How Do I Use Homeopathic Remedies?

On a recent trip to the Vitamin Cottage off of 15th street near Downtown Denver, one of the Natural Products Network team members witnessed a woman browsing the rows of homeopathic remedies and asking an employee numerous questions. That trip provided the inspiration for this article because although homeopathic remedies have been around much longer than most types of Western medicine, many people have no idea what they are, how they work or how to use them.

Homeopathy was first discovered by Samuel Hahnemann in 1796 when he came up with the principle that “like cures like.” Thus, each homeopathic remedy is made from an extremely diluted substance that has similar qualities to the symptoms it is targeting.  It is thought that when the body encounters the homeopathic, it responds and combats the corresponding symptoms. Although, homeopathy has had its critics, it’s sheer staying power and number of users around the world say a lot about its effectiveness. In fact, homeopathic remedies are used by England’s Royal Family and widely prescribed by Physicians in Europe and Asia.

When choosing a homeopathic remedy it’s a good idea to first check with your health care provider. You may be pleasantly surprised how many Western Physicians are becoming more knowledgeable about homeopathy and can advise you accordingly. Recently, a friend of mine told us about a doctor she discovered at Kaiser who is both a Naturopath and a MD – pretty exciting stuff! If your primary doctor isn’t receptive, consider reaching out to a Naturopath for a recommendation. Whomever you go to, the most important thing is that you don’t feel belittled or patronized for wanting to explore another health option—especially one like homeopathy that has been around for a long time and has many fans around the world.

Regardless of which remedies that you end up choosing there are general rules that apply to all homeopathic remedies. First, never touch them as this can disturb the remedies. Instead, always pour them into the bottle cap first before putting them into your mouth and letting them dissolve under your tongue (If you use a liquid, squirt it directly under your tongue without touching the dropper to your mouth). Next, don’t eat or drink anything for at least 20 minutes before or after you take the homeopathic so that they can be absorbed directly into your system. One of our favorite brands of homeopathic remedies is Hyland’s which offers a number of solutions.

Also, when deciding on a healing path with your health care adviser, work on one set of correlating symptoms at a time so you don’t overload yourself with too many remedies.  Even though little to no adverse side effects have been reported, starting with too many homeopathic remedies too fast can be overwhelming. Lastly, if you purchase your remedies from a health food store, ask the cashier not to scan them at checkout. Although some argue that scanning is fine, there is also a belief that it could weaken the energetic quality of the homeopathic—so there’s no point in taking the risk.

Make sure to talk to your doctor before adding any new homeopathic into your daily routine. 

Protect your kids from overlooked health risk

A leading health risk often overlooked as a possible cause for disruptive and irritable behavior in children, lead poisoning is a serious condition that if left untreated can cause various health threats. In fact, according to the CDC, lead poisoning can damage the kidneys, the nervous system, the reproductive system, cause elevated blood pressure and is especially harmful to the developing brains of young children and fetuses.

So how does a child end up with too much lead in his or her system? Most people know about the dangers of lead paint found covering walls of many older houses and apartment buildings. However, not too many people consider their child’s exposure to water run through lead pipes or the massive amount of environmental lead residue. The EPA estimates that more than 12 million children primarily living in urban areas are exposed to around 10 million metric tons of lead residue resulting from the use of leaded gasoline and paint. Even juice boxes can be a source of lead!

According to the Mayo Clinic the signs and symptoms of lead poisoning in children may include:

• Irritability

• Loss of appetite

• Weight loss

• Sluggishness and fatigue

• Abdominal pain

• Vomiting

• Constipation

• Unusual paleness from anemia

• Learning difficulties

You can get your child tested for lead poisoning, often for free. Start by checking with your local health department regarding lead screening guidelines specific to the risks in your area.  If your child does indeed have lead poisoning, you’ll want to talk to your health care provider before starting any treatment, but there are a number of natural remedies that might help.

Natural Strategies for combating lead poisoning  include utilizing homeopathic remedies specifically for lead accumulation. For instance, Hanna Kroeger Herbs makes a Plumbum (Latin for lead) remedy specifically to help dispel lead from the body. Helpful herbs for combating lead poisoning and heavy metal toxicity include Alfalfa and Dandelion. Make sure to always buy organic or wild herbs that haven’t been treated with pesticides. Make sure to consult your doctor about which products are best for you and your children! And of course, it is important to identify the source of lead so that your child isn’t exposed again. Finally, don’t forget to test yourself and other family members for lead poisoning if your child tests positive! Other people in your family could also be at risk!

Healthy pantry makeover

Is your pantry healthy or is it a health trap? Here are some ideas on how to reinvent your walk-in so you have quick, delicious and nutritious meal options on hand that your entire family will love. Check out our recent segment on Good Morning Colorado as we talk about some healthy options!

Rudi’s Organic Bakery
The Rudi’s story started more than 35 years ago when the founders couldn’t find a nutritious bread for their kids. Fast forward to present day and Rudi’s Organic is now a premier brand focused on making products free of artificial ingredients, preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, trans-fat and genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Rudi’s Organic breads are made in small batches using a centuries-old practice that allows the dough to ferment for 12 to 24 hours before the mixing and baking processes begin. Try their new Sandwich and Bagel Flatz! Perfect for kid lunches! www.rudisbakery.com

Simply Organic
There are so many things to love about Simply Organics. They offer a variety of spices and  mixes for quick sauces, salad dressings, chilis and more. Plus, they embrace small organic farmers, helping them improve their agricultural methods and profits through programs like Fair Trade and Well Earth®. Two of our favorite products include the organic Chili Mix which can be prepped in minutes with  common pantry items and the versatile  Carrot Cake mix which can be used to create a variety of different recipes. www.simplyorganic.com

Healthy summer snack ideas

Choosing healthy snacks can make a big difference on how you and your kids feel throughout the day. Here are some nutritious snack ideas that will keep you and your kiddos coming back for more! We’ll be talking about natural snack strategies this Friday on Daybreak – make sure to tune in if you live in Colorado!

Bobo’s Oat Bars
Made with Natural and Organic ingredients, Bobo’s Oat Bars have a moist and delicious homemade taste that is unlike any other snack bar on the market. These one-of-a-kind bars are available in ten amazing regular flavors including four exciting new Gluten Free flavors. Forget artificial ingredients, additives, sweeteners and other harsh chemicals — each tasty treat is baked from the heart using only pure ingredients. www.bobosoatbars.com

Justin’s Nut Butters
This Colorado company only uses the highest quality natural and organic ingredients that are sustainably harvested and found as locally as possible to make their delicious array of nutbutters, peanut butter cups and bars. Products include classic peanut and almond butter and innovative varieties such as Chocolate Hazelnut and Maple Almond. www.justinsnutbutter.com

Snikiddy Snacks
All lines of Snikiddy Snacks are vegetarian and gluten and wheat free. No artificial colors or preservatives, high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, hydrogenated oils, or cholesterol. Plus, the best part is that they are absolutely delicious. We especially like Eat Your Vegetables™ which are the newest snack line from Snikiddy. They contain a full serving of veggies in each ounce serving (13 chips). www.snikiddy.com

Ela Family Farms
Since 1907, Ela Family Farmshas being growing fruit in western Colorado. This 4th generation farm is proud to offer certified organic products that reflect their dedication to quality. For instance, their legendary applesauce features only one ingredient–pure, delicious, organic apples. Now that is something that you can feel good about eating! www.elafamilyfarms.com

Avoid hidden toxins in kid products

When you become a parent, you want to extend your eco-awareness to your kids so that they too can reap the benefits. Sure, you’ve chosen cloth diapers and are careful about recycling and packing nutritious, organic lunches, but what are you missing? Chances are some things you haven’t even thought of. Check out four of the most common mistakes parents make when trying to raise healthy, happy, natural kids.

1. Hidden Chemicals

Just because a product is labeled as natural or even organic does not mean that it is a healthy choice. In fact, many common seemingly healthy products aimed at kids are filled with harmful chemicals. Check out this amazing book, Excitotoxins: The Taste that Kills, to find out the truth about the dangers of common preservatives and food additives. What you’ll find is that there is concrete scientific evidence against common substances like MSG found in a variety of foods (not just Chinese food!!). These harmful additives are used as flavor enhancers and represent a billion-dollar-business. The problem is that they are also making us sick.

The good news is that we can do something about this. Check the labels of foods and stay away from packaged foods that contain an abundance of chemicals. Also, be careful because seemingly harmless ingredients such as “enzymes,” “hydrolyzed vegetable protein,” “natural flavors” and “spices” are sometimes food additives in disguise! Two of the biggest culprits aimed right at our kids are Campbell Soups and Lunchables.

2. Toxic Toys and Clothes

We live in a world where quantity is often chosen over quality — especially when it comes to our kids’ clothes and toys. Even the most environmentally aware parent can get caught up in a wave of seemingly never ending consumerism. Worse yet, parents often end up buying an abundance of toys and clothes for their children that are actually toxic and harmful to their health.

In fact, according to the New York Daily News, dangerous levels of lead and hazardous chemicals continue to pop up in some popular children’s products like Barbie Bike Flair Accessory Kit and the Dora the Explorer Activity Tote. Also, conventional clothing can retain toxic chemicals that can cause rashes. So what is a parent to do? Check out wonderful websites like WildDill.com that offer a variety of clothes and toys that are safe, educational, high-quality and eco-friendly.

3. Over Juiced

Sure, consuming some juice is OK for our kids’ health, but nowadays over consumption of juice is becoming a real problem. So much so that even the American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a policy statement about “The Use and Misuse of Fruit Juice in Pediatrics.” According to the AAP, drinking too much juice can contribute to obesity, the development of cavities and gastrointestinal problems such as diarrhea, excessive gas, bloating and abdominal pain. Also, according to NRP, a California environmental group has found amounts of lead in bottled juice, juice boxes and packaged fruit that exceed federal limits for young children. And compounding this problem, juice boxes are often not recycled and end up littering our landfills.

4. Carbon Kid Print

When is the last time you calculated your carbon kid print? Um….never? If you are like many parents who calculate their individual footprint and its impact on the environment, you might realize that you’ve never even included your kids in this equation – or started a conversation with them about how they can have a positive impact on the environment. Thankfully there is this wonderful website called Carbonfootprint that can help you tally the results and use it as a teaching moment.

Use Foods Around the House to Heal Indigestion, Acne and Sore Throat!

While the saying, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” isn’t usually taken literally—it should be. Apples, like a lot of other common foods you’ll find in your fridge, are packed with healing nutrients that can save you a trip to the doctor the next time you’re not feeling so well. While us westerners often think of food as nourishing our bodies, we hardly ever look to it for medicinal purposes. However, for centuries different cultures such as the Chinese and American Indians have used food to help them feel better.  And we are not just talking about eating food, but also utilizing it in tonics and salves—and even placing it on the body to help draw out toxins.

Despite the disconnect often experienced when thinking of the notion that food can heal, nearly every person can think of a food related remedy that has been passed down in her or his family. The interesting thing is that a lot of these “old wives tales,” as they are often called, actually work and have been backed up by science. Furthermore, with health care costs on the rise, now is the perfect time to explore how to utilize common foods to promote better health. So open your mind—and your fridge— and let’s get started looking at the healing powers of food.

Tomatoes – There are oodles of studies that show that the chemical that makes tomatoes red, known as lycopene, may lower the risk of cancer. Tomatoes are also rich in Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Calcium and Potassium and can be used topically to draw out toxins. Next time you have a breakout try rubbing fresh tomato juice on your skin during your cleansing process.  Also, when you have a sore throat, try cutting a tomato in half and putting each side, juicy side down, on your neck where it hurts. This really works! You can also enjoy the healing benefits of tomatoes by making delicious sauces. Some of our favorite natural tomato products are made by Muir Glen.

Onions – Ahhh, the onion. Did you know that onions contain as many as 150 phytochemicals including quercetin which works to help to dispel free radicals in the body? Probably not, which is why you are reading this article in the first place, right? Anyway, the next time that you find yourself really stuffed up or feeling like you might have a touch of the flu, try making a huge pot of simple onion stew. First, find the biggest and deepest pot that you have and fill it with water until it’s about half full. Then cut 3 whole onions, put them in the pot and bring it to a boil. Simmer for about 15 minutes or until the onions are tender. After you’ve removed it from the heat, check the temperature of the steam with your hand (don’t burn yourself!) When it’s not too hot, poor the onion broth into a cup and sip it slowly while continuing to inhale the wonderful, healing vapors. This simple remedy can help clear you up and get you back on track.

Apple Cider Vinegar – Without going into a long narrative about how Apple Cider Vinegar works to help the body, we’ll save you a lot of boring reading by stating simply that it has been suggested that it works because it helps balance alkaline levels in the body. (Western diets are often more acid than alkaline…thus more alkaline can be ideal).  If you find yourself eating out a few times a week, try making Apple Cider Vinegar your new best friend. After eating heavy restaurant food—or just something that didn’t quite agree with you—put a tablespoon of Unfiltered Organic Apple Cider Vinegar (like Bragg Apple Cider Vinegar) in a large glass of water and sip it very, very slowly. Don’t be surprised if by the time you are finished your tummy ache is completely gone. Apple Cider Vinegar is also a wonderful natural acne treatment.

Natural sun protection products

From the picnics to the camping trips, the summertime means getting outside. Thankfully, there are a number of natural sun protection products that make it possible for your family to stay protected while enjoying all the warm weather fun. Tune in to Channel 2 this Tuesday in Denver as we talk about natural sun protection on Daybreak!

Urban Baby Bonnets
Urban Baby Bonnets was created by a mom who wanted to find a safe and stylish way to protect her daughter from the rays. Super cute natural and organic options keep your little one’s face shielded from sun, wind and light rain. There’s something for everyone, including little boys who want to look cute, too! Also, since the rims of the hats do not flop, they are more comfortable for the kiddos. Everything is handmade–no sweatshops, no outsourcing, just beautifully made, heirloom quality bonnets and clothes that you will love! www.urbanbabybonnets.com

Patagonia UPF Clothing
Patagonia is known for making clothes featuring sustainable materials to help to protect the environment for generations to come. They have launched many ground-breaking programs including their Common Threads Initiative, which focuses on helping reduce environmental footprint. Their UPF (Ultraviolet Protection Factor) clothing collection is a must for the outdoors because it provides built-in sun protection that won’t wear off. You’ll find snazzy styles for every member of the family. www.patagonia.com

Mountain Ocean
Mountain Ocean is a company committed to using only superior natural ingredients to make various products that are perfect before, during and after a day in a sun. The Almond Oil and Skin Trip both soothe and nourish sun-soaked skin, while the Lip Trip uses PABA-Free sunscreen and other targeted ingredients to maintain proper moisture balance while protecting your pucker. www.mountainocean.com

Vitamin E, A and C
Many people don’t realize they can help protect themselves from the sun by taking Vitamin supplements. However, according to Discovery Health, when vitamins C and E are combined they help prevent sunburn and make the effects of the sun much less severe. Also,Vitamin A great tool to help heal skin from  sun damage. Make sure to consult your doctor before adding any new supplement to your daily routine.

Celebrity mom’s favorite natural products

Have you ever wondered which natural products that celeb mom’s choose for themselves and their families? Check out some of the healthy products that high-profile stars love and make sure to tune in for our Celebrity Mom segment this Monday on Colorado’s Best!

Dr. Hauschka
Dr.Hauschka natural skin care products and holistic home remedies respect the body’s natural rhythms, working with these processes to restore balance and bring about lasting beauty. Both Jennifer Lopez and Julia Roberts are fans of the line. In fact, Jennifer Lopez said that she loves the Rose Day Cream. www.drhauschka.com

Organic Kidz
These stylish Stainless Steel Baby Bottles are an eco-friendly safe and practical alternative to plastic, aluminum and glass drinking containers. Made with babies and parents in mind, they’re easy to hold, hard to damage and dishwasher safe. Kim Porter (mom of P Diddy’s twins) Christina Millian and Tiffany Amber Thiessen are fans. www.organickidz.ca

Native Shoes
These comfy and cute shoes are vegan and manufactured through a low emissions process that produces virtually no waste. Brad and Angie’s kids Pax and Maddox have been photographed wearing them and so has the first daughter Sasha Obama! www.nativeshoes.com

Happy Baby Food
Celeb mom Demi Moore not only believes in this company, she also is an investor. This mom-owned and mom-managed company is the only kids food company to include healthy ingredients like choline and DNA for brain and eye development, prebiotics and probiotics to support digestive health, and nutrient rich Salba, kale and quinoa. www.happybabyfood.com

5 Reasons to Get out and Garden and Recipe: Make Your Own Organic Garden Pest Repellent!

By: Dayna Copeland Schaef

Now that the temperatures are soaring and the sun shines late into the evening hours, there is no better time to get out and garden. Read about some of the great benefits that growing your own fruits and vegetables can have for you, your family and your planet.

Top 5 Reasons to Get out and Garden

1. Growing your own fruits, vegetables and herbs will encourage you and your family to eat healthfully. There are few things more delicious than a freshly picked, garden grown tomato with a few leaves of backyard basil, drizzled with some extra virgin olive oil and some coarse sea salt. Gourmet goodness, right from your very own backyard.

2. Getting out to dig in the dirt gets you outside, in the fresh air and sunshine. A little bit of Vitamin D and fresh air can do wonders for your mental health, physical health and appearance.

3. Harvesting the foods from your garden to fill your pantry means less pollution and waste. Instead of buying your fruits and veggies from hundreds of miles away which can cost lots of resources and money, you will be practicing a more sustainable form of agriculture, contributing to a healthier environment and a more stable economy.

4. By feeding yourself and your family with the foods that you have grown yourself, you will save a ton of money! Produce can be expensive, especially organic produce, so why not save a ton of money this summer by growing your own ingredients.

5. Digging in the dirt is also a great workout. You will get some great exercise planting and working in your garden.

So now that you have plenty of reasons to get gardening, try making this easy organic garden pest repellent to protect your hard work without exposing your garden or the environment at large to harsh chemicals or toxins.

Organic Garden Pest Repellent

Ingredients: Organic Pepper Sauce, Castile Soap, Warm Water, Spray Bottle

To Make, mix 2-4 Tbsp. of hot, organic pepper sauce, with 1 tsp. of organic castile soap and fill the rest of the bottle with warm water. Shake to mix and spray on your plants every 5-7 days, depending on how often it rains.

Best delicious guacamole recipe for Memorial Day Weekend!

Rev up your celebrations by serving up this delicious guacamole dip! Your friends and family will love it!

Ingredients

  • 2 organic avocados
  • 1 tablespoon organic sour cream
  • 1/4 cup loosely diced organic cilantro
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped organic onion
  • 3 tablespoons of your favorite natural salsa
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon lemon or lime juice

Directions

Mash the avocados and stir in the sour cream until the dip reaches the desired texture. Add the cilantro, onion, salsa and salt and stir until combined. Add the lemon or lime juice last and lightly stir to prevent browning. Serve with your favorite light corn chips. We love Bearitos all natural tortilla chips! Deeeeelissssssshhhhh!

Are you using the healthiest and best cooking oil on Earth?

By: Dayna Copeland Schaef

It is widely understood that consuming any amount of saturated fat is bad for your health. It is considered to be one of the leading causes of heart disease and is linked to many types of cancer. Saturated fat is the kind of fat that is found most commonly in animal products like meat, poultry, dairy and fish but it is also found in some nuts, seeds and beans. Recent scientific studies regarding the consumption of saturated fats have led many health professionals to offer some redemption where the consumption of certain forms are concerned.

In a recent article featured in the New York Times, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association explained the benefits of consuming coconut oil. Their claims explained that Lauric Acid, one of the components of saturated fat, is highly concentrated in coconut oil, unlike butter, for example, which is higher in Palmitic and Stearic acids and contains almost no Lauric Acid. So it can be deduced that coconut oil could be considered a healthier option to butter.

These studies seem to suggest that not all saturated fats are created equally, as we maybe once understood them to be. As a result of extensive research, scientists have been able to further explore the effects of specific saturated fats on the human body. By breaking down the different components of specific sources of saturated fats, studies have shown that Lauric Acid is actually incredibly beneficial as a supplement to a healthy immune system, helping stave off viral, bacterial and fungal infection–including the very problematic Candida. Coconut oil has one of the highest concentrations of natural Lauric Acid, surpassed only by the insurmountable levels found in a mother’s breast milk.

In addition to its health benefits, cooking with a small amount of this natural saturated fat can add immense flavor to the foods that you already love. Coconut oil can be subbed in wherever vegetable oil, peanut oil, soybean oil, shortening, olive oil or butter is called for. With its rich, exotic flavor, using coconut oil in baked goods such as cakes, cookies and breads adds depth to your favorite sweets. With a deliciously tropical taste, you can also use a little extra virgin coconut oil in the bottom of your frying pan to cook seafood, chicken, vegetables, steak and more. Of course, like any other saturated fat, coconut oil should still be used sparingly. Include it thoughtfully as a part of an already healthy menu.

Eating a healthy, well balanced diet has proven to be a confusing endeavor for so many Americans, with so many individuals at either pole in extreme eating. While it is obvious that eating a high fat diet is very unhealthy, scientists are finding more and more evidence that the extreme low fat fad diets can be just as dangerous. Fat is, indeed, an essential element of a well balanced diet, and with the right understanding of the foods that are available to us, optimal nutrition need not be an unachievable exploit.

Which Common Herb is Better Than Botox?

Looking for a way to shed years off your appearance without resorting to chemicals or even more drastic measures? If so, make sure to check out this age-defying herb that is touted for its natural ability to help heal and nourish the body.

Nettle, a member of the Urticaceae family, is a nutrition-packed herb that has been used throughout time to help promote better health. In fact, some two thousand years ago Caesar’s Roman troops were ordered to gather as much nettle as possible from England because of its many benefits.

Nettle is rich in chlorophyll, and is a good source vitamins A, C and E, iron, calcium and phosphates – key nutrients to help turn back time. It has been used to help prevent infections, combat viruses and bacteria and revitalize the body after childbirth.

When it comes to helping one improve their appearance, nettle serves as a magic tonic for hair and skin. It helps heal blemishes, just like these other innovative natural acne treatments.  Specifically, it helps increase circulation to make brittle hair feel more luxurious and strong. And guys – listen up – it has also been touted for helping to prevent hair loss. On the smooth skin front, it helps to soothe irritation and relieve acne and eczema to promote a more youthful appearance.

The easiest and perhaps best way to consume nettle is by making a simple tea. You can find high quality organic loose leaf nettle at sites including Mountain Rose Herbs. Try combining a bit of organic loose leaf peppermint with nettle to produce a delicious tea blend.

If you are new to nettle or herbs in general, consult your health care provider before adding nettle into your daily routine. If your current health care provider doesn’t know anything about nettle or its vast benefits (or treats you like an idiot for asking about it), then ask around or do your own research into the healing benefits of herbs.

Wasabi Infused Desserts

Cherished for decades in the East for its unique flavor and healthful influences, Wasabia japonica is best known as an age-old food pairing with sashimi or sushi dishes. But, its uses can be much more wide-reaching…even as far as dessert! A company called Real Wasabi is pioneering the use of Wasabi in a variety of inventive products. Check out these dessert ideas, which all incorporate the flavors of organic Dried Ground Real Wasabi.

Wasabi Spiced Pumpkin Pie
Prep time 60 minutes, serves 4

1 1/4 cups pumpkin puree, canned or fresh
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. Dried Ground REAL WASABI™
1/4 tsp. ground ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. all-purpose flour
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup evaporated milk, undiluted
2 Tbs. water
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 unbaked pastry shell (9-inch)

Preheat oven to 400°. In a medium mixing bowl combine pumpkin, sugar, salt, Dried Ground REAL WASABI™, ground ginger, nutmeg, cinnamon and flour. Then add eggs and mix evenly. Once the ingredients are equally mixed, stir in the evaporated milk, water and vanilla and mix well. Grease a pie pan and line with pastry. Pour contents of the mixing bowl into pastry-lined pie pan. Bake at 400° for the first 15 minutes and then reduce heat to 375° and bake 30 additional minutes, or until center is set.

Real Tempting Hot Chocolate
Prep time 15 minutes, serves 2

2 cups milk
splash water
2 Tbs. cocoa
2 Tbs. sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. Dried Ground REAL WASABI™
pinch salt
2 Tbs. white chocolate

Over medium heat, mix cocoa, sugar, 1 cup milk and water until slightly warm, smooth and creamy. Add the rest of the milk, the salt, and Dried Ground REAL WASABI™ and keep stirring, until mixture begins to bubble and steam. Remove from heat and set aside. In another pan, melt white chocolate over medium heat until creamy and then set aside. Stir mixture one last time and then pour into large mugs. Using a butter knife, swirl in white chocolate and serve immediately.

Fresh Fruit Compote with a Twist
Prep time 30 minutes, chill time 4 hours, serves 4

3 cups water
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup raisins
1 cup sweet white wine
1 lb. fresh mixed fruit such as blueberries, strawberries, prunes, raspberries, pears, apricots, peaches, apples or figs
2 tsp. Dried Ground REAL WASABI™
2 whole cloves
1 Tbs. lemon zest
3 cinnamon sticks

In a large saucepan, stir in water and sugar over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Place the rest of the ingredients into the saucepan and stir. Simmer for about 25 minutes, stirring occasionally, until fruits are tender and liquid has reduced to a syrupy texture. Turn off heat and let mixture cool to room temperature. Pour into a large glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours. Serve on fruit cups, in long-stemmed goblets with a dollop of natural whipped cream; on warm pie; alongside poultry dishes; or in the place of jelly.

Extraordinary Easy Apple Crisp
Prep time 45 minutes, serves 4

4 apples, peeled and sliced
1 Tbs. water
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup flour
4 tsp. brown sugar
4 tsp. butter
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. Dried Ground REAL WASABI™
1 dash nutmeg

Preheat oven to 350°. Grease pie pan or baking dish. Combine apples, water, and salt and then place in baking pan or dish. Mix remaining ingredients in a separate bowl until crumbly and then sprinkle over apple mixture. Bake in the top part of the oven for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
Marty’s Marvelous Wasabi Cheesecake
Prep time 75 minutes, chill time overnight, serves 4

1 3/4 cups Graham Cracker Crumbs
1/3 cup butter, melted
1 1/4 cups sugar, divided
3 pkg. (8 oz. each) Cream Cheese, softened
2 tsp. vanilla
2 tsp. Dried Ground REAL WASABI™
3 eggs
1 cup Sour Cream
1 jar apple, strawberry or raspberry jelly for topping

Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large bowl mix crumbs, butter and 1/4 cup sugar. Once completely mixed, press evenly on bottom and sides of deep baking dish or spring form pan and set aside. Next, use an electric mixer to beat Dried Ground REAL WASABI™, cream cheese, remaining sugar and vanilla until creamy. Then beat in eggs, one at a time and carefully blend in sour cream. Once the mixture is ready, spread in prepared dish or pan. Bake for 60 minutes or until center is set. Turn off oven. Leave cheesecake in oven 1 hour with the door slightly ajar. Remove from oven; cool completely and then refrigerate overnight. Top with apple, strawberry or raspberry jelly before serving.

To purchase Real Wasabi Products, please visit www.realwasabi.com

Easy ways to cleanse your body for a spring wellness makeover

Many of us have heard of spring cleaning, a task that we can always expect to lead us to the deepest, darkest, dirtiest corners of our homes to capture every last rogue dust bunny, to finally recycle a year’s worth of old magazines, to scrub the sticky shelves in the refrigerator from the time that bottle of soda exploded last October. Spring is the time to get a fresh start, but it isn’t just the perfect time to clean out our closets and shampoo the carpets, it is also a great time to cleanse our bodies from a year’s worth of toxins.

There are a plethora of detox diets on the market today, but finding a gentle cleanse that will wipe your slate clean and reset your gauges can be downright overwhelming. The trick is to enlist a helping hand right from mother nature’s detox manual, by using all-natural ingredients in a gradual, refreshing cleanse regimen.

The Gerson Method is a diet that has been used with great success as an alternative cancer therapy, but it’s principles are essentially to cleanse the body of any toxins that cause illness, disease and any other unfortunate ailments that may arise from poor diet, lack of sleep, lack of exercise or other contamination.  Whether you have cancer or not, following the Gerson Method is a great way to eliminate your body of unwanted buildup that could be making you feel sluggish and causing a number of other unwanted health issues. The Method enlists the cleansing effects of eating raw organic foods, drinking juices made from the freshest organic fruits and vegetables, consuming natural supplements and partaking in enemas to cleanse the digestive system. Specific information about the Gerson Method can be found at their website: Gerson.org

Another Springtime cleanse that works wonders for many, in both the physical and spiritual realms, is the Ayurvedic Cleanse, Pancha Karma. With its roots in ancient India, Ayurvedic cleansing is done in three stages, preparation, cleansing and rejuvenation. During the preparation stage, certain foods like sugar, caffeine and alcohol are phased out gradually to prepare the body for a fast, which takes place during the second stage, the cleanse. During this second stage, a special herbal drink is consumed, which is made up of water, fennel, pepper, ginger, cumin, coriander and cardamom. During this cleanse period, psyllium fiber is also prescribed in order to flush the system. During the rejuvination period, food is slowly phased back into the diet, until balance is achieved.

No matter which cleanse you choose, taking the season as an opportunity to cleanse your body and refresh your spirit is a great way to nurture your lifelong health and to stay in touch with Mother Earth.

We provide information and not medical advice. Please consult your doctor on your individual needs. 

Natural parenting: homeopathic remedy for your little one’s cough

By: Dayna Copeland Schaef

Many moms and dads claim that being a parent is the hardest job in the world, and when their baby has a cough or a cold, this fact is only further magnified. Watching a child suffer through the discomfort of an illness is the last thing a parent wants to do. But, the solution for a little one’s ailments can be complicated, as many parents are apprehensive about treating their offspring with unnecessarily strong medications, and with good reason. Before drastic measures are sought, it is good to know that there are an increasing amount of homeopathic and natural remedies available for the concerned parent, many of which have been tested and received with great success.

Hyland’s is one very well known brand in the natural products world that is expanding their line to incorporate the needs of our sick little ones. Hyland’s has been a long standing manufacturer of homeopathic remedies for ailments such as: insomnia, menstrual cramps, indigestion, flu and cough/colds. The company has long prided itself on offering products that work in synch with the body’s natural forces. Instead of introducing harsh and jarring chemicals and medications to an already compromised immune system, their homeopathic alternatives offer gentle relief for the individual who is feeling under the weather.

While Hyland’s has been making homeopathic products for over a century, the company has recently released  their first ever homeopathic cough syrup for babies called Hyland’s Baby Cough Syrup. The natural ingredients work together to soothe a range of coughs and and their unfortunate symptoms. The syrup treats a tickling cough, a gagging cough, a dry cough, a hoarse cough and more.

The syrup does not contain any aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen, pseudoephedrine or dextromethorpahn and is safe for use in infants 6 months and older.

In addition to offering your sick baby Hyland’s Baby cough syrup, many parents have found that placing a humidifier on it’s lowest setting in the room where your baby sleeps can help relieve a dry, hoarse or tickling cough, as well.

Being a parent is undoubtedly hard, but rewarding work, and making the best choices for your baby is a lot easier when you utilize the homeopathic and natural remedies that are available, today. Your sweet little ones can get back to cooing and giggling quicker, and you can feel confident that you are nurturing their healthy growing bodies.

We offer information and not medical advice. Please consult your doctor about your individual needs.