My summer holidays are just round the corner! I am so grateful to get a holiday this year and can’t wait for that first dip in the sea!!
I get really excited about natural skincare products and love trying out new products to share with you all. Our skin is our largest organ. Anything you put on it gets absorbed into your body and has to be processed and eliminated by the liver.
Most cosmetics are full of chemicals, preservatives, synthetic perfumes and parabens. These chemicals are there to help bind ingredients together, maintain a longer shelf live and create aroma. But have you ever stopped to think what these ingredients could be doing to your body?
The jury is still out on the safety of parabens and the possible role they may play in breast cancer. So until we know for sure, I personally, would rather not to take a gamble.
The natural travel essentials I'm packing this summer holiday
This year my travel essentials include La Roche Posay sunscreen for the face and another for the body and Green People’s organic sunscreen. Both are paraben free.
I chose La Roche Posay for the face as it is non-comedogenic, which is meant to prevent pores getting clogged and spots breaking out. I’ve been meaning to try Green People for aaages after I first discovered them at last year’s Allergy and Free From Show in London, they do a whole range of natural, organic cosmetics.
I’m also trying out yet another natural deodorant as so far I’ve not been totally convinced by the efficacy of many. Aluminium is an ingredient in your typical anti-perspirant deodorant to prevent you from sweating but unfortunately this is really not something you want in your body as it is a heavy metal. It is particularly toxic to the brain as it can cross the blood brain barrier and interferes with DNA.
Salt of the Earth natural deodorant is aluminium free and apparently works by leaving a thin layer of pure alum, a natural mineral salt on your skin, which prevents the growth of the bacteria that causes body odour. Let’s see how this one copes under Turkish temperatures!!
And last but not least, I never travel anywhere without my trusted probiotics. The good bacteria in these little capsules keeps your gut flora and digestion happy and healthy. Because let’s face it; there ain’t nothin’ sexy about traveller’s diarrhoea… ;)
I’ll let you know who gets my gold star of approval on my return!
Have you tried any of these products before? Or are there any others you would recommend? There are so many great natural alternatives on the market these days it's really hard to choose just one.
Please comment below or join the conversation over on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. I'd love to hear about your own experiences with natural sunscreens and deodrants in particular. Which products do you like or dislike?
You can also check out an article I wrote last year about how to eat healthy while you travel
and check out my travel essentials of 2014 here
Are you plagued by prickly heat every summer? Find out how to prevent prickly heat
Well hello March! I have eagerly been awaiting you so I can dust off my gardening gloves and start growing my own vegetables or GIY - grow it yourself. Now I’m definitely no aficionado when it comes to gardening but you’ll be amazed at how easy it can be to get growing, one pot at a time.
Not everyone is lucky enough to have an allotment, a garden or even a patio but you’d be surprised at what food you can still grow, even in the smallest space or window box.
When it comes to pesticides, fungicides, and other chemicals, all crops are by no means equal.
Non-organic spinach, kale and other leafy greens top the Environmental Working Group's 2014 list of worst toxic offenders due to their high pesticide exposure. Find organic too expensive? It's incredibly easy to grow them yourself in a container, you won't be disappointed!
Last year I had loads of spinach, lettuce gems and rocket. Ok, admittedly my kale was attacked by aphids but with a little love and protection from the Scottish frost over the winter, a few die-hard stalks are actually reappearing. Clearly, it’s pretty hardy stuff.
I was so surprised at what I managed to grow in small containers. One pot alone had runner beans, spinach, little gem lettuces, radish and onions. The pièce de résistance had to be the courgettes with their pretty yellow courgette flowers (pictured left).
It’s seriously satisfying (and convenient) to pop out and cut some fresh lettuce leaves straight from the garden. No more slimy bags of lettuce rotting at the back of the fridge and best of all no pesticides! There’s also the advantage of knowing your own veg is super fresh without having done time in a cold storage unit (a la the supermarkets). That just depletes all the vital nutrients.
How to GIY affordable super foods:
Cut a few holes in the base of a container. Throw in a few small stones and/or broken sticks to form a layer at the base then fill the remaining 2/3 with compost. Scatter seeds on top and then gently scatter a very thin layer of compost on top of that. Ta-dah! You’re very own vegetables providing oodles of nutrients in about 8 weeks. Just remember to water regularly (and daily in the summer).
If you're a novice like me experiment with:
Lettuce (little gems, red lettuce, rocket, spinach)
Herbs – mint, rosemary, thyme, parsley
Below is yours truly last September, a proud and somewhat wind swept moment admiring my first crop! A late bloomer, I only planted the seeds in July, so this year I hope you’ll join me and get sowing this March!
Happy New Year lovely followers and friends. I'm sorry things have been so quiet online recently.
Unfortunately I was struck down by a really awful gastric virus and have been concentrating on making a full recovery. (Natural remedies for gastritis and IBS blog post coming very soon!)
I hope your holiday was incredible and your 2015 is off to an extraordinary start.
We spent some time in Berlin. One of the highlights had to be our visit to the Green Christmas Market. It was brimming with delicious and nutritious vegan and vegetarian food. There is so much vegan fayre in Berlin; it’s a vegan’s paradise!
The setting was pretty unique – think gluhwein round a brazier with a beach theme overlooking the river. Just wish I’d taken more photos.
Now I’d love to hear your New Year’s Resolutions or health goals in the comments section. What do you want to create over these next 12 months? What's the big, future vision you’re committed to bringing to life? I’ll start!
I have bought a steam mop (yes, living on the edge, I know) so I can finally ditch all the harsh, toxic cleaning chemicals for good and create a clean, chemical-free living environment.
Do you already have a steam mop? I'd be really curious to know what you think.
For those of you that experiences gastritis, diarrhoea or IBS check back here very soon as I’ll be blogging about some great supplements that saw me through the past two weeks and really aided my recovery from gastric flu.
Cheers for now,
Don’t let heat rash spoil your (responsible) sun holiday this year!
Prickly heat, heat rash or 'sweat rash' as it might be known - those itchy, sore little red spots that start to appear on wrists and the folds of forearms and creep up on you is a an allergic reaction to heat or sun exposure.
The 'prickles' are due to raised levels of histamine in the skin.
Natural antihistamine supplements include:
Discover how to maintain your Stellar Health when travelling especially if you have food intolerances here>>
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