A Sweeping Declaration and My Daily Routine

I started writing this post on Thursday, and most of what is below is from that day of writing. But since then a few things have made me realise that this week is the perfect week to do a No Social Media Challenge. Now, obviously with my blog I use Facebook and Instagram to keep you all updated, and its certainly essential to getting my blog out there in the big wide world; but I also use it a lot in my social life. In fact, over the last few months the “tag a friend who is always on Facebook/on their phone/taking selfies” has been on the increase and I’m not ashamed to admit, I’m starting to worry a little bit. Continue reading

Sugarfree September

There’s been a lot of stuff going around the media and the internet lately about quitting sugar – a lot of it saying that its bad for you or too extreme, but on the most part that it can be a really good way to get your health in control, which is certainly my perspective.

Have you heard of ‘I Quit Sugar’, the movement created by Sarah Wilson? I for one think it’s a fantastic direction as far as the health world is concerned. I’ve followed Sarah Wilson’s blog for years now – in fact I remember when she first Quit Sugar, as an experiment when she had nothing else to write about for her health column at the time.

From the outside, it can seem like Sarah Wilson’s lifestyle and expectations are unrealistic and unattainable for an everyday person, which I believe is the reason she cops so much flak Continue reading

Tea Fiend: Miranda’s Tea Guide – Ginger Tea

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you’ve probably noticed that I really really (REALLY) love tea. I love a hot cup of earl grey on a cold and slow morning, I love a bubbly and naturally sweet iced tea in the summer time, I love collecting new flavours and I even bathe in the stuff! But the thing I love most about tea is discovering the medicinal properties of the different herbs – meaning that you can drink specific teas to help your body do its thing!

From time to time, I’d like to explore with you these medicinal properties (goodness knows I need another reason to drink more tea, don’t I?) in my Tea Fiend series. Just remember, if you are going to explore these options, best to opt for organic tea (I’d be happy to give you a guide to my favourite brands within this series – just ask!), and don’t be afraid to try a pre-made blend (it will only taste better that way) or even experiment in blending stand-alone herbs that you like (you never know what you will come up with).

Ginger Tea (Zingiber officinale)

(caffeine free)

Ginger is a gorgeous herb to drink in tea form – it’s got a sweetness and heat to it that can be matched easily with a variety of other teas, but on its own, it has fantastic medicinal properties.

For starters, the natural heat within ginger makes it a perfect natural winter warmer! If you get cold hands and toes, ginger is a fantastic herbal tea to drink throughout the day as it gets the blood flowing to really warm you from your head to your toes. This action of stimulating the blood flow can also stimulate the blood flow to your organs, such as those in your digestive system, to stimulate their function. The organs need an adequate blood supply in order to function properly, so stimulating the blood flow in your body can optimise the delivery of nutrients and removal of wastes to better the performance of your organs.

Ginger also benefits the digestive system by reducing nausea, (a safe and effective treatment for nausea in pregnancy) and motion sickness, and can reduce bloating by aiding the breakdown of food due to active digestive enzymes within the ginger. Drink some ginger tea in anticipation of motion sickness if it’s something you know you’re prone to, or as symptoms arise. If you’ve over eaten or haven’t properly chewed your food, or regularly feel bloated just below your rib cage (your stomach area), sipping ginger tea may be a beneficial remedy for you. It also stimulates digestive secretions required to breakdown food and as such has been shown to reduce reflux, flatulence and colic, as well as stimulate the appetite. To stimulate your appetite, brew yourself a cup 30 minutes before meals to gently get your digestive juices flowing, not only will you have an appetite, but you will be more able to breakdown and absorb those all-important nutrients I keep bangin on about!

Ginger is a natural anti-inflammatory food, meaning that it can be used to reduce the pain associated with common ailments, like period pain, headache, muscle pain and migraine. These conditions are associated with an overproduction of pro-inflammatory chemicals called prostaglandins, which over-stimulate the natural inflammatory processes within the body, causing unnecessary damage to nearby tissues, and pain. Sipping on a brew with ginger in it throughout the day, may be of benefit.

[While ginger tea is a helpful tool for such conditions, an anti-inflammatory diet will have a more potent effect (‘Ask Mira’ at mirandaswellness@outlook.com or www.facebook.com/MirandasWellness if you’d like more info)]

The anti-inflammatory effect of ginger is also helpful during cold and flu, while the immune-boosting effects of ginger can help your body to fight off infections.

How to Brew

Infuse 4-6 fresh slices of ginger, or 3-9g dried ginger root in boiling water for 30 minutes and sip throughout the day. Best not to consume more than these amounts in one day.

Combinations

For nausea:

Brew a pot of 4-6 slices ginger with 1/4-1/2 cup fresh peppermint (or 3-9g dried ginger/6-12g dried peppermint), as both herbs are great for nausea. ***If prone to reflux however, leave out the peppermint as it will exacerbate symptoms***

For bloating/flatulence:

When feeling bloated after a meal or experiencing flatulence, a brew of 4-6 slices ginger and 1-2tsp chamomile can help the digestion of your food and to relieve the discomfort of bloating and flatulence

For inflammation:

Brew a ginger and turmeric chai tea, such as this gorgeous one from Reece Carter Naturopathy for relief within 30 minutes

For cold & flu:

Ginger slices, lemon slices, a sprig or two of thyme and a teaspoon of the strongest manuka honey you can buy (the bigger the number, the stronger it is) is a strong brew to boost your immune system and help to kill off microbes that are making you sick in the first place. The stronger the better for this tea, and best if sipped throughout the day. It may not be the most pleasant tea you’ve brewed, but it will definitely pack the punch you are after.

Thanks to Lyndal Martin from Life Loves Me Naturopathy, who was my resident herb-nerd for this piece.

Writer’s Block

I’m sitting here on my bed in my very messy room, coughing my guts up and struggling to come up with a topic for you guys. It’s 4.45pm on a Monday and I’ve walked the 50 minutes to The Valley, with a quick lunch break on the way, printed off resumes, spend 2 hours writing on a topic that I figured out will need more than a few hours to adequately cover (stay tuned), then walked the 50 minutes back home and I still don’t know what to write.

On my walk home I did come to the realisation that its been a while since I wrote something personal on here. In my goal to inspire you I forgot that this isn’t just about the way that I can help you, but (selfishly) the way that you can help me, which in its own way helps you.

Mira and Anna

The last year of my life has been a complete whirlwind, and while I’m enjoying the journey and learning and loving so much about myself along the way, I have to admit, it can get really hard. Now I’m not about to sit here and tell you hard my life is (because honestly, it really isn’t that bad), but it’s really important to me that I am my authentic self on here, because if I can’t do that, how can I possibly expect you to be interested in what I have to say? After all, this blog is called Miranda’s Wellness and my goal is to share my wellness journey with you as well as helping you with your own journey.

So lately, I have been rather disoriented. I finished a 4 1/2 year long chapter of my life, I’m unemployed, dirt poor, and still coming to terms with what it is to be single, as this is the first time I have really been single in my lifetime. I’m very lucky, because I have great friends, some who have also just finished the degree and truly are the only ones who get how I’m feeling, some who keep me company long-distance via text and social media, some who I live with and make me giggle every day, and some who are so generous with their time, their support, their love, their company and their listening. But despite all this, here I am, in the messy room I’ve been attempting to clean for a few weeks now, and still feeling stuck. The space of my room really is a representation of the space in my head – unorganized, cluttered and stagnant.

That’s not to say I’m not making progress, guys – on both my head and my room – slowly.

Strong feet

 

But when I say that you help me, I mean it! For starters, you ask for my help, my opinion and my knowledge, which helps because I’m forced to look at something new/unfamiliar or look at something from a new perspective. I don’t try to pretend that I know everything, I am and will always be learning, but when you engage with me it pushes my learning that bit further, which I love. Secondly, you make me accountable, because I know that if I want to help other people I must first help myself. Part of that is to make healthy choices, or have a healthy attitude about the choices that I do make, and it motivates me to make those choices if I can show them off on Instagram and Facebook (come on, we all do it!). And thirdly, I get to see the things you do or eat or make when you post them on my wall, use my Instagram tag (#mirandaswellness) or tag me, which not only gives me fab ideas, but it makes me proud to see that a. you associate the healthy things you do with me (very freakin cool) and b. you want to share these positive parts of your life with little ol’ me (even more freakin cool!) and it spurs me ever further.

The thing is that what I want to show you that, hey! I’m human too! And I think that so far I’ve been fairly successful with this. My Instagram account @mirandaswellness is my personal and only Instagram account, so I post everything on there, the green smoothies, the chocolate cake, the yoga, the tea, the festivals, the beer! Being congruent in my lifestyle is very important to me, but I refuse to pretend that I am perfect – it just doesn’t sit well with me because I know that I’m not. We all have an ideal person we can see ourselves being, and some people are better at being that person than others. All I know is that, for me, I’ve realised and accepted that every day there is a part of me that wants to sit in front of the TV eating piles of cheese and chocolate all day, and some days that part of me is very big, most days its small, but its always there. All I can do is force myself to remember the positive things that I feel when I make better choices and if I do give in, not to beat myself up about it or let it ruin my day, and also, not to let myself get away with too much *insert fatty cheeky gluttonous Miranda face here*.

Dorky tea face

Another thing I will also say is that I don’t buy in to those fitspo “what’s your excuse?” posts out there. If they work for you, that’s brilliant, but I’m not the sort of person who gets positive motivation out of stuff like that, and I just want to say that if you are also someone who ends up beating themselves up because you see posts like that, just don’t subscribe to that bullshit. You know you, you know what works for you and what doesn’t, and you know how to improve the things about yourself that you want to. I’m all for tough love, but I’d rather read something empowering about how you are a total babe just as you are and if you want to be healthy because its good for the person that you are, not for the way that you look, then please, go forth and run, squat, dance, cycle, lift, do whatever. And if you can’t find anything that says as much, then here:

YOU, my friend, are a TOTAL FREAKING BABE!

So there you go, I was lost, but I found my rant in the end. I hope it makes sense to you, or at the very least made you love yourself a little more.

Ballin Mira

Move with Miranda: Active April Competition

Have you joined my Active April team ‘Move with Miranda’ yet? It’s a nice incentive to get yourself moving each and every day for 30 minutes a day, and it’s easy to accomplish to boot! If that’s not enough to get your cute butt a movin’, here is something to sweeten the deal.

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Be a part of my Active April team to be in the running to win some fabulous freebies from some of the best health and wellness people I know, including a hand-picked bundle from yours truly.

You could win:

Anyone:

My prize pack: Endeavour College of Natural Health Wellnation Clinic Voucher, Ecotan Organic Deodorant, ‘Elixir’ by Janella Purcell, 2 x Pana Chocolate bars (Sour Cherry & Vanilla and Fig & Wild Orange) and a few more health and wellness goodies that I haven’t decided on just yet

1 x Arbonne botanically based, vegan shower set from Be Extraordinary

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Brisbane folk:

1 x 3-day gym pass at Goodlife Chermside including 1 x 30 minute personal training session from Renee McKeague Fitness and Nutrition valued at $100

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2 x free 30 minute personal training sessions (your choice of one-on-one training, training with a friend or group training AND free health food goodies, including coconut oil, Himalayan pink salt, psyllium husks and whey protein isolate powder) all valued at $100 from Brisbane North Barbell

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1 x free initial naturopathic consultation including 20% discount off any products prescribed and 10% off your follow up consultation from Euneek You Health

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1 of 5 x 30 minute massage plus spa facial from Massage Miracles valued at $65 each

Melbourne folk:

A nutritional plan and training program designed specifically for your goals, including 24 hour/7 day email and text message support and 1 personal training session from Aussie Muscle & Physique

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A naturopathic consultation valued at $88 at Healing from Within Naturopathy

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How can I win?

To be in the running, you will need to

Like my Facebook page www.facebook.com/MirandasWellness

Register to Active April at https://www.activeapril.vic.gov.au/ and join my team Move with Miranda (team ID ‘move-with-miranda’) and track your 30 minutes a day of exercise before the end of April 2014

You must live in Australia. If you would like to win one of the Melbourne or Brisbane prizes, please comment on my facebook page the city you wish to enter for, otherwise, you will just be in the running for the ‘Everyone’ prizes.

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For bonus entries you can:

One bonus entry for each Facebook like of the business who have kindly donated these fantastic prizes (Brisbane North Barbell, Euneek You Health, Massage Miracles, Be ExtraordinaryAussie Muscle & PhysiqueHealing From Within Naturopathy and let me know which ones you have followed on my facebook page (so I can check up on you)

Share any Active April post from my facebook page

One bonus entry for each friend you tag on any Active April post on my facebook page

One bonus entry for each photo you post of you being active on Instagram and tag @mirandaswellness #movewithmiranda

The competition closes at midnight, Eastern Standard Time on Wednesday 30th April 2014 and WILL BE DRAWN AND ANNOUNCED THE FOLLOWING DAY

Good luck!

bridge mira

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes!

There’s been a few big changes here at Miranda’s Wellness. For starters, my blog is no longer called ‘Miranda’s Nutrition & Wellness’ – did you notice? Secondly, my Miranda’s Wellness blog has a new address, http://www.mirandaswellness.com

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My Instagram account, formerly @minapeartree, can now be found @mirandaswellness, where I am hosting a share shout out competition under the hashtag #mirandaswellness. If you’d like to be a part of it, share my original photo, shown below, and tag @mirandaswellness & #mirandaswellness. It’s all about sharing the love!

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My Facebook page, formerly http://www.facebook.com/MirandasRecipes can now be found at http://www.facebook.com/MirandasWellness. At the moment I’m unable to change the title of this page, but we’ll get there eventually.

And finally, I have a new email: mirandaswellness@outlook.com, where you can email me health questions or let me know if you would like information on how you can see me in clinic.

I’m very excited to be able to make so many changes that may seem small, but make such a big difference. If you are not already following me on Instagram, Facebook, or even WordPress for that matter, don’t forget to check each one out and click ‘follow’ to keep updated, as each account will have a little bit different content to each other (especially Instagram).

What do you think of these changes? Does my blog feel a little more streamlined to you? Let me know in the comments below.