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SHINE BRIGHTER. Our goal is to live better and be better.

Tag Archives: juicing


Get Lit. Let’s Do Shots!

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Back in the day, if you wanted a partner to do bar shots with, I was your girl! I’m older now, more responsible, and (slightly) smarter. But who doesn’t like a good shot  — especially one that gets you going — and keeps you going? Superfood healthy shots have become the new party trick.


CHEERS TO YOUR HEALTH! ORDER JUICE SHOTS DELIVERY OR PICK UP


All of the fun; none of the hangover. Belly up to the bar and serve yourself some seriously potent GEM shots of immune boosting, energy inducing, detox supporting ingredients from nature’s saloon. Turmeric, ginger, elderberry, E3 live are just a few concoctions to help you get lit with health.

Organic Juice Shots

Below is a bartender’s guide to all that’s shot worthy inside the GEM. Standard pours include:

GINGER

For healthy digestion and immunity. This nutritional gem warms the body and boasts antinausea, anti-inflammatory, and antioxidant compounds. Ginger helps support healthy metabolism and digestion. You can even add a shot to your tea!

TURMERIC

For Inflammation. Nature’s Advil. This orange root is a powerhouse of protection—even against heart disease. It is the “ANTI” food: Anti-cancer, anti-inflammation, anti-Alzheimer’s, anti-aging. Add turmeric to everything!

IMMUNITY SHOT: Ginger + Lemon + Turmeric + Adaptogenic Mushrooms

To cleanse, detoxify, and lessen inflammation. Feeling icky? This is our best-selling shot thought to lessen the symptoms of a cold. In addition to turmeric and ginger, Lemon is alkalizing and has a kick of vitamin C. The boost of mushroom tincture adds cancer-fighting compounds that can help reduce inflammation, pain and support metabolism.   

BRIGHT LIKE A DIAMOND/ E3 / Blue Magic

For detox, brain health, metabolism, energy. Bright Like a Diamond shot contains spirulina, ginger, cayenne. Blue-green algae (sold as E3 Live or Spirulina) boasts vitamins A, C, E, B12, and B6, calcium, magnesium, and iron. Some of this goodness comes from cyacyanobacteria — and that blue color signifies loads of antioxidants.

ALLERGY SHOT: Elderberry + Tart Cherry + Ginger + ACV

For allergy relief, joint pain. This combo works! It’s loaded with potent anti-inflammatory compounds. Elderberry has been used for centuries to quell allergies and fight off colds and flu. You can take Elderberry straight — it tastes amazing, and your kids will love it. ACV promotes healthy gut bacteria, balances blood sugar, reduces acid reflux, and helps lower cholesterol.

PERFORM: Beet Juice + Lemon

For recovery, stamina, liver detox, and athletic performance. Rich in natural chemicals called nitrates, beets are a miraculous addition to your daily routine. Your body changes nitrates into nitric oxide, which helps with blood flow and blood pressure.

 

Scared to shoot it straight? Add these shots to your Green Glow or even your Cameo. This time it’s ok to be overserved. Get a good mix of

shots, and round out your cocktail hour with a bang. Couple the Immunity Shot with the Perform. Or add one to your juice. Float a ginger shot into your hot tea. Just do it. Your only hangover will be shining bright. Cheers to your health!

Order now! Delivery or pick up!


Cancer DOES Define Me

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Full disclosure. I’ve worked really hard over the last 9 years to put my cancer treatment and journey behind me. I am really a master, it seems, of compartmentalizing (almost all) experiences that were traumatic in my life. A great coping skill to eliminate emotional baggage. After fighting cancer, I liked to say, “I will not let cancer define me.” And I was adamant about it.

fighting-cancer-gratitude

But the truth of the matter is cancer has defined me. The experience truly made me who I am today. I can’t deny it. I am brighter, shinier, stronger. It is the reason The GEM is here. 

I came to this realization while recently attending a luncheon honoring a fabulous GEM friend and cancer survivor. This event raised millions for the fight against breast cancer — providing access to advanced diagnostic equipment, innovative clinical research, and most importantly, safe, quality, compassionate care for those fighting cancer. Awesome. The theme was about acknowledging all that cancer brings: anger, fear, hope, love, courage, commitment and acknowledging that together we are strong and together we can do it. I expected that. But as I pushed around the almonds on my banquet arugula salad, something rocked me like a hurricane.

I experienced something profound. And unexpected.

As I listened to the stories of others affected by cancer, I became overwhelmed by a sense of immeasurable gratitude. Gratitude for the experience fighting cancer brought me. For the incredible care I was afforded in Dallas. The love and care shown me by friends. This support system is the reason I survived. The reason I thrive.

CANCER CHANGED MY LIFE

Fighting cancer impacted my life in 3 three ways:

  1. Made me more grateful and mindful of the blessings in my life: My husband who is solid gold. My parents’ unwavering support. My cadre of Rockstar friends. My health. I FIND GRATITUDE in every moment. That kind of positive perspective changes the reality of things.
  2. Changed how I responded to conflict. I breathe deep and know I will GATHER MY PEACE. Because at the end of the day, is it really worth it to stress and blow over big and small stuff? Hell no.
  3. Transformed how I looked at FOOD, and the POWER of it on my physical and mental health. The GEM is the manifestation of my new view on all that nourishes me.

 

FIGHTING CANCER CONTINUES

To continue my cancer-free life, I now do these three things every day to launch a preemptive strike in the fight against the disease:

  1. Wake each morning to 32 oz. of water, deep breathing, and organic green tea. This routine includes listing three things I am grateful for. This changes my situational perspective. (Here’s one way you can use your morning routine to brighten your day.)
  2. Surround myself with shiny, happy people and places that lift me up. I find all of that
    inside The GEM community!
  3. Eat GREEN and CLEAN. Drink my celery juice first thing. By 11 a.m., I’ve already knocked back a kickass cup of MVP soup. (That means I’ve had seven servings of veggies before noon!). You can start by adding one extra green to every meal. It makes a big difference in my energy, mood, and waistline.

 

The truth is I’m grateful for what cancer has done in my life and the person I’ve become. Cancer does define me. And I’m proud of that. Thanks for allowing me to be honest. With you. With myself.


Far And Wide, We Go The Distance To Stay Honestly Organic

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So. This happened. It’s the stuff Organic Juice Bar Horror movies are made of. We were given some of the worst news there is if you are an organic juice bar like The GEM. Wait for it: THERE ARE NO ORGANIC CUCUMBERS AVAILABLE FOR A WEEK. O.M.G.G! (Oh, my, Green Glow) We broke into a cold sweat. What’s an Honestly Organic Girl to do?

We were encouraged to pull the “organic when available” schtick and use conventional cucumbers for the next few days, or even worse, pretend like nothing happened and no one would be the wiser. An inside source told us that we were the only folks in town who order only organic. YIKES. Tempting as it might be, UMMMM. No. If MK and I won’t drink it, we won’t sell it.

Wonder Twin Powers Activate. We sprang into action. We went on a scavenger hunt to several Whole Foods, and they really came out the hero! The search was a success, and we scrounged up about 350 pounds of organic cucumbers from around town. Our incredible produce supplier also helped!

We did the right thing. Don’t you want to know you are getting what you think you are getting? We are proud to say, at The GEM, you do. For us, it’s Honestly Organic. NOT when possible or feasible. ALWAYS.


5 Tips for Staying Healthy This Winter

Posted on by diamondsonyourinside and currently has 3 Comments on 5 Tips for Staying Healthy This Winter

This season brings with it happy holidays and festive parties. It also brings stress, less exercise, and more time indoors which equals a greater risk of getting sick with colds and flu. Want to stay strong, boost your immune system, and increase your chances of staying shiny, bright and well this winter? Read on (hint: it’s not just about more vitamin C):

81aHY-s2LkL._SY679_TIP #1: FEED YOUR GUT good bacteria. Our gastrointestinal system is the center of immunity. Maintaining a healthy gut flora is key to strengthening our immune system and helping to prevent illness.

Probiotics, or “good” bacteria, diminish inflammation in the gut and thus help fight illness. So, during this season especially, make sure you’re consuming probiotic-packed foods, like sauerkraut or organic miso. Daily shots of raw apple cider vinegar will also help. Add a probiotic supplement – it’s imperative. We love BIO KULT because it doesn’t need refrigeration, which makes it easier to carry.

TIP #2: BOOST YOUR DIET. Sure, Vitamin C will help keep your immune system strong, so include foods like oranges, blueberries, peppers and broccoli. But don’t just focus on one nutrient.

  • Eat a whole food, plant-based diet with lots of in-season vegetables like winter greens, yams, carrots, and squash. Our LENTIL SOUP, made from scratch, packs rich vegetable nutrients into a warm cup of ridiculous yumminess.
  • If you struggle to consume the recommended 8 servings of veggies each day, try juicing them! Drink juices that consist of 3/4 vegetables and 1/4 fruit. Our RUBY SLIPPER, a blend of carrot, beet, lemon, ginger and cucumber is a stress-busting combination that will fortify your immune system. A GREEN GLOW has been known to cure all that ails you! Add ginger and lemon boosts too.Bar Shot GEM Bag
  • Use lots of herbs and spices. Turmeric and ginger are possibly 2 of the most anti-inflammatory, immunity boosting spices you can consume. Daily IMMUNITY SHOTS at The GEM part of your ticket to staying well. Buy the IMMUNITY MIX (turmeric, ginger, lemon) in 8 ounce bottles and make your own super powered ImmuniTEA with raw honey. It’s SO good!
  • Vitamin D deficiencies also contribute to our susceptibility to illness. Sunlight AND a D3 supplement will help do the trick.
  • Immune boosting SUPERFOODS such as our ADAPTOGEN drops with medicinal mushroom tincture is the final gloss on ensuring your health for the season. If you do find yourself feeling a little under the weather, start immediately with our COLDS COCKTAIL, a tonic that helps push that cold on through.

TIP #3: MANAGE STRESS. Stress triggers the production of cortisol, a hormone that weakens the immune system, making you more susceptible to infection. People who are under more stress are twice as likely to develop colds when exposed to them than those who are chill. Meditation, yoga, deep breathing – these are KEY to managing stress. Don’t skip over this. It’s important.

TIP #4: DON’T SKIP THE EXERCISE. Moderate EXERCISE is cleansing, moderates stress levels, and bolsters immunity. 30 minutes a day. End of story.

TIP #5: GET GOOD SLEEP. Sleep offers your body time to repair and restore your system. 7-8 hours is the minimum. The nights are longer in the winter for a reason: your body needs more sleep to stay well and strong.

Stay healthy, my friends! And see you inside THE GEM.


6 Snacks for School for Your Lil GEMs

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Hopefully everyone is settled nicely into our new back to school routines. If your kids are anything like our own GEMs, that means It. Is. On.

Snacks for school day, after school sports, group projects, dentist appointments and social gatherings are making for some ravenous kids (and moms). They need proper fuel. The key is to be prepared. If not, the entire day can implode inside the corner 7-Eleven.

It’s critical to make sure your small, convenient, healthy snacks are taken to school for your kiddos and readily between healthy meals. Keep these in your car or purse to that you are always ready!

Check these out mamas and daddies:

The Gem RE-MIX – Yes! Deez NUTS are awesome. It’s our very own raw nut mix! Brain healthy fats and protein abound with walnuts, cashews, pecans, Brazil Nuts, mulberries and dried tart cherries. Super filling and packs a punch!

Sami’s Cinnamon Chips – These millet and flax crackers covered with cinnamon and sugar have been touted as “crack in a bag.” Just know you’ve been warned. Get two bags if you want to try, because once you pass it back in carpool, your chances are none. Deceivingly low in sugar, these chips are also great with almond butter or along side your coffee.

Tosi Bar and Bites – Just the right amount of crunch and sweet. Packed with protein, Omega 3’s and fiber, these bites are made of nuts, chia seeds, flax seeds and organic maple syrup. Cashew, Almond and the brand NEW Blueberry and Cappuccino Crunch flavors are super delicious and healthy.

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Pipcorn – Our version of popcorn. The mini kernels are from heirloom seeds–just like nature intended! It’s Non-GMO and has an addicting crunch. Comes convenient pre-popped bag and is sure to please even the pickiest little eater. Find your favorite flavor: Sea Salt, Truffle (my fave), Kettle, or Rosemary.

Alyssa’s Vegan Bites – When you need something sweet but you don’t want to overload on sugar, Mark Cuban’s new company has you covered. These little cookies have very low sugar (2 grams of sugar in 2 cookies) and are delicious. The tastiest oatmeal raisin cookie you will ever eat.

Hail Merry Sriracha Sunflower Seeds – Exclusive to us and beyond delicious, these gluten-free spicy seeds are perfect for the on-the-go kid.

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So don’t let back to life crazy take you down an unhealthy road. Plan ahead, stock up and send your little GEMs off with ready fuel for the school day and beyond.


7 tips to step off the summer vacation party train

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Step off the summer vacation party train. Summer vacation is over. Hate to break the news, but the party’s over.Step off summer party train

It’s back to school, back to schedules, time to get serious. Everyone with any sense of fun and happy spent at least some of their vacation doing things that are off their daily health routine.

Margaritas, BBQ, homemade ice cream, something with a nacho plate, no sleep, sleeping too late, no exercise. We all are guilty. We live it up, have a tremendously fun/relaxing/fast/crazy vacation away from our daily lives—and will power goes out the window.

Then, SNAP. Back to reality.

All the fun and party begins to fade and you are left with puffy, bloated, brain-foggy, up a few pounds REAL LIFE YOU. You want to feel lighter and brighter again. You want to get back on the feel good wagon.

Here are a few simple tips on how to come back from the fog.

  1. BRING SEXY VEGGIES BACK. Just one EXTRA to your plate. The chlorophyll, the phytonutrients, they will add immediate energy and spark. The fiber will help boost your metabolism and enhance your digestion. Have you tried our new Celery Salad? It’s amaze balls and you get to check one of these tips off your list!
  2. Drink your water. I can’t say it enough. Get back to your 32 ounces of filtered water every morning. You are dehydrated. Hydration brings better metabolism, it cleanses your organs, gives you energy, suppresses your appetite. DRINK UP. (water this time). And take a refillable water bottle wherever you go.
  3. Start downing green smoothies. You need to give your digestive system a break. Have one for breakfast and chock it full of all kinds of greens. You can add ½ a banana if you are still on top of Sugar Craving Mountain. If you are scared to start, begin with adding spinach to your regular smoothies. Think Emerald City or Cameo. Or brighten your White Diamond with added spinach. Your body will soar.
  4. STRETCH it out and BREATHE deep. Both of these things keep your body renewed and keeps things moving efficiently. Yoga or your own stretching sequence will make a huge difference in your day.
  5. LOVE YOUR GOOD BACTERIA. Get back on your probiotics. You’re system has been compromised: bad food, good alcohol, not good living all upset the balance of good vs. bad bacteria in your gut. Digestion, immunity, brain function suffers. Bio-Kult is the best. Stock up inside The GEM.
  6. Catch up on your SLEEP. You’ve been staying up late and its starting to catch up with you. Sleep renews your energy, your mind and of course your body. Lack of sleep makes you crave sugar and ages you. Add CALM tea at night to relax.
  7. LUCKY NUMBER 7: KICKSTART your way back with a detox cleanse from The GEM. Flush out the toxins and get rid of your cravings: Juice Only, Juice Then Dinner or a Workout Cleanse—which shows you what a super healthy day can look like for the rest of your life (until summer returns anyway!).

 

Try these steps and let us know how you feel!

Clarity, Energy and Vibrance are in your very near future!


Your fatigue’s dirty little secret

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Are you in a constant state of fatigue?cure fatique

Do you …

Feel rundown or overwhelmed?

Have difficulty falling asleep?

Wake up in the middle of the night?

Wake up exhausted, even when you go to bed at a reasonable hour?

Feel exhausted late in the afternoon, but more awake, alert and energetic after 6PM than you do all day?

Crave salty and sweet snacks?

Have brain fog? Chronic racing thoughts?

No, you probably aren’t falling apart. You just might be experiencing adrenal fatigue. What is that, you might ask?

Adrenal glands are endocrine glands that sit at the top of the kidneys. These guys mobilize your body’s response to every kind of stress. They regulate blood sugar, regulate energy production and storage, immune function, heart rate, muscle tone and other processes that enable you to cope with the stress.

Important roles, no doubt.

So it’s important to keep these guys working properly and don’t over work them. Adrenal fatigue occurs when the demands of stress cannot be adequately met.

Whether emotional, environmental or physical, prolonged stress is disastrous for the adrenals. Prolonged stress wreaks havoc on your blood sugar, causes thinning skin, muscle wasting, memory loss, high blood pressure, dizziness and night sweats. Eventually, the adrenals become fatigued.

You want to recognize fatigue so you can begin to manage it before it gets out of hand. Overworked adrenals eventually crash, leading to adrenal exhaustion, where the body is unable to maintain adequate adrenal hormone production. And then you can say hello to extreme fatigue (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), irritability, inability to concentrate, frustration, insomnia, addictions to sweet or salty foods, allergies, depression, anxiety, sensitivity to cold, diabetes and headaches…Cliff Notes version: it is not fun!

While we can’t always eliminate stress, we can nourish our bodies and souls in a way that strengthens the response and keep the negative effects on your body at bay.

10 tips to nourish your adrenals: 

1. Breathe! Commit to regular deep breathing exercises. Aim for 10 to 20 deep belly breaths every morning and every night. Six counts in, six counts out. Not only is it calming to the mind and body, it is cleansing and energizing.

2. Eat clean, whole foods. Let food be thy medicine, right? Rid your diet of the nasty five: caffeine (see ya later, coffee), alcohol, table salt, soda and sugar. And say hello to good sources of protein, complex starch, nuts and seeds, super berries and lots and lots of dark greens (they contain great amounts of B vitamins). Nourish yourself through food.

3. Daily organic juice. Flooding your body with super powered greens nourish every inch of your body. Instant energy, without a crash, daily juice helps maintain blood sugar levels and boosts immunity. The new Disco (Super GREEN) juice is the most detoxifying juice yet, power packed with chlorophyll and phytonutrients certain to boost you back to vibrance. For REAL!

4. Sleep. Try to get eight hours for rest and repair. Lack of sleep not only affects adrenals but also hormonal balance. Cortisol levels contribute that puffy ring of belly fat around your middle. Go to bed earlier, and stay screen free for at least 30 minutes prior to bed. Late night viewing of electronic screens are proven to negatively affect sleep patterns.

5. Daily quiet time. This is a good time use a Gratitude Journal identifying five things to be grateful for. Try it—you’ll be amazed how it soothes the mind. Bring awareness to your daily life with meditation. Studies show meditation can drastically reduce stress. Just do it!

6. Try a weekly detox soak. Take a relaxing bath at least weekly to promote detoxification of impurities that tax your system. A detox bath of one cup Epsom salts, one cup baking soda and eight drops of lavender oil just might change your life!

7. Take a daily probiotic. When your gut is healed, health will naturally improve. Bio-Kult is the VERY best probiotic out there. This is something I recommend always!

8. Recover with Bloom! This incredible elixir, called Recovery, is a combination of several organic herbs in a liquid format that helps support adrenals and help the body “recover” from stress—be it physical or mental. I take two droppersful in the morning and at night. I sleep better, and that afternoon fatigue starts to disappear. It’s AMAZING! Get your magic elixir inside The GEM today.

9. Learn to love restorative exercise like yoga. Simple daily yoga stretches, even for just 15 minutes makes an enormous difference.

10. Learn how to say NO … Boundaries. Build your own. This is a major cause of stress. Don’t over commit yourself. There’s only so much of you to go around!!

Learn more ways to nourish your body and soul with a Diamonds on Your Inside counseling session. That’s why we’re here.


What Pink Ribbons Don’t Say About Breast Cancer Prevention

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In my former, pre-GEM~my world, pre-breast cancer, I spent 17 years in marketing and product development for a luxury linen company. It was a great paying job with lots of responsibility and lots of high-level stress. I was burning the candle at both ends, and was generally a hardcore, bitter, very impatient person. And, I knew it all.

On October 19, 2009, 18 days into “Breast Cancer Awareness Month,” that world came to a halt. I was broad sided with a diagnosis of breast cancer that spread to my lymph nodes. Leslie kicked kancer's ass

Crap. I hated pink ribbons. Even more, I hated setbacks.

Later, I realized this setback would be my life changing experience. I was about to learn about peace and happy and a truly healthy lifestyle the hard way.

During my year-long treatment of chemo, surgeries, radiation, sheer exhaustion, I started to dig deep into illness and disease and what I could do to help in the healing process AND make certain it never came back. I learned about alkalinity and inflammation. I discovered very quickly that my previous lifestyle did nothing for my optimal health, so I set out to quell all inflammation in my system.

How?

  • I immediately went out and bought a juicer and Vitamix
  • Went totally on a hard-core, plant-based diet
  • Did a TON of reading and research

I became obsessed with everything related to food and healthy living and quickly discovered first hand the power of juice, clean food and positivity. I learned that inflammation is the root of all disease, so I set out to change my life. I also learned it wasn’t just about food!

What did that mean? In addition to food, your thoughts and your stress are major causes of inflammation.

I needed more. I earned a degree from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, an incredible nutrition school that takes a holistic approach to wellness and focuses on relationships, work, exercise and spirituality as essentials to building good health. I studied lots of brilliant minds on the subject.

The goal: to clean up every dark corner of my world. I dumped the toxic people (oh, yeah baby!), the toxic thoughts, the toxic attitude. I refused to let that stuff into my world. Added yoga, deep breathing, cleaned out my personal care and cleaning products. I changed my environment so to speak. That was a great place to start.

So what about the (toxic) food? So I began embracing a whole-foods, plant-based diet. I cooked, I juiced, I bought organic.

What I quickly realized was there was no place nearby where I felt secure about the quality and selection of the food and juice. Organic was rarely mentioned and almost never honestly served. I couldn’t eat every meal at home, right? So, what happened next? Mary Kathryn and I decided to do it ourselves! Wonder-twin powers activate!

From there, The GEM was born. We created The GEM to be a community where people come to get healthy and happy. And WOW! We were floored by the response. Our baby quickly became a place to find approachable, healthy habits that have a profound effect on your long-term health. Anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, anti-energy vampires. Let food (and disco) be thy medicine, right?

We invite everyone to experience this place of healing and happiness called The GEM.  And hopefully you leave with a little something better than when you enter. Come on in! Don’t wait for a sucker punch from Life to change your thoughts and your habits!

The GEM is living proof that by removing toxins from your life, you will be healthier, stronger and happier. So while the pink ribbons aren’t visible, the disco ball is a constant reminder of the happy, healthy life we all can attain.

YOU ARE YOUR BEST ADVOCATE–whether it is cancer screening or anything else. Take control of your health and happiness each and every moment.  And, don’t be a boob. Perform monthly breast exams. Peace.


Yoga for Stress Relief

Posted on by diamondsonyourinside and currently has 2 Comments on Yoga for Stress Relief

Have to preach this … yoga is a critical component for stress relief. yoga and juice equal peace

Don’t turn off the screen just yet. Yoga doesn’t have to be:

  • Difficult to practice. Simple postures can be done anywhere, anywhere.
  • Intimidating. If you don’t already practice yoga, don’t be scared. You gotta start somewhere. Most folks can’t twist into a pretzel and stand on one finger.
  • Practiced on a mountaintop in white robes. It’s not weird. I ran from the idea of yoga just a few years back, and now can’t live without it! Plus, it is one of the oldest defined practice of self development.

 

Yoga may be more familiar than you think. Many popular techniques found to reduce stress derive from yoga:

  • Controlled breathing. This stuff works.
  • Meditation. Be grateful for your life and the big and small things in it.
  • Physical movement (exercise)
  • Mental imagery. See it, think it, be it.
  • Stretching. It’s crazy what a difference a few stretching poses can make.

 

Yoga can provide the combined benefits of these activities in one technique. It brings together the mind, body and spirit. Whether you use yoga for spiritual transformation or for stress management and physical well-being, the benefits are numerous and undeniable. Those with physical limitations can and actually SHOULD practice yoga, just make sure you have a good instructor.

There are several different styles of yoga, some moving through the poses more quickly and other styles relaxing deeply into each pose. Some have a more spiritual angle, while others are used purely as a form of exercise. Certain poses can be done just about anywhere and a yoga program can go for hours or minutes, depending on your schedule.

This is what yoga can do for you:

  • Reduce stress, anxiety and muscle tension
  • Increase strength and flexibility
  • Reduce cortisol levels–which make you hold on to fat, among a million other things.
  • Lower blood pressure and heart rate
  • Spiritual growth. It can happen, regardless of your religion.
  • Sense of well being. Well, sign me up!

 

Yoga’s benefits are HUGE—it gives a crazy high payoff for the small amount of effort you have to exert.

There are so many studios that offer beginning yoga, often with incredible guidance from the instructor. You really want to have that extra attention at the beginning to learn proper form and be more engaged. Places like Sunstone offer classes that are heated, slower, and more methodical. Start with Spark and work up to Fire Class. Water class (a true spiritual experience, in my opinion) is my personal favorite. Exhale & We Yogis have lots of different varieties of classes.  We Yogis even has classes for kids and teens. Dallas Yoga Center has classes for beginners and even some that focus on meditation. Try a few online videos and images (simple beginner poses), though the energy of a live class is so much more therapeutic.

Select a place that you feel comfortable with and try it out. Give it several tries with different types of yoga until you find what is right for you. Private yoga sessions including guided meditation are an incredibly rewarding option!

Bottom line: Make the connection between knowing your stress levels and changing your behaviors. Managing stress in a positive way will make a life-changing impact your body and your life.

Do you have a favorite yoga studio? Share it with us!!

Peace. Happy. Yoga.


5 Ways to Manage Back-to-School Stress

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School is almost back in session which meansThe GEM Juice Bar major organization needed, major scheduling, major traffic, AND obviously, major stress. Stress is an unpleasant fact of life. We all experience it, and for some of us, we allow it to take over our minds and eventually our bodies.

The key is to find ways to manage it—squash it—and don’t let it rule us. Stress does terrible things to your mood, your energy and your overall physiology. Common symptoms of stress we know all too well: insomnia, headaches, jaw pain, back and neck pain, heartburn and nausea, nervousness and anxiety, nail-biting, and trouble focusing. Even high blood pressure, stroke and obesity! But stress does some other crazy sh*t …

  • Stress changes the expression of your genes. Your genes load the gun, the environment pulls the trigger. Your stressed our body produces chemicals, activating genes that change everything — how much fat you store, your immune function, ageing and even the development of CANCER.
  • Stress affects memory function. High levels of stress hormones damage critical parts of the brain, especially the area responsible for memory. People experience adrenal burnout after chronic stress because the brain actually turns off the adrenals. So relax, silly.
  • Stress jacks with your immune system and increases inflammation. Stress is the ultimate immune-modulator. It slows wound healing and increases your susceptibility to infections.
  • Stress slows your ability to metabolize and detoxify. Genes responsible for enzymes that break down fats and detoxify prescription drugs are negatively impacted by stress. Stress also adds to your toxin burden by increasing your cravings for high fat, high sugar foods. We all know that one, right?  The stress hormones actually make you hang on to your fat cells.

 

The American Institute of Stress (AIS) has a list of 50 common signs and symptoms of stress.  Check it out! So in addition to making us cranky and fat, it can also make us chronically ill? Tell me how to fix this!

What we think and feel, and how long we think or feel it, determines our health. The science is strong, and yet so often since stress is considered something we can’t really quantify, it gets dismissed as not being “real.”

Here are a few ways to quell stress in your life:

  1. Meditate. Come on … Don’t quit reading. Meditation can mean different things to different people. Mindfulness, intention setting, gratitude lists all are part of a mediation practice. Simple deep breathing exercises and morning quiet time (even 15 minutes a day will make an enormous difference). Gabby Bernstein rocks. Wayne Dyer too. This does not take the place of your daily prayer. Try deep breathing exercises in the carpool line or at a traffic light. I swear it will change your life.
  2. Laugh. Call a friend, watch a movie, fake it if you have to!
  3. Magnesium. Deficiencies in this mineral have been linked to anxiety as well as a litany of sleep disorders. Go get you some CALM tea today. P.S. It will also keep you regular. There is also a Calm Bath Soak that is amazing as a bedtime ritual along with some lavender oil that will knock your socks off.
  4. Exercise. Do something everyday—preferably something that raises your heart rate and makes you sweat. Walk with a friend, jump on the trampoline with your kids, or turn up Donna Summer and disco dance off of the chandeliers for all I care. Just do it!
  5. Plan your food. At the very least, have healthy food options in your fridge. You can’t manage stress on Cheetos and drive-thrus. Plus eating like that can add MORE depression and anxiety to your life. (Insider scoop, we will be blogging about this in September: simple, healthy fridge options). Start your day with a Green Glow or a superfood-packed Crown Jewel smoothie.  What stressor can possibly bring you down now??

 

We can help you with all this at The GEM, whether with your nutritional needs, a much-needed laugh or schedule a Diamonds Counseling Stress Session – Just ask!

Next up:  Stress and Yoga!!