Navigating the cold and flu season naturally.

Vitamin D

Many people are deficient of vitamin D3 due to lack of sun light exposure, and lack of vitamin D3 from food sources. People with a BMI of 30 or higher are at higher risk of being deficient( vitamins a, d e, and k are stored in the adipose tissue of the body, the more fat tissue the less available vitamin D is to the body) people with darker skin are at a higher risk of being deficient related to melanin blocking out D3 during sun exposure, living in northern states and being elderly affect you as well.

What are the benefits of vitamin D3?

Reduces occurance of respiratory illness such as pneumonia, the flu, bronchitis and can provide better support for conditions like COPD and asthma. Supplementing my toddler with vitamin D decreased her asthma symptoms by 50%.

Vitamin D aids in the absorb calcium and phosphorus which is essential to bone health.

Vitamin D has benefits for us mentally especially during winter time when sun exposure is reduced. Vitamin D can help with with the symptoms seasonal depression.

How do I take it?

One of my favorite supplement companies is Life Extension. For a small amount of money you can supplement your body with vitamin D easily.

Supplementing is good way to obtain Vitamin D. It’s ideal to obtain vitamin D from whole food sources. Fatty fish like salmon and mackerel , cheese and egg yolks. Plant forms of vitamin D are actually called vitamin d2 and this is often found fortified in almondmilks, soymilks and available in mushrooms that have been exposed to UV light. Nothing beats getting sunlight itself!

Can I take too much?

Yes ,when prior to supplementing with vitamin D you should do some blood work to see if you are deficient of vitamin D or not. Over supplementing can result in high levels of calcium in the body resulting to damage of the kidneys and bone.

Wash your hands it’s actually #1

In nursing school it was literally drilled into my head that #1 for reducing infection is hand washing! Over use of hand sanitizers removes the good bacteria on our skins surface. It’s important to wash your hands with soap and water to remove bad bacteria. When your hands are visibly dirty, after using the bathroom, going out of the house ( touching money, door knobs etc), touching your germ trapped phone and before making meals is a small list of a whole slew of times/ reasons to wash your hands on a regular basis.

Hand sanitizers contain alcohol which dries and cracks the skin, leaving it open to bacteria. It’s good practice with any handwashing to use lotion when hands are dry to prevent cracking/ drying.

Read the link below to find out the pros and cons of using hand sanitizers over good old soap and water.

Are Hand Sanitizers Harmful? | Rush University Medical Center
https://www.rush.edu/health-wellness/discover-health/are-hand-sanitizers-harmful?amp

Supplement with Zinc!

Zinc has many roles in the body that support immune function. Zinc helps break down carbohydrates for cell function, aids in cell growth ( wound healing benefits). Zinc can help prevent the common cold and shorten its duration. If you are deficient in zinc you’ll find that your sense of smell and taste maybe altered. Zinc helps reverse those problems.

Where can I find zinc as whole food sources?

  • nuts, grains, legumes ( chickpeas, beans)
  • Animal protein beef, chicken, lamb
  • Mushrooms, kale, garlic

You can also purchase zinc and zinc lozengers as a tablet or capsule over the counter.

Apple cider vinegar ( with the mother)

Apple cider vinegar is a fermented food that is rich in probiotics. Probiotics support the immune system function, aid in digestion and reduce fungal infections.

Mind Body Green’s blog states apple cider vinegar may result in a trimmer mid section and additional weight loss as it aids in appetite suppression.

I have personally used apple cider for it’s anti fungal benefits, ph balance benefits (for my oral health) . I’ve used AVC for my skin ( it’s antibacterial properties works well on acne caused by bacteria)

I’ve used it to clean my hair and any time I feel a cold coming on I begin supplementing with Bragg’s AVC. It’s raw unpasterized and contains those live probiotics.

Garlic, Ginger and cayenne pepper.

I use raw ginger for it’s anti inflammatory benefits. It reduces nausea and muscle pain that comes with a cold or flu.

Raw garlic has many benefits due to its anti oxidant power. It can help boost immunity and prevent infection. I used garlic during my pregnancy to control gestational high blood pressure. It worked well for me. Garlic has many positive affects on heart health.

Cayenne Pepper has pain relieving properties. How is this so? The active chemical in Cayenne pepper is Capsaicin. Capsaicin reduces certain amounts of a neuropepitde related to pain. It reduces those signals going to the brain which in turn reduces pain levels throughout the body.

Lemon and Apples! An apple a day…..

Lemons are a great food source of the almighty vitamin C. Lemons have anti inflammatory benefits and are a rich anti bacterial properties that prevent infections. Lemons aid in the removal of wastes from the body by improving the kidneys and liver function. Lemon is often used in detox protocols for this reason.

Apples are a rich source of vitamin C just like lemons! Havard Nutritionalist have studied the benefits of apples and this is what they’ve come up with.

“Apples are rich in quercetin and pectin, both of which are credited for supplying apples with their health benefits. [1] Quercetin is a flavonoid, a type of naturally occurring plant chemical that has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. Pectin is a type of soluble fiber that may help prevent constipation and have a modest effect on lowering LDL, the “bad” cholesterol. “

My cold/ flu chasing tea

  1. Filtered purified water ( any amount I just eye everything
  2. Washed raw ginger peeled ( about the size of a teaspoon) kepted whole
  3. Raw garlic ( one clove whole)
  4. Whole apples washed and halved
  5. Thyme, Cinnamon or cayenne and raw honey for taste
  6. Raw washed lemon cut and squeezed
  7. Apple Cider Vingar with the mother 1 table spoon

Instructions

Bring apples, garlic, ginger, lemons to a boil allowing the apples to become mushy.

Add cinnamon, thyme, cayenne pepper ans whatever herbs you’d like.

Strain those ingredients. Add ACV to the tea. And some raw honey for taste!!

Other great sources

I could write a whole blog post about the benefits of elderberries during cold and flu season.. this miracle berry is a great addition to your cold/flu management. I recommend Organic Olivia’s elderberry syrup its packed with antioxidants and immune support.

Disclaimer

This post is not intended to replace medical recommendations, prevent or cure disease. It’s not intended to replace medical advice. Please see your Holistic doctor or primary physican for medical instruction. Do not start supplementation without proper blood work up and without informing your doctor first .

Resources

Taking too much vitamin D can cloud its benefits and create health risks – Harvard Health
https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/taking-too-much-vitamin-d-can-cloud-its-benefits-and-create-health-risks

Vitamin D reduces respiratory infections — ScienceDaily
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2016/11/161116103005.htm

Zinc in diet: MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia
https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/002416.htm

6 Surprising Ways Garlic Boosts Your Health – Health Essentials from Cleveland Clinic
https://health.clevelandclinic.org/6-surprising-ways-garlic-boosts-your-health/

15 Benefits of Drinking Lemon Water in Morning Empty Stomach | Edison Institute
https://www.edisoninst.com/15-benefits-of-drinking-lemon-water-in-morning-empty-stomach/

A Beginner’s Guide To Apple Cider Vinegar: Benefits, Safety & Use
https://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-5875/15-Reasons-to-Use-Apple-Cider-Vinegar-Every-Day.html

Social Media

Follow me on instagram @Namastehealth._

Thank you

Thank you for reading. If you enjoyed my blog please check out my other articles as well. Subscribe to my blog as well. Post and share what you do to stay healthy as well.

Namaste –

Leg Workout Circuit

This workout can be completed at home or in the gym.

Equipment needed Free weights, Stability Ball, Step and Water. You can perform all these movements without weight or equipment with the exception of “bridge to leg curl on stability ball”. Each exercise has a youtube link for instructional information if needed.

Circuit One

Warm up with 10 burpees https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dZgVxmf6jkA

Complete each exercise 10 times and repeat this circuit for 4 rounds.

1. Weighted Reverse Lunges on stepper https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R-g5yPNYv2k

2. Weighted Deadlifts https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IiGk8g3e41w

3. Weighted Plie Squats https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YJzrn0SaiTA go deep, don’t comprise weight for form and don’t forget to squeeze at the top.

4. Weight Lunges ( forward) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QOVaHwm-Q6U

Circuit Two

1. Squat Push Press https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q3NdExA1Sy8 Instead of lifting the heel like the video, keep heels planted. Push up from all four corners of planted feet.

2. Skater Lunges with weight. No jumping. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DUbAhVe0e8Q

3. One Legged Deadlift with weight (a dumbbell held with both hands or kettle bell)https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9bHy3ojQWA

4. Standing Legs lifts with or without weight https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cLxf88HZ85Y Keep standing leg slightly bent to protect knee, keep the chest open and upright. No slouching!

5. Weighted Calf raises to burn out ( meaning do as many as you can without stopping)

Cool down with Stability ball

1. Bridge on Stability Ball (look at minute 3.07 on link provided, lift the hips as high as you can. Drive through your heels. Perform slowly with control https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=okDgnZTnpcw

2. Bridge to leg curl on stability ball ( look at minute 4.33 on the link provided above, again drive through the heels, keep hips high and use control)

Yoga Cool down.

I recommend a hips and hamstring related yoga cool down. Tonight following this workout I did a feel 22 minute hips and hamstring yoga flow from Namaste Yoga on amazon prime. Season 3 episode 5.

Disclaimer

Namaste Health does not endorse or share beliefs or ideals of the videos shown. Do not start a new workout regime until you are cleared to do so by your physican. I was not asked to link these youtube videos by any of the providers, neither did I receive any forms of payments or gifts. Any workouts shared with you are those I have created and done myself.

Social Media

If you completed this workout and enjoyed it please let me know! Please subscribe to my blog here at namastewell. Follow my instagram account namastehealth._ for more health related information, exercises, diet ideas and yoga!

Thank you for reading and working out with me!

Namaste ~

How to implement a non toxic skin care routine.

Let’s get to know your skin. The skin is the bodies’ largest organ. It absorbs all the ingredients just like a sponge; think of your pores as a swinging gateway. Not only are toxins secreted from your pores they are also let into the body this way. Imagine all the chemicals in your perfumes, soaps, shampoos, lotion, body washes, make up and other cosmetics i.e lubes, deodorant etc. not to mention household products and laundry detergent. Whenever possible we need to eliminate toxicity in our lives and our skin care routine.  One of the biggest questions are what am I looking for when it comes to non-toxic skin care?

No. 1 is be on the lookout for Parabens in cosmetics. Propylparaben, Butylparaben, Methylparaben and Propylparaben are some of the chemical names you’ll see used. Parabens are a preservative that was originally derived from different kinds of fruit. Parabens are chemicals that are produced as a preservative for foods and cosmetics developed in the 1950’s.  Parabens stop products from growing molds and different bacteria in them. They are widely used in our society. We are often consuming parabens in overabundance on a regular basis. The problem with Parabens is that they are known to be hormone disruptors. I have experienced this first hand when dealing with Estrogen dominance. The constant exposure of this chemical alters how our hormonal profile works. Parabens are xenoestrogen producers. They cause the body to increase production of the hormone Estrogen. Increased Estrogen in the body will cause males to develop breasts and have a low sperm count. Estrogen over production has a negative effect on young girls by causing them to reach puberty at much younger age. Estrogen dominance causes weight gain in all individuals, increased PMS symptoms, memory problems, and increased chance of developing ovarian cancer later in life.

Avoiding Parabens is overall very good for your health. I saw a significant change when I began removing xenestrogens from my cosmetics. I lost belly fat, felt more energy and overall lost fat deposits around my waist. My periods haven’t been as heavy and the menstrual period went from 7 days of bleeding to 5 days. I was pleased to shave 2 days off my cycle.

No 2 be on the lookout for “natural”  Xenoestrogen producers. Some of the essential oils that I love the most I must refrain from using or use sparingly. Lavender and Tea Tree oil have been cited by Medical News today as hormone disrupters. Does that mean you need to throw out all your favorite essential oils? No absolutely not! I encourage the use of essential oils however; with everything else limit your use of it in cosmetics and detergents. Decreasing exposure is important for individuals with Estrogen dominance imbalance.

No 3 be on the lookout for Sodium Laurel Sulfate and Aluminum Laurel Sulfate in your cosmetics. These chemicals were created to make skin care products foam. Sodium Laurel Sulfate strips your skin of its natural oils creating skin irritations. This chemical is also well known as a hormone disrupter and can cause Eczema as well as dry skin on a regular basis.

Use Vegan and Cruelty free cosmetics.

Whether or not you are an avid meat eater, dabble with being a vegetarian, or full blown Vegan everyone can benefit from taking the vegan route with cosmetics. Vegan skin care as a whole is so beneficial to our society, the companies creating these products are already inclined to remove toxins from their cosmetics. Non vegan cosmetics are full of Animal by products. Cosmetic Companies are often using the very waste of the animal such as urine, known as (Carbamide) in ingredients list, crushed bones ( Keratin, hydrolyzed animal proteins ) and tendons, ligaments of animals known as Gelatin or Collagen in products. Vegan companies are reducing man’s the carbon foot print placed on our planet. We are all aware of the toxins animals are eating, produced inhumanely, and increased cause of methane gases from the beef and dairy industry. By supporting Vegan Cosmetics we are essentially cleaning our air. Cruelty free means that your products were not tested on animals. Think lab rats and little bunnies. These animals were not involved in the process of creating your skin care. I see this as a plus in both ways, no animals were harmed or tortured and it means there are no heavy chemicals in your products causing need to “ test on animals” before humans,  If you believe in or practice Niyamas such as Ahimsa it maybe a personal benefit to you as an added effort to practice non harming.

Use natural detox methods and Lymph draining to improve skin quality.

Skin brushing is the act of dry brushing your skin in an upward motion towards the heart. Skin brushing increases circulation, detoxifies the skin, increases energy levels and exfoliates your skin. My personal favorite Lymph drainage method is Gua Sha. Gua sha is an ancient Chinese method of rubbing a tool against the body ( jade stone, wooden etc). I use it on my face. It increases blood flow (circulation) helps produce natural collagen in the skin, tightens the skin naturally, increases relaxation and helps with sinus issues. Getting adequate exercise, moving your body and sweating is a great lymphatic system detox as well.

Hydrate

Getting an adequate amount of water daily is so important for your skins appearance and health. Oily skin is often the result of dehydration. The body sends signals to your oil glands that the skin needs hydration, this causes an over bunce in oils which in turn becomes acne and black heads.  Through proper hydration these signals won’t be released as often. Water intake will prevent your skin from becoming dull, flaky, dried out and wrinkly.  I have to admit I lack in the hydration department of my skin care routine, it’s a work in progress. It’s literally the cheapest and most effective way to better skin.

Choosing non toxic skin care products

One of my favorite go to’s for finding out about vegan cosmetics and clean skin care products is the ethical elephant. I am a Glossier fan for cosmetics and they give the run down about how they are not vegan but do claim to be cruelty free. While Ethical Elephant does not help you look for sulfates or parabens a few companies I really like are 100% vegan and cruelty free Derma- E, Pacifica Beauty and Nature’s Gate. Think Dirty is a skin care app that helps you find out if your products are “clean or not.” They also offer beauty boxes. I love Maro Skin care face cleansing oil. The oils are pure, vegan and paraben free. Maro Skin care is an upcoming woman run cosmetic company out of NYC. Check them out on IG.

Disclaimer

I was not asked by any of the products mentioned above to write this or received any benefits of doing so. Nothing in this article is intended to treat, diagnose or cure any diseases

References

https://www.livescience.com/64862-what-are-parabens.html
https://ethicalelephant.com/vegan-makeup-skincare-brands/
http://alnewstoday.com/articles/321262.php#1https://www.perriconemd.com/blogs/forever-young-blog/the-importance-of-hydration-for-body-and-skinps://www.vegancatwalk.com/blogs/articles/5-most-common-animal-ingredients-hidden-in-your-makeup


Chemical/ Vinegar Free DYI Counter Top Cleaner!

I am not sure if anyone is like me and really dislikes the scent and taste of Vinegar. Most Organic DIY household cleaners that I’ve found throughout the years contain a base of White Vinegar. I found that as I diluted the Vinegar or added essential oils, the Vinegar continued to stink. I could always smell it while cleaning or notice the smell lingering in the house after wards and it never felt fresh.

The major player in my DIY ingredient is Witch Hazel: We all know Witch Hazel well for its natural cosmetic quality from natural facial toner to naturally treating hemorrhoids. Witch Hazel has an antibacterial and astringent quality to it that I wanted to add to my cleanser. It also has a nice base smell to it naturally all on its own.

Tea Tree Oil and Eucalyptus oil combination: This combination creates a relaxing and fresh smell while adding additional antibacterial qualities to the cleanser. Both oils have a great ability to fight mold in the environment (It will not kill mold on porous environment areas such as rugs and carpets) I will be experimenting in the future with different oil combination especially when I do my wood cleanser. I love this smell combo. I feel I could like it just a little bit more with a fresh mint hint to it.

Kirks Castille Soap or Dr. Bronners : Safe soap made from plant oils will help with cutting the grease on any of the surface areas you are trying to cleanse.

Overall I am very happy with the streak free cleaning results of of my cleanser so far. I am so happy to now longer be working with Vinegar.

The Recipe: What I did was combine 1/4 a cup of Witch Hazel, 1 table spoon of Castille Soap, 3 drops of each oil and 2 cups of distilled water, shaking it well each time. I added the solution to a recycled spray bottled. It works well on my counter tops in the kitchen, kitchen sink, bathroon toliet, bathroom counter top and babies plastic high chair. I do not recommend using on wood or mirror’s. Enjoy!

Resources

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/witch-hazel-benefits-uses

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/tea-tree-oil

https://www.mnn.com/your-home/at-home/stories/everyday-uses-castile-soap

Disclaimer

Nothing on my page is intended to prevent, treat or persuade you to purchase items. Its intended for sharing knowledge about health and wellness information only.

Please follow my instagram account at Namastehealth._

Anxiety is The New Black.

black and white close up eyeball eyebrow
Photo by samer daboul on Pexels.com

Anxiety definition : a feeling of worry or fear, typically about an imminent event or something with an unknown outcome. Other words to describe anxiety would be panic, agitation, tension, stress, suspense, fear, nervousness, and angst.

Anxiety increases when you begin to physically feel it’s blow, the chest pain, the headaches, maybe shortness of breath, nausea, cold sweats, eye twitches, stammering, forgetfulness, irritable bowel symptoms, inability to perform in regular activities and feeling intense fear.

The DSM- 5 a psychiatric diagnostic tool. It uses specific criteria and rules for diagnosing anxiety. It states that a generalized anxiety disorder is excessive worry or fear occurring more days than not, over a 6 month period that involves a number of events or daily activities such as work, school performance, socialization etc.

“Now is the age of anxiety.” –  W. H. Auden. 

What causes Anxiety?

Life is a beautiful gift. We are all here breathing but we don’t intentionally use those breaths. Much like breathing, experiencing anxiety is apart of life. Life comes with many changes through out the years and some of those changes can leave us feeling a bit unsettled. Change of course will come with some natural anxiety. Even good things come with a small amount of anxiety from time to time. For some people there is no true root cause of anxiety, they are born anxious. For others anxiety has many causes. Some very logical relevant causes to anxiety can be relationships, work stress, school performance, health conditions, traumatic life events, raising a family, and poverty. These things can weigh heavily on a person and rightly so. Often anxiety and depression accompany one another, playing an ugly game in a person’s mind. Anxiety is often known to run in families. If your family members tend to get anxious easily you may be more likely to be so yourself, it makes sense too because a lot of our behaviors in life are learned from our family. Drugs and alcohol abuse can cause anxiety. Withdrawal from anti-anxiety medications can cause anxiety. Social media can cause anxiety, comparing yourself to others and not having what other people have can lead to you feeling anxious about your life. The Depression and Anxiety Association of America produced an article about how much social media effects a persons mental health and anxiety levels it’s pretty astounding article.

Can I get better?

We can always better ourselves it’s one of our best human traits. When we put our mind to something we can achieve it! You will get better! Seeking the right treatment and making the right steps and starting immediately is crucial in your success for treating anxiety. Don’t allow it to build up. Recognize the warning signs of stress in your body. Are your shoulders tight? Are you getting tension headaches frequently? Are you having digestive problems? How are you sleeping? Are you feeling anxious? Are you feeling overwhelmed? What are you doing for self-care? What are you doing for mental health breaks daily? You can get better you just need to begin. Do not stop trying once you get started.  That leaves you with the question we all ask, where do I start?

 Where do I start?

Step one:  You need to begin breathing. When you find yourself in an overwhelming state of mind.  Find intentional breath, not even meditation at this point. Just focus on the in and out of your breath.  Tell yourself ” I am breathing in, I am breathing out”. Close your eyes if you are in an area you can do so. Start there. Simply be for a moment. Check in with yourself. Ask yourself 1. How do I feel in this moment? Get used to being in the present moment. Lots of times anxiety comes from living in the future. Our thoughts are not in the present. We are concerned about what may occur in the upcoming moments, months, weeks, years in the future etc. 

Step two: Daily movement. You may have a job or school schedule that takes up a good portion of your day. Your mind is tired but your body is not necessary tired. There is stagnant energy that is surrounding you. It’s fueling your anxiety. Daily movement will improve your health by calming the mind, lowering the blood pressure and improving focus, if you are doing activities outdoor you will be getting vitamin D which is a great natural source of happiness and mood boosting qualities.

Movement suggestions

Yoga : Take a class either at a yoga studio, gym, online, or on the TV ( amazon prime has some great teachers) Audible app also has guided classes that are great! Even a few moments will give you benefits.

Walking: Getting out doors for a brisk walk daily will help you clear your mind. Even walking on a tread mill and taking that time to listen to a positive podcast or active meditation/intention setting podcast is a great way to not only improve you mood but work on yourself mentally. If you are walking outdoors maybe bringing a friend to vent to about life and share your stories with while simultaneously getting fit together!

Martial arts: The practice of self-control through movement and energy release! A perfect combination for some one who has anxiety and perhaps some anger issues as well.  (No you don’t learn martial arts to go beat people up.)  It’s about learning an art form and releasing energy through a practice of self-control and respect for others. Karate, Tai chi, MMA, Ji Jistu etc.

Running: I am sure everyone has heard of a runners high. Running boosts endorphins. Running is something you can set either pace goals or distance goals for yourself.  You can use apps like Nike Training Run app that tracks you distance and has free coaches that inspire you and give you positive pep talks along your route as you run your specific distances and a paces! Running is great for the anxiety/depression combination. Great for the goal setter personality!

Weight lifting:  Lifting weights either by following specific training guide lines by in app purchases like BBG, or doing your own thing in the gym, preparing to compete in body building competitions, crossfit or powerlifting. Weight lifting can be very therapeutic for people as they refocus their energy to specific goals they set for themselves.

Zumba: Dancing is a great way to get out there move your body and raise your endorphins, relief anxiety, reduce your blood pressure and get a great fat blasting full body workout in at the same time while having a ton of fun. Studios, Martial arts studio, online/ tv workouts, community centers and gyms all offer a variety of Zumba classes.

Barre: Traditional Barre workouts stem from the beautiful art of ballet, they are upbeat and offer a full body workout that is challenging and fun. On average you burn a total of 500 calories each workout! There is also a floor barre option that is usually fused with yoga, it offers uplifting principles and offers an atmosphere that totally reduces stress! You literally sweat it away!

Pilates: A great way to build lean muscle and gain control your core. If you know one thing about someone who practices Pilates regularly they are in overall great shape! Developed by Joe Pilate, Pilates integrates breath work that differs a bit from yoga but it does reduce stress all the same. Gives a full body workout and it’s a lot of fun! Great for spine and core health! Catch a class in studio, online, on tv or in a community center or gym. So many options.

Biking: So many options here. Outdoors! Yes! Indoors at the gym! Yes! or take a very upbeat competitive soul cycle class or jump on your bike in the gym or at home and take a class in the comfort of your own home, tour Italy! There are so many options! It’s lots of fun! Your mind will get lost in a good way!

Step three: Meditation. I was too jittery and had too much anxiety for meditation. I used to be the person that would roll up my mat before the end of a yoga class and run out before the final resting pose savasana. I could not bear the silence and being alone in my own thoughts. In yoga savasana is often said to be one of the hardest poses. All you are doing is laying flat on your back in relaxation. My anxiety in the silence was overwhelming to me. My thoughts raced. Even closing my eyes was too much. I would just skip it and leave immediately, if I ever did go to yoga back then. Once I was in yoga teacher training many years later, the importance of mediation practice was explained to me. So many thoughts are entering and exiting our minds constantly throughout the day. How do we know which ones are important? My giving ourselves a few moments of clarity. We allow time for our thoughts to clear and once they re-enter we have time to re-evaluate which ones are important.

How to start mediation practice as a person with anxiety.

  1.  I move first,  before Fibromylagia really took over my energy levels with chronic fatigue. I used to have lots of energy that was stagnant. I needed to move first. I would exercise or practice power yoga first, then mediate. My bodies nervous energy was released and my mind was more clear and ready to receive the practice.
  2.  I do guided mediation on my worst anxiety days, If I leave myself to guide my own practice on a really overwhelming day the likelihood of success is not very high.
  3. My goals are small, it’s really daunting to aim to practice 30 minutes of mediation in one sitting a day. Especially if it’s not your practice. Start with 5 minutes a day! If you find that successful increase it each week by 5 minutes or however you see fit to pace it. If increasing by 5 minute increments is too much, try 2 minutes instead.
  4. Time! You have the time trust me! Stop endlessly scrolling through your phone. Set your timer and breath. Down load insight timer on your phone, down load audible get some of their guided mediations and DO THEM!

Step four: Pick up a hobby. Try starting a hobby like reading, painting, sewing, knitting, weaving, flying kites, doing puzzles or collecting bottles.  A hobby can be very therapeutic and keep your mind in the present moment.

Non Pharmaceutical Anti- anxiety medications!

Cannabis: My favorite supplement for anti-anxiety! My Soul CBD oil drops! As I had stated before anxiety sometimes runs in families. My sister and I are both using My Soul CBD for our anxiety. I am using it for many other reasons as well but, she is also using it for her anxiety management. The CBD oil is organic, third-party tested for quality assurance and it’s THC free! The CBD tincture is flavored with essential oils and they taste amazing, the flavors include peppermint, orange and lemon lime. Lemon lime has been my personal favorite so far. If you are buying the 1500mg bottle 0.33ml equals to 16.7mg of CBD isolate. My current regime is 50mg of CBD oil daily. I take 16.7mg under my tongue at 10am, 2pm and 10pm along with my seizure medication at 2pm and 10pm daily. My sister purchases the 500mg bottle and takes 1 full dropper daily equally to a total of 16.7mg of CBD isolate daily. I have Epilepsy and Fibromylagia so my needs differ from hers as far as dosing goes. My Soul CBD just released a sleeping aid that has 25mg of CBD isolate along with Valerian root, Passion-flower and Pepper and 5mg of Melatonin. If you’d like to try this product, I have an affiliate link you can go to under my resource section to shop this great product!

 

 

Kava Kava : Is a herb sold as a tincture, tea or capsule. People often use it to boost their mood, calm anxiety, improve sleep and reduce pain. Some have described its effect as euphoric much like the effects of alcohol. Kava kava has been known to be more effective for women than men, more effective in younger patients and more effective for people with severe anxiety verses mild.

Valerian root: Similar to kava kava, sold in the same form, tincture, tea or capsule form. Most often used for sleep and often mixed into teas that are made for the function of improving either sleep or mood. Valerian roots action on the brain is increasing the Gamma aminobutryic acid (GABA) receptors, this regulates nerve cells and calms anxiety.  The pharmaceutical drugs Xanax and Valium play similar roles in the brain with GABA receptors. Interesting right?

Chamomile Tea:  Healthline produced an article that states ” Chamomile is commonly regarded as a mild tranquilizer or sleep inducer”. My mom used to prepare Chamomile tea for me as a kid with a little bit of honey and it would give me a great nights sleep. Even as an adult pouring a cup of Chamomile tea has a very relaxing benefit. Anything that makes you feel relaxed enough for sleep of course is a win. Try pouring yourself a cup when you are feeling overwhelmed. The tea taste delicious. Chamomile reduces inflammation in the body and improves digestion, its non habit-forming. Very inexpensive and readily available to use. Overall a very safe to try.

Prescription Medication.

There are numerous options when it comes to prescription anti-anxiety medication. Just remember from the beginning when I stated that even anti anxiety medication can cause anxiety. Two issues are at play here when I mention withdrawal.  Withdrawal anxiety is when you no longer need the medication and wish to get off the medication. The weaning process may produce more anxiety for you or an upswing of symptoms. Or withdrawals due to a habit that is being formed from taking the medication either by abuse/ over use or the body is becoming dependent. Talk to your doctor about the severity or risk of habit forming potential of the drug you are trying and about your family history. My Neurologist had prescribed me Xanax for anxiety and it caused me more harm than good. My seizure activity increased, I was heavily confused and had severe memory loss the times that I took it. After trying it 2 times, I discontinued using it. I do have Ativan which is for seizure rescue use and I use that on rare occasions to get cluster seizures under control. Ativan is also used by many people as an anti anxiety medication. I kept in contact with my doctor how I felt the times I took the Xanax. She knew right away it wasn’t for me. Always communicate to the doctor prescribing you medication on how you feel about a drug and do not just accept that is how you should feel, if it’s past a certain point and you should start feeling better by this time and you aren’t then it’s possible this isn’t the drug for you. Not every drug works the same for everybody. You may need to try a few medications first. Always use a medication as prescribed by your doctor. Exactly how it is prescribed! especially anti-depressant, anti anxiety or mood stabilizing drugs, I can not stress this enough! A doctor can not determine if your medication is working or not if you are not taking your medication properly. In nursing we are taught the Right’s of medications. The right patient, the right time, the right dose and the right route.

I always encourage people to get the help they need without fears of stigmas. If you have never been a medication person or you have fears about what others may think of you for needing anxiety medication. Firstly it’s your private medical information, you don’t need to share if you don’t want to. Secondly if you need to take medication to get well, that is what needs to be done. I recommended talk therapy and counseling to everyone with and without medication use who struggles with anxiety.  If you like alternative medication. Medical Marijuana and CBD oil are now being prescribed by doctors all over the country, look up the laws in your state and see how you can obtain your medical Marijuana card. The chemical component THC in Marijuana can sometimes have a similar effect on the brain ( depending of the Marijuana used) that may cause more anxiety like some people on anti-anxiety medications. Finding the right medication is a science. It may take some time. Be patient.

 

You can also cut out all the personal medication trials if you are doing the prescription drug route and look up a company called Genesight. Genesight offers Genetic testing to provide you and your doctor the best information available to you based off your bodies genetic response and tolerance to medication without having to go through the hassle of trial and error. This is available to not only anxiety medication but also behavioral medications and antidepressants. Information will be provided in the resource link. I heavily suggest taking this extra step for your mental health.

Talk therapy

Talking to a family member or spouse may not help when your anxiety has come to a point that it’s overtaking your life. Perhaps outside help is necessary. It’s also good to have someone to talk to that is not emotionally involved in your situation in any way. They can give some feedback and suggestions, offer a set of listening ears and some compassionate support. A therapist is also a professional . What you speak about together is completely confidential, if you have had difficult experiences in the past or present and you are having a hard time with them. Your sessions are completely private. The only time your information is shared is if you are a threat to yourself or others. In addition to one on one therapy many therapy offices or mental health clinics offer group therapy sessions. I suggest both talk therapy modalities. One on one is good to get your personal story shared and perhaps somethings you wouldn’t want a group to know or be involved in. Obviously the point of having a group is sharing but sometimes we can all be a bit shy or have fears of over sharing. Group therapy shows you that you are not alone. Everyone struggles. Life is messy and we all go through different problems. We can all connect on some level to each other through these problems and circumstances. Perhaps you can even be there to support someone else through a tough time every once in a while!

Resources

Find the right anti anxiety medication through genetic testing with Genesight

Product

Take advantage of My Soul’s THC free non habit-forming CBD oil! Reduces anxiety, helps with insomnia, decreases pain and inflammation

Home

More benefits of Chamomile Tea

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/5-benefits-of-chamomile-tea

More benefits of Valerian Root

https://www.indigo-herbs.co.uk/natural-health-guide/benefits/valerian

More Benefits of Kava Kava

https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/kava-kava#section1

Disclaimer

All the information I have collected is only to share my personal opinion and story in order that it may benefit you personally. I was not asked by any of the companies I listed  to mention them or was compensated in any way. I do have an affiliate link with My Soul CBD oil,  I was not asked to mention them here on my blog.

Social Media

If you enjoy following my blog please give my instagram a follow @namastehealth._

I hope you find this blog beneficial and uplifting ~ Namaste~

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Puff Of Smoke. pt. 2.

” Failure will never over take me if my determination to succeed is strong enough.” -Og Mandino

four rock formation
Photo by nicollazzi xiong on Pexels.com

Mind Over Matter.

Last week I interviewed Brigida she is a young woman living with Moyamoya. Moyamoya is a rare neurological condition. Brigida endured the hardship of not only recovering from the strokes her rare condition cause her but she also went through numerous brain surgeries in her young life because of it. ( please see part 1) I asked her a few questions today about her recovery and about her last brain surgery. Brigida briefly answers some questions related to those events below.

Me:  What is the one thing you could say to encourage another Moyamoya patient?

Brigida: “ Have faith and do not give up!”

Me: What do you feel has been the greatest success in your health and recovery over the years? 

Brigida: ” Honestly my mentality.  Alway’s thinking positive helps me to get up and overcome whatever is bringing me down that day”. 

Me: How many Brain surgeries have you had over the years?

Brigida: ” Two by-pass brain surgeries and probably about four brain surgeries that were done without opening up the sides of my head.” 

Me:  Is there anyone or specific thing that pushed you through all of this?

Brigida: “ The person that pushed me through my last and worst surgery was my son. Every night I would read him a bedtime story. I woke up from that surgery unable to read, write or speak. He came up to me asking for me to read him a story. I wasn’t even able to speak to him. My mother had to tell him I couldn’t read to him. He was the person that pushed me through. I told myself, I was going to read to him again.” 

Brigida was motivated to get back to reading to her son. With that goal in her mind success was the destination. Not only does Brigida read, speak and write again. She dances. When asked about her plans to stay healthy for her future. She included her career as a Zumba Instructor. She said dancing really relieves her stress. She literally dances the stress away and high blood pressure! She has been managing her blood pressure naturally through dancing and healthy eating. She goes on to say she gets regular medical check ups for Moyamoya, that consists of a yearly MRI. Brigida only receives an angiogram if she has any symptoms, such as numbness or weakness to a limb, confusion or slurred speech. Brigida’s outlook on the past is mature and mindful. Not a hint of sadness evolves during our conversations. She looks forward to a healthy future.

98733   Brigida New Year’s 2019 with her 3rd Child

 

Get Your Health Back on Track!

Nothing is in our control. Brigida’s situation wasn’t any different. Only Brigida’s state of mind was in her control. She had a good outlook. This is what separates her from anyone else in my mind, the minute I couldn’t read or write that would be my wall. A woman who went from unable to speak, read or write. Is now able to functioning normally. No. Thrive. Why? Determination. Persistence. Mindset is everything! Now that Brigida is feeling well. She takes the opportunity to stay active and move her body whenever she can. She cares for her mental and physical health regularly.  Brigida saw the other side. She felt the paralysis in her body, the inability to care for her own daily activities. She does not take those things for granted. If you have the opportunity to move your body. I implore you. Do it today! You won’t be sorry you did. Don’t miss out. I have a few things listed below that can help you get started.

  • Meditate –  lowers blood pressure, improves sleep, improves mental well-being, decreases anxiety, improves memory.
  • Zumba- increases endorphins, lowers blood pressure, full body workout, burns lots of calories, lots of fun for everyone, tones muscles.
  • Do some yoga – improves flexibility, improves joint muscle increases strength. Decreases stress, improves memory, improves sleep, reduces pain.
  •  Nature Go for a walk. There is beauty everywhere!  Get some Vitamin D, it is crucial in mental wellness and bone health.

It hope you find Brigida’s story motivational and as inspiration as I have. ~ Namaste~

Resources

Medical information on Moyamoya

https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/moyamoya-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20355586

If you like to know more about the benefits of meditation please read

https://mindworks.org/blog/health-benefits-of-meditation/

If you would like to know more about the benefits of Zumba please read

https://www.livestrong.com/article/68324-zumba-workout-benefits/

Follow Brigida on instagram @Brizumba3

Follow me @Namastehealth_

Disclaimer

This is a true story of Brigida’s personal life she chose to share with me. There was no exchange of funds between her or myself. This is for the sole purpose of uplifting others.

So what’s all the hype about CBD?

shallow focus photography of cannabis plant
Photo by Michael Fischer on Pexels.com

Everyone is always talking about CBD oil and it’s benefits. You’ll now find it at your local cafe being added to coffees and smoothies; the pharmacy has CBD at the register as edible gummies, oil ,even CBD infused water, smoke shops have it available to be vaped etc.  I always thought it was some hype much like virgin coconut oil. Of course coconut oil works well for numerous things and is a great addition to your beauty regime as well as ingesting it. However, there is this running joke that you can basically use coconut oil for everything, this is where I was at with CBD. I figured it can’t be as helpful as everyone says… until I needed it.

First off let me explain what CBD oil is. CBD is a chemical compound found in cannabis. it’s called cannabidiol. Cannabis is the fancy plant name for Marijuana and hemp, just like bell peppers and tomatoes are apart of the nightshade family. CBD can be extracted from the stalks and seeds of hemp or be extracted from the buds of marijuana. CBD extracted from hemp has little to no THC present. THC is the active ingredient in marijuana that makes you feel high. CBD is legal for purchase and available in most states. In short CBD oil blocks the reuptake of certain neurotransmitters in the brain, allowing the neurotransmitter to be increased in the brain. This increase causes there to be more oxygen supplying the heart and aids in blood flow throught out the body, relieving anxiety and inflammation. Check out http://www.projectcbd.org for the specific neurotransmitters involved.

While CBD is legal and contains just trace amount of THC. You may not want to consume CBD in large quanities if you need to pass a drug test. Some tests maybe sensitive enough to assume that you are using marijuana. I saw something on the news one day that a truck driver was strictly taking CBD oil, he tested positve on his drug test resulting in being fired. I am using CBD regularly at the moment,  I am not currently working as a nurse (due to health reasons) other wise I would seriously need to consider getting a medical marijuana card and making my employer aware of medical conditions just to be safe.

I tried several CBD companies…

Once I was aware of the benefits. I gave CBD oil a shot. My first purchase was from Blue Ridge hemp co. I purchased a headache/stress relief topical roll on, its packed with pure aromatic essential oils.  I found some benefits and relief from my headaches. My headaches are a symptom of Fibromyalgia as well as frontal lobe seizures. I would massage my temple with the roll on and behind my neck and ears. The benefits would last about an hour before my headache would reappear. It was a great relief to experience some break from my headaches without using medication. After experiencing some kind of benefit, I decided to try Thought Cloud’s CBD full spectrum tincture. I found it gave me a feeling of euphoria, like 1 glass of wine kind of good (I rarely drink) and in about 20 minutes that would wear off and my chronic pain would hit me instantly. Concerned that there was more THC in the product than I wanted, I gave the bottle away. Months had gone by when I decided I would try the real good stuff, Charlottes Web is well known and promoted to me by my friends with anxiety disorder. I purchased a bottle from them. I tried the oil on several occasions hoping for some decrease in seizure activity or pain. I found myself awake all night long, not able to sleep. I spoke with someone in the company and they said, their hemp oil does include THC. I quickly stopped using it because I didn’t find a benefit. It increased a choking sensation that is an aura to my frontal lobe seizures. It may be that the THC in the product was interacting with my seizure medication in a bad way.

Aura definition-  preceptual distrubance that is related to epilepsy. It can be an unpleasant, taste, smell or feeling.

After that I was convinced that CBD oil did not work, it was all hype. See! I knew it! A group discussion on epilepsy had several people raving about CBD oil. I was wondering why it doesn’t work for me! I purchased CBD dark chocolate coconut oil from Blue Ridge hemp co. I was taking it along with my seizure medication Toprimate. I found it was helping me quite a bit. The only down side to it was eating chocolate and coconut oil everytime I felt an aura. It is also only 15mg of CBD per tablespoon. It is delicious, if I were you I’d give it a try.

Eventually in need of something that worked a bit quicker and had a higher CBD concentration per serivng, I found a company, out of the blue. Very recently a friend from yoga teacher training posted a picture of My Soul CBD oil on her instagram. She said their oil was tested by a third party to ensure its quality. It’s THC free and with the guarantee of a good quality product, I couldn’t resist. I clicked the link and spun a little discount wheel. I received 10% off my first order. I purchased the peppermint flavored CBD drops in 500mg/ 30ml bottle. Please note that the bottle is 500mg but you are recieving approximately 16.7mg per 1ml.  Simple no gimmic ingredients pure peppermint essential oil, mct oil and of course the best CBD isolate.  I am currently taking 1ml 3 times a day. I am off my seizure medication right now due to having some future EEG testing completed where I need to be drug free. Just know that this product works for me. If you have epilepsy do not go off your medication (as stated above, I have a specific medical reason why I am currently off my meds) or make changes without speaking to your neurologist first.  If CBD oil is already apart of your health regime, I would  certainly recommend giving this oil a try. I have been ridden with anxiety from seizures that caused this choking feeling almost constantly, this product did remove that feeling for me and I am forever grateful. I’ve been sleeping better and feel more relaxed overall.

Do topicals work?

20190217_170714   20190216_225733

As mentioned before, I did find relief with my headache roll on from Blueridge Hemp. I think because of the esssential oil combination it is effective. I haven’t found much pain relief or benefit from using the massage oil or the body scrub. This is my personal experience however, If you feel you want to try them by all means do it. They are nice products aside from being CBD. I have a very intense chronic pain issue, it may relieve your sore muscles. It just doesn’t work for me.

Thank you for reading. My intention is to provide my personal opinion of these products and a fair overview on how CBD has benefited me personally. I wish you wellness.

~ Namaste ~

Rescources/ learn more.

Check out http://www.projectcbd.org for lots of great information and comprehensive over view  on the way CBD works in the body.

If you like to purchase some My Soul CBD oil please click on my affilate link https://mysoulcbd.com/?afmc=x2

If you are interested in some great CBD topicals go to http://www.blueridgehempco.com

If you enjoy my blog, give me a follow on instagram @namastehealth._

 

Disclaimer

I am an affliate of My Soul CBD however, I was not asked to review the product by them. I was not sponsored or paid by any of the other products mentioned in my review. As always consult your physican before trying any new supplementation and check for drug/ food interactions with your current medications. Thank you- Danielle