What happened when I quit the Paleo diet?

What happened when I quit the Paleo diet?

First, what is the Paleo diet?

The Paleo diet is a style of eating based on nomad, hunter-gatherer times when we had the easiest access to meat, vegetables, and fruit. Food was simply picked or killed and then eaten. Today, The Paleo diet is often used as part of a holistic healing journey. Difficult to digest foods such as dairy, gluten, grains, and refined sugars are removed from the diet. Leafy greens, low starch vegetables, lower sugar fruits, grass-fed meats, and bone broths are enjoyed to support a healthy gut microbiome, and allow the digestive tract to heal any damage that may have been caused by stress, antibiotics, or the Standard American Diet.

Over the last six or seven years, I have experimented with many healing diets that all seem to be Paleo based. The Simple Carbohydrate Diet (SCD), the Gut and Psychology/Physiology Syndrome diet (GAPS), Autoimmune Paleo or Autoimmune Protocol (AIP), just to name a few. All share very similar values and practices: Eat real, whole food. Consume low amounts of carbs and sugar. Support gut health.

Over the years of experimenting with these diets, I did notice some improvement in my symptoms. The reason I haven’t had as much success as most people is more of an environmental issue… mold, heavy metal, Lyme, chemical toxicity… I need to get out of the moldy environment and detox for any diet to work optimally. A story for another day.

More subtle changes I realized later were, better dentist appointments… healthy gums and minimal cavity concern. I didn’t get as sick in the winter as I used to. I also had a lower, more balanced weight.

Why did I quit?

(Note: I’m not pointing fingers or blame. I’m establishing a timeline. I love IIN and am currently enrolled in and enjoying an advanced course they offer.) As I started the health coach certification program at IIN we were encouraged to experiment with the different dietary practices we learned about. I was in a place where my digestion was okay, and I felt like I could reintroduce some things that were discussed, like gluten-free whole grains, cacao, and potatoes.

That led me down a path of eating more starchy and sugary foods, as well as some “cleaner” junk food. For the first couple of weeks of having whole grains, I felt like my bowels were benefiting from that reintroduction. But it only lasted a couple of weeks. The more I reintroduced the worse I gradually felt. I started to gain weight, and I lost motivation to eat well.  Throughout that year of school, I went from about 115 or 120 pounds to close to 160 pounds (I’m only 5ft tall). Part of that was because of the increased amount of sitting doing school work, but a larger part was the food choices I was making.

It’s almost two years after the start of my coaching training, and I have finally gotten myself back into the headspace to recommit to my health. I am back on Paleo-based habits and my weight is slowly starting to come back down. My digestion is becoming a bit less painful and unpredictable. I am starting to notice my hormones balancing out, and my period starting to regulate again. My skin is a little less spotty. And my anxiety levels are slowly lowering. 

What’s next?

Now that my food choices feel healthier, I am incorporating yoga. Yoga helps me feel stronger, more flexible, and less bloated. The routines on the app I use give me a good sweat, which also helps with detoxing, which I need!  I am also working on getting out of my moldy environment. Once I do that, I will be tightening up the reigns on my die, even more, to help get all of the toxins out of my system. For now, I am focusing on rebuilding healthy routines.

No one’s body thrives in the same way. The Paleo Diet feels good for me at this point in my life and works well for many others. If it doesn’t work for you, that’s okay!  Please share in the comments what style of eating you thrive from.

-Lizzie

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

5 Great Books For Gut Health

5 Great Books For Gut Health

Gut health has been a big topic of research for me over the past 5 years, give or take. I have read many blog posts, articles, and books, as well as listened to many webinars, podcasts, and YouTube videos on the topic. I even enrolled in a nutrition school to learn more about digestive health. It is something that I find very interesting to learn about, and I feel that it is something everyone should be aware of. The gut is essentially the core of your immune system and most of the “mechanics” and wellbeing of your entire body. These are my top picks to kick start a gut health library:

Gut and Psychology Syndrome

Often referred to as “the yellow book”, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride’s book on the GAPS Diet is incredibly detailed and science-based. She was inspired to write her book after successfully treating her own son’s Autism with a modified version of the SCD (Simple Carbohydrate) Diet. In this book, she covers a vast number of gut health-related topics including elimination diets for little ones, for pregnancy or breastfeeding, and for your average Joe. The importance of being aware of environmental chemicals is a topic covered thoroughly in this GAPS book. Dr. Natasha recommends a number of ways to detox, from supplements to baths, and even just enjoying some sunshine. She talks about staying away from pesticides and herbicides and she even discusses how to go about a safer vaccination protocol. There are a number of simple recipes to experiment with. They are written in such a way that the ingredients can easily be adjusted based on one’s food sensitivities as well as what you happen to have in your pantry. I really love her bread recipe! It’s great with some bananas added!

The Heal Your Gut Cookbook

This is a wonderful cookbook to have on hand as you go through the GAPS Diet. The recipes are categorized by each stage of the elimination diet, and there are lots of notes for substitutions or alterations depending on dietary restrictions or what phase of the diet you are working on. To start, there are lots of yummy soup and broth recipes, gradually building toward steaks, burgers and even a few sweet treats in later sections.

Eat Dirt

I have been a massive fan of Dr. Axe since the beginning of my gut healing journey. He has incredible articles on his website. I highly recommend you use the search box on his website as though it were Google. Search anything holistic health related! You can also find very high-quality supplements and essential oils. This book is an extension of all of that that I like to have on hand to refer to quickly. When reading this book for the first time, what really struck me was the list of illnesses and diseases that likely have leaky gut as the main cause. It was the first time I had seen such a long list of diagnoses that were linked to poor gut health. It made me think of many friends and family members that were diagnosed with one thing or another. All of those were on this list, and it made me so sad that this was such a foreign concept to so many people.

The Primal Kitchen Cookbook

This book doesn’t give much information on gut health, but it is full of amazing Paleo recipes. It would also be very easy to use for GAPS and Keto diets too. The Primal Kitchen brand is full of many yummy Paleo condiments such as ketchup, mayonnaise, and salad dressings.

Practical Paleo

The first half of this book is organized by food groups explaining the benefits of eating Paleo. When I first read it I was blown away by how easily the food pyramid that we are taught throughout school could be debunked. This was my first proper explanation of the nutritional science behind a “gut supporting” diet and I was in awe. Diane makes Paleo practices so easy to understand. To make life easier, included in the book are shopping guides… finding the best quality meats, understanding what the little stickers on fruits and vegetables mean, and which flours and oils to keep on hand. There are also 30-day meal plans for specific health concerns such as diabetes, IBS, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, etc. I believe the new version of the book has added a section for Autism. The back half of the book is full of delicious Paleo and AIP (Auto-Immune Paleo) recipes with plenty of notes to make the necessary modifications.

There are soooo many great books about gut health. These are five that I have really enjoyed, but I have so many more on my gut health shelves and  “to read” list. What books would you recommend to someone just getting into gut health?  

 -Lizzie

Lessons I learned from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition

Lessons I learned from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition

In September I graduated from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition as a Certified Holistic Health Coach. I really enjoyed my year there and feel that I learned a lot! Since I didn’t go to college right after high-school, IIN was a great way to dip my toes back into a form of education. It was all online, so I was able to create my own schedule.

Other than the variety of health-related topics we were taught, we also learned many “real world” lessons. These are the life lessons that stuck with me after graduating from nutrition school.

1. My idea of healthy living isn’t always ideal for everyone else.

Because of my long history with digestive issues I’ve read a lot of gut healing books, websites, and articles. Nearly all of them recommend a Paleo style diet. That, for a long time, caused me to think grains, for example, were very bad for everyone.
At IIN we are taught many different dietary theories, as well as pros and cons of the different diets. The theory of bio-individuality, or “one person’s food could be another person’s poison” is something that was also instilled in us on many occasions.
I now feel much more open, mentally to different ways to achieve wellness.

2. The importance of listening to my body, and some tricks to understanding it.

My long stint of chronic illness has taught me how to listen to my body to know when not to push it. IIN has taught me more ways to understand clues my body could be giving.
For example, craving sweets could be a sign that you are actually craving positive emotional connection with someone.

3. How to be my own health advocate.

Over the past few years, I’ve learned to stand up for my health and what I need, but many of the IIN lectures have given me more confidence to do so for my myself as well as others.

4. Being confident in what I know.

I have spent a number of years researching holistic health for my own needs. I’ve learned a lot on my own but was not always taken seriously, because I didn’t have a degree. IIN has taught me a lot, given me even more resources to continue learning on my own, as well as provided me with a snazzy piece of paper that says I know things.

5. The desire to learn more.

At IIN we learn about a vast number of subjects, but do not go into great detail about all of them. With each lecture, they provide a few resources to help dive deeper into subjects that really interest us. There are also continuing education programs at IIN to learn more about digestive health, hormone health, business, writing, etc.

6. How to really listen to people.

The key to health coaching is to really listen. Not only to what clients say but also to what they aren’t saying. There are plenty of lectures that give tips on deep listening. The sample coaching sessions were also very helpful to observe correct ways to key in on what people do and don’t say.

7. It’s okay to not know all of the answers.

Not knowing everything is okay. Being honest about what you know and what you need to look up is better for everyone all around. It is also an opportunity to do some research and learn something new to share with your clients.

Enrolling at IIN last year was a decision I am really glad I made and I highly recommend enrollment for any of my fellow health nuts!

What are your favorite health-related topics to read about? Let’s continue the conversation in the comments.

-Lizzie

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

Young Living Essential Rewards, January ’18 | Unboxing

Young Living Essential Rewards, January ’18 | Unboxing

You’ve probably seen Young Living promoted by a few of your Facebook friends. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the brand, Young Living is a very successful essential oil company whose products are made from organic plants and processed on high-quality machines in the safest ways possible to maximize each bottle’s medicinal value. (You can learn more about their manufacturing process here.)
Each month I receive an Essential Rewards box of products that I have personally selected. I also earn points from each month’s order that allows me to get free products in the future.
This month I ordered Di-Gize and Peace & Calming II.
Di-Gize is my savior. I don’t know how I’d manage without it. I haven’t been without a bottle since I discovered it about 4 years ago. It’s the best tummy soother ever. (You can read my full review of it here.)

Di-Gize Ingredients

“Artemisia dracunculus† (Tarragon) oil, Zingiber officinale† (Ginger) root oil, Mentha piperita† (Peppermint) oil, Juniperus osteosperma† (Juniper) oil, Foeniculum vulgare† (Fennel) oil, Cymbopogon flexuosus† (Lemongrass) oil, Pimpinella anisum† (Anise) seed oil, Pogostemon cablin† (Patchouli) oil” – YL’s Website

Peace and calming II is a beautiful, unique relaxing blend. It’s great to diffuse or apply topically to calm your senses.

Peace & Calming II Ingredients

“Citrus reticulata† (Tangerine) peel oil, Citrus aurantium dulcis† (Orange) peel oil, Cananga odorata† (Ylang ylang) flower oil, Pogostemon cablin† (Patchouli) oil, Picea mariana† (Northern Lights black spruce) leaf oil, Chamomilla recutita† (Matricaria) flower oil, Vetiveria zizanoides† (Vetiver) root oil, Cistus ladaniferus† (Cistus) oil, Citrus aurantium bergamia† (Bergamot) peel oil, Cinnamomum cassia† (Cassia) leaf oil, Artemisia pallens† (Davana) flower oil” – YL’s Website

This month’s order was small and just reached the minimum spending requirement, but both products have been used many times since receiving.
What did you order in your Essential Rewards box this month?
~ Lizzie

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

Four Months at IIN

Four Months at IIN

Since graduating high school in 2014 I haven’t done much to further my education. Instead, I took the time to focus on my health and to work on healing. Its been almost four years since I finished school, so it feels like a good time to dip my toes back into the school scene. I decided to enroll in IIN or the Institute for Integrative Nutrition.

What is IIN?
IIN is an online school that provides its students with a certification in health coaching. The content is very holistic and offers a lot of great information on many health-related topics. They teach about over 100 different diets as well as digestion, exercise, lifestyle, emotions, relationships, and also include guidance in the vocational, business side of coaching.

They have been around for over 20 years and have produced many great professionals such as the creator of Purely Elizabeth granola and even my own Functional Medicine Dr.

What is the commitment level?
It can be taken as a part-time course alongside other college classes and/or work. I find it to be pretty common sense information while being interesting and new at the same time. On average it is about a 5 to 8 hour a week workload.

Why have I enrolled?
Just after I graduated, when I was at my sickest, and just getting into learning how to care for my body myself holistically, a friend of mine was enrolled here at IIN and told me all about it. I was very interested and keep them in the back of my mind (and email inbox) for the future. When I saw that they were having a little deal on tuition this fall I thought it would be the perfect time to enroll. I’d been feeling slightly fidgety with where my life was at… or rather wasn’t at, and was ready for something new, but not overwhelming. I am taking this as an opportunity to learn more about health and wellness to continue my healing journey as well as help my family and friends on theirs.

Over the years I have known many people, friends, family, and acquaintances, who have dealt with similar digestive issues as I have. I find it fascinating listening to their story and what has worked for them. I also enjoy offering advice when I can. I’d love the opportunity to help more people in similar situations.

I also hope to grow my confidence to share healthy living tips here and write about topics a bit more serious than makeup. Don’t get me wrong! I do love makeup very much and will not be cutting it out of my posts, but I’d love to offer help to others virtually via my blog.

Have you taken any courses like what IIN offers? How did it go? To get in the spirit of health coaching comment one area of your life that you would like to improve.

~ Lizzie

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

Mother Dirt Probiotic Skin and Hair Care | Review

Mother Dirt Probiotic Skin and Hair Care | Review

Probiotics are becoming more and more popular in diet and health practices. Recently brands have been adding probiotics to their beauty products. Mother Dirt was created with the intent of keeping your external microbiome happy and healthy. There are four products available for skin and hair care: a probiotic mist, a shampoo, a foam cleanser, and an oil moisturizer. They come in bottles that are TSA approved so you can easily pack it in a carry on case for a flight. Even though the packages are small, a surprising amount of product is jammed in there. Each bottle lasted a lot longer than I anticipated.

All of the products are unscented, are hypoallergenic, and score very well by the Environmental Working Group.

The shampoo is very gentle… almost too gentle. It felt great when using it but my hair became greasy quickly throughout the day. I could not skip a day of washing my hair. I missed having a (naturally) scented shampoo. Mother Dirt doesn’t sell a conditioner to go along with their shampoo. On their website, it says a lot of people didn’t need one. My rat’s nest was still in desperate needed one so I chose The Honest Co. Conditioner.

The foam cleanser can be used for the face and body. It is so gentle, yet very effective. My skin didn’t feel stripped after cleansing, but it still removed my makeup. It even did a decent job taking off waterproof mascara! But again, I missed a pretty scent.

The moisturizer had a strange texture. It didn’t feel oily or greasy. It had more of a slippery texture, almost silicone like. The packaging for this one needs some work. It leaked a lot and often the oil would splatter or squirt when I would pump it out of the bottle.

AO+ Mist is a live probiotic spray. You can mist it anywhere on your body to replenish good bacteria. This mist is perfect… not so heavy that it leaves large droplets, but not so fine that you have to spray it a thousand times before you feel anything.

All in all, I wasn’t as impressed as I’d hoped to be. Even though the mist is slightly pricier than I’d prefer, I really liked the texture so I would repurchase it. I also liked the gentle cleanser and might pick that one up again. The oil cleanser and shampoo didn’t wow me. However, I am glad I tried Mother Dirt. My eyes were opened to this trend. I look forward to seeing what the natural beauty community comes up with next using pro and prebiotics.

What are your favorite good bug supporting products? Please share with everyone in the comments!

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

10 Natural Ways to Combat Stress and Anxiety

10 Natural Ways to Combat Stress and Anxiety

Anxiety is something I have been struggling with on and off for most of my life. Over the past 5 or 6 years since my digestive issues have worsened, my anxiety worsened right along with it. After reading many articles, listening to many doctors, and learning how to listen to my body, I realized that my gut problems and my anxiety had weaved themselves into and endless cycle – One causing the other. With the help of several natural practitioners, virtual support from stories found online, and my family and friends’ support, I am starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel.

Keep reading to learn what has helped me maintain some control over my anxiety. (I am not a medical professional. These are what I have found works for me. They may or may not work for you – Everyone is different.)

1. Apps

A good percentage of us have smartphones. Take a snoop around the app store on your mobile device and you will find a plethora of relaxation apps. A few of my favorites are:

Relax Lite: Simply guided breathing with soothing music in the background. When I get panicky I forget to breathe. This guide gives me something to focus on, other than my nerves.

CalmThis app is very popular. It has a lot of great guided meditations for balancing emotions and relaxation. There is also a work book bassed on the Calm app, with a similar concept.

AudibleSometimes, when my mind is racing at night, I put on a story that comes free with an Amazon Prime subscription.

Relax Melodies: If you enjoy noises, tones, or sounds for relaxation, this app would be great for you.

2. Deep Breathing

Deep breathing,  4 counts in and  4 counts out. Focusing on the counting and feeling the breath deep in the bottom of my lungs helps to calm me.

3. Essential Oils

I LOVE essential oils. I use them for everything. Some great single oils to use for anxiety are Lavender, Chamomile, Orange, and Ylang Ylang.

There are also a few blends that are amazing: Relax, Peace and Calming I and/or II, and Stress Away. Each of these is unique, with beautiful, calming scents. All of these oils work well applied to the skin – for stress, I like to rub them over my chest – and diffused in an essential oil diffuser (the one I’m currently using – great for smaller to medium sized spaces, not so great for larger, open spaces).

4. Yoga and Meditation

When I include a few minutes of yoga and meditation in my day I feel a whole lot better overall, both physically and mentally.

A few apps I like to use are Daily Yoga, Asana Rebel, Butterfly Yoga, and Yoga Academy.

5. Get Outside/Grounding

Getting out into nature, into the fresh air has so many benefits both emotionally and physically. Grounding or Earthing – getting skin to earth contact – in ways I don’t understand supports our overall health in so many ways: reducing stress, reducing pain and inflammation, speeding up healing, and supporting adrenal health. (wellnessmama.com has a really great article about grounding.)

“Playing” in the dirt can provide lots of beneficial probiotics. Having a healthy microbiome is the basis for a healthy body and mind.

So get out there in the sun and dirt! Breath in the fresh air, soak up the vitamin D and play in the probiotics.

6. Don’t be afraid to ask for help

Reach out to a friend or family member you can trust. Explain what you are feeling. Don’t be afraid to tell them exactly how to help you when you do have a panic attack.

Seeing a Therapisteapist can do a world of good. I really enjoyed the time I spent with mine. She provided me with many great tools to understand what was going on with my brain and how to manage it and correct it. Panic attacks don’t just come out of the blue. There is a cause. Maybe we can’t identify the reason right off the bat – and that’s okay – but with time a professional can help you understand the underlying causes of your anxiety and find a way to retrain your brain to overcome what triggers your anxiety.

7. Staying Busy

Staying occupied helps me to keep my mind off of whatever might be stressing me.

For example, I get quite anxious when we have company (I’ve made a lot of improvement on that recently) so staying busy in the kitchen or cleaning around the house in preparation for guests really helps keep my freak out to a minimum.

8. Reducing Toxicity

Detoxing can do a world of good for the body. You can start by making sure the products you use on yourself and your home are chemical free. (Sign up for my email newsletter or follow me on Bloglovin’ to get even more tips on living chemical free.)

With your Doctor’s approval remove synthetic medications. Search for natural options. A Naturopath, Functional Medicine Practitioner or Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner may be able to help with that search.

9. Check hormone and vitamin levels

I really recommend finding a Functional Medicine Practitioner in your area. I absolutely love mine. She is the best Doctor I’ve had so far (and I’ve seen a LOT of Doctors). She is dedicated, open-minded and thorough. Functional Docs have access to both sides of medicine – pharmaceutical and natural. They can also request testing from both sides of medicine. Functional Docs have access to more unique, detailed and possibly weird tests. Ask to get your hormone and vitamin levels checked. My results have been very revealing and helpful for future treatment and healing.

10. Supplements

There are many supplements that can help with stress reduction and mood balancing. (Always speak to your doctor before introducing a new treatment.)

Taking a high quality probiotic to keep your gut flora balanced will, in turn, help the rest of your body. Anxiety can be a side effect of vitamin b deficiency. I recommend finding methylated b’s in case there is an MTHFR gene mutation.

A few supplements such as Holy Basil, Gaba, and L-Theanine are very helpful with mood balancing.

So there you have it. Those are my tips and tricks for keeping a lid on my anxiety and panic attacks. I hope you find something here that could help you but remember, everyone is different. (You should always speak with your doctor before making any changes with your health.)

Do you have any tips that I didn’t include? If so, please share them in the comments!

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

Gift Guide For Someone With Digestive Disorders

Gift Guide For Someone With Digestive Disorders

With Christmas coming up rather quickly, I thought I’d put together a gift guide for something a bit unique, something I know a bit about; digestive disorders. More and more you hear about people with Celiac, Chrones, IBS, IBD, Leaky Gut, I could keep going. I bet you know somebody like that. If you are stumped on what gift to give them this Christmass, here are a few suggestions. These products are favorites of many in the gut healing community.

Cozy Clothes

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Solmate-Socks-Mismatched-Raspberry-Medium/dp/B0077197ZO/ref=as_li_ss_il?srs=6182327011&ie=UTF8&qid=1481302560&sr=8-1&th=1&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=b10c6c459aa4ca4e38ca3f1b645da134" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B0077197ZO&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B0077197ZO" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Solmate Socks

I have a couple pairs of Solmate Socks. I absolutely love them. They come in all sorts of colors and I love how unique they are. An added bonus: they are very cozy and warm. (And made from recycled cotton, and made in the US)

<a href="http://linksynergy.walmart.com/link?id=fMjJXJGRvhY&offerid=223073.52770026&type=2&murl=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.walmart.com%2Fip%2FDanskin-Now-Women-s-Tech-Fleece-Jogger-with-Front-Pockets%2F52770026"><IMG border=0 src="https://i5.walmartimages.com/asr/276294d2-8104-44af-ae85-1e4831d8f9a6_1.2ced70320e39c115e174fe30d6aa5e2e.jpeg?odnHeight=450&odnWidth=450&odnBg=ffffff" ></a><IMG border=0 width=1 height=1 src="http://ad.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/show?id=fMjJXJGRvhY&bids=223073.52770026&type=2&subid=0" >

Joggers

I love wearing pants like these. I have a few fleece pairs and a few  that are a cotton blend. I love both. Most of the time I prefer cotton clothes but when you need something extra snuggly and soft to cuddle up in, baggy fleece is amazing. Walmart is a great place to get cheap, cozy PJ pants of all styles.

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Champion-Womens-Pullover-Fleece-X-Large/dp/B00YUC5568/ref=as_li_ss_il?s=apparel&ie=UTF8&qid=1481305625&sr=1-11&nodeID=7147440011&keywords=champion+sweatshirt&th=1&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=c46d5d8d6ed4bbd31e0e021287c839f2" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00YUC5568&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B00YUC5568" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Sweatshirt of Sweater 

Everyone loves a warm sweatshirt or sweater! Champion is one of my favorite brands for “active” wear. (Even though I’m not a sporty person.)

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00J9BMYXC/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=112f139338c890fd91281c2304ae275b" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00J9BMYXC&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B00J9BMYXC" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Slippers

Sperry Top-Sider is a brand my family has loved for ages. I can only imagine how amazing these slippers could be! Soft and furry is the way to go in the slipper department when winter hits.

 

Cuddly Bedding

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/SONOMA-style-Micromink-Sherpa-Reversible/dp/B00G7RTVK0/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481306502&sr=8-1&keywords=sonoma+blanket&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=a791a0428d7a2cb7b8122622c1ad659c" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00G7RTVK0&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B00G7RTVK0" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Throw

As I am writing this post, it is about 3o℉ outside, and I am bundled up with this Sonoma blanket by the fireplace. Several Christmases ago we received one for each of the three of us from cousins, and we have been loving them since. (My cat is currently snoozing in one of the others.)

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/S2BMOM-Premium-Contoured-Pregnancy-Pillow/dp/B01LYH77HI/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481307708&sr=8-12&keywords=body+pillow&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=e7e68bc36daae8cd3592b0d403aee60e" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01LYH77HI&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B01LYH77HI" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Body Pillow

Regardless of one’s state of health, a lot of people really love body pillows. Pregnancy pillows are so big, you can just curl up inside one massive pillow and be supported by squishy cuddliness on all sides. It sounds pretty great to me!

Essential Oils

One of the most important parts of my healing is using essential oils. They have helped me with my digestion, anxiety, cleaning and even managing my cat’s fleas!

It is important to note that there are many different levels of quality with not real regulations. I wouldn’t put a lot of trust in the cheap oils you can pick up in your local health store. I have gotten the most benefit from Young Living’s Essential oils. For a cheaper option, I enjoy a few oils from Plant Therapy as well.

Digize

I don’t know what I would do without Digize blend from Young Living. It has all of the most beneficial oils in it for gut health: peppermint, ginger, fennel, lemongrass, etc. You can read my full review about it here.

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Young-Living-3423-Thieves-milliliter/dp/B0015KUBBM/ref=as_li_ss_il?s=beauty&ie=UTF8&qid=1481309342&sr=1-3&keywords=thieves+essential+oil&refinements=p_89:Young+Living&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=b56ab3e5313a5455dd2bfe5117082ae6" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B0015KUBBM&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B0015KUBBM" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Thieves

Thieves is another favorite. I love diffusing it. It is a blend of cinnamon, clove, lemon and eucalyptus and has a very Christmasy scent. These ingredients are also wonderful for cleaning. They are antibacterial and antifungal. It knocks out a cold at the earliest sign and it can also be rubbed on the tummy (with a carrier oil to dilute) to help with something along the lines of Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO). Young Living has created many personal care and housekeeping products with this Thieves blend as a base. Thieves Household Cleaner does wonders for mold problems.

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Young-Living-Citrus-Fresh-Essential/dp/B01IRORADA/ref=as_li_ss_il?s=beauty&ie=UTF8&qid=1481313242&sr=1-20&keywords=citrus+fresh+essential+oil&refinements=p_89:Young+Living&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=36c4b52408e72300e649ec502b1e4a99" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01IRORADA&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B01IRORADA" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Citrus Fresh

Added to a glass of water, diffused or applied topically this essential oil blend is beautiful. It tastes wonderful, smells wonderful, and also aids in detox. Lemon, orange, mandarine, grapefruit, and spearmint are blended to create this sweet oil.

<a href="http://www.kqzyfj.com/click-7777694-12658673-1471025630000?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.planttherapy.com%2Frelax-synergy-for-mental-relaxation%3Fv%3D56&cjsku=610256944104a" target="_top"><img src="https://www.planttherapy.com/mm5/graphics/00000001/10ml-SYNERGY-relax_2.jpg" border="0" alt="Relax Synergy 10 ml"/></a><img src="http://www.tqlkg.com/image-7777694-12658673-1471025630000" width="1" height="1" border="0"/>

Relax

Diffused or applied topically, I find great relief from this blend. It has a really strong, sweet lavender scent. It pairs well, diffused with Citrus Fresh.

Books

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Eat-Dirt-Health-Problems-Surprising/dp/0062433644/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481314064&sr=8-2&keywords=dr+axe&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=7d5303e48195303256414735f45db242" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=0062433644&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=0062433644" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Eat Dirt

Dr Axe is a great expert in gut health. His website, www.draxe.com is overflowing with articles, information, recipes, DIYs and more that are related to gut healing. His recent book is sort of a sum of what he teaches.

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Psychology-Syndrome-D-D-D-H-D-Schizophrenia/dp/0954852028/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481314413&sr=8-1&keywords=gaps&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=5b5756046b236261b9c7f357338f3cec" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=0954852028&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=0954852028" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Gut and Psychology Syndrom (GAPS)

The “yellow book” is kind of a bible of gut healing for a lot of people. There is so much information in this book! When I was reading it, I felt like every paragraph I was thinking “wow!”, ‘no way” or “that explains it!”. I highly recommend this book!

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Twilight-Garden-Journal-Notebook-Format/dp/1593596723/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481314724&sr=8-17&keywords=journal&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=61079e35540c77cdce7541549d955c7d" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=1593596723&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=1593596723" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Journal

Writing is an important part of healing for a lot of people. A beautiful journal is a great place to keep track of how your feeling, positive accomplishments, goals or even track food and symptoms.

 

Tea

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/teapigs-Peppermint-Leaves-Tea-Count/dp/B005TJYXZK/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481315072&sr=8-1&keywords=teapigs+peppermint&th=1&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=20ba986f73022a14ffc0f1e1944f04e7" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B005TJYXZK&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B005TJYXZK" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Peppermint Tea

Tea Pig’s Peppermint Tea is sweet, minty, and soothing. It’s enjoyable in a hot mug or in a cooler glass of water.

 

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/teapigs-Chamomile-Flowers-Tea-Count/dp/B00KH0KY72/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481315296&sr=8-1&keywords=teapigs+chamomile&th=1&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=7dd6c82c4ccea669b7eea2cc7c438c4f" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00KH0KY72&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B00KH0KY72" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Chamomile

Before bed, a warm cup of chamomile can help calm the mind and body. A good night’s sleep is so important for healing.

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/VARANO-Marauders-Activated-Changing-Ceramic/dp/B01MQ12XHT/ref=as_li_ss_il?ie=UTF8&qid=1481315586&sr=8-5&keywords=mauraders+map+coffee+cup&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=bbff2dcd3b67269f6d603a717c035381" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01MQ12XHT&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B01MQ12XHT" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Fun Mug

A fun mug always makes things 10X better. Who wouldn’t love a color changing Maurader Map mug?!

Kitchen Tools

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/Cuisinart-DLC-2011CHBY-Prep-11-Cup-Processor/dp/B01AXM4WIK/ref=as_li_ss_il?s=kitchen&ie=UTF8&qid=1481315847&sr=1-6&keywords=cuisinart+food+processor&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=e20798eb009ee817e7d8f514f5ceb186" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B01AXM4WIK&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B01AXM4WIK" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Food Processor

Having a food processor on hand is always a good thing. I love using it to chop up foods like cauliflower to make cauliflower rice.

<a href="https://www.amazon.com/VitaClay-VS7600-2C-Yogurt-Personal-Stainless/dp/B00W49YV46/ref=as_li_ss_il?s=kitchen&ie=UTF8&qid=1481320689&sr=1-14-spons&keywords=vita+clay&psc=1&smid=A3AYKKZ4APZIHU&linkCode=li3&tag=misselizabeth-20&linkId=d782412cd837579c2a6ab135776ca7e9" target="_blank"><img border="0" src="//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?_encoding=UTF8&ASIN=B00W49YV46&Format=_SL250_&ID=AsinImage&MarketPlace=US&ServiceVersion=20070822&WS=1&tag=misselizabeth-20" ></a><img src="https://ir-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/ir?t=misselizabeth-20&l=li3&o=1&a=B00W49YV46" width="1" height="1" border="0" alt="" style="border:none !important; margin:0px !important;" />

Slow Cooker

Having the ability to throw some ingredients in a pot and not have to think about it for a while takes a lot of stress way. Food that is cooked well is a lot easier to digest as well. This particular slow cooker that is linked is made out of clay, without any glaze so you don’t have to worry about any metals, plastics, dyes or chemicals leaching into the food. It also has a setting for yogurt making. The beneficial bacteria from plain, organic, homemade yogurt is very important to repairing the gut and restoring health to the rest of the body.

 

For Curiosity

DNA Testing

There are many genetic factors that can play into digestive issues. Doing 23andMe, I learned about many genetic abnormalities that could be contributing to my health battles. I really recommend doing it. It’s actually really cool learning about the fine details of what makes you, you. You can read a bit more about my experience here.

 

Did I miss any of your must-haves? Add others in the comments.

-Liz

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

My 23andMe Experience

My 23andMe Experience

For many months I have been thinking about doing 23andMe genetic testing. Or any genetic testing in general for that matter. There are many companies that test DNA for many different reasons.

A few years ago 23andMe was focused on the connection between health and genetics. They also offered a lot of information on genealogy. In 2013 the FDA stopped 23andMe from providing health results, or “diagnoses” as they saw it. It took almost two years for the FDA and 23andMe to come to an agreement on what they could and could not share with their customers.

At this time, there are some health results available directly from 23andMe. They have a pretty good system for genealogy and connecting with distant cousins, etc. You are also able to download your raw genetic data (a file of just the scientific codes assigned to each gene) to run through third-party companies. These companies can provide incredible results.

Why did I decide to have my DNA analyzed?

Here and there I have mentioned my health battles, trying to heal my leaky gut. I have yet to go into great detail about it, well because I’m not sure how to just yet. A few years ago I discovered a wonderful Functional Medicine Practitioner. At my first appointment, she requested a rather large batch of blood work (14 vials!!!). Part of that batch tested me for the two most common variations of the MTHFR gene mutation.

A few years ago I discovered a wonderful Functional Medicine Practitioner. At my first appointment, she requested a rather large batch of blood work (14 vials!!!). Part of that batch tested me for the two most common variations of the MTHFR gene mutation.

The results are in… I don’t have MTHFR C677T… BUT… I am homozygous (two copies … one from Mom and one from Dad) for MTHFR A1298C. OK, cool. I guess I’ll take my fancy, methylated B vitamins and that’s that.

About a year and change went by before I really started to wonder about this MTHFR thing. I wasn’t feeling any better, so I decided I needed to look into this and maybe manage it a bit better. What I learned was quite scary, overwhelming, and amazing.

I can become quite obsessive when my mind is set on something, so I set out to learn everything I could about what MTHFR means for me, my body, and my healing.

On several occasions, I found myself on Dr. Ben Lynch’s website, mthfr.net. From what I understand, he is one of the top MTHFR experts on the internet. One article from his website, about managing MTHFR, highly recommended doing 23andMe testing. So I shifted my obsessive researching to genetic testing.

My research concluded that 23andMe was the most cost-effective, consumer service available for what I was looking for. But the argument with the FDA was discouraging and left me nervous about spending so much money on something I wasn’t 100% sure I could trust, rely on, or totally benefit from.

It was many months later, after putting a hold on that research adventure, that I joined Dr. Axe’s Healing Leaky Gut Program. Included in that program was access to a private gut healing Facebook support group. I took my MTHFR questions to that group page. On several occasions, it was suggested that I do 23andMe. Once again my obsessive researching took off.

This time, it led me to Sterling Hill of mthfrsupport.com. We had an incredible phone conversation about how crucial it can be to know your own DNA. She helped me to understand that there are several possible gene mutations that can interfere with the MTHFR mutation and create kind of a perfect storm (wich was what I felt was going on with my body) .

Sterling sold me! After all that time I finally decided to do it!

I bought the kit!

After I ordered my test I was so excited to receive my results. I was constantly checking my 23andMe account, Looking for this image:

I also searched Google high and low for any indication of how long each step of testing would take. There weren’t any good answers. Some people received their results in a few weeks. Some took the average, estimated amount of time, and other had to wait even longer.

Since I didn’t have much luck finding the answers I wanted, I decided to create a timeline of my wait for the next person wondering:

Day 1: Purchased kit online.

Day 3: Kit mailed.

Day 5: Kit received and registered online.

Day 6: Mailed the kit back.

Day 11: Box logged in at lab, quality inspection started

Day 21: DNA Extraction

Day 27: DNA Analysis

Day 28: Quality review, Initial Raw Data Processing

Day 32: Woke up to an email saying my results were in!

Because I was so anxious and excited, this process felt like it took about 4X longer!

The Results Are In!

I learned a LOT from just the results available on 23andMe’s site. I have two copies of the lactose intolerant gene. (I was diagnosed with a low lactase enzyme count via endoscopy several years ago, at the beginning of my health struggles.)

I am more likely to have a sweet tooth. YEP!! It’s a Fox thing.

I can also smell asparagus metabolite in my pee.

23andMe was pretty spot on with my appearance too: Most likely to have brown eyes, no dimples, no unibrow, light-colored, wavy hair, ring finger longer than the index finger and light skin. Cool!

Even though most of the genealogical stories that have been passed down on both my parent’s sides are French/German, my DNA is actually more British/Irish. I also have a smidge of Asian/Native American in me too!

Third Party Analysis Programs

There are many companies who offer more in-depth analysis programs for your raw data. The few that I came across that look pretty good are:

Free:

Athletigen: A sport focused program. It explains how your body and mind react to athletic activities. It gave me recommendations like yoga, hip strengthening, and get more omega-3s. I can agree with all of those. I didn’t need to do this one but I thought it was fun to learn from it.

Codegen: I really like this one! It is very easy to search by gene, mutation, keyword, disease, condition, etc. You do have to reconnect your 23andMe account every time you want to “log in”, but that only takes a second. There is an option to email a time sensitive (accessible up to one week) file of results to your doctor as well. They provide links to many research references.

Genetic Genie: This service provides you with two PDF files. One with methylation genes and the other with detox genes. I chose to use Genetic Gene to first get a feel for what I might be finding in relation to the MTHFR mutation (MTHFR falls under the methylation and detox categories) . It was not as extensive as I was looking for, but it is a great place to start.

NutraHacker: Nutrahacker is a more nutrition based service. They offer great results via “free sample” You can also pay and receive extended results. I downloaded the free portion but have yet to purchase the full results. Do any of you know if they are worth it? I think the free results are pretty interesting. It would be amazing if the full, paid results were twice as interesting!

Paid:

A common one is Promethease for $5. I did not do this one because I had already purchased one that I felt was more extensive.

MTHFR Support at $30: Sterling (previously mentioned in this post) has a very thorough app on this site. The app provides a crazy amount of SNPs. They have educational YouTube video’s linked to many of the gene mutations, along with SNPedia links. Sterling also offers one on one consultations (at an additional price) to go over and understand your results.

I recently discovered Dr. Lynch has created Strate Gene for $45. I haven’t purchased this on but upon first glance at the website, it looks similar to Sterling’s App. Have you used Strate Gene?

There are many others available. Some I didn’t like the looks of, and others I just couldn’t figure out.

What other programs are out there that you would recommend?

I recommend any and all of the free ones. Sterling’s App from MTHFR support was really worth it for me. At first, I was really overwhelmed with all of the scientific codes and words, but it forced me to learn something new. I am really glad I did. I can almost understand it now! 🙂

I am happy I did the 23andMe testing. They are constantly updating their website and releasing new studies. Customers are also encouraged to participate in their surveys, which help with their research projects.

The family features are really neat as well! I was contacted by a distant cousin who told me her last name translated to fox in Russian. I don’t know of any Russian roots in my family, but that was still a pretty cool bit of information.

I would recommend 23andMe to anyone thinking about DNA testing. You get the most for your money. There are also umpteen million third-party analysis programs available.

Have you done any DNA testing before? Did you find it valuable? Are you thinking about doing it now? I look forward to continuing this conversation in the comments!

-Liz

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

The Honest Company Organic Sanitary Pad | Review

The Honest Company Organic Sanitary Pad | Review

Pads and tampons are a big part of many of our lives. We use them quite regularly. They go on/in/around one of the most delicate, sensitive parts of our bodies. Shouldn’t we be keeping that area as healthy and chemical free as possible?

Many of the conventional brands that are easy to pick up at you local drugstore use cheap cotton that has been grown with pesticides/herbicides. When cotton is sprayed with those chemicals, the spray goes directly onto the fluff that is used to make our personal care items, bedding, towels, and clothing. That cotton is then bleached, dyed, and treated with even more harmful chemicals. When we put that toxic material on our most sensitive skin we are allowing all of those dangerous chemicals to be absorbed by our bodies. Knowing my own personal issues (MTHFR, etc.) with detoxing toxins like pesticides, synthetic dyes, and chemicals I can no longer allow myself to use products containing those hidden ingredients.

A while back I shared a video on this topic to my Facebook page. The reporter explains this whole issue with the chemicals in feminine care products really well. You can find it here. Don’t forget to like me on Facebook while you are there!

The ingredients that are used in pads and tampons are not regulated and it is not required for the companies to disclose what they have used. Luckily there are more and more companies who are beginning to care about this issue. These Eco and health conscious brands are considerate enough to list the ingredients on their products packaging and website.

The Honest Co. Pads are made out of organic cotton, and plant-based “plastic” materials. They are made without plastics, fragrances, dyes, bleach, etc.

Under my phone, in the yellow wrapper is Honest’s Liner. This comes folded in thirds and sealed in the yellow packaging. -Side note… The Honest Company has such cute packaging!- This regular liner is great for lighter days, backup for a tampon (which The Honest Company also sells) or every day wear if you like. I have tried a few other organic panty liners mostly by Natracare, and I found that The Honest Co. holds up the best. The adhesive on the bottom is stronger and the surface doesn’t fall apart and get crumbly.

The same can be said for the thong liners. They don’t come folded and sealed like the other three pads. They have a peel off paper backing and are the thinnest of the four. As you can see, it is shaped like a normal panty liner but has dotted lines so it can be folded to fit around a thong. I am not a thong wearer so I haven’t tried that myself but unfolded they work fine in regular underwear. These are so thin and flexible, and they are great for everyday wear, tampon backup or the very tail end of a period.

The Regular and Super pads are both ultra-thin, yet super absorbent. I would compare them to Always Radiant pads or U by Kotex Clean Wear pads, just without all the synthetics and chemicals! I like to use the regular pads during the day and the super at night.

All four of these pads are wonderful! I have not been disappointed by an Honest Co. product yet. I would highly recommend these. They are comfortable, healthy, a bit more Eco-friendly and you don’t miss out on any of the quality and durability from your favorites like Always, Kotex, Stayfree or Playtex.

What are your favorite non-toxic feminine care products? Please tell me in the comments!

-Liz

Shop the new Honest Feminine Care line!

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

Young Living Period Rescue

Young Living Period Rescue

Periods are a weird thing to talk about on the internet. Although, many of us come to the internet looking for suggestions on how to alleviate some of the side effects and deal better with that time of the month.

When I first got my period I took Midol to get rid of the cramps. I did that for several years. Most of the time it helped. When I started to have digestive issues I switched over to Tylenol. There are a lot of ingredients in Midol that I should not have. I figured that Tylenol would work better for me because it is advertised for people with sensitive stomachs. It did work, kind of, for a while, until it didn’t. After a while, there were many times where I would take the Tylenol and felt no better and there were many times where I would take it and felt a lot worse. My stomach is already pretty messed up when I have my period, I don’t need anything else making it worse.

I had just gotten into the essential oils when I was getting fed up with the bad cramps and wacked out tummy, so I went to good old Pinterest, looking for a solution. Pinterest Is the place to go for essential oil info and tips. I found that Young Living makes an oil blend called Dragon Time, for PMS type of symptoms . It is quite pricey so I searched for an alternative. I found a couple of Pinterest posts that said Geranium Oil works really well for them. I recently did a bit more research on geranium oil and learned that it is great for improving circulation, blood flow and mood boosting. On a side note, it is also great for keeping the skin looking younger! I was still hung up on the Dragon Time because it is specifically made for PMS. After doing a bit of browsing around the YL website, I found the Dragon Time in a massage oil formula! This is a big bottle, about a million times the size of a little essential oil bottle, it seems to have more uses and it was about ten dollars cheaper! I had to get it! And I love it! I use it all the time and not just when I have my period. It is very soothing to have a back rub with it. There is one specific time I remember I was in the worst mood, I rubbed this all over my torso and on the back of my neck and within minutes my mood completely turned around!

For period cramps I mix about half a pump of Dragon Time Massage Oil and about three drops of Geranium Oil and rub it all over my lower stomach and lower back. It works really well at keeping the pain at bay.

When I feel really bad I will add in one or both of these oils. The PanAway is similar to Icy Hot or Tiger Balm. It provides heat that can help relieve some of the internal pain. The DiGize is my best friend! It calms wacky tummies in minutes! I prefer to take a few drops on my tongue. Both of these oils are hot oils so it is recommended for them to be used with a carrier oil. I am lazy and the heat doesn’t bother me or irritate my skin so I normally don’t. But when I do feel like following the directions, I find that the Dragon Time Massage Oil works well as a topical carrier oil. I love using coconut oil as an oral carrier oil.

I highly recommend all four of these oils! The Massage Oil is great for both men and women to relax with. The Geranium Oil Is great for circulation and preventing wrinkles. The PanAway is great for body aches. And the DiGize is a tummy ache miracle worker!

If you are interested in purchasing any of these, it would mean a lot to me if you used my referral code 2949525 when logging into the Young Living site!

Do you use any of these oils? What do you use them for? What is your favorite essential oil? Please tell me in the comments below!

❤️ Liz

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

The Best Stomach Ache Remedy | Young Living’s DiGize

The Best Stomach Ache Remedy | Young Living’s DiGize

Do you ever get stomach aches? Are you sensitive to some foods?

I do and I am! For the past four years, I have been dealing with a lot of food sensitivities and digestive issues. So far, I have not been fully diagnosed. A lot of foods can give me a stomach ache. So easing the ache as quickly as possible is always a nice thing! I prefer to do things as chemically free as possible. Young Living’s DiGize works really well for me! I have seen that it is supposed to be pronounced by taking the Di from digestion and the Gize from energize. So Digestion + Energize= DiGize.

My body has been having a hard time tolerating any supplements that could help me. Through several friends, I learned about Young Living oils. I tried a couple that were highly recommended and looked like they might be helpful, but they are quite pricey. I really liked what I tried so I looked for less expensive options. I tried a couple other, cheaper brands and I liked them, but they were not as effective for me. I decided that the high quality and effectiveness was worth the higher price tag. The more I learned about these oils the more I fell in love with them.  I have become a member, which allows me to purchase oils at a wholesale price instead of the retail price. So I do save some money there. There are also ways to earn points and then cash in those points for free products. I can also sign people up and then earn a little bit of commission. If you would like to sign up and use my referral number I would greatly appreciate it! It is: 2949525

I used to take over the counter anti-acids like any other person would for a tummy ache. My mom started to read in many places that they are very bad for you and will cause a lot more damage than good in the long run. I started to notice that. I did keep taking them every once in a while when I felt I absolutely needed to, eventually, they started to make me feel even sicker. I then started to look for other options.

When I was introduced to this company I went straight to Pinterest. There, you can find all kinds of information and recipes for these oils. I basically searched “Young Living for stomach aches” and found single oils that could be mixed together. I also found the DiGize blend. It has pretty much every oil that is beneficial to your digestive system in it. There are oils to help calm your stomach, make the stomach healthier and stronger, are antifungal, and  anti-parasitic. To me, it seems to cover all the bases!

To take it, I normally put 1 to 3 drops on my tongue and wash it down with a couple big sips of water.  The way I do it is not exactly how the directions say. You can either apply it topically or take it orally, but because these are all hot oils you are supposed to add a carrier oil (I like using coconut oil) to dilute it. The heat and burning don’t really bother me so I normally just skip that step. It works pretty quickly and really helps ease a tummy ache. An extra tip: if you can, get someone to gently rub your back. For me, it calms me down and helps my muscles relax so I feel better even quicker!

This has not cured my stomach issues but it sure helps with the immediate discomfort. I have gone through several bottles of this and am in love with it! It is a lifesaver for me and I can’t imagine not having it on hand ever again!

Do you use essential oils? If so what is your favorite oil to use?

❤️ Liz

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living Essential Rewards – May 2019

Young Living has been one of my go-to essential oil brands for a number of years. Each month I get a box of products at a wholesale price that I have hand-picked for myself…

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

YL Essential Rewards Unboxing | April 2018

Essential oils are used in my home nearly every day in one fashion or another. We use them in our skincare routines, treating unhappy tummies or aching muscles, making the air smell lovely, and even when cleaning…

Find Me On Social Media

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