A Simple Detox Ritual To Start Your Day

Starting your day with hot water and lemon has often been suggested on every wellness blog and detox blog that I have ever read or perused.  I began to include hot water with honey and lemon into my morning ritual about 10 years ago after reading about the metabolism and immunity boosting benefits that it provided.  I began this ritual when I was in fashion school full time and working full time – I couldn’t afford to get sick. I truly believe that this simple ritual helped to keep me healthy.  Over the years I have adjusted this drink, at times I omitted the honey and included a pinch of turmeric and black pepper or a few drops of turmeric oil for an anti-inflammatory boost.  But drinking a mug of hot water with fresh lemon has remained a constant to my morning ritual over the years.

Because I often read about the benefits of drinking this simple warming drink, I just assumed that it is something that everyone does. But after working with clients and speaking with friends and family over the past few years, I have learned that I was wrong.  Despite the plethora of evidence supporting this simple detox ritual, many people have yet to get on board.  If you are one of those people – don’t feel bad, but I would like to encourage you to include this simple drink into your morning routine.

Reasons to begin this detox ritual:

  1. It helps to rehydrate your body by replacing fluids you may have lost during the night while sleeping
  2. Aids digestion as the lemon juice helps to flush out unwanted toxins and waste from the body
  3. Boosts your immune system, lemons are a great source of vitamin C and honey is anti-bacterial.
  4. Helps to balance your body’s PH level. Disease thrives in an acidic environment within the body and lemons are one of the most alkalizing foods (once metabolized), so they are superstars when it comes to re-balancing your body’s PH to a healthier level.
  5. Helps to keep you skin clear.  Vitamin C is a potent antioxidant which combats free radicals, this in turn helps to decrease wrinkles and blemishes and boosts your glow factor.
  6. Aids in weight loss.  The pectin fibre in lemons helps to squash hunger cravings and keep you feeling fuller for longer.

What to do:

  • It’s a good idea to use spring or filtered water as you want to keep it as clean as possible
  • Use warm – hot (not boiling) water
  • Squeeze the juice of half of a fresh lemon into a mug
  • Pour in the hot water
  • Optional additions to your lemon water: half a teaspoon of raw or Manuka honey, a pinch of turmeric powder/a few slivers or raw turmeric/3 -4 drops of turmeric oil with a bit of black pepper

Some people may feel that including a mug of hot lemon water to their mornings may be time consuming and that they just don’t have the time for it as they rush to start their day.  I would suggest that if you are one of those people, then try to include this ritual into your mornings a few times a week when you are not so rushed (weekends perhaps?).  Another option is to fill your travel mug with hot lemon water to sip on your way to work and have your first coffee when you arrive at work.

Try it and let me know what you think!

Do you have any detox rituals that you swear by?  Let me know in the comments below!

I hope that you have a wonderful day!  XXS

The Self Care Shower Ritual That You May Be Missing

Detox is a commonly used word amongst people in the wellness community, and over the past few years it has become a commonly used buzz word in popular culture as well.  It means many things to many people, but essentially it is used to communicate a method to rid toxins – most commonly from the body.  While your body has detox organs that help to eliminate toxins from your body naturally, there are certain things that one can do to help further stimulate this process within the body.

This year I decided to incorporate a new detox ritual into my self care routine, namely dry brushing.  This self care routine has become popular over the past few years, and while I had attempted once or twice prior to this year, 2016 is the year that I committed.  For those of you that don’t know, dry brushing is the process of brushing your skin with a natural bristle brush.  Some of the benefits of dry brushing include:

  • It sweeps away dry skin cells
  • Improves digestion
  • Stimulates the lymph nodes
  • Improves the appearance of cellulite
  • Boosts circulation

It is best to dry brush before you take your shower and many prefer to do it in the morning as they feel energized after.  How to maximize your dry brushing experience:

  • Use a soft but firm natural bristle brush
  • Start dry brushing at your feet and brush upwards to your heart
  • While dry brushing your stomach, brush in a counter clockwise circular motion
  • Use a circular motion when dry brushing your chest – that is where lymph drainage occurs
  • Take your time, spend 3 – 5 minutes dry brushing
  • Enjoy the process, it is a great time to breathe and take some time for yourself while doing something great for your body.

I am so happy that I have added dry brushing into my self care routine.  My skin looks and feels great since I have started.  It forces me to slow down and take a minute for myself while I am brushing.  It is extremely therapeutic and I find myself looking forward to my new self care ritual on a daily basis.

Are there any new self care rituals that you have included in your routine this year?  Let me know in the comments below.

I hope that you have a fabulous day!  XXS

 

The Nightcap You Should Be Drinking

Golden milk has had a surge in popularity over the past few years within the wellness community, but it has been used within Indian culture for centuries.  Historically known as Haldi ka Doodh (directly translated it means turmeric milk) it has been used to maintain good health and treat various ailments throughout the years.  Haldi ka doodh was often suggested when someone caught a cold in my house growing up, but it never sounded appealing and I somehow (thankfully) managed to avoid having to drink it.

A few years ago I came across a recipe for golden milk which was an updated (translation: more delicious) version of haldi ka doodh and I was intrigued by the many benefits that it was reported to have including being a powerful anti-inflammatory, improving brain and memory function and better immunity.  The benefit that stood out the most for me was that it was a cure for insomnia.  While I was sceptical that this drink would be the miracle sleep potion that I had been searching for, I had spent enough sleepless nights tossing and turning that I was willing to try anything.  Truthfully, golden milk did not send me into dream land for the next eight hours like I had been hoping but it was delicious and very relaxing and that was a start.

Over time I have fine tuned my own golden milk recipe and it has become a tasty part of my wind down ritual before bed.  Filled with healthy fats and warming spices this drink is as comforting as it is delicious. While drinking golden milk doesn’t guarantee a good night’s sleep, it is a delicious, healthy and relaxing beverage that can be enjoyed at any time or the day.

Golden Milk Recipe a la Stylishly Zen

Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients:

1 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 teaspoon coconut oil (virgin, cold pressed)

1 teaspoon raw honey

1/4 teaspoon turmeric

1/4 ground cardamom

pinch of black pepper

sprinkle of cinnamon

Heat the almond milk, coconut oil, turmeric, cardamom and black pepper in a small saucepan over medium heat stirring occasionally until heated through (just under a boil).  Pour into a mug, stir in the raw honey and sprinkle with cinnamon.

Enjoy!

Why You May Need An Adaptogen

Adaptogens are getting a lot of attention lately and they are often recommended as a supplement, but many people are still not clear as to what adaptogens actually are.

Adaptogens are herbs and natural substances that can help you to adapt, especially to stress.  These (typically) plant based molecules work on the neuro-hormonal system to help improve it’s ability to handle and respond to mental, physical and environmental changes, by supporting balance and promoting a healthy regulation of cortisol within the body.

Life has become increasingly fast paced and hectic for most people and we are constantly faced with a barrage of stressors that cause our body to get completely out of whack. Adrenal fatigue and anxiety attacks are becoming more and more common, demonstrating just how stressed out people are. Adaptogens can help to balance out the stress that your body may be experiencing by calming and nourishing your adrenal glands, enhance your body’s ability to cope with fatigue and anxiety, promote healthy regulation of cortisol, strengthen the body’s response to stress as well as help to stabilize hormonal balance, blood sugar and blood pressure.  Please note that adaptogens are not a quick fix – they are a herbal supplemental therapy to help to support you especially during stressful periods in your life.

Some of the most popular adaptogens on the market today are:

Ashwagandha is known as a calming adaptogen which makes it ideal for people suffering from nervous tension, anxiety or insomnia.  It is commonly recommended for hypothyroidism as it stimulates the thyroid and has been shown to help relieve muscle spasms and in treating fibromyalgia

Licorice Root has historically been known to boost the immune system, increase energy and endurance and protect the thymus from cortisol damage.  As licorice root can affect blood pressure it is important to only use it while under professional supervision.

Holy Basil  is also commonly known as Tulsi.  This herb is popular throughout India as the “elixir of anti-aging”, studies on holy basil has shown that it helps to boost the immune system, regulate blood sugar, hormone levels and blood pressure along with helping the body to fight fatigue and stress.

Rhidola Rosea is popular for it’s broad range of effects which include enhancing fertility, balancing blood sugar and restoring immune function.

Asian Ginseng is a natural stimulant that helps to temper an overactive stress response and increase alertness.  It is also well known to help boost the immune system, combat free radicals within the body and lower blood sugar.

Adaptogens are a great way to help your body deal with stress but as with all supplements it is best to speak with a medical professional to ensure that they won’t negatively interact with any other medications and supplements that you may be taking.  This post is for informational purposes only and it is not intended to replace the advice of a qualified medical professional.

I hope that you have a happy and healthy day! XXS