Foundational Self Care Suggestions
Copyright @Grassroots Apothecary
Water Is Life:
Hydration is crucial for our bodies to function and as we get older our tissues tend to dry out. Most of us are dehydrated and we don’t even know it. The most common advice is to drink at least 8 glasses, in small increments throughout the day as our bodies can only absorb it at a slow rate. Simply honor your thirst, drink a glass each time after you urinate and especially after drinking coffee or alcohol. Conversely drinking too much water (happens rarely but it’s possible) you can disrupt your electrolytes.
If possible filter your water because unfortunately our water sources are increasingly getting contaminated. See this Ultimate Guide To Water by Luke Storey who has done a lot of research into clean water sources. For a less expensive but great option I recommend the Berkey Water Filter.
Avoid plastic water bottles because the plastic has endocrine disruptors and wreaks havoc in our bodies.
Salt = Electrolytes:
Electrolytes are salts that become charged molecules, called ions, when they are dissolved in a liquid. Electrolytes maintain the electric voltage throughout your cells so that signals can pass easily. Several bodily functions are dependent on this electrical communication that electrolytes help carry.
Having the right amount of healthy salt in your body is essential. Healthy salt will help to keep you hydrated. Your body needs more when you’re stressed because salt is an important part of your adrenal response. Healthy salts include sodium, potassium, chloride, bicarbonate, calcium, sulfate, magnesium, and phosphate - important for combating stress, slowing skin aging, calming the nervous system, increasing circulation, easing muscle stiffness, for lymphatic fluid balance thus assisting immune system function. Table salt is stripped of these minerals. An imbalance of electrolytes can cause major imbalances in the body.
Sodium and blood pressure: A lot of people have high blood pressure not because they have too much sodium but because they don’t have enough potassium or magnesium. People who have low sodium levels have a serious problem dealing with stress. If you lower your sodium to the official recommended dietary guidelines it actually increases your heart attack risk because low sodium increases renin. Renin then increases your cardiac risk dramatically. *Source: Dave Asprey, interview on Bulletproof Radio with American Hypertension Society.
Type of Salt: I prefer Celtic/Grey Atlantic salt. It looks wet in the container and is the most hydrating of the salts for kidneys and our tissues - especially when it is placed in water and drank. The grey color denotes richness in magnesium. Himalayan pink salt is good as well but know that it is a bit warming, good to know if you run hot already. Healthy salts are those that include the name to a body of water or place where it comes from (ie: not just ‘Sea Salt’).
Dosage: Upon rising take 1/2 tsp in your water right when you wake up. This is when your body uses salt the most efficiently. Individual needs vary based on a person’s genetic makeup and lifestyle.
Healthy Fats = Essential Fatty Acids (EFA’s):
Essential because our bodies need them. Fats have a bad reputation due to faulty research however the right types of fats play a premiere role in every aspect of our lives - from our decision making processes, our risk for diseases like cancer, ability to lose weight, and even the rate at which we age. Healthy fats are excellent energy resources. Healthy fats can optimize not only our cognitive performance, executive function, mood, and long-term brain health, but overall health as well. (Excerpts from ‘Genius Foods’, Max Lugavere). Some vitamins are fat soluble meaning that they need fat in order to be absorbed in the body. Eating the right kinds of healthy fats help maintain and balance hormone levels and even result in weight loss.(Asprey, Bulletproof Diet).
Healthy fats/oils: Healthy EFA’s are mostly cold pressed: Olive, pumpkin seed oil, or Udo’s blend, or try hemp oil because it’s cooling, (if you tend to run warm). Do not cook these oils (though Olive on lower heat is fine according to newer research by author Max Lugavere of Genius Foods). Newly pressed extra-virgin olive oil actually shares pharmacological properties with the non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug ibuprofen. Beware of fake olive oils. If you’re unsure then choose Greek over Italian.
Virgin Coconut oil can be used for higher heat.
‘Grass-fed, grass-finished’ butter and ghee are also great sources and good to blend a TBS or two in your morning coffee!
MCT Coconut Oil (not the same as regular coconut oil). “MCT” stands for “medium-chain triglycerides.” MCTs contain fatty acids that naturally occur in coconut oil, palm oil (though palm oil is killing off the orangutanes), goat milk, and breast milk. Your body turns MCTs into molecules called ketones, which help burn fat, curb cravings, power your brain and provide incredible energy. Studies are showing that cognitive function in patients with mild Alzheimer's disease has improved with MCT oil with a keto diet. (Max Lugavere). MCT is great in your morning cuppa coffee, teas, smoothies, and salad dressings.
High quality fish/krill oils. Fermented Cod Liver Oil is one of the most nutrient-dense substances. Green Pasture ferments theirs.
Dosage and storage: Use 2-5 TBS of the cold oils daily on your salads, soups, in your smoothies, and on other dishes right before you’re about to eat them.
Use these consistently to feel a difference. For optimal benefits take daily for 3 months. Familiarize yourself with their smell and taste as fats can go rancid fast, especially flax, even when stored in the fridge. Do not store your oils (or spices for that matter) above your stove where heat rises causing them to go rancid.
Because they can be costly I’m not the biggest fan of supplements however due to the bombardment of contaminants in water, soil, air, and even in our own homes, plus soil and nutrient depletion, some supplements are beneficial. Here are just a few:
MAGNESIUM is extremely important for many things including blood sugar regulation, impaired sleep quality, restless leg syndrome (& assuming that you’ve ruled out that it might be an iron deficiency), tardive dyskinesia (a disorder resulting in involuntary, repetitive body movements), chronic constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, temporomandibular joint pain, bruxism (grinding your teeth at night), chronic back spasms, muscle spasms, bladder spasms, rectal spasms, ovarian neuralgia, heart attacks, and any time where you have spasticity of muscle, where you have chronic muscle stiffness and tension.
David Winston, master herbalist, author, ethnobotanist, and president of the American Herbalist Guild, he has used magnesium extensively in his clinical practice and in all his years of practice has not ever seen anything that works like this. The average person is deficient in magnesium. Chances of you getting enough magnesium from your diet is slim. It is hard to absorb and in addition most people don’t eat enough of these foods or quantity of these foods to get enough magnesium. If you have significant digestive issues you’re probably not going to digest your magnesium.
The form: He claims that magnesium pills don’t work. The powdered magnesium called CALM, which if you take enough of it, may work, but the way to do magnesium is in liquid form. The liquid tastes like drinking metal and is not pleasant but it works SO well. It is not expensive.
The name of the company is Cardiovascular Research. Get an 8 oz bottle.
Dosage: You take 1 TBS of the liquid magnesium, put it in a liter bottle of water (or cranberry juice or whatever) and sip throughout the day. Do that for four days. after four days you go up to a tablespoon and a half of liquid magnesium for another four days. Then after four days you up your dose another 1/2 TBS to 2 TBS. Then every four days you go up 1/2 TBS. Somewhere around 2 1/2 to 3 TBS you will develop diarrhea. At that point you cut back by a tablespoon. (So if you’re up to 3 1/2 you cut it back to 2 1/2. If you’re at 2 1/2 you cut it back to 1 1/2, etc) and that’s your level. Do this every day and after about two weeks you will get diarrhea again. When this happens you reach tissue saturation. At that point you cut back another 1/2 TBS. So for most people their daily dose ends up being about 1 - 1 1/2 TBS in water.
Vitamin D. There’s plenty of research out there showing that it’s a top supplement to have.
Disease can begin and end in the gut!
PROBIOTICS for gut health: I learned about P3OM which uses a patented natural process to upgrade a well-researched probiotic strain. This strain is proteolytic which means it digests protein. It’s also antiviral, antiretroviral and it eliminates pathogens and waste and it’s maintainable in a human digestive system.
ENZYMES are the workhorses of your digestion and are part of making every cell in your body work better. If you’re over 35 your enzyme levels start to decline and by the time you’re 65 your saliva and pancreatic secretions can be down by 50%. That leaves chronic indigestion, causing further gut issues, yeast and mold overgrown and even sometimes malnutrition. Recommended: masszymes. (See the podcast section below for super amazing info about proteolytic enzymes)
Gluten can wreak havoc on your health. There is loads of info out there on gluten. Sometimes it’s unavoidable especially when traveling. Try Gluten Guardian for your gut protection.
The herbs listed below are also fantastic for gut health and more.
Staple Herbal Remedies:
Digestive Bitters: Before each meal to get your hydrochloric acid and other important digestive juices flowing. Your digestion is the seat of your health. Make sure your bitters blend have a balance of warming carminative herbs for balance. Most include this. I can formulate a blend and ship as well.
Aloe Vera Juice: Drink 1/2 cup in the morning, and if you run hot, a half a cup at night can cool you down. For acid reflux and much more.
The benefits of Turmeric and how to make an anti-Inflammatory ‘Golden Milk’ by Andrew Weil. Just make sure that your turmeric drink or capsules has black pepper which enhances absorption. Use organic raw honey (and make sure it’s real as there are fake honeys on the market like the stuff in the plastic bear bottles). According to Ayurveda, do not cook black pepper or honey, as the high temps turn it carcinogenic.
Bone broth: An excellent link about bone broth that includes recipes as well as links for where to buy it: http://nourishedkitchen.com/bone-broth/
Should You Drink Coffee? by Kris Carr.
Look into the benefits of MCT, butter and collagen in your ‘Bulletproof’ Coffee by Dave Asprey.
A comprehensive guide to surviving the modern supermarket by Max Lugavere: Food or food-like products that are stripped of nutrients, they promote overconsumption, and drive inflammation. Inflammation is at the core of most dis-ease. Systemic inflammation can correlate with aches and pains, asthma, significantly larger waistline, brain disease, brain fog, depression, and more. Eat non-processed foods, the color of the rainbow. http://maxl.ug/supermarkets
Need a kitchen makeover for an anti-inflammatory diet? Check out the book Crazy Sexy Kitchen, by Kris Carr. Since no two bodies are alike use this as a baseline for what can work specifically for you.
Quality Sleep is essential to your health and wellbeing!
The best 20 minutes you’ll spend listening to Quik Tips to Sleep Better a podcast by Jim Quik.
Bulletproof Radio podcasts:
How to Sleep Better: Science-Backed Sleep Hacks to Wake Up Ready to Go
Losing Sleep Wrecks Your Gut. Here’s What You Can Do About It
Father of Biohacking – Dave Asprey: SLEEP HACKING
Move Your Lymph to Boost your Immunity & Increase Your Flow:
Our lymphatic system is a central part to our immune system. It is our body’s watershed and we want these rivers to keep flowing. The lymph can be assisted in its movement with tools and techniques:
Dry brushing: Daily. Get your lymph & blood flow/circulation going! From the dhyana Center: “Begin at the feet using brisk, upward, invigorating motions towards heart. Turn the skin pink - then move on - blood flow is building. Also brush the arms toward the heart and make sure to get in the soft of the arm and armpits. After dry brushing either take a shower or just apply body oil following the path of the lymph, rubbing the oil into the skin. Start at your feet and brush in sections towards your heart. When your skin turns red move on to the next section.”
Gua-sha daily. It’s a tool and an action. From The dhyana Center, an Ayurveda Center: “The gua sha is a flat piece of wood or jade that is used to move the lymphatic system, break down scar tissue, and tenderize muscles. Use the edge of the guan ha vigorously rubbing along the skin moving feet to heart and hands to heart. The gua sha can be used with water in the shower, steam room or tub. It’s best with a body oil to drive nutrient into the tissues. The guan ha can be used over clothes also. This technique can create bruising from the toxins releasing in the tissues. With time the bruising will stop happening, since the toxins will be released and tissues get tonified. Once you pick one up and use it, you won’t want to put it down!”
What is biohacking anyways? Biohacking is a new word in the English language. It’s more than eating healthy food and power smoothies. It’s the art and science of changing the environment around you and within you so that you have more control over your own biology. Biohacking is really a lifestyle that requires some curiosity, some commitment, and the desire to improve how you show up in the world. Think ‘Life Optimization’.
Control your own biology with a whole variety of at-home tests ranging from food sensitivity to metabolism even to an advance thyroid panel (your thyroid is the energy metabolism controller for your entire body. The tests are private, simple and they all go through certified labs. Everlywell.com, choose the test you want, are private, and they get shipped to your doorstep. It is just a prick on your finger. You get your results in about five days in their online panel. This can track your diet, exercise, and inflammation.
Get your gut micro biome tested! Viome.com the only company that can identify and quantify living organisms in your gut in order to analyze what those bugs are producing and provide you with a personalized meal plan, nutrition and even fitness recommendations. If your gut microbiome is not working you might not be able to process foods like spinach, beets and almonds for instance. These foods might be healthy but not if your gut isn’t able to digest the amount of protein you’re eating. Also some of the healthy antioxidants or supplements may not be benefiting you. Knowing what’s going on in your gut can affect so many aspects of your health: weight loss, improved sleep, mental clarity, digestive issues, improves your skin, and if your gut is working can lift your mood.
Disclaimer: Food sensitivity testing may not always be accurate and can scare people off of food. There are other sources for doing your own testing that are less pricey but this is the one that I heard about which came recommended.
A few of my favorites: Bulletproof Radio by Dave Asprey; Natural MD Radio with Herbalist, Midwife, Dr. Aviva Romm; The Herbal Highway; The Doctor’s Farmacy with Mark Hyman; Kwik Brain with Jim Kwik; The Lifestylist by Luke Storey; Ancient Wisdom Today; Medicine Stories; For the Life of Me by Julie Piatt.
Next level data on Vitamins, supplements, detoxification, chelation therapy, and more. LifeStylist Podcast.
Most people know by now that our environment, water, and food supply is chock full of toxins, and that our bodies accumulate these toxins over time, and this eventually leads to chronic disease and even early death.
But what is the most effective way to both detox our bodies, and provide them with the much-needed nutrients missing from much of our modern, industrialized food system? Dr. Chris Shade is constantly striving to evolve the way the medical industry delivers care, and he is perpetually broadening the way the world understands health. Shade is the creator of Quicksilver Scientific, an organization on a mission to combine nature’s nutrients with the power of science to deliver the most effective supplements and detoxification protocols on the market.
The LifeStylist. (At 47 minutes: Proteolytic Enzymes break proteins down into peptides and then down into amino acids. Amino acids are fundamental building blocks for our body and without them we don’t repair. If we have pancreas problems, don’t chew our food properly, eat processed foods low in enzymes, have mercury fillings, and more then we won’t have the enzymes to break down the food we’re eating (especially the protein, into the amino acids) so the body won’t heal properly. By adding proteolytic enzymes -1 a day and up to 4 - increases mental clarity as good as being on hyperbaric oxygen therapy and on ketogenic diet, fueling the body. Healing can speed up significantly. Because of the enzymes, people are deficient in specific enzymes so it can actually reverse grey hair. Proteolytic enzymes when taken systemically on an empty stomach means that it goes to work in all the nooks and crannies systematically throughout your body. When you take them with food it breaks down the food that you’ve got in your gut. Taking them you do not need to hydrate as much, getting the minerals and nutrients from food better, mental clarity and energy is up.
BiOptimizers’ MassZymes is a full-spectrum enzyme formula.
Another option is Dr.’s Best.
Systemic Enzymes to eliminate scar tissue, food sensitivities, thyroid antibodies, joint pain, and inflammation in general:
When you take them with food it they digest the food. When you take them on an empty stomach they digest the parts of you that you don’t want.
When you take very high doses they break up scar tissue from the body. All the muscle adhesions where your fascia gets adhered to things, those break up.
You might think that’s a good thing, and it probably is but it’s also a bad thing because if you have an adhesion in your movement pattern it’s there to protect you from something and if you don’t correct the movement pattern with functional movement and you break up the adhesion, you end up with a less stable system.
Standard Dosing: 3 - 6 on an empty stomach three times a day.
For breaking up scar tissue, etc: 5 -10 on an empty stomach 3x a day.
Source: Bulletproof Radio with author Izabella Wentz about her new best selling books Hashimoto’s Food Pharmacology: Nutrition Protocols and Healing Recipes to Take Charge of Your Thyroid Health.
Genius Foods For High Performance and Happiness, Max Lugavere on The Lifestylist podcast or youtube, episode #163
Are you dealing with mold sickness? It’s much more prevalent than you think. Mold spores, or mycotoxins, are all throughout many houses and buildings as well as in grains (especially corn), nuts, coffee, chocolate, and wine. Drink coffee everyday? Then you could be dealing with mold sickness: brain fog, fatigue, depletion, anxiety, auto-immunity. For signs, symptoms, stories, and solutions see Moldymovie.com. (A word of advice: tune out the weird background music because it has some solid information.)
The statements, remedies, and techniques described herein are for educational purposes only and does not substitute medical care or meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat any disease.
I believe that the knowledge of the plants, nutritional, and other health hacks is our right so I share this knowledge of the plants, nutritional, and other health hacks to put the power back into the people’s hands. If you want to use these words then please give appropriate credit. Ask for my permission before reproducing, transforming or building upon the material especially if you want to utilize it for commercial purposes in print or curriculum. Thank you. With Love, Dixie Pauline.