Escaping the City for Better Health

As the world somehow continues to spin despite everything, it can be vital to your sanity to take a step back, when you can, and distance yourself from the stress of work, the deluge of news, and the pressure of your responsibilities. Embrace the weekend and get outdoors!
The forest I visited and is featured in this post is Muir Woods near San Francisco, CA.
My boyfriend, Neil and I visited the tree lovers monument. We were just in awe of the beautiful redwoods and sequoia trees! Just walking through the forest, we witnessed natures natural skyscrapers blocking the sounds of civilization. This helped any unwated stress just melt away. You were alone with wilderness (and a few chipmunks). We were rewarded with the freshest air! How? because, trees absorb CO2, removing and storing the carbon while releasing oxygen back into the air. You can truly take a deep breath and feel the change in the air.
In one year, an acre of mature trees absorbs the same amount of CO2 produced when you drive your car 26,000 miles.
Trees also absorb odors and pollutant gases (nitrogen oxides, ammonia, sulfur dioxide and ozone) and filter particulates out of the air by trapping them on their leaves and bark. They are truly wonderful!
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Being in nature had a lot of great perks besides just the amazing air! Neil and I explored all over and through Muir Woods, trekking and going on adventures. If you go, I highly recommend packing a picnic! Maybe one that compliments this outdoorsy day.
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4 Ways Traveling Boosts your Health

In this part of Forage and Nourish I talk about living well while traveling. Sometimes just being outdoors is all we need to revitalize us. Let’s face it, we all want to go a little further than just outside our homes.
My first travel experience was at 19. I got my passport and got on a plane to Canada. Wow, I was amazed! I knew I was hooked on traveling and seeing the world. It’s full of diversity, culture and wonder.
Immune boost
One of the biggest health benefits of traveling is that it helps make your immune responses to bacteria, viruses, and other foreign bodies much stronger. Of course, that doesn’t mean that you should be careless about hygiene and sanitation while traveling! What it does is let your body naturally create more antibodies. (These fight against foreign illnesses.) These antibodies make your body stronger over time and protect you from similar illnesses in the future. Now that’s a perk!
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Stess
Traveling can definitely help break the shackles and stress of the 9-5 tensions occupying your mind!
Taking a nice little trip away from your city and country will help refresh your mind, do things on your own time and relax. If don’t take a break from these everyday stressors, the amount of the stress hormone cortisol gets elevated; this speeds up the aging process and increases blood sugar levels. Now book that trip on that white sand beach!
Weight-loss
For many people, their day-to-day jobs require them to be in an office sitting down most of the time. Even if that is not the case, few jobs actually involve physical activity to the extent that it can adequately burn extra calories. So this is where traveling helps with weight-loss! Watch your steps climb by getting to and from the airport in your new destination or even the sightseeing and tours that you’ll be doing.
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Happiness
Everything we do in life usually involves finding happiness, but often, we forget that working all the time or allowing our lifestyle to fall into a rut does little to secure the happiness we crave. Therefore, traveling is a great way to immerse yourself in something new and exciting, and it gives you a lot to look forward to.
Going to new places, sightseeing, meeting new people and just immersing yourself in a new culture will all help keep your happy hormones (dopamine and serotonin) flowing.
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Now it’s time to travel! Do you have a destination in mind?

Welcoming Wellness: Reiki

Reiki is a holistic system for balancing, healing, and harmonizing all aspects of the person-body, mind, emotions, and spirit-encouraging deep relaxation and the release of stress and tension, and promoting awareness and spiritual growth.

During a healing Reiki session, Reiki flows from a practitioner’s hands into the client. The client is lying fully clothed on a massage table, your Reiki therapist will gently place his/her hands on or near your body in a series of hand positions. These include positions around the head and shoulders, the stomach, and feet. Specific positions may be used based on the client’s needs and/or requests. Each position is held for about three to five minutes. A session can last between 30, 60 or  90 minutes.

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Some clients drift off to sleep while others experience a tingling sensation throughout their bodies.

Each Reiki session is unique to the individual person, and each session varies as the person continues to heal more deeply, however, feelings of deep relaxation are usually felt by all. To increase comfort levels, the room will be dimly lit and relaxing music will be playing softly in the background. Essential oils are typically used during the sessions to aid in relaxation and stress-reduction

 

Top 10 Ways to Boost your Immunity

No one likes getting sick but the question is, how do we avoid getting sick?
The answer is a healthy immune system! We’ve all heard about boosting our immune systems but what does this REALLY mean? Let’s dive in!
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The immune system is the key to fighting every insult to the body.
The entire physical healing process is engineered by the immune system. It is truly the healing power within. This complex network of cells and biochemicals is the frontline defense system against viruses, fungi, and bacteria.
Immunodeficiency
A weakened immune system results in an increased susceptibility to virtually every type of illness. Common signs of impaired immune function include fatigue, listlessness, repeated colds and infections, inflammation, allergic reactions, slow wound healing, and chronic diarrhea.
Autoimmunity
Proper immune function is an intricate balancing act. While inadequate immunity predisposes one to infectious illnesses of every type, it is also possible to become ill as a result of an immune response that is too strong or directed at an inappropriate target.
The immune system is not a physical structure, but a complex of interactions involving many different organ structures and substances.
Top ten ways to boost your overall immunity:
  1. Get enough sleep and manage stress.
  2. Avoid tobacco smoke.
  3. Drink less alcohol.
  4. Eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds.
  5. Consider probiotics.
  6. Catch some rays.
  7. Go for the garlic.
  8. Eat medicinal mushrooms.
  9. Try immune-supportive herbs.
  10. Make an echinacea tincture.
Remember, the immune system is a system, not a single entity.
To function well, it requires balance and harmony.
Balch CNC, Phyllis A.. Prescription for Dietary Wellness: Using Foods to Heal (Kindle Locations 247-249). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

6 Steps to Welcome Wellness

Wellness is a holistic concept that encompasses a person’s physical, psychological, emotional and spiritual components.
Living well gives you the energy to engage with life in a meaningful and fulfilling way.
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A holistic approach to life shows a deeper understanding that actions are felt by our body, by others, or by our environment as whole.
How to live well:
1. Eat clean.
2. Do things for others.
3. Grow yourself.
4. Pause and take your time.
5. Love your life!
6. Connect with others.
Through Forage & Nourish, I’ll be sharing my tips and information that you can apply immediately to live well.
I’ll be covering everything from nutrition to exercise to spirituality and more!
So stay tuned
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6 Plant-Based Musts

The process of cooking food depletes vitamins, destroys enzymes that help digestion, and damages vital fats and proteins. It also results in the creation of free radicals, which are a major contributor to cancer and many other illnesses.
Raw food or plant based eating has a natural balance of the fiber, nutrients, and water that your body needs.
Raw foods are unprocessed, so fat, processed sugar, and additives are not a worry.
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Raw foods contain live enzymes needed for healing as well as many nutrients, proteins, and substances that speed the healing process and the longer you keep them, the less “life” and nutrients they contain.
Six plant-based must-haves:
1. Fruits such as blueberries, oranges, bananas, and avocados.
In-season vegetables.
2. Leafy greens, including kale, spinach, cabbage, and romaine lettuce.
3. Raw nuts and seeds.
4. Steamed gluten-free grains such as quinoa, millet, and buckwheat.
5. Sprouted or cooked legumes, including lentils, peas, chickpeas, and beans.
6. Probiotic-rich foods such as raw sauerkraut, miso, and raw yogurt.
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You can use blenders, food processors, and dehydrators to prepare your meals. Thoroughly clean your vegetables and fruits to avoid food poisoning or try using a vegetable and fruit cleanser, available in health food stores. Either treatment helps to removes bacteria and pesticide residues. Scrub root vegetables well with a stiff brush that you use just for food.
Make sure to get all of your nutrients when eating plant-based meals. Also, there are some nutrient-rich super foods that can’t be eaten raw, such as beans, whole grains, and lean proteins.
Balch CNC, Phyllis A.. Prescription for Dietary Wellness: Using Foods to Heal (Kindle Locations 638-640). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.