Best Teas for Fall’s Cold and Flu Season

As much as I love fall, I could do without the illness that seems to come alongside it. The changing of the seasons, as beautiful as it is, also presents many opportunities for colds and flus to take root in our bodies. That being said, there are things that we can do to curb the symptoms of cold and flu.

Elle’s Top Tips for Beating Cold and Flu Season:

  • Eat lots of spicy soups
    • Find a local Asian restaurant and stock up on hot and spicy soup to kick illness to the curb.
  • Bundle Up!
    • Protecting your ears, neck, and hands/feet from being cold is so important!
    • Get a cute set of hat and gloves like these if you plan on being outside!
  • Drink hot tea with Manuka honey to coat your throat and get good nutrients in.

Gaia Herbs provides many awesome teas that can help get rid of any cold and flu symptoms! They have all natural teas that can cover such a wide range of symptoms. Two of my favorites are the sinus relief and the sleep teas, because I often find it hard to sleep when I do not feel well. In addition to those, there are also many teas meant to help over the course of time, such as ones that emphasize adrenal health.

In a pandemic, it is easy to forget the other illnesses we need to protect ourselves from. Gaia Herbs’ teas make it easy to put protective measures into our daily lives!

How To Use Bee Propolis For Your Health

Bees are such important parts of our ecosystem. Scientists have discovered the benefits of using bee propolis or “bee glue” for its many health benefits. It has been noted to help with reproductive health, wound healing, and anti-aging effects.

As time has gone on, we have seen bee products being incorporated into both modern and holistic medicinal practices.

So what makes bee propolis so special?

Healthline explains the vast applications of propolis well, stating that “Greeks used it to treat abscesses. Assyrians put it on wounds and tumors to fight infection and help the healing process. Egyptians used it to embalm mummies.”

Propolis contains many antioxidants, making it able to fight against many diseases and promoting health benefits on a wide front.

Bee propolis is not incredibly easy to come by, however, so taking it as a supplement is likely the easiest way to incorporate it into day to day life.

Propolis Supplements

A healthy adult can consume up to 70 milligrams of propolis a day. With this, it can help to reduce inflammation, disease, and increase overall bodily health. It contains over 300 constituents, beeswax, tree buds and sap, essential oil, balsam, and flower pollen. On top of this, it has been said to improve:

  • Cellular Health
  • Immune System Health
  • Oral Health
  • Skin Health
  • Upper Respiratory Health
  • Wound Healing

As always, take careful consideration when deciding to incorporate a new supplement into your lifestyle, and do not take propolis if you have an allergy to bees or their products.

The incorporation of something that has been widely used for centuries is an amazing way to kickstart a healthy lifestyle shift.

Covid-19 Friendly Fall Activities

In honor of the fall equinox, I decided to compile a list of all the best (and covid-19 friendly!) fall activities that are perfect to do alone, or with your loved ones!

For the activity lovers:

If you like to be kept busy, social distancing has put a damper on a lot of fall activities. However, there are still plenty of great options! Try to find a pumpkin patch that has a corn field maze – bonus points if it’s haunted. Other great options could be attending or hosting a square dance party with a small group of friends. Getting out of your comfort zone could be just what you need to kick fall off to a good start. Or, you could seek out a fun fall themed 5k to get your heart rate up! These are great for covid, as there are many virtual 5k options!

For the outdoorsy folks: 

If adventuring into the outdoors is more your speed, then now is the perfect time to find a local campsite and enjoy the fall breeze. When you get to your campsite, there’s endless possibilities. You could fish or hunt for a meal or for sport. Or, if you are more like me, you can take advantage of less crowded hiking trails and take in the sights of nature before the first snowfall!

For the foodies:

If food is your love language, try hosting a cook off! You could have a chilli cooking competition, followed by one for apple or pumpkin pie! Or, if you would prefer not to cook, look into local vineyards or orchards. Many are hosting live music that you can bring a picnic to!

Whatever you chose to do, getting creative can be the perfect solution to an activity-free fall season!


Is Flax Seed Really Good for You?

Everyone knows what flax is, but do they know what it does? Flax seeds are amazing ingredients with complex and beneficial nutrient profiles! Consuming flax seed oil can help to curb appetites, aid in weight control, all while providing protein and fiber!

This miracle nutrient is incredibly high in the healthy fat, Omega-3. This has been known to help in many ways, including cancer prevention.

How do you consume Flax?

While you can consume flax in a pure form, many individuals find it easier to consume flax as a supplement. In addition to selling a flax supplement, Douglas Laboratories offers many natural supplements and alternatives.

The Douglas Laboratories flax seed oil is incredibly easy to use. It contains 100% pure, unrefined, organically grown flax. Each bottle comes with 100 soft gels, meant to be consumed daily.

What does it do?

These flax oil supplements contain:

  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids 520mg
    —(as alpha-linolenic acid)
  • Omega-6 Fatty Acids 110mg
    —(as linoleic acid)
  • Omega-9 Fatty Acids 140mg
    —(as oleic acid)

Each of these are essential fatty acids. meaning they are needed in your body.

Why aren’t you taking flax oil right now?

Sadly, many people do not know how important flax can be for your health. In addition to the reasons listed above, it can also help with digestion issues, reduce inflammation, and help to clear up your skin. This magical nutrient can really do it all!

Let me know if you try it, I know that I am going to start incorporating this supplement into my daily life!

The Best Essential Oils For Your Home Office

After a long, Labor Day weekend, it’s time to get back into the swing of things. So, here’s some great essential oils for your home office! A few options to help with alertness (which we all need after sleeping in all weekend!) are rosemary, grapefruit, and peppermint because they alert your senses! However, there are plenty of essential oils to help you conquer the day alert and focused!

You may be wondering, how do I use essential oils? You can use them in a variety of ways! Some people chose to apply them topically, while others diffuse them. I personally enjoy a drop of peppermint or orange oil in the base of my coffee or hot chocolate for a kickstart to my day!

Oils for Focus

Citrus-based oils are amazing on channeling energy and focus. Some of these oils are orange, lemon, grapefruit, and lemon grass. Not only do these help keep you bright eyed and bushy tailed, they can also help build your immune system!

Oils for Energy

Herb-based oils work wonders for giving us energy. Some great options are peppermint, rosemary, and spearmint oils. These oils have been proven to boost mood, increase energy, and in some cases even improve memory.

Whatever you may need to help get your week off to a good start, there is an essential oil that can help you with that process. These natural oils are very helpful to day to day life, but always make sure to use in small quantities at first in case of an allergy.

Good luck and have a great week!


Staying Healthy Back to School

If you’re like me, and heading back into school or work, you know that life is a whole lot more confusing right about now. There’s so many new rules and regulations to keep ourselves and others healthy and safe. However, with all of these new regulations, it is pretty easy to feel controlled or out of whack when it comes to returning to “normal” life. So, here are a few tips and tricks I’ve found to help me feel more myself in this new normal.

Take walks, lots of them

Fresh air is so so important to our physical and mental health. By taking just an hour a day to walk outside and feel fresh air and sunshine, it can improve our mood greatly. The New York Times reported that warmer weather and UV rays could even impact the effect of the coronavirus, but at the very least, getting out in the sunshine can help us feel more grounded and in tune with the earth.

Personally, I’ve been trying to look for new walking trails nearby, and have even attended a few outdoor yoga classes! Many studios are doing free outdoor classes right now, look into it!

Bring plants into your home

Plants have been known to boost our moods and help keep air clean. So, why wouldn’t you bring some into your workspace? While there are some that are hard to care for, some fool proof plants to have are ferns (which come in all kinds of varieties, I have button and asparagus ferns and love them!) and snake plants!

Bottomline, this time of life we are living in is stressful! Whether you are working from home or returning out into the world, you are likely experiencing a lot of changes. Finding positive, natural ways to channel your energy is a great way to cope with new stressors in your life!


How to Protect Your Pets from Fleas and Ticks

Pets are important parts of our families, and many cats and dogs enjoy being outside. However, there are many risks that come alongside the freedoms of playing outdoors. Two major risks are fleas and ticks.

How do we protect our pets from fleas and ticks?

Sadly, tick bites in dogs are hard to find, since they are typically too small to find in their fur. The only way to identify ticks once they are on your pet is watching for ticks, especially in the areas that are tick hot spots. These include the ears, around the tail, around the eyelids, and even under the toes of your pet.

So, what preventative measures can we take to prevent ticks from finding the hot spots on your pet?

There are many products available for flea and tick prevention, but very few natural ones on the market. If we use natural products on ourselves, why not on our furry family members too?

Pet Naturals of Vermont is a brand that provides many natural products for your pets! They have everything from multivitamins to dog treats. Pet Naturals of Vermont also makes a flea and tick spray for your pets that contains all natural ingredients such as sesame oil, lemongrass, and cinnamon oil. All you do is spray the mixture on your pet, emphasizing legs and stomach. Then, depending on coat length you can rub it in or apply it to pet grooming tools like brushes.

As pet owners, the main goal is to keep your pet happy and healthy. Pet Naturals of Vermont makes that easy to do with their fast applying spray!

How Collagen Promotes Healthy Skin

Collagen seems to be the new buzz word for a miracle skin improvement. Now, its an add-in option at coffee shops, juice bars, and even smoothie shops. But what is collagen? And when did it get so popular?

What is Collagen?

Collagen is a protein that is incredibly abundant in the body. It makes up about 30% of the protein in our bodies, and about 70% of the protein in our skin. So why are people taking supplements of it if we already have so much? A main reason is that collagen production largely decreases with age, turning smooth skin into wrinkles.

Some things that collagen does are:

  • Support healthy aging
  • Support healthy looking skin
  • Promote skin elasticity
  • Support a healthy bone matrix
  • Promote healthy looking hair and nails
  • Support nail bed structure

When did collagen get popularized?

Collagen was popularized in diets recently, but had its share of fame during “discovery” in the 1930s. However, it has been used for centuries in the diets of Chinese women in favor of baby-smooth skin.

Now, brands are finding more appetizing ways to promote collagen consumption through gummies or other food-based approaches.

How do you get more collagen?

For starters, taking a collagen supplement is a beneficial and healthy way to consume lost collagen. If you would prefer to eat it through food stuffs, there are plenty of options. Some of these foods you can try to eat are:

  • Pork skin
  • Bone broth
  • Fish
  • Eggs

No matter how you choose to consume it, collagen is a great way to improve your skin through natural means.

Benefits of Antioxidants

In the health and wellness world, it seems that there is always something new and important to ensure is a part of our diet. While antioxidants are by no means “new”, they are incredibly important to keeping a healthy lifestyle.

What are antioxidants?

Antioxidants are substances that protect the body from free radicals. Vitamins C and E are wonderful antioxidants that can be found in many plant sources that are typically high in fiber and low in saturated fat.

What do they do?

Antioxidants fight against free radicals, which are known to cause oxidative stress. Oxidative stress, in turn, can cause many serious issues including heart disease, cancer, arthritis, and strokes.

Antioxidants are known as “radical scavengers” as they find the free radical electrons and stop the oxidation process that is so harmful to our bodies.

How do I incorporate them into my diet?

If you are consuming a relatively balanced diet with fruits, whole grains, and vegetables, you likely already have a decent amount of antioxidants in your diet.

However, if you are looking for natural food sources that contain antioxidants, this list may surprise you at how many of your favorite foods are good for you.

  1. Dark Chocolate
  2. Pecans
  3. Blueberries
  4. Strawberries
  5. Artichokes
  6. Goji Berries
  7. Raspberries
  8. Kale
  9. Red Cabbage
  10. Beans
  11. Beets
  12. Spinach

I don’t know about you, but that list could make some great salads, entrees, and even desserts that are all high in antioxidants. While your body does naturally make antioxidants, these food sources and many others can help reduce the risk of chronic diseases due to free radical damage.

What Do Digestive Enzymes Do?

Digestion is something that impacts us and our bodies daily. So why wouldn’t we try our hardest to help our body perform such a demanding task? Digestive enzymes are taken before a meal, and mimic our natural enzymes to help our body break down carbohydrates, fats, and proteins.

There are three main types of digestive enzymes:

  1. Amylase
  2. Protease
  3. Lipase

And each of these three enzymes performs a different task. Amylase breaks down carbohydrates, lipase breaks down fat, and protease breaks down proteins. The Garden of Life brand carries many different digestive enzymes, as well as other kinds of natural supplements, that can each be used individually or together to build a healthier lifestyle.

However, if you are wanting one enzyme to take that will supplement all of your digestive needs, try Garden of Life’s Omega-Zyme Ultra Digestive Enzyme Blend. This blend has it all, including:

  • Digestive Support with 21 Different Enzymes
  • Wide Range of pH Activity
  • Wide range of digestion support
  • Gas and bloating relief
  • Promotes regular bowel movements
  • Contains minerals and co-factors to support enzyme activity and function
  • Includes lactace and specific protease to support digestion of dairy
  • Vegetarians
  • Dairy and Gluten free

Garden of Life provides a wide range of products that can help the transition into a better feeling you, and the Omege-Zyme is a wonderful place to start helping your digestive track feel stronger and healthier. Adding in a digestive enzyme is a great starting point!