Relax With Hot Tea

If you’re looking for ways to relax, whether as a break from your busy schedule or to unwind from a long day, turn to a hot cup of tea. Often it’s forgotten that tea is made from leaves and herbs that can have strong therapeutic effects. Here’s two of our favorites to consider:

1. Chamomile Tea. Research shows that chamomile has calming effects and promotes sleep. Had a stressful day? Treat yourself to a warm mug of chamomile tea in the late afternoon or evening INSTEAD of a glass of wine. Steep a bag of chamomile tea made from the whole flower for 5-10 minutes to allow all of the nutrients to release into the water. 

2. Green Tea. Green tea is rich in the amino acid L-Theanine. Our body uses this amino to increase levels of dopamine and GABA (Gama-aminobutyric Acid), which has a relaxing and calming effect on the brain. Research reported by Life Extension media also noted that GABA can help relieve the symptoms of anxiety and depression. Have approximately 2 cups of organic, whole leaf green tea daily to feel its effects.

So the next time you feel stress and anxiety building, simply close your eyes, sip and go to your happy place. 

 
 
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Gennis Lafayette, N.C.

Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant

Bar Method Teacher, Palo Alto & San Mateo

www.facebook.com/gennis.lafayette.ne

Happy YOU Year! Week 6

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Are you stressed?  Who ISN’T, right? There are two kinds of stress.  One is typical, daily stuff that keeps us on our toes or makes us worry a little bit.  This type of stress is just a part of life and our bodies and minds are meant to handle it.  An example of this would be a final exam or an upcoming public speaking event. The second type of stress is the keep-you-up-at-night kind of stress that doesn’t stop.  These are often on-going and unrelenting!

Sometimes these are life events, but ones that involve a deeper level of emotion and a big portion of our time and energy.  Examples of this type of stress include prolonged illness, care for an elderly family member, divorce, hideous boss, etc.  This second kind of stress is also a part of life, but its unrelenting nature is catabolic (it breaks down the body).  This level of stress is the #1 cause of illness in many people and thought to be the cause of 90% of all common ailments and degenerative diseases.

If you have ongoing stress, it is important to use relaxation techniques like breathing, meditation or guided imagery to help you cope and relieve it.  Relaxation is different than exercise.  While exercise delivers a stress-busting component, it is not relaxation. A bath. A nap. Reading a book … that is relaxation!  Your pulse is low, your mind is clear and you feel good.

 

Tips and Tricks to Promote Relaxation

Tension and stress often build up inside of our bodies before we begin to feel its outward effects.  Listen to your body and recognize when you are beginning to feel stressed so that you can take action before you are overwhelmed.  Here are a few tips for keeping stress in check:

Practice meditation or breathing exercises.  There are some great apps out there that can help you integrate meditation, even just for 5 minutes a day, into our daily life.  Stop, Breathe & Think is a favorite!  Take a yoga or tai chi class.  Get out in nature, breathe fresh air and feel the sun on your skin.  Block off time on your calendar for breaks during the day (YES, this is ok!).  Use the time to: eat lunch, go for a walk, take a nap, listen to guided meditation, read a book, stretch, pull weeds in the yard, get a massage, pedicure or some other form of pampering.  Ask for help with daunting tasks when you need it, such as childcare or prioritizing work.  Find a hobby that you enjoy and make time for it at least weekly!

Taking this critical time for yourself will help you reduce your stress levels and feel more balanced and joyful in your life!

 

Blog contributor:

 

 

 

 

Gennis Lafayette, N.C.

Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant

Bar Method Teacher, Palo Alto & San Mateo

www.facebook.com/gennis.lafayette.ne

Recipe: The Best Green Smoothie

Hard-working muscles need vitamins and minerals for nourishment. Instead of giving in to your usual afternoon caffeine jolt or carb craving, try an energizing green smoothie. It’s great after a workout.  This fantastic smoothie from I Love Vegan has a peanut butter and banana base – it’s light, creamy and super mild!

green smoothie

 

The Best Green Smoothie 

Prep Time: 5 mins

Total Time: 5 mins

 

Ingredients:

·       1 cup unsweetened almond or soy milk

·       1-2 handfuls of spinach

·       2 frozen bananas

·       2-4 soft pitted dates

·       2 tbsp hemp hearts

·       1 tbsp natural peanut butter

 

Instructions:

Combine all ingredients, blend on high until perfectly smooth and frothy.

 

Superfood Smoothie Topping Ingredients (optional):

·       2 tbsp hemp seeds

·       2 tbsp chia seeds

·       2 tbsp raw buckwheat groats

·       2 tbsp slivered almonds (or pumpkin seeds)

 

Instructions:

Sprinkle on top of your smoothie.

 

Recipe recommended by:

 

 

 

 

Gennis Lafayette, N.C.

Certified Holistic Nutrition Consultant

Bar Method Teacher, Palo Alto & San Mateo

www.facebook.com/gennis.lafayette.ne