By: Cathy Logan, CHC, COT, CECP
This week, we’re going to talk about “dirty cleaners.” Let me paint a picture…
You load the dishwasher with dirty dishes, and pop in a cleansing pod, powder or liquid. Then, you turn on the power button and the dishwasher “bakes” the cleanser, at high heat, into the dishes and glasses you eat and drink from!
Yep, you guessed it: dishwashing detergents contain particularly toxic ingredients. Really, most of the commercial cleaning products we use to clean our homes contain highly toxic chemicals.
This toxicity builds up through repeated exposure; some known effects include: lung and skin irritation, headaches, insomnia, hormone disruption, birth defects, and cancer.
If you’re looking to detoxify your home, using a chemical-free detergent is the first place you can make a change. What toxic ingredients should you look for on the label of a cleanser?
Read the Label: Toxic Cleansers
- Phthalates – found in: many fragranced household products such as air fresheners, dish soap and even toilet paper.
- Perchloroethylene or Perc – found in: dry cleaning solutions, spot removers, and carpet and upholstery cleaners.
- Triclosan or TCS (has been banned!) – found in: most liquid dishwashing detergents and hand soaps labeled “antibacterial.”
- Quarternary Ammonium Compounds or Quats – found in: fabric softener liquids and sheets and most household cleaners labeled “antibacterial.”
- 2-Butoxyethanol – found in: window, kitchen and multipurpose cleaners.
- Ammonia – found in: polishing agents for bathroom fixtures, glass and jewelry cleaners.
- Chlorine – found in: scouring powders, toilet bowel cleaners, mildew removers, even tap water.
- Sodium Hydroxide – found in: oven cleaners and drain openers.
Shocking, isn’t it? There are also no laws in place requiring manufacturers to list ingredients in laundry detergents and fabric softeners. Most laundry detergents contain toxic dyes and fragrances that can be irritants or even harmful carcinogens that also contribute to neuro-degenerative changes. Dryer sheets are especially toxic!
Some alternatives to commercial cleansers to consider:
- Vinegar, salt and water (or baking soda and water) instead of ammonia-based cleaners.
- 1/2 lemon dipped in Borax instead of abrasive cleaners.
- 1 part lemon juice, 2 parts oil instead of wood polish.
- Baking soda, salt and aluminum in boiling water to polish silver.
- Cornstarch: sprinkle and vacuum, instead of rug cleaner.
- Vinegar or rubbing alcohol with water instead of glass cleaner.
- Wool dryer balls, with a few drops of essential oils, instead of dryer sheets.
These are just a few suggestions to help lighten your toxic load. If you have any questions, or more ideas, feel free to email me!
Cathy is a Certified Health Coach, and a Certified ONDAMED® Technician and Emotion Code® Practitioner. She is also trained in Ionic Foot Detox.
By: Jennifer Salos, MS, CNC
Easing your toxic load is easier than you may think. In addition to the intensive detoxification services that we offer at Chesapeake Holistic (e.g., Acupuncture Detox and Ionic Foot Detox), there are lots of smaller ways to cleanse toxins from your body at home.
Do you need to detox daily? Well, yes, we all do. No matter how healthy your diet is, for example, I’m sure you have a guilty pleasure, or two, like ice cream or pizza. One of mine is homemade potato chips with shaved parmesan.
Daily detox not only helps eliminate toxins from unhealthy foods and drinks, it counteracts the many environmental factors all around us.
1) Drink hot lemon water. In the morning, kick-start detoxification by drinking a cup of warm water with lemon. Lemon detoxes, alkalizes (balances PH levels), and helps boost metabolism.
2) Have some fresh cold-pressed juice. A powerful detox drink: lemon, apple, cucumber, spirulina (algae) powder, ginger, and as many dark greens as possible (e.g., kale and spinach). I suggest drinking it on an empty stomach to help your body absorb the nutrients quickly.
3) Sip a detox tea. Throughout the day, drink a few cups of tea without sugar. Choose tea blends that have ingredients with detoxification properties, such as dandelion root, ginger, burdock and licorice root.
4) Add apple cider vinegar to (almost) everything. There are so many uses for raw, unfiltered, organic apple cider vinegar, including: as a white-vinegar substitute when cooking; as a post-workout cleanse (add to warm water gargle); and as a drink with purified or distilled water, and a sweetener (e.g., organic honey or maple syrup).
Along with improving digestion, and other health benefits, apple cider vinegar alkalizes the body and helps to detox the liver.
5) Opt for detoxifying foods and supplements. You liver and kidneys filter what you ingest and eliminate toxins for overall health.
To aid with your organs’ ability continually cleanse, add the following to your food intake: parsley; cilantro; dandelion root; milk thistle; licorice root; cayenne; turmeric; red pepper; garlic; lemon; lime; grapefruit; artichokes; beets; wheatgrass; spirulina; chlorella; cruciferous vegetables (e.g., kale, cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower); and sea vegetables (e.g., seaweed salad, nori, dulse). Dark leafy greens, in particular, are rich in chlorophyll, which binds toxins and purifies the blood.
6) Eat clean. What does that really mean? Essentially, avoid toxins such as refined sugars, processed foods, alcohol, caffeine and non-organic fruits and veggies. When selecting fish, limit or avoid high-mercury options (e.g., swordfish, tuna, mackerel, shark, marlin and grouper); in general, large fish typically have high mercury levels.
7) Sweat it out. Sweating is crucial for expelling toxins. Biking, tennis, speed-walking… take your pick to get your aerobic heart rate up (and sustain for at least 20 minutes). If you like yoga, try a Bikram (hot yoga) class. For a quick detox (in between exercise) take an infrared sauna, which helps to eliminate heavy metal toxins stored in fat tissues.
8) Jump. Rebounding (springing back from impact) stimulates the lymphatic system and increases circulation. Skipping rope, shooting hoops, or using a portable trampoline are easy ways to add jumping into your daily routine.
9) Eliminate. Cleanse your colon by eating high-fiber foods (e.g., fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains) and by taking daily fiber supplements, probiotics, and digestive enzymes. Be sure to drink lots of water to push the fiber (“nature’s broom”) through your digestive tract. If constipation is a big issue (despite ingesting fiber), use natural laxatives like aloe.
10) Dry body brush. This practice activates the lymphatic system, stimulates blood circulation, and elevates toxin elimination through your body’s largest organ: the skin!
Before showering, use a dry shower brush on your entire body. The key is to use small, sweeping circular motions, upward toward the center of your body – the heart/chest area where your lymph system drains. (Do not sweep downward, as it puts stress on the heart valves.)
Brush each section of skin 10 times:
- Start with your feet. Brush the soles and work your way up your legs with smooth strokes.
- Move onto your stomach, armpits and back, brushing in a circular clockwise motion.
- Follow with a shower and a natural lotion.
Note: Don’t brush too hard! Be sure to use soft and smooth strokes: the lymphatic system only needs/likes a light touch (about the weight of a nickel) to help the lymph fluid move. Your skin will likely be a little pink after brushing, but it shouldn’t be red. If it hurts at all, use less pressure!
11) Tongue scraping. Using a low-cost tongue scraper each morning quickly cleanses bacteria and toxic debris that accumulate while you’re sleeping. This simple addition to your routine boosts detoxification and improves breath.
12) Detox bath. A weekly bath (20-30 minutes) cleanses from the outside in. Add these ingredients to up the detox factor:
- Dead sea salts / Epsom salts (2 cups) – draws toxins out through the skin
- Baking soda (2 cups) – naturally alkalizing substance, helps to remove toxins
- Fresh ground ginger (1 tbsp.) – raises body temperature, encouraging perspiration (skip if you have high blood pressure)
- Therapeutic-grade essential oils (4 drops each) – geranium, eucalyptus and juniper berry possess powerful detoxification properties
13) Get massages. While most of us don’t have the luxury of getting a massage every day, massages increase circulation, stimulate the lymphatic system and remove toxic build-up. They also feel so good, especially if Glynda is your Massage Therapist!
14) Get a little more sleep. A big part of why you feel refreshed after a good night’s sleep is from the detoxification that occurs during this daily down time.
When you sleep, your cells and tissues are mending and, because you’re not eating, your body systems are working to eliminate that day’s toxins. Even your brain flushes out toxic molecules that build up during waking hours.
One study suggests side-sleeping (the most popular sleep position) is the best way to encourage removal of waste products from the brain. So if you’re not one already, turn into side sleeper! Our Functional Manual Therapist, Kyle, has some side-sleeping suggestions for proper skeletal alignment:
- If you sleep on your side, place a king-sized or body pillow between your legs, supporting the entire top leg.
- Keep your hips at a 45-degree angle and knees at a 90-degree angle. The same process may be used to support your arms.
- Make sure your pillow is only under your head and neck, not your shoulders
Detoxing is an Ongoing Process
Adding at least of few of the suggestions above will boost your body’s ability to detoxify and improve your immune functions.
For most of us, it’s an ongoing process to strike a balance between doing what we want and what we know is right for our bodies. Basically, the “cleaner” you keep your diet and living environment, the fewer toxins your body will need to remove.
Just know that every effort you make, to support your natural detox pathways, is a step in the right direction.
Sources: Mindbodygreen.com, Paleomama.com, and Women’s Health Network
Jennifer has a Master’s degree in Holistic Nutrition. She is also a nationally Certified Nutritional Consultant and Diplomat of the American Association of Nutritional Consultants.
Spring is for New Beginnings!
By: Katherine Sale, MSW, MAc, LAc, CNC
Despite the highly technical and artificial aspects of life these days, there’s one irrefutable truth: we are a part of nature, whether we’re aware of it or not. Truly, your body, mind, inner world… is intricately connected to the ebbs and flows of all that is happening in the outer natural world.
And, through the shifts and changes of the seasons, nature continually influences your daily life. Think of how you felt during winter’s freezing temperatures, heavy snowstorms, or this year’s torrential rains… you get the picture.
As well, making the adjustment from the sleep of winter to the outburst of spring, as reflected in nature, can be hard on many people. It creates feelings of frustration, chaos and impatience. That’s why the back and forth in temperatures this winter has been so challenging: our bodies and minds are confused!!
The great news: spring brings a new set of opportunities to harmonize with nature.
“Spring is when life’s alive in everything!” – Christina Rossetti
This ‘oneness’ with nature isn’t necessarily automatic. Unfortunately, many of us have blunted our instinctual awareness of nature’s life cycles. Becoming aware – and using nature as a means to regain balance and harmony – is the sign of a vibrant, happy person!
So, here it is now spring: days are now longer, with weather ranging between cold and windy and warm with sunshine. The color green fills tree branches and fields, and trees fill with the sap of life rising up within it. When nature visibly comes alive, we, too, begin to come alive after a long winter of introspection and inner reflection. It’s time to get your body and mind attuned to the wellness benefits that spring brings.
Spring rules the liver, with its major job of cleansing and filtering the blood to help the body eliminate toxins. This is the perfect time for detoxification! Here are a few tips:
- Drink more water, and add fresh lemon juice to the water you drink. It’s a great cleanser. Your liver and kidneys will thank you!
- A common sight in springtime is seeing dandelions growing through sidewalk cracks and in rolling fields. It’s not just a weed. Through the hearty dandelion, nature provides a remedy to help with liver health concerns, such as fatigue, headache, bad breath, irritability, mood swings, sugar cravings, skin irregularities, indigestion, abdominal bloating and excessive weight. Detoxing can be as easy as incorporating dandelion into your daily routine.
Dandelion tea and tinctures are available at health food stores. As well, dandelion leaves (which are the key) are often available in the herbal section of places like Whole Foods. You can even pick dandelions off of your lawn (before putting pesticides and fertilizers down), rinse them off and throw them in a salad!. Many green salad combinations in health food stores include dandelion leaves.
How to Flow with Spring’s Energy
As the energy becomes more flowing with the true onset of spring, you should start to feel the quickening of new beginnings and a fresh start. Now is the time to plant the seeds of your winter-inspired goals and creative ideas:
- Move! Take a walk in the woods, at a park… Observe the beauty of nature and life all around you: birds chirping and building nests, insects surfacing above ground, all busy with purpose.
- Spring clean your house, your wardrobe, even your closets! Get rid of what’s not been used in a year, so you can make room for some new things.
- Think in terms of “spring cleaning” on all levels. This is a great time to begin a healthy, lighter food plan with more fruits and vegetables, instead of the heavy starches of winter. Eliminate foods that stress the liver such as fried or very fatty foods, sugar and white flour, and foods with chemical preservatives and colorings. Begin eating more fresh foods that are now coming to market. Losing that winter weight is a natural desire for most of us.
- Begin an exercise program or step up what you’re already doing. The energy now is naturally available to support this new program.
- Plant a garden, plant a tree! Get your hands in the dirt and smell the richness of the warm soil.
- Begin making your plans with more clarity and enthusiasm… projects that you want to do, vacations and adventures you want to take.
- Take a risk and try something new. Think of what you’d like to try, even if it seems silly or scary.
Spring is the time of year to begin a new cycle of life with a clean slate and clear vision. As the saying goes, “spring forward!” Life is waiting for you to move into your next exciting adventure.
Katherine is a Licensed, Board-Certified Acupuncturist, a Holistic Healthcare Practitioner, and an Integrative Energy Therapies Provider. She offers Acupuncture, Acupuncture Detox and Ionic Foot Detox at Chesapeake Holistic.
Cathy Logan, CHC, COT, CECP
Certified Health Coach, ONDAMED Practitioner, Certified Emotion Code Practitioner
Briefly, explain the services you offer, who these help, and the expected results. I offer several services: Emotion Code, ONDAMED, and Ionic Foot Detox. I’ll focus on the two I perform most often…
The Emotion Code® is a powerful modality: it releases negative emotions trapped in the body that may be causing pain, anxiety, depression and eventually disease. Through muscle testing, I’m able to identify each emotion, where it’s trapped in the body (and at what age), and then release it. Clients tell me they feel so much “lighter” after just one session!
Emotion Code benefits people of all ages; children clear really quickly since they don’t have years of trapped emotions. It’s very helpful for relieving PTSD and past traumas and blockages (e.g., blocks to success or love). Once these things are cleared, clients can move on with their lives and experience a new-found freedom.
Right now, I’m in the certification process to perform The Body Code. It’s a form of energy work, which includes the Emotion Code protocol, used to discover and correct imbalances (e.g., blocked chakras and meridians, as well as issues like infections, toxins and nutritional deficiencies). The Body Code’s approach of correcting emotional and physical imbalances makes conditions right for the body to heal itself.
I use ONDAMED® to create a personalized, FDA-approved approach to pain relief, and to address stress, smoking cessation, Lyme Disease, autoimmune disorders, and much more – for all ages. The easiest way to explain how it works is that the protocol’s biofeedback system transmits a safe, pulsed electromagnetic frequency to stimulate the body’s natural healing response.
Honestly, ONDAMED is amazing. It’s noninvasive, yet so effective at pinpointing a symptom’s source (such as inflammation) and jump-starting cellular repair and regeneration that keeps working after the session. Recently, for example, I had a client with a tear in her elbow: after a few months of ONDAMED sessions the tear was healed, without surgery! Many people also rely on this technology when recovering from surgery because it really speeds up the healing process. ONDAMED is backed by more than 30 years of research and biophysical medical testing.
Ok, let’s get to know Cathy a little bit more… time for the personal questions!
What was your first job? My first career was in the garment business in New York City. I was in sales and merchandising, selling to major retailers. It was very fast-paced and there were so many details. My job was to work with the designer to put the clothing line together, then sell it to the retailers, and then make sure the line got into production and shipped on time. On any given day, there were many “fires” to put out.
At what job would you be terrible? I would be a terrible waitress.
What is your favorite ‘guilty’ food? Pizza! Preferably extra cheese from Ray’s in the Village in NYC.
Any upcoming travel plans? I’m going to Tuscany in the fall!
If you could win an Olympic medal for any sport, real or fake, what would it be? The uneven bars. I just love how they swing and tumble in the air with ease.
If you could invite 3 people, dead or alive, to a dinner party, who would they be, and why? I would invite Clark Gable, as I just adored him as Rhett Butler in Gone With the Wind. (It’s my favorite movie. The first time I saw it was when my parents took me to the theater and I was just mesmerized. I’ve seen it so many times I could probably play Scarlett O’Hara with ease!) I’d also invite Billy Joel because I love his music and finally got to see him in concert last year. And, my final guest would be Dr. Bradley Nelson, who wrote The Emotion Code. I’ve watched many of his trainings and he seems so dynamic, but such a real person: he’s funny and fascinating and has wonderful stories about healing. I’d love to just pick his brain!
What’s your favorite book? One of my all-time favorites is The Polar Express. I have such fond memories of reading that book to my kids when they were little, and always getting choked up at the end.
What energizes you and brings you excitement? Meeting new people with whom I really click totally energizes me. That’s one of the reasons I love my job so much. I meet so many fabulous people and I feel like I make a difference in their lives. And that is truly exciting!
If you had to choose only 3 adjectives to describe yourself, which would you choose? Loving, loyal, and empathetic.
Knowing what you know now, what advice would you give your 18-year-old self? I would say several things! When you do what you love it doesn’t feel like work. Find the joy in each day and always be grateful! Everyone has a path in this life and it has many twists and turns: make sure to stay open to new possibilities. Be true to yourself and don’t box yourself in.
For what are you most grateful today? I’m very grateful for: my husband, Deke; my two kids, Katie and Trip; and my golden retrievers Toby and Cruiser. They all make life worth living. I’m also very grateful for my faith.
Cathy is a Certified Health Coach, and a Certified ONDAMED® Technician and Emotion Code® Practitioner. She is also trained in Ionic Foot Detox.
By Carol Heckman, RN, CNHP, MH, CNC
We all know the basics of a food label: calories, serving size, protein, carbohydrates, sugar, and fats. But what you may want to pay more attention to is the quantity and quality of food ingredients – because these factors may impact your health more than the label’s numbers.
Quantity of Ingredients
On a label, ingredients are listed in the order of proportion in a product. The first three to five ingredients are the most important, and primarily what’s in the package. These should be real food items you can identify (e.g., carrots, rice, peas, chicken and rosemary).
From the sixth ingredient onward, most ingredients listed are likely to be fillers, preservatives and dyes. These are not “real” foods and can be very harmful to your health. If the ingredients list has lots of long, chemical-sounding names you can’t pronounce, it’s best to skip on the product.
Have you ever really thought about the quality of the ingredients on a food label?…
Quality of Ingredients
Ingredients lists don’t indicate the quality of the contents, do they? Each ingredient could be of extremely poor quality or of extremely high quality. Obviously, you want the highest quality of ingredients, i.e.: REAL FOOD.
Determining ingredient quality is where a little extra detective work can come in handy:
- Knowing your food source (who is making your food) these days is vital to ensuring you get quality ingredients. Local farm-to-table sources are the best for quality ingredients (and why we partner with Sprout as a site for Tuesday and Friday deliveries).
- Look past the advertising and do a little product research about the company and evaluate their ingredient philosophy. If you cannot find a philosophy, that’s a big clue quality is not a priority and you’d better off selecting another food source.
To learn more specifics about Functional Health and Nutrition, including what else is lurking in food labels – such as what “natural flavors” really means – send me an email: email@example.com.
Carol is a Registered Nurse, as well as a Certified Natural Health Practitioner, a Master Herbalist, and a Certified Nutritional Consultant.
By: Glynda Cullen, LMT, LE
How do you define “self-love?” Is it a vain preoccupation with your image in the mirror, while the rest of life beckons for your attentive awareness? Or, is self-love something more meaningful: a vast territory still unexplored?
When Self-Care/Love has Left the Building…
If you’re a parent, have you ever fully-geared your child for frigid weather (down to the last, tiny detail) and then run out the door without your own coat? It’s likely you have.
Perhaps, you’ve packed a yummy and nutritious lunch for someone you love, with thoughtful awareness – only to realize later in the day you’ve forgotten to bring something for your own lunch.
Have you ever made sure a loved one (who has worked really hard) was able to sleep in and rest, while you took on the extra work load? All the while, dashing from one task to the next without so much as a calm breath?
I have just shared three examples of self-care that is lacking: each scenario is from my own life. Do you see yourself reflected here, too? How can you actively address your need for self-care?…
Shifting the Focus
It’s time for some self-love/self-care. Refocusing on ‘how’ you treat yourself will enable you to envision a different way of being, a different way of living.
Self-care is a promise you make to yourself: no matter how crazy your schedule is, or how demanding your responsibilities are, you will put yourself first.
You heard me right. Put your wellbeing at the center of your life:
- Be nurturing. Take care of yourself the way you take care of others. Make yourself nourishing food, keep yourself warm and cozy, and give yourself permission to rest and recharge!
- Be compassionate. Forgive yourself when you make mistakes.
- Be vibrant. It’s healthy to interrupt that nonstop schedule of responsibilities. Include things you enjoy. Find your inspirational soul food: whether it’s reading a good book, or a hobby like yoga, tennis or gardening, or just periodically binge-watching Netflix.
When you treat yourself well, you’re letting others know you are to be respected and treated with care and consideration. Truly, if you don’t make yourself important, who will?
In the greater sense, each of us has a special gift or skill to share with the world: to create a better way for all of us to live, here on planet earth. Take care of yourself, so you’re up for the task!
At CH, my mission is to help create a safe space for you to let down your guard and breathe – so you can go to the deepest place within to recharge from the inside out. Make taking time for peace, rest, healing and self-care a regular part of your schedule this new year!
Glynda is a licensed Massage Therapist and a licensed Esthetician. She offers therapeutic massage and facial treatments (and after-hours appointments). Glynda is also trained in Ionic Foot Detox protocols.