Wednesday, March 22, 2017

How I'm Enjoying Life While On The Anti-Inflammatory Diet {Gluten Free Allergen Friendly Expo} {Sponsored}

I am attending GFAF Expo as a Blogger. I was offered this giveaway for my blog.  All opinions are mine.

You can read my 2016 post here 

So, it's been 17 months since I changed the foods that I consume so that they don't contribute to inflammation in my body.  Which, in turn, causes constant pain and swelling that effects my ability to do simple things, like walk.

There are some days that are easier than others.  I have to own up to that. Some days, oh man, I just really want a cheeseburger.  But, I know that it's gong to hurt.  Like, physically hurt me and cause me pain if I consume it.  So, I don't and I know that there are better options for me out there.  I still subscribe to the belief that food is meant to nourish and sustain.    

I continue to abstain from all forms of gluten, dairy, red meat and caffeine.  I sill do not choose to eat processed foods of any kind.  I do eat whole soy (tofu) sparingly, but the use of soy sauce and soy additives are avoided. 

I'm still on a quest to find ways to become better informed about food choices as I walk this path, though.  There is so much information out there! 





I learned a lot at last years Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo.  I attended the classes that they offered, talked to the exhibitors and sponsors who were on site, and gathered tons of great information and samples to try out, not only for me, but also my family.  


I'm excited about attending the Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo again this year.  I get to surround myself with other like-minded individuals, learn about possible food options that may be out there for me to try, to get as much valuable information as possible so that I can make informed food buying decision.  


The Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo "is dedicated to meeting the needs of the celiac community, those with gluten and food sensitivities, auto-immune/inflammatory diseases, and autism. The public is helped through vendor expositions, educational sessions, and online resources. The manufacturers are serviced through vendor expositions, marketing programs, and consultative services."

If you are interested in attending the Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo on either April 22 or 23, I have 2 ticket codes to give away at this time.  Here is how this is going to work:





I am giving away 2 (TWO), one day ticket codes to one lucky winner so that you can attend the Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo at the Schaumburg Convention Center on EITHER APRIL 22 or 23, 2017.  You will have the opportunity to attend classes, and visit with exhibitors and sponsors of the event to see how they support the gluten free and allergen free lifestyle.  

For your chance to win TWO, one day passes (you get to choose which day)

          1) Comment below on how attending the conference would help you
          2) Deadline for submissions is THURSDAY, April 6th by 11:59pm
          3) One winner will be selected and notified on FRIDAY, APRIL 7th

Interested in attending the event?  You can purchase your tickets here.    

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

I'm A Dish Soap Snob

I am totally a dish soap snob.

I do not own a dish washer, never have, likely never will.  Because, I am the dish washer.  More times than not, I view it as a meditative act, not a chore.  I know, I'm weird.

I guarantee that there is a bottle of Dawn on the ledge of that sink!

Anyway, for years I used Dawn.  YEARS.  My mom even used Dawn, so I've been exposed to it for over 40 year.

But, with my new found quest to rid my home of chemicals I had to find a better option.  And, DIY'ing my dish soap was last on my list of options.  Because, why DIY when there are perfectly acceptable options available for purchase.  In this case I say, SAVE YOUR TIME!

I tried the Thieves®Young Living™ dish soap, and though it cut through grease and cleaned my dishes really well, it lacked suds.  This is a big deal for me because I'm a visual and tactile person.  I knew that it was working, I could see it and I could feel it.  I just didn't see the suds.  *sad trombone*

Unfortunately, this is a no-go for me.  This may be a suitable option for you, though.  And, if so I am doing a happy jig for you.  I had to look further, and this was very hard for me to do as I LOVE all things Thieves®.  {OMG it smells SO GOOD}

So, I sought out to find a dish soap that was eco friendly that produced suds.  My first stop was the Environmental Working Group.  They have a Guide to Healthy Cleaning and when you search your cleaning products it'll give you a rating based on the "A"-"F" grading system.

"The ratings reflect potential health hazards but do not account for the level of exposure or individual susceptibility, factors which determine actual health risks, if any." (EWG)

I needed something that I could pick up at the store while I still did research, because my kitchen sink was getting full with dishes.  I settled, and I truly mean settled, on Seventh Generation dish soap, which gets a "C" by the EWG.  A "C" is not a good grade!  But, it was better than Dawn.  



And, the more research that I did led me down the rabbit hole to Dr. Bronner's.  Sweet peas people! Have you heard of them?  Am I late to the game for just finding out about them?  
I chose to get their Sal Sud's Liquid Cleaner instead of their Castile Soap because SUDS!  AND, it gets an "A" from the EWG.  I mean, come on now!  


I ordered my first 32oz. bottle online as I truly did not feel like traipsing all over the place looking for it in health food/natural food/vitamin shop stores because I don't normally shop at those stores.  But let me tell you - they carry the 32oz. bottle at my local Vitamin Shoppe.  So, score!  And, this stuff is AMAZING.  

Look at those suds! And that's with 1/4 teaspoon of liquid detergent. 

Not only can I use it for my dishes, but I've used it as laundry detergent while I wait for my Young Living™ order to come in the mail (one of these days I'll have a back up supply of the Thieves® Laundry Detergent...one day).  I'm in heaven, people, look at all of the other options that are possible with this stuff.


Plus, I can add my favorite Thieves® Essential Oil to the soap and ta-da, I have a lovely smelling dish soap that produces suds and cleans really well.  Oh, I may add Stress Away® for the ultimate meditative experience while doing the dishes.  Oh, the possibilities here. Like Citrus Fresh®?  I have to stop or this will just be a post full of essential oils, but you get the idea if you want to enhance your dish washing experience.    



I encourage you to take a moment and go to the Environmental Working Group's website and check to see what your cleaning products are rated.  From there, make a decision, an active decision, to do better if any of your products have scored a "C" or lower.  There are better options out there.  Do you research and then experiment.  And, like I did, it's okay to start off slow as you are swapping the products out. If you are reading this you are likely the "gatekeeper" to your home.  You decide what crosses the threshold of your home.  You can do better for your and your family.    


Monday, March 20, 2017

Oil Focus - Peppermint Vitality™

Statements made in this blog post have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  
This post is not intended to treat, diagnose, or cure disease.  

Congratulations!  You have purchased your Young Living™ Premium Starter Kit and ARE using the oils (unlike what I did when I first got my kit). 

Each week I'm going to focus on a different oil which is included in the Young Living™ Premium Starter Kit to help educate you on the many different uses of this oil. 

First, why Young Living™?  I choose to use Young Living™ essential oils because of the purity of the oils.  You can find out more about that by checking out there Seed to Seal® process here




Last week I shared information about the "Swiss army knife" of essential oils, Lavender!  You can read all about Lavender Essential Oil here.  

This week I am moving on to a Vitality™ oil in the Young Living™ Premium Starter Kit - 

Peppermint Vitality™

First, what does "Vitality" mean?  What is the difference between this white labeled Vitality™ oil and Peppermint Essential Oil?  

Nothing.  Both contian mentha piperita.  

To maintain compliance with the FDA you cannot label an essential oil (which is considered a supplement) ok for both internal and external use.  So, the label on the Peppermint Vitality™ Essential Oil complies with the FDA's regulations for internal use, and the label on the Peppermint Essential Oil complies with the FDA's regulations for external use.  Both bottles contain the exact same essential oil (Mentha piperita).  



Peppermint Vitality™ Essential Oil - Mentha piperita


  • Add a drop to a glass of water or tea aid normal digestion
  • Rub on joins to relieve minor aches and pains associated with everyday life
  • Rub one drop of oil in the palm of your hands and inhale to jump start your morning routine
  • Diffuse peppermint oil to aid in sinus relief
  • Peppermint oil can hydrate burnt skin and relieve the pain form sunburns when added to coconut oil and then massaged on

DIY Recipe - Healthier Shamrock Shake


  • 1 can of coconut milk
  • 1 avocado (cut in half, take out the pit, and scoop)
  • 2 T raw honey 
  • 1 cup of ice
  • 2 drops of Peppermint Vitality™ Essential Oil
  • (Optional - add 1 T vanilla extract)
  1. Add all of the ingredients into your blender

*your 5ml bottle of Peppermint Vitality™ Essential Oil will contain approximately 80 drops of essential oils. 


How do you love to use your Young Living™ Peppermint Vitality™ Essential Oil?