Healing Herbs for the Holidays

oregano-marketThe holidays should be a time for relaxation as well as reconnecting with friends and family. Make your holiday more cheerful by instituting some healing rituals into your schedule that both sooth and celebrate the season. Take five minutes, or more, a day to treat yourself and your family to these self care activities to lessen stress and more.


Take Five for Inner Fitness

In my recent work with Alchemy I’ve learned that plants combined with meditation practice can do some serious reinvigorating, inside and out! Try brewing some herbs next time you feel depleted instead of relying on sugar or caffeine to kick start your motor. At times when you’re feeling drained you just need a break or simply hydration! Instead of grabbing coffee or sweets that can have side effects like sleeplessness later or the drag of a blood sugar crash, go for herbs. Specific herbs like thyme are bursting with antibacterial properties that have been studied for their ability to kill many microbes. Using herbs is a great way to boost your immune system while others around you start to get the sniffles. Another important way to build immunity? Give your mind a moments pause or think happy healing thoughts to imbue your brew with good vibes. Studies show that thinking positive thoughts and meditation can decrease stress hormones, that tend to flood your body during stressful times. Imbue your brew with these positive thoughts and feelings as you make it. This might sound strange, but Alchemists and great cooks alike believe that healing energy enters food when it’s made with loving attention!

Ginger Thyme Tea

Serves 1

1/2 inch ginger root, peeled, thinly sliced
1/2 lemon, thinly sliced
2 thyme sprigs
2 teaspoons stevia or honey, optional

Place the ginger, lemon, and thyme in a small saucepan along with 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil. Stir in the stevia or honey if using. Serve immediately. Don’t be afraid to take this tea on the road to reheat later or use it as the perfect travel beverage.


Take Five for Beauty

Cooking and beauty don’t seem like they go together, but so much about self care happens in both the kitchen and bath. Herbs aren’t just for garnishing your favorite dishes, they have amazing healing compounds that can work as a gentle, natural antibiotic topically while giving you a bit of sumptuous aroma therapy in the process. I’ve recently been crushing on this new line of from L’Occitane, the Aromachologie Rebalancing collection, that uses real essential oils like thyme, juniper and lemon, for their mega purifying properties. You’ll enjoy their fresh, not overly sweet scents, that can rebalance you as you sniff. I’ve been enjoying the rebalancing black soap which is gentle enough for your face and doesn’t dry out your skin while it smooths. The exfoliating shower gel is idea for dry winter skin, and you can follow up with the relaxing body cream.


Take Five for Snacking

Skip the holiday crowds this year and do your shopping on-line. While you shop, snack on something healthy and delicious, like these kale chips that only take 10 minutes to bake. Put a holiday spin on them by using winters best loved herb, sage. You will fall in love with this simple recipe for fried sage to boost detox while you crunch. Herbs are a fragrant, natural way to disinfect on the inside while you nosh.

Fried Sage Chips

Makes about 10 chips

1 bunch sage
2 teaspoons olive oil or coconut oil
pinch salt

Separate the sage leaves from the stem. Warm the oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the oil and the leaves. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, turning occasionally until the leaves are crisp. Transfer to a paper towel to drain and sprinkle with the salt. Serve immediately.

Hungry for more? Sign up for my easy and delicious Gentle Cleanse program that you can use before and after the holidays to stay fit, even after you’ve splurged.

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