Today’s post is by my favorite health and wellness elf, Jackie McCaffrey. I asked her to write about natural immune boosting, because this seems to be the time of year when we’re most vulnerable to illness. If you’ve been battling the cold or flu season, and you feel like you’re at the losing end, read on and make sure you take note of the Free gift included in this post!
Today’s post is another guest post from our awesome Fitness expert Oonagh Duncan. So many of us fall into the trap of excessive holiday celebrations, but if we are mindful and we make conscious choices about how we share in the festivities, we can actually enjoy healthy holidays. Read on for three easy ways to make healthier holiday choices.
Isn’t it amusing how our Canadian spring always goes from winter to summer with no real in between? The tragic result of this dramatic shift is beautiful weather that gives me ZERO desire to spend any time indoors cleaning out the winter grime. Thank the gods for rainy days, or I swear I’d do nothing at all. Okay, truthfully, on the rainy days I’d rather focus on natural spring pampering than on house work.
Today I have an exciting new treat for you. I’m happy to tell you that Playboy Mommy has our first official sponsor, Holy Taste, a Canadian company specializing in organic health foods, supplements and natural cleaning products. Holy Taste is partnering with us to bring you some of the best items they have on offer, and I’ll give you the real scoop on how these products perform.
We’re going to get things rolling with this beautiful bundle that I hand selected from the Holy Taste website of a collection of products sure to help you feel fresh, inspired, and invigorated – everything you need to tackle your spring projects!
The Holy Taste Spring Pampering Bundle consists of the following delightful treats:
Righteously Raw Caramel Cacao Bar – This is an experience in chocolate that is not for the faint-of-heart. If you’re a die hard chocolate lover like me, you’ll appreciate the incredible richness of this 90% dark chocolate, lucuma and date bar. It’s delicious and it’s an incredible source of anti-oxidants. A couple of squares was all it took to power me through a particularly challenging day with the munchkins. If super dark chocolate isn’t your bag, consider gifting this to the chocolate lover in your life, because we all know at least one.
Devas Vanilla Body Lotion – This line of beautiful, natural beauty products is handmade in Quebec from ingredients sourced from the company’s own organic farm. Sometimes I lock myself in the bathroom (because that’s what you do when you are at home full time with three kids) and rub this on my feet and hands. It makes me so happy that I want to cry.
Devas Grapefruit & Bergamot Bubble Bath – As I’m typing this, I’m realizing that I’ve only used this product as a shower gel thus far. Clearly I need to schedule some time for the full on bubble bath experience. These days, I only get in the tub with a rambunctious toddler, which isn’t exactly the soothing and rejuvenating experience I crave. This light, fresh, clean scent is mild, and my dry skin seems to find it quite agreeable.
NutriDeo Frankincense Natural Deodorant – My quest to find an effective, clean natural deodorant has finally ended. I’ve tried powders with some success, but they are so messy. I’m so glad to have found NutriDeo, and I love this slightly musky scent. It’s gentle on my skin, and the fragrance is subtle. FYI, natural deodorants last about 18-24 hours and you have to apply them generously. It took me a while to find one that worked with my particular body chemistry. I don’t sweat a lot, but I guess I’m particularly pungent. You’re welcome for the extreme over-share. NutriDeo works, and now I want to try the other scents too!
Aangen Yogi Tea This unique ayurvedic tea infusion claims to be “perfect to energize your body any time of the day, especially in the morning or before engaging in any physical exercise.” It was created in partnership with one of Toronto’s leading Ayurvedic doctors to ensure that it is perfectly balanced according to Ayurvedic medicine, which I’m becoming more and more fascinated by. This tea is also designed to help detox, boost the immune system, aid in concentration, and increase warmth. I haven’t yet swapped it out for my daily morning coffee, but it is a wonderful sipping experience, and it does give me a nice little nudge right around the 3pm slump.
Holy Taste is offering the Spring Pampering Bundle for a limited time to Playboy Mommy readers for $49.99. Plus, Holy Taste is offering an additional 15% discount with the code 110513Holy.
[standout-css3-button href="http://holytaste.ca/spring-package-bundle-p-475.html"]Get the Bundle![/standout-css3-button]
Here’s a classic example of a slow-carb lunch.
This mama needs to kick it into high gear to create her ideal thirty-seven-year-old body. This means some drastic measures, which I took as of last Monday, August 12th. The parents in our house all began Tim Ferris’ The Four Hour Body food plan, which we’d experienced with great success a year or so ago. When you do it properly, it really works, but like all health and fitness, the great challenge is in getting the ball rolling.
The thing I like about Four Hour Body is that I can eat as much as I want of the recommended foods, and those foods are wonderfully healthy. I don’t feel hungry, and after getting over the one-and-a-half to two-week period where I’m tormented by sugar withdrawal, I actually feel fantastic. This plan also allows one day of eating anything I want in any quantity I can manage. That’s a huge bonus because I don’t feel like I’m deprived of so many foods I love, and I LOVE food.
When we began two weeks ago I weighed in at 143 lbs. My bust was 34″, hips were 39″, and waist was 32″. My waist is my primary reason for getting my ass in gear. I gain all of my weight there, and studies have proven that those of us who collect most of our fat around our middles are at highest risk for all kinds of disease. We’ve also completely stopped exercising. We were so great with lifting weights every day, and I’m longing to return to this when poor Daddy has more time to spot me. Meanwhile, I’m trying my darndest to fit some yoga in while Noodle is napping in the mornings.
What’s the deal with the Four Hour Body? Well, there is some great science behind it that utilizes the way our bodies metabolize foods. Basically, six days a week I’m limited to:
Any legumes (except chickpeas)
All veggies (except potatoes, sweet potatoes, and squash)
Cottage cheese (the only dairy)
LOTS of water
My usual two – three cups of coffee (with a splash of coconut milk, a dash of cinnamon, and a bit of stevia) per day
One or two glasses of red wine or (less frequently) very dry white wine
Not bad, right?
This kind of eating is best described as “slow carb”, based on foods that have a low glycemic index.
Here’s the very best part, though. On one day (we chose Saturdays) we can eat ANYTHING we want in ANY QUANTITY. This ensures our bodies don’t go into starvation mode, and this actually helps spike our metabolism. We call this day “Free Day”, and sometimes I jot down my cravings so I can be sure to satisfy them on free day. Two weeks into this lifestyle change, I’ve stopped craving junk, and look to treats like cheese, good chocolate, yogurt and fruit to indulge in on Free Day.
Interested? Here’s a link to the Four Hour Body website and a slow carb recipe site to get you started. I’ll keep you posted about how I’m doing with these big changes. So far, at the start of week three I haven’t lost a single pound, or an inch to speak of, but I feel good, and my clothes are fitting differently.