Archive for February, 2010

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How Colors Affect Your Mood, Health, and Even Digestion!

February 28, 2010

Hi Guys,
I hope you had a fabulous weekend! In the heart (or tail end?) of winter, the topic of color was in the front of my mind.

I’ve long been a fan of Feng shui. Feng shui is the ancient Oriental science of how we set up our personal space, be it our home, desk or office, and how the energy of arrangement has a profound effect on our life. I have personally seen incredible things happen in my life by rearranging furniture in my apt. in a certain way to support my goals. Apparently, even Donald Trump has a Feng Shui expert arrange his office- since he learned about it through business associates in Hong Kong! Colors, which are really wavelengths of energy, also play a part in Feng Shui. I also love certain stones and their energies and colors, and jewelry made of them (right not rose quartz is my favorite!).

But whether you are into Feng Shui or not, colors have an undeniable effect on our brain. During my college years at Georgetown I took a few elective Art History classes, and I remember hearing about the theories of color by the Impressionists, who used broad brush strokes, and modern painters, like Mark Rothko that made “color fields” with big spaces of color. These painters  knew that colors affect our moods and help create or shape our emotional energy. Even some scientists have studied the effects of color.

Photo courtesy of http://www.tucrystals.com.

Do you feel depressed lately, want to create more passion, or more relaxation in your life? One of the easiest ways to do that is to paint the walls! A can of paint is a pretty inexpensive way to boost your life, right? It sure beats having to buy more, new furniture. My second favorite way to spruce up your life is to get new sheets. When I went to a Feng Shui workshop, one of my teachers told me one of the worst things was stark white “hospital-like” sheets. They are sterile and will make your bedroom, and possibly your life, sterile and boring.  Red or pink sheets, are great for passion and love respectively. At least off-white sheets are better than white sheets!

Of course, colors in foods are important, and we want to eat fresh fruits and vegetables that are all the colors of the rainbow. But in this discussion I want us to think wider, and more about our personal space and our environment.

Let’s go down the rainbow for some basic color ideas:

Red: Stimulating. Creates passion! If you want more excitement in your life why don’t you at least buy some red candles or some red tablecloths? (I already talked about the red sheets 🙂 ). Red is the color of the root chakra. Can be useful for constipation and reducing nervousness. Maybe some red towels in the bathroom to greet you as you start your day?

Red sheets! Photo courtesy of http://www.thekingdomlifecc.org

Orange: Revitalizing. Associated with our second chakra. Good for stimulating appetite and deep breathing, in other words the taking in of energy.

Yellow: Energizes. Associated with our third chakra, which is how we deal with the material world. Simulates proper nerve function and assists our endocrine system and liver to function optimally.

Green: The color of love and our heart chakra (along with pink). Helps to stabilize emotions, promotes healing and overall balance. I am actually planning on painting my kitchen soon a pretty green! Of course we should bring green plants into our kitchen and living spaces, so as to promote life force and living energy.

Lots of indoor plants! Photo courtesy of http://www.nakedapartments.com

Blue: Restful. Soothing, calm, and can help lower blood pressure and anxiety. The color of the third eye/throat chakra. If you have a stressful job, or are busy with lots of kids, it might be a great idea to paint your bathroom blue and make it your sanctuary! Take long baths.

Purple:
Relaxing. Encourages sleep and a lower heart rate. If you are a chronic insomniac you might want some purple sheets! Or a comforter that has purple in it.

I hope this inspires you to look for ways to bring more color into your life! If we live a life surrounded by white, black and gray, our life might just be more white, black, white and gray. And then where is the passion, fun, life force???

I leave for LA tomorrow, so I’ll write more from there!

Love, Kimberly

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The Supplement We All Need

February 26, 2010

Guys,

I hope you are having a great week! There was horrible weather today in NY, with slushy snow and rain, but I’m just happy I have great new, cool snow/rain boots. That makes it a little happier for me to get from place to place. 🙂

Many of you write to me and ask me what I recommend as far as supplements. Besides probiotics, another one I recommend wholeheartedly across the board is Vitamin D. Vitamin D is very important for our optimal health! It is estimated that a shocking upwards of 85% of Americans are deficient in this important nutrient.

Vitamin D is not readily available in our food supply. The natural and ideal way to get vitamin D is by exposing our skin to appropriate sunlight. Unfortunately for most of us there simply isn’t enough sun exposure for nearly half of the year. Um, that would include me here in ‘ol NYC, and particularly on snowy days like today!  However, even when I’m in sunny places like LA, where I’d like to get some more sun time, I’m often so busy that it doesn’t happen. And that is true for most of us! We would need to be in the sun about 15 minutes a day, exposing about half of our body. People with darker skin would need more sun time. Also, if we are in areas of heavy air pollution and acid haze, much of the sun’s rays would be blocked anyways.

Now we all know that the mainstream media likes to ram it down our throats that the sun is evil and that we must wear sunscreen every day! What they don’t like to point out is that since the excessive rise of sunscreen has come into play in the 1980’s, the rise of skin cancer has also risen (though there are only an estimated 1,500 fatalities from skin cancer a year). Most sunscreens are absolutely TOXIC! Their harmful ingredients are absorbed into our skin and bloodstream, and bake in the sun on the surface of our skin. But that is another topic altogether…The main issue with sunscreen as far as it relates to Vitamin D is that it blocks UVB exposure, which we need to produce Vitamin D in our body.

Why is Vitamin D important? It is related to many issues within our body, including heart and pancreatic health, cell formation, reproductive health, immunity, general well-being, healthy bones, eye health, warding off many numerous diseases….and many more benefits! It can even help prevent the spread and reproduction of cancer cells.

How do we get it and how much do we need? First off, it is important to choose a supplement that is the form of D3, which is what our body naturally produces. Vitamin D2 is synthetic and probably won’t absorb as well. In fact it might actually keep the natural D3 in our bodies from working properly.

The general recommendation for adults is 4000- 5000 units per day. However the big issue is that the actual amount that each individual specifically needs can vary significantly. That means that you might actually need much more than that dosage, especially if you are very heavy, and children may need far less. When you get regular exposure to sunlight your body self administers the correct amount. But when we are supplementing, monitoring our vitamin D levels by routine blood testing is recommended, to make sure you are getting appropriate levels that are therapeutic and not toxic, so you don’t overdose. We can’t assume that the same amount is okay for everyone!

Be sure to take care of yourself and your family with the right kind of supplementation of this important nutrient. Remember to get the D3 and not the D2!

Stay warm and dry. Lots of love to you!! See you here soon. 🙂
Kimberly

These are my favorite jammy pants, since they are so soft. I think comfortable sleep wear you love getting into at the end of the day is so important!!!

 

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Good Day LA Stylefile Video Segment: The Skin-Plumping Smoothie

February 23, 2010

Hey Guys! Here is the quick clip that I shot 2 weeks ago in LA. When we shot it I included a lot more info on the ingredients, but they had cut it down to make it really move and fit into the show. I hope you try it out!

Love, Kimberly

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Raw Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes”

February 21, 2010

Hi Guys!

I hope you had a great weekend! I ended up going to the Rubin Museum yesterday on 17th Street, which is fantastic. It specializes in Himalayan art, and it certainly ignited some nostalgia of my travels through Nepal and Kashmir. Then, this girl I traveled with through Nepal randomly emailed me today to say hello! Thoughts really travel through the ether. 🙂

Today I had a rather lazy day. My friend came over to my apt. to cut my hair, which I love because we can hang out and I don’t have to go to a salon! I also made this easy and yummy recipe, which I wanted to share with you.

This is basically all you need to make this recipe!

Raw Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes” (Serves about 2)

– 3 cups of chopped cauliflower florets

– 1/4 cup raw pine nuts

– 1 Tbs. cold pressed olive oil

– 1 Tbs. cold filtered water

– 3/4 tsp. Celtic sea salt

-1/2 of a small clove of garlic, chopped

– black pepper, to top

Blend all ingredients until the mixture become smooth and fluffy, like real mashed potatoes, (but without all the milk and butter!). Be sure the garlic is mixed well throughout, so you don’t end up with a really garlicy bite! I like to garnish the black pepper on top, so it looks pretty and has that flavor. It really has the consistency and a similar taste to mashed potatoes, in case you were looking for a healthy replacement.

Enjoy!

I like to pair this with salads and veggies.

See you here soon. Have a great beginning of the week! Love, Kimberly

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The Adjective Healthy Means Beautiful, Not “Big”!

February 18, 2010

The greatest beauty is found in nature, and when we eat in tune with nature we become our most beautiful.

Hi Guys! I hope you are having a fantastic week! I had a very exciting day. I taped some segments for Extra today, including a “LifeChangers” segment with Star Jones. I have to say that I am a huge fan now of hers. She was really open and interested in my nutrition philosophy, especially in the fact that I don’t count calories or promote calorie-counting, but instead encourage making healthy, natural choices. She is a very warm and humble person, and even told me if she could just use me for her nutrition stuff she would! (Yay!) 🙂

Stay tuned, it airs on Extra this weekend!

I also recently got this exact email that was so sweet, and so telling at the same time, I just had to publish it. I got Kyle’s permission first, of course (thanks Kyle!).

Dear Kimberly,

My name is Kyle and I’m 17 years old.  I know this might not be your particular area of expertise, but since you deal with beauty and self-image issues I thought you might have have some good insight on an experience I recently had.  It involved a girl I had just met at a dance.  We talked for a good half hour and seemed to be hitting it off.  She was very pretty, smart and nice.  We even exchanged email addresses.  I was so excited!

Then, things suddenly went downhill.  I commented that she had a “really nice, hourglass figure”. I thought she would take it as a compliment but instead she became deeply offended.  I went into damage control mode and tried to clarify my comments but I think I only made things worse when I used the term “healthy”. With a look of complete disgust, WHAP!, she slapped my face and departed.

As I was standing there alone rubbing my cheek, with my friends nearby laughing at me, I was wondering why she was so offended.  She had a classic hourglass figure – very busty, narrow waist, shapely hips/legs. I guess she had interpreted “hourglass” as meaning big/overweight/full figured. Why can’t girls embrace their curves?

Btw, I do have her email address.  Do you think I should her an apology note or should I interpret the slap in the face as another way of saying she does not want to see me again?

–kyle

HERE’S MY REPLY BACK TO HIM:

Hi Kyle!

I usually take up to a few weeks to answer someone back, when I get swamped, but your email was to sweet and sincere to put off!

You are a fantastic writer and you should pursue something that involves writing as you go to college and eventually choose your career. I am impressed. Teenagers can have a very hard time expressing themselves adequately in words. You are lucky because you can do that through your writing, which not everyone can.

For this reason, I would highly recommend emailing her, and explain what you were really trying to communicate. Use the words “beautiful” and “attractive.” I am personally trying to change womens’ interpretations to view the word “healthy” is actually the body adjective we should strive for. Unfortunately, it does get interpreted differently. A girl that is even slightly self-conscious of her body, which is pretty much every teenage girl, and most women in the world (!), will interpret someone saying she is “healthy” as a nice way of saying fat.

Every girl wants to feel beautiful and attractive. So also tell her that you wouldn’t think she would be any more attractive if she was stick-skinny, and the reason you said she was “healthy” was because healthy is synonymous with “beautiful.” I think the world would be a much better place if women knew that guys like you thought that healthy was much more attractive, and if women thought the world “healthy” was a huge compliment. We do not all have to fit into one stereotype. It starts even earlier than 17, but especially at your age, if girls embraced their bodies it would save so much wasted energy and heartache down the road.

Keep in touch, and let me know it goes with your lady!
All my very best, Kimberly


Kyle’s email reminded me of what it was like to be a teenager. We are all confused, in our heads, and deeply self-conscious. Especially us women are already striving to be skinny and perfect, so much so that the word healthy is actually interpreted as meaning big or fat!

We have to realize that when we focus on true health, true beauty will follow. For we can only be truly beautiful when we are truly healthy. I remember living in Australia years ago, having a stressful office job and drinking diet drinks and counting calories (yes it is true, I went through that!!!). When I started learning about nutrition, one of my first teachers helped me realize that yes, it was important that I focus on going to the bathroom every day, and yes, it did matter that I was getting enough nutrients, not just counting calories! That was the turning point. When I focused on being healthy, not skinny, my weight centered and stayed balanced without all the excessive effort. My skin became so much better, and life started to open up. 🙂

A lot of the time, we focus on the wrong thing. We put too much emphasis on one of the beneficial side effects- which is a slim body. That is what happens naturally when we focus on real health, and choosing natural foods over preserved, processed foods. That is what happens when we let go of calorie-counting, and live a life of choosing real, healthy foods which we can eat in abundance and never have to count a single calorie! We only have to worry about restriction and limitation when we are focusing on the wrong foods. Abundant health and beauty are all within our grasp!

The more we as a society embrace this, the better off we will be. And hopefully future generations of girls will not have to go through the heartache of chronic dieting and body image issues that so many of us had to endure.

With love,
Kimberly

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The Issue with Crystal Deodorant Stones

February 16, 2010

Hi Guys!

I recently did a post on underarm health, and mentioned that we should avoid antiperspirants and switch to deodorants that don’t contain aluminum. Some of you asked me about crystal deodorants, and asked whether I recommend them. I didn’t know that much about them, so I decided to look into it, which revealed some interesting facts.

First, let’s review that aluminum is a poison, a neurotoxin that affects our brain, and does not serve our bodies in any way. If we use antiperspirants or deodorants containing aluminum, we can significantly increase how much of this poison enters our body. A review revealed that in one single underarm application of antiperspirant, about .012 percent of the aluminum may be absorbed. When we add that up for all the days we use that product, you can be sure that is a major amount of poison entering our body! Besides being linked to Alzheimer’s disease, a study in 2006 found that aluminum salts can mimic the hormone estrogen, and chemicals that imitate that hormone are known to increase breast cancer risk.

Crystal deodorant stones are often viewed as the healthy deodorant alternative. However, after doing my last post and because so many of you asked me, I researched it more. Here’s what I found: These crystal stones claim to be aluminum- free, but they are referring to the 3 types of aluminum that are most actively used by commercial brands. These specifically include aluminum chlorohydrate, aluminum chloride, aluminum hydroxybromide or aluminum zirconium.

Crystal deodorant stones DO contain a different type of compound known as an alum, the most common form being potassium alum, also known as potassium aluminum sulfate. This type of aluminum is made up of mineral salts and molecules generally considered too large to be absorbed by the skin- though there does not seem to be any solid evidence to support this claim. This makes it better than our commercial choices, but the fact remains that these products are not aluminum-free.

Because they are clearly not aluminum-free, there is still the risk of toxicity entering the body, and Alzheimer’s and all the health risks that go along with that. Therefore, I recommend that if you are using these crystal deodorant stones it would be better if you stopped- we don’t need the risk that this could be harmful to your body!!!

You can switch to the other brands like Tom’s when you really need it, which are aluminum and paraben-free, though they too are not completely perfect. Tom’s still contains the toxin Propylene glycol. If you are unsure about aluminum products, check the label not just for aluminum, potassium alum, potash alum, and potassium aluminum sulfate.

We can wash our underarms very well with soap and water, and as our diet improves, we generally stink much less! Summertime you may want to use it more, but maybe a lot of the time now you can skip…You may not need that deo as much as you think. 🙂

With Love, Kimberly

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5 Tangible Ways I Hold It Together (Sort of!)

February 14, 2010

Photo courtesy of blog.clickbooth.com.

Hi Guys!
Happy Valentine’s Day!!! Whether we love V Day or view it as a silly holiday that makes unattached people feel depressed, or whether we think it is a commercial “fake” holiday that just makes us spend more money on useless things, it is all about perspective isn’t it?? I like to think of it as a day when people are just a little bit more nice, more sweet, and another day to especially give love out into the world, though of course we could do that every day. 🙂

I’ve been really crazed lately, with all very good and exciting things that I would choose to be involved with even if I had 100 million dollars. So that’s good, but I’m crazed all the same. Last night I got back into my apt. from my flight from LA after 11:00 pm, then had to run out and get some food quickly since I hadn’t eaten all day, which took me to past midnight. I had to stay up to 3:00 in the morning since I had to plan my kids’ meditation class I teach once a month on Sunday mornings. I also had to unpack. Last week I was so busy in LA I didn’t get to work on any upcoming projects I was REALLY supposed to (I’ll give that an oops and a Yikes!) with looming deadlines, since I had to rush from event to event to meeting to press stuff to clients to movie sets to … I will say that it was one of the busiest and most successful trips I’ve ever had. It was worth it to have to  um, postpone a few deadlines. 🙂

I feel incredibly grateful that much of what I do doesn’t really seem like work. It is about sharing and connecting and helping a wide range of people. So I am definitely not complaining at all. Still, sometimes I wish there were an extra 6 hours in a day, so I could do more, or sleep a wee bit more.

PURE love. Majita and her mother in Bora Bora, on the island where I practiced yoga. Only 9 people live on their island!

In the midst of major craziness, here are 5 things that keep me really grounded:

1.    My roobius tea with Stevia: When I am on the phone for extended periods of time, I am drinking this. If you have ever been on the phone with me and heard me pause, you can be sure I am taking a sip of this brew! It is my favorite, and it makes me really happy. People always ask me about green tea this and green tea that, but I personally avoid it. Me and my liver certainly don’t need that caffeine. Caffeine in any form puts a drag on our liver, and therefore detoxification. Trust me, lay off all the green tea. Roobius is full of antioxidants and is free of caffeine. Way better!! It is from a red bush in Africa. I like the blueberry flavor the best. And I do like it slightly sweet!!

2.    Scent. I’m a huge fan of aromatherapy. I haven’t worn commercial perfume (I mean Sephora-like fare) in at least 6 years because it is so toxic and goes right into the skin. But that doesn’t mean I don’t like yummy smelly things! I burn incense a lot when I’m working (I like the Nag Chaampa brand, which I’ve been told burns cleanly and is non-toxic), and I sage my apt. pretty often. I mist lavender around me sometimes, and if I really want something that smells good I occasionally use the Kiss My Face Lavender Body Lotion, or I’ll drop some lavender essential oil into my coconut oil concoction I put on my body.

Having the room I’m in or my general environment smell good really helps me stay present and happy, and not overwhelmed. If you have not indulged in the scented, non-toxic goods, they are so inexpensive and are a great way to make your day much better! If you are a candle person, be sure you are using soy candles as opposed to the regular petroleum-based candles, which will pollute your air. Glade, Febreeze candles, sprays, and their commercial counterparts are a heap of toxic rubbish!!!!!!!! We should never buy such things. If you work at a desk, I suggest keeping some essential oil in your desk drawer. Once in a while you can sniff it, or dab it on, or mist it around! Lavender if you are stressed, or a nice grapefruit or citrus if you need to wake up.

3. Chlorella tablets: I’m talking tablets ladies, not powder! When I’m in a bind (which usually happens at least twice a week when I’m in NY ), when I can’t eat for a very long time, I chew about 15 of them. I never leave home without a pouch of
them in my purse. Beware: Your teeth will turn green!! You will look like some kind of swamp monster that emerged from a seaweed-filled puddle…but only for a few seconds. 🙂 Drink with lots of water. Chew them well though- so you break them up and can an instant hit of plant protein and minerals. They keep me going for a while, so I’m not in desperato-ville and have to reach for something that is less than ideal to eat which I try to avoid at all costs.

4. My morning ritual. I always have my Green drink first thing in the morning as the first thing in my belly. It is very rare that I skip. Even if the rest of my day goes haywire, I have done something good for myself, and I feel much better the rest of
the day on. I encourage you to do the same. You deserve the Green freakin’ Smoothie!! Your energy, spirit, skin, body and emotional well-being deserve it. MAKE…THE…EFFORT!!!!!!!!! The rest of your day will by easier and better for you.

5. My meditation practice
. First, last and as much as I can in between. Let me be clear: I would not be the person I am without my meditation practice. If I have contributed anything positive in the world, it is because I meditate and have a more clear perspective of myself and love, and I work towards being a more clear channel. If you are interested in starting a meditation practice or yoga practice and don’t know where to turn, I highly recommend reading Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda. It is the book that changed my life. I found it in a tiny bookstore in Rishikesh, India, and it practically jumped out at me. My life has never been the same since.

See you back here soon. Love to you!!!!!!!!!  Kimberly

Santa Monica. I love.

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The Skin-Plumping Smoothie

February 11, 2010

Filming the segment. That is Michelle to the left, who is one of my favorite producers!

Hi Guys!
This morning I shot a Stylefile segment for Good Day LA. They wanted a smoothie of sorts, so I created this recipe right before shooting (as in half an hour before 🙂 ). Sylefile segments are not live, so there were plenty of cutaway shots, holding the ingredients in my hands a few times, pouring and repouring ingredients, etc.

It is great to have this time of year, since all our skin is a bit dried out from the harsh winter climate. Even here in LA, that does NOT get snow, the climate is really dry right now.

This smoothie is quite yummy. Check it out!

½ frozen Acai smoothie packet: I like the Sambazon brand. Found frozen in the freezer section of health stores like Wholefoods. Loaded with antioxidants and Omega fatty acids that plump and nourish the skin, as well as fiber.

1 ½ cups of coconut water: Our skin can’t be plumped up if it is not hydrated! Coconut water is one of the best hydrators because it has the same electrolyte balance as human blood. Some countries even use it for plasma transfusions. It is also full of potassium, which facilitates cellular cleansing.

½ cup of unsweetened almond milk: Adds a nice creamy texture to the smoothie.

½ avocado:
Raw beauty fat that digests easily, and is full of beauty minerals and fiber.

1 tsp. coconut oil/butter: Medium chain fatty acids that are easily metabolized by the liver and also nourish our skin. Contains a high content of Lauric Acid, which can help us burn stored body fat.


Hope you enjoy!! Also, I’ve been really slammed in LA, and practically every second of my schedule has been accounted (and pulled) for. I apologize for the delay in answering comments and emails, but thanks for the patience and I will get back to you soon! 🙂

See you back here soon.
Love, Kimberly

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Letting Our Underarms Detoxify

February 9, 2010

Somewhere I wouldn't mind going back to- Bora Bora. You can sweat all you want, then just jump off your porch into the water!

Hi Guys, hope all is well! I know there is a lot of snow back home on the East Coast, but I must say it feels a million miles away here in LA. Yes, one perk that my beloved New York has not! It has been sunny, though today there was a huge blast of rain.

Speaking of LA…Last night I went to the premiere of Valentine’s Day, starring 22 actors! The director Gary Marshall came out to announce the movie, and called out all 22 stars to stand up one at a time. Except Taylor Swift and Queen Latifah, all the others actors were present, and were all sitting within several feet of each other in the one-floor theatre. Julia Roberts, Jennifer Garner, Shirley Maclain, Jamie Fox, etc. At the afterparty I spoke to my two favorites, who are so sweet and I love so much: Jessica Biel and Anne Hathaway. They are fantastic in the film! 🙂
I also saw Anne tonight at the Inglorious Basterds Audi party. I thought Valentine’s Day was super fun, and sweet, and I totally recommend it! I also love Inglorious Basterds, I thought it was fantastic.

So anyways, I was in a spa Saturday on my birthday  and I noticed they had aerosol Secret deodorant/antiperspirant sprays next to disposable razors. It made me cringe!! Many of us women tend to shave our armpits in our morning shower, only to put on deodorant/antiperspirant moments later. When you shave, you can be sure our skin pores open in the armpit area, and when we apply those products, chemicals go right into our bodies. The chemical I am mostly concerned with is aluminum. None of us should be using any underarm products containing aluminum! When we put it on, the aluminum has a direct portal into our lymph gland, and the breast. Look at the products out there- most all of them contain aluminum as an active ingredient!

Aluminum has been linked to many health complications, and some even believe that it is a contributing factor in today’s tremendous rise in breast cancer (high levels of chlorine and daily use of underwire bras may be other factors).  It is toxic, and is found in abundance in the brain tissue of Alzheimer patients.

We do have to be very careful of the personal products we use, and this is one that I believe can be the most harmful. Here’s what we can do:

1.    Shave your armpits at night, when you are not going to be putting on any deodorant on afterwards.


2.    Be sure to use deodorant that does not contain any aluminum.
There are many natural brands available, including Tom’s of Maine, which is available at even Trader Joe’s. I really like that brand, and I find it works really well. The other one that works well is the Jason brand.

3.    Stop using antiperspirants immediately.
Sometimes as a society, we use products because they are used in a mass, mainstream way, and we never stop to question their validity…or their purpose. Such is the case with antiperspirants. Why do we want to STOP our body from perspiring?? Our skin is our largest organ, and it detoxifies waste daily. If we STOP the sweat glands from working, we are holding the toxins in, not allowing them to flow out of the body. We do not want to hinder detoxification like this, and especially not on a daily basis. And on top of that we push chemicals in! Double uggh.

If you are concerned about this, remember that you can still use a deodorant, so you won’t stink! 🙂 You can wear looser shirts to start so your body has more room to air out, and over time you may find that since your body doesn’t have to “fight” working against the products which are blocking your sweat glands, your sweat in that area may reduce. And of course, as your diet improves and you cut back on your consumption of animal foods, you will not have so many toxins to push out in the first place! I have noticed a huge difference in my sweating patterns from changing my diet, and I’ve been antiperspirant-free for years now. I don’t even think about it!

Don’t forget to throw out all the toxin-loaded antiperspirants today! And restock with the natural stuff. Remember that toxicity enters the body in multiple ways.

Lots of love, Kimberly

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Medicinal Marinade with Shiitake and Burdock Root

February 8, 2010

Beautiful, earthy burdock root! Photo courtesy of csa.com.

Hey Guys,
Hope you had a great Superbowl weekend and were able to find some (or brought some!) decently healthy choices during the game yesterday. But even if you slipped a little bit, it is now time to start a new, wonderful week.  🙂

This special marinade is something that can be added in small quantities as a side to regular salads. If you are unfamiliar with these ingredients, especially the burdock root, be sure to test small amounts to be sure it agrees with you. Both of these special ingredients have definite medicinal properties!

For a while now, I’ve been interested in burdock root, and ways to incorporate it into the diet. I didn’t want to have to juice it- I wanted to find a way to use the whole entire root. I was excited to find it quite soft, slightly sweet, and gummy to the feel- meaning it could be eaten as a whole and could absorb liquid if soaked in a marinade!

Burdock root has especially been used by traditional Chinese, Indian and Japanese healers. It has often been used to purify the blood by removing toxins that can build up in blood- helping with skin conditions such as acne, eczema, and psoriasis. In India it has been cited to have anti-cancer properties, though there are probably no organized or documented studies on this.

Burdock’s active ingredients are arcigen, calcium, chlorogenic acid, essential oil, flavonoids, iron, inulin, lactone, mucilage, polyacetylenes, potassium, resin, tannin, and taraxosterol. The seeds of the plant contain beneficial fatty acids. The oil from the seeds can be used as a diaphoretic, which leads to increased perspiration, which is essential in cleansing the body of toxins or harmful elements. According to traditional healers, diaphoretics are integral to treating influenza, gallbladder or liver disorders, and to aid the kidneys which purify the blood. Burdock root has slightly laxative qualities, as well as being antibacterial and antifungal.

Burdock root has Para-Amino Benzoic Acid (PABA), which is uncommon to find in a food source. This type of PABA is great for maintaining and reviving hair color and firmness of skin, producing folic acid, and aids in the metabolism of blood and protein formation.

Shiitake mushrooms. Photo courtesy of nancyvancenc.com.

Shiitake mushrooms are healing, strengthening and restorative foods. They have been used medicinally by the Chinese for more than 6,000 years.

Shiitake mushrooms contain an active compound called lentinan. Among lentinan’s healing benefits is its ability to power up the immune system, strengthening its ability to fight infection and disease.

Lentinan, which is technically classified as a polysaccharide and referred to as a branched beta-glucan, has also been shown to have anti-cancer activity. When lentinan was given for human gastric cancer, reticular fibers developed in tumor sites. Reticular cells, which are spread throughout the body in various tissues, are immune cells that have the ability to ingest (phagocytose) bacteria, particulate matter, and worn out or cancerous cells. When lentinan was administered, not only was there a proliferation of reticular cells in gastric tumor sites, but many T lymphocytes (another type of immune defender) were drawn to these cancer sites, and the cancer cell nests were destroyed.

Another active component in shiitake mushrooms is something called eritadenine, which lowers cholesterol levels. It also contains L-ergothioneine, which is a very powerful antioxidant.

Medicine Marinade

–    4 stalks of burdock root, sliced into pieces about a 1/4 inch thick
–    2 large shiitake mushrooms, cut into small strips
–    4 Tbs. low-sodium, gluten-free Tamari
–    1 Tbs. raw apple cider vinegar
–    1/8 tsp. Celtic sea salt
–    4 drops Liquid Stevia
–    2 Tbs. sesame seeds, ground

Mix all ingredients in a bowl large enough to mix the marinade together well. Marinate in fridge for at least 3 hours, stirring occasionally. The apple cider vinegar will help “cook” the shiitake mushrooms and burdock root, without really cooking them. 🙂

Makes about 4 servings, and will keep in the fridge covered for 2-3 days.

Serve as a small side to a large salad or the rest of your meal. Chew well, and relish in being able to enjoy potent, authentic medicine from nature that will cleanse and heal your body in a natural way.

Enjoy opening your repertoire to these new and exciting ingredients! 🙂

Love,

Kimberly