Thursday, October 20, 2011
Since this blog is all about being healthy, I have decided to take part in a 10-day, sugar-free challenge! This challenge is being hosted by: Spoonful of Sugar Free Click the link for more information on the challenge. It would be great if you decided to join us!
Saturday, October 1, 2011
"If you're looking for a big opportunity, seek out a big problem." -- H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
This is a picture of my brother Jordan. He and his band "Sargent Avenue" recently made a humanitarian trip to Thailand and Cambodia. They went there to educate themselves and find out how they can help in the fight against the sexual trafficking of women and children.
It's a big problem...a huge problem, a problem so big that you wonder, what can one ordinary person do? What can one band of six guys who barely make enough money to cover the cost of their band gigs do?
Let me repeat myself..."If you're looking for a big opportunity, seek out a big problem." -- H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
What big opportunity did they get in exchange for seeking out such a huge problem? They did get the opportunity to play on the MTV stage in front of over 10,000 people....but they will tell you, that as great as an experience as that was, it was not the opportunity they are most thankful for.
They came back from their trip, changed men. They came back with a desire and a passion to help make a difference. The got an opportunity to help change the lives of women and children, and they took that opportunity and decided to run with it. They have made it their mission to raise $250,000.00 to build a home for children who are rescued from trafficking, a home where they will be safe, receive an education, be loved and receiving healing for their physical and emotional pain. And a home, where, as an added bonus, they will be provided musical instruments and musical training, offering them the ability to express themselves with the creative outlet of music.
It may not be the opportunity they thought they would find...but they've found that through this experience they have gained so much more than they ever thought possible.
The name of their band is "Sargent Avenue." The name of the home they are building is "Sargent House." They are partnered with "Traffic Jam" a not for profit organization that exists to "jam" up the traffic involving the widowed, orphaned, abandoned, sold and vulnerable who are often forced into horrific lives of labor or sex slavery.
For more information or if you feel compelled to help Sargent Avenue, Sargent House or Traffic Jam, please follow the links below. -- Rachael
Sargent Avenue Facebook Page:
Video with footage from their trip to Thailand and Cambodia:
Traffic Jam website:
Information on the campaign to raise funds for Sargent House:
Thursday, September 29, 2011
"To achieve the impossible, it is precisely the unthinkable that must be thought." -- Tom Robbins
There is a popular saying that goes something like this, "Doing the same things over and over, and expecting different results, is the definition of insanity." I would like to elaborate on this and say that if you do exactly what everyone else does, your results will be the same as theirs. This is fine, if you are hoping to be mediocre. But, if you want your life to be great and different and original, that means you will have to engage in great and different and original behavior. -- Rachael
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
In life, there are no ordinary moments. Most of us never really recognize the most significant moments of our lives when they're happening." -- Kathleen Magee
Don't miss out on life because you are too busy with other things...did you take time to look around you and appreciate the people, places and things in your life today? Or were you so busy with the stresses of life that you forgot to stop and actually live? -- Rachael
Monday, September 26, 2011
Ahhh the delicious mango! Fruit lovers everywhere all look forward to mango season. A few years ago, I had the pleasure of introducing my nephew to his first mango. After he had devoured more than 3/4 of the mango that I was actually planning on "sharing" with him, with a big smile on his face and juice running down his forearms, he asked, "Aunt Rachael, do you have any more mangoes?" Unfortunately, I did not...but he was more than happy when I handed him the core and told him he was welcome to eat as much off of it as he could. :) So adorable.
That being said, I am pleased to inform you that not only is the mango beautiful to look at and delicious, but it is also extremely good for your skin! Mangoes are an excellent source of Vitamin A, in fact, an average sized mango contains more than 80% of daily Vitamin A needs. Vitamin A is extremely important in repairing skin cells and maintaining healthy skin. In fact, a deficiency in this particular vitamin will result in a dry, flaky complexion. Another benefit of Vitamin A is that it is a powerful antioxidant, which means that it fights free radicals. Free radicals can prematurely age skin, which is basically the opposite of healthy, sexy skin, so it's truly important to consume enough Vitamin A!
Mangoes are also natural acne fighters! To use mangoes to clean acne causing, clogged pores, slice a mango into very thin slices and apply it to your face. Leave the mango on your skin for 10 - 15 minutes, then wash your face with warm water.
So go on, grab a mango and begin to eat your way to healthy skin!
Tips for adding mangoes into your diet:
- Mango salsa is a great addition to a meal. You can always buy it at your local supermarket, or if you prefer, you can make your own. Use it to top grilled fish, or as a dip for your favorite tortilla chip.
- Mangoes are delicious all on their own. Peel, slice and enjoy! They are sweet, they are juicy, they are truly a tasty treat.
- My personal favorite way to eat a mango is in a smoothie. Combine in a blender with peaches or your favorite type of berry. Add a little honey or orange juice, some protein powder and some ice...your taste buds and your skin will thank you!
Sunday, September 25, 2011
"If you haven't had your life, what have you had?" -- Henry James
"Oh, the experience of this sweet life." -- Dante
|Sunset at Fort Desoto Park in St. Petersburg, FL|
"Life is here and it is now...either we meet it, we live it or we miss it. All life resides in the narrow margin and the broad expanse of the moment. It is in the doing, the dreaming, the feeling and the caring. It is always present in a glorious attempt, a lofty dream, a brilliant insight, an irreplaceable experience, a calming breath, an unbelievable feeling and an irrepressible passion.
An unlived life is littered with 'could haves,' 'should haves,' and 'if onlys.' Each moment greets us full of possibility and leaves us hoping we are better for having met. While it is true that we only have right now, there will never be a time when it's not now. Grandma Moses said it best, 'Life is what we make it, always has been and always will be.' " -- Kobi Yamada (an excerpt from the book "be")
Thursday, August 4, 2011
Take a few minutes to relax after eating. You don't have to sleep....but just relax. Sit quietly, close your eyes, relax. WHY? Because immediately after eating, the body's energy is focused on digestion. So for those 10-15 minutes it's best to not try to do anything that would require energy to be focused elsewhere. Give your body the 15 minutes it needs to get the digestive process going...after that, you'll be more productive and able to focus on the tasks at hand, and you may actually minimize heartburn and other digestive problems.
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Just a little something to put a smile on your face....why? Because the act of smiling and laughing will actually improve you mood, attitude, health and social life! Get healthy! Laugh!
Monday, August 1, 2011
Here's a great tip to de-stress. Slow Down. Sounds too simple, right? But have you ever noticed that sometimes you eat faster than you should? Does anyone ever comment that you walk like you're in a race? These things are totally sub-conscious...we do them a few times and then our brain takes over and assumes that they need to be everyday, all the time, habits.
Slow down. Take a deep breath. Make a conscious effort to relax while walking. Put the fork down in between bites. Chew. Have a conversation. Slow down. Take the time to mentally and physically relax.
Remember, when you move through life so quickly, you miss out on so many of the things that bring joy, comfort, beauty and enjoyment to life. Take time to smell the flowers. Don't go through life so quickly that you forget to live!
If you have an example of how you have re-trained your brain/body to slow down, I'd love to hear about. Please share it in the comments for this post...your experience may help someone else on their path to true health!
Sunday, July 31, 2011
Sometimes it is so easy to doubt our abilities, to minimize our talents, to believe that we will never achieve our goals, dreams and desires. But remember, whatever you believe will come true...so make a decision to BELIEVE IN YOURSELF!
Friday, July 29, 2011
Who doesn't like potatoes? Even the most picky of eaters usually like potatoes. I have a niece who doesn't like to try anything new but one of the few foods she knows she likes, is potatoes. That being said, there is a big difference between a commercially prepared french fry and a real potato.
For the sake of you being sexy, be sure to leave the skin on your potato, as the layer just below the skin, is the where most of the potato's nutrients are found.
So how does the world's favorite vegetable help give you healthy, sexy skin? One baked potato (with the skin) provides about 75% of your body's daily copper need. Copper is involved in formation of connective tissue. Your body also uses copper, along with Vitamin C and Zinc to produce the elastin fibers that support skin structure. In English, this means that if you don't get enough Copper, your skin's ability to heal itself is greatly diminished and your skin can become rigid and lifeless.
Rigid and lifeless....those two words are definitely not part of healthy or sexy!
Tips for adding potatoes (with skin) into your diet:
- Bake in the oven, just don't over-do the butter, sour cream and salt! I like to top plain baked potatoes with turkey chili. This way you get the benefits of a plain baked potato without it being too dry to eat.
- Potato based breads and cakes are delicious! As long as you don't peal the potato before using it, you should be taking advantage of the all the nutrients it has to offer.
- Homemade, seasoned baked potato wedges are easy and beat the pants off of frozen potatoes...if you want the recipe, let me know...I'll be happy to share!
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Everyday, we make decisions. Will we make the most out of our life? Will we rise up and be all that we can be? Will we get back up when life knocks us down? Or....will we lie there, broken, watching life pass us by?
I choose to live!
I choose to live!
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Do you have a favorite stress-relieving activity? Leave a comment and tell me about it!
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
The second food that we are featuring in our "Healthy Skin is Sexy Skin" series, is the Acerola Cherry. I know what you're wondering....a cherry, is a cherry, is a cherry, right? And while I will agree that all sweet, fresh cherries are delicious, they are not all created equal when it comes to providing you with sexy skin.
Just one, that's right...I said one...one single acerola cherry contains more Vitamin C than an entire orange! Not only does it contain more Vitamin C than an entire orange, the Vitamin C content of one tiny little acerola cherry is 65x times that of an entire orange.
WOW!!! One acerola cherry provides you with the equivalent Vitamin C of 65 whole oranges! That is a whole lot of antioxidants packed into a little bite!
Ok, so it's a Vitamin C powerhouse...but what does that mean for your skin? I'm glad you asked. Vitamin C plays an integral role in the production of collagen, the structural protein in your skin, thus increasing your body's ability to repair skin tissue quickly.
As if the Vitamin C content alone wasn't a good enough reason to start eating acerola cherries, they also contain high amounts of Vitamin A. This combination of antioxidants makes the acerola cherry a free radical fighting machine. Free radicals are the number one cause of skin damage, but they don't stand a chance against the acerola cherry!
Tips for adding Acerola Cherries into your diet:
- My favorite way is to eat them fresh!
- Dried or dehydrated acerola cherries are delicious alone as a snack or added to a salad.
- Fresh or dried, try baking them into muffins or brownies.
- Cherry pie...no further explanation needed.
- Be sure to top your ice-cream sundae or banana split with fresh or dried acerola cherries!
Sunday, July 24, 2011
Stress is not healthy or sexy! To relieve stress, add something beautiful to your life on a daily basis. (Flowers, art, music, etc)
Leave a comment and let me know what beautiful things you have added to your life and how they have helped you relax!
Saturday, July 23, 2011
We've all heard the saying "You are what you eat" and when it comes to healthy skin that is SO true. We all notice when someone's skin looks fantastic, and we all have that friend that never seems to age, or whose skin always looks radiant. Chances are, your friend eats her skin healthy.
Over the next few weeks, we're going to take a look at some of the best foods for your skin.
Skin Super Food #1 - Almonds
Vitamin E is a nutrient that we've all heard of...and most of us know that it's good for skin. Many pregnant women use Vitamin E topically on their skin to prevent stretchmarks and it's also good for rubbing into scars.
What does this have to do with almonds, you ask?
Quite simply, almonds are the absolute best whole food source of vitamin E. Not only is Vitamin E good to put on your skin, but putting it in you, also benefits your skin in a BIG way!
Just 1 ounce of almonds (approximately 15 - 20 whole nuts) provides 35% of your RDA for Vitamin E and 12% of your daily protein needs. That's just a small handful, but it packs a big punch!
The rich, Vitamin E oil, found in almonds, moisturizes dry skin and it's anti-oxidant properties protect against premature aging and skin damage.
Tips for adding almonds into your diet:
- Craving something salty or crunchy? Try some roasted, salted almonds instead of reaching for the potato chips. I love to eat them as a snack food!
- Add chopped almonds to brownies, cookies or almost any baked dessert for some delicious added flavor.
- Slivered or whole almonds are great added as a topping to a salad. Sprinkle them on with your croutons for extra crunch and nutrition.
So go ahead, GO NUTS! Your skin will thank you!
Friday, July 22, 2011
Ever noticed how those days that you "wake up on the wrong side of the bed" you may have a tendency to suffer from a headache, feel exhausted all day long and just not feel well in general?
On the other hand, on the days that you wake up before your alarm clock, full of energy and a feeling of well-being, you have a tendency to feel great (both physically and mentally) all day long?
The medical community is increasingly making the connection between positive attitudes and good health. I found a great article on this topic at LiveStrong.com that delves into this mental/physical connection.
According to this article, "USAToday.com reports that the medical community is increasingly making the connection between positive attitudes and good health. Carol Ryff, a psychology professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison says, 'There is a science that is emerging that says a positive attitude isn't just a state of mind; it also has linkages to what's going on in the brain and in the body.' Positive thinking has begun to be attributed to longer, healthier lives in people with chronic illnesses and a decline in stress, which overall reduces cardiovascular problems."
This is FANTASTIC news! How much easier could it be to boost your immune system, reduce stress and reduce heart problems? BE POSITIVE! Be positive! Be positive! Say it with me, repeat until you smile, then repeat again!
Improve your attitude, improve your life, improve your health! Have you experienced health benefits from improving your attitude? Be sure to share it with us in the comments section.
Here's to becoming a healthy, sexy, you.