Essential Oils

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How I Discovered Essential Oils

Since puberty, my skin has not been my friend. Blame it on genetics, hormones, diet, whatever, but no matter what I did I could not get my skin under control. I tried many conventional skin care lines, and they helped the breakouts but left my skin dry, dull, and prone to wrinkles. And then it happened. I came across the miraculous essential oils melaleuca (tea tree) and lavender. mixed in jojoba oil and used as a spot treatment, my skin responded so well! Incredibly fast healing time and no hyper-pigmentation afterwards. I was hooked. Throughout the years I have incorporated Doterra Essential Oils into my everyday life. From healing my gut to detoxing to sleeping to relaxing tight muscles and literally everything else. They have quite literally changed my life, I am now empowered to take charge of my health in a natural way and you can share this feeling as well! (If you want to read more of my Essential Oil story- click here!)

Why Quality Matters

This isn’t a new concept, literally everything is affected by its quality. That’s why the saying is “quality over quantity”! My dad used to wear patchouli when I was younger, and it had a very peculiar scent. I had never thought that it was anything other than an oil that hippies used to wear as perfume.

But as soon as I opened those bottles from DoTerra WHEW MAN it was a totally different story! They were so incredibly potent, way different than the other essential oils I had smelled over the years.

The reason for this is because DoTerra’s Essential oils aren’t like the oils you buy at the store. They are committed to the highest degree of purity and potency. The oils you smell at stores (even health food stores!!) are not pure. They are blended in another type of oil or some sort of chemical to make them have a “scent” although it isn’t natural. There are actually no regulations in place that require companies to disclose their use of fillers in their bottles, so thats why when you smell a Lavender from a bottle at TJ Maxx it smells a lot different than one from Doterra.

DōTERRA tests every single one of their bottles of Essential Oils 7 different ways, 3 times between harvesting and bottling (to catch any contaminants that may be picked up in the bottling process). I’m sure you’ll agree, when I’m putting anything into and onto my body, I need to make sure it is safe. From my own testimonies and those from friends, family, and strangers, there is no doubt in my mind that DoTerra sells only the best oils. Click here read more about DoTerra’s testing process.

How To Use Essential Oils

Aromatically

As soon as you’re stopped dead in your tracks by the alluring Jasmine bush, as soon as you peel open an orange and are lifted up, as soon as you walk through the forest and the scent of pine sends to the most peaceful state of mind, you have just experienced the power of essential oils. You can experience essential oils aromatically in a few ways; from opening the bottle and taking a deep breath or using a diffuser in your home to fill the space with goodness.

The great thing about using a diffuser is that it can affect more people than just you. If you or someone in your family is sick you can diffuse On Guard to boost everyone’s immune system, if you wish to encourage more energy and motivation, diffuse a blend of orange and peppermint. There are countless recipes and options for you to use depending on your mood! If you don’t have a diffuser you can also put a couple drops on a cotton ball and stuff it someplace that needs from freshening, or you can make your own spray bottle blend and spritz it onto linens, rooms, cars, shoes, closets, literally anywhere!

Topically

Topically may sound like a foreign practice to you, but it has actually been around for ages! When you place an essential oil directly onto a certain area it provides localized and systemic benefits. If I get a stomach ache, I apply DigestZen onto my stomach, if I get a headache I apply peppermint to my temples, if I get cramps from my cycle I apply Clary Sage to my lower abdomen.

You can also apply oils to bottoms of your feet! Did you know that the pores on the bottom of our feet are the largest in our whole body? So when you apply the oils, it is quickly absorbed into the blood stream! There is also something called “reflex points” on our feet- certain parts of the bottom of the foot are directly linked to other parts and systems of the body. It never ceases to amaze me how wondrous our body is! Check out this chart of reflex points to see where you should place your next essential oil!

Topical Dilution

Dilution is super easy and extremely handy. All you need to do is simply add a carrier oil! Like coconut oil, jojoba oil, almond oil, etc. to your essential oils. Dilution provides multiple benefits: slow the rate of absorption (the carrier oil locks in the essential oils so they don’t evaporate), minimize skin sensitivity, or to make bottles of essential oils last longer. If you’re unsure how much to dilute for which oil, just follow dōTERRA’s Chief Medical Advisor, Dr. David Hill’s advice! He recommends a 1-2-3 dilution ratio: Essential oils labeled N (for neat, or no dilution necessary) should be diluted at a 1:1 ratio. For every drop of essential oil you use, add a drop of carrier oil. The oils labeled S (for sensitive) should be diluted 1 drop essential oil to 2 drops carrier oil. And for those labeled D (for dilute), add 3 drops of carrier oil to every drop of essential oil. Look for the N/S/D labels in the dōTERRA catalog or back of the Living magazine.

If you want to make your life a lot easier, you can also make a pre-diluted roller bottle! This way you can carry it around with you and it’s always ready to use.

For those of you that love to know the science behind Essential Oils and if they’re safe, click here!

Internally

This is the most effective way to use essential oils, to learn more about ingesting essential oils click here. The recommended dilution is 1 drop per 4 oz of liquid. I love adding essential oils into my water, it makes it much tastier and i reap tons of benefits! I’ve been trying to detox lately so I have been adding the Slim and Sassy blend to my water. It’s made up primarily from citrus oils and peppermint so it also increases my energy and enhances my mood! You can also cook with essential oils!! Yep. right into your delicious brownies, snacks, entrees, anything you want! You can find a lot of amazing recipes here on DoTerra’s blog!

To learn more about essential oil dosage, read this short article! Typically about 20 drops of essential oil per day is what is recommended.

Chart of how to dilute dōTERRA essential oils:

 

 

My Favorite Essential Oils
Ah there are just so many! Really, they’re all extremely beneficial but there are a few that I always make sure I have on hand!

Digestzen. I’ve been suffering with SIBO for a couple years, and about a year ago it got so bad that I could hardly eat anything without feeling nauseous, having sharp pains, or my stomach bloating till I looked pregnant. This oil was the only thing that provided relief. As soon as I applied the oil to my stomach it totally calmed down. I will never not have this in my purse. You never know when you might need some digestive relief!

Peppermint. So many uses! For headaches, to boost energy, ease digestion, and cool down  the body because it gets super hot in Florida! It’s so versatile and really economical!!

Frankincense. There’s a reason why they call this the king of Essential Oils! I put two drops under my tongue twice a day to keep my body functioning it’s best, reduce inflammation, increase healing, balance hormones, etc. I also use it daily in my skin moisturizer to help heal past breakouts, hyper=pigmentation, and wrinkles. I also put it on my body whenever I have a rash, bites, cuts, burns, literally anything. It’s also really great for helping with depression, I once had a day where I could just not stop crying no matter what I did, but as soon as I dropped frankincense beneath my tongue i immediately felt better! There are thousands of other applications, the main thing to remember is “whenever in doubt, use frankincense!”

On Guard. I could sing this oil blend’s praises all day long! I use it to boost my immune system if I’m around sick people or on a plane, I take it internally when I start to feel like I’m coming down with something, and I use it to clean areas! Whenever I travel this is one of the first oils I make sure to pack.

How to Buy Essential Oils
You have a couple options; you can purchase essential oils and accessories at retail price from my website, but to get the most bang for your buck, I really recommend opening a wholesale membership with dōTERRA. It’s similar to opening a membership with Costco or Sam’s club! The membership fee is $35, and you will get 25% off every product! To keep your membership all you need to do is order one item per year (and lets be honest, thats not a hard thing to do). Then if you wish to renew your membership every year, it costs $25 BUT DoTerra will actually send you a free bottle of Peppermint oil as a thank you gift!

And if you think thats a fantastic idea, here’s an even better one- Instead of “throwing away” the $35 enrollment fee, you can put it toward products by purchasing an enrollment kit, all of which come with amazing savings. To view all of the options for enrollment kits, visit here and then go to my website and click “Join & Save” at the top of the page to get started. When I began with doTerra I started with a kit and it was the best way to start my essential oil journey. I saved a ton of money and I got to try out all of the best selling and oils! It saved me lots of time and money – score! And as if that wasn’t incentive enough, i also received free product credits that I could then use to buy oils for free. And I started earning points back on all my following purchases at a higher percentage than I would have if I started with a smaller kit.

How to Get Free Essential Oils
If you’re like me, or like most people, you like free stuff. right? dōTERRA actually offers something called the Loyalty Rewards Program. It’s a super flexible and completely optional monthly autoship order. Each month you can order different products depending on what you currently need, and you are in control of what you put in your cart, when the order ships, the credit card, address, etc. on the website. During the first 3 months that you’re with the Loyalty Rewards Program, you will automatically receive 10% back in free product credits to spend like cash. The first 3 months you’re on the Loyalty Rewards Program, you’ll receive 10% back in free product credits to spend like cash. Then the following 3 months you’ll recieve 15%, then 20%, and so on until you reach 30% back on your order to spend on products! Here’s a quick example of how it would work: If You purchase 100 PV (about $100) every month for a year, you would have earned $210 in free products!! And in addition to that, dōTERRA also gives the shipping costs back in credits, so that’s another $84 for your oil spending! For free! And that’s just the first year- it gets better the second year! Even though you save money with memberships at places like Costco, they don’t give you money back for purchasing products. To understand it a bit easier, here’s a chart to follow!

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If you don’t think you can spend that much each month on just oils, I also buy soap, toothpaste, shampoo, and other home/personal products on the monthly Loyalty Rewards Order!

To hop on the essential oil and healthy living train, go to my website and click “Join & Save” at the top of the page to begin! To help you walk through the enrollment process or figure out which kit is best for you and your needs, email me at joanna@awellspringoflife.com!

Bonuses for Enrolling through My Website
To show my appreciation for you opening your dōTERRA wholesale membership with me, I’ll send you a fun welcome packet! You’ll receive a couple product samples, a roller bottle, and more tools to help learn more and get excited about your new essential oils! We can also plan to get together or a phone call to go over the oils and how to use them, and then benefits of your membership to you make the most of it! I’ll also add you to my Healthy Facebook Group that’s full of healthy articles, Oil tips, DIY’s, Q & A, and more!

How To Fly Healthy

Turn Your Coach Experience Into A First Class Experience

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We just got back from two weeks abroad in France! We saw so many beautiful places, made so many memories, and even after being back in the states for a week and a half I still want to say Bonjour and Merci whenever I see someone.

But you guys.. our journey back home was a bit brutal- just shy of 24 hours of travel. Thankfully, before we left I compiled an arsenal of tools to use while on our flights to make them a lot more manageable! I am going to also write a blog post on what I used to make sure we stayed healthy even while living out of a suitcase, eating at restaurants for all of our meals, and definitely not sticking to our diets. Keep an eye out for it!

HOW TO FLY HEALTHY

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  1. Preventing Dehydration
    •  Plane air is extremely extremely dry and can cause dehydration insanely fast. Symptoms of dehydration include headaches, bloat, jet lag, dull skin, irritable bowels, and just overall sickliness. You should drink at least eight ounces of water every hour to keep your body properly hydrated.
    • I know that plain water can just taste so bland, right? WELL. I have discovered something absolutely magical to help with all of this!! LIQUID IV HYDRATION PACKETS. These are “a Non-GMO electrolyte drink mix that utilizes the breakthrough science of Cellular Transport Technology.. to deliver hydration to your bloodstream faster and more efficiently than water alone. 1 liquid IV can provide the same hydration as 2-3 bottles of water.”
    • Did you read that last sentence!? One packet = 2-3 bottles of water! And they come in different flavors! So not only do you have to drink less, but you’re more hydrated and your water tastes so delicious! I got the lemon/lime one and it’s sooo goooood. These really come in handy, especially on long flights! Get them here!
    • I also make sure to bring lots of tea bags, they’re much tastier than plain water and depending on what tea you bring, they can also provide a lot of health benefits!
  2. Sore Muscles
    • I don’t know anyone who finds those little seats comfortable. Not moving for a long length of time, not being able to extend your limbs.. it’s giving me claustrophobia just writing about it! And I’m sure you’ve experienced the dreaded pain that comes with being in these seats. That dull ache that radiates throughout the body.
    • Until recently, I just figured it was something I had to deal with. BUT NO MORE! meet your new Flying BFF- Yoga Massage Balls. so simple yet so ingenious. They’re small balls you can place behind your back, under your butt bone, by your shoulder, on your neck. You just roll all around it with your body. The pressure from your weight gives an amazing deep tissue massage. We also used these while not on the plane! When you can’t travel with all of your fancy healthy gadgets (like foam rollers) this does the trick in a pinch!
    • The other SUPER AMAZING product to bring with you while traveling is the DoTerra Deep Blue Rub. This. stuff. is. sent. from. heaven. above. hallelujah. amen. praise be. But for real you guys I would never leave my house without packing this. If you ever have a tight or sore muscle, rub this on and you will immediately feel relief. It’s the better, more effective, all natural alternative to tiger balm. I brought the sample packets because they’re really easy to pack! Plus you honestly don’t need a lot of the product so they last a really long time. However, if you’re thrifty and wanna save some dollahs, just buy the whole bottle and put some in smaller travel tubes! Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
  3. Inability To Sleep
    •  Those overnight flights are killer. You’ve got these weird lights on, you’re not comfortable, you can’t position your body in any way to encourage sleepiness, and there’s always some baby crying. But sleeping is sooo crucial for your travel. Getting off the plane after not sleeping and having a full day of adventuring can honestly set your whole trip off. maybe even cause sickness! I’ve got you covered:
    • Drink Kava Tea (ask for plain hot water from hostess and bring your own tea bags), Take Melatonin, Apply Lavender Essential Oil to Wrists and/or take the Serenity Blend Capsules from DoTerra, Eye Mask, Ear Plugs, Inflatable Neck Pillow, scarf to cover face/use as blanket, and exercise that day or the day before so your body is tired and wants rest. Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
  4. Feeling OuttaWack
    •  This word kinda describes what I’m trying to say haha. When you’re on a plane you are immediately ungrounded. Your feet aren’t touching the ground but you also may be passing through timezones, your internal clock is messed up, you feel nervous or anxious from being on a plane, you really just don’t feel normal.
    • Try these tips: Yoga before your plane ride, really zone in on your body and your breath, this will help relax you. Take deep, long breaths in and out from the nose to help your body recognize that you’re okay, you’re not in a fight or flight mode (I actually just did a video tutorial on this on my IGTV channel! Check it here). Use Balance Essential Oil Blend on bottom of feet and wrists before and during flight. This is a wonderful blend of essential oils that is super grounding, made primarily from tree essential oils which are known for their grounding abilities (roots baby, its’ all about the roots and solidity)
  5. Bloat
    •  This is something that can be hard to avoid. Amidst the dry air, the pressure changes, the weird plane food, being squished next to people and not feeling comfortable, bloating used to seem like it’s just part of the plane ride that came with the fee. BUT there are many tips for how to avoid this!
    • Bring your own food. Pack meals and snacks depending on how long the flight is. Try and eat light, your body is already in a weird limbo state and giving it heavy meals that takes a lot of energy to break down isn’t going to end well. Drink plenty of liquids so your stomach has enough lubrication to perform digestion. (There are many people who actually fast during their plane ride and don’t feel any of these affects! However, not everyone’s body can do this so make sure you listen to yours!)
    • But hey, I’m right there with you when I say that sometimes it is not easy to turn down a free meal… so now your belly is swelling up to the size of a pregnant woman, what do you do? Take Digestive Enzymes while eating, especially when eating heavier, inflammatory meals. It’s not a bad idea to take these no matter what you eat, it’s always a good thing to put less stress on your body.
    • Rub DigestZen on your belly, and actually massage it in with soft clockwise rotations around the belly. DoTerra offers a Pre-Diluted Rollerball for people who are more sensitive (children, older adults) and it’s also more beneficial than the straight oil because the carrier oil actually seals in the essential oils so that they don’t evaporate! If you prefer not to make the plane smell (which you shouldn’t, your health matters too!) they also come in tablets called DigestTab! These are super amazing, I always have a couple in my purse whenever i go out to eat!
  6. Dry Skin
    •  Does anyone else always get a “plane pimple”? It doesn’t matter how long I’m on a plane for.. without fail, I always get a pimple from being on a plane. Probably a mix from recycled bacteria ridden air and no moisture. So there is a way to prevent this! If I’m on an overnight flight, I always pack my skin care routine into my carry-on bag so that I can still wash and moisturize my face. You can do it easily in the bathroom! I also always bring a face mist to periodically spray my face with.
    • The one I make is super simple- 1-2 tsp Aloe Gel, 3 drops Lavender Essential Oil, 2 oz Rose Water, combine in 2 oz Amber Glass Spritz Bottle, shake, and apply! I’ve also heard of people who apply masks while on planes! It’s a great way to pass time and keep your skin lookin’ fly.
  7. Stagnant Blood
    •  This is important to everyone, but especially for those of you that struggle with varicose veins/have a family history of them. When you sit in the same position for hours and don’t use your legs, blood pools and your leg expands, your veins have to work insanely hard to keep blood moving.
    • To prevent this, make sure you either get up and walk around every hour, or if you don’t feel like getting up, simply pump your feet as if you were pumping your brakes. This will get the blood flowing. You can also wear Compression Socks, but those of you that have vein problems should definitely wear them!! I found mine on amazon, and you can choose which one you like based on your color preference and size!Processed with VSCO with m5 preset
  8. Preventing Sickness
    • I’m not sure why, but there always seem to be someone right next to me who can’t seem to stop coughing the whole trip. And all of those germs spewing out? Yeah they’re being recycled in the air that the whole plane is breathing. So many people get sick after being on a plane, they inevitably pick up someones illness and it can be really hard to fully enjoy your trip if you’re feeling under the weather.
    • But no more! There are so many ways to boost your immune system before and during the flight so that you can fight away all of those nasty germs.
    • Before your flight: Eat a whole food based diet- lots of veggies, fruits, fats, whole grains, etc. Make sure you’re exercising, drinking lots of water, getting out in the sun and absorbing that good Vitamin D. Take Probiotics to keep that good bacteria in your gut. And right before your flight, make sure you rub d OnGuard Essential Oil Blend on your neck and bottom of your feet to pump up your immune system even more.
    • During Flight: Spray down your tray and seat area with the On Guard Sanitizing Spray, you really have no idea how well they clean those after each flight, Take an On Guard Beadlet to keep your immune system boosted from the inside out, and take a Vitamin D3 capsule. These will all keep your immune system strong and prevent you from getting sick! Processed with VSCO with m5 preset

And thats just about the jist of it! All of these made my super long flights a lot more enjoyable. I felt way more in charge of my experience and my body. If you have any more tips please leave them in a comment below! I’m always trying to make my coach flight feel like a first class flight 🙂

xxJoanna

*This post contains affiliate links, but don’t worry! These come at no extra charge to you, you’re just helping support me and my blog when you shop using the links :)*

How To Reduce Cortisol (STRESS)

It’s Time To Tell That Cortisol To Get LOWWW

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If you guys know me, or follow me on my social media— you’ve probably deduced that I have a tendency to stress the frrrriiiick out. But you also probably know that I struggle with gastrointestinal issues as well. Surprise, surprise, most stomach problems are caused from the body’s response to stress.

Quick story: Your body manifests your mental and emotional state in your physical body. So if you’re ever going through a hard time at work, home, relationships.. this all translates into your body. The symptoms depend on the person, some get skin issues, some people get really imbalanced hormones, some (like me) get stomach problems. So just keep that in mind when you’re addressing your health issues- ask yourself how happy are you? how stressed? Is there anything you are dealing with?

Okay so back to me. (so self absorbed i know)

The main reason many people have stomach problems due to stress is because you subconsciously squeeze and contract your stomach. What do children do when they feel sad or uncomfortable? They cross their arms over their stomach- as if to protect it.

If you read my previous post, I kinda go into detail about all of the things that I’ve been struggling with. You can find that here. So through my journey of healing my body and healing my gut (that would randomly give me such awful pain, chills, bloating) I have learned so many tips and exercises to use to help calm my body down. Cortisol is the stress hormone, so whenever you are in the “fight or flight” mode, your body floods itself with cortisol. Causing a whole host of problems.

Symptoms of High Cortisol 

  • High Blood Pressure
  • Rapid Weight Gain
  • Food Cravings
  • Muscle Weakness
  • Brain Fog
  • Emotionally Unstable/Mood Swings
  • Imbalanced Blood Sugar
  • Weak Immune System
  • Poor Sleep
  • Changes In Libido
  • Acne/Skin Issues
  • Aches and Pains
  • Imbalanced Hormones/Period Problems

I’m betting you have one or maybe even multiple of these problems. So let’s get down to business (to defeat the huns) no just kidding. to defeat high cortisol. (that was a mulan joke if you didn’t get it)

WAYS TO REDUCE STRESS/CORTISOL

Eat Whole Food Diet, Reducing Inflammatory Foods

  • When you feed your body things that cause it to work overtime, deprive it of key nutrients, or flood your system with toxins that it cannot process- you are putting your body and your internal systems under a lot of stress. PLUS, when you eat inflammatory foods your blood sugar becomes super unstable- rising then crashing constantly throughout the day.
    Foods that are anti-inflammatory are high in key nutrients, fiber, and antioxidants which help balance hormones and control your cravings, all of which help bring your body into balance. Read this blog to find out what Inflammatory Foods you should avoid! 

Meditate

  • Meditation has been around for centuries. Creating space and stillness in your mind and body is scientifically proven to reduce your stress response and encourage relaxation and healing. Even just a few minutes a day can make a big difference. Try slowly building up your ability to meditate. It is really difficult, especially for those who were raised in this current generation who need that constant gratification of doing a million things at once. There are some apps you can get to help guide your meditation, as it can be difficult to know what to do and calm yourself down. Just try it for one minute one day, and keep adding a minute every day. 

Deep Breathing

  • When you’re stressed your chest become tight and your breathing becomes shallow. Very quick, light, short breaths. Unfortunately, these are automatic reactions that are part of the stress response… but most adults breathe like this all the time. To help counteract this- try diaphragm breathing. This actually activates your parasympathetic nervous system aka your natural relaxation response!!
  • How To- Breathe in through your nose, long and slow, filling up your belly and chest with air, then slowly exhale through your nose. You can also try putting one hand on your chest and one hand on your stomach to help monitor your breathing, while also directing your thoughts and energy towards those areas to increase the loving healing. 

Acupuncture

  • I began acupuncture probably a little less than a year ago to help address/heal my SIBO. Combined with supplements and lifestyle/dietary changes, acupuncture had a really impactful effect on my healing journey. Acupuncture originated in China thousands of years ago, and is intended to rebalance the energy in the body. Injuries, disease, stress, these all cause the body to become out of balance. Acupuncture can help alleviate pain, balance hormones, heal stressed organs, achieve better sleep, increase circulation, etc. If you’re in the N. Tampa area, I have a really wonderful Traditional Chinese Doctor who offers acupuncture, she’s the best. 

Regular Exercise

  • This one should come at no surprise to you- exercise is pretty much the second most important thing you can do for your body. I’m serious. It is also one of the best ways to manage stress- as well as balance hormones, balance blood sugar, help you sleep better, yada yada yada it’s really important. There is one catch though- you MUST make sure that you do not overexert yourself to the point of exhaustion. And you must make sure you give yourself time to rest and heal. People who over train actually cause more stress on their body, releasing unnecessary cortisol into their system.
  • Although exercise temporarily increases cortisol, it brings it back down once you are finished. This teaches your body how to handle stress and how to lower cortisol levels easier. 

Adaptogens

  1. Food is medicine. What we put on and into our bodies literally break down and become our cells. So what better way to “treat” ourselves than to feed it substances that can help balance our body. Adaptogens may be something you have never heard of before- and I’ll be honest, until I became super health conscious I never heard of the word either. To put it simply- adaptogens are herbs that help your body “adapt” to undesirable conditions. “According to naturopath Edward Wallace, an adaptogen doesn’t have a specific action; it helps you respond to any influence or stressor, normalizing your physiological functions.” source 
  • I am a big big fan of adaptogens, I really believe I can tell a difference when I consistently take them. I have had experience with Ashwagandha, it is the most common and gentle of herbs. Here are the other top adaptogens that aid in reducing cortisol:
    astragalus
    licorice root
    medicinal mushrooms, including reishi and cordyceps
    rhodiola
  • TIP- always always always make sure you are buying your herbs and adaptogens from a reputable source. Often conventional foods herbs are grown with heavy pesticides and metals. I solely buy my adaptogens from Sun Potion. Their products are top of the line and they last a reaaalllyy long time.

Essential Oils

  • Ah, oils, my favorite! These work similarly to herbs and adaptogens, they work with your entire body bringing it back into balance. If you want to read my previous post about what essential oils are- check this post, it’ll help you understand more of what I’m talking about! Here are the top oils for reducing stress: lavender, clary sage, frankincense, and ylang ylang. I actually just bought the Doterra Roll On Blend called Clary Calm. This is specified for women who deal with PMS/menstrual problems (hormone imbalance, stress, cramps.) I like using it because it helps reduce my stress while also working on the other problems in my body. I love that it is already packaged so I can take it with me wherever I go to get a quick pick me up! 
  • NOTE- When buying essential oils, make sure they are from a reputable company!! Conventional companies are known to add fillers and toxic ingredients to their oils.. which can cause serious harm to your body. I exclusively use Doterra, if you have any questions or want to get started- let me know! 

Get Enough Sleep

  • Remember, cortisol isn’t inherently bad. It is a natural part of our body- it is the thing that wakes us up in the morning, and the thing that makes us tired at night so we sleep deeply. A lot of people with high cortisol levels have an extremely hard time sleeping, their circadian rhythms are out of balance. Getting enough sleep helps our body repair itself, and control cortisol production. Try applying the other tips to balance your cortisol and this will hopefully help our sleeping situation. ALSO- keep in mind, naps are okay. If you are super super tired and you didn’t sleep well and you can’t function- take a nap. Rest. Your body needs it.

Yoga

  • So yoga is like the ultimate cortisol defeater. It includes exercise, deep breathing, and meditation. You can also include essential oils into your practice to reap those benefits. I know yoga isn’t for everyone, but it is a really really powerful tool for reducing stress in your body. Even if it’s just ten minutes once a week. Your body feels so good afterwards, very light very open.

WHEW. Now that was a long blog post. But I know how important it was to write! If you have any questions or any other tips, leave me a comment or send me an email! Don’t forget you can catch me over on my instagram to see all of the other healthy tips and tricks.

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Hope you find the time to relax today. ❤

xxjoannaxx

 

Why You Need to Start Double Cleansing Your Face

If At First You Don’t Succeed, Try, Try Again! 

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Yeah I know, washing your face late at night can be a real pain. And doing a double cleanse can seem even more brutal…..

But hey, before you roll your eyes in disbelief and close the screen, listen to why you actually should have been doing this all along.

You may have noticed that after cleansing, you wipe a cotton round across your face and still see all sorts of residue. .. right?

Well that doesn’t make any sense now does it? After cleansing one’s face should be clean, right?

Well. stop. hold up. 

That’s where double cleansing comes into play! This was originally founded as a korean skin care step; starting with an oil cleanser and then following up with a foaming cleanser. But of course we know better than using those ultra-drying foaming face washes that literally strip everything off your face. So instead of foaming, we can just double up on the oiling (or cream cleanser or even HONEY)!

Double Cleansing Broken Down:

1st Cleanse– Targets and removes the sunscreen and makeup

2nd Cleanse– Cleanses all the grime, dirt and pollution that accumulates on the skin throughout the day

This is my current face washing routine:

  1. Take a dime size amount of Hemp Seed oil and massage it into my skin in little circular movements for a few minutes. You will begin to notice that little balls of dead skin, dirt, and clogged pores coming loose.
  2. Get a clean washcloth super hot, squeeze out the water, steam face until the wash cloth is no longer hot.
  3. Apply Raw Honey to still damp face! You can also combine the honey with essential oils, clay, cinnamon, activated charcoal– literally almost anything.
  4. Leave on for 5-35 minutes, depending on how much time you have. My favorite is to apply the mask before my bath and let my open pores absorb all of the goodness. I can’t tell you how good my skin looks after this- super bright, dewy, tight pores– it’s magic.

Pretty simple, and yet totally revolutionary. I have noticed a difference since starting this, and there’s no way I’m gonna stop now. My skin is softer and cleaner, and it shows.

As always, follow up with a toner and maybe some serums or just a moisturizer. Enjoy that pretty skin, babes.

xxjoannaxx

How A Garden Is Healing for Your Body and Mind

Becoming a Steward of the Earth

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IT’S SPRING!! Like a whole beautiful month into it. I don’t live in the northern part of the US, but I can still enjoy the new flowers blooming, all of the birds chirping while building their nests, the warm afternoon hugged by the cool mornings and nights.

Living in Florida I can grow food all year long, but the spring is especially fruitful. And it hit me the other day how wonderfully healing gardening is.

A garden not only allows you to grow your own food and save money in the process, but it also offers a variety of physical and mental benefits.

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A garden gives you something to tend. to care for. to check up on.

The nurturing side of humans, I believe, is very important. Especially in the age we are currently living. We constantly rush, have pressure placed on us from others and ourselves, we stress, we worry, we become angry, hurt, exhausted. It is difficult for us to slow down and take care… of anything. Even when we do take the time to take care of our food or clean the house, or even taking care of our bodies, it somehow turns into a chore. Something that has to be done, not something you are thankful for the ability to be doing. It seems the only area in our “lives” that there is room for nurturing is when we have children. But what about those who don’t have children? What about those who can’t? Women are especially created to be nurturing, and we need to nurture that side of ourselves.

Waking up in the morning and checking on your seedlings, seeing if they’ve arisen from the ground. Checking the leaves for bugs that may harm it, or fungus that make kill it. Taking the time to water, talking to them to help them grow. Keeping a watchful eye on your little plants so that they may grow big and strong. This long, yet extremely rewarding process feeds not only our stomachs during the harvest, but our souls as well. You put your heart into your garden. As you tend your garden you also tending to and taking care of yourself.

A garden requires you to put yourself in the elements.

If you’re like most, you live in a city. You’re surrounded by buildings, concrete, cars, pollution, noise. You must drive far and long to achieve a state of peace and calmness. But in our fast paced society, many don’t have the time or resources to really take the time off of their normal life and go do something in nature.

With a garden, you have managed to create your own little space of peace. You may still be surrounded by other houses or buildings, but in this space, you have brought nature and made it fit into your home. You are then able to experience the sun on your face, back, and shoulders. You can feel the wind brushing across your cheeks, filling you with gratitude. The scents of the flowers and trees that rush into your lungs, expanding your body and breath until you are at peace with yourself and your life.

You are cooped inside for probably 90% of your life and being outside in the fresh air is extremely beneficial for your physical health; increases brain function, raises vitamin D levels, reduces stress, reduces inflammation, fights fatigue, boosts immune system, protects eye health, etc.. There is scientific proof that being in the fresh air, surrounded by plants can help you live a happier and longer life.

A garden demands your thoughts.

We all have things we are worrying about, struggling with, suffering for. No one has a perfect life, and too often these feelings can consume us until it’s all we can think about. It can be hard some days to distract yourself, and many people use mind-numbing devices and activities to forget. Drinking, TV, phone, social media, drugs. None of which actually offer any benefit to you and your healing. Having a garden is an activity that benefits not only your body, but also your mental and emotional health. You are forced to forget, even just for a little bit, about your troubles. And you can let yourself be consumed with the joy of taking care of something. of nurturing.

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I am no master gardener, I am only in my mere second season of growing. And while it can be sometimes difficult or disappointing, remember that these too are all part of the cycle of life. You must make mistakes to learn from, you must go through the motions to have a grasp on what it is you are trying to accomplish.

So if you have ever dreamed of having a garden, or even if you haven’t until now, I urge you to take that leap. Even if it’s just one pot with one tomato plant. Pour your heart into it, and feed it with the love and attention that all of us crave.

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Wishing you a beautiful day, and that you are taking the steps to become a WellSpring of Life.

xxjoannaxx

Why Your Body Loves the Sauna

Steam On

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If you follow me on instagram then you probably know that I recently joined a gym! I joined because I wanted to have some variety in my workouts. I was hitting a wall and losing serious motivation for any sort of exercise. With a gym I can take different classes while also using equipement when I want to. And best of all—- they have a sauna. I’ve realized I am addicted to the feeling of being extremely hot. That tingly sensation of your blood rushing, pores opening… mmm so good.

So you may already know that sweating is good for us; it detoxes the toxins, keeps all the organs functioning, etc. Did you also know that there is a direct correlation between sweating and glowing skin? Oh heck yeah there is.

However, don’t fret if you live in a colder environment where sweating isn’t really something you can achieve daily – – – I’ve got one word for you:

Sauna. 

And even better– Infrared Saunas. These are better than traditional saunas because they use much milder temperature, and the type of heat actually penetrates deeper into the body, allowing a much more effective detox. Of course, if you can’t find an infrared sauna, a traditional one works too! (my gym only has the traditional kind, but I would take a sauna over no sauna any day!)

So just a quick history lesson- a sauna is technically just a small room used as a hot-air/ steam bath for cleaning and refreshing the body. They are built from wood, typically cedar because of its natural resistance to moisture. Saunas were invented in Finland about 2000 years ago. They were first large pits dug in the ground, but were later built above ground.

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Benefits of Sauna

  • Detox plastics and heavy metals
  • Raise endorphin levels
  • Heal musculoskeletal ailments
  • Increase blood flow
  • Help immune system
  • Aid in weight loss

It is recommended to sweat every day for at least fifteen minutes to really help your body naturally detox all those toxins we come into contact with daily. For now I take my phone in with my and set a timer, but I’m going to get a watch soon so that I can leave my phone in my car! Really trying to work on doing more things without my phone being right there beside me. Maybe I’ll bring in a book to read or sudoku.

Have you ever sat in a sauna and felt your body releasing all those nasties? 

xxJoannaxx

Supplements for Beautiful, Glowing Skin

Beauty Pills

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Breaking out after puberty- it exists and totally sucks. Unfortunately, every 1 in 4 women are plagued with the breakouts- so at least you’re not alone.. right? Our hormones are constantly fluctuating, health is a high speed roller coaster, stress is rising to crazy levels.. so many factors contribute to our less-than-ideal skin. We do all we can to achieve clear skin; fancy facial oils, tons of veggies, staying hydrated, gulping down skin loving smoothies- but sometimes it just isn’t enough. Some key nutrients cannot be absorbed in the amount necessary from the food we eat. So we need to find the answer somewhere else- supplements. Supplements also provide glow-inducing ingredients you may not eat on the daily- like fermented cod liver oil. (gag)

Thankfully, our society is so advanced that we have the ability to snatch up any supplement we want. There are a few key supplements that are known for their plumping, glow-inducing, redness reducing, skin clearing, anti-aging properties.

Supplements for Beauty

Zinc – It has the ability to reduce dihydrotestosteron (DHT)- having too much of this hormone can clog pores, increase inflammation, and cause breakouts. I use this brand.

Ashwaganda – A total superstar herb aka Adaptogen. Ashwaganda is filled with antioxidants that reduce inflammation in the skin, and helps our hormonal responses when dealing with stress. (This is my favorite brand, their quality cannot be beat!)

Omega 3 – Two really great sources of this are Krill OIl and Fermented Cod Liver Oil. Omega 3’s naturally reduce inflammation, and are really high in antioxidants which help slow down aging. ( I only use this brand, they don’t add anything toxic or heat up their product)

Collagen – With its ability to restore elasticity, increase cell turnover, and reduce inflammation- this is a superfood you don’t want to miss out on. (This is honestly the best brand I have found. I can really tell that it’s making a difference in my hair and nails, and if it’s affecting the external, then it is most definitely impacting my internal health. I take 2 scoops daily, and I am now saving money by subscribing! One of the best things you can take for your body.)

There are so many other supplements on the market that can help your body rebalance, but these are the most common. If you’re still having stubborn breakouts after trying all of these supplements for a substantial amount of time, try seeing a naturopathic doctor so they can figure out the underlying causes. Your skin is a message board for your body. Breakouts, rashes, dryness are all signals that something is out of balance. Realize that your body, given half a chance, can heal itself. Stay positive!

Take care of yourself.

Relax. Eat Good Food. Do Things You Love. and Take Those Vitamins! 

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xxJoannaxx

Disclaimers: I am not a medical professional. The goal of this post is to share information about supplements and my personal experience with them. I did my best research and fact-checking for accuracy. It is always best to check with your doctor if you are unsure about using these supplements!

*There are affiliate links used in this post, it comes at no extra charge to you it just helps support me and my blog!*

3 Easy Ways To Detox Your Skin

Detox and Be Merry

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I’m sure you’re aware of how many toxins we come into contact with daily.

Please just read this excerpt from Natural Society :

Modest estimates have suggested that we are exposed to more than 700,000 different toxic chemicals on a daily basis, and this doesn’t include the crazy poisons that GMO companies are pumping into the food supply…. There are chemicals in our food, our water, the air we breathe, the clothing we wear, the carpet we walk on, and the plastics that surround us.”

This should totally freak you out. Because it is so, so, so freaky. And think of children who’s immune systems are still developing, how can they possibly fight off all of those toxins?

There’s not much we can do in one day to stop the amount of toxins that are in every inch of our life, but there are thankfully a few things we can do daily to get rid of those toxins.

Epsom Salt Bath

This is one of the easiest and most luxurious ways to detox. They’re extremely easy to create and you can make it as fancy or simple as you please. No need to drop a ton of cash at a spa when you can enjoy the same thing at home! The Epsom Salt Baths flush all of those impurities out from your system. You can also add in various essential oils for added anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antimicrobial benefits! Honey and Bentonite clay can be added for extra detoxing power! Here is my blog post featuring two of my faaaaavorite bath blends. Check it out!

Clay Mask

Even if you’re a religious skin cleanser, you still need to apply a deep cleansing mask at least once a week to really get all of the dirt, makeup, and impurities out from your skin.  Clay acts as a magnet and attaches itself to the impurities, so when you wash it off you wash off the dirt as well! I have a great blog post giving you the super easy instructions! Its cheap and hella effective. check it out here.

Dry Brushing

I have a previous blog post written all about dry brushing! You can find it here. It’s a really simple way to detox your skin before a shower or bath, it is especially beneficial for the lymphatic system.

 

And that’s it! And you can combine all three for a totally awesome detoxing extravaganza!      

  • Step one: Dry brush the body.
  • step two: Cleanse skin and apply a clay mask.
  • step three: Lower yourself into a luxurious, relaxing bath.

So good for both your internal and external body. Make time for yourself! It isn’t vain or selfish, it’s healthy.

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chillin like a villain in a clay mask 

forever detoxing. 

 

xxJoannaxx

Top 8 Natural Remedies for Seasonal Allergies

The Rise of the Histamines

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Let me just say it- POLLEN SUCKS. It’s great for the bees and the plants and butterflies and whatever- but for you and me and all other humans… no thanks.

My car is literally coated in green.

Anyway, most people are afflicted with allergies. And while doctors normally prescribe pharmaceuticals like antihistamines, they’re not good for your body and may actually make allergy symptoms worse.

So I’ve compiled a bomb list for natural remedies, that can only help your body heal!

Wave Goodbye To Allergies! 

  • Eat an Anti-Inflammatory Diet-
    • Lots of fresh leafy greens, veggies, and fruit.
    • Add in garlic! Natural antibiotic and immune booster. For most powerful, eat it raw
    • Lemons are amazing at detoxing the body and keeping it ‘alkaline’ (in balance)
  • Take Probiotics-
    • Everyone has bacteria in their gut, but most people have way more bad bacteria than good bacteria. A really good soil based probiotic (like these) helps rebalance the gut, which really increases your immune system and decreases allergies!
  • Eat Local Raw Honey-
    • This may sound counterintuitive, but it’s hella not. By taking a daily dose of this, your body will natural build up a tolerance to the local pollen! It is recommended you take 1 TBS daily, whether in tea, oatmeal, smoothies, etc. Remember though- it has to be raw and local, if it has been heated up you will lose the potency, and if it’s not local you won’t be building up your immune system against the local pollen. Check your local farmers market! 
  • Use a Neti Pot-
    • This clears sinuses and removes congestion, naturally relieving allergy symptoms. (like this one) or (this one!)
  • Frankincense Essential Oil-
    • You didn’t think i would go a whole post without mentioning the King of Essential Oils, did you?
    • Frankincense boosts the immune system, reduces inflammation, and heals the entire body. You can rub it (diluted) onto chest, or diffuse in your home, or take a couple drops under your tongue daily. (i only use Doterra’s Frankincense because it is the highest quality out there! Many essential oils are cheap and full of fillers, they will actually cause harm to your body! Check out more here)
  • Drink Stinging Nettle Tea-
    • This is a remedy that dates back to medieval times..!
    • It can treat a wide rage of health concerns, and naturally controls histamines which is why it’s so great for allergies! (check it out here)
  • Doterra’s TriEase Softgels Seasonal Blend
    • TriEase Softgels were developed to protect against seasonal and environmental elements and to promote a healthy respiratory system when needed most. Each softgel contains equal parts of Lemon, Lavender, and Peppermint essential oils, known for their ability to maintain clear breathing and a healthy immune response when combined together.”
    • You can purchase these through my site on Doterra! Which is linked here. ***If you wish to get more involved with oils, have questions, or wish to become a member and save 20% on each order plus earn points towards future orders- let me know! Send me an email or DM me on my Instagram @awellspringoflife!** 
  • Drink lots of water, sleep 8 hours a night, don’t eat sugar, processed foods, dairy, or conventional grains. 

I’m telling you, if you incorporate just a couple of these into your daily life you will see a difference!

Comment below if you’ve had any experience with these natural remedies!

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xxJoannaxx

 

**this post contains affiliate links, but it comes at no extra charge to you! It just helps support me and my blog when you purchase items through that link 🙂 )**

Stop Feeling Guilty For Relaxing

Time spent wasting time, is not wasted time.

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I know the holidays have somewhat recently passed, and you probably (hopefully) took some time off work/your regular schedule to rest, relax, recoup, and enjoy time with family and friends. I’m sure you’re now back into the swing of things, juggling a thousand projects and ideas at once, your mind whirring a million miles an hour.

Holidays are a wonderful forced break, making you get out of your head, and enjoy the season of laughter and giving. But– what about the rest of the year? What about those thousands of other weekends that you spend still running around, still stressing out?

If you’re one of the many, then you rarely allow yourself the blessing of complete, utter relaxation and stillness. Americans are a hardworking group, we are a super dedicated, driven, motivated people. That has its many benefits, but if you’re not careful, it can also some awful side effects.

Heart Attacks. Strokes. Cancer. Digestive Problems. These can all be (and frequently are) caused by a constant surge of stress. You may be under this constant fight or flight sensation and don’t even realize it.

However, with all of this said, the main reason I wrote this post is to encourage you to relax. actually relax.

and not feel guilty.

For many, this is a difficult habit to break. We have this idea that we should be super productive and busy all the time- every day, all day long. So even when we try to “sit down,” there’s that nagging voice in our head and body that makes us feel that we should get up and do something more “important.” Just this small surge causes anxiety and stress. and judgement.

Your body needs to rest. and not just while sleeping.

It’s a wonderful thing to be busy and accomplish everything on your list; but at what cost? And why right this second? You have your whole life to do whatever you want, but you won’t be able to get there if you exhaust yourself at an early age.

Your body and brain weren’t designed to constantly run without a solid, intentional break. (even while sleeping you’re subconsciously processing what you did that day, and planning what you need to do.)

Here’s the real question:

Would you rather go flying through life, only stopping for brief seconds, only looking ahead. Or taking your time, completely tasks thoroughly, while enjoying your present life and moments that make life so special.

It’s okay to say no to invitations.

it’s okay to cancel previous engagements.

it’s okay to ask for someone to help you out, take the kids.

it’s okay to stay at home all day on the couch binge watching your guilty pleasure tv shows.

it’s okay to take naps.

to take long baths.

to read that book you’ve been wanting to read for a year.

YOU DESERVE IT. you work hard, your body is tired, your mind is exhausted.

please, stop feeling guilty for something you have been given that you undoubtedly, irrevocably deserve.

And enjoy this process of honoring yourself. It won’t be easy, you’ll forget, fall back a few steps, but as long as you realize that you need this. that your life will be better, fuller, brighter.

you will get there.

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xxjoannaxx