Whole New Mom http://wholenewmom.com Healthy Living for Real People in Today's Changing World Thu, 19 Jan 2017 15:10:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.7.1 64148957 Nutrition and Child Development – What You Need to Know http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/nutrition-and-child-development/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/nutrition-and-child-development/#comments Mon, 16 Jan 2017 20:51:47 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=42350 How does nutrition affect child development? We all come across various parenting goals on various websites. There are goals about achieving athletic goals, reaching academic achievements, and many more thing. But in reality, many parenting goals revolve around children and their eating habits.  And most of the real goals that we have for our kids involved proper development in one way or another. While some parents deal with picky eaters, others have to stop their kids from stuffing themselves with junk, and some struggle with children who simply seem to have been born with no appetite. Either way, children’s nutrition plays […]

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Nutrition Affects Child Development in Many Ways. Find out what you need to know so that your child can grow up as healthy as possible.

How does nutrition affect child development?

We all come across various parenting goals on various websites. There are goals about achieving athletic goals, reaching academic achievements, and many more thing.

But in reality, many parenting goals revolve around children and their eating habits.  And most of the real goals that we have for our kids involved proper development in one way or another.

While some parents deal with picky eaters, others have to stop their kids from stuffing themselves with junk, and some struggle with children who simply seem to have been born with no appetite.

Either way, children’s nutrition plays a pivotal role in how kids grow up, which is why parents are most concerned about what their children eat, and how much of it they eat.

Balanced nutrition is the key to healthy development in children. However, a lack of balanced nutrition doesn’t just happen because the child is undernourished. Over-feeding is another reason why child development is affected.

There are several reasons why a child might not get balanced nutrition.

Why Children Might Not Get a Balanced Diet

Financial Issues

If the family is very poor and can’t afford food then they might be at the mercy of whatever free food products are available.
Furthermore, if the family can’t afford nutritious food, they might settle for cheaper options, however such options being cheaper might be an illusion, particularly if these choices lead to health issues down the road.

Children are picky eaters

When children fuss about many foods that are put before them, it’s much easier for parents to give in and provide whatever is easiest.

You know how this goes.  The kid won’t eat what everyone else is eating so the parent resorts to pulling out frozen chicken nuggets or quickly making some other kid-friendly meal.

First of all, it’s crucial to get kids to try many different kinds of foods. But if you are going to lean on chicken nuggets every so often, make sure they are a health version like this recipe for Gluten-free Chicken Nuggets.

Junk Food Addiction

If children are addicted to junk food, it can be a constant battle to get them to eat real food.

Junk food is specially crafted to be addictive–to keep the person eating it coming back for more.  Manufacturers use synthetic ingredients in addition to refining processes to do this–and it works!

Lack of Knowledge

If the parents don’t know enough about proper nutrition, then they won’t know how to provide adequately nutritious meals in the home.

If you don’t know how to prepare produce or soak and cook beans, or do anything in the kitchen besides heat up meals in a microwave, then you will be at a handicap to feed your family well.

Food Allergies

While food allergies alone typically won’t make it impossible to get good nutrition, it can make it more difficult.

Whatever the case might be, lack of nutrition or too much of it plays a significant role. In fact, here are some of the ways that child development is affected by the way a child eats.

Nutrition Affects Child Development in Many Ways. Find out what you need to know so that your child can grow up as healthy as possible.

How Nutrition Affects Child Development

Intellectual Development

It’s true that a lot of the child’s intellect will be connected to the kind of nutrition he or she gets. As per a study conducted in 2010 published in The Journal of Nutrition, two- year-olds, who were undernourished had 16 percent more chances of failing or would break into school later, compared to children who had balanced nutrition.

Emotional Development

It isn’t just intellect, even emotional development depends on nutrition. How?

Minerals such as calcium are critical in helping a child develop an emotional system. In fact, undernourished children have more chances of having autism, anxiety, depression, or even schizophrenia.

Behavioral Development

How children behave also stems from what they eat. It might be hard to believe.

In fact, for the first two years, if the child doesn’t get adequate nutrition, they could show signs of becoming withdrawn, could be very less active and generally stay away from helping.

The Importance of Nutrition and Child Development

Food and behavior are also related as shown in this post.   But the effects of nutrition on child development need to be looked at as well.

The numbers are staggering. Most three-year- olds in America are not as healthy as they seem to be.

In fact, 90% of these children have poor to fair health and 31% of them are have regular hospital visits. So, it’s essential for parents to understand that just feeding children is not enough, feeding them a balanced diet is important.

There are parents who are constantly worried about their children’s growth. They often panic that their children are not growing the way they should. For such parents, this guide for food requirements for children would be very handy.

Instead of fretting over why the child’s growth isn’t as lightning fast as the other children around, keep track of these kinds of charts.

While we are talking about nutrition and growth, we also need to understand what the essential nutrition is that your children should be getting, and how a lack could derail their potential growth.

Nutrition in the Womb and Beyond

Nutrition starts even before the child is born. Mothers’ nutrition during pregnancy impacts the brain development of the unborn child. Therefore, if the mother is under-nourished during pregnancy, the unborn baby’s brain functions might not develop fully.

The process of providing the right kind of nutrition continues and the most important form of nutrition a child should get is breast milk. There are many benefits of breastfeeding, but one such benefit is that breastfed children are less likely to develop severe bouts of diarrhea, ear infections, or even rashes like eczema.

Iron and Iodine

Once the child grows up and starts consuming solid food, there are a few elements that need to be present in the food. For example, iron deficiency in children leads to slower nerve impulses, as iron is an important component of brain tissues. In fact, it is all the more important in the first two years of a child’s life. If a child has iron deficiency during this period, it could lead to behavioral changes, and slower psychomotor development.

In fact, even iodine plays an important role in a child’s overall development. A lack of iodine in a child’s diet could lead to reduced cognitive development. Some good sources of iodine include seaweed and other sea vegetables, fish (please eat those that are least likely to be contaminated by mercury and radiation), cranberries (that’s surprising, isn’t it?), organic yogurt, strawberries, navy beans, raw organic cheese and organic potatoes.

The Need for Breakfast

Skipping breakfast, which is quite common in children, isn’t healthy either. This might lead to lower concentration powers, leading them to underperform in tests or on other tasks.

Here are some of Adrienne’s favorite easy breakfasts that are kid-friendly:

Chia Puddings including this Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding and Berry Mousse
Homemade Protein Bars
Chocolate Mint Grasshopper Bars
Buckwheat Granola

Finally, child nutrition isn’t just about keeping your kids’s tummies full.

It’s about planning a balanced meal that is as nutritious as possible for them, because what they eat goes a long way in determining how they grow, behave, and perform.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve had in feeding your kids well?

Sources:

http://www.urbanchildinstitute.org/articles/updates/nutrition-and-early-brain-development
http://www.livestrong.com/article/465374-how-poor-nutrition-affects-child-development/

7 Foods Rich in Iodine


Aradhana PandeyAradhana is a writer from India. Her areas of knowledge include parenting, children with special needs, health and lifestyle. She loves being outdoors and her hobbies include cycling and hiking. Aradhana has a special interest in children with special needs and parenting and shares her experiences through her other passion, writing. She writes to share her knowledge so that it may help others. Her posts on these subjects have been published on more than 250+ various reputed sites like the Huffington post, SheKnows, Mom Junction and many more. Aradhana writes to inspire and motivate people to adopt healthy habits and live a stress-free lifestyle.

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3 Things that Almost Stole Christmas – Part 2 http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/steal-christmas/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/steal-christmas/#comments Tue, 10 Jan 2017 21:23:24 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=42283   In Part 1 of “3  Things that Almost Stole Christmas“, I talked about the unfortunate timing of my Detox and the sad demise of our Christmas Tree–2 of the 3 things that threatened to steal Christmas this past year. So while you’re reading the continuation of the story, keep in mind that I still wasn’t feeling fabulous and that we had left our home 2 days before Christmas to get a tree.  And of course the remaining vestiges of the practically decapitated tree needed to be removed from our home as well. It’s not very festive having parts of […]

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In the spirit of the Grinch that Stole Christmas, a bunch of not so great things threatened to steal Christmas from us. But did they succeed?

 

In Part 1 of “3  Things that Almost Stole Christmas“, I talked about the unfortunate timing of my Detox and the sad demise of our Christmas Tree–2 of the 3 things that threatened to steal Christmas this past year.

So while you’re reading the continuation of the story, keep in mind that I still wasn’t feeling fabulous and that we had left our home 2 days before Christmas to get a tree.  And of course the remaining vestiges of the practically decapitated tree needed to be removed from our home as well.

It’s not very festive having parts of the offending tree strewn all over the living room while you’re trying to set up another tree or open presents.  Or even just sit on the sofa.

Next, however, saga of how our Christmas went wrong continues today with “Mrs. M and the Christmas Dinner the Wasn’t”.

#3 – Mrs. M & The Christmas Dinner that Wasn’t

So then, with Tree #3 in place, Christmas Day had gone along somewhat uneventfully, considering the detox and all.  Mom still wasn’t feeling fabulous, but at least it was a lot better than “totally Ick!”

We had already agreed that we weren’t going to have a traditional Christmas Dinner. Instead, my husband opted for my Pakistani Kima (which is a real favorite around here) and my boys even anything for dinner was OK with them so long as we had my Dairy-free and Egg-free Pumpkin Pie (recipe to come soon!) complete with this lovely Easiest Pie Crust.

Suddenly, however, to everyone’s surprise, we noticed that somehow it had become 5:00 pm.

What?  But it was really just 11 am a few minute ago, wasn’t it?

Not sure how that had happened, but you know–with a number of creative-types who are also research and information junkies in the house, time quickly slips away.

Realizing that the opportunity to have some semblance of a celebratory dinner was quickly slipping away, we talked about starting to make dinner, when my oldest said, “But what about Mrs. M?”

Major. Fork. In. The. Road.

Mrs. M, you see, is our former kitty-corner-across-the-street-neighbor.  She is in her mid-90s and served as a nurse in World War II.  She was widowed years ago, and we used to see her pretty regularly. My boys would take her garbage and recycling to the curb for her, and she’d occasionally hand them a dollar for their efforts.

Mrs. M had a special place in our life.  She was the sole reason we would go Trick or Treating some years.  The treats were too much of a temptation, and I really am not a fan of Halloween, but the joy on her face seeing my boys dressed up was worth it. Every year.

We watched out for her–checking in if we saw a fire truck there or if there was severe weather, called if we saw a car in her driveway that we didn’t recognize–that kind of thing.

Anyhow, years ago, Mrs. M ended up moving to a retirement home.  She has no family around, so we do our best (or sometimes not our best) to visit her regularly.  My boys’ orthodontist’s office is right by her new home, so we would stop by after almost every visit to see her.

Unwanted Visitors?

We did wonder, however, how much she really wanted us to visit.

Typically, we’d go to see her, and she’d seem happy enough, but about 5 minutes after we’d arrived, she’d say something like “Well, nice of you to come,” and we’d know that that was our clue that she was ready to move on to being alone.

Anyhow, back to Christmas.

The boys were upset about the Mrs. M revelation and really didn’t want to go and interrupt Christmas to be told “nice of you to come” after 5 minutes, but my husband said that it would be much nicer to see her on Christmas rather than the day after.

So–we got some chocolates from Costco together that we’d bought just for her (Mrs. M LOVES chocolate), put ribbons on the bag, signed a card, and loaded ourselves into the van after calling to make sure she was in good form for visitors.

What we got when we arrived was the final twist to our “Christmas Gone Wrong.”

We arrived around 6:30.  Typically Mrs. M goes to bed around 7 pm, so we expected to see her in her room, but she wasn’t there.

Puzzled, we went down the hallway and an employee told us that she was in the dining room.  Odd.  So we went in to find her sitting alone in an almost emptied out dining hall.

She looked thrilled to see us and then asked if we wanted to show my husband her room.  She had forgotten that he’d seen it quite a few times before, but no matter.  We went.

While we were still in the dining room, however, I asked one of the workers if it would be OK to bring a movie by to watch with her later that week, to which she responded with an enthusiastic “YES!”

So off to Mrs. M’s room we went.

What–No Movie?

When we got to her room, Mrs. M proceeded to ask us if we could figure out how to work the DVD player.

Shocking.  Just shocking.  This woman, whose hearing was quite terrible, had picked up the bit about the movie, and thought we were going to watch one now.

My heart sank.  We hadn’t come prepared to watch a movie….so we tried to figure out what to do.

My youngest tried to figure out the DVD player so we could determine what to do for the next visit, while I figured out what to do in order to not dash her expectations.  Well, we couldn’t figure out the DVD player (despite my son’s technical acumen), so that took care of itself.

What happened next was the best part.

The TV was set to CNN and they were showing Finding Jesus, a documentary-style program on the life of Jesus, and Mrs. M seemed to really enjoy it.  So we all sat down to watch.

The program was very well done and though not totally theologically correct (not that I would expect that from CNN), it was fascinating to see the Bible brought to life.

We all sat and watched for awhile.

At one point I asked Mrs. M about her bedtime, to which she responded, “Oh, it doesn’t matter.

She wanted us to stay.

So we did.

The program continued, even after the credits rolled, so I checked the internet on my cell phone and found that it was a docu- series that started at 3 pm and went ’til 4 am!  Craziness!

No way were we staying ’til 4 am!

Around 8 or so, she said “Well, I really need to go around 8:30,” so I guess though she was having a good time, she knew her limits :).

I informed her about the 4 am ending point of the program and we all chuckled about it.

When 8:30 came, we all reluctantly parted ways.

In the spirit of the Grinch that Stole Christmas, a bunch of not so great things threatened to steal Christmas from us. But did they succeed?

Please note that there are affiliate links in this post. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Did These Things Steal Christmas?

In retrospect, it would be easy for me to feel like it was a real bummer of a Christmas.

And in the midst of the whole thing, well I really felt like I wasn’t really experiencing Christmas.

But here’s the Truth.

I’m Healthier

and so is my family.

Or at least we’re moving in the right direction.

I can tell I’m still detoxing, and there’s oh so much more that I am going to be sharing with you all about this. It’s just been fascinating to me.

In fact, I’ve started my whole family (and our cat!) on Diatomaceous Earth to deal with their toxicity in addition to mine.

It’s a toxic world and even if you’ve done a lot to clean up your environment, there’s no escaping it.  And our bodies need help.

New Tree, a New Friend & New Memories

My husband is sooooo ecstatic about the new tree.

But more than that, the memories of that night and how it all came together, just warms my heart.

Plus we have a new friend (Mr. Retired Christmas Store Owner).  (or use the other photo??)—or both?

 

Buying a Christmas Tree - Many things threatened to steal Christmas this year, but they couldn't. For the post "3 Things that Almost Stole Christmas"

The Family in the Makeshift “Christmas Shoppe” buying trees and lights galore and amazing bargain prices!

 

And I might, just might, keep the smaller tree up year round.  It’s so pretty in the room where it is–and the memories come flooding back every time I look at it.

The lights in the boys’ room and on the sun room cause the fond memories to pour back in as well.

People Over Food

As we left the retirement home, my oldest said, “You know, you’re right.  Doing this on Christmas made it so much more special–doing something for someone else instead of just doing something for ourselves.”

He got it.

We can have dinner another night.  We can open presents or make cookies any day.

But we couldn’t have visited Mrs. M “on Christmas” the next day.  It wouldn’t have been the same for her.  Or for us.  There was something special about leaving our plans for her. Giving when it wasn’t convenient.

Plus Finding Jesus wouldn’t have been on, which is what it’s all about anyhow.  Finding Him in the every day, even when our hopes are dashed.

Mrs. M saying “It doesn’t matter.” about her bedtime–Priceless. I’ll never forget it.

So those 3 Things Almost Stole Christmas — or Tried to Steal Christmas.

But they didn’t.

Of course, they couldn’t.  I know that. Christmas isn’t going anywhere, but you know what I mean.

It’s easy, when things don’t go as planned, to feel depressed about how picture perfect things weren’t, and to sulk.  Instead, let’s work to see the good in the trials and steal Christmas (and the rest of life) back.

One Final Thought

I want to add something for those for whom this Christmas was a time of deep loss–much deeper than anything that we went through.  Actually, there is more to our story than what I wrote as we continue to deal with physical issues and others, but no one in our family got a horrible diagnosis and we didn’t lose a loved one or our home to fire, or anything like that.

I am so sorry if any of those things happened to you (I’m sure that there are some of you out there) and I hope that you are able to find either true physical healing or at least to get the support that you need, hopefully from a local source, but if not, from wherever you can.  I don’t at all mean to minimize that kind of suffering with this post.  Life is hard and it’s tough to get through it sometimes.  But you don’t have to do it alone.

Please reach out to others if you need help–our world is getting messier and we need each other.  And God.

Pumpkin Pie, Presents, Parties, the Christmas Tree and all of that—they’re just things.

People and the real meaning of Christmas is what it’s all about.

And I have to say–this is most definitely the most memorable Christmas that I have ever had.

Have you ever had a disappointing Christmas?
Or something that looked like one that turned out to be a blessing?

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3 Things that Almost Stole Christmas – Pt 1 http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/3-things-stole-christmas/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/3-things-stole-christmas/#comments Mon, 09 Jan 2017 21:14:00 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=42208 Christmas. It came and went like a flash. We typically Do Christmas Slow around here, but well, this Christmas was more than slow. It kind of didn’t happen. Basically, our Christmas didn’t go as planned.  In many ways. Instead of Visions of Sugarplums, Parties, and Ho Ho Ho, our Christmas was: Detox, a Broken Tree, and the Dinner that Wasn’t. I could say that ours was the Christmas Gone Wrong, and give you some tips about what to do so that you don’t end up in the same situation that we did, but…..well, you’ll get the idea as you read on. […]

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In the spirit of the Grinch that Stole Christmas, a bunch of not so great things threatened to steal Christmas from us. But did they succeed?

Christmas.

It came and went like a flash.

We typically Do Christmas Slow around here, but well, this Christmas was more than slow.

It kind of didn’t happen.

Basically, our Christmas didn’t go as planned.  In many ways.

Instead of Visions of Sugarplums, Parties, and Ho Ho Ho, our Christmas was:

Detox, a Broken Tree, and the Dinner that Wasn’t.

I could say that ours was the Christmas Gone Wrong, and give you some tips about what to do so that you don’t end up in the same situation that we did, but…..well, you’ll get the idea as you read on.

Every year, Christmas is a bit of a hard time for me for the following reasons:

We live far away from any remaining extended family.
My husband is a professor, so he always has loads of end-of-the-semester grading to do.
We reside in a city where almost everyone (besides us) has relatives (meaning they all have plans).
My birthday is 11/23 and our anniversary is 12/30, so between my birthday, Thanksgiving, Christmas, our anniversary, and New Year’s, there’s just a little too much going on.

However, this year was particularly hard for us.  For one thing, we are in the middle of choosing a church, so we feel pretty disjointed and weren’t sure where we would go on Christmas for church services, but there were even more things that really threatened to “steal Christmas,” a la The Grinch.

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Here’s what happened.

In the spirit of the Grinch that Stole Christmas, a bunch of not so great things threatened to steal Christmas from us. But did they succeed?

#1 – The Detox

It all started about a month before Christmas.

I had ordered some of Miessence’s heavy duty Fermented Superfood Probiotic thinking that it was time to change up my probiotic routine.  I remembered how it had really worked well for me before and figured I’d give it another go.

So I took it.  For the whole month. And things started happening.

At the same time, I had also backed off of taking Betaine HCl with every meal. I was basically thinking that I had done a lot of healing and that I could handle taking less most likely.

Anyhow, when the fermented food probiotic was done, I moved to Miessence’s Powdered Superfood Probiotic and things really started happening.

Hmmmm.

I started having a resurgence of some mild rosacea and then well, my lips started drying out. Badly.

We’re not talking dry lips.  We’re talking Sahara Lips.  Like No Amount Of Lip Balm Is Gonna Do Nothin’ Lips.

I’d had this before and was sure I knew what it was.

Candida.

Very often, when I have some kind of candida die off, my lips will get incredibly, nothing-you-can-do-to-help-them dry. And that’s where we were at.

I used this DIY Lip Scrub a few times and that helped minimally, but the severe chapping came right back.

So I was really stirring things up.

I decided to push it harder.

Call me crazy.

I mean, it’s the Holiday Season, and here I am forcing myself to do deep healing or detox or whatever?

Yup – not really smart.

But I was determined.

If something needed to die, I was going to kill it.

My lips got worse and then they got better, but I started to have a slight reaction on my eye.  That made me nervous.  Even if I wanted something to die, I wasn’t sure I wanted the evidence on my eye, ya’ know?

So I backed off the ferments and decided to try some Diatomaceous Earth, which is known for its detox capabilities.

I started off with a very very small dose (only 1/2 tsp), since I hadn’t felt well at all on 1 Tbsp a day.

And then very quickly I was seriously having Herxheimer Reactions.

I won’t go into all of the details, but let’s say that I felt like I had a mild version of the flu and it all was a recipe for being somewhat of a Grinch.

Meh.

I pretty much didn’t want to do anything but feel better.

I’ll share more about the Diatomaceous Earth later, but eventually I started feeling better and was glad that I had pushed through.  For now, though, if you’re interested in reading more, the testimonials on this site are a very interesting read.

Clearly, there is more work to be done on the health front.  But then again, I think that we all have that going on, right?

#2 – The Tree

Enter–the Christmas Tree.

Actually, now that I think about it, every tree that we have had has a funny story attached to it….so I’ll start out by sharing a little about Tree #1 and its sad fate.

Tree #1

Tree #1 came to us in a funny way.

I am allergic to pine (I take after my mother in this way) and so we always had an artificial tree.  I’ve dreamt of going out and cutting down a tree, but it just doesn’t happen in our family.

Soon after getting married, my husband and I moved to Oklahoma where he got his first professorial job.  The salary was exceedingly low (we qualified for public aid) and well, things were tight.

But I wanted a tree.

One thing that really bothered us was that we lived in Campus Housing and it was mandated that we purchase and pay for cable TV, even on my husband’s meager salary.  But there were 2 bright spots to that. One was that when tornados hit, we could see the trajectory of the storm’s devastating path.

The second was this guy.

Seriously, Bargain Barn was our friend.

We would sit and watch this guy auction off all kinds of things from baby goods to home decor to feminine products.  (There was something unbelievably riotous about hearing this guy auction off pad with “wings” in his Okie accent!)

When you’re broke and your idea of a date night is sharing a McDonald’s ice cream cone (this was in my pre-healthy eating days), then you settle, ya’ know? 🙂

It is from Bargain Barn Guy that we bought the tree.  Cheap.

Plus loads of fabulous Gold Ribbon, much of which still remains to this day.  If you ever get a gift from me with gold ribbon on it, you’ll have Mr. Bargain Barn to thank for it.

Sadly, this is the only last vestige remaining of this hilarious show.

 

Years ago, we had a very unfortunate thing happen to Tree #1.  We loaned it to a church for their Christmas display and somehow our tree stand got lost in the process.  They insisted that they never got it, but our tree stand was gone.  Not in the house and not at the church.

Gone.

My husband, knowing nothing about tree stands (and how easy it is to replace them), figured that the tree was a goner and decided he didn’t want to go and pick the tree up, so it got donated.

So my boys and I started on “The Great Christmas Tree Hunt,” which took hours and hours and miles and miles on the car as we drove from one store to another, trying to find a tree that was affordable and didn’t look completely unattractive.

It wasn’t an easy job.

Tree after tree, store after store, and still–no tree.

Finally–we found it, at a Second Hand Store, south of where we lived.

Tree #2

The tree was lovely and looked quite real and was just what I had hoped for.

And it was pre-lit. 🙂

We went home, decided on the tree, called the store owner and committed to it after asking the Store Owner if it was easy to set up and take down, to which she responded, “Yes.” So we proceeded to drive down and get it.

When we arrived, she had the tree perfectly boxed up to go.

That was the end of the perfection and ease, however.

Since that fateful day, every Christmas, my husband has regretted that purchase.  And that’s putting it mildly.

The tree was the “hooked” kind, so each branch had to be put in individually, but here’s the kicker—it was pre lit.  So the lights were all connected.  Not good.

When you tried to put the tree together or take it apart, the lights would get all tangled up in the branches and took numerous hours and tremendous frustration to erect; basically, it was a great way to start off the Christmas season on the wrong foot.

(Moral of this story–it’s easier to replace a tree stand than to live with a high-maintenance Christmas tree!)

Tree #3

So…….this year, 2 days before Christmas (yes, I have very good timing), we still didn’t have the decorations on Tree #2.

I wasn’t sure I liked where the tree was and so I decided, instead of lugging the tree around the living room, to lay the tree down on its side.  Why?  I don’t know.  But I did it.

When I picked the tree back up, the top was CROOKED.

Very Crooked.

I figured I just had to straighten it out, the way you would “fluff” out any artificial tree.

But fluff, it would not.

The Tree. Was. Broken.  Broken to the point that I would have to weld it and it still might not work.

I was mortified.  But when I told my husband, he was thrilled.

“Praise God!!!” he said.  “Let’s buy a new one!”

(Side note – Oh how I WISH I had a photo of the broken tree top.  I don’t know what came over me that I didn’t take one. I suppose I was just devastated about what I had done and then my husband was adamant that we get that tree out of our house asap…..so it slipped my mind until after it was gone :(.)

Of course I was not in the best of moods, thinking I’d wrecked Christmas.  Here it was, 2 days before, and we had no tree.

I remembered that just prior to our putting the tree up, however, that I had been on Craigslist and there was someone clearing out his Christmas decor business and that there was a 7.5 foot tree reduced from $480-ish to $140-ish.  So I hopped back on Craigslist and hoped for the best.

But the tree. was. gone.

Heart in stomach.

Something made me check pages 2 and 3 of my Craigslist search, and there it was. A tree.  And this one was reduced down to–get this–$39!

Phone. Please!

I called the number and the man said he had a few trees left and we could even come over that night if we wanted to.

So, we did. We all hopped in the van, and though the weather was quite bad, we went.

And in the makeshift display area off the rear of the seller’s house, was…..our new tree.

It looked quite like Tree #2, but well, it wasn’t broken (ha), and it wasn’t pre-lit.  AND it was cheap!

We ended up having a long (very long) talk with the retired man and got along famously with him.  Plus, there was another smaller tree that I fell in love with.

That one too was reduced to only $39, and I was pretty sure that I knew exactly where I would put it.

Here it is, nestled in the corner of one of our rooms.

Silver Pine Christmas Tree - for the post "3 Things that Almost Stole Christmas"

I also bought a wreath and some ornaments, and our youngest really wanted some lights so we “splurged” on green, red, and blue lights for him.

He ended up decorating our Sun Porch and the boys’ room with them.

Green Christmas Lights for the post "3 Things that Almost Stole Christmas"

These lights now make me sooooo happy!

And well, that “Easy to Assemble” Tree that threatened to ruin our marriage every Christmas (just kidding) is now GONE :).

Oh, and there’s more to the story of that night.

Saved by Technology

As we left the makeshift Christmas Tree Outlet, my husband said “Oh no! We’re almost out of gas!”

We literally had only 7 miles worth of gas left and it was bad bad weather.

Not sure what to do, our youngest remembered that you could check on your cell phone to see where the nearest gas station is–so we did. And thankfully, we were able to find a station before we were stranded.

Yes, finding these trees was a blessing, but I didn’t want to be stranded with them in the middle of a very cold winter in the Midwest.

Stay Tuned

The saga continues.  I’ll be back hopefully tomorrow with the rest of the story as you read how our family fought to save Christmas from the many foes that strove to destroy it.

Onward……

How was your Christmas?
Did things go as planned?

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Sweet & Savory Balsamic Baked Red Onions – low carb & AIP http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/balsamic-baked-red-onions/ http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/balsamic-baked-red-onions/#comments Thu, 29 Dec 2016 20:56:53 +0000 https://wholenewmom.com/?p=41956 Today I have a fun new recipe for you all–Balsamic Baked Red Onions. I actually have never made baked onions before (in fact I have never done much at all with red onions), but well, here’s how this recipe came to be. I’m all about saving money, and that means that whenever possible I try to buy everything in bulk. And I do mean just about everything. I sometimes make mistakes and overbuy something (some things do go to waste), but overall I think I do a pretty good job of taking advantage of low prices and using up pretty […]

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A balance between sweet and savory, these Balsamic Baked Red Onions are an easy side dish that dresses up every day meals and is perfect for special occasions too.

Today I have a fun new recipe for you all–Balsamic Baked Red Onions. I actually have never made baked onions before (in fact I have never done much at all with red onions), but well, here’s how this recipe came to be.

I’m all about saving money, and that means that whenever possible I try to buy everything in bulk.

And I do mean just about everything.

I sometimes make mistakes and overbuy something (some things do go to waste), but overall I think I do a pretty good job of taking advantage of low prices and using up pretty much all that we purchase before it goes bad.

Having a few deep freezers has really helped us take advantage of savings like these.

Here are some examples of things that I buy in bulk.

Beans
Rice
All grains (we don’t buy as many grains these days since we’re eating more low carb, but I do still buy some)
Spices (I tend to purchase spices in at least 1/4 pound sizes, if not 1 pound sizes)
Salt (I buy huge bags of Real Salt)
Coconut
Magnesium Flakes
Chicory and Dandelion Root for my DIY Coffee Substitute
Fruits and Vegetables (either from a store sale or at the end of the day at the Farmer’s Market)
Meat – whenever I get deals on Free Range Leg of Lamb, Free Deer Meat and more.

I even bought Bulk Organic Cocoa this past month — might have overdone it, but we do love it around here!

The Bulk Red Onions Purchase

Anyhow, I just participating in a food group buy a few months ago with Azure Standard. If you haven’t worked with Azure before, you really should check them out. They have great deals and fabulous customer service.

So this past month, they had an amazing deal on Organic Red Onions.

I really hadn’t ever done much with red onions before, but when there’s a huge deal on something, I try to figure out what I can do to take advantage of the deal.

So I asked friends what I could do with all of these onions (it was a LOT — 50 pounds!) and most of them said that I would have to freeze or dehydrate them, and that if you dehydrate them your house can easily reek for weeks.

Now, I am kind of OK with that because I have my trusty DIY Purify Essential Oils Blend that is great for all kinds of unwanted scents, but I really wanted to figure something else out.

So I turned to the internet.

The Baked Red Onions Recipe

We’ve been trying to mix it up by changing up our vegetable dishes recently. We get in a rut having the same thing over and over again (think salads, broccoli and cauliflower rice) so I was really excited to try something new.

Baked Red Onions was the recipe that most intrigued me, though there are a few more that I thought I might try.

So I bought them….all 50 pounds of them.

Much to my “totally don’t love cooked onions” oldest son’s chagrin.

I tried a few recipes that I found online, but they all weren’t quite right, so I upped the seasonings and added in a few things, and well, the resulting Balsamic Baked Red Onions recipe was a real hit with everyone. Except for my oldest.  Sigh. I guess there’s no way around that no matter how lovely the onions are :).

Red Onions are sweeter than yellow or white onions, so they typically are used in recipes where fresh onions are called for, like this AIP Guacamole.  AIP stands for either Autoimmune Paleo or Autoimmune Protocol.  The diet restricts certain food groups that are considered to cause inflammation.  I will be writing more about it in the future.

But they have a lovely flavor when cooked and they really shine with the seasonings in this dish, plus they have lots of nutritional benefits to them.

A balance between sweet and savory, these Balsamic Baked Red Onions are an easy side dish that dresses up every day meals and is perfect for special occasions too.

Benefits of Red Onions

You’ll notice from the photos that I left the peels on for baking.

There are several reasons for this.

One – they are pretty. I like the way that they look baked with the peels on :).  And pretty is good for your health.

Two – they are easier to eat this way. My son commented on this — if you bake these without the peels, they can turn to mush and be kind of hard to eat, but this way they have a nice little “container” that holds the onion halves for you on your plate.

Three – so much of the nutritional benefits of red onions lurks near the peel.  In fact “a red onion can lose about 20% of its quercetin and almost 75% of its anthocyanins if it is ‘overpeeled.'” (source)

By baking the onions in their peels, you will be more likely to eat all of the onion, rather than tossing the nutritious part just below the peel.

There is a lot of attention on greens in the nutritional world, but the humble onion is a nutritional powerhouse on its own.

Just look at some of the nutritional benefits of red onions. One serving has:

1.5 grams of fiber
Vitamins and minerals including folate, thiamine, calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese and vitamins C, K and B-6
Flavonoids, the most important of which is quercetin, a substance which has been linked to the reduction of stroke and heart diease (source)

Red onions are also one of the best sources of chromium. (source)

So on with the recipe.

I made a double batch of these Baked Red Onions, and we gobbled them up.

Since then, we’ve made them numerous times, and they keep disappearing.

They are great on their own, plus they make a fabulous topping for your favorite dishes. Just this week we’ve baked the onions, and then chopped them and added them on top of our current favorite chili recipe (recipe coming soon).

A balance between sweet and savory, these Balsamic Baked Red Onions are an easy side dish that dresses up every day meals and is perfect for special occasions too.

 

Balsamic Baked Red Onions - low carb & AIP
 
Author:
Recipe type: Side Dish
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Sugar-Free, Grain-Free, Low-Carb, Vegan, Paleo, AIP
 
A cross between sweet and savory, these Balsamic Baked Red Onions are a gorgeous colorful side dish--perfect for every day or entertaining.
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Wash onions.
  2. Cut onions in half.
  3. Mix other ingredients and pour over onions.
  4. Toss to coat.
  5. Bake in 450 oven for 30-40 min (40 makes them softer and easier to digest). Alternatively, bake at 350 for 1 hour or more to desired doneness.
  6. Serve with the skins on and the extra balsamic liquid either drizzled on top or offered on the side.
Notes
Cutting the onions in half so that the stem is in the center of the cut half makes for a better presentation.
Oil choice: I recommend choosing an oil based on its smoke point. Please choose your oil based on the oven temperature that you will be using.

I hope you enjoy this recipe. It’s great for an every day side dish and pretty enough for a Holiday Table as well.

What is your favorite recipe that uses red onions?

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Gluten-free Christmas Cookies – low carb options http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/gluten-free-christmas-cookies/ http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/gluten-free-christmas-cookies/#comments Fri, 23 Dec 2016 19:33:54 +0000 https://wholenewmom.com/?p=41840 What’s better than Christmas Cookies?  Healthy Christmas cookies, that’s what – and in our house, that means gluten-free Christmas Cookies.  In fact, most of the cookies in this post are grain free Christmas Cookies so if you’re off of grains, or limiting them, you are in luck. And since we’re watching carbs, I’m giving low carb options for as many of the cookies as possible and AIP options where possible. Why Gluten-Free Christmas Cookies When I was little, we always made cookies at Christmastime.  I really got into it, making all kinds of flavors some years.  My favorites went from traditional […]

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This assortment of Gluten-free Christmas Cookies is perfect for all of your Holiday Baking! From Gingerbread to Peanut Butter Blossoms, there are loads of Healthy Christmas Cookies for everyone!

What’s better than Christmas Cookies?  Healthy Christmas cookies, that’s what – and in our house, that means gluten-free Christmas Cookies.  In fact, most of the cookies in this post are grain free Christmas Cookies so if you’re off of grains, or limiting them, you are in luck.

And since we’re watching carbs, I’m giving low carb options for as many of the cookies as possible and AIP options where possible.

Why Gluten-Free Christmas Cookies

When I was little, we always made cookies at Christmastime.  I really got into it, making all kinds of flavors some years.  My favorites went from traditional chocolate chippers to Almond Crescents, to Meltaways and even Biscotti. But my favorites were Peanut Butter Blossoms.

There’s something about those Peanut Butter Blossoms – the combination of Chocolate and Peanut Butter (highlighted in my Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Chia Pudding) is always a winner, and when the cookies are still warm, those Hershey Kisses just melt into the cookie (and into your mouth) just right.

When I grew up, however, I found that gluten and I didn’t get along so well, and we felt the need to take the rest of the family off of gluten for various health reasons.  And then we found out that my oldest was deathly allergic to dairy and egg, and so there went many of our favorites.

Time to find new recipes.

Our dietary needs have changed a lot over the years, to the point where we’ve experimented with paleo, GAPS, and AIP, but right now we pretty much eat as healthy as possible while limiting carbs and having basically no junk at all.

I’ve gotten a few healthy cookie recipes together, which really help, but I reached out to some blogger friends of mine to expand my recipe box.

And boy did I get some good ones.

My mouth was watering as I put this post together.

And yes–it even has my favorites, Peanut Butter Blossoms, in the mix.

Of course, whether it’s Christmas or not, you can enjoy these delicious Gluten-Free Christmas Cookies all year round!

Oh, and if you are looking for even MORE cookies, this post, Healthy Christmas Cookies, is the place to go.

This is for sure one amazing assortment of healthy gluten free Christmas Cookies.  Not sure which I will make first, and really, I might just have to make all of them!

Frosted Pumpkin Cookies – Meghan Birt

For AIP, omit the non AIP spices (nutmeg is debatable) and use a gelatin egg and cassava or tiger nut flour.

Frosted Pumpkin Cookies

Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies – Back to the Book Nutrition

For low carb, use low carb chocolate chips and a low carb sweetener.
For AIP, use carob and carob chips, cassava or tiger nut flour, and a gelatin egg or other AIP egg substitute and alcohol-free vanilla, and omit the nuts or sub in coconut shreds.

Double Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Walnut Cardamom Snowballs – All Day I Dream of Food

Walnut Cardamom Snowballs

Pumpkin Snickerdoodles – New Grain-Free Option! – me

Looking for Healthy Cookie Recipes or Allergy Free Cookies? These Pumpkin Snickerdoodles are Gluten-free, Dairy-free, Egg-free and Sugar-free. My boys LOVE them. In fact, whenever I talk about making cookies they ask for these! If you love snickerdoodles, you'll love these.

Grain-Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies – Back to the Book Nutrition

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener and use low-carb chocolate chips or my Homemade Chocolate Chips.

Grain-Free Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Paleo Sugar Cookies – A Girl Worth Saving

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener, and if you’re really strict low carb, omit the tapioca.

Paleo Sugar Cookies

Sugar-Free Paleo Pecan Snowball Cookies – Sugar-Free Mom

Sugar-Free Paleo Pecan Snowball Cookies

Grain-Free Chocolate Crinkles – Recipes to Nourish

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener and use almond flour instead of cassava flour.

Grain-Free Chocolate Crinkles

Coconut Zucchini Cookies – Grounded and Surrounded

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener, use almond flour, replace the applesauce with a healthy fat, and use low-carb chocolate chips or my Homemade Chocolate Chips.

Coconut Zucchini Cookies

No-Bake Coconut Delights – me

These No Bake Coconut Cookies come together super fast and they are Low Carb! Like a Low Carb version of those pricey Cocoroons in the health food store!

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cookies – Recipes to Nourish

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener and almond flour.

Gluten-Free Gingerbread Cookies

4-Ingredient Gluten-Free Shortbread Cookies – Wholesome Yum

4-Ingredient Gluten-Free Shortbread Cookies

Flourless Peppermint Chocolate Chip Cookies – Savory Lotus

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener and use low-carb chocolate chips or my Homemade Chocolate Chips.

Flourless Peppermint Chocolate Chip Cookies

Pumpkin Pie Snowball Cookies – Beauty and the Foodie

Pumpkin Pie Snowball Cookies

“Almond Joy” Bars – me

Got a sweet tooth but trying to eat healthier? These No Bake Dessert Low Carb "Almond Joy" Bars are soooo good - even non healthy eaters love them. Every time I make them they are gone lickety split and they're full of healthful ingredients like coconut oil, nut or seed butters, and more. These bars are sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, egg-free, dairy-free, autoimmune protocol/AIP friendly, and more!

Paleo Ranger Cookies – Pure & Simple Nourishment

for low carb, use a low-carb sweetener.

Paleo Ranger Cookies

Paleo Vegan Gingerbread Cookies – Healy Eats Real

for low carb, use a low-carb sweetener, and if you’re strict low carb, omit the arrowroot.

Paleo Vegan Gingerbread Cookies

Blender Batter Fresh Cranberry Breakfast Cookies – Raising Generation Nourished

for low carb, use a low-carb sweetener instead of the dates and almond flour for the tapioca, although they will not be as light with almond flour.

Blender Batter Fresh Cranberry Breakfast Cookies

Grain-Free Ginger Cookies – Savory Lotus

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener.

Grain-Free Ginger Cookies

Cranberry Molasses Spice Cookies – Gutsy By Nature

use low carb sweetener and almond flour for low carb.  The molasses should be OK in these.

Cranberry Molasses Spice Cookies

Kid-Approved Gluten-Free Gingersnap Cookies – Happy Mothering

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener and almond flour.

Kid-Approved Gluten-Free Gingersnap Cookies

Perfect Peanut Butter Blossoms – Real Food with Dana

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener and use low-carb chocolate chips or my Homemade Chocolate Chips.

Perfect Peanut Butter Blossoms

Grapefruit Linzer Cookies with Blueberry Preserves – Grass-Fed Salsa

for low carb, substitute a low-carb sweetener, use almond flour instead of arrowroot, substitute a healthy fat for the applesauce, and use low-carb preserves.

Grapefruit Linzer Cookies with Blueberry Preserves

Double Chocolate Coconut Butter Cookies – Eat Beautiful

for low carb, use a low-carb sweetener.

Double Chocolate Coconut Butter Cookies

Paleo Matcha and Pine Nut Cookies – I Heart Umami

for low carb, use a low-carb sweetener, and if you’re very strict low carb, omit the arrowroot.

Paleo Matcha Green Tea Thumbprint Cookies

Which of these Gluten-free Christmas Cookies is your favorite?

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Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Chia Pudding ~ low carb & dairy-free http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/chocolate-peanut-butter-chia-pudding/ http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/chocolate-peanut-butter-chia-pudding/#comments Fri, 16 Dec 2016 21:13:19 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41826 I’m so excited to share this recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding with you today. Because–Chocolate and Peanut Butter. There’s nothing like it. Since I’m all about healthifying things, how about turning this all time favorite flavor combo into a healthy treat – Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding? You better believe it. I have a real weakness for Reese’s Cups. Sigh. A really big one. We never buy candy, but if we’re at a party or gathering and there are mini PB Cups to be had, I’m a sucker for them. And at Halloween, if my kids go to […]

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This Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding is an easy dairy-free dessert that's super healthy too -- loaded with the benefits of chia seeds.

I’m so excited to share this recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding with you today.

Because–Chocolate and Peanut Butter.

There’s nothing like it.

Since I’m all about healthifying things, how about turning this all time favorite flavor combo into a healthy treat – Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding?

You better believe it.

I have a real weakness for Reese’s Cups.

Sigh.

A really big one.

We never buy candy, but if we’re at a party or gathering and there are mini PB Cups to be had, I’m a sucker for them.

And at Halloween, if my kids go to an event or go door to door, those PB Cups are something I’m totally coveting and bartering for.  It’s bad.

Thankfully this doesn’t happen often since I’m not a fan of the ingredients.  Yup, they are a little better than those candies that are basically just artificially colored sugar mushed together, but……

But oh – the taste.  Sigh, Reese’s.  You really did it.

The History of Reese’s

Yes, I had to find out.  I just had to.

Because this person deserves some kind of reward.

My Henry Reese was the father of 16 kids.  The short version of the story is that Mr. Reese got a job on the Hershey Dairy Farm (of Hershey Chocolate fame).  He started working in the chocolate factory and was encouraged to make his own chocolates. In 1920, his business was doing quite well and it led to him selling “Penny Cups” (they cost only a penny then), which were later to become Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.  You can read all of the fascinating story here, including how the Hershey Company bought the H.B. Reese Candy Company for $23.5 M in 1963.

Now, I am not going to be able to get any $23.5M windfall from this recipe for Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding, but I think it will get me a few Chocolate and Peanut Butter Lover “thank you”s from you all, in addition to it seriously coming to the rescue of my never-ending love of Chocolate and Peanut Butter.

Benefits of Chia

Chia seeds are full of protein, and they are full of fiber too so they fill you up and help you manage your waistline.

They are loaded with calcium too (a 1 ounce serving has 18% of the RDA) so those on dairy-free diets can feel especially good about adding this nutritional powerhouse to their diets.

Here is some of the data on the nutritional content of chia seeds:

  • Fiber: 11 grams.
  • Protein: 4 grams.
  • Fat: 9 grams
  • Calcium: 18% of RDA
  • Manganese: 30% of RDA
  • Magnesium: 30% of RDA
  • Phosphorus: 27% of RDA (sources: 1, 2)

And that’s just the beginning.

This Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding is an easy dairy-free dessert that's super healthy -- loaded with the benefits of chia seeds!

About Chia Pudding

I love chia puddings.

They are super easy to make, are super filling, and they are loaded with the healthfulness of chia.

One thing about chia, though, is most of the chia puddings on the web are soaked overnight.  The chia expands from the liquid in the pudding to make a tapioca-like pudding.

I personally am really turned off by tapioca – and those little soaked chia seeds look even more like fish eyes to me than their tapioca “cousins.”

So I opt for blended smooth chia pudding everytime.

Anyhow, in case you haven’t tried them yet, I already have some other lovely chia pudding recipes on my site including Chocolate Chia PuddingBerry Mousse, and Pumpkin Chia Pudding.

Plus I’m already working on a few other versions…..so hang on to your chia-loving hats :).

But this one is a real winner.

Like a Reese’s Cup in a jar – but without the TBHQ, refined sugar, soy, and other things I don’t like putting into my body…..

And yes, if you have a peanut allergy, another seed or nut butter will do just fine.  We tried it out with sunflower seed butter and almond butter and it was super tasty either way.  Of course, peanut butter is something special, but not if you have an allergy to it like my son does.

We used my Homemade Nut Butter / Seed Butter in this recipe. Making your own nut and seed butters is a fabulous way to save money and have total control over your ingredients.  You can see more about how to make your own Homemade Nut Butters and Homemade Seed Butters here.

This Chia Pudding is so healthy and easy to whip up.  You can blend it up the night before, put it in small dessert cups or mason jars, and enjoy it for a quick and easy breakfast.

Do You Need to Soak Chia Seeds?

I’ve written about How and Why to Soak Nuts and Seeds. And I’ve seen loads of soaked chia pudding recipes all over the internet. So I’ve wondered about whether my blended up, super smooth chia puddings were a health concern.

Well, they are not.

The good news is that chia seeds do not have the enzyme inhibitors that other nuts and seeds have, so you don’t need to soak them.

You can:

eat ’em raw

try ’em blended

eat ’em soaked

eat ’em like tapioca (not my preference, but if you like them this way….)

But just eat ’em and no worries about the soaking.

This Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding has a super dark chocolate pudding blended with a yummy peanut butter filling.  So if you’re a Reese’s lover like me, it’s guaranteed to satisfy!

You can really have fun with the toppings on this as well — from bananas to whipped cream to chocolate sauce, Homemade  Chocolate Chips, to this Whipped Coconut Pudding — the possibilities are deliciously endless.

This Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Seed Pudding is an easy dairy-free dessert that's super healthy too -- loaded with the benefits of chia seeds.

This Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding is an easy dairy-free dessert that's super healthy too -- loaded with the benefits of chia seeds.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Chia Pudding ~ low carb and dairy-free options
 
Author:
Recipe type: Pudding
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Sugar-Free, Grain-Free, Low-Carb, Vegan, Paleo
Serves: 4 servings
Prep time:
Total time:
 
Chocolate Peanut Butter Chia Pudding - like a Reese's Cup in pudding form. Loaded with healthy ingredients and oh so delicious!
Ingredients
Chocolate Pudding
PB part
Instructions
  1. Place ingredients for Peanut Butter Pudding in the blender, adding chia last to prevent it from swelling and making blending more difficult.
  2. Blend until smooth.
  3. Remove from blender and set aside.
  4. Place ingredients for Chocolate Pudding in blender.
  5. Blend until smooth.
  6. Layer the Chocolate and Peanut Butter Puddings alternating as desired.
  7. I recommend adding the chia last so that it doesn't swell and make blending more difficult.
  8. Finally, top with Whipped Coconut Cream, Bananas, Chopped Nuts, Homemade Granola, Cookie Crumbs, etc.
Notes
The Peanut Butter filling is a little thick -- feel free to add more coconut milk to thin it out as desired.

Dietary Notes - you can of course use regular milk and whatever sweetener you like.

I recommending making the Peanut Butter (or other nut butter) Pudding layer first so that you don't have to clean out the blender prior to making the Chocolate Pudding Layer, in which case the dark color of the chocolate would affect the light color of the Peanut Butter Pudding.

There you have it. I so hope that you try it and that you enjoy it as much as we do.

Do you like your chia puddings blended or not?
Please share with your other Chocolate Peanut Butter loving friends…

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20 Gut Health Tips for Kids with ADHD http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/probiotics-and-adhd/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/probiotics-and-adhd/#respond Sun, 11 Dec 2016 21:47:54 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41774 ADHD is prevalent these days, wreaking havoc on personal lives, families, and kids in school. There are drugs on the market to deal with it, and lots of different natural remedies for ADHD, but what if there was a way to deal with it from the root — from the inside out—by considering gut health and ADHD — or even probiotics and ADHD? Energy, excitement, and bursts of activity are surely normal (and entertaining!) aspects of being a kid that any parent is happy to see. But in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), these traits can show up more intensely: […]

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There are loads of meds and natural remedies for ADHD, but how about getting to the root of it all by looking at gut health and ADHD or probiotics and ADHD?

ADHD is prevalent these days, wreaking havoc on personal lives, families, and kids in school. There are drugs on the market to deal with it, and lots of different natural remedies for ADHD, but what if there was a way to deal with it from the root — from the inside out—by considering gut health and ADHD — or even probiotics and ADHD?

Energy, excitement, and bursts of activity are surely normal (and entertaining!) aspects of being a kid that any parent is happy to see. But in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), these traits can show up more intensely:

ADHD Symptoms

out-of- control hyperactivity
constant disruption of those around them
impulsivity
having trouble focusing
difficulty shifting between tasks

and more

Unlike typical bouts of wandering attention, ADHD is a medical disorder that researchers believe is the result of a chemical imbalance of neurotransmitters in the brain. It can affect many aspects of a person’s life, including learning, connecting with others, organizational skills, and time management.

As a parent, this can be disheartening when you begin to peel back the layers to discover that a medical disorder may be at the root of your child’s focus and behavior troubles. But if you feel your child might have ADHD—or if they have already been diagnosed—don’t worry. You are not alone (LOTS of parents struggle with this), and you have more options than you might think.

Obviously, as parents we will do whatever is possible to set our kiddos up for independent, healthy, and fulfilling lives.  So the question becomes: what’s the best option for achieving this when approaching ADHD?

If you’re like most parents, psychiatric medications like Ritalin might seem an obvious choice to improve your child’s school and family life (because let’s face it: an ADHD diagnosis can impact everyone involved).

After all, these drugs help ADHD children by increasing neurotransmitters norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin in the central nervous system.

But guess what else also does that?

Gut bacteria!

Yes, the same neurotransmitters that are given a boost by ADHD drugs are actually naturally created in our guts by trillions of microorganisms that live there (a.k.a. our microbiome) and then delivered to the brain.

This all literally all begins in the gut, and this is important to understand when looking at ADHD.

The Gut-Brain Relationship

Our little ones’ brain health and the gut are more connected than most parents realize.

In fact, making sure the gut microbiome is healthy and teeming with a diversity of friendly flora may have a big impact on the chemical balance in children’s brains, along with their overall health and development.

You see, those bacteria in the gut can communicate with the brain directly. They do this by sending messages via the vagus nerve, which runs from our brainstem all the way to our abdomen.

Gut microbes are crucial for the creation and regulation of neurotransmitters needed by the brain to produce healthy signals throughout the body—the same neurotransmitters that drugs like Ritalin are designed to increase in ADHD children.

But most of that serotonin isn’t being made in the brain—about 80-90% of it is made in the GI tract!

This is why we need that healthy balance of bacteria in our little one’s belly: to promote a healthy balance of chemicals in the brain.

Gut Health and ADHD Symptoms

Gut bacteria support nearly every facet of health and are part of the inner ecosystem of microbes that develop in each of us, beginning in the womb.

That’s why healthy gut flora are important for so many functions in the body, including optimal mental and emotional function (the creation of neurotransmitters and proper chemical balance in the brain), which is crucial for children with ADHD.

For the gut microbiome to be healthy, it requires an abundance of the good bacteria, also known as probiotics. About 85% of gut microbes should be a variety of probiotics in order to optimize important functions in the body and brain.

This is easier said than done, since so many things work against us (and our children) when it comes to the good flora we need to keep us healthy and thriving.

Here’s a quick list of things that can wipe out the good guys…

There are loads of meds and natural remedies for ADHD, but how about getting to the root of it all by looking at gut health and ADHD or probiotics and ADHD?

10 Things that Damage Good Gut Health

1. Processed and Sugary foods

Processed foods are often full of GMO oils that can destroy the gut. Plus these foods are full of refined carbs and sugars that lead to gut issues including candida and leaky gut.

2. Preservatives, Pesticides, Emulsifiers, Dyes, Artificial Fragrances

There is so much wrong with all of these. Just avoid them as much as possible.

3. Prolonged Stress

Stress has many bad effects on the body and the brain, with impaired gut health being one of them.

4. Certain medications

Besides antibiotics, other meds also affect the gut–birth control pills being one offender.

5. Widespread Presence of and Overuse of Antibiotics

Antibiotics kill life.  That is what their name means. They destroy not only the “bad guys”, but also the “good guys” in the gut.  That’s why you often have gut issues after taking an antibiotic and need to restore the balance.

6. Toxins in the Environment and Home

Besides those listed above, there are other pollutants to consider like flame retardants, chemicals in cleaning compounds, air pollution that comes in from the outdoors or from appliances.

7. Limited time outdoors (limited exposure to soil and animals)

Exposure to animals and soil is a good thing as it exposes us to small amounts of soil based organisms that can be beneficial to the gut.

8. Over-sanitizing (ex. antibacterial soaps)

Antibacterial soaps have been linked to the destruction of good bacteria (Source).

9. Cesarean birth vs. vaginal birth

When babies are born via C-section, they miss out on the benefits of mom’s gut flora that lines the vaginal cavity.

10. Not being breastfed

Breastmilk contains beneficial bacteria along with so many other things that benefit baby’s well being.

Probiotics and ADHD — How to Restore Your Child’s Gut Health

Ideally, we should expose our children to healthy bacteria as early as possible (even prenatally through maternal probiotic supplementation) and avoid practices that damage our friendly flora. This will give kids healthy connections between gut and proper brain chemical balance.

But since many factors in our modern environment can negatively affect the microbiome, one of the best ways to ensure our kids are continually exposed to strong probiotic colonies is through high-quality probiotic supplements.

In one promising study, probiotics combined with other nutritional supplements were shown to be just as effective at improving symptoms of ADHD as Ritalin (1).  This makes sense because as we’ve already discussed, the neurotransmitters needed for healthy brain balance are produced in the gut!

In another fascinating trial, researchers gave 75 infants either probiotics or placebo for the first six months of life, and then followed them for thirteen years. At the end of the study, none of the kids in the probiotic group had developed ADHD, compared to 17% of kids in the placebo group (2).

10 Steps to Balance the Gut and Improve Mental Function

If we’re not actively stocking our guts with good gut bacteria, the scales will likely tip and the bad guys will soon outnumber the good guys. Thankfully, you can help your children fortify and improve their gut health.

First, Replenish Your Child’s Gut and Encourage Focus

1. Take a high-quality multi-strain probiotic formula to balance gut bacteria and promote a healthy digestive system. The best probiotics can withstand stomach acids and enable the bacteria reach the gut alive to perform their health-enhancing duties. Otherwise, the stomach’s acidic environment might make the probiotic totally useless, which is a huge waste of money.

We’ve tried a bunch of probiotics over the years, but my youngest loves this probiotic, and I love the care that has gone into their products. I’ve corresponded with the company’s owner and am highly impressed with her knowledge base and attention to detail.

2Eat probiotic-rich foods such as non-dairy yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, kimchi, miso soup, pickles, tempeh, and kombucha tea.

3. Consume prebiotic foods to ensure the friendly flora in your gut stay alive and thrive! Prebiotics are a type of nondigestible fiber that feeds the probiotics in your gut. Some popular prebiotics include oats, bananas, Jerusalem artichoke, dandelion greens, garlic, leeks, and onions. You can also purchase a prebiotic like this one that we use.

4. Encouraging free playtime to help alleviate stress almost instantaneously while encouraging a more balanced microbiome.

For more microbiome-boosting, get kids outside to play and get extra dirty. This exposes them to healthy microbes that help to keep their digestive tract and immune system strong year long.

5.  Revamp the family diet.

Focus primarily on whole, plant-based foods, preferably those that are organic, hormone, pesticide and antibiotic free. Include fresh vegetables with every meal to nourish the body with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

6. Avoid or reduce exposure to products that interfere with our body’s natural hormones (endocrine disruptors).

These can include items that contain BPA (plastics and aluminum cans); dioxins (animal products such as meat, eggs and dairy); atrazine (non-organic corn and unfiltered drinking water); phthalates (plastic containers and plastic wrap); arsenic (unfiltered drinking water); perfluorinated chemicals (non- stick pans or stain and water-resistant coatings) and pesticides (non-organic produce). Please, please, make sure that you have a good water filter  in your home.

7. Remove or reduce exposure to possible triggers, such as added stressors and video games. These flood the brain with the important neurotransmitter called dopamine, leaving very little dopamine leftover for motivation, focus, and attention.

8. Consume an abundance of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients, amino acids, essential fatty acids, and phospholipids.

Foods such as chia seeds, hemp seeds, flax seeds, avocados, whole grains, olive oil, and almonds are all fairly easy foods to sneak into your child’s lunchbox or mix in with their meals. Try my Chocolate Chia Pudding, Dairy-free Ranch Dressing, AIP Guacamole, Moroccan Vinaigrette, and Almond Joy Bars to see how easily and deliciously you can add these to your child’s diet.

9. Watch the carbs.  Excess carbs and refined sugars can lead to gut dysbiosis which can cause all kinds of health and behavioral issues.

10. Consider Liver Support – The liver filters out all kinds of toxins so give it some support.  Supplements are one way to do that, and these castor oil packs have been a huge help in our family.

Conclusion

As anyone with a child with ADHD knows, anything you can do to help make things more smooth is a big help.

There are loads of natural remedies for ADHD that you can pursue, but why not get to the root of things?  Look at the relationship between gut health and ADHD or probiotics and ADHD to see if these might be the right approach for you and your family!  And besides, when you improve gut health, all kinds of other good things can follow.

Because a happy gut leads to a happy, healthy, and balanced brain. And a healthy brain means a joyful, productive, and motivated child!

 

Do you give your kids probiotics?
What has helped for ADHD for you or your kids?

References:

1. Harding, K. L., Judah, R. D., &  Gant, C. (2003). “Outcome-based comparison of Ritalin versus food-supplement treated children with AD/HD.”  Alternative Medicine Review : A Journal of Clinical Therapeutic 8 (3): 319–30.

2. Pärtty, A., Kalliomäki, M., Wacklin, P., Salminen, S., & Isolauri, E. (2015). “A possible link between early probiotic intervention and the risk of neuropsychiatric disorders later in childhood: A randomized trial.”  Pediatric Research 77 (6): 823-28.

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Nigella Seed Oil – True Magic for the Skin! http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/nigella-seed-oil/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/nigella-seed-oil/#comments Thu, 01 Dec 2016 20:31:57 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41428 Today, Lise Andersen, Formulator and Owner of LisaLise Natural Skincare, is sharing with us the magic of Nigella Seed Oil (more commonly known as Black Cumin Seed Oil). Lise has a fabulous website with loads of information on natural skincare ingredients and lovely DIY formulas and how-to’s that you can use to make your own skincare products. Lise and I met via a comment she made on my blog and I was really impressed with her knowledge of skincare and her thoughtfulness about using clean ingredients. I know some things about skincare, but I have a lot more to learn, for […]

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Nigella Seed Oil - This amazing oil is simply Magic for Your Skin!

Today, Lise Andersen, Formulator and Owner of LisaLise Natural Skincare, is sharing with us the magic of Nigella Seed Oil (more commonly known as Black Cumin Seed Oil).

Lise has a fabulous website with loads of information on natural skincare ingredients and lovely DIY formulas and how-to’s that you can use to make your own skincare products.

Lise and I met via a comment she made on my blog and I was really impressed with her knowledge of skincare and her thoughtfulness about using clean ingredients.
I know some things about skincare, but I have a lot more to learn, for sure, and one thing I didn’t know anything about is Nigella Seed Oil (Black Cumin Seed Oil).  Here is Lise to tell us more about this amazing product.

Nigella Seed Oil

Part of my work creating plant-based cosmetics entails researching ingredients, and nigella seed oil has some of the most impressive qualities I have come across in a single ingredient. The INCI (Latin) name for this herb – also commonly called black cumin or black caraway – is Nigella Sativa (black cumin seed).

The cold-pressed oil has a golden color, deliciously warm, peppery scent and is so rich in essential oil components that it needs to be diluted heavily before application to the skin.

A Miracle Herb

Nigella received the title ‘Miracle Herb’ from a scientific paper published by the American National Library of Medicine. Because nigella has demonstrated such impressive abilities as battling certain types of tumors and cancers, it continues to hold science’s full attention with numerous ongoing studies.

Scientific studies to date have shown that nigella seed oil decreases blood pressure, promotes wound healing, and can help treat acne with a reduction of up to 10%. In a 6-month study, topical application of nigella seed oil significantly decreased vitiligo.

Other studies indicate that nigella seed oil is an effective aid for treating psoriasis. A 2010 study showed that nigella seed (in an emulsion combined with borage oil) reduced skin irritation significantly while improving hydration and epidermal barrier function.

Current studies are trying to establish whether or not nigella might be able to help relieve:

allergic reactions
epilepsy in children
the rashy skin reaction from nickel allergy

To add to all these positives, nigella has a very low degree of toxicity.

Nigella Seed Oil Benefits

Nigella seeds contain many beneficial actives:

fixed and essential oil
alkaloids
proteins
lineolic acid
palmitic acid
oleic acid
vitamin E
and (much) more.

The oil has anti-sceptic and anti-inflammatory properties, making it a great choice for sensitive skin. It also promotes cohesion of skin cells, helps lock in moisture, and helps the skin regenerate.

In short, nigella seed oil is a multifunctional powerhouse.

Apart from being great for skincare, nigella seed oil also helps strengthen nails and bring bounce and shine to dull, brittle hair.

Tips for Nigella Seed Oil Topical Use

Before we get to the formula, following are a few tips regarding the use of Nigella Seed Oil:

Always dilute before use – never use more than 10% in any blend.

Do not use nigella seed oil near the eyes.

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Why Measure by Weight

Measuring by weight is the only way to be sure of the exact amount of each ingredient, which is vital when making skincare products. It is simply not accurate enough to measure the ingredients by volume.

The reason for this is that every oil has a different density and cannot be accurately measured by volume.

Therefore, ALWAYS measure by weight – it’s as easy as 1-2-3:

1. place container on scale
2. set scale to 0
3. pour oil into container until desired weight is reached

Note that for making skincare, you will want a scale that can handle precise measurements, like this one, which is actually the very scale that Adrienne uses in her kitchen :).)

Nigella Seed Oil (Black Cumin Seed Oil) Skincare Formula

Throughout much of this year, I have been testing nigella seed oil in different cosmetic applications and it has already become a favored staple in my ingredients stockroom. Several clients have started asking for it specifically when ordering a custom face oil blend.

Now you can incorporate this wonderful skin-loving oil into your daily skincare routine. Exclusively for Whole New Mom’s readers, I have created a formula for a luxurious, nourishing face elixir that can be used by men and women alike – either alone or under a moisturizer.

This blend is for adult skin and has a generous 7% nigella seed oil. If you have nut allergies, replace the sweet almond oil with either jojoba oil, thistle oil, or hempseed oil. Be sure to use only cosmetic grade oils for your elixir.

How To Apply Your Elixir

Place 6-8 drops elixir in the palm of your hand.

Rub palms together to warm and disperse the product.

Apply to freshly-cleansed, damp face and neck using gentle, upward strokes and taking care to avoid the eyes.

Check the mirror.

See that fabulous face? — That’s you plus the magic of Nigella Seed Oil!

Nigella Seed Oil - This amazing oil is simply Magic for Your Skin!


Please note that this formula is free of preservatives and should be used within 6 months of making.

So, what are you waiting for?

Get some Nigella Seed Oil and get working on having this powerhouse go to work towards making you more lovely, and most importantly, more healthy.

Have you ever heard of or used Nigella Seed Oil?

Lise Anderson LisaLise SkincareLise M Andersen – LisaLise – is based in Copenhagen, Denmark where she creates plant-based custom cosmetics and formulations. Visit her website LisaLise.com where she also offers instructional e-books and DIY skincare kits. Follow along as she develops products at her blog, LisaLiseBlog.com, which also features many DIY how-to’s and an ever-growing ingredients library.

 

 

Sources:

National Library of Medicine, Review on therapeutic potential of nigella sativa
Pharmacological and Toxicological Properties of Nigella Sativa
Plants for a Future: Nigella Sativa
Journal of Dermatology, Dermatological Effects of Nigella Sativa, 2015
M.S. Hanafi, M.E. Hatem, Studies on the anti-microbial activity of the Nigella sativa seed (Black Cumin)
S. Amin, S.R. Mir, K. Kohli, B. Ali, M. Ali, A study of the chemical composition of black cumin oil and its effect on penetration enhancement from transdermal formulations
Brazilian Journal of Medicine and Biological Research, Antitumor properties of nigella seed extracts
Chopra RN, Nayar SL, Chopra IC. Glossary of Indian medicinal plants. New Delhi: Council of Scientific and Industrial Research; 1956
Mohammad Akram Handawa, AntiCancer Activity of Nigella Sativa
Thymoquinone in the clinical treatment of cancer  – fact or fiction? US National Library of Health and Medicine
Thymoquinine  – 50 years of success in the battle against cancer models, Science Direct
American Journal of Physiology, Thymoquinone, a bioactive component of Nigella sativa, normalizes insulin secretion from pancreatic ?-cells under glucose overload via regulation of malonyl-CoA
Ivankovic S, Stojkovic R, Jukic M, Milos M, Milos M, Jurin M., The Anti-tumor activity of thymoquinone and thymohydroquinone, Sept 2006, PubMed
Use of the naturally-occurring quinones thymoquinone and dithymoquinone as antineoplastic and cytotoxic agents, University of Kentucky Research Foundation Application for Patent
Thymol (Wikipedia)

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Healthy Cyber Monday Deals! http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/healthy-cyber-monday-deals-2016/ http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/healthy-cyber-monday-deals-2016/#respond Mon, 28 Nov 2016 16:55:19 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41610 Hi there everyone! Hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving Weekend….the fun’s not over yet, however…….I’ve got a lot of new deals for you today. More and more good things to share….enjoy all the savings!!!  There are some really really good ones! By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running. Rocky Mountain Oils 20% off everything, Free Oils Box & 40% off ALL Doorbusters. Plus more! Today is the day! […]

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Hi there everyone!

Hope you all had a lovely Thanksgiving Weekend….the fun’s not over yet, however…….I’ve got a lot of new deals for you today.

More and more good things to share….enjoy all the savings!!!  There are some really really good ones!

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Rocky Mountain Oils
20% off everything, Free Oils Box &
40% off ALL Doorbusters.
Plus more!

Rocky Mountain Oils Cyber Monday Sale

Today is the day!

Shop at Rocky Mountain Oils, and get 40% off all of the Black Friday Weekend Specials, plus they are adding in the Mom’s Essential and Concentration Kits for 40% off for today only — and the first 200 who order $49 or more get a FREE 16 hole Wooden Storage Box!

I highlighted RMO in my series on The Best Essential Oils and ended up with them here.

Go here to get all of the deals!

NYR Organic

Neal's Yard Remedies Cyber Monday Sale

Get a FREE Bee Lovely Hand Cream ($15 value) with any order of $100 or more.

I have this hand cream in my purse now and it’s lovely.  Whenever I share some with a friend, they love it.

Delicately scented with honey — and it supports the deminishing bee population too.

Go here to shop and get your free Bee Lovely Hand Cream.  🙂

Crunchi
30% off

Crunchi Black Friday Sale

Yikes – I posted that this deal was only on through Sunday, but it’s still on today.

Crunchi has fabulous products — LOVE their makeup — and it’s very clean.

Here are the 30% off deals through the end of today:

Foundation – So far, my favorite foundation. Stays lovely even in 90 degree heat.
Primer – I had never worn a primer before, but wow.  What a difference!
Lip Gloss – This is my favorite lip gloss ever.  Smells great, stays on for a long time and looks lovely.
Bronzer – I had never worn bronzer before either – but this gives a nice bit of color without looking overdone.

Plus, you get Free Shipping over $150 :).

All are While Supplies Last so don’t delay!

Morrocco Method
Cyber Week Deals!

Morrocco Method Cyber Monday Sale

I have been looking for a non-toxic shampoo for a long time and right now I’m settling on Morrocco Method.

I’ll be sharing more later, but their shampoos, combined with some other natural products / herbs, has my hair feeling fabulous.

Sometimes I rotate in another shampoo, but not always.

You can get great deals on Morrocco Method all week, but today – get 25% off all of their Shampoos and Conditioners with code CyberMonday.  I’m buying some for sure!

Go here to shop.

Diffusing Mamas

Diffusing Mamas Black Friday Sale

Take your essential oils with you and save 25% on my favorite Diffusing Jewelry.   PLUS get Free Products valued at more than $75 when you order $150 or more!

So much of the diffuser jewelry on the market are low quality — they break and tarnish :(.  No fun.

Not these – These are super high quality.

Use Code BLACKFRIDAY2016 to get the savings!

Instant Pot 7 in 1
43% Off!

Instant Pot

I used my Instant Pot for the First Time this weekend, and my youngest said it made the BEST chicken he’d every had!

I’ve used Pressure Cookers for a long time, but this was so nice – no watching, no checking the level of the pressure — just set and forget!

Go here to get your new favorite appliance!

Lilla Rose
20% – 60% off everything

Lilla-Rose-Hair-Clips

Get 20% – 60% off of everything at Lilla Rose!

Plus Get Free Shipping on orders of $75 or more.

I wear Lilla Rose clips every day — You can read my Lilla Rose Review here.

T-Tapp
My Fave Exercise Routine!
T Tapp Sale

If you are looking for a way to stay in shape but you’re short on time, T-Tapp is for you!

I do only T-Tapp and some minimal weight training, and I am able to stay in pretty good shape doing only 15 minutes a day. PLUS it helps give you good posture!

I do T-Tapp’s Basic Workout Plus, but occasionally do the Step Away the Inches as well.  It’s fun and easy…and many can even do T Tapp late at night and it doesn’t disturb sleep (it works for me just fine!)

Go here to get all kinds of deals on T-Tapp workouts and more here.

Amazon
$10 off Books!

Amazon Holiday Book Sale

Get $10 off your book purchase of $25 or more with code HOLIDAYBOOK!

What a great way to add to your healthy living library.  Grab a great cookbook, an herbal book  – how about homeopathy or essential oils?

This book on Essential Oils is one of my favorites and it’s been reduced to an amazing low price!  I’m buying this for sure!

Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals

Go here to get your savings!

Beautycounter
BOGO my FAVE Mascara
Special Blush Offer
& Free Shipping over $100

Beautycounter Cyber Monday Mascara Sale

All day today, you can BOGO on my favorite safe mascara.

This stuff literally is basically waterproof!  I was caught in a downpour and it didn’t run!  I’ll share more about safe / natural mascaras later, but this is the one I always use if I’m going to be somewhere where I will likely cry (sappy movie, church, etc.) or if it’s raining, or when it’s allergy season or I have a cold.

Plus, you can get a huge discount on this Special Blush Duo and Free Shipping over $100.

Go here to get your mascara and all the other deals….

 

Vitamix

Vitamix Black Friday Sale

I LOVE my Vitamix!  Seriously, it’s one of the BEST investments we ever made in our lives.

Through Cyber Monday, get their Certified Reconditioned Machine for as Low as $249!

And through December 31st, while supplies last, save up to $90 on a new qualifying machine on Vitamix.com.

Bluehost
$2.95 a month hosting!

Do you have a blog or are you thinking about starting one?

Now is the time to Go here to get it as your blog’s host – for the great price of only $2.95 a month for 36 months!

You can’t beat this deal!

Go here to get it.

That’s all for now — enjoy the savings!!
I’ll be back later this week with some new posts :).

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11 Quick Steps to Get Holistic Health Now http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/get-holistic-health/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/get-holistic-health/#comments Sat, 26 Nov 2016 20:35:08 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41580 You might look healthy on the outside, but are you really healthy? It’s important to not have appearance be your goal, but to really learn how to get holistic health — by that, I mean having not only a healthy body, but also a healthy spirit and a healthy soul. Health is often confused with weight loss. To people, looking slim or athletic means that a person is in good physical condition. However, health is more than just your outward appearance. A holistic approach to health applies to your mind and body. Due to a lack of time and their […]

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Learn How to Get Holistic Health with these 11 tips because Healthy isn't just about being thin and "buff"-- it's about your Body, Spirit, and Soul.

You might look healthy on the outside, but are you really healthy?

It’s important to not have appearance be your goal, but to really learn how to get holistic health — by that, I mean having not only a healthy body, but also a healthy spirit and a healthy soul.

Health is often confused with weight loss. To people, looking slim or athletic means that a person is in good physical condition.

However, health is more than just your outward appearance. A holistic approach to health applies to your mind and body.

Due to a lack of time and their busy lives, people don’t pay enough attention to their health. While eating right and exercising is a start, overall health requires a more thorough approach.

Below we’re sharing 11 tips to get holistic health. Keep reading to find out what they are.

1. Learn To Breathe

Breathing has been used as a relaxation technique for a long time. Learning how to control your breathing can help reduce stress and relieve anxiety. Stress and anxiety can put undue pressure on the cardiovascular system.

There are a number of breathing techniques that one can use to encourage healthier breathing.

I use the abdominal technique. It involves taking 6 to 10 deep breaths every minute for up to 10 minutes. However, there are a number of other techniques that people can use.  Equal breathing or alternate nostril breathing are some techniques.

 

2. Eat Right

Eating healthy doesn’t mean you have to resort to eating only salads or starving yourself. You should focus on eating healthy foods that you like. Include as many fruits (as low carb as possible) and vegetables as you can.

Of course, there are many “healthy eating” plans around. There’s the candida diet, the paleo diet, the keto diet (low carb, high fat), the autoimmune protocol (AIP) diet, the Whole30 diet, the Blood Type Diet, and the list goes on and on.

Eating Right means eating in a way that is best for you.  Of course, there are some parameters that are good to follow no matter what diet you are on — such as avoiding junk food and artificial flavors and colors, and eating organic as much as possible, but eating as much produce as possible while including good sources of protein and fats, is overall a good place to start.

 

3. Stay High On Energy

To ensure your mind and body are both in top condition, stay high on energy throughout the day.

There are a few natural energy boosters such as green tea, berries, and other fruits that will keep you healthy and happy.

Depending on your personal reaction to it, green tea may or may not be a good addition to your diet.  Some people are very sensitive to caffeine and must avoid it at all costs.

However, caffeine in limited quantities can be quite beneficial as it’s known to boost your metabolism and offer other thermogenic benefits. Typically, coffee is not recommended as the added things like sugars and processed creamers add a lot of empty calories and non wholesome ingredients.

Plus the “caffeine hit” is much greater than it is for green tea.

By the way, if you love coffee, but are trying to get off of caffeine, you can try this Homemade Coffee Substitute.

Learn How to Get Holistic Health with these 11 tips because Healthy isn't just about being thin and "buff"-- it's about your Body, Spirit, and Soul.

4. Set Goals

While we relate goals to weight loss, goals can be useful for other aspects of health. Set certain targets for things like how many hours a week you should spend on your hobbies, with family or friends, or away from your cell phone / computer.

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

5. Reward Yourself

People on strict diets often resort to cheat days to help them cope with the pressure. On a cheat day, they can eat fatty foods that are otherwise restricted.

This concept can be applied to other areas of your life fairly simply.

 

6. Take Time For Yourself

Even with all your responsibilities and trying to balance work and family, you should try to take time for yourself. Doing something you enjoy like reading your child a story, doing a crossword puzzle, writing a letter (who doesn’t love getting real mail these days?!) or putting together photo albums for an hour a day will ensure you stay grounded and peaceful.

Some of the best “time for yourself” can be getting alone and just resting.  (From Adrienne – getting time with God is a huge rejuvenator for me.)

 

7. Exercise The Right Way

Depending on what your primary goal is, you should tailor your workout to suit it. Most people just perform exercises without understanding what they are for. Start by calculating your BMI, which will help you understand your position as well as help you set a goal.

Then streamline your workout to help you achieve that goal.

(Adrienne here: My personal favorite exercises are T-Tapp, walking, and some weight lifting.  And I don’t do crunches anymore!)

 

8. Stay Hydrated

Your body mostly consists of water. This makes it crucial to drink enough water throughout the day. Studies have found that most people are actually dehydrated and don’t drink the daily recommended water intake.

Make sure that your water is clean, however.  See Is Your Water Safe and How to Make Your Water Safe for details on how to make sure you aren’t drinking toxins!

 

9. Eat Fats

Fats are not your enemy! Healthy fats are essential for your body to function properly.

Healthy fats should be consumed from sources such as nuts, fatty fish, and oils like olive and coconut. This also works to reduce food cravings since fat satiates you.

 

10. Socialize

Meeting with people and having a good time is also important. Regular social interaction ensures your mind stays healthy. Laughter is also great to reduce stress and lift moods.

Go to church, join a mothers’ or ladies’ group, have people over, or go for a walk with a friend.  It’s all a fabulous way to get that connecting time that your soul needs.

 

11. Get Offline

So much of our time is spent sitting in front of a computer or a mobile phone that we’ve become addicted to them. Studies have found that social media contributes to feelings of depression and stress. Disconnecting, even for a short period every day, will ensure you are happier.

Conclusion

In a world where every third person is overweight, losing weight and eating healthy are important.

However, a holistic approach to health is what most people require. It will help prevent burnouts at work, improve your quality of life, and much more.

Here’s wishing you a healthy and happy life.

 

Do you do all of these?  Which do you find the hardest?
Got another tip to share?

Aradhana PandeyAradhana is a writer from India. Her areas of knowledge include parenting, children with special needs, health and lifestyle. She loves being outdoors and her hobbies include cycling and hiking. Aradhana has a special interest in children with special needs and parenting and shares her experiences through her other passion, writing. She writes to share her knowledge so that it may help others. Her posts on these subjects have been published on more than 250+ various reputed sites like the Huffington post, SheKnows, Mom Junction and many more. Aradhana writes to inspire and motivate people to adopt healthy habits and live a stress-free lifestyle.

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“Shop in Your PJ’s” Black Friday Healthy Living Deals – 2016 http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/black-friday-healthy-deals-2016/ http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/black-friday-healthy-deals-2016/#respond Fri, 25 Nov 2016 07:38:42 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41480 I hope that you all had a lovely Thanksgiving (those of you in the US, at least :)). We had a fabulous time with new friends, had a mostly organic meal, loads and loads of food and fellowship, and my kids got to hang out with their children. We talked music, faith, current events, healthy living, and more…..just great. Since we stayed late, I did not go to any stores in the wee hours (not that I would anyhow), and well, when there are great deals like this online, who needs to? So excited about these! By the way, any of […]

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Black Friday Healthy Living Deals

I hope that you all had a lovely Thanksgiving (those of you in the US, at least :)).

We had a fabulous time with new friends, had a mostly organic meal, loads and loads of food and fellowship, and my kids got to hang out with their children.

We talked music, faith, current events, healthy living, and more…..just great.

Since we stayed late, I did not go to any stores in the wee hours (not that I would anyhow), and well, when there are great deals like this online, who needs to?

So excited about these!

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

The Truth About Cancer
Free Showing
The Truth About Cancer Symposium

This weekend, from 9 AM EST today (11/25) through 6:30 PM Sunday (11/27), you can get completely access to The Truth About Cancer’s (TTAC) Ultimate Live Symposium.

This group regularly produces very popular series and contains a lot of great information to help you and your loved ones, including:

Vaccines and Cancer – Is There a Link?
Nutrition and Cancer – What You Need to Know
The Keto Diet – Can It Really Prevent and Treat Cancer?
RoundUp and Cancer – How We Are Poisoning Ourselves

Get your free access here.

Beautycounter
Free Lip Sheer and Body Oil

Beautycounter Black Friday Sale

From today through Sunday, Nov. 27, if you spend $125 at Beautycounter, you will get a FREE Lip Sheer ($30 value) — your choice of color!  Beautycounter’s Lip Sheer is the ONLY safe lipstick that works on me.  Their colors are lovely.  I love Twig, Petal, and also Terra.

Spend $250, and get the FREE Lip Sheer AND a Free Rosemary Citrus Body Oil ($103 total value!).  Beautycounter’s products are very safe  – their lipstick rates a 1 on EWG so it’s super safe!  The body oil is lovely – goes on right after the shower and isn’t greasy.

I highly recommend:

Mascara – it’s basically waterproof and is very safe!  I got caught in a downpour and it didn’t run at all!

Sea Salt Spray – LOVE this. I ditched my toxic hairspray (it said it was fragrance-free, but I found “fragrance” on the label!).  This spray is non drying and holds great, plus it adds volume too.  I use very little and don’t find myself reapplying much at all!

Charcoal Cleansing Bar – GREAT for fighting breakouts – without drying!

Tint Skin – Their foundation is lovely and very safe.  Lots of shades to choose from too.

Eye Pencils – Safe and pretty.  I personally love the Navy – not too dark, just right color.  The Black is great too.

Beautycounter has a nice 60 day “no worries” return policy too!

Crunchi
30% off

Crunchi Black Friday Sale

I’m not a “one company fits all” kind of gal, so I’ve also teamed up with Crunchi.  They have fabulous products and are a very young company. LOVE their makeup — and it’s very clean.

Here are the 30% off deals that you can get from today through 11/27:

Foundation – So far, my favorite foundation. Stays lovely even in 90 degree heat.
Primer – I had never worn a primer before, but wow.  What a difference!
Lip Gloss – This is my favorite lip gloss ever.  Smells great, stays on for a long time and looks lovely.
Bronzer – I had never worn bronzer before either – but this gives a nice bit of color without looking overdone.

Plus, you get Free Shipping over $150 :).

NYR Organic
1/2 off Healing Foods Book

 

Neal's Yard Remedies Healing Foods Book

 

This isn’t a Black Friday deal (I update the post on Sat.) but it’s a great deal.

For 11/26 and 11/27, you can get the Healing Foods Book for 1/2 off when you spend $60.

This book is loaded with tons of nutrition helps as well as lovely recipes to help you feel your best.

Read more about NYR Organic here.

Rocky Mountain Oils
20% off everything and up to 40% off others!

RMO Black Friday Deals

Through Monday, Nov. 28 (Cyber Monday), there will be great sales going on at Rocky Mountain Oils, the company that I mentioned in my series, The “Best” Essential Oils.

Each day there will be a new sale announced, so come back every day to see what new thing is on sale!  With Free Shipping in the US, you can easily take advantage of all of them!

The whole store is 20% off all weekend, and every day there will be certain products offered at 40% off!

Today (Sat 11/26), get 20% off everything plus 40% off the Frankincense Carterii and Breathe Easy Blend!

Lilla Rose
20% – 60% off everything

Lilla-Rose-Hair-Clips

Get 20% – 60% off of everything at Lilla Rose!  Plus Free Shipping on orders of $75 or more.

I wear Lilla Rose clips every day.  Read my Lilla Rose Review here.

This deal is on thru 11:59 PST Monday, Nov 28!

T-Tapp
My Fave Exercise Routine!
T Tapp Sale

I used to really overdo it at the gym and running, and then exercising at home….then I ended up with adrenal issues.  Boo.

Now I do only T-Tapp and some minimal weight training, and I am able to stay in pretty good shape doing only 15 minutes a day. PLUS it helps give you good posture!

I do T-Tapp’s Basic Workout Plus, but occasionally do the Step Away the Inches as well.

Go here to get all kinds of deals on T-Tapp workouts and more here.

Instant Pot
40% off!

Instant Pot

The Instant Pot is a favorite of healthy cooks all over!

Right now you can get this amazing pot for

I’ve not done it yet, but I hear you can cook a frozen chicken in 35 minutes!  Woot!

And bonus – – the interior isn’t toxic non-stick — it’s Stainless Steel!  I just used mine for the first time last night and made Shredded Chili Lime Chicken.  It was GREAT!  My family was really surprised at how amazing it tasted.  Just set it and go – no watching :)!

Grab your Instant Pot on sale here.

Vitamix

Vitamix Black Friday Sale

I LOVE my Vitamix!  Seriously, it’s one of the BEST investments we ever made in our lives.

Through Cyber Monday, get their Certified Reconditioned Machine for as Low as $249!

And through December 31st, while supplies last, save up to $90 on a new qualifying machine on Vitamix.com.

Excalibur Dehydrators
20% off

Excalibur Dehydrator Black Friday Sale

I use my dehydrator all the time!  And now you can get one at a great price!

Get 20% off all orders over $100 – use code BLACK2016.

Code expires midnight PST, Friday 25, 2016.

Xtrema Cookware
25%+ off!

Ceramcor Black Friday

I use a lot of different cookware, but one of the sets that I like is the Xtrema Ceramic Cookware Set.

It’s totally non toxic, cooks well, and is great if you’re making things that can’t be cooked in metal (many herbalists recommend not heating herbs in metal).

Get 25% off everything, plus bonus categories are 30% off – through 11/27.

Bluehost
$2.95 a month hosting!

Do you have a blog or are you thinking about starting one?

Now is the time to Go here to get it as your blog’s host – for the great price of only $2.95 a month for 36 months!

You can’t beat this deal!

Go here to get it.

Amazon
$10 off Books!

Amazon Holiday Book Sale

Get $10 off your book purchase of $25 or more with code HOLIDAYBOOK!

What a great way to add to your healthy living library.  Grab a great cookbook, an herbal book  – how about homeopathy or essential oils?

This book on Essential Oils is one of my favorites and it’s been reduced to an amazing low price!

Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals

Go here to get your savings!

Have a great rest of the Holiday Weekend!
If you have any questions about any of the deals, feel free to ask below…

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Are Old Essential Oils Dangerous? Use Them or Toss Them? http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/shelf-life-of-essential-oils/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/shelf-life-of-essential-oils/#comments Sat, 19 Nov 2016 19:41:36 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41354 What is the shelf life of essential oils? Do essential oils expire? These are important questions to answer. Essential oils are not cheap.  Well, some of them are very affordable, but some are quite expensive, and of course the bottles are quite small. If you are into DIYing essential oils blends instead of buying blends pre-made, knowing about essential oils expiration and the shelf life of essential oils can be a big deal. For example, let’s say you want to save money by making your own essential oils blends like my Breathe Easy Blend, Hair Growth Blend, or Antibacterial Blend. […]

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Wondering if your older essential oils are safe to use or if you should toss them? Find out if Essential Oils Expire and what the shelf life of essentials oils is.

What is the shelf life of essential oils?

Do essential oils expire?

These are important questions to answer.

Essential oils are not cheap.  Well, some of them are very affordable, but some are quite expensive, and of course the bottles are quite small.

If you are into DIYing essential oils blends instead of buying blends pre-made, knowing about essential oils expiration and the shelf life of essential oils can be a big deal.

For example, let’s say you want to save money by making your own essential oils blends like my Breathe Easy Blend, Hair Growth Blend, or Antibacterial Blend.  However, if you end up having a bunch of left over essential oils that you end up tossing because they expired, then you end up not saving any money at all.

Sigh.

Anyhow, the topic of the shelf life of essential oils and whether or not essential oils expire is something that I have been wondering about for a long time.

Because I’m a money-saving-bulk-buying kind of gal.

I’m the gal who buys 25-pound bags of organic dried beans, 25-pound bags of organic coconut for my Homemade Coconut Chips and Easiest Coconut Milk, 25-pounds of chicory for my Nourishing Coffee Substitute — and yes, I have bought a lot of single essential oils to make blends from.

And I have a lot.

So for all of the other money-saving-bulk-buying folk out there, here are the facts on the shelf life of essential oils.

One Myth About Essential Oil Expiration

There are lots of myths running around regarding essential oils and one of them is this:

“If a company tells you that their essential oils expire, or have a shelf life, then they are not pure essential oils.”

That’s not true.

Now, it is true that essential oils do not contain water, so they do not grow mold, mildew, or yeast, and additionally they have antibacterial and antiviral properties, but they do change over time and you need to know how in order to be able to use your essential oils safely and effectively.

Several things can affect the shelf life of essential oils and can cause them to not be as effective.

Essential Oils are volatile oils (they easily evaporate — that is why you smell them) and they can oxidize.  If you know anything about the word “oxidize,” it means that it is affected by oxygen.

You’ve surely heard about “antioxidants” in foods and how they are good for you, right?  They prevent, or help get rid of, the damage done by oxygen exposure that is called “oxidizing.”

In the same way that oxidizing affects foods (and your body), oxygen affects essential oils.

Wondering if your older essential oils are safe to use or if you should toss them? Find out if Essential Oils Expire and what the shelf life of essentials oils is.

Things That Affect the Shelf Life of Essential Oils

Oxygen

Every time you open your essential oil bottle oxygen gets in.  The oxygen reacts with the oil and oxidizes it, in the same way that exposure to the air causes an apple to turn brown.

According to Robert Tisserand’s Book On Essential Oil Safety,

oxygen can change the chemical composition of an essential oil by reacting with some of the constituents.”

Think about that. If you are changing the chemical composition of an essential oil, then you basically have a different essential oil than you thought you had.

The properties that you bought it for might not be in the essential oil any longer and there will be new properties — some of which might not be desirable.

Light

There is varying information on this, however it is known that light is also damaging to essential oils.  That is the main reason why it is recommended to store your essential oils in colored bottles, which apparently help to minimize this effect.

A study was done on Sweet Orange Oil in which the oil underwent significant changes in its composition when it was exposed to UV light at 20°C for 50 minutes. There were decreases in certain constituents and new constituents resulted. So technically the oil was a totally different oil after this exposure. (Source)

Fennel Oil has been shown to oxidize more quickly in light than in dark. (Source)

Heat

Heat also can affect the quality of your essential oils, however this has not been as widely studied.

Robert Tisserand, considered by many to be the foremost expert on essential oil safety, recommends keeping your essential oils away from heat and in cool areas, ideally in the refrigerator. (Source)

Heat would cause the volatile compounds to evaporate more quickly, but of course the lid of the bottle would need to be removed in order for this to happen.

It appears, from the studies that have been done, that the effect of heat on an essential oil will vary depending on the components of that specific oil with components such as citral, citronellal, and oils that are high in monoterpenes seeming to be more greatly affected by heat exposure.

Apparently, those essential oils that are extracted using CO2 are more prone to damage from heat than other essential oils, though the reason for that is not yet known. (Source)

Time

Of course, if the essential oil is not exposed to oxygen, light, or heat (so it’s unopened in a dark, cool place), then it should be fine.  However, once you open the bottle, the deterioration begins and it is progressive with time.  As you expose the essential oil to any of the above assaults, over time, the essential oil will change.  If you regularly open your bottle to use the oils, then the effect will occur more quickly.  Additionally, as you have less of a particular essential oil left in a bottle, it will be exposed to more oxygen and the effect on the remaining oil will be greater.

There are some essential oils that get better with time, Patchouli being one of them.  Others that I have read about include Sandalwood, Rose, possibly Cedarwood, Vetiver, Frankincense (CO2), and Myrrh.

Are Old Essential Oils Dangerous?

Essential oils are made up of different components.  There are lighter components and heavier ones.

The lighter components are the ones that evaporate first and so that would leave behind the heavier components.  Typically, the lighter components are the ones that are gentler on the skin.  So if you use an essential oil that has been around for awhile, your chances to experience irritation are greater.

Additionally, the chances of getting sensitized to the oil increase as well. As I mentioned in this post on Emulsifying Essential Oils, you can greatly minimize the chances of sensitization in general.

And as I mentioned above, when essential oils are exposed to light, heat, and oxygen, the components change.  So what you end up with is a different oil than what you started out with.

So yes, old essential oils can be dangerous.

What is the Shelf Life of Essential Oils?

I’ll write in more detail about this in the future, but for now, here are the basics.

Essential oils that have a higher quantity of monoterpenes or oxides have the shortest shelf life — approximately 1-2 years.

Those essential oils that have a higher quantity of phenols may last up to 3 years.

Essential oils that contain ketones, monoterpenols, and/or esters have a shelf life of approximately 4-5 years.

Essential oils with a higher amount of sesquiterpenes and sesquiterpenols can last up to 6 years.

Don’t worry if all of this “terpene” and “ketone” and “….perpenol” stuff is confusing.  We’ll go over it more later :).

In the meantime….

The Essential Oil Safety Book

I referenced this book several times in this post, and there’s a reason for that.  It’s a good one.

Robert Tisserand’s book is considered by many to be the book on Essential Oil Safety.

It’s a fabulous reference tool for anyone wanting to know more about essential oils in general, and essential oil safety in specific.

Essential Oil Safety: A Guide for Health Care Professionals

Conclusion

Essential Oils are pretty stable, but you need to take care how to store them.

Use common sense.  If an oil smells bad or looks bad, don’t use it.

Better safe than sorry.

Of course, you need to be careful to buy pure oils in the first place.  Personally, I buy oils from several different sources.

Years ago, I started looking for a quality essential oils company that I could trust.  After hours and hours of work, I ended up choosing the essential oils company mentioned in this post and have added Neal’s Yard Remedies to the mix. I initially chose them for their skincare and personal care, but they have an amazing line of oils that are all produced sustainably.

A number of you have asked about organic essential oils – I am talking to other companies as well so that I can have more sources for my family and for all of you as well.  Please stay tuned for that information.

Got a question about Essential Oil Storage or Shelf Life? — Leave it below!

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Easy Homemade Elderberry Syrup – low carb & AIP http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/easy-homemade-elderberry-syrup-low-carb/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/easy-homemade-elderberry-syrup-low-carb/#comments Sat, 12 Nov 2016 19:39:28 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41321 Today I’m sharing with you one of my favorite tools for healthy living — Homemade Elderberry Syrup — and I’ve made it low-carb so even those on low carb diets can enjoy it. When I was young, I got sick a lot.  And I do mean, a lot. It was during that time that antibiotics were all the rage, and I was sadly the victim of that kind of thinking. Every time I got sick, my mother would take me to the doctor and would ask for antibiotics. It set me up for a ton of health issues including candida, […]

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This Easy Homemade Elderberry Syrup is a delicious way to boost your immune system and keep your family healthy, especially during the cold and flu seasons!

Today I’m sharing with you one of my favorite tools for healthy living — Homemade Elderberry Syrup — and I’ve made it low-carb so even those on low carb diets can enjoy it.

When I was young, I got sick a lot.  And I do mean, a lot.

It was during that time that antibiotics were all the rage, and I was sadly the victim of that kind of thinking.

Every time I got sick, my mother would take me to the doctor and would ask for antibiotics. It set me up for a ton of health issues including candida, gut problems, adrenal fatigue, and thyroid disease, and set the stage for my son’s autism as well.

Everything is connected.  And when you mess with your gut, you mess with everything particularly since it is the core of your health.

Since I found out the horrible effect that antibiotics can have on gut health, in addition to learning how they can lead to antibiotic resistance, I have tried my best to keep my family healthy without leaning on antibiotics for things like ear infections, goopy eye, and the sort.

I also think it’s important to avoid over the counter meds as much as possible due to them having unwanted side effects.  For example, for years I took Benadryl for allergy issues, only now to find out that it is an anti-cholergenic drug that can lead to Alzheimer’s and brain shrinkage.

YIKES!

All the more reason to lean on healthy natural remedies whenever possible.

Brain Shrinkage and Alzheimer’s?

No thanks!

I have a whole post on DIY Cold and Flu Remedies which includes this fabulous recipe for Elderberry Jam, but I started making Elderberry Syrup this year when my youngest got a very bad virus, as in a terrible terrible sore throat, a fever, and was feeling completely out of it.

We thought he had strep since his throat was so sore and we even ended up going to Urgent Care due to some odd symptoms, but we were sent home with no special treatment recommendations.

So I went to work nursing my son back to health.

I gave him Echinacea Tea, a mixture of garlic, cayenne, and honey, and this fabulous Elderberry Syrup.

The Elderberry Syrup was his favorite part of the regimen. I think he would have eaten it all day if I had let him :).

He sat and watched Lone Ranger reruns all day long, and I actually sacked out and watched them with him.  I never really got sick, but my body sure was working overtime fighting the germs off. At one point I even slept through a bunch of the The Long Ranger’s shooting, “Hi Ho, Silver!”calling, and more.

Elderberry Health Benefits

Simply getting more fruits and vegetables into your diet is always a good thing, but when you are adding in produce that is dark colored, the benefits typically run deeper.  The dark color is an indication of more nutrition and more detox capabilities as the antioxidants in the foods scoop up all of the junk that is best removed from your body.

For centuries, elderberries were a standard folk remedy in Europe, North America, Western Asia and North Africa, so now their health benefits are being examined and studies.

Elderberries (Sambucus Nigra) are full of antioxidants which have many health benefits. They also have tannin, flavanoids (including quercetin, which is often used for helping mitigate allergy symptoms and anthocyanins), carotenoids, amino acids, vitamins, and more.

They have been shown to lower cholesterol (Source), and boost the immune system (Source), including giving relief of Influenza Symptoms (Source) and the duration of colds (Source)

Dried Elderberry Caution

Just so you know, when you buy Dried Elderberries for making your Homemade Elderberry Syrup, don’t go a snackin’ on them, MK?

Elderberries are not to be eaten raw as they are toxic in that form.

Actually it isn’t the berries themselves that are toxic — the seeds, stems, leaves, and roots of the plant are toxic, and of course, the berries have seeds in them.

I knew about this, but found out just how bad it could be.

Those parts of the plant contain a cyanide-inducing glycoside.  Eating a sufficient quantity of these cyanide-inducing glycosides can cause a toxic buildup of cyanide in the body and make you quite ill.  Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and even coma.  Most people recover quickly, although hospitalization may be required. The fruit of the elderberry is a tiny berry, about 1/8 to ¼ inch in diameter, and about 50% of the berry is seed.  Cooking the berries destroys the glycosides present in the seeds, making the berries with their seeds safe to eat.  As such, the fruit of the Black Elderberry should always be cooked before consumption.  Interestingly, research indicates that exposing elderberry to heat actually concentrates the polyphenols and anthocyanin’s.

See, I had dried elderberries around for the purpose of making Homemade Elderberry Syrup and one day was craving berries.  I figured that the elderberries had most likely been dried at a high enough temperature so as not to be raw, and I sat and snacked on some.

And some more.

Bad idea.

I ended up awake almost all night with, let’s just say, serious digestive upset. Upset to the nth degree.

The moral of this story is that friends don’t let friends snack on dried elderberries.

Ever.

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Don’t Feel Like Making Your Own Elderberry Syrup?

This recipe is super simple, but if you really are in need of the syrup and don’t have time to make it, then you can buy quality Elderberry Syrup as well.

This brand has an organic version, but it isn’t low-carb.

Nature’s Way Organic Sambucus Elderberry Syrup, 4 Fluid Ounce

Nature's Way Elderberry Syrup

Following is the recipe for Homemade Elderberry Syrup that I used. I make mine low carb but the honey-sweetened version adds extra health benefits.

These are the jars pictured in the blog image.

This Easy Homemade Elderberry Syrup is a delicious way to boost your immune system and keep your family healthy, especially during the cold and flu seasons!

5.0 from 2 reviews
Easy Homemade Elderberry Syrup - low carb & AIP
 
Author:
Recipe type: DIY Foods
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Sugar-Free, Grain-Free, Low-Carb, Vegan, Paleo, AIP
Serves: approx. 1½ cups
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
 
Easy Homemade Elderberry Syrup - low carb option. Just what you need to boost your immune system to stay healthy and keep germs away!
Ingredients
Instructions
  1. Combine the berries and spices (if using) and water in a saucepan.
  2. Bring to boil.
  3. Simmer for 30 min to an hour until the water is reduced by about a half.
  4. Mash the berries in the water, or blend in a blender.
  5. Strain through a cheesecloth or nut milk bag (optional).
  6. Add sweetener. Heat, if needed, to combine. (heat gently if using honey to not destroy the enzymes.)
  7. Store in a jar or bottle in the refrigerator.

That’s it.

Super simple.

Keep this on hand all year round to help keep your immune system healthy, and use extra when fighting off “a bug”.

Have you had Elderberry Syrup before?

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Are You Pro-Life? (or Just Pro-Birth?) http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/what-is-pro-life/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/what-is-pro-life/#comments Mon, 07 Nov 2016 21:06:25 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=40972 What is Pro Life? Those of you who have been around here for awhile know that I like digging — and thinking. I don’t like to just spout out common thought or regurgitate what I see online.  In other words, I like to seek out the truth and then share it. This issue is a case in point. I keep seeing posts on social media, and articles about “You’re really not pro-life if….” followed by a litany of arguments. The argument goes something like this: “You’re not really Pro-Life, you are really Pro-birth. Because you only care about people before […]

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What is Pro Life? Do you only care about fetuses or do you have a holistic view of life? What's really important here?

What is Pro Life?

Those of you who have been around here for awhile know that I like digging — and thinking.

I don’t like to just spout out common thought or regurgitate what I see online.  In other words, I like to seek out the truth and then share it.

This issue is a case in point.

I keep seeing posts on social media, and articles about “You’re really not pro-life if….” followed by a litany of arguments.

The argument goes something like this:

“You’re not really Pro-Life, you are really Pro-birth.

Because you only care about people before they are born.

You are not for government funding for adults and children who are needy, plus you aren’t for open borders, you are Pro-war and I bet you are for the Death Penalty too. “

Is this argument accurate?

Let’s reason it out.

Why This Topic

But before we go there — let me say that I hope you will stick around even if you disagree with me. I’m happy to talk about your thoughts, to listen, and to be open.  These are health-related issues.  I assume that there will be some of you who think this doesn’t belong here, but I think it does.

We can and must talk about these things.  Because they are important.

AND this is about health. It’s about the health (and possibly the life) of the mother, right? And about the health and life of the little one inside.

So it ties into my blog’s mission of healthy living.

It’s often seen as a taboo topic, but I don’t think it should be.  Why should we not talk about tough things?

By listening to each other, we can learn.

And I’m for sure open to hearing what you think on the issue.

Are You REALLY Pro-Life?

First of all, before we get into the argument, let’s talk about what being Pro-Life actually means.

What is Pro Life? Do you only care about fetuses or do you have a holistic view of life? What's really important here?

What Pro-Life Is

The Pro-Life Position is to be opposed to abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia, and often extends to embryo-destructive medical procedures.

Pro-Choice is the opposite position.

But You Don’t Support Life After Birth

The argument: If you were really Pro-Life, you would support free birth control, free childcare, and extended welfare benefits.

Here’s the deal — this argument is patently wrong on two points:

It’s not the Government’s Job

One can defend the unborn, and the elderly, and the infirm, and yet not think that the federal government should be the provider of birth control, childcare, and more.

Other alternatives (and much better, in my estimation) for such assistance are churches, communities, families, and local government.

Does one have to be for the federal government doing everything in order to be a compassionate human being?

In any event, the expansion of the federal government’s powers both goes against the Tenth Amendment (“The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people”) and has a poor track record of actually benefitting those it claims to help.

We Are Limited People with Limited Resources

Wanting to give someone the privilege of life does not mean that one needs to be just as enthusiastic about or involved in making that person’s life comfortable.

I’m not saying that we shouldn’t have compassion, but we all have limited resources, whether financial, time, emotional, or otherwise.
Moreover, no one can participate equally in all aspects of helping others.  One person might focus on preventing abortion, while another might focus on stopping human trafficking. Another might be doing his best to eradicate hunger.
Just because each person isn’t equally involved in all of the other aspects of a “full life” does not mean that there isn’t care or concern for the same.
This article makes a great point.  Is a firefighter less dedicated to saving life just because he isn’t equally dedicated to making sure that the person saved from the fire has adequate clothing and food after being saved?

But You Don’t Care About Refugees and Immigrants

The argument: If you are not for welcoming all refugees and immigrants into one’s country, then you are not pro-life.

Again, this argument is a logical fallacy.  Yes, we should be caring about refugees and immigrants.  My heart breaks seeing the horror that these people have to deal with.

However, I don’t think it’s sustainable to open our borders and allow everyone in who wants to come in.

I’m basically a libertarian, but a country is not a country without borders.

Think about it this way — do you think we should all leave our doors open to our houses and give anyone who wants it free access to our food and our homes?  I think this is a valid analogy to what some think we should do regarding our county’s borders.

My position is that we should work on making immigration easier and figure out other ways to help with the refugee issue with better vetting, safe zones, or other solutions.

Having other solutions about the refugee and immigration problem that are different than open borders does not mean that one is not pro-life.

But You’re War Monger

This argument assumes that pro-lifers are fine with having babies born, but they are way too quick to pull the trigger to get involved in military action in other countries that will lead to many deaths of soldiers and innocents.

I am personally deeply concerned about the amount of military aggression in other countries. However, even many libertarians (who are typically isolationist) are seeing that the current world situation at times demands using force.

It’s a terrible conundrum, but at times using force might be necessary to save the lives of others.

Sorting through the pros and cons of military involvement at any particular time is very complicated because it’s hard to discern what the truth of the matter is. However, killing in the womb and euthanasia are obvious life and death situations when there is nothing tantamount to self-defense or preventing aggression involved in the situation at hand.

What About the Death Penalty?

This is a Red Herring argument.

An unborn child is never guilty of anything deserving of punishment, let alone death.

Many of those who oppose abortion are, in fact, against the Death Penalty, and I myself am generally against it, mainly due to injustices in the court system and because it is often unjustly applied in our society.

On the other hand, I recognize that this also is a very difficult topic.

The main thing to remember here is my first point — that this is false logic.  You can’t compare the death of, for example, a convicted serial killer with that of an innocent unborn child.

Conclusions

There are more topics within this argument that could be covered, however, these are the main ones that I typically encounter.

In conclusion, the definition of the Pro-Life position is basically to be opposed to abortion, infanticide, and euthanasia.

Of course we should all strive to figure out ways to address the ills that surround us of poverty, unwanted pregnancies, the refugee crisis and immigration and more.  However, those issues are not integral parts of the Pro-Life position.

Someone once said this regarding this issue. “I can be wrong about the best way to combat poverty, help refugees, or federal fiscal policy, but I can’t be wrong on the life issue.”  The right and wrong in this situation is far too clear.

I agree.

What really is disconcerting about such articles is that typically (always?) they are written by people who embrace the Democrat Party which has a staunch pro-choice stand including a history of their Senators voting to remove all limits on abortion, for all 9 months.

Instead of allowing such illogical arguments to flourish, let’s look at the facts and then move forward with conversations from there, now that we have clarity on what Pro-Life really means.

What do you think?
Is the Pro-Life position hypocritical?

Photo Credit: Creative Commons Ada’s Feet by Christian Haugen is licensed under CC by 2.0.

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Do Supreme Court Nominations REALLY Matter? http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/supreme-court-nominations-election/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/supreme-court-nominations-election/#comments Tue, 01 Nov 2016 20:19:24 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41132 Do the Supreme Court Nominations really matter during this (or any) Presidential Election? The US Presidential Election is on just about everyone’s mind these days. Many of us are sick of it. But it’s a big deal even if you’d just like the whole thing to go away. People are talking about policies, sex scandals, lying, corruption, third party voting, and more, but one of the main topics is the Supreme Court. So — what does this have to do with this blog? A lot. Politics and Health The Supreme Court has to do with health.  A lot. Over the […]

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Will the next President really make a difference regarding the Supreme Court? Or is it a complete waste of time and effort?

Do the Supreme Court Nominations really matter during this (or any) Presidential Election?

The US Presidential Election is on just about everyone’s mind these days.

Many of us are sick of it. But it’s a big deal even if you’d just like the whole thing to go away.

People are talking about policies, sex scandals, lying, corruption, third party voting, and more, but one of the main topics is the Supreme Court.

So — what does this have to do with this blog?

A lot.

Politics and Health

The Supreme Court has to do with health.  A lot.

Over the years the Supreme Court has made decisions based on abortion, healthcare, and I’m sure vaccines will be on the docket at some point. Additional health issues have been proposed to the Supreme Court such as birth control.

And I am not just interested in health issues.

I’m a homeschooling mother who cares a great deal about freedom in general.

Educational freedom, religious freedom, and health freedom, which includes vaccine and healthcare freedom.

All of these issues are, or will likely be dealt with at the Supreme Court level.

Politics and Me

Before we get into the main point, here is a little big of my background.  I was never involved in politics at all as a child.  I was raised in a Democrat household and was told that the Democrats were for the poor people and the Republicans were for the rich.

Basically I knew nothing else. Well, I maybe knew who the President was at any particular time, but that might be about it.

That all changed in my 20s for a variety of reasons, but I got interested, and got informed, and got involved.

I was even a delegate at one point, and my husband is a political junkie, and even participates in and runs some libertarian seminars year round across the country.

So while we don’t know everything, we try to be well informed.

And as you read on, you will see that I am pro life.  I am happy to dialogue about that as well, but that is the position from which this article is written.  Of course, the same argument could be made from the liberal standpoint — that Supreme Court nominations do matter.

Are the Supreme Court Nominations a One Issue Scam?

I have a friend on Facebook who posted that the focus during this election on the Supreme Court Nominees was simply a “single issue scam”.

I totally disagree.

By its nature, the Supreme Court discusses many issues.  Plus the sheer magnitude of the effect that the Supreme Court selection will have on our nation makes it a huge issue no matter what.

Saying that the Supreme Court is a single issue is like saying that voting for a President is a single issue, or voting for your Congressional Representatives is a single issue.

Didn’t Conservatives Legalize Abortion?

The main argument that is tossed around regarding not considering the Supreme Court to be an issue of import is the Roe v. Wade argument.

The argument goes like this. “It was a majority Republican-appointed Supreme Court that legalized abortion!” so the argument that a Republican President will do anything positive for the Supreme Court makeup is simply wrong-headed.

Another friend of mine posted this article on Facebook, making that same argument.  Here is an excerpt from the article:

The makeup of SCOTUS when Roe v. Wade was decided was as follows:

  • Harry A. Blackmun
  • William J. Brennan
  • Warren Earl Burger
  • William Orville Douglas
  • Thurgood Marshall
  • Lewis Franklin Powell, Jr.
  • Potter Stewart
  • William H. Rehnquist
  • Byron R. White

Only two justices voted against Roe v. Wade: Rehnquist and White. Rehnquist was a conservative appointed by Nixon, and White was appointed by Kennedy. So, what was the makeup of those justices who voted to legalize abortion?

Blackmun (R-Nixon)

Brennan (R-Eisenhower)

Burger (R-Nixon)

Douglas (D-Roosevelt)

Marshall (D-Johnson)

Powell (R-Nixon)

Stewart (R-Eisenhower)

Well, at first glance, it does look pretty bad.

The argument basically is that Nixon and Eisenhower did nothing, and in fact, were part of the problem, so why bother thinking that another Republican would do any different?

Well, there are a number of problems with this argument.

Will the next President really make a difference regarding the Supreme Court? Or is it a complete waste of time and effort?

Rebuttal to “a Republican Supreme Court Legalized Abortion”

Abortion was already legal

First of all, abortion was already legal in many states.  What this decision did was to legalize it across the country, which therein overrode state laws.

So, in a sense, this was more of a statement about state’s rights and overriding them.

Nixon and Eisenhower Were not Conservatives.

They were anything but.

And Nixon had some very troubling views on abortion.

Nixon said on the day after Roe v. Wade was handed down that abortion was necessary for certain situations like interracial marriages. (Source)

Both Nixon and Eisenhower would be considered by most to be moderates.

Public Awareness Has Changed

Contrary to during Nixon and Eisenhower’s time, there is much more public awareness now of the need for conservative judges, in particular due to Roe v Wade and the current imbalance of the “balance of powers” that leans too heavily on SCOTUS.

We do not have a balance of powers.  In fact, things are heavily imbalanced with too much in total being left to the federal government and too much falling on the Judiciary.

Things Are Different Today

In the year that this post was written, we have information about what kind of justices would likely be appointed by both candidates, today the situation bears no similarity to the previous presidencies.

And due to the changing climate of Presidential elections, one would expect this to continue.

For this year, Trump has made a list of the judges that he would like to appoint. You can see those judges here.

Illogical Argument

This entire argument is a non sequitur.

The article states that since these moderate Republicans did a terrible job of appointing justices to SCOTUS, therefore someone who has a specific list of conservatives of whom he plans to appoint is going to nominate the same kind of wimpy justices?

It’s a guilt by association fallacy and non sequitur fallacy as well.

Consider the Source

This article was written on Patheos by a man who calls himself a scholar.  He went to Gordon Conwell and then to Fuller Seminary.  If you look the URL of his writings, he calls himself “formerlyfundie” which is, of course a derogatory comment.

Gordon Conwell is a bit left leaning, as is Fuller, depending on your perspective.  Patheos is all over the map, but is primarily a left-leaning site.  The author calls himself a part of the emergent church, which is not a part of orthodox Christianity.

So, consider the source when reading any argument.  We all have biases, but we should be able to be intellectually honest about our statements regardless.

The article by Benjamin Corey is anything but.  It’s not intellectually honest, and it’s not scholarly.

Conclusion

The Supreme Court nominations matter a great deal.

The next President will likely appoint 4 justices to the Supreme Court and those justices will likely be on the bench for up to the next 30 years.

Currently, the court (particularly since the death of Antonin Scalia) is riddled with judges who are mainly on one side of the aisle — for more government control, and even justices who don’t respect our Constitution.

If the justices of the Supreme Court of the US don’t respect the Constitution, then what can we expect from them?

Our Founding Fathers set things up the way they did in wisdom and to prevent abuses. If we abandon that foundation, it is to our peril.

Disclaimer

None of this means that I am not concerned with some of the issues that surround Trump.  I am.  But I also think that some of these concerns have been blown out of proportion, or flat out lied about by the mainstream media.

The issue of Trump mocking disabled people is one case in point. Long story short, you can see in this link that he in fact didn’t.  And of course, there is still time left before the election so anything could come up.

Additionally, of course candidates may not do what they promise to do, and justices might not act as we expect them to.  But we can still make informed decisions to the best of our abilities.

If you would like to dialogue about those things, feel free to comment below.

The point of this post was to dispel what I consider to be a totally illogical argument stating that the Supreme Court issue is a non-issue.

In fact, the Supreme Court Nominations are big deal and are something that all of us should be paying close attention to.

What do you think about the Supreme Court?

Photo Credits: Creative Commons Supreme Court by Matt Wade is licensed under CC by 2.0.
Creative Commons Supreme Court by Mark Fischer is licensed under CC by 2.0.

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Free Kindle Books & Healthy Living Deals ~ Oct 30, 2016 http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/free-kindle-books-healthy-living-deals-oct-30-2016/ http://wholenewmom.com/whole-new-budget/free-kindle-books-healthy-living-deals-oct-30-2016/#comments Mon, 31 Oct 2016 01:09:01 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41186 Hi everyone! I know I haven’t done a post like this in awhile, but there are some nice deals going on that I wanted to get out to you! It’s been a bit crazy here with fall coming, things we’ve had to deal with for our home and family life, and more, and some big things I am working on for the blog – so looking forward to sharing them with you! I hope things have been a little less crazy for you….. So here you go….I hope you enjoy these! By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate […]

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Healthy Living Deals

Hi everyone!

I know I haven’t done a post like this in awhile, but there are some nice deals going on that I wanted to get out to you!

It’s been a bit crazy here with fall coming, things we’ve had to deal with for our home and family life, and more, and some big things I am working on for the blog – so looking forward to sharing them with you!

I hope things have been a little less crazy for you…..

So here you go….I hope you enjoy these!

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

Free Kids Essential Oils!
RMO Trick or Treat

Right now – get 2 Free Kids products (worth $29.90) free when you spend $99 at Rocky Mountain Oils!

Their Kids’ products are great – pre-diluted so you can use them right away and they are specially formulated for kids.

My son really likes their Clear Head and the Ouchi Blend.

25% Off My Favorite Beauty Balm and Face Masks

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Through 11:59 PST tonight, get 25% off amazing Face Masks and one of my all time favorite products, their Wild Rose Beauty Balm from my favorite skincare and personal care company, Neal’s Yard Remedies.  My current favorite mask is the White Tea Mask – my skin feels amazing after using it.

Read more about what I love about NYR Organic here.

The Wild Rose Beauty Balm (WRBB) is so great!  And a little goes a LONG way……I use it twice daily as a moisturizer, as a lip balm, and it really did a number on a bad case of dermatitis that I had.  More on that later……it supports skin so well, I have heard loads of people talk about how great it has helped their eczema.

Go here to order – you will LOVE it.

I’m personally buying at least 2 of the Wild Rose Beauty Balms myself – they are so great!!

Genius Blogger’s Toolkit

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Free Kindle Books

As always, these books were free at the time of printing but the prices can change at any time.

In case you didn’t know, you don’t need a Kindle or other fancy gadget to read these books. Just download Kindle for PC or Mac here and read on your computer.

Growing Herbs at Home

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The Useful Knots Book

Home Fermentation

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That’s all for now.  
See you next week!

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11 Superfoods to Boost Your Immune System http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/foods-that-boost-your-immune-system/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/foods-that-boost-your-immune-system/#comments Thu, 27 Oct 2016 18:58:09 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41139 With the cold and flu season upon us, it’s important to find ways to stay healthy. Thankfully, there are many foods that boost your immune system that can help you be healthier. Even when we eat healthy and try to stay fit, we can sometimes fall prey to a cold or fever. As we grow up, our immune system can sometimes fail us. For a young child who is still growing and developing, the immune system plays an especially crucial role. When functioning well, the immune system helps protect you from infections and diseases. None of us want to be sick, but such illnesses […]

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Eat these 11 Nutrient-Dense Superfoods to help Boost Your Immune System and ward off colds and flu!

With the cold and flu season upon us, it’s important to find ways to stay healthy. Thankfully, there are many foods that boost your immune system that can help you be healthier.

Even when we eat healthy and try to stay fit, we can sometimes fall prey to a cold or fever. As we grow up, our immune system can sometimes fail us.

For a young child who is still growing and developing, the immune system plays an especially crucial role.

When functioning well, the immune system helps protect you from infections and diseases. None of us want to be sick, but such illnesses could potentially hamper growth and stall a child’s development. However, proper nutrition helps improve the functioning of your child’s immune system to help avoid such problems.

To help everyone be healthier, here are 11 super foods that will help you and your child stay healthy and in the face of many onslaughts.

What is a Superfood?

Superfoods are nutrient-rich foods that are considered to be especially beneficial for your health.

Typically, when one talks about superfoods, people have thoughts of things like goji, spirulina, chlorella, elderberries, wheatgrass, pomegranate, acai, and more.

In this post, you can see some superfoods featured in Delicious Superfood Berry Popsicles.  They are a great way to get high quality nutrition into your body in a delicious treat.

However, truly there is no real definition of superfoods, so really it’s a nutrient-rich food.

For this blog post, the idea is to figure out ways to get good nutrition into you and your kids easily.

Let’s face it. Life is hectic enough already without adding hard-to-find foods onto your grocery list.

So this list of 11 Superfoods is made up of foods that are more readily available so parents all over the world can easily get these into their kids’ (and into their own) diets.

Eat these 11 Nutrient-Dense Superfoods to help Boost Your Immune System and ward off colds and flu!

11 Super Foods that Boost Your Immune System

1. Citrus

Citrus fruits such as oranges and limes have high vitamin C content. They are also rich in antioxidants.

Antioxidants are beneficial for the immune system as they help fight free radical damage and prevent cell breakup.

2. Green Leafy Vegetables

Vegetables come loaded with fiber and nutrients and are some of the healthiest foods on the planet. Green leafy vegetables like spinach, broccoli, and cabbages are loaded with essential vitamins and antioxidants that boost immune system functioning.

And to keep your Green Leafies from spoiling, here is information on How to Store Leafy Greens.

3. Yogurt

Yogurt is packed full of good bacteria that helps with digestion and in turn help with your child’s immune system. These are otherwise known as probiotics and aid the immune system in fighting harmful infections and bad bacteria.

Please do choose organic yogurt whenever possible. And if you cannot eat dairy, coconut yogurt is a great alternative.

4. Nuts

Nuts like almonds, peanuts, and walnuts are great sources of fats. They also contain vitamin E and zinc along with a good amount of antioxidants. They are also versatile and easy to mix with different foods.

To optimize digestibility of nuts and seeds, soak and dehydrate them first.

And all nuts and seeds can be easily made into delicious Homemade Nut or Seed Butter.

5. Fish

Fatty fish like tuna and salmon are excellent sources of omega three fats. These healthy fats improve white blood cell activity.

This once again helps shore up the immune system.

6. Berries

Blueberries are famous for their high antioxidant content, but almost all berries are very healthy.

They contain flavonoids and phytochemicals, which are powerful antioxidants. Berries are versatile and can be used to make a range of healthy smoothies, desserts and more for your kids.

Some great ways to get more berries into your diet are: Berry Chia Pudding, Berry Cobbler and Superfood Popsicles.

7. Eggs

Eggs are one of the most nutrient-rich foods on the planet. They are rich in protein and vital vitamins along with antioxidants.

They also have essential fats making them a superfood. Eggs and dishes made from eggs make a perfect breakfast for you and your child.

8. Peas

While kids aren’t very fond of peas, they are an extremely versatile food. Peas are another green food which is rich in antioxidants.

Carotenoids, polyphenols, phenolic acids, and flavonoids are some powerful antioxidants present in peas.

You can, of course, eat peas alone, but here is a dish that has load of peas in it.

9. Garlic

Garlic is famous for causing bad breath. However, it is also useful for fighting bacteria. Infections that affect the stomach through bad bacteria can be prevented by eating garlic. Try and get your child used to the pungent flavor of garlic from a young age.  Peeling garlic can be a bother, of course, so here is a post on How to Easily Peel Garlic.

10. Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes contain beta-carotene that is converted into vitamin A once ingested. Vitamin A helps maintain healthy skin.

Healthy skin is one of the first defenses for your child to protect against viruses and bacteria.

11. Honey

Honey makes a great alternative to sugar and can be added to a child or adult’s diet quite easily.

This natural sweetener is packed with antioxidants and helps relieve allergies (when local honey is used).

Conclusion

As parents, we’re always striving to ensure children get the best that we can possibly give them.

Not only do these 11 foods taste great, but they are also important for yours and your child’s health. Whether sweet or savory, vegetable or fruit, you should try including as many of them as possible in their diet.

This will ensure they stay healthy, and are able to withstand the seasonal flu and cold that usually plagues all of us.

What are you waiting for?
Get started with these superfoods today!

Do you eat any of these Superfoods regularly?
What powerhouses would you add to the list?

Aradhana PandeyAradhana is a writer from India. Her areas of knowledge include parenting, children with special needs, health and lifestyle. She loves being outdoors and her hobbies include cycling and hiking. Aradhana has a special interest in children with special needs and parenting and shares her experiences through her other passion, writing. She writes to share her knowledge so that it may help others. Her posts on these subjects have been published on more than 250+ various reputed sites like the Huffington post, SheKnows, Mom Junction and many more. Aradhana writes to inspire and motivate people to adopt healthy habits and live a stress-free lifestyle.

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Homemade Alcohol-Free Vanilla Extract ~ low carb & AIP http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/alcohol-free-vanilla-extract/ http://wholenewmom.com/recipes/alcohol-free-vanilla-extract/#comments Sat, 22 Oct 2016 16:43:40 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=41076 Today, Erin from Eat Real Stay Sane is sharing a fabulous recipe for Homemade Alcohol-free Vanilla Extract. Most vanilla extracts on the market, and more homemade vanilla extract recipes call for alcohol. So why alcohol-free?  Why Alcohol-Free Vanilla Extract? There are a number of reasons why you might want an alcohol-free vanilla extract recipe. Reasons to Avoid Alcohol: addiction issues – those who have a history of alcohol addiction need to avoid alcohol in all forms, including extracts religious reasons – some religions ban the use of alcohol strictly dietary reasons – some diets limit or don’t permit alcohol. The candida diet […]

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Homemade Vanilla Extract that's Alcohol-free! If you're avoiding alcohol for dietary or other reasons, getting the great flavor of vanilla can be hard, but you're covered with this simple recipe!

Today, Erin from Eat Real Stay Sane is sharing a fabulous recipe for Homemade Alcohol-free Vanilla Extract.

Most vanilla extracts on the market, and more homemade vanilla extract recipes call for alcohol. So why alcohol-free? 

Why Alcohol-Free Vanilla Extract?

There are a number of reasons why you might want an alcohol-free vanilla extract recipe.

Reasons to Avoid Alcohol:

  • addiction issues – those who have a history of alcohol addiction need to avoid alcohol in all forms, including extracts
  • religious reasons – some religions ban the use of alcohol strictly
  • dietary reasons – some diets limit or don’t permit alcohol. The candida diet is one such diet, as is the AIP (autoimmune protocol, or autoimmune paleo) Diet. If you’re heating a recipe using alcohol, then it will burn off, but if not, avoiding alcohol is required with such diets.

If you want an alcohol-free vanilla extract, you need vegetable glycerin for steeping the vanilla beans.  However, often glycerin is made from corn or soy, so that’s a whole other problem.

So making your own alcohol-free vanilla extract is the way to go. Then you can source your glycerin without GMOs. 

Another bonus for vegetable glycerin-based vanilla extract is that it tastes amazing. 

Glycerin is naturally sweet, so this Homemade Vanilla Extract tastes lovely just as it is. My son LOVES licking the spoon when I bake with it!

So with that, here’s Erin to share with you her recipe.

But first, I should explain something.  In reality, this is not truly an extract.  Since there is no alcohol used it really is a vanilla flavor since alcohol extracts better than the alternatives. However, if you are needing to avoid alcohol, this works great. 

Homemade Alcohol-Free Vanilla Extract

Some of my most memorable cooking experiences involve vanilla. For me, measuring a teaspoon meant filling it until it overflowed into the cookie dough – or not using a measuring spoon at all.

So “1 teaspoon” really meant 2 — minimum.

And, the smell? LOVE it. If you don’t take at least a quick whiff whenever you’re baking, I’m not sure you’re human.

Unfortunately, stores mostly sell cheap imitation vanilla, or “pure” vanilla extract with added ingredients and a hefty price tag.

Instead let’s make it ourselves – especially with Christmas nearly here. What better gift than world-class homemade vanilla?

Why Avoid Store-Bought Vanilla Extract

Like most grocery store items, the story is in the ingredients. Like other food labels, the labels on vanilla extract aren’t exactly honest.

Most of what Americans buy at the store is the imitation vanilla. It’s much cheaper than true vanilla extract, so it’s appealing that way. But the ingredients are far from natural, often containing artificial flavors, caramel coloring, and corn syrup. No thanks — especially for something that doesn’t taste anything like true vanilla.

The next option is to buy pure vanilla extract. This is a better option for non DIYers, but there are drawbacks. For example, McCormick brand vanilla extract carries a price tag of $23.20 for a pint. Not exactly budget friendly.

Caution: even if the label says ”100% pure vanilla extract,” there can still be extra ingredients (like corn syrup!). That label just means that the vanilla flavoring comes from vanilla beans – not artificial flavors.

Why Alcohol-Free Vanilla?

The term “extract” means that the product carries 35% alcohol. When you buy pure vanilla extract, most of it contains vodka, bourbon, brandy, or rum.

We don’t like to use alcohol for religious reasons. However, alcohol may affect probiotics. So if you use vanilla made with alcohol to flavor your yogurt, you might reduce the benefits of the yogurt.

So today I’m going to show you how to make your vanilla with glycerin instead – aka vanilla glycerite, or with water if you can’t have glycerin.

What is Vegetable Glycerin?

Glycerin comes from palm, coconut, corn or soybean oil (that’s why we always buy organic) that’s gone through a process called hydrolysis.

The oil is heated under pressure with water until the glycerin splits from the fatty acids and is absorbed by water. Then it’s further distilled to enhance purity. Glycerin is a clear, sweet, thick syrup.

It’s commonly used in food manufacturing because of it’s sweet flavor with fewer calories than table sugar. Our bodies also metabolize glycerin more slowly than sugar, preventing a blood sugar spike.

However, there are a few drawbacks to using glycerin as opposed to alcohol — flavor and shelf life. We love the flavor, but others swear by rum or bourbon vanilla.

The shelf life for a vanilla extract is about 4-6 years, while glycerin-based vanilla lasts about a year.

Homemade Vanilla Extract that's Alcohol-free! If you're avoiding alcohol for dietary or other reasons, getting the great flavor of vanilla can be hard, but you're covered with this simple recipe!This Christmas, we’re making this extract to give as gifts. Who wouldn’t appreciate their own bottle of delicious homemade vanilla extract? Especially when they take the lid off and get that first smell – it’s almost intoxicating!

But, it takes 2-3 months to make, so get started now to have it in time for Christmas gifting.

By the way, any of the following links may be affiliate links. If you click on them and make a purchase, I might make a commission. Your support is much appreciated and helps keep this free resource up and running.

4.0 from 1 reviews
Homemade Alcohol-Free Vanilla Extract ~ low carb & AIP
 
Author:
Recipe type: DIY Foods
Cuisine: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Sugar-Free, Grain-Free, Low-Carb, Vegan, Paleo, AIP
Serves: 1 pint
 
This Homemade Alcohol-free Vanilla Extract needs only 2 ingredients and it tastes great! Perfect for gifting and for special diets!
Ingredients
  • 7-10 vanilla beans for each pint of glycerin (you can use up to 14 for stronger flavor, but it's more pricey). There are a lot of varieties of vanilla beans. We like these.
  • A nifty bottle that holds a pint of liquid. Beanilla has some snazzy bottles, but we bought these bottles off of Amazon.
  • 1 Pint of USP grade, non-GMO glycerin. (For THM use alcohol instead of glycerin.)
Instructions
  1. Slice the vanilla beans vertically. Don't remove anything, just toss them (bean and everything) in your bottle.
  2. Add the glycerin, put the lid on, and put it somewhere out of the way.
  3. Once a week, give the bottle a good shake (after 4 weeks you can shake it 2-3 times per week). Over time, the glycerin will turn dark. It’s ready when you take the lid off and you’re overpowered by the fragrance. As long as you give it least a few months, you're good.
  4. Leave the vanilla beans in, and they’ll continue to add flavor the longer it's stored.
Notes
If you find the glycerin to be too thick for your liking, add a little water and shake until you get the consistency you want.

For those needing to avoid glycerin (like those on the Trim Healthy Mama diet (THM), use alcohol. Some say you can use filtered water and store in the fridge to steep, but I'm not comfortable with that as bacteria would likely grow very quickly.

There!

You’ve made your own vanilla for much cheaper than the store-bought good stuff. Plus it’s healthier and tastier than the imitation versions.

Enjoy – and let me know how it went!

Erin Smith from Eat Real Stay Sane - Guest Writer for Whole New MomErin and Cameron Smith, owners of Eat Real Stay Sane, teach people how to adopt a healthy lifestyle. They focus on real food, eliminating toxins, and overcoming chronic illness. Their secret is to cook homemade substitutes of foods they like – but with healthy ingredients. Get their free ebook, “Guilty Pleasure Recipes Without the Guilt.” You can follow them on Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.

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How and Why to Emulsify Essential Oils for Safety http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/essential-oil-emulsifier/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/essential-oil-emulsifier/#comments Fri, 14 Oct 2016 19:27:26 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=40906 Have you ever heard of emulsifying essential oils? If you’ve been using essential oils for awhile, you know that there is just a lot to learn, and an essential oil emulsifier is one thing that you should know for many essential oil usages. So what is an essential oil emulsifier and why do you need to know? The concept is important both for performance of your essential oils recipes, but also for essential oils safety, so today I am going to share with you how to emulsify essential oils and why you need to know about this. It’s easy to just […]

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Have you heard about Essential Oil Emulsifiers? If you're using essential oils, you need to know what an essential oil emulsifier is -- your health could depend on it!

Have you ever heard of emulsifying essential oils?

If you’ve been using essential oils for awhile, you know that there is just a lot to learn, and an essential oil emulsifier is one thing that you should know for many essential oil usages.

So what is an essential oil emulsifier and why do you need to know?

The concept is important both for performance of your essential oils recipes, but also for essential oils safety, so today I am going to share with you how to emulsify essential oils and why you need to know about this.

It’s easy to just get caught up in what brand carries the best essential oils, what kind of diffuser to buy, and then scour the internet or essential oils books to find all kinds of recipes for DIY recipes for essential oils like DIY Body Scrub, DIY Antibacterial Oil Blend, DIY Hair Spray, Homemade Essential Oil Breathing Blend, and more.

However, essential oils are powerful substances and we need to treat them with respect.

One of the safety tips that many don’t know about it that essential oils should be emulsified if they are going to used in a water-based product.

What is an Emulsifier?

An emulsifier is something that mixes two oil and water-based components together.

Oil and water do not mix.

When you have a salad dressing made of oil and a water-based product (like apple cider vinegar, for example), the two components will stay separated and so you must stir then together prior to using the dressing, or else you will have a bunch of oil on your salad instead of the whole dressing.  Blech.

If you use a salad dressing that doesn’t have an emulsifier in it, you have to shake or stir it before using it, or you end up with all of the oil and none (or very little) of the water-based portion.

After shaking or stirring a mixture of an oil and water-based blend, a dispersion of the oil droplets in the water is formed. However, when the shaking or stirring is done, the two phases start to separate.

Here is where an emulsifier comes in. When you add an emulsifier to the system, the droplets of oil remain dispersed in the water base, and the result is a stable emulsion.

No more shaking or stirring necessary.

Well, the same concept applies to essential oils.

Essential oils and water do not mix.

So if you are using an essential oil in a water-based product, you will not end up with a well-blended mixture.  Instead, you end up with the essential oil floating around in the water base.

The Science Behind an Emulsion

An emulsifier consists of a hydrophilic (water-loving) head and an hydrophobic (water-hating /oil-loving) tail.

The hydrophilic head has an electric charge that will dissolve in water but not oil, whereas the hydrophobic end has a long carbon tail that dissolves in oil but not in water.

When you add a essential oils to the emulsifier, the emulsifier’s hydrophilic head moves towards the water-based portion of the blend and the hydrophilic tail moves towards the oil-based portion.

The emulsifier positions itself between the oil and the water and by reducing the surface tension, stabilizes the emulsion.

Have you heard about Essential Oil Emulsifiers? If you're using essential oils, you need to know what an essential oil emulsifier is -- your health could depend on it!

Why You Need to Emulsify Essential Oils

when I started using essential oils, like many people, I used them in more of a willy nilly fashion.  I would use them neat (undiluted) on my body, took them internally without much caution (I even used them to try to lose weight), and used them a lot.

Gradually my thinking about essential oils has changed.  While these substances are capable of doing so much good, they can also do harm.

I’ve heard multiple horror stories about health issues arising from improper use of essential oils. And beyond what I have personal experience with, there are dangers like:

Sensitization

I’ll be sharing more later about this, but if you use essential oils without blending them, you are more likely to end up sensitized to them.

Skin Burns

If you don’t blend your oils well, you can actually literally burn your skin since some oils are very caustic. (I’ve had this happen to me, actually.  Ouch!

Inaccurate Dispensing

If you don’t emulsify the oils, you will end up using a bunch of the essential oils sometimes and possibly none at another time, so you likely won’t get the results you want.

Irritation

(I’ve used essential oils products that weren’t emulsified and later ended up burning my eyes since the concentrated oil inadvertently ended up on my hands, which later touched my face, etc.)

Mucosal Damage

Essential oils can damage your delicate mucosal tissue if not blended accurately.

What Kind of Essential Oil Emulsifier Should You Use?

There are many emulsifiers on the market for many purposes, like cleaning up toxic spills or ones that are used in other commercial products, but since we are talking about essential oils here (and since I want to eliminate toxins as much as possible), I’m only recommending non toxic emulsifiers.

Here are some ideas of non-toxic emulsifiers to consider using as your emulsifier, depending on what you are making.

I should point out that the following are suggestions based on how aromatherapy has been done for years, but there is new information coming as to which of these are truly acceptable emulsifiers.  When I get that information I will be sure to update this post.  For now, the information that I have is that castile and alcohol are better options than the others on this list.

Polysorbate 20 is considered to be a good emulsifier for water based products that will be applied to the skin.

There are other commercial emulsifiers that could also be acceptable alternatives. Their toxicity varies so that is up to you to decide.

How to Emulsify Essential Oils

  1. Add the emulsifier to the essential oils before adding them to the other water-based ingredients.
  2. Shake or stir the combination.
  3. Technically you should wait several hours to see if there is any separation. If there isn’t, then you can add the emulsification to the water-based ingredients.
  4. Typically a ratio of 1:1 is appropriate for emulsification of essential oils, however some oils will need more of an emulsifier and others will need less.

 

When Do You Need an Essential Oil Emulsifier?

Typically you would use an essential oil emulsifier when making an aromatherapy spray, but there are other applications when you would also need an emulsifier, such as for a lotion, cream, or some other water-based products such as house cleaners, or this DIY Hair Growth Blend (the water-based method), or this DIY Hair Spray.

You Do NOT Need an Essential Oil Emulsifier When……

  • Blending an essential oil with a carrier oil
  • Combining an essential oil with a non-water based lotion (exception noted above)
  • Blending an essential oil with any other fat, as in when making this Homemade Body Cream

Conclusion

When dealing with essential oils, you are working with powerful products so safety is important.

Essential Oil Emulsification is a must for making DIY Essential Oil products without endangering your health, or the health of others.

If you’re wondering what essential oils I use for my family, read my series on the best essential oils, or you can skip to the end where I announced my choice.  There are a lot of comments but they are full of good information as well.

 

Have you ever used an Emulsifier with Essential Oils?

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10 Reasons Why I’m NOT Tossing My Homeopathic Teething Tablets http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/fda-homeopathic-teething-tablets/ http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/fda-homeopathic-teething-tablets/#comments Sat, 08 Oct 2016 17:16:10 +0000 http://wholenewmom.com/?p=40919 Have you heard about the issues surrounding homeopathic teething tablets, the FDA, and seizures? Two days ago I saw that the FDA is recommending that parents not give their children Hyland’s Teething Tablets or Gels, citing possible side effects — including seizures. Pretty scary stuff. So should you throw out your Hyland’s Teething Tablets and Gels, or not? Let’s talk about this, but first let’s start with the history behind the situation. Hyland’s History with the FDA In 2010, the FDA started investigating Hyland’s because of reports of side effects that were possibly related to the company’s Teething Tablets and Gel. […]

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Have you heard about the FDA warning about homeopathic teething tablets? Here's my take on the whole thing and why I'm not tossing my tablets.

Have you heard about the issues surrounding homeopathic teething tablets, the FDA, and seizures?

Two days ago I saw that the FDA is recommending that parents not give their children Hyland’s Teething Tablets or Gels, citing possible side effects — including seizures.

Pretty scary stuff.

So should you throw out your Hyland’s Teething Tablets and Gels, or not?

Let’s talk about this, but first let’s start with the history behind the situation.

Hyland’s History with the FDA

In 2010, the FDA started investigating Hyland’s because of reports of side effects that were possibly related to the company’s Teething Tablets and Gel.

The concern?  The FDA apparently had received complaints about side effects that parents observed in conjunction with using these products. The products had the homeopathic remedy Belladonna in them. Belladonna (which contains alkaloids) is the component of the plant that is sometimes associated with disconcerting side effects when used in large amounts.

The FDA inspected Hyland’s facilities and found that sometimes there were variable amounts of belladonna in the products, so the company was asked tighten up its manufacturing process and implement a child safety cap to prevent the ingestion of too many tablets.

Now, in 2016, The FDA now says it is:

analyzing adverse events reported to the agency regarding homeopathic teething tablets and gels, including seizures in infants and children who were given these products, since a 2010 safety alert about homeopathic teething tablets. The FDA is currently investigating this issue, including testing product samples. The agency will continue to communicate with the public as more information is available. (source)

So, without doing any testing, the FDA is telling parents not to use any of the Hyland’s Teething Tablets or Gels, and to throw out any they already own.

I have spent hours researching this since the story first came across my desk and I have a bunch of thoughts that I am going to share with you today.

But mostly I am going to share with you why I am not throwing out my homeopathic teething tablets.

#1 – There Is No Proof

There is no proof that belladonna caused these seizures or any of the other reported side effects.

What we have, from all I can tell, is that parents reported seizures that happened around the time they gave these tablets and/or teething gels to their babies.

However, correlation does not mean causation.

Many times I suspected one thing as the cause of a condition only to later find out that I was wrong.

The FDA did its investigation back in 2010, and at that time there was no proof that the belladonna (or any other substance) in the tablets and gels was causing the reported side effects, and there still is no proof.

#2 – Too Little Belladonna

The amount of belladonna in the tablets is infinitesimal.

Apparently high amounts of belladonna can potentially cause seizures.  If you have seen the size of homeopathic tablets, they are very small, and this is the list of ingredients in the tablets:

Calcarea Phosphorica 6X HPUS
Chamomilla 6X HPUS
Coffea Cruda 6X HPUS
Belladonna 12X HPUS (0.0000000000003% alkaloids, calculated)

Other ingredients include acacia gum and lactose, N.F.

Here is Hyland’s statement about the amount of Belladonna in their tablets: {emphasis mine}

Belladonna 12X HPUS is manufactured from the whole plant, of which a small portion is Belladonna alkaloids (the component sometimes associated with side effects). Each Teething Tablet (which weighs about 65 mg) is composed of 0.0000000000003% Belladonna alkaloids as stated on the label. As calculated, this means that each complete teething tablet contains only approximately 0.0000000000002 mg of Belladonna alkaloids.

The amount of Belladonna alkaloids in teething tablets is minuscule, especially when compared to conventional medicines that contain Belladonna alkaloids. To put the calculated amount of Belladonna in a Hyland’s Baby Teething Tablet into perspective, the 0.0000000000002 mg of Belladonna alkaloids is THOUSANDS OF TIMES below even the therapeutic amounts of Belladonna used in conventional anti-spasmodic medicines that doctors sometimes prescribe (0.2 to 5 milligrams of Belladonna alkaloids). The side effects (called anticholinergic side effects) sometimes caused by conventional medicines delivering more than 0.2 mg of Belladonna alkaloids – such as dry mouth, blurred vision and urinary retention – are not associated with homeopathic medicines because of their minute dosage.

…. a 10-pound child would have to accidentally ingest, all at the same time, more than a dozen bottles of 135 Baby Teething Tablets before experiencing even dry mouth from the product. Additionally, the body clears Belladonna alkaloids from any single dose in a matter of hours. Therefore, the Belladonna in the product would be very unlikely to build up in the system when taken as directed on the package label. Nonetheless, in the event of any accidental ingestion of a Hyland’s product, we encourage you to contact your own medical professional and/or poison control center immediately.

Could 0.0000000000002 mg of Belladonna alkaloids could cause a seizure in an infant?

#3 – FDA’s Double Standard

When I told my family about the FDA’s Warning about Hyland’s Homeopathic Teething Tablets and Gels this morning, my oldest’s response was “What about vaccines?!?!” If you haven’t been reading my blog for awhile, you might not know that we think he suffered vaccine damage.

We are not anti-vaccine, but safety and testing for vaccines needs to be improved in a big way.

Here the FDA is up in arms about some seizures and other side effects, but meanwhile they allow loads of drugs, etc. with much worse side effect data than this to be on the market.

How about all of the seizures and deaths and other health issues that are attributed to vaccines, pharmaceutical drugs, and OTC meds?

1.  Benadryl has been shown to cause Alzheimers.
2. The government has paid out millions of dollars to parents for death and injuries due to vaccines. (source)
3. Harvard University even states here that taking any new drug is dangerous considering potential damaging side effects. (source)
4. For another example, here is a list of potential side effects of Baby Tylenol.
5. And here, from the CDC is a statement about the risks from the Chickenpox Vaccine: (source)

– Soreness, redness, or swelling where the shot was given
– Fever
– Mild rash or several small bumps after vaccination.

If you get chickenpox rash after vaccination, you can spread the disease to others. But, this is very rare. If you have chickenpox rash, you should stay away from people with weakened immune systems.

Seizure (jerking and staring spell) that may be caused by fever. Seizures after chickenpox vaccination may or may not be related to chickenpox vaccine.

Serious side effects from chickenpox vaccine are extremely rare. They may include severe brain reactions and low blood count. These side effects happen so rarely that experts cannot tell whether they are caused by chickenpox vaccine or not.

So why is the FDA not asking parents to refuse the chickenpox vaccine since there is a concern about seizures and brain reactions, but they are willing to make this recommendation about these homeopathic tablets?

#4 – Inaccurate Media Coverage

Some of the coverage in the media is misleading, which causes concern as it lends credence to the thought that this is not all based on fact.

For example, this article says the following:

Of particular concern was the ingredient belladonna, which researchers had linked to infant seizures in a 2014 study.

They mention a “study” done by researchers who linked the seizures to belladonna, but when you click on the link, you are taking to a report about 1 infant presenting w/ seizures, and there is no proven link of the belladonna to the seizures.

One report about one child is just a case study, but this article clearly implies that some kind of double-blind, placebo-controlled study. This is poor journalism.

It makes me wonder if there might be other inaccurate reporting surrounding this issue.

Have you heard about the FDA warning about homeopathic teething tablets? Here's my take on the whole thing and why I'm not tossing my tablets.

#5 – Other Possible Causes

The FDA recommends that consumers should seek medical care immediately if their child experiences seizures, difficulty breathing, lethargy, excessive sleepiness, muscle weakness, skin flushing, constipation, difficulty urinating, or agitation after using homeopathic teething tablets or gels.

However, these symptoms definitely could be attributable to other things, like vaccines, another illness, etc.

For example, vaccines can cause reactions even up to 14 days after the vaccine. (source)

Obviously, something else (including another ingredient in the tablets) might be the cause here.

#6 – FDA Pushing for Reports of Adverse Effects

The FDA has put out a request for doctors to turn in forms reporting adverse reactions to the teething tablets.

Do they do the same thing about vaccines?

Nope.

Why not?

Seems to me that they are eager to attribute blame to Hyland’s, and as a result to homeopathy and alternative care in general.

#7 – Past Egregious Actions by the FDA

The FDA closed down a probiotic company due to health claims; meanwhile, they insisted that arsenic in chicken is totally safe, and they sent SWAT Teams to raid a raw milk facility.

I know that the FDA apparently doesn’t want snake oil salesman taking advantage of the public. But perhaps we traded that for a society where we get duped by physicians and pharmaceutical reps and a multitude of drug commercials into buying things that line their pockets?

Besides, their information is not friendly to the whole food community. The FDA states that nuts aren’t healthy and that walnut companies can’t make claims about their product being heart healthy.  And that probiotic companies can’t claim that their product really does a lot of good?  We know that these things are true and more and more science is backing us up.

It’s time for the FDA to update its information and figure out how to monitor alternative medicine in ways that allow people to get healthier without buying toxic products.  Or perhaps let the free market settle these things.

#8  – Natural Alternative Recommendation

In the wake of this issue, the FDA now recommends that parents contact their physician to get recommendations for natural alternatives for teething pain.

This seems very odd to me — the FDA is recommending natural remedies?

Why not recommend natural remedies for allergies or the common cold–instead of Benadryl and Sudafed that we know cause many issues?  Why aren’t they recommending that we throw these out and not use them?

How about the FDA recommending that parents ask their physicians for natural alternatives to antibiotics and OTC cold and allergy meds?

Why is the FDA  OK with other meds that have definite side effects but they’re picking on Hyland’s?

#9 – The FDA is Ignoring Scientific Data

So the 0.0000000000002 mg of Belladonna alkaloids is a big concern now, but the mercury in vaccines isn’t?

There is scientific proof that mercury causes damage and is toxic to humans, even in small amounts.

There seems to be scientific proof that autistic babies do not detox mercury appropriately. (source)

So why is the FDA not telling doctors to not shoot mercury into babies, or at least not waiting to see if kids show signs of autism before shooting more mercury into them?

#10 – No More Teething :).

So this is kind of a funny reason, but I figured we could use some levity here.

One reason I’m not tossing my teething tablets is because teething is over in this house. Well, sort of.

My youngest has some teeth erupting and he’s been complaining about them, so I would totally use the tablets now.

And if I had a baby now, I would have no concern about using homeopathic teething tablets. In fact, we are using more and more homeopathy now, which I hope to share about in the near future.

Conclusion

I can’t tell you what to do, but I don’t see this as holding water right now.  Just too many red flags.

However, as with anything, it is possible that I am wrong about this. So please make your own judgement about whether to use these products or not.

Perhaps, contrary to what many alternative medicine critics state, homeopathy is very powerful. Thus the belladonna, or some other homeopathic ingredient in the teething products, is causing a reaction.

Or perhaps there is more belladonna in these tablets than declared (though I doubt it). Even if there is, apparently it would have to be a huge amount to do any damage.

And of course, there are no studies on belladonna (or these tablets) on infants or children.  So possibly for some reason they are not appropriate for young children.

And I could be wrong about the FDA and their intentions.

What do YOU think?

Do you use homeopathy?
Do you think the FDA is right on or out of touch on this one?

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