Healthy and Holistic

Month: September, 2012

The Finishing Touch

I was running some errands earlier this week when I was suddenly inspired to buy a couple of notebooks to journal all the things that I love and inspire me.

Next to the notebooks was an aisle of fun stickers.  Stickers remind me of my childhood when my cousin Anita and I would have sticker collections.  We would collect all kinds stickers in a large photo album and  go to each others house with our stickerbooks and sit and trade them.  The nostalgia got to me and I couldn’t resist picking up a few sparkly stickers to decorate the journals.

I love these sparkly dots and thought they would look great on this flower notebook.

All decorated, I think the stickers add a nice finishing touch and make these already colorful notebooks extra sparkly.

It’s the pretty little odds and ends in my life that motivate me and make me happy.  From having my favorite orchid strategically placed where I can see it walking in my front door to pinning my favorite images on my inspiration board, it’s the little decorative touches that make me feel like I’m surrounded by beauty.  Looking at these notebooks make me smile I can’t wait to carve out some ‘me’ time to fill them with words, pictures, and whatever else inspires me.

Alkaline Foods

photo: worldhealth.net

I recently had a reading with the lovely Julie Hasen Intuitive and she mentioned that I had the potential to become acidic and should up my intake of alkaline foods.

I have heard of the whole acid-akaline food thing before but never really gave it much thought because I thought I ate enough healthy foods to counteract any acidic substances I would consume.

However, the past few months I have been busy with weddings 4 to be exact (and another 3 to go!), celebrated several birthdays, and had nights out with friends that I haven’t been as strict with my diet.  I’ve eaten foods that I’m allergic too—who can pass up wedding cake? And birthday cake?  and other acid-forming foods so, I guess I can see how I have the potential to become acidic.

First thing I did, research acid alkaline foods.  You can google acid-alkaline food charts and receive a lot of information, but it can be confusing because what you think might be an acid, e.g. lemon actually has an alkalinizing effect on your body.

As a general rule of thumb, all vegetables, especially greens, are alkalizing.  Meat, dairy, coffee, alcohol, and sugar are acidifying.  Things like fruit, grains, and nuts tend to be neutral to mildly acidic.

I’ve created a chart to depict the information I’ve found on acid-alkaline foods.  The foods highlighted in green are high alkaline and the foods, highlighted in red are high acid-forming, all others are moderate in their category.

It’s best to aim for 80% alkaline foods and 20% acid-forming foods.  So if you imagine your plate, a little more that 3/4 will be filled with veggies and the rest with other foods.

Over the next few weeks, I’m going to try to follow these guidelines and incorporate the top ten alkaline foods (see below) into my daily diet.  I’ll let you know how I do!

Top 10 Alkaline Foods

  1. Grasses- Alfalfa, Barely, Dog, Kamut, Wheat
  2. Cumber
  3. Sprouts- alfalfa, broccoli, radish, soy
  4. Sea Vegetables- kelp
  5. Sprouted Chia seeds
  6. Spinach
  7. Parsley
  8. Broccoli
  9.  Kale
  10. Lemons

Matcha Green Tea

Let me begin by saying that I am a habitual coffee drinker.  I love the aroma and the smooth rich taste of my morning cup of java.

While I don’t drink more than one cup–well, sometimes two if I’m really tired, I always start my mornings with a fresh cup of coffee.  And if you asked me what are the three things I would take with me in case of a fire, my Tassimo coffee machine would be one of them.

That said, I occasionally like to mix up my routine or will attempt detoxes where I give up my cup of joe for a few weeks.

One thing I reach for when I am trying to mix it up is green tea.  You’ve all heard the numerous benefits that green tea has to offer, from boosting metabolism to fighting cancer, but did you know that you are not getting all of the valuable nutrients when you brew a cup of green tea?

That’s because water can only extract a fraction of the antioxidants green tea carries.  The majority actually remain trapped in the tea leaves. The only way to truly take advantage of green teas full potential is to consume the whole leaf.  That’s where matcha comes in.

Matcha green tea is stoneground tea leaves and enables you to absorb all of the vitamins, antioxidants, minerals, and amino acids that no loose leaf green tea can.  In fact, in order to consume the same nutrients in a single cup of matcha, you would have to drink 10 cups of brewed green tea.

Matcha is easy to make (think instant coffee) and provides a whole host of benefits.  And good news for coffee drinkers, can give you your morning caffeine boost.  You can adjust the quantity of matcha to give you more or less caffeine.

Read below for some of the benefits of matcha green tea and how to make the perfect cup.

Benefits of Matcha Green Tea

  • Is packed with antioxidantsincluding the powerful EGCg
  • Boosts metabolism and burns calories
  • Detoxifies effectively and naturally
  • Calms and relaxes
  • Enhances mood and aids in concentration
  • Provides vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium
  • Fights against viruses and bacteria
  • Is rich in fiber
  • Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar
  • Does not raise insulin levels

Directions

1. Heat 6oz of spring of filter water (just under a boil)

2. Add 1 tsp of matcha green tea powder to a mug

3. Add a few drops of hot water to mix into a paste with a spoon

4. Add remaining hot water to paste mixture and stir, you can also adjust measurement to taste

5. Matcha is ready to drink!

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