7 Tips to Getting a Restful Night’s Sleep

7 Tips to Getting a Restful Night’s Sleep

Sleep is one of the most important tools we have to support good health. And it’s free.

 The bedroom is the place we go to recharge, unwind, and support deep rest.

The bedroom is a sacred space.

Look around with an unbiased eye and take note of what’s happening in your bedroom.

Is it cluttered? Are there pictures or knick-knacks that drain your energy?

Sleep is critical for our physical, mental and emotional health. It is our time to unplug, recharge, detox, and quite literally, rest. This supports a healthy immune system and a healthy nervous system.

Without quality sleep, we experience greater emotional stress, susceptibility to illness (lowered immune response), premature aging , and anxiety.

Here are 7 tips on enhancing your beauty and your health through sleep.

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2. Choose an alarm clock with red or orange light, not blue or green. Or go old school. The spectrum of red or orange light is much more soothing to our bodies. If you want to drop a few bucks on a super zen battery operated chime clock, check these out.

3. Sleep in the dark. Our bodies are programmed to sleep in the dark and wake with the light. Have you ever gone camping? Once the sun goes down, sleeping happens much sooner.

Buy black out curtains or simply hang extra fabric to seal out the light. Studies have shown that light while sleeping can affect hormones, mood, and ovulation in women.

4. Keep electronics away from your head. Electromagnetic fields (EMFs)  disrupt our health and can trigger anxiety, restlessness, and prevent sound sleep. This includes alarm clocks (you can put this across the room or in the hallway), lamps, really anything plugged in to the wall. If you like to read at night, unplug the lamp before you settle to sleep. Some people even like to flip the circuit breaker.

5. Remove TVs, computers, stereos, and other unnecessary gadgetry from your bedroom. Studies have shown that once you turn off the TV it continues to radiate for 8 hrs. Not so good if you’re trying to rest and repair.

6. If you suffer from insomnia, try eliminating caffeine. Even a small cup of coffee at 8am could affect someone who is extra sensitive and prone to insomnia.

7. Create a nighttime ritual – 5- 30 minutes should do the trick. Here are some ideas to explore:A hot salt bath (or if your feet are hot, a cool foot bath with peppermint soap), slow yoga to meditative music, 10 deep belly breathes, or a foot rub. All of these bring your energy inward, calm the nervous system and prepare the body for sleep.

Nourish Yourself with Golden Milk

Nourish Yourself with Golden Milk

Golden Milk is a delicious and nourishing drink that packs incredible health benefits into one warm mug at a time.

It’s very

Some of the wonderful benefits of Golden Milk:

  • Anti-inflammatory – easing joint pain
  • Soothing to the spirit and aids in digestion and sleep
  • Supports healthy liver function
  • Supports the spleen and stomach
  • Supports healthy blood sugar levels
  • Supports the heart and brain
  • Supports a healthy immune system
  • Supports the nervous system

The key Ingredient in Golden Milk  is tumeric – which is a powerhouse. Curcumin is the most active ingredient in turmeric – It’s a strong antioxidant is anti-inflammatory, antibacterial  anti-fungal. However, curcumin is not well-absorbed into the body — UNLESS it is blended with black pepper. Black pepper contains piperine which has it’s own anti-inflammatory properties. The black pepper enhances the curcumin ability to work synergistically with the body.  Golden milk is blended with other herbs and spices for flavor and health benefits. Once you begin to get the hang of it you can add your own favorites in.

You can drink Golden Milk 2- 3 times per day. I prefer it before bed. You can make a homemade version with our recipe below or purchase a  mix. We have used Gaia Herbs brand and it is wonderful – with the added benefit of Ashwaganda. Ashwaganda is an adaptogen which helps the body deal with stress. That said, you can certainly add that into your recipe.

Delicious Golden Milk at Home

  • 1 cup Milk or  Dairy Free coconut milk (regular, full-fat, canned)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (can use MCT coconut oil)
  • 1½ teaspoons ground turmeric
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cardamom (optional – to taste –  I love cardamom and addition to almost everything)
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • if sugar sensitive sweeten with 10 drops liquid pure stevia extract, or to taste
  • OR Sweeten with raw honey to taste after removing from heat
Directions:
  1. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat, whisk together the coconut milk,  water, coconut oil, turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, and pepper. Warm slowly until hot but not simmering, about 7 minutes
  2. Remove the pan from the heat, and whisk in the stevia or honey (not both!)
  3. Leftovers can be refrigerated for up to three days

 

 

The Kidneys Ask Us to Slow Down

The Kidneys Ask Us to Slow Down

In Traditional East Asian Medicine, the body’s physiological processes can be viewed through the lens of Five Phase theory. 

Each phase relates to a major organ, an emotion and a season. 

All things can be viewed through this lens for easy discussion and healing discoveries.

The heart and lungs are relatively higher in the body away from the earth. They process blood and air every second of every day. 

 

The liver and spleen are physically just below the diaphragm in the middle. They process food and blood on a daily or in some cases weekly cycles. 

 

The kidneys are the lowest of these five.

They rule events in life such as birth, puberty, child bearing.

These processes are slow. 

In the last 40 or so years the speed of our lifestyles has increased exponentially.  Mother Earth is still telling us all to slow down – more. 

In 2020 I went from 50 patients per week to 22. It wasn’t by choice. But it was most certainly better for me. More time for conscious breathing, exercise, and hydrating. 

Kidney Deficiency usually manifests in the low back and the knees.

This past year has been challenging, heart-breaking, and difficult to varying degrees for each of us.  As we press on into this third wave, it is important to understand the stress this has on the kidneys. We are all to some degree in fight or flight. We are in survival mode. Every social pattern we have known has been disrupted and changed. As we move through this transition, the healthiest thing we can do is to acknowledge how this affects the kidneys and support ourselves accordingly.

In the kidneys resides essence or Jing and our will to live.

The connection between the kidneys and the heart is important to understand. If you look at the diagram, you may notice  that this is the axis of fear and joy. Water and fire. This is a spectrum. The antidote for fear – is Cultivating Joy. The adrenals and kidneys are directly connected. We want to nourish our kidneys and support our essence. We can do this in the following ways:

  • Turn the TV off
  • Take a holiday from social media
  • Go outside. Make a fire, talk a walk, tend to your yard- connect with the natural rhythms of nature. Feel the wind, see the stars, you get the idea.
  • Get plenty of rest at regular intervals
  • Hydrate well and often with good quality
  • 20 min Gentle movement necessary during the day – yoga, qi-gong or pleasant walk in the park (not a 3 mile run)
  • Plan to do less
  • Practice self-care
  • Drink bone broth or mineral broth if vegetarian

 

The Kidneys…

  • are at the deepest level of all the organs (this operates on the levels of mind, body and spirit) 
  • control your entire blood pressure system
  • regulate Blood cell production
  • regulate all the water in the body (regulate the salinity of the water through the advanced filtration system)
  • are related to the element of water and are in affinity with the colors black and blue (where these colors to support the kidneys!)
  • In the Kidneys we find the will – including the will to live – the will to move forward and conversely, fear. Kidneys out of balance will be an experience of stuckness/frozen in fear. It is like the roots of the tree are all dried out.

Winter is the time of a deep going within, it is the season of the kidneys, so having loving intention in this direction can amplify our process.

If we can find the gifts, the silver linings and perhaps even find the joy in places and moments we can proceed in that direction, slowly, mindfully and heal. 

 

Homemade Bone Broth

Homemade Bone Broth

 

Homemade Bone Broth is deeply nourishing to the body.

It supports gut health, skin hair and nails and nourishes our deepest organs- the kidneys.  This is food as medicine. Bone broth is a fantastic source of many gut-healing, anti-inflammatory agents. Healthy, pasture-raised and grass-fed animal bones and joints are rich in amino acids, gelatin, collagen.  These components support the health of your bones, joints, and skin.

Collagen is an essential building block for a healthy gut lining. With homemade bone broth you can help repair damage by ingesting collagen-rich foods and supplements such as bone broth and hydrolyzed collagen powder.

It is important to source healthy and humanely raised pastured and grass-fed animals – so that you getting the healthy benefits of this traditional food.

Here is the simple recipe for chicken bone broth we make at home. There are other bone broth recipes you can find with a simple search (lamb, beef  and fish).

Simple Homemade Bone Broth (Chicken)

  • 1 chicken back
  • 6 -12 or more chicken feet (this is an important ingredient as this is where much of the dense gelatin resides)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 14 Cups of clean spring water (chlorine and fluoride free)
  • 3 TBS of Himalayan salt or Celtic Sea salt
  • 1 TBS of raw Apple cider Vinegar

Directions:

  1. Add all ingredients to Instant Pot or crock pot
  2. Add in apple Cider Vinegar – let sit for 1 hr – this helps leach all the nutrients and minerals out of the bones
  • Instant Pot: Set on High Soup 120 mins
  • Crock pot: Cook low and slow for 18-24 hours
  • Stock Pot – stove top: Turn to a simmer and put lid on pot and let it simmer for 18-24 hours

When done pour through a tea strainer over the mug or bowl. Add other ingredients as desired. We like the broth just this way. But you can add other ingredients before or after cooking.

  • Garlic (crush and let sit for 15 min before adding in or cooking with it as it activates the healing benefits)
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon
  • Celery, onion, carrot, etc.
  • We will also use it to make soup. We like to sauté the holy trinity of onions, garlic and celery – add diced carrots, beets and broth.

With the instant pot  – we keep the broth going on warm for a few days and serve hot from there straining as we serve. 

Process from the stove top or out of the Instant Pot or Crock pot:

  1. Turn off and let cool for 30 min to hour, then lift out all the bones/veggies and set aside
  2. Pour the broth through strainer to filter out all the grit into another bowl
  3. Cover and refrigerate.  The fat will separate and rise to the top.
  4. Remove from fridge and  you may now skim off the fat with a large metal spoon (some leave the fat on). The broth should be jelly-like which is WHAT YOU WANT – it means it is loaded with collagen and gelatin.
  5. You can now put a wide mouth funnel over a few mason jars.
  6. Put up to 3 days worth in the fridge and freeze the rest. It only stays fresh for about 3-4 days. You can freeze it for up to one year. PLEASE NOTE: Only fill mason jars for the freezer 75% when frozen  the broth will expand and the jar will crack.

 

Benefits of Homemade Bone Broth

  • Gut Health: The dense gelatin in bone broth is a vital nutrient for healing the gut
  • Aids Digestion
  • Improves joint health.
  • Strengthens your immune system
  • Anti-Inflammatory
  • Anti-aging
  • Makes your hair, nails, and skin glow
  • Can improve sleep

 

Simple Homemade Bone Broth (Chicken)

Keyword Adrenal Fatigue, Gut health, Health, immune, Kidneys, Stress

Ingredients

  • 1 Vhicken back
  • 6 -12 Or more chicken feet (this is an important ingredient as this is where much of the dense gelatin resides)
  • 1 Bay leaf
  • 14 Cups Clean spring water (chlorine and fluoride free)
  • 3 TBS or less of Himalayan salt or Celtic Sea salt
  • 1 TBS Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Instructions

  1. Add all ingredients to Instant Pot, crock pot, or stop top

  2. Add in apple Cider Vinegar - let sit for 1 hr - this helps leach all the nutrients and minerals out of the bones

Cooking Method

  1. Instant Pot: Set on high/ seal - Soup for 120 mins

    Crock pot: Cook low and slow for 18-24 hours 

    Stock Pot - stove top: Turn to a simmer and put lid on pot and let it simmer for 18-24 hours 

Recipe Notes

When done pour through a tea strainer over the mug or bowl. Add other ingredients as desired. We like the broth just this way. But you can add other ingredients before or after cooking. 

  • Garlic (crush and let sit for 15 min before adding in or cooking with it as it activates the healing benefits)
  • Fresh Ginger
  • Squeeze of fresh lemon
  • Celery, onion, carrot, etc. 
  • We will also use it to make soup. We like to sauté the holy trinity of onions, garlic and celery - add diced carrots, beets and broth.

With the instant pot  - we keep the broth going on warm for a few days and serve hot from there straining as we serve. 

Process from the stove top or out of the Instant Pot or Crock pot:

  1. Turn off and let cool for 30 min to hour, then lift out all the bones/veggies and set aside
  2. Pour the broth through strainer to filter out all the grit into another bowl
  3. Cover and refrigerate.  The fat will separate and rise to the top. 
  4. Remove from fridge and  you may now skim off the fat with a large metal spoon (some leave the fat on). The broth should be jelly-like which is WHAT YOU WANT - it means it is loaded with collagen and gelatin.
  5. You can now put a wide mouth funnel over a few mason jars.
  6. Put up to 3 days worth in the fridge and freeze the rest. It only stays fresh for about 3-4 days. You can freeze it for up to one year. PLEASE NOTE: Only fill mason jars for the freezer 75% when frozen  the broth will expand and the jar will crack.