We scoured our pages for some natural lifestyle ideas that deserve a second read
Using a long-handled brush made of stiff, natural vegetable bristles, brush your entire body with light, upward strokes. In just five minutes, you'll open your pores, promote circulation, and clean your skin without removing natural oils.
Herbalist Rosemary Gladstar's recipe to help prevent stretch marks:
1/2 cup cocoa butter
1/2 cup coconut oil
20,000 IU vitamin E oil
2 teaspoons grated beeswax
1 teaspoon lanolin
1/4 cup apricot, almond, or grapeseed oil
Mix together and apply to the skin two to three times daily.
In the kitchen
Dry herbs by spreading leaves on a clean screen, placing it in a spot with good air circulation, and turning the leaves once a day for five days. Then put the leaves in a clear glass bottle and place the bottle in a dark place. Check the bottle for moisture for a week-if moisture develops, put the herbs back on the screen for a few more days. When you've completed the process, seal the dried herbs in opaque containers.
It's good to be green: Two tablespoons a day of edible seaweed provide a therapeutic dose of iodine, selenium, iron, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, beta-carotene, vitamin E, and B-complex vitamins.
More reasons to buy green tea: Besides being packed with nutrients and disease-fighting elements, green tea can also soothe sunburn and, as an after-shampoo rinse, add luster to your hair. Rehydrated green tea leaves can cleanse your breath and relieve toothache pain and swelling. You can fertilize your garden plants by placing fresh green tea bags around the roots and drive away mosquitoes by burning leftover tea leaves. And if that's not enough, sleeping on a pillow filled with dried, used green tea leaves helps ensure good sleep, promotes clear thinking, and improves your mood.
Add a twist to your water intake by
- Using ice cubes made with apple or cranberry juice
- Dropping a few frozen berries or juicy pineapple slices into your glass
- Filling one-fourth of your water glass with peach or apricot nectar
- Enjoying water-filled fruits and vegetables such as grapefruit, watermelon, broccoli, and lettuce
- Tossing several ice cubes into your favorite smoothie
- Slurping up natural broth soups
Satisfy your soul
To calm your thoughts before you sleep, ayurveda practitioners recommend bending from the waist and brushing your hair toward the floor.
Seven tips for minimizing TV's influence in your life:
- Take the TV out of your children's bedrooms
- Get the TV out of your living space
- Don't turn the TV on for background noise
- Establish TV-free time in your schedule
- Watch only preselected programs
- Stop channel surfing
- Don't talk about TV programs
Cure yourself with color: Wear blue to inspire creativity, cover your table in green or brown to suppress your appetite, and think yellow to stimulate your memory and mental processes. Fight a cold, improve circulation, and increase energy with the color red, and the next time you don't feel like partying hearty, wear a purple dress. The color is said to protect against alcohol overindulgence.
Around the house
Keep Fido flea-free by combining 10 drops of cedar leaf essential oil in a half-cup of aloe vera nectar. Spray the mixture on your dog daily during peak flea season.
Get rid of ants by sprinkling chili pepper, paprika, dried peppermint, and damp coffee grounds or borax at their entry point into your house. If they've already stormed your fortress, spray them with strong mint tea or wipe them up with a wet sponge so their armies of friends won't follow their trail.
Create your own natural house cleanser:
- 1 teaspoon borax
- 1/4 teaspoon eucalyptus essential oil
- 1/4 teaspoon lavender essential oil
- 1 teaspoon sodium lauryl sulfate
- 3 drops tea tree oil
- 2 cups hot water
- 2 tablespoons white vinegar
- Mix together and pour into a spray bottle.
Caring for the kids
To calm overactive children before bedtime, put 3 to 4 drops of chamomile oil in their bathwater.
Treat diaper rash with a wipe made from a 1-to-6 ratio of white distilled vinegar to water, a lotion containing calendula or comfrey, bentonite clay powder instead of talc, and a soothing paste of water and powdered rose buds, powdered slippery elm bark, or ground myrrh.
Freeze your homemade, organic baby food leftovers in an ice-cube tray covered with plastic. Then you can take out and thaw individual portions. But make sure to date and label the trays-baby food shouldn't be frozen for more than three months.