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My Sunshine Kale Smoothie!

My Sunshine Kale SmoothieOk, I’m not trying to be cocky here but I have invented the BEST smoothie EVER!  I’m not kidding.  Yesterday I talked about the amazing benefits of kale.  Today, I’m so excited to share with you probably the best smoothie I’ve ever made!

Last weekend was spring break and my girls and my mom and I went to Dallas for the weekend.  I found myself really craving something clean and green and happened upon a Jamba Juice.  Jamba Juice is tricky because so many of their smoothies have so much sugar added to them, not to mention they charge a fortune!  I ended up with a kale smoothie that had oranges and bananas added to it.  It was good.  It tasted healthy but still so tasty.  I knew I could recreate it at home and bump up the nutritional value a bit too!

I kept the smoothie true to the Jamba Juice smoothie with an orange, banana and kale.  I added chia seeds, coconut oil and just a bit of raw honey for added health benefits.

Read HERE about kale

Chia seeds are quite amazing.  Just  1 TBSP. contains 5.5 grams of fiber, 2 grams of protein and 4.5 grams of fat.  They also contain a decent amount of Zinc, Vitamin B3 (Niacin), Potassium, Vitamin B1 (Thiamine) and Vitamin B2.

Coconut Oil contains lauric acid, caprylic acid and capric acid.  Because coconut oil has anti fungal, anti bacterial, anti viral properties, it can fight viruses, fungus, bacteria, candida and parasites.  Coconut oil can help boost immunities.

Raw Honey is a natural antibiotics, helps with allergies, is anti-inflammatory, anti fungal, and anti bacterial.  Raw honey also balances blood sugar, lowers blood pressure, aids in digestion and strengthens the immune system.

Kale Orange Smoothie kale smoothie 2

My Sunshine Kale Smoothie

1 cup of organic kale

1 orange

1 banana

1 TBSP. chia seeds (find HERE)

1 TBSP. coconut oil (find HERE)

1 TBSP. raw honey (find HERE)  **local would be best!

A dash of cinnamon

Kale Smoothie P1140299

Add all ingredients to a blender, mix and ENJOY!

This is seriously the yummiest smoothies ever!  And as you can see, it is also very healthy.  Quite the boost of superfoods for your bod!  Not a bad idea with swimsuit season coming fast!

xx, Jenni

Be sure to leave your thoughts if you make the smoothie.  I would love if you would share your favorite smoothies too!

Why You Need to Add Kale to Your Diet…

The Benefits of KaleI started adding kale into my diet about 6 mos. ago.  I’m always looking for new veggies that I can stomach.  Especially leafy greens.  The benefits in leafy green vegetables are huge.  I was just going to make this a smoothie recipe post, but I decided to divide it up into 2 posts because kale honestly deserves a post of it’s own.  Get ready to get excited about KALE!

Ok, first off, kale is extremely low in calories, does not contain fat and is high in fiber.   This is good news when trying to boost your vitamins and minerals, lower cholesterol, strengthen your bones, detox, and fight against free radicals without having to take a million supplements.

1 cup of kale provides way over the daily recommended amount of vitamins K, A & C.  It also fights inflammation, which has been studied and suspected to be one of the main culprits of premature aging.   It’s a huge dose of antioxidants which are proven to slow down premature aging.

In a nut shell, kale is a damn good idea!

Benefits of Kale:

  • Lowers cholesterol
  • High dose of antioxidants
  • Anti-Inflammatory
  • Anti-Cancer
  • Contains loads of Vitamin K-bone strength and nervous system health, blood clotting
  • Contains loads of Vitamin A-boosts immunity, bone health, reproductive health, eye health and SKIN HEALTH!!
  • Contains Vitamin C-lowers blood pressure, strengthens immunity, speeds metabolism
  • Contains more iron then red meat
  • Detoxifies
  • High in Calcium

All of these benefits are such good news for those of us that are slowly refining our diets in order to be healthy.  Especially for those of us border line anemics that don’t digest red meat too well!

How do you incorporate kale in your diet, you might ask?  Well, my husband used to make kale chips that were so yummy-so incredibly tasty!!  Go HERE for that recipe!

I’m always throwing new things in the blender for my daily smoothie in order to add vitamins, minerals and antioxidants to my day.  To my delight, kale, while not as tasteless as spinach, works rather well in smoothies.  In fact, I’ve been enjoying an incredibly yummy smoothie lately that I will share with you this week!!

Stay tuned!!

xx, Jenni

P.S. If you have other ways you enjoy kale, please SHARE!!!

 

Allergy Relief-Part 2

Allergy Relief Stradegies

Well, here we are talking about allergies again!  When I left you with my Part 1, I had decided to take 9 drops of L.L.P. essential oil blend (lavender, lemon and peppermint) in a gel cap 3 times a day.  I also committed to rubbing the blend on the bottoms of my feet at least 2 times a day.

Some of you might be wondering why I don’t just take an allergy pill.  One big reason that keeps me from taking allergy medication is that most of them work by drying your system out.  I cringe when I think of dehydrating my body.  I tend to be dehydrated naturally and to take something that will further dry me out seems like a death wish!  I dug a little deeper and found common side effects to common over the counter allergy medicines.

Side Effects of Allergy Medication:

  • Decreased libido
  • Depression
  • Increased appetite
  • Brain Fog/Drowsiness
  • Altered Taste and Smell
  • Constipation
  • Dry Mouth
  • Inability to urinate
  • Dehydration
  • Nausea
  • Nervousness
  • Uneven Heartbeat

My Experience with Ingesting Essential Oils via Gel Caps:

It’s been 3 days since I’ve been doing this new regime and my symptoms are reduced.  I’m not 100% and in fact, I’m wondering if my allergies have turned into a full blown cold-I’ve heard they do that.  What I have noticed since taking the gel caps is that the itchiness I experience in my sinuses-you know the tickle that makes you sneeze-is greatly diminished.  I have bouts of sneezing but they are few and far between.  Itchy eyes are on and off as well.  I still feel a bit drugged and overly tired which was really what I wanted to remedy.  My nose went from running like a faucet to feeling really stuffy at times, especially when lying down.  This is why I suspect I might have a cold.

Taking the gel caps was super easy and painless.  I felt a bit of indigestion probably from the peppermint but it wasn’t uncomfortable.  I could taste the peppermint which was nice because it gave me very clean breath!  Never did the gel cap burn my throat nor did I have any side effects of taking the oil internally.

What I want to state is that with natural remedies you are usually addressing the cause of the symptoms rather then the symptoms.  When you take an allergy drug, for the most part, you are treating your symptoms.  Since the essential oils are going after the inflammation that cause the sneezing, grogginess and itchiness, it’s not an immediate relief.

Allergy Relief

I honestly don’t know if I should be giving the essential oils more time before reviewing this type of treatment or if I have a legit cold!

I was hoping to tell you that I found immense relief but I didn’t.  My relief is minimal but I will continue to take the gel caps because I do think it might kick in in the next few days.  There might have to be a Part 3!

I would love any input if anyone has some about essential oils and allergies!

If you are like me and really struggling with your allergies, I have compiled a list of things you can do that might be helpful.  Remember that everyone is different and what works for some, doesn’t work for others.  In my opinion, I would not be without a bottle of L.L.P Blend.  I do find lots of relief with sinus pressure and itchy eyes by pressing a small amount into my sinus area.

Allergy Relief Strategies

  • Apply L.L.P. to the bottoms of your feet at least 2x a day.
  • Take 9 drops of L.L.P. in a gel cap 3x a day.
  • Apply L.L.P. to the bones around your eyes as well as your sinuses.
  • Make an DIY allergy salve to relieve and heal a dry, stuffed up nose.
  • Explore local honey and local bee pollen.  They can easily be added to smoothies.
  • Incorporate Apple Cider Vinegar into your daily diet.  Go HERE for a recipe and go HERE for why it is helpful with allergies.
  • Steam your face-Showers are a great relief!
  • Add 2-3 drops of L.L.P. to your water or juice several times a day if you don’t have gel caps.
  • Diffuse L.L.P. all day, everyday!  I use THIS diffuser.

Allergy Salve

There you have it-Just because my experience with the gel caps wasn’t amazing, I would still recommend you try it if you have wanted to.  There is just too many accounts of people experiencing a lot of relief using this method.  Plus, I’m really glad to have the gel caps and might take a cold/flu bomb tonight.  Just keep reminding yourself, green is on the way!  All this allergy annoyance will be worth it!  I’m so sick of brown everything!

Don’t forget to use my coupon code JENNIRAINCLOUD for 10% off your essential oils order at Spark Naturals!

xx, Jenni

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The Benefits of White Tea w/ Neal’s Yard Remedies

White Tea Skin BenefitsA couple of months ago I wrote a post on the London based skin care company, Neal’s Yard Remedies.   I became a consultant to the company in order to get quite a few products for an extremely discounted price plus, I wanted to offer a source for you all to buy the products I was going to review since Amazon didn’t carry a good selection.  Go HERE for that post.

Today I am reviewing a trio of products that I’ve been using for the last few months.  The products all contain white tea and include an eye gel, face mask and a hydrating toner.

Before I get into the actual products, let’s talk about the benefits of white tea for your skin. Let me clear up that white tea and green tea are almost identical in there make up so any product that contains green tea is also extremely beneficial to your skin.   First and foremost-White tea contains a large amount of antioxidants.  Antioxidants are anti aging power houses that attack free radicals that are caused from pollution, highly processed food etc.  Free radicals cause premature aging and highly compromise the health of your skin.

White tea extract strengthens the skin’s immune system by restoring damaged cells caused by too much sun.  White tea also helps kill bacteria.  It has been proven to reduce the signs of sun damage as well as slow down the aging process.

Several studies have shown that white tea/green tea kept cancer cells from growing.  White tea also has anti inflammatory properties especially when used after sun damage has occurred.  Not only that but it also repairs DNA harm and damaged cells as well.   In other words, it helps prevent the breakdown of collagen.   It has also been quite effective with treating redness and inflammation due to rosacea.

White Tea Benefits for the Skin

You can see why these products containing white tea are such a good idea, especially with summer on it’s way!

White Tea Enriching Facial Mask-  This mask includes Kaolin for detoxing,  rose flower extract, pumpkin seed oil, evening primrose oil, frankincense oil,  patchouli oil, cardamon seed oil, white tea leaf extract and aloe vera.  The mask not only detoxes the pores, it also hydrates as well as heals at a cellular level.

I love this mask.  It smells amazing and unlike other clay masks, this one is comfortable.  It’s creamy and rich.  My skin feels silky smooth afterwards.  The jar is large and will last for quite a while.  I have been using it once a week for a month and really love that it’s so detoxifying without drying me out.

White Tea Enriching Mask

White Tea Facial Mist-  This spritzer feels so good.  It balances and hydrates.  I use it before I moisturize and after I cleanse.  It’s so refreshing and cooling.  It’s perfect for sensitive skin.  I feel like it delivers a hardy dose of antioxidants that help fight signs of aging and damage.  My daughter’s even beg me for a squirt!

The facial mist contains aloe vera, palmarosa oil, bergamot oil, english lavender oil, geranium oil, roman chamomile, melissa oil, ylang ylang oil, citronella oil, white tea leaf extract,  vitamin E and sunflower seed oil.  It’s seriously jam-packed with yummies for the skin!  It smells amazing and as a bonus, I spritz it after I finish my makeup for a dewy, healthy look!

White Tea Facial Mist

White Tea Toning Eye Gel-  I use this eye gel in the morning after moisturizing.  It’s super light but you can feel it tightening the skin around the eye.  I also use it between my eyes for added tightening.  It also helps with puffiness and dark circles!  It’s perfect for skin that has not experienced a huge amount of aging.  I would especially suggest this product for those of you in your 20’s-late 30’s that are looking for something to prevent aging.

It contains witch hazel, glycerin, rose flower extract, aloe vera, eyebright extract and white tea leaf extract.

White Tea Firming Eye GelWhite Tea Skin CareI LOVE Neal’s Yard Remedies.  These 3 products are probably my favorite out of all that I have tried.  I just love using products that are using the goodness from plants-it’s truly natural and what are skin responds to.

Like I stated in THIS post, I have experienced such an improvement in my skin in the last few months.  I believe that these products have contributed.  When you balance and nourish your skin with natural products the skin responds!!

Go HERE to explore more of Neal’s Yard Remedies amazing products!

xx, Jenni

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Allergy Relief PLEASE!!! Part 1

Spark Naturals L.L.P Blend

Hi!  Ok, let me paint you a picture.  I’m sitting here eyeball deep in brain fog.  I’ve been struggling with allergies for over 2 weeks now.   I literally go catatonic every few minutes, then snap out of it and wonder what I was doing before the latest episode.  The trees are all budding, have I mentioned we live in a forest?  Pear trees are fully bloomed and it hasn’t properly rained in over 2 weeks. I’m driving myself crazy trying to write a decent post!  Hence, my 1 no-brainer post from last week!  It took me days to come up with a simple shopping collage!  geeeezzzzz….

I should have a remedy for allergies by now.  I have suffered with outdoor allergies all my life.  They are pretty much debilitating.  My sleep is interrupted, my skin is affected, my nose is raw, tissues are bought in bulk and then there’s the lack of brain function.  I’m a mess!   Yeah, and if you see a puffy old lady on the elliptical next to you at the gym, sneezing and then stuffing snotty kleenixes in her sports bra for quick access, avert your eyes.  It’s just me.

Being an avid essential oil user I feel ashamed that I have not yet found the relief other oil user’s rave about.  L.L.P. is a blend of lavender, lemon and peppermint.  It’s supposedly the trifecta of allergy relief.  I have 2 bottles.  Aside from pressing it into my sinus area and diffusing, I haven’t really explored this so called remedy.  It’s time to get serious.

Normally I blog about things that have worked for me, things that I’m excited about and feel could help you all on your natural journey so this post will be a 2 parter and will be a bit different.  I’m going to commit to using L.L.P the way my essential oil guru, Camp Wander suggests and then report back to you at the end of the week with my results.  You can read her article on L.L.P HERE.

Camp Wander suggests ingesting L.L.P.  She suggests putting 9 drops of the blend in a gel cap and taking 3x a day.  She also suggests applying the the feet as well as using topically on any areas of the skin that are effected.

L.L.P. Essential Oil Blend allergy 2

Before I go catatonic once again, let me squeeze in a little info. as to why lavender, lemon and peppermint are meant to be so effective on allergies.

When an allergen enters our body, our body begins to release histamines in order to fight it.  This triggers inflammation.  These oils all combat inflammation.  It’s that simple.  I dug and dug through the internet and my essential oils books looking for something a bit more exciting then that but it’s just really simple.  Inflammation is a huge problem and can cause much discomfort on many levels.  If you can calm the inflammation in your body, great relief can be had.

Ok, I’ll get back to you on Friday and let you know how ingesting L.L.P 3x a day via gel caps and rubbing L.L.P.  on my feet is working.  Hopefully I’ll be out of zombie mode.   Stay tuned!!

AHHHH  CHOO!!!! , Jenni

P.S. If you are interested in ingesting essential oils in gel caps as well, always choose PURE, un-diluted essential oils.  This is vital.  I trust Spark Naturals and highly recommend them!  Please enjoy 10%  off your full order by using my coupon code JENNIRAINCLOUD.