATION: KareBoost Health 107 Cedar Grove Lane, Suite 100, Somerset, NJ 08873

An important study published recently in the British Medical Journal suggests children whose mothers were overweight or obese during their pregnancy may be at greater risk of early death from cardiovascular causes as adults.

This research found a 35% increase in risk of premature death in the adult children of mothers who were obese at the time of their pregnancy. It also discovered a 29% increased risk of a hospital admission for a cardiovascular event for these same adult children.
This new information represents both a serious concern for individuals, and a major public health issue since in the United States about 64% of women of reproductive age are overweight and 35% are obese.
The exact way maternal obesity leads to these negative health outcomes is not known with certainty. It may be that maternal obesity has permanent effects on the appetite and metabolism of a child, which can lead to heart and other health problems later in life.
It may be that obese or overweigh parents model less healthy eating habits for their children. Or it may be that the social and environmental factors which lead to obesity in a parent also directly affect the cardiovascular health of children. It may be some combination of all three of these factors, or other, as yet unknown, factors.
While the exact mechanism by which maternal obesity leads to this increased risk of cardiovascular health problems may be unclear, the benefits and importance of maintaining a healthy weight and good cardiovascular health are well established. While this study may suggest maintaining good cardiovascular health will be more difficult for children of obese parents, it by no means suggests it is not possible.
Check out our New YOU Resolutions Workshop Series in January 2017 for you and your family.  Pre-Register at or 732-860-KARE.
Tuesdays at 6:30pm: 
1-3-17:          Lifestyle Changes
1-10-17:        Growing your Daily Home Yoga Practice
1-17-17:        Food Journaling and Mindful Eating
1-24-17:        Mindfulness and Relaxation
1-31-17:        Family Meals & Stress less over Family Eating
Karen Leibowitz, MD
KareBoost Health

5 Healthy Ways to Lose Weight

Check out our New YOU Resolutions Workshop Series
TIME: Every Tuesday at 6:30pm in January 2017
LOCATION: KareBoost Health 107 Cedar Grove Lane, Suite 100, Somerset, NJ 08873
            Weight loss and diets are incredibly popular in today’s society. With the myriad of quick fixes offered, it is no surprise that people often seek out fad diets and products claiming fast and easy weight loss. However, finding and maintaining a healthy weight is a lifestyle change that requires an adjustment in routine and habits.    Here, we will discuss 5 ideas to consider when embarking on a weight loss plan. 
1) Healthy weight loss takes time.  An ideal plan aims for a loss of no more than ½ a pound to 1 pound per week.  Weight loss over a pound a week is typically a loss of water, bone or muscle. Remember true health is not a number on a scale, and if a plan sounds to good to be true, it probably is. 
2) Avoid restrictive diets.  The cabbage soup diet or grapefruit diet may sound appealing with promises of rapid weight loss, but chances are you will quickly tire of eating the same thing repeatedly and slip back to old habits.  Also, a healthy diet includes a diverse array of foods to insure your body gets the nutrients it requires to function well.
3) Include exercise.  Diet plans that promise weight loss without exercise should send up a red flag.  30 -60 minutes most days a week of an activity you enjoy is essential to maintaining a healthy body and mind.
4) Be wary of diets with rigid menus and strict requirements.  Any diet with no room for error will be hard to maintain.  Keep in mind that maintaining weight loss is a lifelong process, and if you cannot incorporate a diet’s strict requirements for a few weeks, it is probably not a diet that will work for life. 
5) Know yourself.  Think realistically about how much time you have to shop for and prepare food.  For example, if you travel a lot for work, a plan that requires all home cooked meals will lead to frustration. 
For a personalized plan and individual support, ditch the fad diets and consult with our dietitian and health coach instead.  Fad diets and weight loss products promise quick results, but at best they only work temporarily and at worst can be very dangerous to your health.  Our dietitian and health coach can help you find a realistic, flexible plan that you can incorporate into your schedule and budget.  Finding a plan that you can stick with will result in long-term changes. 
Check out our New YOU Resolutions Workshop Series in January 2017 for you and your family.  Pre-Register at or 732-860-KARE.
Tuesdays at 6:30pm: New YOU Resolutions Workshop Series
1-3-17:            Lifestyle Changes
1-10-17:         Growing your Daily Home Yoga Practice
1-17-17:         Food Journaling and Mindful Eating
1-24-17:         Mindfulness and Relaxation
1-31-17:         Family Meals & Stress less over Family Eating
Andrea Berez, MS, RD, CSP
Kara Unal JD, RYT
Greg Bing, M.Ed. ACE
Karen Leibowitz, MD
KareBoost Health

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