Back To School

 

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Finally the long summer holidays are over and school starts again! I have been dreaming of this moment the last two and half months… Don’t misunderstand me! I love being at home with my two kids but I think every mother can feel related with me, the few months start to feel reallyyy long after the first few weeks… Especially here in Spain where it’s so warm during the day that you basically stay inside until 5-6 in the evening. It’s worse than rainy days during the winter!!

But as I said, kids are back to school – or at least one of them. Younger one is just 9 months old so he stays at home with me. But even so it feels so good to have a few hours a day some mother&son quality time while sister is at school.

It’s nice to get back to our routine and my daughter is happy to see her friends again after so many months, but starting school brings also some other issues to think about.

Kids get sick. Like all the time, especially younger ones. I think I read once that kids age 3-5 are ill almost half of the year! So when school starts again, it’s good time start giving some supplements to your children.

Two years ago when my daughter started school, I decided to give her Strathdrops. I didn’t want her to be sick all the time and I heard that this product might help her. Strath is a highly nutritious whole food yeast supplement containing vitamins, minerals, amino acids, enzymes, and trace elements in an herbal base. It is highly recommended by practitioners for anyone wanting to increase energy, endurance, and mental performance. And the best is that it suits the whole family! You can have it in tablets, elixir and drops. The liquid ones are best for children cause you can just add it in their juice. My daugher has been taking this the last two years and luckily she hasn’t been sick so often than the other kids at her class!

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Even if I try really hard, I have to say that my daughter doesn’t always eat enough vegetables.. It’s not the end of the world but of course I get a little bit preoccupied if she gets all the vitamins and minerals she needs to be a healthy little girl. Just to make sure that she doesn’t lack any of the essential ones, I started to give her MiviTotal Plus. Also in liquid form as I prefer, it’s just so much easier than playing with the tablets.

“Kids should eat fish at least twice a week …”. I know, I know.. It’s really good for you and my kids and I love to eat fish. But if you hate cooking it?? I can’t even touch it, yaiks. And don’t even talk about the smell! Luckily in Spain it’s quite cheap to eat fish in a restaurant so we try to do it at least three to four times a month. I also give some extra omega-3 to my children and luckily someone has invented the chewable Omega-3 tablets for kids! Kids can be quite tough when it’s time to take some vitamins, especially if it smells and tastes like fish.. But these ones are odorless and with a taste of orange!

I remember the first time when my daughter came from school with a note that said “Please check your child’s head, there has been some unwanted visitors at school!”. The word that every mother is scared of – lice. Immediately I checked my daughters head and luckily didn’t find any.. But never say never. Since that I’ve always had some Tea Tree oil at home. I add few drops behind my daughters ears before she goes to school, lice don’t like the smell so they normally stay away from the head with a bad smell. If your child gets lice someday, tea tree oil works also to get rid of them. Add 10 drops to a normal amount of shampoo and wash carefully and repeat.

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With these remedies I hope we survive another school year without colds and lice!



Saludos
Suvi

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Food poisoning

By  Anni Dahms Owner of the retail chain ANNI’s VITAL SHOP. Nurse- & Health specialist, Biopath and Nutritional Adviser.

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The article is also available in Spanish, Finnish, Danish

During my recent summer vacation in Mexico, I got a terrible food poisoning. It was completely my own fault, as I totally chose to ignore my inner body voice. I had bought a bunch of bananas without top stalks, which were a bit overripe as well. My inner voice told me that I shouldn’t buy bananas without a top and that I certainly shouldn’t eat them if they were overripe. I said, “who cares, you don’t get sick from eating bananas”. However, they next day I quickly realized that you can indeed, get sick from bananas! I had a strong diarrhea, I was vomiting, had a high fever, and my entire body was hurting.

IMG_3213I didn’t have any probiotics, as I had given them to my lovely moto-taxi driver, whom have had diarrhea for two weeks. It is quite uncomfortable, to be driving around with two rolls of toilet paper, when you have been on the road all day. I had given them to him, because I normally have a good immune system and a strong stomach, thinking I would not need any myself. After my sickness had peeked, my friend came with a beer and told me that I should drink it in small sips. It would settle me a bit, as it was necessary to get some sugar and salt in the 35-degree heat. I sipped it slowly and felt that it was helping, even though I’m well aware that alcohol is diuretic. When my friend felt safe leaving me on my own, he drove to the nearest vegetable stand, bought a bunch of vegetables and asked them to slaughter a chicken, since his friend was sick. They quickly ran into the yard and found the finest chicken, which became pure medicine to me. It was boiled with all the vegetables for 3 hours, and then I was almost spoon-fed with the lovely soup. Whether it was the beer, the soup, or the love I was given, I have no way of knowing, perhaps a combination of the three, and I quickly started to regain my strength and could return to my daily doings. Even though the above-mentioned diet helped me, I would normally recommend a safer and milder one. Food poisoning flourishes, in my experience, often in September. “Migrating birds” from many countries return to their other home, here in Spain. The toilets on the planes are shared by all, and many new people meet, which hug and greet each other. The students in different schools are starting their everyday routines again, and here they meet and greet as well, with bacteria from many different places. Food poisoning can be caused by bacteria, virus, and other harmful substances. The symptoms often start a few hours after the consumption of the given food or other close contact with the infected, but it can take up to 24 hours before you really feel it, as it kicks in. The symptoms are often strong diarrhea, vomiting, pain in the stomach, and fever. The strongest symptoms usually disappear after 12 hours.

The diet

During a food poisoning, it’s good to try to cleanse your body, if you are, reasonably healthy. Otherwise, you should contact your doctor and get help that way. You should also contact your doctor if your condition is worsening, or if the duration seems longer than normal. When you can hold in water, then start with some boiled water, possibly with some apple- or lemon juice added, and/or a small amount of salt. We loose salt during the sickness and our bodies need salt to function. Start carefully when consuming liquids. Your stomach is very affected by the disease, so it can have difficulty taking in a lot of fluids in the beginning. If you feel that your mouth is extremely dry, then it can be a good idea to start sucking on home made safe ice cubes. A soup of oats, possibly sweetened with an unsweetened juice, is a good start to taking in foods again. It could also be a good idea to drink some carrot juice to support the liver. It can be a great help to eat grated apples, which is best eaten with a teaspoon. I don’t chemically know why it should be eaten with a teaspoon, but my earlier experiences have taught me that it works. A possible explanation is, that you eat the apple more slowly and chew it more. If you feel you are getting better, it might do you good to eat a piece of toasted bread, but it has to be without butter, or you could use some of the grated apple to put on top. Also a bit of boiled mashed potatoes will do you good. The mashed potatoes must be made with water, without any added butter. You can also choose to add some unsweetened yogurt, preferably ecological. Slightly paradoxically I also recommend a bit of banana, when your diarrhea has slowed down. Rice can help stop diarrhea, but I would never advise starting with it, except when dealing with babies, children, or weak persons. It is my opinion that you will benefit far more by really cleaning out your system, even though it can be quite tough on the stomach. This obviously only applies if you normally are strong and healthy. I usually say, that when you start to feel hungry, then you can probably endure eating. However, do be careful about meals that can be too heavy, or rich in substance. If you want some meat, then stick to chicken or turkey. You should also stay away from food that have been heavily seasoned for the first few days, even if you are otherwise feeling better. The spices can help the nausea persist.

Dietary supplements

The most important thing when strengthening your intestinal system and thereby helping your immune system, is to get a good lactic acid, also called probiotics. If you don’t know which the best for you is, get information about the different products in your local health food store.

  • It can be a good idea to supplement with Spirulina. Spirulina is a green algae, which comes both in tablet form or as a powder that you can mix into your smoothies. It contains both vitamins, minerals, and 60% of Spirulina is protein. Moreover, it’s rich in fiber and doesn’t contain fats. It cleanses your body of heavy metals and other toxins, so it’s often called a natural probiotic.
  • Chlorella, which is also a kind of algae, can be taken together with the Spirulina. That way you will get a proper elevation of your energy levels for your immune system and a unique super booster too.
  • Active charcoal can also be used to fight a poisoning, it is good at removing the toxins from the system. Preferably use active charcoal made from coconut shells. Just as a precaution I would like to mention, that active charcoal is not the same as regular charcoal, so stay away from the charcoal briquets from the BBQ!
    If you choose active charcoal, make sure that you drink plenty of water, at least 12 – 16 glasses a day. Active charcoal needs to be consumed a couple of hours before you eat or take other dietary supplements or medicine.
    When you buy active charcoal, you have to ensure that it doesn’t contain any artificial sweeteners. You could perhaps add a bit of juice, if it just doesn’t go down in its natural form.
  • Matcha tea can also be a good idea, to support your immune system. It is filled with antioxidants and gives the body a healthy and natural source of energy.
  • A good vitamin-B supplement, which consists of all the different B vitamins, can help you gain energy and strength.
  • It can also be a good idea with a supplement of garlic, it is generally good for the immune system and works as an antibacterial.
  • Apple cider vinegar is good for the digestion. It helps you digest the food. It contains both vitamins, minerals, and enzymes. Mix a couple of teaspoons in a glass of water.

Tips

If possible, try to avoid food poisoning. You have to be very careful with meat and especially sausages, and you must be even more careful if you are visiting hot climate countries. When you eat fruit and vegetables, you must make sure that you clean them properly before eating. When I washed my vegetables in Mexico, I used bottled water, as I have no idea what could be in the tap water. If you go to a restaurant, ask them not to put ice cubes in your drinks. It is better to eat fruit you can peel such as oranges or bananas. Make sure that the bananas are sealed both at the top and the bottom, so you don’t make the same mistake that I did! Before you travel to a new country, make sure that you start taking a lactic acid bacterium one week prior to your arrival, and make sure you bring some extra in case something unforeseen happens. Don’t drink the water from the tap, but instead buy your drinking water. You should also use bottled water when you brush your teeth. Make sure that you clean your hands often and bring rubbing alcohol and/or wet wipes, keeping you hands clean goes a long way. Avoid dairy products, especially if you have just had diarrhea. It can be difficult for a while for the stomach to digest the milk sugars. If you like street food, then find those places that seem clean, and only eat the pieces that are burning hot. Bacteria doesn’t like high temperatures. It can be soups, fried food, or stews. If you air-travel, keep in mind that studies have shown that the small tray tables in front of you are filled with bacteria, so it might be a good idea to use one of your wet wipes to clean it before use. As H.C. Andersen said: “to travel is to live”. Don’t let your travels be controlled by fear. Make sure that you have great travel experiences often. This will also strengthen your immune system.

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Case story: My journey with Oolong

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One day, I walked into Anni´s Vital Shop, asked for a tea which could help me reduce weight in my tummy area. I was recommended Oolong Tea.

I started taking one cup in the morning after my breakfast and one later between late afternoon and dinner time, following the indications given, and enjoying the Oolong Tea which I like very much.

In-between I also drink water. Doing some sports will help too, but if you are not a sport fan, you can do some walking.

The main part of the story is the interesting fact that I was 72 kg. when I started taking the Oolong tea, and now I am only 67kg, all in only two months. Please try it, if you wish to loose weight around your waist, and when the miracle occurs, please let us know. Regards Stella.

Facts about Oolong tea

Oolong tea has a flowery aroma, mild flavour with absolutely no bitterness. It is sometimes known as Blue tea, being halfway between a green and black tea. The production process involves partially fermenting the tea leaves then steaming them to capture the slightly smoky and subtly rich flavour.

Scientific studies have found that it can aid with slimming by increasing metabolism, burning fat and blocking dietary fat absorption.

Delicious any time of day but often drunk after mealtimes as a digestive tea.

The Liver & Your Drinking Habits

By Anni Dahms
Owner of the retail chain
ANNI’s VITAL SHOP.
Nurse- & Health specialist,  Biopath and Nutritional Adviser.

Español * EnglishSuomi * Dansk


 

The liver has a tough life in most of us. When the liver is overloaded, the rest of the body also suffers. One of the many functions of the liver is to detoxify and destroy toxins. If the liver is overburdened and stressed, it loses its ability to detoxify, and the toxins must find other ways throughout the body to eliminate this waste.

The liver is affected either positively or negatively, depending on what you put in your mouth. It is summer, warmth, vacation, and party time, which mostly are accompanied by energy drinks and alcohol in large quantities. Stop before it is too late. The liver must endure your entire life, and preferably, in good shape, so we can feel our best. The liver stands for joy, so it is worth taking care of.

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On the 30.05.2018 there was a broadcast from the Danish National TV station, in the series called “Kontant”. The broadcast was called “Energy drink – unsuited for children”.

As a former school nurse, doing my best to take care of the children’s health, I chose to see the broadcast, which left me frustrated and deeply saddened.

In these days its “in”, both among adults and children to drink the so-called caffeine – and sugary energy drinks.

Children who play videogames, or elite sports, are heavy consumers of these drinks, so  many are enjoyed in large quantities in schools, clubs, and among adults at work.

In the broadcast it was shown that children who drink these energy drinks, often have panic attacks, suffer from stress, allergies, depression, headaches, insomnia, and especially overweight.

The same symptoms are present for adults, but as adults, it is up to us to make the decisions of what we choose to pollute our beautiful bodies with, but for children, it can be difficult to leave these drinks out.

In many countries energy drinks are prohibited for children below the age of 16, but not in Denmark despite all the warnings about the side effects. It is expected that every third child between 10 – 17, will be affected by these side effects. It is often mentioned, that increasingly more children are hospitalized with side effects from energy drinks.

It is said that it is responsibility of the parents. However, I wonder how you would stop your child being around other kids and be the only one not consuming energy drinks. It is difficult, if not impossible.

The consumption of the above-mentioned drinks is increasing rapidly, both among adults and children. It is reported that the sales have gone up 41% in the last year alone.

Many adults resorts to a couple of energy drinks, when they need to get pumped up for something. A cold energy drink in the warm summer heat tastes delicious and instantly gives you energy. But be careful and think about whether you should treat your body this way. An investigation has shown that 42% of people who drink energy drinks regularly, has experienced side effects.

When I step into the supermarket, my eyes  capture   the many different colorful and tempting large cans, situated either at the entry or near the cash register.

A can that contains 250 ml of energy drink, will also roughly contain 80 mg of caffeine, a cup of coffee contains roughly 90 mg. Caffeine affects young people more. There are other additives in these drinks, that we don’t have much knowledge about.

Moreover these drinks are also filled with sugar. In every energy drink there is between 14 – 17 sugar cubes (roughly 50 g).

Sugar is very addictive, and the next step is to combine the energy drinks with alcohol, especially when there are summer parties to attend. It is a poor cocktail both for young and for old, and many heart attacks have been attributed to it. Some researchers compare the combination of energy drinks and alcohol to cocaine, in the way it affects the brain.

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Alcohol is a risky intoxicant. Energy drinks, both with and without alcohol can temporarily derail our blood sugar balance, our nervous system, circulation, brain, and heart. It is not far from attracting diabetes 2 or other inflammatory illnesses either.

Diet

If you sometimes choose to drink the above mentioned, then make the decision with much consideration and self-discipline. Make sure to supplement with blood sugar stabilizing food and drink, this will benefit both your liver and by extension, your entire body.

Different energy drinks are also available in sugar free editions. This is perhaps better in terms of calories consumed, but your brain is triggered to continually seek sweet things, and it is only very few artificial sweeteners that are healthy.

In august 2009 there was a team of Israeli researchers, who warned children about the dangers of drinking sugary soda, lemonade, and juice. The Israeli researchers stated that both regular soda and fruit juice in large quantities, can lead to a fatty liver, because the metabolic functions of the liver are affected by all the sugar. According to the researchers, you shouldn’t switch to  “Light” products either, as they are also believed to be dangerous.

Trade in the sweet drinks for a piece of fruit, and perhaps stick to a single cola as a weekend indulgence. Cut down on coffee and alcohol, if the liver continues to be in a fatty state, it might eventually turn into cirrhosis of the liver and in the worst cases, liver cancer.

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Drink plenty of water. If you are tired of plain water, then put a jug of water in the fridge, with a slice of lemon in it, the water will get the most delightful fresh taste.

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Drink liver friendly herbal teas, such as milk thistle, horsetail, dandelion, or licorice root. Make your own smoothies with plenty of vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, celery, and kale. Sweeten the drink with apple, liver friendly berries, or unsweetened juice from healthy berries and add a bit of lemon, also liver friendly and enhance the flavor of water.

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It could be a good idea to drink a glass of beetroot juice daily, if it is too strong to drink on its own, you may  have it diluted with water. As much as possible, eat and drink ecological. Let vegetables be a large part of your diet and supplement with nuts and almonds, plenty of berries and perhaps a bit of light meat.

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Dietary Supplements

The most important dietary supplement for the liver is milk thistle, with its high content of silymarin. It has been used as a natural remedy, to strengthen the function of the liver for thousands of years. It strengthens the membranes in the liver cells, and contributes with lowering poor cholesterol, and strengthens the immune system, and it is also a great antioxidant. Some researchers believe that it furthermore might help the liver and kidney functionality if you are undergoing chemotherapy.

Make sure to consume a good vitamin/mineral daily.

Supplement with an extra vitamin-B. Make sure that the product contains choline, which is healthy, both of liver and brain.

 Lecithin is a fat, which is present in all our cells. 30% of the brains dry weight and 70% of the livers fatty tissue is made of lecithin. It can be a great help to take lecithin daily, in a shorter period.

It can be a good idea to drink Kombucha daily. Kombucha is a fermented probiotic tea, which after it has been fermented, becomes a lovely drink with fizz, which tastes a bit like white wine. It contains lots of great bacteria. Kombucha is a powerful detoxifier and can play a vital role with keeping the pancreas and liver healthy, it can also help to keep the blood sugar level stable. If your liver is ill, then it is better to wait some time before drinking kombucha, as the powerful detoxifier might be too rough for a sick liver. You can make your own kombucha or choose to buy it at an herbalist store. Kombucha is available in different taste variants. The doses should be fitted to what fits you best, but around 1 – 2 dl. daily, is what most of us would benefit from. There are many suggestions as to how to best consume kombucha. Kombucha should not be consumed by people whom are pregnant or breastfeeding. You can read more about kombucha on Kombuchasvampen.dk.
Keep in mind that kombucha contains a tiny bit of alcohol, less than 1%, so alcoholics must stay away from the drink. There is still slight amount of sugar in the drink Most of it has changed during fermentation.

Molkosan is a popular whey drink, where the taste has changed in the last years, so the drink now tastes a bit like buttermilk. It tastes slightly acid, but it actually turns alkaline inside the body, and it can be a great counter to our acid forming foods. It can be used as a drink to enjoy, where you mix a couple of teaspoons in a glass of water.

Tips

You often see a correlation between the eyes and the liver. If your liver is suffering, then your blood circulation will also be reduced, and not enough blood will reach your eyes. You must be conscious of everything you eat and drink, as it influences your body. Therefore, you should choose your summer drinks with consideration.

According to the Chinese teachings of your inner clock, if you often wake up around 1 to 3 in the night, your body might indicate that you need to take better care of your liver. This is the time where the liver works at maximum capacity.

You can get tips about your general health, by taking a C-rp blood test (C reactive protein). It is a protein, which is produced in the liver and serves as a general indication of the level of inflammation in your body and by extension, your general health.

Be mindful of the importance of happy thoughts. Happiness is the most important remedy for the liver. Let love, peace, and joy be the driving force in your every day. It can be a difficult task, but practice makes perfect.
Perhaps you could start with just 10 minutes every single day and then increase the time every week. Our bodies functions are controlled by emotions, and they are also affecting the organs in our body. It is therefore important to be conscious of your thoughts. The best possible way to fuel good thoughts is to make great choices when it comes to eating and drinking.

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Summer & Mosquitoes

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Who wouldn’t love the sun and warm weather? Summer is probably the most awaited season, but it brings not so wanted things too, such as mosquitoes. No matter whether you are in Lapland or Costa del Sol, there are mosquitoes around especially in the evenings and places with water and leafy greens.

There are so many different repellents against mosquitoes, most of them with full of chemicals and toxics. Of course, those can be very effective and give good protection against mosquitoes, but to have all those toxic ingredients on my skin, makes me wonder if it is the best way to protect or should I look for a healthier way.

On the previous blog post we told about natural remedies, especially essential oils and how they work against mosquitoes and other insects. I love essential oils and how multipurposely they work. Saying that I was also extremely glad when we at Anni’s Vital Shop found a whole range of natural anti-mosquito products by Incognito.

Incognito is a British brand and has been on the market for exactly eleven years. The idea came to Howard Carter’s mind after he got bited several times during his travels around the world and got malaria and Dengue fever from these bites. His aim was to create a truly effective, natural insect repellent, which would protect people from insect bites all over the world.

After 2007 when the first product went on the shelves, Incognito has won the Queens Award for Sustainable Development. This tells that they take it seriously what comes to ethicality, responsibility and sustainability.

At Anni’s vital Shop we have now the whole family of Incognito protections and repellents.

Sunscreen & Insect Repellent SPF25

  • 3 in 1 – sunscreen, repellent & moisturizer
  • Natural & organic ingredients, the active ingredient is PMD
  • Light citrus fragrance
  • Protection against bot UVA (aging) &UVB (burning) rays
  • the tube is made of sugarcane plastic and is fully recyclable

Roll-on Insect Repellent

  • Tested to be effective 100% against mosquito bites
  • 50ml bottle fits into airplane hand luggage
  • Fresh scent

Hair & Body Wash

  • Contains rare organic Java citronella to boost your protection against insects
  • Fresh citrus aroma
  • Free from parabens

Anti-mosquito Repellent Spray

  • Tested to be 100% effective* against mosquito bites
  • Fresh citrus aroma
  • 50ml bottle fits into airplane hand luggage
  • DEET- & Picaridin-free formula (no synthetics)
  • Awar winning formula

Room Refresher

  • 100% natural; non-toxic and free from irritants, parabens and SLSs
  • Use indoors to keep insects out for up to 3 months
  • Fresh pine and citrus aroma
  • Winner of the Platinum Award Home & Garden category 2016

 

My favourite is the room refresher which I can use instead of toxic plug-ins.

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You can order all of these repellents also at our webshop. During this summer you get free shipping within Europe when you buy for 80€ or more.

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Essential oils to rescue the summer

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Summer is coming and bringing light, heat, and life with it. Various seasonal challenges are emerging at the same time – Mosquitoes wake up to otherwise enjoyable summer evenings, ants conquer the kitchen cupboards or tables and the skin may react to the burning rays of the sun.

I graduated as an aromatherapist 15 years ago, since then essential oils have followed me everywhere. Essential oils used in aromatherapy are made of flowers, leaves, fruit, leaves, and roots. In addition to relaxing massage technique, the heart of aromatherapy treatment is the mixed oil blend based on the interview and the goals of the client.

Therapeutic, clean oils have both physical and emotional effects – they can either relax, revive, enhance mood or, for example, help muscle tension, support immunity, help control high blood pressure, balance and cleanse the skin. In addition to massage, oils can be used at home in a diffuser, bath water or a few drops of your favorite scent can be used under the armpit with some coconut oil instead of deodorant. Also in the home cleaning a few drops of essential oil in the filter of a vacuum cleaner or mixed in the floor washing water to give a natural, clean and fresh scent for the whole house. Some essential oils can also be used internally, for example, to calm down digestive problems or to remove unwanted bugs.

Essential oils to repel mosquitos & other insects

With the summer heat, various insects become alive and start to disturb our summer fun. Essential oils can be used against them – safely, naturally and non-toxic. Lavender, citronella, eucalyptus, mint and tea tree oils are excellent for insect depletion. You can mix the scents of your choice either in a spray bottle in boiled and cooled water or in a base oil, with a ratio of 1:15. Some suitable base oils for skin are e.g. cold pressed coconut, jojoba, almond, argan or olive oil. Pure essential oils are mainly recommended to use diluted, but if a mosquito has already managed to bite you, then a drop of pure lavender or tea tree oil applied directly into the area will calm the itching and disinfect the skin area preventing it from inflaming.

Essential oils to repel ticks

A green grass or a beautiful flower meadow is also a home for the ticks. A good idea is to eat a clove of garlic every day if you know the area you’re on has ticks in there. You can add some essential oils of lavender, lemongrass, eucalyptus and lime on your boots and legs. Also, a dog’s fur can be sprayed with diluted lavender oil. Remember that a dog has a very sensitive nose and smell compared to humans.

Essential oils to repel ants

The little ants sometimes roam their path through our gardens, terraces or kitchens. Most of us don’t like it really – so it’s good to know they don’t like cinnamon, clove or mint. Powdered spices can be sprinkled on their paths or essential oils sprayed as diluted with water.

Essential oils for sunburns

If you spend time relaxing in the sunshine for more than a half an hour, remember to protect your skin with sunscreen. If it already happened and the skin becomes red and hot in the evening, gently spread some aloe vera gel with a few drops of lavender oil on to the burning area. The skin will calm down quickly and the burned area will not peel off after a few days. Also, take 1000-1500 mg of vitamin C if you got the skin burned. It works as an antioxidant, protects the cells and helps to calm down the skin for the following day.

Have a sunny, warm and relaxing summer everyone!

Tiina Rouvali

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Inflammation & Anti-inflammation

By Anni Dahms
Owner of the retail chain
ANNI’s VITAL SHOP.
Nurse- & Health specialist,  Biopath and Nutritional Adviser.

Español * EnglishSuomi * Dansk


Infection and inflammation are often used interchangeably, but they’re not the same.
The difference between an infection and an inflammation is that an infection is an attack by microorganisms; this could be a virus, bacteria, or fungal attack on the body, as with colds, sore throats, and pneumonia.
Inflammations are non-bacterial: an irritation, pain, swelling, fever, etc.

Both conditions are often categorized as inflammation, and this can seem quite confusing.

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Inflammations are an extremely vital part of our immune system, and they often disappear rather quickly. However, sometimes an inflammation can become chronic. This might be a result of mistreating your body: Too little exercise, smoking, contaminated air, stress, poor diet etc., which means the immune system has to take on more than it can handle.

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It is the opinion of many medical researchers, that inflammations can lead to a myriad of illnesses. For instance, it affects our bodies negatively and advances our aging process.
New research suggests that inflammation can be linked to many of our modern-day epidemics, such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, joint problems, and psychological illnesses. There are even scientists that are linking inflammation to depression.

By making sure that we have healthy lifestyles, we can improve our everyday and feel strong, happy, and at ease. We can, by living healthier, slow down aging and reverse the deterioration of the body.

When I say healthy lifestyles, I don’t just mean healthy foods. I mean the whole package: a proper way of life with plenty of exercise, gratefulness, and good eating habits…combined with good sleep patterns.
Ayurvedic medicine says that stress is diminished through a proper circadian rhythm. This entails that you go to bed at 22:00 and wake up with the sun.
Speaking of—I have recently read a powerful quote from the father of Indian medicine. He announced, “Ayurveda is the holy science of life and benefits all mankind, both in this life and the next.”

It’s alright if it is challenging for you to change your lifestyle, but it should never become another stress factor. There must still be room for a normal life.

If you have many things that you would like to change, split them into smaller bites.

Also, for instance, tell yourself that you are on your way to an anti-inflammatory lifestyle, then you have a better chance that your changes will be permanent. If the changes feel difficult to maintain, then think of the upsides of preventing a sickness rather than curing them.
You can get a degree of inflammation measured with a CRP(C-reactive-protein), it is a substance, which is formed by inflammation in the liver. CRP is measured in the blood, so a blood test could give some clarity.

 

The diet

Your body and mine—the bodies of everyone, are built by the food we consume and absorb. Going all the way back to Hippocrates, who wisely said, “We must consider our food medicine, and our medicine food,” shows us just how true this is.

You will experience that an anti-inflammatory diet will do you good, and strengthen your immune system, whilst making you feel better, both physically and mentally.
Personally, I tend to eat my emotions from time to time. Especially when I’m worried, stressed, sorry, or just plain tired. I’m constantly working on getting more discipline into my food habits and think I’m seeing progress. The good thing is that I feel it as a negative experience when I mess up. On the other hand, I also instantly feel good when I’m eating correctly.
It might be a good idea to plan your meals one week ahead of time.
Eat plenty of fiber rich foods, such as vegetables. The fiber in your food, will help stabilize your blood sugar.
Most vegetables work as an anti-inflammatory. Make sure that you get lots of colors into your everyday meals. It is a joy for the eye and therefore a joy for your digestive system. Vegetables also have their own healthy properties, like eggplant, broccoli, all kinds of kale, onions, peppers of all colors, tomatoes, all types of lettuces, and beets.

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Use the vegetables in smoothies, as raw food, baked, roasted, or in vegetable soups, and perhaps mixed with red lentils, which will fill you up and tastes lovely. Vary your approach as you see fit, and consider using almond milk for your smoothies.
Make sure that your food has a delightful taste, preferably with a variety of spices.

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You can make many great sauces with avocado, tomato, garlic, plenty of herbs, olive oil, and lemon juice. There are many herbs that have an anti-inflammatory effect (for instance thyme, oregano, rosemary, ginger, basil, chili, turmeric, coriander, and capers) on your body. The options are only limited by your imagination.

Consume nuts and almonds together with seeds such as sesame (perhaps in the form of tahini) that are rich in omega-3. Be aware that you can also get almonds through almond milk and almond butter. The same is true for a variety of other nuts.

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You should also enjoy berries, fruits, and legumes. They do not only work as a natural anti-inflammatory, but are also a source of antioxidants. Anti-inflammatory fruits and berries are: pineapple, apricot, blueberry, lemon, cherry, melon, apple, raspberry, papaya, and others.

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For your general health it is beneficial to eat 5 – 6 small meals daily. It is good to start your day with a glass of warm water with some lemon.

Make sure that your meals are prepared with quality ingredients, homecooked and chosen with careful consideration. Include quinoa and chia seeds in your daily cooking. You can find many easy-to-follow recipes online.
When I gave courses on nutrition, I always asked the participants to write down what they had eaten and drunk in the 3 days prior. From that we could often discover what our weaknesses and strengths were, and where it was important to change.

It can be a good idea to do the same for yourself, and perhaps one or more of you friends, whom are also interested in eating a inflammation lowering diet. It is very likely that as a group following the diet, you have a higher chance of success.
Stay away from foods containing gluten, dairy products with lactose, and sugar. Feel for yourself which dairy products you can tolerate, such as yogurt.

Don’t drink too much wine, but it is beneficial to enjoy a single glass occasionally. Red wine is anti-inflammatory.

Do not drink more than one cup of coffee daily, but instead enjoy one of the many interesting tees, such as green tea, matcha, turmeric, nettles, dandelion, rooibos, and licorice.

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Using olive oil is very healthy, use the one that is as dark green as possible. Also enjoy ecological butter on your bread responsibly. This also contains omega-3 oils.
Avocado and coconut oil are also great and healthy sources of fat.

Eat a little bit of light meat and fish, preferable fat fish, such as salmon, mackerel, and herring.

If you need some bread, then consider baking it yourself with, for instance, buckwheat, desiccated coconut, or almond flour.

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Dietary supplements

  • Make sure to get plenty of omega-3 oils. Experts believe that 3 – 5 grams of fish oil, can help reduce inflammations. Omega-3 oils are basically miracle oils. They help with many things, from being anti-inflammatory, to fighting wrinkles, stress, and anxiety. Omega-3 oils are seen as essential. This means that we cannot form them in our body ourselves, but they have to be supplied with food or as a dietary supplement.
  • Stay away from the many bad omega-6 oils, which can start to create inflammations in your body.
  • Probiotics are living microorganisms, also called lactic acid bacteria; they, too, have an anti-inflammatory effect. It is important to strengthen your intestinal flora. When you buy probiotics, then it might be a good idea to change the labels, which often contain different intestinal bacteria. There are new discoveries being made every day about the importance of the intestinal flora. 80% of our immune system originates from our intestinal system.
  • Take a high quality and versatile vitamin/mineral product.
  • Supplement with extra vitamin-C, ideally with bioflavonoids.
  • Vitamin-E is good for antioxidants.
  • Selenium works especially well with vitamin-E.
  • Ginger is anti-inflammatory.
  • Curcumin from turmeric is generally strengthening, and anti-inflammatory.
  • Garlic is also part of the anti-inflammatory family.

 

Tips

To live an anti-inflammatory lifestyle has been a long and interesting journey for me. It came with many experiences, quite a few stops, and a few too long breaks, before picking up where I left off. I have discovered that it really pays off to keep a low level of inflammation in the body, which has become realistic for me, even with a busy lifestyle. I have neither the time nor the energy for a great health revolution, but I try my best in my daily life.

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  • Even though food and supplements are important, there are also many other factors, which play a role in an anti-inflammatory lifestyle.
  • Exercise is important. Exercise strengthens the immune system and works anti-inflammatory as well. You should get some sort of exercise at least once a day. It could for instance be a mix between strength training and stretching exercises, which improves your flexibility. Make sure that all your muscle groups are moved.
  • It should be exercise that suits you – the exercise should not be exaggerated; this could have the opposite effect. It might be worthwhile getting a personal trainer whose focus is on you. If you have a trainer once a week, you can continue on your own 3 – 4 times a week.
  • If you are more stressed than you ought to be, stop what you are doing and revisit your approach to the situation. Perhaps you should start doing yoga. Speak to your yoga teacher about which kind of yoga could be beneficial to you.
  • Be grateful. Use your eyes and senses to notice all the beauty that surrounds you.
  • Make a conscious effort to bring joy into your life.

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