The little organs that sit on top of your kidneys called the adrenal glands have the major role of managing your body's stress response. When you experience stress, your fight or flight mechanism gets activated which makes your eyes dilate, your heart race, your face flush, and your palms sweat. This system is literally preparing your body to fight or flee. It expends energy, increases heart rate, and causes blood to flow to the muscles in preparation to run away. This is meant to be an acute response, meaning it should only last in the short-term. The problem is that, in our modern world, we are faced with constant stressors. And consistent, chronic exposure to this kind of stress and adrenaline can wreak havoc on your body. Specifically, it’s our adrenals which take a big hit, leading to issues related to adrenal overdrive or burnout. In today's post, I give you the signs and symptoms to look out for that your adrenals need some love, as well as walk you through the steps of healing adrenal dysfunction using nutrition, supplements/herbs and lifestyle techniques.Read More
CBD (aka cannabidiol) is the new kid on the block getting tons of attention for its benefits on sleep, stress, pain, anxiety, inflammation and more. Despite all the buzz, there is still a bit of confusion around what it is, where it comes from, what its used for, if it's legal, safe, etc. In this post, I fill you in on everything you need to know about CBD, plus a delicious way to use it... CBD Bliss Balls!Read More
Mid-morning and mid-afternoon can be particularly challenging during the work-day. My clients tell me that these times are usually when they feel tired, bored, fidgety, frustrated, stressed and often get the urge to snack (even when they’re not hungry). One of my go-to suggestions is to get up from your desk and make a cup of tea. By choosing one that offers stress-relieving benefits, this ritual becomes even more productive! Fve medicinal teas for helping you cope with stress are up on the blog!Read More
Collagen. You've heard of it. But in case you need a refresher, collagen is the most abundant protein in the body and it’s a key constituent of all connective tissues. It provides the infrastructure of the musculoskeletal system (considered the “glue” that holds the body together!) and it’s the primary building block of skin, hair, nails, tendons, cartilage, bones and joints. Our natural collagen production declines as we age - think wrinkles, thinning hair, brittle nails, achy joints, etc. We can provide the amino acids our bodies need to maintain the health of these structures by using collagen as a protein powder supplement, adding it to smoothies, coffee, soups, oatmeal, etc. In addition to supplementing these key amino acids, we can also include vitamins and minerals need to enhance our body's own natural production of collagen. Vital Proteins (my fave brand of collagen peptides) has formulated a few supplements that do just that, namely Spirulina, Beef Liver and Beauty Boost. Read this post to learn more about the benefits of each.Read More
Cold and flu season is in full force. Add in flying on planes with recycled air, stress about going back to work, kids going back to school and bringing home the latest bug, etc. and you've got yourself primed for getting sick. The best strategy for making it through winter without getting taken out is to ensure you're supporting your immune system all season long. If and when you do feel that tickle in the back of your throat, there are a handful of things you can do to fight off the cold before it takes hold, or at least reduce the duration and severity of symptoms. In this post, I give you with my top 8 immune-boosting and cold-fighting tips to get you through the next few months unscathed!Read More
Keto. The diet everyone is talking about. The diet that is based primarily on healthy fat…including some adequate protein and very little carbs. The high-fat ketogenic diet was originally designed to treat epilepsy, however studies now show that this way of eating can be beneficial for those suffering from obesity, cancer, type-2 diabetes, as well as people looking to increase energy, lose body fat and enhance cognitive function. The goal of the keto diet plan is to shift the body’s metabolism in favor of burning fat instead of sugar for fuel. While being in ketosis has many benefits, adhering to this diet is pretty tough for most people as it requires measuring/tracking food consumption and very careful monitoring of your body’s ketone production. To learn more about what exactly ‘going keto’ means and if it might be a good fit for you, check out my post!Read More
Ever wondered why you can’t drink a cup of coffee past 11am or you’ll be staring all the ceiling all night, while your husband can have an espresso after dinner and sleep like a baby? The way your body breaks down and responds to caffeine is actually influenced by your genes! As a result of gene variants, some of us are fast caffeine metabolizers while others are slow metabolizers. Fast metabolizers can guzzle coffee all day and feel great – these lucky dogs get a whole bunch of benefits too, like increased metabolism, mental clarity, etc. Slow metabolizers are better off drinking green tea (which has about half the caffeine as coffee) or even skipping caffeine altogether, otherwise they get jittery, anxious and have disturbed sleep. To learn more about caffeine genes, fast/slow metabolizers, as well as the health benefits of coffee and green tea, check out my post!Read More
My amazing friend and fellow health activist, Clara Wisner of revolutionary lifestyle, is currently traveling around the world on an epic adventure. You might know Clara from the Living Rising podcast which I was on a few weeks ago chatting about Ayurveda. If you missed it, you can listen to it here. In addition to being a nutrition therapy practitioner, Clara is also a self-love guide. What does that mean? She specializes in helping women ditch toxic habits and release self-sabotaging beliefs that keep them stuck. As part of her travels, she's exploring self-love practices and spiritual theories all over the world and compiling the incredible knowledge she's garnering into a book about self-love. Soooo basically, she's a legend and I wanted to let y'all know about a super cool online course she's offering all about self-love....Read More
Hey everyone! Just wanted to give you a heads up that I was on Love Rising podcast this week chatting with Clara from Revolutionary Lifestyle about all things Ayurveda! As you guys may already know, I am a Certified Ayurvedic Lifestyle Counselor and often integrate Ayurvedic wellness practices and diagnostic tools in my holistic nutrition practice. On the podcast, I explain what Ayurveda is (hint: it's India's 5000 year old medical system, translated as the "science of life") and talk about the primary doshas (vata, pitta and kapha) and how to juggle all three to maintain health and balance. A big part of this is having a solid daily routine which I go through in detail, i.e. sleep-wake cycles, meal timing, etc. And finally Clara and I catch up about our respective experiences at Vaidyagrama which is an Ayurvedic detox retreat center in India. I was there about four years ago and my time there was instrumental in my personal healing process. You can read more about my time at Vaidyagrama here and here. So, if Ayurveda is at all interesting to you, head on over to iTunes and have a listen to the new Love Rising podcast! You can click the photo above or here is the link! Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or want to learn more!Read More
Ancient Ayurvedic wisdom teaches us that living in accordance with the natural rhythms of nature will lead to flow and ease. Living out of sync with these rhythms can cause disruptions in our bodies, such as indigestion, bowel irregularities, hormonal fluctuations and difficulty sleeping. The 24-hour day is broken down into six 4-hour cycles, each with its own optimal activities. The cycle I'm honing in on in today's post is our natural sleep-wake cycle, which is ideally 10pm - 6am. I've explained this in more detail in the post, along with discussing five of the most common sleep issues either I've experienced personally or hear from my clients. I've given you the action steps for how to fix these issues, plus a handful of deep sleep tips, to help you start getting more restorative sleep tonight!Read More
It’s likely that you’ve heard about the detrimental effects of the stress hormone cortisol. Elevated cortisol levels and chronic stress can affect every physiological system in your body. It can make you tired, anxious and irritable; lead to weight gain, bone loss, high blood pressure, insomnia and digestive issues; and contribute to diabetes and heart disease risk.Read More
What do cosmetics, shampoos, shower gels, stressful lifestyles, conventional food, and home cleaning products all have in common? They can all be hiding endocrine disruptors - toxic chemicals that can interfere with your body's endocrine (hormone) system. Endocrine disruptors can increase, decrease, block or imitate certain hormones, or alter how these hormones work in the body. They harm the body's neurological, immune, reproductive, and developmental systems and have been linked to a wide range of health concerns, including fertility problems, decreases sex drive, kidney disease and birth defects.Read More
The holiday season doesn't have to be all about gorging, boozing and no sleep. With a little planning, you can keep it fun and healthy without without getting fat and sick!
Here are five of my favorite health hacks to help you thrive, not just survive, this holiday season:Read More
The importance of food wastage is serious sh*t. Did you know that, globally, 1.3 billion tons of edible food is wasted per year? A new report from the National Resources Defence Council shows that an alarming 40% of food in America - more than 20 pounds per person each month - is thrown away. So, it's consumers (yes, us!) who cause half of this food wastage disaster! The average household throws out 20% of their groceries. That's one shopping bag in every 5 (*shock horror*). To me, throwing out food is like tossing dollar bills into the toilet. Whenever I have to do it (which is slim to never cause I'm a bit of a food waste nazi), it literally pains me. Surely I'm not the only one?Read More
Let’s face it – most of us feel like we’re experiencing some level of stress in our lives at the moment. Whether it’s family, work, financial or physical stress, our bodies are under some form of stress on a daily basis. While some stress is a good thing - it’s what gets you out of bed in the morning and motivates you be a productive person – many of us are feeling too much stress too often or for too long which puts us at risk for various health conditions.Read More
The sun is out, the weather is heating up (at least in Denver it is!)....which means backyard BBQs, Sunday beer sessions, happy hours, parties and weddings are kicking into gear. Spring/summer is my favorite time of year and when I enjoy being the most social. Sometimes being social translates into being over-served.
As fun as drinking can be, the body really takes a hit. After a big day/night out, you gotta give your body some love. No one likes to feel badly after having a good time so here are my top tips for enjoying a drink (or 10) and not suffering (too much) the next day!Read More
In life, we can choose to move with or against the current of nature’s natural rhythms. Our daily rhythms and hormonal fluctuations are tied to the cycles of nature and, when these are all in sync with each other, life seems a lot easier because you'll be 'going with the flow.'
According to Ayurveda, the stress of living against these natural cycles is a fundamental violation of healthy living. Living in sync with nature’s cycles is a powerful lifestyle tool to de-stress the body and mind and feel like you're in the flow of things.
Ayurveda suggests that, in nature, there are two 12-hour cycles that are each divided into three smaller cycles.Read More
I don't know about you guys but I think the flu shot is whack. I used to get it every year when I was younger but I've read some articles recently which suggest that it's actually not even that great at preventing the flu. In fact, a study at the University of Minnesota found that receiving a flu shot for one strain my contribute to a higher risk of contraction and severity from the flu of a different strain the following year. Additionally, I don't like the toxins that are in the vaccine. For example, Fluzone contains formaldehyde, which is a known carcinogen. Yuck! No, thank you.
I am not trying to persuade you one way or another, just merely informing you of some of the risks associated with the flu vaccine, and giving you ways to boost your immunity during flu season with alternative methods! So let's get to it, shall we?Read More
I recently organised a little 'party' to showcase an organic, local, and hand-made skincare range which I love, called Vanessa Megan. I invited about ten girls over to have a play with some of the products and hear first-hand from Vanessa why it is so important to feed your skin with natural ingredients instead of all the harsh chemicals found in most products on the market today. Vanessa Megan's motto is: "You should never put anything on your skin that you wouldn't eat." LOVE THAT! Her products are 100% natural and organic, free from mineral oils, SLS's, parabens, PEG's, artificial preservatives and fragrances. Not to mention, they smell and feel divine! The night was lots of fun and very informative. I think it served as a good catalyst for the girls to go home and read the labels on all those (probably expensive!) products in their bathroom cupboards. Also known as the Bathroom Challenge! I did this challenge a few months ago and was completely astounded by how many toxic chemicals and synthetic ingredients were in my beloved beauty regime. When we spray and lather these chemicals on ourselves every day, they undoubtedly seep through our skin (our largest organ) and directly into our bloodstream. I know many of us take such care with what we put in our mouths but few of us think twice about what we are putting on our skin. It's all going to the same place - into the bloodsteam! The first step to a beauty detox is self-education so I would definitely recommend reading labels and checking for the Big 9, as per the Bathroom Challenge. For those other ones you don't know (and probably can barely pronounce!), this cosmetic database is brilliant for searching a product or ingredient and learning about safety ratings and other health information.Read More