Much Ado about Moringa

Known by scientists as the world’s most useful tree, Moringa (Moringa oleifera) is finally getting the attention it deserves.

It holds the world record for the most antioxidants of any edible plant. The Moringa tree grows in India and Africa and has been used for thousands of years for its healing properties. It was valued by the Romans, Egyptians and Greeks for its medicinal impact for a range of ailments. The leaves are dried and then crushed into a powder, which then can be used in smoothies, soups, salads, tea and stews.

This is why I love it:

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Self-Care Isn’t a Luxury, It’s a Necessity

The phrase self-care describes what people might do in order to achieve optimal physical, mental and spiritual health. Google reports that searches for “self-care” are twenty-five percent higher now than a year ago. And there’s a reason for that.

More and more people are beginning to recognize that performing everyday healthy rituals — getting acupuncture, doing yoga, taking a bath, meditating, or even having a skin care routine — can help keep your body and mind balanced and energized. And self-care is an important part of starting to make health your hobby.

Finding moments of joy and fulfillment to care for yourself doesn’t have to be complicated. Make a list of things you can do to care for yourself, and you’ll realize that many — if not all — of the things on your list are easily within arm’s reach. All you need to do is pick one, add it to your schedule and you’re on your way to feeling and being healthier, happier and more self-fulfilled.

An act of self-care benefits your mental health, too. Be kind to yourself and make it a priority. Research shows that taking time to take care of yourself eases stress when you are feeling overwhelmed. Self-care is crucial for finding solace in these stressful times.

And there’s another benefit: when you take the time to care for yourself, you are then in a better position to help take care of the other people in your life.

Herbal Tea Time

Herbal teas make for delicious, relaxing, no calorie drinks that genuinely satisfy you. People have been drinking tea for centuries for its great taste and health benefits.

Plus, teas have legit medicinal properties, too. They are especially known for their powerful antioxidant qualities. Herbal teas are derived from different parts of the plant, like flowers, roots, seeds and bark.

I drink four or five cups a day. Hot or iced, herbal teas add so much to your day. Also, teas have no fat, carbs or additives (pay up for organic if you can). Also, tea is excellent for hydration.

Anyway, here are some of my favorites:

  • Chamomile Tea: relaxes the body and mind

  • Ginger Tea: improves immune system and helps with digestive issues and nausea

  • Green Tea: high in antioxidants and can fight cancer, burn fat and improve cholesterol levels

  • Pu’erh Tea: considered a black tea. One study shows that animals given Pu-erh had less weight gain and reduced LDL cholesterol

  • Spring Dragon Longevity Tea: This is a blend of six chopped herbs and is both invigorating and calming. It helps optimize the body’s systemic immune response. Check it out here.

And there’s credible science that supports that herbal teas can have some medicinal qualities. Check out this National Institutes of Health study here.

The Skinny on Your Skin

A new buzz word making the rounds is “collagen” — the main structural protein found in skin and other connective tissues. It is the most abundant protein in the human body.

Collagen is found in bones, muscles, skin and tendons.  It is the substance that holds the body together. As we age, the body produces less, and the structural integrity of the skin declines.  Wrinkles form and joint cartilage weakens.

A healthful diet can help the body produce collagen, regardless of age. Nutrients that may support collagen formation include:

  • Proline: In egg whites, meat, cheese, soy and cabbage
  • Anthocyanidins: In blackberries, blueberries, cherries and raspberries
  • Vitamin C: In oranges, strawberries, peppers and broccoli
  • Copper: In shellfish, nuts, red meat, and some drinking water
  • Vitamin A: In animal-derived foods and in carrots and sweet potatoes

Another helpful collagen booster is bone broth. It heals your gut lining and reduces inflammation.

If you are like me and want an extra dose of collagen to feel and look better, I have found good results with Dr. Frank Lipman’s Collagen Refresher, The Fountain’s Phyto-Collagen Molecule, and Vital Proteins’ Collagen Powder.

My nails seem stronger, my cuticles are smoother and my face looks a little fuller. My joints feel better and I can work out longer without feeling sore. I also noticed that my dry eyes stopped bothering me.

The most important thing to know about collagen is that you need to protect the collagen you have. You can do so with sunscreen and stimulate the collagen as much as you can with topical retinoid, growth factors and peptides.

As my facialist says ”Beautiful skin is a matter of choice, not chance.”

The Challenge of Silencing the Never-Quiet Mind

According to Psychology Today, “Meditation is the practice of turning your attention to a single point of reference. It can involve focusing on the breath, on bodily sensations, or on a word or phrase known as a mantra. In other words, meditation means turning your attention away from distracting thoughts and focusing on the present moment. Meditating is deceptively simple.”

And when it comes to developing a wellness state-of-mind, meditation gives us the clarity required to consistently make the right self-care choices. I’ve been doing TM (transcendental meditation) for over 40 years and can’t imagine my life without it).

From an article published on healthline.com, and written by Matthew Thorpe MD, PhD, here are 12 invaluable science-based benefits of meditating.

Meditation:

  1. Reduces Stress
  2. Controls Anxiety
  3. Promotes Emotional Health
  4. Enhances Self-Awareness
  5. Lengthens Attention Span
  6. May Reduce Age-Related Memory Loss
  7. Can Generate Kindness
  8. May Help Fight Addictions
  9. Improves Sleep
  10. Helps Control Pain
  11. Can Decrease Blood Pressure
  12. You Can Meditate Anywhere

Click here for the full article by Dr. Thorpe on healthline.com