After a long, cold winter many of us need to lose a few pounds to get ready for the fast approaching bikini season. We know that dairy, carbs and sugar make us gain weight. But we need something naughty to look forward to and fantasize on… Personally, I am unable to crack my sweet tooth. I wanted something to replace my winter German Chocolate Cake obsession with that would give me multiple benefits. I finally hit upon it.
I rarely comment on current events here as I want to stay on subject but I want to send out love and prayers to the French tonight. I lived for years in Paris, did my MBA there, carried my child there, I dined, danced, cried, laughed, partied and loved in that great City of Lights. And, it was with great sadness today that I read about this heinous attack on all of our free rights and security. Laughter is a salve for all humans. If we cannot laugh at ourselves, religions, governments then we exist in a state of fear and poverty – forever crippled. Paris, your lights may have been dimmed today but tomorrow they will burn even more brightly. Al Qeada – you are only convincing the world to turn away from your religion in disgust and shun your people. To France and their dead: Chapeau off. Head bowed. Je suis Charlie.
In the quest for the perfect, nourishing skin oil I have come across a lot of options. Avocado, Apricot kernel, Evening Primrose oil etc. Frankly, they are all great and variety is the spice of life for your health and your skin. One oil that came across my radar in Europe that is not so well known in America is Borage Oil.
The more I read about Borage Oil the more I wondered if it was as powerful to consume as to apply topically. And this question led to me to a deeper examination on the limitations and benefits of Omega 6 oils and how what you are eating affects the balance of Omega 6 oil and the very important Omega 3 oils.
The essential fatty acid gamma linolenic acid (GLA) from borage and other oils has been shown to be one of the most effective agents for the treatment of skin disorders and for the maintenance of healthy skin. The fatty acid profile of borage is unique in that it contains 20 to 24 percent GLA. Evening primrose oil contains 8 to 10 percent GLA and black currant oil contains 15 to 17 percent.
The popularity of borage oil as an ingredient in topical formulations for the skin is growing rapidly, based on the strong research showing that it is of benefit in the treatment of various skin conditions, including dry skin, eczema, inflammation, wounds, and dermatitis.
Role of GLA in the skin
Healthy skin depends on adequate amounts of lipid, in particular certain polyunsaturated fatty acids called essential fatty acids (EFAs), for moisture, suppleness and smoothness as well as to prevent skin disorders. The most important polyunsaturated fatty acids for maintenance of healthy skin and for the alleviation of skin disorders are the essential fatty acids of the omega-6 family, namely linoleic acid (LA) and GLA. Dietary deficiency of these fatty acids results in a characteristic scaly skin disorder, increased epidermal turnover rate, weak cutaneous capillaries that rupture easily, decreased wound healing and increased transepidermal water loss (TEWL) leading to xerosis (dry skin). Dry skin is the most common skin condition and is especially common in the elderly. By the age of 80 years, the epidermis may lose as much as 50% of its thickness, which accelerates water loss. Dry skin also exacerbates many other skin conditions including eczema and psoriasis.
Summer is here and I am back in America! As much as I love the energy and spirit of my country, I worry about the loose regulations around the production and use of chemicals. After ten days in NYC and exposure to non-filtered shower and bath water I could see the toll on my skin – it looked dry and lifeless. But quick re-vitalization is at hand with proper filtration systems and home-made hydrating face masks.
In a day and age where we can buy everything pre-packaged and where we rush from one activity and web page to another, it pays to slow down and consider that everything we need arrives ready to use in its natural unadulterated state. And these gifts of nature can be found in a grocery store and, hopefully, your kitchen.
The following are eight of the easiest and most refreshing facials masks that you can make at home. They will nourish and moisturize tired summer skin. Remember, sun, sunblock, salt water and chlorinated water can take a big toll on skin so be sure to re-ignite it.
I have been drinking teaspoons of oil before bed for years. Throughout my pregnancy, I kept 6 bottles of oil and a spoon next to my bed. Every night, I religiously took a spoonful of each in order to help the brain development of my baby. It is a common misconception that oil makes us fat. And I cannot tell you how aggravating it is that so many people think in terms of calories and not overall health. We Westerners would do well to adopt a more Eastern approach to our bodies by looking at the whole wellness of the body instead of attacking one area. To deny yourself critical oils because of a diet might make you thinner but your face and skin will likely age more rapidly because (for instance) the integrity of the cell membrane has been compromised. Yes, avocados may be high in calories but you should be exercising and the oil in avocados is one of the best for your body, your immunity, your skin and keeping you young. At 105 pounds while maintaining a diet that includes an avocado a day I can tell you that drinking the right oils will not harm you.
Essential fatty acids are, as they sound, fats that are necessary within the human body. Though you’ve probably often heard the word “fats” and associated it with bad health, there are some essential fatty acids that are necessary for your survival. Without them, you could cause serious damage to different systems within the body. Essential, unoxidized oils speed up fat metabolism. This is a widely misunderstood aspect of human metabolism. Essential oils provide a steady-state source of energy, and prevent sugar-insulin-adrenaline roller coasters. Other clinical benefits of essential oils include their value in the prevention and management of the following disorders: Continue reading
Back in the Wild Days of yore, I preferred a delicious long, slim joint to a cocktail but I never would have guessed that my skin would have been better served had I extracted the oil from hemps seeds and spread it on a cracker.
This article, from Natural News by John Mckiernan sums up the little known benefits of hemp oil.
Hemp seed oil, pressed from the seeds of the Cannabis sativa plant, has been named nature’s perfect food due to its balanced concentrations of omega fatty acids. Hemp used to be consumed worldwide, as it was one of the first cultivated and consumed crops. There is a misconception that hemp contains THC, the principal psychoactive constituent of the cannabis plant. Needless to say, this is false. Although relativity new to the Western Hemisphere, hemp seed oil is now widely available in health-food stores. Continue reading