Anti-Inflammatory, ayurveda, Balance, Balance Hormones, Boost Energy, Healthy Body, Healthy Digestion, Immune Boosters, Skin Support, Uncategorized

The New Kind of Smart Water

Its been a full summer and as many of you know I am deepening my practice of Ayurveda. Drinking liquids that nourish me instead of deplete me has been key in keeping me hydrated and helping to purify, stimulate digestion, help elimination, reduce gas and bloating, provide antioxidant protection, clear wastes and toxins from the body and helping me to feel nourished. I have been infusing herbs into water and adding the water to my drinking water throughout the day.

The overall purpose of this water is to keep it simple, nourish the liver and kidneys to help them function and clear out excess ama (waste material/toxins). This recipe must be made fresh each day. Use only whole seeds or tea-cut size pieces of ingredients. Use only organic, food grade flowers and petals, without stems or leaves.

Basic Wise Water Recipe:

  • 1/4 tsp Coriander Seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Cumin Seeds
  • 1/4 tsp Fennel Seeds
  • 1 quart of blessed water
  • steep for 15 minutes
  • add to water or drink straight up throughout the day either hot or warm to room temperature.

Why are these spices so important? They deliver hormone balancing effects at the same time that it gently clears out cellular wastes that may otherwise block the action of the hormone on the tiffs.

Coriander Seeds have a cooling effect and enhances urine flow and the removal of toxins from the blood, liver and kidneys. Overall it balances all three doshas (the three energies that define every person’s makeup) but especially pitta (fire and a little bit of water).

Cumin Seeds are cooling overall but this miraculous spice is a key digestive aid in many recipes and is especially helpful in moving gas and clearing out bloating. Cumin has specific detoxifying effect on the whole body. It helps to reduce inflammation. It also purifies both the blood and the uterus and enhances the reproductive essence.

Fennel Seeds are a premier digestive aid and are especially helpful in moving gas downward and out of the intestines. It helps reduce spasms. Balancing for both vata (air & ether) and pitta. It is also mildly phytoestrogens and balancing for the reproductive system of women.

You can also add other nourishing herbs and spices! I have been adding brahmi, it is  known to rejuvenate the mind, enhance memory, improve concentration, and to directly influence the quality of consciousness. Alma is used to support normal ranges of blood sugar, build blood and support liver function. Cardamom aids in digestion and fat metabolism without creating excess heat in the body, and it tastes delicious! Rose petals can benefit your body in a number of ways, not only are they great for the skin but they can also help you relax and even relieve digestive issues.

Making this everyday has given my water a little flavor and the health benefits are numerous! Start making your own today!

Love,

Michelle

Anti-Inflammatory, Balance, Balance Hormones, Blood Sugar, Cardiovascular Health, Cleansing & Detoxification, Health Tonics, Healthy Body, Healthy Mind, Juice, Uncategorized

Celery Juice Challenge

Some of my friends from the Tree of Life started posting about celery juice and specifically the celery juice challenge. Being a seasoned juicer I know and understand how valuable celery juice is and I use it as a base for my green juices.

I honestly thought that because  added it to my green juice it would have the same healing effects blended as it does on its own. After joining the #celeryjuicechallenge inspired by my friend and by Anthony Williams’ glowing praise of celery juice, I decided to give the “powerhouse of a drink” a shot. I was baffled by how powerful it is.

  • Simply Juice 1 bunch organic celery
  • Drink the undiluted juice right away and wait at least 15 minutes before consuming anything else.
I have to say, I thought this would be easy and I would have it in the bag because I’m a seasoned juicer. Honestly, I had a hard time the first 4 days. At first it tasted bitter and strong. Celery is apparently and herb and juicing the fattest stalks and leaving out the leaves help it to taste better. I made it through the first couple of days though and now Im feeling the awesome healing effects and also experiencing some detoxification!
While blending celery with other ingredients is not “wrong,” Anthony William suggests that these blends work differently than a pure celery juice.

Pure celery juice contains bio-available cluster salts and claims to be blissfully healing:

BETTER DIGESTION: Celery juice can help you rebuild HCL in your gut, which is crucial for fully digesting your food and absorbing important nutrients. Research also suggests that celery improves liver health, which can increase your body’s own detox capacities long term.

LIVER DETOXIFICATION: Celery’s detoxifying properties work to remove bad bacteria, fungi, mold, viruses and other toxins from the liver; the phytonutrients found in the green stalks also can have a protective effect.

NERVOUS SYSTEM SUPPORT: Celery is a powerhouse for supporting the nervous system. It has a calming effect on the nervous system because of its detoxify properties. It also provides support through its ability to act as a blood purifier.

ANTI-INFLAMMATORY: Celery contains luteolin, a potent flavonoid, that can act as an antioxidant and inflammation.

THYROID CLEANSING: According to Medical Medium, Anthony William, the mineral salts in celery may help to fight and cleanse the body of the Epstein-Barr virus, particularly in the thyroid. Celery can also help to boost production of important thyroid hormones in those with hypothyroidism.

HEART HEALTHY: Studies have shown that celery extract consumption can help to prevent stroke, lower blood pressure, and reduce plaque in arteries.

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My experience so far is that its healing my gut. I felt nauseous the first couple of days due to bad bacteria die off. 10 days into the challenge  I am experiencing improved, blissful digestion, higher levels of lightness and alertness as well as more energy.
Celery is a major alkaline food. This means it helps to purge the body of acid and toxins and cleanse the liver and bloodstream like nothing else. It helps to smooth out frazzled nerves and soothe any tensions from stress. I found drinking celery juice to have an amazingly calming and relaxing effect on my mind, body, and emotions—in Ayurveda we would say its clearing out excess ama or toxins. The body’s internal digestive fire is called Agni~ Undigested food (and emotions) turns to ama. When we clear the ama out of our system it therefore gives us the tools to digest more in life, on the physical, mental and emotional sheaths.  by incorporating celery juice first thing I the morning, there is this constant subtle feeling of post-meditation bliss and an internal “ahhhh.”
Not to mention reduced cravings because my body is highly mineralized and electrically charged. I can just walk right past those holiday cookies like they are not even there! WINNING!
If you don’t have a juicer you can always use a blender!
Here’s how:
  • High-speed blender
  • Nut-milk bag
  • Large bowl

Method

  1. Wash and roughly chop the head of celery into rough chunks.
  2. Add to a blender along with a splash of water (to help the blades spin).
  3. Blend for a few seconds until broken down.
  4. Pour into a large bowl through a nut-milk bag.
  5. Squeeze through the juice, and compost the remaining fiber in the nut-milk bag. Drink immediately for the most nutritional benefits.

I challenge you to try it, starting immediately for the rest of December! Let me know your experience!

 

May you all be blessed with the wonder of life during this time of year!

Love,

Michelle

ayurveda, Balance, Healthy Body, Healthy Digestion, Healthy Mind, Main Dish, Recipes, Uncategorized, Weight Loss

Kitchari

Lately I’ve been utterly obsessed with kitchari. Its amazing! Through all of my food adventures I have found kitchari to be the perfect food dish for creating balance in the body and mind.

In Ayurvedic philosophy, health starts in the digestive system. The function of the whole system is dependent on the proper digestion, assimilation and elimination of our food. If these things aren’t happening properly, we become vulnerable to disease. The metabolic energy of digestion, called agni in sanskrit, literally means fire. This fire must be strong for us to properly digest and assimilate our food and so its strength is a direct indicator of the health of our entire system. And so, beyond just cleansing the body of toxins, called Ama, kitchari will rekindle low agni, paving the way for greater balance in the entire system.

Kitchari Recipe:

1 Cup of yellow mung dal

1 Cup of basmati rice

6 Cups of blessed water

2 Cups of easily digestible vegetables (such as asparagus, carrots, celery, green beans, summer squash, winter squash, yam, sweet potato, turnips or zucchini), cut into bite sized pieces.

2 Tablespoons ghee or coconut oil if you prefer

2 Inch piece of fresh ginger root, minced

1 Tablespoon turmeric

1 Tablespoon cumin

1 Tablespoon black mustard seeds

1 teaspoon fennel seeds

1 teaspoon coriander

1 teaspoon cinnamon

1 bay leaf

2 teaspoons Himalayan pink salt

1 stick kombu seaweed (optional)

Soak the split mung dal overnight (or for at least four hours). Strain the soaking water, combine with the rice and rinse the mixture at least twice, or until the water runs clear, and set aside.

In a medium saucepan or soup pot, warm the ghee over medium heat. Add the black mustard seeds, cumin seeds and sauté for a couple of minutes, until the mustard seeds begin to pop. Add the turmeric, coriander, fennel, and fresh ginger. Stir briefly, until aromatic. Stir the rice and dal mixture into the spices and sauté for a few moments, stirring constantly.

Add the water, turn heat to high, and bring to a boil. Add bay leaf and kombu. Then, add hard vegetables like turnips, sweet potato, yams, winter squash, carrots or celery. When the soup comes to a boil, stir in the salt, reduce heat, cover, and simmer for about 45 minutes.

Add your softer vegetable half way through about the kitchari’s cooking process, stir in the vegetables and allow the stew to return to a boil. Continue to simmer until the rice, dal, and vegetables are fully cooked. I like to have very little water remaining when finished. The consistency is more like a thick stew than a broth. Make sure your beans, rice and hard vegetables are thoroughly cooked. Remove from heat, cool, and serve.

Some great add ons to kitchari are chutney, cilantro, plain yogurt, raisins, mixed greens, (romaine, spinach, chard, kale, sprouts), sesame seeds, shredded carrots & beets.

“Health is a state of complete harmony of the body, mind and spirit. When one is free from physical disabilities and mental distractions, the gates of the soul open.”  ~B.K.S. Iyengar

Each ingredient plays a specific role in this dish. Kitchari can stimulate your circulation, invigorate your metabolism, and clear out congestion. The beans are alkaline forming and blood-purifying, they also provide protein and nutrients to nourish the body. Cumin and bay leaf reduce water retention. Coriander promotes liver function and bowel movements, balances blood sugar, is anti-inflammatory and is great for the lungs. The amazing health benefits of turmeric include its ability to reduce inflammation, heal wounds, improve skin health, protect cognitive abilities, and ease menstrual difficulties. Turmeric also helps eliminate depression, alleviate pain, slow the aging process, protect the digestive tract, and prevent cancer. Mustard seeds fight inflammation and cancer. Fennel is great for bone and skin health as well as digestion. Kombu is great for digestion, immune health, supports metabolism, a great source of iron, and is excellent for bone and teeth health. The rice is easily digested, the warming sites kindle the Agni so that we can become digestive superstars!

In conclusion, balanced agni is what gives us vigour and optimal health and well-being. Our bodies are incredible and intelligent, and incorporating kitchari into our diet gives the body a chance to reach homeostasis and beyond. Such a simple dish can initiate drastic improvements in the quality of digestion, assimilation, elimination. It can also shine light about your cravings, energy levels, and overall joy for life!

If you want more info on the next Ayurvedic Kitchari Cleanse Im leading, click here.

Many blessings,

Michelle

“The doctor of the future will no longer treat the human frame with drugs, but rather will cure and prevent disease with nutrition.”  ~Thomas Edison

 

ayurveda, Balance Hormones, Blood Sugar, Boost Energy, Healthy Body, Healthy Mind, Inspiring Quotes, Meditation, Uncategorized, Weight Loss

Food Is Power

Food provides us with more than just nutrients – carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins and minerals. Food is a condensed form of energy. This energy is very powerful because it gives the human body life sustaining energy from the food we take into our body. When you eat, you process and absorb the forces of nature that is contained within the food. Plants are amazing because they store light through photosynthesis. Eating plant food  releases energy and nutrients from the plant and absorbs to the body. Taking in fresh, whole, live, organic foods creates a physical and energetic force that interacts with the body on a physical, emotional, mental and spiritual level. Now thats powerful!

Rawsta

Compare this to feeding the body processed foods that contain chemicals of artificial colors, flavors, preservative, pesticides, hormones, antibiotics and genetically modified organisms (GMO’s), this can undermine the health and quality of your life. Add the problem that when we eat these sorts of foods we experience an extreme that includes cravings, because our body is not getting the sustenance it needs to be in balance.

Some people use food as a way to control negative emotions and weight. Fad diets and strict calorie control is horribly restrictive and destructive to our body, mind and soul. These sorts of habits lead to food cravings, mental and emotional imbalances as well as sustenance abuse and other extremes like dieting, fasting, gorging,  starving, bingeing/purging. Another way people use to control or hide emotions is by other addictive tendencies, like using drugs or alcohol.

Sustenance is a way to nurture and support the body for balance, vitality and health.  If we are abusing our body by becoming obsessed with restricting our body through conscious control or dieting or using drugs and alcohol, this can lead to mental and emotional imbalances like irritation or explosive temper, weight fluctuations and digestive issues all related to stress.

One way to create balance and soothe the digestive system without imposing calorie restriction or hiding by using drugs and alcohol is to focus on easily digestible foods like soups and pureed foods. Choosing these foods that are easily digestible instead of restricting the body tends to be kinder to your body and helps balance your mood, blood sugar and weight more easily.

Some great food choices are:

  • soups
  • pureed foods
  • fresh organic fruits
  • fresh organic vegetables
  • sprouted seeds
  • soaked nuts
  • pinto beans
  • bananas
  • lemons
  • squash
  • carrots
  • golden beets

It is important to note that our liver and kidneys must work harder to process chemicals from non-organic foods and therefore eating pure, clean, organic food is critical. It is also important to note that when you eat meat, you take on the animal’s energy, including the energy of how it was raised and the fear and trauma of the animal being slaughtered. This is very powerful.

Sugar and caffeine and stress contribute to hypoglycemia and adrenal exhaustion that affects 70-90% of individuals in the United States. This is because sugar and caffeine create temporary bursts followed by crashes that lead to low energy and has hard core effects on your blood sugar, pancreas and adrenal glands. White flour and white sugar are so devoid in essential minerals, vitamins, fiber and water that this further depletes the body.

Stress creates more of a deficiency in the body. Inviting stress reducing practices into your life will help restore and maintain balance within the body for optimum health and vitality.

Create balance through non-food practices:

  • meditation
  • self care
  • self love
  • martial arts
  • smart exercise
  • walking in nature
  • sit ups

Making small steps in changing your diet and lifestyle is important to creating a balanced body, mind and spirit.

To regain your personal power think about this: 

I am receptive to Divine energy moving into every cell of my body. I am committed to expressing my creativity, to accepting my responsibilities, and to making decisions that are balanced and supportive to my spiritual growth. I am guided and receptive to Divine will at all times. 

You have the power to transform your life, to live in complete harmony with nature and to create the life you have always wanted! Try Kitchari! Do a three day cleanse eating only kitchari to give you digestive system a rest!

Create balance within, then without!

Love,

Michelle