All Posts By:

Allie Smith

  • InBrain Health, Real Food

    Brain Food: supercharge your brain power with walnuts and blueberries

    This post is part of our Brain Food Series where we’ll explore the food choices for a sharper, clearer mind.

    While we love to kick off our mornings with a superfood breakfast, you can eat them any time of day . . . just as long as you DO consume them on a regular basis, your brain will thank you. So you probably already know that you should be eating real food including way more more fruits and vegetables. But have you ever wondered what specific foods you should be eating on a daily basis so your brain will function at optimal health? If so, then you’re in the right place.

    Grab a glass of water (your brain loves to be hydrated) and settle in for some nutritional knowledge. 

    BRAIN food: Walnuts

    Have you ever noticed the striking resemblance between a walnut and the human brain? It’s uncanny.

    10 superfoods for brain health

    Maybe that's nature's way of giving us a little memory nudge to remember that walnuts are a superfood. 


    Your brain loves walnuts. Specifically, the high concentration of the Omega-3 fatty acid ALA (alpha-linolenic acid) and antioxidants nourish your brain. Omega-3s are called essential fatty acids because unlike some other fatty acids, our body cannot manufacture them and needs to acquire them through our diet.

    How much should you be eating? The daily recommended serving of walnuts is one-quarter cup, equivalent to 1 ounce, 12 to 14 halves, or about a handful. Eat the skins too since 90% of the polyphenol components are in the skin.

    While ALA and DHA are not interchangeable, the ALA in walnuts still provides a powerful punch.

    What the research says

    According to Harvard Health, a UCLA research study found that walnuts helped students achieve higher scores on cognitive tests.

    Research has shown for years that walnuts help people feel full. But they recently discovered why. And in one interesting study, the neurocognitive effects of walnuts included activating the appetite regulation part of the brain to reduce food cravings. Full disclosure: this study was funded by the California Walnut Commission but conducted independently and supported by a Harvard Clinical and Translational Science Center grant.

    In the study the “Role of walnuts in maintaining brain health with age“, they found that:

    Primary prevention in many of these neurodegenerative diseases could be achieved earlier in life by consuming a healthy diet, rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory phytochemicals, which offers one of the most effective and least expensive ways to address the crisis. English walnuts (Juglans regia L.) are rich in numerous phytochemicals, including high amounts of polyunsaturated fatty acids, and offer potential benefits to brain health. Polyphenolic compounds found in walnuts not only reduce the oxidant and inflammatory load on brain cells but also improve interneuronal signaling…”

    In summary, walnuts are loaded with amazing compounds that feed our brains and can be a powerful way to prevent aging problems before they happen.

    Quick tip: in order to reduce exposure to lectins (which we’ll talk about in depth in a future post), we soak the walnuts for at least 7-8 hours at room temperature, rinse and drain, and then either toast at a relatively low oven temperature or store in the fridge dusted with some sea salt. Here's why we soak our tree nuts

    If you have a tree nut allergy, obviously skip walnuts and explore other sources of plant-based Omega-3s, such as chia seed which we'll dive into in another post.


    Brain Food: Blueberries

    The humble blueberry belongs in your arsenal of superfood. Like walnuts, blueberries fall into the category of superfoods that are delicious while still addressing major health concerns.

    10 superfoods for brain health

    When you buy your blueberries, make sure that they're organic (or at least grown without pesticides if they're not organic certified at your local farmers' market) because blueberries have been found with more than 50 different pesticides! 😱 They're not on this year's EWG's Dirty Dozen list, but it's a smart idea to get these without pesticides.

    And a very cool thing? Frozen blueberries offer the same benefits as fresh. You can also incorporate dried blueberries into your granolas and trail mixes, but do try to find a a brand of berries with no sugar added (or make your own in a dehydrator!). If you can get your hands on Alaska wild blueberries, you're in for a powerful antioxidant powerhouse, with an antioxidant profile 3-5 times higher than cultivated berries from the lower 48 states. Now THAT'S a superfood!

    What the research says

    Blueberries are an antioxidant powerhouse; they have the highest antioxidant value of any commonly eaten food and they can reduce oxidative stress by 20%. Associated with reducing obesity and metabolic syndrome, they protect both your DNA and your cholesterol from deteriorating. Compounds in blueberries improve neuron signaling and they collect in the areas of the brain associated with intelligence and memory care.

    Smart ideas for a superfood breakfast

    So now we know that we should be (or at least could be, we're all about choices and not forcing anything) eating blueberries and walnuts as part of our regular diets. Want a few ideas for incorporating them into your menu planning? 

    10 superfoods for brain health

    What works for us might not work for you, so we try to provide as many mix-and-match options as possible. Get creative and mix and match your power breakfast.

    • Blueberry coconut smoothie (with leafy greens) or smoothie bowl
    • Blueberry chia pudding
    • Blueberry Kombucha (or made into blueberry kombucha popsicles!)
    • Overnight oats with blueberries and walnuts
    • Gluten Free Cashew Butter Pancakes with blueberries and walnuts
    • Super smoothie – for children before school, try a blueberry smoothie with a small handful of walnuts blended in. If you have a high powered blender, the walnuts simply add to the creaminess.
    • Bowl of frozen blueberries – another before school staple in our household, our kids love partially defrosted blueberries.
    • Blueberries topped with full fat yogurt, lightly sweetened whipped cream, or coconut cream
    • Paleo walnut “granola” with chia seed, blueberries, and shredded coconut
    Brain health starts with a better breakfast of superfoods.Click To Tweet

    10 Foods for Better Brain Health

    We'll dive into each of these foods in our Brain Food series, but if you're not already eating these foods, you might want to start adding them into your daily menus. Because when it comes down to it, brain foods are a smart idea.

    1. Avocado
    2. Blueberries
    3. Broccoli
    4. Coconut Oil
    5. Dark Chocolate (70% or higher)
    6. Eggs (from free range-chickens)
    7. Green Leafy Vegetables
    8. Salmon (also Sardines, Fish Oil, or vegan Omega-3s derived from algae)
    9. Turmeric (grab our recipe for a delicious turmeric golden latte)
    10. Walnuts

    Brainfood - how to eat for your brain healthWant more on brain foods and brain health? Check out these online resources:

  • InNon-toxic Home

    Non-Toxic Yoga Mats and DIY Yoga Mat Cleaner


    So you’ve finally made it to a yoga class and you're sweating out toxins and you're doing your deep belly breathing. You're detoxing, right? But somewhere between Warrior 1 and Down Dog, are you absorbing even more chemicals back in through your toxic yoga mat?

    Chances are, that your yoga mat actually is made of toxic materials that are leaching harmful chemicals. The most common material for yoga mats is PVC (polyvinyl chloride) which if you're not already familiar with it, is a form of plastic that has been made pliable and soft through phthalates and other chemical plasticizers.

    From pilates to physical therapy, plenty of people have a mat around the house that’s not used for yoga, but the toxic considerations remain the same. We’re huge fans of yoga (and exercise and movement in general) but it’s no secret how much we detest PVC. Vinyl (#3 recycling code) is commonly used as a nickname for PVC and it's everywhere in modern life, even in our exercise mats.

    Why go to all the trouble to avoid toxic PVC (vinyl) plastic?

    Lead. Phthalates. VOC's. Dioxin. Just for starters. It's nothing to mess around with, especially considering that these chemicals are well-established carcinogens and endocrine disruptors that wreak havoc on our bodies.

    Keep an eye out for soft, flexible vinyl – the most problematic because of the stabilizers (like lead and other heavy metals) and plasticizers (like phthalates) required to make it more pliable.

    • Due to its chlorinated makeup, the entire life cycle of vinyl is responsible for the formation of more dioxin than any other single product. Dioxin is a well-known carcinogen and can affect the reproductive, immune, endocrine and neurological systems.
    • Chlorine production for PVC results in the release of over 200,000 pounds of mercury to air, water and land each year.
    • To make vinyl products flexible, controversial plasticizers known as phthalates are used, accounting for nearly 90 percent of total phthalate consumption. This translates into more than five million tons used for vinyl every year.
    • Lead is often added to vinyl construction products as a stabilizer to extend its life. It is estimated that 45,000 tons of lead each year are released into the environment during its disposal by incineration.

    You'll need to assume that the term “vinyl” means PVC unless you've been able to verify the details with manufacturer.

    Is your yoga mat actually toxic?

    But what about phthalate-free vinyl (PVC #3)? That's safe, right?

    While it's a step in the right direction, we're still left to worry about with many other harmful chemicals common to PVC. Even phthalate-free PVC still isn’t a safe plastic because of the other harmful chemicals often used during production. The Center for Health Environment and Justice names the following possible concerns with PVC:

    • May contain dioxin (a known carcinogen)
    • May contain volatile organic compounds (VOC’s)
    • May contain organotins
    • May contain lead, cadmium and other metals
    • Heat and humidity can increase the release of these chemicals
    Heat and humidity are common (and even expected) in yoga classes, so if you're using a PVC mat, conditions are right for it to release toxic compounds.Click To Tweet

    Have you ever purchased a new yoga mat and then unrolled for the first time and been unpleasantly surprise by a chemically “new yoga mat” smell? Does that mean it’s off-gassing toxins? If it’s made from PVC, probably. If it’s made from natural rubber, no. Natural rubber products (which we'll discuss later on this article) have a strong smell for the first several weeks until they air out, but they aren't off-gassing toxins.

    What about TPE?

    Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) is being sold as an eco-friendly alternative to PVC and most new-to-market yoga mats are made with it and being marketed as “safe” or “safer”. It's a more stable compound that is manufactured with closed cell technology (so sweat, germs, and microbes don't penetrate the surface) but it's too new to say how it interacts with our bodies. And while TPE is free of Bisphenol-A (BPA), PVC, Lead, Phthalates, and Dioxins, there are still concerns about its long term safety. It's definitely cheaper and more durable than all natural materials, but we're sticking with recommendations for sustainable, all natural yoga mats.

    But as we always say: this is a journey. The idea is to start by making one lifestyle change at a time.

    Non-Toxic Yoga Mats (that are also eco-friendly and sustainable), plus our DIY recipe for safe yoga mat cleaner #greencleaning #yogamat #yoga #nontoxicyoga

    Non-Toxic Yoga Mat Materials

    So where does that leave us when we want a truly non-toxic (and eco-friendly) yoga mat or exercise mat?

    We used to focus on frugal choices because like dad used to say, money doesn’t grow on trees. . . but fortunately, sustainable cork and natural rubber do grow on trees! So now we focus on quality over cost, as much as possible.

    Non-toxic yoga mats tend to be made from all natural materials which are also biodegradable. Being biodegradable, they will start to break down over time which is both a pro and a con since sometimes they start breaking down while we're still using them. All natural mats are also more expensive and heavier than the cheap $15 PVC mats. That’s okay by us though, we’re willing to sacrifice convenience for our health!

    Options for non-toxic and sustainable yoga mats include:

    • Cork (cork is made from cork trees in Portugal – which are not cut down in the harvesting process – and is naturally antimicrobial and maintains its grip even under sweaty conditions)
    • Jute
    • All natural rubber
    • Hemp and organic cotton (for yoga rugs/towels, but not for a true cushioned and grippy mat)

    Natural rubber products may also have a strong ‘natural rubber’ smell until they full air out over a few weeks. If you are allergic to latex, use caution with natural rubber although many manufacturers do state that their natural rubber is still safe for latex allergies.

    Non-Toxic Yoga Mat Recommendations

    This list isn't comprehensive of every non-toxic choice available on the market, but these have been the highest rated that meet our criteria. And…they're stylin' too. 😍 Read the reviews before you buy to see feedback on how it worked for different uses such as thickness for knee cushioning, stability, and portability (some all natural rubber mats can be very heavy).

    DIY Yoga Mat Cleaner Recipe

    Okay, so now that you’ve invested in a safe yoga mat (or at least you're planning on it), you’ll want an all natural cleaning spray to keep it clean!

    Fortunately, Tea Tree Oil (Melaleuca alternifolia) is inexpensive and readily available. It's naturally antiseptic, anti-microbial, and effective but still gentle enough to be used on the skin. And clinical Research is now supporting what we've seen for years.

    “A wealth of in vitro data now supports the long-held beliefs that TTO has antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties.”

    Essential Oil Yoga Mat Cleaner

    This is the fun part where you get to play essential oil alchemist. The following cleaning base recipe can be tweaked and customized with whatever essential scents are most appealing to you. (Check out our post on the differences between absolute and essential oils)

    DIY Yoga Mat Cleaner #yogamat #diy

    Essential Oil Yoga Mat Spray

    • 1 2 oz or 4 oz spray bottles (we like sturdy glass bottles like these ones)
    • Approximately 3/4 cup of water
    • 1/4 cup Witch Hazel (white vinegar can also be used)
    • 5 drops tea tree oil
    • 2 drops eucalyptus oil (optional)
    • 2-3 drops of lavender, lemongrass, or lemon essential oil (optional)

    Mix together in a bowl or a measuring cup (a pyrex measuring cup works well) and pour into your glass or stainless steel spray bottle. Spray over mat and wipe down with a clean cloth and let air dry. 

    NOTE: Lavender essential oil is toxic to cats (although fresh lavender is not), and full strength (100% undiluted) tea tree oil is toxic to both cats and dogs, so be safe and use this disinfectant spray out of their reach.

    Non-Toxic Yoga Mats (that are also eco-friendly and sustainable), plus our DIY recipe for safe yoga mat cleaner #greencleaning #yogamat #yoga #nontoxicyoga

    Before we sign off, here's one more handy tip for keeping those floor germs off your hands and face when you're practicing yoga or pilates.

    When you've finished your practice, instead of starting at the end of your mat and rolling it up, instead, fold the practicing surface of your yoga mat in half and THEN roll it up. That way the surface that touches your face and hands never comes in contact with the surface that touches the ground.

    Do you have another favorite non-toxic mat that we didn't list? Let us know your favorites in the comments below!

  • InCurrent Research, Green Cleaning, Non-toxic Home

    Is Your Pillow a Petri Dish?

    Plus, 9 Ways to Reduce Toxins in Your Bedroom (including dust mites and airborne pollution)

    It’s time to get tough on toxins in your bedroom – most specifically, that petri dish we call a pillow.

    Did you know that we literally spend ⅓ of our lives asleep? Everything touching your skin during those precious hours of sleep interacts with our bodies over the course of a night (and a lifetime) on some level.

    If you live 75 years, you’ll spend 25 years trying to get some shut eye!

    And nobody, and we mean nobody, wants to sleep in a petri dish of bacteria, fungal spores, dead skin cells, and mites. Have you heard about or read a few of the news articles circulating that your pillow and mattress become heavier over time due to the accumulation of dead skin cells, sweat, dust mites, and dead dust mites? We did a little digging and it turns out . . . this is true.


    A person sheds millions of skin cells every day and you’re spending approximately 8 of those hours in bed. And unfortunately, dust mites thrive on skin cells and the humid environment of your pillow.  

    Signs of allergies triggered by your pillow are runny or stuffy nose, coughing, even wheezing and asthma attacks.

    Monsters hiding IN the bed

    Okay, but don’t freak out because this is (mostly) fixable. Focus on keeping your current pillows very clean and replace as often as you need to. If you have dust mite allergies (10% of the population does) or any kind of autoimmune suppression, consider replacing them more often (as often as every 6 months or so ) but replace them at LEAST every three years.

    An impermeable barrier between your pillowcase and pillow helps a lot to reduce mites. So check out the variety of zippered pillow covers in addition to your pillow case, so that you’re not getting cozy with the critters.

    Your bedroom might be making you sick.

    is your pillow a petri dish?Your sleep environment can have a dramatic impact on your health. Another thing to consider is that you might be allergic to your pillow itself. If you’re using a down (feather) pillow and have allergies, you might want to skip the feathered pillows for something washable. If your current pillow is not made of down or memory foam, get that baby in the washing machine with hot water.

    A mattress retailer did a poll and discovered that 80% of respondents indicated that they struggle with allergies. “Experts recommend that you purchase dust mite-proof sheets and pillow covers, and make sure to wash your pillow every three to six months in hot water with liquid detergent.”

    As a final note about your pillow, if you’ve never replaced your pillow, you are well overdue for a new one.

    If you’re going to upgrade your sheets, pillow cases, and pajamas, can we just say GO ORGANIC. Cotton crops uses 16% of ALL of the pesticides used! More than any other crop in the world. Consider upgrading to breathable pajamas and organic cotton sheets. Cotton is just dripping with pesticides with disastrous effects on the earth and the farmers. And while tests show that these pesticides do not make it to the fabric stage of cotton production, cotton batting however may still contain toxic residue. states that it’s imperative to buy organic cotton batting, as used in a mattress or pillow. Especially since this filler can be used in crib mattresses!

    One last tip to breathe easier at night

    As we discussed earlier in our post 10 NASA-Approved Air Purifying Houseplants, we suggest using plants to clean the air that you’re breathing, especially in the bedroom. A few particular plant varieties are excellent at removing airborne toxins such as formaldehyde, ammonia, xylene, and benzene which we can guarantee that don't want to be breathing at night.


    9 Tips for Sleeping Easier:

    1. Toss your sheets and pillow cases in the washing machine
    2. Buy zippered pillow covers to reduce dust mites
    3. Throw out old pillows and replace them with new ones at LEAST every 3 years
    4. Consider adding air purifying houseplants
    5. Consider upgrading to breathable organic cotton sheets
    6. Evaluate whether it’s time to replace your mattress or get a PVC-free mattress cover
    7. Dust regularly (you’re breathing the air in this room for 7-9 hours every single night – that’s 3,000 hours per year!)
    8. Vacuum regularly, with a HEPA filter vacuum if possible
    9. Consider buying and using a HEPA air purifier

    So…when was the last time you changed out your pillows? Is it time?

    9 ways to reduce toxins in your bedroom

  • InNon-toxic Home

    10 NASA-approved Air Purifying Houseplants (plus 4 other ways to use plants to detox your life)

    You probably already know that plants are good for you and that you should eat more of them. But did you know that there are houseplants that will literally pull toxins from the air?

    Some of us have green thumbs. Some of us are houseplant serial killers… Even if you fall into the plant killer category, you should buy and care for some air purifying houseplants in your home (and office).

    90% of people spend the majority of their days indoors and you may or may not have any control of the ventilation quality.

    Astronauts just need space…and plants

    Without ventilation, air gets toxic over time.

    Back in the 1980s, NASA studied indoor air pollution and researched ways to clean the air inside space stations because apparently you can’t just open a window to air out the joint when you’re orbiting space.

    Did you know that the research from NASA recommends having at least one air purifying plant per 100 square feet of home or office space?Click To TweetDid you know that the research from NASA recommends having at least one air purifying plant per 100 square feet of home or office space?

    Let’s do a little math. Let’s say you’re living in a 900 square foot apartment in NYC. According to NASA’s study, that’s nine houseplants to clean the air.

    And by the way, if you’re using chemical-based air fresheners in your home? Stop. The number one thing you can do to improve the health of your home is to rid your home of synthetic fragrances.  Fragrance is a term that legally encompasses over 3,000 ingredients. So when you read your labels and you see fragrance listed there, be aware that there could be just one fragrance ingredient or there could be all 3,000 of them in your product.

    What About Your Furry Friends?

    NASA’s recommended plants for reducing air pollution are great for indoor air quality but many of these plants’ leaves are toxic to pets. So before you run out and buy all the plants, take a look at your lifestyle. Pets? Toddlers? Anyone else prone to eating leaves out of curiosity?

    Houseplants that are toxic to pets

    According to the NASA air purifying plant chart, there is not a single plant that removes all the 5 major air toxins that is NOT also toxic to dogs if eaten. We have cats and dogs – one of which might nibble leaves while the other wouldn’t ever give it a taste. So understand your pets’ temperaments and decide what works for your household.

    The level of toxicity has a huge range from mild stomach upset to much worse, so we recommend double checking the lists here:

    (Seasonal note: Poinsettias are mildly toxic to cats but deadly to kittens, who like human babies, metabolize toxins differently than adults.) And while you’re at it, check this out → 5 Common Houseplants Toxic to Children and Pets

    Our love of plant-based eating doesn’t include houseplants… 😉

    Top 3 Plants for Growing Your Own Fresh Air

    In his TED Talk “How to grow fresh air”, environmental specialist Kamal Meattle boils it down to 3 plants that are highly effective at cleaning air, even highly polluted air.

    1. Areca Palm – wipe the leaves so the plant can do its job and it’s non-toxic to pets and humans even if eaten
    2. Mother in Law’s Tongue/Snake Plant – if eaten, its leaves are mildly toxic to pets. This plant is great for bedrooms because it converts CO2 to oxygen only at night so it literally cleans the air as you sleep.
    3. Money Plant/Golden Pothos – also known as Devil's ivy because it’s so darn hard to kill, Pothos plant leaves are toxic to pets and mildly toxic to humans if eaten

    The NASA Clean Air Study found that the humble Snake Plant has air purification qualities, removing 4 of the 5 main toxins with a unique process. The gas exchange pores on their leaves only open at night so as a result, oxygen is released at night, unlike most plants that only exchange gases during the day.

    10 NASA-approved Air Purifying Houseplants and 4 other ways to use plants to detox your life #airpurifyingplants #plantbenefits #nontoxic

    Quick Tip: Save this graphic to your phone to take to your local nursery.

    A few particular plant varieties are excellent at removing airborne toxins such as formaldehyde, ammonia, xylene, and benzene….which unfortunately might be in your house. You just water the plant, wipe the leaves regularly, and keep it alive and in return, it removes toxic chemicals from your breathing air. Sounds like a fair trade to us!

     10 more air healthifying houseplants:

    1. Aloe Vera: Aloe vera, toxic if eaten (but the internal gel is great for sunburns and cuts)
    2. Areca Palm/Golden Cane Palm/Butterfly Palm: Dypsis lutescens, non-toxic if eaten
    3. Bamboo Palm: Chamaedorea seifrizii, non-toxic to pets if eaten
    4. Boston Fern: Nephrolepis exaltata ‘Bostoniensis', non-toxic if eaten
    5. Devil’s Ivy/Money Plant/Golden Pothos: Epipremnum aureum For you houseplant killers, note that this variety is hard to kill! toxic if eaten.
    6. Dracaena: multiple varieties, toxic if eaten
    7. English Ivy: Hedera helix English Ivy is beautiful and cleans the air, but its leaves are mildly toxic to pets. Since ivy tends to grow long and trail, keep it trimmed and out of reach.
    8. Ficus/Weeping Fig/Rubber Plant: Ficus benjamina toxic if eaten.
    9. Mother in Law’s Tongue/Snake Plant: Sansevieria trifasciata, mildly toxic if eaten.
    10. Philodendron: multiple varieties, toxic to children and pets if eaten
    10 NASA-approved Air Purifying Houseplants and 4 other ways to use plants to detox your life #airpurifyingplants #plantbenefits #nontoxic

    Quick Tip: Save this graphic to your phone to take to your local nursery.

    But wait, there’s more… 4 other ways you can use plants to increase your health

    1. Plants can make you happier

    Besides filtering the air, looking at and caring for houseplants can elevate your mood and digging in the dirt can literally increase your serotonin levels. The microbe M. vaccae that lives in soil enters your body through inhalation of the dirt and boosts your serotonin. Houseplants and fresh cut flowers are also a great way to naturally combat seasonal depression.

    The act of caring for plants and the routine of watering and removing dead leaves can be a practice in mindfulness itself.

    2. Plants can help you think more creatively

    Apparently, just having green leafy plants in sight while doing your intense desk job can make you work smarter and more creatively. Not only do they help clear the air, they help you clear your stress too.

    A recent article by Psychology Today about the cognitive and emotional upside of houseplants said,  “The presence of green leafy plants has also been linked to enhanced creative thinking.” Interesting to note that very lifelike artificial plants had the same benefit on quality of improving work.

    10 NASA-approved Air Purifying Houseplants and 4 other ways to use plants to detox your life #airpurifyingplants #plantbenefits #nontoxic

    3. Plant-based eating can help you lose weight and feel great

    Even omnivores need more vegetables. As Michael Pollan says, eating can be distilled into simply this “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.”

    Plant-based eating can help you stay healthy from the inside out. Eating fresh organic produce is an easy and delicious way to shed pounds, discover new fruits and vegetables that you didn’t even know existed (Dragonfruit or watermelon radishes anyone?), and pack your diet with antioxidants, fiber, and cancer-fighting phytochemicals.

    We're about to read Ketotarian: The (Mostly) Plant-Based Plan to Burn Fat, Boost Your Energy, Crush Your Cravings, and Calm Inflammation to see what they have to say on the subject of weight loss, ketogenic diets, and plants.

    4. Plants can help you treat illness and improve your skin

    When sickness strikes, you can reach for your arsenal of home remedies such as our elderberry syrup for colds and flu or our homemade botanical cough syrup. Herbs, medicinal roots, and plants have been the basis of medicines for thousands of years.

    In recent years, the pharmaceutical and cosmeceutical industry have been researching and incorporating botanical agents into medications and topical skin care. We’ll be seeing even more botanical extracts in skin care such as green tea phytochemicals, caffeine, chamomile, and soy to just name a handful.

    We're currently reading Healing Mushrooms: A Practical and Culinary Guide to Using Mushrooms for Whole Body Health and can't wait to dive into exotic mushroom elixirs and coffee blends! Sounds weird, right? Right. We'll report back on how our mushroom experiments are going… 😉

    If you’re ready to graduate from a simple houseplant care, you can take your gardening relationship to the next level with a kitchen window herb garden! We love the medicinal and culinary uses of Stevia, Lemon Balm, Basil, and even Dandelions.

    We may not be able to help you keep your houseplants alive, but hopefully we convinced you that you need more of them in your life. So…are you ready to become the houseplant whisperer?