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Detoxifying Cauliflower-Parsnip Soup

Ingredients

  • 4-5 shallots, or 2-4 leeks if you prefer a milder flavor
  • 1 rib (about ¼ cup) chopped celery
  • 1 head garlic (about 7 cloves)
  • 6 cups veggie broth (or 1 quart water plus 3 veggie cubes)
  • 1 tsp. curry + ¼ tsp. turmeric
  • 1 ½ pounds parsnips, diced
  • 1 head cauliflower (about 1 ½ cups florets)
  • 1 cup baby spinach
  • ¼ cup cilantro
  • 4 tbsp. Udo’s Oil
  • Optional; 1 t salt, ½ t pepper, 2 T chives, 1 T lemon juice

Instructions

  1. Heat a bit of broth in the bottom of a saucepan and add the alliums (shallots, leeks, garlic) and celery, stirring until translucent.
  2. Add broth, diced parsnips, and any cauliflower stems, and bring to boil.
  3. Cook 2 minutes, then add cauliflower florets, and reduce to medium heat.
  4. Cook 2-3 minutes more, and finally stir in the spinach and cilantro.
  5. Turn off heat and taste. Season with salt, pepper, and/or lemon juice to taste.
  6. Ladle into bowls and top each with 1 tbsp. Udo’s Oil and a sprinkle of snipped chives.

Holistic Nutritionist, Dana Green Remedios, RHN, RNCP has a passion for helping others break through their blocks to greater health, wealth, and happiness, working with transformational mind-body tools. The Vancouver-based educator and coach answers your questions in English, French, and Spanish as a Specialist working in the Product Information Department at Flora, and is a regular contributor to the FloraHealthy blog.

Skin Health – Inside and Out

Skin, it is our largest organ and one that provides more protection than you might think. We all know skin is our outer shell but it does more than guard our muscles and organs. Our many layers of skin play a role in our immunity, temperature regulation, vitamin D synthesis,  water regulation and toxin removal. Keeping it healthy is an integral part of overall health.

Many of us put a lot of time and products into making it look younger, softer, firmer and smoother. While these lotions, creams, butters, oils and other topical concoctions feel great and provide some temporary results, true skin health comes from the inside out.

Hydration

Good hydration is essential for good skin health and I don’t mean topically with creams. True skin hydration comes from inside. Skin cells, like all cells in the body, are primarily made up of water. This means that a lack of water will result in dry, tight cells. Dry skin has less resilience and is more prone to wrinkling.  Unfortunately, skin is one of the last organs to receive water from the body, meaning that drinking the recommended 8 glasses is especially important for that healthy glow.

Omega 3’s, obtained from fish oils are also essential for good skin hydration. The eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) found in Omega 3s is especially beneficial as it regulates oil production and boosts hydration. EPA can prevent acne, and by delaying the skin’s aging process, stave off wrinkles. A 2005 study in the Journal of Lipid Research discovered that EPA can help block the release of the UV-induced enzymes that eat away at our collagen, causing lines and sagging skin. Because EPA is both an antioxidant and an anti-inflammatory agent, it can protect against sun damage and help repair it.

Dry Brushing

Dry Brushing, like it sounds, is the act of brushing your skin in a particular pattern with a dry brush, usually before bathing. This is an old health trick with many benefits that is gaining new popularity. By gently dry brushing the skin in a circular pattern starting farthest from the heart and working towards the heart many good things happen!

  • Increase blood flow and circulation.
  • Stimulate and detoxify the Lymphatic system that lies just below the skin’s surface.
  • Soothe and massage sore muscles.
  • Exfoliate and remove dead skin cells, resulting is softer, brighter skin
  • Clean pores by physically removing oil and dirt.
  • Reduce cellulite.
  • Combine the above results for an early morning energy boostIt is recommend to start with a soft brush and light pressure, working your way up to a firm brush.

Probiotics

Skin supports its own ecosystems of microorganisms including bacteria and yeast. Many of these are beneficial and cannot be removed with cleaning.  If this delicate balance between yeast and bacteria is disturbed, like in the the rest of the body, an overgrowth can occur resulting in infection. Many of us take probiotics (healthy bacteria) for digestion and stomach health but researchers now know that the gut and the skin are connected. When bad bacteria are present in the gut (due to stress, poor diet, medications etc), they can cause flare ups on the skin in the form of eczema, rosacea and acne.  Taking an oral probiotic can reduce these “bad bacteria” by replacing them with “good bacteria” that can help improve and prevent skin issues. There is also very promising research that suggests that taking probiotic supplement while pregnant can improve an infants skin health.

Sun Exposure

We all love the feel of the warm sun on our skin, especially after a long cold winter. That warm sun provides many benefits to us including the very important vitamin D, but it can also have damaging effects. Sun changes skin. In response to prolonged sun exposure our skin begins to discolour, initially with a redding burn or darkening tan. It then starts to develop freckles, discoloured areas, age spots and wrinkles. Sun exposure causes most of the skin changes that we think of as a normal part of aging. Over time, the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light damages the fibers in the skin called elastin. When these fibers break down, the skin begins to sag, stretch, and lose its ability to go back into place after stretching.  There is also much research to support the claim that excessive sun exposure causes skin cancer.

Protecting your skin from prolonged and excessive sun exposure is vital to healthy skin, both appearance and function. Clothing, hats, shade and good sunscreen are all useful when fighting the damaging effects of the sun. Choosing a healthy sunscreen that is not going to increase your exposure to harmful chemicals is also important. Many sunscreens, while effective in preventing sun damage, contain ingredients that have been proven to be harmful to our bodies in other ways, some even causing cancer themselves.  To find an effective, healthy sunscreen look for biodegradable, all natural sunscreens that do not contain ingredients like oxybenzone, a hormone disruptor, or retinyl palmitate, a form of vitamin A that may harm skin. To see how your sunscreen rates, check out the Environmental Working Group Annual  Guide to Sunscreen. This research-based document is a great guide for choosing the best sunscreens for your family.  We use it to make sure every sunscreen we sell in the store is effective and healthy for our customers.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.besthealthmag.ca/best-looks/skin/probiotics-for-better-skin/

http://www.uwhealth.org/madison-plastic-surgery/the-benefits-of-drinking-water-for-your-skin/26334

http://www.health.com/health/article/0,,20411530,00.html

 

 

Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

Very few natural health remedies have been around as long as the humble but powerful apple cider vinegar. Its internal benefits are many and include detoxification, improved digestion,  blood sugar control and metabolism support it can also be used for a quick energy boost.

The benefits of apple cider vinegar come from compounds which include acetic acid, potassium, magnesium, probiotics, and enzymes.  Acetic acid has the ability to kill dangerous “bad” bacteria, and at the same time to foster the growth of beneficial “good” bacteria. Because acetic acid kills unwanted bacteria when it comes into contact with it, it essentially acts as a natural antibiotic. This means apple cider vinegar naturally provides numerous benefits related to skin, digestion, and immunity health without any side effects.

By drinking 1-3 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water daily you can…

appleciderDetox Your Body

Apple cider vinegar is a liver and lymphatic tonic which can help detox your body.  It helps balance your body’s pH and stimulates cardiovascular stimulation, bowel motility, and lymphatic drainage.

Treat Acid Reflux and Heartburn

Some of the main causes of acid reflux and heartburn are an imbalanced stomach pH and lack of enzymes and probiotics. Apple cider vinegar is full of all of these nutrients. Adding 1 tbsp of apple cider vinegar to a cup of water and drinking it five minutes before meals can cure acid reflux.

Can Kill Candida (Yeast) and Boost Probiotics

Millions of people around the world struggle with candida and yeast.  The side effects can be bad breath, lack of energy, UTI’s and digestive issues.  Apple cider vinegar contains probiotics and a type of acid that promotes the growth of probiotics which help kill off candida.  R

Regulate Your pH

Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid which is acidic in nature but has a more alkaline effect on the rest of your body.  Balancing your bodies pH can reduce your risk of chronic illnesses like cancer and can dramatically increase your energy.

 Support Weight Loss and Metabolism

There are several reasons apple cider vinegar promotes fat loss but one of those reasons include that it reduces sugar cravings and improves detoxification.

Balance Blood Sugar 

Medical research has proven that the acetic acid found in apple cider vinegar can balance blood sugar and improve diabetes.  Put apple cider vinegar on salads or consume 1 tablespoon in water before meals.

Fight Seasonal Allergies

Another amazing treatment of apple cider vinegar is for allergies.  Apple cider vinegar helps break up mucous in your body and support lymphatic drainage.  It also supports the immune system and can clear your sinuses.  Put 2 tablespoons in a large glass of water and drink 3x daily for allergies.

 Cure a Cold and Relieve a Sore Throat 

Apple cider vinegar is the ultimate remedy to cure a cold and sore throat fast!  Because it’s loaded with vitamins and probiotic boosting acetic acid it’s a great natural cure.  Take 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in one glass of water 3x daily to cure a cold.

In order to provide the many health benefits,  apple cider vinegar must be unpasteurized and naturally fermented, containing the “mother”.  The mother has a murky brown appearance and can be seen in the bottom of the bottle. It is actually strands of live yeast that contain beneficial bacteria. Like all fermented products, apple cider vinegar is made using active yeast that is combined with sugar. In this case, it is naturally occurring sugar from crushed apples. The sugar feeds the yeast and the yeast can then grow healthy bacteria, which is how fermentation takes place.

The best apple cider vinegar for therapeutic and health wellness should be made from certified organic apples. Pasteurization is not required and is not recommended for people using it for health benefits, as this kills all of the delicate nutrients and enzymes. When buying apple cider vinegar look for a cloudy appearance, indicating the presence of beneficial bacteria.  At The Granary we recommend and use both the well known Bragg’s brand and the local, Ontario grown, Filsinger’s brand. Both are equally good and available in a range of sizes. For the most enjoyable experience try adding a bit of raw honey to make a delicious drink!