Wellness Wednesday: Why You Should Eliminate Processed Foods

It’s safe to say that most American consumers probably can’t recall the last time they ate a meal prepared entirely from wholesome, farm-to-table ingredients, without any canned or prepackaged products. That’s because most Americans today consume mostly processed foods—foods produced with pesticides, GMOs and synthetic chemicals, routinely laced with too much sugar, salt and unhealthy fats. Keep in mind that processed foods can contain dozens of additional chemicals that aren't even listed on the label.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines “processed food” as any raw agricultural commodity that has been subjected to processing methods, including canning, cooking, dehydration, freezing or milling. This means that the only time a food can be classified as “fresh” is when you’ve taken it straight from the source (washing it is okay, and would not be classified as a form of processing) and eaten it. By this definition, most foods would be considered processed.
You've probably heard a hundred times, "avoid processed foods as much as possible." But what are "processed foods" and why is it so important to avoid them? Here are a few dangers of consuming processed foods...
1. Processed foods are usually loaded with added sugar or High Fructose Corn Syrup
It is well known that sugar, when consumed in excess, is seriously harmful. As we all know, sugar is "empty" calories - it has no essential nutrients, but a large amount of energy, empty calories are really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the harmful effects of sugar.
Many studies show that sugar can have devastating effects on metabolism that go way beyond its calorie content. It can lead to insulin resistance high triglycerides, increased levels of the harmful cholesterol and increased fat accumulation in the liver and abdominal cavity. Sugar consumption is strongly associated with some of the world's leading killers including heart disease, diabetes, obesity and cancer.


2. Leading to addiction
Another one of the harmful properties and impacts of processed foods is addiction. As previously mentioned, processed foods trigger a hyper-rewarding state and make people overeat. It is hard to give up something sweet and fatty if you are eating it regularly. Processed foods are known to cause addiction just like cigarettes and drugs do.

As the foods are processed, they lose water, fiber, and nutrients. Once they are consumed, neurotransmitter dopamine is stimulated which makes you feel good despite the lack of essentials. The artificial stimulation of dopamine leads to food cravings and excessive eating. Ultimately, you can become addicted to food, specifically to processed food.

3. Sodium Overload

While sodium is beneficial to human bodies, it can cause major problems when there's too much of it. Nearly all processed foods contain absurd amounts of sodium that make food tastier and addictive. Restaurants are also known to add more salt than necessary to their dishes so that they will taste better.

High-sodium diets are often a factor causing high blood pressure and can lead to heart diseases or stroke. Excess sodium in body also causes kidneys to hold more water than necessary. This can lead to conditions such as swelling in various body parts.

4. Hormones

Exposure to plastic chemicals, including BPAs and phthalates, can cause hormonal havoc in the body. Since all processed foods come swaddled in plenty of plastic, all those plastic chemicals could be steadily accumulating in your body. A recent study showed that consumption of fast food was correlated with increased exposure to industrial chemicals known as phthalates. Unfortunately, exposure to these chemicals can have a disruptive impact on your hormones and health, as they seep into the body easily and kick out the body's natural hormones from places they need to be. Avoid packaged foods as often as possible, especially if your hormones are already imbalanced.

5. Processed Foods Are Often High in Trans Fats and Processed Vegetable Oils

Synthetic trans fats are common in foods that contain partially hydrogenated vegetable oil, such as crackers, chips, most store-bought baked goods, and any fried foods, just to name a few examples. Synthetic trans fats are known to promote inflammation, which is a hallmark of most chronic and/or serious diseases. Most also contain high amounts of omega-6 fats in the form of processed vegetable oils. These polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs) tend to stimulate inflammatory processes in your body, and they are very chemically unstable and prone to oxidation. Consuming these oxidized fats in excess has been linked to all sorts of health problems, such as atherosclerosis and heart disease.
Eating mostly a whole foods diet with very limited to no processed foods is paramount to health and happiness. Putting your health first when it comes to diet will pay off in the long run.



A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Wellness Wednesday: Why Crash and Fad Diets Don’t Work


Crash and Fad diets are a trend and they are popular, but can’t deliver long-term results. A crash/fad diet is a diet for losing weight by limiting calories in a very short period of time. We all are inclined towards faster result and crash/fad diet is an example of it. It helps in quick weight reduction but is bad for your health in the long run. Many crash/fad diets prevent you from getting the nutrition your body needs. This is especially true of those that limit or avoid certain food groups. Without proper nutrients, you can weaken your immune system, increasing the risk for illness.

Most people find that after following a crash diet, they immediately put the weight back on. The problem is that they do not make it possible to lose weight by changing the way a person thinks about food. The diet will cut out food groups and nutrients so that fewer calories are eaten. Once the person goes back to eating like normal, the weight is just piled back on and there are high chances that more weight goes on with it. 

What happens to your body when you go on an extreme diet?

Malnutrition Begins:

Calories should be viewed as fuel and if you view food in that manner, then drastically cutting calories means depriving your body of the fuel it needs to function. For instance, if you strip all calories from fats from your diet, your body isn’t able to absorb fat-soluble vitamins such as A, D, E and K. These vitamins act as powerful antioxidants, fighting free radicals to prevent inflammation and disease, as well as supporting healthy gene expression, cell growth, immune system function, cognitive ability and bone health.

Your Metabolism Slows:

With less muscle, your metabolic rate (the number of calories you burn at rest) automatically drops. That means you burn fewer calories walking, talking and even exercising. Your metabolism eventually drops low enough that you stop losing weight and, when you go off of your diet, your metabolism will always be more sluggish than it was before you went on your crash diet.

Dehydration/Health Risk:

The short-term dehydration and nutritional deprivation can go hand in hand. Even if you consume a lot of water throughout your diet it is hard for your body to retain water if you are not eating balanced meals. Severely restricting your caloric intake deprives your body of vitamins, carbohydrates, proteins and nutrients that it needs to sustain itself.

Early aging:

Crash dieting speeds up the process of ageing. You will notice signs of aging on your skin like sagging skin, fine lines and wrinkles early on.

Muscle and tissue loss:

Crash dieting causes the fat to be stored and the muscles are burned instead of the fats and calories. This causes a great deal of muscle loss and loss of tissues around organs like the brain, kidneys and the liver.


Here are 10 tips to loosing weight:

1. Eat a high-protein breakfast

2. Avoid sugary drinks and fruit juice

3. Drink water a half hour before meals

4. Choose weight loss-friendly foods 

5. Eat soluble fiber

6. Drink tea

7. Eat mostly whole, unprocessed foods

8. Eat your food slowly


If you were considering a crash/fad diet, you should reconsider. Not only will it be unsuccessful in helping you achieve weight loss but also you will undoubtedly expose yourself to health risks in the long run. The best diet is not a diet at all, but a way of life that includes food you enjoy, exercise, and healthy habits. 


Meet Jean Titus

A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

My Fluffy Puffs Beard Review


There's a new oil in town and it goes by the name of Regal 7 Growth Oil, an all natural product from My Fluffy Puffs. It boasts that Regal 7 Growth Oil is a concentrated formula created with 7 natural oils working harmoniously to offer the hair all the goods - Omegas 3, 6 and 9 along with a healthy dose of Vitamins A through D.  Now that we have all the science behind the oil out of the way, lets get to the goods: is it worth it? We tried The Regal 7 Growth Oil on one of our bearded guys and over the last 30 days, and he's been relying on this solely when it comes to hydration and shine.

After day one, we were impressed with the high gloss finish the oil provided as well as how long the product lasted through out the day. Our guy is an early riser and gets his day going at 4:30 AM. On day one, by the time he was closing his work day at 3:00 PM, his beard looked and felt as good as it did when he first applied the oil.  Over the course of four few weeks, he consistently applied the oil every morning after his normal beard routine. By the end of a month's usage, Regal 7 Growth Oil proved to stand up to its day one results. Although there is no noticeable change in the length of the beard, it did appear to be fuller. As it's a concentrated oil that packs a powerful punch, a little goes a really long way.

With proper beard wash and conditioning, following up with the Regal 7 Growth Oil after helps make your beard more manageable.  The oil softened our guy's beard hair enough to run a beard comb or brush through it. Because of its thickness, it can take a little time to work it through to the root of the hair. We recommend using a dime size drop no larger in the palm of your hand, rubbing them together to heat the oil up a tad before applying. Make sure you get as close to your face as you can without touching it.  The oil's potency tends to seep pass the beard into the pores of your skin. It's also great for those dry winter days, but not so great if you already have oily skin. Gentleman if that's you, pack light. 

The over all consensus is, its a winner! For those of you who don't suffer with oily skin and are looking for an oil that's concentrated, proven to keep its luster for hours, and has all natural properties which stimulates hair growth, Regal 7 Growth Oil may be the one for you.

Why Turmeric Should Be A Part Of Your Diet


Turmeric, also known as Curcuma Longa, it is rich in a compound known as curcumin, which is responsible for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Many studies show that turmeric may also help fight infections, some cancers, and treat digestive problems. Turmeric has many benefits for supporting prostate health, especially health concerns related to aging. Many men take turmeric for prostatitis and BPH. However, you should never use turmeric and curcumin to improve your health without first consulting with a trusted medical professional. 

Unfortunately, curcumin is poorly absorbed in the body and has minimal impact on blood vessels when taken alone. The good news is that there are ways you can enhance its absorption. Here are a few ways to improve the absorption of Turmeric:



Piperine, a compound found in black pepper that’s responsible for its pungency, can greatly improve absorption of turmeric in the body. 


Turmeric is fat-soluble and thus much better absorbed when taken with fat, such as coconut or almond milk.


Heat is said to increase the solubility of curcumin (the primary active constituent in turmeric) by 12 times, which may also increase its bioavailability in the body.


Quercetin is a flavonoid found in many plant foods such as onions, capers, and Serrano peppers, and is known to inhibit an enzyme that inactivates curcumin. 

In addition, there are also a few natural remedies that help us in shedding excess weight easily and safely. Consuming turmeric in various forms is one such effective weight loss remedy. When you’re trying to lose weight, you want to make sure you are doing it in the safest way possible. Using natural ingredients can assure that your body is going to remain at its optimal health as you lose weight. Though turmeric is not an end-all to weight loss, it does play a large role in your body’s ability to lose weight. Adding turmeric to your diet, while continuing with an exercise program, is a great way to continue reaching your weight loss goals. 

There are several food/beverages that include Turmeric, but listed are a couple of my favorite beverages that you may enjoy...




  • 1 cup coconut milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon ghee
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric (powder or grated root)



1. Pour coconut milk and water into the saucepan and warm for 2 minutes.

2. Add in butter, raw honey and turmeric powder for another 2 minutes.

3. Stir and pour into glasses.




  • 2 cups water
  • 1/2 2-teaspoon ground turmeric 
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 1 lemon wedge  


1. Bring water to a boil in a small saucepan

2. Add turmeric, ginger, and cinnamon

3. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes

4. Strain tea into a large glass; add honey and lemon wedge.

Although not commonly considered being an allergenic substance; turmeric can have certain side effects on the body, including nausea, dizziness or diarrhea, particularly when consumed in large quantities. Everything should be taken in moderation! Again, please speak with a trusted medical professional before you use turmeric to treat any health condition that you have.



A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Wellness Wednesday: Why Is It Important To Have A High Fiber Diet?


What exactly is fiber? Fiber is a part of the structure of plants and helps build plant molecules, including cellulose, lignins and pectin. Fiber actually contains zero calories since humans essentially can’t digest it, and although it’s found in carbohydrate foods like vegetables, fruits, nuts and whole grains; it doesn’t contribute any carbs to our diets. Whole grains are not the best source of fiber, as they contain anti-nutrients and glutinous. 

Fiber can help prevent heart disease, diabetes, weight gain and some cancers, and can also improve digestive health. Insoluble fiber promotes the movement of material through your digestive system and increases stool bulk, so it can be of benefit to those who struggle with constipation or irregular stools. Soluble fiber soaks up water like a sponge and turns into a gel-like consistency during digestion; it slows the process of digestion and helps your body absorb nutrients. Most people need upwards of 50 grams of fiber per 1,000 calories consumed.

BMWB 2018 Calendar ON SALE NOW!

BMWB 2018 Calendar ON SALE NOW!

Consuming an extra 14 grams of fiber each day can cut your calorie intake by a full 10 percent. Research shows that people who consume more fiber (as low as 20 grams per day) weigh an average of 8 pounds lighter than people who consume low fiber (closer to 10 grams per day).

Things you can do to convert to a high fiber diet:

1. Rather than adding high-fiber foods all at once, add just one or two servings a day to your regular diet for a week.

2. Possibly switching from white to whole wheat or multi-grain bread for your sandwich at lunch, or adding a salad at dinner.


3. Let your body adjust, then add another serving the following week, and so on. Giving your body a chance to get used to processing the increase in fiber will make the transition easier and reduce the amount of intestinal gas you'll have to deal with.

4. Load up on water. Staying hydrated and drinking plenty of water will help to prevent uncomfortable intestinal gas and bloating.

5. Eliminate other foods that cause gas. If you're already overwhelming your gut with fiber, cut out other foods that create gas. Try limiting or avoiding sugar-free candy and gum that contain sorbitol and gassy carbonated beverages

On a last note, one of the keys to getting ride of that dreaded belly bulge and revealing that coveted six-pack is a diet high in fiber.


Meet Jean Titus

A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Holiday Gift Guide: 7 Amazing Gifts For An Amazing Man


And it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! We just love this time of year, the holiday season puts us in such a merry and bright mood (insert cheesy smiley face emoji). It's also the time of year where we rack our brains trying to get that perfect Christmas gift for the special man in our lives. Parents and kids are easy for the most part but what do you get for your bearded bae? Don't bore this year's tree by putting the same old go to tie, cologne, or sweater under them. Put your man on to some new things! Raise the bar and change the game when it comes men's gifts. How do you do that, what do you do, what do you get? 

Black Men With Beards did a bit of the leg work for you and have put together a luxury gift guide: 7 Amazing Gifts For An Amazing Man.

1.  Nothing is sexier than a man who can cook! And if cooking isn't really his thing but you've been trying to get him in the kitchen more, help him out a bit by inspiring his pallet with a new cook book.  Chef Kenneth Temple released a cookbook just in time for  the holidays, Southern Creole - Recipes from My New Orleans Kitchen. There's so many delicious and easy to follow recipes in this book, no reason to ask what's for dinner in 2018. Cooking a meal together is also some sexy shit; spice of your life in more ways than one this holiday season!


2.  If you care about that man and love his beard, get him a beard kit so he know it's real. All jokes aside, we have always expressed the importance of proper beard care and maintenance. This is the perfect gift for the bearded man who is too manly to up his product game. Nature Boy's Deluxe Beard Kit is packaged beautifully and comes with all the essentials to maintain a healthy flourishing beard. 

3. You can never go wrong with a nice timepiece as a Christmas gift. And it's always special when you can put him on to a new brand. There's nothing more classic than a chocolate leather band and big silver face. We particularly love this piece from Talley & Twine, its distinctive minimalist face trimmed in gold featuring the number seven (the number of divinity btw), makes it a great everyday wear piece.


4. Whether he's a tech man or not this gift here is exciting, especially if he's a Google-gadget-smartphone kinda guy.  Making life easier the Google Home Mini is a must have gadget this holiday season. Completely control your house with voice activated AI functionality of Google Assistance. Ask almost any question and get it answered with the access to Google's massive wealth of knowledge, stream audio, video or images from your smart device, answer and end calls, even order a pizza from the bathroom (ok too comfortable maybe, but you get the point.) This is a cool fun tech gift indeed.   

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5. Gym bags are not for traveling. I repeat gym bags are not for traveling. Whether it's overnight or for the weekend, throwing your belongings in a sweaty gym bag days are long gone when there's some amazing manly duffle and traveling bags out there. We can't take our eyes off the Overnight Satchel in this muted green color from the design duo Want Les Essentials. This gift packs a pretty nice price tag so fellas if she gets you this, next trip is on you! 


6. There comes a time when as a grown man you put away the sneakers and throw on the hard soles.  You don't go cheap on what you eat or what you put on your feet, especially when it comes to dress shoes. The Jon, equestrian inspired chocolate leather boots from Armando Cabral is sleek and classic. The design and quality screams distinguished gentleman. 


7.  Beaded bracelets stacked with style are still all the rage when it comes to subtlety accessorizing a man. The sleek unique boldness of this Ryan G. holiday collection stack screams black, power, and king! 

Did we mention most of these brands are BOBs, and you know we love that! 'Tis the season for patronizing black owned businesses. 

Wellness Wednesday: Why Ginger Should Be Apart Of Your Diet


Ginger is one of the most ancient spices worldwide. It has become well-known for its health benefits, we which include its ability to boost bone health, strengthen the immune system, increase appetite, prevent various types of cancer, improve respiratory conditions, aid in digestion, eliminate arthritis symptoms, relieves pain related to nausea and flu, lowering levels of inflammation, reducing exercise-induced pain (soreness) and enhances sexual performance.
Ginger has multiple health benefits that are great for everyone, but it has unique properties, which might benefit ageing men dealing with their physical and mental well-being. Ginger inhibits the build up of cortisol, which can cause weak erections or erectile dysfunction and works to maintain healthy blood pressure, and reduces cholesterol, which if both are high, can reduce the flow of blood into the penis.
Ginger supplements are made from dried or fresh ginger root or from a steam process of the oil. You can find ginger extracts, tinctures, capsules, oils, and tea. To reap ginger health benefits, be sure to not take more than 4 grams of ginger daily, including from food. The suggested dose is 75 to 2,000 mg of standardized ginger (4% volatile oils or 5% compounds including gingerol or shogaol) in divided doses taken with food.
Here are a few ways to incorporate ginger into your diet...
1. Soup- Fresh ginger, grated or pureed, brings an extra zest to your hot, creamy winter soups.
2. Brew it: An ideal natural remedy to clear up congestion or the onset of a sore throat is fresh ginger   tea. An upset belly can also benefit from fresh ginger.
3. In stir-fries - Almost every stir-fry could use a little grated or even minced ginger to spice things up.
4. Blend it: For a little detox in your smoothie, consider blending in some fresh ginger (piece of ginger, size of your thumb).
Make sure to discuss with your physician before beginning on a regimen of ginger, particularly if you have preexisting conditions (especially heart diseases) or are taking some medicines. There may be interaction between ginger and certain medicines such as drugs used to treat diabetes and blood thinners. Taking ginger in excessive amounts, instead of bringing ginger benefits for men, can result in symptoms of bloating, heartburn and an upset stomach.

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Meet Jean Titus

A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Wellness Wednesday: How Exercise Can Help With Depression


Exercise helps prevent and improve a number of health problems, including high blood pressure, diabetes and arthritis. Research on depression, anxiety and exercise shows that the psychological and physical benefits of exercise can also help improve mood and reduce anxiety.
Depression manifests physically by causing disturbed sleep, reduced energy, appetite changes, body aches, and increased pain perception, all of which can result in less motivation to exercise. It's a hard cycle to break, but getting up and moving just a little bit will help. And you don’t have to be a fitness fanatic to reap the benefits. Research indicates that modest amounts of exercise can make a difference. No matter your age or fitness level, you can learn to use exercise as a powerful tool to feel better.
People who exercise regularly tend to do so because it gives them an enormous sense of well-being. They feel more energetic throughout the day, sleep better at night, have sharper memories, and feel more relaxed and positive about themselves and their lives. And it’s also powerful medicine for many common mental health challenges.
Exercise is a powerful depression fighter for several reasons. Most importantly, it promotes all kinds of changes in the brain, including neural growth, reduced inflammation, and new activity patterns that promote feelings of calm and well-being. It also releases endorphins; powerful chemicals in your brain that energize your spirits and make you feel good.
Here are some exercises that can help with depression.:
Running is one of the best exercises for your health: It can torch calories, reduce food cravings, and lower your risk for heart disease. Running for just five minutes a day might even help you live longer, according to 2014 research. Running may make it easier for you to fall asleep at night, which benefits your overall mental health by improving memory, lowering stress levels, and protecting against depression.
The ancient practice of yoga can have a wonderful effect when it comes to mental health, being beneficial not only for those who suffer from depression but also for those diagnosed with anxiety or neurosis. Practiced on a regular basis, it reduces the overall levels of stress. At the same time, it can improve the overall cognitive functioning, so you do not have to ask yourself how to improve your memory anymore. Yoga allows one to concentrate on breathing while slowing down and calming an otherwise agitated mind.
Dancing is one of the pleasures of life and, at the same time, an excellent type of physical exercise. When you hear your favorite music, and you begin moving your body to the rhythm, nothing else matters during that time. You are transported into another world and, suddenly, your negative thoughts are no longer important. Dancing increases the level of self-esteem, being particularly recommended to those who suffer from anxiety or depression. It is fun, easy and allows you to get in touch with your relaxed side.
Finally, exercise can also serve as a distraction, allowing you to find some quiet time to break out of the cycle of negative thoughts that feed depression. Being in the present moment can help you cultivate gratitude and focus on the good things and people you have in your life – something that’s liable to be forgotten amid the heavy fog of negative thoughts that loop in our mind during a period of depression.


Meet Jean Titus

A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

BEARDOLOGY by Beaute Dior: A Personalized Beard Experience and Grooming for Black Men


It comes as no surprise that beards are the trend and pretty much used in marketing campaigns all over (hey Shea Moisture) because lets be honest, we absolutely love beards right! But as much as we adore them, who's responsible for the proper TLC that allows black men and their beards to flourish for our oogling consumption? Just a few years ago men were just out here growing beards and having their barbers tend to them; and if you ask most men, setting an appointment for a "beard treatment" isn't the first, second or third thing people think of in regards to the upkeep of beards. However, there are some amazing estheticians and lady barbers who are passionate, equipped with training and who also have continuously educated themselves on hair and skin, particularly catering to black men. 

We set our focus on the services of Dominique aka Beaute Dior. She's created a service package focused on the care and maintenance of beards, and has dubbed herself and earned the name of a "Beardologist". She provides luxury maintenance and growth enhancing beard treatments and  facials for men in the Indianapolis area.


We asked Dominique why she decided to focus on beards, and she had this to say: I realized that there really weren't any customized services of sorts catering to that particular need for men. Men were relying on a barber to help maintain and sometimes grow a beard when the actuality of it was that beard growth really started with the health of the skin."

She knew there were men who would not only benefit from the very customized experience but she also new she could assist in a ways that promoted overall skin health.

We caught up with her to get some tips for for those guys who are currently participating in #NoShaveNovember, and those of you who are in need of a little go to for the winter months. 


It's better to moisturize your beards with a beard butter daily than it is an oil. Although there are many benefits to a daily beard oil, for optimal moisturizing, a beard butter tends to be lighter and seeps down into the pores without clogging them. Make sure you work the butter deep into the skin underneath your beard for optimal benefits.


Washing your beards with shampoo may get it clean, but could also be doing damage at the same time. Often these products aren't formulated with the key ingredients needed for a healthy beard. Dominique recommends using an all natural beard wash on your beard will do your beard due justice in not only cleaning but aiding in maintaining its moisture too. 

Beardology Tip:  Only wash your beard 2 to 3 times per week. Over washing is a thing and it can cause your hair to dry out more, defeating the purpose.


Some may say this is a personal preference but for the sake of logic, combing is far less harsh on the beard than brushing. Brushing especially with the wrong kind of bristle brush can pop or pull out hairs causing potential ingrown hair. Combing is a less harsh approach and allows you to start from the root, stimulating the follicles to enhance growth. Dominique recommends a wooden beard comb over plastic or metal options.


Dominique recommends that men exfoliate once a week. Exfoliating assists in the sloughing off dead skin cells, especially underneath and around the area of your beard. The build up of dead skin cells can lead to oily clogged pores. Exfoliating also promotes healthy skin as well as hair growth. If you don't know how to exfoliate, that is definitely a reason to book a beard treatment asaptual.


That's like a no brainer during November right, but if you must take to it, clip and trim preferably with shears. Tell your barber stay away, line ONLY and do not touch it. 

If you are in the Indianapolis area, you can experience this customized service during the month of November with 50% off gentlemen by booking by clicking here. Take advantage and treat that beard the way it needs deserves!

Wellness Wednesday: Physical Fitness And Your Libido

The goal of exercise is to obtain a healthier lifestyle. Exercise is a powerful tool in the development of muscular strength, cardiovascular fitness, mind-body coordination and stress relief. Exercise also has been proven to increase sex drive for men.

Working out three to four times a week can do a lot to help your sexual technique, flexibility, and endurance. Here are a few exercises that are guaranteed to improve your libido...

1. Weight Lifting:

Weight lifting causes the body to produce testosterone, which is the primary precursor for the male sex drive. To improve your sex life, do some push-ups, sit-ups, and crunches. These muscle-building exercises can help lead to better sex by strengthening the shoulders, chest, and abs. Strong upper body strength can increase stamina since these muscles are used during intercourse.

2. Kegels: 

Doing Kegels is considered a good sex exercise for men because these exercises can help endurance and control by toning the pubococcygeus (PC) muscles — the ones that let you stop the flow of urine mid-stream. Kegels strengthens the muscles in your body’s pelvic floor, which can lead to better sex. Men can use Kegels to delay ejaculation by contracting these muscles just before orgasm.

3. HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training):

© Black Men With Beards 2017 // Quinn Gordon

© Black Men With Beards 2017 // Quinn Gordon

Doing interval training will increase your stamina and endurance. And you can do intervals just about anywhere -- outside on a track, at the park or on a bike, elliptical, stair climber or treadmill. HOW TO DO IT: After your warm-up, start your intervals at full speed, going as hard and fast as you can, and push yourself for at least 30 seconds. Then back off for a minute or two. Repeat this several times. Add these to your workout a couple of times a week and soon you’ll be ready to go longer or be ready whenever your partner wants to go again.

4. Yoga:

Yoga will help your flexibility, which can result in better sex. Some experts say it can also improve your stamina in the sack by drawing your energy in and up. Yoga poses that improve pelvic muscles are recommended, such as the Bow Pose, Peacock Pose (also called the Forearm or Elbow Balance), and Shoulder Stand.

Having a healthy diet can naturally increase your libido, boost your reproductive health and spark your sexual appetite. Improve your overall performance by adding these foods to the menu...


1. Watermelon:

This fruit is rich in L-citrulline, an amino acid that helps improve blood flow to the sexual organs. L-citrulline optimizes blood flow in the body by first converting to L-arginine and then to nitric oxide, which is involved in dilation of the blood vessels. Low levels of nitric oxide are associated with mental and physical fatigue and sexual dysfunction.

2. Blueberries:

Blueberries are high in antioxidants and have the capacity to relax the blood vessels, thereby allowing improved circulation. This, in turn, means better blood flow to the sex organ and stronger erections. Blueberries also rule when it comes to the boosting the dopamine levels, as they give the body a greater ability to release this hormone.

3. Asparagus:

Asparagus has been considered a successful aphrodisiac. This vegetable is rich in potassium and folic acid, a B vitamin that helps increase the production of histamine, which is important for a healthy sex drive.

4. Avocados:

Avocados are rich in vitamin B6 and folic acid, which help increase overall energy. B6 also helps regulate prolactin, a libido enhancer. Avocados are also rich in heart-healthy monounsaturated fat, which helps to increase testosterone production.

Having a heightened libido can be extremely healthy, physically and mentally. There are so many benefits such as improved mood, better sexual performance, reduced risk of cardiovascular disease, and even burning calories. A low or malfunctioning libido can contribute to severe health conditions, so make sure you maintain a healthy libido, so you can lead a happier, more satisfying life. 


A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Why Stretching Is Important For Men


Good flexibility promotes healthy muscles and joints. Improving and maintaining a good range of motion in your joints can enhance your quality of life. Improving the elasticity of muscles and connective tissue around joints allows greater freedom of movement and enhances your ability to participate in many types of sports and perform activities with greater ease. Optimal flexibility also makes activities of daily living such as bending, turning, and lifting easier to perform. Participating in a regular stretching program increases circulation to the muscles being stretched, helps decrease low back problems, improves postural alignment, promotes graceful body movement, can improve self image, and helps to maintain proper motor skills throughout life.

Improving your bending ability is crucial for more than just preventing injury. In fact, flexibility training is an important aspect of gaining strength and size. The typical lifter spends most of their day outside of the gym hunched forward over a computer further deteriorating any chance at proper posture. Outside of just preventing injury, having better posture helps to show off the muscular physique you worked so hard to build. Proper flexibility also goes hand in hand with full range of motion exercises like squats and deadlifts, which are major muscle builders. Having tight hips and shoulders can inhibit proper form and limit your fitness.

So, what are some different ways to stay flexible? The best way to maintain flexibility is to stretch regularly. Whatever your age, you must incorporate stretching at least once a day. Even if it is not part of an exercise regimen, there are several simple stretching exercises that you can do at your desk or even in front of the TV. If time is short, focus on stretches that work the larger muscle groups such as shoulders, hamstrings, hips and lower back, and calf muscles. It is these areas that are prone to stiffness and soreness, as we grow older. But remember to always be careful to not overdo it. 

There are several ways to improve your flexibility. Stretching and exercise help considerably but you also need to keep an eye on your diet and nutrition. Eating junk food and snacking on fatty and sugary snacks can make matters worse. You can promote fitness by combining a balanced diet (full of fresh fruits and vegetables) along with nutritional supplements that support joint health and improve your mobility. Incorporating things like ginger and turmeric in your diet and supplementing with fish oil can go a long way in improving your joint health.

Although there are physiological changes that occur, as we grow older, regularly stretching and performing range of motion exercises can improve flexibility at any age, helping to increase longevity and enhance overall quality of life.


Meet Jean Titus

A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!


Wellness Wednesday: The Reasons You Aren’t Losing Weight

Everyone has their own personal goals for their health and body composition, and sometimes those include weight loss. But there's a lot of misinformation out there, so we are going to discuss some common pitfalls, stumbling blocks and misconceptions around weight and fat loss and how to be successful in keeping it off.


1. You Don’t Drink Enough Water:


Besides keeping you hydrated, drinking water on the regular, according to recent studies, can aid with weight loss. Filling up on water before a meal helps encourage portion control, and eating foods that contain a lot of water (like fruits and veggies) will fill you up faster, causing you to eat less. A small study even found that drinking cool water could speed up metabolism and discourage cravings for sugary drinks like soda and juice.


2. You Don’t Eat Enough:  

Don't starve yourself to save calories for later. It'll not only mess up your metabolism, and by dinnertime, that famished feeling will likely cause you to eat more than you would if you weren't starving. Not only is starving yourself not sustainable for continued weight loss, but also, limiting yourself to too-small portions can lead to excess snacking between mealtimes.


3. You’re Not Eating Enough Protein:

Whether you prefer lean meats, fish or legumes, make sure you are eating enough protein, especially when you are lowering your overall caloric intake. To ensure your weight loss is reflecting a drop in fat and not muscle, it’s important to have adequate protein in your diet. People with diets were protein comprised, 15-25 percent of their daily calories stored as much as 45 percent of excess calories as muscle, while those who ate only 5 percent of their calories from protein, stored 95 percent of access calories as fat. Start your day off right with a healthy serving of protein, instead of a sugary or carb-filled meal.


4. Eating Too Many Processed Foods:

Stay away from refined foods! That means white bread, crackers, chips, plus all those sneaky refined sugars in packaged foods. All of these unhealthy items increase inflammation in the body. Belly fat is associated with inflammation, so eating too many processed foods will hinder your ability to lose belly fat." Instead, stick to whole, clean foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.


5. Too Much Cardio Not Enough Weight Training:


Cardio is generally considered the fastest way to burn calories for most. However, there is a point of diminishing returns for most. Spending hours and hours of cardio can be tedious and cause unfavorable metabolic adaptations. Weight training can solve your excess cardio problems. Weight training produces a phenomenon called EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption). In a nutshell, this means that your metabolism is going to stay elevated after you exercise, so you continue burning calories even after you are done training. Sometimes metabolism stays elevated up to 72 hours after an intense weight training session. EPOC is the gift that keeps on giving (in terms of body fat reduction).


6. You’re Being Unrealistic:

Sustainable, lasting weight loss can take a while. While a loss of one or two pounds per week is reasonable and doable for many people, there are no hard and fast numbers that equal "success" for everyone. We all differ and everyone tolerates lifestyle change differently. For some people, the only way to lose weight without getting frustrated, bingeing, and giving up is to do it very slowly. Being realistic about how much weight you can actually lose in a given amount time with a given amount of effort is crucial.

As you integrate all this into your own weight loss efforts, remember to check in with yourself regularly to make sure your goals for your body are consistent with your goals for your mental health and happiness. Also, always check with a doctor before making any big changes to your diet or exercise routines.


A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Wellness Wednesday: How Stress Affects Your Health


Stress! The word alone can make you feel stressed out. If you’re among those feeling like you have too much stress and not enough time to deal with it, you’re definitely not alone. For most of us, stress is a fact of life. Unfortunately, research reveals that it's also a fact of fat. Even if you usually eat well and exercise, chronic high stress can prevent you from losing weight or even add pounds.

When we’re stressed there’s a lot that goes on inside our bodies, and it’s a lot more than what meets the eye. Stress causes us to go into a mode to protect ourselves. hormones are released, heart rate increases, blood pressure goes up, the process of digestion slows, there are other lingering effects such as stress hormones that continue to linger and wreak havoc on sleep, weight, our immune system and so much more.

Cortisol is a steroid hormone that our bodies produce in response to stress and also to low blood sugar levels; cortisol works to return our bodies to a place of “normalcy” after a stressful experience. Besides stress, there are also other things that can elevate cortisol levels; these include not getting enough sleep, alcohol and caffeine.

  • Reduced testosterone levels: Stress and low testosterone share many symptoms and have been linked to the stress hormone cortisol. There is evidence that high levels of cortisol depressed testosterone levels in men.
  • Elevated blood sugar levels: This contributes to fat storage in the abdominal area.
  • Suppressed immune system: This means those with elevated stress levels and therefore stress hormones may get sick more often.
  • Decreased bone formation: Although this too may happen over a much longer time, cortisol may affect how well our bodies are able to build strong bones.
  • Affected memory: Some research suggests that over time (likely longer, more chronic situation) may have an effect on our ability to recall memories and events.

 Here are some ways that you that you can reduce stress:

1) Breath and Meditate - Meditation comes in many forms, but whichever you choose to go with, it will likely help reduce stress. Start in a comfortable position and focus on clearing your mind. If your mind begins wandering, find something to focus on, like your breathing, a mantra, or an object in front of you. Check out these other forms of meditation to figure out which one best fits your personality and schedule.

2) Yoga, Stretching or Massage - Yoga is a method of meditation that helps relax the muscles and clear the mind. Regular yoga sessions, stretching and massages can improve flexibility, reduce pain, stiffness, lower blood pressure and improve overall health. It doesn’t have to take a huge commitment, time or money, start with 15-30 minute sessions.

3) Eat Healthier - Most people under stress tend to become emotional eaters, but digging into junk food isn’t going to help. Foods like alcohol, candy, and those high in sodium and fat are actually very bad for reducing stress. Instead, opt for a healthy diet high in whole foods, and when you have to indulge, indulge in a sweet fruity snack. Fish–with their omega-3 fatty acids–are also good for reducing the symptoms of stress.

4) Put Your Phone Down - Television, radio, Internet, or social networking is the sixth top cause of stress in the U.S. Given that your smartphone can deliver all of these at once. It’s probably best to stay away from it when you’re trying to reduce stress. Staying away from your smartphone for a while gives you time to focus on yourself, clear your mind, and work through your stress without distractions.

5) Get More Rest - A common cause of stress is lack of sleep. Furthermore, stress can make it difficult to sleep. It’s an awfully vicious cycle. If you’ve only got a few minutes, lay down and set an alarm to allow yourself a few minutes of rest. At night, try to get at least seven to eight hours of sleep to reduce your day-to-day stress.

6) Exercising Body and Mind - Exercise and other physical activity produce endorphins—chemicals in the brain that act as natural painkillers—and also improve the ability to sleep, which in turn reduces stress. Meditation, acupuncture, massage therapy, even breathing deeply can cause your body to produce endorphins.

The time and effort you spend relaxing and learning new stress management skills is always well spent because of the emotional and physical health benefits it brings. By knowing yourself well enough to tell when you’re under stress, you can take action as soon as possible.


Meet Jean Titus

A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Wellness Wednesday: The Importance of Protein In Your Diet

Did you know that your organs, tissues, muscles and hormones are all made from proteins? The protein found in foods is used by every part of the body to develop, grow and function properly. It can be argued that nothing is more important than consuming protein foods, and because proteins are involved in just about every body function, it’s important that you consume foods high in protein every day, during every meal to prevent protein deficiency, which can wreak havoc on the body. Not only does it help you maintain and lose weight, but it also works to stabilize your blood sugar levels, improve your ability to learn and concentrate, reduce brain fog, boost your energy levels, support your muscles and bones and support the absorption of important nutrients. 


Many people make the mistake of trying diets that involve calorie counting and deprivation. On a high-protein diet, you will feel completely satiated after eating, and you won’t have to deal with the blood sugar highs and lows that lead to cravings and moodiness. You’ll be surprised to see how many foods you can eat on a high-protein diet. Protein comes from a variety of sources, including grass fed beef, fish, organic chicken, eggs and if you're vegan, you have choices such as beans, legumes, broccoli and nut butters. When proteins are digested, they leave behind amino acids, which the human body needs.

Unlike carbohydrates and fat, your body does not store protein, so it has no reservoir to draw from when you’re running low. Protein bars and shakes are a great way to supplement your diet to ensure you’re getting the right amount of protein. 

Here are some reasons why the proper amount of protein is essential for weight loss and maintaining a healthy weight. 


Therefore, it seems logical that eating more protein would help you build more of them. Eating plenty of protein can help increase muscle mass and strength. If you're physically active, lifting weights, or trying to gain muscle and strength, then you need to make sure that you're getting enough protein. 



High-protein diets are known for their fat-reducing benefits. One reason they work is that eating a lot of protein reduces hunger. Protein is filling and when people eat more of it they are more quickly satisfied and eat fewer calories. A study discovered that for every 1 percent increase in protein intake, people naturally decrease their calorie intake by between 32 and 51 calories daily.


It may be surprising, but it is a scientific fact that your body cannot effectively burn and use fat as energy are losing weight, your body loses both muscle and fat. During this process it is especially important that you continue to eat enough protein in your diet. Having adequate protein coming in from your food fuels fat burning while preserving calorie-burning lean muscle.



Tendons benefit in the same way that muscle does from a high-protein intake. Greater protein synthesis accelerates the repair of tissue and strengthens connective tissue for less risk of injury. In addition, a higher essential amino acid intake will prevent muscle atrophy due to immobilization if you are restricted from training, and this has also been found to decrease the time it takes to recover original strength levels after an injury.

If you're wondering how much protein you need to take, an active person will generally need anywhere from .8 to 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. 



A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

The Gentlemen's 8

A gentleman is not defined by the content of his wallet or the cute of his suit. He is defined by his manners and the content of his character.

A true gentleman is a respectable thing to be. By definition, he's strong, chivalrous, intellectual and posses an impeccable sense of style with a calm demeanor - and we all know dressing well is a form of good manners. Well, we are beyond proud and excited to present to you eight of the most stylish distinguished gentlemen who will serve as NOIR event ambassadors as well as your host for the evening. Meet the G8


A gentleman is a man who takes the initiative in noticing the details of his partner's expectations without instructions. 

Most memorable beard encounter:

"Had a lady literally come up and smell my beard as I gave her a hug. She wanted to see if I smelled as good as I looked she said."


A gentleman in my eyes is someone who embodies masculinity while still being caring, compassionate, chivalrous and kind. 

Most memorable beard encounter:

"A woman came up to me and first apologized and then said she just had a not so PG-13 moment visual and that she needed to change her underwear."


A gentleman is one who’s not afraid to be his true self, knowing that the full embodiment of his gifts and love for humanity will heal the world around him.

Most memorable beard encounter

"Meeting up with some of my bearded brothers in the NYC area for the first time and shooting a small campaign that would sweep social media. The most memorable part was the conversation, it was deep rooting in bettering our communities and adjusting how black men were viewed."


A gentleman is a confident, intelligent thoughtful, respectful and insightful person who walks the world not only in style but In example.

Most memorable beard encounter:

"A young lady came to me once and rubbed her face on my face, haha! We laughed, and we actually went on some dates after."


A gentleman is one who is smart, educated and very aware. He is one who takes care and provides for his family. A gentleman is one who takes pride in his appearance and pays great attention to details, and is well groomed. 

Most memorable beard encounter:

"Hahaha, I'd never forget!  While working at Coach, I had an elderly Asian man come up to me and rub my beard with both hands WITHOUT PERMISSION! Now although I was angry, he was elderly and also a tourist (he probably doesn't know our privacy standards) so I let it go and laughed it off. Lol!!!"


A gentleman is a man who has confidence and respect in everything that he does, and carries himself with a certain mystique that everyone gravitates to and respects.

Most memorable beard encounter:

LOL! I think my most memorable beard encounter had to be about a few weeks ago. I was in DC sitting at a bar and the bartender kept bringing me drinks, and each time I kept telling her I didn’t order these. Well these drinks were bought for me from this table of women sitting across from me at another table. They really appreciated my beard, but were nervous to approach me, so they kept sending me drinks."


A gentleman simply put is a man who is strong, intentional, thoughtful and aware of his power and position in his family , community and world around him.

Most memorable beard encounter:

"About a month ago I met a Canadian woman at a bar in Brooklyn who was very pleasant. We were standing outside waiting for her cab and we had a full 5-7 minutes session of her just intimately massaging and caressing the entirety of my beard. She had healing hands. The crazy thing is she derived more pleasure out of the experience than I did."


A man who does not only exemplify visual traits that are becoming of a gentleman (good grooming habits, great posture, great clothing), but a man that has mastered himself, who leads by positive example, who is chivalrous to women, and a teacher to the youth and who collaborates with his fellow man.

Most memorable beard encounter:

"I was in Philadelphia for my first major modeling gig. All of the designers liked my look. But passed on me because of my beard. They said I should cut it, because beards are seen as rugged, messy & grungy. One stylist took a chance for me and had me walk in his show. He has used me in more campaigns that has gotten me great exposure. Since then I’ve been in 3 magazines, features in style & beard blogs, movies & Netflix series and even on BET."


Wellness Wednesday: The Best And Worst Foods For Men

One of the most frequently asked questions is "What Should I eat?”, so I decided to compile a list of some of the worst foods you may be eating and some of the best foods you should be eating. Let's be honest: Grocery and convenience stores are full of chemical- and sugar-laced foods we should never eat but that makes up a surprisingly large portion of most people's regular diet. You may be surprised to find out what's on this list.

Most of these foods are acid forming and need to be eliminated as soon as possible. They create inflammation in the body, throw off hormonal balance, and bog down the body’s natural process and among other things that negate your efforts to maintain or restore a healthy weight. Here is the list of the worst foods...
Fried Foods: Fried foods like French fries and chips, as well as breaded and fried meat, pump your arteries with oils that have been made less healthy by heating them to high temperatures. Frying makes healthy food (such as vegetables, fish, chicken or potatoes) unhealthy. The high caloric content in fried foods can cause you to gain weight, which leads to diseases, problems with your joints and hormone problems.
Soda: Soda is one of the worst foods for men because it is filled with caffeine, fructose and refined sugar. The artificial sweeteners in diet soda are even worse for health. The caffeine in soda can trigger gout. The sugars, which are bad for your teeth, can cause insulin levels to go so high that drinking one soda per day can increase your chance of a having a heart attack by 20 percent.
Fruit Juice: Fruit juice seems healthier than soda, but it is also a bad choice for aging men. Fruit juice causes a spike in blood sugar that is especially bad for anyone with diabetes and gout. Plus, juicing removes the beneficial fiber from the fruit. It is better to eat whole fruits and vegetables than to drink their juice.
White Bread Products: White bread products include crackers, rolls, bagels, pasta and low-fiber cereals. Milled white flour produces a state of inflammation in the body, which can worsen arthritis and cause spikes in blood sugar. Potassium bromate, a bread additive in the United States, is banned in other countries. Potassium bromate is known to be toxic in human cells and cause cancer in animals. Instead of white bread, choose whole-grain and high-fiber products.
French Fries: Fried foods like French fries, chips, and breaded and fried meat pump your arteries with oils that have been made even unhealthier by heating them to high temperatures. Frying takes healthy foods (like vegetables, potatoes, fish, or chicken) and transforms them into ones to avoid. In fact, eating breaded and fried chicken is worse than eating a burger. Also be leery of prepackaged food you have to bake. They are often breaded and fried with oil to keep them crispy. Chips and French fries contain acrylamide. The calories in fried foods like French fries can cause weight gain, which can lead to other diseases, problems with your joints, and hormone imbalance, while the unhealthy heated oils found in these foods can lead to heart disease. It is healthier to boil, steam, roast, or bake your foods.
Excess Alcohol: A glass of wine, especially red wine, may actually benefit your health, but drinking excessively is bad for aging men. Too much alcohol can damage your liver; accelerate aging, and even lead to osteoporosis. Excess and regular drinking of alcohol dilates blood vessels in the skin, widening blood vessels until they lose tone. This can lead to deeper facial lines and wrinkles.
Doughnuts: Doughnuts are definitely foods to avoid over 40 because they are basically sugar, white flour, and unhealthy trans-fat, which are linked to heart disease. Like French fries, doughnuts may contain acrylamide, which is considered a carcinogen. Doughnuts are possibly the worst way to start your day.
Now that we've talked about some of the worst foods, let's talk about some of the best foods. When you take care of your body by eating right, you prevent age-related weight gain. Here is the list of the best foods...
Wild Salmon: Fatty fish like wild salmon contain omega-3 fatty acids that help reduce inflammation, slow the plaque buildup inside blood vessels and increase the ratio of good to bad cholesterol levels.  They’ve also been shown to lower blood pressure.  Wondering how much to eat? Eating one to two 3-ounce servings of fatty fish a week reduces the risk of dying from heart disease.
Blueberries & Strawberries - They're great tasting and they make go well with salads, oats, and smoothies. Better yet, berries are amazing brain food and potent sources of fiber, a nutrient shown to aid weight loss. Consuming a diet rich in blueberries and strawberries may help slow mental decline and help maintain memory and focus. Strawberries are also rich in folate, a nutrient that when consumed with B vitamins have been shown to prevent cognitive decline and dementia.
Sweet Potato - Sweet potatoes are packed with potassium, a mineral that can lessen the effects of sodium on blood pressure. They’re also rich in carotenoids, powerful antioxidants that help stabilize blood sugar levels and lower insulin resistance, which prevents calories from being converted into fat.
Turmeric - Curcumin, the active ingredient in the Indian spice, blocks the effects of pro-inflammatory enzymes and chemical pain messengers, easing arthritis pain and swelling. Think of turmeric as Mother Nature’s all-natural ibuprofen. Turmeric has also been known to slow the growth and spread of cancer cells and lower cholesterol levels.
Leafy Greens - You should already know that nutrient-packed leafy greens like kale, bok choy and spinach should be a part of your regular diet. If you’re not already eating them, add these pain-fighting green superfoods to your diet.
Green Tea - Not only can green tea aid weight loss and help you recover faster after a workout, its potent antioxidants may also lower levels of “bad” cholesterol, while simultaneously increasing levels of “good” cholesterol. Studies indicate that green tea may block bad cholesterol from being absorbed in the intestine and help the body get rid of it.
Water - Most people take drinking water for granted, but keeping hydrated has a huge impact on overall health. Despite how crucial water is, a significant number of people fail to consume recommended levels of fluids each day. Although some of the water required by the body is obtained through foods with a high water content (i.e., some fruits and vegetables), majority is gained through drinking water and other beverages. Drinking water helps the body to function properly; all the cells and organs of the body need water. It is also used to lubricate the joints, protect the spinal cord and other sensitive tissues, regulate body temperature, and assist the passage of food through the intestines.
Good nutrition is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle. Combined with physical activity, your diet can help you to reach and maintain a healthy weight, reduce your risk of chronic diseases (like heart disease and cancer), and promote your overall health.
MEET JEAN TITUS A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!


A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Wellness Wednesday: Five Reasons Why You Should Train Your Legs


Your legs represent the largest muscles in your body, so you have to spend an appropriate amount of time training them with a descent amount of resistance using "heavy weights". Because we use our legs in almost everything we do, they have higher amounts of endurance muscle fibers than our upper bodies would have; therefore, in order to adequately train your legs, they need a higher volume of work.

Popular excuses: “I run for my legs”, “My legs are too big already”, “Squats hurt my knees”, … whatever the story, not training your legs is the biggest training mistake you can make.


Here are 5 reasons you should train your legs


1. MORE MUSCLE: You can find studies showing that Squats & Deadlifts increase the release of Growth Hormone & Testosterone more than any other exercise. These are natural muscle building hormones. Testosterone is a steroid hormone that is naturally produced in your body and plays a key role in the health of men, helping increase the growth of muscle mass and strength. Compound moves, such as squats and deadlifts, which use large muscle groups, help elevate your T-levels.

2. YOU'LL BURN MORE CALORIES: Whether or not weight loss is your goal, if you want to get the most bang for your buck at the gym, you're going to have to do legs. Working  bigger muscles and compound exercises, like squats, deadlifts and lunges will require more energy and a higher metabolism. Challenging these larger muscles in short will burn more calories. 

3. MORE STRENGTH: You might not believe it, but your legs and core produce the majority of your power during heaving lifting. Stronger legs and core muscles will increase your strength on upper-body lifts and thus help upper-body muscle development. Quick examples of how Squats & Deadlifts can cause strength gains on your other lifts:


•   Leg drive matters on the Bench Press. Stronger legs mean more leg drive and a bigger bench, and thus bigger muscles.

•   Squats & Deadlifts strengthen your legs & lower back. 

These muscles help you stay strong during the Overhead Press. If you lack conditioning, your big lifts will only get so far. Performing functional exercises, like deadlifts, however, will strengthen your legs, glutes and lower body, while developing all-over muscle and mobility.

Remember, core strength supports the body in almost every movement. And the deadlift – the King of Exercises – is the key core strength building movement. 

4. SYMMETRY & BALANCE: Simply put, you don't want to have a huge upper body with toothpick legs. You want for your physique to be balanced and symmetrical, but for more functional reasons, upper body strength won't help you much from avoiding slip and fall accidents and maintaining your general balance. Most of our power and balance is generated from our lower half. Balance is essential for maintaining control of your body. Much like a building or any other structure, the strength of most structures lies in its foundation. 

5. AVOIDING INJURY. This is the last, but in my opinion, the most important reason I stress that leg training is necessary... If you're training three days out of the week, you have to dedicate at least one day to training your lower body. If you don't, you run the risk of creating muscle imbalances, poorly conditioned hamstrings and a lack of mobility. And that lack of mobility and conditioning will lead to a number of possible issues, such as... lower back pain and knee injuries. Exercises such as, squats, lunges and dead lifts will help in developing functional strength and reduce the risk of injury by building muscle around weak joints and help promote more stability and balance.


A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Black Beard Love: Anthony & Sopha


A marriage is between 3 people - Man, Woman, and God, and it's the God in him that won her over. Meet Anthony and Sopha, the loving couple from Dallas, TX. Getting married is one thing, staying married is another. Growing a marriage requires work and compromise; the effort of both spouses engaging each other mentally, emotionally and spiritually. It's their faith that draws Anthony and Sopha closer to each other.


"I love his heart for the Lord. I love how he is constantly serving and mentoring young men through the sport of Basketball."  According to Sopha, Anthony has an enormous heart, making him love hard and do anything for anyone because that's just the kind of man he is. Supportive, caring and ready to help when ever needed. And Anthony? He adores Sopha, admitting she has one of the most beautiful smiles he's ever seen, her spirit radiating from within, and her compassion something to emulate. That type of selfless love she has for empowering and inspiring others makes Anthony love her more each day.

I love that my wife doesn’t know a stranger. She loves everyone she meets.
— Anthony

So what do these two lovebirds enjoy doing together the most? Having hectic work schedules during the week limits the amount of time Anthony and Sopha get to spend with each other, so they make it a point to designate Saturdays for some lazy love lounging by hanging out and watching movies.


"A typical Saturday results in us making a fort in our living room and binge watching our favorite TVs shows," says Sopha. Being a creative and married to a creative, one can imagine the musing this love breeds. Sopha explains she enjoys capturing Anthony while he is behind the camera working. "There's something special about seeing Anthony photographing that makes me happy." Nothing like gazing at the one you love create beautiful art right? They also enjoy working out together, trying out new things together, and praying together. They also compromise on the things that the other wouldn’t normally do, like doing outdoor activities because that’s what Sopha loves, or doing something inside because that what Anthony enjoys. 

This is black love. The kind of couple you look at and can't help but to feel the love they have for each other, and the kind of love that you cheer them on from the sidelines because black love is communal. They are what we hashtag #goals: he protects her love and she nurtures his soul.

"Black love is beautiful. To us, its embracing and appreciating who we are and where we come from. It's celebrating as a culture, black families taking back what belongs to them.  Destroying this image of broken homes and statistics that have labeled our communities as impoverished. It's celebrating the beauty in seeing black families empower, inspire, and rise above all circumstances that were set up against them. It's celebrating the role models who give others hope in healthy love. Black love is magic and I am so thankful we get to celebrate and own our blackness."

Keep on showing off what we know to be true, that black love prevalent and alive. Follow Sopha and Anthony on IG!

Wellness Wednesday: What Is The Posterior Chain?

The actual definition of the posterior chain is a group of muscles located on the back of your body.  These muscles include the lower back, glutes, hamstrings, trapezius, calves, and posterior deltoids. Unfortunately, for the athlete that is just beginning strength training, these muscles that are not easily seen in the mirror are frequently neglected.

For the most part, people with desk jobs rest on their glutes all day which eventually leads to them becoming reliant on their quads or becoming ‘quad dominant’. Here the glutes have lost their prioritized role of generating hip extension and stabilization.

Within these muscles the most common movement is the hip extension. Developing a poor posterior chain can eventually lead to the following injuries/health scares;

  • Lower back pain
  • Shortened hip flexors
  • Weakened core stability
  • Less effective general athletic function


The opposite muscles to your posterior chain are those of the anterior chain, specifically your quadriceps and hip flexors. If you spend all of your time working on your anterior chain, and your glutes and hamstrings strength will be compromised and could lead to some of the injuries and issues previously mentioned. So, it's vital you balance your posterior and anterior workouts. When performing explosive exercises such as jumping, both chains have a role to play and an inferior posterior chain will have a negative impact on your power and performance.

Stronger glutes and hamstrings prevent knee injuries, strong quads coupled with weak glutes and hamstrings can put additional stress on your knees which can heighten the risk of knee injuries. A dedicated posterior chain strengthening program is crucial for injury prevention.


Many athletic and sporting movements such as jumping forward, backwards or side to side, sprinting, leaping and even decelerating relies greatly on an effective posterior chain. The posterior chain is a major weakness for many athletes, particularly beginners. Neglecting exercises like the deadlift, kettlebell swing and back extensions could be detrimental to your strength, performance and even posture. A weak posterior chain will overload your lower back and abdominals, which as mentioned above can manifest itself as lower back pains. Keep your posterior chain strong to avoid this.




Kettlebell Swing

Kettlebell Swing

Hyper Extension

Hyper Extension


A serial entrepreneur and former financial advisor, Jean Titus discovered his purpose and passion through the heartache of losing loved ones far too early. He lives his mantra – “We rise by lifting others” – daily as a life coach and Personal Trainer. Jean brings a simplicity and practicality to his work, helping clients draw on their strengths to realize the one thing money can’t buy – good health and wellness. Follow him on Instagram and his fitness journey!

Black Male Educators Are Necessary

© Black Men With Beards 2017 // Jeff Clark

© Black Men With Beards 2017 // Jeff Clark

When you think of late August and early September, a few things should come to mind; football, grilling out and back to school! For most children this is the time they get to reconnect with old friends and show off their new gear and parents are able to take the lock off the refrigerator and save a little money. This is the time where students are able to start fresh and refocus on their academic goals and teachers are there to educate and guide them in the right direction.

Guilford County is just one of 100 counties in the state of North Carolina. Within the last few years North Carolina has witnessed educators go on strike due to budget cuts that would froze any raises on teacher pay and eliminated the majority of teacher assistants. According to the National Education Association report, during that time N.C ranked 47th in the country for the average teacher rank. Due to teacher strikes and a roughly five percent increase of salaries the NEA reports that the average teacher salary in 2017 puts North Carolina 35th in the nation.

© Black Men With Beards // Jeff Clark

© Black Men With Beards // Jeff Clark

Despite a slight increase in wages there are certain struggles that never seem to fade away. The academic performance of minority students in Guilford county, and the huge disparity between how black students are disciplined when compare to their white counterparts. The youth justice project reported that during the 2014/2015 school year only thirty one percent of black students were “college and career ready” during the end of course exams compared to sixty eight percent of whites. The report also revealed that black students account for seventy one percent of short term suspensions where as whites accounted for only fourteen percent. Mass incarceration begins early as blacks accounted for eighty percent of detention admissions compared to five percent of white students; all for the same offenses.

I was able to speak to a former classmate of mine who is now an educator with the Guilford County school system. I asked a few questions and he was able to speak on his experiences as a teacher and some of the hardships both students and teachers endure daily.

Lacy:  What inspired you to embark on a career in education? 

Kev:  For me, it wasn’t what inspired me, rather it was who inspired me to embark on a career in education. My good friend Christian Hill (former GCS Recruiter/former HP Central Assistant Principal) talked me into working in education when we were hired as football coaches at Mendenhall Middle School.

Lacy:  As a black educator, what's a hindrance you can identify that minority students face? 

Kev:  There are too many things to truly list that hinder our minority students. I’ll name a few with hopes of not rambling or boring you, discipline, reading levels, and cultural/ethnic representation. A student's behavior will directly disrupt their learning and it usually shows when it is time to read. Most black and minority students don't open up to receive the teachings from someone who doesn't come from the same cultural background or ethnicity as them. 

Lacy:  Do you think that black students and other minority students would benefit from having more educators that resemble them in the classroom?

Kev:  I absolutely think black students and other minority students would benefit from having more educators who resemble them in the classroom. This goes back to the above-mentioned cultural representation as well. Nobody can reach a child like someone who speaks like him or her, and lives or has lived like him or her in my opinion. Of course there are lots of kids who are reached by those who don’t share the same cultures or ethnicities, but the majority need/want to see someone who resembles them being successful in a positive way to be reached.

Lacy:  Do you plan to stay in education? If so, what are you hoping to achieve? 

© Black Men With Beard // Jeff Clark

© Black Men With Beard // Jeff Clark

Kev:  I hope to stay in education for as long as I can and guide the misguided youth, as well as return to coaching football in the near future. The only thing I have ever wanted out of this when I first started was to save a kid going down the wrong path. It was really all about football for me until I saw the impact I had on a kid’s life. Being able to say I’ve had former players/students go on to play at Florida St, N.C. A&T, ECU, WSSU, and more is more than enough of an accomplishment, but when a former player/student tells you that they don’t know if I would have made it without you that is priceless.

Lacy:  What's one of the biggest challenges teachers face in the classroom that most are probably unaware of?

Kev:  I think race and lack of understanding are the two biggest challenges teachers face in the classroom. Too often black students and minority students want to play the race card with a teacher who is willing to give them the shirt off of their back. I can’t tell you how many times a student has called a teacher racist because they weren’t given their way and allowed to be a stereotypical (by society’s standards) black or minority. This makes it harder for that educator who doesn’t have the same cultural or ethnic background as he or she to reach them. Students also have to understand that everyone who doesn’t look or sound like you isn’t against you. Once that is understood the education process seems to get easier from there.

Article written by Lacy D. Colson III. Colson is a student at N.C. A&T State University, studying African American studies. Lacy is also a mentor for the African American male initiative program through United Way and is a loving husband and father living in Greensboro, N.C.