Sunday, February 28, 2016

A Simple Tool to Jumpstart My Fitness Revolution



Yes, I hear the message from the Universe loud and clear. I need to start getting off my butt and moving more. There couldn't be a more proper time for this tool to be reviewed by me!

The Review

The little klutz in me had a bit of a challenge following the (simple!) instructions, getting to lock the band and the LEDs to light up but once successful, it was pretty neat having something so light work so well at tracking how much movement I make measuring 'my steps' per day. After awhile you won't even notice you are wearing the thing. I love how the battery charges so quickly from your laptop and lasts up to 5 days!

I have to admit that my first day tracking was a shock - I didn't reach my quota of 10,000 steps! I don't move much considering that I work online and blog more often these days. My shocking realization was I needed to boost movement... so I purchased myself a stability core ball from Toby's so that at least I can use my core muscles when seated for laptop work. And when my kids want to start playing with the ball, it is a sign for me to stop static work and just MOVE!

Another great idea I had was when my 9 year old son wanted to borrow the Fitbit for a day. Aha! Maybe I could track how much he moves and compare and inspire me to move as much. Perhaps we could do a game of how much more steps we could do if we did certain activities and work outs.

What tools do you use to motivate you to move?

Available at Beyond The Box branches or Digital Walker stores.

Browhaus Make Up Range: A Naturalist's Review


Yay for new make up loot! 

To be very honest, I try to lead a chemically low or chem-free lifestyle. Sadly, there aren't too many natural and organic brands specifically for make up available in the local market so I research on what scores low in toxicity using the Skin Deep Cosmetics Database online because let's face it (pun intended!), women do need their make up some days!

I am currently testing these baby innovations from Browhaus. A first for their company is their own make up range to compliment their brow and lash treatments. New products are: High Definition Mascara, Classic Brow Lead, Precision Eyeliner and the Heavy Duty Bi-Liner.

Here's why I prefer to color my brows. My right eyebrow is colored while my left isn't. Do you see how sparse it really is? I need a brow resurrection pronto!



So I checked for all of its ingredients per product:

Classic Brow Lead (Php648) ingredients: Paraffin, Castor Oil, Microcrystalline, Cera Alba, Black Iron Oxide, Bis-Diglyceryl, Polyacyladipate-2, Palmitic Acid Stearic Acid, Boron Nitride, Mica, Red Iron Oxide, Montan Cera, Copernica Cerifera Cera, Phenoxythenol

Only Conpernicia Cerifera Cera and Montan Cera were not detectable in the database but all other ingredients passed the test ranging scores from 1-3. (10 being the most hazardous)

I'm no make up artist but here I am below using the HD Mascara and the Precision Eyeliner below. Makes such a dramatic difference, right?




All of HD Mascara's ingredients (Php 998), (isododecane, paraffin, beeswax, iron oxides, microcrystalline wax, trimethylsoloxysilicate, cyclopentasiloxane, disteardimonium hectorite, dextrin palmitate, propylene cardonate, tocopherol, panthenol, squalane, panax ginseng root extract) scored 1 or low in hazardous score key except for phenoxyethanol which scored 4 (moderate harazardous). Nothing with high hazards, thank heavens!

Precision Eyeliner (Php750) ingredients: Water, alcohol, butylene glycol, styrene/accrylate copolymer, accrylates/octylacrylamide copolymer, beheneth-30, disodium edta, xantham gum, sodium dehydroacetate, sodium hydoxide, sodium benzoate, propylparaben, methylparaben, phenoxyethanol, carbon black.

Xantham Gum, Sodium Hydoxide weren't detectable but here's the rest of the scores:

Fairsodium benzoate 

Moderate hazard: methylparaben 

High hazard: propylparaben 

All other ingredients scored low hazard 1-2.

And to remove the make up after an event or by the end of the day is their Erase Make Up Remover which is made in Taiwan. 

Erase Make Up Remover (Php800) ingredients: water, glycerin, propylene glycol, PEG-7 Glycerin Cocoate, Hydrogenated Polyisobutene, Acrylates Copolymer, Triethanolamine, Phenoxyethanol, 2-Bromo-2-Nitropropane-1, 3-Diol, Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate

Moderate Hazard Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate, Phenoxyethanol, Triethanolamine, PEG-7 Glycerin Cocoate

High hazard2-Bromo-2-Nitropropane-1 

All other ingredients scored low hazard (1-2).

*I haven't tried the bi-liners but will include in a future make up review!

Conclusion: I would definitely continue using the Browhaus Make Up Range on occasion because I do need to look decent for certain events and celebrations. The products work well on my skin. They don't run and have lasting power which is important in our humid weather. My only health concern are the 2 ingredients (propylparaben and 2-Bromo-2-Nitropropane-1) which scored high in hazard levels in the Precision Eyeliner and the Erase Make Up Remover. 

The full Make Up Range by Browhaus is available in all Browhaus outlets. Visit www.browhaus-manila.com for store listings. 

Monday, February 22, 2016

How To Make Your Own Coconut Milk and VCO


Non-dairy milk is in huge demand these days after learning about the awful pesticides, hormones and antibiotics found in dairy milk! Read Dr. Hyman's 6 reasons why you should avoid dairy at all cost here

With that being said, I've gone the extra mile by making my own coconut milk at home for my kids to drink. It's really easy and very cheap to make! You can purchase mature coconut strips or gata from your local market in the Philippines for only 30 pesos (less than a dollar!) per bag.

On our first attempt, we tried doing it on my Hurom juicer but after about 25 minutes it stopped working. I doubt it is meant to juice grated coconut so we had to switch to manual hand labor instead!


You will need:

1 bag of grated coconut
Cheese cloth or katcha or I used my daughter's clean lampin /cloth
Hot water
A bowl to catch the milk



After boiling water, place the grated coconut inside the cloth and make a pouch and start to milk it. Warning: this is scalding hot so wait awhile before you start milking the bag!




Viola! Here's your freshly pressed coconut milk which your kids will loooove! No sweetener needed :) 



Now, if you wanted to make VCO (virgin coconut oil) you would do the same thing except wait for the oil to settle in the middle layer after a day then find a way to extract it. I made the mistake of using this container because it is very hard to skim the top layer. 


 So, I had to transfer to a bowl and then refrigerate. The oil will harden and then you will have to remelt.


I must tell you how awesome the VCO home production of my good friend, Ana (of Body Food All Natural) is in her home! You may follow her on Instagram @anagutch for inspirations like this!



Body Rituals with Mustela Maternite

Just like Cleopatra, I've got tons of body rituals to make me feel, look and smell divine! To add to the meticulously chosen products I currently use on my body is the latest range by Mustela Maternite. While I am not pregnant, I do have battle scars from my previous pregnancies. I am glad Mustela addresses these real concerns for us women.

The Stretch Marks Recovery Serum and Body Firming Gel are now both part of my daily body ritual especially summer months are soon arriving. Let's wait and see if I see improvements on my skin in the next few weeks (together with a more active lifestyle and healthy eating!)


Now what I do love about Mustela is that they have tackled controversial ingredients which they have excluded from their products. This is lifted from their website:
In order to ensure the safety of pregnant women and their future babies, the following ingredients have been excluded:- Parabens, phenoxyethanol
- Halogenated derivatives (Chlorphenesin and Triclosa, for example, which can be irritants and cause allergies)
- Alcohol, which when used as a solvent helps substances to be absorbed into the skin

Thank you, Mustela Philippines!



Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Aloe Cure For Stomach Acidity



Years ago, I used to suffer a lot from horrible stomach acidity. I would curl up in my bed writhing in pain whenever I would get the attacks. A visit to the alternative doctor confirmed that these were stress induced. I did certain changes to my lifestyle, mostly dietary choices and then became more vigilant with my yoga and breath practice.

I no longer get these attacks on a regular basis but just a few days ago I had one! Because I had these green folks in the fridge, I gave it a go and I did feel better almost instantly. I am glad to know there is a dietary supplement made from organic aloe vera that soothes the digestive system. I will definitely be drinking this good stuff to alkalinize my body more!

GOOD TO KNOW: Aloe Cure contains a natural buffer called malic calcium which neutralizes hot acid over a long period of time to maintain proper acid levels which is key to nutrient absorption.

These products are available at Watson's and Lazada.com.ph

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Flow Mystery Tour And Artis Artisan Antipolo

 

There is something so refreshing and healing about being out in nature. One day I will build my house surrounded with trees and live sustainably, preferably in a permaculture designed village and farm. For now, I do quick trips to renourish my body, mind and soul. 

I organized the last Flow Mystery Tour with a short escape to nature in mind for all that signed up. Last month, I brought the group to Antipolo for some sunshine and fresh unpolluted air which we all desperately needed.
 

The venue was the Bee House in Beverly Hills Subdivision in Antipolo. When we arrived, I led a yoga class out in the garden while the kids played with small animals by our side. Yes, most of our tours and retreats are kid-friendly! Check out flowretreats.blogspot.com for more details.



Then, my good friend Ana led a workshop on how to make your own Bath Fizz Bombs using all natural ingredients. 



Those are real dried Lavender flowers. They smelled heavenly! 


Our finished products drying out under the sun.


While waiting for homemade lunch, we checked out the merchants to the Artis Artisan Bazaar.










This event is the brainchild of The Bee House owners Marie Gutierrez, the wife of master builder Vitty who is also the brother of Ana. They are quite a talented family!





After our healthy lunch of falafels and , we proceeded to do workshop # 2 which was DIY Kombucha also led by Ana.


I have learned how to make Kefir before but lost track after sometime. Ana encouraged me to try Kombucha and have been making and drinking this probiotic wonder drink since she taught me. 



I love how her youngest son is her little apprentice when it comes to her handmade and homemade interests. He was manning the booth and selling his Kombucha creations for her! 


Thank you for collaborating with me, Ana! I love your life, your village and all your creations!




You may follow Ana Niguidula on Instagram @anagutch to know more about Body Food All Natural products and her workshops.

Follow FLOW Retreats on Instagram @flowretreats to find out about our next Mystery Tour or retreat!


Thursday, February 11, 2016

Mommy Milkshake Run 2016



I've been seeing this fun running event for moms and their families on my social feeds for years since 2007 yet, I never had the chance to go because of previous commitments. This year, I am pledging to go take my 8 year old son on our first run together! With all his energy, I think it would be a good experience for him to mingle with other parents and children while running....eventually walking is okay too, I suppose!

Come join us on Sunday, March 6, 2016 at the 6th Mommy Milkshake Run. There will be a 3km and 5km run along the BGC area. You know my son and I will be choosing the 3km run! It's open to  expectant moms, moms & dads (with or without slings and strollers), toddlers & kids. The run will have no time limit. (Yay!)

Since the event is a family friendly fun run, the organizers promises to have all our needs taken care of. They will provide Portable Toilets, as well as a Breastfeeding station and lounge for the nursing moms. It is called a Milkshake Run after all! There will also be a diaper changing area for parents with babies and toddlers, ample water stations along the route to provide hydration for all participants, first aid stations and medics will be available for any untoward incidents.

And guess what? You won’t need to carry your little one for the entire race, as you can bring a stroller for them. Yay! So I guess I'm bringing the toddler, too!

However, bikes, skateboards, hover boards, and roller skates during the run. Pets are also not allowed.

After the run, everyone will receive a certificate of participation, as well as a bag of goodies from our sponsors. 

There will also be a family fair with games, music, raffle prizes, food carts, special awarding ceremony, and an inflatable section for all the kids.

Here are a few things to remember:

1. Registration period is from January 25 to February 14. Payments will be accepted until February 15. We will follow the No payment, No run policy, so please be prompt. 

Registration is required for every participant, including children.

2. On February 13 and 14, you can register and pay at Planet Sports, BGC, from 12 noon 
to 8pm.

3. Registration Fee are as follows:

Children ages 2-12 years old = P300
*Children below 2 years of age can enter for free, but has to be registered.

Adults

3k = P500
5k = P650

4. You can claim your Race Kits from February 22 to March 4 at the Creative Juice office in 2F Fun Ranch, Frontera Verde, Ortigas Ave. Pasig City. Other pick up sites will be announced in Mommy Mundo's social media pages.

5. Race kits include The 6th Mommy Milkshake Run Singlet, Map of the venue, and the 3k/5k route.

6. On Race day, it is important to know that registration will start at 5:30am, location of meet up, to be determined. Race bibs will be handed to you upon registration. For our pregnant participants, please provide a medical certificate from your doctor/OB Gyne, allowing you to join this race.

7. Opening Program starts at 6:00am, where we will stretch and warm up our bodies before the run.

8. Race starts at 6:30am for the 5k run and 6:40am for the 3k run.

For more details, please visit www.mommymundo.com/milkshakerun2016

The 2016 Mommy Milkshake Run is supported by Curves, Gatorade, Hi-Precision Diagnostics, 
Growers, The Fort City, Working Mom, and The Bull Runner, Bonifacio Global City Estate and Ambucore.



Wednesday, February 03, 2016

Introduction to Pranayama Workshops

Thanks to Facebook, I have been getting updates from fellow yogis on workshops and events that I truly am interested in. Come join me as I become a student once again in re-learning the beautiful and cleansing art of Pranayama!


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Everybody knows meditation is good for you; but sitting down to meditate is hard work. Focused breathing can help a lot, because once we channel prana, our internal breath, meditation arises easily and naturally.

Liana Romulo is offering the same 2-part beginners course she offered last year. Each part will be offered 2x. Please indicate which 2 sessions you'd like to attend when you text 0921 315 2644 to make a reservation.

PART ONE
Wednesday, Feb 10, 3:00pm to 4:45pm
Saturday, Feb 13, 9:00am to 10:45am
PART TWO
Wednesday, Feb 17, 3:00pm to 4:45pm
Saturday, Feb 20, 9:00am to 10:45am
Course fee P2,500


Liana Romulo has been cultivating a personal breathing practice for nine years, closely following the lineage of Swami Kuvalayananda, founder of the Kaivalyadham Yoga Institute in India. She has completed more than 800 hours’ formal training with O.P. Tiwari, who is Kuvalayananda’s direct disciple and a master of pranayama. Although Tiwariji gave her his blessing to share the practice with others in 2012, Liana still seeks the guidance of her first teacher, Paul Dallaghan, whilst also receiving illumination from Richard Freeman and Mary Taylor, with whom she studies Ashtanga Vinyasa yoga. 

Reservations are required. Please bring a yoga mat and a water bottle, and wear comfortable clothing that won’t pinch or bind when you sit on the floor. Romulo Peace Center, Century Plaza, 120 Perea Street, Legaspi Village, Makati City.

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