A colonoscopy?? It’s just not natural. I have to do what?  Yikes, you have been told you need to have a colonoscopy. Well, been there!  When I heard that my thoughts were:  it is creepy and scary, and you have to drink that horrible stuff and then, chance having diarrhea on the drive in to […]

Here, there and everywhere!

Toxins are everywhere.  Don’t we hear that all the time?  They hide in plain sight.  If we aren’t paying attention, we’ll get more than we bargained for, and not in a good way.   So what are toxins, what do they do and how do we minimize their effect on ourselves and our families?

Just what are toxins?

The word toxic means poisonous.  Well, we know pesticides, cigarette smoke and exhausts from our cars have harmful chemicals in them.  When we breathe these in we are poisoning our bodies. How about our household cleaners, air fresheners and even many of our laundry detergents contain carcinogens and other toxic chemicals

We voluntarily put toxins on our bodies each day in the form of deodorants, beautifully scented lotions, body washes and shampoos.  Heck, for women it’s in our cosmetics, our lipsticks, foundations and believe it or not, the facial moisturizers that we use to help our skin can contain many harmful chemicals.  We need to always remember that anything that goes on our skin goes into our body, then our bloodstream where they are carried to our liver, kidneys and other organs.

How about what we put in our bodies?  Studies are showing there are pharmaceuticals like antibiotics, antidepressants, painkillers and even birth control pills in our water supply.   Our processed foods are loaded with chemicals, additives and preservatives.  Some meat has hormones and antibiotics added. What we eat and drink go directly into our body where they are not broken down properly because we ordinarily do not have the enzymes needed for the process.  Instead, the chemicals go through the digestive system and head over to our organs also.

What do toxins do?

Since they are poisonous chemicals, they are harmful to us.  They reside in our cells, muscles and soft tissues.  They can overwhelm our immune system.  Over time we can start developing symptoms of chronic toxicity. Following is a short list of issues that can be caused by this toxicity.

  • Bloating
  • Constipation/Diarrhea/Gas
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Excessive sinus problems
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Joint pain/Muscle aches
  • Sinus congestion
  • Skin problems

Remember since toxins are hanging out in our bodies and not being eliminated, they build up until we get sick.  Many diseases we see now days are associated with toxicity.   Some of the diseases follow.

  • Alzheimer’s disease/Dementia
  • Arthritis
  • Attention deficit disorder
  • Autism
  • Autoimmune disease
  • Cancer
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Depression and other mood disorders
  • Digestive diseases like Crohn’s disease, ulcers, and colitis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Food allergies
  • Heart disease
  • Insomnia
  • Menstrual problems like heavy bleeding, cramps, PMS, menopausal symptoms, mood changes and hot flashes
  • Parkinson’s disease

What can we do?

We can’t control the air pollution but we can find ways to minimize our exposure to toxins and help our bodies detoxify.

How do we minimize our exposure?

In our home: 

  • Use natural cleaners and laundry soap.
  • Use a diffuser with your favorite essential oils for your air freshener.

 On our body:

  • Use coconut oil or a carrier oil as your moisturizer.
  • Use more natural makeup. Be sure to check the ingredients.

In our Body:

  • How about we start with cutting out some of the processed foods.  I know we live in the real world and I love chips as much as the next person but do we need to have them every day?  Not really.
  • Instead of a candy bar, how about a bowl of fruit (and aim for organic when you can).
  • Make a goal to cut out one processed food item a week.
  • Invest in a water filtration system or a distiller.
  • Take a detox bath.  Simple recipe:  One cup Epsom Salt, 10-12 drops of your favorite essential oil(s).  I use lavender and roman chamomile for relaxation.  Take a detox bath 3-4 times the first 3 weeks then at least once every week or so.

The most wonderful thing about toxins!

Once I removed the processed foods and did the detox baths, I noticed a difference within a week or so.  Toxins can wreak havoc on our bodies but if you pay attention, you will start to notice a change.  Even now, when I eat sugary foods (candy, ice cream, etc.), my hip ache.  Yep, strange, just the left one does.  Now I don’t mean I eat 5 gallons of ice cream and a bunch of candy bars.  It seems that if I eat one candy bar or a bowl of ice cream, maybe, 2 days in a row, I ache.  It’s crazy!!  After 2 or 3 days of no sugars, my hip is fine.  That showed me toxins can really affect our bodies.  Small changes equal big results.

Do you have a similar experience?

Have you notices aches and pains that disappear when you stop eating certain foods?

Feel free to comment.  I’d love to hear from you.

 

 

 

 

What could a GPS possibly teach anyone?

I bet you are thinking, what could she possibly be talking about.  Well, we set our GPS for directions to a specific location.  The location is the goal of the trip.

Yikes, Miss GPS told us to turn right, but we went straight. So what happens when we miss a turn?  Miss GPS redirects us.  Now she tells us to turn right, but we get confused and turn left.  What does Miss GPS do now? She redirects us. She wants us and helps us reach our goal whether we miss a turn, make the wrong turn or even change direction.

What is Miss GPS’s reaction?

Does she get annoyed with us or get mad and yell at us? Nope, she stays calm and keeps heading us toward our location (goal), even when the location (goal) changes.   It doesn’t matter how often we miss the turn or change the goal, she stays calm and gives us a new course to follow.

I have to wonder how we handle it when a friend or our kids miss the planned turn?  How do we handle it when the friend, who is perfect for the big promotion, doesn’t apply for some reason? How about when our child, who we want to go to college, decides they don’t want to go? Do we stay calm? Do we help them reach their goals and dreams?

How do I react?

Personally, I know I don’t stay calm. I get worked up.  I may get frustrated with my friend wondering how could she have missed the opportunity of a lifetime, or get upset with my child wondering why he or she decided not to go to college.

If I could handle things like Miss GPS what would I do? I know I would want to help them reach their goals. I would stay calm and redirect or help them redirect towards their own goal.

In the case of my friend, maybe talking with him/her to see why they didn’t apply for that great promotion. That is where I can truly be a friend.  I need to remember it is not my life; I am a bystander (like Miss GPS). My job is to help those I care for continue to their goals, but I need to be understanding and stay calm so I can be helpful.

What can I do?

Maybe my friend, who knows the promotion would be great, really is thinking about making a career change.  I, as Miss GPS, can help them by being there for them.  Maybe help look into classes or offer to provide dinner once a week so she can take those classes. Something to help make it easier for her and her family. It isn’t redirecting my friend but helping find solutions for her to help her get to her goal.

Children are a tough one because we are so close to them. We have seen every misstep throughout their lives, and we want so badly to protect them from any others.  If they veer off course, man, I can get upset and wonder if they lost their brain.   I need to be Miss GPS and stay calm, and help them figure out their next steps (or turns) to help them get where they want to go, not where I want them to go.

How can I help them reach their goals?  I definitely would need to be patient and loving while they figure out what they really enjoy and want to do for the next 30 or 40 years.  Maybe I could help them get information on certain careers or introduce them to people in a career they are interested in so they can talk to them and ask questions.  Perhaps they know what they want to do and I could help them find a great training program.  It is not about my goal but their goal.

Lessons learned

Miss GPS never has her own location (goal) in mind.  It is always about what the driver wants.  The driver may be our friend or our child, but we need to be like Miss GPS, always helping them towards their goal, not ours.

So the lessons we can learn from my GPS are:

  • Stay calm.
  • Be ready to help no matter how many wrong or missed turns there are.
  • Have solid solutions of ways to help others get to their goal.
  • Remember the goal is the driver’s, not ours.

Remember, many times the wrong turns are where the best lessons are learned.

Sometimes they make the best adventures!

What are some other ways we can support our friends and family members, even when we don’t agree with their decisions?

What wrong or missed turns (or opportunities) have you had that ended up being a great experience?

Leave a comment!!!

 

Whether it is marriage, friendship, family or work. Every area of our life requires communication.  What exactly is communication? I know we all think it is talking but is that all?

Just what is communication?

It is sharing with others our ideas, thoughts, feelings and, of course, news and events.  It’s the back and forth conversation when we talk with our friends. The crying when we grieve and the smiling when we are happy.  It’s the way we explain the goals of a new project to our team.  We are all communicating all the time.  Sometimes, we don’t even realize it.

Can you relate to this?  You see your friend with her 2-year-old and, as you are chatting, another mom comes up and says something like, “Oh my, she doesn’t have any hair, my daughter, who is 2, has a head full.”  You don’t SAY anything, or do you? Does rolling your eyes count? It sure does. You shared your thoughts, didn’t you? Yep, just non-verbally.

Yes, there are different types of communicating?  

There are many ways to communicate.  Obviously, verbal and non-verbal, but then you throw in the volume of your voice, the tone of your voice and how about body language.  Now it gets complicated.  I’m just going to talk about a few basics, so you have something to think about.

Verbal:  

Talking to each other.  Think about how we speak.   The tone and volume of your voice can change the message.

Say out loud in your regular voice, “Would you be able to finish this report by tomorrow?”  That sounds fine, not mean at all, just a regular question but..now say it LOUD.  This time the question sounds like you are annoyed (or even mad) that the report isn’t finished yet and you are asking if it can be (as in, are you capable of finishing it) by tomorrow.   Same question, different message.

We must be careful to be sure we are speaking in a way that conveys what we really want to say.  I can give you the perfect example of something I do all the time.  My husband will ask me a question, “Do you have a second to come and look at this?”.   I answer, “Why, what is it?”  Sounds innocent enough but since I am reading or getting ready to go out and don’t want to do it now because I’m busy, I use my snarky voice.  I didn’t intend to, but it pops out.  How does my husband, who is a very nice man, by the way, react?  He says something like, “why can’t you talk to me nicely.”  I didn’t intend to sound mean, but that is how it came across. I know that about myself and really have to work on it.  No joke, every day!  When I get frustrated, my tone is not very pleasant.

When we are mad at one person, many times, we will continue to sound mad at others.  We need to take a few deep breaths and relax before we talk to others.

Non-Verbal:

Here’s a non-verbal that is very common.  We all need to be careful of looking all around when we are speaking to someone.  If you are listening to someone, do it wholeheartedly. Don’t have your eyes looking past them to see what is happening down the hall.  How many times have you had a conversation with someone and their phone pings then they start scrolling through their phone?  “Hello, I’m right in front of you, and we are having a chat, but I guess you don’t care.”   Now I understand if someone is waiting to hear test results or something important, but that is not usually the case.  It is frustrating and not professional or kind.

How do we want to be seen?

How do you feel when someone you are speaking with is leaning towards you and making eye contact? You can tell they are paying attention and the conversation matters to them.

We do this with children.  Think about it.  When they are small, we stop, kneel or lean down and look them in the eye when they talk to us. We want them to know they are important, what they say is and that they are valuable (and precious) to us.

I don’t know about you, but I want others to know I value my time with them and what they say is important to me.  I know I need to pay attention to my tone of voice (my poor husband really gets the most of that).  I need to watch that I am truly paying attention and not distracted by other things going on around me when I am in a conversation with someone.

When someone values us enough to talk with us, that is an honor, and we need to understand that.  Time is in short supply these days.  Your friend could go to many others, but she chose you to spend her time with.  You should be thrilled to pay attention to HER.   At that moment, she needs to be the most important person.  

 

We may be grown up now, but there is still the child in us that wants to feel important and valued.

 

What other things have you seen people do or have been done while you are talking that either made you feel good or of little value?

Leave a comment, so we can all learn.  Each of us may do something that we don’t even realize until it is mentioned in a post or comment.

 

 

 

 

Good nutrition is having the nutrients we need for our body to be healthy.

The nutrients come from the foods we eat. 

For example, from an orange, our body receives folate (vitamin B9), potassium, thiamin (vitamin B1), and as most of us know, vitamin C.

So, why should we care about good nutrition?

Don’t we all want our body to be healthy and act like it is supposed to?

In an orange alone, the folate helps in the production of red blood cells, encourages cell and tissue growth, and aids in DNA synthesis and repair.  Potassium helps to improve kidney function by flushing out excess sodium in the body through the kidneys.  Too much sodium will increase your blood pressure as well as increase your risk of heart issues.  Thiamin helps your body maintain a healthy metabolism and makes sure cells throughout your body are able to grow and work like they are supposed to. Last, but definitely not least, is vitamin C.  We know it is good for colds but it also helps protect cells from free radical damage and is needed for the growth and repair of tissues throughout our body.

Wow, all this in an orange.  The key is that many things we eat give us only a small portion of what our daily need is. We have to have not only good nutrition, in the form of unprocessed foods, but also a variety of foods, so our nutrients are balanced.
What happens when we don’t have enough of a certain nutrient?
Let’s look at vitamin C.  Although rare in the United States, low vitamin C can cause gingivitis, make you prone to easy bruising and put your immune system at risk.  Just the immune system alone you don’t want to have in jeopardy. It is what protects us and helps us fight against diseases caused by pathogens such as viruses, bacteria, and parasites.
We are shortchanging our body when we do not get the nutrients we need to keep it healthy.  It’s important to eat fresh fruits and vegetables not just processed foods.  Our body needs the proper nutrients to feed our cells and keep us healthy.
Believe me, I know it is easier to stop and grab a hamburger and fries than to make dinner. It’s only recently that I have not been running through fast food joints.  For me, being diagnosed with Celiac Disease stopped that. No gluten means no bread so I stopped because of a specific health issue.
Could I be ill because of what I eat, or don’t eat?
What issues do you have that are possibly linked to lacking certain vitamins or minerals? Some health issues we have may have to do with our diets and the nutrients we are not taking in.  We also need to remember we are talking about not only our health but our family’s health.
I’ll be addressing nutrients in other articles but I wanted to just give you a taste, so to speak, of the importance of good nutrition.
What have you eaten that you immediately feel an unpleasant effect from?
Have you had a health issue that is directly related to foods you have been eating?
Leave a comment and let’s talk!!