Aug 28, 2014

Mornings and lunches that work

Have you ever lovingly packed a nourishing lunch for your child, only to have it come home a jumbled, slightly nibbled on mess? Maybe it's time to teach your children to pack their own lunch, freeing you to tend to the multitude of other things it takes to get out the door in the morning. Not only will it make life easier for you, your child will feel empowered that he or she is doing an "adult job". Here are a few tips that we here at MMH find make for an smooth morning exit once school begins.

Teach your children to include one high protein item: like peanut butter, leftover meats, cheese or yogurt, and two side dishes. Make a rule that at least one must be a fruit or vegetable. Children are more likely to eat food they choose.

Keep foods and lunch items low in the cupboard and fridge for your children to easily reach them.

Ask for their input on the shopping list, then as your budget allows, provide a bit of variety by buying their favorite healthy choices.

Avoid the last minute search for shoes, books, and that favorite jacket by having your children help you make sure these are in place the night before.

Joy in the morning. Tired children are grumpy children. A regular bedtime that allows for 7-9 hours of sleep isn't something to bend the rules on. Sticking to it will pay off.

With a bit of consistency these can become simple habits that make mornings work!  

Aug 19, 2014

Did you know...?

If you place a peeled garlic clove between your toes you will taste it within minutes?

We all know the importance of taking care of our bodies by choosing healthy foods and committing to regular exercise. But what about what we put on our skin? It is the body's largest organ, yet seldom thought of as a place for harmful or beneficial matter to gain access.

If it’s possible for garlic to enter and travel through your body system in about 15 minutes, then think of what else is entering our bodies through the skin! Dangerous chemicals are often found in things we use daily such as body care products and cleaning agents. Parabens found in most lotions and moisturizers can act as an unhealthy estrogen in the body, leading to hormone imbalance and may even lead to estrogen based cancers.

Sanctum products are a great choice for chemical-free and healthy bath products. From baby products to safe choices of soap, shampoo and even deodorant, Sanctum products are derived from 100% natural ingredients, which means no harsh or harmful chemicals are added. 

Essential oils are another healthy and safe solution to replace those chemical-based products in your house. To relieve dry skin, try mixing Lavender and Myrrh essential oil with a carrier oil such as Meadowfoam or Sweet Almond. The carrier oil and the essential oil will help maintain velvety skin without the harmful chemicals or greasy feeling after.

Try a detox bath by adding 1 cup of baking soda to the bath with your favorite essential oil. Your skin pH can be balanced by adding 10 drops of lavender essential oil with 1 cup of apple cider vinegar to a bath. This can ease a sunburn, and help heal acne, while leaving your skin smooth and healthy. Now that you know how quickly garlic is absorbed through the skin, why not try placing a few crushed garlic cloves mixed with coconut oil on the bottom of your feet overnight when your body needs help fighting off a flu or infection? You can get a large part of the beneficial properties of garlic without eating it.

Aug 7, 2014

First Trimester Discomforts

While the exact cause of the common discomforts of the first trimester are not entirely understood, it does seem sensible to give a new life a clean, healthy place to grow and develop. As the body's main organ for detoxification, the liver filters and stores blood around the clock.
Author and Herbalist Shonda Parker encourages getting the liver in good health by cleansing and supporting it before conceiving. Noting that fewer of the common discomforts are experienced by those wise enough to do this. However, if you are already expecting, you can still give your liver a gentle boost by using liver friendly herbs that are considered safe for use during this time or while nursing. 

LiverGlow II contains extracts of Lemon Balm, Alfalfa, Milk Thistle, Grape seed, Dandelion, Olive leaf, Bilberry and fresh Ginger to gently cleanse, support cleanse, support and nourish the liver. It may be all you need to feel better and more energized. A combination of liver friendly fresh and dried ginger root extracts can go a long way in calming the stomach during this time. Stomach Aid can be taken with LiverGlow II, it contains fennel and peppermint in addition to fresh and dried ginger extracts. Give your baby a clean, healthy place to grow and fell better as well.

Combat morning sickness...
Blood sugar levels seem to affect how sick one feels in the first trimester. Try eating a bit of protein every two hours. A few tablespoons of yogurt, 5-6 raw almonds, or half of a hard boiled egg. If you cannot keep anything down, sip on water with fresh organic lemon juice and freshly squeezed ginger juice with a bit of honey. Room temperature Sprite or Ginger Ale does the trick for some women. Maybe it’s the lemon and sugar in these that bring relief. Using fresh lemon/ginger juice with raw honey can be a healthier version that hopefully will help you feel better!

Jul 28, 2014

From Calming to Cleaning: the endless benefits of essential oils

Distilled from an enormous amount of plant leaves, stems and flowers, essential oils are valuable and beautiful gifts from nature. A single drop can go a long way. These oils are taken into the body by inhaling, through the skin and sometimes ingested. There are a wide range of health benefits such as calming the nervous system, congestion relief, and even household cleaning. Whatever the application, diluting with a carrier oil is almost always required to prevent the potent oils from damaging the body or with water to prevent surface damage when used as cleaners.  

We are excited to offer 12 of the most requested and most commonly used, organic essential oils! After a lengthy search and quality testing, we are confident the oils we are offering are among the purest available. They will meet or exceed your expectations of a high quality, undiluted product that you can depend on.

Eucalyptus: Respiratory support as an inhalant. Using diluted as a vapor rub applied to the chest may soothe the respiratory system. 

Overall this oil is a tonic, as it is thought to boost and tone most of the body systems. Good for uterine health, stress management and digestive health.

Lemon: Aids with digestion and is an anti inflammatory. Lemon also has antibacterial properties, its a great choice for making your own household cleaning agent. 

Lemongrass: A great bug repellant including flies and mosquitoes. Also can soothe a headache and contains anti inflammatory properties. 

Lavender: Helps you relax and calms anxiety, known for its skin healing properties. Repels  insects including mosquitoes. Disinfectant, can be used for cleaning. 

Myrrh: Skin healing properties and can be used on cuts and scrapes and all around skin health. Also supports the immune system and may ease the common cold. May ease allergies.

Nutmeg: Packed with antioxidants, promotes good circulation and may soothe sore muscles. 

Oregano: Natural anti-bacterial and anti-viral properties, supports the respiratory and immune systems.

Peppermint: Soothes the digestive system and eases nausea. Powerful insecticide as well. Peppermint can help cool the body temperature, as well as soothe a headache. 

Tea Tree: Stimulates the immune system and may ease the common cold or fever. Rich in antibacterial anti-viral and anti-fungal properties. Tea Tree also has skin soothing properties that help soothe bites and stings. 

Thyme: Excellent respiratory support as an inhalant and a natural, chemical free vapor rub. 

Wintergreen: Soothes sore muscles, aches and pains, potent inflammation relieving properties. 

Jul 17, 2014

Get the most from your iron supplement

  • Iron is very soluble in the stomach thanks to it’s acidic environment, but in the small intestine the free iron ions look for a partner. Organic acids such as the fructose found in honey, Vitamin C, and amino acids derived from proteins form chelates to help with absorption.  
  • To naturally address an iron deficiency you need to get the most from an iron supplement as well as from your diet. Try taking iron between meals or before breakfast with a Vitamin C source such as tomatoes, or citrus fruits.
  • Add foods rich in bio-available iron. Chicken are great sources, as are dark, leafy greens such as spinach and collard greens. Red beets, beet juice, wheat grass juice, raisins, and prunes, are high in iron, and may be useful in alleviating anemia.

  • Avoiding tannic acids, fiber, and the phosphates found in egg yolks, milk, and cheese for a few hours before and after taking an iron supplement can make a difference in how well the supplement is absorbed.
  • Coffee, black tea, and non-decaffeinated green tea are high in tannic acids and can reduce iron absorption by 50%.  
  • Other minerals compete with iron for absorption sites. A high intake of calcium, magnesium, and copper can interfere with your body benefiting from an iron supplement. It is best to take these at a different time.