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Posted: March 27, 2014

 

Ever heard of Oil Pulling?  I came across this technique awhile ago and found it intriguing.    I know, it seems very odd, but the benefits greatly outweigh the oddness!  I started oil pulling just a short time ago and can see a difference already.  Wow!  My teeth are much whiter and my whole mouth feels healthier.  For those two reasons alone, this simple, inexpensive home remedy is worth doing.

 

So what is it?  Oil pulling is an ancient folk remedy recommended by Ayurvedic physicians that began in India.  This ancient Ayurvedic ritual which dates back thousands of years, was introduced to the modern world by Dr. F. Karach, MD in 1992.  He claimed that oil pulling could cure a variety of illnesses, including heart disease, digestive troubles and hormonal disorders.  Although there has not been much research on oil pulling, it is easy to find countless ways this technique has helped many people from their testimony.

 

Here’s how:  take a teaspoon up to a tablespoon of either sesame, sunflower or coconut oil into your mouth each morning and swish or pull it around and through your teeth and gums without swallowing it.  You do this for about 15 – 20 minutes. Then you spit it out into the trash, not the sink or toilet.  The oil is supposed to go from being clear to a white, milky substance, as it is now loaded with toxins and bacteria it has drawn out from all that swishing and thereby reducing inflammation.  I like using coconut oil for the milder taste.

 

The Benefits of Oil Pulling:

Brighter, whiter teeth

Healthier gums

Prevents bad breath

Increased energy

Clearer mind

Decreased headaches

Clearer sinuses

Alleviate allergies

Better sleep

Clearer skin

Regulated menstrual cycles

Improved lymphatic system

Improved PMS symptoms

 

 

 

 

Don’t miss these three additional articles for more information:

 

Oil Pulling For A Brighter Smile and Better Health

Oil Pulling Benefits – What is Oil Pulling Anyway?

Oil Pulling: An Ayurvedic Secret For Whole Health!

 

 

Happy swishing!

 

 

 

 

 

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Peppermint, Please!

 

Posted: December 20, 2013

 

It’s almost Christmas!  I hope you are enjoying the holiday season.  One of my all time favorite flavors during the holidays is Peppermint.  Candy canes, peppermint ice cream, peppermint mocha coffee creamer and peppermint milkshakes are all at the top of the indulgence list!  While peppermint is known as a wonderful winter treat, did you know about its therapeutic effects?  The power of peppermint has been known since Ancient times.

According to GreenMedInfo, March 19, 2013:

 

“Dried peppermint leaves have even been found in several Egyptian pyramids carbon dating back to 1,000 BC.”

 

Peppermint is a hybrid mint, a cross between water mint and spearmint.  The plant, indigenous to Europe, is now grown  throughout all regions of the world.   The botanical name of peppermint is mentha piperita.  The oil of peppermint is extracted by steam distillation and has vitamins A and C, omega-3 fatty acids, and minerals  including potassium, manganese, iron, magnesium, calcium, and copper.   Menthol is the main component, which provides the minty aroma and the “cooling sensation,” when tasted or touched.

 

So besides being so tasty, what makes peppermint one of Nature’s most versatile and valuable herbal remedies?

Here is a list of some common uses for peppermint essential oil.

 

  • Alleviate congestion due to a cold or sinus infection.   Combine a few drops of peppermint oil with eucalyptus oil and rub onto the chest, neck and back for an all-natural, kid safe cold rub.

 

  • Alleviate bad breath.  Peppermint is a bactericidal agent.  It kills bacteria that causes bad breath.  A few drops of peppermint essential oil on the tongue throughout the day can be very effective.

 

  • Relieve stress and fatigue.  Peppermint oil rejuvenates the body!  It is a great alternative to sugar and caffeine.

 

  • Fever reduction.  Peppermint oil has been found to be a great alternative to many commercial fever reducers for mild fevers.  Rub peppermint oil onto the bottom of the feet or onto the forehead.  Please note: this is only recommended for mild fevers. If your child has an extremely high fever, other symptoms, is unresponsive, or confused due to a fever, you should seek emergency help.

 

  • Alleviate upset stomach.  Peppermint is very helpful in treating mild to moderate stomach issues, such as indigestion, gas, nausea and diarrhea.  Immediate relief can be found by either inhaling peppermint or by applying a few drops of peppermint oil to the tongue.

 

  • Repel Spiders!  Soak peppermint oil in a cotton ball and place around the house where you find spiders.  Very cool!

 

For an excellent in-depth look, check out Peppermint.

 

 

And for a few more uses read…

 

25 Ways to Use Peppermint Essential Oil

 

The Power of Peppermint: 15 Health Benefits Revealed

 

Word of Caution:
Peppermint essential oil is very strong.  You should always add it to a carrier oil when applying it to children, and if peppermint gets in your eyes it will burn, so be sure to use caution when applying this oil to your face.

 

I’m headed for a peppermint treat….Have a wonderful Christmas and Happy New Year!

 

Neuroscience of Music

Posted: November 30, 2013

 

Music has been a part of every age and culture.  Music is one of the most powerful neurobiological tools we have to change our mood, mindset, and behavior.  The sound of music relieves stress, anxiety, brings peace, calm, relaxation and much more.  The Neuroscience of music is a fascinating subject!  While I have only started to look into this more, I know many people who have been drawn to music, whether through learning an instrument, singing and performing in theater, or simply embracing the beat of a good tune.  I was surrounded by music growing up.  Both piano teachers, my grandmother taught my mother and my mother taught me to play the piano.  Thanks mom!  Music was in our home and it is through this exposure that I have a continued appreciation for it.

 

 

From early on, I have presented music to my boys in different ways.  From playing classical music during pregnancy, attending baby music time, to toddler music class, to starting piano lessons and simply playing music around the house or in the car, music has been present.  I have also noticed a change in my boys’ moods or a sense of calm when I began singing or put on music.  It is amazing to see the difference, for example, on a rushed morning to get out the door that was quickly becoming chaotic, in my boys’ behavior when I began singing one of their favorite songs.  They started to focus on the song, a sense of calm ensued and we were able to get out the door on a more cheerful note.

So, what’s the big deal about music?  Let’s look at some science behind it (this is for you, Matthew!)

 

The articles below provide a glimpse into the effects of music.  Fascinating….

 

Neuroscience of Music – How Music Enhances Learning

 

The Edge Effect – When Music Meets Neuroscience

 

Learning Music Boosts Brain Development

 

Music Matters for Body and Mind

 

The Evidence on Music Therapy

 

 

Watch this interesting video  The Power of Music from www.musicandmemory.org.

 

 

What effect does music have on your mind and body?  Whether it is used to relieve anxiety, stress, pain, help calm a crying baby, help trigger memory of Dementia and Alzheimer’s patients, strengthen the developing minds of young children, or simply used as a relaxation tool, music is a part of humanity and the neuroscience of music is helpful in explaining its effects within our everyday lives.

November 9, 2013

 

When you eat bread, you could be eating the same ingredient as what is used to make your Yoga mat!  What?  That’s right, the U.S. food industry uses the same additive in breads and cereals (just two examples) as what the chemical industry uses in the production of foamed plastics, synthetic leathers and rubber.  Nice.  The additive is called azodicarbonamide.  Ever heard of it?  Take a look at the ingredients in your loaf of bread.  Is it in there?

Here is the low down from Wikipedia:  Azodicarbonamide Facts

Is it safe?

 

Our trusty health regulatory agencies have assured us that azodicarbonamide is safe for use in our foods.  If that is correct, then why has its use as a food additive been banned in Europe, Australia and the United Kingdom?  I don’t know about you, but I’m getting a bit tired of U.S. officials and the food industry possibly compromising Americans’ health.  The FDA allows about 10,000 chemicals in our foods.  For about 80% of food additives in the FDA’s database, the agency lacks relevant information, including toxicity data, about the safe amount to eat and almost two-thirds of additives don’t have publicly available feeding data. (Source: Reproductive Toxicology Journal study by Neltner and Maffini)

 

See study here: Data gaps in toxicity testing of chemicals allowed in food in the United States

 

 

In the U.K., azodicarbonamide has been identified as a respiratory sensitizer (a possible cause of asthma).

 

The bottom line is how can people expect me to believe that this chemical, that is used to make exercise mats and rubber shoes, is perfectly safe to ingest!  Give me a break.  I’ll pass.

 

There is a fix.  Look at labels before purchasing food and find alternatives without azodicarbonamide such as organic brands that refuse to use chemicals!

 

 

 

Posted: October 12, 2013

 

Fall is here!  And with Fall, comes the cold and flu season once again.  We don’t look forward to it, but did you know that warding off those germs can be easier than you think?  God gave us plenty of resources in Nature to help keep us healthy, yet our society tends not to focus on Nature much.  As I learn more about remedies found in Nature that have been used for hundreds of years, it baffles me why they are not being utilized more often.

There are obvious ways to help prevent viruses and bacteria from finding their way in.

 

Here are a few:

 

1.  Avoid contact with people who are sick.   When you are sick, keep your distance from others to protect them from getting sick too.

 

2. Stay home when you are sick.

3. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing.

 

4. Washing your hands often will help protect you from germs.  If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.

 

5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

6. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces at home, work or school, especially when someone is ill.

And of course, get plenty of sleep, be physically active as much as possible, manage stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious food.  Simple, right?  For some, life can get in the way and staying healthy may not be so simple.

 

If you want to boost your chances of avoiding colds and the flu or minimizing the symptoms, here are a few strategies from Nature, including my newest find, Black Elderberry Extract.

I have used the following gifts from Nature multiple times for myself and my family and have been amazed at the true benefits these gifts provide.

  1. Echinacea

  2. Black Elderberry

  3. Melaleuca Oil (Tea Tree Oil)

  4. Probiotics

  5. Honey and Cinnamon

  6. Multivitamins

My major line of defense as soon as a cold is coming on, is to use Echinacea in liquid form.  Read more from my post:

Echinacea! A Great Choice for Immune Boosting Ability

 

 

Echinacea is a powerful immune booster to use when trying to combat illness.  Echinacea is however, only to be used on a short-term basis for fighting illness, not as a daily prevention.  The longest length of time you want to take Echinacea is two weeks, then take a break from it.  That is why I was thrilled to come across Black Elderberry, another powerhouse of immune boosting properties.  Black Elderberry Extract can be taken every day!  This can be a great immune booster and prevention strategy.

 

Read Elderberry Benefits & Information and watch this video:  Health Benefits of Elderberry

 

 

What to do when a cold does sneak up on you?  Immediately increase the Black Elderberry dosage and grab the Echinacea at the first sign of a cold or flu!  Consistently take the recommended doses 3-4 times per day until symptoms disappear.  The duration and severity will be reduced greatly.  I don’t dread when my boys get a cold as much now because when I use the above strategies, their colds either don’t develop into much or don’t last near as long as in the past.

If you are taking probiotics, it is a good idea to increase the dosage too.  Got a sore throat?  Drink a few cups of warm water and honey per day until it goes away.  I was amazed at how fast the honey, along with taking Echinacea,  worked for my most recent oncoming sore throat.  Zapped it out in just over a day.  It never developed into a full-blown sore throat.

 

 

Watch this video: Medical Minute: Healthy Homemade Solutions

 

 

And last, but certainly not least, here is one of my go to favorite gifts from Nature:  Melaleuca Oil (Tea Tree Oil).  It is a natural antibacterial and antifungal.  I can’t tell you enough how much I love this oil!  It has helped my family repeatedly during the times a cold has surfaced.  I run a humidifier with 10 drops of Melaleuca Oil during the day and at night.  It aids in better breathing and nasal congestion.  This seems odd, but we also rub a drop of Melaleuca Oil in each nostril 3 times per day and it helps in reducing the symptoms of a cold.

 

Read my previous post: Tea Tree Oil…Nature’s Gift

 

 

Find out what works for you!  Remember to start your strategy at the FIRST sign of illness and be consistent.

 

Enjoy this fall season with Nature on your side!

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