My Favorite: Daily Health & Beauty Products

I’ve been recently trying to switch over most all of my everyday health and beauty products to natural, cruelty-free products. I’ve found several really awesome products and wanted to share with you all if you’re looking to switch some of your health and beauty products to more natural alternatives as well.

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Rose Water Spray

I absolutely love using rose water spray multiple times a day, it’s so refreshing and rejuvenating. It is simple to make, so instead of buying it I make it. All you need to make your own rose water spray is rose oil, distilled water, and a glass spray bottle. Combine 20-30 drops of rose oil with distilled water in the spray bottle and then put the lid on and shake to emulsify. You can use this spray on your face and body as much as you’d like! I love using it in the morning after I rinse my face with water, as well as after a workout or when I feel like I need to refresh my face during the day. It not only smells incredible, but it helps to calm and brighten my face.
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My Favorite: Trader Joe’s Products

Trader Joe’s is probably one of my favorite places to shop, not one of my favorite grocery stores to shop at, but my favorite store in general. Being the foodie I am, I’d much rather food shop than shop for clothes. I don’t live near a Trader Joe’s, so when I am able to go I like to stock up on my favorites. Trader Joe’s is awesome because you can get great quality foods for low prices. The service is great, and they’ll always help you in any way they can. If you’ve never been to a Trader Joe’s you definitely should find one, and go! When you are able to go, make sure to try out some of my favorite products, I’m sure you won’t regret it!

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1. CURRY SIMMER SAUCE

This sauce is incredible, it’s kind of like my ketchup, I put it on just about everything! I love putting it over some freshly steamed potatoes, or in a tortilla with some sprouts and avocado. It’s so versatile and can really add some flavor to any type of dish.

2. CORN AND CHILE SALSA

This salsa will probably change your life, for the better of course. It’s both sweet and savory and a perfect salsa to top off any meal. I love using it in a burrito bowl, or on top of a salad.

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My Favorite: Documentaries

I have always loved a good documentary, and over the past several years I’ve found myself watching  variety of different types. From food to serial killers, becoming a part of a journey or situation that is different than my own is so fascinating to learn about. I really wanted to share my favorite documentaries that I’ve discovered over the past several years, and highly recommend for you to watch! Most of these can be found on Netflix, or streamed online so go check them out!

Forks Over Knives
   Forks Over Knives is by far my favorite food-related documentary, it basically changed my life. This documentary is based off The China Study, which is one of the most comprehensive nutrition-related studies that has ever been doneIt was initiated by Dr. Colin Campbell which is one of my favorite doctors/researchers. All of his work is so powerful and in-depth, and I highly respect everything he does. Forks Over Knives not only shows how a plant-based diet is the most beneficial diet, but it proves how powerful eating plant-based is. This documentary is very easy to understand, and it shows both the science part, as well as the impact the study had on individuals.

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My Favorite: Teas

Tea is an amazing thing, especially when it starts getting cold outside. I love sipping tea while studying, or watching TV. It’s a completely guilt-free drink with added health benefits that you can especially enjoy throughout the fall/winter seasons. I thought that since it is beginning to get pretty chilly outside, I would share with you my favorite teas and why they are so great.

It took me a while to really appreciate, and enjoy drinking green tea. Green tea is probably one of the best teas that you can drink, because of the beneficial antioxidants and compounds that it contains. It also alkalizes our bodies, which is really important when it comes to our digestion. Our stomachs want to have a pH of 7 (neutral), but certain foods (dairy, meat, sugar, corn, coffee, salt) can cause our pH to drop and become acidic. Drinking green tea can help to regulate our body’s pH. After trying, and hating, many different types of green tea I finally found one that I loved. Bigelow’s Green Tea with Lemon is by far my favorite type of green tea.  The lemon adds a hint of flavor that neutralizes the bitterness of the green tea. It’s the perfect combination!

Chai tea is another one of my favorites, especially during the fall. I love adding a few drops of liquid Stevia to give it a hint of sweetness. My favorite type of chai tea is one that I just recently discovered at Trader Joe’s, it’s their Ruby Red Chai tea. This tea contains all organic warming spices, which are great for digestion, reducing inflammation, and boosting the immune system.


I didn’t think that I would like hibiscus tea, but I surprisingly loved it! I tried this type by BADIA, and it is delicious. It has an interesting flavor, that is sweet yet slightly bitter. I love drinking it when I want something a little sweet, or fruity because it has both flavors that work so great together.

Earl Grey tea was one of the first types of tea I began drinking. It is such a great tea to start out with if you’ve never really drank hot tea before. It has a smooth and comforting taste to it, and it’s great to have with breakfast if you’re not really a coffee drinker. Again, early grey tea has a list of great health benefits such as immune support, oral health, digestion aid, and even stress relief. 


Chamomile tea is one of my favorite kinds of tea to drink right before going to bed, it’s so soothing and comforting it usually helps me fall right to sleep. Bigelow makes a delicious Cozy Chamomile tea that is completely caffeine free and has a smooth and light taste to it, which makes it the perfect pre-bedtime drink, there is a reason it’s called Cozy Chamomile. Not only does it help you go to sleep, but it also helps relieve stress, improve your immune system, and promotes good digestion. 

My Favorite: Spices

A common complaint I hear from people when they begin eating healthier is that the food is “bland” and “flavorless.” Because of all of the artificial flavoring, preservatives, and excess salt that is put in processed foods it has caused society’s tastebuds to be underdeveloped and makes it more difficult for people to appreciate flavor from real sources. That is why I highly encourage seasoning your foods with spices, and using a wide variety of herbs and spices. Building your spice collection is key to enjoying, not only cooking, but eating.


Also, did you know that you can buy spices in bulk? Buying spices in bulk is great if you’re wanting to try out new ones for the first time. You can only buy a little at a time and if you like it you can decide to go buy more. If you hate it, then you didn’t waste your money on a whole bottle of it. Spices that are sold in bulk are usually in containers so you’re able to smell them before purchasing them, which can help you decide whether or not you would use it. Places like Whole Foods, Earth Fare, and local co-op grocery stores usually sell spices in bulk. I definitely recommend buying spices like this if you’re just starting to expand your spice collection or your palette.
Now on to MY top five favorite spices…
1. Cinnamon
There has never been a time where I wasn’t obsessed with cinnamon. Fall time or not, cinnamon should be used all year. It is the perfect spice to put into a warm bowl of oatmeal, sprinkle on top of a sweet potato, apple slices, or a hot cup of coffee. Cinnamon is not only delicious, but it also has a ton of health benefits! Believe it or not cinnamon helps to control blood sugar, as well as control appetite, and it even can lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol.
2. Ginger
Like cinnamon, ginger is a spice that is typically used during the fall, but should definitely be used throughout the entire year. Ginger and cinnamon go hand in hand, so wherever/whenever you used cinnamon use ginger as well! Just like cinnamon, ginger has plenty of health benefits: immune support, helps with nutrient absorption, reduces inflammation, and improves blood flow.
3. Cumin
Cumin is an incredible spice to use in almost any hearty dish. I love using cumin when I’m making Mexican inspired dishes because it gives a smoky and deep flavor that is so incredible. I throw cumin into chillies, stir fries, stews, soups, guacamole, and tacos. Again, cumin is a spice that has nutritional benefits as well: it’s rich in iron and fiber, aids in digestion, prevents premature aging, reduces toxins in the body, and even helps relieve stress and anxiety.  
 
4. Turmeric 
 
I don’t even like to consider turmeric a spice, but rather a form of medicine. Not only is it delicious but it is seriously an incredible health booster. The nutritional benefits that are packed into this spice is unbelievable, so I definitely try to use turmeric in as many dishes as possible.
Turmeric is commonly found in Indian cuisine, so I like to use it when I make curries, or other Indian dishes. It is good in Mexican cuisine too, combining well with chili powder and cumin as well as cayenne pepper. So now that you know how to use it, let me tell you why you need to use it: Turmeric is highly anti-inflammatory, helps reduce oxidation in the body, helps brain function, can lower risk or Alzheimer’s and heart disease, relieve stress, and even help delay aging. 
 
5. Ground Mustard Seed
 
I absolutely love using mustard powder when cooking. Any dish I use it in becomes so rich and filled with flavor, I just love it. Of course ground mustard is more flavorful than the condiment so be careful with adding too much! Ground mustard seed is great to use with the other spices I’ve mentioned (cumin and turmeric). It definitely provides a depth of flavor with a hint of spice. And naturally, ground mustard seed is full of nutritional benefits which makes it that much better! Ground mustard seed has some omega-3 fatty acids which are important to have in your diet, it also is an anti-oxidant, and is full of minerals such as iron, magnesium, and calcium.