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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Enjoying the Sun

We live in a society that tells us to cover up and fear the sun. I too was hit with that stigma while I was directing a day spa. Our aestheticians constantly preached the sun block story. I can totally understand too with all the skin cancer issues. However, rather than solely blaming the sun for these unfortunate circumstances. Let's address a couple related issues.

First of all, cancer cannot grow in oxygen rich blood. Even more, the Ph level of the blood needs to be off balance in order for cancer to thrive in the body. Lastly, cancer is a fungus and it's food is sugar and too much fat in the system clogs and causes stagnation. Skin cancer occurs when the body is nutritionally imbalanced and the skin does not have the antioxidants to keep the skin protected.

Do you have any idea of what is in sunblock? If you ate it, would it make you sick? Well, applying toxic products to the skin is worse than eating toxins. At least the liver can filter the garbage out a bit when we ingest them, but when we apply it straight to the skin it is a direct route to the blood stream. No filtration took place. Some people suggest that the sunblock is the problem and not the sun.

Denying the body of sunlight is not wise. Think of a plant that is denied sunlight. What happens to it? It grows lanky and weak. The plant is susceptible to disease. We aren't that different. We need sun and we need it all over our bodies. Back to the plant analogy, imagine if only half the plant was exposed to sunlight. What would happen? Can the plant really be healthy? So, what am I suggesting here? GET NAKED in the sun. I know, you are freaking out, but seriously, if you care about your health and you give it a shot you will see how wonderful and well you feel.

So, go out and get a bit of healthy sunlight. Be smart about it and don't go overboard here. Acclimate yourself. Start off peak hours before 10 am and after 4 pm. Try 10 minutes and work your way up to more exposure. In the winter lay out in a sunny window.

Try natural sun protectors through eating them. Eat vibrant, rich, full rainbow spectrum of fruit and vegetables. Did you know that each color conatins a different antioxidant? Eating a diet high in all the colors of the rainbow ensures balanced coverage. It's funny to note that in the winter the food that grow are primarily green and in the summer all the colorful fruits and veggies emerge. This is because plants produce a pigment as a way of preventing from being sunburned. Eating them raw provides us with that same sun protection since antioxidants are destroyed in the cooking process. Eating 2-4 Brazil Nuts a day which contains all the selenium we need for sun protection also.

Lastly, coconut oil and aloe vera is a great sun block!

Go on and have fun in the sun!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Courage to Follow a Dream

My dream has been to open a wellness center for over 7 years now. As I evolve and continue to learn I have decided I want to establsih a tropical, sustained Eco-Village/ Retreat. There are many places that offer similiar features that I would like to model my place after.

Location Model: Pangaia
Non-profit Educational Training Center Models: Ann Wigmore Institute in Puerto Rico, or Dr. Gabriel Cousens The Tree of Life in Patagonia, AZ)

Sustainable living
Health- raw food nutrition, physical fitness (yoga & outdoor recreation)
Spirituality & Self Expression/ Self Love/ Self Discovery/ Self Realization
Nature- connection to the land through food & living environment

Off the Grid- solar power, passive cooling/heating, rain water collection & filtration, grey water system, composting system for toilets & garden clippings.
Sustainable food with Permaculture/Organic Edible landscaping (surplus sold: co-op, farmers market, organic produce delivery)

Tree house bungalows w/private outdoor garden showers
Communal Area: kitchen, dining, media library, gathering room, yoga/massage deck, indoor shower/bathroom, laundry

Daily Services
Raw meals provided
Morning meditation/beach walks
Classes and Adventure Activites
Sunset fireside luau celebration w/ live musical talent

Classes, Workshops, Training courses
live food nutrition/purification & natural hygiene
yoga teacher training
spirituality / self empowerment
Homegrown food self reliance workshops
Feature guest speakers/ talent from around the world

Adventure Activities
Nature Hikes (medicinals, edibles, tropical fruit/botany, wildlife)
Surf, snorkle, kayak, swim
Bike rides
Zip line, paintball , skydive, parasail, rock climb
Horseback riding

The first steps are:
Intern at an established location to clarify vision and gain experience
Establish a non-profit team & obtain grant writers
Attract interested parties

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Week 3 Results Bikini Body Weight Loss

Weigh In : 129.2 lbs

The inches are playing games on me, but I have to admit it has been almost 2 months since my last measure and weigh in. So, this is where I am at now.

Bust: 36"
Waist: 28"
Navel: 31"
Hips: 38"
Thighs: 23"
Upper Arm: 11.50"
Calf: 14"

This looks about where I started, but it just goes to show that fat inches and weight loss can be two different things. As I mention in my video, it's impossible to lose more than one pound of fat a week. So, I am looking at a slow and natural evolution in my body.

My goal is to have fun. I want to enjoy being active not dread working out! I am going simple again with:
walking daily 2-4 miles
sun saluations daily, I want to try this fierce flow !
core rhythms (this was a gift from a friend and I LOVE it). I fall in love with dancing again and again. :)

Getting Rid of Shampoo & Hair Products for Good

This is from Emily who contacted me recently after seeing the "My Way" post of G Living. She shared her story of going off shampoo. This really appeals to me, especially since I have seen such an improvement in my hair since going raw. I noticed I could go longer between shampoos and I didn't get the same oily residue I once did. So, now that I am embarking on the 80/10/10 lifestyle I can see how this can play into my beauty regime.

Here is Emily's story:

I have light brown, it was extremely straight and fine but lots of it -before going without shampoo ­ and it wouldn't hold a curl for anything. I was reliant on my blow dryer and products because if I didn't blow dry or use products in it it would slip out of even a bobby pin! Now my hair is thick and shiny, each strand is significantly thicker and I can stretch it for a long time before it breaks. It also has its own bounce and will hold a curl for two days without products! All I use is a boar bristle brush and water and this works much better than all the other things I tried and believe me, I tried them all!First, go and buy a 100% natural boar bristle brush‹it makes all the difference in the world and I¹m convinced had I done it in the beginning it would have saved me a lot of gross days! They make blonde and brown boar bristle brushes. If you have thick, coarse hair get the brown bristles otherwise the blonde is for you. The blonde seems too soft to move through hair but it¹s not. I brush in small sections that way all of my hair is sure to get coated with sebum.
The Process
The reason our hair gets stinky and greasy is because the natural oils gather at the scalp. The brush distributes it evenly from shaft to ends.The sebum is what conditions our hair, strengthens it, and gives it it's protective coating.The brush is actually doing the cleaning which is why you only need water after that. When you brush it loosens up dust, dirt, fuzz and then it can be washed out easily when you scrub your scalp under water. Never get your boar bristle brush wet. To clean it all you have to do is remove hair, run your fingers through the bristles vigorously (you¹ll see little particles coming out) and then it¹s ready to use the next time.Brush twice a day to keep the sebum from accumulating at the scalp. When you first brush it seems that your hair is really greasy, walk away from the mirror for 20 minutes and then come back and see that the oily look is gone having absorbed into the hair!
Transition / Detox Phase
If you use products you¹ll have to go through a couple of weeks of detox as the glues and thickeners are being stripped from your hair. The ends of your hair will be sticky and hard to comb though but will work its way out over a couple of weeks. During this period just hang In there and put your hair in a braid or bun and remind yourself that a little discomfort has a huge payoff!The brush should be sufficient to keep your scalp looking mostly clean during this phase but if you find you need a little more clean get an old bottle and dissolve 1 tbsp of baking soda to two cups of water and shake vigorously then pour over your head (I found for the long run this actually dried out my hair but for the detox it could be a life saver).Apple cider vinegar made my life miserable so I¹d skip that entirely. If you want some sort of conditioning look up herb hair rinses which make your hair surprisingly soft and smell nice. My favorite was sage. I'd boil water and pour over a handful of fresh sage leaves, let steep till cool and then pour over my hair in the shower.
I tried Yucca root to wash, which also made my hair really greasy.Shampoos strip our hair of its natural oils and it then has to over produce tokeep its pH balance and for the first couple of weeks of going without shampoo it will seem that your hair is actually more oily. This is the case since your body hasn't caught on yet that it doesn't need to overproduce but after a few weeks it will regain its balance and your body will actually produce much less oil all together. I used to have to wash every day but now only every other and sometimes I can go three.
This is the same phenomena as with oily faces. I've used only olive oil to wash and moisturize my face for several years now and olive oil as a moisturizer for my whole body and my skin has never been better. I stopped breaking out, have virtually no shine and survive east coast winters without any flaky skin. I use a lighter oil in the summer when the humidity is high like jojoba or just raw honey to wash.
Don't be alarmed if you seem to be losing a lot more hair at the beginning of your transition. The reason for this is because our products have glues and binders in them so it's actually kept broken or dead hairs in your head and these need to come out anyway to make room for the new growth. I lost a LOT of hair and got really nervous that I'd have to go for a few months with sparse hair before the new growth came in but this didn't turn out to be the case.
My routine now: Brush twice a day with the boar bristle brush from scalp to end (in sections). Massage my scalp vigorously under the shower every other day and let air dry before brushing. I don't comb when it's wet. To get out the taCheck Spellingngles I just flip my wet heir back and forth until I can run my fingers through it. At least once a day I give myself a scalp massage just to stimulate the blood flow, which makes your hair grow faster. After I wash I usually roll my hair in socks (like you would rollers, just tie the ends like you would the beginning of tying your shoe) and sleep on them and have glamorous curls for the next two days.Your hair will settle into its original design and you'll look even more beautiful since each of us has been created perfectly and uniquely with no mistake, made to radiate beauty.
So, we're the ones who in our pursuit of beauty have actually gotten ourselves further from it and on this perpetual cycle of grasping for the next new thing that holds the promise for _____. As I've watched my life and look transform into exactly what I've been trying to achieve outside of myself for so many years. It has made me extremely passionate to inspire people to get back to their original design in a practical, very normal way. :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Bright Eyes

If the eyes are the window to our souls than what do yours say? Look at the whites of your eyes. Are they bright white or are tinted yellow? Not even Visene can help you here. By the way, isn't that just another lame cover up rather than finding the source of the symptom? Last time I checked, dousing yourself with this and that and micromanaging your health is not effective or sustainable.

If the whites of the eyes are tinted yellow and they are not as sparkling as you'd like, you may consider doing a liver cleanse to jumpstart you onto a healthier diet. The whites of the eyes represent the health of the liver. Newborn babies will sometimes have jaundice and yellow tinted whites of their eyes due to immature liver function.

If you think of our bodies as one big fish tank think of your liver as the filter. Just imagine what would happen to the fish in the tank if over years you never cleaned the filter. Imagine what the water in the tank would look like. Imagine what a dirty tank smells like (if you want sweet skin read this article) . We aren't that different from this analogy. Once the stress is off the liver the whites will begin to sparkle.

Try incorporating these practices to get that sparkle back

1. Lots of water (ideally organic water from fresh juicy fruits and veggies)

2. Foods that cleanse and heal the liver are artichoke, lemon, beets, and dandelion greens. Try drinking 64 oz of lemon water upon rising.

3. Herbs such as Dandelion and Milk Thistle can be made into a tea and consumed regularly for continual liver cleansing.

None of the above mentioned solutions will be sustainable and permanent until a clean diet is obtained and continued consistently. Remember, this is a jumpstart but will never undo the damage completely from a poor diet until the diet is changed. Just remember that it is important that the colon is very effective and eliminating optimally. The liver purges and the toxins go into the colon and wait to be eliminated. If elimination is slow, then the toxins will be reabsorbed back into the bloodstream and your efforts will no longer be effective.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Basil Wrappers from "Entertaining in the Raw"

I have never claimed to be a genius in the kitchen. I'll leave that to the pros! However, I am proficient at following recipes. I don't even follow them exactly and they still seem to work out fine.

After the video footage my son decided he did like the wrappers after all, and we devoured the rest of the wrappers. This was super fun and easy to do with my kids. What a great way to teach them a healthier way of eating. I feel good that their recipe knowledge has a healthy base unlike my upbringing. I learned as a kid how to make things that tasted good, but health wasn't the focus. I am glad I am turning it around for my kids.

The wrappers are very filling and I can see if the presentation was done correctly that it would be a hit at events. I normally keep things simple for raw potlucks,but this would be awesome, even for non raw people.

The cheese is creamy with a little tang to it, the dehydrated tomatoes have an intensified flavor, the avocado and basil just round it out. A total comfort food! The wrappers called for spinach juice, but I used kale juice. It didn't affect the flavor, but it did intensify the color. The wrappers tasted like creamy bites of heaven with vibrant flavors from the cheese, tomato and basil. A must try!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Video of Raw Food Meetup w/ Happy Oasis

Thanks to Paul (the organizer of an amazing raw food metup group), we are able to see a little of what Happy Oasis shared with us on Saturday. Of course, you hear me ramble about how large the co-op has grown thanks to the dedication of Alexis (mentioned in my last post). It is a bit differnt than a CSA. We don't pay in advance a lump sum or we don't belong to only one farmer. If you want more information, please send me a comment and I'll give more details. Perhaps, I will post a blog on how to set up an organic produce buying club for everyone.