Living a life less toxic…

by Faith Canter


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Natural Homemade Laundry Liquid

I love this recipe for natural homemade laundry liquid  – it’s so easy, quick and you don’t need tons of ingredients!

You’ll end up with around 2.2 litres of laundry liquid when following this recipe or you can double or even triple the ingredients to make more like I did.

 

Ingredients:

50g (1.8 oz) of a bar of soap (the bits from the end of a bar(s) are perfect), grated

2 litres (3.5 pints) of water

100g (3.5 oz) borax substitute (it is actually called this and you can pick this up in most supermarkets)

100g (3.5 oz) soda crystals (you can pick this up in most supermarkets)

100ml (3.5 fl oz) of white vinegar

30/40 drops of essential oils (antibacterial oils like lavender and tea-tree work well, as do any of the citrus oils).

 

Directions:

1. Pour half the water (1 litre) into a saucepan and bring to the boil and then turn down to simmer.

2. Add the grated soap and allow to dissolve (stirring occasionally).IMG_20140330_181059

3. Add the borax substitute and soda crystals  and stir again until dissolved.

4.  Take off the heat and add the remaining litre of water, then the vinegar and stir well.

5. Add your selection of essential oils.

6. Pour the mixture into any old glass or plastic bottles using a funnel.  Make sure to leave an inch or so at the top of the bottle so you can shake it before each use (as it will separate when standing for a while).

7. Allow to cool and then pop the lid on.

 

This laundry liquid can be used inside the drum or in the drawer and you will need approximately 50ml per wash. 

This roughly works out (depending on essential oils used) to around 6 – 10p per wash. 

 


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Detoxing through TRE – Tension and Trauma Release Exercises

Guest Blog by Vicki Cook – Detoxing through TRE – Tension and Trauma Release Exercises

TRETM is a self-help therapy that I am passionate about because it has helped me to return to full health and energy.  I had many debilitating symptoms that are grouped under the condition of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  These physical and mental problems were caused by the stress I was under as a child in a highly dysfunctional, emotionally abusive family and I continued to perpetuate in the way I handled my life after leaving home.  I have used many therapies over 20 years and they helped me to heal and be able to function and get on with my life but nothing has gone so quickly to the deepest held roots of my problems.  So now I want others to use this same natural and instinctual way of healing too.

TRETM is a series of exercises that can activate a predictable and easily regulated neurogenic tremoring response which usually begins in the hip flexor muscles.  The neurogenic tremoring will successfully reduce the challenging symptoms caused by trauma or the stress and overwhelm of daily life.

This revolutionary technique developed by Dr David Berceli supports healing at the deepest levels of the body where traumatic responses are held in the muscles and myofascia.  The beauty of neurogenic tremoring experienced in TRETM is that it enlists the body’s own natural recovery process which then works to release the tension in the body and to calm the stress response in the brain.

It will enable you to relieve chronic patterns of tension held in the body. These patterns are created when we need to protect and defend ourselves and the fight, flight, freeze responses are activated, but they are not released after the emergency or perceived emergency is over.  When these patterns of fight, flight, freeze are switched on all the time they cause PTSD, depression, bad backs, IBS, fatigue, anxiety disorders and other similar symptoms.

TRETM can be learnt quickly and adapted to fit any level of physical ability.  Once you have learned to activate the tremoring you have a self-help tool which you can use whenever needed and to heal past stress and trauma.  Some people choose to have sessions with a Practitioner or be part of a TRETM Group as they experience challenges with allowing the body to tremor and need support to overcome these.  TRETM can be used on its own or to enhance other therapies.  TRETM can be used on its own or to enhance other therapies.

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Visit www.trescotland.co.uk  for further information about Individual or group sessions and Scotland’s first 3 Day TRETM training to be held in Edinburgh in July 2014

Our facebook link is https://www.facebook.com/groups/TREinUK/


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Sauerkraut

When you make Sauerkraut yourself or buy the unpasteurised stuff from a health food store it is packed full of probiotics.  To name just a few: Lactobacillus acidophilusL. bulgaricusL. plantarumL. caretL. pentoaceticusL brevis and L. thermophiles.  It is also thought to be full of vitamin C, help the fight against cancer, be a great treatment towards peptic ulcers, be packed full of essential enzymes and helps balance the flora of the gut, thus helping symptoms of IBS, leaky gut, food intolerances and even some auto-immune diseases.

It is super easy and cheap to make your own sauerkraut and it tastes delicious also!

Recipe: 

1 medium cabbage

1 tbsp sea salt

Optional: 

1 tbsp caraway, coriander or fennel seeds

3 tbsp grated ginger (I highly recommend this addition)

2/3 cup grated carrot

Directions:

1. Remove outer leaves from the cabbage and set aside.

2. Shred cabbage, carrots and ginger (if you’re adding these).

3. In a bowl, mix the shredded items with seeds (if you’re adding these) and sea salt.  Then massage together or pound down with a mallet or the end of a rolling pin for 10 mins.

4. Once the juices have been released place into a wide mouth  jar and continue to pound down until juices come up and cover the cabbage (if this does not happen then added a little lightly salted water until it covers the cabbage well, (leave 2 inches of space at the top).

5. Place a whole cabbage leaf over the top of the cabbage to make sure no air can get to the shredded cabbage underneath.  If not then use some a clean weight of some sort to weigh the cabbage down, add lid.

6. Leave in a dark spot at room temperature for around a month.  You can eat it after 3 days, but it’s much tastier and has more probiotics in it if left longer.  Transfer to fridge once you open it or after a month or two.

Note:

If you leave it for more than a couple of weeks you may want to ‘burp’ it (open the lid a little) to release the build up of pressure from within the jar.

Sauerkraut can be added to the side of most meals or even added to smoothies for a probiotic boost, but don’t heat it as you will lose most of the goodness!

Now enjoy! =)


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Energy Healing Detox

Energy Healing Detox – Guest Blog by Rachel Medhurst 

Do you ever feel drained? Does your body feel tired and exhausted?

Our bodies run on energy. We have energy centres in our bodies that control how we feel in general.

When I decided to try my hand at energy healing, I was amazed at how quickly I could ‘feel’ energy. I could physically feel it spinning when I put my hands in front and behind a person’s chakra. Our emotions usually affect that energy. Our energy centres are at seven points in our body, starting from the base of the spine and working up to the top of your head.

When learning about energy healing, I realised that each chakra is related to a different part of our lives. For instance, your base chakra is related to security, the material world and reproduction. Your throat chakra is related to your truth, voicing concerns and expression.

When we are unbalanced in our lives, it’s usually because we are unbalanced in these emotional areas. The chakras will become clogged if we are avoiding how we feel about a certain situation. These emotions then become trapped in the chakras, causing outside difficulties and physical problems too.

Most of the time, the emotions that are blocked, stem from our childhood. We find it hard to process anything when we are young, either because our parents or guardians don’t let us, or because we’re too scared to allow the feelings to come up. When we start to heal and cleanse ourselves, we can release these blocked emotions forever.

When energy healing, I start by moving my hands up the chakras. The energy comes through me and starts to clear away the blocked emotions. These slowly come up to the surface to be felt. This rising feeling usually continues for a few days. I personally felt a lot more refreshed after having energy healing. This was because the emotions were able to come up to be felt, rather than me sinking down to meet them. This rising feeling is like a cleansing of emotional toxins. I then proceed around the body at different points to allow energy to flow to every part of the body. This should help any physical ailments.

It’s important to understand that when any type of cleansing is going on, it’s the thoughts and emotions that you believe and hold onto, that needs to be cleansed. The unblocking of the emotions through energy healing allows this to happen naturally. If we did not feel this, we would not be able to let it go. Therefore the physical ailments and issues in your life could not be healed. Everything is connected, including the mind, body and spirit. When you take the time to heal all three, you truly start to see some beautiful results.

NB: As an Energy Healer I do not claim to cure illness or disease.

Rachel Medhurst is an inspirational writer and energy healer.

For more information visit her website at www.rachelmedhurst.com and www.loveyourselfhealing.com

Or Facebook: www.facebook.com/rachel.medhurst.5


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Homemade Natural Cleaning Products

Making your own cleaning products is not only extremely easy but also a lot cheaper than shop bought environmentally-friendly products.

The four main things I use to clean my house are:

1. Tea-Tree Oil – I use this neat, directly onto mould spores or make a bathroom spray to use in problem areas to prevent it.

Directions:  For each 100 ml of filtered water I add a total of 15 drops of a mixture of tea-tree, lavender and cedar wood essential oils, (all with antibacterial and anti-fungal properties).  Add this to a spray bottle and shake well before each use (as the oils settle on the top of the water otherwsie).

2. Vinegar Antibacterial Spray – I use this for cleaning my kitchen, windows, floors and pretty much everything else expect wood and near any rubber seals around baths and sinks.

Directions:  Use an old kitchen cleaner spray bottle (well washed, of course).  Fill 1/3 of it with white vinegar and 2/3 with filtered water.  Then add up to 25 drops of a mixture of any of the following: tea-tree, lavender, cedar wood, pine, lemon or orange essential oils.  Lastly pour the juice of half a lemon into the bottle.  Shake well before each use.

This recipe smells strong when you’re using it but the smell soon disappears once dried.

You can also use the skin/left overs of any citrus fruit by adding them to the mixture for a week or two first and then removing, using as normal .

3. Natural Bleach –  You can use this in your washing machine (add two cups the the load) or as a soak for turning your greys white again =)  You can also use this in a spray bottle for bleaching your kitchen and bathroom.

Directions:  Use an old kitchen cleaner spray bottle (well washed, of course).  Fill the bottle 3/4 of the way full with filtered water.  Then fill the bottle almost to the top with hydrogen peroxide and lastly add the juice of a whole lemon.  Shake well before each use.

4. Bicarb – For stubborn stains and oily items I give them a scrub with bicarb and this usually does the trick!  This can also be added to washing machines and dishwashers for a helping hand.

I also use bicarb as a carpet deodoriaer, it works wonders with eliminating those doggie smells!  I simply fill up an old shake n vac bottle (or a talc bottle would work just as well) with bicarb (leaving about 2 inches space at the top).  Then add 25/30 drops of a mixture of essential oils and give it a really good shake.  Sprinkle carpets and rugs and leave for a few hours or overnight and then vacuum it up.

Happy healthy, cheap, non toxic cleaning everyone! =)

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Water Cultured Kefir

So what is Kefir?  

Kefir is a fermented/cultured probiotic drink.  It comes in both ‘milk kefir’ and ‘water kefir’ forms.

As the name would suggest ‘milk kefir’ is made from milk, but not just dairy milk.  Milk kefir is also made with coconut milk, almond milk, soya milk –  pretty much anything that comes in milk form can be used to make milk kefir.

Water kefir is made from sugar water or coconut water.

Both can be flavoured with various fruits and vegetables (this usually happens on what they call a ‘second ferment’ of your product).

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So why drink it? 

1. Kefir is a much higher source of many different strains of healthy bacteria and yeasts.  This is far higher in probiotic content than the yoghurts or little pots of probiotic drink you will find in a supermarket.   Kefir is an excellent all round source of probiotics.

2. It is a wonderful detoxifying drink as it helps balance the yeasts and bacteria in the digestive system.  This helps to eliminate bad yeasts and bacteria throughout the body.

3. Milk kefir is packed full of easily digestible calcium.

4. It’s full of amino acids and minerals essential for good health.

5. If you have a lactose intolerance you may find that you can tolerate using milk kefir products and in some cases the kefir even helps to heal the gut of this intolerance.

6. It is an excellent source of protein and can reduce cholesterol & high blood pressure.

7. It holds plenty of B vitamins, especially B12 and vitamin K.

8. It helps strengthen the immune system.

9. It can help with energy levels and cognitive function.

10. It’s thought to benefit autoimmune conditions.

11. It’s cheap and easy to make!

So how do you make it?

Milk kefir is slightly better for you than water kefir, but I prefer water kefir.  Sometimes I make it with sugar water and sometimes with straight coconut water instead.

Directions:

1. Take a large mason jar and dissolve 1/4 cup of organic sugar into one cup of hot water into it.  Then top up with another 3 cups DSC_0471 cold water (if the water is chlorinated then leave on the side for 24hrs before adding grains) . I then add 4 tbsp of water kefir grains.

2. You can also add bicarbonate of soda, lemon, mineral drops or egg shell at this stage for added mineral content and healthy grains.

3. Secure some muslin or a  coffee filter over the top of the mason jar with a rubber band.

4. Let it culture for 48 hours, a little less if you prefer it sweet and a little more if you prefer it slightly more sour (the more sour the less sugar is left in it).

5. When it reaches your preferred taste, separate the grains from the liquid through a plastic sieve (metal item can damage the grains).  Then add grains directly into a new batch of sugar water.

6. You can now drink the liquid as it is, leaving it in the fridge in-between to slow down continued fermentation.             DSC_0623

7. You can now do a second ferment to add flavour to your kefir.  Add juiced fruit or even vegetables like beetroot to the kefir drink and put in a closed mason jar or grolsch style bottle and close the lid firmly.  This will allow the kefir to get fizzy like a flavoured soda. Leave this for another 24 to 72 hours and store in the fridge when it is at your preferred taste.

What I’ve learnt from my adventures:

1. If you’re not particularly healthy, have digestive issues, eat a lot of sugar or suspect that you have a yeast overgrowth then have only have a few sips of kefir each time to start with and slowly increase your intake.  If you consume too much to start with, you may experience strong detox symptoms.  These symptoms can be slightly unpleasant.  This is particularly prevalent if you have an unhealthy digestive system.

2. Do not rinse grains in normal water if they need rinsing, use sugar water or coconut water.

3. Boil egg shells first otherwise they can cause mould.

4. Fruit is much better and stronger tasting if juiced rather than whole pieces of fruit added, but you can do this also, but it will need straining off.

5. Your grains should multiply slightly with each batch, if this is not happening then you may need to add more sugar or minerals.

6. Sweet fruits generally work better than sour fruits, especially strawberries, mmmm =)

7. Don’t use metal utensils (including sieves) with the grains as this can harm them.

8. If you buy dehydrated grains, they can take a few batches to get going properly.  Have patience!DSC_0682

9. If you don’t want to make another batch straight away, then put the grains into super sugar water in the fridge (making sure to add more sugar after a week).

10. Eventually you’ll have too many grains.  Why not give the extra ones to a friend, so that they can start their own.  You can even eat the excess kefir grains!

It’s addictive!  Once you start, you can’t stop!

It really can become addictive… but in a good way! =)