Create and Curate

Detoxify Your Home With Natural Cleaning Products

July 8, 2018

Indoor air pollution is a serious problem. Most people are unaware that the residue from chemical cleaning products used in their homes creates a lingering, toxic load affecting their health.


We are inundated with chemicals daily, and every person in the United States has measurable levels of synthetic chemicals in their bodies; many which are fat-soluble and stored indefinitely in fatty tissue. Indoor air pollution is actually more toxic than outdoor air pollution. This is due to the amount of particulate matter that is generated by electronics, furniture, and other household items. 


I recommend that everyone invest in a good HEPA air filter for their bedroom. It is especially important that your bedroom be a clean air sanctuary that contributes to restorative, detoxifying rest. There are other things you can do to minimize indoor air pollution, like changing air-conditioning and heating filters three times a year, opening windows to ventilate, and avoiding plug-in room fresheners and anything with artificial scent.


One of the easiest ways to minimize toxic residue in your home is by using household cleaning products that are free from synthetic chemicals. You can check for a list of acceptable products. Even better, environmentally safe cleaning products can be easily made with inexpensive and effective ingredients. 


I recommend using up the cleaning products you currently use. As they run out, replace them with homemade versions, or with a brand that is made with natural, nontoxic ingredients. Once you see how easy and cost effective it is to make your own cleaning products you can lower your carbon footprint by reusing the same spray bottles or containers over and over. 


DIY Safe Household Cleaning Products



2 teaspoons Borax

1/4 cup white vinegar

3 cups hot water

Combine and store in a spray bottle



Glass Cleaner:

1 cup white vinegar

1/2 cup 70% rubbing alcohol

4 cups water

3 drops essential oil to add scent (optional)

Combine and store in a spray bottle


All-purpose Cleaner

1/2 cup baking soda

2 quarts warm water

Combine and store in a spray bottle

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What’s The Deal With Supplements?

June 26, 2018

How do you sort through all the conflicting and confusing information about taking supplements, and figure out what might be helpful for you? Vitamins and supplements are big business. Every day there is something new being splashed across media channels promising to keep us young and cure what ails us; while, at the same time, talking heads are urging caution and citing concerns.


The Standard American Diet (SAD) is a contributing factor in creating a diet that does not meet all of the body’s needs. Americans are the most overfed and undernourished people on the planet. Shockingly, in the next 18 minutes, four American’s will die from illnesses related to the food they eat! Foods that are processed, homogenized, pasteurized, contain genetically modified ingredients or artificial ingredients are killing more people than terrorism, war, murder, accidents and all other diseases combined. 


If you want to maintain optimum health, it is vital to understand the importance of diet and supplementation in an ever-changing nutritional landscape. Vitamins and supplements are not regulated by the FDA in the same way as pharmaceuticals; so it is important to understand why some brands are superior to others. You should also speak with your physician before starting a supplement program.


I am a huge fan of David Perlmutter, MD, the author of Grain Brain, Brain Maker and The Grain Brain Whole Life Plan. If you have not read at least one of these books, I highly recommend that you order a copy and read it as soon as possible. Dr. Perlmutter has a simple guide for supplements that focuses on gut and brain health. It is worth considering if you want to add supplements to your diet.


I have long been a fan of adding natural supplements of nutrients that are hard for the body to obtain through a normal diet. In addition to what Dr. Perlmutter suggests, I  take a whole food compounded Activated C Food Complex, a Stress B-Complex and Magnesium with B6.


Supplement Guidelines:


Buy whole food compounded supplements and vitamins. Whole food means the nutrients are derived from food sources and are not made from chemicals.

  1. Purchase probiotics in small quantities and rotate brands. You want to look for at least 10 billion strains of beneficial bacteria and 10 billion CFU count. I always have 2 brands in my refrigerator at a time.
  2. Prebiotic fiber is essential for gut health and serves as the food for probiotic bacteria. When supplementing with acacia gum, be sure to buy USDA organic, Non-GMO Project verified, vegan, gluten free labeling. Make sure it’s free of psyllium, sugar, soy or artificial ingredients.
  3. Take your supplements at the same time daily with filtered water.



DHA: Docosahexaenoic acid, which is an omega-3 fatty acid that makes up more than 90 percent of the omega-3 fatty acids in the brain. 1,000 mg daily.


Extra Virgin Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is a great source of medium-chain triglycerides (MCT), reduces inflammation, and is a super fuel for the brain. 1-2 tsp daily  used in cooking, or consumed in a warm beverage.


Turmeric: Well studied for its anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and anti-apoptotic properties. It is a member of the ginger family and is the seasoning that gives curry its bright yellow color. 500 mg twice daily.


ALA: Alpha-Lipoid acid is a fatty acid that is found inside every cell in the body where it helps produce energy for the functions of the body. ALA also crosses the blood-brain barrier acting as a powerful antioxidant in the brain. 300-500mg daily.


Vitamin D3: Have your doctor check and monitor your vitamin D levels. Vitamin D3 is technically a hormone, not a vitamin and has far-reaching beneficial effects on the body and brain. 5,000 IU daily.


Prebiotic Fiber:  Key for optimized gut health, nutrient absorption, and maintaining healthy body weight. 1-2 tbs. acacia gum with water daily. Start with 1 tablespoon in water 20 minutes before the evening meal.


Probiotic: Look for a probiotic with at least 10 strains of beneficial bacteria and 10 billion CFU. Take on an empty stomach first thing in the morning.


In an ideal world, we would get all of our nutrients from the food we eat. In today’s world, we have to be more vigilant and proactive to make sure we are giving our bodies what they need to stay healthy. 

Eating a largely plant based organic diet, filled with a colorful variety of foods, will nourish you with micronutrients and fiber. Embracing healthy fats like organic coconut oil, organic extra virgin olive oil, avocados and fatty fish will help maintain a healthy weight and support brain function. Avoiding artificial ingredients, processed carbohydrates, sugar and artificial sweeteners, GMO’s, gluten and too much protein can reduce inflammation in the body. You can control how you spend your consumer dollars — decide what you want to put into your body and take charge of the future of your health by being proactive; start with nutrition.

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Four Things You Can Do Right Now To Improve Your Health

May 11, 2018

Four years ago I hosted “GOT WELLNESS?”; a wellness event for women at the Old Town Theater in Alexandria, Virginia. The event was born from what I saw as a need to provide women, typically the wellness decision makers for their homes, with vital information about improving their health, and the health of their families. 


I have long been encouraging my friends and family to take control of their health through knowledge of alternative health practices and the power at the end of their forks. Despite my passion about the topic, my practice and coaching others to wellness, I am not a doctor.  As such, I wasn't always able to get everyone to pay attention. So, I set about assembling a team with impeccable integrative-medical credentials to explain the importance of using EVERY available resource, from traditional medicines and medicinal lifestyle practices to modern medicine, as a way to achieve optimum wellness. 


I convinced the accomplished Integrative Doctor Marie Steinmetz to participate as the keynote speaker. Dr. Steinmetz’s Family Practice was well respected long before she became one of the first Integrative physicians in the D.C area to have graduated from the University of Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine. Her practice was built on integrative wellness and functional medicine; taking a whole patient approach to creating optimum health and wellness. The event sold out quickly, and it was clear that women wanted more information about the best choices for themselves and their families when it came to preventive wellness.


Be your own best health advocate through knowledge and the practice of creating your own wellness micro-climate.


The statistics are dire. Half of all adults in the US have one or more chronic diseases. Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, high blood pressure, obesity, and cancer comprise six of the ten leading causes of death. These are modern diseases have flourished amidst sedentary lifestyles and the Standard American Diet (SAD).


The stakes have never been higher for being proactive and taking control of your health.


The good news is there are many things in our personal environments that are a good starting point for taking control of future wellness — little everyday things that can have a big impact over time, because they are cumulative. It is important to remember that there are very few neutral things in our environment; most things have a positive or negative effect on our bodies. The goal is to minimize the negative and maximize the positive, putting the health odds ever in your favor.


4 Things You Can Do Right Now To Improve Your Wellness Microclimate


Take Off Your Shoes When You Come Inside.

Fecal matter, fungal spores, human skin flakes, hair, animal dander, dust mites, pollen, pesticides, lead dust and insect fragments are a few of the harmful toxins that are currently present in your home. According to a research, about 40% of these contaminants are brought in your household from the outside. These get stuck on your pets, clothing, and especially shoes. Create a place to leave shoes at the door and have house shoes for family and friends.


2.   Toss The Teflon Cookware

Fluropolymers such as polytetrafluoroetheylene (PTFE) and substances containing polyfluoroalkyl and perfluoroalkyl compounds (PFAs) are commonly used to create conventional, non-stick cooking surfaces. These materials are toxic and highly resilient, with both the human body and also the wider environment. When exposed to heat, most non-stick cookware becomes a source of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), which is a long-chain chemical compound that has been linked to a frightening range of health problems including thyroid disease, infertility in women, organ damage and developmental and reproductive problems. Instead, purchase a safe non-stick pan like Greenpan, Mercola or Scanpan brands. 


3.   Ditch The Flouride Toothpaste And Mouthwash

Over 95% of the toothpaste sold in the U.S. contains fluoride; with many stores carrying few, if any, non-fluoridated brands. The use of fluoride in dental products, particularly during early childhood, presents health risks. This is why the FDA requires a poison warning on every tube of fluoride toothpaste now sold in the US.

Risks from ingesting fluoride toothpaste include permanent tooth discoloration (dental fluorosis), stomach ailments, acute toxicity, skin rashes (perioral dermatitis), and impairment in glucose metabolism. Fluoride is also a known neurotoxin and impairs thyroid function. Switch to an organic brand of toothpaste that uses minimal chemicals to get the job done. Tom’s Of Maine, Primal Life Organics and Earthpaste are all acceptable.


4.   Filter Your Water

“Clean” drinking water from your kitchen tap has come from an exterior water source that has been potentially subject to pesticides and industrial run-off.  It then travels through miles of pipeline, picking up contaminants along the way. It’s been disinfected with potential carcinogens like chlorine, ammonia and or chloramines; then “fortified” with fluoride. Drinking, showering and bathing every day with this chemical mix affects your health. The environmental organization The Environmental Working Group spent three years investigating America’s drinking water and the results were shocking. They found that roughly 85% of the population was using tap water laced with over 300 contaminants, many with unknown, long-term effects, and more than half of which aren’t even regulated by the EPA. The best option is buy a whole-house filtration system; but you can start with a counter-top filter drinking pitcher like Aquasana or Britta and start drinking safer water today.


These 4 actionable tips are easy, affordable, and will positively impact your health.


Visit me at The Culinary Cure to learn more about how you can “live like you mean it and age like you want to.”






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