Sunday, December 20, 2009
- 2 Cups Wholemeal Self Raising Flour
- ¼ cup reduced fat margarine, melted
- 150ml reduced fat milk
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon golden syrup
- 1 ripe banana, mashed
- 70g slivered almonds
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 30g slivered almonds to top muffins
- Preheat oven to 180, (160 fan forced).
- Sift flour into bowl. Mix margarine, milk and egg together and add to wholemeal self raising flour.
- Carefully fold through golden syrup, mashed banana, almonds and cinnamon. Top muffins with extra almonds.
- Place in muffin trays and fill the pan ¾ and cook for 12-15 minutes or until golden brown.
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
....the best Venezuelan black chocolate
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Saturday, November 28, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
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Sunday, November 1, 2009
by Susi Baumgartner
Aromatherapy literally means
“to treat with aroma or fragrance through inhalation.”
Although inhalation is one of the main applications for Aromatherapy, there are several ways to enhance your health and well-being through the Art of Aromatherapy.
As a preventative measure Aromatherapy is a safe alternative method to soothe our emotions, quiet our mind, and balance our energies, especially if we feel like we are a little off-centre or out of balance. Essential oils have the ability to help us naturally, by bringing about a feeling of calmness or alertness, depending upon the situation and which essential oil or combination of oils you use. Using an oil burner to diffuse essential oils or having a massage with an essential oil blend are other practical and effective ways to enjoy their benefits!
How does it work?
The diffusing effect of essential oils works through the 'olfactory system' which has a direct effect on the brain (through the limbic system) and of course the brain affects the rest of our systems! Whether that be our emotional systems, our internal organs, our energetic system, our digestive system, etc., they can stimulate appetite or a give us a feeling of being full, again depending on the desired effect as to which oils we choose to use.
Through our emotions they can affect the way we feel and ultimately the way we feel affects everything else!
Recent studies of essential oils have involved looking at their effects on stress, blood pressure and even cortisol levels, which are indicated in stress levels among many other things.
My ten picks for your aromatherapy kit:
Diffuse this essential oil for a “breath of calm” in a busy day! Chamomile may help you to dispel anger and steady your feelings bringing you back to a clear, calm state of mind, helping you to feel better emotionally and to sleep well.
The health benefits of chamomile essential oil are numerous and can be attributed to properties such as: anti-spasmodic, antiseptic, antibiotic, antidepressant, anti-neuralgic, carminative, analgesic, sedative, nervine, digestive, tonic, antispasmodic, bactericidal, anti-inflammatory, anti-infectious, etc.
This essential oil is believed to be beneficial for hormonal balance, insomnia, and other symptoms of PMS. You may find it calms you, making it a wonderful oil to diffuse during stressful times.
An essential oil high in sesquiterpenes which means it can affect the emotion centre of the brain. It also encourages the pineal gland to release melatonin which fosters deep sleep. Breathe in this oil during times of congestion, coughs, and bronchitis.
Diffuse this fragrant oil when you would like to increases spiritual awareness and stay focused while you are meditating. Breathing in Frankincense may also improve your attitude and elevate your spirits!
Another great essential oil for stress. While it calms and balances you, it may help to release negative memories. Diffusing this oil may bring you to a higher level of well-being emotionally so you feel more peaceful and optimistic.
This wonderful essential oil is well known for its calming, relaxing and balancing effect on the emotions. These properties make it a good oil to diffuse when you are dealing with nervous tension, high blood pressure or depression. Diffuse this in the bedroom for a good nights rest.
This essential oil is fun to diffuse because it is said it helps to make one more intuitive. It is also purifying and a natural insect repellent. Diffuse it to stay awake and feel less irritable!
This fresh cool-scented essential oil is known as “The Happy Oil”. If you are on a weight-reduction diet, you may like to know that Peppermint has been studied for its ability to affect the brain’s satiety center; the part of the brain that makes us feel full after we’ve eaten enough! It’s also good for headaches, focusing, and depression and can help clear the sinuses.
The health benefits of Tea Tree Essential Oil can be attributed to its properties like anti-bacterial, antimicrobial, antiseptic, antiviral, balsamic, expectorant, fungicide, insecticide, stimulant and sudorific.
This relaxing fragrance balances male-female energies. It seems to give you what you need to come into balance. It brings your energy up if it is low and helps to calm you if you need grounding! It also has aphrodisiac properties. Think: calm, balance, confidence, peace, joy.
This article is for your interest only and none of these comments are meant to replace conventional medical treatment. Please use essential oils with care, and never ingest them or use them undiluted on the skin.
Advanced Aromatherapy, Kurt Schnaubelt, Ph.D.
Aromatherapy for Common Ailments, Shirley Price
Essential Oils Integrative Medical Guide, Dr. Gary Young
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Brain Health Blog
Working memory training changes the brain
By Gregory Kellett, a cognitive neuroscience researcher at SFSU and science writer for Lumos Labs .
It seems that working memory training may work by physically altering the brain. Stockholm Brain Institute researchers put healthy people through working memory exercises for 35 minutes per day over a period of 5 weeks. Changes in dopamine receptor density were measured with positron emission tomography (PET) before and after the training.
Following working memory training, they found:
- An increase in the density of dopamine receptors.
- An improvement in working memory performance.
Time to try a little Brain Training....!
Saturday, September 12, 2009
Aromatherapy is the therapeutic use of aromatic plant extracts or essential oils. These oils and extracts have a wide variety of uses, such as in bath salts, massage oils and even fragrances, which can be therapeutic to the mind, body and soul.
The pure essence of a plant, otherwise known as essential oils, provides physical and psychological benefits when used correctly and safely. These benefits can come from both inhalation and physical application.
There are a wide variety of aromatherapy products to choose from and each serves a different purpose. For example, lavender has a calming effect, while oils from the family of mint – such as peppermint and spearmint – offer a stimulating effect.
These oils can be found in numerous vehicles, such as soaps, air fresheners, candles, and massage oils.
Benefits of Aromatherapy
The benefits of the essential oil aromas can be noticed almost immediately. Inhaling the fragrance of essential oils stimulates the brain to trigger a chemical reaction, like releasing serotonin, due to the neurotransmitters firing at a certain level.
The lungs also get a much needed boost from the naturally occurring chemicals in the fragrances, offering a therapeutic benefit. For instance, the diffusion of eucalyptus oil can help break up congestion.
Essential oils that are applied topically can be absorbed into the blood stream and aid in health, beauty and certain hygiene conditions.
How To Use Aromatherapy
These oils should never be applied directly to the skin in an undiluted form. Carrier oils, such as cold pressed vegetable oils, are used to dilute the concentrated essential oils and add moisturizing ingredients to help with absorption.
Aromatherapy is a great alternative to some traditional medicines and treatments. By going the natural route, you avoid some of the negative side effects of pharmaceuticals, while at the same time providing additional benefits.
Many health food stores carry essential oils and have knowledgeable staff that is more than willing to explain different uses. Classes and seminars are also sometimes available in your local area. Search for them online or ask your local health food store.
Here are a few items you can use to get started on your path to effective aromatherapy:
1. Essential oils. These oils can be found at health food stores and online. Pick out your favorites or ones that are known to have the effect you’re looking for.
• Don’t be afraid to combine two or more oils for a new scent and a dual effect.
2. Diffusers. There are numerous ways to allow essential oils to get into the air.
• Cold air diffusers use the motion in the room to help diffuse the essential oil.
• Hot air diffusion is usually done by steam or a gentle warming of the oils.
3. Misting bottle. Misting bottles are a great way to spread the essential oil without having to use a diffuser.
• They fit conveniently into your purse or pocket and can provide a quick spritz of essential oils as needed.
Of course, there are many other items you can use for aromatherapy, but these three would be a great place to start if you’re looking for some natural help to common issues or if you just like the way they smell.
Remember to use essential oils sparingly! They’re concentrated and usually just a few drops will go a long way.
It’s easy, therapeutic, and fun to use the effects of aromatherapy. Give it a try!
Friday, September 11, 2009
The direct impact of negative thoughts and emotions on immunological function seems to be reasonably well documented and, since many Psychoneuroimmunology (PNI) phenomena seem to be mediated by negative affect, rather than situational “stress”, strategies that directly modify this factor may manifest greater benefits. While relaxation orientated meditation most likely acts to reduce the impact of stress...
Posted using ShareThis
Thursday, September 10, 2009
THE THERAPY SYSTEM
• The Active Elements® formulas combine Homoeopathically prepared mineral salts with their physical mineral counterparts, thus linking the energetic and physical properties of the mineral elements.
• The mineral active ingredients are combined in ways that considerably reduce treatment cost.
• Active Elements® Mineral Therapy is true to homoeopathic and naturopathic principles and is orientated to maintaining wellness, not just managing illness.
• The system is structured so that only 2 formulas are used together and the labelled dose is twice a day.
• The therapy can be used as a ‘stand alone modality’, or as a ‘base to build on’, according to your needs.
• There are only 9 formulas in the entire Active Elements® range. Most prescriptions require only 2 Formulas at a time.
• All formulas are Lactose, Gluten, Sucrose and Animal free.
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Thursday, July 23, 2009
By Dr. Daniel G. Amen
The brain is a three-pound supercomputer. It is the command and control center running your life. It is involved in absolutely everything you do. Your brain determines how you think, how you feel, how you act, and how well you get along with other people. Your brain even determines the kind of person you are. It determines how thoughtful you are; how polite or how rude you are. It determines how well you think on your feet, and it is involved with how well you do at work and with your family. Your brain also influences your emotional well being and how well you do with the opposite sex.
Your brain is more complicated than any computer we can imagine. Did you know that you have one hundred billion nerve cells in your brain, and every nerve cell has many connections to other nerve cells? In fact, your brain has more connections in it than there are stars in the universe! Optimizing your brain's function is essential to being the best you can be, whether at work, in leisure, or in your relationships.
From his work as a clinical neuroscientist, psychiatrist, and brain-imaging expert, there are 7 ways to enhance the functioning of your own brain and enhance your life.
1. Protect Your Brain
"....Current brain imaging research has shown that many chemicals are toxic to brain function. Alcohol, drugs of abuse, nicotine, much caffeine, and many medications decrease blood flow to the brain. When blood flow is decreased the brain cannot work efficiently....."
2. Feed Your Brain
3. Kill the ANTs (Automatic Negative Thoughts) That Invade Your Brain
4. Work Your Brain
5. Make Love For Your Brain
6. Develop A "Concert State" For Your Brain
7. Treat Brain Problems Early
You probably run, lift weights, or do yoga to keep your body in great shape; you put on sunscreen and lotions to protect your skin; you might have already given up smoking because you know it causes Lung cancer...but chances are you simply ignore your brain and trust it to do its job. People unknowingly endanger or injure their brains, stress them by working at a frenzied pace and not getting enough sleep, pollute them with caffeine, alcohol, and drugs, and deprive them of proper nutrients. Brain dysfunction is the number one reason people fail at school, work, and relationships. The brain is the organ of learning, working, and loving; it's the supercomputer that runs our lives.
It's very simple: when our brains work right, we work right—and when our brains have trouble, we have trouble in our lives.
Clinical neuroscientist and psychiatrist Dr.Amen uses nuclear brain imaging to diagnose and treat behavioral problems. He explains how the brain works, what happens when things go wrong, and how to optimize brain function.
Dr. Daniel G. Amen demonstrates how to overcome behaviors such as depression, ADD and anxiety.
Change your Brain, Change your Life - Click here to watch Part 1
Friday, July 17, 2009
Meditation is good for your brain....!
Kirlean photography shows Meditation works:
Before and After Pictures of the energy field (aura)
Thursday, July 9, 2009
‘Fragrance is the nourishment of the spirit’ Mohammad (Islamic Prophet)
Aromatherapy: A Relaxation Experience You Owe Yourself
Aromatherapy is of the opinion that particular good smelling, plant-derived oils enhance your health and physical well being, far beyond the enjoyable smell and nice feeling they endow. They are breathed in, or massaged on, or occasionally consumed.
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Aromatherapy is the practice of utilizing the essential oils, from a large mixture of plants, to bring about particular changes in the body or the mood. Scientists determined long ago that smell is a very authoritative thing. For example, particular scents can trigger memories and others can bring about particular mental physical changes. Aromatherapy is said to restore or enhance mental, emotional, physical and spiritual health. While such claims are essentially non-testable, you cannot debate with the mountain of testimonies that report these facts for hundreds of thousands of individuals.
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Aromatherapy at its core is quite simple. A variety of lavender, geranium, and patchouli relieves tension and anxiety; chamomile and melissa act as antispasmodics and nerve sedatives. Aromatherapy is advertised as a natural way to help patients cope with stress, chronic pain, nausea, and depression and to create a feeling of well-being. Proponents also claim aromatherapy can help relieve bacterial infections; stimulate the immune system; fight colds, flu, and sore throats; improve urine production; increase circulation; and cure cystitis, herpes simplex, acne, headaches, indigestion, premenstrual syndrome, muscle tension, and even cancer. Aromatherapy is viewed by many to be a branch of herbal medicine. It is in fact the use of herbs and flowers in their most concentrated form.
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Aromatherapy has also been reported to decrease nausea and vomiting, lessen anxiety and increase quality of life in cancer patients. Aromatherapy is sometimes employed in clinics and hospitals for treatment for pain relief, for labor pain, for relieving pain caused by the side effects of the chemotherapy, and for the rehabilitation of cardiac patients.
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In today's world, nearly everyone has stress. Aromatherapy is one effective way to battle stress. Aromatherapy is an ancient yet timely and stunningly modern approach to total well-being that is in tune with nature. While it is no alternative for modern medicine, no matter how much you would like to believe in the healing powers of flowers and plants, the positive effects of it have been experienced and used for literally thousands of years.
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Article Source: http://www.articlealley.com/article_971846_17.html
What Are Anxiety Disorders?
As an evolutionary device, anxiety is very helpful in dealing with stress, tense and unexpected situations. Anxiety can stir you up into action, give you focus and heightened powers of concentration. Anxiety might help you stay up all through the night before that big exam, be funny or interesting on the first date, be confident at the presentation. To generalize matters, anxiety helps you deal with situations you would be terrified of being in in normal circumstances.
However, when anxiety elevates to excessive, irrational fear that impacts the very way we function and makes normal daily life impossible, then it has become more than mere anxiety - it is now a medical disorder.
Most anxiety disorders last for very short periods of time - a week or two - and do not really require serious medical attention. However, some anxiety disorders can be serious, lasting for months to year at a stretch, with the tendency to worsen exponentially if not treated in the early stages. Moreover, most anxiety disorders hardly occur in isolation - they're usually accompanied by psychological and physical sickness. Most patients of anxiety disorders are also highly prone to drug and alcohol abuse.
Anxiety disorders can be broadly classified into five types:
1. General Anxiety Disorder
2. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
3. Panic Disorder
4. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
5. Specific Phobias, Social Phobia and Social Anxiety Disorder
Each of these anxiety disorders have specific and varied symptoms, but all of them center around an excessive and irrational fear or dread.
If you believe you have anxiety disorder, or your daily life has been hampered due to some irrational fear, it would be prudent to seek medical help right away before your condition worsens. Anxiety disorders are some of the most easily treatable mental illnesses and a lot of specific therapies and medications have been developed to help patients fight their anxieties. Remember that anxiety is a universal emotion that impacts everybody at one point of time or the other, and can be overcome very easily.
Sunday, July 5, 2009
Tapping or EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) is like a form of meridian acupressure or needleless acupuncture. It is gently stimulating pressure points in an attempt to clear the blocked energy or stimulate energy flow, particularly in the left side or emotional body.
What is Anorexia Nervosa?
Anorexia nervosa has been defined as an irrational fear of gaining weight coupled with a constant attempt to lose weight. Victims of anorexia nervosa display a dangerous obsession with thinness and are known to go to extremities to maintain a low body weight. A disturbing and debilitating part of this affliction is that the more weight the victim loses, the more obsessive they become about losing even more weight. The symptoms are often difficult to spot in the beginning, and anorexics usually tend to deny their condition. However, as it worsens, the tell-tale signs of anorexia nervosa like dramatic weight loss, and a denial of being too thin start to appear.
There is no one specific cause for anorexia nervosa. It is thought to be a result of various biological, emotional and social triggers. Research has shown that in some cases, a predisposition to anorexia may tend to run in families, thus making the disorder genetic. Another important part is played by the brain. Victims of anorexia nervosa have higher levels of cortisol, a hormone secreted by the brain that causes stress. Similarly, they also tend to show decreased levels of hormones such as serotonin and norepinephrine, the hormones associated with the feeling of well-being. Sometimes it is due to a result of a lack of confidence in one’s looks that can trigger an obsession for thinness. This cause is mostly seen in women.
The trait of perfectionism too can play a part. If one is constantly obsessed with perfectionism, it might just as well translate into anorexia nervosa. In some cases, this condition may just be the result of an overly stressful life or even a huge emotional upheaval. The third factor, and the most important one at that, is society and its pressures. People, especially women, are under the constant pressure to look good, if not perfect. And when thinness is seen as a desirable feature in a woman, it only makes matters worse. Peer pressure is the biggest cause in cases of teens displaying signs of anorexia nervosa. An unhealthy obsession with activities such as ballet, gymnastics or modeling is also known to have resulted in anorexia nervosa.
Though the signs of low self esteem may not be obvious, anorexics view themselves through an excessively critical eye which can be very obvious. For example, an anorexic person may often lament over imagined weight gain. In addition to this, anorexics show an aversion to any and all food and often find excuses to separate themselves from others just before meals in order to avoid detection. This disorder should not be treated lightly and professional therapy is a must. In addition to this, family support is essential.
Home Remedies such as Garlic, Ginger, Limes, Oranges and Apples should be encouraged to soothe the digestive system and naturally stimulate the appetite
See dietary tips below!
Some Common Emotional Causes for Anorexia Nervosa:
* Thinking that they are fat
* Obsessive fear about getting fat or putting on weight
* Always thinking about their weight
* Becoming obsessed with losing weight
* Emotional problems or excessive stress
* Obsessive Dieting or purging
* Wanting to look like models
* Genetics and family history
* An imbalance of chemicals in the brain (can be due to stress)
* Peer Pressure
Bach Flower Remedies to treat emotional causes:
Mimulus for Fear
Agrimony for hiding behind a mask, 'putting on a brave face'
Crab Apple for self-disgust (being unhappy with one's own body)
Rock Water for self-repression, self-denial
more on Bach Flowers here: Bach Flower Remedies
see also 'Tapping' or EFT [Emotional Freedom Technique]
for treating emotional causes (see video above for EFT explanation)
Simple Home Remedies/Dietary Tips for Anorexia
This disorder naturally results in a loss of appetite due to excessive fasting where the activity of the stomach slows down and secretion of gastric juices are reduced. The stomach has to be treated if possible to balance the damage that may be present, and to also encourage the appetite to increase. Try any or all of the tips below.
Eat 2-3 fresh Oranges a day.
Eat at least 1 Apple a day.
Boil 2-3 cloves of garlic in about 1 cup of water.
Strain, then Add the juice of ½ a lime to this mixture and drink 2 times a day, for a week.
Make a paste of fresh Ginger.
Add a pinch of rock salt and a drop of lime juice to ½ a teaspoon of the paste.
Eat this 2 times a day for 1 week.
Chamomile tea is the 'Mother of the Gut' and is very soothing for the whole digestive tract as well as being a Nervine (soothing and nutritive to the Nerves)
Chamomile tea with a teaspoon of honey (& a slice or two of fresh ginger) should be drunk as often as desired and is especially good in the evening.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Why not give yourself a free mineral assessment - and have the specific remedies sent to you!
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The Active Elements® System is based upon the belief that many health issues stem from mineral element imbalances within the body. These imbalances can occur for a variety of reasons, ranging from modern agricultural practices, to poor diet and stress.
We Are All Subject To Mineral Element Imbalances!
As mineral element Imbalances in the soil affect the health of plants and animals, so too can Imbalances affect the health of us humans as well. We can also suffer imbalances without realising it, because the first signs of a mineral element Imbalance are vague and very rarely noticed. If attention is sought for these early symptoms, they are most times misdiagnosed and treated as something else. Orthodox medicine quite often treats every symptom as if it were an illness in its own right. This is why a person can be prescribed a whole collection of drugs (particularly evident with the elderly). These symptoms may well be the body's way of letting us know that there is something wrong and hopefully giving us the opportunity to prevent an illness from developing. Prevention is always better than cure!
Mineral Element Imbalances are wide-spread and occur for a variety of reasons. Some identified reasons are:
1. Poor diet.
2. The way our food is grown.
3. The way our food is stored and processed.
4. Our body may have difficulty in absorbing some minerals from our food.
5. Even if absorbed, they may not be utilised properly.
6. Drinking and smoking.
7. Physical and mental stress.
8. A genetic predisposition for imbalances to exist or develop.
Because most times these imbalances remain undetected, the Active Elements® online Assessment System provides a simple, quick and non-invasive way to determine any imbalances that may exist.
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Friday, March 27, 2009
Monday, March 23, 2009
What is EFT/Tapping?
EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) or Tapping, is based on the ancient principles of acupuncture but without the use of needles, and includes emotional elements as part of the healing process. By tapping on various body meridians while tuning into thoughts, feelings, emotions or beliefs, we are able to clear the energy disruptions that cause physical and emotional distress.
Sounds easy compared to conventional therapies? It is. Astoundingly so.EFT was introduced by Gary Craig in 1995. Over the past decade EFT has rapidly expanded throughout the world, becoming a highly valued method for over 5000 medical doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, chiropractors, acupuncturists, nurses and other members of the healing professions.