All posts by Christine

Organic Chocolate Children’s Advent Calendar

The countdown to the festive season has arrived and the build-up to Christmas is often more exciting than Christmas day itself. This is particularly true for children because this is on December 1st that many advent calendars begin. Advent calendars are covered with little windows corresponding to each day of the month of up to the 24th. of December. Each little window opens with a flap to reveal an image often related to Christmas tradition but nowadays, they can also reveal a nice little chocolate piece and this is why children are so excited each day to wake up and open their advent calendar.

Since the festive season is already linked with an increased intake of food and sugary stuff that lower the immune system and create a build-up of toxins in the body, why not limit the damages by giving advent calendars packed with organic goodies to avoid additional intake of chemicals.

Organic chocolate means that the cacao and sugar used are produced with chemical-free methods using biodynamic and organic fertilizers so being free of pesticides, chemical fertilizers, herbicides and other things, it is not only better for our health but it is also a way of protecting the health of the farmers who are less exposed to chemicals and to protect the environment and the ecosystem by using alternative means of production. So by doing one small part, everyone wins. And at the same time, why not give fun facts to our children about organic farming so that they can learn about the environment and health-friendly food. Tiki the Penguin can help!

You can find advent calendars with organic chocolate in any supermarket or in some chocolate shops. Alternatively, you can find some on Amazon such as Montezuma’s – Organic Milk Chocolate Children’s Advent Calendar or Montezuma’s Dark Chocolate Advent Calendar or even Montezuma’s Organic Milk Chocolate Advent Calendar

Enjoy and Happy December!

Organic men skincare by ManOrganic – Black Friday 15% off – code FRIDAY

ManOrganic offers a refined selection of natural and organic male grooming products in one convenient place. Shipping is free on all organic skin care and body care orders over €15 worldwide. Get 15% OFF EVERYTHING (excluding gift vouchers and items on sale) with the checkout code: FRIDAY – until December 2nd, 2017.

A wide variety of Christmas gifts are available from as low as €15 to introduce friends and family members to these amazing organic products that can be shipped everywhere in the world. You can browse through the Gift Sets section to get more ideas or the 100% organic skin care page to discover the power of plants! They also offer organic health care products including organic massage oil, organic products for aches and pains, organic supplements and organic anti-aging products.

manorganic organic free shipping

ManOrganic is the one stop shop for organic products for men.


Oil pulling technique or swishing with organic oils

When speaking of dental and oral hygiene, what comes to mind includes brushing teeth and flossing to help prevent bacteria from accumulating in the mouth.
However, one ancient and simple technique that is too often overlooked is oil pulling technique or swishing with organic oils in the mouth for 15 to 20 minutes to purify not only the mouth but the entire body. Oil pulling organic oils is an oral hygiene method that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine since 3000-5000 years. Oil pulling technique is also called Kavala or Gandusha and is said to traditionally help with tooth decay, inflamed or bleeding gums, and because it is a powerful detoxifying or cleansing method, people have reported improvements with their overall well being.

Dental and mouth hygiene is very important for the overall health and wellbeing. When the teeth and gums are healthy, this is usually felt in the body as well. The mouth is the first point of entry for bacteria that are kept at bay thanks to saliva and oral care. However, predisposition or poor oral hygiene lead to cavities or gum diseases which makes it easier for the bacteria to spread and enter the bloodstream and is often detectable by halitosis or bad breath (although this is not always the only reason and professional advice should be seeked). When bacteria have reached the blood, they release toxins and many ailments can surface including migraines, headaches, arthritic pain, allergies, respiratory infections, diabetes that is poorly controlled, cardiovascular disease (clogged arteries, blood clots), heart attacks, strokes, and even preterm births because the toxins released by those bacteria can reach the placenta.

Oil pulling technique is a simple well-being technique and it is best done gargling with organic oils first thing in the morning and before going to bed. The commonly used organic oils include organic safflower oil, organic coconut oil, organic sesame oil (light color one, also known as the queen of oils) or organic olive oil. The principle is that the oil will pull the bacteria so it is very important to spit it out after swishing to ensure not to swallow back any toxins. The mouth can also be rinsed with warm water and gargling with sea salt water afterwards will amplify the antibacterial effect before brushing the teeth as usual.

Oil pulling is a strong detoxifying technique so some side effects can be felt especially at the beginning including pimples, headaches, bitter taste in the mouth for a few days. Everyone reacts differently so just observe how you feel afterwards.

From my humble experience, after swishing for 20 minutes each day for 2 weeks, I noticed whiter teeth, no more cracks in the tongue and an increase of energy. Swishing can be done while showering and getting ready for bed or while watching a show on tv so that 20 minutes will not look so dreadful.

Here is our suggestion of Organic Raw Virgin Coconut Oil 500ml or organic safflower oil .

Can you cook with extra virgin olive oil?

When chosing a cooking oil, it is important to avoid certain vegetable oils such as walnut oil or flaxseed oil. However, many people wonder if extra virgin olive oil belongs to the category of oils that should be avoided. So can you cook with extra virgin olive oil?

To determine if an oil can be used for cooking, it is necesssary to know its “smoking point”. The smoking point of an oil is the point right before the oil starts boiling to put it in a simple way or the peak at which a chemical break down of the oil starts to take place and becomes harmful to health, because of the loss of nutritional content and the creation of carcinogens. The boiling point of water is 100ºC but the smoking point of an oil depends on each type of oil. The higher the smoking point is, the safer it is to use that specific oil for cooking. As a reference point, deep frying occurs at 190ºC so an oil with a smoking point below this temperature will not be suitable for cooking.

However, it is also important to define why the smoking point of an oil is high. The smoking point of an oil is determined partly by its free fatty acidity or FAA and the lower the FAA, the higher the smoking point will be. The free fatty acidity content on the other hand can be very low or close to zero for different reasons:

– the oil has been refined, meaning it went through a chemical process
– the oil is pure and of high quality such as extra virgin olive oil and is naturally low in FFA

The smoking point of olive oil varies from source to source because each manufacturer claims their oil to be the best but the smoking point also depends on the type of virgin olive oil. Virgin olive oil is obtained by a mechanical process of the olive fruit and does not undergo any treatment or alteration. It is important to differentiate olive oils and according to the International Olive Oil Council, the definition of olive oil is as follows:

“Olive oil is the oil obtained solely from the fruit of the olive tree (Olea europaea L.), to the exclusion of oils obtained using solvents or re-esterification processes and of any mixture with oils of other kinds. It is marketed in accordance with the following designations and definitions: Virgin olive oils are the oils obtained from the fruit of the olive tree solely by mechanical or other physical means under conditions, particularly thermal conditions, that do not lead to alterations in the oil, and which have not undergone any treatment other than washing, decantation, centrifugation and filtration. Virgin olive oils fit for consumption as they are include:

Extra virgin olive oil
– Virgin olive oil
– Ordinary virgin olive oil”

Extra virgin olive oil has a free fatty acidity ranging from 0 to 0.8% and as mentioned above, the lower the FFA, the higher the smoking point. Also, the higher the quality of the extra virgin olive oil, the lower the FAA.

On the other hand, olive oils not fit for consumption include refined olive oils that have been chemically treated, olive pomace oils that are extracted from the pulp using solvents or pure olive oils that are a mix of refined oils and extra virgin olive oils. The FFA of a refined olive oil is around 0.3% so is also low but the oil is not as natural and healthy as the extra virgin olive oil while having a similar ranging FFA.

A high quality extra virgin olive oil’s smoking point varies between 185ºC to 210ºC which makes its smoking point slightly below or higher than the deep frying temperature of 190 degree celsius so cooking food at lower temperatures which typically vary between 140ºC to 160ºC with extra virgin olive oil is actually fine and will give a nice taste to the dish. Extra virgin olive oil is also rich in monounsaturated fats (around 70%) and the ideal cooking oil should be rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (called also unsaturated fats or good fats versus saturated fats that raise cholesterol, increase heart disease rate and much more). This is why oils such as refined coconut oil, palm oil, peanut oil, even sunflower seed oil should be avoided. They may have a high smoking point but their content of saturated fats make them unhealthy, even dangerous. Another good alternative is organic avocado oil also rich in monounsaturated fats and with a smoking point of 271ºC.

You can easily find Biona Organic Extra Virgin Italian Olive Oil, 1l online.

Egyptian magic cream

Egyptian magic cream is multi-purpose healing balm 100% natural. It can be used to soothe dry skin (body and face) or as a massage balm, on dry lips, for anti-aging and anti-wrinkles purposes, for eczema-prone skins, to reduce stretch marks and even insect bites. It has been on the market for years and is now endorsed by celebrities such as Kate Hudson or Madonna for its efficiency. Other usage include application on baby skin to replace mineral oil-based products, application on nails and cuticles to protect and soften and application on hair for a lustrous shine.

It is very easy to use by warming a small amount in the palm of the hands before applying on skin. It gets absorbed very easily and leaves the skin smooth and supple.

The key ingredients of the Magic cream are olive oil, beeswax, honey, bee pollen, royal jelly and bee propolis.

You can find Egyptian Magic Cream 118ml. It costs only about 30 Euros for 60ml and can last for months since only a small quantity is needed to do its magic!

Enjoy and send us your feedback 🙂

Organic pine nuts

Organic pine nuts are edible kernels extracted from pine cones that grow on specific pine tree species. The quantity of kernels produced by a cone will depend greatly on the altitude at which the tree grows because little or too much humidity will force the tree to abort the pine cone growth and hence the seeds growth. An ideal altitude seems to range between 2000m to 2500m although in certain climates, the pine trees can produce cones at much lower altitudes. pine coneThe pine seeds or nuts are contained within a hard shell present underneath the pine cone scales. Pine nuts are very difficult to extract and require a full process that can last up to 18 months. The cone needs to reach maturity to be harvested of course, then dried until it fully opens to gather the seeds and the seeds need to be extracted from their own hard shell. pine nuts This explains why pine nuts can be expensive but also given the fact that they have a short shell life and can become rancid pretty quickly unless they are stored in a dry place.

Health benefits of pine nuts

Pine nuts are not considered nuts but seeds and can sometimes be found under the name of pignon or pignalias. People have been eating pine nuts for centuries and they were once considered as an aphrodisiac in Ancient Greek civilization where they were preserved in honey. They are now included in culinary dishes including salad toppings, sauces, meat but they are also delicious as is. Their health properties lie in their high content of protein which is ideal for people who do not eat meat. They are very rich in good fats including mono-unsaturated fatty acids, polyunsaturated fatty acids and linoleic acid (omega 6). Linoleic acid forms part of our cell membranes and should be included in regular diet especially if combined with Omega 3. They also contain Vitamin A, B (1, 3, 5, 6), Vitamin E, fiber, zinc, magnesium, potassium, iron and manganese. They are said to contribute to lowering the bad cholesterol, preventing cardio-vascular disease (thanks to the good fats), reducing the appetite and helping with weight loss. Also, they can contribute to skin and hair health because of the natural occurring fats.

Organic pine nuts should be favored because the pine trees grow on organic crops. Also, some pine nuts can have a bitter flavor which should not happen with organic pine nuts. However, just like for any other organic products, you should always check the origin of the product to ensure that it is truly organic.

Organic safflower oil for weight loss

Safflower is a plant belonging to the sun flower family with yellow, red or orange flowers. The plant is 30 cm to 150 cm of height and can resist both very dry climates or intense colds. Traditionally used to produce dyes, the safflower plant produces seeds used to make oil.

Animal fats and vegetable fats

There is a distinction between animal fats and vegetable fats. Animal fats are rich in saturated fats and are therefore to be eaten in moderation. They are often the cause of increase in weight, bad cholesterol and cardio-vascular diseases. As for vegetable fats, they can result in the same complications if they are chemically treated and heated because they also contain saturated fats. On the other hand, an oil that is virgin, cold-pressed and from vegetable origin is rich in polyunsaturated and mono-unsaturated fats and will not induce the same problems since those fats are actually indispensable for proper function, nourishment and protection of the human body. A cold-pressed oil extraction is done without pre-heating of the source it is extracted from (seeds, grains, fruits).

Health benefits of organic safflower oil

There are many sources of good fats but cold-pressed organic safflower oil is extremely interesting for its therapeutic use because of its chemical composition; it is indeed very rich in polyunsaturated and mono-unsaturated fats and particularly in Omega 6 and Vitamin E. Among all the vegetable oils, safflower oil is the richest in linoleic acid, an essential fatty acid that should be included in human diet on a daily basis for good health since it is one main constituent of human cell membranes and it is valuable to strengthen the immune system. A lack of linoleic acid can result in skin disorders such as dermatitis, inflammation, acne, dry skin, dry hair and even hair loss.

Safflower oil can be used internally as part of the diet and is particularly recommended for weight loss. It is also recommended to people suffering from type 2 diabetes not only to lose weight but also to reduce blood sugar and safflower is being studied to produce insulin. It can help as well to regularize menstrual cycles and has natural anti-inflammatory properties. However, because safflower oil is very rich in linoleic acid but contains less mono-unsaturated fats, it should be taken in alternation with other oils or food sources rich in mono-unsaturated fats to benefit from a balanced diet and give the body all the nutrients needed.

Topically, safflower oil used in massages can help reduce muscular tensions and muscular pains, rheumatism conditions and intestinal disorders. As mentioned above, it is also an excellent oil against skin disorders such as eczema, psoriasis, inflammation, acne, dry skin and even dry hair. It can be added in the bath to really penetrate the skin and the hair and leave it soft and nourished. Safflower oil is odorless and can be mixed with few drops of favorite organic essential oils to make a relaxing and therapeutic bath.

Organic safflower oil can found at any local health store or online Naissance Safflower Oil 250ml Certified Organic 100% Pure like any other organic products.

John Masters Organics Blood Orange and Vanilla Body Wash

John Masters Organics is a luxury beauty line that focuses on creating organic beauty products that treat the skin and the body gently and the Earth with respect. John Masters started making organic products 20 years ago using herbal remedies and organic essential oils and achieved to create more than 30 luxurious organic products that are renowned around the world. It is after his career skyrocketed as a talented hair dresser that he developed his passion for organic products, noticing that all the products used in salons were packed with chemicals that could only be hazardous for employees and clients health alike. In 1991, he formulated his first organic hair product that was only the beginning of a long story.

Part of his organic line of products is the John Masters Organics Blood Orange and Vanilla Body Wash, a creamy and rich body gel that when foaming, gently washes away dirt and oil while leaving the skin smooth and nourished. The organic blood orange and vanilla body wash is strictly made with botanicals and the key ingredients include bourbon vanilla oil responsible for the amazing aroma, blood orange peel oil that is uplifting and stimulating while promoting collagen production and grapefruit essential oil that balances oily skin but also is a skin decongestant and it helps to break down adipose tissues in people with cellulite problems. This body wash gel texture is due to the content of aloe vera gel. It also contains milk thistle that acts as an antioxidant, arnica and chamomile that have natural anti-inflammatory properties, calendula flower extract and borage oil that are beneficial to dry skin, vegetable glycerin that is moisturizing and corn and coconut that are used as surfactants (cleaning agents).

The organic body wash is so soft to the skin that it is suitable for all types of skin including baby skins and can be used to wash the body but also the face.

We have tried it and besides being a 100% organic product, the amazing smell was really a plus. Unfortunately, because of the use of essential oils in the product that are volatile, the aroma tends to go away from the skin pretty quickly which is too bad because you would want to keep this smell on you all day. However, John Master Organics also carries a the blood orange and vanilla body milk John Masters Organics blood orange and vanilla body milkto moisturize the skin right after the shower and it has more or less the same amazing smell than the body wash while lasting much longer on the skin.

To buy the John Masters Organics Blood Orange and Vanilla Body Wash, click here and enjoy!

Natural and organic deodorant aluminium-free

A good hygiene is important, one for our own health but also for the sake of others because let’s face it, nobody likes BO so we use deodorant to attenuate body smell or antiperspirant to block it altogether. Body odors are created from the natural body sweat that in itself is odorless but when it comes in contact with the skin becomes fermented by bacteria, thus creating this unpleasant smell. The hair that are naturally present where sweat is more abundant such as under the armpits prevent the colonization of bacteria that are responsible for body odors. However, we have taken the habit of shaving for aesthetic purposes so when sweating, body odors are even more prominent. The sweat function varies with each human being and so do natural body odors but to prevent them, we have developed a hygiene routine using antiperspirants that stops the sweat glands from working and thus stops perspiration. In theory, it sounds great but in reality, it is far from being healthy because sweat glands have important functions. Indeed, firstly, they help the body control its temperature. When the body temperature rises, sweat is produced and is evaporated on the skin’s surface through sweat pores to cool down the temperature. Secondly, it helps the body get rid of waste materials such as urea or lactic acid that are toxic.

The first antiperspirant formulation was designed in the 40’s and since then has been improved to work even more effectively, meaning that it acts even more strongly on blocking the natural body function that is sweating. Additionally, antiperspirants contain chemicals and aluminium that are absorbed by the skin to enter the body and that over time can create heavy health complications. Besides creating skin irritations and allergies in some people, some studies have linked the use of antiperspirants with Alzheimer’s disease and breast cancer in others. A good way to check how toxic is a specific antiperspirant is to consult the Cosmetic Safety Database whose role is to test cosmetic products and assess whether they are safe or not.

Natural deodorant for a safe hygiene

The solution is not to give up on hygiene or not to shave but on the contrary, to be even more hygienic and use safe alternatives that will leave the body performs its natural functions while keeping us even cleaner. First, a shower morning and night should be part of the daily routine. It may sound funny but with the hectic pace of life people are going through, this is not a common practice. If you check at your work, you can easily notice that some people did not hop in the shower before cloaking in. Then, it is important to use a natural deodorant that does not only contain fragrance to cover body odors but that actually performs natural anti-bacterial activities. Since the bacteria are the cause of odors, by stopping their growth and killing them, body odors are automatically prevented. Natural deodorants are usually made with specific organic essential oils that are extremely efficient in killing bacteria while smelling good or with natural alcohol that is antiseptic, baking soda or salts. Because when switching to a all natural deodorant, the body can perform its natural functions once more, we may experience an increase in sweating but this is temporary and all we need to do is to reapply during the day. Also, the smell of essential oils can also be beneficial to the mood or state of mind so you get 2 products in one 🙂 A natural deodorant may not appeal to everyone because it does not have this commercial and synthetic fragrances that we have been accustomed to. However, when we get in touch with our body again, we become more sensitive and tend to appreciate these natural smells much more because we know unconsciously they have beneficial effects on our health.

You can find a natural or organic deodorant at your local health store or online but as usual, when buying organic products, always double check the ingredients to ensure it does not contain any chemicals. You can also formulate your own natural and aluminium free deodorant. For example, while not using some organic aloe vera gel and mix it with a few drops of organic tea tree essential oil or organic lavender essential oil. Both of these organic essential oils have very powerful anti-bacterial effects and will guarantee an odorless day!

We can also suggest the lemon and sage organic deodorant by The Organic Pharmacy. jasmine grapefruit organic deodorant ErbavivaThis is an amazing product that not only smells good but works well and even wake you up in the morning. natural deodorant powderAn other alternative includes the Himalayan salt natural deodorant powder that only contains sodium bicarbonate, apple cider vinegar and grapefruit seed extract. You can view other organic deodorants here.

Try it and enjoy 🙂

Top organic beauty products for Christmas and special coupon code

The organic apothecary LoveLula have just launched their autumn/winter catalogue of new organic beauty products and this is an amazing Christmas gift guide for friends and family. You can order the calalogue on their website or view it online to shop for the best organic gift.

If you find something you like and of course you will and spend at least £20.00, use the coupon code AKIN to receive an AKIN Organic Lavender and Anthyllis Intensive Moisture Leave-In Conditioner for FREE. Only the first 100 customers can benefit from this offer so hurry up!

At LoveLula, you can find gifts for every budget, as low as £10 and choose from more than 1200 organic products including organic skin products and organic body products that are good for the skin, the hair and good for the Earth.

Enjoy 🙂