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Your insurance might cover this healthy meal plan service — here’s how PlateJoy Health works

Your insurance might cover this healthy meal plan service — here’s how PlateJoy Health works

Insider Picks writes about products and services to help you navigate when shopping online. Insider Inc. receives a commission from our affiliate partners when you buy through our links, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

A simple, healthy meal you might find on your PlateJoy Health plan.

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A simple, healthy meal you might find on your PlateJoy Health plan.
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PlateJoy Instagram
  • Many of us want to eat healthier, but diets are notoriously hard to stick to.
  • PlateJoy wants to make healthy eating a lifestyle, not just a diet. To do this, they offer totally personalized meal plans that’ll keep you on track with your health and wellness goals.
  • While its plans cost money, if your insurance covers it or if you’re at risk of type 2 diabetes, you may have access to their new plan called PlateJoy Health for free.
  • Keep reading to see how PlateJoy Health works.

Many of us aspire to eat healthier. Yet for most of us, these aspirations usually stay as just that, never translating into real action. While in theory we really do want to be healthier, with busy schedules and so many other things to prioritize, it’s easy to let a diet fall to the wayside and grab quick and easy foods instead, even if they offer no nutritional value.

PlateJoy is a service that makes healthy eating more feasible by curating meal plans catered to your specific preferences and needs. After you answer an in-depth questionnaire, PlateJoy will create a weekly menu and a grocery list based on what you need to buy and what you have in your pantry. You can even connect to Instacart to have these ingredients delivered right to your door. So, in the end, all you have to do is cook your meals.

Read more: I tried PlateJoy, an online service that customizes healthy meal plans for $8 a month – and it can be adapted to suit any type of dietary needs

For some, eating healthy is more than just a matter of losing weight or feeling more energized – it’s a matter of health itself. That’s why PlateJoy recently launched PlateJoy Health – a free program specifically designed for individuals at risk of type 2 diabetes.

Eating a more balanced, nutritious diet is one of the most common recommendations doctors give to patients to reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes. Since so many diets fail, PlateJoy Health takes a different approach, offering a meal plan of healthy recipes that fit in with individual’s schedules, locations, and eating preferences, so they can adopt a healthier lifestyle overall.

PlateJoy’s meal plan service isn’t free, but if you’re at risk of type 2 diabetes, it might be. Many insurance plans will cover 100% of the cost of PlateJoy Health. If you’re eligible, you’ll not only get a free PlateJoy meal plan membership, but a free Fitbit and wireless scale, so you can track your activity and weight loss.

If your insurance doesn’t cover the service, or you’re not at risk of type 2 diabetes, you can still purchase the service for $89 (for a three month plan) or $119 (for a six month plan). And, if you sign up right now, you can save $10 on your purchase of a PlateJoy membership.

Sign up for PlateJoy Health for free (if eligible) or $89 for a three month plan or $119 for a six month plan (if ineligible) >>

If you’re interested in joining PlateJoy Health, here’s a walk-through of what you can expect:


Start off by signing up with your email and insurance to see if you’re eligible for the service

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PlateJoy Health

In order to see if you’ll qualify to get PlateJoy Health free, you’ll need to give them a little bit of information about yourself. Whether you qualify or not, everyone can use the service – you just may have to pay a fee (and you won’t get a free Fitbit or scale).


Once registered, head to your new landing page

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PlateJoy Health

Access free video content and your weekly menus, plus keep track of your activity, sugar consumption, and weight loss all from this handy landing page.


Then, you’ll fill out an in-depth questionnaire to help inform your PlateJoy meal plan

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PlateJoy Health

PlateJoy’s questionnaire is extremely thorough, so you can be sure your meal plan will actually be personalized. They ask questions you would expect to find when creating a healthy eating plan, like if you’re trying to lose weight, how active you usually are, and what ingredients you’re looking to cut from your diet – if any at all.

You’ll also be asked very specific questions like how you feel about seasonal produce (do you care if your meals include out-of-season ingredients, for example), eating leftovers, and if you prefer batch cooking or having something different for dinner every night.

You can go back and change the answers to your questionnaire at any point, in case you realize something you choose is not actually working for you.


Once you finish your questionnaire, you’ll find a queue of meals waiting for you

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PlateJoy Health

Based on your answers, PlateJoy will select and present you with a slew of meals that you may find on your next meal plan. As well as the meal itself, you’ll find cook time and nutritional information. If one meal seems unappetizing to you, you can remove it from your queue permanently so that it never shows up on one of your meal plans.


Once you’ve scanned through your breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack options you’ll create your own menu

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PlateJoy Health

Here’s what a week of dinners might look like. When you come across your week’s worth of recipes, you can remove, swap or add based on what you like and don’t like. If you want to cook one of these recipes, simply click the cook arrow and you’ll be led to a full recipe page.


Once you decide you’re satisfied with your meal plan, you’ll get a custom shopping list

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PlateJoy Health

Before creating your shopping list, PlateJoy will ask what you already have in your pantry. Then they’ll send you this shopping list based on the ingredients needed in your recipes and the items you already have. They also indicate how much of each ingredient you’ll need for your menu, so you don’t waste food or money by buying too much.

You also have the option to send your ingredient list directly to Instacart, so you can save yourself the trip to the grocery store and have everything delivered right to your door.


Then, all that’s left is for you to get cooking

A simple, healthy meal you might find on your PlateJoy Health plan.

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PlateJoy Instagram

Once you have all your ingredients, all you have to do is cook. Head back to your landing page to keep track of your progress, but otherwise all you have to do is enjoy your delicious meals.

See if you’re eligible to sign up for PlateJoy Health for free >>

This $100 exercise device mimics what NASA sends into space with astronauts — I thought it was gimmicky at first, but I’m still using it 2 months later

This $100 exercise device mimics what NASA sends into space with astronauts — I thought it was gimmicky at first, but I’m still using it 2 months later

Insider Picks writes about products and services to help you navigate when shopping online. Insider Inc. receives a commission from our affiliate partners when you buy through our links, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

OYO

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OYO
  • A high-quality exercise device is easy to use, motivates you enough to keep you coming back to it, and provides noticeable improvements to your health.
  • I like the OYO Personal Gym because you can adjust the resistance to really push yourself, and it comes with access to dozens of workout videos, including the 10-Week Challenge.
  • Though it’s more expensive than some home gym equipment (currently starting at $99.95 on Amazon), it’s more affordable than a gym membership, is backed by a full three-year warranty, and you can easily bring it with you when traveling.

From the Shake Weight to the Thighmaster to the Body Blade, there are countless gimmicky exercise devices that prey on people trying to turn over a new leaf in their physical fitness. Most of this equipment is eventually donated to secondhand stores where they serve as just another exhibit in the “Museum of Fitness Fads Gone Bad.”

At first, I thought the OYO Personal Gym was going to be another of these short-lived crazes. But, after coming back to it time and again for the last 60 days, my opinion has changed. Read on to learn more about my experiences with this device.

OYO fitness 3

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OYO Fitness

My first experiences with the OYO Personal Gym

OYO sent me both versions of their personal gym to test: the Pro and the LE. Both options come with two 10-pound and one five-pound flex packs, leg and door anchors, an exercise wall chart, and a nutrition guide. Both are backed by a full three-year warranty. The OYO Personal Gym works by providing between 10 and 25 pounds of resistance as you push it together or pull it apart with your hands or with the attachments. You adjust the resistance using the flex packs provided.

The Pro version of the gym costs $50 more than the LE and connects to the OYO app on iOS devices via Bluetooth. The app keeps track of how many reps you have completed, logs your workouts, and offers coaching advice based on your workouts.

The same technology astronauts use in space

For this review, I had the opportunity to talk to former astronaut Dr. Leroy Chiao, who spent over six months on the International Space Station and is a spokesperson for the OYO Personal Gym. “When up in orbit, it’s very important to exercise,” Dr. Chiao said. “On Earth, if you miss a workout, you at least walk around a bit to work the muscles. In space, it’s more like you’re laying in bed for months at a time. Without exercise, your muscles quickly atrophy and your bones demineralize.”

“When I was up in space, I used what was called the iRED, or Interim Resistive Exercise Device,” Dr. Chiao continued. “I came back physically stronger in each physical test, and I had immeasurable bone loss in the bone density scan. This was a testament to the effectiveness of the iRED.”

“Fairly recently, Paul Francis (founder and CEO of OYO Fitness) got in touch with me to let me know he created the iRED and had patented the SpiraFlex technology and used it in the OYO. I became very interested.” Dr. Chiao now brings the OYO with him when he’s traveling so he can get his exercise in.

OYO

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OYO

How the OYO Personal Gym performed

At first, it took a little getting used to the OYO. Specifically, when I was transitioning from pulling the ball-like handles out to pushing them together, I had to make sure that the dowels attached to the handles were back to their original position, or else I couldn’t squeeze the device together properly. After the first couple of workouts, I had the hang of it and rarely ran into trouble with this.

I really liked that OYO made it clear where I should start by offering the 10-Week Challenge. This is a series of 36 workout videos that feature a broad array of exercises performed in three to five circuits. Each exercise lasts approximately 30 seconds for the first three weeks. Then, OYO Director of Fitness Nick Bolton ups it to one minute per exercise. And, with week 5, the challenge shifts from three workouts per week to four.

Since I had other training regimens I had to stay on top of for roller derby, I didn’t stick with the schedule of the 10-Week Challenge, but I still got a lot out of progressing through it. As of this writing, I’m through week 7 of the challenge.

I received the OYO right as the Michigan weather made outdoor exercise virtually unbearable. Fortunately, this device made it so I didn’t have to step outdoors to get a dripping-sweat workout. I got in the habit of working out first thing in the morning – before I was awake enough to talk myself out of it. I found it was an excellent way to start the day. It got my blood flowing and helped me keep my focus throughout the day.

OYO

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OYO

Some concerns about the device

I was not a fan of the OYO app. First of all, all of my devices are Android so I had to borrow my wife’s phone to use the app. I had to reconnect each time I used the OYO device, which took a few tries. I didn’t find the rep tracking to be all that helpful, and I already keep a log of my workouts in a spreadsheet so I didn’t need the log feature. If you do go with the Pro version and want to follow the workouts, I recommend casting your device onto a larger screen. It’s difficult and awkward to try to watch the videos on a small iPhone screen.

I found the leg attachments and door anchors were only marginally useful. I didn’t use the door anchors at any point. None of the 10-Week Challenge exercise videos I followed used them. The leg attachments were cumbersome. They were okay attached to the ankles during hip opening and squeezing exercises, but beyond that, it got dicey.

Specifically, the single-leg kickback was the bane of my existence. I was supposed to attach one leg attachment to my bicep and the other to my ankle then kick back while on my hands and knees. The attachment did not fit on my large bicep. So, I put it on my wrist. The motion was still so uncomfortable that I had to modify the exercise.

The bottom line

Overall, I am surprised by how helpful the OYO Personal Gym is. As a runner, cyclist, and roller derby skater, I primarily focus on my legs and have neglected my upper body for decades. Consequently, I suffer from chronic back pain. The OYO Personal Gym changed all of this. Now, I have an easy way to fit a challenging full-body workout into my fitness regimen without having to leave my home. I strongly recommend the OYO to anyone interested in improving their overall physical fitness. I also suggest that you seriously commit to the 10-Week Challenge if you do give the OYO a shot.

Buy the OYO Personal Gym on Amazon starting at $99.95 (originally $129.95)

Ingredient Education: What is Hyaluronic Acid Serum & How Hyaluronic Acid Benefits Skin

Ingredient Education: What is Hyaluronic Acid Serum & How Hyaluronic Acid Benefits Skin

Hyaluronic Acid is one of those ingredients that you always hear called a “super ingredient,” but some of you may not really know anything about it! That’s why we are here. We are going to answer some of your burning questions about Hyaluronic Acid and the BeautyPrep Hyaluronic Serum from the simple ones like “What is Hyaluronic Acid?” to “Will Hyaluronic Acid help extend the life my fillers?”

What is Hyaluronic Acid?

Let’s start with the basics. Hyaluronic acid (HA) is a mucopolysaccharide (say that 5 times fast) found in most cells in your body. It’s often called “the body’s moisturizer.” One of its main functions is to bind water and to lubricate movable parts of your body. The greatest amount is found in your skin, which has almost 50% of your body’s HA.

What is Hyaluronic Acid Good for?

It’s a very important part of your skin’s cellular matrix and is responsible for preserving healthy moisture levels, maintaining cell structure, keeping your skin smooth and plump, regulating healing and upholding your skin’s defense against environmental damage. As you age, the levels of Hyaluronic Acid diminish, leaving your skin prone to dryness, irritation, and wrinkling.

What is the BeautyPrep Hyaluronic Serum?

BeautyPrep Hyaluronic Serum, a Hyaluronic Acid Serum

Our BeautyPrep Hyaluronic Serum is a combination of ingredients that concentrate on hydrating the top layers of your skin, the epidermis and then above that the stratum corneum. These are the layers that take the most environmental stress and are most prone to dryness. The BeautyPrep Hyaluronic Serum helps your skin cells hold onto moisture, maintain plumpness and flexibility, and aids the overall health of your skin.

What ingredients in the Serum help achieve healthy skin?

We have a number of ingredients in the BeautyPrep Hyaluronic Serum that work together to aid your skin’s health and to make this product a powerhouse of hydration without being sticky or heavy. Just some of the ingredients are Ulva lactuca which is the backbone of Hyaluronic Acid and comes from a beautiful green seaweed called jade alga. Also included are beta glucan, hydrolyzed collagen, and, of course, Hyaluronic Acid as sodium hyaluronate.

What is the difference between Hyaluronic Acid and Sodium Hyaluronate?

Sodium hyaluronate is the sodium salt of Hyaluronic Acid found in most of our connective tissues. We use sodium hyaluronate because it’s a smaller molecule which has a better plumping action than the larger molecule of straight HA.

What is Beta Glucan and how does it affect your skin?

The Beta Glucan we use is certified natural by Ecocert and is extracted from oat kernels. It acts as a natural moisturizer barrier and film forming agent. This film helps to prevent trans-epidermal water loss, which means your skin cells are able to hold on to more of their own moisture. It also helps relieve dry itchy skin because it replenishes your skin’s moisture barrier and generally locks in so much hydration that your skin looks smoother and younger. It’s pretty much your favorite new ingredient!


Related Post

This electrolyte powder is a low-sugar way to replenish fluids and prevent dehydration after workouts or long nights out

This electrolyte powder is a low-sugar way to replenish fluids and prevent dehydration after workouts or long nights out

Insider Picks writes about products and services to help you navigate when shopping online. Insider Inc. receives a commission from our affiliate partners when you buy through our links, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

hydrant electrolytes

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Hydrant
  • Drinking electrolyte water to replenish missing fluids and electrolytes is not a new concept, but many of the current options aren’t doing enough and may not be as good for your body as you think.
  • Hydrant, a powdered electrolyte mix, is an exception. It contains an efficient balance of only the ingredients you need to refuel after you work out, fall sick, or drink alcohol.
  • They taste good, absorb quickly into your body, and combat the effects of dehydration effectively.

After working out, falling sick, or a night of drinking, what’s the first thing after water you reach for? For many, it’s a bottle of Pedialyte, Gatorade, or Vitaminwater.

You understand vaguely that they’ll replenish your body with the electrolytes and fluids you’ve lost. I, for one, grew up drinking a lot of Gatorade after sports games and even up until recently drank it to nurse hangovers.

However, a closer look at their contents reveals they’re filled with artificial ingredients, an excessive amount of sugar, or an improper balance of electrolytes. It’s not surprising, then, that after chugging one of these drinks, you only feel minimally better and not as re-energized as you’d expect.

From using powdered rehydration packets as a child whenever he was sick to revisiting them after rugby games and nights out while attending Oxford University, Hydrant cofounder John Sherwin has also experienced his fair share of dehydration experimentation.

He realized while working alongside constantly tired coworkers that they were chronically dehydrated, but this time around, he wanted to find electrolyte powder packets that were actually good for them. The search for clean electrolytes turned up empty-handed, so in typical startup founder fashion, Sherwin created his own, combining his personal experience with his background in biology.

hydrant electrolytes 1

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Hydrant

Each 8.7-gram packet of Hydrant contains eight ingredients and only what your body needs, including sodium citrate, potassium citrate, salt, magnesium citrate, and zinc gluconate. Its balance of electrolytes are based on the World Health Organization’s standard for oral rehydration.

Hydrant does contain cane sugar, but only just enough to activate the sodium-glucose transport mechanism that gets water and electrolytes into your bloodstream faster. Since it doesn’t have too much sugar or any artificial sweeteners, it won’t lead to a crash and upset stomach later.

It also has low osmolarity, which means your body can more easily and quickly absorb the ingredients and feel their effects.

hydrant electrolytes 2

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Hydrant

Because Hydrant is a portable powder, you can drink it anywhere, provided you have a bottle of water to mix it with. Depending on which bulk pack you buy, each packet costs $1 or less, making it less expensive (and less wasteful) than bottled electrolyte drinks.

It tastes pretty good, like a tangy lime (from lime juice powder) with a hint of salt. Taste is an underrated but important factor considering all the times you’ll want to reach for Hydrant: during and after airplane travel, a workout, alcohol consumption, or a stressful work day where you haven’t had the time or thought to drink something.

If you notice muscle or brain fatigue, headaches, or nausea, chances are you’re experiencing the effects of dehydration. The efficient, clean, and tasty fix to replenish the culprit – those missing fluids and electrolytes – is a packet of Hydrant.

Shop electrolyte powder packets, available in packs of 30 to 120, at Hydrant here

Jillian Michaels warns people to avoid the keto diet: ‘Why would anyone think this is a good idea?’

Jillian Michaels warns people to avoid the keto diet: ‘Why would anyone think this is a good idea?’

Jillian Michaels has said multiple times that she doesn't support the keto diet.

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Jillian Michaels has said multiple times that she doesn’t support the keto diet.
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Jerritt Clark/Getty Images

The keto diet has garnered a lot of attention for its storied weight-loss results and strange food requirements. It’s so popular that a number of celebrities have credited keto for their famous figures. There is one celebrity, however, who rejects this trending diet as nothing more than a “fad.”

Fitness guru Jillian Michaels recently said the keto diet is a “terrible, terrible idea” on an episode of the #Adulting podcast.

“Your cells, your macromolecules, are literally made up of protein, fat, carbohydrates, nucleic acids. When you do not eat one of the three macronutrients – those three things I just mentioned – you’re starving yourselves,” Michaels said about the keto diet’s restrictive parameters.

Michaels previously told Women’s Health that the keto diet is a “bad plan.” In a video for the publication, the former “Biggest Loser” trainer was asked her opinion about a number of health-related topics, including the high fat, low-carb diet.

“I don’t understand. Like, why would anyone think this is a good idea?” Michaels said, adding the diet is a “bad plan for a million reasons.”

Read more: 5 scary things that could happen to your body on the keto diet

She also bashed the diet in May 2018 when she told People that keto is not a good idea for the average person.

“Do not go keto,” she said. “Just work out, eat clean, and don’t overeat. I promise you, balanced diet. It’s that simple.”

The problem with the keto diet is its lack of nutrients, according to Jillian Michaels

Michaels’ main issue with the keto diet is that it deprives your body of essential nutrients.

The keto diet allows foods like bacon and butter that would typically be shunned by dieters.

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The keto diet allows foods like bacon and butter that would typically be shunned by dieters.
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Melia Robinson/Business Insider

Other experts agree with her’ concerns about the diet.

In September 2018, Sara Seidelmann, a cardiologist and nutrition researcher at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, published a study that evaluated the eating patterns of more than 447,000 people. She discovered that banning entire food groups (as dieters do in keto) can help you lose weight in the short term, but could also send you to an early grave.

There are some benefits to following keto, but the diet isn’t sustainable in the long term

The keto diet forces your body to burn fat because there are no longer carbs for it to break down and turn into energy. Additionally, it can help you lose water weight and make insulin levels drop – a perk for people with health conditions associated with high insulin levels, like polycystic ovary syndrome, Type 2 diabetes, and infertility.

Read more: 10 ways the keto diet can affect your skin – for better or for worse

Despite these benefits, keto is not designed to be a permanent way of eating. For the meal plan to have any effect, your diet must be made up of 60% to 80% fat and less than 10% carbs. That’s fairly unsustainable for most people.

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“To make a very long story short: avoid the keto diet,” Michaels said. “Common sense. Balanced diet is key.”
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Hollis Johnson/INSIDER

Additionally, as Michaels told People in May 2018, the keto diet might trick people into thinking they “can eat whatever” and however much food they want.

Michaels encourages people to eat a well-rounded diet

So what should people do if they’re looking to get healthier? Michaels says it’s not that complicated.

“You don’t eat processed sugar, you don’t eat processed grains, and to make a very long story short: avoid the keto diet,” she said. “Common sense. Balanced diet is key.”

Leah Rocketto contributed to an earlier version of this story.

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