Saturday, May 18, 2019

Cinnamon and Honey Mix

There is a magic that happens when you mix and boil Cinnamon and Honey together. Cinnamon falls in the sweet spice family of herbs. I have heard that cinnamon is good for improving your sleep, and weight loss but I use it mostly on my oatmeal and as part of my flu and cold elixir I usually put together in the cold and flu season. Honey contains high amounts of vitamins and minerals that can vary slightly depending on the flowers the bees forage but overall it is hard to beat the anti-fungal and anti-bacterial qualities found in pure natural honey.

Mixing the two together creates, in my opinion, a superfood that can be useful for a list of health problems. For someone, looking for help controlling cholesterol levels the mixture of boiled cinnamon and honey can, in about two hours lower high cholesterol levels as much a 10%.  This may sound funny and, I have yet to give this a try, but the mixture of cinnamon and honey on pasta, eaten on bread in place of jelly at breakfast is said to decrease cholesterol in the arteries and protect against heart attack.

Consuming the cinnamon and honey mixture on a regular basis can protect you from organisms like viruses and bacteria strengthens your body's resistance to these organisms by bulletproofing your immune system. Cinnamon mixed with honey can even provide reinforcement when your body is a war with a cold. A quarter tablespoon of cinnamon and one teaspoon of honey taken three days in a row will go a long way in helping you fight off that cold. Honey, doctors have discovered, contains an ingredient that can remove flu bacteria and viruses, how cool is that?

When it comes to your skin and acne a mixture of cinnamon and honey applied to your face before bedtime, and rinsed off in the morning can help reduce the inflammation that causes acne. The mixture of cinnamon and honey, with olive-oil added, can be used to prevent hair loss. Mix one tablespoon olive oil, one tablespoon honey, and one teaspoon cinnamon applies to your scalp for at least 15 minutes then rinse.

Cinnamon and honey mixed together was already know to have a positive effect on the stomach, by presenting stomach aches, but a more recent study has shown that the combination of these two ingredients is also effective in treating gastric cancer when one tablespoon of cinnamon and one tablespoon of honey are taken over a period of three months. The same combination of ingredients one tablespoon of cinnamon, one tablespoon of honey in a glass of lukewarm water helps fix a gall bladder infection by killing harmful bacteria in the gall bladder.

Where we all fall in the list of cures and treatments the combination of cinnamon and honey can provide is beyond me and my abilities to know. My hope is that by spreading health-related information like this we can all get a clearer picture of just how useful these health tips can be and figure out when and where to apply them. So far I have enjoyed success with just about every health tips I have followed and where necessary I have checked with my doctor when thinking about replacing an over-the-counter medicine with a herbal, or more holistic one.

It's not that I don't trust all of the health tips I read across, I just like to balance some of my non-medical knowledge decision-making with some true medical opinion, and I love sharing the health tips I have tried and that have worked for me. I have made a small batch (two small jars) of the cinnamon and honey mix and I'm just finishing my first week of using it each morning in tea. You can bet if  I develop any superpowers that fact will appear in a post.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Flower Pot Herbs

It’s not exactly fast food, in fact, it could take most of the summer to get your herbs to the point you can begin harvesting them but I thought it was well worth the wait. With only the most rudimentary of tools, a little space on my kitchen counter and some unsaturated elbow grease, I sat up my own countertop herbal garden indoors and start growing herbs in pots for beginners.

Indoors or out gardening is a rewarding hobby. It was nice to see the beauty of my herbs take root, and begin to grow all summer long. For me, it was a joy to fulfill one of my favorite wishes to grow my own herbs. My plan originally was not to grow them indoors but everything worked out so well I ended up being glad that I did. Oregano, Sage, Parsley, Cilantro/Coriander, Tarragon, Mint, and Rosemary were my herbs of choice.

An indoor gardener can grow his or her own herbs, making it as simple or complicated as he would like. In many ways the oregano is like me, it doesn't tolerate the winters very well, but oregano does very well on your kitchen countertop. Oregano can grow just as well from cuttings or seed I found out.  Sage makes a great indoor plant whether you live in a hot, or cold climate.  Parsley grows best from seed and its ability to withstand a wide range of temperatures makes Parsley a good indoor herb to grow too.

My next flower pot contained cilantro some times called coriander it's best grown from seed. You need to make sure the seed germinates quickly so it's a good idea to cut the seed for cilantro in half I learned. It only took about one week to see my cilantro growing, and it is one of those herbs you can grow all year round. Tarragon can tolerate frost very well when it's grown outside so countertop gardening with Tarragon is a breeze when it came to temperature consideration. Mint grows well from the root, or cutting I used the root method. Mint tastes great in drinks or tea, it dies back in winter, but for the rest of the time mint grows like a weed. Placing a rosemary cutting in water until the roots sprouted, which seemed almost immediately, in a day or two so less than 4 days later it was ready to be planted in my countertop flower pot and my countertop garden was complete. There are a few things you should consider when thinking about gardening indoors.

The first consideration when growing herbs indoors is light, in my kitchen, the plants on my countertop were situated right next to the window and since they were in pots I could rotate the seedling or sprouts that needed the light the most. When the weather changes even when placed next to a window overcast, and clouds can still cut down on the light your plants need so it's a good idea to have a grow light standing by just in case you live in an area where the sun can disappear for days at a time.

The next consideration is to try and figure out what plants you want to cook with? What are your favorite herbs? Do a little research or question the people at Home Depot, or the Nursery you go to about the herbs you want to grow and try to learn how each of the herbs you want to grow need to be treated when it comes to watering, feeding with fertilizer, and tending to with regard to different pest who also love the herbs in your indoor garden. You can even learn which herbs to plant together. I chose not to grow my herbs in 4-inch pots and used a little over foot long pots so I could grow more than only one herb in each flower pot, for example, my mint and oregano roomed together a move that overall did save me some countertop space.

I even found it fun figuring out which ceramic herb pots to use for the kitchen because of all the extra information I collected from the gardening experts. You'll need potting soil and some organic water-soluble fertilizer to feed your plants every 10 to 14 days. A few hand tools for digging and working your mini-countertop-farm potting soil, I also added a pair of rubber gloves for the days I don't feel like getting my fingers dirty. Be careful not to over water your plants make sure your pots have holes in the bottom to allow water to drain and not collect in the bottom of the flower pot and you should be off to a good start.

Friday, May 10, 2019

Nourishing Your Skin

This post takes a look at some of the foods that nourish the largest organ on the human body, your skin. I will also share information about a list of foods that have been scientifically proven to boost the strength, health, the appearance of your skin. And some interesting details about the Walnuts, Yellow Bell Pepper, Raspberries, Pomegranates Chickpeas, and Salmon that have been proven to help you maintain healthier skin with fewer wrinkles.

The best way to maintain that healthy skin glow is to eat healthily, and maintain a healthy diet so here are some of the ways to protect the skin you're in. Our body's protective covering of skin is under constant attack from the sun, the gazillions of good and bad bacteria that call the surface of our skin home and from within. Most of the time if you're not healthy on the inside, it will show on the outside, your skin.

So let's start with Walnuts, unfortunately for us, omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are not made in our bodies but walnuts are a rich source of omega-3 fatty acid and when you eat them walnuts can help our body make collagen that is necessary for healthy skin. Inflammatory skin diseases like acne and psoriasis can be reduced by the helpful anti-inflammatory qualities of the omega-3s that can also be found in other foods like ground flax seeds, flaxseed oil, tofu, chia seeds, and canola oil.

Chickpeas are also good for your skin, the zinc in chickpeas is important for your skin mainly because it supports the regeneration of new skin cells. A benefit most noticeable in skin repair associated with the healing of wounds. Studies have shown that zinc can inhibit propionibacterium overgrowth, Propionibacterium is just one of the gazillion skin-dwelling residents mentioned above that contributes to acne. Zinc-fortified cereals, oatmeal, poultry, tofu, oyster and beans are all good sources of dietary zinc when it comes to keeping your skin healthy.

One of the building blocks of protein is amino acids and amino acids are believed to be related to collagen synthesis in our skin. I have noticed that when I highlight information like that in my blog posts about half the people who read it and share their thoughts with me say something like, "I tried it and I actually believe it works! While the other half shares why they don't believe it worked for them. To me, this sounds about right since not every cookie-cutter health idea fits everyone.

That is also one of the reasons I caution everyone interested in trying something new "health suggestion wise" to be sure to consult with your doctor before stepping off the healthy path your doctor may have laid out for you. The food medicine ideas that I try and work for me might not work for you, especially if you are taking prescription meds. Anyway, back to the amino acids---salmon contains all of the essential amino acids that play a role in skin health. Researchers found that consuming a combination of essential amino acids significantly increased the rate of collagen syntheses in mice suffering from ultraviolet light damage.

In my research, I found that eating a well prepared, grill cooked, salmon meal left me feeling full and very fulfilled and while I do suffer from bouts of dry skin some days I still can't tell if it's the hard water my city provides for bathing or the fact that I don't have salmon as often as I might like that contributes to my dry skin. I do know that salmon is a good source of monounsaturated fat that was found to be a positive associated with skin elasticity in older women in the British Journal of Nutrition.

Carotenoids the antioxidant pigments that give a lot of fruits and vegetables their bright orange, yellow, and red colors can be found in sweet potatoes. Carotenoids help keep our skin cells healthy and go well with fat-soluble foods to help them be better absorbed, so for a boost to your skin health that tastes good add some nuts or a little olive oil to your sweet potato. In the article, I consumed about carotenoids the people whose faces were rated as healthy looking by others around them had consumed 2.9 carotenoid laced fruits and vegetables a day.

To end this post let me mention how Pomegranates and Raspberries can help keep your skin looking healthier and more attractive. These two fruits are high in ellagic acid and research has shown that ellagic acid can significantly reduce collagen breakdown from UV light exposure. To me, it's been eye-opening to see the role nutrition plays in the prevention of collagen breakdown, wrinkle reduction, and other skin damage. For better-looking skin make as many of the above fruits and vegetables mentioned above a part of your skin healthy diet.

Thursday, May 9, 2019

Manuka Honey

Back in 2009, an encouraging finding published in a European Journal showed some promise in the war against the so-called superbugs and that Jelly bush honey from New Zealand also called Manuka Honey was succeeding where many of the worlds top antibiotics were failing. The article in the European Journal of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases explained how manuka honey had grown in popularity so much that New Zealand producers were being forced to seek trademark protection to combat fake manuka honey being sold in places where the original product was sold out.

Manuka honey is made by bees that forage the New Zealand manuka bush for the nectar of the Leptospermum Scoparium and tea trees native to New Zealand and Australia. According to a report by The Australian (Australia's national daily newspaper), Australian researchers though experimentation had found out that manuka honey killed every pathogen or bacteria they tested it on and it did not seem to matter whether the manuka honey was taken internally or applied topically to help fight skin infection from insect bites and cuts.

One of the most exciting discoveries about the use of manuka honey was that this brand of honey prevented the superbugs it was tested against from building up an immunity to its healing properties, a fact that set manuka honey apart from the antibiotics in use today whose shelf-life is most often shorter than most bacterias super ability to attack quickly and during its attack become resistant.

You can find Manuka Honey online and in health food stores but be on the lookout for counterfeit, or fake manuka honey scams. On any honey purchased from the health food store, it would be wise to look for some sort of certification. For manuka honey look for the UMF (Unique Manuka Factory) certification. The phytochemical property derived from the manuka bushes that gives manuka honey its unique properties are regulated by the Unique Manuka Factor Honey Association of New Zealand.

Because of the methylglyoxal found in manuka honey that seems to work in concert with other unknown compounds found in manuka honey to destroy bacteria more research needs to be done. With what is already known about manuka honey means that this food's ability to defeat one of the biggest health challenges humanity faces in the war against bad bacteria is off to a very promising start.

The healing properties of honey are one of the reasons I believe so strongly in protecting the earth's bee population. Imagine a natural treatment source that lowers cholesterol, prevents heart attack, even boosts your immune system not coming from the pharmaceutical laboratory, but from mother nature herself. I plan to explore more of the wonderful abilities of honey, and share with you what I find out in future blog posts, this blog post was all about manuka honey, so stay tuned.