My skin care tips – Organic and green of course

Many of us face problems related to sun exposure. Moderate strength sunscreens such as earths almond aloe moisturizer with spf 15 could check premature wrinkles and sun burn. The presence of aloe and almond also help in retaining the skin moisture. For good result, apply the earths almond aloe moisturizer with spf 15 at least 20 minutes before going out.

Most of you might be aware that glowing skin can be achieved even at the comfort of your own home without spending big bucks. As homemade natural skin care works internally, it is wholesome in its approach. This means, it benefits the entire system including your skin. Also because homemade natural skin care products rely on easily available fresh fruits and vegetables, there is less chance of side effects than commercially available natural skin care products.

My 80-years-old granny has never gone to any beauty saloon, but still her glowing look can embarrass many younger women. Want to know, how? Let’s take a sneak-peak at some of her age-old recipes…

Top five natural skin care recipes

  • Carrot and honey are great exfoliators, effective on any skin type.  While honey is an excellent moisturizer, fresh organic carrot is rich in vitamins A, C and E. For this, finely grate a fresh carrot and mix it thoroughly with half a tablespoon of organic honey.  Smear the paste evenly on your skin before leaving it for about 15 minutes.  Now gently remove the dried mixture by washing with luke-warm water. For best result, repeat the treatment once every week.
  • Regular skin cleansing is very important for healthy and glowing skin. As children, we have seen our granny steaming her face twice every week before retiring to bed. Steaming opens up clogged pores and loosens debris trapped deep into the skin. For this, heat up some water and pour it into a bowl. Some fresh herbs such as mint can be added for a refreshing aroma. With a small towel over your head (to prevent the steam from escaping), steam your face for about 10 minutes while maintaining a safe distance from the bowl.
  • Applying a facial mask is great for skin tightening. Yogurt (a skin softener) and organic honey are considered a good mask for dry to oily skin. Mix one teaspoon of yogurt with a teaspoon of organic honey. You can also add a few drops of fresh lemon juice for excessively oily skin. Leave the mixture for about 15 minutes before rinsing with lukewarm water. Gently pat dry your skin with a soft towel.
  • Drinking at least 8 full glasses of water everyday is important for retaining youthful skin. Water is necessary for normal skin hydration and in flushing out toxins from the system.
  • Another great skin care is drinking lukewarm water mixed with fresh lemon juice and honey, regularly first thing in the morning. Mix fresh juice of a lemon and a teaspoon of honey in a glass of lukewarm water. Being rich in vitamin C, lemon can promote collagen formation, while honey could retain natural moisture. Together, this could control wrinkles and black heads.

Les Mills Pump

So I haven’t really weighed in on my experience and review of Les Mills PUMP in a while and thought it was about time. I am still workout to a different Les Mills PUMP workout every morning. This past Monday I began week six of the program which started the second phase of the program. The second phase named, Panoni, is the change. This phase of the program really focuses on changing your shape by building and sculpting the muscles for the long lean look. But we will get more to that later.

Sunday marked the end of phase one which is named Te Wero, which is the challenge. This phase is designed to challenge your body to shed some serious pounds. These challenging workouts aim boost your metabolism and stimulate weight loss. During this phase there were a lot of workouts that you completed several times per week, I felt that this repetition was a good way to get your body use to the new moves and to really focus on perfecting form. Personally, not having much experience with barbell training I loved that I was able to get to really know the routines so I was less worried about what they were doing on the TV and more focused on my form.

Throughout this first phase of Les Mills PUMP one of my favorite workouts was Pump Burn, in this thirty minute workout you are working several muscle groups at the same time to really increase your heart rate, burn calories, and kick start your weight loss. During week five of the workout you add the workout Pump Shred to your regime. This has become another one of my favorite workouts, this is a forty five minute workout that focus not only on the calorie burn and fat burn but also building your endurance. You really get to experience the rep effect in this workout.

The rep effect is a major building block for Les Mills PUMP. Traditional weight lifting tells us that in order to build muscle you need to lift heavy weights at a low repetition count. The rep effect tells us the exact opposite. Here the muscles are fatigued by using light to moderate weights at a higher repetition count. During some of the routines you will be completing 800 repetitions. Using this thinking, the rep effect of Les Mills PUMP will allow you to fatigue your muscle, lose fat, and build strength without becoming bulky. That means that by the time you complete this program you will have a sexier, sleeker, stronger, and toned physique than you have ever imagined possible.

In terms of weight loss during the first phase of the Les Mills PUMP program; I have shed five pounds and two inches from my body. I am seeing a lot more definition in my arms, back, and chest. Overall, I must say that I am extremely happy with my results thus far and cannot wait to see what the next phase has to offer!

My favourite cookware

Out of the 4 different cookware materials, my personal favorite is the cast iron cookware. Besides being durable and economical, cast iron cookware are  safe for my family and for the environment. And that’s the most important deciding factor for me.

We know that regular healthy diet is essential for a fit and healthy lifestyle. We usually take care of that by having nutrient-rich food. But do we show the same care while buying cookware? Our intention to buy cookware is often guided by our desire to create a sleek kitchen interior or its price factor. While both are important, but doing so we often overlook the most important matter – “How safe is our cookware to cook and store our food?” While there are a plenty of options available, opting for non-toxic and safe cookware gives us the best chance to stay healthy and safe.

To stay healthy, our buying decision has to be based on informed selection rather than on the spur-of-the-moment thoughts. Consideration has to be given to the materials the cookware is constructed from and matching it with our particular cooking need.

Cast iron cookware: For those who are looking for healthy, sturdy and long-lasting cookware, cast iron cookware items make wonderful choice. Being an excellent conductor of heat, cooking on a cast iron grill pan is a cinch. As the heat is evenly and consistently spread, you can enjoy tender and juicy grilled chicken or a succulent tuna steak. But try to avoid cooking acidic food, such as tomatoes, on your cast iron grill pan as this could alter the taste of your food after reaction with tomatoes. Enamel-coated cast iron pan could be a better choice.
Glass cookware: Being made of inert material, glass cookware is considered as the safest and healthiest option. However, since glass is easily breakable and needs careful handling, as a cookware it is not a popular choice. But if you prefer glass cookware, a more durable and dependable cooking aid could be pyrex cookware. As it comes with unique heat-resistant glass, the versatile pyrex cookware can be safely used for baking and organized storing of food.
Stainless steel cookware:  Provided that the cooking surfaces remain intact, your stainless steel pots and pans can give you many years of service. While selecting stainless steel pots, consider opting for those which come with an inner core of copper or aluminum. Being efficient conductors of heat, such cookware with copper or aluminum layer sandwiched between steel layers can promote uniform spreading of heat. This can also ensure mouth-watering taste of your food. However, to prevent the inner copper or aluminum core to come in direct contact with your food, avoid scrubbing the surface too hard.
Non-stick cookware: Though come with sleek and contemporary design and easy to maintain facility, non-stick cookware is not considered safe for our health. Once reaching high cooking temperature, the Teflon content in non-stick cookware starts releasing toxic gases which are suggested to be carcinogenic and deadly to humans (in small amounts), besides being global pollutants.

Get on your bike for bike month

So hop on your bike and join the biking revolution!


Grab your helmet, roll up your pant leg and put your car keys/bus pass away, because May is National Bike to Work month. This is your chance to go green and get healthy by biking to work. Like the name implies, Bike to Work month is recognized throughout the month of May. Most cities and states also observe Bike to Work Day or Bike to Work week. The bike month was started by the bike industry ages ago and the League of American Bicyclists took it over in 1956. It was started with the sole idea of celebrating the experience of cycling and encouraging people to do something fun and different.Biking to work can just be for anyone. But if you are like me and haven’t biked in a long time, here are some tips to help you ride safe:

  1. With biking becoming increasingly popular, most major cities have separate bike lanes for bikers. Stay on the bike line and follow the rules of the road at all times. Obey all the traffic signals and signs and if possible keep to the right lane.
  2. Like any other activity, it is important to be equipped with the necessary gear for a comfortable ride. Make sure you have your helmet, water bottle, bike messenger bags and gloves. A good helmet reduces the risk of fatal injuries.
  3. Wear bright colored clothes or reflective gear especially at night, so you are visible to other drivers on the road.
  4. Always follow a straight and predictable path and never weave in and out of parked cars.
  5. Finally plan your bike route well in advance so there’s no added pressure.

If you still feel biking is not your cup of tea, here’s what a couple of my co-workers have to say about biking to work everyday:

Mandy: “Riding my bike to work is a great adventure every day. I am outside and enjoy the route I take. I hear the birds and it is lovely to see how nature changes through the seasons. I feel in the car you don’t see that. But on my bike I am more aware of my environment. I love the sun shining in the morning and waking me up on my commute to work.”

Linda: “Riding a bicycle to work is fun and a good daily exercise. You start the day being active which makes you feel good. It is wonderful to cycle in the warm morning sun and get some fresh air before starting to work. You arrive awake and happy at work. On the way back home riding your bike helps you to leave all the work behind and be ready to enjoy the evening.”