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Neem and it’s Benefits

Neem and its benefits

An average Neem tree is 15 meters high with th...
An average Neem tree is 15 meters high with the crown’s diameter up to 15-20 meter (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Neem and its benefits are a well kept secret if you are not familiar with Ayurveda.

So, lets start with a little back ground on Ayurveda.  Ayurveda is a 5,000. year old art of traditional  healing in India, their medical system. Ayurveda deals with the balance of you and your environment, you and nature. Working to balance your daily routine, sleep patterns, eating and digestion, with meditation, herbs, yoga,and massage. Ayurveda has been made popular by people likeDeepak Chopra, M.D, and in recent news, Dr Oz has introduced several Ayurvedic Physicians(recently Dr. Chaudhary).

With Ayurvedic medicine herbs are used to help balance the system, this is where you will find things such as ginger for digestion, or holy basil for stress reduction and relaxation. Herbs have a benefit in the  overall plan of Ayurvedic healing, weather it be added to your food, to  massage oil, or taken by the spoonful, it is used in the forms needed.

This is where neem and its benefits come in as one of the many great kept secrets of India and Ayurveda. Neem is native to India and Burma (Myanmar), the neem oil is derived from the seed of the neem tree, but the whole plant can also be used for medicinal purposes. Neem and its benefits can found in many forms in Ayurveda products, such as teas, or pastes due to its anti fungal, antiseptic, and anti-inflammatory properties.

Neem is often found in products used to help relive itchy, dry scalp, tooth decay and acne. You will often find it added into a product due to the strong, seemingly unpleasant scent. I often will add neem oil to a base of sesame or coconut oil and apply to the skin to help nourish the cells and decrees blemishes. So a word of caution, when looking for a great neem oil, maybe start with a product that has neem added, or a neem capsule( http://www.Mapi.com).

Heather Small  http://www.mettaspa.net

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Winter Tea

Winter Tea

winter herbal tea

My main focus in staying healthy is with massage therapy, along with that I add herbs, meditation, and a balanced daily routine to help maintain a healthy self.

People that are close to me and come to me as clients, know that I work to maintain a healthy lifestyle.  One of the many ways I work to keep healthy during the winter months is with herbs, and making winter teas is simple, warming, and relaxing. Winter teas are a great way to balance the immune system , relax the mind and warm the body. When I look at putting together a batch of winter tea, I start with a few base questions

  • 1) when do I plan on drinking my tea
  • 2) what is the focus of this tea,
  • 3) who is drinking this tea

Looking at a few basic questions helps me plan my tea, example: I would like to drink my tea in the late afternoon – so no caffeine. Focus is on health immune – nettle, oat-straw, ginger, elderberry and so on. The last question is important, I have 4 kids, and some herbs kids love – I don’t want to form a long term hate for herbs, so I work to keep softer, fruiterer teas with the kids(our older two kids drink any tea, the younger two are rather picky –  find that I may add the herbs into a soup in place of tea sometimes). Right now we are drinking rose-petal lavender infused green tea in the morning, for a light calming from the lavender, soft smell from the rose, and energy from the green tea. As our morning rolls into afternoon we have a cumin, coriander fennel tea to help flush and move things through the system, to decrease a buildup of toxins in the system. We will drink winter tea throughout the day , and adjust our teas as needed, if we have a cold, or a very busy work week, etc.

Weather you chose to buy your teas from Metta Spa, or find that tea that is just the right balance for you, or experiment with your own blends at home, take you your time and enjoy. Herbal teas are a great addition to a balanced daily routine, give them an average of three weeks to start to notice the benefits( some people are more sensitive and see changes quickly, others need a little more time.

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My love for Yoga

So let me share my love for yoga with you.

I am a mom first( four kids at home), a partner, a self-employed Massage Therapist, an Ayurveda bodywork, you get it ,the list could go on. So my life can get busy, but I keep it balanced. How? I’m thankful for the life I have, the people, family, clients, everything that makes it the life it is.

I spend a lot of time with my clients, helping to create a daily routine that will work in their schedule to bring in a balance, so it is only fair that I work to do the same in my own home. The things that I have found to be the most effective is to make sure I am getting massages, eating well, my meditation, and yoga.

With four kids in the house we searched out yoga teachers that would work best for our family. The girls and I enjoy a fun, more energetic yoga( the girls are 12 and 17) this keeps them interested and wanting to come to class.  As we moved through our journey into yoga and including all the kids we came to a yoga program that has created so much calm, and bless into our home, http://www.learningfromtheheart.com. This program has become such a cornerstone for our family, I felt the need to share with you and my clients.

Last year my parter and I went to our first Kundalini yoga class ( I have been to many yoga classes, this was his first ever yoga class), and we meet so many incredible people, but one would become a gift to the family, Sat Nam Kaur. We quickly realized the work and patient for kids and yoga that she had, and as quickly joined her class. Since then we have enjoyed her class, our oldest son( 20 years old) is helping with the classes, and the difference we have seen in our youngest( 10 years old) who struggles with ADD/ADHA has truly convinced all of use of the power of yoga and this program.

If you have never had the pleasure, or gift of yoga, try it, look around, this program that we have found is a free program to families with children dealing with ADD/ADHD, anger and autism, we are blessed to find a teacher that believes in the power of her work, her gift.

With having kids ,we all have our struggles, and to find something that helps, it is a great please to share with others, with families dealing with the same or simular issues. I share this part of my life in great metta(loving-kindness).

About this Author:

Heather Small is an Ayurvedic body-worker and Massage Therapist at Metta Spa, you can contact her at www.mettaspa..com, or heather@mettaspa.com. Heather works  closely with her clients to help create a long-term goal of balanced health and well-being. To find out more about this yoga program: http://www.learningfromtheheart.com.

Tea for rainy days

Turkish Tea

Turkish Tea (Photo credit: dimi)

I love to make a tea for rainy days, it can warm the body or help when the weather makes you feel stuffy and congested. I like to make a Sassafras tea, its great for the spring to help with purifying the blood, great for the joints and skin, also good with preventing colds. You can buy a sassafras tea or get sassafras bark, steep for 10-15 mins, then drink. The best way is to drink one cup a day for two weeks, this will purify the system. The other great quality of this tea is that its cooling, so you can enjoy this tea for rainy days in the heat of the summer storms.

Cooling Summer Tips

As we enter into the hot summer months, we think of ways to keep cool. Adding coconut or mint into your summer rice will help cool the system. Looking at our food is a great way to keep the system cool and relaxed in the hot summer months.