Getting Started with Meditation

Healthy mind, healthy body… A lot of us are quite regimented when it comes time to working out the body. So what about working out your mind? Meditation practice is one easy way to do it and here’s some things to consider when you try it out.

meditating woman relaxing in pose of lotus outdoors

It’s not about having no thoughts –  a common misconception is that you have to clear your mind completely in order to meditate when in fact it’s more about not resisting your thoughts and letting them pass in front of you without giving them a reaction.

It’s not about being uncomfortable – for those who don’t mind assuming a yogi, cross-legged position, that’s great! But for the rest, sitting comfortably with your back supported on a chair is also satisfactory.

Pick a time – pick a time of day to meditate so you can establish consistency and build up your mental strength. Also, setting your alarm can help you to keep increasing your times so you can get yourself up to the ideal 20 minute mark.

Have no expectations– just let yourself be without judging the experience or the results right away. Doing this will help you to accept the practice for what it is and let yourself go into deeper meditations.

Just try to enjoy this as your special time away from all of your busy distractions…a little bit truly goes a long way for your overall health and well-being!

Nancy Sacks

Fall Allergies are Here!

allergyYes, it’s definitely been wacky weather here in So Cal. The unusual humidity and rain we have had makes for a very confusing time for our bodies. Also, the ragweed pollen was detected earlier than normal this year so lots of us are already suffering with the sneezy, itchy eye, sinus headache and wheezing issues associated with those pollens.

So what can we do to prevent or deal with allergies naturally? First off, I suggest using the combination homeopathic drops Pollen/Hayfever. These amazing drops will help to de-sensitize you to a wide variety of pollens. This is the original version used to help allergy sufferers, which were so effective that doctors started using this concept in an allergy shot form! They are safe for everyone and you can use any specific type of drops needed, such as Mold/Dust, Tree Pollen, Grass Pollen…as well as many different types of foods that you are allergic to. There are also natural anti-histamines that can not only help with symptoms, they also help to reduce overall inflammation.

Another super effective tool is the Nettie Pot, and if that doesn’t sound appealing there are homeopathic nose sprays. I also just discovered a super convenient and quite comfortable nasal wash tool called NasoPure, in fact I liked it so much I decided to carry them in my pharmacy. They are available for adults and children – check them out.

It’s also a great time to do a liver cleanse of some sort, since the liver acts as a filter for the body and if your filter needs cleaning then your body may tend to become more sensitive. Cleansing can be achieved by simply cutting back on coffee and rich foods, by doing green juices or by taking specific products to help detoxify and support the liver. An easy way to make the liver happy is to start the day with a glass of fresh squeezed lemon in warm water.

So as you see, there are lots of things you can do to help with your allergies. The whole point is – you do not have to suffer, and you do not have to rely on anti-histamines…there is a better way!

Yours in Health,

Nancy Sacks

Raising Healthy Eaters

Ok so it’s back to school which means keeping up with activities, sports and homework while trying to prepare healthy meals for the kids and the whole family.

Happy mother and two daughters cooking in the kitchen

I have talked to the families I work with for years about offering healthier options and I know it can be frustrating at times if your kids are demanding fast food or junky snacks…but where there is a will there’s a way, right? So I say commit to trying healthier alternatives with your kids. There will be some winners and some losers but in the long run you will feel better about the food they are eating and you will also be pleased to see that it has a positive effect on moods, energy and the immune system.

Something fun to incorporate when you can is cooking at home with your kids. This allows you to know which ingredients go into your food plus there are lots of healthy cooking blogs at our disposal these days, which can give you great ideas with positive kid tested reviews. I have personally discovered some delicious cheesy kale chips, gluten free chocolate chip cookies and vegan chocolate mousse recipes this way!

One last thing; as long as it remains hot outside, please remember to keep your kids hydrated. Again if they give you a hard time about drinking plain water you can always try coconut water or diffusing some fresh fruit in the water pitcher. Really anything you can do to instill these healthy habits in your kids now, pays off big time in their future!
I know it can be difficult to always keep it healthy, especially when there is little time to shop and cook, but anything is possible when you are prepared and have the right intent!

Please enjoy this choc chip cookie recipe – it’s vegan and gluten free but super delicious!

Choc Chip Cookies
1 ½ cup almond meal
2 ½ tblsp melted coconut oil
¼ cup cacao nibs or choc chips
2 tblsp maple syrup
1 tsp vanilla extract
¼ tsp sea salt
¼ tsp baking powder
1 tblsp cacao powder optional
1 tblsp chia seeds optional

Preheat oven to 350. Mix ingredients and line a baking sheet with wax paper. Place 1 tblsp of batter and press lightly in the center.

Bake 13 – 15 minutes or until golden. They will be soft but will crisp when cooled.

Yours in Health,

Nancy Sacks

Healthy Sleep Habits

As the days start to get shorter, we should try and find ways to get to bed earlier. Getting more sleep is actually one of the most positive things you can do for your overall health! Here are a few tips for improving your sleep:

Sleeping angel statuePower down your electronic devices at least an hour before bed. The lights from these devices stimulate your brain and can disrupt your ability to get into a deep sleep by lowering your production of Melatonin (a naturally occurring sleep hormone). If you don’t want to take melatonin you can get it naturally by drinking Tart Cherry juice in the evening, which promotes your body’s production of melatonin.

Start a journal: when you get into bed, write down 3 things you are grateful for in a notebook or a journal. Focusing on what you are grateful for draws your attention to what is positive in your life, which works wonders for promoting better sleep.

And last, program what you want to happen! This one is easier than it sounds…simply imagine or visualize a great night sleep, and waking up happy and refreshed. Studies show that the mind is a powerful thing, and you can use your wisely by deciding to have the quality of life you deserve.

Yours in Health,

Nancy Sacks