Epsom Salt Baths – Not just for relaxation

epsomsaltpicMany think of Epsom salt baths as a luxury they don’t have time for, or for relief of sore muscles and achy joints for when they’ve gone crazy at the gym. Not so! An Epsom salt bath is actually therapeutic for good health!

(Please note that if you have kidney disease, contact your doctor before using any magnesium supplements.)

Magnesium Deficient?

Many people are deficient in magnesium. There are several reasons for this.

  • First, modern industrial farming has caused depletion of minerals from the soil, including magnesium.
  • Second, the American diet has gone from a whole unprocessed food diet to a diet of mostly processed foods, too much sugar and protein, and unhealthy salts and fats, all leading to decreased magnesium intake and absorption. Our ancestors did not have these issues to deal with.

What’s the Big Deal?

Magnesium is of extreme importance and is actually one of the most abundant elements in the human body. Deficiency rarely shows on blood tests because only 1% is in the blood. Most is in the bones and teeth. The body is amazingly built to keep the levels in the blood constant by pulling it from those places. Otherwise, any kind of deficiency could cause a potentially deadly heart rhythm.

The University of Maryland Medical Center states that symptoms of magnesium deficiency may include agitation and anxiety, restless leg syndrome (RLS), sleep disorders, irritability, nausea and vomiting, abnormal heart rhythms, low blood pressure, confusion, muscle spasm and weakness, hyperventilation, insomnia, poor nail growth, and even seizures.

Magnesium helps regulate over 300 enzymes and is involved in many bodily functions such as muscle control, electrical impulses, production of energy, keeping bones strong, and the elimination of harmful toxins. It can even ward off migraines, help with depression and diabetes, decrease the risk of developing asthma and reduce fibromyalgia pain.

Do I Need Magnesium Supplements?

Americans take tons of calcium but rarely enough magnesium. The small amount that comes in calcium tablets isn’t near enough that’s needed for good health. Calcium intake without enough magnesium can actually result in improper calcium placement in the body, for example, not in the bones and teeth where it belongs.

Here’s where Epsom salt comes in, known as hydrated magnesium sulfate. This form of magnesium is easily absorbed through the skin unlike the oral form which is not easily absorbed from the digestive tract. Studies have shown there is an increased magnesium level in the body after soaking in a bath with Epsom salt.

Where Can I Buy It?   Or DIY.

Epsom salt can be purchased at grocery stores, drug stores and supercenters for very little money and are available either plain or with added essential oils such as eucalyptus or lavender. If you want more variety in scents you can pay a LOT more at specialty stores or just add your own essential oils such as rose, lavender, cedar, chamomile or sandalwood, or a combination of whatever you want.

Just Do It…

Fill your tub with whatever temp you like and add 1 – 2 cups depending on the size of your tub. Fifteen minutes or more is all it takes. Your body will absorb what it needs.

So turn on your favorite tunes or TV show, or grab a book, candle, herbal tea and head to the tub. This is not a luxury; it’s the “Healthy Approach”!

Laura RN

Add One Superfood to your Diet

chiapicChia seeds made their way to the public in the 1970s as the Chia Pet. They are one of the many superfoods we all have heard of but most aren’t aware that they are not only edible, but a super powerhouse of nutrition and high, long lasting energy that can keep you feeling satisfied with no cravings for hours. Think about how expensive diet pills are, or those meal plans that you have to purchase in order to lose weight. Chia seeds can replace all that for much less money and a lot of nutrition that those other things don’t supply. For weight loss, add to as many foods as you can, to feel satisfied longer. Chia seeds don’t add any flavor to your foods but actually intensify the flavors. Chia seeds do not have to be organic since they grow easily and pests don’t bother them. They are available in white or brown, either is great. White costs a little more, but is worth it if you don’t like the brown color in your foods.

 

Chia seeds contain omega 3s in a vegetarian form, as well as protein, healthy fats, antioxidants, lots of fiber and the ability to keep you full for hours with very few calories. All of these benefits help combat chronic illness such as obesity, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Chia also contains calcium, magnesium and other essential minerals necessary for optimum health. Taken daily, they assist with regularity and colon detoxing, along with drinking plenty of water. They act with a sweeping motion through the intestines and colon, even helping those with diverticulitis/diverticulosis. Taken before a workout, can give energy for a better and longer exercise session and keep you hydrated longer. For regularity and curbing the appetite, consume right before meals and/or first thing in the morning like a fiber drink or even add to your metamucil type drink.

 

Now the question is, how do you eat chia seeds when you’ve only seen them growing on little clay dogs?

 

1. Go buy a bag or cannister at the store. Many places are carrying them; supercenters, wholesale warehouses, and healthfood stores. In dry form, chia seeds are very “shelf-stable”, meaning they last for several years at room temperature. Chia seeds can be puchased online for about half the price as in stores. But for now, just go buy some and get started. Just don’t ever try to wash them. They will immediately become sticky as they absorb the water.

 

2. Presoak some of the seeds to use in smoothies and some foods. Take two cups of purified or bottled water, milk, almond milk or coconut milk and add 1/3 cup chia seeds. Whisk several times in the first 5 minutes then store in the fridge. This will make a chia gel. Chia gel made with water can be stored up to 2 weeks covered in the fridge. Made with a milk product w about will keep about a week.

 

3. Add to your daily foods, as much as you feel comfortable with – 1 teaspoon to 2 tablespoons is good to start with, and don’t worry about overdoing it. The more the merrier! 2 Tablespoons is a good goal to work up to, adding it to various meals throughout the day. Chia gel or dry chia seed can be added depending on the foods. Following is a list of some things you can add it to. Use your imagination after that:

 

Add dry chia seeds - sprinkle on foods to add an extra nutrition boost without changing the flavors.

 

Oatmeal, grits, cold cereals 
Salads
Can be consumed dry, followed by a glass of water or any other liquid
Mix with any liquid such as orange juice and drink straight down if you don’t have time to wait for the gel – this is a great breakfast drink!

 

Add chia gel (water or milk based) – replace 1/3 to 1/2 of any fats such as butter, oil, or margarine in

 

Recipes
Casseroles
Dressings, dips, sauces
Muffins and cakes

 

Dry seeds or chia gel can be added to smoothies with fruit, one of the milks mentioned above, a handful of greens such as spinach, spring salad mix or regular romaine lettuce. Not iceberg, there’s not enough nutrition in that to call it “greens”. Add ice and blend. This will keep you full for hours and you’ve already gotten a fruit and veggie in for the day. Sadly, most breakfasts don’t contain either.

 

For a instant “pick me up” healthy treat, keep this recipe on hand in the fridge.

 

Chia Pudding Recipe

 

2 cups of milk (regular, almond, or coconut)
Natural sweetener such as honey, stevia, even a little sugar, to taste
1/4 tsp vanilla extract, or to taste 
Pinch of himalayan or sea salt, another healthy addition (don’t leave this out) 
1/3 cup chia seeds

 

Mix all together thoroughly using a whisk. Whisk several more times in the first 5 minutes and then again at 15 minutes. Eat freely as much as you want but, as with any food, don’t stuff yourself silly!

 

“Orange Julius” with a nutrition boost

 

Mix orange juice with 1/3 cup or more of the chia gel (water or milk version) 
Blend with a high speed blender for an instant “Orange Julius”. Add some natural sweetener to your liking. The chia seed addition will prevent the blood sugar spike and fall that occurs when you drink the juice alone. To make a complete breakfast, add a scoop of whey protein powder and you’re out the door!

 

 These and more are great for “on the go”, “no time for breakfast”, or “I’m starving and there’s nothing to eat except these chips in the pantry”, times! Instant fullness and satisfaction and no drive thrus or bingeing on chips or snacky foods. Healthy, fast, and inexpensive. That’s the chia seed!

Laura RN

Green Tea Health Benefits

greenteacupGreen tea is one of the mainstays in Asian countries where very little breast cancer and heart disease occur. It’s an amazing “superdrink” that has been in use for thousands of years in Asia, but only in recent years have the health benefits come to light, worldwide. Green tea contains large amounts of catechins (pronouced “cat-a-kins”) which is what makes it so valuable to good health.

Be sure that when you consume tea on a regular basis, that you use organic tea so your body doesn’t have to deal with the pesticides and can just reap the real benefits of the tea alone. If your grocery store or supercenter doesn’t carry it, then head to a local health food store that is sure to carry a variety of organic teas. One of my favorites is Green Jasmine tea. It’s like drinking a relaxing warm, or cold, beverage out of a beautiful white fragrant flower. Other tasty varieties include green tea with mint or peach. It’s a healthy way to just experiment and find your own favorite!

Here are just a few of the many benefits of green tea.

Weight Loss – It’s thought that the catechins found in tea, specifically green tea, cause a person to burn more calories, about 70 extra per day through thermogenesis-the production of heat within the body which aids in burning calories. Drinking at least three cups a day is recommended to raise the body’s metabolic rate.

Cancer – Numerous research has demonstrated that tea is beneficial in preventing cancer, including prostate, pancreatic, breast, colorectal, esophageal, bladder, lung, and stomach. The catechins found in tea prevent cell mutation, deactivate certain carcinogens, and reduce the formation and growth of tumors. Drinking as many as four cups a day may be necessary to reap the anti-cancer benefits.

Heart Health – Tea consumption is also associated with a lower risk of heart disease and stroke. Research published by Harvard demonstrates that people who drink at least one cup of tea daily have a 44 percent lower risk of heart attack. Some animal studies have demonstrated that tea also lowers cholesterol levels.

The most beneficial way to brew tea is to pour boiling water into a mug over a tea bag, cover with a small plate, and let sit or steep for 5 – 10 minutes. Then squeeze the tea bag over the cup to release more of the antioxidants. Use a tea bag squeezer, yes they sell those, or just turn your plate sideways over your cup and press the tea bag against it with a fork. Sweeten with raw honey, stevia (like Truvia), or a little real sugar, never artificial sweeteners (I’ll discuss that another day).

So drink up, but keep in mind that green tea does contain caffeine so check with your doctor before beginning to drink it, and don’t consume it after 3 – 4 pm if you are caffeine sensitive. Decaf is also available but with less varieties of flavors to choose from.

Laura RN

Water Purifier…the best! and cheapest!

<a>My husband, Chuck, heard someone talking about our water filter on the radio yesterday. How with the possible radiation risk everyone should have their “Berkey” water filter. That was great to hear, since we just got one. It’s working out great. I keep it on the porch and the kids love going out there getting water too. I fill up a smaller pitcher to keep inside and just refill the top of the Berkey with the hose outside.

Here is a better site than we got our from because you can have a choice of getting 3 free sport bottles instead of 2 like we got. They are 28 bucks each otherwise, if you buy them. It’s a good idea to buy the extra 2 black filters for 99.00 a pair so your water will go thru much quicker for when you want it now. Also with 4 filters, they will last 12,000 gallons. Each filter lasts 3000 gallons. Or if you have fluoride in your water, there is a special filter for doing fluoride and arsenic. We didn’t get those as our water does not have fluoride or arsenic. Shipping is free at least. The water tastes awesome too.

This water can be taken from any source and turned into drinkable water, and in large quantities to sustain a whole family. Even a retention pond or swamp.

Berkey Light

We have it in case there were to be an issue with the public water supply, whether terrorism, radiation, EMP or a solar flare cutting off electricity at the treatment plant. Have to have water to survive and besides, we use it everyday as an optimal source of purified clean water.

I’ve calculated the price if you were to buy gallons of purified water over the life of the filters in a Berkey. For less money up front you can just wait to get the extra 2 filters so the total price is 200 instead of 300. Then your water would cost more per gallon…Wow, this is way better than I thought! It’s a whopping 2 and a half cents per gallon and with only 2 filters it would be 5 cents a gallon! That’s amazing. Water that’s purified so thoroughly, leaving only the healthy minerals behind.

Laura RN

PS: No I don’t work for them, I just want “my people” to be taken care of.  Please pass this along as I can’t get it to everyone.

What Food Labels Aren’t Telling You

labelspyglass(foxnews.com) If a food is low in calories and fat – it’s healthy right? Well, not so fast. Some foods that we’ve deemed the healthiest, like yogurt and cereal, actually contain ingredients that have been proven to adversely affect our health. Keep reading to learn about five ingredients you should try to avoid during your next trip to the grocery store.