Saturday, March 28, 2009

Healthy Recipe Friday - Romaine and Orange Salad

I know summer is not here yet, but summer cool salads I think are great any time of year. Today I'll be sharing Romaine and Orange Salad. Sure to become a healthy favorite recipe with your family.

Romaine and Orange Salad:
6 cups torn romaine
2 med. navel oranges, peeled and sectioned
6 slices red onion, separated into rings

1/4 cup olive oil
2 Tbl. orange juice
2 Tbl. cider vinegar
1/4 tsp. salt
Dash of ground mustard

In a large salad bowl, toss the romaine, oranges and onion slices.
Next, combine dressing ingredients in bowl and stir with wire whisk while adding in olive oil. mix till well combined.
Drizzle dressing over salad and toss.
Cover salad and refrigerate until chilled; toss again before serving.
Yield 6 servings.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Safe, Non-Toxic Spring Cleaning

Spring Cleaning

Well for many of us here in the south it’s time for spring-cleaning. Time to open the windows (if you can stand the pollen), put up all those winter clothes, and just let the house air out.

Now, we want our houses to smell fresh from those months of being closed up. We want to clean, but we need to do it in a safe way without putting toxins in the house, which is worse for you than being closed up with all that dust from the winter. Many people run out and buy window cleaner, liquid cleaners, powdered cleaners, carpet fresheners, bleach, and everything else. And that can run into some big bucks just to clean. I’m going to share with you how you can spring clean and use just one to two cleaners to do it all. And do it in a safe, natural and non-toxic way.

First, start out by cleaning out your vacuum. You can clean out many of the filters by washing them or replacing with a new one. This will help to get all that dust and pollen.

Then start your spring-cleaning by using some straight backing soda on your carpets. This will help absorb orders.

Then, if possible, take your curtains down for washing. Remove any pictures/plaques, etc.. for dusting later.

While your curtains are washing, use 1 TBL of Basic-H2 in a gallon of water and wash your walls. This helps get all that dust and grease build up off your walls. Once your walls are done, wash your windows. Do this by mixing 2 drops of Basic-H2 in a 16 oz. Spray bottle of water. And with this same spray bottle of Basic-H2 clean your pictures. And to wash your figurines and plaques, add 1 TBL of Basic-H2 in a sink filled with warm water and simply wash and rinse and dry.

Now, I have mostly cotton curtains in my home. And I use the Liquid Laundry and the Fabric Softener and I hang my curtains right back up without drying them in the dryer. So in essence I let them air dry and they have a nice light clean scent to them. For me this cuts ironing time.

For storing my winter clothes, I use tubs but I put in a fabric softener sheet. This gives a very light fresh scent to them when I take them out for winter use.

Now for light dusting around my house, I use the Basic-H2 wipes. This is nice for those quick jobs, but for dusting the entire house, I use the 2 drops in the 16 oz. spray bottle of water and spray it onto my rag and just dust as usual.

For cleaning my tile, linoleum and wood floors, I use 1 TBL of Basic-H2 in a gallon of water and simply clean as usual. I don’t have to go back and do any rinsing, as you need to do with other commercial cleaners.

When cleaning the grout or tub I use the Scour-Off. There is no messy powders or powder fumes that can cause you to cough and choke when using it. Simply use a plastic scrubber or pads and use the Scour-Off paste straight from the container. And it has a wonderful light scent.

When cleaning cooktops (non glass) and ovens, I use the Scour-Off. I use my scrubbing pad and add some warm water and clean the top and my oven. For my oven, I let it soak just a bit with water and then come back and clean and rinse with warm water. Now for those cooktops that are glass, Use the Basic-H2 by adding ¼ tsp. Into a 16 oz. spray bottle of water. Let soak for a few moments, then just wipe clean.

Clean your mini blinds by adding 1 TBL of cleaner into your tub with warm water. Wash blinds and let them hang outside to air dry.

And when cleaning the baby’s room, simply use the Basic-H2 for everything. From the windows, baby bed, floors to toys. And you wont have to worry about heavy fumes from cleaning products and chemicals left behind on the floors, toys and beds. The last thing you want is a toxic chemical smell on your child’s bed or baby mattress.

Make your Spring-cleaning easy. Take one room at a time. Work that one room until you have it all done, and then go onto the next. Trying to take it all on in one weekend can be overwhelming. So I find it better to do a little at a time. Start out by going through the clothes first, getting those put up and out of your way. Then you don’t have to go back and mess everything up you just cleaned.

So there you have it, Spring-cleaning and your home smells clean and fresh without all the heavy chemical smells and toxins. And you did not have to spend a fortune to do it. You have used 2 basic products to do it all.

To find out more about what products to use, visit our Home Care

And for a handy usage guide, contact me at and I’ll be happy to send one to you.

Happy Spring,

Saturday, March 21, 2009

76 Ways Sugar Can Ruin Your Health

76 Ways Sugar Can Ruin Your Health - by Nancy Appleton, Ph.D
In addition to throwing off the body's homeostasis, excess sugar may result in a number of other significant consequences. The following is a listing of some of sugar's metabolic consequences from a variety of medical journals and other scientific publications.

Sugar can suppress your immune system and impair your defensesagainst infectious disease.1,2

Sugar upsets the mineral relationships in your body: causes chromiumand copper deficiencies and interferes with absorption of calcium andmagnesium. 3,4,5,6

Sugar can cause can cause a rapid rise of adrenaline, hyperactivity,anxiety, difficulty concentrating, and crankiness in children.7,8

Sugar can produce a significant rise in total cholesterol,triglycerides and bad cholesterol and a decrease in goodcholesterol.9,10,11,12

Sugar causes a loss of tissue elasticity and function.13

Sugar feeds cancer cells and has been connected with the developmentof cancer of the breast, ovaries, prostate, rectum, pancreas, biliarytract, lung, gallbladder and stomach.14,15,16,17,18,19,20

Sugar can increase fasting levels of glucose and can cause reactivehypoglycemia.21,22

Sugar can weaken eyesight.23

Sugar can cause many problems with the gastrointestinal tractincluding: an acidic digestive tract, indigestion, malabsorption inpatients with functional bowel disease, increased risk of Crohn'sdisease, and ulcerative colitis.24,25,26,27,28

Sugar can cause premature aging.29

Sugar can lead to alcoholism.30

Sugar can cause your saliva to become acidic, tooth decay, andperiodontal disease.31,32,33

Sugar contributes to obesity.34

Sugar can cause autoimmune diseases such as: arthritis, asthma,multiple sclerosis.35,36,37

Sugar greatly assists the uncontrolled growth of Candida Albicans(yeast infections)38

Sugar can cause gallstones.39

Sugar can cause appendicitis.40

Sugar can cause hemorrhoids.41

Sugar can cause varicose veins.42

Sugar can elevate glucose and insulin responses in oral contraceptiveusers.43

Sugar can contribute to osteoporosis.44

Sugar can cause a decrease in your insulin sensitivity therebycausing an abnormally high insulin levels and eventuallydiabetes.45,46,47

Sugar can lower your Vitamin E levels.48

Sugar can increase your systolic blood pressure.49

Sugar can cause drowsiness and decreased activity in children.50

High sugar intake increases advanced glycation end products (AGEs)(Sugar molecules attaching to and thereby damaging proteins in thebody).51

Sugar can interfere with your absorption of protein.52

Sugar causes food allergies.53

Sugar can cause toxemia during pregnancy.54

Sugar can contribute to eczema in children.55

Sugar can cause atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease.56,57

Sugar can impair the structure of your DNA.58

Sugar can change the structure of protein and cause a permanentalteration of the way the proteins act in your body.59,60

Sugar can make your skin age by changing the structure of collagen.61

Sugar can cause cataracts and nearsightedness.62,63

Sugar can cause emphysema.64

High sugar intake can impair the physiological homeostasis of manysystems in your body.65

Sugar lowers the ability of enzymes to function.66

Sugar intake is higher in people with Parkinson's disease.67

Sugar can increase the size of your liver by making your liver cellsdivide and it can increase the amount of liver fat.68,69

Sugar can increase kidney size and produce pathological changes inthe kidney such as the formation of kidney stones.70,71

Sugar can damage your pancreas.72

Sugar can increase your body's fluid retention.73

Sugar is enemy #1 of your bowel movement.74

Sugar can compromise the lining of your capillaries.75

Sugar can make your tendons more brittle.76

Sugar can cause headaches, including migraines.77

Sugar can reduce the learning capacity, adversely affect schoolchildren's grades and cause learning disorders.78,79

Sugar can cause an increase in delta, alpha, and theta brain waveswhich can alter your mind's ability to think clearly.80

Sugar can cause depression.81

Sugar can increase your risk of gout.82

Sugar can increase your risk of Alzheimer's disease.83

Sugar can cause hormonal imbalances such as: increasing estrogen inmen, exacerbating PMS, and decreasing growth hormone.84,85,86,87

Sugar can lead to dizziness.88

Diets high in sugar will increase free radicals and oxidativestress.89

High sucrose diets of subjects with peripheral vascular diseasesignificantly increases platelet adhesion.90

High sugar consumption of pregnant adolescents can lead tosubstantial decrease in gestation duration and is associated with atwofold increased risk for delivering a small-for-gestational-age(SGA) infant.91,92

Sugar is an addictive substance.93

Sugar can be intoxicating, similar to alcohol.94

Sugar given to premature babies can affect the amount of carbondioxide they produce.95

Decrease in sugar intake can increase emotional stability.96

Your body changes sugar into 2 to 5 times more fat in the bloodstreamthan it does starch.97

The rapid absorption of sugar promotes excessive food intake in obesesubjects.98

Sugar can worsen the symptoms of children with attention deficithyperactivity disorder (ADHD).99

Sugar adversely affects urinary electrolyte composition.100

Sugar can slow down the ability of your adrenal glands to function.101

Sugar has the potential of inducing abnormal metabolic processes in anormal healthy individual and to promote chronic degenerativediseases.102

I.V.s (intravenous feedings) of sugar water can cut off oxygen toyour brain.103

Sugar increases your risk of polio.104

High sugar intake can cause epileptic seizures.105

Sugar causes high blood pressure in obese people.106

In intensive care units: Limiting sugar saves lives.107

Sugar may induce cell death.108

In juvenile rehabilitation camps, when children were put on a lowsugar diet, there was a 44 percent drop in antisocial behavior.109

Sugar dehydrates newborns.110

Sugar can cause gum disease.11

Friday, March 20, 2009

Healthy Recipe Friday - Leek and Potato Soup

I love soups and couldn't pass this one up seeing I made some early this week. But I love Leek and Potato soup and I wanted so share my recipe with you.
Hope you enjoy,

Leek and Potato Soup
Ingredients: -
1-1/2 to 2 lb. potatoes - peeled and diced - One rule of thumb, use 1 good sized potato per person.
2 - leeks - bottom portion only, sliced in half and washed, then finely chopped
2 cloves garlic - finely chopped
1/2 cup chopped roasted red bell pepper - I use the jar peppers
1/8 cup finley chopped fresh parsley
1/8 cup chopped fresh cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
Low sodium chicken broth
1 cup milk - or you can use heavy cream if you like
olive oil

In a heavy dutch oven, use about 3 TBL olive oil - to this add the leeks and garlic and cook until they begin to soften.

Once they have started to soften, I add my diced potatoes and enough chicken stock just to cover. Let simmer until potatoes begin to get tender. this may take about 20 min.

Then I add my salt and pepper.

Once the potatoes are just tender, You can use a potato masher or stick blender and begin to mash the potatoes. I like more chunks in my soup, but you can make them as creamy or
lumpy as you like.

Once I have it mashed, I thin my soup down just a bit with the milk. I like a thicker soup, but you can use as much of the milk as you desire until it's the consistancy that you prefer.

I then put back on a low heat to warm it just a bit after adding the milk and then I add my chopped parsley,cilantro and roasted bell pepper. Then I check my seasonings and add more salt and pepper if needed. And I just let it heat through.

Added Note: - I have at times added a little of mild ground sausage to my soup. I use about 1/2 pkg and brown it. When my soup is simmering , I then add it in. But I do not brown my meat with the leeks because I drain any grease from the sausage first.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Energy Efficient Light Bulbs, What They Didn't Tell You

All I can say is WOW, I was doing some research on the energy efficient bulbs and found many articles on how they contain mercury. Please be careful and don't break these in your home. Do your research on how to dispose of the bulbs and how to take care of them if they happen to break in your home. Not only can they be a hazard to your home, but our water as well.

Here are a few articles you can read for yourself.

1- To Little, To Late -

2. The dark side of energy efficient bulbs -

3- Fluorescent Light Bulb Warning-

Going Green Tips - places you can make changes

Going Green, this is such a hot topic right now, but if you ask most people what does going green mean? Most come up with many different answers. I think it all depends on how dedicated you are to changing things around you. What you view as important in your life.

For me, going green means doing what I can do to better my environment, and better ways to take care of my family in a more safe and natural way. Do I believe in Global Warming and all the disaster that people predict? Well, in part yes, but in the other part, no. I know as a people.. we have contributed much in not doing the right thing for our planet, but I also know there are just some things that are going to happen naturally. But we’ll leave that for another post some day.

So, what are some of the things we can do to become greener? With this you can go a little or you can go all out green. Buying organic cotton clothing, purchasing green homes, to green cars. I'm going to share just a few ways that you can get started on going green.

1- When it comes to fruits and vegetables, try purchasing from local farmers. And don’t be afraid to ask them how they fertilize their produce. It’s your body and you have a right to know what’s going into it.

2- Do your best to recycle materials around your home. Try to purchase products with the least amount of packaging. I know sometimes this can’t be helped, but try whenever possible. And if you have recycling bins around you, use them. Recycle paper, plastics, cans, and glass.

3- Make your own scratch pads. I often use materials that I have printed off and no longer need. I tare them into quarters or long halves and make my own scratch pads. These are great for notes by the phone, computer, scratch pads for your children when doing math homework. You can even leave one in your car when you need something to write a quick note.

4- Use your own refillable water bottles and filter your home water. One, you will be saving on putting all those water bottles into the landfill and by the time you purchase all those water bottles, you’re paying more for water than you are a gallon of gas. So use your tap, filter your water and fill up several bottles to have on hand.

5- Purchase or make your own shopping bags. I use these all the time and love it. They hold more, they are stronger and you don’t have to use so many little plastic bags to bring in your groceries. It will take a little getting used to, but once you do, you will never leave home without them. And now many local stores offer these for sale. And there are endless places on the net that you can purchase reusable bags from.

6- If you have large items, try a local free cycle group. There are many people out there that will swap or take it off your hands.

7- Carpool. Talk with others where you work, and if you can organize a car pool. This will save gas and carbons along with saving your car that wear and tear.

8- Use reusable lunch containers. There are many companies that make great reusable containers. Not only will this save on all the waste you throw away from eating out, but it will also save on your budget. Take leftovers or make healthy salads. Use good quality containers to store leftovers in your fridge. You may have to spend a little more, but it’s worth it in the end. And in many cases will add shelf life to your food. Instead of purchasing all that margarine in big tubs, (which is bad for you anyway) use block butter. Very little packaging to throw away, and you don’t have a ton of plastic tubs to.

9- Use cloth napkins instead of rolls of paper towels. Simply wash and re-use. Use regular plates and utensils instead of plastic. Granted you’ll have to wash them, but you wont have to be purchasing them over and over.

10- Use natural and organic cleaning products. There are gallons upon gallons of chemical waste being thrown into our landfills. Partial bottles that still have cleaning agents in them. What happens? Well they begin to leach out into our water table, and into our systems. Try using cleaning supplies that are concentrated, that will last longer, and less packaging to throw away or recycle. Cleaning products that if they do go into the water, will not harm us or our water.

Now I know this is just a short list of things you can do, but even the smallest change can have a huge effect over time. And never fear, I will be posting more on things that you can do to make your home a greener place to be.

Until next time,

Friday, March 6, 2009

Winter Skin Care - Tips on how to take care of your skin.

During the winter our skin takes a beating. We go through dry cold weather; in some areas you have lots of cold hard blowing winds. And some live on the coasts where they have to deal with the sea winds and salts drying out their skin. And it’s not just our faces that takes a beating, so does our hands and lips. And then we are under layers of heavy clothing not to mention we go in and out of dry heated places.

So what can we do to keep our skin supple and moist during the winter months?

Here we offer a few helpful ideas on how to take care of dry winter skin.

  1. Even though it’s winter your skin still needs UV protection. So you will want a good SPF 30 during the winter. This will help protect your face from harmful UV rays.
  2. Vitamins are essential for healthy skin, especially vitamins A, B, and C. Vitamin E helps to improve the complexion when applied topically. So good moisturizers with vitamins in them will help your skin.
  3. Use a good ph balanced soap for your skin. Many soaps on the market can dry your skin and strip it of the much needed oils during the winter months. So look for a soap that is free from harsh chemicals and scents.
  4. Exfoliate your skin at least once a week. Using a bath brush before getting into the shower will help. Or using gentle exfoliating scrubs. You don’t want harsh scrubs, as that will scratch your all ready dry skin. You just want to gently remove old dry skin cells so that newer skin is exposed.
  5. When finished with your bath or shower, pat your skin dry and apply a good moisturizing cream to your body. By doing this, you help lock in the moisture in your skin. Shea butter enriched products are wonderful for dry skin.
  6. Drink plenty of water during the day. Your skin will need this to keep from dehydrating and its just plan good for you.
  7. Your skin is the largest organ of your body and your skin needs supplements just as the rest of your body does. Make sure you take plenty of Vit C, B, E, Zinc and a good Antioxidant. This will be your defense against the free radicals that attack your skin. And a good Omega 3 will also work wonders for your skin. All of this works from the inside out to restore your skin and help it to maintain it’s elasticity
  8. Don’t forget your lips. Lips need a good balance of moisture to keep them soft. Try to find a good lip treatment that offers vitamins and Vit E , Shea Butter or Jojoba

I know there are many more ways to take care of your skin during the winter months, but we hope this will give you some places to start.

Patty Dooley - Independent Shaklee Distributor

Healthy Recipe Friday - Sweet Potato Hash

Now, I know most will think.. Sweet Potato.. I don't like Sweet Potato.. but I have to tell you, you will love this recipe. It's one of my favorites to fix and goes so well as a side serving with fish. I received this recipe by signing up for Vegetarian Times. A wonderful site for those who are vegetarians or those just looking for healthy vegetable recipes.
You can visit their site here:

Sweet Potato and Black Bean Hash.
2 tsp. vegetable oil
2 medium onions, chopped
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch dice
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
4 tsp. ground cumin
1/2 tsp. salt
3/4 cup frozen corn
15-oz. can black beans, drained and rinsed


1- In large heavy skillet, preferably cast-iron, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 5 minutes.

2- Add sweet potato and cook, stirring often, until beginning to brown in spots, about 3 minutes. Stir in garlic, jalapeno, cumin and salt and cook, stirring often, 30 seconds. Add 3/4 cup water and cook, stirring to scrape any browned bits from bottom of pan, until potatoes are tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in corn and beans and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through. Season with freshly ground pepper to taste and serve hot.

Until next time,
we hope you enjoy this recipe

Patty Dooley