Say Open Sesame – to Discover the Miraculous Benefits of this Unbelievably Healthy Oil

ImageJust as Alibaba opened the door to unbelievable fortune in the Arabian Nights- with one simple phrase- “Open Sesame”, you too can benefit from the distinguishing richness of the sesame seed, which is a treasure of nutrients.

Revered in alternative medicine as a healing oil since the Babylonians, it aides cardiovascular health, detoxifies body, fights ageing and strengthens bones. Cold-pressed sesame oil is a treasure of healthy fats, antioxidants and natural resistance. Sesame oil comes in two varieties- toasted and un-toasted. When sesame seeds are dry roasted prior to oil extraction, the oil is richer in flavor and darker in color. The other kind is the light golden variety, which has a milder flavor but a higher smoke point.

Sesame is packed with Nutrients

Nature has blessed Sesame oil with 3 really powerful compounds that are found nowhere else, namely – Sesamol, Sesamin and Sesamolin. Moreover, it is rich in omega-6 and omega-9 fatty acids, and other essential vitamins and minerals. However, in order to enjoy the maximum benefits of this power-packed healthy oil, one should use cold pressed sesame oil over the processed, supermarket variety. Cold-pressed oils are produced by crushing/pressing oil seeds and fruits with heavy granite millstones or modern stainless steel presses. The process is done with low-level heat, to preserve the minerals, vitamins and essential fats in the oil.  This process gives lower yield than modern methods but the oil produced is healthy and natural.

  • The Vitamin E and Sesamol, a unique compound in sesame, have been found to have fantastic antioxidant properties
  • Sesamin & sesamolin are cholesterol-lowering agents and protect the liver from oxidative damage
  • Zinc strengthens bones
  • Recent studies recommend sesame oil to Diabetics over any other oil.
  • Copper soothes rheumatoid arthritis pain
  • Calcium prevents osteoporosis, migraine and colon cancer
  • Magnesium supports respiratory health.

Cardiovascular Benefits of Sesame Oil

  • The poly-unsaturated fats in organic sesame oil restrains  hypertension and blood pressure
  • Sesamin, lowers blood pressure, reduces the formation and absorption of cholesterol- and so helps maintain cardiac health.

Beauty Benefits of Sesame Oil

Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of medicine, acknowledges sesame oil as an important healing oil.

  • Sesame oil has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, which nourish and detoxify damaged skin and hair.
  • Oil-pulling with sesame oil promotes oral hygiene and rids body of harmful toxins.
  • Massage with Sesame oil for youthful skin as it counterbalances free-radicals, a major cause of aging.
  • Apply sesame oil on sunburns, skin allergies, dandruff and eczema to benefit from it’s anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.

Cooking with Sesame Oil

Derived from Sesame seeds, this oil has a distinct aroma and flavor that is slightly sweet and nutty. The virgin, cold-pressed variety is strong in flavor, and is almost essential in oriental cooking. You can use Sesame oil for sauteing vegetables, chicken and sea-food. Not particularly suited for frying, but you can sprinkle it over dishes, and salads before serving to add a lovely flavor profile. Still, cold-pressed sesame oil holds on at a higher smoking point than most other organic oils. This is due to the stabilizing properties of sesamin and sesamol that are naturally present in it. These compounds prevent sesame oil from going stale even when stored in the the open.

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Oil Pulling- Daily Detox Routine that You Should Start Immediately

ImageOur bodies have a natural detox mechanism, constantly eliminating the accumulated toxins that are metabolic byproducts. But the rising amount of chemicals in our bodies- ingested as pesticides, medicines and pollutants are more than our body can handle.

If you suffer from constipation, acne, exhaustion, excess gas, sinus, depression, mood swings, nausea, halitosis and a low immunity, you might need to undergo a detox or cleansing.

As opposed to complicated detox methods, Oil Pulling offers surprisingly easy way to cleanse your system and push out those toxins every day. An added bonus- get pearly white teeth without chemical bleaches.

 What is Oil Pulling?   

Oil-Pulling is a morning ritual derived from the best kept secrets of the Ayurveda. It requires swishing or pulling, cold-pressed, unrefined sesame oil, in your mouth for several minutes. It rids the mouth of the bacteria, germs, parasites and other toxins that cause secondary infections and chronic inflammation- leading to a number of health problems.

How to Perform Oil Pulling?

Oil-Pulling should be done first thing in the morning, before consuming any water or food.

  • Put a spoonful of, cold-pressed Sesame oil in your mouth and swish it around for 15-20 minutes
  • Spit it Out: Do not swallow the oil, the swishing leaves oil full of toxins and germs
  • Brush your teeth.

 Helpful Tips:

  • The first few times, the taste of oil will make you want to gag. Be persistent and in time, you’ll be ok
  • In case sesame oil isn’t available; other cold-pressed, refined vegetable oils can also be used.

Benefits of Oil Pulling

  • Promotes Oral Hygiene
  • Shiny White Teeth
  • Stronger Immunity
  • Better Sleep
  • Clearer Skin
  • Increased Energy
  • Improved Concentration
  • Decreased migraine headaches
  • Clearer Sinuses
  • Less severe asthma
  • Regulated Menstrual Cycles
  • Improved Lymphatic System

Oil Pulling not only cleanses the body of impurities but also provides clarity of thought and peace. Try including this amazingly effective detox exercises in your daily routine for a new and healthy life.

10 Amazing Natural Beauty Products Hiding in your Kitchen

Looking and feeling good is important for our confidence and self esteem. Women and men often make substantial efforts to look good, using a number of cosmetics available in the market.

A recent study claims that our skin absorbs 67 percent of the cosmetics applied on it. Imagine the amount of synthetic chemicals our body absorbs owing to make-up products. Take a closer look at the ingredients of your favorite make up to discover the kinds of chemicals your skin has been absorbing all this while.

Luckily, several effective and chemical free beauty products are lying in your kitchen cabinet- waiting to be discovered.

Discover 10 great and natural ways of looking beautiful using simple kitchen ingredients.

Image1.   Honey

The golden juice of nature is rumored to be the anti-ageing secret of Greek Gods. It is also the secret to perfectly moisturized skin and lustrous hair.

Glowing Face Pack:  Full of antiseptic and antifungal properties, apply honey on face, to discover healthy and blemish free skin.

Acne Treatment: Dab honey over facial acne for a speedy recovery

Hair Mask: Mix honey and coconut milk to make a hydrating and refreshing hair mask

Image2.   Potatoes

Surprisingly, the humble potato has several beauty benefits. It is a perfect cure for puffy, tired eyes.

Puffy Eyes Mask:  Potato contains a compound known to help reduce swelling and puffiness. Treat puffy eyes with a mask made with shredded potatoes. Shred a small potato, freeze it and apply as an eye mask for 15 minutes.

Image3.   Cinnamon

This flavorsome exotic spice has some great skincare benefits.

Lip Plumper: Mix a bit of cinnamon powder with lip-gloss for fuller lips. Caution – It might sting a bit

 Facial Mask: Make a royal mask of cinnamon and honey for acne-free and fresh skin

Image4.    Beet Root

Discover the perfect ‘Blush of Health’ with beetroots. The naturally colorful beets can add some much needed color to an otherwise pale/dull face

Cheek and Lip Tint: Add little glycerine and rosewater to beetroot juice and preserve it for further use. The cheek cum lip tint is 100 percent natural and also longer lasting than the commercially available products

Image5.    Rose Water

Fresh, moisturizing and pleasantly fragrant, Rose water is considered to be nature’s perfume. Feminine yet strong, it has many beauty benefits

Toner:  Use organic rose water as a toner for fresh, well hydrated skin

Body Splash: Spray on rose-water after bath for a fragrant day ahead

Anti-ageing Agent:  A natural astringent with anti-inflammatory qualities, the use of rose water has been found to reduce fine lines and wrinkles.

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6.   Turmeric

This antiseptic spice is a great remedy for post-acne scarring

Post- Acne Cream: Mix organic turmeric powder with lemon juice for a medium-thick paste, and dab onto discolored/ scared skin. Wash the area after 20 minutes. Because turmeric has a strong yellow color, the area treated may have a temporary yellow tint, which might last a wash or two.

7.   Yogurt

A moisturizing agent, as well as a skin exfoliant, yogurt can be used as a cooling mask to rejuvenate dry and tired winter skin.

Image8.   Coffee

Conditioner: Brewed dark roast coffee can be used as a post-conditioner wash to add rich color to brunette and auburn hair. Instant coffee mixed with conditioner provides a similar effect.

Scrub: Use instant coffee as a facial exfoliator. Some mix granulated sugar with coffee to scrub off dry, dead skin.

Energy Mask: Caffeine can also rejuvenate the skin. Turn a tired and dull face to glowing and fresh by applying a mixture of instant coffee and honey for 10 minutes.

Image9.    Sugar

Scrub: Use sugar as part of your weekly beauty regime. Mix sugar with baby oil/ almond oil and scrub gently in a circular motion, to reveal a fresh and clean skin

Image10.       Salt

Sea salt and ground rock salt are great exfoliants that work as home-made body polish scrubs, to reveal a naturally radiant skin.

Body Polish: Rub salt in a circular motion on your entire dry body, before a shower for an incredible glow. Follow up with a rich moisturizer to re-hydrate skin.

Acne Cure : Make a thick paste of salt and honey. Apply to the affected area. Word of caution – It will sting initially, but is an effective medicine for fighting acne.

Home-made Energy Drinks for a Natural Power Boost

ImageWhile living life in the fast lane, our body often suffers from fatigue and grows weary, but that is no excuse to clock out for the rest of the day. Many of us turn to an Energy drink to help us boost our energy, and also to re-hydrate us during workouts or sports.

Most such energy or sports drinks available in the market contain similar ingredients that act as a temporary stimulant. An artificial stimulant is not real energy, and the boost they provide is short lived. Many experts also believe that these drinks have adverse physical and neurological effects.

 Most such drinks have the following ingredients:

  • Sugar – A common source of empty calories
  • Caffeine – Increases heart rate, insomnia and dehydration
  • Taurine – A nonessential amino acid to help focus and increase the blood flow to the heart. Long-term effects of Taurine remain unknown
  • Artificial Colors

As an alternative to such synthetic energy supplements, why not try making some natural and healthy energy drinks at home?

Honey is a proven alternative to energy drinks. It contains high-levels of fructose and glucose that enter the blood stream gradually. It provides a much longer lasting energy boost, as well as, essential amino acids required for post workout recovery. It is a great, natural fuel for sports and is packed with plentiful nutrients and health benefits.

Follow the easy recipes listed below, to make your own rehydrating and nourishing energy drinks:

DIY Refreshing Fruit Energy Drink

  • Mix 1/3 cup of Natural honey  with 1/3 cup of unsweetened grapefruit, pomegranate or cherry juice
  • Add 6 cups of water.
  • For workouts and outdoor activities, add a pinch of salt
  • Blend well and Refrigerate

DIY Antioxidant Herbal Tea Energy Drink  

  • Steep four bags of herbal/ green tea in two cups boiling water.
  •  Add five cups water and 1/3 cup honey
  • Stir well and store in the refrigerator till ready to use.

There you go- follow these simple recipes to make a bottle of these delicious energy drinks and hit the gym for a full power work out.

Honey – Sweet Remedy for Losing Weight

Losing weight is almost always a struggle and involves eating bland food, as well as, completely depriving the sweet tooth of any pleasure, whatsoever.

natural fitness

However, ancient knowledge coupled with latest findings suggests that losing weight can also be a sweet affair with honey. Contrary to common belief, research shows that the daily use of honey instead of sugar does not lead to weight gain. Packed with nutrients- it in fact makes you feel more energetic. This simple, Nectar of Gods, helps in weight loss, while also ridding the body of harmful toxins.

There are various ways of using this nature’s gold to lose weight, boost metabolism and get beautiful, glowing skin.  Listed under are some simple ways of using honey everyday:

Honey and Lemon-  Ayurveda recommends having honey and lemon for effective weight loss. Start your day with a warm glass of water with honey and lemon, on an empty stomach. This drink can be taken throughout the day before meals, ideally half an hour before food.  Digestive herbs like ginger can also be added for boosting flavor and nutrients.

Honey and Lemon in hot water is also a great detox drink, particularly beneficial for glowing, fresh skin.

Honey and Cinnamon- Unani Healing, the ancient tradition of Greek-Arabic medicine, suggests drinking a brew of cinnamon and honey first thing in the morning. This drink can be made by boiling cinnamon in half a cup of water and later adding honey before drinking.

Hibernation Diet- A revolutionary diet that suggests consuming a spoonful of natural honey before bedtime can lead to both- a sound sleep, as well as, weight loss. This easy to follow diet suggests that the nutrients in honey promote fat burning in the body while you sleep. The body burns fat during sleep as a natural self healing mechanism. This is often disrupted by low blood sugar as we sleep. Honey primarily concentrates on bettering the sleep metabolism of the body, by supporting the liver and adrenal function.

Substitute Sugar- Honey is rich in fructose and glucose, which supplies our body with energy to burn fats, while also boosting the metabolic activity in our body. But unlike the empty calories of sugar, corn syrup and other processes sweeteners, honey is nutritionally abundant with amino acids, vitamins and is a rich source of calcium.

Honey not only improves the taste of herbal teas and smoothies, but is also known to curb hunger.

Natural Energy Drink- Avoid expensive and toxic energy drinks. Instead, substitute them with natural honey-based energy drinks. Researchers at University of Memphis have found that honey is an effective energy drink pre and post exercise. Honey gives equal amount of energy as glucose, but with sustained energy and prompt recovery. Make your own energy drink, which is both natural and energizing during work outs and sports.