January is just days away and we're positively giddy! We promise its not just all the delicious raw chocolate we eat- but anticipation and excitement in looking forward to the freedom of renewal that comes with the turn of a brand new year! This month we're taking this crisp opportunity to focus on self care, detoxification and shedding what no longer serves us. Re-assessment, re-alignment, and re-setting of intentions that reflect our most current state of well-being, allow for a major mind/body update. New goals provide momentum, enthusiasm, and confidence in an active pursuit of our highest ideals in 2015.
January is a fantastic time to dig deep. Patience and compassionate self inquiry can provide us with so much clarity and insight, and, help to identify opportunities for growth and personal development. With some light house cleaning, organization, and heart-based internal dialogue, its amazing how much space we can find in old familiar environments. A little consolidation goes a L O N G way! Once we're aware of what we've got to work with- reclaiming the space and filling it with love and fresh perspective is a joy in itself.
Our mixologist Nathalie
prepared to kick off her new year by sauntering into the kitchen and indulging in a little soul-food plant-medicine and DIY body care! Below you'll find recipes to slough off what is no longer useful from the inside out. Whether you're drawn to the warm and satisfying or fresh and invigorating, she's got you covered. So here's to you in 2015! Get mixing, keep breathing. Countdown to renewal starts N O W!
Shrubs, aka 'drinking vinegars', are sweetened, vinegar-based syrups originating from medicinal cordials of the 15th century. This American version has its origins in 17th century England where vinegar was used instead of citrus juice to preserve berries and other fruit for the off-season. Because of their acidity, shrubs are well-suited as an apertif or used in cocktails as an alternative to bitters. Our favorite way to enjoy them is simply mixed with a splash of sparking water!
In her recipes, Nathalie used apple cider vinegar- rich in enzymes and potassium, it supports a healthy immune system by promoting digestion and balancing pH.
2 C Strawberries, fresh or frozen
3/4 C Honey
6 Star Anise
1/2 C Water
and 1 C Apple Cider Vinegar (reserved)
To Make: Combine all ingredients except apple cider vinegar in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Once a simmer is reached, lower heat and continue to simmer for an additional 10 mins. Remove from heat and let cool. Pour mixture into a quart-sized glass jar and add 1 C of cider vinegar. Shake and let sit at room temperature for 2 days. To use, simply strain the mixture and enjoy!
Juice of 2 Lemons (rinds reserved for later use)
1 large knob of Ginger, sliced thinly
3/4 C Honey
1 C Apple Cider Vinegar
To make: No simmering necessary for these next two recipes! Simply mix all ingredients in a quart-sized glass jar. Let sit at room temperature for two days, strain and enjoy.
4 small Apples, cored and puled in a food processor
1 C Cranberries, fresh or frozen
3/4 C Honey
1 C Honey
To make: Again, no simmering necessary! Mix all ingredients in a quart-sized glass jar. Let sit at room temperature for two days, strain and enjoy.
What cleansing initiative would be complete without a daily self massage? Many of us already know that our skin is the largest organ of our body, but did you know that our skin and lymph system are responsible for removing up to one pound of waste material from our bodies per day!?!! As part of your daily or weekly self-care routine- use these scrubs to slough off dead skin cells, promote circulation and lymphatic drainage, and increase your appreciation and acceptance of your innately perfect and beautiful body! Your tissues will respond to your love and affection.
Winter is notorious for drying out the skin, dulling it and weighing you down. New year-new you! Now is the perfect time to nurture your Self inside and out, and reveal the warmth and brilliance of your natural complexion!
Mix together the following ingredients and slather on!
INVIGORATING PEPPERMINT MOCHA BODY SCRUB:
1 C Coconut Palm Sugar
1/2 C Coffee Grounds
3 T Raw Cacao
1/2 tsp. Peppermint Essential Oil
1/2 C Almond Oil
WARMING CINNAMON CLOVE BODY SCRUB:
1 C Coconut Palm Sugar
1 T Ground Cinnamon
1/2 T Ground Cloves
1/2 C Almond Oil
The idea of eating
"fat" was scary to me for a long time. Actually, for most of my life
I avoided eating it at all. I was under the impression that eating fat=fat on
my body. I had no idea how wrong I was about this until I began my studies in
holistic nutrition. I learned that there is a huge difference between healthy
fats and unhealthy fats. Healthy fats like olive oil, coconut oil, avocado,
nuts, seeds, cacao butter (pictured above) are essential to a well balanced
diet and a fully functioning thyroid (which helps aid our metabolism). Once I
started incorporating healthy fats into my diet I was so much more satisfied at
every meal, I didn’t have to eat as much, I felt happier (as healthy fats improve
brain health and alleviate depression) and my memory improved. I recommend
eating fat with every meal to help prevent heart disease, lower cholesterol and
boost your metabolism for weight loss benefits. Are you afraid to eat fat? Play
around with what fats you like best and please share your experiences with us below.
There are many stereotypes about fats in general, let alone saturated fats. We talk with a lot of people who are concerned with fat content because of the misconception that fat contributes to weight gain. We'd like to clear that up that not all fats are created equal, In fact, coconut oil is profoundly healthy for you and actually contributes to weight loss, not weight gain. In the last years it has become even more popular because of its treatment for cognitive diseases such as Alzheimer's and dementia. Here are 4 reasons to add more coconut oil to your diet.
• Boosts your thyroid -
Your thyroid is one of the most important glands in your body - it controls the way you metabolize food, the way you use energy, lose and gain weight, how well or poorly you sleep.
• Increases your metabolism & promotes a lean body and weight loss
Coconut oil contains Medium Chain Triglycerides or MCT's which are fats that are easily digested and immediately burned by your liver for energy, like carbohydrates without the inulin spike, BOOSTING your metabolism and helping your body USE FAT FOR ENERGY as opposed to storing it. HENCE, becoming leaner)
• Supports your immune system - Nearly 50% of the fat found in coconut oil is lauric acid, which is considered a miracle compound because our bodies convert lauric acid into monolaurin which has anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-protozoa properties.
More information can be found here