What a quick and easy way to show your body you care and it can relax into trusting you to honor its needs. 💜
Yeah, yeah, drink water, I know. You've heard it before. But check the studied effects of even MILD dehydration HERE
✨First challenge below!✨
The things we know should do, and maybe don't, can be our greatest steps to well-being!
Day One Challenge:
How do you touch yourself?
Is it rush, rush, clothes on, face washed, put on moisturizer, quick orgasm?
One way to help the body and mind truly relax and feel restored is mindful self touch.
Pay attention while simply resting your hands on your body/sweeping fingers over your skin/bracing a part of the body. And consider the skin under your fingers, slow down and be attentive to what feels good, not good, and be in the moment when you touch your skin. The focus is less on thinking about how it feels and more about FEELING it feels.
Don't feel anything?
That's totally okay.
Sometimes our body or mind feels numb to things and wants to know it's safe to feel. This kind of touch can become a frequent practice and done in as little as a minute to help sensitize the mind and body to safe and nutritious touch.
✨ It helps you feel better in your body and your body safer with you,
✨ It can improve your mood.
✨ It can make sex and sensuality more pleasurable! (whether alone or with partners)
✨ It grows our ability to listen to and trust our body.
But don't trust me, give it a try for yourself!
I like to do this while I wash my face. What suggestions do you have? Have any fears about doing it? Did it and want to share your experience? Let us know in the comments below!
If you are interested in reading about the science of touch, this link will take you there.
Best of health!
Join me on Saturday 5/4!
Am I normal?
Haven't we all questioned if our bodies are "normal" and healthy? Or maybe something doesn't feel right and you want to know how it is for other womxn?
This isn't just another biology class! While connecting to other womxn, you'll learn:
practical steps to getting a healthy cycle
how to listen to your body
how to begin work WITH your body to get to feeling right again
And we'll be trying a few things, too!
We'll touch on hormones, acne/skin, mood, pain, energy, pms symptoms, spotting, weight, perimenopause (pre-menopause), ovulation, depression, and sex/libido
We will lightly touch on yeast infections and UTIs, but that will be the focus of the next class.
Last class (Know Your Body, Love Your Body), we went overtime because women had so knowledge much to share! This time, I'll be careful to respect time constraints of those who attend and there will lots of time at the end for questions and sharing.
Cost: 100 NT
Location: 25-9 Daye Road, Taichung
There will be wine for purchase from Salut and free tea from Health Bestowing Hands.
*sign up info*
Please add your name to the sign up list pinned to the top of the event page ( Am I Normal? event page, click here ) or message HBH’s Facebook page (HBH Fb page here) to save your spot. The class is limited to 12 womxn. Confirming on this list guarantees you a place! ♥
If there is enough interest, I will open up another class
See you on the 4th!
Vicky, Herbalist at Health Bestowing Hands
Heartburn. GERD. Acid reflux. Already feeling the fire?
In this first post of the Informed Consent Series, we’ll cover
🔴 the top vitamin and mineral deficiencies associated with taking over the counter (OTC) and prescription heartburn drugs
🔴 why these deficiencies REALLY matter to your health
🔴 how to lower your risks while taking these drugs
In a post coming soon, I'll let you in on a little known fact that might end your heartburn!
The National Institute of Kidney and Digestive Diseases reports that 60 million Americans have heartburn at least once a month and 25 million have symptoms DAILY. It's so common today that people often feel heartburn is just a part of modern life, especially as we age. The National Institute of Kidney and Digestive Diseases reports that 60 million Americans have heartburn at least once a month and 25 million have symptoms DAILY. Millions are using over the counter (OTC) and prescription antacids, H2 blockers, and proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) for heartburn.
Is that you or someone you care about?
The three most popular kinds of acid reducing drugs and their related nutrient deficiencies:
The Quick Fixes:
Rolaids, Tums, Alka-seltzer, baking soda, Milk of Magnesia, Gaviscon, Maalox, Mylanta
B7 (biotin), B9 (folate), calcium, iron, chromium, iron, CoQ10, B12, magnesium, beneficial bacteria/probiotics
Too much of a quick fix? You may have
▪️ muscle twitches (due to the effects of levels of calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus)
Common complaints! A person might then reach for another drug to ease these NEW symptoms. Antacids used for a long period can create acid rebound where even more acid than before splashes into the esophagus after consuming foods or drinks. Great, right?
Cimetidine/Tagamet, Famotidine/Pepcid, Nizatidine/Axid, Ranitidine/Zantac/Taladine
B7 (biotin), B9 (folate), calcium, iron, chromium, iron, CoQ10, B12, magnesium, melatonin, beneficial bacteria/probiotics
PPIs/Proton pump inhibitors (both OTC and prescription)
Esomeprazole/Nexium, Lansoprazole/Prevacid, Omeprazole/ Prilosec/Zegerid, Pantoprazole/Protonix, Rabeprazole/Aciphex
vitamin A, B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B6 (pyridoxine), B7 (biotin), B9 (folate), B12, C, D, calcium, chromium, iron, magnesium, selenium, melatonin, CoQ10, beneficial bacteria/probiotics
Read on to learn the three biggest risks of these deficiencies (and near deficiencies).
1. Depression/mood disorders/anxiety/cognitive decline:
It’s well documented that being low in the B vitamins (especially B 12, B 2, B 6, and B 12), magnesium, and disruptions in gut bacteria can lead to these changes:
▪️ low energy
▪️ feeling more affected by stress
▪️ tingling sensations
▪️ heart palpitations
▪️ confused thinking
2. Disrupted sleep and inner/circadian clock:
A night of poor sleep is bad enough, but when it becomes every night nothing feels right anymore! Notice melatonin in the lists above?
Melatonin helps regulate our inner clocks, telling us when it’s time to sleep and wake up. We ALSO have a lot of melatonin in our guts along with neurotransmitters like the famous serotonin! Without enough melatonin at the right times a person may notice these symptoms:
▪️ other hormones are unbalanced
▪️ sleep is a mess
▪️ body is holding on to fat more easily
▪️ acceleration in aging
▪️ depressive disorders
▪️ worsening of IBS and other digestive disorders
Going to doctors with very real concerns like these often means getting a prescription for depression, anxiety, or a sleeping pill.
Or told it’s all in their heads.
3. Gas, bloating, bacterial infections, and malabsorption:
Stomach acid breaks down out food to give us nutrients and it protects us from foreign bacteria in food and drink.
Acid reducing drugs lower stomach acid. This means we absorb fewer necessary nutrients from our food (malabsorption). We’re also less protected from bacteria like H. pylori, leading to digestive system infections and disrupted gut bacteria. Every day, we learn more about how important gut bacteria balance is!
Here are a few risks for lowering stomach acid (though there are far too many to list here):
▪️ gas and bloating
▪️ food sensitivities
▪️ leaky gut
▪️ infections of the digestive tract
▪️ absorption and production of key nutrients
▪️ auto-immune disorders
▪️ foggy thinking
▪️ low energy
▪️ poor mood, anxiety, and depression
▪️ increased allergies
In a follow up post you’ll learn~
why the symptoms of heartburn, GERD, and acid reflux are often actually caused by TOO LITTLE stomach acid- even though it doesn’t feel like it. I’ll also be telling you how to check!
So what can we do?
1) Knowledge is powerful! Eat foods high in these nutrients. In some cases you might choose to supplement.
2) Follow the instructions on the labels! OTCs like Tums and Alka-seltzer are meant for occasional acid symptoms. Even over the counter PPIs like Prilosec and Prevacid are only to be used for fourteen days or less.
Why 14 days? Drug companies know that after fourteen days these drugs are REALLY difficult to stop because used longer, they can trigger even more painful acid rebound symptoms that need more drugs to stop. Long term suppressing of heartburn can do a lot of damage to the body because the heartburn is telling you something is wrong. PPIs were not designed to be used long term though now they frequently are. Partially because people don’t make necessary changes and partially because rebound symptoms when stopping are so awful.
Check out my follow up post coming soon where I’ll introduce effective alternatives for heartburn, acid reflux, and GERD!
Let me know in the comments on Facebook or below this blog post if there is an OTC (over the counter) or prescription drug you'd like to see in the Informed Consent Series!
Fortify Your Life, Dr. Tieraona Low Dog, M.D.
DeVault, K. R., & Castell, D. O. (2005, January). Updated guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of gastroesophageal reflux disease. American Journal of Gastroenterology, 100(1), s190-200
A Mind of Your Own, Kelly Brogan,
Proton Pump Inhibitors: Review of Emerging Concerns - Mayo Clinic Proceeding
To some, holy basil (tulsi) seems like a paradoxical plant when used in the body. It's considered powerful and subtle. Herbalism is full of this kind of plant! Working with herbs takes a shift in thinking from the standard symptom-focused medicine of the West to one that emphasizes plants, food, and practices that can work with the body to enhance natural healing and vitality.
Original quote from https://fxmedicine.com.au/content/holy-basil-general-stress
In Taiwan and especially here in Taichung, air pollution is getting worse before it gets better. We can help our bodies protect against pollution and heal from it better. Reishi is just one of the simple ways to do that. Especially when one is looking to strengthen the immune system and/or calm the nerves!
See reishi here at HBH-> Reishi capsules
Unabridged quote below and found here: www.kivasenchantments.com/smoke
This piece on red clover infusions (long steeped teas) is short and neat. If you are looking to soothe the body and gently stimulate detox and elimination, red clover is super reliable! I have seen it work for eczema as well.
See the original post here -> www.ascensionkitchen.com/red-clover-infusion-for-psoriasis-and-skin-conditions
Only my hubby-to-be would ever agree to rolling out of bed (on his holiday) at the crack of dawn, to wander down to my secret spot, mason jar in hand, to forage and collect herbs for a medicine-making project of mine. Aww.
We must have looked such a site. Me lying in the grass taking pictures of red clover with the sun rising behind it, and him crouching down amongst the weeds carefully choosing the bestest clover heads for my infusion.
So whilst this is perhaps the simplest of remedies I’m sharing with you today – it’s actually a pretty special one.
RED CLOVER (TRIFOLIUM PRATENSE) INFUSION FOR PSORIASIS AND SKIN CONDITIONS
This pretty little flower is a common weed you may have seen growing in un mown grass and in the green patches on sidewalks around the city. It’s actually a very special herbal remedy for women and for skin.
One of its actions is as a depurative (also referred to as an alterative). This is actually a very old, traditional Herbal Medicine term, and refers to the plant’s ability to detoxify and assist in elimination – reducing the accumulation of metabolic wastes.
By getting the blood flowing and aiding elimination, you are able to clear skin conditions by moving the waste that builds up underneath the skin’s surface. This is what makes it such a beautiful remedy for chronic skin disorders such as psoriasis.
Red clover flowers differ from the regular, pale brown clover, though both are a favourite with the bees and make beautiful honey. When you forage for them, it is best to choose an area that hasn’t been sprayed. A tradition I like to follow, is to give a small offering to the plant and ask permission before harvesting, only taking what you need and no more. In the Native American Indian tradition, they would give a little tobacco – which is a sharing plant – such a sweet offering. The late spring and summer months are the perfect time to pick them.
In addition to purifying the blood, red clover was traditionally used to clear the respiratory system of mucous (due to its lymphatic and expectorant actions). It is also traditionally used for the treatment of menopause and hot flushes, and as an anti-cancer medicine (again, for its ability to detoxify and aid elimination),.
Red clover is a great source of vitamins and minerals, an extremely nourishing plant.
The recipes below use fresh red clover flowers – but you should be able to find the dried flowers at a natural foods store, or from a herbal supplier such as Astral Herbs (Australia).
RED CLOVER TEA
- Freshly harvested red clover flower heads
- To make a tea, pour boiling water over a couple of teaspoons of red clover flowers and steep for 10-15 minutes.
- Drink the tea three times a day.
- If you have any flowers leftover after making your tea, add them to a salad.
RED CLOVER INFUSION
This recipe has a much longer steeping time than a regular tea (which many herbalists would actually refer to as an infusion) – as taught to me by my Herbal teacher on my Shamanic Herbal Apprenticeship.
- 1 litre glass jar with a lid
- Enough red clover heads to fill the jar
- Fill a glass jar with red clover heads, right to the very top.
- Cover it entirely with boiling water and screw the lid on.
- Let steep for eight hours, or overnight.
- Strain out the plant material, give it back to the earth for compost and drink the tea.
- The benefit of preparing a long infusion this way is that it enables all the precious minerals to be extracted.
I'm drinking some tulsi now. I just feeeeeeels good and I'm not surprised! 5,000 years of use in Ayurveda backs up what science is starting to discover. Physician Aviva Romm, MD, reminds,
🌱"(Tulsi) calms the mind and spirit, and promotes longevity... It is used to improve energy and relieve fatigue, for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant actions, and to lower blood glucose, triglycerides, and cholesterol. Holy basil may also protect the liver, helps with nicotine withdrawal, and elevates the mood, especially providing relief from mild depression. "
What was the last thing you spent 75 NT on? Did it improve both your health and the earth's?
If there is one thing Mother Earth could do without, it is chem-filled cleaning products that are on the surfaces of nearly all homes and washed into every waterway.
If you're thinking that what you currently use can't be ALL that bad, how would you feel about a drop of it on your tongue? The tongue is a highly absorbent surface and so is your skin. Meaning, what is used in your space to wash floors, showers, counters, forks, and chopsticks are all similarly important.
I present to you the 75 NT option that is safe on your tongue.
Castile comes in 2 main forms. Liquid and solid bars like you see above. They both lather generously and come unscented or with a fragrance (ideally from an essential oil or other chem-free source). But what is it actually made from? The truest castiles are made with olive oil as it was originally made in Castile, Spain. Today, it can be made with several plant based oils like coconut. Added to these is an alkali, usually sodium or potassium hydroxide, and voila! A earth-friendly soap that has been around for ages!
Castile is fabulously versatile. Used successfully for cleaning nearly every nook and surface in your house, it's also wonderful for use on your face and body. How many of your current cleaning products can you say that for? While the liquid is the most user friendly for cleaning around the house, the bars can be easily converted to liquid for a fraction of the price! Here's how:
It really is that easy. Save money, be a gentler child of Mother Earth, and reduce the products you currently have. It cleans floors, tables, counters, toilets and sinks, and many other places around your home (but for dishes, try this ). If you are looking to add some anti bacterial action to your castile, simply add tea tree, eucalyptus, or lemon essential oils~ just a few drops will do! Use it in your shower and for hand washing, confident that what you are putting on your absorbent skin and washing down the drain is safe.
If DIY isn't your jam, then liquid castile soap is just a click away! Dr. Woods brand is a responsible company and has very affordable 32 oz/946ml peppermint and almond versions. Dr. Woods brand also makes liquid castile with additional fair trade shea butter and tea tree, peppermint, or almond. Shea butter makes it even better for dry and/or sensitive skin and ideal for shaving.
Mila Earth is based in Taipei, and lovingly makes liquid castile packaged in beautiful glass bottles, as well as effective castile based laundry detergents .
How many ways can you think of to incorporate this versatile and biodegradable solution into your life? Your body and the earth will be grateful for every one.
For more information on buying the highly economical Kirk's Castile Fragrance Free Bars, click here and see their rating by the EWG here.
For more tips, products,and to order, see www.healthbestowinghands.com or our Facebook page.
Try to imagine what a sexy herb would look like.
Is it shiny? A vivid primary colour? Voluptuous and rippled and sinewy all over? Burdock (牛蒡根) is likely the opposite of what you might be envisioning. Dirt brown, straight as an arrow, and even displaying hairs in surprising places, burdock can only brag about price and size. At about 25 NT and averaging 2-3 feet long, at first glance these are all that this root has going for it.
But like a great lover, burdock is attentive to your body. It makes you feel good. It moves slowly until the two of you are working in perfect synchrony and by then what burdock looks like ceases to matter because now you love it right back.
How has this Cyrano escaped your notice all this time? Or perhaps you already cook it at home or eat it as gobo in your favourite Japanese restaurant and just had no idea what a dynamo it is. There isn't much that burdock can't transform. Whether you cook it or make a simple decoction (more on that later), this herb can assist in all of these and more.
So what are the best moves in this root's repertoire? Let's start with the basics. It is generous in vitamins and minerals like B1, B2, B3, B6, C, magnesium, iron, zinc,and potassium. Burdock has a tap root which means that is pulls nutrients from deep down in the soil where other plants can't reach. But how do you know if you are using all the nutrients you consume? If you are you gassy, fatigued, stressed, get a puffy belly after meals, or are less consistent in the bathroom than you used to be, burdock loves you there, too. It's full of fiber to give your digestive system a good cleaning as well as plentiful with a special polysaccharide called inulin. Inulin invites good bacteria and keeps them happy enough to stay, so you'll soak up more from your food, generate more nutrients, feed your immune system, maintain balanced blood sugar levels, and can be back to your old self in the bathroom.
Historically, herbalists called burdock a blood purifier. Today we know it gives your liver special attention. Burdock doesn't force the body to cleanse, it supports the liver, kidneys, and the rest of the body to operate at peak health. If something needs to go, burdock helps it along via the liver and kidneys. If a system needs building, this herb will support your body that way. A great example of this is hormones! While hormones can be your best ally, the false and hazardous ones we pick up are not. These are picked up from plastics, the meat we eat, and artificial fragrances around us. And on us! Laundry detergents, fabric softeners, and colognes/perfumes are some of the worst offenders. Additionally, if we are stressing around in cortisol streams and/or not eliminating our bowels well, neither our natural nor the accumulated hormones (and hormone impostors) can move out of our bodies. Instead they recirculate inside us disrupting the entire mind-body. Burdock is rich in regular-making fiber while also supporting the liver in metabolizing hormones and clearing out what doesn't belong. Your skin will thank you for all of this by clearing up. Your heart gets a turn at burdock's loving attention, too, with a good dose of potassium which encourages a healthy heart rate and blood pressure. By now, having reached your heart, your body is smitten with this homely root.
Burdock isn't the one you notice from across the room. It's the one that you take a while to warm up to and then one day you find that you can't imagine having been without it. The longer you and burdock stick together the better you’ll feel and what started out as a 25 NT market fling has turned into a true partnership in health.
Like most herbs, burdock pairs especially well with one or many herbs to nourish and restore more deeply. The synergy of burdock root and dandelion is highly prized. If you want to let burdock and dandelion work in tandem on you, you can find burdock's best ally, dandelion root, in 8 oz bags at:
For a more in depth look at burdock root (), see these two posts by these two respected herbalists:
Jim McDonald www.herbcraft.org/burdock.html
Richard Whelan www.rjwhelan.co.nz/herbs%20A-Z/burdock.html
How to consume your newly acquired burdock root:
A drinkable decoction