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Is Soy Sauce Bad For Your Health?

In 2012, I committed myself to a healthy, natural lifestyle. I gave birth to my kids naturally; switched to non-toxic personal care products; cut back on certain foods in my diet; spent more money on essential oils, health supplements and organic foods…you get the idea. Heck, this past week, I even bought an expensive, non-toxic sofa without flame retardants—it was designed with hardwood sourced from FSC-certified domestic forests, CertiPUR-US certified poly foam, and certified organic cotton interior lining. Before 2012, I never expected to give a darn about the materials that were used to create our old, torn sofa.

But when a friend started talking about the dangers of soy, I kind of just looked the other way and pretended not to hear him. Because of my Asian background, I have eaten a lot of soy sauce in my life—and I love it. So, what’s the deal with soy sauce, anyway? If you love soy sauce like I do, you might be pleasantly surprised with some of the information that I found. Turns out, there’s what I like to call “Bad Soy Sauce” and “Good Soy Sauce.” I also found a tasty substitute for soy sauce!

Bad Soy Sauce

Bad soy sauce goes through acid hydrolysis and contains soybeans, caramel color, corn syrup and salt. The process to create bad soy sauce is complete in a few days.

I call this bad soy sauce because it contains artificial ingredients and GMOs. I would also like to note that 1 tablespoon of soy sauce usually contains about 38% of your daily value of sodium. That’s a whole lot of salt in one tablespoon!

Good Soy Sauce

Good soy sauce goes through a fermentation process and contains soybeans, salt, and enzymes. Wheat is often added as well. It takes approximately six months to create this type of soy sauce.

I call this good soy sauce because of the fermentation. Thanks to the fermentation process, this soy sauce may be beneficial for your gut. If you choose to eat soy sauce, try to find an organic brand (avoid the GMOs) that contains less sodium.

Soy Sauce Replacement: Coconut Aminos

This is what is listed under Ingredients on my Coconut Aminos bottle (I get mine at Thrive Market):

“Organic coconut tree sap aged and blended with sun-dried, mineral-rich sea salt.”

Coconut Aminos is a delicious replacement for soy sauce—and it contains only two healthy ingredients. If you are like me, you are probably wondering, “does it taste like coconut?” No; thankfully, it does not! Also, one tablespoon of coconut aminos contains only 12% of your daily value of sodium. I would say that this is a big improvement from 38% (the daily value of sodium for one tablespoon of soy sauce).

What do you think of soy sauce and coconut aminos? If you like this blog, consider liking the Facebook page as well!

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Reference

Soy Sauce. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.encyclopedia.com/education/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/soy-sauce

Ten Essential Oils For Your Medicine Cabinet

When I discovered essential oils in 2018, I was so excited to use plant medicine—the last piece of the puzzle on my Natural Living journey! Are you searching for natural solutions that will help to eliminate the root causes of your signs and symptoms? Scroll down to read about ten oils that you should have in your medicine cabinet!

1. Lemon

Lemon oil is wonderful for cleansing the body and the house. One to two drops of lemon in water or tea will support the body’s detoxification process. It also has a great taste.

Feeling down? Lemon and other citrus oils can help uplift your mood!

2. Frankincense

The “King of Oils” is an amazing oil that can support all the cells of your body. Frankincense helps to restore the skin and promote feelings of peace. I use it on my baby’s irritated skin and in my night cream. I also take frankincense internally for extra support.

3. Melaleuca (Tea Tree)

Melaleuca is effective at cleaning my house, my skin and my nails.

15 drops of lemon oil, 15 drops of melaleuca, 1 cup of water and 1/2 cup of vinegar makes an effective, all-purpose cleaner!

4. Lavender

The “Swiss Army Knife” of essential oils is calming for the skin and the emotions. I used it on my children when they had hives and I currently rub it on my baby’s jawline when he is teething. To help my toddler wind down after a long day, I rub lavender on the back of her neck and on the bottoms of her feet.

5. Oregano

Oregano is a powerful oil that I take internally when I need a boost for my immune system. When my children are not feeling well, I also rub this potent oil on their feet.

6. Protective Blend

The Protective blend is another oil that can support your immune system. I take this oil internally and apply this topically on my children. This blend has an inviting aroma that is very pleasant to diffuse.

7. Respiratory Blend

When I need extra respiratory support, I rub this potent blend on my nose, chest or feet. At night, I like to diffuse this blend with frankincense—it’s a refreshing blend for easy breathing.

8. Digestive Blend

To be honest, the smell of this oil used to make me nauseous. Eventually, it became my “hero oil.” Whenever we have any kind of tummy trouble, this blend provides relief within seconds!

9. Peppermint

The smell of peppermint makes me want to get up and go! I like to rub peppermint oil on my neck for an instant cooling sensation. Peppermint can also be used for stomach upset and head tension. It has also been known to repel insects.

10. Soothing Blend

This blend provides relief and comfort. I like to rub this cooling blend on my forehead, neck, and wrists after a long day. After my husband’s CrossFit work-out, I rub this blend on his back and knee.

Do you need to give your medicine cabinet a makeover? Contact me for the purest oils!

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Six Life Lessons From My Six-Year Old

She drew on the mirror with yogurt.” That’s what I told my husband the other day. I bet that you can guess that I am a mom! Mother’s Day is approaching, so I thought that it would be appropriate to share six things that I am learning from my six-year old.

  1. Play in the mud and rain puddles.
    My daughter doesn’t really care if she gets mud on her clothes. Life is messy. I am learning that it can be fun to play in the mess!
  2. Smell the flowers, even if you’re in a hurry.
    My daughter doesn’t rush around everywhere like I do, and she absolutely loves to smell flowers. She reminds me to slow down and enjoy the moment!
  3. Always forgive.
    No matter how many times I have to say, “I’m sorry”, my daughter is always quick to forgive me. I am learning that forgiveness can be a remedy for bitterness.
  4. Be silly.
    My daughter can find humor in almost anything. She makes me want to laugh more!
  5. Tell people what you need.
    My daughter always asks for help and is very helpful to others. I am learning that it is better to ask for help than to overexert myself.
  6. Make friends wherever you go.
    My daughter likes to greet everyone that she sees. I am learning that it is nice to connect with someone new, even if it is only for a moment.

What lessons have you learned from your kids? If you like this blog, consider liking us on Facebook as well (@myinspirationforwellness)!

DIY: How To Get Rid of Ants Naturally

What do you get when you have small kids and a small amount of time to clean? Well, I’ll tell you what I get. I get ANTS! Luckily, I found a cheap, natural, effective way to get rid of ants!

Here’s what you need:

  • 1 cup of warm water
  • ½ cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons Borax
  • Cotton balls
  • Plastic bag

Please note that Borax is a natural powder. However, it is toxic if it is ingested by kids. Therefore, keep these “ant traps” away from small children and pets.

Here’s what you do:

  1. Cut the plastic bag into approximately seven small squares. The plastic acts as a disposable, waterproof plate for the cotton. In the past, I used a plastic container; later, I switched to a plastic bag so that the ants could get to the mixture faster. If you don’t want to use a plastic bag, you can use any small, shallow container or plate.
  2. Mix the water, sugar and Borax in a small bowl.
  3. Submerge a cotton ball in the mixture and place the cotton onto the plastic. Repeat until you have enough ant traps or until the mixture is gone.
  4. Place the plastic in the path of the ants. Keep the ant traps away from children and pets as the Borax is toxic if it is ingested.
  5. Throw the cotton and plastic away in approximately 48 hours.

These ant traps worked for odorous house ants (ants that like sugar). The ants will carry the mixture back to their home and the whole colony will die from the exposure to the Borax. Vinegar and essential oils are also great for repelling insects, but the ant traps and Borax were more effective because they wiped out the entire ant colony. This recipe came from DIY Natural. Mommypotamus also has some great ideas.

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Essential Oils and Hair Restoration

I recently had lunch with a business contact who asked me if there were any clinical studies regarding essential oils and hair restoration. A search on PubMed for “essential oils and alopecia” revealed 14 hits–two out of these 14 hits peaked my interest.

The first study compared rosemary oil and a synthetic medication called minoxidil. The second study involved four essential oils: thyme, rosemary, lavender and cedarwood. The writers of both research articles concluded that essential oils were effective treatments for hair restoration.

According to the drug label on DailyMed, minoxidil will not work for everyone and unwanted side effects can occur after use. In contrast to synthetic medications which can cause unwanted side effects, natural essential oils produce side benefits. The smell of rosemary oil can help with concentration; thyme can be used to purify the skin; lavender can calm the emotions and soothe the skin; and cedarwood can assist with mood stabilization.

Contact me for the purest essential oils!

References

Hay, I.C., Jamieson, M., & Ormerod, A.D. (1998). Randomized trial of aromatherapy. Successful treatment for alopecia areata. Archives of dermatology, 134 (11), 1349-1352.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9828867

Panahi, Y., Taghizadeh, M., Marzony, E.T., & Sahebkar, A. (2015). Rosemary oil vs minoxidil 2% for the treatment of androgenetic alopecia: a randomized comparative trial. Skinmed, 13 (1), 15-21.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25842469