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Married Folks, This Is What Your Sex Life Needs This Year

2021 could be when you have some of your best sex yet, y'all.

Marriage

I ain't gonna lie. Whenever I hear a married person say that sex isn't that big of a deal in a relationship, I immediately think, "So, what's up with your sex life?" For one thing, the Bible says it's a big deal (Genesis 2:24-25, Proverbs 5, Hebrews 13:4, I Corinthians 6:16-20—Matthew). It should be one of the main things that separates the kind of relationship you have with your spouse from the one you have with other people. Plus, there are way too many benefits that come from doing it (including it de-stresses you; makes you feel closer to your partner; boosts your immunity; lessens any body aches and pains you may have; lowers your blood pressure, and increases your longevity, for starters). And that's just some of the reasons why sex actually is something that should be a top priority in any marital union (that is physically capable).

We're at the top of a new year, so I figured that now would be as good of a time as any to share some of the things that husbands and wives should focus on, specifically, as it relates to their sex lives. Because while sex shouldn't be seen as the "cake" of a marriage, it should definitely be an ingredient that makes the cake good—I also think it's the icing too, chile.

1. More Prayer and/or Meditation Time Together

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If you grew up in a religious household, you probably prayed, simply because that's something that you were taught to do. But did you know that there are proven health benefits that come from doing it? Praying can decrease your stress levels, put you into a better mood, make you feel more positive about life and even help you to communicate better with those around you (because once you talk it out with God, you can oftentimes gain a greater perspective with others). You know, there's a Scripture in the Bible that basically says that where two or more are joined, God is in the midst of them (Matthew 18:20). So, when you stop and ponder what prayer can do for you alone, why wouldn't you want to join into this activity with your spouse?

As far as meditation goes, it's also a practice that relieves stress and anxiety, increases your attention span, helps to make you kinder and more sympathetic towards others, helps to control pain levels and can improve your quality of sleep as well. So, if you do a form of couple's meditation, not only can it serve as a way to get more quality time in but if you it's orgasmic meditation, it can do wonders for your libido and sexual satisfaction too. If you've never heard of orgasmic meditation before, check out "What Exactly Is 'Orgasmic Meditation'?". If you want a little proof that prayer before sex goes hand in hand, check out "Ashley Graham & Her Husband Say Prayer Is The Ultimate Form Of Foreplay". Amen? Amen.

2. Sex Dates

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When you're single, a big part of the reason why you go on dates is to get to know the other person better and, if you're interested in getting married, deciding if someone is a good fit for your life. After you're married, dating is about getting off of the roller coaster called life so that you and your partner can really focus on nothing but one another.

That's why I'm such a big fan of sex dates. They are dates that are super romantic and yes, have a sex theme/focus to them. While I once read that more than a date per month can turn out to be too stressful and/or expensive for married folks, who said that dates always had to be over the top? You can always plan dates at home (check out "10 Romantic Dates You Can Go On (In Your Own Home)")—and if they're sex dates, all you need is a little horniness and creativity to make at least a couple of nights a month, super unforgettable (check out "When's The Last Time You And Your Man Had A 'Sex Date'?"). How about opening up a bottle of wine this week so that you and your man can put some sex dates on your schedule. Who knows what the chat alone might lead to?

3. Bedding Upgrade(s)

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While I hope that your sex life includes spontaneity (which would include getting out of your bed from time to time), since the bedroom is the most common (and oftentimes comfortable) place to get it in, make sure that you upgrade your bedding this year. For instance, when it comes to looking for sheets that will get the job done, they need to be durable (a good set should least you between 2-3 years), comfortable, able to "breathe" (so that you're not literally burning up, in the worst way possible) and easy to clean.

In a word, organic cotton. As for thread count (if you're into that sort of thing), a 400 count will feel amazing. As far as color, believe it or not, white remains the popular choice because it gives the feeling of being crisp and clean (which is why hotels use them). If you're like me and you prefer darker hues overall, there's certainly nothing wrong with that. Just remember that the darker the sheets, the easier it will be for bodily fluids to show.

4. Midday Quickies

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Speaking of being spontaneous, really do your best to make 2021 the year of the quickie. Not that long passionate sex isn't the total bomb (oh, it most certainly is); it's just that there's something about hitting your partner up in the middle of the day to ask if they've got a few minutes that conveys how much you still desire them—and who doesn't want to be lusted in the absolute best way possible? I don't care if you both work from home or not, make it happen. If you do happen to be home, it only takes a man about six minutes to climax and be honest, it probably takes you longer to get a glass of juice and drink it (am I wrong?). If one of you works from an office, I'm pretty sure there's a lunch break, right (if not, that's illegal, so it's time to get a new job this year too)? Schedule a quickie in, at least once a month. It will help to relieve tension and stress, will put you in a much better mood, can actually make you more productive when you return back to work and, it can help to keep the spice alive in your relationship. All good enough reasons to strongly consider having quickies more often than you probably already do.

5. A Sex Library

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The main reason why we read is to gain more knowledge and insight on different topics, right? That said, it's kind of crazy that a lot of married couples don't have more books that directly deal with the topic of sex in their house. If I were to recommend one right off the top of my head, it would be Sacred Sex: A Spiritual Celebration of Oneness in Marriage (Tim Alan Gardner). Yet whether it's a sex book or maybe even a collection of sex-themed podcasts, you can create your own book or podcast club for two by choosing something to read or listen to each month (or every other month) and then having a dinner when you both discuss your takeaways from what you processed. It's just one more way to engage in quality time while also strengthening your sexual relationship.

6. Sex-Shifting Discussions

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The reason why I've written articles for the site like "How Your Man Can Adjust To Your 'Sexual Growth Spurts'", "8 'Kinds of Sex' All Married Couples Should Put Into Rotation" and "9 Sex-Related Questions You & Your Partner Should Ask Each Other. Tonight." is because I deal with way too many couples to not get that one of the greater challenges that happens in a marriage is couples outgrowing one another while still being in love with each other. And sometimes, this happens in their bedroom. As it specifically relates to relationships, one of my favorite quotes is "people change and don't tell each other". Before long, you look up, realize you're strangers and wonder if you should get a divorce.

When you stood before your spouse and vowed (vows are promises, y'all) to be with them "for better or for worse", sometimes the "worse" is being patient throughout each other's evolutions. You won't know where each other are, sexually, without talking things through. Being more mindful of this in 2021 could save your sex life and ultimately, your marriage as well.

7. Monthly Sex Goals

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If your only sex goals are to give your hubby enough to keep his mouth shut while hopefully having at least a few orgasms from time to time in the process, your bar is super duper low. Personally, I know married couples who have some really amazing-to-the-point-of-being-envious sex lives (check out "10 Married Couples Share The Keys To Their Totally Off-The-Chain Sex Life", "How To Have Mind-Blowing Multiple Orgasms. Tonight, Chile." and "What Is A Super Orgasm & How Can I Have One?"). One thing all of them say is a key to that is being intentional about having great sex.

A part of what can make this a reality for you is to set goals—ones like be more creative in February, buy some more sex toys in March and fulfill a couple of fantasies in April. While putting down some sex goals might initially seem like nothing other than one more thing for your to-do list, actually, if you break a few plans down, it can take some of the pressure off when it comes to taking your sex life to another level by making sure that both of you are fully satisfied.

8. Your Own “Position of the Month” Club

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I once read that there are only six basic sex positions; that everything is some variation of those. The six include missionary, cowgirl, reverse cowgirl, doggy style, spooning and standing up. While there may be a lot of truth to that, there are books that claim there are at least 100 different twists to those positions to choose from and also articles that profess that there are close to 50. There are only 12 months in the year, so why not you and your husbands get a book and/or check out an article and select at least 12 positions that you've never tried before and add them to your monthly sex goals. It can be fun to try some new ones out, it can help to keep you and yours from getting into a sex rut and it can definitely help you both to discover new and exciting ways to get each other off.

9. Going to Bed at the Same Time

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Did you know that as much as 75 percent of married couples don't go to bed at the same time? For some, it's because they have opposite work schedules (which is totally understandable). Others don't because if their spouse goes to be earlier than they do, that gives them a few precious moments alone. I get that too. But if you and yours aren't doing so "just because", you might wanna rethink that in the new year. Putting forth the conscious effort to turn in together, at least three times a week, gives the two of you the opportunity to engage in pillow talk, to cuddle and perhaps, well…who knows what that could lead to?

Another interesting article that I read said that it's right around the three-and-a-half year mark that husbands and wives start to take each other for granted; this includes not sleeping together (in the literal sense). It's hard to stay anywhere where you're not appreciated, no matter how sincere you were when you took your vows. So again, turning in together is something that should be made a top priority in 2021. It could help to prevent a sexless marriage or worse—a divorce up the road.

10. A Wedding Night Do-Over

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As I said in the intro, from a spiritual perspective, sex is important. The Good Book says that it is a physical act that makes two people one (Genesis 2:24-25, I Corinthians 6:16-20—Message). From a legal angle, you're not even considered to be "all the way married" until you actually consummate. Yet guess how many couples (on average) DON'T have sex on their wedding night? A whopping 52 percent. Amazing how the color of napkins at the reception can be prioritized but coitus, for whatever the reason, for so many, isn't.

If you happen to be someone who didn't have sex on your wedding night or, you did but it honestly wasn't as great as you thought it was going to be, the beautiful thing about the present is, while you can't change the past, you can create a bit of a do-over. Get together and plan to have a wedding night do-over. Even if you can't get to the exact location where you spent your first night together, you can recreate the atmosphere with a few decorations and some sexy lingerie. A lot of couples feel much closer after taking a walk down memory lane. By wanting to add more to this particular memory, it can be very sweet, very thoughtful and hot AF too (by the way, even if your wedding night was fab-u-lous, you can still get in on this). Here's to a new year of some of the best sex possible, married folks. ENJOY!

Join our xoTribe, an exclusive community dedicated to YOU and your stories and all things xoNecole. Be a part of a growing community of women from all over the world who come together to uplift, inspire, and inform each other on all things related to the glow up.

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ACLU By ACLUSponsored

Over the past four years, we grew accustomed to a regular barrage of blatant, segregationist-style racism from the White House. Donald Trump tweeted that “the Squad," four Democratic Congresswomen who are Black, Latinx, and South Asian, should “go back" to the “corrupt" countries they came from; that same year, he called Elizabeth Warren “Pocahontas," mocking her belief that she might be descended from Native American ancestors.

But as outrageous as the racist comments Trump regularly spewed were, the racially unjust governmental actions his administration took and, in the case of COVID-19, didn't take, impacted millions more — especially Black and Brown people.

To begin to heal and move toward real racial justice, we must address not only the harms of the past four years, but also the harms tracing back to this country's origins. Racism has played an active role in the creation of our systems of education, health care, ownership, and employment, and virtually every other facet of life since this nation's founding.

Our history has shown us that it's not enough to take racist policies off the books if we are going to achieve true justice. Those past policies have structured our society and created deeply-rooted patterns and practices that can only be disrupted and reformed with new policies of similar strength and efficacy. In short, a systemic problem requires a systemic solution. To combat systemic racism, we must pursue systemic equality.

What is Systemic Racism?

A system is a collection of elements that are organized for a common purpose. Racism in America is a system that combines economic, political, and social components. That system specifically disempowers and disenfranchises Black people, while maintaining and expanding implicit and explicit advantages for white people, leading to better opportunities in jobs, education, and housing, and discrimination in the criminal legal system. For example, the country's voting systems empower white voters at the expense of voters of color, resulting in an unequal system of governance in which those communities have little voice and representation, even in policies that directly impact them.

Systemic Equality is a Systemic Solution

In the years ahead, the ACLU will pursue administrative and legislative campaigns targeting the Biden-Harris administration and Congress. We will leverage legal advocacy to dismantle systemic barriers, and will work with our affiliates to change policies nearer to the communities most harmed by these legacies. The goal is to build a nation where every person can achieve their highest potential, unhampered by structural and institutional racism.

To begin, in 2021, we believe the Biden administration and Congress should take the following crucial steps to advance systemic equality:

Voting Rights

The administration must issue an executive order creating a Justice Department lead staff position on voting rights violations in every U.S. Attorney office. We are seeing a flood of unlawful restrictions on voting across the country, and at every level of state and local government. This nationwide problem requires nationwide investigatory and enforcement resources. Even if it requires new training and approval protocols, a new voting rights enforcement program with the participation of all 93 U.S. Attorney offices is the best way to help ensure nationwide enforcement of voting rights laws.

These assistant U.S. attorneys should begin by ensuring that every American in the custody of the Bureau of Prisons who is eligible to vote can vote, and monitor the Census and redistricting process to fight the dilution of voting power in communities of color.

We are also calling on Congress to pass the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act to finally create a fair and equal national voting system, the cause for which John Lewis devoted his life.

Student Debt

Black borrowers pay more than other students for the same degrees, and graduate with an average of $7,400 more in debt than their white peers. In the years following graduation, the debt gap more than triples. Nearly half of Black borrowers will default within 12 years. In other words, for Black Americans, the American dream costs more. Last week, Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Elizabeth Warren, along with House Reps. Ayanna Pressley, Maxine Waters, and others, called on President Biden to cancel up to $50,000 in federal student loan debt per borrower.

We couldn't agree more. By forgiving $50,000 of student debt, President Biden can unleash pent up economic potential in Black communities, while relieving them of a burden that forestalls so many hopes and dreams. Black women in particular will benefit from this executive action, as they are proportionately the most indebted group of all Americans.

Postal Banking

In both low and high income majority-Black communities, traditional bank branches are 50 percent more likely to close than in white communities. The result is that nearly 50 percent of Black Americans are unbanked or underbanked, and many pay more than $2,000 in fees associated with subprime financial institutions. Over their lifetime, those fees can add up to as much as two years of annual income for the average Black family.

The U.S. Postal Service can and should meet this crisis by providing competitive, low-cost financial services to help advance economic equality. We call on President Biden to appoint new members to the Postal Board of Governors so that the Post Office can do the work of providing essential services to every American.

Fair Housing

Across the country, millions of people are living in communities of concentrated poverty, including 26 percent of all Black children. The Biden administration should again implement the 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule, which required localities that receive federal funds for housing to investigate and address barriers to fair housing and patterns or practices that promote bias. In 1980, the average Black person lived in a neighborhood that was 62 percent Black and 31 percent white. By 2010, the average Black person's neighborhood was 48 percent Black and 34 percent white. Reinstating the Obama-era Fair Housing Rule will combat this ongoing segregation and set us on a path to true integration.

Congress should also pass the American Housing and Economic Mobility Act, or a similar measure, to finally redress the legacy of redlining and break down the walls of segregation once and for all.

Broadband Access

To realize broadband's potential to benefit our democracy and connect us to one another, all people in the United States must have equal access and broadband must be made affordable for the most vulnerable. Yet today, 15 percent of American households with school-age children do not have subscriptions to any form of broadband, including one-quarter of Black households (an additional 23 percent of African Americans are “smartphone-only" internet users, meaning they lack traditional home broadband service but do own a smartphone, which is insufficient to attend class, do homework, or apply for a job). The Biden administration, Federal Communications Commission, and Congress must develop and implement plans to increase funding for broadband to expand universal access.

Enhanced, Refundable Child Tax Credits

The United States faces a crisis of child poverty. Seventeen percent of all American children are impoverished — a rate higher than not just peer nations like Canada and the U.K., but Mexico and Russia as well. Currently, more than 50 percent of Black and Latinx children in the U.S. do not qualify for the full benefit, compared to 23 percent of white children, and nearly one in five Black children do not receive any credit at all.

To combat this crisis, President Biden and Congress should enhance the child tax credit and make it fully refundable. If we enhance the child tax credit, we can cut child poverty by 40 percent and instantly lift over 50 percent of Black children out of poverty.

Reparations

We cannot repair harms that we have not fully diagnosed. We must commit to a thorough examination of the impact of the legacy of chattel slavery on racial inequality today. In 2021, Congress must pass H.R. 40, which would establish a commission to study reparations and make recommendations for Black Americans.

The Long View

For the past century, the ACLU has fought for racial justice in legislatures and in courts, including through several landmark Supreme Court cases. While the court has not always ruled in favor of racial justice, incremental wins throughout history have helped to chip away at different forms of racism such as school segregation ( Brown v. Board), racial bias in the criminal legal system (Powell v. Alabama, i.e. the Scottsboro Boys), and marriage inequality (Loving v. Virginia). While these landmark victories initiated necessary reforms, they were only a starting point.

Systemic racism continues to pervade the lives of Black people through voter suppression, lack of financial services, housing discrimination, and other areas. More than anything, doing this work has taught the ACLU that we must fight on every front in order to overcome our country's legacies of racism. That is what our Systemic Equality agenda is all about.

In the weeks ahead, we will both expand on our views of why these campaigns are crucial to systemic equality and signal the path this country must take. We will also dive into our work to build organizing, advocacy, and legal power in the South — a region with a unique history of racial oppression and violence alongside a rich history of antiracist organizing and advocacy. We are committed to four principles throughout this campaign: reconciliation, access, prosperity, and empowerment. We hope that our actions can meet our ambition to, as Dr. King said, lead this nation to live out the true meaning of its creed.

What you can do:
Take the pledge: Systemic Equality Agenda
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Every day, Black women elevate the world. We are trendsetters and visionaries; the shapeshifters that lead by virtue of presence alone. In a world that sells our identities for consumption, we remind everyone that joy is our birthright and the grace we carry will always be authentic. Our existence is not a social experiment but a crafted emblem of perfection. And for that, we deserve everything good this world has to offer.

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Sometimes, when things are a little "off" when it comes to our health, there are simple steps that we can take to get ourselves back on track. For instance, did you know that around 92 percent of Americans are considered to be vitamin or mineral deficient in some way? And since there are core nutrients that all of us need in order to function properly, it's important that we're aware of what certain deficiencies are directly linked to.

Today, that is the focus. Here are eight health-related issues that, oftentimes, if we'd just add more of a vitamin or mineral into our system, we will start to feel better in no time (technically a couple of weeks but you get my drift).

1. Muscle Cramping

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Something that happens randomly to me sometimes is I'll have a muscle that cramps up, seemingly out of nowhere. Then I'll snack on a banana and start to feel better. You know why? It's because bananas are high in potassium and potassium is a nutrient that our system needs in order for our muscles to easily contract. If you sweat a lot or don't have enough fluids in your system, you can become a high candidate for being potassium deficient. As far as how much your body requires on a daily basis, it's somewhere between 3,000-4,000 mg a day. Foods that are a good source of this mineral (that is also an electrolyte) include mushrooms, zucchini, cucumbers, sweet potatoes and lentils.

2. Lip Cracking

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If your PMS is off the chain or you've been catching a lot of colds lately, it could be because you need some more Vitamin B6 in your life. However, a telling sign that this is almost definitely the case is if the corners of your lips are cracking or even if your tongue feels a bit swollen.

The main thing to keep in mind with this point is if you're noticing indications that you could stand to have more Vitamin B6, there's a pretty good chance that your system has gotten close to totally running out. And just how much does your body need of this vitamin on the daily? About 1.3 mg. Up it up to 1.5 mg if you're over the age of 50.

Foods that are loaded with Vitamin B6 are peanuts, poultry, oats, avocados and pistachios.

3. Brittle Nails

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If it seems like no matter how much pampering you do to your nails, they are brittle and breaking, that could be an indication that you are low in iron and/or Vitamin C. The reality is that just our periods alone can make us vulnerable to having lower iron levels. And just how much should you be getting into your system? A lot of healthcare professionals recommend somewhere around 14.8 mg each day. As far as the Vitamin C goes, not only can you have brittle nails when you're not getting enough of it, this is a nutrient that makes it easier for your body to absorb iron too. 75 mg per day of it is recommended (120 mg each day if you're pregnant or are breastfeeding). Foods that are high in iron include beef, dark leafy greens, quinoa, pumpkin seeds and broccoli. Foods that are a good source of Vitamin C include citrus fruits, peppers, potatoes, berries and Brussel sprouts.

4. Allergy Symptoms

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If you've got allergy symptoms that are driving you totally up the wall or you're someone who deals with asthma or eczema, these things can be so much worse for you if you are low in omega-3. Long story short, they're fatty acids that pretty much every part of our body needs from our skin and hair to our reproductive system and our heart. Matter of fact, I actually read once that if you tend to have an excessive amount of earwax, that can also be a heads up that omega-3 is lacking. As far as how much is good for you, 1.1 grams daily is enough. And as far as foods that have omega-3 in them, those would be walnuts, spinach, salmon, chia seeds and eggs.

5. Weakness

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Magnesium is both a mineral as well as an electrolyte that helps to regulate muscle and nerve functions and keep your blood sugar in balance. Well, when you don't have enough magnesium in you, it can cause you to experience extreme amounts of fatigue and weakness. A part of the reason why is because magnesium is what helps to keep your potassium levels where they should be. So, when your potassium levels are low, your muscles will not perform with as much strength as they should. Somewhere around 315 mg each day is what your system requires. Foods that are loaded with magnesium include whole grains, pumpkin seeds, halibut, bananas and dark chocolate.

6. Hair Loss

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One of the main things that all of us need in order for our hair to flourish is zinc. It's a mineral that assists with hair tissue growth and repair, fights dandruff and, it also helps your scalp to produce the sebum that it needs for your hair follicles to remain healthy. That's why it makes a lot of sense that if you're low in zinc, you could possibly suffer from some hair loss or, the very least, hair breakage. What can keep your tresses in good condition is if you consume around 8 mg of zinc daily. Foods that are high in it include Greek yogurt, cashews, black beans, sesame seeds and kale.

7. Sleepiness

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OK, if you're out here getting less than six hours a night on a consistent basis, that's probably not an indication that you are lacking a nutrient; what that probably means is you are sleep deprived.

However, if it seems like no matter how much sleep you get at night and/or naps you take during the day, you are still sleepy as all get out, what that could be telling you is that you are low in Vitamin B12. I can personally attest to this because I was sleepy a lot (and I get no less than six hours a night and sometimes a nap) until I started taking a B12 supplement. When you're low in this vitamin, it can trigger sleepiness or even sleeplessness because it plays a significant role in maintaining your energy levels.

It's kinda crazy that a lot of us are Vitamin B12 deficient when most of us only need .002 mg a day of it. Anyway, foods that are a good source of this nutrient include liver, fortified cereals, shellfish, nutritional yeast and milk alternatives (like almond or oat milk).

8. Food Cravings

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Last fall, I wrote an article about signs that you've got a sugar addiction going on (you can check it out here). One indication is if you're constantly wanting to eat sweets all of the time. Well, along these same lines, if you're experiencing food cravings, that too could mean that you've not some nutrient deficiencies happening. Sweets typically mean that you can stand to have more magnesium or tryptophan. Fatty foods mean you need more calcium. Red meat, caffeine or the desire to chew ice means you're low in iron. Salt is oftentimes connected to dehydration or an electrolyte imbalance.

Wanting to eat bread all of the time could also mean that you could use a tryptophan boost (because you are looking for something to make you feel better and bread is a comfort food. Tryptophan helps to produce the feel-good hormone serotonin so that you don't want bread as much). Foods that are high in tryptophan include tuna, cheese, turkey, milk and apples.

While I certainly wasn't able to tackle all of the nutrient deficient-related issues that exist, take this as a bit of an intro cheat sheet. Again, if you are currently experiencing any of these issues, try getting more vitamins and minerals into your system. You might be surprised just how big of an impact...a little bit of tweaking can make.

Join our xoTribe, an exclusive community dedicated to YOU and your stories and all things xoNecole. Be a part of a growing community of women from all over the world who come together to uplift, inspire, and inform each other on all things related to the glow up.

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