Thursday, March 31, 2011

Common Carcinogens, Poisons, and Toxins in the Home and
How to Get Rid of Them

Clorox bleach is a common product. What people don't realize is that bleach is a neurotoxin, and it causes kidney, liver and lung damage. Bleach can cause eye, skin, mouth and throat burns.  It also may cause heart conditions, chronic respiratory problems such as asthma and chronic bronchitis, plus obstructive lung disease.  
Another common cleaner are window cleaners, such as Windex, which causes kidney and liver damage and attacks the central nervous system; it also is known to cause tumors. Additionally, disenfectant sprays, such as Lysol, is commonly used around kids, but are carcinogenic, immunosuppresant, and can cause headaches, blurred vision, cardiac arythmias, and even death. Also, multi-purpose cleaners, such as 409, can cause mild to moderate damage to the eyes, and is a possible carcinogen.
Even worse, detergents such as Cascade and Tide, are two other popular household products, but are considered very toxic to humans and pets. Cascade is bad for the environment because it gets in the rivers and lakes and disintegrates the fish. When it mixes with hot water in the dishwasher, it creates toxic fumes, which we then breathe in. As a result, it can cause lung disease, skin irritation, and severe eye burns. Laundry detergents also contain nonyl phenol ethoxylate, crushed fiberglass, dyes, and perfumes, which leaves a residue on clothing, which is then absorbed into the skin. The film that is left on clothing can result in allergies, as well as damage to the tissues, the central nervous system and also the lungs; but it also causes cancer.
As you can see, these are unhealthy products. However, there are products , such as Melaleuca's products, that are safe and healthy for you, your home, and the environment. Melaleuca's products are made from natural plants and herbs, are biodegradeable, are versatile, and work better than clorox bleach, tide detergent, and other common household cleaners. The ingredients used in their products have been tested scientifically and been shown to promote health and wellness. If you had a choice between a nasty, toxic product and a healthy natural one, wouldn't you choose the healthy one?

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Weight loss made easy II

It has now been 2 weeks.  I am doing great and have more energy.  I won't lie, this diet got a little boring and grocery shopping was torture. 
I lost another 2 lbs, but I have to admit I did have dairy, a cookie, and some candy.  This slowed down my weight-loss almost by 300%.  Amazing, right?  Well I thought so too. 

Tomorrow is my day off.  I am going to pump out at the gym, then pig out on foods.

I will keep you posted.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Weight loss made easy.

I cut out sugars, sweetners, HFS, carbs, fruits, fruit juices, and 99.9% dairy.

What do I eat, you ask?  Protein, lentils, and veggies.  I thought it was going to be boring but actually it is not.  And best part is, I have lost a total of 8 lbs on it thus far.
Grass fed beef, bison, wild game, and fish are on the top of my list. Poultry also adds options when red meat becomes really boring.  Add lentils to the side and the meat doesn't look too boring.
Then all sorts of veggies appear in the spectrum as well.  Broccoli, spinach, artichoke, kale, cauliflower,  okra, rutabaga, carrots, celery, cucumber, radish, turnip, peas, green beans, brussels sprouts, asparagus... oh the list goes on and on.  The only things to avoid there are all potatoes, except sweet, and corn (which is technically a grain anyways).  Salads are wonderful with oil and vinegar dressing.  Go exotic and add dandelion leaves, sprouts, and sunflower seeds to the mix.  Oh heaven!

Not your style...I understand.  But find your style within these limits and you won't be too disappointed. 

Then there is your day off.  I just had mine yesterday for St. Patties Day.  I had pizza, beer, icecream, and cookies.  But funny thing was, I didn't crave all that much, and I lost my appetite for breads which I used to adore breads.  My energy levels are absolutely through the roof now as well, and my tastes for sweets have changed. 

So: 1.) Start your day with 35 grams of protein; 2) be fancy with your protein, lentils, and vegetables so they are not so boring; 3) add 1/4 cup of lentils to the side of each meal; 4) pile your plate up with vegetables that you love; 5) drink coffees, teas, and water all day long; 6) end your day with a fiber drink such as FiberWise drink from Melaleuca; 7) schedule 4-5 days off per month to reset your metabolism and curb those pesky cravings.   

Monday, March 14, 2011

Essential Oils in Aromatherapy

*Still in revise mode: Stay Tuned

Aromatherapy in holistic health is the use of essential oils for the healing of the mind, body and spirit. I use the word healing loosely because technically, in the USA, only products approved by the FDA can heal. But 3000 years ago civilizations used essential oils medicinally to heal wounds, prevent diseases, and cure ailments.  Even Biblical texts account for the use of herbal remedies and essential oils to keep diseases, parasites, and [paranormal phenomenon] at bay.  Forms of Aromatherapy are accounted for around the world in different time periods and civilization eras. Some of the most documented cases were in the Middle Ages in Europe, however there are many other historical documented medicinal uses around the world all the way up to World War II.   Aromatherapy became popular in the USA in the late 90's when science could decipher the compounds in the essential oils responsible for the mechanisms of healing.  Today in the US., an Aromatherapist License is required in order to recommend and prescribe essential oils in order to help with ailments, even though many companies have emerged over the last two decades selling essential oils.  Those companies offer their essential oils as a supplement or scent enhancer rather than a complimentary therapy, which I frown upon since this really does a disservice to Aromatherapy and those who have gone through the schools to obtain their Aromatherapy License.
I thought about obtaining my license while I was in my undergrad.  I had taken an Aromatherapy class and fell in love with it.  From then on, I was hooked and have used essential oils as complementary and alternative medicine.  But that is what my degree is so I can do that for myself, I just can't recommend any essential oils or herbal therapy for anyone else.  The loophole is I can educate others and that is what I will do here.  Although there are thousands of oils to choose from, below are some of the most popular essential oils and what they are used for in Aromatherapy.:

Basil (Ocimum basilicum) Diffuse in air for bacterial and viral infections. Use with carrier for aches, pains and cramps.  Not recommended for use internally because of its toxicity at large concentrations. Never use in large doses.  Do not use when pregnant or lactating.

Bergamot (Citrus bergamia) Use six drops per eight ounces of non-scented lotion for skin ailments such as acne, psoriasis, abscesses, and other dermatological disorders. Diffuse in air for anxiety, stress, and depression.  Use on toothbrush for cold sores, halitosis, and dry mouth.  It causes photo-toxicity so it is not recommended for use if sunlight exposure is a probability.  

Cedarwood Atlas (Cedrus Atlantica) Diffuse in air for studying, stress, bronchial infections, and asthma induced wheezing.  Use eight to ten drops per eight ounces of non-scented lotion for skin ailments such as acne, cystitis, and chronic dry skin.  

Cinamon
Clove
Eucalyptus
Frankincense
Geranium
Grapefruit
Jasmine Absolute
Lavender
Lemon
Lemongrass
Marjoram
Myrrh
Orange
Oregano
Patchouli
Peppermint
Rose Absolute
Rosemary
Sandalwood
Spearmint
Tea Tree    
Wintergreen
Ylang-Ylang

Friday, March 4, 2011

Heal With Reiki

Reiki is becoming more popular in the U.S. then it has ever been before. However, there seems to be some skepticism on its effectiveness on patients and also a lack of knowledge on what Reiki actually does. To understand the fundamentals of Reiki, one must understand the history and distinguish from the different point of views, both opposing and supporting. While these are addressed in this paper, it is important to understand how people can benefit from Reiki. This paper will explore the different forms of Reiki, how to find a local Reiki practitioner, the effects of Reiki and what ailments it is specifically used for.
But first, to understand the different forms of Reiki, the history must be understood. Reiki’s vague past started on Mt. Kurama, a mountain North of Kyoto Japan, where Japanese monks would find enough peace and serenity to meditate. And it was the year of 1914 when an educated Japanese Doctor named Mikao Usui decided to look for answers to new methods of healing. He ascended Mt. Kurama and gathered twenty-one stones in which he stacked on the ground where he sat near the base a small waterfall. There he fasted, chanted and prayed, throwing one stone away each day to keep track of time. On the twenty-first day, famished, tired, and weak, he started to hallucinate. As he hallucinated, he envisioned Sanskrit symbols in which sparkled and glittered in front of him. When he awoke, he felt rejuvenated and strong.
Dr. Usui then walked down the hill side and upon the descent he stubbed his toe. He immediately reached down and grasped his foot in agony. After moments of pain, he released his foot and found that the bleeding had stopped and the pain had subsided. When he reached the base of the hill, he found a stream but the water had been tainted with harmful organisms. Parched, Dr. Usui clasped water in his hands for a moment and then drank. His journey was almost complete when he reached an Inn. He had then demanded breakfast. The Inn Keeper had warned about eating such a large meal after fasting, but Dr. Usui did not listen. Dr. Usui took his bowl and prayed over it. He ate with no side effects.
Dr. Usui was just about to leave when he noticed the Inn Keeper was in pain. He walked up to her, clasped her jaw with his hands and within seconds, she had suffered no more tooth ache.
It was these four miracles that Dr. Usui preformed which sparked the Reiki tradition.
The tradition was almost lost, however, when only a few students had learned his secrets. Dr. Usui had provided care for a majority of people in Japan, including the city of Kyoto and surrounding towns. Dr. Usui, however, did not teach his gift to many students; but out of the handful of students, one by the name of Chujiro Hayashi who later became a great teacher and master.
Chujiro Hayashi was a Japanese Naval physician who found Dr. Usui and began to learn Reiki. He became Dr. Usui’s most dedicated student and later decided to open a clinic of his own. He developed techniques of hand placements and eventually started to teach others his gift.
That is when, by a little bit of fate, a woman by the name of Hawayo Takata wondered into his clinic in Tokyo, Japan in the early 1930’s. At that time, she had been suffering from several ailments including emphysema, appendicitis, and gastrointestinal problems.
Under Dr. Hayashi’s care for four months, she became well again. That is when Hawayo Takata began to inquiry about the treatment that saved her life. Dr. Hayashi was hesitant for two reasons. First, Takata was female, and healing was traditionally a male occupation; second, Takata was only half Japanese and her home country was in the U.S. Reiki had been considered a sacred practice in Japan and it was not intended to journey and be practiced anywhere else.
After a long time of persuasion, Dr. Hayashi gave in to her wishes and in the spring of 1936, Takata became his thirteenth and last student. Dr. Hayashi taught Takata everything that he had learned and developed throughout his years of mastery. After two long and grueling years, Takata finally graduated. In 1938, she had moved back to Hawaii, taking all that she had learned with her. Sadly, she was the last student Dr. Hayashi would teach; for in winter of 1940, Dr. Hayashi passed away opening up the spot for Takata to take Reiki Grand Master in 1941.
Takata was the only Grand Master for many years. She had opened a clinic in Hawaii where she practiced for thirty years. During which, she had taught many students the art and history of Reiki. She did not, however, teach anyone advance Reiki, nor how to become a Reiki Master successor.
Before Dr. Takata’s death in December of 1980, she realized that it was time to train someone to become her successor. She charged a whopping $10,000 for the class and hand picked only twenty two students; of which, none were to be named essentially Grand Master. And subsequently, only a few traveled to the mainland and opened up their own clinic. Reiki’s existence in America hung on a thread.
But Reiki soon caught on.
With the raising of consciousness in the West, Reiki is growing in popularity; more and more people are becoming aware of it and are using it.” (Barnett & Chambers p. 6)
Slowly, the clinics sprung up across America and throughout the East, eventually merging into Europe and on to other continents as well. Today, Reiki clinics can be found in every major metropolis in every major country around the world. Practitioners have incorporated technology, metaphysics, and other alternative healings into their techniques. Reiki branched out and there are now numerous forms of Reiki; from animal Reiki, Herbal Reiki, Stone Laying Reiki, Spiritual Revival Reiki, to Reading & Reiki, among many others. With each practitioner, the length of treatments, their rates, even their methods are all individual.
Some states, however, heavily regulate the practice; they now regard Reiki as a medical practice and require all practitioners to become licensed. Some states restrict how the Reiki sessions are preformed, and other states restrict the tools used during treatments and the recommendations given afterwards. Such tools include message oils or herbal spreads, while the recommendations, (viewed as a prescription by some state legislatures) may be a simple suggestion that the client drink an eight ounce glass of water immediately after the session.
Despite the regulations, Reiki still thrives in much of the U.S. and there is strong evidence to conclude that it has been well discussed by many people of all nationalities and creeds. On the other hand, it has been argued that Reiki is an occult practice, viewed to be a source of unknown powers. Some religions prohibit energy work such as Reiki and an underlying fear keeps some people from even learning about or even what it can do for them.
What many people do not realize is that Reiki is very beneficial and may help them in ways they never thought possible. To understand the benefits, Reiki must first be explained. Reiki is an energy work, it works on multiple levels of health, including physical, spiritual, emotional, and psychological. Although being a very spiritual technique, it is not a religion nor does it conform to any one type of religion. An individual does not have to believe in any particular belief to benefit from Reiki. The energy work specifically comes from ‘Ki’ or the life-force from the ‘Rei’ or soul. In specific terms, a practitioner focuses on fusing and adjusting a patient’s soul’s energy.
Consequently, since it works upon multiple levels of health, there are many benefits from it. Some of the benefits include balancing, focusing, provides stamina, de-ages, it provides pain relief, organ repair, stress relief, and it calms, it rejuvenates, it improves memory, heart function, cardiovascular health; along with depletes cancer cells or tumors, repairs ulcers, improves bone density, and eliminates depression.
The best part about Reiki is that unlike medication or surgery, Reiki is non-evasive and does not have any known risky side effects. Multiple sessions are recommended but not mandatory. And along with one treatment, a multiplicity of healing happens; meaning that a certain ailment would be worked on along with the cause and the symptoms. Such similar treatment is hard to find that will cure all three (ailment, cause, and symptoms) in a short amount of time.
It is also important that a trustworthy Reiki practitioner is chosen. How to choose a practitioner is simple if these guidelines are adhered to: First, locate one by obtaining a local metaphysical newsletter (found in bookstores and coffee shops) or by going online to find one in your local area. Second, make a phone call to the practitioner and ask about his or her license (if necessary), the length of time in practice, what kind of tools or aids does he or she use, for how much and how long does a session last. Third, if satisfied thus far, ask for a tour the clinic. Be sure to ask questions. Most Reiki practitioners will understand and should not pressure anyone into a session, nor make an individual feel uncomfortable in any way. The practitioner should feel warm, welcoming, and inviting.
But, how does one decide if Reiki is right for them? It is important to understand that Reiki might not be for everyone. It is important to sit down and create a list of both expectations and questions that you might have. If you are still unsure of the treatment, then it is wise to forgo the treatment until you are ready.
Since Reiki is an intense energy work, it may be overwhelming for beginners. Often times, the energy brings up old wounds, whether emotional, physical, psychological or spiritual, and may be hard to cope with for the short amount of time it rises to the surface. It is important to understand that the energy focused on such damaging wounds that were suppressed by will over long periods of time, and thus Reiki will painfully bring them up before it is able to clear the pain away.
It also might be wise for a patient to have ample time to recover from the energy work. Length of time varies on the patient, so it would be wise to ask the practitioner for guidance. It is also recommended that a patient should refrain from driving or other stressors right after a session.
Now, based on this given knowledge of the history and benefits of Reiki, one could make an educated decision on whether it is right for them. With the many benefits from Reiki, it would be hard not to seek a practitioner for everything from mild heartburn to cancer. Reiki does not replace medical care, but it does enhance therapeutic effectiveness. Perhaps someday, everyone will utilize Reiki for the overwhelming amount of benefits it happen to provide.