Archive | August 2014

The Power of Basil

When I started my garden this past Spring with my little one (Shadow is what I call him) it was for the intent of getting him more interested in trying foods and seeing how foods many foods grow from a seed and become the foods we eat.  Seeing how our foods have been hijacked by GMO’s and toxic pesticides was another reason I wanted to start taking control of more of the foods that were once deemed good for us now if they come from a store are suspect.  At least I know growing in my garden what we are feeding it with and what we are using to deter pests.  What started out as a learning lesson for both of us soon grew into a labor of love.  I have been meeting some interesting people along the way with learning new things about gardening and getting the most out of our produce growing.  I even got involved with an organization, Stir the Pot, https://www.facebook.com/HelpStirThePot that is really doing some big things with helping to feed the homeless and just all around teachers of growing your own produce.

I wanted to grow everything but I realized I was still a newbie and had more learning to do about benefits-of-basil-leaves-for-skinsome produce.  I learned about investing in growing herbs and how beneficial and natural deterrents many of them were to many unwanted pests that were trying to get at our crops.  One particular herb, basil was at the top of my list for having because for 1 I wanted to add to my spaghetti sauce, and yes the flavor is in a whole other world.  The freshness is just something that will keep you from going back to store-bought.  I began doing more research on this herb and my findings lead me to learn it was more than just a flavor booster in your foods but also a great asset to have for many other issues both inside and outside of the body.

Basil for Skincare Needs

As far as skin care is concerned, basil leaves are an excellent skin rejuvenate which have the potential to ward off skin diseases, thus providing you with a clearer and healthier skin. Whether eaten raw or applied as paste, basil leaves offer a host of benefits for your skin.

  •  Prevention of Acne and Pimples:

Basil leaves prevent the outburst of acne and pimples as they purify your blood by removing toxins. They contain anti-bacterial and anti-fungal agents and you can apply a paste of these leaves mixed with sandalwood paste, neem paste or rose-water to prevent inflammation.

  •  Beneficial for Facial Skin:

Rubbing dried basil leaves on your face improves your facial skin in many ways, giving it a younger and fresher appearance. Applying a paste of basil leaves on your face and neck improves your skin tone.

  •  Prevention of Blackheads:

Basil leaves also prevent the appearance of blackheads. Wet the top side of the basil and place one leaf on each side of your nose for 5 minutes. After this take it off and wash your face.

  •  Treatment of Skin Infections and Ringworms:

Due to their anti-bacterial, anti-biotic and anti-fungal properties, basil leaves can restrict the growth of bacterium like E coli and B anthracis which cause skin infections. A concoction prepared by grinding and boiling 200-250 grams of basil leaves with equal quantity of sesame seed oil can be applied on the skin to cure itching. A mixture of ground basil leaves and lemon juice can be applied on the skin to treat ringworm.

 

Here is a wonderful recipe to help deter those pesky pimples:

Basil anti-pimple remedy     Homemade-Masks

Ingredients

  • 5 basil leave
  • 5 neem leaves
  • 5 drops of lemon juice
  • 1 tsp Honey

Application

  • Grind basil and neem leaves together to form a paste.
  • Add lemon juice and honey to this paste and mix well.
  • Apply mixture as a face pack and leave on for 25-30 minutes.
  • Wash with water pat dry with a clean towel.

The combination of basil and neem (or Karanja oil) is very effective in fighting acne problems. Lemon works as an astringent while honey hydrates dry skin.

 

This little herb with the big leaves also benefits your body in these ways too:

Basil for the Body

  •  Treatment of Common Cold and Cough:

Basil leaves are effective in alleviating coughing and colds. Chewing fresh leaves or drinking a tea of dried basil leaves can calm coughing and relieve cold and flu. Basil leaves are used as an ingredient in cough syrups and expectorants and help to mobilize mucus in bronchitis and asthma.

  •  Treatment of Sore Throat:

A concoction made by boiling basil leaves in water can be taken as a drink or used for gargling to get relief from sore throat.

  •  Heal Stings and Bites:

Chewing a basil leaf or applying the juice of basil leaves on the area stung or bitten by an insect will help relieve the pain as well as draw the venom out.

  •  Beneficial for Children:

The juice of basil leaves is extremely beneficial in case of common pediatric such as cough, cold, diarrhea and vomiting. Basil leaves taken with saffron hasten the appearance of chicken pox pustules. Children experiencing loose motion at the time of tooth eruption can be given a mixture of pomegranate juice and powder of dried basil leaves for quick relief.

  • Relief from Frequent Vomiting:

If you are suffering from frequent vomiting, you can try having a mixture of basil leaves juice, ginger juice and honey for immediate relief.

  • Relieve Stress and Sharpen the Mind:

Basil leaves are considered as an ‘adaptogen’ or anti-stress agent. Chewing around 12 basil leaves twice a day on a regular basis purifies your blood, prevents stress and develops a sharp mind.

  • Beneficial in Cancer:

Having a mixture of 10 grams of juice of basil leaves in 20-30 grams fresh curd or 2-3 spoons of honey religiously is said to help cure cancer.

  •   Aid in Weight Loss and Curb Laziness:

Basil leaves taken with home-made fresh curd help in reducing excess weight and fight laziness by renewing your energy levels and facilitating new blood cells formation.

  •  Beneficial for Eyes:

Being rich in vitamin A, basil leaves play an important role in eye health. You can soak a few basil leaves in water and wash your eyes with them every morning and before going to bed to prevent conjunctivitis, swelling, inflammations, boils and other infections. Basil leaves act as relaxants for your eyes to sooth stress induced fine lines. Chewing a couple of basil leaves helps to ward off eye problems caused by free radicals such as vision degeneration, cataracts and glaucoma. Basil leaves juice is an effective remedy for sore eyes and night blindness.

  •  Dental Health:

Basil leaves can be dried in the sun, powdered and used for brushing teeth or mixed with mustard oil to be used as toothpaste for maintaining dental health and massaging the gums. It is also effective in curing pyorrhea and other teeth disorders. The anti-bacterial agents in basil leaves prevent bacteria build up whereas the antioxidants ensure clean plaque free teeth.

  •  Help to Get Rid of Bad Breath:

Bad breath can be detrimental to your self-confidence. Basil leaves can be a healthy substitute to special toothpastes and chewing gums to ward off bad breath. You can chew a handful of basil leaves to prevent bad breath.

  •  Helpful in Quitting Smoking:

Chain smokers can try chewing basil leaves to get rid of their addiction. These can be more beneficial than nicotine patches, flavored gum or even plain candy to curb the urge. While the juice has a cooling effect on your throat, the chewing will distract you and the antioxidants will repair the damage caused due to years of smoking.

  •  Treatment of Kidney stones:

The juice of basil leaves taken with honey regularly for 6 months will expel kidney stones from the urinary tract.

  • Relief from Headache:

Basil leaves are considered a great medicine for headache. A facial steam of dried basil leaf is effective in alleviating headache. For this purpose, add a tablespoon of dried basil leaves to 2 cups of water in a large pot. Covering your head with towel, carefully lean over the pot and breathe in the steam for 5 to 10 minutes. You can also apply pounded basil leaves mixed in sandalwood paste on your forehead to get relief from heat and headache as well as cooling effect in general.

  • Treatment of Respiratory Disorders:

A decoction of basil leaves with honey and ginger is a natural remedy for respiratory disorders like bronchitis, asthma, cough and cold. A decoction made by boiling basil leaves and cloves in half a liter of water mixed with salt gives immediate relief in case of influenza.

  •  Good for Heart:

Basil leaves purify the blood by removing toxins. Basil leaf tea helps in controlling blood pressure. Basil leaves contain an antioxidant eugenol that helps in reducing cholesterol levels and blood glucose levels, thereby reducing the risk of heart attacks and other cardiac diseases.

 

One of my gardening buddies gave me(thanks Patrick) this recipe passed on this fabulous recipe to me and I am sharing with you! Please let me know how you liked it.

Basil Tea Recipe     th (2)

This version gets infused with fresh basil, but you could also use mint, or lesser amounts of rosemary, sage, or thyme. The basil syrup will keep for up to a month in the fridge, so you may want to double the recipe and use the extra to sweeten iced tea or spring cocktails.
  • 4 cups fresh basil leaves, packed, plus 6 basil sprigs for garnish
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 cup fresh-squeezed lemon juice (about 6 lemons)

1. Bring basil leaves, sugar, and 2 cups water to a boil in medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar and bruise basil leaves. Simmer 5 minutes without stirring. Strain, pressing on basil to remove liquid. Cool.

2. Pour 2 cups basil syrup into large pitcher. Stir in lemon juice and 4 cups water. Transfer to refrigerator, and chill well. Serve over ice, garnished with basil sprigs.

 

We are Campaigning on A Mission of Prevention

 

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I have been working tirelessly for over a month to bring this campaign to you.  I feel there is a need to get a stronger presence out to you and others about the dangers of toxic ingredients in your skin care products.  It isnt just enough to eat healthy for the inner you but you need to be just as aware on what goes on your outer you.

Please join me in the fight to get more information and bring more awareness to staying healthy on the outside to keep the risk of dangerous health issues to a minimum.  We have to stop waiting until we have an illness and take more preventative measures.  This starts with reading labels, researching ingredients and taking back your control of what you put on your body.  Stop leaving those big name companies that use inferior and synthetic ingredients in their products and where some slap a natural oil or butter name on the front to make you more at ease with using their products.  When in reality it is only a small amount wading through the toxic ingredients that bring about issues of skin allergies to more severe illnesses like skin cancer.

Dont be fooled by these companies, dont keep allowing them to dictate what you should put on your skin.  Please click the link below and see just what I am talking about:

After Affects Co is Campaigning for You

Click the link above to go to campaign site

Are Natural Products Good For Me and Do They Really Work?

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It is truly amazing how After Affects has taken me to places where I have met some truly fascinating people and had some interesting conversations on the subject of natural skin care. Through the many vendor and farmer’s market events I found that the most common thing that I was asked by many customers of all races is “Are these products for my skin?”  I first thought people were pulling my leg, trying to be funny but as I further talked to many I found their thoughts were convoluted with alot of what they had been programmed to think by many of these big named companies.  Companies that had been around for many generations, teaching them that there was a divide in skin care products.  A separate but equal product so to speak.

This in turn, I think, had people of lighter tones including Caucasians believing because they didn’t see the dry skin that they needed a product that wasn’t full of alot of moisturizer ingredients. Now I know to many

IMG_0360they would probably just look at those two commercials and just think, “Oh well the company is trying to show that they are appealing to all races. Which is good marketing sense.  Ask yourself this, if you see a commercial with an actor/actress of same race as you using that product what pop’s into your mind, “Oh this product if for me”.  As if to say there are products specifically for of that particular race.  But in truth, WE ALL have dry skin and in truth there are some lighter toned people who need more moisturizer products than some darker toned people.

Take a look at the ingredients on the back of the bottles of lotion below. The top pic is an “Original” lotion then look at the one for “Extra Dry Skin and Ultra Healing”. You will notice the “Original” doesn’t have Petroleum or Mineral Oil as one of the main ingredients in its list of ingredients a its counterpart does.  Even those with Shea Butter, they may use that without adding the pore clogging Petroleum ingredient but it is still drowning in a sea of toxic ingredients.  What many fail to see is the only difference is our skin tones, our body’s skin craves the same moisture need as the next person.  And with the mineral oil/petroleum we get Original lotionsucked in to believe it must be for those with really dry skin, and seeing that stuff sitting on your skin gives you a sense that it is giving you extra moisture…not true.  I found that even there is Age-Defying lotion that uses Mineral Oil in it too I guess give more moisture too.  This having the opposite effect that you want, it is drying and clogging pores and actually speeding up the aging process. And I believe these manufactures bank on your ignorance of this to continue pumping ads to you with misinformation about extra dryyour skin care needs.

These companies bank on you using this logic with regards to products that are lab induced, only because some chemicals have different effects on different people of different races.  But seeing as many times when we purchase a product from these companies that we are driven by that commercial and what the actor sold us on and we don’t stop to think what else is in that bottl04ffa710e/jar etc. of lotion, shower gel, facial cream,shampoo,conditioner, or body scrub. We don’t read the ingredients on the back to see what other “wonderful” benefits this product will offer us.  We don’t question what Propylene Glycol is,or Sodium Lauryl Sulphate, Quaternium-15 and oh lest not we wonder what exactly is a Paraben and what do these do for my skin and my health.

With the age of technology that we are in and we can get information just by pressing a few buttons on our phone, why not Google these ingredients to see exactly what these ingredients for which you can hardly pronounce let alone know what they could possibly be doing to your internal organs.

It seems there are more questions for those who create true natural products then those who don’t.  And that is ok, that means you are thinking and want answers to your questions regarding, “Is this product for me, is it safe, will it cause me to break out”.  I welcome all those questions and hope that the information I provide will cause you to think further and eager for answers from the larger companies that use synthetic toxic ingredients that can lead to many health issues.  Yes there are some people who are allergic to certain natural ingredients due to nut or floral allergies, there are some essential oils that people with certain health conditions shouldn’t use due to side effects.  But for the most part natural should be used by natural don’t you think?

Let me say this, true natural products are just that from nature.  Think about it, we are ALL from Nature; Black, White, Hispanic,Asian, Indian(India), etc.  We all have skin (just in different shades), we all have pores, we all get itchy dry skin from IMG_0358loss of moisture.  So if we are all from nature would it not be prudent to think that true natural products made with true natural ingredients would stand to be a perfect fit for our natural skin?

We must remember this, no matter what our skin tone our skin cells have 3 things in common, the need for moisture, the need for protection and the need for cell regeneration.

different races

 Let’s Make Natural Use More Than An Option But A Way Of Life