Posts Tagged ‘coconut oil’

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Skin and My Other Product Obsessions Of the Moment

August 23, 2010

Last night I went to an Emmy's party in Hollywood. The first person I met right when I walked in the door, through a friend of a friend, was Kathy Griffin! I admire her courage and just putting whatever she is thinking out there, and for being a strong woman! I'm a fan. I'm wearing the Sally B's natural lipgloss here in Ruby's Red.

Heeelloooo there!!

Hope you had a great weekend! I just finished my first week here, which was amazing! It was busy, but very successful. Again, the past week sort of feels like a month, because so much happens and my days are so full. The days never blur together. Isn’t time funny how it can seem to fly by or slow down?

I have noticed my skin freaking out a bit since I’ve gotten to LA. I am not a huge fan of the dessert climate, but what are you going to do? In the summer I usually don’t put any lotion at all on my body, but here my legs started getting flakey, almost immediately. I feel the moisture being leached right out—–eek!! I’ve been doubling up during the day with coconut oil as a lotion.

I really love the Artisana brand’s coconut oil, which is free of pesticides, artificial flavors, colors, preservatives, stabilizers, added oils, GMO’s. Coconut butter is the coconut meat ground up, but coconut oil is only the oil pressed out, and that is what you want to use on your skin rather than the coconut butter.

By the way, the Artisana has a great raw tahini! I used it yesterday to make my Raw Chickpea-less hummus for a party yesterday.

I was given a bottle of Burt’s Bees Naturally Nourishing Milk and Honey Body Lotion, which is decent. It sort of creeps me out that there is milk (dairy!!) in there, and I found that I had to keep applying it to make my skin feel anywhere near “naturally nourished.”

The quest continues to find a good paraben-free body lotion! For now I’ll just stick to the coconut oil.

I managed to squeeze in getting to the steamroom at a very luxurious, organic spa the other day, because I miss the humidity of Chicago and New York so much!! Call me crazy, but I love the moisture on my skin. It makes me feel moisturized, rather than my skin is being choked of every last drop of its precious natural water!

I’m totally obsessed with the Ojon hair products now. They are awesome because they don’t contain parabens, sulfates, synthetic dyes, phthalates, GMO’s, or triclosan. Here are my faves: The Ojon Restorative Pre-Cleansing Treatment, Ojon Ultra Hydrating Shampoo, and Ojon Ultra Hydrating Conditioner. You can get it straight from their website, www.ojon.com, or at Sephora.

And speaking of Sephora, you know how everybody gets those little tins of lipgloss/moisturizer that they sell at the front? They seem so innocent because they are strawberry flavored (I think) and are labeled as “natural.” I can’t remember the name because I never use them…because they are all petroleum-based! Terrible for the collagen in the lips. My advice? Chuck ‘em right now!

When I was working on a movie in April in Atlanta, I found a great brand down there called Sally B’s Skin Yummies. I now use their B Glossy Organic Lip Gloss, which not only moisturizes, my lips, but it is a pretty color and has a great smell/taste. Check out the ingredients: Organic Castor Oil, Organic Shea Butter, Organic Beeswax, Vitamin E, Carneuba Wax, Organic Lecithin, Mica, Peppermint.

I use Ruby’s Red. I keep one in my purse and one in my bathroom. Love!! Their website is www.sallybskinyummies.com.

Speaking of lips, I love the non-toxic lipgloss by the Christopher Drummond line (www.christopherdrummond.com). Here are the ingredients: Castor oil, coconut oil, soybean oil, beeswax, candella wax, mica, iron oxides, Tocopherol (Vitamin E).

My favorite is Carnival, which I think is so pretty. It feels and looks great!!

Enjoy! I’ll write more soon!!!!

Lots of love, Kimberly

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Back to Tropical Paradise at the Ann Wigmore Institute

July 5, 2010

Hi Guys,

I hope you are having a great fourth of July weekend! I arrived yesterday back at a little slice of heaven called the Ann Wigmore Institute to take more classes and do more training. It has only been 10 months since my last trip back here, but it is a natural, beautiful place in western Puerto Rico that I love and will come back to time and time again.

My favorite environment is tropical, hot and humid. I love the humidity!!! And the jungle!!! When I go to bed I hear the chirping of tropical lizards and critters, and the occasional thump of a coconut or a mango dropping off a tree. When I woke up this morning I heard tropical birds singing and roosters! I love sweating and cleansing the skin, then just jumping in the ocean to cool off. When I go out of my room to the little sideroad outside, it is about 98 steps for me to get into the ocean. 🙂

Here's the path to my room!

It’s so funny how I just posted that blog video about opening coconuts. They use machetes to open them here, right on this board. FRESH young coconuts every day!! Now you know I’m in heaven!!

Look at ’em all!!!!! Freshly chopped and ready to be eaten/drank. Come to mama little coconut babies!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Beach at dusk.

This evening I went down to the beach to meditate and look over the ocean. It is such a magical time of day. My heart is swelling with joy right now on so many levels. I am so grateful to be here!

I will share much more soon.

Sending joy and love from my heart to yours!

Kimberly

Self-picture taken at dusk

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More Random Thoughts: Raw Food, Yoga…

December 12, 2009

Hi My Loves,

Yes, my brain does like to jump around sometimes. Not in a frenetic ADD way, but more in a way where I get really excited about a lot of different thoughts all at the same time that I want to share! While they don’t all really seem interrelated- well, I think everything really is related.

Here are some random thoughts- to give you an idea of that is playing on in my head:

1.  I know it is cold and winter because my coconut oil has turned white and solid. What should I do?
In a word- nothing. We love our coconut oil because it is a wonderful and commonly used ingredient in raw deserts, and because when we apply it topically it penetrates and makes our skin smooth and hydrated. It doesn’t matter whether it is a liquid oil or a solid butter- it will still work the same. I actually like it when the jar I keep near my bed to put on my skin gets a bit thicker and more milky. It is a little easier to scoop out how much I put on. When it is liquid it is a bit more unwieldy, and yes I have definitely oiled my sheets up more than once!

You don’t have to worry about refrigerating coconut oil in any form. If you are mixing a recipe by hand (like my Raw Cacao Truffles recipe) and you are worried that your coconut oil is too chunky to mix well, I would just sit your jar on your stove, which is always slightly warm anyway, and it should liquefy quite nicely.

2. I know it is winter because my body is craving warm food and cooked food sometimes. Great! It is important to transition with the seasons. No one said you have to eat 100% raw to get amazing, fantastic results. Some cooked food can be very beneficial in fact, as long as it is placed correctly and is easily digestible food. I do NOT believe in the die-hard 100% raw food philosophy people that promotes if you eat anything cooked you are doing something really “bad.” Please! Who wants to live a life of restriction?? To me, that is sort of like the calorie-counting people, which are also restricted and have to know how many calories are going into their mouth at all times. I reject both of those schools.

This is really a whole blog post which I’ll do soon as it is getting colder- and could really fill a whole book on how to eat, but I will say a few things. Non-cream soups like Miso soup and vegetable soup are fine. If you feel like something heavier, like a grain for dinner, I recommend quinoa, millet or amaranth after you’ve eaten a salad, and along with some lightly steamed vegetables. You can spice it up and make a whole meal out of it. Delicious!

Days when you eat some cooked food I do recommend being sure to have your Green Smoothie that morning, and also be sure to have a nice green salad beforehand. Remember that if we eat very well most of the time, and follow certain rules, such as the ones I just said, you are not being “bad” for eating some cooked food sometimes!

3.    I know it is winter because I can intuitively feel that my yoga practice needs more fire. Of course, this could apply to other forms of movement. In winter, it is easy to want to close ourselves off, burrow ourselves in our homes and apartments, and withdraw. We are wrapped up in layers and layers of clothes, hustling to get from place to place and spending much less time in the fresh air and the outdoors.

With all this happening, we need to be conscious that we are not closing our heart chakras. We need to find ways to stay open and passionate, engaged with what excites us and makes us feel alive and energized and joyous. We have to put out a bit more effort in the winter to ensure we are still living our life to the fullest and not getting sucked into a familiar routine that just rolls along. Where is the fire??

One way I am actively seeking and bringing more fire into my own life is with my yoga practice and the way I teach yoga. After warming up I am bringing a much more a fiery routine with sun salutations, faster and more modern music than I might usually play in my classes, and series where I have my students move one breath per pose. It is really helping me feel the fire right now. I love it! We much naturally adjust to the seasons and the cycles of nature. How can you bring in more fire into your own life right now?

4.    Along those lines, it is a good time to be reminded to remain unattached. With the closing off of the heart chakra and feeling more withdrawn, we tend to get a bit more attached to our routines and the minute components of our life because it makes us feel safe and so we have something to cling to. Have you gotten more upset lately over something that usually wouldn’t bother you? Of course, the upcoming holidays can also add more stress…

Yesterday in fact, I had a few situations that challenged this in me : 1) I was at a crappy airport terminal at JFK with 0 good food selections, and I was truly starving and about to get on a 6 hour flight. I did the best I could- baked rice chips and a not so great salad. Instead of dwelling on being mad at myself for not bringing food, or that I would throw myself off, I focused on letting it go. I also counter balanced it by not eating any peanuts on the airplane- alflatoxin mold! Even if I was near dying I don’t think I would eat those peanuts. 🙂

2 ) I take my friends’ yoga class once in a while and I get really excited when I can make it. And yesterday there was an unexpected sub! I noticed that feeling of frustration rising up, and I immediately took some deep breaths and tried to open up. And you know what? I loved the sub! She had beautiful energy. (And yes, I do think it is important for yoga teachers to keep being students as well!).

3) I was stuck in a cab for 2 hours and missed my flight. I had to pay a $50 change fee and got stuck with a middle seat instead of my original window seat. I am actually sitting in that middle seat as I write to you! I did get a bit put off for a minute, but then I realized, DOES IT REALLY MATTER? What’s the big rush anyways? I’m still breathing, still alive, and ultimately, everything will be okay. So I got to LA a few hours later- it is worth getting upset and secreting a large amount of harmful stress hormones?
Things are never such a big deal when we step back and become unattached to a specific outcome (even if we have to force ourselves to do so sometimes), and realize that in the big scope, 99% of the stuff we are attached to can shift, and it is okay. Being unattached in a very important practice, with our food and our lives. We just have to do our best and go with the flow. Everything does happen for a reason!

Love,
Kimberly

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Dry Winter Skin: How to keep your body and face moisturized in the cold months

October 15, 2009

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Hi Guys,

So 2 days ago that once-a-year occurrence happened, that really means the cold weather is a ‘comin: The heat turned on in my apartment. “What?! Big deal,” some of you non-New Yorkers are probably saying. But in NYC, guys, most of us have NO control over the heat in our apartments. It goes on when it goes on, and stays on at whatever temperature your landlord dictates. There are minimums it shouldn’t drop below, but I have friends in Brooklyn that would argue that that rule is not always enforced- and attest to it with the use of their multiple space heaters.

Fortunately for me, my apartment gets STEAMY HOT. I live on the ground floor, so I’m not sure if that is a factor, but my apartment gets nice and toasty, just the way I like it. 🙂 So when the heat turned on the other day when I got home from being out all day, it was sort of like walking unexpectedly into a sauna!! Cozy but also wow….hot!!!

Well, whether we control our apartment heat or not we all have to deal with one thing: dry winter skin. It is already time to start warding it off and keeping our skin healthy!

One of your best weapons to fight dry, scaley skin is the mighty coconut oil. In Sanskrit, the translation for the word for coconut tree literally means “Tree of Life.” Coconuts indeed will give us life- and beauty- in different forms.

We’ve talked a lot about young coconuts that you can crack open and eat and drink fresh (I sort of recall a rather embarrassing video that took me WAY more cracks than usual to get open! I swear!! 🙂 ). But today we’ll focus on coconut oil, which is made from the hardened white flesh. In countries like French Polynesia and the Philippines, I have seen coconut milk pressed out of the white flesh with hand-made tools from the local forest, which is always an amazing-looking process to witness.

But raw, unrefined coconut oil is made when the white flesh is shredded up, and then the oil is pressed out further to make the concentrated essence: the coconut oil. Because the pressing process doesn’t get hotter than 100 degrees Farenheit in raw coconut oil, the coconut oil can remain raw and unaltered, with its natural enzymes intact. (Around 116 degrees is generally accepted as the temperature when enzymes can start to become denatured, as well as vitamins and amino acids).

Consuming coconut oil is a great way to beautify and moisturize your skin from the inside out. It has a plumping and softening effect, which makes your skin look and feel more healthy and attractive (and so much nicer to the touch! 🙂  ).

Coconut oil is great in desserts. Check out the recipes for the cacao truffles, macaroons, and key lime pie bars that are in the Recipe section. I talk about coconut oil in the key lime pie bars dessert recipe post also. It is also great in certain smoothies- but not the Green Smoothie!! You want the greens and fruit alkalizing your system first, and not getting slowed up with any kind of fat, even this amazing one. Save it for later on in the day. Also, you can cook with it. It stays stable at higher temperatures, meaning it won’t oxidize and get rancid the way other oils become when heated, which includes even olive oil.

Coconut oil is a healthy saturated, cholesterol-free fat made of medium chain fatty acid that our bodies can break down and be emulsified easily, and without overburdening our livers, the way other fats can (like clogging animal fat- yuck. Sorry, I had to insert that!:) ). Coconut oil contains Lauric Acid, which supports the thyroid and can help increase our metabolic rate.

This is the last time I ate a truly fresh coconut- early September in Rincon, Puerto Rico!

This is the last time I ate a truly fresh coconut- early September in Rincon, Puerto Rico!

Well, not only can you eat coconut oil, you can put it all over your hands and body. It makes a great body moisturizer- and absorbs right into the skin. It can be used on your hair as a conditioner (leave in or rinse out, depending on the texture of your hair), and for massage as well. It will keep the skin tight and moisturized. There are natural anti-bacterial properties in coconut oil as well, due to its content of Capric Acid, which makes up about 6% of its fatty acids. It can even be great to alleviate stretch marks! Some of us may feel funny about using the same bottle for kitchen purposes, that we also use to slather on our bodies in the bathroom and bedroom. It just seems a little…gross? I personally keep separate jars in the kitchen and in my bedroom. Don’t worry if the coconut oil gets liquid or stays a white solid. In either case, it works great! You don’t have to refrigerate your coconut oil, by the way.

“What about putting it on my face?” Some of you are asking. Ah, the face. 🙂  The face, the face. The face is to me, is a whole separate territory. The thing with the face is, that it is especially important to all of us to keep our faces looking our best. And we do not live in a completely natural environment. Our faces are constantly exposed to environmental toxins and pollution, and we live stressful lives surrounding by radiation and electropollution. And yes, if we overdo it, just the way we can overdo anything, the sun can be harmful, and especially if we are toxic on the inside.

So no! I trust my elbows and calves to coconut oil, but not my face.

Make sure to get coconut oil brands that are raw and unrefined.

Take care, and let me know how you do with your skin!

xx Kimberly

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I am REALLY proud of this. 🙂 I scraped out all the meat in a young coconut (which matured and hardened more than the soft spoon meat but not quite as hard as a mature coconut), in one piece!! Ta da!!

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Recipe: Key Lime Pie Bars

June 18, 2009
One glorious hour next to the ocean before heading for the plane!

One glorious hour next to the ocean before heading for the plane!

Hey Guys,

How are you??
So I realized that I forgot to post my recipe in the last blog! So check it out, below.

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I just got back to New York late last night, and hit the ground running today!! In a very good way. 🙂  Some exciting meetings, and I got to teach my first yoga class in a week today. I really miss teaching and my students when I am away, so it was nice to teach a nice big class today.

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Backbends are probably my favorite yoga poses. I love to shine the heart energy open!! 🙂 If you don’t have any kind of regular backbending practice you can start with some gentle ones, even holding on to the sides of your chair (if it isn’t a rolly chair!) and leaning back at work sometimes! Don’t worry if you aren’t too flexible, your spine can open up over time. Keep your shoulders relaxed and don’t hunch them up. Feel and imagine the light of energy expanding from your heart and throat chakras!

It is always interesting for me to be constantly traveling between New York and LA. In LA, I find that you have to spend a lot of time in cars driving around! I was  on some really cool movie sets  with my smoothies and had some great dinners. And of course having the ocean so close is so energizing and revitalizing, and great to connect back to our divine nature connection. These photos were taken in one last yoga hurray about one hour before I had to leave for the airport ☺ Today back in New York, I welcomed the flurry of running after cabs to rush into meetings in conference rooms and creative brainstorming sessions in coffee shops, and welcomed back the rush of high energy in the compressed space of Manhattan. So I really love and am grateful to be able to experience these very different environments.

I hope you are having a great week! How is your diet doing, as we adapt into summer? In the next few weeks I’ll be talking a lot more about summer food and diet choices.
Take care. 🙂
Lots of love,
Kimberly

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Fat-Burning Key Lime Pie Bars

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The whole family will love this recipe! They are a great substitute for all the summer ice cream and other deserts- as the lime is summer-y tasting, and they are creamy, rather than icy.

This desert contains coconut oil, which is an unprocessed, cholesterol-free oil that contains Lauric Acid. Overall, coconut oil stimulates the thyroid, increases your metabolism and can help you burn stored body fat!
Secondly, like lemon, lime has over 200 enzymes and helps restore liver tissue. The liver is our main fat-burning organ, so with this recipe we are also giving it a boost.

This recipe is low-glycemic, so will NOT spike your blood sugar the way refined sugar will. This is great for us adults that don’t want to gain weight, but it is ALSO great for kids-so they don’t get those crazy sugar rushes that other recipes give them!

Remember that one serving size is ONE bar, about 2″ x 3″. Nuts still have a lot of calories, so that is a good serving for a dessert!

Recipe:
1 cup organic lime juice

½ cup unrefined coconut oil

1/4 cup raw organic honey

4 cups cashews

Liquid stevia as needed, to sweeten

½ -1 cup water

Combine all ingredients in a blender except for the water, and blend on high. Add the water last and as needed to keep the blending going and make the mixture smooth.

Freeze at least 4 hours, or overnight. Cut into bars and serve! Makes about 15 full-portion sized bars. Can store in the freezer and keep for a few weeks.

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Metabolism-Boosting Cinnamon Treats

September 30, 2008

These delicious little balls of goodness have lots of health benefits. All their ingredients are 100% raw, with their enzymes intact to ensure easy of digestion and assimilation.   And best of all… they are not fattening!

Cinnamon has unique and potent remedial qualities and has been used for medicinal purposes around the world for centuries, including in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine.  In modern medicine, recent studies have confirmed these benefits.

Cinnamon helps regulate blood sugar, and is even recommended for diabetics. It also helps improve circulation, which is great with cold weather on the way – especially for you ladies that easily get cold (like me)! Cinnamon also helps improve digestive health and eases stomach discomforts. During your menstrual cycle, it can really help ease cramps.  It also helps kill and prevent the growth of harmful internal bacteria.

Another key ingredient, coconut butter, is a cold pressed, cholesterol-free oil that stimulates thyroid function, increases metabolism and promotes weight loss.

I use almonds in a lot of my recipes since they are such a potent antioxidant food, packed with phytochemicals, manganese and Vitamin B2 to neutralize free radicals.  Almonds are also rich in skin-beautifying vitamins and minerals, including Vitamin E, magnesium, protein, fiber, potassium, calcium, phosphorus and iron.

1/3 cup cinnamon

2 cups finely ground raw almonds

1/3 teaspoon Celtic sea salt

1 cup organic Thompson raisins

1/4 cup organic maple syrup1 ½ Tbs organic coconut butter (sometimes called oil)

Stevia, as needed to sweeten

Add the almonds, cinnamon, Celtic sea salt and raisins in a bowl and mix well. Next add stevia and coconut oil, and mix again until your “dough” is ready. Roll small pieces between your palms, making little balls. Freeze overnight, which helps to make the consistency solid. I keep them in the freezer until I serve them- or grab a few here and there as little deserts for myself. Enjoy!