Warming Chai, DIY Warming Balm AND a chance to win!


Wow, is it chilly here in New England this morning! I’m pulling out a mug of cinnamonny chai and rubbing some warming balm into the soles of my feet… and I’m keeping on my fuzzy socks until the sun comes out!  {{don’t judge!}}  It is June, right?!

Anyway, if you’re game to try, I’ve posted my recipes for my favorite Coconut Chai and Warming Balm below!  I’m also including a blurb about the bennies of Coconut Milk (which apply to Coconut Oil too).  I alternate dairy free milks depending on my mood and on what I have in the pantry… coconut, hemp, almond and cashew are easy to store and easy to blend into your perfect milk! (I’m hooking you up with my DIY Coconut Milk Recipe too… :)  )

I want to hear from YOU!  What do you do when you are chilly?  What is your go-to, warm-me-up, comfort-in-a-cup drink?  What other tricks do you have up your sleeve?  Share…  I’ll be picking ONE or TWO people to send a tin of my gorgeous Warming Balm or a Chai Lip Balm… I’ll let you choose.  But, you can’t win if you don’t share!  Get to it!   

*********************************************************************

coconut-729059_1280

5 Health Benefits of Coconut Milk

  1. Calcium and Magnesium powerhouse ~ Coconut milk is higher in calcium than regular milk and almond milk! It is also rich in magnesium which can help relieve and ease sore muscles and promote a sense of calmness for relaxation and sleep.
  2. Nutrients galore ~ Coconut milk contains iron, selenium, sodium, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus and potassium, as well as vitamins C, E, B1, B3, B5 and B6.
  3. Immune System Booster ~ Coconut milk and coconut oil contain lauric acid, which is anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal. It’s a great tool to support a healthy immune system.
  4. Weight Management ~ The body uses the short and medium-chain fatty acids in coconut for energy. The fiber in coconut milk is also great for helping you feel full and satisfied AND it’s great for your colon!
  5. Dairy Free, Nut Free and Vegan ~ allergy friendly for those who need to be dairy-free, nut-free, soy-free and gluten-free.

DIY Coconut Milk

  • 2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 4 cups water

What you will do:

  1. Soak coconut in the water for an hour
  2. In your vitamix or high speed blender blitz everything – the coconut and the soaking water. You want to blend on the highest speed for about a minute. You’ll see that the solids will dissipate and the whole mess will get insanely creamy — watch the sides of your pitcher for the change!
  3. If your blender doesn’t get the mixture completely smooth, go ahead and strain everything through a clean nutmilk bag or clean coffee filter.

NOTE:  you can add a little vanilla extract and a few drops of liquid stevia if you want to change the flavor.  Also, for DIY Coconut Cream, reduce the amount of water to 2 cups.  You may need to add a little water as you blend, depending on the moisture content of the coconut that you start with!

Warming Coconut Chai

What you will need:

  • 1 can full fat coconut milk
  • ¼ tsp clove or 2 whole cloves
  • ½ tsp cardamom or 1 cardamom pod
  • 1 tsp cinnamon or about 1 inch of cinnamon bark
  • ½ inch fresh ginger, skin removed and minced
  • black tea – 2-4 teabags, depending on how strong you like your chai
  • raw honey, stevia, or coconut sugar (usually a tsp or two will do if you need it sweet)

What you will do:

  1. Crush any whole spices (not the ginger) in motor and pestle or put them in a baggie and gently bash them with a rolling pin; a clean coffee grinder also works as does a quick spin in your high speed blender with the coconut milk. Whatever your method, grind the spices and combine with the coconut milk.
  2. Heat coconut milk, ground spices and ginger to a simmer.
  3. Add tea bags and simmer for about 5 minutes, then shut off the heat and cover; the longer you let this steep, the deeper the spiced flavor will be – 10-15 minutes.
  4. Taste the mixture. Does it need sweetener or is the cinnamon enough?
  5. Strain your concentrate through a sieve or tea strainer.
  6. Reheat the concentrate and add some water to thin it if you like.


Whipped Chai Balm

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Saturday Strategy… and a confession!


Hello my loves!  Do you do Saturday Strategy sessions? Not sure what that is?  Read on and I’ll share one way that I use them… plus, there’s one of my favorite juice recipes is down at the bottom, so read on!

Confession:  My joints are killing me this week!  It’s Saturday and I should be doing some laundry and enjoying time outside with my family… but, I am taking a moment to take stock of where I am, where I want to be and what I need to do to get there.  It’s a Saturday Strategy Session.  I highly recommend them!  Here’s how I do it — you can follow my lead by getting out a piece of paper or opening up a blank doc on your PC.  Write the headings, “Where I am,” “Where I want to be,” and “What I need to do to get there.”  Then, check in with yourself, honestly.  When you’re done you will have a snapshot of your experience and an idea of what your next step needs to be.  Here’s mine:

Where I am: In the midst of a flare.  In pain.  Right arm, from shoulder to fingertips. Left wrist and hand. Both femurs are sore.  Little toes are on fire.  Clothes are pull on, pull over, slide on.  Sleep is choppy, though I am waking fine.  Mild fatigue. Occasional severe fatigue in the afternoons.  Mood is ok, still on the sunny side, though my patience meter is a little thin.

{{Background — Usually, I have a good grasp on the inflammation and pain nastiness from my psoriatic arthritis.  This week though, something has a hold on me.  Maybe it’s that I haven’t had as much time to do sauna sessions or maybe it’s that I ate out with my darling husband… a little extra stress, kids being kids, missed a morning in the gym… it snowed again (in April, in NH!)… could be anything or just my body… not sure, but the pain and stiffness is beyond my comfort zone.

I’ve been dealing with psoriatic arthritis for over 10 years.  In the beginning, I tried the drugs that the rheumatologist prescribed, but stopped short of using the biologics when I started a program under the care of Dr. Joel Fuhrman.  Talk about one conversation changing a life… well, my initial consult with him was nothing less than life-saving.  His approach is one I’ve followed now, almost exclusively since my diagnosis (and with great success!).  But, I have never reached 100% remission and have seen progression in my joints (though slow, it’s obvious).  And, I do get flares, like I’m in now.  No fun.  No fun at all, really.  Let’s me know that there’s still work to be done.   So, I slowly roll out of bed in the morning and am gentle with myself and my tender joints.  My hands are nothing more than flippers for an hour or more and body feels like a tin man.  It’s frustrating.  It’s a bit discouraging.  And it honestly sucks when my life’s work is centered around health and balanced energy.  Can you relate?}}

Where I want to be: Free from inflammation and pain. Able to get dressed easily (zip zips, button buttons, clasp clasps).  Stable energy so I can be the best me.

What I need to do to get there:   Start with an attitude of gratitude.  I have a lot to be thankful for and truly live a blessed life.  When flares happen, as they do with a chronic autoimmune disease, I like to give my digestive system a break for a few days so my body can focus on rest and repair rather than digestion.  The easiest way for me to do this and still function as a mom, wife, health coach and general member of society is to juice and blend to get my nutrition.  Employ anti-inflammatory strategies.

My plan:

  • Juice, smoothies, blended soups daily for 2-4 days; longer if needed
  • Nettle and Chaga tea for liver and kidney support
  • Skin brush 2-3x/day to encourage lymph movement
  • Sauna daily – be intentional about this and schedule it
  • Break a sweat daily – 20-30 minutes, even if I can’t get to the gym; mood enhancer, lymph mover, great choice for overall health.
  • Pray – set my grateful heart right with praise and thanksgiving; ask for forgiveness where necessary
  • Meditate – set my mind right with moments of peace and tranquility
  • Laugh – I know which friends are good for it, but there’s always a cute kitten around to humor me or a video just a click away!
  • Love – give it; accept it.
  • Ask for help when I need it – this is a BIGGIE for me. I am the last person to ask for help and the first to say that people should do so when they need support, lol.  I need to get better with vulnerability, I think.

The GREAT NEWS is that juices, smoothies and soups taste great and are easy to make!  So, I am looking forward to feeling better and not having to stress while working on it.

Here’s the juice I made for this morning:

sweet beet

What do you do when your health isn’t where you want it to be?  And what do you put into your favorite juices and smoothies?  (I’ll be sharing some of my tried and true favorites over the next few days!  à make sure to sign up for my newsletter or click the RSS feed so you don’t miss them!)

Xoxo,

Sarah

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment