Hi, and welcome to another wellness edition. I feel the spring season is always a good time for fine tuning the body, preparing for the warmer months and longer, fuller days ahead. It’s all well and good to start being healthy in the new year, but how many of us eventually fall off the wagon? It’s understandable, especially with the UK weather, stresses of life, those periods of colds/flu/winter blues.. that we stop hitting into that health regime and turn to nesting, having a binge on pizza and catching up on boxsets. Spring brings lengthy, brighter days with the promise of summer lurking around the corner…so improving health and wellness now, just feels more achievable.
Above image credit : Pexels
*It’s a bit of lengthy one, so you might wanna to grab a nice cuppa and take a load off!*
I always find winter into spring, really hard with chronic pain illness, it is probably the worst time of the year for me, so I like to try and improve wellbeing with some fresh tweaks come spring. For all of us, using self-care, nutritional boosts, exercise and better body care, is helpful to get ourselves feeling back on form again. I’m sharing some fab products and tips to help boost, repair and care for body and mind, all to help with getting finely tuned and improving wellness for the months ahead.
Myo-Band Whey Protein Powder
I recently started using Myo-Band whey, on advice from hubby, being into weightlifting for a few decades now. GB Whey 100 tastes amazing, is super low in fat, and high in protein with fast absorption, to help muscles repair and strengthen quickly. Protein powder is an ideal supplement for Fibromyalgia sufferers, helping to improve and stabilise muscle function.
I usually take it everyday, not just after a workout, as I find it boosts energy and helps me perform more activities in the day. It doesn’t totally get rid of pain, but it certainly helps the muscles cope better, especially after exercise, and also lessens fatigue. I find, with the vitality boost I get from this nutrient rich protein supplement, it benefits my overall physical and mental wellness.
I currently have Myo-Band in the chocolate flavour which, is delicious, plus nicer tasting and much easier to blend than some brands of whey protein I have tried.
On pilates workout days, I add a scoop of the protein powder to 300 ml of coconut/almond milk and take straight after a reformer session, and sometimes another before I go to bed to help sleep and muscle repair. On non workout days, I usually add a scoop to a healthy smoothie, the same as above only adding a banana, and sometimes strawberries, chia seeds, spirulina powder, maple syrup..or whatever you want/need for a healthy nutritional boost.
Spirulina, aka blue algae, is also a natural source of protein, contains vitamins, minerals, omegas and antioxidants. It can help reduce inflammation, lower cholesterol and control blood sugar levels, plus protect cells against oxidative damage. It’s also known to help muscle strength and boost energy, and is a good supplement for overall wellness.
Adding Spirulina to shakes or smoothies, results in vibrant deep green colour vibes!
Aroma Works Signature Range Essential Oils
This British brand produces quality essential oils and candles for mental wellness, plus aromatherapy skincare. You can find a bit more about them in my post here. I’ve been enjoying using this set of 4×10 ml bottles of essential oils, kindly *gifted to me for review. It has some beautiful fragrance blends for using with oil burners, or to add into a bath, to aid mental wellness with some aromatherapy self-care.
The blends :
- Nurture ~ May Chang, Sandalwood & Chamomile. Uplifting and soothing, this fruity little number provides vibrancy yet restores calm.
- Serenity ~ Lemongrass, Geranium & Neroli. Calming yet reviving, great for stress relief and the need for relaxation, it rebalance and energises.
- Inspire ~ Bergamot, Black Pepper, Lime, Juniper Berry & Chamomile. Uplifting and zesty, this boosts mood, reboots yet restores calm.
- Soulful ~ Juniper Berry, Frankinsence, Bay, Bergamot & Patchouli. Exotic and vibrant, this eases fatigue, soothes and relaxes.
Aromatherapy helps improve mental wellness, either by way of stimulation or relaxation.. clarity and balance can be restored, and the soul rested. I love using different oils to suit a mood or need, and these pre-blended beauties are ideal for those self-care moments. I add a few drops of my chosen blend into a running bath, then lie back in the warm water and breathe in the fragrance. When a room/people need a mood change, it’s time for aromatherapy minus the bath, as these blends are perfect to use by adding a few drops to water in a ceramic oil burner. Just be sure not let the water burn dry, and enjoy the benefits of the notes in the air around you.
These oil blends are £11 each, but buying this lovely box set provides a good saving and is well worth having to hand.
H’ayou Body Tool
Gua sha (‘gwahsha” to rub), is an age old East Asian massage practice, a technique of applying light pressure using a tool to scrape the skin. It can cause erythema ~ redness of the skin from increased blood flow. When using with more pressure, it may also cause some bruising or, darker spots of erythema, which can be helpful in diagnosing where there are problem areas within the body. Chinese medicine is based on chi, or energy, and its flow through the body, and Gua sha can help when the chi is out of balance, by moving the flow and in turn, can be used to help ease tension and pain issues. Usually if something is out of synch in our bodies, it can have an effect on our overall wellness.
The ‘Body Restorer’ tool benefits :
- Reduces inflammation
- Boosts immunity
- Releases tension
- Promotes better sleep
- Relieves muscular pain & headaches
It is made from 100% stainless steel, has soft edges and curves for use on different areas of the body, and comes in a velvet pouch for storage. It feels solid but not cumbersome, and the actual thickness of the tool is slim.
Although I have only been using the body tool from the Hayo’u Method for around a month, I’m finding it helpful on my Fibro muscles. It is especially good when using over the trapezius, where tension can build and travel up the neck, causing tension headaches.
A Gua sha tool should used with a body oil, as this helps provide a little slip on the skin, making it easier and more comfortable to glide the tool over the body. I use it to break down fibrous knots in muscles and any granulation in the tissues, on my hip replacement scar tissue, and sometimes to work over areas of cellulite to help fluid retention and blood flow. By sweeping the tool over the area, blood flow is increased, knots are broken down, and by working towards areas of lymph nodes, any build up of toxins can be removed from the body via the lymphatic system. Most mornings, I also use it for the ‘Hayo’u one-minute massage ritual’, to aid general flow and wellbeing for the body.. (find out more about this on the Hayo’u website).
I rate this Hayo’u tool so much, I have also just ordered the facial tool to use as part of my facial routine, so I will update you on my thoughts a little further down the line.
Rejuvenated H30 Hydration & Veggicol
I recently started to use some Rejuvenated products again, a British brand supplying natural ingredient supplements that produce results. Founded by the lovely Kathryn Danzey, their range of supplements help with diet, skin and overall wellness. They have a team of nutritionists, scientists and doctors, that create easy to use natural, full of goodness formulations, and focus on products for healthy lifestyles and wellbeing. With 100% ethically sourced natural ingredients, products contain no preservatives, and there’s no animal testing involved, plus some of their supplements have been award winners.
H3O Hydration contains Magnesium, Calcium and Vitamin C. H3O provides hydration, minerals and ions, in each daily serving to help promote good health and skin. I find having this in a drink most days, helps keep me hydrated, especially when I get migraines. It helps improve my skin, but I find it really good for aiding my fibro fatigue. I usually just add to water, mix well and the result gives a slightly fruity flavour. This is easy to take by simply adding to drinking water, and the nutrients can help overall wellness.
‘Hypotonic hydration with Hyaluronic acid. Key mineral Magnesium contributes to a reduction of tiredness and fatigue. Calcium helps in the process of cell division and specialisation.
Vitamin C contributes to the protection of cells from oxidative stress’.
Ingredients : Ionic minerals ~ Potassium chloride, Magnesium chloride, Calcium lactate and Sodium citrate. Trans-reservatrol, Inulin, Hyaluronic acid, plus L-ascorbic acid (Vitamin C).
Free from ~ carbohydrates, artificial colours/sweeteners, gluten, dairy, soy, preservatives, yeast, starch, fat and cholesterol. 100% natural. *Suitable for Vegans and Diabetics.
The Veggiecol capsules are a vegetarian formulation, great for those looking to use a collagen supplement, but have an allergy to fish. Packed with antioxidants and nutritive ingredients that work in synergy with each other, these help to promote good cell health in skin, connective tissues and bones. I have been pleased with the results from these in the past, and I’ve already noticed more bounce in my skin, but want to get another course to help improve my nails.
Ingredients : Vegetarian collagen (egg polypeptides extract), Acai berry, Hyaluronic acid, Vitamins B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin) and C, Zinc, Copper, Stevia, Glucosamine, Chondroitin sulphate, Keratin, Lysozyme. Plus 500 different proteins including Elastin.
Contains no artificial sweeteners, flavourings or preservatives. Gluten and lactose free. Suitable for Vegetarians ~ *with the exception of those allergic to eggs. *Not suitable for Vegans
As with most supplements, you really need to be taking them for 2-3 months before noticing a difference. However, I find Rejuvenated products seem to work quickly, around 1-2 months for me. I usually take 2 Veggiecol tablets every day with some of my H3O drink. Other supplements are also available from this brand, and are well worth checking out.
Provacan CBD (Cannabadiol), Oil & Balm
Although I had heard so much good stuff on the grapevine, it took me a long time to finally getting round to deciding to try Cannabidiol. With all the benefits to be gained, I finally bit the bullet and am now getting a little wellness boost.. minus the high.
The reason there is no psycoactive high with CBD, is that it is taken from the female part of the plant, the flower, not the leaves. I won’t deny I’ve never had the odd smoke of weed in the past, because I have, but that was a long time ago..and using cbd oil, you just don’t get the spaced out vibe, nor those hunger pangs! So, all is good.
Having read that Provacan are one of the top brands in the UK for Cannabadiol products, plus the fact they are fully MHRA, GDPR & CTA compliant within the EU, I decided to purchase one of their oils plus their topical balm. The ingredients they use are grown, manufactured and produced under strict EU agricultural and food processing guidelines.
Benefits of CBD oil can include :
- reduces anxiety and depression
- promotes relaxation
- helps restore good sleep
- reduce pain perception
- improves general feelings of wellness
The below info quoted from Provacan website :
“Provacan CBD Oil for sale is one of the industry’s leading hemp-based formulas, and is manufactured from only the finest whole-plant extracts grown and shipped from Europe. We guarantee that the highest EU agricultural directives are incorporated into our end products, and are committed to:
- Sustainable agriculture for future generations of hemp farmers
- The sourcing of only raw, organic ingredients
- The use of 100% non-GMO hemp
- The use of pesticide, herbicide, and insecticide-free hemp crops”
I went for 1200mg (12%) Cannabidiol, which provides a strong 6mg dose in each drop of oil. I was helped by my kind hubby to purchase, as it is pretty expensive, and he knows how I suffer with pain, so in furniture I am saving money aside to repurchase. I started using about 5 weeks ago, by adding a drop under my tongue before bed, and for a while, I did find it helped me sleep better and for a while longer.
I wasn’t noticing a difference in pain so I altered my dose to ‘as and when’ I needed, so sometimes in the day when pain is high, I might use 2 drops and then 1 at night. Or, I will use 1 drop in the day and/or 1-2 at night, depending on my needs. Over the last few weeks, I’ve definitely noticed that my anxiety has decreased, and my low moods (from menopause and taking HRT), have lifted over time. I certainly sleep better..and although it does not fully stop my pain, it helps relax me, which in turn has an effect on my body. I recently told my GP I was trying it, and she told me that although she cannot prescribe it, she thought it might be useful and had recommended others with similar symptoms to myself, to give it a go. At the moment, I would call it work in progress, but good work, as it’s definitely doing some good!
It does have a herby taste and obviously is oily, but I usually suck a mint after a couple of minutes of letting it sit under my tongue. It can be added to a hot drink, but I prefer it to get straight into the blood vessels, hence dropping under the tongue. I know that improvements can increase over time, so I will do an update in a few months. I think it’s all about trial and error and to find what works for you, but definitely worth trying! If you are interested in taking CBD oil, just make sure you do your research, and buy from a reputable brand that uses good ingredients/strengths of Cannabidiol, and that meets the compliancy rules.
I also got a free topical cbd balm when I purchased the oil, and thought it would be helpful to apply to areas of pain. Although this is known to be good for using on the skin, it can also boost the production of naturally-occurring, anti-inflammatory endocannabinoids.
The balm contains :
- 300mg total infused CBD content
- Coconut oil
- Shea and cocoa butter
- Grape seed oil
- Madagascar vanilla
- Essential Rosemary oil
I take a pea sized amount and emulsify between my palms, just a little, before massaging into tense muscles or specific areas of high pain. I do find it helps to ease within about 10 minutes, especially tight Trapezius muscles across my shoulders. There is a slight warmth/tingling which soon subsides, a bit like when you first apply magnesium spray to muscles. Also, I sometimes use on areas after using my gua sha tool, as it helps reduce inflammation.
So far, I’m happy with the results and will probably make some tweaks here and there as to how I use cbd over time. Watch this space..
Bathe by Suzanne Duckett
I love my beauty/wellness books and when I noticed Bathe was being released last autumn, I just had to order it. If you love a nice soak in the bath (who doesn’t?!), this glorious book will make you love them even more, as it takes things so much further. Suzanne delves deep into the why’s, wherefores, history and types of bathing all around the world, and what water and bathing can actually do for our wellbeing. She shares fabulous tips on treatments, rituals and products, all to enrich your bathing downtime experience.
Bathe is such an interesting and enjoyable read, so if you love your beauty and self-care as much as I do, it’s a recommended book buy.
…which leads me on to..
Elemis Aching Muscle Super Soak
Although I love a bubble bath, most of the time for me, I need/want aromatherapy experiences and treatment oils or gels, to add to my bath in order to soothe my aching muscles and give me the right mind space. A bath can have an effect on our wellness, as it affects our physical and mental needs and senses.
Containing key ingredients of Rosemary, Juniper, Thyme, Clove, the soothing benefits from these essential oils, are just what a tired/aching bod craves. Plus, the aroma is a sensory treat for mind and soul, which uplifts and revives.
I pour 3 capfuls into the running water, and after a few minutes lying in the bath, oh boy does it help my aches and fatigue. It’s not for the faint hearted or the subtle rose lovers of this world, this packs a punch in so many ways but is totally beneficial. It’s a healing, bath time indulgence that if like me, once you try.. you won’t want to be without it for yourself or the family!
So ‘cheers’ guys.. there you have it! By combining all this with a healthy diet and exercise, I’m hoping to reboot for spring and improve my overall wellness in preparation for a fab summer ahead (here’s hoping right)?! I hope you found this post useful, and do let me know in the comments if you have any questions, or, have found something that really helps you get finely tuned!
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*post contains one gifted item for review, not sponsored ~ Aroma Works oils set