Category Archives: Health

Skin Care Products

Your SKIN is a very important organ of your body. What you put on it is absorbed into your system.

I love this article from MIND/BODY/GREEN

I have searched for more natural organic products for years. The facial creams and cleaners I am presently using are from DoTerra Essential Oils. Always read the labels before you ingest or apply products to your body or in your environment.

So get out your facial creams and check the ingredients.

Losing Weight

I should be a great authority on losing weight – as I have lost the same 20 pounds so many times in my life! I’ve tried many diets, yo-yo’d up and down, and given up desserts more than once in my life. How about you?

When I returned from living in Peru, I first learned about Agave and I thought WOW now here’s an answer to sweetening my food and replacing sugar or honey in recipes. Well then, now we’ve learned more and it is on JJ Virgin’s Myth list, and I’m back to Raw honey and/or Stevia.

So here are her 7 Myths – read the article for details:

1. Slow and Steady Wins the Race

2. Grazing all the time helps you lose weight.

3. Low-fat dairy keeps you lean.

4. Everything in Moderation.

5. Soy is a health food.

6. Agave is a healthy sweetener.

7. A calorie is a calorie

So how many of these myths do you believe will keep you at your ideal weight? I’ve just lost 18 lbs and have 5 more to go to my goal. Healthy salads and fruits are my best friends. Daily exercise – at least a 30 minute walk – is a must. I allow myself a dessert in moderation one time a week. I keep a food journal.

How do you lose weigh and then maintain yourself at a healthy place?

June 25, 2014

Sunshine – I love Summer!

I love the term SUNSHINE VITAMIN when referring to Vitamin D. Recently my blood test came back showing low Vitamin D, and I received suggestions for improvement. So I did a little research – so easy on internet these days. When we talk about Vitamin D there are actually two forms included in that term – Vitamin D2 which is really made by plants, and then Vitamin D3 which is actually made by our skin after it has been exposed to sunlight. Both are important to us human beings. Even exposure for 10 minutes daily to the sun’s rays is said to prevent deficiency. My test was done the end of March after a cold Utah winter, so not surprising that I was low as I’m not a skier (I think they get more winter sun than I do on the beautiful Utah slopes) and I tend to hibernate in my warm home during the winter months as much as possible.

A few foods naturally contain Vitamin D or others are fortified such as milk. It is really tough to get all the Vitamin D our body needs just from natural food. Our liver and kidneys work to convert it for our bodies use. Vitamin D also helps calcium absorption, which strengthens our bones. It’s a pretty important vitamin and I found I needed to make sure I was getting enough each day to improve my levels as my osteoporosis test also had one area of risk. I checked out the daily RDA needed and found a chart on the website

Table 2: Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDAs) for Vitamin D [1]
Age Male Female Pregnancy Lactation
0–12 months* 400 IU
(10 mcg)
400 IU
(10 mcg)
1–13 years 600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
14–18 years 600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
19–50 years 600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
51–70 years 600 IU
(15 mcg)
600 IU
(15 mcg)
>70 years 800 IU
(20 mcg)
800 IU
(20 mcg)

* Adequate Intake (AI)

So here’s my plan:

1. Eat more foods containing Vitamin D – fish is the highest, some yogurts and cheese are fortified, and the egg yoke contains D, but I rarely eat eggs. Thus I found #2 and #3 on my list to be my best sources.

2. Take a natural supplement

3. Get more sunshine – so I’m getting out daily to walk or bike or play at the park or zoo with my grand daughters. It does help that we are now in summer season :)


Here’s an article I found with some interesting information:


While on the subject of skin – it’s SUMMER in the northern hemisphere and SUNBURNS are frequent and a hazard to our skin. Of course the best thing is to stay out of the sun or avoid it especially from about 11 am t0 3pm when the rays are the strongest. But that doesn’t always work with your day at the swimming pool, the beach or the amusement park. Even weeding in your garden can cause a bright red sunburn. So be sure to protect yourself with clothing, sun blocks, a hat, sunglasses and wisdom.

Just staying in the shade of a tree or umbrella does not protect your skin. I remember one of my worst sunburns was on the beach at Acapulco. My mom and I were camping in our van during our road trip and parked about 30 minutes up the beach from the beautiful city of Acapulco, Mexico. I spent the whole day sitting in the sand under one of those bamboo thatched roof huts feeling protected in the sun – back before sun blocks were the thing. The next morning I was shocked to find myself miserably suffering with bright red skin every where that wasn’t covered by my bathing suit. Lucky for me that aloe vera was readily available in Mexico, but I still had some uncomfortable days ahead. The reflection of the ocean water and sand can and will burn. One of the products I now use is Lavender Essential Oils.

My good friend Rebecca gives some great suggestion on her blog

Our skin is an organ of the body. Remember that what we put into our body effects our health immensely. The products you use on your skin will enter into your body system. Read the labels of your body lotions, facial creams, perfumes, sun block and even make-up. Are there chemicals that can harm you? Cause cancer? Other diseases.


I’m fascinated by this article on how to reverse 4 diseases:

DIY Hand Sanitizers

Hand Sanitizers and Cleaners:

I brought up my five children in Bolivia, Mexico and Peru during thirteen years on a budget working for small Humanitarian organizations. Most of those years are what I call the BHS years – yep “Before Hand Sanitizer” years. I took a washcloth in a plastic bag out to the villages and packed extra water for rinsing. I was always washing my babies hands, taking their fingers out of their mouths, and administering parasite meds every six months along with a stool sample to the lab each year. I learned a lot of tricks of the trade during my five years in Bolivia with four children ages 7-1 when we arrived and  five children 11-1 (yes I was brave enough to have a baby in a clinic in Bolivia back then) when we left. Hand sanitizers appeared in 1988, but weren’t an instant hit and didn’t really sell well at first – and they certainly were not sold in Bolivia in 1988 when we arrived. They have also come a long way from being over 60% alcohol and flammable to “going green”.  By the time we went to Peru in 1997 hand sanitizers were popular in the USA, but at first we had to take it with us and have friends bring it down. But soon it was popular and found in local pharmacies.

Today, we can find natural organic brands mostly in Health Stores or make it ourselves. Using natural products and essential oils, in my opinion is healthy and avoids diseased from harmful chemicals. When I go on humanitarian expeditions I still advice participants to remember to wash their hands frequently with soap and water and at least rinse them before using hand sanitizers when working in the dirt, touching garbage etc. Shaking hands can also trransfer unwanted germs and we all need to be careful before eating. I found a great DIY recipe at :

January 2014

A new year. A time to reflect on what I learned in the past, live in the present, and plan for the future. Most of us start off by setting new goals -but do we stick to them. Lose weight, eat healthier, exercise more, read more, travel to South Dakota – ok that’s only because it will be #49 on my list. Just one more to go after this July. (which do you think I will be missing?), get married (no, that’s really not on my list yet), and spend more time with family.

So how do you make goals that you are really going to keep.

1. Be realistic.

2. Write them down – in a notebook or in the notepad on your cell phone or tablet – but it really does help and make them more real when they are written down.

3. Review them at least weekly – maybe you need to think about your important goals daily.

I love Smoothies

I’m enjoying juicing and smoothies. Here is a recipe that Sheri sent me:

Avocado Blueberry Smoothie

One whole avocado, sliced
1/2 cup blueberries
1 cup low fat milk (I use vanilla almond milk)
1/2 cup ice
2 Tbps. honey

Blend in blender and enjoy!  The avocado and the chemical that makes the blueberries blue are the real belly fat eaters! Link to seafood soup