Herbal Teas for Your Health

Herbal Teas for Your Health

herbal teaI was recently asked what my favorite tea is and I answered, "That's like asking me which is my favorite child!"

So many teas to choose from .... and I love them ALL! How can I choose? There is a tea for every purpose. Herbal teas for your health...

Herbal teas come prepackaged by many companies available in our grocery store and can be quite expensive that way. You can actually save a LOT of money if you buy the ingredients in bulk and you can get really creative by combining different loose teas.

You don't need to buy those prepackaged tea bags! All you need is a tea infuser you can use anywhere to turn loose tea into a delicious, ready-to-go, nutritious drink...

(This article is for educational purposes only This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease).

Here are just a few of my favorite teas...

Calming Chamomile

Chamomile flower tea has wonderful soothing properties especially good before bed time and can be a remedy for indigestion. It is an aromatic and flavorful tea made from whole Chamomile flowers. The taste is refreshing and simple with clean floral aroma. You'll know it's ready to drink when your tea is light yellow in color - usually 4-5 minutes steeping time.

Refreshing, Soothing and Uplifting Mint Tea

My favorite company from which I buy all my bulk tea is Mountain Rose Herb Company. They have a wonderful bulk blend of loose mint tea that combines organic peppermint, spearmint for a delicious tea blend. Mint tea is excellent for digestion, headaches and can help you to feel more alert and focused.

Raspberry Leaf for Hormone Balancing

This is a must-have for women over 40. Raspberry leaf tea  has a long history of helping women find hormonal balance - and it tastes very much like black tea minus the caffeine.

Marshmallow Root for Respiratory

Medicinally, marshmallow root tea has been approved in Germany for supporting inflammation of the gastric mucosa, and for irritation of the oral and pharyngeal mucosa. It is often used for mild respiratory symptoms, including cough. The root is traditionally used to support a healthy digestive system also. You can read the research on this herb here.

Warming Chai Tea

Chai tea is wonderful in the winter months or anytime you are feeling under the weather. This blend of herbs contains organic ginger root, organic cinnamon bark, organic and fair trade Darjeeling tea, organic cardamom, organic and fair trade cloves, organic and fair trade nutmeg, and organic vanilla bean. This tea does contain caffeine.

Chai is a warm, piquant, and delightful blend. This particular blend is a great alternative for those who wish to avoid large amounts of caffeine, sugar, and dairy products, which are commonly found in commercial Chai products. It has an exotic, earthy flavor and the aroma itself is therapeutic with the combination of spices and vanilla. You steep it 5-7 minutes and when it is amber/orange in color you'll know it's ready!

Mint Chocolate Mate

Mint Chocolate Mate is a refreshingly smooth blend with just the right amount of kick. Think peppermint patty in a cup! The initial bright minty flavor and aroma transforms into a delightful combination of mate and cacao. A rich cup of tea that could easily be considered a dessert. It has a deep, roasted earthiness with a refreshing minty finish. You'll steep for 7-9 minutes and look for a dark amber color to know when it's full prepared for you to enjoy. This tea does contain caffeine so a little bit goes a long way. It contains organic and fair trade Yerba Mate, organic peppermint leaf, organic and fair trade roasted cacao nibs, organic roasted carob, organic vanilla beans, and organic and fair trade roasted cacao powder.

Tummy Taming Tea

If you or your child is experiencing tummy aches or digestive rumblings, this tea is very calming. Here is a recipe I use in my house I would love to share with you:

Combine ingredients in your tea infuser and then pour 1 cup of boiling water over it and steep for 5 minutes. Sip and be soothed!

21st Century Tea

We all can easily become overwhelmed in this fast-paced time, both mind and body. The air we breathe  is not always the cleanest and the stress of being on the go can easily run us down. This non-caffeine soothing and strengthening infusion called 21st Century Tea is specifically blended to offer support to our immune systems. Both helpful and tasty, enjoy a cup and relax. It contains organic nettle leaf, organic red clover blossoms, organic elder berries, organic alfalfa leaf, organic red Clover herb, organic St. John's Wort, organic sage, and organic ginger root.  Steep for just 3-4 minutes until golden in color.

Herbal teas for your health! It's an easy, delightful way to enhance your mind, body, spirit balance.

I proudly partner with Mountain Rose Herb Company as an affiliate partner because I use their products and know them to the highest quality and integrity products on the market. If you should choose to purchase any of these products using the links in this article, I will receive a percentage payment and utilize these funds to provide free and helpful content to the Wonders Wellness community.

Journaling Along the Journey of Life

Journaling Along the Journey of Life

journaling

After 35 years of keeping a journal myself, I can attest to the fact that the process of journaling helps enrich the journey of life. I am a big fan of writing regularly for a host of reasons and benefits.

Here are just a few:

  1. Journaling helps track thoughts and behavior when you are working to create new and healthier habits.
  2. Run-away thoughts and anxiety can be dumped onto the pages of a journal.
  3. Journaling provides accountability when you are striving toward goals in life.
  4. Writing in a journal allows for processing ideas, dreams, reflections and worries.
  5. Journaling can provide a spark for creativity and a place to envision projects and new realities.
  6. Journaling can be a spiritual experience, opening the heart, mind and put you in touch with your inner world and intuitive senses.

I have discovered over the years of working with clients that sometimes it feels difficult to get started or know what to write.

I was happy to see that one of my colleagues has developed a one-year online e-course that provides 52 journaling prompts geared toward helping people create a more fulfilling life for themselves.

Nicole Liloia, LCSW is a licensed social worker, therapist and a life coach who specializes in helping people create lives they love and learn to reduced stress. Her new course called The Live More E-Course and it provides 4 wonderful video tutorials plus weekly journaling prompts for an entire year - all focused on helping you to create a much more fulfilling life.

When journaling becomes a regular habit, it's amazing what shows up on the pages. Journaling can become like a trusted friend, a faithful companion, a mirror that helps you see yourself more clearly, a trainer and an accountability partner to keep you on track.

You can use write using good ole pen-n-paper or you can register for a free account at www.penzu.com. If  privacy is a concern, Penzu has a yearly fee to keep your journal safely encrypted.

Don't worry about your writing skills. It's not necessary to be a strong writer to keep a journal. In fact, I find it best to let go of all concerns about grammar and proper writing style. Journaling is a place for you to freely spill your feelings, thoughts, ideas, dreams, anxieties in whatever format feels right for you in the moment sans judgment and editorial.

Go check out Nicole's e-course and commit to a year of journaling for a clearer mind, a lighter heart and a more focused outlook.

Serving the Needs of Women Around the World

Serving the Needs of Women Around the World

Indian Woman

Be of service. Join me in helping women around the world.

In Yoga there is an important practice called seva.

Seva is a Sanskrit word meaning “selfless service” or work performed without any thought of reward or repayment.

In ancient India seva was believed to help one's spiritual growth and at the same time contribute to the improvement of a community.

An important part of our spiritual development is opening our hearts and extending love and help to those in need. And part of growing a heart-based business is having a commitment to giving back and helping for the good of the world.

Here at Wonders Wellness, I believe deeply in observing seva and I invite you to join me.african woman

Together, we can help women around the world who have limiting circumstances and are under-privleged. Please join me in helping! You can donate your time, money, specific items or your expertise to helping women around the world who need our help.

There are many women's charities but here are a few of my favorites that I like to support and hope you will too!

Just this year alone, Wonders Wellness has donated 25% of profits to these charities and there is a plan to continue donating a sizeable portion of all proceeds from the sales that come from this website.

women's global empowerment

The mission of Women’s Global Empowerment Fund is to support women through economic, social and political programs; creating opportunities while addressing inequality, strengthening families and communities. The strategy is to provide women with the framework necessary to create viable opportunities for themselves and their families.  Through grassroots strategies, marginalized women are given the tools necessary to alleviate poverty thus facilitating sustainable development and empowerment. Our goal is to work for social justice, increased human security and women’s empowerment. LEARN MORE as to how YOU can help here!

alliance for international women's rights

 

The Alliance's mission is to support women’s rights efforts in developing countries (with an initial focus on the Central Asia region) by developing a network of professionals in developed countries who are willing to use their skills and experience to help promote women’s rights.  The Alliance believes in the rights and values outlined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Convention on the Elimination of All Discrimination Against Women and the Beijing Platform for Action. These human rights instruments assert that "women's rights are human rights" and recognize the essential dignity and inherent rights of every person, male or female. LEARN MORE and see how YOU can be of service!

 

becky's fundBecky Lee Women's Support Fund (Becky's Fund) was founded in November 2006 by Becky Lee, an advocate and attorney for battered women's rights. After seeing the lack of support for small domestic violence organizations, she decided to create an organization to help both battered women and other organizations that fight domestic violence continue the work they were doing on behalf of these battered women. Becky’s Fund strives to address domestic violence in all sectors of our community, establish prevention-based educational programs to counter domestic violence, and collaborate with others in the community to find ways to change the behavior and thinking behind issues that cause and perpetuate domestic violence. CLICK HERE to learn more about how you can help!

 

virginia gildersleeve fundThe Virginia Gildersleeve Internationa Fund is an international women’s fund based in the United States and governed by an international Board of Directors providing grants globally to fund locally generated projects that advance the rights of women and girls; projects that help improve the lives of women and girls by advancing women’s rights and social justice. VGIF was founded in 1969 and has funded over 515 projects in 93 countries, focusing on issues ranging from education and health to economic empowerment and human rights. LOOK HERE to learn MORE about how you may be of service!

 

women's vpicesWomen’s Voices for the Earth (WVE) amplifies women’s voices to eliminate the toxic chemicals that harm our health and communities. WVE envisions a world where women lead to create a healthy environment without toxic chemicals in our workplaces, homes, and communities. LEARN MORE about how you can join with other women to help our planet earth.
This is just a short list. There are opportunities all around us to extend ourselves, to share what we know and what we have without any expectation of anything in return.
There is a time to build business and earn profits. There is a time for self-care. And there is a time to reach out beyond the comforts of our lives to reach those who truly need our help.

Aligning and Allowing: Living a Full & Authentic Life Over 40

Aligning and Allowing: Living a Full & Authentic Life Over 40

LIVE color

Since I am a woman who has spent most of my life practicing gentle yoga and meditation, I often borrow from these principles and experience in discussing life to my clients and students.

Even if you aren't into yoga, lean in and take some guidance from this analogy.

Once we have crossed over into midlife, we go one of two directions:

  1. We age rapidly. We see our health decline. We lose our luster for life. We often fall into a state of malaise or depression. We resent and resist what is and we get nowhere with that.   OR....
  2. We choose to do it differently. We allow what is but we begin to work with where we are making different choices, changing our habits, shifting and living authentically. We seek balance. When we do this we feel ALIVE, excited, peaceful, hopeful and fulfilled.

In the practice of yoga, we apply principles to achieve balance between contraction and expansion of both the mind and heart. In fact, the entire path and practice of yoga is about finding balancing and center.

The physical practice of yoga helps us to find the center  and balance in the body. If you are able to find physical balance, it is natural for your mind to follow. If your mind is scattered, your body will also be off balance.

Whether or not you practice yoga, these same principles apply for life.  And living a full and authentic life over 40 requires a practice of seeking center and balance.

In yoga we talk a lot about alignment. Aligning the body and the mind throughout the practice in order to have balance.

I think in life it is essential we constantly check our alignment and practice allowing what is so that we can work with the challenges and the joys that life presents rather than resisting. I recently wrote another article about dancing with life's challenges that speaks to this notion of working with your challenges rather than resisting and fighting.

Here are some steps you can take to begin creating a practice of aligning with your most authentic self, allowing what is, working with your present situation and creating a FULL life over the age of 40:

  1. Set appointments for your self-care. I'm not talking about routine medical or salon appointments (although that is important too!). I'm talking about the care of your spirit and your body in daily life. You know how to take care of others. You've been doing it all your life. Now, it's time to really dedicate time to care for yourself. Set appointments to go for a walk every day! To meditate... to shop and prepare and eat 3 meals/day that are rich in healthy whole foods.
  2. Get your beauty rest. Make time to do guided relaxation (I've got a great free one right here on this website!) Create a healthy sleep routine (grab my free guide Sleep Tight here) With appropriate rest, you will feel more energized and more joyful in your daily life.
  3. Embrace aromatherapy. I've been in love with essential oils for nearly 20 years. I joke about the fact that if there is a housefire and I can only grab one thing it will be my case of essential oils. In mid-life we need to be looking to natural ways to feel good, look our best and live a more fulfilling life - Get away from synthetics and toxic fragrances and check out essential oils. You'll be amazed how they will change the way you feel and look at daily life.
  4. Chug H2O. We hear it all the time but I can't emphasize enough how important this is.... Staying hydrated is so important for every aspect of our health especially as we grow older.
  5. Learn to say no. Sometimes living an authentic and full life over 40 means turning down invitations, politely declining time-consuming projects and making room for open space on your calendar. Open space is time that can be enjoyed taking care of your own self (see #1)

In my 12 Weeks to Total Transformation program and in my coaching programs I address how important it is that we lovingly and gently move into a plan for aligning and allowing.  In all my programs I very purposefully provide a step by step, week by week guide to getting everything in your life lined up. Your eating, your sleeping, your breathing, your movement, your thinking, your feeling... It's all there.

If 12 weeks feels like too much all at once, check out this little bitty one-new-habit-each-week program!  You can create a healthier way of living that will help you be aligned with your authentic self by incorporating just one new habit each week. It's easy really...

Allow what is and embrace who you are, where you are but then choose to align. Take simple, gentle action to redesign your life over 40.

 

Herbs to Aid Digestion for Women Over 40

Herbs to Aid Digestion for Women Over 40

 

herbal tea

Normal digestive functioning can get thrown off pretty easily. When women reach the mid-life point and hormones start becoming more erratic, our digestive health can take a hit.

Fortunately there are a number of herbs to aid digestion for women over 40. And I have a very affordable resource for you. I order all of my herbs from Mountain Rose Herbs because they are all organic, a high integrity company and the best prices I've found. I love Mountain Rose Herbs so much I have partnered with them as an affiliate to make their products available to my clients and customers.

So let me tell you about how herbs can help with your digestion!herbs

According to Marcelle Pick, OB/GYN NP, the science of using botanical remedies to treat health conditions is finding its way back into mainstream medicine. Nature’s healing properties, found in plants, herbs, roots, and flowers have been an essential part of restoring health for centuries, long before we could reach for pills from grocery store shelves.

Sherry Coleman Collins, MS, RDN, LD based in Atlanta recommends people consult with their doctor or registered dietitian to rule out intestinal disease or conditions and incorporate a healthy diet of nutrition-rich foods rather than relying on herbs.

I agree, that women should always consult with their health practitioner before taking herbs, depending on your health and any medications you may be taking.

According to herbalists there are three important herbal properties that can be helpful when our digestive system is off balance include bitters, aromatics, and demulcents. Let's take a closer look…

Bitters

bitters sodaA lot of people turn up their nose to the taste of bitter.... but the bitter taste is actually a very important piece of the flavor spectrum for overall health and well-being.

Bitter herbs can assist to stimulate digestion by helping gastric juices flow and encourage peristalsis. Just a drop of this flavor on the tongue is effective in activating the production of beneficial digestive secretions including saliva, gastric acid, and bile.

This will often help to promote normal elimination, provide relief for gassy cramping and to support a healthy appetite for nutritious foods after an illness or while traveling. It's a good idea to keep a bottle of these bitters on-hand to take by the drop or to make a super easy bitter soda. Here's a recipe:

Dandy Bitter Soda

Fill 1/3 of a 4oz jar with the herb mix. Pour a high grade unflavored vodka over the herbs until the jar is filled. Allow to extract for 2 weeks and strain. Use several droppers in a pint of seltzer water with a squeeze of fresh grapefruit juice, or take a few drops straight on the tongue.

 

Aromatics

Aromatic herbs have been used in cuisines around the world to add bursts of flavor to a meal, and also to help stimulate healthy digestion. These plants have volatile essential oils that present strong aromas like fennelpeppermintdillcoriander, and ginger to name a few. Many aromatic herbs are warming to the digestive tract and carminative, meaning they help expel gas. This action can ease an uncomfortable feeling of fullness especially after a meal by making flatulence more productive and less stagnant.

After-Dinner Digestif Lozengesherbal-digestif-loz

Mix dry ingredients in a bowl. Use a glass dropper to add one dropperful of liquid at a time to the bowl. Keep adding one dropper of liquid until the mixture holds together in a clump, similar to the consistency of cookie dough. Be careful not to add too much liquid. Form into small lozenges about the size of a pencil eraser. They will be strong! Coat the outsides with additional licorice root powder if desired. Allow to dry on a screen or plate for a few days. Store in a glass jar or tin.

Demulcents

Some herbs are mucilaginous and produce a slippery texture that coats, soothes, and protects mucus membranes. These plants also help to ease dry conditions. The slippery action triggers a reflex that promotes natural moistening secretions within the body systems such as respiratory, digestive, renal, and reproductive. Best extracted as an infusion in water rather than in alcohol tincture form, they can be helpful for hot and dried out conditions.

herbsSoothing Marshmallow Rose Tea

Fill 1/3 of a pint jar with herb mix (you can also bundle the herbs in cheesecloth) and cover completely with cool water. Refrigerate overnight and strain. Add honey to taste if you’d like a little more sweetness. Drink and enjoy!

 

*DISCLAIMER: For educational purposes only. This information has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Anti-aging Smoothie Recipes for Women Over 40

Anti-aging Smoothie Recipes for Women Over 40

woman in grass

Are you ready for some anti-aging smoothie recipes?

Grab your shopping list!

Click here to download antiagingsmoothieshoppinglist.pdf

and get your Vitamix out on the kitchen counter and let's start whipping up some special smoothies every day to introduce your skin to the BEST anti-aging regimen around.

Is all natural skin care is important? Absolutely.

But what you put into your body, many nutritional experts say is MORE important in terms of seeing ongoing anti-aging results.

In order to help your skin look and feel youthful, there are some specific nutrients you want to consume on a daily basis and smoothies are a great way to incorporate a powerful combination of these. I'm going to provide for you 3 anti-aging recipes for women over 40.

But first, let's take a look at the nutrition specifics we are aiming for in order to create these delicious anti-aging concoctions.

Vitamin C

This antioxidant vitamin encourages new cell growth and some experts say that a diet high enough in vitamin C can help minimize wrinkles. Vitamin C also helps the body absorb other good vitamins so this is an important one!

Vitamin E

This vitamin helps the skin retain moisture, promotes healing and fights off free-radicals (those cancer-causing menaces). It's important to ensure you have enough Vitamin E in your diet and you will find spinach, avocados, sunflower seeds and almonds give you a good dose of E.

Beta Carotene

This little anti-aging buddy is a carotenoid antioxidant, protecting your skin cells from  sun damage and helps improve your eyesight - which we can all use as we hit mid-life!

Fiber

Getting plenty of fiber daily is going to keep your intestines moving, removing toxins from the body and slowing the absorption of the natural sugars that occur in the fruits we are using in the smoothies.

Healthy Fat

Once you get over the age of 40 you probably begin to notice your skin is aging.  As the hormones in our bodies begin to shift and change, your skin begins to lose its natural moisture and the elasticity of youth begins to give out. This is why your skin begins showing lines and wrinkles. The healthy fat of omega 3  helps hydrate your skin by plumping up your skin cells. Omega 3 also has anti-inflammatory benefits. You can read more about healthy fats HERE.

Here are your recipes for 3 anti-aging smoothies below. I recommend you drink one in the morning and another in the afternoon. Be sure to drink them on an empty stomach as the fruits will digest rapidly and you want the full benefit of all these high powered nutrients.

green smoothie 3Hail to the Kale Smoothie

This smoothie is a great way to get your greens and beta carotenes in! Sure to give your whole body a boost first thing in the morning or in the afternoon.

Ingredients:

1 cup packed kale leaves (remove the stems) Vitamin E, Vitamin C, Beta Carotene, Fiber
 1  medium carrot Beta Carotene
 1/2 green apple (remove stem and seeds) Fiber, Vitamin C
 1/4 lemon (remove rind and seeds) Vitamin C
 1/2 banana Fiber, Potassium
 1/2 cup coconut water hydrating, contains electrolytes and healthy fat
1/2 cup almond milk Vitamin E, Fiber, Healthy Fat

 

Directions: Combine ingredients in your Vitamix. Blend until smooth, serve and enjoy!

berry smoothie 2

Berry Berry Fairy God-Mother Smoothie

This is such an anti-aging power punch it's like having a magic potion from your fairy god-mother!

Ingredients:1/2 cup fresh or frozen blueberries Vitamin C, Fiber, and LOTS of extra powerful anti-aging anti-oxidants!

1/2 cup strawberries Vitamin C, Fiber, and LOTS of extra powerful anti-aging anti-oxidants!
1/2 cup of raspberries Vitamin C, Fiber, and LOTS of extra powerful anti-aging anti-oxidants!
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk Hydrating healthy fat, fiber
1 teaspoon chia seeds Omega 3, Fiber
1 tablespoon of fresh mint leaves (vitamin C)

 

Directions: Combine ingredients in your Vitamix. Blend until smooth, serve and enjoy!

  • green smootie

 Spring Green Smoothie

Ingredients:
 1 cup of tightly packed spinach Vitamin E, Fiber, Vitamin C
 1/2 green apple Fiber, Vitamin C
 1/2 banana Potassium, Fiber
 2 Tablespoons  ripe avocado flesh Vitamin E and Healthy Fat
 1 Tablespoon sunflower seeds Vitamin E, Healthy Fat
 2 Tablespoons lemon juice Vitamin C
 1 cup of unsweetened almond milk Vitamin E, Healthy Fat

Directions:

Combine ingredients in your Vitamix. Blend until smooth, serve and enjoy!

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