Kristin Malone Spa Therapy's Blog

Health, Beauty and Well-Being Education

Health benefits of Herbs and Spices. February 2, 2011

Filed under: General Health — Kristin Malone Spa Therapy @ 10:09 pm

Spice - Kristin Malone Spa TherapyAs I mixed and blended the ingredients for all the festive foods I prepared this holiday season, it made me think of all of the healthy benefits these treats would bring.  There is a good reason that some of the same herbs and spices you find in your kitchen cupboard can also be found packaged for medicinal purposes. There are many health benefits that come from these tasty ingredients including anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties and cancer fighting effects, to name a few. Here is a list of just a few of the most popular herbs and spices and the benefits they provide.

Cinnamon – This spice can lower blood sugar, triglycerides, LDL and total cholesterol and has properties that are anti-inflammatory and can improve circulation by thinning the blood. It also contains compounds that can relieve pain and act as a sedative. 1/2 a tsp. is recommended 2 times a day.

Tumeric – Contains compounds that can inhibit the growth of Cancer cells. 500-800 mg recommended daily.   Spice - Kristin Malone Spa Therapy

Rosemary – Helps to stop gene mutations that could lead to Cancer. The herb also helps prevent damage to blood vessels and reduces inflammation in the body.

Garlic – Destroys Cancer cells and disrupts tumor cells. Just 1-2 cloves a week can provide Cancer protection benefits.

Paprika – Contains compounds that are anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant.

Ginger – Helps with nausea and stomach discomfort and aids in digestion. Ginger can also help to relieve the pain and swelling associated with arthritis and can thin the blood. Just one tsp. is equal to the anti-oxidant levels of one cup of spinach. 500-2,000 mg recommended daily.

Oregano – It is believed that oregano has one of the highest anti-oxidant levels of many fresh herbs. Just 1 tsp. is equal to the anti-oxidant power of 3 cups of chopped broccoli.

Red Pepper (Cayenne) – This truly “spicy” spice can enhance metabolism, increase feelings of satiety and promote fat burning. Cayenne can also lower blood pressure, triglycerides, LDL and improve circulation.

TSpice - Kristin Malone Spa Therapyhyme – This herb has anti-oxidant properties and can aid the respiratory system especially those weakened by chronic bronchitis and asthma. Thyme can also ease menstrual cramps and has antiseptic properties.

Cloves – This spice has anti-inflammatory effects that can help arthritis and helps to stimulate digestion. Clove oil can be used to relieve a tooth ache and is a good mouthwash.

Cumin – Acts as an immune-system booster and helps asthma. Cumin is a stimulant and aids in digestion and digestive disorders. It also aids the liver in Spice - Kristin Malone Spa Therapydetoxification and is extremely high in Iron.

These are just a few of the most popular herbs and spices but there are many, many more out there containing many similar health enhancing benefits. You can choose to buy your helpful herbs and spices in capsules for medicinal benefits but it is just as beneficial to get them from your food. Add a little spice to your life and sprinkle some healthy flavor in all of your favorite dishes.

Here’s to your health – Kristin Malone

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Tips to keep your skin from drying out during the cold winter months. November 1, 2010

Filed under: Facials,General Health — Kristin Malone Spa Therapy @ 11:45 pm

Winter is just around the corner! When it gets cold outside we turn up the thermostat and curl up in front of the fire in our favorite blanket but all of this heat can reap havoc on our skin. While turning up the heat can give you a warm and cozy feeling, it can also dehydrate the skin leaving it dry, itchy, flaky, red and in some instances even crack. Indoor heating is necessary to prevent us from feeling like we live in an igloo but it acts like a gigantic blow-dryer throughout the entire home. (Think about the purpose of a blow-dryer for your hair.) Since you can’t totally forgo Kristin Malone Spa Therapyheated comfort, there are some things you can do to make your skin healthy, hydrated and looking great.

1. Heal from the inside. You should start by making sure you are healthy from the inside since organs like the kidneys and liver can have more to do with the health of your skin than anything you put on it. The most important thing you can do is drink plenty of water. If you are not a huge fan of H2O, flavor enhanced waters and juices are good ways to hydrate. Soup is another good source of water (and oh, so good on a cold winter night) but just make sure that the sodium content is not too high. Remember that drinks containing caffeine and alcohol do not count toward water consumption since they are diuretics and actually leech water from the body. You may want to up your consumption on days when you will be consuming these beverages. Also make sure you are eating a well-balanced diet. I’m not saying you can’t enjoy pizza and wings while watching the game, just make sure you get plenty of the foods that contribute to a healthy body and skin. Fruits and vegetables contain an array of vitamins and minerals and also have a high moisture content. Foods containing EFA’s are also important to the health of your skin, essential fatty acids can not be manufactured by the body so we must eat foods containing them to keep our cells healthy and functioning properly. Statistically 99% of Americans do not get enough omega 3 fatty acids so here is a list of good sources: Fish especially Salmon, flaxseed, walnuts, soy and canola oil, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds and leafy green vegetables.

2. Turn down the heat. As I stated in the beginning, the heat in your home can be treacherous for your skin but that’s not where it stops. Your car is another place where heat can be very hard on the skin. Many people like to aim the hot air vents directly onto their face especially on a very cold day. Fight the urge to do this since the prolonged exposure to heat (or cold) can cause capillaries to break down and if the exposure is repeated enough it can lead to skin conditions like Rosacea. Use your floor vents, heat rises anyway and it wont take long to heat the whole car. Another place to keep the heat down is in your shower or bath. Staying in the concentrated water of a shower or bath that is too hot and too long can rupture the lipid barrier and severely reduce the moisture in your skin. Instead, use warm water and limit the amount of time you stay in.

3. Bring in the humidity. A humidifier will restore moisture to the dry air that your heating system leaves you with. Several placed around Kristin Malone Spa Therapyyour home will have the best effect but placing one in the areas you spend the most time, like next to your bed, will make a difference too. If you can stand how funny it looks, placing bowls of water around the house can produce a little moisture in the air as the water evaporates.

4. Increase moisturization. People with all skin types, even oily, may find that they need to increase the amount and type of moisturizer they use. A thicker, oil-based moisturizer especially at night will help to combat dry winter skin, just make sure that the product is non-comedogenic meaning that it will not clog pores. Also, in certain climates you need to watch out for products containing humectants which pull water out of one side and give it to the other. If there is no moisture in the air they will pull it out of the skin and it will evaporate off. Humectants work better in a humid climate. If you need an extra kick, a moisturizing mask can intensify hydration and help your skin perform better.

Following even a few of these tips will leave you with healthy and hydrated skin all season long. Consult your Aesthetician or Dermatologist for any persistent problems and remember that even though the days are shorter, the suns rays are just as dangerous so don’t forget to wear SPF every day.

Happy WInter – Kristin Malone

 

Could this mark be Skin Cancer? October 25, 2010

Filed under: General Health — Kristin Malone Spa Therapy @ 8:29 pm

During the course of a Facial or Massage treatment, I have some clients ask me if a mark on their skin could be Skin Cancer. My simple answer is always “When in doubt, see your Dermatologist!” A visit with a Dermatologist is something we should all be doing once a year anyway, especially if you have fair skin or have had a severe burn at any time in your life. Prepare for your visit by noting any moles, bumps, tags or any marks on the skin that you would like to make sure get diagnosed by your doctor. If you choose to have elective removal of something from your skin for vanity reasons or to prevent it from becoming cancerous, your Dermatologist can usually burn it off with nitrogen with little to no scar. However, if something looks suspect, you should have it cut or scraped off to be biopsied. More often than not it will turn out to be nothing but there is no harm in being safe and finding out. Pre- Cancers and Cancers caught in the beginning stages are much easier to treat and have higher survival rates.

When monitoring existing moles and growths on the skin, a good rule of thumb is to follow the ABC’s of Skin Cancer. A is for Asymmetry – If one side is not equal to the other this is a very suspicious sign. B is for Border – If a mole’s border is irregular, it is more likely to be Cancerous or Pre-Cancerous. C is for Color – A variation in the color of the mole is cause for concern. D is for Diameter – Any mole or growth that is greater in size than a pencil eraser should be considered suspicious. E is for Elevation – Be suspicious when a mole or growth is elevated or raised from the skin. E also stands for Evolution – Keep a close eye on all moles and growths because they can change or evolve over time and these changes can be cause for concern. Play it safe and have anything that is questionable examined by your M.D.

For more information on Skin Cancer, check out the Skin Cancer Foundation website at http://www.skincancer.org

To find a Dermatologist in your area, log onto the American Academy of Dermatology website http://www.aad.org/findadermKristin Malone Spa Therapy

Your best defense is to perform self checks on a regular basis and to be aware of changes in your skin.

Keep your skin healthy and beautiful – Kristin Malone

 

WELCOME TO MY BLOG! September 16, 2010

Filed under: Facials,General Health,Massage,Waxing — Kristin Malone Spa Therapy @ 4:44 am

Kristin Malone Spa Therapy

The purpose of this blog is to educate people in spa therapy.  Massage, Facials, General Health, Body Treatments and Waxing.  I am very excited to cover all these topics with helpful hints, suggestions, tips and more!  Please feel free to comment and send any suggestions for topics or discussions.   This is just the beginning!

Kristin Malone