Herbs to Boost Your Immune System

Natural remedies for your immune system range from using essential oils to changing your daily habits. Another great way to give your immunity a nice boost is with certain herbs.

Here are some of the top healing herbs that can help you boost your immune system to ward off a cold or flu.

Take Echinacea

This recommendation is probably not that surprising, as echinacea has long since been associated with boosting your immune system and helping to prevent the cold and flu. Echinacea is a type of herb that contains natural antibacterial and antiviral properties. It is these properties that help you to fight viruses and illnesses, as they are able to boost the white blood cell production in your body. These blood cells are needed to help fight infections you come into contact with.

Elderberry

Another herb that can be really healing for your body and help to boost your immune system at the same time is elderberry. Elderberry is a unique herb that is very healing, helping to fight off different types of infections, including the influenza (flu) virus, bacterial infections, and viral infections. There have been numerous studies looking at its effectiveness for your immune system. You can use different parts of this herb, from the flowers to the leaves and even the bark.

Calendula

The next herb to be aware of is called calendula. This is one of those herbs where the name sounds familiar, but people aren’t fully aware of what it is or how it can be beneficial. Calendula is a type of plant with healing flower petals that look similar to marigold flowers. These have been used for many medicinal purposes, as they naturally reduce inflammation, fight bacteria, and contain natural antioxidants. This can help prevent your body from free radical damage, which can also in turn help to improve your immune system.

Green Tea

While not technically an herb, the leaves used in green tea are also amazing for your immunities and helping to avoid the cold and flu. Green tea is also a good source of antioxidants, as well as boosting your immune system to keep away infections and viruses. Try to drink 2-3 cups of green tea a day. The good news here is that green tea has a lot of other health benefits as an added bonus, from aiding in your weight loss efforts, to improving your skin.

Health and happiness,

Shaline

How are you feeling today?

Are you feeling alone? Stressed? Sad?

This is a stressful time for all of us. So, I was thinking of how I can do my part to help others. So, I decided to create a bundle to help you get through the pandemic a little easier. This FREE bundle focuses on self-care and mental health during this time.

Here’s what’s inside the bundle:

– Essential Oils for Emotional Health and Balance
– 12 Healthy Habits to Boost Your Mind, Body, and Spirit
– 5 Happiness Boosting Smoothies
– How to Use Essential Oils
– 21 Day Food and Gratitude Journal
– Eat Your Way to Hormone Health
– Hormone Health Quiz

You could come out of this pandemic with…

  • Ways to balance emotional health using essential oils
  • Ways to alleviate stress and overwhelm instantly and naturally
  • Tools to keep your home free of chemicals and toxins that suppress your hormones and immunity
  • Hormone-loving rituals and resources to support lasting health and vitality
  • The confidence to understand your body and its needs so you can be the best version of yourself.

 

This bundle has the power to radically change your relationship to your hormones and improve your emotional health by changing your relationship to the #1 thing that throws everything out of balance: STRESS.

This pandemic is going to end, but your emotional health and hormones are not. COVID-19 is going to be a memory one day, but how are you setting yourself up for a lifetime of healthy choices and habits to help you thrive?

Stay connected with other women by joining my private Facebook group. Click here and I will email you the bundle.

Love and light,

Shaline

4 Benefits of a Spring Detox

Spring normally brings new hopes, promotes positive vibes, and brings out blooming flowers. So, Spring usually is the best time to embark on a detox plan. In winter we feel too indulged in food and drinks and it seems nearly impossible to do a detox. But there is no such issue in spring as you are full of energy and the weather is also in your favor making the whole detox plan easier on you. You need to keep in mind that detox is not a permanent weight loss plan, it just provides a jump start towards the whole process. You would still have to plan for regular exercise and follow a healthy eating routine. Here are some reasons why you might need a detox and the benefits it will bring for you.

Why Spring Detox?

We are constantly exposed to the toxins in this modern world due to the air pollution as well as the foods we intake. Even our livestock is treated with drugs and the crops are sprayed with pesticides which pose serious threats to our health with their harmful side effects. So, it is a great idea to plan for a spring detox to get rid of all these toxins and provide a fresh start to your body for a stronger immune system and an improved blood circulation. But why spring? Well, spring represents renewal and refresh – it is the perfect season to detox your body and mind and elevate your life.

Woman Spring Flowers

Benefits of Spring Detox

A spring detox has various benefits from an improved immune system to elevated energy as well as better circulation. The list of benefits continues, we can sit here for hours to be honest. But we won’t. Instead I’ve compiled a list of quick benefits a spring detox can have in your life. Check them out!

1.     Weight Loss

If you are planning to lose some weight then the spring detox is the best way to start with. It will provide you with the perfect kick start towards your weight loss goals and help you achieve them at a faster rate. So, start off this spring to get better outcomes with improved energy levels and a quick metabolism.

2.     Elevated Energy

Speaking of energy, yes! Detoxing can increase your energy levels. This helps you to work out twice as hard and longer for better results. The more active you are, the more you move, the more you lose weight and improve your overall health.

3.     Better Digestion

There is clinical evidence that detoxing also helps greatly with the digestion. As the toxicity might lead to various health issues such as bloating, nausea, furred tongue, constipation, gas, indigestion and a toxic liver. However, all these issues can be avoided by indulging in a spring detox.

4.     Improved Immune System

A spring detox is also beneficial in improving the immune system immensely. It helps to avoid colds and the flu, blemishes, cellulite, tiredness, fatigue and puffy eyes by improving the lymphatic system. It also helps to clear the sinuses by vanishing congestion and improving the lung function. It also resolves the urinary tract issues by increasing the urine output. In other words, it improves the immune system and doesn’t let the illnesses take over.

So, go ahead with and try a spring detox and see for yourself how much it benefits your overall health and well-being!

Love and Light,

Shaline

How to Stay Sane during tough times

This was a post that I had written after fashion icon Kate Spade passed away and in light of what we are currently going through, I want to re-post this. I hope you find it helpful.

 

 

With the passing of fashion icon, Kate Spade today, I want to share how depression is a real thing!  And not just depression, post-partum depression is real too.  I experienced postpartum depression after my daughter was born.

 

What is emotional wellness?

Emotional Wellness implies a person’s ability to be aware of and accept their feelings, rather than denying them.  Emotional Wellness is having an optimistic approach to life, and enjoy life despite its occasional disappointments and frustrations.

According to NIH, Emotional wellness is the ability to successfully handle life’s stresses and adapt to change and difficult times.

 

Six Tips for Improving Your Emotional Wellness

  1. Brighten your outlook – It is said that people who are emotionally well have fewer negative emotions and are able to bounce back from life’s difficulties faster. This quality is called resilience. Another sign of emotional wellness is being able to hold onto positive emotions longer and appreciate the good times.
  2. Reduce your stress – Everyone feels stressed from time to time. Stress can give you a rush of energy when it’s needed most. But if stress, chronic stress lasts a long time, those changes become harmful rather than helpful. Learning healthy ways to cope with your stress can also boost your resilience.
  3. Get good quality sleep – To fit in everything you want to do in your day, you often sacrifice sleep. But sleep affects both mental and physical health. It’s vital to your well-being. When you’re tired, you can’t function at your best. Sleep helps you think more clearly, have quicker reflexes and focus better. Take steps to make sure you regularly get a good night’s sleep.
  4. Strengthen social connections – Social connections might help protect health and lengthen life. Scientists are finding that our links to others can have powerful effects on our health—both emotionally and physically. Whether with romantic partners, family, friends, neighbors, or others, social connections can influence our biology and well-being.
  5. Cope with your loss by surrounding yourself with family and friends – When someone you love dies, your world changes. There is no right or wrong way to mourn. Although the death of a loved one can feel overwhelming, most people can make it through the grieving process with the support of family and friends. Learn healthy ways to help you through difficult times.
  6. Be Mindful – The concept of mindfulness is simple. This ancient practice is about being completely aware of what’s happening in the present—of all that’s going on inside and all that’s happening around you. This means not living your life on autopilot. Becoming a more mindful person requires commitment and practice.

 

Tips to help you be more mindful

  1. Take some deep breaths. Breathe in through your nose to a count of 4, hold for 1 second and then exhale through the mouth to a count of 5. Repeat often.
  2. Enjoy a stroll. As you walk, notice your breath and the sights and sounds around you. As thoughts and worries enter your mind, note them but then return to the present.
  3. Practice mindful eating. Be aware of taste, textures, and flavors in each bite, and listen to your body when you are hungry and full. Chew longer and enjoy your food.
  4. Find mindfulness resources in your local community, like yoga and meditation classes, mindfulness-based stress reduction programs, and books.

 

Tips to help you develop a more positive mindset

  1. Remember your good deeds. Give yourself credit for the good things you do for others each day.
  2. Forgive yourself.  Everyone makes mistakes. Learn from what went wrong, don’t dwell on it, and move on.  Think of the song from the movie, Frozen: “Let It Go!”
  3. Spend more time with your friends. Surround yourself with positive, healthy people.
  4. Examine your beliefs about the meaning and purpose of your life. Think about how to guide your life by those beliefs that are important to you.
  5. Develop healthy physical habits by eating healthy, get regular physical activity, and regular sleep. These habits can improve your physical and mental health.
  6. Journal and express gratitude each morning before you begin your day.

Tip to help your manage stress

  1. Get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep.
  2. Exercise regularly. 30 minutes a day of walking can boost mood and reduce stress.
  3. Build a social support network.
  4. Set priorities. Decide what you must get done first and what can wait. Learn to say “no” to new tasks if they’re putting you into overload.
  5. Think positive. Make note (journal) what you’ve accomplished at the end of the day.
  6. Try relaxation methods such as mindfulness, meditation, yoga, qi gong, or tai chi.
  7. Last but not least, seek help. Talk to a mental health professional if you feel unable to cope, have suicidal thoughts, or use drugs or alcohol to cope.

 

Tips to help you get better quality sleep

  • It is a good idea to go to bed the same time each night and get up the same time each morning.
  • Sleep in a dark, quiet, comfortable environment.
  • Exercise daily.  It is not a good idea to exercise right before bedtime.
  • Limit the use of your cell phone, tablet, etc at least an hour before bed.
  • Relax before bedtime. A warm bath or reading may help.
  • Avoid alcohol and caffeine late in the day.
  • Avoid nicotine.

 

Tips to help you build a healthy support system

  • Build strong relationships with your kids.
  • Get active and share good habits with family and friends.
  • If you’re a family caregiver, ask for help from others.
  • Join a group doing your favorite hobby. Examples: a book club, hiking, running, craft like rubber stamping/scrapbooking.
  • Take a class to learn something new. This is also good for your brain.
  • Volunteer for things you care about in your community, like gardening/tree planting, school, library, or church.
  • Visit different places and meet new people.

 

Postpartum Depression

First, postpartum depression is a mood disorder that can affect women after childbirth. Mothers with postpartum depression experience feelings of extreme sadness, anxiety, and exhaustion that may make it difficult for them to complete daily care activities for themselves or for others such as her family.

Examples: Serena Williams and Chrissy Teigen had their struggles with postpartum depression

After childbirth, the levels of hormones, estrogen and progesterone, in a woman’s body quickly drop. This leads to chemical changes in her brain that may trigger mood swings. In addition, many mothers are unable to get the rest they need to fully recover from giving birth. Constant sleep deprivation can lead to physical discomfort and exhaustion, which can contribute to postpartum depression.

Difference between the Baby Blues and Postpartum Depression

Baby Blues is not as severe as postpartum depression and usually will go away after a few weeks. However, postpartum depression lasts longer. A mother usually has the “baby blues” after having a baby. Since babies require a lot of care, mothers worry a lot and get tired from caring for her newborn.

 

Sources:

 

https://www.nih.gov/health-information/emotional-wellness-toolkit

https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/postpartum-depression-facts/index.shtml

2 Ways to Loving Your Inner Self

Are you so stressed and being a busy mom that you don’t take time to slow down and love yourself?  And do you want to make your life a happier and more peaceful one?

These two ways will help you achieve the highest level of love with your inner self and become a more confident you by using some simple techniques.

Meditation is vital for loving yourself (self-love) because it gives you quiet, alone time. Here are five meditation techniques to help you meditate and the Power of Eating Food with a high (positive) vibrational frequency.

1. Why Meditation is Vital for loving your inner self

Meditation has a positive effect on our attitude towards life because it makes us take some time to quiet our mind. This helps to soothe our nerves and make us feel stress-free. Removing the negativity of stress helps you better perceive positive vibes from others and feel happy about your life and relationships. Yoga is also effective in clearing your mind and reducing the tension of stress.

Meditation gives your immune system a boost and your mind a chance to reflect on the positive things in your life. There is a variety of meditating techniques, such as concentration meditation, which is used to focus on a single point, and mindful meditation, which is used to control wandering thoughts. Meditation can help lower your blood pressure, improve blood circulation, lower your heart rate, reduce perspiration, slow your respiratory rate, reduce anxiety and relieve stress. Meditation can also help you develop self-love in the following ways:

Meditation addresses the stress

In today’s world, stress has become our biggest enemy; it promotes negative feelings and vibes about ourselves and contributes to long-term exhaustion and mental fatigue. Meditation helps to ward off such negative thoughts by promoting a good sleep cycle, better nervous system health, and improved digestion. Meditation is great for relieving stress from your life and helping you discover and love yourself.

Mindful awareness helps us to steer clear of self-destructive habits

A meditation practice not only helps guide you into better eating habits and exercise, but it also helps you steer clear of other self-destructive habits. These can be anything from avoiding junk food to sleeping better and fending off negative thoughts. Meditation provides the mindful awareness that is required to avoid negative behaviors and maintain positive ones.

Meditation improves our self-awareness

Meditation increases your self-awareness; as a result, be become more in tune with what you should eat and how you should exercise to keep your body healthy and promote positive vibes. Practicing good self-care ultimately helps you love yourself.

Here are a few simple ways to help you start meditating:

  • Sit back or lie as comfortably as possible.
  • Close your eyes.
  • Breathe naturally; don’t try to control it.
  • Now breathe by focusing your attention on it and notice how your body moves with each inhalation and exhalation. Observe how your throat, chest, and abdomen move during breathing.
  • Just notice the movement without controlling the breathing process. Start doing this for 2 to 3 minutes and then increase the duration.

Including meditation in a regular routine will also help boost your energy levels.

 

How to start meditating with 5 simple techniques including moving meditation

Here are five basic meditating techniques. Try them all, and decide which one best fits you and your lifestyle.

1.   Moving Meditation

If you don’t like sitting for long periods of time, walking meditation might be for you.  You focus on your body while moving.  While your arms and legs swing, feel them lifting and extending. Feel your feet as they rise and touch the ground. Keep your mind focused on the movements of your body instead of on other things.

2.   Breathing Meditation

Get in a comfortable position. Close your eyes and inhale slowly through your nose. Hold the breath for a few seconds, then exhale it slowly through your mouth.

3.   Mindfulness Meditation

To practice this one, your mind needs to be present in the right moment. Start by focusing on your breath and continue by feeling other sensations throughout your body.

4.   Mantra Meditation

This technique is conducted by repeating a sacred word or phrase, such as “aum.”  To bring your mind to a state of focused tranquility. You can repeat the mantra aloud or repeat it silently.

5.   Empty Mind Meditation

This meditation technique allows you to be fully aware without a specific focus. Simply sit in a peaceful place in a good posture and let your thoughts float without passing any judgment on them or lingering on any of them.

These meditation techniques are simple and effective enough to start your meditation practice or enhance your existing one.

2. The Power of Eating Food with High Vibrational Frequency

They say we are what we eat, and rightly so: food is a basic necessity and may even be one of the reasons behind making our lives great and helping us feel good about ourselves. Because we are made up of and use energy, our bodies require us to consume energy in the form of food, air, and water for sustenance and good health. To promote self-love, our inner selves require thoughts made up of positive vibrational energy. We can raise our energy vibrations by eating highly nutritious, energetic foods and eliminating unhealthy thoughts, foods, and relationships. Eating high-energy foods helps us reach a higher consciousness and better connect with our higher source. Fresh and organic foods are high in nutritional value and offer great vibrational energy benefits. Fast food and junk food, on the other hand, are of low vibrational quality and don’t add any valuable nutrients to the body. Eating high amounts of these foods can result in poor health.

To lift the energetic vibration of your food, practice gratitude and avoid negative thoughts while preparing your food. Here is a short list of high-energy foods to increase, and low-energy foods to avoid:

High-energy foods

• Fresh, certified organic fruits and vegetables
• Natural supplements, like spirulina
• Pure or filtered water — reverse osmosis or freshly collected spring water are the best choices
• Healthy oils, like olive oil and coconut oil
• Nuts and seeds
• Fermented foods
• Herbal teas
• Herbs and spices
• Raw chocolate
• Raw honey and maple syrup
• Legumes
• Grains such as buckwheat, brown rice, amaranth, and spelt

Low-Energy foods

• Genetically modified (GMO) foods, and conventional foods that have been treated with chemicals and pesticides
• White rice and flours
• Sugars and artificial sweeteners
• Coffee
• Sodas
• Alcohol
• Meat, fish, and poultry
• Processed, packaged, canned and fast foods
• Unhealthy oils, like canola, cottonseed, margarine, and vegetable oils
• Frozen foods
• Pasteurized cow’s milk, yogurt, and cheese
• Cooked foods, deep-fried foods, and microwave foods

Click here for your free downloadable guidebook.

4 Ways to Love Your Inner Self Guidebook 2

 

 

Are You a Stressed Busy Mom?!

Hi there.

I hope you are staying well.

I just created a new Facebook group,  Healthy Thriving Moms for stressed busy moms. This group was created to gather moms and is a loving community for powerful moms to come together for support and celebrate our awesomeness.

Our Focus is on: Nutrition, Clean Beauty, Self-Love, Self-Care, Positive Mindset, Mom Empowerment, Happiness, Health & Well-Being. We are here for Personal Growth and Building Meaningful Heart-to-Heart Connection.

The purpose of this group is to provide the women in our community support and keep you updated about our upcoming events both locally in the Menifee/Murrieta/Temecula and North San Diego areas and Virtually Online no matter where you live.

We will share news and opportunities as well as give ongoing support to keep you Inspired and Empowered to Live Your Best Life on a Regular Basis. We Welcome You with Open Loving Arms. 💕

Life is a Beautiful Journey when shared with Like-Minded Souls on the same path. You don’t have to go it alone. Together, we are stronger! 💞

Feel free to invite other moms you know that can benefit from positivity, loving support and encouragement to join us.

Visit our Healthy Thriving Moms’ website!

Love and light,

Shaline

Affirmations that will change your life

Here is a passage of affirmations by Marianne Williamson that really touched me. Take a moment to read and reflect on it and bring it into your heart.

“There can be no darkness where I provide the light.

Light is to darkness what love is to fear; in the absence of one, the other disappears. All the darkness in my life – the fears, neuroses, dysfunctions, and diseases – are not so much a thing as the absence of a thing. They represent not the presence of a problem but rather the absence of the Answer. And the Answer is love.

All fearful manifestations disappear in the presence of love.

Today I make a stand against darkness, knowing that love will save me from the painful delusions that occupy my mind.

As I myself surrender my mind to love, and dedicate myself to the Light of True Being, then love will cast out my fears and light will cast out all darkness.”

6 Ways to Support Immune Health: Does CBD Help?

Amid what is happening around the world with the Coronavirus, I wanted to re-share this blog post with you.

 

This is a stress time due to the uncertainty.  This excess stress can weaken your immune system, thus making us more susceptible to falling ill.  Fortunately, there are several preventative measures you can take to make sure you’re doing the best to maintain overall well-being.

 

CBD Health Benefits for the Immune System

The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is responsible for regulating most functions in the human body. One of these functions is our immune response. Cannabinoids (like CBD) interact with our ECS. When our ECS is active, it helps to aid our body in bringing itself back into balance (homeostasis). When our body is in balance, it is more likely to make sure proper immune function and regulation is occurring.

The immune system is extremely complex, and there is still much to be learned about it. We are excited to see more research being conducted about the relationship between CBD and the immune system. For now, though, it appears the ECS and CBD are very much involved in the maintenance of a properly functioning immune response.

Due to the complex nature of the immune system, there are many misconceptions when it comes to staying well as the weather changes. Let’s bust some of those myths before jumping into the best preventative measures you can take to keep sickness at bay.

 

Busting Myths About Immune Health

Many of us have heard the phrase ‘put a coat on or you’ll catch a cold!’ Although we may associate sickness with colder weather, research suggests our increase in sickness during the winter months is most likely due to spending more time indoors (to avoid the cold) and spending more time in close contact with others who may pass a virus to us.

Having busted this common misconception, let’s dive into some effective, preventative measures to keep you healthy.

 

  1. Manage stress

woman stress

Stress is the single most important factor you can manage to avoid weakening your immune system. Stress wears down our immune system rapidly, making us more likely to fall ill when we are exposed to germs.

It’s not uncommon to be stressed out, it can be a stressful time! You can help mitigate this stress by meditating, indulging in regular exercise, and practicing mindfulness. There are many various ways to manage stress, so whichever option works best based on you and your schedule is great! We’re not so concerned HOW you manage stress, we’re merely advocating for you to do so!

 

  1. Prioritize sleep (or make it better!)

woman sleeping

Our bodies repair themselves while we sleep – which is why it is so crucial to make sure we’re getting enough quality sleep. When we skip out on our regular amounts of sleep, the number of infection-fighting antibodies and cells in our bodies are reduced.

Supplementing with a CBD supplement before bed will help you relax and therefore get into a deeper sleep. There are several things you can do to ensure you get a better night’s rest, and it is in your immune system’s best interest to get quality sleep when you can.

 

  1. Support your body with herbs and supplements

herbs

It is recommended using a supplement as just that – a supplement to an already healthy lifestyle! Things, like sleeping well and managing stress, will always make a more significant impact than a supplement, but we listed a few supplements that can help boost your immunity nonetheless.

CBD

As mentioned before, CBD can be a powerful tool to help maintain balance in your body. Including CBD into your daily routine will be all-around beneficial – and will especially aid in activating your ECS and keeping you balanced this winter.

Medicinal Mushrooms (Chaga, Reishi)

Mushrooms are widely used in Eastern medicine and have been known to act as a powerful immune sidekick. Source high-quality reishi mushroom powder and try mixing it into your morning latte.

Echinacea

Echinacea has been shown to increase the number of white blood cells, which helps to fight off colds or infection. Try an herbal echinacea spray or a bag of tea that contains dried echinacea.

 

  1. Load up on healthy foods

fruit smoothie bowl

Vitamins can help an infection from even happening in the first place. If you are eating a healthy, balanced diet, then you should not need to take a supplement – the vitamins are already in the food we eat! We know there are plenty of treats around this time of year and we are not suggesting you don’t indulge (because we sure do!), but that doesn’t mean you have to completely ditch your healthy lifestyle altogether. You can still eat healthy meals in between your holiday get-togethers, and squeeze in workouts when able.

Vitamin D

Due to the decreased amount of sunshine, vitamin D is an important supplement to add to your regime. You can either purchase a high-quality vitamin D supplement or look for fortified milk and cereals.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is probably the most well-known immune booster. You can get your dose of vitamin C by eating citrus (like oranges, grapefruit, or lemon), bell peppers, kale, and broccoli.

Vitamin E

Vitamin E is an antioxidant that will help the body fight infection. You can get vitamin E from nuts (like sunflower seeds, almonds, peanuts, or hazelnuts), avocados, mango, and kiwi!

Zinc

Zinc is a mineral that keeps the immune system strong and aids in healing. You can find zinc in legumes, nuts, seeds, and soy products.

Prioritize eating a salad packed with vegetables, drinking a green juice, or even making your own vegetable broth before your next holiday get-together. Your immune system will thank you!

 

  1. Stay hydrated

water lime

Making sure you stay hydrated aids your body in eliminating toxins and other unwanted bacteria. Soda, alcohol, and sugary drinks are not substitutes for water; if you need to, try herbal teas or add flavorings to your water to make sure you are getting enough.

As a guideline, to be properly hydrated, our bodies need ½ of our body weight in ounces per day to stay hydrated. If you weigh 150lbs then 75oz of water daily is what you need. We know drinking that much water isn’t always possible, but 35oz of water daily is better than zero. Do your best!

 

  1. Wash your hands

 

person washing hands

One of the easiest tips of all, but we had to mention it! Thoroughly wash your hands, especially before handling food or after being in an environment with a lot of germs. (like grocery stores, doctor’s offices, hospitals, etc.)

These tips can help you avoid sickness anytime. This article is written to  show you how easy it is to integrate a wellness lifestyle into your already busy schedule. Wellness is a choice that everyone can make!

Stay well!

Shaline

 

Reference: MadebyHemp

Free Challenge: 30 Days to a New You

30 Days to a New You!

We all want to be healthy and feel more amazing, right? And Spring is the perfect time to reset.

The truth is, it can be confusing to know where to begin.   When we feel overwhelmed, it’s easy to give up even before we’ve started.  I know how it goes because I’ve been there before too!

 The top 3 goals I hear most often from my clients are:

  • feeling better
  • losing weight
  • having more energy

If you felt better, had more energy and reached your ideal weight, you would probably feel like a new version of yourself, right?

I have put this series together to address all 3 of these issues with super simple tips you can implement right away.

During the next 30 days, you’ll receive easy-to-implement strategies to help you look better, feel better and help you reach your health and fitness goals.

Check out my Facebook group, 2020 Vision for Clean Living.

Sign up below to register for the challenge. The Challenge begins Wednesday, March 18.

 

 

 

What is Mindful Eating?

Happy March!

 

Quote of the Month

I have made it a rule to give every tooth of mine a chance, and when I eat, to chew every bite thirty-two times. To this rule I owe much of my success in life.  – William Gladstone

 

Mindful Eating

Mindful eating is taking the time to slow down and chew more. This one simple strategy can make a big difference.

When it comes to increased health, it’s not just what we eat but how we eat. Digestion actually begins in the mouth, where contact with your teeth and digestive enzymes in your saliva break down food. But these days most of us rush through the whole eating experience, barely acknowledging what we’re putting in our mouths. We eat while distracted—working, reading, talking and watching television—and swallow our food practically whole. On average we chew each bite only eight times. It’s no wonder that many people have digestive problems.

There are many great reasons to slow down and chew your food.

  • Saliva breaks down food into simple sugars, creating a sweet taste. The more you chew, the sweeter your food becomes, so you won’t crave those after-meal sweets.
  • Chewing your food adequately allows your body to absorb and assimilate more nutrients and improves digestion.
  • More chewing produces more endorphins, the brain chemicals responsible for creating good feelings.
  • It’s also helpful for weight loss, because when you are chewing well, you are more apt to notice when we are full.
  • In fact, chewing can promote increased circulation, enhanced immunity, increased energy and endurance, as well as improve skin health and stabilize weight.
  • Taking time with a meal, beginning with chewing, allows for enjoyment of the whole experience of eating: the smells, flavors and textures. It helps you to give thanks, to show appreciation for the abundance in your life and to develop patience and self-control.

The power of chewing is so great that there are stories of concentration camp survivors who, when others could not, made it through with very little food by chewing their meager rations up to 300 times per bite of food. However, you can experience the benefits of chewing by increasing to 30 chews per bite. Try it and see how you feel.

Try eating without the TV, computer, smart phone, or noisy company. Instead just pay attention to the food and to how you are breathing and chewing.

This kind of quiet can be disconcerting at first, since we are used to a steady stream of music, TV, reading email, and demands from others. But as you create a new habit, you will begin to appreciate eating without rushing. You have to eat every day—why not learn to savor and enjoy it?

Because you’re taking more time to chew, you’ll also notice that you feel full sooner, which means you’re much more likely to consume fewer calories while still feeling full. This can help with weight loss and/or weight maintenance.

Before you eat, take a deep breath or two and relax.  Focus on the meal you are about to eat.  Do your best to chew each bite 30 times and see how you do and how you feel.

After you do this for a while, you won’t have to count anymore; you’ll know by the texture of the food, which should be completely liquefied before you swallow.  Your stomach doesn’t have teeth, so the more you can break down the food in your mouth, the easier it will be for your body to digest it.

Give it a try at your next meal today.

 

Food Focus: Quinoa

 Quinoa (pronounced keen-wah), is a nutritional powerhouse with ancient origins. It was originally cultivated by the Incas more than 5,000 years ago; they referred to it as the “mother of all grains.” It contains all nine essential amino acids, making it a great source of protein for vegetarians. Quinoa is also high in magnesium, fiber, calcium, phosphorus, iron, copper, manganese, riboflavin and zinc.

While quinoa is widely considered a grain, it’s actually the seed of a plant called Chenopodium or Goosefoot, related to chard and spinach. Quinoa is a gluten-free grain and has a similar effect as other whole grains in helping to stabilize blood sugar.

It has a waxy protective coating called saponin which can leave a bitter taste. For best results, rinse quinoa before you cook it or even soak it for a few hours or overnight. When cooked, it has a fluffy, slightly crunchy texture. Try it in soups, salads, as a breakfast porridge or as its own side dish.

For quinoa, and whole grains in general, the majority of digestion occurs in the mouth through chewing and exposure to saliva. For optimal nutrition and assimilation, it is vital to chew your grains well and with awareness. A great meditation is to find a calm place, without distractions, to sit down for your meal. Make it a habit to chew each bite 20 times or more. See how this simple practice can help your digestion and overall focus for the rest of your day.

 

Recipe of the Month: Quinoa Pilaf

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Cooking Time: 30-40 minutes

Yield: 4 servings

Ingredients:

1 cup quinoa

2 1/4 cups organic chicken or vegetable stock

1/2 cup dried cranberries

1/2 cup walnut pieces

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

pinch of salt

Directions:

  1. Rinse quinoa in fine mesh strainer until water runs clear.
  2. Boil the water and add quinoa and salt, cover and reduce heat.
  3. After 15 minutes add cranberries and walnuts to top; do not stir.
  4. Cook 5 minutes more, until all the liquid is absorbed.
  5. Remove from heat, add parsley and fluff with fork, cover and let sit for 3-5 minutes and serve.

Enjoy!