Posts tagged 'wellness'

Honey Ginger Tea & DIY Recipe

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About a month ago, my mom bought a jar of Assi Honey Ginger Tea and told me that my aunt raved about the health and beauty benefits of ginger tea. I’m a big fan of tea in general but I’m not always consistent about drinking tea everyday. I really like the flavor of this tea and there has been some noticeable difference. This tea comes in a jar and it looks like a jam. Basically, you add a tablespoon of the tea to hot water and mix it well. It tastes the best when it’s warm. My mom and I finished this big jar in about 2 weeks. Now we’ve switched to making this tea on our own using fresh ginger and honey.

Here’s a little bit of background info on the benefits of ginger tea:

  • Lower the chances of indigestion
  • Soothes pain, menstrual cramps, headache, and inflammation
  • Prevents nausea, cold, and flu
  • Clears the skin using its Vitamin C and antibacterial properties
  • Contains antioxidants to prevent aging

You can read more about it here.

Obviously, some of these benefits are long-term effects and don’t show immediately results. But I have noticed a difference in reducing menstrual cramps and preventing nausea. Last week, I was sick with a nasty virus and it left me stuck in bed for a couple of days. I experienced nausea, dizziness, and excessive sweating. But drinking this tea has helped me to recover quite quickly.

To make this tea at home, simply boil a pot of water and add some chopped ginger and a bit of honey so that the tea doesn’t taste too spicy. I usually make some concentrated tea and put it in a large jar. You can store it in the fridge for a few days. When I want to drink it, I would dilute the concentrated tea and heat it up in the microwave. It is best to consume ginger tea in the morning since the spice can really wake you up and the tea helps with digestion throughout the rest of the day.

I hope you’ll give this a try!

-Karen

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Getting Your Body & Mind Ready for Finals Week

Hi guys! If you are a student like me, then you know that finals week is approaching quickly. I’m going to share some tips on how to prepare for exams and maintain your sanity during this crazy time of the year. Sometimes I feel like this type of posts are more of a pep talk for myself, but I hope you’ll find something useful!

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Study Tips:

Note: I was a science major in college so whatever I say probably applies to science courses more than humanities courses.

  • Start early! I really mean it. Start studying at least 2 weeks before your exam to allow enough time to go through all the material. I know it’s really hard to start studying for the final exam while you still have other assignments due. But start small by spending 15 minutes per night reviewing and then gradually increase that amount of time as it gets closer to the exam.
  • For concepts that you have to memorize, write them all out (by hand if possible) and study them everyday before the exam. I usually write out a long version first, and then create a condensed version to pinpoint all the crucial points.
  • For classes that you have to solve problems (such as genetics, chemistry, physics, math), learn the concepts first, identify different types of problems, do practice problems, and summarize how you should approach each type of problems. Make a list of the step-by-step procedure if the material isn’t too theoretical.
  • Do practice exams and time yourself! Unfortunately, not all professors are willing to provide those….


Take Care of Your Body:

  • Eat healthy, snack often. I don’t know about you, but I get hungry really easily when I study! My favorite snacks while studying are: Greek yogurt with granola and nuts, mixed fruit bowl (I suggest chopping up the fruit right after a meal and put them in a Tupperware. Trust me, if you are too lazy to chop/peel fruit when you are full, you won’t do it when you are hungry.), chips & guac, and dark chocolate (can’t live without my dark chocolate :P).
  • Get some rest. I know it’s much easier said than done but make sleep a priority. Sleep at least 6 hours per night. Being well rested makes studying easier.
  • Stay (somewhat) physically active. Time is tight but try to exercise/play sports twice a week and take walks on the other days.
  • Drink lots of water, don’t drink too much coffee. Although I love my daily cup of coffee, I usually can’t stand the taste of coffee during finals week because I’m so tired of the taste. I like to drink green tea when I’m stressed because I find it to be very calming. I normally just use whole leaf green tea and add some honey in there.
  • Use a sheet mask 1-2 times a week. Stress is a major cause of dull skin. Sheet masks are easy to put on and remove. Plus you can keep doing your work while you have the mask on.


Positive Mindset:

  • It’s natural to get overwhelmed but don’t stress too much. Breakdown your larger tasks into smaller bits and you’ll get more done than you expect. I love making lists so I depend on my Todoist app to keep me on top of things.
  • Don’t be too hard on yourself if you slack off for a little bit. Just pick yourself up and focus on your work afterwards. Get rid of distractions such as electronics. It’s too bad that the SelfControl app doesn’t work in OS X Mavericks. Now I gotta exercise real self-control :P
  • Change your study/work environment so you don’t get too comfortable. For example, rotate between studying at the library, coffee shop, your desk, dining table, etc.
  • Listen to instrumental music. I’ve been really enjoying the Study Music Project, created by a current medical student. You can listen to his music here on his YouTube channel.
  • If you are soooo stressed that you feel like you are on the verge of a mental breakdown, stop what you are doing and take a break! Spend an hour watching TV, reading, drawing, baking, napping, or whatever that helps you to relax. Sometimes you need to get your mind off your work so you can approach it with a new attitude later.
  • Resist the urge to online shop. I have this bad habit of really wanting to online shop whenever I’m stressed out, but I end up regretting most of those purchases. To deal with this, I have 2 solutions: 1) create a Pinterest board of the things you want instead of actually buying them, 2) write down “I saved $____ today by practicing self-control” on a slip of paper and put it in a jar. I know they are kinda silly but they work!

Phew, you finally reached the end of the post! I wish you all the best of luck with your final exams! Hang in there!

-Karen

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Ginseng Green Tea Recipe

During the summer time, one of the favorite beverages is the green tea. Today I’ll show you how I like to make my tea.

A little bit of scientific background: Green tea comes from the plant Camellia sinensis, which is rich in polyphenols, a type of antioxidant. Antioxidants neutralizes free radicals and help to prevent cell and tissue damage (anti-aging). The flavonoids in green tea are natural anti-inflammatory compounds that have shown to reduce the risk of heart disease and cancer.

Personally, I prefer using loose leaf tea. I recently started adding another ingredient, ginseng. Ginseng is a root that has many health benefits, including:

  • physical/mental health stimulant
  • weight control (appetite suppressant)
  • relieving menstrual cramps.

It’s important to use ginseng in moderation. For tea, chop up the ginseng and use 1 tbsp of ginseng per 1 cup of water. I’d suggest purchasing ginseng in the form of small pre-cut pieces or powder. It’s really difficult to cut ginseng roots so it’s better to leave the cutting up to the manufacturer.

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Instructions:

  • boil the water
  • add green tea and ginseng into a cup/teapot
  • add hot water into the cup
  • let the tea and ginseng steep
  • remove the ginseng after a few minutes
  • lastly and this is optional, serve the tea over ice

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I hope you enjoyed this simple recipe! This is a really easy way to flush out the toxins in our bodies and improve the overall skin complexion. I usually make a pot of tea in the morning so I can drink it throughout the day. I’m not the best when it comes to drinking lots of water, but making this tea helps. In the next few weeks, I’ll be posting a few different DIY green tea mask recipes using the tea leaves from this beverage. Be on the lookout for these effective and affordable beauty masks!

-Karen

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