Simple Steps to Detoxing

I just want to highlight a few small steps and additions you can make into your life, that are simple, easy, but truly make the world of a difference.

The important thing to remember: Do not get so caught up in eliminating this or that, but focus on adding healthy meals, practices and thoughts into your life! The moment you start adding, your live will abundantly change for the better, and everything else will fall into place. It is all about balance, and treating your body with gentle love and care. Therefore do not stress over the things that you are forgoing, focus on the good, and with time the perfect balance will be found for you and your body

My simple detox steps:

Dry Brushing

Do this before you shower or bath in the morning. It helps drain and stimulate the lymphatic system. It also improves skin texture and appearance (Hello summer and short shorts :) )

Coconut Oil

Use this after your shower/bath or anytime as a moisturizer. Hands down, best moisturizer you will ever use! Val wrote an amazing post on its benefits and uses. All natural, multi-purpose, life-saver.

Sleep

Sometimes this is both over-looked and under-rated, but in my opinion the most important! As if you do everything else, but are getting a few hours sleep a night, everything else will be negated. So as you begin this week, set the intention of catching a few more zzzzzzzz's than normal.

Oil

Lavender, peppermint, ylang-ylang, moroccan rose... any essential oil. Use them to relax, fall asleep, as scents, in the bath.

Water

Drink, drink, drink as much as you can. H2O will naturally detox your body by flushing out all the unnecessary toxins and dead cells. Have a hot cup in the morning with fresh lemon, and carry around a reusable water bottle throughout the day. Heaps of fluids is key, for all of your bodies functions. Dehydration can produce some nasty side affects.

 

Green Juice (or any veggie green)

Try to drink a green juice everyday! Give yourself this challenge. If this is unattainable, then plan to eat as many green vegetables in a day as you can. Try different varieties of kale, lettuce, broccoli, green beans... the choices are endless. Green = the best.

Tea

If ever in doubt, or if you are feeling a bit off, simply sit down with a cup of tea and try to relax and let the days worries melt past you. There a million teas to try so you will never get bored, and with sweeter teas available, they will help curb people who have major sweet tooth's :) My favorites are: Egyptian mint green tea (Gypsy), Kava Stress Relief  (Yogi), Rooibos, peppermint

Quiet time

Pray, meditate, take 10-15 minutes of complete solitude. Sometimes we just need the time to just be. No distractions of any kind. Allow yourself these moments, to be thankful, regain energy, or just to be still.

Get moving

Walk, run, jump, play... just get your body moving and your heart rate up and SWEAT!

I hope this helps a little!

Just remember to be gentle with yourself, listen to your body and know that any and every healthy choice that you make is a big deal. Don't get too caught up with the details, just start adding more of this into your life, and you will notice instant changes.


Waste Land

One of the most awe-inspiring documentaries of the year 2010, "Waste Land" captures an artist's quest to find a balance between art and the transformative power of giving.

Vik Muniz, a man of vision and extraoridinary talent sets out to visit the world's largest dumpster, Jardim Gramacho in Brazil, to capture the essence and life of its working people, the "catadores" ("self-designated pickers of recyclable materials").

In this moving and thought-provoking documentary, Muniz brings us up-close and personal with some of Gramacho's most intriguing characters. Not fully knowing what to do, Muniz ends up taking beautiful photographs of the Catadores, and together with their help, turns them into stunning, larger than life replicas made out of garbage.

A beautiful alchemy takes place between the people of Gramacho, the artist Vik Muniz, and the vision they all help bring to life.

Muniz's final act is to auction the works of art and donate all the proceeds to the people who call Gramacho home.

Waste Land has won numerous awards including the "Human Rights Film Award" by Amnesty International and The Sundance Film Award of 2010. A must see!

YouTube - Official Trailer

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sNlwh8vT2NU[/youtube]

 


Marius and Lonneke Marius and Lonneke for Kuyichi by Pablo Delfos

Wear JEANS!

Some time ago the London Science Museum launched some fun-statistics about clothing and their actual worth.

The statistics were published in a report to support its Trash Fashion: Designing Out Waste exhibition. 3000 women were asked everything about their wardrobes and because of this scientists have worked out that the cost-per-wear ratio (dividing the cost of clothing by the number of times it is worn) is lower for jeans than any other item, apart from basic underwear and T-shirts.

According to their calculations, the typical pair, which cost around £40, is worn about 428 times, which would be just 9p a time.

To compare: a pair of leggings, which cost about £10, will be worn about 68 times, which would be 15p per wear.

A t-shirt/top would be 8p per 218 wears

And coats and jackets would be 10p per 575 wears

Well, I think we just got ourselves the best excuse to buy jeans from now on!

Only if you promise to wear them for a long time! But they get better with age and if you buy them from a sustainable brand like Kuyichi, you can’t go wrong!

See below OYL contributors Marius & Lonneke in an old campaign for Kuyichi jeans in 2010.


Eating Your Water

With the temperatures heating up in New York City, it is vital to get the right amount of water in daily, as we consist of 60% H20 relative to our weight! So not only should we drink up, but we should also eat up!

I know it can be hard to get the recommended '8 glasses of water a day' for some people, especially if you are out and about, and simply lead an extremely busy lifestyle. I personally try to shoot for a good 10+ glasses, and for most approximately 2 litres a day is minimum! It might seem like a lot, but I do perspire quite a bit in the summer, and I sometimes think I am part camel, as I really do crave water! People laugh at me, but I have to admit it is my favorite beverage :)

But drinking water on its own is not the only source of hydration, as we are surrounded by nutrient dense, and hydrating fruits and vegetables which ultimately contribute to our daily intake of water (not fluids, as you can't count coffee, alcohol or caffeinated tea )

So here is a list of my favorite, water rich foods which you can incorporate into your diet, to contribute to your recommended 8 glasses a day minimum. They are perfect for the summer, and really will leave you nourished, healthy and most importantly hydrated!

- Lettuce (96% water)- all varities. My favorite is crunchy Romaine

-Cucumber (94%)- I have mine in salads, as a snack or I juice it into a green juice! So hydrating.

-Pears- I incorporate them into a juice, or cut them up in my fruit salads

-mushrooms- I can have a mushroom any which way, but prefer them steamed or lightly sauteed

-radishes- perfect in your summer salads, especially delicious with a citrus fruit (grapefruit, arugula, fennel, radish salad)

-watermelon (96%)- Of course:) My ideal summer fruit, and one that I simply cannot get enough of

-pumpkins (93%)- these gorgeous squashes have an extremely high water content, so roast them, make 'pumpkin fries' or simply steam them for a side dish

-broccoli and cauliflower (90%)- My two favorite vegetables. I do have to have them slightly steamed though, but can eat them in the bucket loads.

-spinach (92%)- I blend it into smoothies, juice it, or simply throw it into my salads. The more greens the better!

 

Not only are these foods alive and nutritious, but they taste amazing, consist of antioxidants which contribute to anti-aging, keep you full and contribute to your glow, all the while keeping you hydrating!

Remember to drink and eat your water!

 


Positivity: Always Be Positive

Being Positive.

As much as we try to be positive all.the.time, negativity and doubtful thoughts always manage to creep in. Especially during times of physical, mental and emotional weakness. During these times, I try to take small positive thoughts, and repeat them over and over, or in my mind remind myself of all of the things I am thankful for. Putting yourself and your situation in Perspective is vital.

Below I just wanted to provide the simplest of thoughts and ideas you can incorporate into your thoughts and brainwaves when those negative thoughts do creep in!

  • Realize it’s possible, instead of telling yourself why you can’t.
  • Become aware of your self-talk.
  • Squash negative thoughts like a bug.
  • Replace them with positive thoughts.
  • Love what you have already.
  • Be grateful for your life, your gifts, and other people.
  • Every day. (before you get out of bed give thanks for all the good things in your life & before bed too)
  • Focus on what you have, not on what you haven’t.
  • Don’t compare yourself to others.
  • But be inspired by them.
  • Accept criticism with grace.
  • But ignore the naysayers.
  • See bad things as a blessing in disguise.
  • See failure as a stepping stone to success.
  • Surround yourself by those who are positive.
  • Complain less, smile more.
  • Image that you’re already positive.
  • Then become that person in your next act.

In our lives we are constantly bombarded with stress, negative people, situations, and bad environments. BUT it is what we take away from it, and HOW we choose to react to the situation that is before us. That is a choice, therefore CHOOSE to be positive. There is no other way.

Jot down some of these simple positive thoughts, the next time you need to take a step back, and breathe.

Positivity is contagious. Smile and laugh when it doubt :)

A positive attitude may not solve all your problems, but it will annoy enough people to make it worth the effort.’ ~Herm Albright


Inspiration: the key to life?

We all find Inspiration in many ways. Whether it is from others, nature, travel... it surrounds us every single moment of our waking hours. But how to stay inspired?- sometimes I find that hard! I am inspired for a moment, but prolonging that inspiration takes some practice.

Always keep your eyes open, at all times, stay present whenever possible, and allow yourself to breathe in that inspiration.

Inspiration isn’t just a one-time thing. You’ll need it on a regular basis.
When you practice the above — keeping your eyes open, staying present, and breathing in inspiration — you get better at it. It becomes a skill ( it is important to look at it as a skill, as it is something you have to practice) you can use at any time, and you’ll use it often.

Some tips for keeping the inspiration coming:

  • Work with inspired people – one of the best ways to stay inspired is to work with creative, energetic, positive people.
  • Read daily – varied things, from blogs to magazines to books of all kinds.
  • Get outside – nature is one of the biggest inspirations, and you’ll miss it if you’re inside all day. What is better then fresh air in the early morning, a brisk evening walk at sundown... pure bliss to me.
  • Talk with new people – they’ll always expose you to new and interesting things, if you’re open to it.
  • Break out of your routine (this is huge for me as I can be a natural creature of habit!) – see things from a different perspective. Take a new route home. Go to a new restaurant. Visit someplace new in your area.
  • Find time for silence – it’s more inspiring than you might think. Unfortunately, not enough of us do it, and it can feel lonely at times (this is especially difficult for us living in NYC)
  • Exercise – or at least get moving. It helps the blood to circulate, and gets ideas moving around. Some of my most inspired thoughts come when I am walking around the city.
  • Don’t just feel inspired. Take this inspiration and use it, be moved, and do something. Channel that inspiration into creating something amazing.
  • Put that something out into the world, and in turn, you will inspire others.

For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.” ~Vincent van Gogh


My new discovery of Vitamin E oil!

We all know Vitamin E has a whole host of benefits and can be found in many foods that we eat everyday, like:

almonds, olives, spinach, blueberries, sunflower seeds, vegetable oils, tomatoes, wheat germ, avocado and the list goes on and on.

To begin with here are some important key facts to keep in mind:

Vitamin E is essential to life -- we cannot live without it.
How much vitamin E is enough? Prominent researchers believe that to perform at its best, the body needs more than the US Daily Value (DV) of 30 IU vitamin E daily. Average healthy females should have 400 IU a day, and average healthy males 600 IU a day.
Vitamin E should be taken at mealtime -- it is absorbed better when taken with meals rather than an on an empty stomach.
Inorganic Iron can DESTROY vitamin E. According to the Shute Institute, the two should be separated in the stomach by an 8-9 hour interval. However, organic iron, found in spinach, and other iron rich foods can be taken at the same time as vitamin E.

What I have recently discovered though is Vitamin E oil for my skin & nails. I had purchased some vitamin E capsules a few months ago, and after hearing the many great benefits of it, decided to put it to good use... but I wasn't going to take it in pill form (although for some individuals this is necessary, assess accordingly). What I have started to do is topically apply the oil to my skin and nails !!!

To begin with I started to put it on blemish marks as I had read about it through researching, and came up with vitamin E oil and its healing properties with scarring. Even though no proven research exists regarding this oil and its effects on scarring, I was willing to take the risk and see what would happen.

Low and behold it worked WONDERS ! Now I don't apply it all over like a lotion. I take a clean needle point, prick the capsule, squeeze out the oil on the back of my hand and carefully apply it to any blemish, or mark that has been left over from a breakout. I usually do this in the morning, and sometimes let it soak in for hours, and just leave it. Or I put it on for just a little bit and pat is slightly. The key is consistency (everyday) you could do it at night as well, but I swear marks heal 100 times faster, and the whole cycle is cut in half.

I don't want to guarantee anything as everyone's skin is different, but honestly it does not hurt to try ! See it as an experiment and proceed cautiously as with any new topical treatment.

Now what to do with the leftover oil on your hand? (as you only need a little bit), use it as a hand moisturizer! I swear to you my hands, nails cuticles, everything have never looked better. My nails have a glistening sheen (no need for nail polish/hardener), and my hands are SO soft. Oh and my nails grow now at a warp speed. It is actually quite crazy, and you truly have to see it with your own eyes to believe it.

So next time you are at the store, pick up some Vitamin E capsules! All natural, healthy, and so extremely versatile. Just make sure you do a patch test first, as everyone has different skin types and bodies.


The wonders of Peppermint Oil

Stressed? Have a headache? IBS? Nausea? Respiratory problems?

Peppermint oil has been cultivated since ancient times, having been found in Egyptian tombs as far back as 1000 BC. It can assist in nervous disorders, the respiratory tract, for muscle aches and pains and for skin problems.

I am a huge fan of lavender, rose hip, tea tree and ylang-ylang, but peppermint oil is my go to.

I discovered it when I moved to Cape Town, South Africa over five years ago. Those long haul flights left me fatigued, prone to headaches and parched in every way. After searching my local health food store, the beautiful woman working there suggested peppermint oil. Not only is it economical (I moved away from Cape Town a year and a half ago, and bought it way before then and I still have the same tiny bottle here with me in New York!) but it is an oil that is both miraculous and refreshing.

Now whenever I feel tired or am plagued by a headache (who likes popping pills? Not me!), I reach for my peppermint oil and slather it all over my temples (or where you experience pain), on the back of my ears, wrists and neck. When I fly I've actually shared my peppermint oil more then once, as my fellow passengers instantly smell the calming effects of the oil and we strike up a conversation about its wonders. I let them have a go, and they are forever a convert.

Here are a few more health benefits:

  • Indigestion: Often people put a few drops of peppermint oil in a glass of water and drink it after their meal due to its digestive properties. It also helps during motion sickness and upset stomach (Perfect for people who travel a lot, with all modes of transport)
  • Dental Care: Due to its antiseptic properties, it's useful for dental care. It removes bad breath and helps teeth and gums deal with germs (The reason why most toothpastes are minty)
  • Respiratory Problems: Menthol, which is present in abundance in peppermint oil, helps in clearing the respiratory tract.
  • Nausea and Headache: It is a good home remedy for nausea and headache. Applying peppermint oil in diluted form on the forehead is known to remove headache (My favorite way to use it!)
  • Stress: Like most other essential oils, peppermint is able to provide relief from stress, depression and mental exhaustion due to its refreshing nature
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome: The muscle relaxing property of peppermint oil has been found to ease irritable bowel syndrome.
  • Pain Relief
  • Immune System: Increases your immunity to diseases and therefore helps you in preventing a number of diseases.
  • Hair Care: Very useful for hair care as it gives a cooling effect to the head, and removes dandruff and lice. (Place a couple of drops in either your shampoo or conditioner)
  • Skin Care: It gives a cooling effect. Further it nourishes dull skin and improves oily skin. (Steam a sink of hot water and place 8-10 drops, place a towel over your head and allow the oil and steam to refresh your face/neck)

You can find it at Whole Foods or any local health food store for under $10, and trust me when I say it will last you for years!

The perfect way to refresh, enliven and de-stress.


Chamomile Tea and Rhino's

Chamomile is great for reducing stress and promoting relaxation but it comes as a surprise that it also has an effect on bad tempered rhinos: it keeps them from gatecrashing and harming both land and people. They don't exactly drink the tea, but the smell alone is enough to send them running! The pungent odor wards them off, and thus prevents them for causing any riot or damage.

"It works as barrier. Because of the peculiar smell of this unpalatable [herb]... it helps to stop wildlife from entering farmland. It works not only for rhinos but also other herbivores," said Suman Bhattarai, of the Partnership for Rhino Conservation, which helps Nepalis live side-by-side with the rhino.

So farmers resenting visits by dangerous heavy-weights have found an easy way to keep them off their grounds and protect their crops: simply plant Chamomile. Such a simple and harmless plant, yet such an effective and healthy way to keep these large animals from becoming more of a threat.

AND for humans Chamomile has many positive and wonderful benefits. I know a cup for me before bed, and I am instantly calmed and relaxed:

  • Insomnia and other sleep disorders
  • Anxiety and Panic Attacks
  • Muscle twitches
  • Wounds, burns, and scrapes
  • Skin conditions such as psoriasis, eczema, chickenpox, and diaper rash
  • Stomach problems such as menstrual cramps, stomach flu, and ulcers

Good for humans, but bad for Rhino's! I am just happy such a simple and beautiful plant can ward off Rhino's in a civil and humane way, all the way producing more delicious leaves to provide us with lovely teas and treatments.


Royal Family Recycles

Check out this cute photo of the Queen being GREEN and recycling her outfits!

I know I am a big advocate of wearing my clothes over and over, as I am not only minimalistic and simple when it comes to clothing, because it is good for the environment :) I do have my moments where I like to shop, but I have to need something or feel inspired to add to my wardrobe.

We don't just have to think about recycling, paper, plastic, etc... but must think about vintage shopping, re-wearing clothes, having a swap party with your friends, donating, re-purposing furniture, etc

Inspiration from the Royals for today: Recycle

love & light

Lisa

http://cocoperez.com/2011-10-25-queen-elizabeth-recycles-royal-wedding-wardrobe-in-australia


Almond Milk Latte

Hi guys!

Just a little something I wanted to share with you.

This is something I don't make everyday, but sometimes during the week and always on weekends.

A organic coffee with steamed almond milk. It makes the most delicious Almond Milk Latte.

All you need is:

Organic Coffee

A french Press: I use a Bodum

 

 

 

Organic Almond Milk

Milk Frother: I use this Aerolatte which is genius!

 

Simple. Easy. So yummy and healthy.

Enjoy!

Do you drink coffee? How often and what is your favorite?

love & light

Lisa

 


7 Billion People Today

Today our population has hit 7 Billion People.

9,512 people are added to our global population every hour.

WOW.

Imagine. We are but one of these 7 Billion people on this planet. Makes your daily troubles and worries seem minuscule, hey?

With already 1 billion of our population starving and in poverty, and literally without food, how are we going to feed our growing population, when in most cases our neighbors and fellow city dwellers are having trouble providing healthy food for their family? How do we solve this? Does a solution exist?

Personally there are many theories, I  believe that helping women in the developing world to finish their education, earn more money, and break the cycle of poverty that they were born into. To learn that  children is not the only and final way. And perhaps slow the blistering pace of global population growth. When I was living in Africa, these women, it is all they know, they aren't allowed to get an education, and if they do they still fall pregnant early because of family pressure and culture.

In any case, what are some ways we can live more sustainably and green. I know it sounds quite unmountable, when you think of these numbers, BUT we can't have that mentality, we CAN'T keep on living the way we do.I fear this will be our demise. People thinking that trash on the ground is ok, not recycling won't make a difference, leaving the water running or the lights on because we are too lazy, or eating foods that are continually causing illnesses, disease and our planet to disintegrate before our eyes! Look at Mother Nature (!) I don't think we need a bigger example... she is NOT happy, and neither is our planet.

We all have to take part in make our planet and world a better place, if we don't who will? Educate your family, friends and children. Live the life, and through that you won't only be making a difference but you will be encouraging others to follow suit.

We also need innovation and optimal use of our natural resources - through this we will hopefully be able to provide food for everyone, as it should be a basic right.

  • plant an herb garden
  • switch your lightbulbs to CFL's
  • create a homemade compost bin
  • switch appliances to energy efficient models
  • use reusable bags
  • buy a reusable water bottle
  • wash laundry in cold water
  • turn OFF the lights
  • ride your bike/walk/car pool
  • shop at the farmer's market
  • turn off and unplug appliances at night
  • pay bills online (Go paperless!)
  • stop junkmail
  • shop vintage
  • buy antique furnitures
  • support local restaurants that use food from the farmer's market
  • fix leaky faucets
  • make your own household cleaners
  • learn about other cultures and people around the world- expand your horizons
  • lower the temperature in your house
  • eat organic and drink organic coffee!
  • use cloth napkins
  • watch Food Inc, read 'Animal, Vegetable, Miracle'
  • donate clothes
  • 5 minutes showers

These are but a few tips that I wanted to share.

7 Billion people, but it all starts with 1.

LOVE, Lisa