Letting Go

Sometimes, as Busy Professional Real-Life Superwomen we live in fear and it can be a good thing because it gives us the chance to stop, think and re-evaluate our lives and what is triggering the fear.

Unfortunately, many times we don’t allow ourselves to reflect on the fear and look at it as an opportunity for growth. Instead we let the fear take us over and keep us worried, stressed and stuck. I know there has been many times fear as stopped me. It has stopped me from sending letters or making calls to people, organizations or groups, where I could share my passion for doing health and wellness presentations and workshops, it has stopped me from asking for referrals for my business, it has stopped me from sharing my true desires with my husband and it has slowed me down from completing classes.

In 2012, I was gifted a training workshop to become a Bellyfit instructor. I took the training, but did not complete the practicum portion for fear people would judge me. See the practicum involved me teaching eight dance/aerobic classes. The thought of teaching these classes brought up a lot of  anxiety and fear because in the past I was told I didn’t have any rhythm or coordination. How could I effectively teach a class with a fusion of Bellydance, African Dance and Bollywood if I had no rhythm? I was afraid people would judge me or even worse laugh at me. I truly had some root (fear), solar plexus (difficulty letting go) and heart chakra (judgment) imbalances going on.

Finally, this year I decided to retake the Bellyfit training and to teach the 8 classes. Why? Because 2016 was my year of completion and I have done a lot of work around embracing my fear and not letting it control me.

You might be asking how did I let the fear go.

FIRST – I looked fear straight in the eye, had a conversation with what was holding me back (vulnerability) and let it go. Now this wasn’t done overnight. It was a process of several months, examining what no longer served me and letting it go to make room for what I truly desired in my life.

SECOND – I set up a plan so I wouldn’t look too foolish doing the class. This involved practice, practice and more practice. As well as inviting friends who loved and supported me to the initial classes.

THE RESULT, as I write this blog I have completed all 8 classes and this past weekend did the final tapping to be submitted for review.

If you are a Real-Life Superwoman are fears keeping you from living your fullest potential yet like me you would never know it. Why? Because it would make us look like we didn’t have it all together and that four letter word would slip in. VULNERABILITY.

If you are like me and my clients below are some steps you can take to Let Go of Fear.

Ask Yourself The Following Questions.

  • What if I lived in the moment and wasn’t so worried about the future?
  • What if I let go of fear?
  • Where is this fear coming from? (childhood, past negative experience, limited mindset, etc)
  • Is this fear rational?
  • What would life look like if I let go of any doubt and trusted God and Source energy?
  • What if I choose love instead of fear?

Witnessing Your Fears.

If you aren’t aware of your fears, they will take over your life. The best way to let go is to be honest with yourself about what is upsetting you or making your scared.

Choose a new perspective.

Take action. This means get a journal and write down the story you are telling yourself about the fear and then re-write your story where you have let go of the fear and are doing what your heart desires.

You have the power to create a new story with a new ending.

What do you choose to surrender?

Find Gratitude for Your Fears.

Within everything, there is a reason to be grateful. Everything leads to a beautiful transformation – even if it isn’t apparent yet. Make a list of your top three fears. Next to each, note how this fear has transformed you. How it has lead to growth. Why you are grateful for it. Be grateful for every opportunity. Every moment.

Forgive Yourself.

Too often we are holding onto things in our life that do not serve us. I have found it helpful to forgive myself by journaling and then shredding the paper and saying, “I love you and I accept you.”

When you can forgive yourself, you will see you have more energy, less stress and more self- love.

What fears do you choose to let go of as you move into 2017?

The Holiday “Should Do List”

Do you have a “should do list” for the holidays? Things that you should do, but you don’t want to do or don’t like to do. It’s just been something you have done every year out of obligation.

Today I spoke with a couple of my clients who said they felt stressed and overwhelmed about the holidays. They felt behind in all the things that “should” be done for the holidays.  They had not bought or sen the  holidays cards, put up decorations, or bought any gifts for neighbors.  They felt even more stressed because the didn’t have the time or extra money to do these “shoulds”.

I asked them why felt the need to do it. They felt it was something that had to do because they didn’t want people to think bad of them or it was something they had traditional done for years. Yet they admitted they would not want someone to buy them something out of a sense of obligation. They also would not get upset if someone did not get them a card or gift. They realized they were putting the pressure on themselves.

I too have done this in the past not just around the holidays but throughout the year. Doing things because I “should” or because I wanted people to like me and not get mad at me. Now I try to only do things that make my heart sing. If it is not a hell yes it is a NO! and if people are going to get mad at me because I didn’t send them a holiday card well then I really need to re-examine that relationship.

I have recognized over the years when I come from a heart centered place, with my list of things to do, what a difference it makes. I feel happier, more peaceful and in the flow. Isn’t that what this season is truly about?

How about you?

If you want tips on how to  enjoy the holidays with peace and ease, while still getting all you need done with sustained energy and balanced, well nourished chakras, download Chakra Nourishing Guide.

In this guide I will share what the chakras are, what happens to us Busy Professional, Real-Life Superwomen when they are out of balance during whatever holiday you might celebrate and what foods, lifestyle, movement and affirmations you can do to create healthy harmonious chakras.

How to Boost Your Immunity and Reduce Toxins

Detox is vital in this toxic world.  As a health coach I focus on digestion because I believe  good digestion leads to a healthy life. But I also realize that to have good digestion, you must be detoxing properly.

You see, detox is a natural step toward a better digestion. Good digestion leads to less inflammation, and less inflammation leads to less disease in this world. Let me say it again, decrease the inflammation and prevent disease.

Hippocrates said it best: “All disease begins in the gut.”

If this is true and disease begins in the gut, aka your digestive system, then having a healthy and strong digestion is key.

But let me share a secret with you – when the body is toxic, your digestive system is weak.

So even if you eat “clean” and only buy organic and hormone-free foods, you are still breathing toxicity in this world.

We live, eat and breathe toxicity every day. Look around your home and think of the paint on the walls, the rugs, the pesticides sprayed on your green grass, the exterminator to get rid of the bugs. Even if you are chemical-free in your home, is your chemical makeup free?

Even if you are doing your best to live a chemical-free life, we are still alive, and that means eating, breathing, and sleeping in a toxic environment.

Unless you feel that are ready to live in a bubble or a hyperbaric chamber, then it is time to wake up to what I call daily detox.

Now detox is not a curse word or anything to be scared about. Instead, it is exciting to think about your body and cells actually functioning. I do not tell people detox has to be living on juices, or water only, or only smoothies or just salad or soup. Detox is about lessening the toxic load in your body. As I say, “taking out the trash.”

When we are toxic, our body cannot perform its job. The body cannot metabolize properly, detox properly, absorb nutrients and minerals, or stay hydrated. It is a vicious cycle. See, detox is necessary to be healthy, happy and free of disease. We all have some low-level inflammation because again we breathe, but even more so we stress in this busy world.

Every time you stress (very common for us Real-Life Superwomen) you create acid in your body. Your body is then forced to pull minerals to buffer the acid waste. The liver, lymph and kidneys begin to work hard to filter out the toxic load.

But what happens when the body is tired and clogged? When your digestive system is not working and cannot break down these foods, it cannot focus on getting RID of TOXINS. That means you cannot get rid of bloat and fat and skin breakouts and all that jazz that keeps you tired.

TOXINS=>WEAK DIGESTION=>WEAK IMMUNE

  • Difficult weight management
  • Constipation/diarrhea
  • Gas/bloating
  • Headaches
  • Low energy
  • Low sex drive
  • Bad skin
  • Heartburn/reflux
  • Moodiness/depression
  • Get where I am going with all of this?

By detoxing you will improve digestion and free your body of inflammation and toxins in the process.

The foundation of this detox is NOT to ever feel deprived or starved.

The goal is to help you do what I have learned to do in my own life: learn how to EAT CLEAN and learn what foods are IRRITATING your body.

Join me for my detox and cleanse starting on November 6

Click below and let’s change your life today.

Click here

Now that you’ve learned a little more about the benefits of detoxing, how can you start bringing it into your daily life?

Here are a few of my favorite ways to stay healthy and detox naturally:

  1. Upon waking, drink warm or room-temperature water with lemon and 1 tsp raw apple cider vinegar (if tolerated) and add a dash of cinnamon or cayenne.
  2. Start your day by being positive – find that daily affirmation that gets you fired up. I love Louise Hay, Lisa Nichols, Danielle LaPorte and Marianne Williamson.
  3. Try getting quiet within yourself even just for one minute – and say “I release what does not serve me” – place your hand on your heart as you say this out loud. Scream if it you want, own that power.
  4. Each meal choose a variety of fresh colorful whole foods. Think rainbow eating and as a result you get plenty of vitamins and minerals as well as nourish your chakras.
  5. Aim for one meal that is super easy on your digestion per day like a smoothie, green juice or soup. Give that digestion a rest.
  6. Get moving and shaking. Yes, exercise is one of the best ways to detox your body.
  7. Drink plenty of water and add lemon, lime or grapefruit to flush the toxicity.
  8. Skin brushing is my favorite way to support the liver and get rid of those toxins.
  9. Tongue scraping.
  10. Be happy and grateful for life.

Pumpkin Spice Latte or Turmeric/Ginger Latte?

I don’t know about you, but I have learned to appreciate the change in weather. Doesn’t it just warm you up and make you feel all tingly inside to see the beautiful red, yellow and orange leaves? Not to mention—how much I love  all the warm seasonal foods at the local market.

And the Pumpkin Spice Latte—oh the PSL…the beverage that marks the beginning of fall for most people…

Me? I prefer to skip the PSL and you may want to as well. Especially when you consider that it contains caramel coloring, no real pumpkin, loads of sugar, preservatives and sulfites. Click here to read more about the ingredients in a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte.

Instead, I prefer to warm up a big mug of Golden Milk (hint—it’s NOT milk at all)  or what I call Turmeric/Ginger Latte to show my immune system as well as my root and solar plexus some good old-fashioned lovin’. Trust me, once you taste the frothy spiciness of this warm-your-belly herbal remedy…it’s sure to become your new fall staple.

This is just one of the delicious chakra nourishing fall recipes from my Autumn detox program. This upcoming detox program is going to be the best thing that’s happened to you in a long time (it involves releasing weight, letting go of foods, lifestyle habits and thoughts that no longer serve you and bringing in colorful vibrancy and energy to all areas of your life). For more information about the detox program click here.

Below is the recipe
Turmeric/Ginger Latte

Ingredients:

1 cup of unsweetened coconut milk

½ cup water

1 Tbs coconut oil

1 tsp powdered turmeric

1 tsp powdered ginger

2 tsp of cacao (optional)

1 tsp vanilla extract

Raw Local honey to taste or Stevia

1 dash of cinnamon

1/4 cup of unsweetened coconut milk

 

Directions: Place first seven ingredients in a small pot. Warm on medium heat until hot. Put in blender or nutribullet (my favorite type of blender). Add honey and 1/4 cup of cold coconut milk. Blend for about 20 secs. Pour in your favorite cup and add a dash of cinnamon. Enjoy!

The key to making this drink is blending all of the ingredients in a blender. This gives the drink a creamy, frothy like consistency. All I can say is delicious! I can’t seem to get enough.

Here are the benefits of this tea along with what chakras the ingredients nourish.

Coconut milk – contains minerals like, iron, calcium, potassium, magnesium and zinc. It also contains lauric acid, which has been found to exhibit antibacterial, antifungal and antiviral properties. Nourishes the sacral and crown chakra

Coconut Oil –contains healthy antiviral, antifungal and antimicrobial saturated fats. Contains lauric acid. Has immune system –enhancing properties. Is a antioxidant. Helps regulate blood sugar. Nourishes the sacral and crown chakra

Turmeric – anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, and is liver detoxifier. Nourishes the root, solar plexus and third eye chakra.

Ginger – anti-inflammatory, improves immune system. It also improves the absorption and stimulation of essential nutrients in the body, by stimulating gastric and pancreatic enzyme secretion. Nourishes the root, solar plexus and third eye chakra.

Cacao – contains minerals like magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, copper, potassium and manganese .Essential vitamins such as: A, B1, B2, B3, C, E and Pantothenic acid. Is a antioxidant. Cacao can also increase the levels of serotonin, which help improve your mood. Nourishes the third eye chakra

Cinnamon – contains mineral like manganese, iron and calcium. Has anti-bacterial and antimicrobial properties. Is a antioxidant and also helps regulate blood sugar. Nourishes the solar plexus and third eye chakra.

Stevia and honey – nourishes the solar plexus chakra

 

 

Embrace the Yin of the Year with Power-Packed Autumn Veggies

Cooler mornings, chillier nights, and blessedly balmy days, ah, autumn! We turned the seasonal corner just last week on September 22….can you feel the shift in energy?

I was noticing the beginnings of the shift at the end of August: leaves were starting to fall and the heat of summer was waning. Now that we’ve reached the end of September, I can really see the change. The leaves are turning colors, the weather is brisk, the days are shorter and energetically I am slowing down.

I wasn’t always so tuned in to the season’s slowdown. In fact, as a Real-Life Superwoman I’ve spent many years resisting autumn’s shorter days and darker nights, because they meant that winter was on the way.

Why should that matter? At the time – like many Superwomen – I didn’t even realize that I was in conflict with the energetic flow of the year…but I was, and it was taking its toll.

In traditional Chinese medicine, autumn is the start of the Yin time of year: a time to slow down, reflect, and replenish your body, mind and soul. Time to sleep more, meditate, and eat foods that are grounding.

Problem is – when you’re enmeshed in this Yang culture, you aren’t willing to surrender to this kind of slowdown; you want to keep charging full speed ahead!

So this Busy Professional Woman spent years fighting the Yin energy of autumn and winter…and as a result, often felt depressed, had a compromised immune system from constant activity, and was more vulnerable to colds and flu as a result.

Now, however, I have learned to appreciate the autumn season. I love the vibrant, warm colors of fall foliage and the vegetables that ripen at this time of year – winter squash, pumpkins, beets and other root vegetables such as sweet potatoes, turnips and parsnips. Not to mention the warm fragrance and flavor of ginger, cinnamon and nutmeg…

Feeling hungry yet (smile)?

So today I want to share a couple of my favorite autumn foods and how they nourish your health, well-being and chakras.

Beets – From their gloriously red root to their leafy top, these veggies offer a ferocious number of benefits. According to Mercola.com , beets help to lower blood pressure, boost stamina, fight inflammation, support detoxification, improve nerve and muscle function, boost bone strength, stimulate the production of antibodies and white blood cells, and ward off cancer and Alzheimer’s disease. They’re packed with fiber to keep our digestive track healthy and nutrients – vitamin C, potassium, manganese, and folate. On an energetic level, as a deep-crimson root vegetable they help to ground us by nourishing the root chakra.

Butternut squash – With its hard shell and firm flesh, this is an easy food for long-term storage, providing our ancestors with a stable source of carbohydrates and fiber when fresh veges were scarce. Today, these winter squashes do more than their share in boosting your health: according to WholeLiving.com , it’s loaded with potassium, B6, folate, and carotenoids – essential for the functioning of your skeletal, cardiovascular, nervous and immune systems. Its high antioxidant levels help to reduce risk of rheumatoid arthritis, asthma, and other inflammatory disorders. With its high level of beta-carotene, butternut squash can help to protect against breast, colon, and prostate cancer and macular degeneration…as well as supporting fetal and newborn lung development. Its high levels of Vitamins A and C help to support the production of collagen, essential for healthy hair and skin. Finally, as a bright-orange food, it helps to nourish the sacral chakra, which helps keep us in the flow and connected with our creativity.

Sweet potato – This is my all-time favorite autumn food…in fact I could eat this delicious vegetable any time of the year! And sweet potatoes are another nutrient-packed autumn veg: in fact, according to Mercola.com, they hold the record in their levels of Vitamin A – at 769% of the recommended daily value, only beef liver provides more. They’re also loaded with beta-carotene, Vitamins C and B6, and the antioxidant enzymes copper/zinc superoxide dismutase and catalase – boosting your immune system and all-over physical functioning and helping to fight cancer – as well as the protein adiponectin, which helps to regulate your body’s insulin production. As root vegetables, with their deep orange color, sweet potatoes support both the root and sacral chakras.

Do you want to know more about how certain foods help nourish the chakras and as a result improve your health and well-being? If yes, I invite you to join my free 7 Day Autumn Chakra Smoothie Challenge, starting Oct 3!

Tweet: Need ease and flow? Eat butternut squash Tweet: Need ease and flow? Eat butternut squash.@zestandharmony

 

Got the Munchies?

We’ve all done it – had the Midnight Munchies, the 2:00 p.m. Crash, and the 4:30 Grumpies…. gone rummaging through the pantry or perusing the canteen machines, and come away with a sugar or salt fix that jump-started our energy or calmed our craving, only to leave us hungry again an hour or so later..

Sure, you may be saying, I’m not proud of it, but when I’m lying awake obsessing over tomorrow’s presentation, falling asleep at my desk, or ready to snap at my coworker if she looks at me crosseyed, what’s the alternative? And whoever heard of going to the movies without popcorn, or Netflix without a snack and drink nearby?

I hear you! There are a hundred and one reasons for snacking, and most of them revolve in some way around keeping our mood and energy stable. The reality is – snacking can be a form of self-medication, an attempt to supply a genuine physical need….and it can actually be a self-defeating solution, as an National Institutes of Health study  indicated that more calories, saturated fat, and sodium you eat, the more likely you are to suffer a bad mood two days down the road.

So the Busy Professional, Real Life Superwoman’s key to healthy snacking is to find what your body is really looking for in the foods you crave, and then to satisfy that craving with the actual nutrients you need.

Instead of digging into your “stash,” try tuning in to your body and emotions to ask:

Am I craving sweets to fill an emotional need, or numbing out a painful thought or feeling?

A landmark study by Judith and Richard Wurtman established that many people crave sweets and carbs at such times because these foods boost production of the “feel-good” hormone, serotonin.  And according to biologist/author Deane Alban , your blues may actually be due to a serotonin deficiency. You can correct this with high-nutrient foods rich in calcium, chromium, folate, iron, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Vitamin D and zinc, which support the production and regulation of serotonin.  Or you can add foods rich in tryptophan, which is an amino acid that is a precursor for  serotonin. A few foods rich in trypotophan are : eggs, poultry, beans, lentils and seeds.

According to my mentor, Dr. Deanna Minich’s Whole Detox Program , you may also be seeking to satisfy other emotional needs with sweets and carbs: for example, many women turn to dairy treats for a sense of nurturance and comfort. Seeking out processed carbs with white flour may be a red flag indicating  tension, a need for love, or putting out more energy than is coming in. And – not surprisingly! – chocolate may indicate a craving for love.

But the “food of the gods” can be good for so much more…in fact,  dark chocolate is high in many of those serotonin-boosting vitamins and minerals (not to mention a host of other nutrients!), and the high-cacao/low sugar organic, fair-trade varieties can relieve your craving with just a square or two. The sweet-sweet milky varieties that you’ll see in the grocery store checkout aisle, however, may contain a raft of toxins, such as fat, fructose (the new name for high fructose corn syrup), and pesticide residues ….all factors that can prolong, rather than cure, a low mood.

Am I craving salty foods to boost my energy?

Bizarre as it may sound – who hasn’t heard horror stories of the high-sodium American diet and its impact on health? – many Americans are actually sodium-deficient! How is that possible? Well, according to the Body Ecology nutritional consulting firm, the salt that’s so liberally added to just about every processed food on the shelf is not the kind our bodies need and crave, but a nutritionally-deficient and physically damaging substitute. So to satisfy your body’s genuine demand for salty foods, they say, you should stay away from the refined salt on chips, fries, and nuts, and go instead for genuine sea salt, which can “nourish your thyroid and adrenal glands, keep your blood alkaline and even increase the healing powers of other foods. “

Very often salty foods are also crunchy (pretzels or popcorn, anyone?) which helps to relieve stress or anger by literally giving you “something to dig your teeth into.” Fortunately this is an easy need to satisfy – just chop up fresh organic veggies and sprinkle them with  a little  genuine sea salt.

Am I craving spicy foods to dull pain or to fight boredom and apathy?

Very often apathy is a symptom for something going on at a deeper level – depression, perhaps, or even an unrecognized illness. Spicy foods offer a long list of health benefits: for example, clinical nutritionist Dr. Josh Axe  writes that cayenne can help relieve cardiovascular conditions, digestive issues, and chronic pain diseases such as fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis. And of course we all know garlic, with its long list of immune-boosting properties, and ginger, renowned for reducing nausea, pain, and inflammation.

The Indian Ayurvedic tradition is built around managing health through foods, and particularly spices…a worthwhile area to explore when you’re craving rich flavor.

The Three Rules of Snacking

As I tell my clients – it’s all about transforming reflexive habits into conscious decisions….

  1. Slow down, tune into your cravings and see what you really want.
  2. Make your snacking choices consciously, with nutrient-rich whole foods
  3. Choose a variety of colorful foods which will nourish your chakras
  4. Enjoy them slowly and mindfully.

If you need some On The Go Snack ideas,  I have included a free gift with recipes below…and if you’re looking to learn more about the nutrients you really want based on the foods you crave, here’s a helpful chart to print out and post on your refrigerator.

Boost Your Late-Summer Diet with Powerhouse Veggies!

If you’ve been wandering through the Farmer’s Markets lately (as you know, my favorite activity!), you’ve probably been seeing the explosion of colors as we move deeper into harvest time. Between the red grapes, tomatoes, yellow squash, zucchini, blueberries, and eggplant – just for starters –  there’s something to nourish every chakra, not to mention every taste!

I was passing by a booth at the Baltimore Farmer’s Market this past Sunday (as you know, my favorite happy place!) and noticed a display of squashes….and all I could say was WOW! Did you realize there are eight varieties of summer squash? And all of them in glorious shades of green and/or yellow…

So today I want to celebrate three of my favorite summer vegetables: zucchini and yellow squash, and eggplant, and see how they can give us Busy Professional Women more Zest and Harmony.

First of all, both zucchini and yellow squash pack a multivitamin’s worth of nutrition into a slender, tasty few inches. According to the George Mateljan Foundation’s website, they’re high in carbohydrates, protein and fiber, as well as vitamins A, B1, B6, B2, and C; potassium, magnesium, manganese, folate, copper, and phosphorus; along with omega-3 fatty acids, zinc, niacin, and calcium, as well as the antioxidants alpha-carotene and beta-carotene. It would be hard to find a more nutrient-rich squash.

And that’s not all! With their high levels of magnesium and potassium, both the yellow and green summer squashes reduce high blood pressure and the risk of heart attack and stroke, while their high levels of vitamin C and beta-carotene may also help to prevent the oxidation of cholesterol which can cause atherosclerosis, and their high folate levels help to remove homocysteine, which may contribute to the factors causing heart attack and stroke.

The beta-carotene and vitamin C in summer squash have anti-inflammatory properties, helping to reduce inflammation and ease the symptoms of arthritis and asthma, while their high levels of fiber and water help to keep the gut functioning smoothly and prevent the onset of colon cancer. And diabetics get a special benefit from these powerhouse veggies: summer squash contains a unique polysaccharide structure that research demonstrates may promote better regulation of insulin and protection against diabetes.

And what about the energetic level?

Yellow squash helps to nourish the solar plexus chakra, coming into ripeness just at the turn of the seasons, when we need a strong power center at our core to help us set boundaries. How many Real-Life Superwomen I know (I used to be one!) who are giving a lot and don’t set limits to protect our energy levels! Then we wind up wondering why we’re stressed, exhausted and irritable – all symptoms of an unbalanced solar plexus chakra.

With its green color, zucchini supports your heart chakra…perfect for supporting you through the emotional challenges of season’s change, whether you’re walking your teen through the end of a first summer romance, or entering new emotional adventures of your own. That heart-chakra support can also bolster you against the stresses of work, and gives you the extra “oomph” you need to make positive changes when needed.

And then there is my other favorite summer vegetable, eggplant!

Technically, eggplant is neither a squash nor a vegetable – it actually a fruit and belongs to the nightshade family of fruits and vegetables, which also includes tomatoes, bell peppers and potatoes – but I use it in a lot of recipes with summer squashes (ah, ratatouille! Eggplant/zucchini/tomato tian! Grilled veggie kebab!). But like summer squash, eggplant packs a powerhouse of nutrients into that glossy purple or blue/black teardrop: fiber, copper, vitamins B1, B3, B6, and K, manganese, potassium, and folate, according to the George Mateljan Foundation’s website. It also contains a important phytonutrients, including phenolic compounds such as caffeic and chlorogenic acid, and flavonoids, such as nasunin.

So what does this do for you? First, some of these compounds are powerful antioxidants, protecting your cell membranes from damage by free radicals. So eggplant is a potent ally against cancer, microbial infection, “bad” cholesterol, and viruses…as well as high blood pressure! One of these phytonutrients, nasunin, also acts as an iron chelator, removing excess iron from the bloodstream, thus reducing free radical damage to joints, which can cause rheumatoid arthritis; and preventing cellular damage that could lead to cancer.

On the energetic level, since eggplant is a blue/purple color, it nourishes the third eye chakra, helping us to listen to our inner wisdom and trust the process of life…key skills which are many times forgotten or undervalued by us Real-Life Superwomen.

Below are just a few ways to incorporate these nutritional powerhouses into your diet!

 

  • Make a smoothie using frozen zucchini
  • Make “pasta” with zucchini and yellow squash. You can either make it with a Spiralizer or Julienne Peeler.
  • Roast these vegetables on the grill for Labor Day
  • Sauté all three vegetables or just one of them such as eggplant with onions, garlic and tomatoes.

 What is your favorite summer squash and summer squash recipe?

Get Cool with These Yin foods

According to Traditional Chinese Medicine foods that produce HEAT are considered YANG foods and foods that are COLD are YIN in nature.  The heating and cooling effect of foods refer to their capacities to generate either hot or cold sensations in the body.  Yin foods moisten the body and are generally low in calories and rich in potassium. Yang foods warm the body and can be drying. They are higher in calories and sodium.  Below are a list of cooling foods and the chakra it nourishes.

  • Root Chakra

    Strawberries

    Cranberries

    Raspberries

    Watermelon

    Tomatoes

    Carrots

  • Sacral Chakra

    Avocado

    Cantaloupe

    Honeydew

    Carrots

    Coconut

  • Solar Plexus

    Banana

  • Heart

    Cucumbers

    Dark leafy greens

    Watercress

    Avocado

    Honeydew

    Cabbage

    Broccoli

  • Throat Chakra

    Sea Vegetables

    Kombu

    Kelp

    Nori

    Wakame

    Arame

  • Third Eye Chakra

    Blueberries

    Blackberries

    Eggplant

What are your favorite yin foods and which chakra (s) does it nourish? Share in the comment section below.

Reclaim Your Balance – and Your Power – in this Election Year!

If you, like most of us, have been watching our national political conventions, you’ve probably been cycling through a whole gamut of emotions – I know I have! And from what I’ve seen, some of the strongest emotions on display have been anger….chaos….frustration…separatism…and fear.

Let’s skip all the political reasons why voters are feeling these emotions so strongly this year…that’s a whole other discussion! What I want to look at right now is the energetic reason.

 As a nation, I feel energetically our root chakra is totally out of balance, and has been for centuries. There have been pockets of time when it seems to be more out of balance than others. Such as  the last couple of months. There has been struggles for equality, innocent people being killed, Black Lives Matter protests, the argument over gun control, terrorism….  and much more.

What are the giveaway signs of an imbalanced root chakra? You guessed it: all of the emotions we’ve been seeing – and feeling – during the the last couple of month as well as the two conventions, and the primary elections leading up to them.

In fact, the campaign talk, on one side more than the other, seems to be aimed at aggravating this imbalance, triggering deep-seated concerns about safety and survival which can show up either as excessive fear or as aggression and defensiveness.

Not pleasant feelings to experience….and they lead to unpleasant – even tragic – outcomes.

So what can we do, as Busy Professional Women, to balance our own root chakras and avoid getting caught in this chaos and election-year spin?

During chaotic times it is important to do things that nourish your root chakra and ground yourself so that you can remain rooted in the present moment. Your groundedness can have a ripple effect on your friends, family, community and the nation.

Believe me, I’m right there with you in this! My heart has been feeling tender, and I have been feeling highly sensitive….so I have been taking proactive self-care actions to remain focused, grounded and present despite the crazy energies of these times.

Every morning, I meditate and rub essential oils such as as Frankincense, Lemongrass, or Cedarwood on my hands, feet and spine. My root chakra has been calling for root vegetables such as carrots, potatoes and beets, and so I have been listening to my body and adding these to my diet. To nourish my heart chakra to withstand the ugly political talk, I have been eating more kale and spinach. Cucumbers have also been nourishing my heart and cooling my body and emotions.

Because the stress of current events can help to cause more inflammation and risk of illness and dis-“ease”, it’s particularly important to make sure our meals are filled with nutrient rich foods: these help to boost the immune system which in turn nourishes our root chakra.

Imbalance in our root chakra also throws other chakras into imbalance, and I see both my clients and myself becoming more emotional over the tension and chaos in our nation. This indicates imbalance in the sacral chakra, where emotions are held.

Because, as women, we tend to hold our emotions in our hips (which also hold the stress of long-term sitting jobs), I’ve been recommending and doing exercises that move and open the hips and release those emotions and stresses. Bellydance is a wonderful practice for this purpose, with its wealth of hip shimmies and circling. Depending on the nature and strength of the emotions you need to work out, and your own fitness level, other options can range from yoga to barre exercises to kickboxing.

Bottom line? It’s easy to feel helpless, caught up into the emotions that are sweeping the nation. But as Busy Professional Women, we have a responsibility to ourselves and others to claim our own power and autonomy and manage our emotions rather than letting them control us. Ultimately this helps us to remain clear-headed and make good, positive choices, for ourselves and for the nation!

Do you need some support in reclaiming your energy, vitality and power? If yes, allow me to support you with my 90 minute Jump Start Your Energy and Vitality Session. Click here for more information.

 

Is Your Energy and Mood on a Roller Coaster Ride?

What Busy Professional Woman doesn’t know the mid-afternoon crash? You’re charging through your coffee-stoked morning, pause briefly for lunch, race back to the afternoon list of to-do’s, all rarin’ to go… you get nicely started…and then suddenly find yourself wondering what happened to all your energy!
You’re sleepy, body-fatigued, brain-fogged, hungry, maybe irritable…as if someone had turned off your light switch.

As a veteran Busy Professional this is a pattern I know, oh, so well! Almost every day around 2 p.m. I felt hungry and tired. I wanted to take a short nap, but with my 7 a.m. – 3 p.m. nursing hours that wasn’t going to happen. I was never a big coffee drinker, so that wasn’t my solution, but instead I would grab a quick pick me up such as a Reese Peanut Butter Cup, or a bag of cookies, pretzels or chips.

Sound familiar? That shot of caffeine, sugar, carbs, or salt may be just the thing you crave to keep you up for the next couple hours at work. And sure, the taste of it, and the energy jolt, might be good, but then you go through the same crash 30 -60 minutes afterwards!

So what exactly causes that jolt and crash?

Most breakfast foods such as cereal, doughnuts and English Muffins or even the so-called healthier choices like bagels, bran muffins and instant oatmeal – all those lovely bready comfort foods – are basically processed simple carbohydrates, which function like sugar in your system. Worse, they may also be high in the added sugars of frostings or fillings or spreads.

When all of this sugar hits your bloodstream, your energy soars…and so your pancreas sends an increase in insulin to balance things out. That insulin then causes a dip in your blood sugar and causes you to be hungry mid-morning…and then you make similar choices at lunch (a sandwich or sub in a fat, freshly-baked roll, maybe chips or cookies for dessert), thus triggering another jot and dip in your energy.

You haven’t popped a single pill, but you’re basically on an upper-downer cycle! So what can you do to stop the rollercoaster? Here’s what I did to free myself… One of the ways you can feel energetic and vibrant during the afternoon is to have a breakfast that is rich in protein, phytonutrients, fat and fiber rather than
high-glycemic simple carbs. This gives you a long-running source of energy that doesn’t trigger your pancreas.

My favorite way to get all four of these things is to drink a smoothie. Why? First, you have endless choices for ingredients, between your liquid, green, fruit, fat/protein, and fiber!

Second, because you are consuming these nutrients in liquid form, your body can assimilate them in next to no time, so you have a quick and long-lasting source of energy.

Who could ask for more?

Here are just a few of the ingredients I like to put in my smoothies…

Liquid – water, coconut water, unsweetened dairy-free milk, or plain kefir

Greens (provide vitamins and minerals such as iron, calcium and magnesium. They also nourish your heart chakra, helping you to open up to love and compassion) – kale, collards, chard, bok choy, arugula, spinach, lettuce

Fruit (contain phytonutrients – natural chemicals that help protect plants from germs, fungi, bugs…and can also support your body’s functions and help it ward off disease) – where to begin here? Banana, apple, berries, mango, etc. are just a start!

While you can leave out the fruit if you want to reduce your sugar intake, I like to
select a fruit in the color of the chakra I want to nourish for the day:

  • Red fruits such as strawberries, raspberries and apples nourish the root
    chakra, which keeps you feeling grounded, safe and secure.
  • Orange fruits such as mango and oranges rnliven the sacral chakra enhancing
    flow, creativity, play and pleasure.
  • Yellow fruits such as bananas and pineapples nourish the solar plexus which
    actives your fire, your self-confidence and power.
  • Green fruits such as kiwi or honeydew help to support the heart chakra.
  • Blue fruits such as blueberries support both your throat chakra and third eye
    chakra, which help you to speak your truth and enhance your intuition
  • Purple fruits such as grapes support your third eye chakra and crown chakra,
    enhancing your intuition and connection to Spirit.

Fat/protein (provide a concentrated source of energy in your diet, as well as being the building blocks for cell membranes and a number of hormones. They’re also carriers for fat-soluble vitamins, and help to assist in their absorption…just to name a few of their benefits!)– hemp seeds, hemp protein, Sunwarrior protein, fresh coconut meat or coconut oil, nuts and nut butters, avocado, coconut oil, flax, or chia
seeds.

Fiber (helps to control cholesterol and blood sugar levels, as well as supporting bowel health and function and helping you achieve a healthy weight) – The greens, fruits, flax, hemp and chia seeds are all rich in fiber.

So what are you waiting for? Have a party in your blender….and energy without a crash!

Want to learn more about what foods can give you energy and vitality? Join my free 7 Day Chakra Smoothie Challenge starting July 18.

To register click HERE