Lemons 'n Lyme

When life gives you lemons, use them to beat Lyme


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Lyme Treatment and Supplement Update June 2017

I know I haven’t written a real blog post in a while. I’ve been much more active on Instagram and YouTube lately. I have a recipe coming soon for the blog, though, so don’t worry (too much)!

I posted a video earlier this week on my YouTube channel with a full treatment and supplement update for June 2017. Watch below if you are interested in what sorts of treatments I’m doing as of late.

 


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Affording Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is FREAKING expensive! I’m sure we all know that by now. I got a few requests from people asking me to make a video on ways to save money, pay for Lyme treatment, or afford life with a chronic illness. I reached out to some fellow warriors for their best suggestions and then compiled a list and made a whole video about it!

Hopefully this video is helpful or there’s a tip you didn’t know. Let me know your top tips in the comments!


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All Natural Home Part 1: Hygiene Care

I’ve been wanting to do a series on how to keep your life “natural” aka non-toxic. So, I’m finally going to be doing a 3-part series on the products I use in my home and on me to maintain a non-toxic (or lower-toxic) life/environment.

Part 1: Hygiene/Body care- all the basics from soap to shampoo

Part 2: Household products- how to make cleaning products at home without the toxic load and how I lower my exposure to toxins from things like tap water

Part 3: Beauty- My tips and tricks for non-toxic make up, hair spray, and more.

This series will be spread over the next few months. So let’s get started with part 1 today! Not all of the products I use are the absolute cleanest, but I have to balance cost with toxic-load. Therefore, I try and find the cleanest products I can within my budget. I also like to make a lot of my own products but sometimes that can be more of a hassle, so I want to show you what you can find in the store. I’m sharing those products with you today and I hope you find it useful if you are also on a budget. All products are $10 or under.

Body:

1. Face Lotion: I have extremely sensitive skin and for a very long time I could only use one, very toxic, face lotion without breaking out. I finally found a brand I like that is less toxic AND gluten-free! This isn’t 100% the cleanest product on the market but it’s pretty good, free of some of the worst offenders, and my skin handles it alright.

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2. Body wash: Again, sensitive skin Sally here! I needed something that would minimize break outs, keep my skin from drying out, and get me clean. I like how simple this product is and it smells amazing! My favorite flavor is the tangerine or the vanilla.

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3. Body Lotion: This product does the trick but another favorite for me is straight up coconut oil! Coconut oil can feel a little greasy until it soaks in and sometimes you don’t have the time to wait, so using a body lotion can be easier. Coconut oil can also clog pores and since my skin is very sensitive, it isn’t always the best option for me. This one is pretty clean and seems to hydrate my skin well (another problem I have- very dry skin).

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4. Deodorant: The deodorant I use is made locally here in Santa Fe so I’m not going to share that brand (but for all of my Lymie Santa Feans, it’s the one sold at my doctors office ;)). I suggest making your own unless you have an awesome apothecary near by and they make deodorant (cough FORT COLLINS I LOVE YOU cough). Pretty much all deodorants in the store are filled with nasty chemicals that you shouldn’t been putting on your skin, especially directly on top of your lymph nodes. There are a few brands out there that you can get your hands on in the big grocery stores sometimes, though, like this one

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Hair:

1. Shampoo: This isn’t my favorite shampoo but it was on sale (2 for 1!) last month so I had to take advantage of it. I’ve struggled to find a non-toxic shampoo that actually works and isn’t a thousand dollars (I have hair that is SUPER greasy on top and SUPER dry on the bottom and is on the thinner side). If you have any suggestions shoot ’em at me! But, this stuff still does the trick and I found my hair has been better since I’ve worked to not shampoo every day and installed a shower filter. The water really does make all the difference. More on that in a later post 😉

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2. Conditioner: I’m pretty nonchalant about conditioner. If it’s non-toxic, I’ll take it. Conditioner is conditioner to me. This was another 2 for 1 deal. Again, any conditioner suggestions send them my way.

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3. Coconut oil: 1-2x/week I smother the ends of my hair in coconut oil, tie it up in a bun, and chill out for 30-60 minutes before washing the oil out. This helps protect my hair, add pack in some moisture (I do live in the desert), and keep it shiny and soft. Basically it’s a non-toxic deep conditioning treatment for your hair! You can feel free to really massage it into your scalp and whole head of hair if you have dry hair or dandruff. My scalp is quite oily so I avoid that and only put the oil on my ends.

Mouth:

1. Toothpaste: There are a handful of good toothpastes on the market these days. Yes, you can very easily make your own but sometimes you just don’t want to deal with the hassle of that. Whenever I buy toothpaste, I look out for fluoride, gums, and sugars on the ingredients label. I’ve always loved Dr. Bronner’s products (so clean!) so I was quite excited when they came out with a toothpaste. I’ve tried a lot of natural toothpastes and this is by far my favorite one.

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2. Coconut oil: I use coconut oil for oil pulling, an all-natural method for keeping your teeth and gums clean and healthy! I plan to do a separate post or YouTube video about it but for now you can click on that link to learn more. Have you figured out yet that coconut oil is the miracle product?! If I was stuck on a desert island I’d want a roll of duct tape and a jar of coconut oil!

I hope this gives you all some ideas if you are struggling to transition your products from toxic to non-toxic ones.

Stay tuned for parts 2 and 3! What are your favorite toxin-free products for staying clean? Are you sensitive like me?


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Evening Routine: How to Prepare for Sleep

Hello, allow me to introduce myself.

My name is Victoria and I am the Queen of Insomnia.

I can stay up… all night… staring at the ceiling.

Although I take sleep medication (I know I know. Yes, I absolutely hate that I need it. Trust me, I need it), I still can manage to spend the night awake. But, over the past month I’ve not only developed a morning routine, but a night routine that helps to calm my mind and allow me to both fall asleep easier and stay asleep (hopefully I don’t curse it with this post).

It’s usually anxiety and a racing mind that prevent me from falling asleep and I’m slowly learning to calm those thoughts. The tips I provide below help with all aspects of the falling asleep process, though. Sleep is a huge issue for me, so the tips I provide aren’t lame “relax your mind, breath, think happy thoughts” tips. They are legitimate tips that have helped me and I think can, hopefully, help you, too!

Last week I shared my tips for STARTING your day and today I’ll be sharing my tips for ENDING your day.

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1. Pick a Bedtime: This is crucial. You need to pick a reasonable time for you to go to sleep. This is important because, not only is routine important (as we are learning), but picking a time allows you to determine when you need to start your wind-down process each evening and lets your body know WHEN it needs to start winding down each evening. Pick a time that not only works with your schedule but also is plausible given your life and personality. Don’t choose 9 pm if you are used to staying up until 2 am. You can get it to 9, but it won’t happen the next night. If your ultimate goal is to be asleep by 10 pm every night and you are used to being up until midnight, start by setting your goal at 11 or 11:30 pm, then slowly work back.

2. Begin Your Evening Routine 30-60 minutes Before Bedtime:  You’ve got to get your body ready for sleep. You can’t be raging to metal music one minute then expect to fall asleep the next minute. 30-60 minutes before the bedtime you’ve chosen, begin preparing your body for sleep. If your mind knows that bedtime is approaching, it will begin to calm down. You have to give it time to prepare itself and your body for sleep.

3. Lithium: Melatonin is a popular sleep supplement. But if you are anything like me, melatonin ain’t yo thang. Okay, but seriously, melatonin KEEPS ME UP! I’ve found lithium to be a much better supplement for sleep and anxiety. I take a lithium supplement about an hour before sleep to calm my brain (anywhere from 2-5 pills).

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4. Download f.lux: By now you’ve already probably heard about how bad screen light (from your computer, phone, Tv, etc) is for you at night and how it interrupts your minds ability to relax for sleep. Let’s be honest, we live in a world dominated by screens. And we all feel the need to check our email/social media/texts right up until we physically can’t keep our eyes open anymore. But that interrupts your bodies ability to not keep your eyes open anymore. I’ve go the solution: f.lux. It’s an application that adjusts the light on your screen to match evening glow and lessen the disruption of screen time on sleep time. You’re welcome, now feel free to email until the minute you pass out ;).

5. Choose Relaxing Activities: I’m not going to tell you to read a book or meditate for an hour before going to bed. But I don’t advise you do high energy or demanding (physically or mentally)  activities in that 30-60 minutes before bed. Watch a movie or favorite TV show, but I suggest choosing one that isn’t super action packed or scary (nothing that is going to raise your adrenaline levels). Reading is always a great option, as well. And if meditating is your thing, perfect! But I highly doubt your unable to sleep and reading this post if you spend an hour meditating before bed each night. Just create a routine and pick activities each evening that aid in relaxation and don’t awaken your body and mind.

6. Evening Yoga/Stretching: I know you might be thinking, why would I want to be active before bed? Won’t that disrupt sleep? Not if you pick a stretching or yoga routine that is calming and designed to help you fall asleep. This has been a life changer in my ability to sleep! I notice a difference on the nights when I don’t do my yoga routine before bed (I have a harder time falling asleep, staying asleep, am in more pain, and wake up early but exhausted). I recently posted my evening yoga routine video on YouTube and I highly recommend giving it a shot. Otherwise, I suggest you pick a couple of deep, relaxing stretches to do. Hold them and breath into them rather then moving quickly between poses. I also suggest doing your yoga/stretching close to your bedtime. I usually do this yoga routine anywhere from 1-15 minutes before sleep.

 

I truly hope these tips help you. I don’t take this topic lightly, as insomnia is a huge problem for me, so I really believe these tips can help you.

What tips do you all have for helping with sleep? I’d love to hear them!