Cancer-Fighting Salad Ingredients

If you’re looking to give your spring salads an extra-healthy boost, we have the ingredient list for you! Sometimes it can be tough to quickly cook up a stellar and well-balanced meal, especially during lunch time. We often find ourselves in the frozen food aisle or microwaving poorly portioned leftovers, neither of which makes for an ideal lunch. So, we put together the perfect list of salad ingredients to stock up your fridge, whether it’s at home or at work. They don’t take up too much space and have tons of nutritious value. Even if you buy salad kits from the grocery store, consider rounding them out by sprinkling in these ingredients!

Pomegranate Seeds

While you can buy whole pomegranates, you’ll save time and work getting packets of seeds alone in the produce section. Delicious with chunks of butternut squash, kale and a huge lineup of fruits, pomegranate seeds also are a prime superfood in the fight against breast cancer. Chemicals in the pom suppress the production of estrogen, which research hopes will help stunt some cancer growth. You can also buy pomegranate seed oil, which is a great addition to your bathroom cabinet for extra skin health.

Blueberries

Another fruit that City of Hope has found helpful against tough breast cancer cases, blueberries are the perfect size for throwing into a spring salad. They taste especially delicious with spinach.

Lentils

Lentils add lots of texture to your salad, but are also provide Vitamin B and a very healthy form of fiber. Use these and beans to replace lunchtime bread! It’s helpful to cook lentils yourself and be sure to avoid adding too much salt. Lentils are delicious with tons of healthy spices, though, like turmeric and rosemary. Try them with these, kale and chicken for a delicious warm salad!

Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar has been a very popular health food for skin and digestion. If you’re having trouble with either, it doesn’t hurt to add a little tang to your salad with a homemade dressing. Try this recipe with honey and dijon mustard. Lots of salad dressings are unfortunately very sugary and fatty, so this is a great homemade alternative! Plus, you can adjust it to your taste.

Avocado

One of the best ways to get a healthy fat in your diet, some studies say that avocados can fight leukemia and other cancers. Plus, the edge of avocados closest to the skin can be full of cancer-fighting carotenoids, a type of antioxidant. Learn how to reach these when you cut your avocado here, and leave a couple on your desk to ripen up!

Wonderful Meditation Podcasts

When a busy week of work, travel or treatment feels overwhelming, it’s important to take a moment of peace for yourself. The Foundation for Living Beauty loves building grounding retreats for our women. Between those retreats, continue your moments of meditation and self-love with some of our favorite free podcasts. They all have different voices, perspectives and reflections, so you can find the best fit for your quiet moments!

If You Can’t Sleep:

Stin Hansen’s wonderful playlist (Fittingly entitled “ZZZZZZ….”) is an excellent choice for nights when it just feels tough to doze off. Stin gives gentle reminders that each project, worry or even joy has its own time and place. The calm music will also sweep you away into a good night of sleep. Download her podcast here.

If You’d Like A Beautiful Getaway or Love Nature: 

As one of our favorite meditation groups, the Meditation Society of Australia gives your moments of reflection and visualization an extra peaceful twist. Perfect for mornings or naps, their Cliff Visualization podcast brings you straight to the edge of a stunning Australian sunrise and leaves you feeling weightless. Download the podcast here.

If You Want to Take Yoga With You

If you’ve fallen in love with yoga, check out Yoga Download podcasts. Some are videos, and some are simply audio guides, but each podcast gives a variety of yoga poses for many purposes. Whether you’re a beginner or simply want to stretch, there is a wealth of free guidance! See their selections here.

If You’d Like a Quiet Moment to Focus on Breathing

Jesse and Jeane Stern have a variety of incredible podcasts, but their piece on Transformational Breathing can be done anywhere and is truly simple and grounding. Download the audio episode here.

Are there any other meditation focuses you’d like us to search out? We’re happy to help! Let us know which you enjoy, too!

the silhouette of a person standing in front of a black skyline and colorful sky above

Therapy on the Trails

Sometimes, clearing your mind also means freeing your body from its normal routine. For therapist Nicole Shannon, the power of time outdoors can be healing and deeply powerful. Below, she tells us all about her Trail Sessions, where traditional therapy intersects with exercise and relaxation on hikes.

Trail Sessions Therapy sends your therapy on a hike. It adds the vast benefits of the outdoors to those of traditional psychotherapy. It puts your healing of mind and body in motion. Wellness of body and mind are so closely connected, that engaging your body in the healing of your mind naturally accelerates results. The trail becomes a dynamic work space for your body and mind. I encourage letting go of technology to embrace the natural beauty around us while doing physical activity. Trail Sessions Therapy was developed out of the belief that one’s emotional health is closely tied to their connection to nature and time spent outdoors. The ground beneath your feet will center you. The direction will unstick you from where you are stuck.

The trail hiking therapy sessions emphasize the distance you cover emotionally. It will focus on your strength and empowerment. Every step is a manifestation of your progress, every inhale is energy, every exhale is letting go of what does not serve you.

While the trail can seem daunting and steep you will not walk it alone. You have already shown courage by reaching out and putting yourself on the trail. I will help you find your footing, overcome obstacles and gain a deeper understanding of yourself and those around you. You will hike into a stronger and better you.

You set the pace and I will match it. Slower, meditative walks allow for clearing of the mind and free-flowing contemplation. Faster, power sessions facilitate targeted break-throughs and emotional responses. Trail Sessions Therapy adapts seamlessly and instantly to your ever evolving path to growth, wellness and healing.

If you’re interested in booking a session with Nicole, email [email protected] for rates and more information.

a glass cup of tea set on stop of tea leaves with mint sprigs

Talking With: Art of Tea

We’ve been fortunate to have many great facilitators throughout the years at FFLB. One of our generous supporters has helped us “tea” up for greatness over and over again! Steve Schwartz, known throughout his industry as the “Master Tea Blender”, has always been ready to support our women and team with generosity and immense knowledge. We asked him some pressing questions about his area of expertise. Start a brew, sit back and learn a bit about the art of tea!

FFLB: How do you source your tea?

SS: Direct from origin whenever possible. I have relationships with farmers all across the world and work with them to source the top 2% of the world’s finest teas.

FFLB: Can you offer a brief two-sentence summary about tea’s origin?

SS: We believe true tea should come from Asia. All true teas come from the camellia sinensis evergreen shrub, which is the foundation for white, green, oolong, black, and pu-erh teas. If it isn’t from this shrub, it just isn’t a tea.

FFLB: Are there any types of teas that you recommend avoiding? If so, why?

SS: No, any tea that allows you to take a moment out of a busy day – whether it’s for the taste, health benefits, or simple satisfaction that brewing the perfect cup brings – is a good tea in my eyes.

FFLB: Are loose leaves better than teabags? Vice versa? Or is there no difference?

SS: High-quality, organic loose leaf and specialty teas are typically better in quality and taste.

FFLB: The most enriching tea or type of tea for general well-being is ___.

SS: I deeply enjoy gyorkuro for its grounding effect. It has a clean mouth feel and a grassy finish.

FFLB: Is there a type of tea you would recommend for cancer patients?

SS: I would recommend the process of brewing loose leaf teas in general. The mindfulness used in preparing the water, selecting the leaves, brewing the tea, and finally enjoying the cup can be highly therapeutic.

FFLB: The most popular tea from the Art of Tea collection is ___.

SS: That’s a close one. I’d say it’s a toss-up between our Earl Grey Crème and Classic Black teas.

FFLB: The healthiest and most effective tea sweetener is ___.

SS: I recommend either stevia leaf or raw local honey.

FFLB: How does tea compare to pure water consumption?

SS: 98% of what is consumed while drinking tea is water, making it a great way to hydrate while also experiencing the benefits of whatever tea is brewed. Therefore, a great water source is very important for enhancing the tea experience.

FFLB: Forget jam and bread! The best tea-time snack in your opinion is ___.

SS: Fresh baked, warm chocolate chip cookies.

Follow Art of Tea on Instagram, and take a look at their award-winning teas on artoftea.com!

Featured image. 

a woman showing another woman how to do a yoga pose with their hands in the air

A Moment With Tari Prinster of Yoga 4 Cancer

FFLB has been blessed with the skills and advice of Tari Prinster on multiple occasions, especially in yoga sessions on retreats with Living Beauties. A cancer survivor herself, Tari has been deemed a Selfless Service Leader by Yoga Journal. She graciously answered some of our questions about four basic poses to help patients center themselves and relieve some stresses and aches during treatment. Each pose is accompanied by an illustrated guide. Thank you for your amazing insights, Tari!

1. The Best Pose for activating the lymph and circulatory system to detox the body: Knock-Kneed Cactus. 

Tari emphasized the importance of restorative poses with action quality post-chemotherapy. 

knock kneed catcus

2. A good pose to manage middle back (thoracic) tension: Restorative Fish

restorative fish

3. For Activating Digestion: Cat and Cow (Im. 1) ; For Calming Digestion: Restorative Cobbler (Im. 2)

catcow

restorative cobbler

4. For Peace of Mind and Meditation: A Base Meditation Pose, And Tari’s Advice on Preparing.

meditation

“Taking time to breathe can lead quite naturally into a moment of meditation. To begin, sit in dynamic stillness. You can also meditate lying down, standing, or walking, but a comfortable, upright seat is an ideal physical container to develop a wakeful, relaxed mental state…In meditation, we begin to tame our monkey mind, first my choosing a point of focus. Your focal point can be your breathing, a visualization, a mantra or a guided journey…No matter the state in which you find your mind, be kind to yourself.”

All of this article’s poses and illustrations can be found in Tari’s book, Yoga For Cancer. Add it to your collection for a daily dose of healing, exercise and spiritual wellness! 

Featured photo via Mantra Mag.

Need a mat, blanket or yoga blocks for your practice?

Gardening: Planting Seeds of Growth During Cancer

Google “gardening and cancer“, and you’ll be amazed at the long list of overwhelmingly positive results. At FFLB, we love practices that restore peace to both mind and body. While the list of benefits named by cancer patients is endless, here are some of gardening’s most impressive accolades:

3 in 4 gardeners surveyed said that gardening helped them manage feelings of depression and sadness during treatment, while over half of gardeners in another survey found more energy as a result of gardening during treatment. A third of gardeners in that survey also noted that gardening helped them manage weight gain in response to treatment.

pinkribbon

Via weblogs.com/baltimoresun

The vast options for gardens’ contents also act as healing. If a patient doesn’t feel up to maintaining a full garden, a pot or windowsill box can still be beautiful daily treats. A garden might also act as a memorial for a loved one or friend. Whether you plant vegetables to encourage healthy eating or aromatic herbs to bring peace, gardens can provide something for every aspect of your journey with cancer.

If you don’t have a green thumb, gardening can still enhance your journey. Restorative gardens, sometimes specific for cancer patients, are designed using therapeutic techniques and activities. Patients and their loved ones can find mental peace in these gardens, often with opportunities like art therapy, meditation and yoga. Some gardens even have “plant-free” sections for patients who must avoid allergens. This article lists some of the best restorative gardens in the world. Nearby, be sure to try City of Hope in Duarte’s Argyros Family and Japanese Gardens. They look peaceful and calming! Although they aren’t specifically for cancer patients, The Huntington Gardens and Descanso Gardens make great healing spots right near FFLB.

City of Hope's Japanese Gardens

Want to plan your own garden? We suggest you plant lavender, rosemary, oregano, carrots, spinach or wildflowers. They’re all easy to maintain and beautiful, too!

800px-The_garden_delivers_carrots

via Filcker/woodleywonderworks

a cup of green tea leaves steeping in water

Tea Time

Tea cleanses and detoxes have been trending all over the internet lately. From celebrities and models to bloggers, it seems like everyone believes in the power of tea. Turns out, a “tea-tox” doesn’t have to be strict or branded to have refreshing health benefits. We recently stumbled across an article by a Marie Claire writer, who tripled her intake of daily tea and saw incredible results. By drinking 9-10 cups of tea a day, including heavy green tea consumption, the author felt softer skin and majorly improved hydration, as well as a calmed sensation throughout the day.

Fukamushi Sencha

With such enticing benefits, we decided to research the benefits and rules of tea in regards to cancer. Both green teas and black teas contain great antioxidant boosts. Tea polyphenols have also been proven in lab tests to help lessen UV damage, modulate immune systems and protect against tumor development. One study also showed slightly positive effects of tea on cancerous oral lesions. Another study demonstrated that among participants drinking 10 cups or more of green tea daily, risks of cancer incidences decreased. The study also revealed the tea’s cardiovascular benefits. While many other studies have been inconclusive as to tea’s specific cancer fighting benefits, it has been deemed a very safe means of hydration, particularly when decaffeinated.

We’re pleased to enjoy Art of Tea at FFLB. With the ultimate fresh brews and some gorgeous “blooming” teas, they light up our day and keep us hydrated. We’re sure they’ll do the same for you as well! Halo - Award Winning

What to Wear During Treatment

Chemotherapy and dialysis treatments can be exhausting, and FFLB knows the power of experiencing cancer treatment with as much comfort and peace as possible. We’ve picked up information from cancer patients and professionals on the most comfortable treatment-wear ideas. Many of the options are extremely affordable, so you can have a wide array of choices to feel comfortable and enter treatment with confidence.

Forever 21

Camisoles are among the best and most affordable layering pieces for treatment. Choose a cotton tank for breathability, and head to bargain brands for affordable pricing. Forever 21 has a rainbow of cotton options, many under a few dollars. Layer the camisole over a bra and you’ll have an easily movable top for port access.

Treatment can be chilly, and we’ve heard a few good tips for layering over a camisole. Flannels are a great option, because they’re easy to button up and down and have rollable sleeves. Cotton button downs are similarly great choices. Searching for flannels at a consignment or thrift store is a good place to start. These stores usually have very affordable button-downs passed along by men, so they provide extra cozy and almost blanket-like warmth for only a few dollars. Old Navy also has some colorful options under $30.

Old Navy

Ponchos and capes make for extremely cozy and accessible options, too. They’re stylish for wearing outside of treatment and can be layered over camisoles, flannels or both. This under-$50 option is a great example-warm, cozy and better fitted than a blanket, but easy to maneuver around. We found a very fashion forward Free People poncho on sale for less than $50, too. Want to make your own poncho? Here’s a great no-sew DIY! Decorating and bedazzling your poncho with special sayings and ideas can also be a fun craft and uplifting reminder during treatment.

Nordstrom

As far as specific products that work well for patients in treatment, we found a few well-reviewed ideas. Ron Wear, recently featured on Yahoo and supported by cancer survivor Robin Roberts, has a line of sweatsuits that contain zip-able holes in the arms, chest and legs for ease of access during treatment. The suits’ warmth and normal appearance have impressed many cancer patients and made treatments more bearable. Chemo cozy has some beautiful options too. Their port-accessible fleeces could work just as well on a nature walk as during treatment. We also found some affordable camisoles made specifically for post-mastectomy wear.

Chemo Cozy

We want to hear from our Beauties and other members of the community: What do you recommend wearing to treatments? What makes you most comfortable and lets your inner beauty shine through?

close up image of a white origami crane against a whicker basket

Weekly Wednesday Inspiration: Paper Cranes

Long regarded in Japanese culture, origami is a calming and meditative practice that produces some stunning, simple art. Often mimicking real life and nature, origami paper folds to create cranes, lotuses and other peaceful symbols.

IMG_9822

Cranes in particular have a special place in history as origami’s finest representative. Tradition holds that folding 1,000 paper cranes can bring good fortune and peace to many occasions. Couples often fold cranes before their weddings for prosperity, while the cranes can also be folded in hopes of healing from illness, giving congratulations on an anniversary or celebrating family.

IMG_8813

At FFLB, there’s always a lot to reflect on, especially around our tenth anniversary. We’ve introduced cranes as a meditative craft idea. Whether it be during a treatment or in hopes of uplifting another Beauty, folding cranes is a tradition with potential for harmony.

Thank you to our amazing women who have contributed cranes! We hope these stand as symbols for your happiness, well being and importance to our community. Interested in making your own cranes? We’ve hunted down some of the finest instructions on the web. Tavin’s Origami Instructions has a helpful video, and we also like this step by step diagram.

Let us know how your crane folding journey goes, or shoot us a picture of your success! Plus, watch for cranes on our Instagram, @livingbeautyorg.

an amber bracelet on a white background

Baltic Amber: Nature’s Ibuprofen

Nature can have gentle, subtly healing elements- and they can also be an easy, everyday part of your style routine! After experiencing Hazelaid‘s hazel wood bracelets as helpful with skin ailments like eczema, we caught up with the company to learn about the potential benefits of their other stunning resource, baltic amber jewelry.

Baltic amber works like a natural ibuprofen, reducing inflammation and swelling while easing aches and pains. When in contact with body heat, the amber releases an oil called succinic acid, an alkalinizing acid that may lower the body’s acidity (and certainly doesn’t raise it). It’s a mild pain reliever, but the lighter and less polished the amber, the stronger it is. While not many patients have tried the amber to ease cancer symptoms, it is possible that stronger amber might be very helpful for pain issues that come with cancer. The amber does help on small levels to boost immune systems and energy levels, which is always excellent news!

amber

Hazelaid (along with FFLB) would love to know if and how our stylish Beauties find relief with this jewelry. In the course of our discussions, the company generously agreed to give away a free piece of jewelry to one lucky Beauty! Plus, a second Beauty will receive a 40% off code that can be applied in a transaction of up to three items from Hazelaid.

Even if you don’t win, or if you’re not a Living Beauty but have interest in Hazelaid, we have good news! All of our readers can get 10% off their purchases by using the code Foundationforlivingbeautiful10. Thank you to Hazelaid for joining our wonderful community of facilitators and sponsors. We look forward to extending more wonderful, holistic and fresh ideas!

To enter the contest, please email [email protected] with your own holistic tips and suggestions. Name a product, recipe, holistic expert or exercise that has helped you, and tell us how we can get more information! Your suggestions will help us continue building a forum to help other Beauties. Include your name and preferred phone number. Two winners will be chosen completely randomly after verification in our database. We also ask that our product winner keeps us posted on how the jewelry helps so that we can pass on the info!

Thank you for participating in a community of Living Beauty! Think this could help a friend? Pass it along and get them in touch with our staff. Feel inspired to donate? Check out how here.