Category Archives: Health

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The Natural Answer to Deodorant

Each day, as we get ready to head out of the house, we all put on our favourite deodorant and fragrances and cosmetics. Most are unaware of the products we use on our skin are often full of toxic chemicals. After using these products day in day out, it can then cause skin issues and other health related problems.

According to the National Cancer Society, “Reports have suggested that these products contain harmful substances, which can be absorbed through the skin or enter the body through nicks caused by shaving. Some scientists have also proposed that certain ingredients in underarm antiperspirants or deodorants may be related to breast cancer because they are applied frequently to an area next to the breast.”

Since our skin is our largest organ, we need to take measures to ensure that what we put on it is as natural as possible. There are five harmful chemicals found in deodorant that can play a part in causing health problems: Aluminium Compounds, Parabens, Propylene glycol, Triclosan and Steareths. If you’re looking for a new deodorant or perfume, check the back for these ingredients and avoid that product if they are listed.

Thankfully, there are plenty natural non-toxic options out there. My husband and I have personally tried more than 10 different natural options. After checking them out, I highly suggest the below 5 products:

1 – Axilla Black Chicken Deodorant Paste

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This unique blend of natural and organic ingredients target and effectively neutralise odour without harmful chemicals or sweat blockers. This means your body can continue to do what it does naturally without smelling funky.

This awesome deodorant paste:

* Contains only natural and certified organic ingredients

* Does note contain harmful Aluminium Salts or compounds

* Is completely invisible upon application

* Does not contain synthetic fragrances

* Contains pure essential oils and botanical extracts

* Does not contain alcohol, Parabens, Propylene Glycol, Triclosans or other harmful chemicals

* Vegan friendly and not tested on animals

* Made with love in Australia

This is hands down the favourite of deodorant for men and women.

2 – Schmidt’s Deodorant Paste – Bergamot & Lime

Schmidts deodorant

This is another good deodorant paste, but is a touch harder to put on in comparison to Black Chicken. The Bergamot & Lime is a zesty, refreshing scent. The paste is neurtralised, with the natural antiseptic properties. Free from Aluminium, free from crystals, yet keeps you fresh and does not block your sweat glands.

3 – Crystal Deodorant Roller

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For those that prefer a roller over a paste, the only natural roller I can find that actually works is the Crystal Roller. It is made from natural mineral salts to neutralise bacteria and prevent body odour, even after strenuous activity. There are a few options of scent. My favourite is the Chamomile and Green Tea blend.

All Crystal deodorants have:

* No harmful chemicals

* No Aluminium Chlorohydrate or Zirconium

* Hypoallergenic

* Dries instantly

3 – DoTERRA Whisper Essentail Oil 

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An easier option for perfume is using essential oils. This DoTERRA oil is my favourite, with a musky, warm, spicy, soft, sweet smell and people often comment on.

As stated from DoTERRA its primary benefits are:

  • Combines with each individual’s chemistry to create a beautiful, unique, and personal fragrance
  • Provides a warming, musky aroma
  • Entices and intrigues the senses

The ingredients are :- Fractionated Coconut Oil, Patchouli Leaf, Bergamot Peel, Hawaiian Sandalwood Wood, Rose Flower, Vanilla Bean Absolute, Jasmine Flower, Cinnamon Bark, Vetiver Root, Labdanum Leaf/Stem, Cocoa Seed, Ylang Ylang Flower

4 – DoTERRA Balance Essential Oil 

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This DoTERRA essential oil is also a good option for perfume. It’s more of a fresh, sweet and woody scent and one I like to use when I am feeling out of balance :)

Its primary benefits are

  • Promotes a whole-body sense of relaxation
  • May help ease anxious feelings
  • Evokes feelings of tranquility and balance

The ingredients are:- Spruce Leaf, Ho Wood Leaf, Frankincense Resin, Blue Tansy Flower, Blue Chamomile Flower, and Osmanthus Flower essential oils in a base of Fractionated Coconut Oil.

Do you have a Deodorant that you love and its not on this list? Please share your favourite.

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Recipe:- Banana Bread (Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Paleo)

Sometimes we can have a treat as a snack that is still healthy and yummy! 

This easy Banana Bread is Gluten Free, Dairy Free and Paleo. It’s delicious served lightly warm and toasted with some butter. 

The best thing is that bananas are an energy food and are a great source of potassium, which is essential for maintaining normal blood pressure and heart function. Their moisture and sweetness means you can reduce the amount of sweetener and oil considerably. In addition, protein-packed almonds are also full of healthy fats that are kind to your arteries and can help lower cholesterol as well as keep blood sugars stable. This makes a nice change from ‘store bought’ banana breads that are generally high in refined white flour, sugar and saturated fats.

Ingredients

  • 300gm (3-4 medium) ripe bananas 
  • 200gm (2 cups) almond meal
  • 25gm (1/4 cups) ground flaxseed (linseed)
  • 50gm raw honey or organic maple syrup 
  • 50gm (1/4 cup) macadamia nut oil
  • free range / organic eggs
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda (bicarb soda)
  • 1 tsp baking powder (alumimun-free)
  • 1 tbs fresh lemon
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Method

  1. Preheat  your oven at 160 C – fan forced
  2. Combine smashed banana, honey, oil, vanilla, eggs, baking soda, baking powder and lemon. Use a blender like a Vitamix or Thermomix or you can do this by hand in a large bowl.
  3. Add the almond meal and flaxseed and mix well.
  4. Spoon batter into a loaf tin. The size I use is 14cm wide x 25cm long.
  5. Bake for 45minutes to 1 hour (a skewer inserted into the centre should come out dry).
  6. Remove from the oven and allow to cool before turning out the loaf.
  7. Keeps in the fridge covered for up to 1 week.

Courtesy to Teresa Cutter from book Purely Delicious. This recipe has been been slightly altered to suit. While this is a very healthy option, I still advise eating these kinds of sweet foods as occasional treats only. Cut the sweetener down even more if you can, to keep things even better for your wellbeing. 

Happy Baking :)

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A lovely bunch of coconuts

There are many products that are derived from coconuts. A few years ago it was hard to find edible coconut products, I was always searching in healthy food stores or ordering online. But these days, through great social media, the coconut is becoming more readily available in our supermarkets.

So, what is each product and what does it do?

Coconut oil is an edible oil extracted from the meat of matured coconuts harvested from the coconut palm. There is a plethora of uses for this in both cooking and skin care. It’s a great oil to use due to its versatility at different heats. At room temperature this oil becomes liquid and when cooled it hardens to a solid state. These days there are many brands of coconut oil. When choosing a brand, always opt for organic, cold pressed, virgin coconut oil opposed to refined coconut oil. Refined coconut oil is processed through heating and therefore looses its nutrients and antioxidants. My favourite brand is Nui “Wild Harvest’ Cold-Pressed Virgin Coconut Oil.

Coconut butter is the flesh of the coconut which as been ground into a butter. It is creamier than the oil, and is a handy butter to add to delicious desert and snacks recipes.

Coconut flakes are the dried, flaked meat of the coconut. They can be enjoyed raw or lightly toasted and make a great textural addition to recipes.

Desiccated coconut is coconut meat that has been shredded or flaked and then dried to remove as much moisture as possible. Of all the forms of dried coconut this is generally the finest. A great added to or used to coat snacks balls.

Shredded coconut like desiccated coconut is the coconut meat that has been shredded or flaked and then dried, but it’s larger in pieces and has a coarser texture than desiccated. This tastes great added to homemade granola.

Fresh coconut water is the tasty, clear liquid inside young coconuts. It is full of 5-key electrolytes making it great for hydration. Coconut water also comes bottled or packaged for convenience. Beware of flavoured or sweetened products as they can be added with unwanted sugars and preservatives. Coconut water packaged should contain 100% coconut water and nothing else. My favourite brand is ‘C Coconut’ Water

Coconut milk is the liquid that comes from the grated meat of a coconut. The rich taste of the milk can be attributed to the high saturated fat and oil content. Coconut milk is great added to curries but also makes a delicious dairy-free milk alternative. It’s great to use as the base for smoothies and is also great on your cereal.

Coconut cream is very similar to coconut milk but contains less water giving it a thicker, paste-like texture. Use it much like you would coconut milk in all types of sweet and savoury dishes.

Coconut flour is made by dehydrating coconut meat, and then grinding it into a flour. It’s a great gluten-free alternative with fewer carbohydrates than many other flours and a significantly higher fibre and protein content. Coconut flour is versatile enough to be used as a substitute to wheat flour in baking and savoury dishes, but be mindful that coconut flour soaks up liquid like a sponge. You may have to up your liquid ingredients to accommodate.

Coconut sugar is produced by making several slits into the bud of a coconut tree and collecting the sap. The sap is then boiled until it thickens and solidifies. Coconut sugar is nearly 50% fructose making it a no-go if you are avoiding or quitting sugar. I do not recommend this product of coconut, as it is still adding sugar into your diet.

Coconut nectar is much the same as coconut sugar but in a syrup form similar to agave or honey. As mentioned above, avoid this ingredient if you are quitting sugar. It’s also important to check sugar-free products that use coconut sugar or nectar as their replacement for other sugars.

An important note on preservatives – If you are particularly sensitive to preservatives, avoid any dried or tinned forms of coconut. There are some preservatives such as sulphites 220-228 that are found in most packaged foods. Sulphites are known to cause inflammation and allergic reactions when ingested. Its best to choose organic coconut products at all times to avoid any other chemicals used in the farming process.

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5 Wellness Favourites – Music, Tea and the Comfiest Pants ever!

There are many things you can do to help improve your happiness. Often we have great days and sometimes we have sad days – and thats ok! If you’re ever wanting to pull yourself out of a funk, here are 5 things in the world of health, wellness and lifestyle that I’ve been loving recently:

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1 – Current Favourite Music  - Vulfpeck ‘Wait for the Moment’

Speaking of funk, these guys have some incredible tunes to get your body moving and mind smiling. This particular track feautres the amazing voice of Antwann Stanley. He is next level – I haven’t heard this voice for a while. It gets right into my heart and bring happiness to the day – such a perfect song to start a day with a smile :)

If you like this song, Vulkpeck ’1612′ is also a good one!

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2 - Nixon Blaster

This is the portable speaker I use to bring my music with me wherever I go. It throws out a big sound for a compact unit. There are others out there, so I’d recommend to pick one that suits you, so you can have tunes on command whenever you need them.

See this video for ‘A Closer Look at the Nixon Blaster’.

 

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3 - Girlfriend Collective Clothing

I was recently given an awesome pressie of some ‘Girlfriend Collective’ leggings and I haven’t taken them off much :) They are perfect for yoga, exercise, chilling, anything! Pretty much the comfiest all round pants you can wear.

The collection believe the best fashion is not about trends – it’s about quality. They also focusing on humane manufacturing, meticulous design, and sustainable materials, and aim to create a community of people who care about every step of the process.

Highly suggest – worth checking out!

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4 – ‘Qi’ Organic Green ‘Wellness’

Qi Wellness Tea is a refreshing berry fusion, formulated to give you an uplifting boost to your day. It combines blueberry, pomegranate and hawthorn fruit for a range of antioxidants. Qi Wellness Tea is in a naturally sweet and mellow tasting green tea base so there is no need to add milk or sugar. Its rich with antioxidant blueberries and pomegranates.

Qi Teas are:- Certified organic- Certified Fairtrade- Gluten & dairy free- No artificial flavours- No GMQi. Tea Bags are free of staples and glue – Unbleached tea bags- Individually wrapped. 

You can get it at your local supermarket or online.

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5  - Mummy’s Wish - Helping Mums with Cancer

This is a beautiful organisation that dedicates the provision of really practical supoort that keeps families functioning and together during Mum’s cancer treatment. They helped out during my own cancer treatment and I’m eternally grateful. For more information or to support them, click the link above.

That’s it for this time. For more posts like this, delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe up to the Wellness Tree newsletter which is located on the website.

Cover image by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

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Easy Pesticide Removal For Fruit and Vegetables

When it comes to fruit and veg you want to get the cleanest produce possible. The first answer is to buy organic, but since it’s often three times the price, sometimes that’s simply not realistic. Studies have shown that washing your produce in water does help reduce the pesticide residue, but won’t eliminate all pesticides. So, it’s better to remove as many nasties as you can by using this natural vinegar wash. Another benefit of using a natural vinegar wash is that you are also removing bacteria from the produce. 

HOW TO REMOVE PESTICIDES FROM FRUITS AND VEGETABLES

  1. Fill a large bowl or sink with 4 parts water to 1 part plain white vinegar.
  2. Soak the fruit and vegetable that you would like to clean in the mixture for 15-20 minutes.
  3. Thoroughly rinse the fruit and vegetables well with water
For further reading I highly suggest checking out the Dirty Dozen list for more information about which kinds of produce are the most likely to have the most pesticide residue on them. It’s a great thing to have in mind when buying organic, or doing an extra thorough wash like this one, once you have your groceries home.

 

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Guest Blog: Colon Hydrotherapy and Its Benefits

Occasionally we have health experts guest post on Wellness Tree about their specialist area. This time we’re lucky to have Nicki from Apana, Health and Wellness who has been practicing colon hydrotherapy (sometimes simply known as colonics) for the past 6 years. If you’ve ever wondered about colon hydrotherapy, but weren’t sure about giving it a go. Or, are totally new to this area of detox cleansing and want to find out more, this is the perfect chance to read about what actually happens during a colonic, ailments that is it good for treating and the benefits of the treatment. Over to Nicky…  

The colon is the most important organ for maintaining good health and wellness, if the colon is overburdened then our whole system is put under stress. By gently cleansing the colon we can assist the body in its natural ability to remove toxins, heal and recover health- Our natural birthright. A malfunctioning colon is the greatest obstacle to good health. Colon hydrotherapy involves the safe gentle infusion of filtered water into the colon via the rectum. There are no chemicals or drugs involved and the entire therapy is both relaxing and effective. Apana, Health and Wellness uses the closed system of Colon Hydrotherapy, where filtered water passes through a UV light chamber and is introduced at a low pressure through a single use disposable speculum. We use warm and cold water, as well as pulsating techniques to stimulate the colon. Assisted by abdominal massage, the therapist is present and in full control the the procedure at all times. With so many harmful environmental factors these days such as excess stress, poor food quality and lack of exercise, it is no wonder that more people are beginning to discover the many benefits of colonic hydrotherapy. What can Colon Hydrotherapy Aid in:

  • Liver overload from alcohol or medications
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Depression
  • Back ache
  • Headaches & lack of concentration
  • Skin Disorders
  • Bloating and flatulence
  • Digestive problems
  • Yeast / Candida overgrowth
The Benefits:
  • Cleansing – the breakdown and gentle removal of toxic matter to encourages a better functioning colon.
  • Hydration – Hydrating, lubricates the colon enabling greater breakdown and easier removal of waste.
  • Stimulate – Colonics can stimulate reflex points linked to other organs in the body improving general wellbeing.
  • Toning and stimulating – Hot and cold water treatments can aid in stimulating peristalsis and toning the bowel eliminating any stubborn waste and enabling the colon to resume its natural task.
  • Stress relief – Stress can often create tension within our bodies, impairing some of our natural functions, particularly the colon. Colonics can relieve constipation that can come from the tightening of the colon due to stress.
  • Restore – provides a clean environment for the restoration of good bacteria and ph levels.
If that sounds interesting, and you want to know even more, get in touch with Nicki on the details below.

About Nicki and her practice: Nicki became a registered Colon Hydrotherapist through Australian Colon Health in 2011 and began her own clinic in Busselton in 2013.

Specialising in digestive health and general detox, Nicki is passionate about restoring gut health through probiotic rich living foods.

With a love of raw and fermented foods, Nicki shares her knowledge and experience through regular workshops enabling others to transform their health from the inside out.

Outside of work Nicki enjoys staying close to nature, yoga and precious time with family.

Nicki can be contacted on: 0455 986 691

or through the Apana Health and Wellness Website

www.apana.com.au