Essential Oils For $20 Or Less

Wellness Doesn’t Have To Be Expensive

essential oils under $20. health doesn't have to be expensive. www.awellspringoflife.com

I understand that starting out with a new form of wellness can be a little intimidating, and you may even postpone starting because you don’t think you’ll be able to afford it. But wait! There are tons of essential oils that are super cost effective and will still have a major impact on your life and your health.

Not to mention, once you look at the math- there are 250 drops in each 15ml bottle of Essential Oil. So each drop only costs you pennies. That is exceedingly cheaper than any pill on the market.

I went into detail with 10 of the oils under $20, but there are a lot more! You’ll see them listed at the end. (keep in mind, this price is based on having a wholesale membership and saving 25% on every product.)

You ready? Yeah, me too.

essential oils under $20 (1)

 

Essential Oils under $20

Grapefruit: $16
This is a major part of the all time favorite doTERRA blend, Slim & Sassy®! Grapefruit helps to not only detox the body, but also supports your metabolism! Grapefruit is also a great choice for diffusing; it instantly purifies the air and provides an uplifting mood. Just wait- everyone who comes over is going to love love love how your house smells! Click here to purchase Grapefruit Essential Oil.

Melaleuca: $19
If you follow me on instagram, you’ll know that I LOVE Melalueca. It is amazing for any and all skin irritations, you just apply it onto the affected areas diluting as necessary. Because it is naturally purifying, this is a great oil to apply on the bottom of your feet or inside of your shoes to refresh them! Melalueca is also great taken internally inside a veggie capsule; helps support healthy joint function, soothe soreness, and when added with Frankincense and Oregano makes an AMAZING combo to get rid of any sickness. Click here to purchase Melalueca Essential Oil.

Clove: $14.00
This is one of those oils that you don’t wan’t to be without. Clove is a master at fighting free radicals because of it’s ability to be naturally cleansing and keeping your immune system healthy. I also love adding it to my moisturizer for a boost of germ destroying power! Clove is a “hot oil,” so make sure to always dilute it topically, and take internally using Veggie Capsules. Click here to purchase Clove Essential Oil.

Rosemary: $14
Yes, the delicious herb that you add onto your baked chicken, but man oh man it provides a lot more benefits than just taste. Rosemary Essential Oil can actually be taken internally to support healthy organ function! It can aid in reducing anxious feelings, tension, and low energy. Many people use it to help them with their memory! I also add it into my shampoos and hair serum because it helps hair grow. Click here to purchase Rosemary Essential Oil.

Eucalyptus: $14
Oh delicious Eucalyptus! I actually posted about this a little bit ago on this Instagram post. Eucalyptus is a great oil for cleansing- not only surfaces but also the air! I’ve been adding it onto my dyer balls for extra cleansing power on our clothes. This oil also opens up airways, so I love putting a couple drops at the bottom of your shower! It makes you feel like you’re in a spa. If you suffer from a lot of sinus issues, Eucalyptus is an amazing oil. It’s in the Breathe oil combination! Click here to purchase Eucalyptus Essential Oil.

Lemon: $10
Harvested in Sicily, Lemon is a doTERRA must-have oil that comes in the doTERRA Introductory Kit. Lemon is great for detoxing, cleansing, respiratory functions, and fights against allergies. This oil is also a straight up MAGICIAN for cleaning. If you have a weird mark on a table, in your car, on the wall, just add a little bit of lemon and watch it magically wipe away! Click here to purchase Lemon Essential Oil.

Cypress: $15.50
Cypress instantly transports you back into the woods. It has such a delicious scent that provides a great energy boost when you’re feeling a little tired. Cypress can be used on the skin to reduce blemishes, balance oily skin, and increase circulation! I first used Cypress in a blend for my husband to help with this varicose veins- and it worked! Click here to purchase Cypress Essential Oil.

Lemongrass: $10
Lemongrass is amazing for soothing sore muscles. You can apply it after a hard workout. just make sure you dilute it with a carrier oil like Fractionated Coconut Oil. I first used it after I had all four of my wisdom teeth removed and it really helped to bring down the puffiness and reduce the pain. Fun fact: Lemongrass is also a natural insect repellent! Click here to purchase Lemongrass Essential Oil.

Juniper Berry: $19
This is a great oil to help with internally cleansing! You can add it daily to help detox all of the toxins, chemicals, and bad hormones your body tends to hold onto. It’s also wonderful used topically on skin to shrink blemishes. Click Here to purchase Juniper Berry Essential Oil.

Wild Orange: $10.50
This just may be one of my absolute favorite oils to diffuse. It smells SO good and it simultaneously purifies the air and boosts my immune system! You can also add Wild Orange to your water for a delicious boost of flavor and keep your body healthy.  Click here  to purchase Wild Orange Essential Oil.

Other Oils under $20

Besides being 100% natural, my favorite thing about essential oils is that they are so versatile. One oil can do so many things, and how much cheaper is that than getting different pills for each problem!?

To become a Wholesale member and save 25% on every product, sign up here. To just buy everything at retail, follow this link to my website!

If you have questions about starting essential oils, make sure to check out this blog post!

And if you are curious about what essential oils may be best for you and your health concerns, please reach out to me!

Happy oiling!

xxjoannaxx

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My Health Journey

The Emotional Side Of Healing

Getting healthy is a lot more emotionally involved than you may think. But let me just start off by saying that I am not perfectly healthy now, and honestly never will be.. our bodies are imperfect. But I have, like many of you, struggled with something for years and am finally at a point in my life where my body looks and feels it’s best. It’s been a long journey but I wish for nothing more than to share all that I have done in order to help some of you.

The Beginning

I remember the first time I knew something was wrong.  I had just eaten a meal that I had eaten probably 100 times, and suddenly my stomach started to cramp, I got really cold, chills all over my body. It had gotten so bad so fast that I began writhing on the floor. I felt so nauseous, and tried making myself throw up but wasn’t able to. It would start to go away then immediately come back full force. I was crying out in pain. It was honestly the worst pain I had ever experienced, even worse than awful period cramps because of the fear of not knowing what was happening to my body. I literally felt like my stomach was going to burst through my skin.

It thankfully passed after a few hours, but I was really, really scared.

my healing journey, sibo, emotional side of healing.www.awellspringoflife.com

The Healing Process

Physical Side

Over the next few years I became extremely cautious with my food. I kept making little changes in my diet, always eliminating food that gave me problems.

My symptoms included: sharp, excruciating pains in lower and upper stomach, chills and goosebumps covering my body, nausea, rash from chest to stomach, unintentional weight loss, continuous breakouts, various food sensitivities, and feeling totally and completely helpless.

But it had gotten to the point that even healthy foods began to give me these problems. And foods would one day be fine, but then another day suddenly cause me to drop to the floor and curl up into a ball. It felt like my body was continuously rejecting all of the food I tried to give it.

my healing journey, sibo, emotional side of healing.www.awellspringoflife.com

March 2, 2017. It wasn’t until later that I had realized how thin I had become. My body wasn’t absorbing any nutrients.

I signed up for Dr. Axe’s Leaky Gut Program after watching a webinar because I knew my disease was at least partially caused from my gut being damaged. It is a magnificent program that helped both my husband and I, but I knew I needed further attention.

When we were in Florida for a holiday I made an appointment with a naturopathic doctor I used to go to. And with the normal testing- blood work and hormone test, he gave me something I never heard of before- a breath test. To test my level of bacteria in my body.

When the results came back it showed that I had super high levels of bacteria which gave me the diagnosis of Small Intestinal Bacteria Overgrowth aka SIBO.

I was ecstatic. The fact that there was a name for my condition meant that there were certain steps I could take to help heal my body. I had gone so many years,slowly giving up hope and this was the first sign that showed the light at the end of the tunnel.

So I went on the specific SIBO diet- cutting out a lot of different vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, sugar, protein, etc. And although this helped a little bit.. I am sorry to say that it did not heal me. My body was still weak, I still felt like my stomach was always upset. I went back to the doctor but never quite felt like he had my best interest in mind, something about how he spoke just didn’t show the care that I needed. So back to square one.

*small lesson: You do not need to see a doctor you do not love. You are your own best health advocate. Trust yourself and your feelings.*

I started seeing an acupuncturist, and after our consultation she gave me such confidence again that I started tearing up and gave her a huge hug. She is actually a Traditional Chinese Medicine Doctor so she was able to help me more than the typical acupuncturist. She first put me on high dosages of natural antibacterials to help kill the bacteria, high doses of probiotics to bring back the balance, and a shake to heal the gut lining and give my body the nutrients I wasn’t absorbing through food.

She also ordered a stool test which was by far the NASTIEST thing I have ever done but it is the best test to see how your body is doing. It tested my nutrient absorption, which bacteria levels were high, if I had any viruses or parasites, etc. This allowed my doctor to personalize my treatment even more.

my healing journey, sibo, emotional side of healing. www.awellspringoflife.com

September 22, 2017. I was far along in my healing protocol and my stomach was doing better, but I was still really thin and dealing with a lot of emotional baggage.

Emotional Side

But it wasn’t until I tested my hormones through Delgado Naturals and saw how high my cortisol was that I also began to work on my emotional stress. If you read my other posts on my story on healing. ways to deal with emotional stress, and how to reduce cortisol, you’ll know that I have had some pretty hard years.

And you must know, this is so very important, that all stress manifests itself in physical ways. So my constant low level stress was causing my stomach to get all twisted up inside. I was constantly on the verge of tears, I was extremely lonely and heart broken, so I took the path to begin seeing a counselor. Having that outlet and a source of calm wisdom helped heal my heart and mind.

The Finale

Through persistence and patience, I am now at a point in my life where my body is absorbing nutrients, my gut is strong and healthy, my energy has dramatically increased, and I am, without a doubt, so much happier. I still go once a month to my acupuncturist to keep my body aligned. I don’t really take many supplements besides ones to balance my hormones, and I have kept up with the lifestyle changes to reduce my stress.

Now, I’ve been told that SIBO never truly leaves your system.  You can help it go into recession, but it may never fully go away. And that’s okay- I have accepted it. Through this health journey I have discovered various natural ways to help my digestive system whenever I do have a flare up. I am just so thankful that I never gave up trying or looking for a doctor that I truly felt was looking out for ME.

my healing journey, sibo, emotional side of healing.www.awellspringoflife.com

September 26, 2018. This is me now. With a little extra love all around, and a healthy, strong body

my healing journey, sibo, the emotional side of healing. www.awellspringoflife.com

Your health is not determined by a number on a scale. It is only defined by your happiness.

 

What are you currently battling in your health journey?

xxjoannaxx

Natural Cramp Remedies

PERIODS DON’T HAVE TO BE PAINFUL

Natural Remedies for period cramps. www.awellspringoflife.com

Cramps are probably the most common side effect of menstruation. For some lucky women, it could be a slight nuisance, but for others.. it can mean sharp, deep pains that render you completely weak, rolling back and forth, and feeling nauseous. It can be so debilitating that it affects your work and lifestyle.

For me personally, cramps have definitely gotten worse the older I’ve become- due to my hormonal imbalance. As a teenager, I would feel a little pain right as I started my period, but I could easily wait for it to pass and continue my day. Recently, however, it has become so painful that I HAVE to be on bed rest for 24 hours.

Unfortunately, we’re all taught that PMS symptoms and cramps are just “part of being a woman” and we need to take Advil and get on with the rest of our day like nothing has changed. But cramps are a sign that something is imbalanced in our body and we need to address it. (think about it, your body never hurts just because- there is always a root cause.)

The #1 thing you can do for your body and help your cramps is to first and foremost get your hormones tested. I cannot tell you how much of a difference it has made in my life- from my skin, understanding bodily functions, to also diagnosing the reason behind my cramps. I have been using the company Delgado Protocol for about 3 years now and I LOVE THEM. All you do is order a simple test, add your saliva to the kit, send it back, and they send you your results within a couple days.

They then set up a free 30 minute call that goes over your results and what they recommend. If there is one thing I am always talking about- it is this. Saliva is the best way to test your hormones, and the kit is cheaper than seeing a doctor.

I also have a code! When you email them about ordering the 12 Panel Saliva Kit, say you’ve been sent by me (Joanna Alexander) and they will offer you a discounted price of $104 instead of the retail price $165. Here is their website. 

Natural Remedies for period cramps. www.awellspringoflife.com

Best Natural Cramp Remedies

I truly believe that the body is one system, and that unnecessary medications cause more harm than good. So I have been on the mission to find the best remedies for cramps, and I daresay I found them.

DIET

Yes, your foods affect your cycle. This has been incorporated into many eastern medicine practices but unfortunately overlooked in the Western medicine. It is recommended to eat a lot of warming, nourishing foods during your period- which makes sense because your body needs to heal.

Your diet should consist of roasted veggies, soups, stews, bone broth, as well as lots of foods high in essential fatty acids.

Cramps are actually caused by evelated levels of the hormone PGE2, by eating a lot of essential fatty acids it raises your PGE 1 and 3, to help balance it out.

FOODS HIGH IN ESSENTIAL FATTY ACIDS

  • Olive Oil
  • Oily Fish (sardines, salmon, anchovies, tuna)
  • Hemp seeds
  • Chia Seeds
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Flax seeds
  • Walnuts
  • Almonds

OTHER FOODS TO INCLUDE DURING MENSTRUATION

  • Seaweed (wakame and dulse- they’re super nutrient dense)
  • Liquid Chlorophyll (raise iron levels)
  • Kelp (can find them in refrigerated sections, but they also make kelp noodles)

And of course, with anything concerning diet- there are always things you should avoid. These specific foods will actually increase inflammation and cause more painful periods.

FOODS TO AVOID DURING MENSTRUATION

  • Raw Vegetables
  • Sugar
  • Dairy
  • Saturated Fats
  • Alcohol
  • Excessive Caffeine

HEAT

I just started doing this this month and WOW I cannot believe what I’ve been missing! It immediately helps soothe my aching body in the most gentle, loving way. It’s like a thousand hugs right to your uterus- I’m serious. I use a hot water bottle (only $10!?!) that I picked up awhile ago, but a lot of women also fill a sock with rice and microwave it!  I also really enjoy taking baths on my period- I’ll add in some epsom salts and let my body relax.

ESSENTIAL OILS

Essential Oils provide the quickest result when I deal with really bad cramps. My most recent blend is absolutely miraculous:

Doterra’s Clary Calm: This is full of amazing essential oils that are great at balancing hormones, reducing PMS symptoms, while also reducing inflammation!

Neroli Essential Oil: This is the QUEEN for cramping. Once I started adding this to my cramp routine it made the biggest difference! I love that it is diluted in fractionated coconut oil- the roller ball makes it really easy to apply and it lasts!

Copaiba Essential Oil: This is one of the best oils to use for pain and healing the body.

How To Use: On my abdomen I’ll rub Clary Calm, Neroli Touch, and top it off with a drop of Copaiba Essential Oil. Then I’ll gently rub it into the skin. Pro Tip: To increase the benefits of these oils, add a heating pad! It’ll open up your pores, letting the essential oils absorb more quickly.

Deep Blue Rub: If you’re one of the many women who also suffer from back pain during your period- this one’s for you. It’s the natural alternative for Icy Hot! Packed with healing essential oils, this will immediately bring your back some relief.

How to Use: Simply rub wherever you have aching pain! Back, neck, shoulders, etc.

For information on how to get started with Essential Oils- read this blog post!

REST

Yes, you need to rest girl. Lay down and let your body heal. You are not designed to feel the same or act the same every day of your life. Take time off exercising, socializing, and try to schedule big work projects before your period. Take the time to read, take a bath, nap, watch Netflix- whatever it is you like to do to take it easy. And when your heavy bleeding is over, don’t rush back into your normal routine– ease into it with slow walks, slow days, honor your body.

Remember, your body is beautiful and sacred and it deserves attention and respect. If you’re dealing with period problems, take the time to learn abut them and heal yourself naturally.

Do you struggle with cramps? What are your remedies?

xxjoannaxx

Why I Don’t Believe In Diets

Bio Individuality

why i dont believe in diets. bio individuality. www.awellspringoflife.com

I have a seriously unpopular opinion. I’m also part Italian so I’m full of passion, especially when it comes to things I whole heartedly believe in.

I DO NOT like diets.

why i dont believe in diets. bio individuality. www.awellspringoflife.com

I really don’t like the ‘popular’ fad ones where they claim to help you lose 20 lbs in ten days, or the ‘eat only apples’ kind of diets. These do not work. I repeat- DO NOT WORK. They’re completely unsustainable because you will inevitably rebound and regain the weight you lost, or maybe even gain more because you deprived your body of the nutrition it needed.

Teaching your body to “yo-yo” between weights is extremely unhealthy- you’re only teaching it to be under constant stress. With these fast and cheap diets you are also not learning anything about your body and what it actually needs. Your mind and body are meant to work together, it is one machine. And when you simply treat your stomach like a food vending machine it is not getting the attention it requires to run properly.

why i dont believe in diets. bio individuality. www.awellspringoflife.com

But there’s also something else that I really, really do not appreciate, especially as a health coach.

I cannot stand it when people push their diets on others as if it is the ONLY way to be healthy. 

Yes, the vegans, the vegetarians, Whole30, Keto, etc. They shove their diets in your face and make it seem as if you do not follow their diets, you will be unhealthy. Like their way of living is the only way.

Lemme tell you something:

IT IS NOT TRUE.

Everyone’s body is different. Every single one of us have different genes, different ancestors, different lifestyles, etc. What works for a celebrity may not work for you. What works for your friend may not work for you. What works for a Natural Doctor may not work for you. What works for your sister may not even work for you.

You are special. you are unique. you are different. 

and you need to treat your body as such.

I have a serious problem with people who claim to be leaders in the health movement and yet do not integrate one of the most important concepts into their teaching: BIO INDIVIDUALITY.

We need to realize that there is no such thing as a one diet fits all. There never was such a thing and there never will be. And using fear to force people to listen to them and their way of eating is absolutely ridiculous.

Yes, there are many people who have had incredible success with certain diets- where they have actually changed their life. But that does not mean it is the only path to a vibrant, healthy life.

So I’m calling out all of the doctors, authors, coaches, etc. Let people be! Let them decide what works best for them. Stop trying to force them into your lifestyle. Simply give them the tools they need to learn and experiment, and from there decide what is best for them.

And to all of you wanting to achieve a healthier life- do not fall for scare tactics. Things that are good and true do not need the added level of fear. Truth can hold its own. I urge you to experiment, research, and take the time to learn your body.

I am a HUGE ADVOCATE for teaching people about their bio-individuality. You know your body best. You are the best advocate for your health. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.

Hopefully I didn’t scare too many of you off, but this is something I believe to be extremely vital to a balanced life. Gotta speak my truth you know?

Whats a diet you’ve tried that hasn’t worked for you?

why i dont believe in diets. bio individuality. www.awellspringoflife.com

xxjoannaxx

How To Make A Hotel Room Cozy

Home Away From Home

make hotel room more comfortable and cozy. how to enjoy vacation more with essential oils, rituals, lamps, etc.

Traveling is great and all, but unless you’ve got the big bucks chances are you’re not staying in a nice fancy hotel. When staying in less then ideal hotels you can deal with weird smells, stuffy rooms, annoying customer service, etc. But THANKFULLY you can do something to help make your stay more enjoyable.

cozy hotel rooms

Hotel Tips

Bring A Diffuser and Citrus Essential Oils 

That air in the room has been recycled for only God knows how long. Diffusing citrus oils will not only clean the air but also clean the entire room! Citrus oils are naturally purifying and cleansing. These oils are also great for uplifting, energizing, and may even improve your mood!

Here are the citrus oils : Bergamot, Grapefruit, Lemon, Lime, Tangerine, Wild Orange and a simply divine blend called Citrus Bliss (forreal though, the scent is bliss.) You can always mix and match oils too! I recently smelled the combination of Spearmint and Lime and GOOD LAWWD it was magical.

Here are some diffuser ideas:

doterra_petal_diffuser_essential_oil_diffuser_1509676683_e9a9b2830love love this one -its so cute and minimal!

this one is on my wish list- one day!

Bring Your Own Sheets

The older I get, the more aware of germs I become. Of course, I would like to think that the sheets are 100% totally and completely sterilized.. but how can I be sure? Just thinking of the many other naked bodies on the sheets makes me wanna hurl a little bit. And the blankets? You really honestly think hotels wash those every time? No. def not.

So if we’re driving to our hotel I always make sure to pack a big bag full of sheets, pillowcases, and a blanket. It is so worth it you guys. I feel so much more at ease, and even having my house scent instead of weird chemical smell on the sheets is amazing. And if you’re really awesome, you’ll also bring your own pillows. Just recently had an awful weekend because the pillows were like big sacks of flour and I could not sleep. lesson learned.

Continue Normal Routines

It can be hard keeping up with your routines when you’re thrown into a weird room in a weird place, but making sure you take the time to be as consistent as you can with what you do at home will make a big difference. For example, I always oil pull in the morning, so I try to do that, I bring my dry brush, tongue scraper, face masks, etc. I try to stick as closely to my normal routine as possible and it helps me feel more in control and at ease.

Himalayan Salt Plug Ins

If you read my previous blog post, you know how powerful and amazing himalayan salt lamps are. But I totally know they aren’t the most practical thing to bring while traveling. Thats why the plug in versions are SO DOPE!! You’ll just amplify the cleansing air process while making the room feel more like yours. Also great alternative if you like having night lights!

These ones look amazing.

Bring Hand Sanitizer

Not only for your hands, but also to clean some of the small things in the room- door knobs, tv remote, headboard, night stand, etc. I used to clean condos so I first hand know that people who clean fast do not always clean super well.

doterra-touch-on-guard-10mlI really like using the DoTerra Hand Sanitizer because it’s all natural, you don;t need a ton, and it smells so good because of the blend of warm essential oils!

Pack Food

If you’re like the majority, chances are you have a sensitive stomach/food sensitivities. I know it can be hard to find restaurants that you can trust won’t hurt your stomach, especially in smaller towns. I always like to pack a few meals depending on my length of stay. Plus some simple breakfasts that don’t require any heating up.

For example, I recently brought these; chia seed pudding, hard boiled eggs, fruit, big salad, baked sweet potatoes, baked chicken, olive oil and apple cider vinegar. So simple and only needed to be refrigerated. Try and find a hotel with a fridge in the room, but if not, just bring a large cooler and keep refilling the ice!

Bring Sleep Items

You never know if the hotel will be noisy, have lots of light, or really uncomfortable beds. So I recommend bringing an eye mask, ear plugs, and maybe even some melatonin if you’re having the worst time falling asleep! I’m definitely to the point in my life where I prioritize sleep over so many things- even looking like an overpacked crazy lady.

That’s pretty much it! I am always thankful for traveling, but that doesn’t mean I settle! There are always super simple and cheap ways to make your life better. Always remember that.

xxJoannaxx

*this post contains affiliate links- but don’t worry! It comes at no extra charge to you. You simply help support me and my blog when you purchase the items through the link I provided :)*

Do Bras Cause Breast Cancer?

Burn Your Bra For Your Health

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Boobs.

They come in all shapes and sizes, different attributes, they can be similar or totally different, they attract men and feed babies- if you’re a woman, you’ve got ’em. BREASTS.

And we’ve gotta take care of them! Did you know that breasts are under attack? Yeah, lemme just rattle off a few Statistics-

  • About 1 in 8 U.S. women (about 12.4%) will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime.
  • For women in the U.S., breast cancer death rates are higher than those for any other cancer, besides lung cancer.
  • As of January 2018, there are more than 3.1 million women with a history of breast cancer in the U.S. This includes women currently being treated and women who have finished treatment.
  • About 85% of breast cancers occur in women who have no family history of breast cancer. These occur due to genetic mutations that happen as a result of the aging process and life in general, rather than inherited mutations. (source)

These should be alarming to you. Breast Cancer is absolutely no joke, and we all really need to be aware of how common it is and ways to help reduce the risk.

#1 Way is to live as healthy as possible to reduce the possibility of your cells mutating. Eating right, regular exercise, reduce your use of chemicals in home and body products, and limiting stress are all things you need to incorporate into your life to help your body become the strongest it can be.

But you may not be aware of another highly recommended step: Stop Using Underwire Bras.

This notion that bras were connected to an increase in breast cancer was first brought to the world’s attention in 1995 through Sydney Ross Singer and Soma Grismaijer’s book Dress to Kill: The Link Between Breast Cancer and Bras. The book talks about the 1991 study done at Harvard where they discovered that pre-menopausal women who didn’t wear bras had half the risk of breast cancer when compared to women who did wear bras. They used 5000 women between 1991 and 1993 and discovered that:

  • Women who wore their bras 24 hours per day had a 3 out of 4 chance of developing breast cancer.
  • Women who wore their bras for more than 12 hours but not to bed had a 1 in 7 risk for breast cancer
  • Wearing a bra less than 12 hours per day dropped breast cancer risk to 1 in 152.
  • Women who never or rarely wore bras had a 1 in 168 risk for breast cancer.
  • Overall, women who wore their bras 24 hours per day increased their breast cancer risk by 125 times over women who rarely or never wore a bra. (source)

The main concern is that tight-fitting bras do not allow the lymph nodes to properly detox and flush out all of the toxins that our body is in constant contact with. Any time you have an accumulation of toxins in the body you are at a higher risk for cancer. This is why I recommend doing an armpit detox a few times a year (clay mask on armpits).

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Here is how Dr. Michael Schacter, MD, of the Schacter Center for Complimentary Medicine, explains it:

“Over 85 percent of the lymph fluid flowing from the breast drains to the armpit lymph nodes. Most of the rest drains to the nodes along the breast bone. Bras and other external tight clothing can impede flow.”

“The nature of the bra, the tightness, and the length of time worn, will all influence the degree of blockage of lymphatic drainage. Thus, wearing a bra might contribute to the development of breast cancer as a result of cutting off lymphatic drainage, so that toxic chemicals are trapped in the breast.” (source)

It is crucial for the body to have constant drainage throughout the lymphatic system to properly detox all of the chemicals, waste products, toxins, carcinogenic substances, etc that we unfortunately are always dealing with.

However, you must know that the lymphatic system doesn’t work on it’s own, it all depends on how much movement you give the body. Exercising and sweating are ways to engage the detoxing, even just a fast walk or sitting in a sauna help keep the lymph nodes moving.

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But not only do we need to be aware of the constriction that bras cause, we must also be aware that with bras there comes a rise in temperature. Bras are external organs and are meant to hang away from the body. Just like men’s testicles, they are supposed to have a naturally lower temperature than the rest of the body.

Many cancers are sensitive to temperature, and temperature changes can actually change hormones which raises the risk for breast cancer. Keep in mind that it is advised for men to not wear tight fitting pants or underwear because it can actually change the testosterone production and reduce their fertility.

Of course, with everything there are two sides. Some institutions and doctors deny that there is any correlation between bras and breast cancer. But it is up to you to make the decision you feel is best for your body. If you are afraid that bras somehow will keep your breasts from sagging, let me assure you that that is a myth. Bras do not determine how much your breasts will sag. Your breasts will sag based on the proportion of fat and tissue, and how much you use your muscles. If you wish to read more about it, check out this amazing site: www.breastnotes.com

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Here are some tips to keep your health and breasts in tip-top shape:

  • Reduce the amount of time you wear your bra, take it off when you can.
  • Do not wear your bra to bed.
  • If you are smaller chested, try tops that have built in support.
  • Try breast massages to increase lymphatic drainage, it will also help you notice if you have anything peculiar that needs to be addressed.
  • Do not buy bras with underwire, but if you already have many bras with underwire, just snip the outer edges to remove the underwire on your own.
  • If you bra leaves any marks or redness on the body, it is too tight and you should make adjustments.
  • Use Essential Oils to boost breast health! A few great ones are Frankincense, Clary Sage, Jasmine, and Sandalwood! I dilute these with a little Jojoba, Almond, or Coconut Oil and apply them to my breasts at night! You could even use these while doing your massage.
  • Don’t carry cell phone on your person, try to keep it as far away from your as possible.

Try going braless or wearing pretty bralettes now and again. It can’t hurt to be as kind os loving to your body as possible!

xxJoannaxx

Why I’m No longer Afraid Of Food

My Unpopular View Of Diets

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(If you’d like to watch the video I made about this topic, check it out here!)

I’ll be honest, this has been quite a revelation for me and I know it will be for you too. Food has been an obsession since the first fast weight-loss diet. The idea that we could lose weight at rapid speed simply by radically changing the food (or “food”) we ingest and how often we eat. But with that comes unhealthy obsession, eating foods that don’t actually sustain us, relying solely on food instead of treating the lifestyle changes, yo-yoing between one weight and the next, etc. Diets only last for so long, they’re not sustainable, and it is such an unhealthy way to try an obtain an “ideal body.”

However, with that comes the complete opposite end of the spectrum- Obsession with HEALTHY FOOD. This is much healthier and far more beneficial for your body, but as with all things, there is such a thing as too much of a good thing. I’m not referring to healthy, vibrant, whole foods because you can literally eat as much of those as your body needs and you will become the most lively, lovely, vibrant person. I am referring to the obsession with healthy food. You can go too overboard. There is even something people can be diagnosed with called Orthorexia, which is “a medical condition in which the sufferer systematically avoids specific foods in the belief that they are harmful.” source

This causes STRESS. The nasty six letter word that is the underlying cause for so many diseases and conditions.

You can literally look up any problem you have, might have in the future, your friend has, your dog has, and you will always find that there is some food group that you should remove from your diet to help heal your body and/or as prevention.  This isn’t a bad thing- it is quite miraculous! The fact that our body is literally made up of the food we eat is nothing short of incredible. We have the ability to change our weight, our skin, our ailments, even our genes just by choosing what foods we put into our mouths. Can I get an Amen because I think this definitely deserves an AMEN!

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But as I have learned through my time at the Institute Of Integrative Nutrition and from personal experience, you must must must have balance.. with everythingI do have a type A personality so I do have the tendency to go to the extreme with things. I am a research lover and really enjoy learning as much as I can and becoming the best I can be.

But I now know for sure that I went overboard.

There was a time, quite recently actually, where I felt like I literally couldn’t eat anything. If you read health articles or books, or listen to podcasts, or watch documentaries, you can always find someone bashing each and every food group. And not only sugar and gluten because those have been “evil” for awhile (and for good reason.) But there are some that say you shouldn’t eat meat. Or beans. or fruit. or fats. or anything with seeds. or grains. The list goes on and on and contains all types of food no matter how raw or pure it may be.

While I was searching for my one ticket to save me from my breakouts and heal my gut, I was listening to anyone and everyone. I was trying all of the recommendations, cutting out all of the food groups, taking all the vitamins, I was like a derailed train that just kept going and gaining more speed. But you know what? Nothing seemed to be that one perfect answer that solved all of my problems. Yes, there are definitely things I do that keep my skin more under control and my stomach more manageable, but there wasn’t anything that seemed like my holy grail.

And I had become afraid of food. 

I never felt like I could go out with friends, eat the same dinner as my husband, go to family functions because I knew either A. There would be nothing for me to eat and I would be really hungry. or B. If I did indulge and break my insanely strict diet I would break out horribly and my stomach would swell up to a 6 month old pregnant woman. And you know what this caused? STRESS. Big fat stress all day every day. Even when I wasn’t dealing with the crossroads of deciding if I should or shouldn’t go to an event, it would be there all day. I would have mini battles in my head of “Oh I really want this. But can I? I have already had so many fruits today. But will this red apple be too much sugar for my system? Will I have a reaction? Is it worth it? Am I seeing anyone soon? Will I look okay when I take my makeup off? Oh but I really want that juicy apple. But nah, I guess I shouldn’t. Let me just have a little more water.”

For real you guys. This was my life. And looking back at it now I realize how crazy it was, how much low level stress I was dealing with every day.

But then we decided to go to France for vacation. And I told myself that I will give myself complete leeway to eat whatever I wanted. Breakouts be damned, I wanted to treat myself! It’s not everyday you go to a beautiful country, and why go and not have the complete culinary experience?!? It’s near blasphemy.

So we went and for the first day I was subconsciously keeping track of how much bread I ate, how many veggies I had, and I had to break that habit. So I don’t know how many vegetables I ate during our trip, but I definitely know it wasn’t the allotted 3 cups a day. And those baguettes and pastries? Yeah. Your girl ate them. A lot of them. I also had delicious cheeses and alcohol.

Are you ready?

I FELT INCREDIBLE. not only that, but I also looked absolutely great.

My body was bangin’, my skin was glowy, but most importantly I felt so joyful and more at peace than I have in a very, very long time.

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I could not believe the results. All this time I thought that “unhealthy” food was the root of all evil, when that wasn’t it at all. The stress over being healthy and not allowing myself to ever let go, and then the guilt when I did indulge was doing damage to my mental state which was totally affecting my body and it’s symptoms.

And then it hit me- No food is inherently evil. It’s the manipulation and modification of foods that can make it unhealthy. Eating foods that are made in a lab or that are heavily with pesticides and chemicals, food that has been so processed and pumped with artificial sugars, THAT is what is unhealthy.

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But bread that was handmade by the baker early that morning, cheese that came straight from the farmer’s farm, meat that came from the hands of the butcher, these are not the things that put our body out of balance. They are the things that sustain us. Not only from a physical point of view, but also our mental and emotional state. If you constantly eat foods that you find gross or unappetizing, your body isn’t going to receive it as well as a beautiful balanced meal that satisfies every taste bud in your mouth.

However, we must remember that everyone’s body is different. You must always listen to your body to see how it reacts to foods, what works for your friend may not work for you. And you shouldn’t always eat super heavy, extravagant meals, your body will feel sluggish and probably run down over time. But hey, your girlfriends wanna go out to eat and chow down on some delicious food thats full of dairy and gluten and sugar and split a bottle of wine? GIRL, DO IT.

The medicine you will receive in the form of laughter and community is far more beneficial than staying home alone and eating the same food you’ve been eating all week. 

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Being back home, I now approach my diet with a much softer and relaxed hand. If I want that cheese on pasta? I’ll add it. If I’m way too exhausted to make dinner, I have no problem going out and picking up something to eat, even if it’s not the healthiest thing. Balance is key. You can be healthy eating tons of whole foods while also eating some gluten here and there, or dairy, or whatever. Try to get good quality foods because that is what counts. You should really try and avoid that processed junk that filled with preservatives and colored dyes, but again, if you’re at some barbecue that only happens a couple times a year and you see your favorite chips, girl- eat those chips.

Stop restricting yourself to the point of stress. Let loose and be wise.

I hope you now feel a little less suffocated and constricted. Your body is a wonderful, magical thing and it can handle a little indulgence every now and again.

Be kind to your body and your mind.

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I hope this helps you further along your journey of Becoming A WellSpring Of Life.

All my love.

Joanna

How To Start With Essential Oils

The 411 On The Cheapest Yet Most Effective Natural Medicine


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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 feeling unwell 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 sadness, 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!

If you have any more questions, feel free to email me!

xxjoannaxx

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. <3

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