Monday, February 28, 2011

Purely Elizabeth Eco-Giveaway: First Round Winner

Congratulations Raphaelle Thiriet Zilio! You are the winner of our first round of Purely Elizabeth Eco-Giveaway. You will love the Cookie Monster Sample!!
Please send your shipping address to EcoLogicalMom (at) ymail.com to redeem your prize. Please send it before March 5, 2011, otherwise we'll have to select another winner.

How Healthy is that Oatmeal?


If you are an oatmeal lover, and usually buy them at fast food and coffee locations, this article is for you. Check out the nutrition facts of the dish (or snack, depending on the size) available in top fast food venues:

McDonald’s Fruit & Maple Oatmeal (9.2 ounces) delivers 290 calories, 4.5 g fat, 1.5 g saturated fat, 160 mg sodium, 5 g fiber, 5 g protein. It’s made with a combination of instant and slower-cooked oats.
Make it a little healthier and skip the brown sugar—you’ll save 30 calories and 45 mg of sodium.


Starbucks Perfect Oatmeal (about 8 ounces) has 140 calories, 2.5 g total fat, 0.5 g saturated fat, 105 mg sodium, 4 g fiber, 5 g protein. It’s made with quick-cooking oats. Don’t want the plain variety? Add the Nut Medley—although it bumps the calories up to 240 (more than just adding the brown sugar and the same as adding the dried fruit) and the total and saturated fat to 11.5 g and 1.5 g, respectively (also more than the other toppings). The walnuts, pecans, and almonds deliver good-for-you fats and 2 extra grams of protein, but no unhealthy added sugars as the brown sugar and sweetened dried fruit do.


Au Bon Pain Oatmeal (8 ounces) delivers 170 calories, 3 g fat, 0 g saturated fat, 5 mg sodium, 4 g fiber, 6 g protein. It’s available in three different sizes—a small is 8 ounces, a medium 12 and a large 16. Although the large delivers more calories (340) than any other chain-restaurant choice, it can still easily fit into a healthy diet.The Apple Cinnamon variety in the same 8-ounce size has an extra 20 calories, but all other nutrient amounts are the same.


Jamba Juice Plain Oatmeal with Brown Sugar (12 ounces) contains 220 calories, 3.5 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 20 mg sodium, 5 fiber, 8 g protein. The oatmeal serving is on the larger size (unless you order the medium at Au Bon Pain) compared to the others. Interestingly, the oatmeal is made with steel-cut oats and is the only one I found to be slow-cooked. The Fresh Banana Oatmeal is the flavor that adds the least amount of extra calories (12 ounces, 280 calories, 4 g total fat, 1 g saturated fat, 20 mg sodium, 6 g fiber, 9 g protein). Apple Cinnamon, Berry Cherry Pecan and Blueberry & Blackberry bump the calorie total to 290, 340 and 290, respectively—and increase sodium by a little bit in each.

Honestly, making a healthy and customized oatmeal at home, school or at the office is one of the easiest snacks to prepare. It only takes a few minutes, and you can vary with nuts, dry fruits, honey,...

Sources: Shine, and EatingWell

Fever is not as Bad....

"A new report released by The American Academy of Pediatricians states that not only is there no need to bring down a fever in an otherwise healthy child, but there is a downside to treating a fever - it can prolong the illness that originally sparked the high temperatures.
The only reason to treat a fever is to make a child more comfortable, a co-author of the report said. “In a normal child there’s no set temperature at which you’d need to treat a fever,” said Dr. Janice Sullivan, a professor of pediatrics and pediatric critical care at the University of Louisville. “Our recommendation is primarily to treat discomfort associated with an illness rather than the fever itself. So, when children are uncomfortable or crying, then you should treat them with medication.”

“Studies done in children with chicken pox, for example, found that children whose fevers weren’t treated had about a day less that they were considered contagious compared to those who were treated,” she said."

We think that parents should always consult a pediatrician if the fever is higher than 101F.

Source: Today

Friday, February 25, 2011

Soy Romper For Your Lil' Cutie



Now, if your cutie at home is slightly older, check out this long sleeve romper with the same adorable selection of animal prints. Snaps around collar and at the crotch allows quick diaper changes. Made with soy fiber and organic cotton...incredibly soft and cute!


By BabySoy

Animal Soy Footie



This adorable Baby Soy kimono footie is so soft, and the animal illustrations are brilliant! It comes with palm wrapper that prevents babies from scratching themselves. Made with soy and organic cotton. Illustrations available include dog, elephant, zebra and fish. Sizes 0-3M and 3-6M.


By BabySoy

Tofu A La Parmigianna

I love tofu, and am crazy about Italian food. When I saw this recipe I got completed hooked. It combines the best of both worlds!


Tofu A La Parmigiana
Servings: 4 portions  

  • 1/4 cup plain dry breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • 1 14-ounce package firm or extra-firm water-packed tofu, rinsed
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 8 ounces white mushrooms, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 3/4 cup prepared marinara sauce, preferably low-sodium
  • 1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil

Combine breadcrumbs and Italian seasoning in a shallow dish. Cut tofu lengthwise into 4 steaks and pat dry. Sprinkle both sides of the tofu with garlic powder and salt and then dredge in the breadcrumb mixture.
Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add onion and cook, stirring, until beginning to brown, about 3 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook until they release their juices and begin to brown, 4 minutes more. Transfer to a bowl.
Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil to the pan. Add the tofu steaks and cook until browned on one side, about 3 minutes. Turn over and sprinkle with Parmesan. Spoon the mushroom mixture over the tofu, pour marinara over the mushrooms and scatter mozzarella on top. Cover and cook until the sauce is hot and the cheese is melted, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle with basil and serve.

Per serving: 262 calories; 16 g fat (5 g saturated fat, 7 g mono unsaturated fat); 13 mg cholesterol; 15 g carbohydrates; 16 g protein; 3 g fiber; 597 mg sodium; 443 mg potassium Nutrition Bonus: Calcium (40% daily value), Selenium (15% dv).
Source: EatingWell.com

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Healthy Living Inspiration


Our BIG kudos to Ida Keeling. At age 95 she set a new sprinting record for her age group: 60 meters in 29.86 seconds. She first broke the record three years ago, after picking up a steady running habit at age 67. Her secret to longevity?  Eating breakfast foods for dinner and dinner foods for breakfast. Also exercising!

Source: Yahoo News

10 Food Rules Worth Following


We all know that teaching our kids to eat healthy is very important for their growth. While enforcing a diet helps, kids will only stick to a healthy diet for life if they learn to appreciate and enjoy it.
Start by explaining at their level official dietary guidelines. Also, get them involved with recipes and their preparation. Show them the ingredients and the impact in our bodies and on the Earth.
Here are 10 food rules that are worth following, and explaining to kiddos:

1. Eat mostly plants: the benefits of a plant-based diet include improved blood pressure, decreased risk of heart disease, lowered cholesterol and better weight control.
2. Eat animals that have themselves eaten well: not only we are preserving their species, but also consuming less antibiotics and other medicines indirectly.
3. Have a colored diet: the colors of many vegetables reflect the different antioxidant phytochemicals they contain.
4. Balance is key: eating junk food occasionally is ok. Compensate it as soon as you can by going back to your healthy, but always delicious, diet.
5. Healthy meals are just as delicious: use great recipes with quality ingredients, and your dish will most likely be very yummy! Plan ahead and have good ingredients in your pantry.
6. Whole grains, always: whole grains are just as good in terms of taste, but so much richer in quality. Seriously, the benefits of adding the vitamins and fiber to your diet are incomparable.
7. Avoid processed foods: cooking a meal, or eating a fruit or dairy is just as easy, with huge benefits. At least try it! You will be surprised by how easy it can be.
8. Appreciate quality taste: don't fall for sugar, salt and fat as tasty ingredients. Don't underestimate the magic flavor of herbs, honey, garlic, extra virgin olive oil, black pepper, and other simple organic ingredients.
9. Eat less of these: sodium, saturated fat, trans fat; added sugars and refined grains.That simple!
10. Simplify: if meeting dietary guidelines feels overwhelming, find ways to make things a little easier on yourself. Take a few shortcuts by adding chopped fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables and low-fat dairy products to your shopping cart.

Sources: Michael Pollan books, eatingwell.com, healthy.gov

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Fun and Delicious Peppers with Quinoa: Kids Will Love Them

I love quinoa, not only for its tremendous nutritional value, but also because of its delicious taste and texture. Luckily my kids learned to love it too! This recipe is fun for kids, and quite delicious. They will get hooked to the cool visual and taste. Customize it to your family's taste by substituting some ingredients. For a richer meal, add ground chicken, previously cooked with garlic.

Quinoa Stuffed Peppers
Servings: 2 portions

  • 2 Poblano or bell peppers
  • 1/2 cup of quinoa (red or white)
  • 1/3 cup butternut squash, diced into 1/4 inch pieces
  • 4 grape tomatoes, minced
  • 3/4 cup part skim grated mozzarella
  • 1/2 tsp. sal

Roast the peppers and the squash on a sheet pan for 7-10 minutes at 450 degrees, turning once during cooking time. When the peppers are cooked through place in a zip top bag and let steam for 10 minutes. Then, gently peel the outer skin of the peppers and set aside. Also set aside the squash in a separate container.
Cook quinoa exactly as you cook rice (boil a cup of water, then add salt and the quinoa and let it simmer until the water is absorbed).
In a large mixing bowl combine the cooked quinoa, cheese, tomatoes, butternut squash, salt and pepper.
Cut a long slit through the length of the pepper and remove seeds.
Stuff the quinoa mixture into each pepper, pressing down to make room for more stuffing.
Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees, or until the cheese melts thoroughly.
Serve over your favorite tomato sauce.

Source: Based on recipe from Eat Drink Better

Building Words!

Letter blocks are one of the most attractive toys for babies and toddlers. Easy to understand, they can pile them up, put words together, and construct imaginary buildings!
These blocks are made from environmentally friendly rubber wood and non-toxic paints. They come with a wide variety of letters, colors and pictures on all sides. The textured surface allow kids to touch and feel letter shapes. A fabric bag is provided for storage.

By Wonderworld

The Omnivore's Dilemma for Kids

In this version of The Omnivore's Dilemma for kids, Michael Pollan explains complicated food industry issues clearly, offering compelling evidence of the environmental damage done by what he calls the industrial meal, and urges readers not to look away from animal-welfare issues. Great book with very positive reviews.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Top Food Label Lies

The Daily Green publication came up with a list of top "nutritional lies" in food labels. Check out this summary on how to recognize them:

1. Made with Whole Grains
Many times unbleached wheat flour is the main ingredient, and whole wheat flour is the third on the list, "indicating that the product contains relatively little," according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest. Some products that trumpet their whole grain credentials use caramel to mimic the brown color that results from the use of whole grains.

2. Ingredient Lists
Just add up all the sugars that go by different names: sugar, corn syrup, high-fructose corn syrup and white grape juice concentrate. Boom! A sugar explosion.
Which can of diced tomatoes is 60% tomato and 40% water, and which is 70% tomato? How much fruit is actually in that fruity-looking "health" bar? Right now, there's no way to know .

3. Serving Size
A 20 oz. soda fits easily in your hand, fits easily in your car's cup holder and might even come free with a sandwich at the local deli. But even if a reasonable person might perceive that bottle as a single-serving delivery system, there are 2.5 official servings in there, meaning 100 calories per "serving" ... but 240 calories per bottle. Very trick...

4. Omega 3
Everyone knows Omega-3 fatty acids are healthy, but that doesn't mean every product emblazoned with the word is a healthy source of it. The FDA allows certain foods that are rich in two of the Omega-3 fatty acids to advertise that they can reduce the risk of coronary heart disease, but only if they're also low in saturated fats or other risk factors.

5. Made with Real Fruit
Case-in-point: Gerber Fruit Juice Treats for Preschoolers. Its package blooming with pictures of ripe oranges, raspberries, cherries, peaches, grapes and pineapple, its only fruit-like ingredient is fruit juice concentrate, which the Dietary Guidelines for Americans considers just another form of sugar. Similarly, Betty Crocker "Strawberry Splash Fruit Gushers" say they're made with real fruit, but the only thing approximating fruit is pear concentrate (sugar) with Red No. 40 for "strawberry" color.
Bottom line: If you want real fruit, buy real fruit. If you want candy, buy candy.

6. Zero Trans Fat
While some companies reformulated their products to reduce the use of risky fats, many just replaced trans fats with saturated fats. These reformulated foods are basically just as bad, but they scream one truth: "0 trans fats!" to obscure another: "still bad for your heart!"

7. Free Range Eggs
The government doesn't regulate the use of the phrase "free range" or "cage free" on eggs. Legally speaking, it's meaningless, according to Consumer Reports' Eco Label Decoder.
The Department of Agriculture does have rules for use of the term on poultry. It means chickens must be granted the luxury of exactly five minutes of "access" to the outdoors everyday.

8. Fiber
Fibers advertised in many foods are mainly "purified powders" called inulin, polydextrose and maltodextrin, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest. For the real thing, look for foods like whole grains, vegetables, fruits and beans.

Source: The Daily Green

Shrimp Chili Cornbread Casserole

Cooking healthy shouldn't take longer, actually it should be simple and easy. Casseroles are cooked in the oven, meaning easy to make, and most always incredibly delicious. Check out this one with shrimp, chili and cornbread.

Shrimp Chili Cornbread Casserole
Servings: 12 portions
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 medium zucchini, diced (about 5 cups)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 14-ounce cans no-salt-added diced tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 pounds raw shrimp, (41-50 per pound; see Ingredient Note), peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Cornnbread topping:
  • 1 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup nonfat milk
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tablespoon honey

To prepare filling: Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add onion and bell pepper; cook, stirring often, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds. Stir in zucchini; cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes. Stir in chili powder, cumin, cinnamon and 1 teaspoon salt; cook for 20 seconds. Pour in tomatoes and their juice; bring to a simmer. Remove from the heat. Stir in shrimp and cilantro. Pour into a 9-by-13-inch baking pan.
Preheat oven to 350°F.
To prepare cornbread topping: Whisk cornmeal, flour, baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Whisk milk, 1/4 cup oil, egg and honey in a medium bowl until smooth. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and stir just until moistened. Drop by heaping tablespoons over the shrimp mixture.
Bake the casserole, uncovered, until the top is browned and the filling is bubbling, 40 to 45 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.

Per serving: 225 calories; 8 g fat (1 g sat, 4 g mono); 104 mg cholesterol; 24 g carbohydrates; 15 g protein; 3 g fiber; 522 mg sodium; 222 mg potassium.

Source: Eating Well

Monday, February 21, 2011

Kiddos' Veggies Basket

The Wooden Veggie Basket is packaged in a wooden crate with six pieces of colorful vegetables: Tomato, Cucumber, Carrot, Mushroom and Onion. It also comes with a wooden knife to "cut" the vegetables in half. It helps kids recognize shapes, colors and a wide variety of vegetables. Made from environmentally friendly rubber wood and non-toxic paints, dyes and lacquers and formaldehyde free glue.

Purely Elizabeth Eco-Giveaway: Yummm!


We are so excited to announce our new Purely Elizabeth Eco-Giveaway! Kids and adults love cookies and muffins, but finding healthy versions is almost impossible! Purely Elizabeth products are one of the purest mixes in the market: gluten free, vegan and free of refined sugars. They contain nutrient rich flours, superfood seeds, and organic ingredients. What's more, they are easy to make and very delicious!!

We are giving away 2 sets of the Cookie Monster Samplers, a US$40 value. Each eco-friendly gift box includes:
  • chocolate chip cookie mix 
  • oatmeal raisin cookie mix
  • oatmeal cherry chocolate chip cookie mix
  • 4oz bottle of Nielsen Massey Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla

How to Participate (so easy!): 
Become fan (a.k.a. "Like") of EcoLogical Mom on Facebook. That's it!  Winners will be announced on February 28 and March 4, 2010.


Good luck!

Winners will be chosen at random.
 "Cookie Monster Samplers" are provided by Purely Elizabeth.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Rock-a-Thigh Baby Eco-Giveaway: Congrats Tara Parsons!

Congratulations Tara Parsons! You are the winner of our Rock-a-Thigh Baby Eco-Giveaway. Please send your shipping address, size and patterns of your choice to EcoLogicalMom (at) ymail.com.

Please hurry because if we don't hear from you by February 25, 2011, we will have to pick another winner.

Crispy Chicken and Potato "Fake" Fries Anyone?

This healthy version of Crispy Chicken and Potato "fake" Fries is awesome! Two icons of "unhealthy fast food turned into delicious dishes without the fat, thank you...

Crispy Chicken and Potato "fake" Fries
Servings: 4 portions
  • 3 large baking potatoes (about 2 pounds total)
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • One 4-pound chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 large egg white
  • 1/2 cup bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup whole wheat flour
  • Salt
  • Black pepper 
  • 1 table spoon of oregano
  • 1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika
Position 2 racks in the upper and lower thirds of the oven and preheat to 425°. Slice the potatoes into 1/3-inch-thick fries. Place on a baking sheet, drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil, toss to coat, then arrange in an even layer. Bake in the upper third of the oven until crisp and golden, about 40 minutes. Meanwhile, remove and discard the skin from the chicken, except for the wings. In a large bowl, beat the egg white until frothy. Add the chicken pieces and toss to coat.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, mix the bread crumbs, flour, black pepper, oregano and paprika; season with salt. Coat the chicken with the crumbs and transfer to the prepared baking sheet. In a large, heavy skillet, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat. Add 4 chicken pieces and cook, turning once, until golden, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a clean baking sheet and repeat with the remaining 3 tablespoons olive oil and 4 pieces chicken.
On the bottom rack of the oven, bake the chicken until cooked through and crisp, about 22 minutes. Season the fries with salt and serve with the chicken.

Source: Based on recipe from Rachel Ray Magazine

CRIB RECALL: 26,000 Ikea Cribs

Consumers should immediately stop using IKEA SNIGLAR brand cribs which can entrap and suffocate children if the mattress support detaches, the U.S. and Canadian governments said on Thursday.
The US Consumer Product Safety Commission and health Canada said in a joint statement that four of the bolts provided to secure the mattress support are not long enough and may collapse.
Although no incidents have been reported the statement urges parents to check immediately if the mattress support bolts extend through the nut. If not, consumers should contact IKEA for a free repair kit, the statement said.
About 20,000 of the non-drop-side, full-size cribs with model number 60091931 were sold in the United States and 6,000 in Canada.
The cribs were sold from October 2005 through June 2010 at IKEA stores throughout North America.

Source: USCPSC and msnbc/Reuters

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Nutritional Benefits of Indian Cuisine

Who doesn't love a delicious, rich Indian meal? It's filling, enjoys a worldwide appeal, and best of all - it is good for you! Indian food is internationally recognized as one of the most healthy food types available. Here are six ingredients and meals that you can enjoy guiltlessly.

Cumin
Cumin is a popular spice that is found in several Indian dishes, such as aloo gobi, aloo baingan, and jeera. It is also a main ingredient in curry powder. This special herb is full of antioxidants, which help the immune system to function at its best. Those suffering from digestive issues will also benefit from regular doses of cumin. Richness in iron is another benefit of cumin, which makes a great supplement for those with anemia or lack sufficient iron in general.
Turmeric
Turmeric is another powerful all-around healer used in the prevention and treatment of several maladies. For instance, turmeric is known as a mild pain killer as well as anti-inflammatory. Turmeric is also good for the liver, acting as both a detoxifier as well as a protector. Arthritis and joint disease sufferers will do well to eat dishes with turmeric in order to relieve their symptoms. Turmeric is found in vindaloo, chicken masala, and aloo phujia. Like cumin, turmeric is also an ingredient in curry powder.
Vegetable Curry
Though the ingredients and spices vary greatly with this universal dish, they all have one thing in common - vegetables! A vegetable curry is an excellent way to get your daily dose of veggies all in one meal. Popular vegetables include cauliflower, onions, potatoes, carrots, squash, eggplant, peas, and tomatoes.
Chana Masala
Chana masala is a delicious meal that is easy to make and found on menus worldwide. If you're not familiar with this dish, its main base is chickpeas, or garbanzo beans. Chickpeas are rich in protein, fiber, folate, thiamin, iron, magnesium, and potassium. The other ingredients in chana masala include an herb-heavy seasoning comprised of a combination of the following: turmeric, cumin, paprika, cayenne pepper, coriander, and ginger.
Ginger
Newly pregnant mothers can take advantage of Indian dishes seasoned with ginger, as it is a known treatment for morning sickness. Ginger tablets are also available in airports and ship ports to reduce the effect of motion sickness and nausea. Ginger soothes the gastrointestinal passageway, making it a natural remedy for heartburn. Some studies have even shown that ginger may be helpful in the prevention of certain types of cancers. Vegetable bhaji, tomato masala, and masoor dal are all dishes that utilize ginger.
Fenugreek
Fenugreek is another miracle spice. The fenugreek seed is a good source of fiber and iron. Acting as nature's Viagra, it has been used to increase libido in both men and women. Menopausal women will find relief in fenugreek, which has similar properties as estrogen. During flu season, fenugreek can be used to ease sore throats, fever, and coughing. This herb adds flavor to dishes such as methi dum aloo, sambar, and sai bhaji.

Source: Jasmine Stephenson is an international traveler, freelance writer, and Indian food lover who also writes for radiologytechncian.com and onlinecollegedegrees.net

Baby Monitor with Awesome Features

If I had to buy a baby monitor again, I'd certainly look for key features that only a few monitors offer. Too bad this Avent model wasn't available at that time!
Besides the usual features such as wide range, rechargeable batteries and technology to keep your privacy without interference, this one has temperature and humidity display, an ECO mode for saving energy (not everyone leaves in a 3,000 sq feet house!), a remote-activated nightlight, and five lullabies that can help sooth your baby to sleep. The unique feature that I love is the Talk Back. This is perfect when all your baby needs is to hear your voice, or for those naughty toddlers that get out of bed as soon as you leave the room. Genius!

By Philips Avent

US Calls for Ban on Soda Caramel

Some chemically enhanced caramel food colorings used in widely consumed cola drinks could cause cancer and should be banned, a U.S. consumer advocacy group urged the Food and Drug Administration Wednesday.
Pure caramel is made from melted sugar; but two other versions approved to color food products include the chemical ammonia and produce compounds shown to cause various cancers in studies of animals, the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) said in a statement.
The group is petitioning the FDA to ban the ammonia-containing caramels, which are also used in other dark-colored soft drinks.

Source: Reuters, msnbc.com 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Foods That Prevent Insomnia

Sleeping is key to allow us to have an active and healthy life. Unfortunately not all of us are lucky enough to get the desired 8 hours every night. While reading about the subject, I was very surprised by this list from Planet Green of foods and drinks that can prevent and cause insomnia. Some of these foods and drinks are known for relaxing, however......

Five foods to prevent insomnia:

1. Pumpkin seeds: great source of magnesium which serves to calm the body down. Magnesium helps to relieve the stress that can keep us up all night. Just 1 oz. of pumpkin seeds has 151 mg of magnesium, making it one of the most magnesium-rich foods out there.

2. Cottage cheese: contains tryptophan, a sleep inducing amino acid that relaxes the entire body and mind. If you don't do dairy you can also find tryptophan in soy milk, tofu, hummus, and lentils.
3. Sesame seeds: rich in trytophan but they're also high in carbohydrates with a medium protein content, perfect for before bedtime.
4. Brown rice: whole unrefined grains like brown rice have a calming effect on the mind. They soothe the nervous system so that the mind stops moving a mile a minute and you can fall asleep. Also consider oats for a similar effect.
5. Spinach: chlorophyll-rich foods like spinach help you get to sleep. Spinach, like pumpkin seeds, is also loaded with magnesium, which calms and de-stresses the entire body.

Five foods that promote insomnia

1. Bacon: contains tyramine, which increases the release of norepinephrine, a brain stimulant that keeps you up. Others foods that contain tyramine include chocolate, eggplant, ham, potatoes, sauerkraut, sugar, sausage, tomatoes, and wine.

2. Refined carbohydrates: these drain the body of vitamin B, which the body needs to release serotonin. When the body can't get enough serotonin, then tension, fear, and depression can keep you up all night.
3. MSG: monosodium glutamate (MSG), often found in Chinese food, causes a stimulant reaction in some people. MSG is almost always found in processed, prepared, and packaged foods. Here's a list of surprising places that MSG hides.

4. Alcohol: while many of us drink to relax the body and mind, the fact of the matter is that wine, beer, and spirits can keep you up at night. This is especially true if you drink more than one glass. While alcohol can make you tired in the short run, you're likely to awaken in the middle of the night.
5. Chocolate: can elevate your energy levels with bioactive compounds like tyramine and phenylethylamine. Chocolate also contains sugar which wakes you up as well as the other obvious culprit, caffeine.
Beyond your diet, yoga is another great way to help you sleep. Here are some yoga and meditation practices to keep you calm and collected.

Eatable Kid Project: Gold Fish ....Yum!

Gold Fish crackers are a top American classic. Kids are raised loving them! However, they are not exactly one of the healthiest snacks available in the market. Well, I came across this great recipe that kids will enjoy not only eating but also making them. A healthier Gold Fish version, and an optional peanut butter spread is suggested to make it a richer snack!

Homemade Gold Fish (with optional peanut butter spread)
Servings: 40 crackers
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 4 tablespoon(s) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 8 ounce(s) grated extra-sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 3/4 teaspoon(s) salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon(s) fresh-ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup(s) peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon(s) honey
  • 1/8 teaspoon(s) cayenne pepper, optiona
  1. Make the dough: Pulse the flour, butter, cheese, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and pepper together using a food processor until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Pulse in 3 to 4 tablespoons of water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and only enough so that the dough forms a ball and rides the blade. Remove, wrap in plastic, and chill for 20 minutes or up to 24 hours.
  2. Make the spread: Stir the peanut butter, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and honey together until smooth. If desired, stir in the cayenne pepper for extra heat. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside until ready to serve.
  3. Bake the crackers: Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 baking pans with parchment paper and set aside. Roll the dough out to 1/8th-inch thickness. Cut out as many crackers as possible using a 2-inch fish-shaped cutter. Place them 1 inch apart on the prepared baking pans. Bake until golden and crisp — 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool. Repeat with remaining dough and scraps. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week. Serve with peanut butter spread.
 Source: Based on recipe from Country Living

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Rock-a-Thigh Baby Eco-Giveaway: Only 3 Days Left!



Have you signed up yet? Only 3 days left!
Rock-a-Thigh Baby socks don't slip off those cute little legs. And the patterns are so much fun! 
We are giving away 4 pairs to a very lucky winner! Yayy!

Check out the Prize:
- 4 pairs of Rock-a-Thigh Baby socks, winners choice of size and design (a US$56 value).

How to Participate (so easy!): 
Become fan (a.k.a. "Like") of EcoLogical Mom and Rock-a-Thigh Baby on Facebook by February 18, 2011, when the winner will be announced. That's it!
Rock-a-Thigh Baby socks was invented by a experienced Wisconsin mom.  The socks are an environmentally friendly, sustainable textile product made with soft 100% "Pre-Consumer" yarn (which is recycled yarn spun from regenerated material recovered from newly made fabrics), cotton-blended fiber with virgin dyed acrylic fiber; dyes are certified by OEKO-TEX standard 100; eco-friendly soy-based ink for non-skid grips. And the shipping and packaging materials are 100% recyclable.

Good luck!

Winners will be chosen at random.
 "Rock-a-Thigh Baby" are provided by Rock-a-Thigh Baby, LLC.

Classic Nuggets with a Healthy Twist

Chicken nuggets is a classic, and a favorite with kids. Unfortunately most versions bought at fast food chains and grocery stores are very unhealthy. We stumbled across this recipe and absolutely loved it! Very crunchy, juicy and delish! Yes, the blueberry mostard sauce is different, but if you are prepared for that, use the usual marinara or simply a good mostard. All great!


Cornmeal-Crusted Chicken Nuggets
Servings: 4 portions
  • 1 cup fresh blackberries or raspberries, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  • 2 teaspoons honey
  • 1 pound chicken tenders, cut in half crosswise (see Tip)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 3 tablespoons cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Mash blackberries (or raspberries), mustard and honey in a small bowl until it looks like a chunky sauce.
Sprinkle chicken tenders with salt and pepper. Place cornmeal in a medium bowl, add the chicken and toss to coat (discard any leftover cornmeal).
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium and cook the chicken, turning once or twice, until browned and just cooked through, 6 to 8 minutes total (thinner nuggets will cook faster than thicker ones). Serve the chicken nuggets with the berry mustard.

Per serving: 184 calories; 5 g fat (1 g sat, 3 g mono); 67 mg cholesterol; 9 g carbohydrates; 3 g added sugars; 26 g protein; 2 g fiber; 452 mg sodium; 70 mg potassium.

Source: EatingWell

    Monday, February 14, 2011

    RECALL: 800,000 Child Safety Seats

    Federal safety regulators recalled nearly 800,000 child safety seats made by Dorel Juvenile Group (Cosco, Maxi-Cosi and Safety 1st).
    The recall covers certain infant, convertible and booster child restraint systems that were made between May 2008 and April 2009. The seats were sold individually or as part of a "travel system" with a stroller. NHTSA said the harness locking and release button on the seats does not always return to its locked position. In the event of a crash, the child wouldn't be tightly fastened in, which could result in injuries, the agency said.
    As a remedy Dorel will send registered owners a small tube of "food-grade lubricant" that is designed to prevent sticking and ensure that the harness button works properly.

    NHTSA said consumers can continue to use the seats until the lubricant is applied, but the agency said caregivers should make sure harness is properly adjusted and locked.

    Consumers who want more information about this recall should contact the manufacturer directly at 1 866-623-3139 or via email to harnessadjustment@djgusa.com.

    For Your Lil' Monkey at Home


    How adorable are these!! Janey Baby Collection is a collaboration between Babysoy and Jane Goodall Institute. Products feature whimsical drawings of endangered species discussed in Dr. Goodall 's book Hope for Animals and Their World. This collection uses organic cotton and soybean fiber. Artworks are printed with water-based ink. Proceeds from each sale benefit the Jane Goodall Institute and its programs.

    By Babysoy

    Your Recipe for Tonight

    Looking for an incredibly delicious and easy recipe for your Valentine's dinner tonight? This is your lucky day!
    Check out this amazing recipe that can get done in just a few minutes, and remembered for a lifetime...

    Grilled Salmon with Tomatoes and Basil
    Servings: 4 portions 

    • 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
    • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    • 1 whole wild salmon fillet (also called a “side of salmon,” about 1 1/2 pounds; see Tips)
    • 1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil, divided
    • 2 medium tomatoes, thinly sliced
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
    Preheat grill to medium.
    Mash minced garlic and 3/4 teaspoon salt on a cutting board with the side of a chef’s knife or a spoon until a paste forms. Transfer to a small bowl and stir in oil.
    Check the salmon for pin bones and remove if necessary (see Tips). Measure out a piece of heavy-duty foil (or use a double layer of regular foil) large enough for the salmon fillet. Coat the foil with cooking spray. Place the salmon skin-side down on the foil and spread the garlic mixture all over it. Sprinkle with 1/3 cup basil. Overlap tomato slices on top and sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper.
    Transfer the salmon on the foil to the grill. Grill until the fish flakes easily, 10 to 12 minutes. Use two large spatulas to slide the salmon from the foil to a serving platter. Serve the salmon sprinkled with the remaining 1/4 cup basil. 

    Per serving: 248 calories; 10 g fat (2 g sat, 5 g mono); 80 mg cholesterol; 3 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 35 g protein; 1 g fiber; 367 mg sodium; 799 mg potassium.

    Source: Eating Well

    Friday, February 11, 2011

    RECALL: Baby Monitors Recalled After Strangulation and Battery Burn

    The US Consumer Product Safety Commission announced today a recall for Summer Baby Monitors due to strangulation hazard and potential rechargeable battery burn.
    Babies and toddlers have been victims of strangulation with power cords.

    If you have a Summer monitor, please click here for model numbers and additional details.

    Source: USCPSC

    Clever Tips for a Toxic-Free Environment

    Healthy Child Healthy World published a very clever list of things you can do to avoid toxic products at home. Here is a summary:

    What to Do

    Cleaners
    • Use gentle castile soap and water, which has been shown to be as effective as antibacterial soaps. In fact, there are significant concerns about resistant bacteria developing due to antibacterial soap. In addition, triclosan, an ingredient commonly used in antibacterial products, has been linked to negative environmental and health impacts. 
    • Buy safer cleaning products. Many local, online, and discount stores carry cleaning and home products that are very effective without harsh chemicals or fumes. Make sure you read the label and do a little research, if necessary, to make sure the company is making an honest claim. The following terms are not regulated: nontoxic, bio-based, chlorine-free, organic, phosphate-free, natural fragrance, and/or biodegradable. 
    • Make your own safer cleaning products. Click on Safer Solutions to find some basic ideas. 
    • Clean floors with a HEPA filter vacuum cleaner that traps fine particles of dust, soot and pollen, and wet mop regularly. 
    • Reduce your use of products altogether by investing in microfiber cloths or hand held steam cleaners, both of which clean effectively with water alone.
    Personal Care Products
    • Look for products made with certified organic ingredients and those with the fewest ingredients. 
    • Use fewer products and smaller amounts. 
    • Make your own! Some products are easily replaced with simple ingredients from your kitchen. Olive, almond, or coconut oil can make a wonderful moisturizer, oatmeal makes a nice face mask, and even toothpaste can be substituted with baking soda (if you really want to get back to basics). 
    • Avoid body care products with Parabens, Phthalates (DEHP, BBP, DBP, DMP, DEP), DMDM Hydantoin, Fragrance, Triclosan, Sodium Lauryl/Laureth Sulfate, DEA (diethanolamine) and TEA (triethanolamine), Formaldehyde, PEGs (polyethylene glycol), and anything with "glycol" or "methyl."
    Home Furnishing
    • Look for products made with natural materials. Call the manufacturer to find out what a product is made of (be sure to ask about adhesives, coatings, and treatments.) 
    • Re-use reduce your exposure to volatile organic compounds (VOCes) – often recognized as that “new smell.” 
    Safe Solutions 

    Cleaners
    • For a "soft scrub," mix together baking soda and liquid soap until you get a consistency you like. The amounts don't have to be perfect. Make only as much as you need, as it dries up quickly. 
    • To clean extra-greasy ovens, mix together 1 cup baking soda and 1/4 cup of washing soda, then add enough water to make a paste; apply the paste to oven surfaces and let soak overnight. The next morning, lift off soda mixture and grime; rinse surfaces well. 
    • Disinfect cutting boards by spraying with vinegar and then with 3% hydrogen peroxide (available in drug stores). Keep the liquids in separate spray bottles and use them one at a time. It doesn't matter which one you use first, but both together are much more effective than either one alone. 
    • For a good all-purpose disinfectant, mix 2 teaspoons borax, 4 tablespoons vinegar and 3 to 4 cups hot water in a spray bottle. For extra cleaning power, add 1/4 teaspoon liquid soap to the mixture. 
    • General dusting is best done with a damp cloth. Dry dusting simply stirs up dust and moves it around. Also, try 1 teaspoon olive oil per 1/2 cup vinegar. Mix together in a bowl and apply with a soft cloth. 
    • For windows, put 3 tablespoons vinegar per 1 quart water in a spray bottle. Some recommend using half vinegar and half water. For extra-dirty windows try this: 1/2 teaspoon liquid soap, 3 tablespoons vinegar and 2 cups of water. Shake well. The best way to get streak-free windows? Use newspaper instead of paper towels to wipe them.
    Personal Care Products 
    • Make your own moisturizer using olive oil, almond oil, or coconut oil. You can scent it with a couple drops of essential oil if you like. Note: Any scents, even natural oils, can trigger health effects in sensitive populations. Always watch for reactions when introducing new products. 
    • Disposable baby wipes contain alcohol and fragrances which may irritate your baby's delicate skin. All you really need is water. Buy 2-3 dozen wash cloths or cut up old t-shirts or sheets to the size you need. Keep a spray bottle with water handy. Then spray and wipe. On the road, you can keep damp wash cloths in a zip bag.
    • If you catch a diaper rash early, use Aloe Vera. Bad rashes benefit most from exposure to air.
    • Visit Skin Deep to uncover any risks your current products may pose and to identify safer products.
    Home Furnishings
    • Buy furniture made from solid wood. Most furniture is made from pressed woods like particle board or plywood. The glues used in pressed wood typically contain formaldehyde, a known human carcinogen, which can slowly and silently seep into your indoor air. Look for solid or pressed woods that are formaldehyde-free. Also seek out woods that are FSC certified, reclaimed, or recycled wood. Used furniture is another great option, as it will likely have already off-gassed any VOCs. If you choose used, avoid furniture painted with lead paint (a swipe test kit from a hardware store will tell you if it’s safe), anything with mold or mildew (give it a good sniff), or anything with deteriorating cushioning.
    • Look for local. Imported furnishings may not meet US safety standards. For example, almost all US manufacturers have already voluntarily reduced their use of formaldehyde in furniture, but cheaper imported furniture may still have high concentrations of formaldehyde.
    • Avoid furniture that is marketed as stain-resistant, and do not apply stain-resistant treatments onto fabrics.
    • Avoid products that contain PVC, such as inflatable furniture, artificial leather, PVC-coated fabrics, and vinyl furniture covers.
    • Choose friendlier flooring. Healthy Child recommends an easy to clean hard surface like cork or hardwood (find out what types of adhesives or coatings are used) with a washable rug made from natural materials like organic wool. Still, most people like to have carpet at least somewhere in there home – and it is extremely affordable. Look for carpets that follow sustainable carpet standards like those outlined by the Carpet and Rug Institute.
    • Opt for safer electronics. Televisions and computers can have components made with heavy metals and chemicals. Toxic flame retardants are a priority concern as they migrate out of electronics, cling to dust, and contaminate indoor air. 
    • Decorate responsibly. Textiles like curtains and rugs can have synthetic finishings like stain guards and moisture repellants that may contain toxic chemicals. Look for natural materials like wool, cotton, or even bamboo - and ask about any finishes. When you’re looking for paints, stains, or other finishes, watch for those labeled low-VOC or VOC-free.

    Organic Cotton Training Pants

    For mommas facing potty training days, there are not many options of organic cotton training pants available in the market. Imse Vimce has good reviews so far, and it is made with organic cotton for kids up to 37 lbs. Definitely worth trying!

    By Imse Vimse

    Thursday, February 10, 2011

    7 Reasons to Wear Organics


    We all know that organic food is not treated with harmful pesticides, reason why it is delicious (and expensive!). However many of us don't fully understand the benefits of wearing organic clothing. Well, we've done a bit of a research for you, and here are the 7 key benefits of organic clothing you should know:

    1. It is reported that cotton crops are the 2nd largest user of agricultural pesticides in the world. Only second to coffee internationally and to corn here in the United States. This means that 25% of the world's insecticides and 10% of the world's pesticides are dedicated to cotton. Four of the top nine pesticides used in treating  cotton is considered by the EPA to be highly carcinogenic. These are cyanide, dicofol, naled and propargite. Also, organic cotton is grown on land that is certified to be free from any pesticide, insecticide  and defoliants for at least three years. Also, organic fabric contains natural dyes, which are safer for your health and for the environment.

    2. When the crops are sprayed it is estimated that only 25% of those chemicals actually get absorbed into the plant. The rest is drifting up to miles and settling on crops that we eat and into water that is a drinking source for humans and animals.

    3. Some of the insects that these chemicals are supposed to repel are becoming immuned to these synthetics. This requires that more be dumped onto the plant in attempt to produce the highest yield possible.

    4. Organic cotton is hypoallergenic, meaning it doesn't harbor the particles in the air that can make it hard to breathe.

    5. Organic fabrics typically absorb moisture more efficiently than non-organic fabrics.

    6. When you purchase organic fabric, you're supporting farmers who use products that are safer for the environment. Overall, buying organic cotton helps reduce your carbon footprint.

    7. Because organic fabric isn't produced using harmful chemicals and pesticides, it is safer for the men and women who work the land. When you purchase organic fabric, you're supporting safer working environments.

    Sources: Organic Fair trade, eHow

    Wednesday, February 9, 2011

    Toxic Body, Home and Mind...

    Here is an inspiring post we received from one of our readers, Krista Peterson, a 23 year old passionate about environmental issues, and a health & safety advocate:

    "It is becoming harder and harder to live a healthy life in today’s society.  With less time and more and more unhealthy shortcuts available through junk food and other conveniences, it takes both effort and information to stay on task. Knowing how to eliminate toxins from your body, your home, and your mind can lead to a balanced, energized, and healthy lifestyle.  

    You’re stuck with your body for the rest of your life, so it benefits you to take good care of it.  Of course, too much sugar, processed food, and junk food are bad for you. But your body also produces natural toxins. On a cellular level, unstable molecules, called free radicals, can cause oxidation, a process very similar to the rusting of metal.
    Oxidation is known to cause cancer, cataracts, heart disease, and other illnesses.

    Antioxidants are substances found in nature that work to protect our cells from free radicals and oxidation by interacting and stabilizing the molecules.  Fruits that are high in antioxidants include apples, blueberries, and black beans, each of which is great for dessert making or just plain snacking. Also foods high in Vitamin C, E, and A contain antioxidants.


    Your home ought to be a safe haven of health, a place where you can refocus, rest, and refuel.  But toxins like lead and asbestos may be making your home unsafe. Lead can be found in water, soil, household dust, and some paint. It is important to be able to recognize the
    symptoms of lead poisoning to prevent permanent physical damage to yourself and your family members. Lead poisoning symptoms include abdominal pain, aggressive behavior, reduced sensations, and difficulty sleeping.

    If your home was built in the 70’s or earlier, it may contain a natural mineral called asbestos in the dry wall, insulation, tile, or heating appliances.  If asbestos fibers are disturbed, they’re released into the air and can be inhaled, causing a cancer called mesothelioma if ingested or inhaled.
     Mesothelioma treatment is similar to most cancer treatment, including chemotherapy and surgery.  For those who already have mesothelioma, consider alternative treatment .  Some options, like yoga, acupuncture, and herbal remedies, may be unconventional, but they have yielded promising results.

    Good mental health, while affected by your home environment and your physical state of well being, can also have a lot to do with a positive attitude.  Though not necessarily tangible, negative thoughts are toxic.  Studies show that maintaining a
    positive attitude can lead to better mental and physical health. Optimism reduces stress, allowing you to focus on better lifestyle choices.  Expelling the toxins of negative attitudes can also change your hormonal balance, restoring energy and immunity, and reducing your risk for conditions like depression.

    So, if you desire a healthy life overall, consider the dangers of toxins like free radicals, lead, asbestos, and negative thinking.  With information on what these hazards can do and the drive to eliminate them from your body, home, and mind, you can make the steps toward an even healthier you."

    Source: Krista Peterson, Orlando, FL 

    Content  provided by guest writers are not checked by EcoLogicalMom for accuracy. Please click here for our complete policy. Always consult your doctor or specialist for best care.

    4 Musical Instruments and a Tree

    This musical tree is actually 4 different musical instruments, each with its own sound. When all of the instruments are assembled together you will get a tree like shape for a fun and visually stimulating way to store the instruments. It is all 4 instruments for under US$15! What's more, it is eco-friendly: made from environmentally friendly rubber wood and non-toxic paints, dyes and lacquers, and formaldehyde free glue. Packaging is made from at least 70% recycled paper.


    By Wonderworld

    Grandma's Natural Remedies That Work

    Check out this list of "grandma's" natural remedies to resolve simple aches and pains. We love finding solutions to replace Advil, Tylenol and others....

    Directly from EcoSalon and YahooGreen

    "1. Stop Bleeding
    You’d think it would burn, but a sprinkle of cayenne pepper on a cut will quickly stop the bleeding and actually relieve the pain.

    2. Toothache
    There’s nothing so bad as the shooting pain of a toothache. You don’t want to ignore a tooth problem, because an infection that close to your brain can be extremely dangerous if it spreads. But in order to reduce swelling and pain while you wait for a dentist appointment, try putting a few drops of clove oil on your tooth and gums, and bite down on a smashed piece of garlic (which has excellent antibacterial properties).

    3. Rashes and Allergies
    Prescription and OTC antihistamines can cause some serious side effects. Before you head for the strong stuff, try green tea, which contains compounds with antihistamine properties. You’ll need to drink 2-3 cups a day to get the full effect.

    4. Athlete’s Foot
    It’s a foot fungus, and it stinks. Air those piggies, then soak them in salty water, wash them with garlic juice, or soak them with diluted white or apple cider vinegar. All of these things will help kill the fungus.
    But you have to be persistent, consistent, and diligent: No matter what treatment you use, do it a few times a day and stick with it until at least a week after you think the symptoms are gone! Fungus excels at hiding out and coming back when you least expect it.

    5. Acne and Sensitive Skin
    First, you really have to look at your lifestyle, because imbalances in your health can show up in your skin. But in the meantime, wash your face with oatmeal. It’s a gentle exfoliant and draws out oil and impurities.

    6. Sore Muscles and Bruises
    After a hard afternoon of rowing with a friend, I resigned myself to a few days of burning muscles and soreness. But my friend saved the day with a tube of arnica cream. He rubbed it on my shoulders and voila, instant relief and absolutely no aches the next day. The humble arnica flower makes an incredible cream that no medicine cabinet should be without. Use it immediately to speed up the healing of bruises, sprains, sore muscles, and other general aches.

    7. Flatulence
    Some foods, like beans and raw veggies, are more likely to cause gas, but if you find flatulence to be too common of an occurrence, try taking a digestive enzyme with your meals. You can find these at any health food store.
    In the meantime, make use of digestive spices such as ginger, anise, peppermint, coriander, and dill. You can make tea with these ingredients or incorporate them into your food.

    8. Dandruff
    Have you looked at the ingredients in dandruff shampoo? It seems like they contain almost everything in the Toxic Ingredients You Must Avoid list. Better to try something natural first before resorting to chemicals. Many people swear by rubbing aloe vera gel onto the scalp (leave it on for 20 minutes than rinse it out). This will certainly help with dry, itchy scalp.
    Another remedy is a rinse with apple cider vinegar. Try these remedies a few times before deciding if they work for you. Even dandruff shampoo requires regular use to see results, so give the natural stuff a chance!

    9. Headache and Migraine
    Try rubbing peppermint or lavender oil on your temples and the base of your neck; sniffing these oils may also help.
    Rub a fresh cut lemon or lime on your forehead. Feverfew is a good herbal remedy for headaches.
    Have a little caffeine by way of green tea, and don’t forget to use an ice pack for 20 minutes to dull the throbbing.

    10. Indigestion and Heartburn
    It almost goes without saying – but consider why you’re getting heartburn in the first place. Did you overeat? Too much grease or spicy food? Eating late at night? Scout out the cause and try to stop this before it happens. Then, put down the antacids.
    The belching, bloat, and heartburn caused by indigestion come about because you don’t have enough stomach acid to do the job right. A spoonful or two of apple cider vinegar will help break down the excess food that is causing you trouble and bring your stomach back to balance.

    11. Constipation
    First, drink more water and eat more fruit and salads. You’re backed up for a reason and taking lots of laxatives is not the answer. Meanwhile, drinking a few teaspoons of olive oil mixed with a bit of orange or (diluted) lemon juice can help things get moving.
    Another surefire remedy is 1/4 teaspoon of epsom salts drunk in 1/2 a glass of water. Sometimes calorie restriction or avoidance of healthy fats (such as the good fats found in fish, nuts, and avocados) can worsen constipation.
    And though it’s counterintuitive, some people relieve their constipation by actually cutting back on grain consumption! True, grains contain fiber, but some people don’t digest grains very well. Other causes of constipation include stress, depression, inactivity, and nutritional deficiencies. If your constipation is chronic, it may be a sign of a more serious problem, so please seek medical advice and adjust your lifestyle.

    12. Sore Throat
    Sore, scratchy throats are usually a sign of a cold or flu coming on, so you don’t want to ignore this symptom, but you can relieve the pain by gargling with warm salt water a few times a day and then drinking a soothing honey-lemon tea.

    13. Burns
    So you bumped up against the stove again? Ouch. Rinse first with cold water, but then immediately apply aloe vera gel to the burn.
    For those of us who don’t have aloe in the house, slice a potato and rub its cool, soothing juices all over the burn.
    And honey, with its antibacterial properties, is also good topical ointment. If you can catch the burn immediately, mustard is also reportedly a great salve.

    14. Nausea
    The classic cure for nausea or carsickness is ginger tea or candied ginger. You can chew on the stuff raw, if you like, but it’s so spicy and strong it might just make you feel worse.
    Sniffing real peppermint or lavender oil can also help."

    Sources: EcoSalon and YahooGreen