Which Grains are Gluten-Free? [free printable checklist]

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-photos-green-rye-grain-image26195968

The thought switching over to a gluten-free diet can be very overwhelming. It seems like gluten is in everything. One of the biggest challenges is that most people aren’t clear which grains contain gluten and which ones do not. Once you have this distinction clear it is easier to get a handle on the whole concept of gluten-free eating.

Most people already know that wheat contains gluten but there are a number of other grains to watch out for as well. Most conventional packaged foods contain one ore more of the gluten containing grains. There are a lot of gluten-free alternatives available to replace your usual staples.

In general, whole grains are ideal. It’s important to remember even if a product is gluten-free it doens’t necessarily mean it is healthy. Label reading is just as important with gluten-free foods as it is with conventional foods.

I’ve put together a list of the most commonly know grains and separated them into two groups. The first list of grains all contain gluten so if you are trying to begin a gluten-free diet you should avoid these grains. The second list is a group of grains that are safe to eat on a gluten-free diet.

Continue Reading

How to Build Confidnce in Using Natural Remedies

http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-images-linden-tea-tilia-image23487009When I’m browsing Facebook or just talking to other parents, the subject of sick kids seems to come up often. Kids do get sick more then adults because their immune systems are still developing, and it’s good for them to get sick sometimes. The truth is most of the time, the little colds and viruses they get are not much to worry about. With basic things like rest, fluids, and comfort from Mom, they will get through it. Using natural remedies can help their little bodies fight off the illness and also alleviate some of the uncomfortable symptoms. I know, the idea of your child being sick isn’t a great feeling so it’s natural to want their aches and pains to go away immediately but using pain killers, decongestants, and other harsh medicines is not the answer.

Most of us did not grow up using homeopathy, herbs, or essential oils (If you did, that’s awesome) so it’s a fairly new concept. More commonly, you grew up using Doctor recommended over the counter items such as Tylenol, Sudafed, NyQuil, and Robitussin. Since you have experience with these drugs it seems more comfortable to use them with your own children. You know how they work and what the outcome will be if you take them. It’s familiar. The reality is, just because it’s familiar doesn’t mean is safe or healthy.

Natural remedies are a safe and gentle way to assist the body to heal itself. The issue is that most people are not familiar with them, don’t know how to take them, and are not sure about dosages. It’s common for someone to “try” a natural remedy and not give it enough time to see if it can really help before they give up and take the conventional drugs.  This happens because it’s unfamiliar and you just don’t trust it since you’ve never experienced it’s power.

Continue Reading

3 Perceived as “Healthy” Foods You Shouldn’t be Eating

three perceived as healthy foods you shouldn't be eatingThe interesting thing about nutrition is that there are many theories and diets that work wonders for some people but can also cause a complete disaster for others. Sometimes nutrition theories become popular due to some (weight loss) success stories and turn into fads that can last decades. The low-fat craze is the nutrition myth that sticks out most in my memory. Most people know now that low-fat is not necessarily a good thing. Many food products are a result of nutrition fads and popular theories and most of the time these food products really aren’t healthy. Food companies come up with some pretty convincing points in their marketing but most of them don’t make much sense in reality.

When I’m out and about in the world and I hear people say they trying to be “good” and eat healthy food, it kills me to see what they think is a “healthy” food. I see them suffer through eating some horrible food creation because they think it is good for them but most of the time it is a nutrition myth or a result of misinformation given through a (Monsanto) marketing campaign.

These are some foods I often hear people say they are eating when they are trying to be “good,” that shouldn’t be a part of anyone’s diet at all.

Continue Reading

6 Reasons to Drink Warm Lemon Water in the Morning

http://www.dreamstime.com/stock-images-lemon-tea-image7189174

Using common foods to maintain health and promote healing is one of my favorite topics. Lemons are high on the list of healing foods and most of us already have them in the house. Lemons have strong antibacterial, antiviral, and immune-boosting powers and also act as a digestive aid and liver cleanser. Lemons contain many substances, including citric acid, calcium, magnesium, vitamin C, bioflavonoids, pectin, and limonene that promote immunity and fight infection.

Drinking warm lemon water first thing in the  morning has some really potent health benefits that I want to share with you.

1. Kickstart Digestion

Lemon juice encourages healthy digestion by loosening toxins in your digestive tract and gets things moving. Drinking warm lemon water first thing in the morning gets your digestion system ready for the day.

2. Detoxify

Since lemon water activates the digestive system this also helps to detoxify the body. It helps flush out the toxins in your body by enhancing enzyme function, stimulating your liver. This is a gentle and simple way to detox everyday.

3. Boosts Immune System

Most of us know that Vitamin C is good for the immune system. Vitamin C works best when it’s taken in on an consistent basis. Lemons are high of vitamin C so starting a lemon water practice is a great way to get plenty of this antioxidant without a supplement. The level of vitamin C in your system is one of the first things to plummet when you’re stressed so replenishing your vitamin C every morning is always a good idea – in times of stress or anytime.

Warm lemon water is also an effective way to diminish viral infections and their subsequent sore throats. Since the vitamin C in the lemon juice is also boosting your immune system, you’ll simultaneously fight off the infection.

4. Unclog the Lymphatic System

Drinking warm lemon water can help to clear the lymphatic system. The lymphatic system has many functions such as detoxification and immune functions so keeping it clear is important for optimal health.

5. Balance PH

Keeping a balanced PH is important for good health. Many diets are based on alkalizing the body with lots of healthy vegetables. Lemon is a great way to help balance PH on a daily basis.

If you want to give your routine an added PH balancing effect, add 1 tsp. of apple cider vinegar to your lemon water.

6. Promotes Healthy (and Youthful) Skin

The antioxidants in lemon juice help to not only decrease blemishes, but wrinkles too. The detoxifying nature of lemons helps to carry toxins out the digestive system instead of it coming out the skin causing eruptions. Vitamin C is also effective as a topical application for scars and age spots so applying lemon topically may help.  The high vitamin C content in rosehip seed oil is why my Renewing Facial Serum is an effective and natural way to reduce scars and dark spots on the skin as well.

Here is how to prepare your lemon water:

Start with a cup of warm filtered water  not boiling hot water (side note: my favorite water filter is the Berkey, read more about it in this post). Generally, its best to avoid ice cold water since it can be a lot for your body to process. It takes a lot more energy to process ice cold water than it does warm water (or any food or beverage for that matter).

Always use fresh lemons, organic if possible, never bottled lemon juice. The best way to get the most juice out of your lemon with the least amount of effort is to use a lemon squeezer, I like this one. Squeeze 1/2 a lemon in your glass and drink it down first thing and wait about 15 minutes before eating breakfast. Be sure to always dilute lemon juice with water because lemon juice can be very hard on the enamel of your teeth.

Do you drink warm lemon water in the morning? What benefits have you seen? Please share in the comment section below.

Thanks for reading and commenting!

signiture pink 20pt