Monthly Archives: June 2013

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Spring Into Action!

Do you need to drink more water?  I do.  But our tap water is gross; and our reverse osmosis water is stripped of everything: bad contaminants and healthy minerals.  And I would rather not buy bottled water since it’s not eco-friendly, the sources are questionable, and it leaves a plastic aftertaste in my mouth.  Ugh…

Harding Spring

Harding Spring

For a healthy way to quench your thirst, what you COULD do is find a natural spring near you.  Find A Spring is a resource dedicated to helping people locate springs worldwide, many of which have been tried and tested by others.  Spring water is cleaner than drinking water, mineral-rich, tastes great, and…wait for it…FREE!  So take your jug, bottles, canteens, and go get some of this cool, refreshing, deliciousness.  Your body with thank you, and beg for more.

Me filling one of my Eastar BPA-Free 1-gallon jugs at Harding Spring.

Me filling one of my Eastar BPA-Free 1-gallon jugs at Harding Spring.

Personally, I go to Harding Spring near Sedona, AZ.  When my family retreats to this area for some R & R, we make collecting spring water a group activity.  It’s fun for all of us, and we savor every drop.  We always meet locals there, who have been collecting spring water for years.  If we lived closer, I’d be there EVERY. SINGLE. DAY…TRUST!  In the meantime, I add fruit pieces, fresh-squeezed citrus, or other supplements to our reverse osmosis water; and I look forward to checking out other springs during my upcoming travels.

Another view of me collecting Harding Spring water.

Another view of me collecting Harding Spring water.

Stay hydrated, my friends!

Salt

Growing up, I suffered from seasonal allergies.  For years, I was MISERABLE.  By the time I graduated from college, my symptoms had mysteriously subsided.  What?!?  I have no idea how I managed that, but who am I to question a modern-day miracle?  These days, I am mildly irritated during allergy season.  However, my family’s allergies are much worse than mine.  So, what do we do?

The Salt Chalet Arizona is located in this building in Scottsdale.

The Salt Chalet Arizona is located in this building in Scottsdale.

For an alternative treatment that will have you (literally) breathing a sigh of relief, what you COULD do is try salt therapy.  Salt therapy (a.k.a. speleotherapy or halotherapy) helps to relieve allergies, respiratory issues, and skin conditions.  My husband shared his experience at Salt Chalet Arizona, where he went through a series of treatments to deal with an extreme case of eczema and allergy symptoms.  I’ve wanted to try this, and recently took the plunge.

Kickin' back in my zero gravity chair, ready to do some deep breathing...

Kickin’ back in my zero gravity chair, ready to do some deep breathing…

As with many natural therapies, it takes time to heal.  The more you do it, the more benefits you receive.  And who doesn’t want good benefits these days?  I have also found that it can take a couple of sessions to understand how to make the most of alternative treatments.  For example, during my first Salt Chalet experience, an elderly gentleman with COPD pointed out to me that I should breathe in the fine salt particles through my mouth (no filter), and breathe out through my nose.  I had been doing the opposite!  So, when I went to my second appointment, I applied this intel accordingly.  As a result, I had a more productive session.

The view from my zero gravity chair.

Nothing fancy to see here.  It’s all about the therapeutic benefits of the Dead Sea salt.  The comfortable chairs, light therapy, and relaxation music help to create a spa-like experience though.  And I’m always down with that!  For information about other salt room locations, check here and here.

Looking to “spice up” your allergy, respiratory, and skin protocol?  Just add salt.

 

 

 

Float On…

I love getting 90-minute therapeutic massages to relieve stress and muscle tension, and usually won’t settle for anything less in duration.  In fact, I already have a session scheduled during an upcoming trip to Sedona, and I can’t wait!  However, I also enjoy trying alternative therapies that promote health and well-being.

For a euphoric experience in a unique environment, what you COULD do is try flotation therapy.  Flotation therapy (or Restricted Environmental Stimulus Therapy) relieves pain, stress, and aids relaxation.  Earlier this year, when I was searching for an unconventional spa treatment for my birthday, my husband shared that one of his clients raved about True REST Float Spa.  So, I scheduled an appointment on my special day.  At first, I struggled to quiet my mind.  But once I settled into a comfortable position and focused exclusively on my breathing, I went into a deeper state of relaxation until I was out.  On my way out, I could feel my body release a LOT of tension in my lower back.  Hallelujah!  At the end of my 1-hour session, I emerged from my pod relaxed, refreshed, and HOOKED.  I can best summarize my first float as follows:

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1 REST pod + 1200lbs of magnesium sulfate (Epsom salt) + 200 gallons of skin temperature water + relaxation music + LED lights = a womb-like experience that helped me find my happy place.

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I returned a couple of weeks later, and brought a friend.  ‘Nuff said.

You can find more information about flotation and float center locations near you here.

If you don’t float, now you know.

 

Go Daddy!

Father's Day Pic Copy

The weekend is here, and Father’s Day is fast approaching.  That said, how do you honor and indulge a man, who doesn’t have any specific requests?

What you COULD do is send him off to enjoy an activity of his choice, e.g., a spa treatment, a round of golf, hang time with his buddies, a workout, a nap, etc.  Seriously!  Recreation, rest, and relaxation are golden for a man who hustles everyday to provide for his family.  Afterwards, he’ll feel rejuvenated and ready to tackle the next week’s agenda.  You could then have a sit-down dinner at home for him, and present him with cards and gifts at the end of the day.  If he’s anything like my husband, he’ll LOVE it!  And, more importantly, he’ll be in a better frame of mind to receive it.  Or you could “shower” him early, then release him for the remainder of the day.

I’m planning to encourage my man with breakfast, cards, and gifts in the morning.  After church, I’ll hold it down at home so that he can see Man of Steel, go out to dinner, and watch the NBA Finals with his friends.  He really appreciates these times, and cherishes the memories.

Enjoy your weekend!!!

 

Cuckoo For Coconut!

I. have. a. problem.  (Admission is the first step…RIGHT?!?!)

I love all things coconut, and I don’t see an end to my obsession.  Some of the benefits of this tropical treat include:  fiber, vitamins, minerals, as well as anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, and other healing properties.

Here are 5 of my favorite coconut products:

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1.  Everyday Coconut Super Hydrating Body Wash by Alaffia:  I have a bottle in every shower at my house.  I use it as a shampoo, face and body wash.  Check it out in your Whole Foods HABA Department!

2.  So Delicious Coconut Milk Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert:  So many flavors, so little time.  These frozen treats are great by themselves, or as an accompaniment to cake, cookies, or pie.  You can find this line in the frozen section at Whole Foods, natural food stores, and some supermarkets.

3.  Nutiva Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil:  This is a staple in my pantry, and I ration it out for food and cosmetic use.  Specifically, I use it for baking, stir frying, and moisturizing from head to toe.  Costco carries this “supa-sized” 78oz container.

4.  Trader Joe’s Roasted Coconut Chips:  Crispy and sweet, these are great for snacking, right outta the bag.  However, I specifically buy them to sprinkle on top of my chia seed pudding.  You COULD roast your own; but if you don’t have time, then TJ’s has you covered.

5.  Zico Pure Premium Coconut Water:  You can find this at natural food stores and supermarkets.  I drink it straight, or add a splash to a glass of water with fruit pieces.  I also use it as a base for my fruit smoothies.  It’s so hydrating!

One of the best ways to enjoy coconut is to crack open a fresh one, insert a straw, and drink the water.  Afterwards, you can scoop out the meat with a spoon and enjoy.  If you don’t want to DIY, then you can try your local Whole Foods Market.  There you can find fresh coconuts in the produce department, already cut, and ready to consume.  Stay nourished, my friends!

 

Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia!

Until recently, I only blended chia seeds into my smoothies.  When I tried chia seed pudding for the first time at True Food Kitchen, I was instantly hooked.  After polishing off my bowl, I grilled the staff for their recipe.  They gave me a short list of ingredients (coconut cream, bananas, brown sugar, vanilla, sea salt, chia seeds), but no specific quantities.  However, everyone assured me that it was easy to make.  Still, I searched for recipes to try until I found a formula that worked for me.  Since it closely resembled the dessert that I enjoyed at TFK, I customized this recipe.  Here are the results:

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You get a lot of nutritional bang for your buck with this ancient super food.  Chia seeds are loaded with omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, antioxidants, calcium, and protein.  And who doesn’t want a healthy heart, better digestion, beautiful skin, gorgeous hair, and great nails?  Enjoy!

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