Wednesday, March 25, 2009

How-to aromatic massage guide and recipes

Our sense of smell not only helps to protect us, it is also one of the ways we communicate. Therefore, blending smell with touch massage can create a very romantic and intimate experience.

To create a sensual atmosphere:
1. Create a private space.
2. Fill your space with your favorite colors and fabrics, including pillows and/or blankets.
3. Minimize outside noise.
4. Details: relaxing music, aromatherapy candles, and fresh flowers.

To enhance aromatic massage:
1. Diffuse the essential oil of your choice into the room (essential oils can also be added directly into massage oils and bath water; see the recipes below).
2. Focus on comfort and intent.
3. Communicate through all of your senses; don’t focus on conversation only.
4. Play. Laugh. Enjoy yourself.

Aromatic Massage Recipes

For massage, essential oils are best added into a base oil like jojoba, almond, or avocado.

1. Basic Massage Oil
Sweet almond oil: 4-oz
Rose Rosa damascena oil: 1-2-drops
Jasmine Jasmine grandiflorum: 1-2-drops

2. Rose Water Ointment
Sweet almond oil: 1-oz
Beeswax: ½-oz
Rose water: 7-oz
Rose Rosa damascena: 8-drops

Melt the beeswax and almond oil over a water bath. Remove from heat and cool until lukewarm. Beat in the rose water until the ointment emulsifies, and then add the 8-drops of rose essential oil.

Once relaxed head to toe, follow your sensuous massage with another sensory indulgence:

Chocolate, best shared by two.

1. Liquid Chocolate (makes four servings)*
3-T unsweetened cocoa powder
Stevia: 10-drops
Pinch of salt
3-cups 1% milk
½-t vanilla extract
Ice cubes

Instructions: Slowly warm the milk on low heat, stirring constantly to prevent scalding. In a medium bowl, stir together the cocoa powder, Stevia, and salt. Slowly pour in 1-cup of the milk and whisk until smooth. Whisk in remaining 2-cups of the milk and vanilla. Fill four 8-oz mugs with Liquid Chocolate and serve warm.

For a taste of the exotic (and increased libido), add cinnamon to flavor, or add a few drops of rose essential oil.

CLICK HERE to download a free aromatherapy ambiance blend recipe.

*Recipe provided by ACHS graduate Maureen Jeanson, author of Squeaky Gourmet.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

5 stress-relief tips to protect your health

For some people exercise is relaxation. It is difficult to worry and fret about the mistakes and decisions of the day when you are coordinating arms and legs in a dance movement or running that extra mile up a hill. What’s more, relaxation is doing something you enjoy, absorbing yourself in the moment, and nothing else.

Emotional and mental relaxation is as fundamental to your health program as the food you put into your mouth. Do not neglect this aspect of your health regime, regardless of how busy you are.

For easy, at-home, do-it-yourself stress relief and health support, try these techniques:

1. Diffuse your favorite essential oils in your office and home. Lavender, neroli, and anise are pleasant, yet effective stress-reducing aromas.

2. Soak in a fragrant bath, scented with lavender or rose essential oils. Play some relaxing music, light an aromatherapy candle, read a book, and relax. Remember not to have the water too hot, and add the essential oils just before you get in, as they evaporate quickly.

3. Eat a good meal full of fresh vegetables and health-supporting herbs, like rosemary, which enlivens both the senses and digestion.

4. Remember to enjoy life. Do something fun: Walk in the park, watch a comedy, or savor a great meal.

5. Every night, before you go to sleep, write down five things you are grateful for in your life that day.

CLICK HERE for a free download about the history of aromatherapy.

Rosemary is a natural antibacterial herb

Native to the Mediterranean, rosemary is a needle-like evergreen with a camphor-like scent and a fresh, somewhat bitter taste. When used topically, rosemary has antibacterial, antiseptic, nervine (sedative), and stimulant properties, among others. As a culinary ingredient, rosemary imparts flavor and aroma, and helps to facilitate digestion.

In addition, Rosemary officinalis, is one of the earliest and most renowned of the English medicinal herbs. A powerful antibacterial herb, rosemary is often used in hair preparations and as an ingredient in soaps and toiletries and is best know as a memory and circulation support.

Discover the power of practicing sustainable wellness with simple solutions like adding herbs into your everyday diet.

Join our Herb of the Month Club and have high quality, organic, healing, therapeutic grade herbs delivered to our kitchen once a month. Each month an 8-oz package of the featured herb will automatically arrive, including an informational description of the herb and recipes and formulas to help promote your natural health lifestyle. Or, call (800) 487-8839 for information.