Natural skin care products are better for your overall health

In my quest to help my skin age well (because it will age!) I’ve tried everything including insanely expensive skin care products, making my natural products using herbs and essential oils, and every product in-between.

The one thing I learned and declared without hesitation ─ natural skin care products work the best, and it makes sense. The best we can hope for from a cleanser, toner or moisturizer is that they will help support the skin as it does its job, it is designed to do. Just like our hormones, the best thing we can do is support them with natural products and let them do their job.

tumblr_mxss8wTGhd1rk7qxgo1_500I did some research to get a better understanding of the skin and how it works. The skin has a built in system that is always attempting to regulate its moisture. When we interfere with the skins function, we are making things worse ─ which I have done to my skin thinking it needed more moisture, when in fact, I was inhibiting its natural function and weighing my skin down.

When I stopped using heavier moisturizers that contained oils, my skin looked and felt firmer and fuller. When I see products labeled “For mature skin”, or “dry skin” or a ridiculous marketing tactic of late, for menopause skin, I now realize how misunderstood moisturizing is. We don’t want to replace the skins function; rather, we want to support it and strengthen its natural process ─ just like our hormones!

Regardless of its’ beautiful skin or balanced hormones, it all starts at the same place ─ our general health and what’s going on inside our body.

Eating a clean and healthy diet, getting daily exercise, being mindful, not smoking and not drinking in excess will all show in your skin and predict how well your skin ages and how well your hormones function.

Stay tuned. I’ll be sharing more on skin care!

Female Viagra & Sexuality

Last August the FDA approved a new drug “Addyi” to treat low libido. The drug was specifically approved to treat perimenopausal women not yet in menopause.

The drug is meant to be used by women with no existing medical or psychiatric conditions, never had a previous problem with sexual desire or low libido and her low libido is not due to relationship problems or the effect of other medications. Addyi users must reframe from drinking any alcohol because of the severe interaction.

The basic overview is our physiology and psychological status at the moment can either perk up or muffle an orgasm.
The basic overview is our physiology and psychological status at the moment can either perk up or muffle an orgasm.

From the very beginning, Addyi showed little improvement in sexual desire or satisfying events and also showed worrisome side effects such as dangerous and abnormally low blood pressure, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, trouble falling asleep or staying asleep, depression and a constant feeling of drowsiness. I was surprised to learn that one out of three women taking Addyi experience these side effects.

Addyi is a serotonin 1A receptor agonist and a serotonin 2A receptor antagonist that affect brain receptors. In other words, the drug is an antidepressant and anti-anxiety medication, and when the FDA approved the drug, they stated that the mechanism by which the drug improves sexual desire and related distress is not known.


Relax, enjoy the moment and dwell on the beauty of life.
Relax, enjoy the moment and dwell on the beauty of life.

Addyi is also something that needs to be taken every day and comes with a black-box warning stating that consuming the drug with alcohol may lead to severely low blood pressure and fainting and taking the drug along with certain medications may also be dangerous.


Sexuality is different for everyone and with age what’s important in a relationship and intimacy also changes. Low libido is not a disease that needs to be treated with anti-depressants or any drug for that matter.

Sometimes we find ourselves at a choice point and need to step out in a direction that feels more comfortable and we believe right for us as individuals rather then follow the crowd with the notion all women should be having orgasm’s that blow the roof off the house!

I love people who take bold action toward the change they want to see in themselves and if it’s increasing your libido and restoring harmony to your love life naturally and safely, here are a few strategies to keep in mind:

1. High levels of sugar in your bloodstream can turn off the gene that controls your sex hormones. Significantly reduce or eliminate sugar, especially high fructose sugars. Grains also convert to sugar, so it is best to keep them to a minimum.

flower hand2. Eat a healthy diet with plenty of greens and other colorful vegetables and high-quality proteins. This simple measure can have a profound influence on every area of your health, including your sex life.

3. Get adequate amounts of vitamin D; it increases testosterone levels, which may boost libido.

4. Exercising regularly can enhance your human growth hormone (HGH) production and libido.

5. Don’t smokelay down

6. Avoid drinking alcohol excessively.

7. Get restorative sleep. A well-rested body is more willing to engage in intimacy.

8. De-stress at the end of your day. Stress can dampen your libido and make sex the last thing on your mind.

9. Try Femmerol. 42% of the women in our clinical trial reported relief from low libido, and 47% reported relief from vaginal dryness.

The Art of Being

This March I’ll be celebrating my 64th birthday.

I’m comfortable with aging. I’m healthy, fit, and confident, no major complaints although it ‘d be good if someone handed me a big check!

There are a few things about aging that I find annoying. Fine lines and wrinkles, and a jawline less defined, the remnants of aches from years of skiing, biking, hiking and climbing mountains with the occasional crash landing.

pexels-photo-24746The outdoors has always been my gym, but these days I live more thoughtful of my body, reminding myself I have probably taken my lifetime quota of falls. I now run and do yoga/mat pilates, sometimes ride my bicycle, other than the seemingly unconscious behind steering wheels, they seem pretty harmless activities.

And then there is the reprising of memories mostly in my head of the wonderful, the sad and the unmentionable.

Nonetheless, I have so far lived a very blessed and full life that I’m extremely grateful. There is also something profoundly liberating about aging: an attitude hard earned. What once seemed important, I now hear my soul say to all things and people not worth mentioning; I’m too old for this, and I happily go about my day. There was a time when exasperations would knock me off my perch.

As I approach mid-60, I feel 30.

As a teenager and young woman, there was not a body part or feature that spared judgment. I still want thicker hair and thinner ankles, but one thing I’ve learned with age about beauty is that no one cares.
Somethings stay the same. In the depths of heartbreak, nothing feels right. I think I feel the loss more so now than ever before.

Family and friends, we love each other even more as we watch each other age.

Appreciation. I do appreciate my ankles and hair.
What torture we girls inflict upon ourselves.

In the past two years and three months I have moved twice. From NY to FL and from apt 104 to 208 in the same building. It was easier to move from NY to FL then it was to move one floor up.

Before moving to NY, my mother passed away, and I spent months cleaning out our family home of 60 years. My father never threw anything out because it was “still good.” My mother, on the other hand, put things away because “someday you may need it.” The challenge was finding it when it was necessary.

There was a book case in the den filled with photo albums and boxes of photos buried away in closets. I spent days sitting on the floor looking at photos that told the stories of time past.

There I was as an infant, first grade, graduations, my travels. After all those years spent in despair about my looks, I was now looking for someone who didn’t look so bad! Perhaps when I’m 80 and look at pictures of myself at 60 I will notice the same older, but a still beautiful woman.precision-nutrition-barefoot-running

The smiles, radiant youth, eyes that twinkle all reminded me of my nieces, so young and glowing, but doing the same thing, all girls do -angst over a spot on their skin or their hair.

I’m happy to have the body I have, it’s healthy and fit and gets me where I want to go. I no longer have a need for five and a half inch stilettos. Three inches is fine. Flats are better.

With age comes wisdom. I accept I can only control what goes on inside me; I can’t monitor the world around me. Faith and trust sustain my soul and hope.

My health was saved when I discovered the keys to healthy living and the importance of maintaining healthy hormones balances without HRT in any form.

Today, I continue my pursuit of maintaining my health and hormones and feminine self with herbs, food, exercise and mindfulness.

My quest continues to transform the hormone health of women with safe, natural means one at a time –beginning with you! If every woman just kept her eyes on the ball and followed through each swing, together we would all be healthier, happier and more resilient.

When I was getting divorced my mother gave me a card with the poem The Art of Adventure by Wilfred Peterson. I still have it. It’s about creating the life you envision and never allowing your dreams to die.
The philology applies to life, health, career and family ties.

nature-sunset-person-womanSomeone said by the time you are middle age; you have started over, and over again. It doesn’t matter if it is new health goals or career changes or relationships ups and downs. Resilience is the key to doing that.

One of the finer parts of aging are the relationships that ebb and flow through the years. Women bond with other women in unexpected ways. I’m so fortunate to have known a select few; we have been each other’s friend, buddy, pal and cohort in crime when needed. My two best girlfriend lost their lives to breast cancer, too soon, too young.

I’m not too old for desire or to love again; I never know who will enter into my life or when. It’s much easier to navigate anticipation and disappointment when you’ve had some experience.

I’ll take a pass on unconsciousness, self-absorption, rudeness and bad manners. I rather cozy up with a good book. I just can’t see the sense in squandering valuable time.

That’s my old soul speaking her mind.
I believe with each year comes opportunity. My new mantra is hopefully a goodbye to all that may be holding me back.
To health and beauty,

Beautiful Women by Erma Bombeck

Age 3: She looks at herself and sees a Queen.

Age 8: She looks at herself and sees Cinderella.

Age 15: She looks at herself and sees an Ugly Sister (Mum I can’t go to school looking like this!)

Age 20: She looks at herself and sees “too fat/too thin, too short/too tall, too straight/too curly”- but decides she’s going out anyway.

Age 30: She looks at herself and sees “too fat/too thin, too short/too tall, too straight/too curly” – but decides she doesn’t have time to fix it, so she’s going out anyway.

Age 40: She looks at herself and sees “clean” and goes out anyway.

Age 50: She looks at herself and sees “I am” and goes wherever she wants to go.

Age 60: She looks at herself and reminds herself of all the people who can’t even see themselves in the mirror anymore. Goes out and conquers the world.

Age 70: She looks at herself & sees wisdom, laughter and ability, goes out and enjoys life.

Age 80: Doesn’t bother to look.  Just puts on a purple hat and goes out to have fun with the world.

Healthy Corned Beef and Cabbage with Potatoes

I love this meal! Hardy, warm, gluten free and the best left-overs! I’m having family and friend over to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day and dig into some Corned Beef and Cabbage with Potatoes. I’d would also like to serve some good old fashion Irish Soda Bread but still haven’t found a good source for a gluten free version, and when I do I’ll let you know!
The recipe and introductory text below are from Irish Traditional Cooking by Darina Allen.

corned beefAlthough this dish is eaten less frequently nowadays in Ireland, for Irish expatriates it conjures up powerful nostalgic images of a rural Irish past. Originally it was a traditional Easter Sunday dinner. The beef, killed before the winter, would have been salted and could now be eaten after the long Lenten fast, with fresh green cabbage and floury potatoes. Our local butcher corns beef in the slow, old-fashioned way which, alas, is nowadays more the exception than the norm.

INGREDIENTS (serves 4-6)
4 lb corned brisket of beef
3 large carrots, cut into large chunks
6 to 8 small onions
1 teaspoon dry English mustard
large sprig fresh thyme and some parsley stalks, tied together
1 cabbage
salt and freshly ground pepper


Put the brisket into a saucepan with the carrots, onions, mustard and the herbs. Cover with cold water, and bring gently to a boil. Simmer, covered, for 2 hours. Discard the outer leaves of the cabbage, cut into quarters and add to the pot. Cook for a further 1 to 2 hours or until the meat and vegetables are soft and tender.

Serve the corned beef in slices, surrounded by the vegetables and cooking liquid. Serve with lots of floury potatoes and freshly made mustard.

Bon appetite!


Menopause Tips: Living in Rhythm

We live in a culture that idealizes youth and often conveys using hormone replacement treatments might slow the natural course of time, in spite of its known risks to women’s health. The idea of natural menopause is frequently all but ignored, and our culture is waging a war on the natural and inevitable process of moving forward with time and aging.

Being healthy is a practice just like anything else we participate in and a healthy menopause experience is within reach of every woman, menopause is a natural process you grow into ─ your body is built to experience the end of monthly cycles and go on living happily and healthfully on less estrogen and progesterone without submitting to harmful drug treatments such as HRT.ea870d_723ba6e5e89d4c88a498ef8f0848d5a1.jpg_srz_288_155_85_22_0.50_1.20_0.00_jpg_srz

Menopause is meant to be the perfect ending to our childbearing years, and if you live a healthy lifestyle you already know the effects of menopause are less noticeable when you are happy and healthy, then your body just moves through its process in rhythm with your chemistry and timetable.
food-healthy-vegetables-potatoes (1)Simple dietary and lifestyle changes can repair and renew how you feel and look. There’s no secret to Menopause; it ’s a natural and normal part of being a woman.

There seems to be an underlying fear of menopause because it’s associated with aging. As we mature our looks, and our body get devalued ─ as a society our relationship with menopause and aging is in crisis because we are told health and beauty are only related to individual images and limited to certain ages.

I have worked in the natural health industry for the past 25 years. I have been a researcher, a counselor, a businesswoman and the founder and CEO of Solutions for Women, the company behind Femmerol, a product that helps strengthen your system during the hormonal change. Over the course of the past quarter century I have learned a great deal about what our hormones need to be healthy, and in balance to work with our individual and unique natural rhythm.

All prescription hormone treatments are manufactured steroids intended to imitate what women produce naturally. Unfortunately, these products do more harm than good; they are unable to address the underlying causes of imbalance or restore healthy hormone functions. They may treat symptoms for the short term only, but at what price to your health? And because symptoms tend to return after treatment is stopped, how long do you want to prolong just managing symptom control?umbrella

There are fundamental principles of being healthy ─ eating fresh whole food, getting adequate physical exercise and using your God given power to choose wisely and well, think constructively about your health, your life, and the world, even on their worst days. Nurturing from the inside and outside is not something reserved for a day at the spa; it’s a way to live every day. It’s a way of loving who you are.

One of the best ways to establish hormone balance is to be your menopause expert, listen to your body and live in rhythm with your internal clock. Most of us live by rhythms that are not our own. Our days are shaped by the demands of our environment whether they come from the people we love, or our work or everyday life, and it creates a physical and mental tug of war between our rhythm and the needs of others. What I have learned over the years is that no matter how chaotic the day I can still come home to my internal rhythm.

If you are unhealthy or unhappy, don’t ignore it or surrender and give up. Investigate what is going on. If you are worried about the effects of menopause and post-menopause or aging, ask yourself why? Whose voice are you hearing when you think about menopausal and aging?

4 ways to get your groove back during Menopause

Most of us live by rhythms that are not our own. Our days are shaped by the demands of our environment whether they come from the people we love, or our work or everyday life, and it creates a physical and mental tug of war between our rhythm and the needs of others. What I have learned over the years is that no matter how chaotic the day I can still come home to my internal rhythm.

Here are four great ways to get your groove back during menopause.

Take care of the basics first ─ your outlook.

A phlegmatic temperament will give you the ability to think things through and envision your future, and to create a plan for the fulfillment of your goals. There is a part of us that loves routine and finds safety in it; it creates rhythm, consistency, and stability.

Exercise your Zen

In additional to physical exercise several times a week, schedule at least 25 minutes once a week in which your only activity is to sit comfortably in a quiet place and listen to your thoughts and feel your feelings. If you can do this more than once a week, that’s even better.59-years-old-grandma-fashion-model-yasmina-rossi-2__880

This practice will help you get in touch with what’s true for you, if you feel emotional simply let it emerge, crying is a healthy way to release stress and feel compassion for yourself. If the editors of Vogue Magazine are afraid of aging, that’s their problem!

Daily meditation 

waves of wellnessMeditation comes in many forms, and it’s different for everyone. It doesn’t mean you have to sit like a monk –or live like one. Meditation is a spiritual practice and one of the most powerful antidotes to chaos and fear. Meditation can be as simple as giving 15 seconds before a meal to thank you for anything that you are grateful for. Meditation can be a warm bath at the end of the day, and that is 20 minutes of pure bliss to be naturally warm and quiet and undisturbed, allowing the stress to melt away!

Meditation is the time you give yourself to be fully back in your body without outside or environmental stimulus. It has been said 20 minutes of meditation a day is ideal. My time is watching the sun come up with my cup of tea, it’s so quiet, I love it and my early morning jog sets me up mentally and emotionally for the day ahead.

The healing power of plants

Vegetables, fruits, culinary and medicinal herbs are the foundation of health.  Food and plant based medicine fall into a class known as adaptogens. They refer to nonspecific endocrine-regulating, immune modulating effects that help increase the body’s ability to adapt, adjust and maintain balance when faced with physical or emotional stress, such as the changes that happen with natural menopause and aging.healthy-people-woman-girl

In addition to eating a healthy well-balanced diet, medicinal herbal formulations such as Femmerol can be considered tonics for the whole body because they strengthen resistance to negative influences and limit the consequences on our physical and emotional wellbeing. Your goal should be to strengthen your hormonal system and keep it strong your whole life, at every age. Your balance is unique to you, and frankly, there is no drug on the market that will ever know your body as well as you do ─ and know what it is you needs to heal.

What do you think? Sound off with your opinions in the comments below.