The Best New Year’s “Resolution” Of All? Plus A Free 31-Day Healthy Eye Challenge


At a time of year when many people are starting to make resolutions about exercising more and eating healthier (both good things to be mindful of!), there’s something else that could likely be a more direct and lasting way to bring about a healthier, happier you….


Image may contain: text

Growing up in a society that is so focused on outer appearances often makes it very difficult to really accept and love ourselves just as we are, especially for females, who are repeatedly bombarded with images of how they “should” look from TV, magazines and elsewhere. It’s said that being able to love yourself is the key to how everything else in your life unfolds and is necessary for being able to truly love others.  So why not forget about making a lot of “surface-oriented” resolutions and just promise yourself and your body that you will focus on loving who you are and your body as it is and see what happens? You’ve got nothing to lose and everything to gain!

p. s. If you DO make a list of resolutions, then you might find this blog post that lists 22 ways to stick to them helpful:

Related Self-help Health posts that focus on how our thoughts and feelings affect our overall health and well-being:

Gratitude & the DNA Connection

Get Healthier With Gratitude

Emotions & the DNA/Reality Connection

Kind Words = Better Health

And here’s an invite from energy medicine guru Donna Eden for a free event I signed up for that some of you may be interested in as well…..

Join the 2019 31-Day Healthy Eye Challenge!

We’re inviting you to join us January 1-31 for the Healthy Eye Challenge, a five-minute daily routine to help improve your eyesight and bring fresh vitality to your peepers!

This is a FUN “challenge” for you for one entire month — specifically dedicated to activating, inspiring, and enlivening each person in our community and beyond.
Tune in to our EEM Programs Facebook page OR our YouTube channel through the month of January to view the videos!

This is a free program with videos created by Donna & David, our staff, students, teachers, faculty, and family members for YOU! Make this commitment to yourself and join us every day and experience better eye health!!!

Salud and Happy New Year!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.



A Quick Fix For That Sugar Craving?! Works For Other Foods As Well…..


As someone who came out of the womb saying “Dessert, please!” this caught my eye. I’ve heard about something similar to this before. but have never remembered to actually try it. But I could tell by the reaction I had just in reading the words and thinking about doing it as I read, it might be pretty effective. You’ve got nothing to lose by giving it a try and supposedly it works on all sorts of food cravings, not just sweets……

stop sugar cravings
Photo: junce/istockphoto

The 5-Second Trick to Stop a Sugar Craving

“If you just can’t stop yourself from eating one more doughnut, imagine sprinkling a tablespoon of coarse iodized salt (I’m not talking about delicious, flaky fleur de sel) on it and imagine what it would be like to take bite after bite, swallow after swallow of the ‘pinch your tongue’ super-saltiness. Do this visualization when the urge to consume the sweet stuff comes up, and you’ll have some serious problems just thinking about having a taste.”Moalem speaks from experience. “The first time I tried it, I was at dinner at a friend’s house, and they had made homemade doughnuts topped with Nutella for dessert,” he remembers. “I did the visualization with the salt shaker, imagined unscrewing the top, dumping it on the doughnut and taking a bite, and it immediately elicited a little bit of a gag reflex. I don’t think I could have eaten one if I were forced to.” We had a similar wow-that-actually-worked moment one afternoon when chocolate chip cookies were calling our name.

The reason the trick works is because even though most of us like salty foods, humans have a natural aversion to overly salted eats (think so much salt that your face contorts like you just ate something bitter). That may be because extremely salty or bitter foods signaled danger for our ancestors, as those foods were more likely to be poisonous, says Moalem, a neurogeneticist and evolutionary biologist by trade. Just thinking about what a cookie covered in salt would taste like is enough to make you turn away. It’s not limited to sweets either–the trick should work with whatever type of food you’re trying to cut back on, like any and all kinds of cheese (just us?).

For really hard-to-break cravings, you can even take it to the next level and actually pour salt on the food in question and take a bite (Moalem did it to cure his ice cream addiction and says it did the trick.) Once you take a bite of that now disgustingly salty treat, your brain will remember how much you disliked it. So the next time visions of candy, ice cream, cookies or whatever food floats your boat start dancing through your head, you’ll be a lot less likely to give in to the craving.

Salty Sweet Visualization Exercise reprinted from The DNA Restart by Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD. Copyright © 2016 by Sharon Moalem, MD, PhD. By permission of Rodale Books.


Read more:

Another thing to try when it comes to food cravings/addictions, or struggles to lose weight, is EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique, aka “tapping”). There are lots of free resources for learning the process at EFT Universe, The Tapping Solution, and elsewhere on-line. Here’s an article about how it helped 3 people overcome holiday over-eating:



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Still Eating Margarine? Please Read This!


A number of years ago I became aware of the fact that margarine was actually not good for us, but was still shocked by some of the details mentioned in this post by Jeff Passofaro. I grew up in the era when margarine first came on the scene and gained wide popularity as a cheaper, healthier alternative to butter. At one point I even preferred using it on toast and other things….probably because my taste buds were manipulated by the artificial flavorings and other ingredients that can have an addictive-like effect on the body.

But I’ve been back on the butter band wagon for years now, especially if it’s grass-fed, and if you aren’t already on board, too, then this post might do the trick. Who needs horror movies when there’s so much scary stuff in our food and water supply these days?!



This is interesting . .. .

Margarine was originally manufactured to fatten turkeys. When it killed the turkeys, the people who had put all the money into the research wanted a payback so they put their heads together to figure out what to do with this product to get their money back.

It was a white substance with no food appeal so they added the yellow coloring and sold it to people to use in place of butter. How do you like it? They have come out with some clever new flavorings….

DO YOU KNOW.. The difference between margarine and butter?

Read on to the end…gets very interesting!

Both have the same amount of calories.

Butter is slightly higher in saturated fats at 8 grams; compared to 5 grams for margarine.

Eating margarine can increase heart disease in women by 53% over eating the same amount of butter, according to a recent Harvard Medical Study.

No automatic alt text available.

Eating butter increases the absorption of many other nutrients in other foods.

Butter has many nutritional benefits where margarine has a few and only because they are added!

Butter tastes much better than margarine and it can enhance the flavors of other foods.

Butter has been around for centuries where margarine has been around for less than 100 years .

And now, for Margarine..

Very High in Trans fatty acids.

Triples risk of coronary heart disease …

Increases total cholesterol and LDL (this is the bad cholesterol) and lowers HDL cholesterol, (the good cholesterol)

Increases the risk of cancers up to five times..

Lowers quality of breast milk

Decreases immune response.

Decreases insulin response.

And here’s the most disturbing fact… HERE IS THE PART THAT IS VERY INTERESTING!

Margarine is but ONE MOLECULE away from being PLASTIC… and shares 27 ingredients with PAINT.

These facts alone were enough to have me avoiding margarine for life and anything else that is hydrogenated (this means hydrogen is added, changing the molecular structure of the substance).

Open a tub of margarine and leave it open in your garage or shaded area. Within a couple of days you will notice a couple of things:

* no flies, not even those pesky fruit flies will go near it (that should tell you something)

* it does not rot or smell differently because it has no nutritional value ; nothing will grow on it. Even those teeny weeny microorganisms will not a find a home to grow.

Why? Because it is nearly plastic . Would you melt your Tupperware and spread that on your toast? Of course not, so share this with your friends…..(If you want to butter them up :-))!


Related Self-help Health post: Healthy Fats, Plus Butter vs Margarine

And check out my What’s New page for details about the upcoming free Holistic Oral Health Summit. Oral health is the most overlooked health issue in conventional and integrative medicine, even though 80% of disease symptoms are caused by problems in the mouth. Plus, millions are exposed to disease-promoting dental procedures every day. So Jonathan Landsman has gathered 33 of the world’s top experts to show you the best ways to improve oral health, prevent and reverse disease symptoms, and save thousands of dollars in unwanted medical expenses. A wide variety of topics will be covered, including oil pulling, harmful toxins like mercury, problems with root canals, cavitations and implants, proper heavy metal detoxification and much more.



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Mycobacterium vaccae: Bacteria That’s GOOD For Your Brain!!


Reading this article will give you yet one more reason for spending plenty of time outdoors, whether walking through the woods, working in the garden, or making mud pies with the neighborhood kids. 🙂


Get Outdoors and Try to Get “Infected”
With These Brain-Healthy Bacteria

We know that eating a variety of organic fruits and vegetables promotes good health…

We also know spending time in nature, whether it’s walking through green spaces or spending time in the garden, can increase feelings of well-being and reduce cortisol, the stress hormone.

Now researchers have discovered another reason why spending time outside makes us feel so much better: Soil contains a beneficial strain of bacteria that can improve cognition and lower some risk factors for dementia and Alzheimer’s disease

Read on to learn more about this friendly microbe and how it can keep your brain strong…

The helpful bacterium is known as Mycobacterium vaccae (or M. vaccae). It’s abundant in soil. When we’re outdoors we breathe it in the open air…

As you may know, science is homing in on the connection between our microbiome – the beneficial microbes in our gut — and brain function. Some researchers even go so far as to call the gut the second brain. (For more information on gut and brain health, see Issue #205.)

A 2013 study published in the journal Behavioral Processes provided more evidence for this theory when researchers Dorothy Matthews and Susan Jenks fed a group of mice live M. vaccae bacteria and then had them run a maze. A control group ran the maze without the benefit of the microbe.

The results were stunning. Mice that ate the bacteria before and during the trials “completed the maze twice as fast as controls and with reduced anxiety-related behaviors.”

M. vaccae acts like an “old friend”

The “old friends” or “hygiene” hypothesis of stress-related diseases states that, because we spend less time in nature and overuse antibacterial soaps and other germ-killing aids, our bodies no longer reap the benefits of microbes like M. vaccae, which have helped humans survive and thrive for thousands of years.

The hypothesis gets its name from the strategy of ‘reintroducing’ humans to their old friends [beneficial bacteria] to promote optimal health and wellness.

Without them our bodies fall prey to the negative effects of stress and chronic inflammation, and this adversely affects our bodies’ own ability to prevent diseases.

Chronic inflammation also contributes to depression, which is not only a danger in its own right, but is also a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and dementia (see Issue #117).

In a 2016 study published in the journal Trends in Immunology, researchers “immunized” mice with M. vaccae and found that their exposure to the microbe (or infection, if you will) prevented stress-induced colitis and reduced fear, anxiety, symptoms of inflammation and poor stress management.

The Connection Between M. Vaccae,
Serotonin and Alzheimer’s Disease

The reason for the animals’ decreased anxiety in the above studies is that ingestion of M. vaccae stimulates the release of serotonin in the brain. Higher levels of this neurotransmitter elevate mood and decrease anxiety.

Serotonin is the “feel good” neurotransmitter that’s also essential to synaptic functioning. Your neurons need serotonin to communicate with each other. This molecule also plays a crucial role in memory and learning.

Serotonin production naturally slows as we age. Research suggests that this decrease could be linked to depression, decreased cognition, memory problems and Alzheimer’s disease later in life.

Studies of autopsied brains of people with Alzheimer’s disease have shown serious serotonin deficiencies. Being low on serotonin doesn’t necessarily cause cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease, but it is an indicator that overall brain health and functioning has been compromised.

Big Pharma has been trying to create drugs that boost serotonin, but so far they haven’t been effective. So your best bet to prevent low levels of serotonin is to actively stimulate its production with M. vaccae – and by other means.

How to Increase Your Intake of M. vaccae

Spending time in green places, city parks and uninhabited woods alike, increases your exposure to M. vaccae. Get outside and breathe the fresh air as often as you can.

Eating fruits and vegetables directly from the tree, shrub or vine also helps you to ingest beneficial quantities of this microbe. As long as they’re grown without pesticides and herbicides, you’ll be pretty safe to eat them without washing. (I’d be wary of vegetables grown in or near the ground, especially in manure-rich soil. Those I’d wash.)

Dig a little deeper and you’ll discover that gardening or otherwise closely interacting with the earth gives you even more M. vaccae.

Long-time gardeners swear that spending time among their plants is therapeutic. Now we have a new reason to think so.

Spend some time playing in the dirt with your kids or grandkids. Try planting a small flower garden that you all can tend together. Grow one or two vegetable plants and eat the produce right off the plant. Or visit a local farm and sample their wares.

As long as you’re outside, eating organic fruits and veggies and getting dirty once in a while, you’ll be doing your brain a favor.

 Source: Brain Health Breakthroughs Newsletter by Lee Euler

Related Self-help Health posts:

Walking: Just Do It (In Nature!)

Natural Ways To Treat Alzheimer’s

Trees: They’re Not Just For Hugging

FYI, there’s a free on-line series starting on the 12th that ties in nicely with the idea of spending more time digging in the dirt. It’s the 3rd Annual Home Grown Summit. which will feature 38+ presenters sharing their best “secrets” about growing food, living sustainably, creating community, and more….


You can go to my “What’s New” page to find out more about the summit, plus see the list of e-books and reports the Grow Network offers for free.



p.s. Be sure to give Self-help Health a follow so you don’t miss out on future posts. Also check out the To Your Health page at my website Evolution Made Easier and my other blog for more helpful information, tips, tools and resources.

Disclaimer: Please not that any information provided here is as a guideline only, and not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.


So What’s REALLY In Your Tea?!


For years now it’s been easy to find articles extolling the benefits of certain types of tea, especially green and white. I’ve even featured a couple of posts on the topic myself. But unfortunately things are not as straightforward these days when it comes to knowing if something is really healthy or not. Just read my posts on Water, Water Everywhere, But Not a Drop to Drink?!  and When Organic Isn’t What It’s Cracked Up to Be to get a sense of how many highly-touted bottled waters or organic foods actually contain all sorts of contaminants. And recently it was revealed that many of the high-priced protein powders containing rice (even organic ones) contained heavy metals, mainly because so much of the rice used comes from toxic-laden China. And apparently almost anything containing wheat these days is to be avoided like the plague.

And now it seems you really need to beware of what’s going on with the tea you’re drinking, even, in some instances, if it’s organic. For me, this article by Food Babe does a great job of presenting possible issues you should be aware of…..


Food Babe's Tea Drawer

Do You Know What’s Really In Your Tea?

(by ) Tea is something I drink every single day. It’s sacred at my house – I even have a whole drawer devoted to it! I drink it because it is amazing for your health. There are so many varieties of tea that can improve digestion, metabolism and even prevent certain diseases. This investigation into tea ingredients has been in the making for a long time. What I’m about to share with you totally rocked my world forever and I’ll never look at tea in the same way again. Do you really want to know what’s in your tea?…Then read on.

The ancient Chinese tradition of drinking tea dates back thousand of years to the early Chinese dynasties and aristocrats who drank the beverage for its medicinal properties. In ancient times, leaves from the Camellia Sinensis (the tea plant) were either ground into a powder or placed as loose leaves directly into water to infuse it with herbal essence. Unfortunately, modern day tea is nothing like the unadulterated version of old tea. Many of today’s tea brands are operating under the guise of providing health benefits and promoting clean living, but are actually laden with pesticides, toxins, artificial ingredients, added flavors and GMOs.


Conventional Teas – An Abundance of Pesticides

Did you know that most tea is not washed before it is put it into bags? That means if the tea was sprayed with cancer-causing pesticides, those pesticides go directly into your cup. And this is the reason why tea is on my organic shopping priority list. To prove this point, here are some shocking facts about one of the most well-known tea brands – Celestial Seasonings.

A recent third-party analysis by Glaucus Research found that 91 percent of Celestial Seasonings tea tested had pesticide residues exceeding the U.S. limits. For example, Sleepytime Kids Goodnight Grape Herbal contained 0.26 ppm of propachlor, which is a known carcinogen under California’s Propsition 65.

The “Wellness” tea line was found to contain traces of propargite, also a known carcinogen and developmental toxin. The FDA has already issued two warning letters to Celestial Seasonings in regard to poor quality control. Imagine what happens when pesticide-laden tea is steeped in boiling water.

If grocery store brands don’t provide a clean option for you, perhaps a high-end loose leaf tea would circumvent some of the issues of grocery store brands. Right? Wrong! Take Teavana, which is found in malls across North America for example. Teavana taps into tea culture with the “Teavana Experience.” Convincing their employees to take customers on a sensory journey – they open a huge canister of loose leaf tea and wave the top of the canister so you can smell the tea – touting all of the wonderful health benefits of tea complete with samples and manipulative demonstrations that end in an expensive visit to the tea shop. Is all the extra money worth it? Are customers getting a superior tea product? No.

Teavana tea was tested by an independent lab and 100 percent of it was found to contain pesticides. One tea in particular, Monkey Picked Oolong, contained 23 pesticides. 77 percent of the teas would fail European Union pesticide import standards, and would be banned from import. 62 percent of the teas tested contained traces of endosulfan, a pesticide that has been banned by the U.S., China, the E.U., and 144 other countries because it has been linked to impaired fertility and could harm unborn babies.

Teas Can Contain Artificial Flavoring, Natural Flavors, and Hidden GMOs

Furthermore, a majority of Teavana teas contain added flavor – specifically “artificial flavoring.” If their tea is so high end, why would they be adding ingredients produced by fractional distillation and chemical manipulation of various chemicals like crude oil or coal tar? Coal tar in my tea? No, thanks.


Many popular tea brands get away with using the ingredient “natural flavors” to trick the consumer into thinking they are buying better, cleaner ingredients; however companies are just covering up the inferior taste and low quality of their tea. Fortunately, there are brands that are putting the kibash on the use of natural flavors and using all real ingredients. I was happy to learn that Ahmed Rahim, CEO of Numi Teas is just as disgusted by this ingredient as I am. He said to me “You can breakdown anything that is found in nature and if it ends up tasting like the flavor you wish to use – you can add it to any product and call it NATURAL FLAVOR on the ingredient label. It could come from a stone in the ground and you’d never know.” This is why when I see the words “natural flavor” listed on a label – I put the product down and run far, far away. I want to know what I am eating! Don’t you?

Additionally, the added risk of consuming possible GMOs is not something many people think about when consuming teas. Before this investigation and witnessing tea companies using modified corn starch and soy lecithin in tea (additives likely made from genetically engineered corn and soy), I didn’t think about it either! I can’t imagine having a serious soy allergy, considering all the places companies try to hide it.


Why The Tea Bag & Packaging Matters

A recent article in The Atlantic discusses the “silky sachet” and “luxurious mesh bags” that hold loose leaf teas (like in brands Tea Forte and Mighty Leaf). Turns out, these modern day bags meant to showcase the tea leaves, are made of plastic.

PLA (polylactic acid) is a (likely GMO) corn-based tea bag material that has attracted major tea companies due to its nice look and its claims of biodegradability. Terms like “silky sachets” and “corn-based biodegradable tea bags” mislead customers into believing a product is more natural and sustainable than it really is. While the processing for PLA removes all traces of genetic material, it is still made with genetically modified corn. Although the actual tea bag is not an ingredient like teas and herbs, it is an element that is put into boiling water.

According to The Atlantic, tea bags are most commonly made from food grade nylon or polyethylene terephthalate (PET) which are two of what’s considered the safest plastics on the scale of harmful leaching potential. However, Dr. Mercola disagrees, he states:

“While these plastics are generally considered among the safest in terms of leaching potential, the molecules in these plastic tea bags may still in fact break down and leach out when steeped in boiling water…” Well, isn’t that how tea is prepared?

Another temperature consumers need to worry about in tea is the “glass transition” temperature. Here’s the science behind the glass transition temperature or, Tg, and why it becomes dangerous according to The Atlantic:

“That is the temperature at which the molecule in certain materials such as polymers begin to break down. As a rule, the Tg of a material is always lower than the melting point. In the case of PET and food grade nylon (either nylon 6 or nylon 6-6), all have a Tg lower than the temperature of boiling water. For example, while the melting point of PET is 482 degrees Fahrenheit, the Tg is about 169 degrees. Both nylons have a lower glass transition temperature than PET. (Remember that water boils at 212 degrees.) This means the molecules that make up these plastic tea bags begin to break down in hot water.”

So, while the plastic itself won’t melt in your tea, the glass transition temperature could potentially leak out harmful phthalates if there are such things in your tea. Another thing to worry about is that some of the newer tea bags are made with a variety of plastics. Some plastics are nylon, some are made of viscose rayon, and others are made of thermoplastic, PVC or polypropylene.

Beware of paper tea bags too, which can be worse than plastic tea bags.

GET THIS: Many paper tea bags are treated with epichlorohydrin, a compound mainly used in the production of epoxy resins. Considered a potential carcinogen by the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health2 (NIOSH), epichlorohydrin is also used as a pesticide. When epichlorohydrin comes in contact with water, it hydrolyzes to 3-MCPD, which has been shown to cause cancer in animals. It has also been implicated in infertility (it has a spermatoxic effect in male rats) and suppressed immune function.

So what do you do the next time you want a cup of tea? Antioxidant rich teas aren’t going to do much to counterbalance the chemicals, additives and artificial flavorings in today’s modern teas.

First, I recommend looking at this chart below to see how your favorite tea brand stacks up:

Tea 2

And then when brewing and picking out the safest tea remember these tips:

1. Choose an organic & non-GMO certified brand of tea. (My favorites are Numi, Traditional Medicinals, and Rishi Tea (loose leaf).

2. Check the ingredient list on the back of the tea package to make sure there are no added flavors, GMO ingredients like soy lecithin and corn starch added to the tea leaves.

3. Make sure the brand you buy uses a safe form of packaging material or buy loose leaf tea and use a stainless steel or glass tea strainer. Have the company verify that bags do not contain epichlorophydrin, and avoid plastic tea bags all together. (Numi and Traditional Medicinals are some of the only brands I trust in this category because they have publicly stated they do not use this harmful ingredient or GMO packaging and are Non-GMO Project verified.) 

4. The majority of restaurants use some of the most pesticide-ridden tea and brands that have harmful packaging like Celestial Seasonings, Lipton, Bigelow, etc. Don’t fall victim to this. Bring your own tea when eating out or going to restaurants and ask for pot or cup of boiling water (remember to leave a good tip if you do this). I even do this at Starbucks because I like to vote with my dollars and not buy tea brands that are harmful. If you drink iced tea, brew your own at home and carry an *insulated water bottle  with you. 

*Personal Note: I recommend using the water bottles from Vibes Up; they help neutralize harmful toxins and balance and harmonize whatever liquid is put in them.

5. Remember these temps and times for brewing the perfect cup of tea


If you know someone who loves to drink tea, please share this post with them. I was just as shocked as you probably are about all of this craziness – knowing what’s in our tea and what we put in our body matters! Let’s change the world together.

Additional information:

For a “second opinion” on which teas and bags are safe, you may want to read this article:

And here’s what I found on one site about the dangers of tea bags:

As tea bags evolved, many companies tried different styles and designs of tea bags which led to pillow styled tea bags, rounded tea bags, and even pyramid shaped tea bags. Different tactics were taken to make tea bags more appealing and this resulted in companies that chlorine bleached their tea bags so that customers would find the cleaner look to be more visually appealing. However, the bleaching method comes at a heavy price to consumers. Chemicals linger on tea bags that are bleached and when steeped, these chemicals seep into the water of the tea and are then ingested into the body. This exposes the body to harmful toxins like dioxin. Dioxin, a common chemical that is found on bleached tea bags, lingers in the body for up to 11 years and cannot be dispelled through the detoxification process of the liver. This chemical builds up in the fat tissues of the body where it agitates and disrupts cell distribution leading to hormonal and behavioral disorders as well as increases the body’s risk to harmful cell deformities and cancers. —


**Personal Note: I highly recommend always using structured water for brewing your tea; it truly hydrates, neutralizes toxins, and has a balanced pH, so it will help off-set any worries about the tea you are drinking. Hmmm, and I just had a thought….the BerryBreeze™ refrigerator unit (I LOVE mine!) has the ability to neutralize the pesticides and harmful bacteria/fungus on the produce you store there. Wonder what it would do to teabags or a cup of brewed tea?!

Related Self-help Health posts:


Of course you can get organic teas in any good health food store or supermarket, however, I always buy mine on-line because it’s much less expensive that way. One of my favorite discount places to shop is; use code CJG192 if you are a new customer and spend more than $40 and you will get $10 off, plus you can take advantage of their wonderful specials and trial offers sections. Shipping is free on orders of $20 and up. There’s an extra 5% off on orders over $60. is another on-line favorite of mine; if you are new to Vitacost and make your first purchase of $25 or more through the link on my webpage you will receive a $10 off coupon. Woohoo! 



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my Evolution Made Easier blog for helpful tips, tools and information on health and well-being, expanded consciousness, spirituality and more.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

McDonald’s French Fries: It’s Much Worse Than I Thought


Did anyone else see this eye-opening, scary article from The Alternative Daily about what’s in McDonald’s french fries? Yipes! I grew up in the era when McDonald’s was just taking off and almost everyone thought it was a great thing to have access to fast food. I remember when getting food from the drive-up window was a special family treat (yeah, I know I’m old and came from a home where no one had a real understanding of what good nutrition was).

Anyway, I used to eat my fair share of filet of fish sandwiches and fries, but as I became more aware and health conscious, I stopped. However, I have to admit that since then I would still partake of an order of fries once or twice a year for that taste and trip down memory lane. I knew the cooking oil McDonald’s used was likely very unhealthy, but figured that eating something that was basically just cooked potato couldn’t be all that bad. OMG! Wrong!

This article shows just how far away we in the US have gotten from real food. I still can’t believe, though, that something with all that stuff in it could taste good to my palate. Have to hand it to the “mad scientists” that came up with the recipe!



(photo from

The Fourteen Ingredients in McDonald’s Fries Revealed!

Making a french fry is a pretty simple process. All it really takes is potatoes, some kind of fat, and salt. Some people may sprinkle a few spices on top for flavor. While the deep-frying process is definitely unhealthy, at least we all know what potatoes, oil and salt are.

McDonald’s, on the other hand, doesn’t keep their fries that simple. The franchise, amid plummeting sales, has released a series of videos showing how their foods are made, aiming to give consumers greater peace of mind.

In one video, Grant Imahara, the former host of the popular series “Mythbusters,” sets out to solve the mystery of the McDonald’s fry. However, while the tone of the video is assuring, and all 14  of the ingredients are described in innocuous terms, what the video actually accomplishes is showing us exactly why we should not be eating these little sticks of poison.

The first ingredient on the list

Potatoes: Ok, McDonald’s, you’re good so far…

Now, what about the oil used to partially fry them, before they are frozen?

Canola oil: You lost us, McDonald’s, and it didn’t take long. Canola oil, which doubles as an insecticide, is often made from GMO seeds, is highly processed, and often contains obesity and heart disease-promoting trans fats.

Soybean oil: As over 90 percent of the soybeans grown in the US are genetically modified, the oil most often is, too. Plus, it’s highly processed. Not good.

Hydrogenated soybean oil: Same processed soybean oil, processed even more to include trans fats. If you see “hydrogenated” or “partially hydrogenated” on a label, stay away.

Natural beef flavour: Wait, what? That’s right – McDonald’s fries contain traces of beef – or highly processed beef byproducts. Vegans and vegetarians, take note. Even if you’re fine with beef, when it comes to natural flavors, they can come from virtually anything.

Hydrolyzed wheat: Really? Not gluten free you mean? Are all those gluten intolerant and celiac sufferers out there aware of this? Bad choice again, McDonalds! To be fair, the acrylamide-producing, trans fat laden high heat oils used to cook the fires likely denature the proteins in the gluten – derisking it somewhat (or possibly entirely) for celiac and gluten intolerant individuals – but still – why even ‘go there’?

Hydrolyzed milk: Hydrolysis is basically an industrial process of “digesting” foods – in this case it is wheat (previous ingredient) and milk – with chemical agents. Yuck.

Citric acid: This one’s not too bad, as citric acid is naturally found in fruits and veggies. However, you can bet McDonald’s probably uses a processed version.

Dimethylpolysiloxane (a.k.a.Silly Putty): This is an anti-foaming agent also found in silly putty, plus various sealants, adhesives and lubricants. The processing of this agent allows for small amounts of formaldehyde to be present.

Now, a few more ingredients, sprinkled on the fries themselves…

Dextrose: A form of sugar. As we know, sugar is a major player in obesity, type 2 diabetes, tooth decay, heart disease, and more. A health nightmare.

Sodium acid pyrophosphate: This chemical stabilizer is added to the fries, according to the video, “to keep them from going gray.” In its raw form, sodium acid pyrophosphate can lead to severe inflammation, but for some reason, the FDA says it’s okay in our food in small amounts.

Salt: Salt in itself is essential to life, and real, unrefined salts are nutritious. However, refined, processed salt is a far cry from real, and a far cry from healthy.

Moving forward, the following ingredients are in the frying oil…..

Corn oil: Very likely made from GMO corn, through industrial processing.

TBHQ: This mysterious little ingredient is tertiary butylhydroquinone, a preservative derived from butane. In high doses, it is linked to DNA damage, behavior changes and other detrimental symptoms in lab animals. Appallingly, in the video, Imahara refers to TBHQ as, “an antioxidant that helps to preserve the freshness of the oil.”An “antioxidant” made from butane? C’mon.

Well, there you have it, folks. Does this recipe sound appealing to you? At the end of the video, Imahara reassuringly smiles at the camera and says, “so at the end of the day it’s not a Franken-fry composed of chemicals.”

Umm… Mr. Imahara, did you read the ingredients?

-The Alternative Daily

Update 2/9/15: I just came across this article that contains similar information, but answered one of the questions I had……I’ve read a number of times that food chains from the US serve healthier versions of everything at their locations in foreign countries. Amazing, but true! So I was wondering about the ingredients for their fries being sold elsewhere. It just goes to show how lax the laws are here for safeguarding our food and how apparently other countries have taken a stand and demanded better and gotten it, whereas the people in the US have not. Here’s the quote I’m referring to and you may want to read the rest of the post because it elaborates on certain ingredients:

Interestingly, Hari notes that McDonald’s fries are worse than those made in Europe. She writes that, compared to the U.S., french fries in the UK are primarily made of a few basic ingredients such as potatoes, vegetable oil, and some sugar and salt.

Learn more:

And another article that not only mentions companies having a healthier ingredient list for the products sold outside this country, but also touches on how flawed our food regulation system is:

Related Self-help Health posts:

More On McDonald’s Fries & Toxins In Our Food

Foods You Should Avoid

What You Should Know About Wheat

Healthy Fats; Butter vs Margarine



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts. Also check out my new website Evolution Made Easier and blog of the same name for more helpful information, tips, tools and resources.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Don’t Throw Away That Peel!

 I love citrus and the fact that it’s good for you and has such a wonderful smell. I’ve been a big fan of using the peel of oranges, lemons and limes in recipes for a long time, but after reading this article from The Alternative Daily I now have even more ways I can put it to use!



Famous for their ability to add a burst of freshness to any dish, sweet or savory, citrus fruits including lemons and oranges are well-known for their many health perks. The most pronounced of these is their high concentration of immune-boosting vitamin C.

We have written quite a bit about various citrus fruits, including the many benefits of drinking warm lemon water in the morning. While citrus fruits are very popular, and are widely embraced by many home cooks, too many of us are still throwing away the peels. This is unfortunate because much of the antioxidant content of these fruits is concentrated in the peel.

The following are seven reasons – culinary and other – that you should never throw away a lemon or orange peel again.

Embrace the zest

Use the zest of lemons, oranges and other citrus fruits to flavor your meals. Simply grate the peel and use fresh, or dry for later. Citrus zest tastes amazing in a wide range of dishes – including poultry, fish, pasta, grilled meats or vegetables, salads, soups, stews—the list goes on. In order to avoid any unwanted pesticides, always choose organic citrus.

Not only does it taste great, it provides you with fiber, antioxidants and essential oils. One of the main antioxidant groups found in citrus is known as limonoids. Limonoids have been linked to combating many forms of cancer, including breast, mouth, lung and colon cancers.

Orange peels have the added benefit of the antioxidant hesperidin. The authors of a 2011 study published in Pharmaceutical Biology wrote, “orange peels are considered to be a cheap source of hesperidin, which may be used in the pharmaceutical industry as a natural chemo-preventive agent. Hesperidin and orange peel extract could possess antioxidant properties with a wide range of therapeutic applications.”

Note: If you have any kidney or gallbladder illness, ask your doctor before enjoying citrus zest.

Amplify your olive oil

Add a few organic orange or lemon peels directly to your bottle of organic, extra virgin olive oil. The longer the rind sits in the oil, the more it will become infused with the citrus flavor. This will add an exciting dimension when you drizzle it onto fish dishes and salads before you serve. You could also experiment with using it in your next batch of hummus.

Tone your skin

After you squeeze your lemon or orange, you can rub the inside of the peel directly on your skin. This will tighten your pores and serve as a toner. As it is more acidic, lemon will be more potent, while orange will be milder. Rinse well after applying to your skin.

PERSONAL NOTE: I’ve also read that fresh lemon juice can be used to fade age spots.

Create fresh-scented instant humidity

Simmering a large pot of water, and adding some lemon and/or orange peels can instantly make your kitchen – likely your entire home – smell fresh. If you keep it simmering on the heat for a while, the steam will also add some humidity into dry, stale air.

Keep bugs at bay

Many types of insects are naturally repelled by citrus peels. Slicing lemon peels and using them to line the doors to your home which lead outside can help keep ants from entering. If they are already inside and congregating in specific areas of your home, simply leave some lemon peels there, too – they will likely evacuate quickly.

For garden slugs, a layer of orange peels over the soil can help deter them. Orange peels can also help keep mosquitoes away; simply rub the inside of a peel on your skin.

Note: Do not rub citrus on exposed skin before going into direct sunlight.

Deodorize your garbage and garbage disposal

Keeping a few citrus peels in your trash cans, underneath the bag, can help to combat nasty garbage odors. Similarly, if your garbage disposal smells, running a few lemon or orange peels through can quickly neutralize the stink.

Make your kitchen sparkle

If the chrome in your kitchen is looking less than shiny, simply rub with a lemon rind, then rinse and buff with a cloth. This can also be effective for a stainless steel sink.

The above options are just a few of the vast uses for citrus peels – they can be handy nearly everywhere, and absolutely do not belong in the trash! -The Alternative Daily


Check out the recipe in this previous Self-help Health post for healthy “orange creamsicles” that I always include at least  1/2 tsp of freshly grated orange peel in. An absolutely delicious way to get all those nutrients into your diet!

Healthy Blueberry Muffins & Orange Creamsicles

Other related Self-help Health posts:

Lemons: They’re Not Just For Lemonade

Sassy Water

Lemon Water

Don’t Underestimate The Power of C

UPDATE: I often squeeze fresh lemon juice on my salads as a part of the “dressing process,” but since I’d just posted this earlier in the day I decided to grate some zest onto everything, too. I have to say that, along with some fresh basil from my balcony, it added such a nice high end note. Reminded me of when I go out to eat somewhere and wonder what secret ingredient they’ve added to make their salad taste so good and out of the ordinary. Give it a try and let me know what you think. Or leave a comment about ways you’ve come up with to put more zest in your life (pun intended :-)).



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts. Also check out my new website Evolution Made Easier and blog of the same name for more helpful information, tips, tools and resources.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.


Free Event About The Genie In Your Genes

Wow, the free events just keep coming. This one sounds very interesting and reminds me of some of the research I’ve heard Dr. Bruce Lipton and Gregg Braden talk about. Even if you can’t make the live presentation tomorrow, you will receive a replay recording if you’ve signed up, so you may want to take advantage of this…..



Subject: A Genie In Your Genes?!


Bestselling author Dawson Church recently wrote a book with a provocative title: The Genie in Your Genes.

It’s a playful way to point to emerging scientific research that shows we actually have far more power over our genes and how they express than we ever thought before, which opens the possibility of getting many more of your “wishes” fulfilled for health and longevity.

Dr. Church has been studying this “genie” for years, with fascinating conclusions. The “genie” is based on a new field of science called epigenetics that shows that your life experiences CAN reshape how your genes are expressed and how you can literally affect your cellular pathways, which can dramatically impact your health and well-being and the way in which you handle disease.

This is exciting news and it gets even better…  you have an opportunity to connect with Dr. Church on a free call sponsored by The Shift Network on Tuesday, July 1st called “Discovering the Genie in Your Genes: 3 Easy Ways to Harness Epigenetics for a Healthier Life.

During this special event, you’ll learn:

  • How stress and relaxation both send epigenetic signals to your whole body
  • Practical examples of how you can use this knowledge to trip your own genetic switches
  • Research that shows this can lengthen your life by 9 to 14 years
  • Which methods – meditation, EFT tapping, neurofeedback – work, and why
  • How to identify which techniques will work best for your unique body
  • The “Epigenetic Health Spiral” and how it can uplevel your health – at any age

Everyone who registers for the free call will also receive the audio recording.  You are encouraged to take an hour to experience this breakthrough understanding that’s sure to be a mind-expanding adventure at the interface of science, spirituality, health and conscious evolution. You can register here.


p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts. Also check out my new website Evolution Made Easier and blog of the same name for more helpful information, tips, tools and resources.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Free Qigong Distance Healing Session

Here’s another free health-related resource you may want to check out. About once a month Qigong Master Michael Mohoric offers a free group distance healing session. It’s easy to participate; basically all you need to do is have the intention of being a part of the group. Here’s the notice about the event with all the details….


New-Free Distant Healing

Saturday MAY 17, 2014 6-7pm Pacific Time (Los Angeles) 
There will be another free- distant energy healing for everyone who wants to join and all their friends, families and anyone else who reads this. The main healing session is
on SATURDAY MAY 17, 2014 from 6-7pm Pacific DAYLIGHT Time or same as Los Angeles, (MDT 7-8pm), (CDT 8-9pm), (9-10pm EDT-same as New York).
You can join this no-cost distant energy healing session by using your intention to be included. To join, just close your eyes for a minute when you read this and mentally say that you intend to join the session and want to be included. That is all you have to do to connect with the energy and you don’t have to do anything else. Healing energy can begin to flow to you once you do this as many people who have done this before have reported.

There will be unscheduled daily energy adjustments leading up to the main session. You can receive a lot of healing energy before the main session on MAY 17.
For those who want to know more about this work you can read the website

Michael Mohoric was the former Secretary of the International Tibetan Qigong Assn. and found he was blessed with a gift for distant energy healing after recovering from a spinal cord injury.

This is not a telephone or Internet session. All you do is just relax and sit or lie down during the session and notice what is happening in your body. Even if you are busy you can still get good results. Because there are many people in the session, please do not email to join. There would be too much email to handle unless it is done this way.

You join simply by using your intention after reading this email. Also because this is a big group I won’t be able to answer questions before the session and you’ll get the details you need in this email. Please feel free to email your experiences afterwards.

Besides the main healing session there will be daily unscheduled energy adjustments leading up to SAT. MAY 17 for those who intend to join before the main session. You can begin to notice effects of the energy adjustments soon after intending to join. Sensitive people can feel the effects of this adjustment period strongly before the main session.
The energy works on many levels, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual. Even though it’s a group healing, the energy works with everyone individually. The energy is intelligent and knows best how to work with your energy system. The energy infuses light and energy into your energy field and can help clear and balance the acupuncture meridians, chakras and other energy channels. The energy won’t weaken with a large group and can even get stronger with more people. Distance isn’t a problem and you can receive this energy anywhere in the world.

This is not a telephone or Internet session.  To receive the energy you just sit or lie down and relax on SAT. MAY 17 from 6-7 PM Pacific Time-same as Los Angeles (PDT) or 9-10pm New York Time (EDT) and receive the energy. Even if you have to be active during the session you can still receive great results.

People in other countries can use: . Use Los Angeles as the city of origin. You can also use -7GMT to convert the time. Please note USA is now on Daylight Savings Time.

Many spiritual traditions teach that we are all connected and now some Quantum Physicists are saying the same thing. These ancient teachings often mention the most important thing we can do is help others. When we help others we are also helping ourselves because we are all connected.
In Chaos Theory there is a term used called the butterfly effect. It proposes that small actions or variations in a system can affect giant and complex systems. It suggests that possibly a butterfly flapping it’s wings in one part of the world over time could create a tornado in another part of the world or change its direction. If you send this email to others we don’t know how it will affect the bigger picture. You could send it to your friends and they could send it to their friends and it could affect hundreds of people or many people could read it on a blog, message board, other social media site etc..

Once someone has received energy from the free-session I will be able to send energy to them if they are in a disaster area to help them get through difficult times. I am only a conduit for the energy and not the source and give all credit to the Divine, Universe, Spirit or whatever term one wants to use. The energy helps people to adjust their energy field so they can heal themselves. I am very grateful for this gift and happy to share it.

I liken this to the transmitting antenna of a radio station. When you use your intention to join the session it is like a radio tuning into a radio station.  When you post and email this to your friends then you are transmitting the healing energy to them. We will all be broadcasting healing energy to many thousands of people all around the planet. Letting others know can help enhance your session.

You can include other people in the session by following the instructions in this letter. You can print this out and mail it to friends who don’t have email to join the session.  You can also read this to people over the phone if they don’t have email and they’ll get the energy when they use their intention to join.
For those in foreign countries you can translate this into your native language and send it to your friends to include them. Just try and stay as close and true as you can to the meaning of this email. This could be a great service to your countrymen. You can leave out the testimonials in your translation and just copy and paste the first sentence of this newsletter to the bottom of your translation.
How to Include Others    

If you want to include other family members living at home in the session then just write their names on a piece of paper and put “Energy Healing” at the top of the page. Leave the paper out in the open on a counter or desk. Please don’t send me their names in an additional email. You should get other adult’s permission to be included (don’t tell me). You don’t need to get your children’s permission. Anyone else outside your home will have to join by reading this email and using their intention to join. You can also include your pets by putting their names on the paper.  Animals love the energy and respond very positively.

This is not a phone session. You can be anywhere and receive the energy. Your intent to join is the connection. You could be in your car or on a plane and still receive the energy. It’s best to try and be quiet during the session on SAT. MAY 17 and just notice what is happening in your body. You can sit or lie down. You can still be active and get good results during the session but best results are obtained by being quiet during the session.

It is ok to sleep during the session.  It’s helpful to not bathe right after the session, wait until the next morning. Try to avoid cold drinks the night of the main session & the next day. It is also good to take it easy the next day after the session and if you exercise do it very moderately.  It is best to use the energy for healing and not for a lot of activity.  The energy can continue to work in your body several days or more after the session and some people can continue to see changes weeks after the session.

I like to hear from people afterwards. Please feel free to email your experience.

If you are not on the email list and would like to receive notices about other free sessions and the monthly newsletter then you can sign up through the website.  
There is no set time for the unscheduled adjustments before the main session on MAY 17 and you can receive this energy at any time. The unscheduled adjustments before the session can be a very powerful time. You may notice many things before, during and after the session.  Some people may feel peaceful, energized, centered, balanced and sleep better.  Others may be more emotional, restless and lethargic as they detoxify, which is very good. There can be a lot of purification happening on many levels during this time, emotional, mental and physical.

Before and during the session people can feel different energy sensations working in their body.  Some of these feelings can be tingling, electrical, vibrating, heat, coolness, cold, pressure, lightness, pulsing and other things. If you feel very cold then this is a sign that old negative energy is leaving your system. Try to stay warm if you feel very cold. Even if you don’t feel the subtle energy, it is still working.

It is ok if you have to be active during the session. Many people have to work or take care of their families during this time. It can still be very beneficial if you aren’t able to be quiet. It reduces the effects some but it can still be very effective.  You can also sleep during the session. Sleeping is good way to receive the energy because you are very relaxed.

Try not to work on anything during the session, just be receptive and let the energy do it’s work. The energy knows where to work where it is most needed in your system. Thousands of people have done this and many report they are surprised when the energy often finds their blockages even though they haven’t told me their symptoms.

Usually a great majority of people have very positive results. Some people are more sensitive and can feel a lot of energy moving in their body. Others may not feel the energy but will notice good effects. After the sessions people can feel calm, centered, energized and balanced. They can also feel their pain greatly reduced or eliminated. Like any modality this won’t work for everyone but most people see significant results.

Don’t worry if you feel odd pains come and go leading up to the main session. This is good. As the energy clears the blockage in an area it can result in temporary pain.  Also people can feel extra emotional during this time, which is also very good.

From a Qigong and Traditional Chinese Medical perspective much dis-ease is caused by emotional repression.  The energy from these repressed emotions get stored in the organs and tissues of the body. The energy from the sessions can help to release these stored emotions. When we release repressed emotions then we can bring about deep healing. It takes a lot of energy to hold down the emotions and when they are released we can have much more energy available to us.

Dreams can be very active and vivid during this time. Sometimes people can have very beautiful and peaceful dreams during the sessions. Others can have some strange dreams. This is also beneficial. The sessions can help people to release old negative energy. The energy works like a virus detection program on a computer and can neutralize negative energy patterns, beliefs and programming.

Some people will notice some of their old negative ways of thinking will simply be gone and sometimes addictions fall away. Don’t worry if you have scary dreams during the sessions. As one releases old repressed fear out of their energy field then the mind can give it a symbol. The symbols and fear are coming from your own mind. The energy work isn’t causing anything, only helping to release old energy and emotions.

The energy helps to purify, cleanse and detoxify the body and mind.  As the energy works through the energy blockages it can cause toxins to be released that are stored in the area. Some people may feel achy or tired at times leading up to the session. This is good and very, very helpful in the healing process. Feeling unusually tired is a sign that the body is using a lot of energy for healing.

Many modalities recognize the positive effects from detoxification. You may also find that you have to go to the bathroom more as you release toxins. During the purification process your organs of elimination will be energetically supported to help them release the toxins.  I have done this process with thousands of people and the energy always works for people’s highest good. If you don’t feel good some of the time, try and hold the thought that you are healing.
The time leading up to and a little while after the main energy session can be a little bit like a roller coaster ride.  You can feel very energized one day and then tired the next day as you release more toxins.  Just realize that every time you don’t feel good that it is a powerful time for healing and that you are raising the vibration of your energy system. It is good to stay hydrated and drink extra water (warm not cold) during this time.
I am very grateful for this opportunity to work with everyone.
Disclaimer:  I, Michael Mohoric, am not a medical doctor and do not practice medicine. I don’t diagnose, heal, cure, prevent or treat disease. I recommend people continue to see their medical doctors and follow their advice. My spiritual work is a complement to conventional medicine. I’m a minister and this spiritual energy work is not a substitute for conventional medical treatment of any kind, physical or psychological. For such issues you should seek the proper licensed physician or health care professional. This energy work may help the bio-field to come into energetic balance. Qigong theory believes when one’s energy field is in balance, the body’s latent healing ability can heal itself. I make no promises or guarantees about the results of this work.



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Cleansing the Liver and Gallbladder


Today’s post is really a continuation of the one I did a few days ago on natural ways to keep the liver and gallbladder healthy. It would be very helpful to read through that information before diving into the following information. The oil therapy included in the previous post, along with the other protocols mentioned, will help relieve the liver of toxins, but to get stones out, a formal cleanse is really the only way to go besides surgery. What’s nice is in the process of doing a cleanse you will not only remove gallstones without resorting to surgery, but also dramatically improve the overall health of the body, especially your digestion. A cleanse can also help clear up some seemingly unrelated issues, such as allergies and shoulder, upper arm and upper back pain.


 Did you know that gallstones are the fifth cause of hospital admission and the third most common surgical procedure (yipes!) Fortunately there are ways to get stones out using simple things such as Epsom salts, grapefruit juice and olive oil. Think of it—no expensive hospital stay, no days missed from work or play, no surgery and scars to recuperate from!!

There are a variety of liver/gallbladder “recipes” you can use for flushing out gallstones, and number will be presented at Self-help Health to give you options to choose from. Hopefully there will be at least one that works with your time schedule, personal preferences, and level of dedication. You’ll notice that most of the routines have certain things in common, but may vary in the number of days required, amount of olive oil taken, etc.

Some of the protocols call for special ingredients/products, while others only require things that are readily available, such as Epsom salts, olive oil and grapefruit juice. Regardless of which routine you end up using, be sure to choose a time when you will be able to rest the day after you take the Epsom salts and olive oil/grapefruit juice mixture (you’ll also want to stay close to a bathroom!). Also, before undertaking a cleanse that calls for several doses of Epsom salts, be sure your body can tolerate magnesium sulfate (Epsom Salt); I read recently that a few people have been known to have adverse reactions when taken in the amount called for in a liver cleanse.

Great Smokies Liver/Gallbladder Cleanse:

The following cleanse is from Dr. Wright at Great Smokies Medical Center in Asheville. It’s the first cleanse I tried, and unlike most liver cleanses you might find, this one mainly uses phosphoric acid as a way to “pre-soften” the stones, instead of relying on large quantities of apple juice. With this particular routine you may eat normally and perform all your usual activities during the days of preparation leading up to the actual cleanse.

Ingredients needed:

  • *Phosphoric acid (1 to 2 bottles, depending on preparation time recommended by healthcare practitioner)
  • Apple cider vinegar, organic if possible
  • Several fresh lemons, organic if possible
  • Epsom salts (4 TBS.)
  • Organic cold pressed Italian olive oil (1/2 cup)
  • 1 to 2 organic fresh pink grapefruit, depending on size
  • Organic coffee (3 TBS.)
  • Enema bag

For 3 days prior to the actual day of cleansing, take 45 drops of phosphoric acid 2 times a day in a small glass of purified water, followed by 6-8 ozs. of water to clear the vinegar-y taste of the acid. If you are allowed fruit juice in your diet you may use organic unfiltered apple juice instead of water. Phosphoric acid and, to a certain extent, the apple juice work to soften stones and facilitate their passage. By the way, the number of days and amount of phosphoric acid were what I was told to use; your actual number of days, amount of drops, and frequency of dosage should be confirmed by kinesiology or as directed by your doctor or health care professional. I got my phosphoric acid when doing this cleanse directly from Dr. Wright, but Super Phos 30, is available through th Global Healing Center link on the Links page of Evolution Made Easier. GHC also carries liver cleanse kits.

On the actual day of the cleanse, eat lightly at breakfast and lunch, avoiding fats, protein, and dairy. This leaves your food choices to whole grains, fruit and vegetables, unless your diet is normally grain and fruit restricted, which would leave just vegetables. Eliminate any non-essential medications and nutritional supplements the day of cleansing.

The timing of the various steps that follow is specific and designed to work with the body’s internal rhythm, so follow it as closely as possible:

  • Acidify your system by drinking 2 TBS. fresh lemon juice mixed with 1 TBS apple cider vinegar 3 to 4 times before 2 pm. Don’t eat or drink anything other than water past 2 pm or it could interfere with your results and/or cause nausea.
  • Some time before 6 pm mix the 4 TBS of Epsom salt in 3 cups of purified water & place in the refrigerator. To improve the taste, ½ tsp of ascorbic acid (vitamin C) or fresh lemon juice may be added to the mixture. (If you have an inflammatory bowel disease like Crohn’s or ulcerative colitis, or chronic diarrhea, decrease the Epsom salts to 1 TBS). See Tips section below for another idea for how to prepare the Epsom salts/water doses.
  • At 6 pm, drink ¾ cup of the Epsom salt mixture; set out the grapefruit & olive oil so they will be at room temperature for later.
  • At 8 pm, drink another ¾ cup of the Epsom salt mixture and get any bedtime chores done so that you will be able to adhere closely to the final part of the night’s schedule. Timing is critical to your success.
  • At about 9:45 pm, mix ½ cup olive oil with up to ¾ cup fresh squeezed grapefruit juice (pulp removed) in a blender or jar that can be used as a shaker. Mix or shake vigorously to blend. Finish any last minute things you need to do to be ready for bed at 10 pm.
  • As close to 10 pm as possible, drink the oil/juice mixture while standing up (drinking through a straw may make it more palatable). You may rinse your mouth afterwards with a small amount of fresh lemon or grapefruit juice. Try to get the mixture down within 5 minutes.
  • Immediately go to bed and lie down on your right side or on your back, if lying on your right side is not tolerated. Try to lie still for at least 20 – 30 minutes, and then go to sleep as soon as possible. If you have symptoms of hiatal hernia or esophageal reflux, you will want to elevate the upper part of your body with pillows or rest in a reclining chair for the first few hours after drinking the oil/juice mixture.
  • The next morning at 6 am or later, *if your bowels are loose, drink 1 qt. of purified water mixed with 2 tsp. crystal salt and fresh lemon juice. You may go back to bed if you desire.
  • Four hours later, administer an enema consisting of 1 qt. of warm water mixed with 1 cup of brewed organic coffee (information on this will be included in the next post on liver cleansing).
  • Two hours later, you may drink diluted fruit juice, or vegetable juice or water, if you are on a fruit restricted diet. Thirty minutes later you may eat fruit or cooked vegetables.
  • One hour later, you may begin to eat your normal diet, but keep it light.

*If your bowels are NOT loose the next morning:

  • At 6 am or later drink ¾ cup of the Epsom salt mixture and go back to bed if you desire.
  •  Two hours later administer the coffee enema and drink the last ¾ cup of Epsom salt mixture. Go back to bed if you desire.
  • Two hours later, if your bowels have moved you may follow the eating schedule in the section above. If they have NOT, take a dose of the lemon/vinegar mixture and then 10 min. later administer a coffee enema. Repeat this step every hour until your bowels move.

Anytime you’re on the toilet (which is likely to be A LOT during the cleanse), be sure to look for gallstones, which normally float because of the cholesterol inside, so fortunately they’re usually easy to spot. However, stones that are calcified, or contain heavier substances like protein, can sink to the bottom of the bowl. The lighter stones are usually pea green in color from the bile, but can be other shades or tan, depending on their make-up. Some of the liver’s toxins and waste may come out more as sludge than stones (thanks to the softening effect of the phosphoric acid, apple juice, or malic acid, depending on which particular protocol you’re following), or even as whitish “chaff” (cholesterol crystals that haven’t formed into stones yet) floating on top of the water in the bowl. Whatever form, be glad your body is saying “good-bye” to it all.

Sometimes during a cleanse, the bile and poisons it is causing to be released will produce spasms in the duodenum and small intestines, which cause some of the mixture to overflow into the stomach. This may result in a feeling of nausea or even vomiting of bile. In this case, try using peppermint tea (use prepackaged bags or 1 TBS. dried peppermint leaves to 2 cups of pure water, simmered for 5 minutes and strained).

Just know that thoroughly ridding the liver of all its stones may not be a quick process. It ended up taking me more than a year of doing monthly cleanses to get to a point where there were virtually no backed-up stones left. But that’s not to say it couldn’t happen much quicker for you! Most people have spent years doing things that have caused quite a build-up in the liver, so it generally will take some time to be stone free. With the first cleanse you do you will normally only get those stones that are at the front of “the pack.” So it’s recommended that once you start the cleansing process you continue to do so on a regular basis until you have little or no stones being released.

Until you reach that end result, you may want to follow a monthly schedule or do a cleanse as frequently as every two weeks, but normally no more often than that. After you are free of stones you will probably want to cleanse the liver twice a year, say in the spring and fall, as routine maintenance. Some health care practitioners recommend timing cleanses to coincide with the full moon or a few days after—supposedly you get better results and more stones out. But don’t cleanse when you are ill, or when it will put too much of a strain on the body.

TIPS: Here are a couple of “tricks of the trade” I’ve come up with to help make the whole cleanse process a little more tolerable, at least in my opinion: Instead of mixing the 4 doses of Epsom salts all at once as the directions state, make them separately. For each serving measure out 2 TBS of the ¾ cup of water and heat until boiling; pour that over the 1 TBS. of Epsom salts, stir until dissolved and refrigerate. Remove the mixture a few minutes before you’re supposed to take it, add a little bit more of the water, give it a stir and then hold your nose and down the dose in one gulp; use whatever remains of the ¾ cup of water (which should be around ½ a cup now) as a “chaser” to help get rid of the yucky taste.

You can also use the same idea for dealing with the oil/juice mixture taken at bedtime. In other words, don’t mix all the grapefruit juice in with the olive oil. Reserve some to use as a chaser—this way you have a smaller (albeit unfortunately more oil-heavy concoction) quantity of the mixture to get down and the reserved part of the juice can be used to clear the taste from your mouth. Also, try to use a light colored olive oil for the cleanse mixture—it’s usually got a milder taste and is easier to stomach than darker varieties—and that’s important when you have to down such a large quantity all at once. Bragg’s own brand of organic extra virgin oil is one of the easiest I’ve found to take in such a big dose. It’s mild tasting, which might not be a “plus” when you’re cooking and want a strong flavored oil, but is great when you’re having to down half a cup of the stuff all at once! Also, I’ve found that drinking the oil mixture through a straw (two are even better than one!), and even holding your nose, helps it go down quicker.

Dr. Hulda Clark’s Liver/GallBladder Cleanse:

One of the most widely used protocols for cleansing and detoxing the liver and gallbladder is included in Clark’s book The Cure for All Diseases. You’ll find it is quite similar to the previous one from Great Smokies Medical Center, although it doesn’t include using the phosphoric acid to soften the gallstones.

Dr. Clark is a big believer in the idea that metal-laden dental fillings and various parasites are the major causes of almost any health condition or disease. A toxic mouth can put a heavy load on the liver, burdening it immediately after cleansing, so she advocates replacing any suspect dental work, getting rid of parasites, and doing a kidney cleanse BEFORE you undertake her liver/gallbladder cleanse routine. I used the cleanse protocol given in The Cure for All Diseases a number of times over the years, but didn’t realize until putting together the information for a book I wrote  that some of the instructions have been slightly changed since the edition I have of her book. You can go to the website for her recipe and updated instructions.

One of the updates mentioned on the website is that you can substitute 3 cups of freshly pressed grapefruit juice, or freshly pressed apple juice, for the 3 cups of water used with the Epsom salts—I would assume that way the taste wouldn’t be nearly as unpleasant. After downing more than my share of doses of the Epsom salts mixture, anything that works to improve the taste sounds like a great idea to me! The website also recommends that the olive oil be ozonated, and says you can substitute 3 lemons for the grapefruit juice used as part of the olive oil routine at 10 pm, but to not blend the juice with the oil, i.e. drink a little oil, then a little juice, until both are gone. Apparently if you mix the lemon juice with the oil it sometimes gets slightly congealed/slimy and hard to swallow.

Her routine on the day of the actual cleanse includes eating a no-fat breakfast and lunch, such as cooked cereal with fruit, fruit juice, bread and preserves or honey (no butter or milk), baked potato or other vegetables with salt only. Not eating any oils or fats before the actual cleanse allows the bile to build up and develop pressure in the liver. Higher pressure pushes out more stones. The routine after 2 pm is much the same as the one from Great Smokies, with a few slight variations. Her website also lists an alternative plan—omitting the first Epsom salts dose at 6 p.m. and taking only the 8 pm dose that day. Supposedly many people still get stones out with one less dose. But if you try this routine and don’t get good results, do the full course next time. Her instructions for the last part of the evening are as follows:

At 9:45 PM, pour 1/2 (half) cup (measured) olive oil into a pint jar. Add 2 drops HCl to sterilize. Wash grapefruit twice in hot water and dry; squeeze by hand into the measuring cup. Remove pulp with fork. You should have at least ½ cup, more (up to ¾ cup) is best. You may use part lemonade. Add this to the olive oil; also add black walnut tincture. Close the jar tightly with the lid and shake hard until watery (only fresh grapefruit juice does this). Now visit the bathroom one or more times, if necessary, even if it makes you late for your 10 pm drink. But don’t be more than 15 minutes late or you may get fewer stones.

At 10:00 PM, drink the olive oil/grapefruit mixture, taking 4 ornithine capsules with the first sips to make sure you will sleep through the night (or 8, if you already suffer from insomnia). Drinking through a large plastic straw helps it go down easier and you may use oil and vinegar salad dressing, or straight honey to chase it down between sips. Take it all to your bedside if you want, but drink it standing up. Get it down within 5 minutes (fifteen minutes for very elderly or weak persons). Lie down immediately—you might fail to get stones out if you don’t. The sooner you lie down the more stones you will get out. Be ready for bed ahead of time. Don’t clean up the kitchen, if it will make you late.

As soon as you get the drink down, walk to your bed and lie down flat on your back with your head up high on the pillow. Try to think about what is happening in the liver. Try to keep perfectly still for at least 20 minutes. You may feel a trail of stones traveling along the bile ducts like marbles. There is no pain because the bile duct valves are open, thanks to the Epsom salts. Go to sleep, or you may fail to get stones out if you don’t.

The next morning you follow the same schedule as the Great Smokies cleanse, or follow Alternative Schedule 2, which includes taking a second dose of the oil mixture (but only ½ a cup) two hours after the 6 am dose of Epsom salts, and then the last dose of Epsom salts two hours later, around 10 am (supposedly this schedule can increase the number of stones you remove). After 2 more hours, you may eat. Start with fruit juice. Half an hour later, eat fruit. One hour later you may eat regular food, but keep it light. By supper you should feel recovered.

Clark’s website also suggests using a colander fitted inside the toilet seat to make sure you collect all the stones that come out. You may want to count them as closely as possible because she believes you will need to total 2,000 stones before the liver is clean enough to rid you of allergies or bursitis or upper back pains permanently. The first cleanse may rid you of these dis-eases for a few days, but after the cleanse, as the stones that were left in the rear travel forward, you’ll likely start getting the same symptoms again. You may repeat cleanses at two week intervals, but never cleanse when you are ill. (some of this information is excerpted from “The Cure for all Diseases”: Copyright 1995 by Hulda Regehr Clark, Ph.D., N.D. All rights reserved.)

By the way, there are some people out there who disagree with aspects of Dr. Clark’s information and viewpoint. They believe that much of what comes out during a cleanse is actually just bile that has solidified, and not actual gallstones. They say that it is better to focus less on the number of stones you’re getting out and more on the relief of symptoms. Regardless, the fact remains that the liver functions better with periodic cleansing and maintenance. I know I have had a variety of “debris” come out, and some of it has definitely NOT been just solidified bile, but without sending everything off to a lab I guess it’s hard to know for sure what’s what. 🙂

There are several other routines I want to present, including the one I finally settled on as being the easiest one for me personally to follow, but didn’t want to overload you with information here. So I will feature a few more options in an upcoming post and will also include details about using coffee enemas, something that initially sounded strange and yucky to me, but I have since learned how helpful and healing they can be for certain health issues.

FYI, you can get most liver cleanse ingredients and kits that already include almost everything you will need at any good health store, however I buy all my health supplies on-line at a couple of discount sites. One of my favorite places to shop is; use code CJG192 if you are a new customer and spend more than $40 and you will get $10 off, plus can take advantage of their wonderful specials and trial offer section. Shipping is free on orders of $20 and up, and there’s no sales tax. There’s an extra 5% off on orders over $60. is another on-line favorite of mine; if you are new to Vitacost and make your first purchase of $25 or more through the link on my webpage you will receive a $10 off coupon. And if you plan on shopping again after that, be sure to sign up for a free acct. at, if you don’t already have one. That way you can use the eBates portal to shop at Vitacost (and 100s of other popular stores) and earn cash back on your purchases. Plus, eBates also offers some reward–I got a $10 gift card–when you place your first $25 order at a store through them. How does it get any better than that?!

CAUTION: Be sure your colon and process of elimination is in good working order before attempting a liver cleanse. If you are in ill health, you certainly don’t want to be doing something that may burden or tax your system further. And I highly recommend working with an alternative health care professional if you are new to this kind of thing, especially if you are going to use phosphoric acid.

Related Self-help Health posts:

Keeping the Liver & Gallbladder Healthy

Cleansing the Liver & Gallbladder Part II



p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

%d bloggers like this: