You know that saying, ‘you are what you eat?’ Well, it is true, but in more ways than you think. Aside form the multitude of ways that eating healthy can impact your overall health and wellness, what you eat can and does really make a difference in the health of your skin and its appearance.
So, what foods have the biggest impact on your complexion? We have listed them here, so make sure these get on your next shopping list.
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This tasty marvel has high levels of beta-carotene and is one of the very best sources of vitamin A. Beta-carotene repairs skin cells. But, taking a supplement just won’t cut it. Studies have shown that in order for you to actually get the benefits of Beta-carotene you need to eat it. To cook, simply wash the squash cut in half scoop out the seeds and bake it cut side down, eat and enjoy!
Lycopene is found in only a few foods, one of which is Tomatoes that lycopene is proven to repair skin damage caused by the sun and can help protect your skin from further damage as well. In order to get the best benefit, cook your tomatoes, that will concentrate the lycopene. Lycopene is also found in watermelons, but you would need to eat a really large amount of watermelon.
While most people know beets are chock full of vitamins A and C, not many people know that there are even more in the green tops that usually get tossed. If you want to boost collagen production, you need to eat the greens too. Saute them, add them to soups or just add them to sandwiches or salads.
Two for Tea? Why not, Tea is high in antioxidants and contains flavonoids that combat disease. They also happen to be great for your skin and studies show that daily tea drinking will reduce wrinkles. Tea does hydrate you, but make sure you re getting white, green, or black teas rather than blends like chamomile or chai, which are just meant to relax or soothe.
Acne issues? Quinoa is very high in protein which can stabilize blood sugar, which in turn can help reduce acne breakouts. Buy it pre-washed when you can, that will lessen the slightly bitter taste that it naturally has. Cook and use just like you would rice.
Basil has been used throughout history for more than just cooking! It is effective for a number of common ailments; respiratory issues, headaches, digestive troubles and fevers. Today, Basil is best known for its anti-spasmodic and anti-inflammatory properties so it works great for muscle spasms and cramps. There are a few ways you can use basil as a home remedy. You can buy Basil Essential oil (make sure it is a therapeutic grade), you can use any of the following methods.
Fresh basil flowers and leaves can be used. The basil should be cut into small pieces (or torn) and placed in a non-metallic container. Then Pour boiling water over them and let it ‘sit’ is called steeping. Generally, you should steep basil herbs take 10-20 minutes. You could use dried basil as well, but you will need to increase the steeping time.
HERBAL EXTRACT This is the strongest concentrate Formula: 16 oz of distilled water to 4 oz of herbs. Soak herbs 4 hours or more, then simmer on very low heat in covered saucepan or double boiler for 30 minutes. Strain decoction into uncovered clean pan and simmer down to 1/4 of the original amount. The end result should be 4 oz of extract. Store in a glass container and keep refrigerated or you can use natural anti-oxidants like vegetable glycerine, or a few drops of alcohol (liquior not rubbing), for example.
Can be done with fresh and dried herbs. Rule of thumb: Fresh herbs need to be ‘hot’ infused, dried herbs won’t spoil when slowly cold infused. Easy version: Fill a glass bottle with dried herbs (chopped) and cover with cold pressed (virgin, native, extra, first pressing, organic) olive oil or one of the many other carrier oils, depending on the intended use, like jojoba or sweet almond. Make sure you have about 1 inch on top of the herbs, all need to be covered. Keep in a warm (sun or near stove) place for a at least 14 days. Don’t strain when starting to use, just take what you need. Most oils get stronger the longer the plants are left, of course. You can also exchange the herbs for fresh ones.
Best/most potent version: Use both, fresh AND dried basil. When using fresh herbs, use a double burner or crock pot and steep them on very low heat for 3 days, exchanging the herbs daily, then decant (strain), and adding new, dried herbs to the oil. This last batch sits for months in a tightly capped bottle, shaken daily or when remembered. Take as you need, and/or decant completely after 3-6 months.
Tip: When decanting the fresh herbs, never mix strained oils with pressed oils, the pressing (we all press out plant material like crazy to get that last drop of oil) contains more water and will spoil faster. Keep separately from the main batch, and use the pressed oil first, and for yourself.
Cover chopped plant material with warmed organic apple cider vinegar in a glass bottle. Macerate for 4-6 weeks. Shake extracts daily. Strain, press pout residue, and store in glass bottles.
Here are a few different things you can use your Basil for;
Everyone should have a well stocked first aid kit. Knowing that you have the items on hand to be able to handle medical issues at home and immediately is simply priceless.
Know what you can treat at home and what you need to see a professional for is also essential. But, in this post we will talk about what you should have in your first aid kit. Herbs and essential oils have been effectively treating people (and animals) for thousands of years. But, which ones should you use for what? Read on to find out.
In the event of an emergency or disaster having all the items you need close at hand can make all the difference. A word of caution when selecting herbs and oils, always make sure that you are getting your herbs from a trusted source, they need to be clean and organic. Growing your own is a great way to stay stocked up. For Essential oils, you need to make sure that you are using therapeutic grade essential oils. NOT perfume oils, this is not something that you should try and skimp on. We like Young Living Essential Oils.
All of the remedies are available at any well-stocked health-food store and online.
Aloe vera gel: Cooling and healing, aloe vera (Aloe vera) soothes the inflammation of sunburn and common kitchen scalds and burns.
Arnica gel or cream: Arnica (Arnica montana) flowers have anti-inflammatory and circulation-stimulating properties; the gel or cream is excellent for sore muscles, sprains, strains and bruises. Do not apply arnica to broken skin.
Calendula-comfrey salve: The bright yellow-orange blossoms of calendula (Calendula officinalis) have astringent, antibacterial, antifungal, anti-inflammatory and wound-healing properties. Comfrey (Symphytum officinale) contains allantoin, a compound that stimulates the growth of new tissue and helps heal wounds.
Chamomile tea bags: With its delicious distinctive flavor, chamomile (Matricaria recutita) makes a tasty tea. Gentle enough for children, chamomile has mild sedative, antispasmodic, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. It promotes relaxation, relieves indigestion and, when applied topically, soothes skin irritations.
Echinacea liquid extract: Rich in immune-stimulating chemicals, echinacea (Echinacea spp.) can be used for any type of infection. Liquid extracts are the most versatile because they can be used both internally and externally.
Elderberry capsules or liquid extract: Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) is essential for stopping a cold or flu from ruining your vacation. The berries contain compounds that prevent cold and flu viruses from invading and infecting cells. If you’re flying or otherwise potentially exposed to viruses, taking elderberry is a good preventive. If you do come down with a cold or flu, taking elderberry can hasten your recovery time.
Eucalyptus essential oil: A potent antibiotic and antiviral, eucalyptus (Eucalyptus globulus) is excellent for treating colds, flus and sinus infections when used as a steam inhalation. Dilute with oil or witch hazel extract before applying to the skin, and do not take internally.
Ginger capsules, tea bags and crystallized ginger: The antispasmodic and gas-relieving properties of ginger (Zingiber officinale) soothe digestive upsets. Ginger also has been proven to relieve motion sickness better than Dramamine, the conventional drug treatment.
Goldenseal capsules or powder: A powerful antimicrobial, goldenseal (Hydrastis canadensis) is effective against a variety of microorganisms that cause traveler’s diarrhea. The powder has antiseptic properties and can be sprinkled onto cuts or wounds to stop bleeding. Do not take goldenseal internally during pregnancy.
Grindelia poison oak/ivy tincture or spray: Grindelia (Grindelia camporum), also known as gumweed, contains resins and tannins that help to relieve the pain and itching of plant rashes. It’s available as a tincture and also as a spray specifically for treating poison oak/poison ivy rashes.
Lavender essential oil: Virtually an all-purpose remedy, lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) has sed- ative, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties. It’s helpful for anxiety, insomnia, headaches, wounds and burns. For most people, lavender essential oil can be applied directly to the skin. Do not take more than 1 to 2 drops internally.
Laxative herbal tea bags: Travel constipation is a common complaint. Most herbal laxative teas rely on senna (Cassia senna), which contains compounds called anthraquinones that stimulate intestinal activity. Because senna has a bitter, unpleasant flavor, it’s often combined with tasty herbs such as cinnamon, fennel, licorice and ginger. Peppermint essential oil and tea bags: With its high concentration of menthol, peppermint (Mentha xpiperita) soothes an upset stomach, clears sinuses and curbs itching from insect bites. If you have sensitive skin, dilute peppermint oil before applying. Taken internally, peppermint may aggravate heartburn. Valerian tincture: The sedative properties of valerian (Valeriana officinalis) make it useful for relieving anxiety, insomnia and tension; it’s also a mild pain reliever.
Witch hazel extract: Distilled witch hazel (Hamamelis virginiana) has mild astringent, antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties, making it useful for insect bites and skin irritations. It’s also an excellent base for diluting essential oils for a variety of simple, topical herbal first-aid remedies. Do not take it internally.
Additional First-Aid Essentials
Adhesive bandage strips: Various sizes, including butterfly closure bandages.
Alcohol: Small plastic bottle for removing poison oak/ivy oils from the skin.
Bandage materials: Sterile gauze pads, a roll of gauze, adhesive bandage tape.
Cosmetic clay: With drying and drawing properties, clay is useful for healing skin rashes and insect bites. Store in a small plastic container.
Elastic bandage: For sprains or strains.
Electrolyte replacement: Powdered drink packets such as Emergen-C.
Moleskin: Blister treatment.
Scissors: Small pair for cutting bandages, adhesive tape, moleskin.