The Natural Health Benefits of Basil Herb

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Beauty, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 15-03-2016

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basil herb

This week we will carry on with our look at fresh herbs as medicines and health foods. There are so many choices out there and they are all so healthy and good for us! Today’s fresh herb is basil. Fresh basil is used around the world in countless delicious dishes. Italian food is a favorite, and sprigs of fresh basil in a sauce or on pizza are a delightful touch to a delicious dish. But, I’ll bet you didn’t realize how wonderful basil was for your health too!

Scientifically basil is called “Ocymum basilicum” (sweet basil), and also ” Ocymum minimum” (basil bush). Basil can actually be found growing all over the place here in Kuwait, and is next to homes and buildings, along the street sides, in public parks, and just everywhere! You can also buy fresh basil herb in most supermarkets in the green grocer section. If all else fails though, you can use it dried as well. In Arabic it is called “rayhaan”. While basil belongs to the mint family of plants, it doesn’t really resemble mint in taste or aroma.

basil herb organic

Basil is one of the most versatile and beneficial fresh herbs. It has a wonderful strong aromatic aroma that is sweet yet powerful. If you are looking for it on the streets, it is a leafy bushy plant with lovely purple flowers growing up in spikes. Basil is practically indestructible once it gets started, and that is probably how it is able to grow all over the dry desert lands of Kuwait. Here in Kuwait the basil plant that you find outside in the “wild” is a bushy, woody type, but the leaves are the same, and extremely loaded with the essential oil that is what makes basil medicinally beneficial. It is the leaves of this plant that are used medicinally, but you might like putting the beautiful purple aromatic flowers in a vase, giving your home an aromatic spicy smell (and having the basil aroma flowing around in your home will keep it a healthier place as well).

basil seeds organic

If you suffer from digestive problems, particularly upset stomach, vomiting, nausea, or flatulence, just drink a light basil tea or eat a few basil leaves. You can make basil into a lovely tea by infusing it with plain steaming hot water for a few minutes. You can also just pop a few leaves right into your mouth! It is also great for aches and pains, and can be applied directly onto a painful area.

I will never forget the time a friend and I were preparing my first herbal clinic in Kuwait for opening back in 1994 and I was standing on a ladder, painting herbal names around the ceiling. I was busy painting and I reached back with my arm, when suddenly I felt a horrible searing pain! Without realizing it I had put my arm into the path of the ceiling fan, which hit my forearm with force. The pain was excruciating and I’m blessed that my arm wasn’t cut off. The only thing that we had around was some fresh basil that was growing coincidentally outside the front door of the place. My friend Renee, who was also into herbs, rushed out and picked some basil, crushed it, and immediately applied it to my arm, which, by then, I was incapable of moving and which was becoming blacker by the minute. The pain immediately eased when the basil was applied, and we wrapped it in gauze to keep the basil on, and continued working. Thanks to good ole’ basil, the day was saved, the basil helped the bruise to resolve itself in record time, and I was none the worse for wear!

basil essential oil

Basil is also great for respiratory ailments such as bronchitis, or any other phlegmy ailment that causes coughing, because it helps to get the phlegm out of the system. If you have a fever basil can be applied directly to the head or body, in the form of hot packs (make an infusion and soak cloth or towels in it). It is also good for colds and the flu, and is noted to be great for earaches. Basil is know to strengthen the immune system, so if you are one of those people who seem to be sick all the time, basil might be just what you need!

Some people swear that basil can get rid of any migraine, and since most migraines are sinus related, that makes perfect sense. If you are having trouble with your menstrual cycle, basil can help to regulate it for you, and if your problem is that your cycle is too light it will solve that problem for you as well. If you suffer from skin problems, basil might be just what you are looking for. It is said to be antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal, thus, people who are suffering from acne and other inflammatory ailments can try applying fresh basil directly to the places where they have problems, and it should help.

The Chinese use basil for many purposes as well, including bladder and urinary problems, and blood diseases. Some people throughout history have even used basil to cure cancerous tumors! In Ayurvedic medicine basil is called “tulsi”, and is used widely in India for many purposes similar to how basil is used medicinally in the West and other Eastern lands.

For those who suffer from nervous disorders, such as anxiety attacks, basil is going to be your friend. Keep some with you wherever you go, if possible, and whenever you feel an anxiety attack coming on, just take out your sprig of basil leaves or basil flowers and take a big whiff of it. Inhale as deeply as you can, and you should feel better right away. Basil is relaxing and calming, and is certain to help you to forget why you were anxious in the first place! If you are prone to feeling tired, basil is also your friend. Again, just keep a sprig or two of basil with you and deeply inhale the refreshing aroma. The essential oils that are abundant in the fresh basil herb are great for reviving you and helping you to feel refreshed and revived. This can be particularly useful at the end of a long work day, when you are feeling like you can’t concentrate any longer. Just breathe in the lovely aroma of the basil and you will be able to continue with your day!

So, if you are suffering from any of the ailments we just talked about, carry a few sprigs of basil around with you and use them frequently! You will be glad that you did!

 

Email me: mia@yournaturalhealthonline.com

 



Mint and its Benefits

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 25-02-2016

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mint herb

 

There are all kinds of fantastic beneficial herbs that you can find right in the vegetable section of your supermarket. In fact, the herb that we are going to talk about this week can be easily found right in your backyard! Mint grows practically everywhere, and is easy to cultivate and harvest. It smells wonderfully fresh, and tastes delicious as well. Mint is also widely available all over the world, particularly here and in this vicinity, with mint being used in practically everything! The great thing about mint is that it tastes so good too!

mint essential oil

The history of the use of mint as a medicine is practically as old as mint itself, and there are records of its use in ancient China (and other countries in the Far East), India, the Middle East, Europe, and the Americas. It is truly an international herb.

spearmint herb cut

You can get mint as an herbal medicine, in many different forms, including as a fresh herb, dried herb, essential oil, herbal oil, and even in capsule form (for taking as a digestive medicine). But, if you want it in its most natural form, then fresh mint is the route for you. And, what’s even better is that mint is so well tested that some companies are even selling it as a non-prescription medicine, but who needs that when you can have the fresh version and it’s as inexpensive as can be!

peppermint herb cut

There are so many ways that you can have mint as well. If you like warm drinks, then a lovely mint infusion will be the way. If you prefer chewing on green leafy things, then fresh, either plain, in a salad or sandwich is what you need. And, dried is another option that keeps things fresh, practically indefinitely.

organic herb seeds

And mint is great for so many different medical ailments that some people call it a panacea. It is particularly well known for its use as a digestive aid. If you suffer from intestinal gasses, heartburn, flatulence, digestive upset, IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), nausea, and even intestinal cramping, then mint is just what the doctor ordered (although it is highly unlikely that any conventional doctor that you know will prescribe it)! Many people swear by its use for diarrhea too. Mint is also great for hemorrhoids, shrinking the swollen veins (you can use fresh mint, or mint juice here, but I find that the essential oil is particularly helpful in this case, particularly if mixed with calendula oil and other essential oils).

china tea cup set

Mint is great for problems in the respiratory system, being a great help with people suffering with phlegm problems such as bronchitis and asthma, breathing-type allergies, and is even used historically for helping with tuberculosis. Mint is good for those suffering with the flu, but try to catch it early before it takes hold. Mint is also great for feverish conditions as well as any type of inflammation.

 

organic mint tea

Mint infusion (made with hot water and some mint leaves) is great for calming down raw nerves and anxiety. In this same capacity, it is well known for helping to get rid of heart palpitations, which is particularly helpful for nervous, anxious people. Mint is also great as an antibacterial and antifungal. It is great for muscle aches and pains, and is also useful for cleansing the liver. It even helps to get rid of nasty urinary system gravel that can be one of the most painful ailments of all.

mango and mint cookbook

In addition to being a great medicament, mint is also loaded with important nutrients as a food too. It contains a certain amount of protein, calcium, iron (and other minerals), and a host of vitamins, including a healthy dose of Vitamin C, Vitamin D, and Vitamin E, along with other things like B vitamins. It also contains chlorophyll, which is nature’s antibiotic and freshener. So, mint is clearly great for your health from a variety of standpoints. And it’s much better to get your vitamins and minerals naturally from whole fresh foods than it is to get them from a tablet. The same goes for medicine. Isn’t it better to take your medicine in the form of fresh whole food, rather than a tablet or capsule? I know that I am certainly going to choose natural food over pills any day!

instant pot

For those people who suffer from skin ailments, such as acne, mint is just what you need. You can put mint juice directly on your skin, in order to help kill the excess bacteria that are plaguing you, and it will also help clear up eczema. If you get a bug bite or sting, then applying mint directly over the area will help reduce the burn, sting or itching.

simply mint gum

Mint has been used in candies and chewing gum for ages, and now you will know one of the reasons for that. Mint actually helps get rid of the harmful bacteria that flourish in our mouths, particularly in the presence of food or during the night when we sleep and our mouths are not active in producing saliva (which helps to clean our mouths). It is great for the tongue as well as the mouth, stamping out the harmful bacteria that grow and helping to keep our mouths feeling and smelling minty fresh and clean. (Now you know where all those toothpaste commercials came from).

Another great thing about mint is that it is safe and beneficial for babies as well as adults, and thus is one of the most useful medicinal foods anywhere. Then you have the added benefit of its being available practically everywhere, and you have perfection. So, get out to your supermarket, green grocer (or the little Afghani guys on the street) and get some fresh mint! It’s inexpensive and great for your health!

 

Email me: Mia@yournaturalhealth.com



Cilantro and Its Benefits

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 20-02-2016

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cilantro

 

Green leafy vegetables are always touted as being some of the healthiest of all, as are green leafy herbs. There is a good reason for that. The reason is that they are loaded with all kinds of good vitamins, minerals, nutrients, and medicinal benefits. Last week we talked about wheatgrass. This week we have another of the great green wonders. The best thing about this one (unlike wheatgrass) is that it is readily available all over Kuwait and the world! All you have to do is go to any supermarket, any vegetable market, or even to the roadside guys that sell fresh vegetables from a pseudo-bicycle veggie stand. The herb I am referring to here is cilantro, which is also known as coriander leaf. Here in Kuwait it is called “kuzber”. It is used as a cooking herb here and around the world, but not many people know that it is also great as a medicinal herb, and that it has countless benefits.

organic cilantro

Cilantro is known for the fact that it looks very much like parsley, but has a different, somewhat stronger aroma, and a slightly different leaf configuration. (Some people call it Chinese parsley, even though it is indigenous to the Middle Eastern areas and some parts of Europe originally, and in spite of the fact that it is grown in many places including India, where it is widely used in cooking and as a medicine). So, when you want to go and buy it, look for it in the same place as the parsley. It is generally right next to the parsley, and is the same price (super cheap!) The seeds, which generally are called coriander (not cilantro), are also available everywhere, and are renowned for their healing properties too. They are quite inexpensive, so no one should have any trouble buying them. Coriander essential oil can also be found in the repertoire of any aromatherapist worth his or her salt (which is good for the same ailments but only used externally due to the oil’s strong properties).

cilantro essential oil

Cilantro, which is known scientifically as “Coriandrum sativum”, is used for many ailments, including digestive problems. It is great for indigestion (which is why it is often added to dishes that have gas causing ingredients, etc) and it helps to get a flailing appetite back. It is also renowned for getting rid of heavy metal (aluminum, mercury, etc)(or other) toxicity, and it is so effective in doing this that the metal are found in the urine almost immediately after eating a dish containing cilantro (or coriander)! This is important because it has been found that several diseases concentrate in areas where these heavy metals accumulate. Also, people with heavy metal accumulation in their bodies exhibit many other symptoms as well, such as anemia, chronic fatigue syndrome, serious allergies and sensitivities, heart problems, hormonal imbalances, migraines, and a host of psychological symptoms (including anxiety, memory problems, and many more serious problems). Thus, getting rid of them is of utmost importance. In fact, cilantro (or coriander, whichever you prefer) is known as being one of the best overall medicinal tonics! Who knew?

organic herb seeds

Cilantro is good for diabetics as well, and there has been research that shows that it is effective in helping to balance blood sugar levels. It is known to balance and lower blood cholesterol too. When trying to get rid of infections (bacterial, fungal, and viral), or prevent them, (in fact, historically it was used as an antibacterial agent, a fact that has now been verified scientifically). Scientifically it has been found to kill the salmonella bacteria, which is probably one of the reasons that cilantro is used so extensively with fish and other seafood, chicken, and other dishes here in the Middle East, particularly Iran. And the most delicious herb to eat with shrimp is coriander. If you haven’t tried the well-known Kuwaiti shrimp dish that uses generous amounts of fresh cilantro as a base for a delicious sauce, don’t miss it! Coriander is supposed to be fantastic also as an antimicrobial. Using it in foods apparently helps them not to spoil! People have been using both the leaf and the seed since ancient times for these and other purposes, and this herb was even found with the Egyptian pharaohs inside their tombs. Ancient Greeks and Romans also used it as a medicine. At that time in history cilantro was considered a great talisman against evil spirits and the devil himself. In Indian ayurvedic medicine coriander or cilantro is considered a balancing herb, and they use it when a cooling cure is needed.

miracle gro aerogarden

Many people use cilantro for helping with rheumatism and arthritis and the associated pain that accompanies these problems. Since it helps to increase the circulation in the body, it is going to be great for many other ailments as well, including getting rid of excess body fluids, particularly for those who suffer from edema. This is also great for people who are suffering with cellulite! Many people swear by its use as a deodorant as well, and say that it gets rid of their unpleasant smelling perspiration odor. This will hopefully be good news to those people out these who have a problem with that. (If it’s not good news to them, it will be good news for the rest of us!)

 

The best part is that cilantro (coriander) is considered totally safe as a food and as a medicinal herb. Even in very large quantities, it doesn’t show toxicity, and on the contrary, is well tolerated and good for us. So, make it a point to go out now and try it if you haven’t before. You don’t want to miss out on such a good thing, and the fact that you can buy it right in your local supermarket, on the streets, or practically anywhere in Kuwait for a very low price is certainly a big plus. So, what are you waiting for?

 

Email me: mia@yournaturalhealthonline.com

 




Quick and Easy Natural Remedies for Depression

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 20-11-2015

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depression 3

 

When you are feeling down, it might be because something awful has happened in your life, or it might just be that you are bored. So, how about getting out there and taking up a hobby? Think of all the things you love to do and choose one or two of them to do on a regular basis. If you can’t think of anything, then why not try something completely new and different? You’d be surprised at what you might end up liking! Don’t limit yourself to certain things though, keep your mind open and go for something unusual or something that you would never have thought of yourself as doing. Whatever it is might just be the answer you’ve been looking for, and you’ll never know till you try it. You might even make some new friends while doing your new hobby!

    matchitecture set                wool felting set

 

Doctors are quick to give medication for depression and other problems, when medication is not necessarily the answer, and it definitely isn’t the first line of action in any case. Why take medication when you can get similar results from fairly simple changes in your life, along with some simple dietary rules that aren’t THAT difficult to follow. If you go to the doctor for something like depression or any other kind of anxiety disorder, don’t be quick to jump on the chemical medication bandwagon. Wait for a while and take your cash in hand. There is almost no time when this ordeal happens that medication is a good answer. So, leave that market to the hucksters and others, but in order to keep your good health at a maximum, pay attention to your own body, make sure that you take as few medications as possible, and stay as natural as you can.

 lemon balm herb  linden flowers herb  st johns wort

There are some natural alternatives to the chemical medications that conventional medicine prescribes for depression and other similar ailments. They act to relax, reduce the stress reaction, and calm the nerves, as well as to balance glands. These are herbs such as lemon balm, lemon verbena, linden flowers, chamomile, lavender, Siberian ginseng, valerian, fennel seed, mint, rose petals, licorice root, basil, gingko, rosemary, marjoram, and Saint John’s wort. These can be infused as a tea, with only a teaspoon of the dried herb for a half or whole liter of water in a thermos. You do not boil the herbs, but only the water, and then put the herbs in the hot water and cover it for 15 minutes or so, until a light colored tea has been gotten. Then you can drink that throughout the day. You can choose any one or more of these herbs, but whichever you choose, make sure that you still only use one teaspoon total of the herbs for your tea. It shouldn’t be too strong. Remember, as always, less is more.

     lavender oil   melissa oil     chamomile oil    jasmine oil    ylang ylang oil

Essential oils can also be used for the same purpose and they are basically the same as the herbs. Lavender is good, as is marjoram, basil, rose, lemon balm (Melissa), chamomile, neroli, patchouli, lemongrass, sandalwood, frankincense, myrrh, ylang ylang, rosemary, jasmine, clary sage, bergamot, geranium, orange, and grapefruit essential oils are all good for depression, so choose oils that you like the aroma of, and use them in oils (with just a few drops), inhale them, burn them (in oil burners to diffuse the aroma in your home), in the bath (a few drops in the very warm bath water), and some people even put a drop or two in their tea (although I don’t recommend this unless you are under the care of an aromatherapy professional).

It is important to remember though, that if you decide to try herbal teas or essential oils you can’t take chemical drugs along with them. While herbs and oils are generally extremely safe to use, you must still consider the fact that they are natural medications nonetheless, and will react in your body, so you mustn’t use the two together. Also, if you are under the care of a medical, psychiatric, and/or psychological professional, please make sure that you inform them of your desire to try going natural for your problems, and if you find that they are not very receptive to your wishes, then perhaps you would be better off finding another professional who is more receptive and willing to help you and work with you in your quest to become a healthier, happier person.

stresstabs

When you are depressed it is important to make sure that you are getting the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that your body needs, so make sure that you are taking a good multivitamin (preferably without iron). A good one on the market here is Stresstabs. They are very inexpensive and loaded with high levels of important vitamins and minerals. You might also want to take evening primrose oil or borage oil as well. I personally don’t like fish oil capsules, just because when they melt in my stomach they make me feel ill and I feel like I’m breathing fish (which isn’t pleasant), but if you don’t suffer from those problems then by all means, fish oil is another great supplement. And, if you have been tested and you know that you need a certain supplement, then you really need to make sure that you are getting it. If your iron is low, then take iron, or preferably get natural iron from eating good, wholesome foods with iron, such as liver, dark green leafy vegetables and the like. We mentioned food last week, but again, please remember that there is no replacement for a good diet. Keep away from the dairy products if you suffer from depression. Also, too many carbohydrates, particularly refined ones will keep you feeling lethargic and miserable, which will make you feel worse than before. Additionally, some research is pointing to the idea that for some people the diet they are eating is what is actually causing the depression in the first place, and that has been my own hypothesis all along. So, if you are suffering from depression, check your diet and lifestyle, make necessary changes, take supplements if you need them, change your attitude, drink herbal teas, use essential oils, and get happy!

(To be continued)

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 

Do You Suffer From Depression? Natural Ways to Deal with Depression

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 19-11-2015

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depression-1

The widespread problem of depression is being talked about practically everywhere these days. Oprah is always talking about it, and so is Dr. Phil and others. There are literally hundreds and thousands of self help books out there on the market today based on peoples’ struggles with depression. Statistics show that around one million people commit suicide worldwide every single year, thousands (if not millions) more who tried but didn’t succeed, and many, many thousands, or probably millions, who are thinking about it or have thought about it. Most of those people began their quest for death with depression. In fact there are almost 20 million people a year, in the USA alone, with depressive disorders. Now THAT is scary!!! So, the big question is what can we do about it? The answer to that is A LOT! We can actually do a lot, and if you are someone who suffers from depression, then read on, because you are going to learn tools that can help you get over and out of your slump and back into life.

Let’s face it. Life is sometimes hard, and it isn’t going to get any better unless we take a different viewpoint. We have to begin looking at the glass as “half full” instead of “half empty”, or another famous saying that really sums it all up is, “When life gives you a lemon, make lemonade”. Looking on the bright side may seem like an effort in the beginning, but it will become easier and easier as time goes on and soon you will be able to do it automatically without even thinking about it. It’s all just basically mind over matter.

depression cure book

Before we get into the mental aspects of the problem, let’s look first at the physical aspects. The first thing that you have to do is take an inventory of your diet. This is imperative, because no matter how much mental work you do, if your diet is a contributing factor in the problem, then you won’t feel completely better. Do an honest food diary for several days and analyze what you are eating. The ideal would be to have plenty of fresh vegetables, fresh healthy proteins, and a small amount of fresh fruit and whole grains. Keep away from things with artificial colors, flavors, and additives as much as possible. Try to stay away from tea and coffee and other toxins (like tobacco, etc) also. This change alone might be all you need!

Here is a book that will get you started on the proper anti-depression and good health diet that you need…

the primal blueprint

Proper sleep is extremely important, and if everything is right in your body, you will be able to sleep. The only time that will go wrong is when you turn your schedule around, for whatever reason, for example work hours, staying up regularly watching TV, chatting on the Internet, studying late hours, or whatever. The fact is that your body has an internal system of regulation and if something is not going well you have got to do something about it. Otherwise you’ll most likely be in for a host of diseases and other problems. The correct way to do this is to wake up early in the morning and stay up until whenever you go to bed at night (which shouldn’t be too late). The body thrives on the idea that the daylight hours will be your waking hours, and the dark hours should be your sleeping hours. You should also get enough sleep without getting too much, so try to make sure that you sleep at least 6 hours a day, preferably 8. Staying up all night at your friend’s house or sitting in the diwaniyah all night long isn’t good for your health. The bottom line is that your body was created to make sure that you don’t get into negative emotion, so don’t let yourself.

21 day primal

Exercise is a very important activity that you need to get involved in if you are trying to beat depression. Any kind of exercise will do, including walking, swimming, jogging, yoga, martial arts, aerobics, and more. Do what you enjoy, because you need to have an activity that you are going to stick with for the long term, and make sure that you have more than one choice, if possible, so that you don’t get bored.

get your shift together

Jog your funny bone. If you want to stop feeling depressed then you have to laugh. Even laughing when you don’t feel happy, when you feel miserable, when you are totally depressed will have a positive effect on you immediately. Even when you are feeling like a total fake, it is still working, so keep it up anyway. Scientifically it has been discovered that laughing and smiling actually releases some important hormones into the body that help to make us feel better. Also, it’s important to remember that you will feel and be what you think of, so make sure that you always visualize and think of good things. So, remember, if you are suffering from depression, don’t watch sad and depressing movies. Watch comedies only. Watch happy shows, read happy and uplifting stories and news, and try your best to have a positive attitude, even in the face of adversity. You’ll be surprised what a little “mind over matter” action will do for you! Don’t hang around with people who are negative, depressing, or mean. You don’t need to add to your problems, and they will just drag you down with them unless you are extremely careful.

the end of stress book

Try to keep stress to a minimum at all times. If something happens that wasn’t quite what you expected, don’t worry about it. If it’s something that you are capable of changing then great, but if it isn’t, big deal. Just accept the idea that situations and people are different, that not everyone likes the same things that we do, that things happen, and get on with it. There is no benefit whatsoever in whining about things you can’t do anything about. All that does is bring in more and more negativity, which is exactly the opposite of what you are supposed to be doing. You need to think positively, be positive, and put yourself in the best possible state of mind. It’s not that difficult to do, but it takes a little bit of time to get the hang of what is required to do to get there, particularly if it doesn’t come naturally to you. No matter what your life is like, you can always find someone who has more problems than you do, more illnesses than you have, and more stress. So, don’t look up to those who are doing better than you, but always look down at those who don’t have it as good as you. You can always find people who are better off than you, no matter how rich, how happy, or how whatever you are, but looking at people whose situations are worse than yours will help ground you and make you understand how lucky you really are. That alone will make you smile for real.

(to be continued)

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

Quick and Easy Ways to Get Rid of Minor Hearing Problems

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 18-11-2015

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hearing problems

The next time you notice that you are saying “excuse me” or more likely “huh” to your friends too much because you can’t hear what they are saying, think about the idea that whatever you are suffering from might be something to look into and not a figment of your imagination. Don’t ignore it and let it slide, because minor ear problems can easily turn into something serious. Remember, you might have an infection and your ear is close to your brain! You don’t want whatever is bothering you to get in there do you? While an infection is one of the most serious of the possible problems, chances are it’s something much less frightening than that.

Hearing problems are commoner than you think. They can be caused by lots of different things, including loud noises (yes, turn the music down please), injury, infection, and more. Lot’s of people have hearing problems and most of these problems are quite easy to take care of. If you are having trouble hearing and the onset was sudden, then chances are that you have some wax buildup in your ear canal. Also, if you are suffering from itchiness, tinnitus (ringing in your ears), or dizziness, etc, those are also signs that you could possibly have wax buildup in your ears. This is something you can clear up fairly easily most of the time. And you must keep in mind that it is quite normal to have ear wax. If you didn’t have it your ear would end up being one unhealthy place! One of the reasons it is there is to protect your ear from invaders of the bacterial and viral type, to keep out the dirt, and also to act as a water-repellent. It’s just a problem when it is produced in an over abundance, which can sometimes be natural (for some people), and sometimes it is a response to a problem in the ear.

Did you know that those cotton buds that you are so in love with are really not so great after all? You should really be cleaning your outer ears with plain (or perhaps mildly soapy) water (when you bathe or shower), or, at most, a towel or tissue on the outer part of your ear. But, you’re not supposed to be shoving those cotton buds halfway (or all the way) into your ear to coax that earwax out. All that does is poke the wax in deeper and can cause possible problems. Some people have even caused eardrum perforations by using cotton ear buds too vigorously.

One of the problems that can occur in your ear is that the ear wax can get impacted in the ear, and sometimes it goes up against the eardrum and causes further problems. This can happen due to over zealous cleaning with ear buds, or naturally. This is not usually serious but can cause hearing loss, which can often be quite severe. When this happens you need to do something right away. The doctor will normally give you ear drops right away to begin breaking down the earwax. Then, when you go back several days later, they can use a vacuum machine to draw out the excess wax that has built up. If you want to try your own natural solution, there are also several ways you can do it. One of the most interesting and oldest methods is called “candling”. This consists of taking a special cone shaped contraptions (such as reeds, wax cones, candles, etc, and lighting a flame at the outer end, which causes a vacuum to form, it turn pulling out the earwax. Some people claim that this method not only cleans out the ears but also does something for a person’s inner self as well. This method is said to have been used by the ancient Egyptians, and is used by the Native Americans to this day. Some professionals claim that it doesn’t work and can be dangerous, but natural practitioners continue to use it, and swear by it. (If you are going to try this yourself, please do it under the supervision of an expert, and make sure that you do not have perforated ear drums or no ear tubes, because in those cases this method could be detrimental). So, in this case, when in doubt, don’t. Some people use a simple hot water bottle to heat the earwax and allow it to come out on its own. The hot water bottle method is a lot simpler and safer than candling.

lamb hot water bottle

Other people use a wash of hydrogen peroxide (which is a naturally occurring chemical). Apparently all you have to do it pour a small amount of it in your ear and wait. Shortly ear wax and other things will begin to come out. Another method is to use the hydrogen peroxide on a cotton ear bud. That method won’t get rid of serious wax buildup but it will make you feel better.

hydrogen peroxide

An even safer method is to put olive oil in your ear. Olive oil is like a natural antibiotic and it is oily as well. If you want an even stronger remedy, you can also try adding some squeezed garlic juice in with the olive oil before you put it in. After allowing it some time, the wax should begin to soften and will often come out on its own.

cortijo de suerte alta picual extra virgin olive oil

The fact is that some people just produce more earwax than others. Those people have the choice of doing nothing and leaving it, or, if it is bothering them, they can try one of the solutions mentioned above. You can always take preventative measures and use a softening agent (like olive oil) once in a while to make sure that it doesn’t become worse. If your problem is chronic though and bothers you, or if it is accompanied be severe deafness or pain, you should do something right away. Even if you decide to use a natural home style remedy it is better to consult the doctor before doing so, just to rule out any organic ailment like a perforated eardrum, etc. Don’t leave your ear health to chance because once you lose your hearing you may never get it back. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 




Quick and Easy Way to Keep Those Mosquitoes and Bugs at Bay

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 11-11-2015

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Mosquito
The mosquitoes are out in force these days, as are the biting ants, and other annoying insect pests. Some people just never seem to get bitten by them at all, but others just attract them it seems, and are usually covered in annoying itchy bites. So far, for us here in Kuwait, the idea of a mosquito bite, while being unwanted and really uncomfortable, is not something that we need to consider extremely dangerous, but there are places on the earth where they are, such as in places where malaria, yellow fever, encephalitis, etc. are prevalent. Also, West Nile disease is more and more worrying, although we have not had to deal with it in Kuwait so far. So, what can you do if you’re one of those sweet smelling human beings that those mosquitoes and ants want so badly? Plenty!

mosquito essential oil blend

The first plan of action is to prevent those insects from coming around you at all. That is the ideal situation, so that you don’t have to deal with the bites afterward. The most obvious protection is the basic mosquito net. It might be cliché but they are still probably the most effective protection around. The only problem is that you can’t go out with a mosquito net wrapped around you. So, while mosquito nets are great for when you are going to sleep, you would look kind of funny walking around with one draped over your head. The “practical version” of the mosquito net is to simply wear clothing that covers all of your exposed areas. Also, it is important not to wear colors that look too flowery or bright, so the best thing is to wear light and dull earthy colors. Some perfumes and soap fragrances can also attract mosquitoes (and other bugs). The worst time for mosquitoes to bite is during the dark hours (specifically at the exact times of dusk and dawn), although that is not the only time they bite, and they are particularly pleased with dank, stagnant areas, swampy areas, or places where the humidity is high and it is hot. Also, having yellow tinged outdoor lights for places that might have mosquitoes is supposed to help reduce their numbers.

mosquito bracelets

There are practically countless products on the market right now, including some that are really not that safe or healthy. There are several that are safe and hopefully as healthy as chemical formulations would allow without being totally ineffective. There are yet others that are natural and considered totally safe under all circumstances, even pregnancy! Mosquito repellents are what you need to ward off those little rascals. They don’t kill the mosquitoes but they make life so miserable for them that they stop coming around. Citronella is one of the most well known natural items on the market. You can get it in the form of pure essential oil, and also as a blend and in products containing certain quantities of it. Probably the most well known product containing citronella oil is “Skin-So-Soft” from Avon. The great thing is that this product is available right here in Kuwait. Other important mosquito repelling essentials oils that have been included in many name brand marketed products include lemongrass, geranium, cedar, and peppermint.

mosquito sticks

As far as chemical repellents go “Deet” (which is actually N,N-diethyl-m-toluamide or N,N-diemethylbenzamide) is probably the most well-known (or at least one of the most) mosquito repellents around. It is sold practically everywhere too, and comes in several brand names, such as “Off!”, so it’s not difficult to find. These come in many different forms including sprays, wristbands, creams, oils, and more. Just be careful to follow the directions for use, because overusing can result in too much absorption through the skin, which can be toxic. Permethrin is another well known repellent chemical mosquito repellent that is particularly effective on clothing and cloth, and in fact is effective for weeks. If you can’t find one of the types that I have mentioned, then just make certain that whichever type of repellent that you end up using it has been approved by a bona fide, official, and respected health agency. I’m not certain whether any of these are available right now in Kuwait, but even if they aren’t, you should be able to get something similar, if need be.

citronella fire log mosquito repel

Some scientific studies also suggest that if you are prone to being bitten by mosquitoes, taking thiamine (which is vitamin B1) regularly will prevent mosquitoes from bothering you, and this is supposed to be particularly true for those who have serious allergic reactions to the bites.

skin so soft mosquito

But, if it’s already too late and you have already gotten bitten, then relief is easier than you think. There are some great herbs and essential oils out there on the market that you can use to get practically instant relief from mosquito bites. You can use pure lavender or tea tree essential oils directly on the mosquito bites, or you can blend calendula or olive oil (as a base) with several drops of pure lavender, tea tree, peppermint, geranium, German or Roman chamomile, or cypress essential oils. You will get immediate relief from the itching and redness and if the bite is swollen that will improve as well. These essential oils work so well that it is practically miraculous.

lavender mosquito       calendula oil mosquito

There are also several herbs that are great for bug bites, and some of them even grow in your garden. Marjoram, basil, marshmallow leaf, chamomile flowers, calendula flowers, licorice, and aloe (which is widely available in Kuwait) can all be used topically right on the mosquito bite for quick relief, and if you don’t have the herbs fresh, then you can also use dried herbs. You can either soak them in warm water, or brew them into an herbal infusion and then put them on the bites in the form of warm compresses. (These remedies are good for other types of bug bites as well).

calendula 2 mosquito      calendula mosquito

So, if you are one of those people who are prone to getting bitten, you don’t have to worry any more. Even if you can’t prevent the bites, you can get quick relief by using one of these great natural remedies.

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 

Quick and Easy Way to Get Rid of Sinus Congestion Due to Cold, Flu, or Allergies

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Information About Essential Oils, Information About Herbs, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 07-11-2015

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sinus problems

Well, here we are again in the middle of the changing of the seasons here in Kuwait. Practically everyone is suffering from sinus and ear problems, allergies, colds, or the flu. They are sniffling, coughing, sneezing, wheezing, and worse! So, what can we do about this difficult time? Plenty!

There are so many alternative methods of dealing with the symptoms that come alongside any of the above-mentioned ailments. Some of the symptoms are:

  • excessive sneezing
  • coughing (either dry or productive, depending on the problem)
  • drippy or clogged nose
  • wheezy or whistling sounds when breathing (coming from the throat or chest area
  • tightness or pain in the chest area
  • feeling of pressure or pain in the forehead, temples, sides of face, cheeks, and       teeth (in the absence of other dental problems)
  • dizziness
  • ear pain with or without popping or whooshing sounds
  • headache concentrated in the frontal area, over the eyes
  • inability to taste or smell

 

The first thing you must do if you are suffering from any of these symptoms or others that may not have been mentioned here is to stop all dairy products immediately. Dairy (like milk, cheese, cream, etc) will cause you to have more phlegm, which you definitely do not want, since you already have a problem with too much phlegm. There are other foods that you would be better off stopping, for example oranges (that includes the juice)(I know, I know, since you were a small child everyone has been telling you to eat more oranges and drink orange juice whenever you were sick because you needed the vitamin C, well just pretend you didn’t hear it from them), onions, most store bought fruit (because they are usually loaded with pesticides and other preservatives that will cause you to become worse), heavy spices, tomato products (again the phlegm problem), and anything else that you have noticed increases your symptoms (you may have an allergy or sensitivity to some other type of food and not even realize it).

eucalyptus essential oil

Once you have reduced the influence of the foods that you are eating you can then move on to do something about your actual symptoms. If you are suffering from migraines, pressure or pain around the head and face, drippy or stuffed nose, or any number of other sinus type symptoms then there are several plans of action that you can take. The more you do of these the better you will feel. Steaming will always make you feel much better and more clear-headed. Just boil some water until it is steaming hot, and prepare some essential oils or fresh (or dried) herbs. The ones that I have found to work best are the camphorous ones, like eucalyptus, sage, thyme, and pine, but there are others that also work, like mint, marjoram, and rosemary. If you can get these in essential oil form great, otherwise, you can buy the fresh or dried herbs in the supermarket, or even better, grow your own. Once the water is hot and steaming, get your large bowl and towel ready, pour the hot water in the bowl, put in a few drops of the oil or a small handful of the herbs and immediately put your face over the steam with the towel over your head to make sure that none of the steam escapes. Breathe as deeply as you can until you can’t smell the oil or herbs anymore or until the steam dissipates. This process can be repeated up to several times a day. If you try this you will love it, because its action is fast and relieving. Steaming is definitely one of the best remedies for this type of problem. You can use essential oils for small infants as well, either with a vaporizer in the bedroom, or by putting a few drops of the essential oil on their pillow case before they sleep.

essential oil vaporizer

You can also have herbal teas. Naturally different teas will have different actions, but all of them will be soothing and warming, which is exactly what you need. The best to have are sage, thyme, marjoram, marshmallow (the plant not the confection), basil, eucalyptus, lavender, rosemary, mint, and the list goes on, but those are the best choices, and since some of them are available in practically every supermarket, it won’t be difficult for you to find them. These are herbs that are good to always keep on hand, just in case, and even the smallest infant can drink these safely (just remember with a small baby to reduce the concentration of the tea by half or more). When you make your tea, boil the water first, and then when the water is in your cup add a scant teaspoon of the herbs (or you can also put a heaping teaspoonful into a thermos), cover it will a saucer and let it steep for at least 10 minutes. The idea is that the water should be tinted but not dark, preferably. The reason that you cover it is because you don’t want the essential oils (which are the most important part of the herb) to escape and evaporate. You can add sugar if you want but you probably won’t feel that you need it since most of the western herbs (American and European) are mild and tasty on their own. You can drink several cups of this type of tea daily until you feel better.

marshmallow herb

Remember, you don’t HAVE to suffer from sinus problems, colds, the flu, etc. All you have to do is take action and do something about it. We tend to get lazy when we aren’t feeling well, and don’t really feel like preparing whatever it is that we need to do to help ourselves, but we find it easy to get up and make a trip to the doctor. So, instead of making trips to the doctor, make that little extra effort in order to cure yourself. Herbs and essential oils are certainly better choices than the usual antibiotics that conventional medical practitioners love to give out. And when you’re not feeling well, it is difficult to get yourself up and out in the first place. Also, don’t forget that if you catch whatever you are suffering from early, when you first feel it coming on, you will be able to prevent it from getting worse and taking hold. You may never have to be ill again! Wouldn’t that be great?!

thyme essential oil

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

 

Quick and Easy Way To Get Rid of Muscle Spasms From Exercise

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Natural Health, Quick and Easy Natural Remedies You Can Do At Home | Posted on 30-10-2015

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muscle spasm in leg

Lot’s of people complain of muscles spasms in various parts of their bodies, particularly their legs or lower extremities. Some people say that the problem is worse when they are in bed sleeping (or trying to). The really bad spasms even have their own name. We call them Charlie horses (when they are in our leg muscles), but don’t let that cute name fool you. They hurt like crazy, and some people get them quite often. Some people get muscle spasms in their feet too, which is very painful and makes it difficult to walk or move around, particularly when they come regularly. So, the question is… what is happening inside the body that would cause the muscles to go into a spasm like that? There are several possibilities, with some being commoner than others. Let’s look at these causes and see what we can do to remedy the problem.

Probably the commonest reason of all for muscle cramps is over exercise. Naturally, if you have just done a super workout, don’t be surprised if you feel the burn, as they say. Also, if you have taken up a new sport, it is perfectly normal for the muscles to go into a kind of shock in the beginning, so don’t worry about it. The best thing to do in these cases is to soak in hot salty water. It will help your body to work out the lactic acid buildup/low mineral intake that is causing the cramping feeling. But, don’t worry too much, since this problem is only temporary, and will go in a day or two.

Another of the reasons that people may get muscle spasms in their lower extremities could be dehydration. This is a fairly common cause. Here in Kuwait this is particularly likely since the weather here is hot most of the year and it is easy to forget to drink enough water if you are not careful. While this isn’t usually a very dangerous problem, it can quickly turn into one, so always make sure that you drink enough water. Besides the obvious dangers of getting dehydrated, muscle spasms in your legs and feet are not pleasant and if you can avoid them with a little water, do. This is particularly important in the Holy Month of Ramadan, since you are not able to drink water all day. So, do make sure that you get in enough water at night. If not water, at least some kind of liquids, but water is the first choice.

himalaya salt

Click HERE to get Himalayan Salt from Amazon

Another common reason for muscle spasms is the lack of salt in the body. Now, you don’t have to go out and buy a salt block to lick all day long. Just make sure that you’re eating a balanced diet, and that, if you are suffering from leg or foot cramps, you get a little more salt in with your daily intake of liquids. This problem of salt depletion can also occur with the depletion of calcium and other minerals and vitamins, which upsets the equilibrium in your system and can cause all sorts of other problems as well as the muscle cramps. So, always make sure that you eat a well balanced diet, drink plenty of liquids and, if you need to take a multivitamin with minerals, take one! This is particularly important if you are suffering from some type of acute ailment, such as diarrhea, or vomiting, where it is easier for you to become dehydrated and depleted of these important things. But, if you are well and still complain of muscle cramps, drink more water, eat food with a little more salt, and eat foods with plenty of magnesium (like dark leafy greens, avocados, nuts, seeds (especially pumpkin seeds), fish, bananas, dried beans, lentils, brown rice, and yes! dark chocolate).

organic sprouted pumpkin seeds

Click HERE to buy raw sprouted organic pumpkin seeds from Amazon

Sometimes there is no internal problem perse that is causing your cramps… but there are also external factors that can contribute to the problem. The most common external factor would be the cold. While you wouldn’t necessarily think that in Kuwait this would be a problem (everyone knows that the weather here easily goes up to 50 C in the summer months) yet, it really can be a problem here, even in the summer. This is due to the extensive use of air conditioning. So, if you tend to suffer from cramps in the lower extremities, in the summer be careful from overly cold air conditioners, and in the winter make sure you keep warm and out of the cold desert air. Keeping your muscles warm is a simply way of solving your problem. If you must be in a cold environment, either indoors or out, make sure that you are properly dressed. You might even want to go as far as wearing leg warmers and heavier socks. While this might look slightly unusual in the summer, no one will blink an eye in the winter, and don’t worry about it anyway, since your health is more important. Another good remedy is to soak your legs and feet in hot salty water. This is a great remedy for muscle spasms, and just feels good, even after just walking too much. You can also put hot salt water compresses, which will give you the same effect.

heated calf wrap

Click HERE to get this heated calf wrap from Amazon

It is also very effective to use black pepper and ginger essential oils in a base of organic olive oil (or any other organic oil like almond, etc…. all you have to do is put a few drops of each in the base oil and rub it all over the affected area for practically instant relief.

black pepper essential oil ginger essential oil

And a good old foot bath will do wonders for any type of leg muscle spasm. Use water that is quite hot, as hot as you can stand, but not hot enough to burn you obviously 🙂

leg spa foot and leg bathClick HERE to get this foot and leg spa from Amazon

There are some other possible causes of muscles spasms in the legs and feet, but they are rare and caused by a variety of organic diseases, most of which are less common, so before you run off to the doctor to see what the problem is, consider the possible causes that I have mentioned above. Once you have ruled out all of these possibilities, then a trip to a general doctor or other medical practitioner might be in order. It isn’t a good idea to leave this type of ailment too long, without finding out what the problem is, just in case.

If you or someone you know suffers from muscle spasms (cramps) in the legs or feet, it is usually easy to get rid of. Don’t worry about it too much, but just take action, and don’t leave it. You need to make sure that your health in number one on your list of things to do!

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com

Can Gadgets Work To Help You Lose Weight?

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Posted by Mia Ponzo | Posted in Complementary Alternative Medicine, Natural Alternative Diet, Natural Beauty, Natural Health, Natural Weight Loss | Posted on 24-10-2015

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fat jiggler

When it comes to losing weight people will do almost anything. But, you will find it interesting to see just what kind of ridiculous things they will actually try. I guess it is a matter of desperate measures for desperate people, but some of these things are hilarious, and really absurd! It really makes you wonder how anyone would actually believe that something like that would work at all! Now, this is not to say that some weight loss gadgets don’t have some merit when it comes to losing weight. That’s not it at all! There are plenty of perfectly good and useful weight loss helpers out there. Unfortunately though, many of the things are a waste of time and money. Those are the ones we will be talking about here.

spot-fat-burners

Check it out! Caffeine laced pantyhose! What will they think of next? While you wear them the caffeine is being released into your body, and supposedly your metabolism is going to be booming in no time flat! Well, if they work, you still need to stay away from them, because, as we stated previously, caffeine is not your friend. So, if you’re thinking of spending your money on this item, don’t.

Skinkiss_Caffeine_Slimming_Tights_Pantyhose

There is also weight loss lip balm. I hope your lips are really chapped, because in order for this to work at all, you would need a lot more of this supposed appetite suppressant than you are ever going to get from swiping this over your lips! Go for the cocoa butter and the salad instead.

burner-balm

Ab-belts are another of the interesting gadgets out on the market today. Do we really think that wearing a special belt around all day or for several hours is going to help us? It’s going to melt away the fat, you say. Highly unlikely! Doing a bunch of stomach crunches for the same amount of time would be sure to give us great abs!

stomach-butt-sculpter

Or perhaps you wish to take it to another level with the “zapping” version, which uses batteries and claims to zap away your problem fatty areas. The only way that I know for sure works for that is the zapping action of a liposuction tube digging away at your fat! I know that zapper is a lot less expensive, but it’s pretty much the same as giving your money away in charity to a really rich guy, and without any of the self satisfaction.

fat joke

Another gimmick that is out in the market is the blue diet light. This is combined with hypnosis apparently. Be very careful when you read about claims like these, because if they worked you would be seeing lots of thin people walking about with beautiful bodies and the reflections of blue lights in their eyes. (Maybe I will tell you about my red light diet story sometime if you are really nice to me. The answer is yes I too, have been gullible!).

japan diet glasses

Along that same line of thought come the diet glasses. These glasses make you think your food is larger. These supposedly work in helping you to eat less according to a study done… OK.  But I will keep my money for those nice designer sunglasses that I had my eye on.

diet earrings

Then, when you take off your diet glasses, you can put on your diet earrings. Here the idea comes from acupuncture and areas on your ears that are supposed to suppress your appetite. Well, do they work? What do YOU think? Now, the kicker is that these earrings are actually cute. You might even want to wear them if they didn’t make you lose weight. But, since they do (?????) that makes it even better! NOT!

sauna suit

All those health clubs that want to suck the fat out of you with their body wraps, fat melting machines and more, are not just whistling Dixie, they are sucking something out of you for sure, but it’s not fat. Basically, it’s your money that they are sucking out of you. So, keep your hard earned money in your pockets and stop wasting it on silly gimmicks that don’t work.

hula-chair

Now, if you don’t want to get bored…what about the hula chair? You can sit on it and never stand up, all the while getting loads of exercise! The best part is that you turn it on and it works all by itself, twisting you in hula-like movements until you turn into Barbie! Don’t run right out and order one now though. They aren’t that cheap, and unfortunately, even though they seem like a lot of fun (did I say that?) they simply aren’t going to give you the results that you are looking for. (Unless the results you are looking for are you sitting in a foolish looking chair twisting like crazy in front of the television).

jiggle machine

Then there are those machines that you lie down on and they do all the work for you, and you’re supposed to lose all kinds of weight. The fact is that anything that allows you lay around like a sloth simply isn’t going to be melting any of that weight off you, no matter how much you hope that it does. Neither will those vacuum chambers that work along the same lines. And those machines that make you jiggle like crazy are just as much of a waste of time as any of those other gadgets. So, steer clear.

air shorts

The moral of the story is that you need to keep your money in your pocket, eat less, and do some kind of exercise of your choice. Whatever it is that you enjoy doing is what you should be doing, while you are cutting down on your intake, because, no matter what anyone tells you, the only way to lose weight (besides cutting off your fat) is to zip up your lips.

 

Email me: miaponzo@yahoo.com