Remember?

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” Adults would ask us when we were young…

“An Astronaut! A Princess! A Superhero! A Chef! A Firefighter! A Writer! A Poet! An Artist! A Doctor! A Veterinarian! “

Do you remember when you dreamed that big? When you knew what you wanted to be without the confines of what someone else said was possible or not?

Don’t put constructs on your dreams, dream as big as you want to and remember what you wanted to be. Dream like everything is possible because if you don’t, you aren’t doing it right. Any intelligent three year old could tell you that…and apparently, so can a bumper sticker.

Getting Your Green

 One of my guides on how I’m doing with my diet… and by diet I simply mean the food I am putting into my mouth… is to ask myself at the end of the day if I had any greens? And how much did I have? This is something I will ask my patients and clients as well. It is a good indicator as to whether or not my body is getting the nutrition it needs to supply every organ function and system in my body. Sorry, the lettuce on a sandwhich doesn’t count and your iceburg salad does’t count either. When you are looking for the healthy stuff reach for the deep greens, it is like getting a really good deal at the mall.  They are skin enhancers, cancer fighters, and immune system builders all for the low price of eating a vegetable! The dark greens, like broccoli, kale, collards, and swiss chard are full of vitamins and minerals so get yours today!

The Whole Foods website has great ideas if you need ideas on what to make

http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipes/2767

The above is a great recipe for broccoli salad!

Nourishing with Nettle

Many of us know nettle as a pesky weed that will overtake the garden and give you a rash but this plant has some pretty amazing healing attributes. It even nourishes the plants that grow around it. For us humans,  it is rich in beta-carotene, iron, potassium, calcium, folic acid, and lycopene. These vitamins and minerals are good for overall health and the chloryphyll content is sure to make your insides happy. It also contains a type of lecithin that inhibits some viruses, including AIDS.

Nettle tea alleviates anemia and stimulates blood circulation. The herb is used by allergy sufferers and research is being done on its benefits in cancer prevention. Nettle root is even proving to be an effective treatment for existing prostate cancer. Nettle leaf is great for those suffering from osteo and rheumatoid arthritis. However it is important to note that is not recommended for those with hypertension.

If vanity is your main motivation… I’ll tell you that nettle is also said to prevent balding, acne, and cellulite. Cheers from my green cup to yours!

Chemical Conscious

77,000 new chemicals have been introduced since 1940. They are in your lotion, your food, your clothes, your sheets, your cleaning products, and the air you breathe. You are exposed to them in ways you are not even aware of. Chemicals run the gamut of side effects. They include allergic reactions, neurotoxic effects, and many times are linked to cancer. We are exposed to more carcinogens than ever before but if we invest in and take care of ourselves we can limit our exposure and in turn help the environment. Helping the environment will lead to cleaner air and water which will also lead to better health for us. See how what you give out always circles back?

Green companies are growing rapidly today. Choosing food, beauty products, and laundry detergents that are nontoxic is getting easier and easier. Websites like skindeep rate beauty products and give information on the chemicals in everything from your mascara to your body wash. Companies like Seventh Generation offer nontoxic cleaning supplies. Even Target now offers organic sheet sets.

Better yet, learn something new and create your own. You can make your own beauty and cleaning products from ingredients in your kitchen. There is a reason cucumber extract is in so many eye gels, save on the packaging and cost by just cutting a couple slices for your eyes and put the rest in your salad. You will have beautiful skin from the inside out. There are do it yourself recipes for household cleaners which will be nontoxic to your home and your wallet. You will see vinegar and baking soda in a whole new light. You don’t have to change everything all at once, but even one change makes a difference.

Speak in Smiles

” Has anyone told you today how beautiful you are?”

…”No…”

“Me either!!! What is wrong with this town?”

I overheard this interaction several years ago on the cobblestone streets of Savannah, Georgia and I will never forget it. A conversation between strangers that I assumed was taking the direction of a man picking up a woman was in fact a man making a comical observation that made me and everyone else around us smile and laugh.

Make someone smile today. Give a compliment, fold someone else’s laundry, say hello to a stranger, tell a joke. You really can’t go wrong when you set a goal for spreading joy. The thing is…when you make someone else smile, there is an instant reaction. You end up smiling too.

Why Do They Kill The Dandelions?

Several years ago I was fortunate enough to step off a train in early May into the amazing town of Zermatt, Switzerland. The magic of having a mountain like the Matterhorn staring down on you is only a part of the wonder. I noticed fields of yellow, the green grass sparkling with beautiful, fluffy flowers. I will never forget how incredible the fields looked.  I wondered why,  in the states,  are we so fond of weed killer? And why in the world are we so against this friendly looking flower? After all, when we let them live out their lives unharmed, they reward us with summer wishes. They let us blow away our unwanted worries and pour our hopes into them as we hold their stems, close our eyes, purse our lips, exhale and wish. This is only the beginning of the benefits of this humble plant.

The health benefits of consuming dandelion include relief from liver and gall bladder disorders, diabetes, urinary disorders, acne, jaundice, cancer, and anemia. It is rich in Vitamin A, C, iron, calcium and has properties for detoxification. So the next time you get out the pesticide spray, rethink this amazing flower, its roots, and greens. For all have different properties that can help heal you.

Me? Well, I’m taking my advice and consuming dandelion root tea and I’ll be having a dandelion salad for dinner.

Giving Up Who I am Today

“We must be willing to give up who we are today for who we can become.”

 Do the things we have in this moment, the beliefs we have today, and the relationships we are currently in, make us who we are? What about our responsibilities, our jobs and our finances? Do they make us who we are? What if we’re not happy with some of these aspects of our lives? If we’re not happy with it, it can’t be who we are, in fact then wouldn’t it be the opposite of who we are? Isn’t who we are most evident when we are happy?  How do we get from where we are to where we want to be? How do we get to the place that is truly reflective of who we are?

I highly encourage finding the best in every situation, in every aspect of your life, even if it isn’t your idea of perfection. Appreciation is always essential, but this isn’t my focus for today. Instead, I want to ask you what your life would look like if you based your decisions on your ideal life instead of a current undesirable situation, thought, or aspect.

 What if instead of making decisions based on our current situation and the limitations we think exist, we made decisons based on something better? What if we made choices based on how we wanted to be and feel instead of based on what we feel right now? When you imagine the life you want, if you don’t have it in this moment, then something must change in order for you to achieve the life you want. You must be willing to give up who you are in this moment today in order for change to happen. It is a scary thing to consider, giving up who we are, but every major step forward requires it. Everytime we make a decision, from the food we eat to the person we choose to marry, we are shaping our lives. Today I encouarge you, when making these decisions, to base them on the person you want to be and on the life you want to have.

Advice I give Myself: Have the courage to live the life of my dreams.

Cook at Home

There are many reasons to cook at home instead of eating out. It will save you money, you will know exactly what you are eating, and you will know exactly how it was prepared. Have you ever seen those restaurant shows and what goes on in the kitchen of a restauran? The screaming, the yelling, the sweat, the mice, and cockroaches? Think about the energy that goes into the food you get when you eat out versus the energy of the food you cook at home.

Find simple recipes, don’t make cooking at home a huge production because you won’t do it as often if it is always a hassle. Cook once to eat twice. For example, cook quinoa, an amazingly versatile grain which is very high in nutrition. Use the cooked quinoa as breakfast with almond milk, cinnamon, nuts and fruit. At dinner mix it with black beans, mushrooms, cumin, chile powder and corn and use as a taco filling. For lunch use it in a salad with chickpeas, avocado, and colorful vegetables. Clean as you go so it isn’t overwhelming at the end of the meal.

As I stare at the takeout menu, even from a very healthy restaurant, I think:

Advice I Give Myself Today: Bring lunch to work instead of getting take out 4/5 days a week.