As mentioned in my post on Spring Immunity, one of my top go to's for giving us a health boost are my Young Living oils (why I choose YL over any other brand here). I use this roller on our feet when we are going to any big family event, crowded locale, a party, when we travel or when we start to feel under the weather. So basically, anytime we leave the confines of our home, haha.
These rollers are super easy to make. I order my roller bottles from Amazon and always have some on hand so I can gift my girls when these babies when they travel too.
To make yourself an Immunity Roller, blend up the following:
2 Drops Frankincense
4 Drops Thieves
3 Drops Lemon
2 Drops Oregano
Fill the rest of the bottle with carrier oil
... and place on your roller top. Voila!
Need help getting started with oils? Visit my Oils page to read more about it.
Ready to sign up and make your roller? Join here!
Last night we threw a dinner party for some dear friends of ours. My friend Emma is a total sweetheart and fellow "crunchy" mama like myself and she brought me a batch of homemade elderberry syrup as a hostess gift.
Could someone know me any better than that? Haha.
I buy Elderberry (which is not cheap no matter where you get it, I usually get it at Sprouts or on Amazon or Thrive), regularly to keep mine and the baby's immunity up, so a whole batch for the house was scoring huge. Thanks friend.
I was lacking some creative ideas for the blog this week, #MomTired #MomBrain, and her thoughtful gift got me thinking about Spring immunity. The baby and I have both been dealing with some Spring allergy sniffles and the tail end of cold and flu season still looms throughout the U.S. so its always good to have strong go-to's to keep us well and breathing well.
I wanted to share today some of what we are currently doing naturally to keep us well today and through the Spring and Summer season.
And if you're wondering how to make Elderberry Syrup at home, Emma uses Wellness Mama's recipe, which you can find here.
As a natural mama, I want to do everything I can to support Grey's body, and ours, with ways that are natural and created by God. Elderberry, with its anti viral and anti inflammatory properties, it's high in Vitamin A, B, C, antioxidants and quercetin and enhances the immune system. I could write a whole post on Elderberry, and I may sometime soon, but it is the powerhouse player of our immune boost regimen and we take it everyday. I usually take an Elderberry gummy that also contains zinc and vitamin C as well.
Speaking of Vitamin C, I take a buffered Vitamin C powder from Seeking Health when I'm starting to feel run down, when I'm fighting allergies or when I'm sick to give me a boost. I use a buffered C as it's gentler on my stomach and bladder, which I've had issues with in my past. It's also the reason why I don't take it everyday and get my daily C from the elderberry gummy or through fruit and vegetables.
My biggest go to to keep my home purified and healthy are my oils. In addition to cleaning with and diffusing Young Living Oil's Thieves Blend, I also make a custom Immunity Roller for our feet (Grey's included!). Thieves oil is a powerhouse immunity booster and has played a vital role in shortening our past illnesses (comparing our average colds to post-oil life vs. before we used them), curbing illness when we start to feel something coming on and for general everyday support.
A daily probiotic has also been vital. We began taking them to boost our immune systems, but learned how they can support our immune systems so it became a win/win to make sure we take it with our dairy-free yogurt or smoothie in the morning.
In addition to these steps, we also drink a ton of water, eat a hearty helping of fruit and vegetables every day and get optimal rest.
How do you boost your families health naturally? Always love to chat with fellow healthy ladies on keeping their families well.
As someone who's personally been using essential oils for nearly two years, I felt it was time to move from simply using oils, to sharing what they've done for me and my family.
Authenticity means everything to me, which is why it's taken so long for me to move into the space of sharing and selling oils. As I really, whole heartedly began to believe in them and fall in love with this non-toxic lifestyle we are leading with our homes, health and bodies, I began speaking more of them and sharing them with those around me and with my clients and readers.
Many have asked how they can get started, I have all that info on my oils page.
This post, however, serves to inform on how you can best utilize the oils that come in the Premium Starter Kit. It's how I got started, it contains some of my very favorite oils that are versatile for your everyday life and it is how many of my friends and clients are starting their oily journeys as well.
Below I've outlined what's included in the Premium Starter Kit, and how each oil is best used. If you have any questions, would like to try an oil or are interested in getting started, contact me. I'd be happy to chat!
This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Natalie Hodson, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #abscorepelvicfloor http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV
I've never been one to shy away from hard topics when it comes to women's health and I'm excited that, today, I finally get to dig deeper into one of my very favorite topics that most women don't talk about.
The health of our core and pelvic floor post-baby.
I've personally suffered from Pelvic Floor Disorder and pelvic inflammation for years, even before Grey was born, and after a 29 hour natural labor, four hours of pushing and a traumatic birth, my pelvic issues have continued since his arrival and I stay diligent to do all I can to support the health of my abs, core and pelvis. Not only for my health throughout life, but for when and if I'm blessed to carry and birth another little baby.
In addition to pelvic floor therapy and massage, I have been following Natalie Hodson's Abs, Core and Pelvic Floor program to work on my pelvic floor and core health daily. Therapy and massage can be pricey, and with a one year old, hard to get in for appointments as often as I'd like. Natalie's program allows me to stay on top of my body's performance and health every day, even with a baby in the room.
Along with Dr. Monique Middlekauf, a specialist in pelvic floor dysfunction, this program is well-rounded, touching not only on exercises that can help your overall pelvic floor and core health, but it also includes nutrition help, supplement advice and encouraging self-talk affirmations.
To be honest, I actually cried a few tears of joy when I found out about this book and program. I've been searching for ways to minimize pain and improve function in between doctor visits and this has been such a blessing to me, and by extension to my family, because when I feel better and have an outlet to exercise in a safe, effective way that supports the post-partum issues we as mamas can deal with, I am a happier person overall.
The program is an easy 30-day program that can be done right in your own living room. It addresses issues such as pelvic floor dysfunction (raises hand), Diastasis Recti (a problem that plagues many of my mama friends and clients) as well as helping with overall fitness and turning our mom-bods into leaner, healthier bods we can feel good in. Natalie and Dr. Middlekauf are extremely knowledgeable and the program is written well and is easy to understand and follow along.
Women are able to start the program as early as 6 weeks post-partum (or as advised by your doctor) and on. It's never to late to start taking care of your core and pelvic floor, and even women who haven't gone through childbirth but who suffer from pelvic or abdominal muscle conditions, can benefit from this program. Issues ranging from incontinence to chronic tightness (my personal ailment) to painful intercourse and urinary problems (also mine), can be improved by putting effort into supporting such an important part of our bodies.
As mamas who are looking to get back in shape, I know a lot of us jump right back into our old routine - crunches, planks, vigorous workouts - when in reality, as a personal sufferer of pelvic floor disorder, and with fellow moms struggling with Diastastis Recti, these are big no-no's in getting yourself back on track and they can actually increase your pain and underlying issues.
Abs, Core & Pelvic Floor addresses all of these key points and gives us women alternative, beneficial exercises that can not only help us get back into shape, but that support our issues, helping to heal, restore and strengthen.
The entire program is available in a printable PDF, as well as a series of videos, to further assist in understanding how to do each exercise, how to engage your muscles and how to use the right form to prevent injury. There's also bonus information on nutrition, which, as a nutritionist, I found exciting to see included because it is such an important piece of the health puzzle.
Taking steps to improve my pelvic health, is HONESTLY, one of the BEST decisions I ever made for myself. It personally changed MY life, which is why I am SO passionate about it, and why I don't shy away from the topic when other women want me to share my story or ask for advice.
Personally, from one mama friend to another, I would suggest you speak to your doctor or a pelvic floor therapist in your area to assess and diagnose your specific issues.
To learn more about this amazing 30-day program, read more on Abs, Core & Pelvic Floor on Natalie's website!
And when you do start the program, reach out! I'd love to cheer you on and do it along with you! Find more on the program and follow along my journey on Instagram as well with the #AbsCorePelvicFloor hashtag.
Although it's a 30-day program, I plan to integrate their exercises, stretches and tips in to my day to day workouts. Take the step, you won't regret. I feel so much stronger, healthier and so many issues have improved since I've implemented my game plan to better pelvic health. There is so much valuable information to gain from this program, in addition to what I was already doing, that I can use for life and am so thankful for it, and for them.
This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Hyperbiotics, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #HealthiestDaysAhead http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV
As a nutritionist, and as your friend, I seriously love your guts.
I want them to be healthy and thriving, full of beneficial bacteria and healthy, good food that is kind to your body.
More than that, I want you to love them as well.
So many clients, friends and family members come to me asking how to do that. They know I've personally made changes and improvements, and they've heard me toss around the phrases "gut health", "inflammation", "probiotic", and "prebiotic", and most people need direction or are stuck in the pattern of "what they know".
So, I decided to put together a list of what I do, to ensure my gut is in tip top shape. Doing so, allows me room to enjoy decadent treats now and again, because I know my foundation, from which my immune health and mental clarity, is solid.
You'll find my full list below, but I really want to focus on the star player on my Get Gut Healthy team, and that's the Probiotic. I've been taking a daily probiotic since 2011 and it's helped my health immensely. And now, with Grey here, I make sure my husbands gut gets love too, as well as the baby's.
So many things in our world today break down the delicate intestinal environment. From antibiotics, pesticides in our food and the tap water we consume, to chemicals we breathe in the air, the overuse of sugar, stress and not enough sleep - it takes quite a beating and its our job to build it back up and strengthen what is weakened over time.
Think of your gut as the command center from which major acts derive from. From regularity (goodbye constipation!) to mental clarity (goodbye brain fog and fatigue!), immunity boosting (are you a chronic cold/flu sufferer?) and yeast balancing (infections? candida?) - getting your gut back in action is critical.
One of my FAVORITE formulas, for both me and the fam, is the new Hyperbiotics line, found at Target. (As if we needed another reason to shop and love this store, am I right mamas?)
As someone who struggled with getting her folate and B Vitamin levels up when I was trying to conceive Grey, their Pro-Moms blend packs natural folate and helps produce essential B vitamins.
And if you know me and my need for all things Non-GMO, their formulas are vegetarian, non-GMO, and free from gluten, lactose and sugar! You also won't find any additional nasties such as soy, iron, nuts, artificial flavors, artificial colors, or preservatives.
As a nursing mom, the Pro-Moms blend is what I am on right now, though the Pro-Women, Pro Kids (for my nieces and nephews) and Pro-15 blend are in the family cabinet as well. It's great for those of us who are nursing or pregnant, due to the fact that it encourages full nutrient absorption which is key when we are growing and sustaining lives.
The Pro-Women blend also contains cranberry extract to give our urinary system a little love as well.
Now, let's talk about my top Gut Friendly must-haves in your kitchen.
Now, just like anything, each persons body and makeup are different, so you may react to this food source, just as one can react to any other natural food. I have clients that don't tolerate it, not because it is a bad or harmful product in general, but because they have a specific sensitivity. Just like I do not handle oranges well. Because of this, do I keep my clients and readers from consuming oranges? No. I just know it's something that causes inflammation in my own make-up.
Let's look at some facts backed by scientific research to give us a clearer picture on why and how carrageenan is used, and why it's a better choice over other food additives.
Questions I most often get asked are:
We have a lot of choices to make when it comes to food. When I started researching additives and ingredients in 2011, I made a choice to cut out many, many ingredients. You may contact me to speak on any questions you may have on label reading and ingredients, however, my extensive research on carrageenan and how I feel when I consume it, is what made me make the ultimate choice to keep it in my diet. I believe whole-heartedly in using plant resources over synthetic chemicals and I have maintained a healthy diet with great improvement in all my symptoms with this as a regularly consumed ingredient in my food.
We know its seaweed, but how is it sourced?
It is a soluble fiber derived from red seaweed, a natural food ingredient that has been used for hundreds of years (it is not "new" like read in some claims) in food preparation worldwide, replacing our need for synthetic and animal-based products. This fact makes it a great option for the vegan lifestyle, as well.
What foods do you find this ingredient in and what are the benefits?
Acting as a natural stabilizer, it offers benefits in texture, structure and physical appearance to foods such as dairy-free milks, ice creams, yogurt, dressings, jams and jellies and meat products. It adds creaminess and helps foods retain moisture and freshness.
How is it used elsewhere and what are it's benefits outside of food consumption?
It is also found in make-up, face wash, toothpaste and shampoos, allowing companies to cut the use of harmful and synthetic chemical stabilizers.
How can I learn about it's safety and read more research on this?
All of the research can be found through Food Science Matters. With many scientific studies and reports to back up the safety of this food additive. You may also follow Food Science Matters on Twitter and Facebook to interact and start a conversation.
Chocolate Frosted Cake Donuts (gluten-free/dairy-free/egg-free/soy-free)
Mango + Greens Smoothie (gluten-free/dairy-free/nut-free)
Glazed Spiced Apple Bundt Cake (gluten-free/dairy-free/soy-free)
Salted Caramel Vanilla Hot Cocoa (gluten-free/dairy-free/soy-free)
My chosen brands of coconut and almond milk, yogurts and meat sources often use the seaweed-derived product that ensures my food stays fresh and allows me the convenience to have these items on hand for my family and events without having to make them at home.
It's important to keep in mind when making food changes to thoroughly research to make the best informed choices for you and your family. And remember, Food Science Matters.