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Holiday Gift Guide!

Posted on December 5, 2017 at 10:30 AM Comments comments (0)


The holidays are about spending time with loved ones and showing our love and appreciation for them through gifts. These gifts should be a reflection of what we hope for them in the future (wellness, health, prosperity) and also full of love and thoughtfulness for the things that they enjoy most in life. Bardos has a wonderful selection of things that can brighten up your loved ones holiday and that are also beneficial to their health and wellness. 

We are offering our Angel Mist Sprays for $20 each of $35 for a pair. These mists are wonderful for freshing up a room, as after shower body spray, and can even be kept in your car as a freshener for that space. 

We are also offering Cupping Sets for $25. This is a wonderful way to give someone you love the gift of self care.

Bardos is also offering hand blended Herbal Compresses for $20. These compresses are extremely versatile. We have been using them as a part of our bath ritual making a soothing tea for our body to immerse in. 

While these gifts are available seperately we are also offering them as a bundle, one of each gift listed above, for $55 with gift wrapping as an option. 

And of course we always offer the gift of massage as an option! We have Gift Certificates and are also running our Fall Special for a few more weeks so that you can purchase gifts at a discounted rate! 

Alcohol Replacements

Posted on November 29, 2017 at 9:20 AM Comments comments (0)


There is nothing more holiday appropriate than a big mug of eggnog (the real stuff!). But, alcohol can wreak havoc on your body. There is nothing wrong with enjoying the holiday season in full force but in case you need a little rest from all the induljances we'll be offering some inspiration on beverages that are just as tasty but also alcohol free. 

In addition to giving you some ideas for drink replacements I wanted to talk about how alcohol effects the body. Enzymes in your mouth begin breaking down alcohol right away. This leads to the production of acetaldehyde. The liver is in charge of removing the acetaldehyde from the system which is really taxing from the liver. This is one of the reasons for the toxic feeling of a hangover. The kidney is also affected with alcohol consumption. Because vasopressin, a hormone in charge of regulating how much you urinate, is inhibited with the consumption of alcohol you urinate more often. This means that your body is not reabsorbing the water it needs to hydrate and results in higher blood pressure and that pounding headache. 

Alcohol also affects us sexually. While it is touted that alcohol is an aphrodisiac it is actually the latter. Alcohol can make it hard to maintain an erection and also reduces lubrication (dehydration!) in women. 

So, if you're looking to avoid alcohol try one of these tasty options (we aren't providing measurements for all of the recipes because they are simple and can be adjusted based on the amount that you need):

Cranberry Moscow Mule

Seltzer water
Cranberry Juice
Fresh pressed ginger juice
Apple Juice

Non-alcoholic Sangria

2 cups boiling water

2 black tea bags (or 2 teaspoons loose-leaf tea in an infuser; decaf tea is fine)

2 cinnamon sticks

1/2 cup coconut sugar

3 cups pomegranate juice

1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice

1 medium orange, sliced into thin rounds

1 medium lemon, sliced into thin rounds

1 medium lime, sliced into thin rounds

1 medium apple, cored and cut into 1/2-inch chunks

3 cups carbonated water

Use the boiling water to steep the tea bags and cinnamon sticks adding the coconut sugar after 5 minutes. After it has cooled add the tea mixture to the rest of the recipes ingredients. 

Sparkling Kombucha Mocktail

Kombucha
Juice of Choice (we suggest cranberry, apple, or pomagranate) 

You can spice this up by muddling ginger and rosemary into the beverage!

Vegan Tumeric Eggnog

1 cup coconut cream

1.5 cups water

3 pitted dates

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/8 tsp ground allspice

1/8 tsp black pepper

1 tbsp coconut oil

 


Healthifying Your Holiday Favorites

Posted on November 27, 2017 at 10:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Desserts are a much loved part of the holidays. Mothers often spend weeks in the kitchen baking cookies of all sort to be enjoyed throughout the season. There's no reason to get rid of such a wonderful tradition but we can change it to make it healthier! We're going to make a list of common desserts and give you the resources to make a healthier version!

Chocolate Chip Cookies

There are so many ways to tweek chocolate chip cookies! One way is to use dates instead of traditional sugar options. Dates are full of fiber which helps ensure that the sugars are released slowly. You can also use things like coconut sugar and maple sugar as they are low glycemic and will not cause a spike in blood sugar. 

The type of flour that you use can also be changed. Some of the recipes below don't even include a traditional flour- the cookies pictured below use a mixture of dates and walnuts! Almond flour, rice flour, and coconut flour are also really wonderful alternatives.


Gluten Free, Date Sweetened Chocolate Chip Cookies 
https://food52.com/recipes/30982-date-sweetened-chocolate-chip-cookies" target="_blank">Walnut and Date Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Cookies

Pecan Pie

It's all about that gooey center with pecan pie! Luckily substituting dates for sugar doesn't effect the gooeyness of this treat. And, like with all of these desserts there are lots of alternative flour blends to incorporate and use in the pie crust.  


Date Sweetened Pecan Pie
Date Sweetened Gluten Free Pecan Pie

Hot Chocolate

Who doesn't love to cozy up to a warm fire with a big mug of hot chocolate?! There is so much nostalgia attached to this beverage and also so much sugar. We LOVE to make plant based beverages with cacao and dates. There are so many different ways to make this beverage, so tailor it to your needs. 

At Bardos we typically go with a smoothie approach. We mix 1/2c of raw walnuts with 1c of water and add in 1-2tsp cacao, 1tblsp coconut butter, 2-3 dates, 1/4tsp himalayan pink salt, and a dash of vanilla. This recipe will give you a boost in protein, fiber, and fats makings this indulgent drink also really wonderful for you.  

Chocolate peanut butter hot chocolatehttps://www.indigo-herbs.co.uk/recipe/adaptogenic-morning-chocolate-elixir" target="_blank">
Indigo Herbals Adaptogenic Hot Chocolate

Ginger Cookies

Ginger is such a wonderful thing- it is amazing for the digestive system and tastes so good! Using molasses and dates as sweetener helps these cookies stay soft and chewy!

https://wellnessmama.com/62579/gingerbread-cookies/" target="_blank">Ginger cookies with molasses and dates
https://www.ambitiouskitchen.com/2016/12/paleo-ginger-molasses-cookies/" target="_blank">Ginger cookies with coconut sugar and dates

Thank you Friends and Family!

Posted on November 20, 2017 at 9:20 AM Comments comments (1)

Thank you for trusting us to be a part of your journey towards wellness! 

As a thank you we would like offer an extended Black Friday Special that will give you a chance to buy two get one free!

This offer can be shared and would be a perfect holiday gift for giving!

Again, Thank You <3



Benefits of Apricot Oil

Posted on November 15, 2017 at 4:15 PM Comments comments (1)

Apricot kernal oil is derived from the seed found inside of an apricot. This kernal is made up of about 40-50% oil that is then extracted and used for health and beauty purposes. This is the last ingredient that we use when hand blending our massage oil and it's a great one!

Apricot oil is a light moisturizer that leaves you feeling moistured but not oily. It is wonderfully moisturizing as well as other really great qualities. Apricot oil is rich in Vitamin K which has been shown to reduce dark circles under the eyes as well as dark splotches found on the body. It is full of unsaturated fatty acids as well as Vitamin E which are great at combating fine lines and wrinkles. The high Vitamin E content also helps with elasticity and firmness/tightness of the skin.  

This is a wonderful oil to keep in the shower! It works great at combating psoriasis and eczema. It is recommended that you later your body with the oil before towel drying which allows the body to seal in moisture. It is also protective against UV rays and can be used in conjunction with sunscreen. 

We have shared several different beauty recipes based on the oils that we mix together and today we thought we could share a simple massage oil that you can use at home.

Simply mix 8 oz of apricot kernal oil with 10 drops of lavender oil and 10 drops of peppermint oil and you're all set!

Avocado Oil

Posted on November 13, 2017 at 10:50 AM Comments comments (2)

Avocado oil is wonderful for the skin and makes up a large portion of our massage oil. It is known to smooth the skin as it is full of essential fatty acids. It is also a great acne treatment as it works to unclog pores and get rid of dead skin cells. Avocado oil is also a natural sunscreen as it is full of mono-saturated fats that create a protective layer on the skin. Other benefits include:

1. Boosts collagen
2. Removes dark circles
3. Improves skin elasticity
4. Effective against Psoriasis and eczma
5. Prevents premature aging



A super simple face mask recipe is as follows:

Mash up 1/2-1 avocado and mix in 1-2tblsp of avocado oil. Use on face and neck for 10-20 minutes. This will instantly soften the skin and would be a wonderful treatment for anyone experiencing dryness or redness on the face/neck area. 

Brain Health

Posted on November 13, 2017 at 9:35 AM Comments comments (0)

Top 15 Foods for Brain Health:

(Diet and exercise are essential to brain health!)

 

1. Kale

2. Coconut oil

3. Olive Oil

4. Pumpkin seeds

5. Blueberries

6. Almonds

7. Cacao

8. Dandelion Greens

9. Walnuts

10. Spinach

11. Asparagus

12. Kimchi

13. Jicama

14. Broccoli

15. Avocado


Top 10 detoxifiers:

1. Chlorella
2. Blue Green Algae
3. Spirulina
4. Dandelion
5. Burdock Root
6. Milk Thistle
7. Vitamin B3 (with flush)
8. Black Pepper, Cinnamon, Cayenne
9. Tumeric
10. Bacopa Monnieri

Top 10 Enhancers:


1. Young Coconut Meat
2. Sprouts
3. Vitamin C (Camu Camu, Aronia Berry, Lime with honey)
4. Primrose oil
5. Hemp Seeds
6. Chia Seeds
7. Quinoa
8. Ginko Biloba
9. Bacopa Monnieri
10. Cacao

What is Bacopa Monnieri?

"Bacopa monnieri thrives in soggy, bog-like conditions and is a creeping, perennial herb found growing in wetlands around the globe.

In traditional Ayurvedic treatments bacopa has been the go-to treatment for epilepsy, asthma, ulcers, tumors, inflammation, and even leprosy. The reason you see it used for such a wide variety of treatments is that it tends to show positive effects for a wide assortment of ailments.

The first is that bacopa is considered an adaptogen. You can think of adaptogen as any ingredient or chemical which helps your body overcome the effects of stress.The second pathway is the ability of the bacosides (the active chemical compounds found in bacopa) to help improve the ability of your brain’s neurons to communicate.

Bacosides also help promote better kinase functioning in your brain (the enzyme process of breaking down substances to be used by your brain cells). Think of protein kinases as the hallway monitor for your brain. They are the key regulators of cellular functioning.

With improved protein kinases you get help in repairing damaged brain cells and a boost in the creation of new brain cells which ultimately pays off with increased nerve impulse transmission (all hands on deck and working hard).The combination of these two massive benefits unique to this prolific, but unknown plant make it one of the leading natural treatments for improved cognitive functioning."

(https://www.simplesmartscience.com/bacopa-monnieri-leaf-and-herbal-extract/)

Supplementation with Bacopa Monnieri

"Bacopa takes time to work. Studies that are too short tend to note either lesser or no effects, and studies that take multiple measures note that improvements are much better at 8-12 weeks than they are at 4-6 weeks.

The standard dose for Bacopa monnieri is 300mg, assuming that the total bacoside content (the active compound) is 55% of the extract, by weight.

Bacopa monnieri can also be supplemented in a leaf or powder form. To achieve the ideal 10-20% of bacoside content requires a dose of 750-1,500mg of the leaf or powder.

Historically, Bacopa monnieri was consumed with ghee, a clarified butter that originated in India. Since Bacopa monnieri is fat soluble and requires a lipoid transporter to be absorbed, it should be supplemented alongside a meal."

(https://examine.com/supplements/bacopa-monnieri/)



The Importance of Organic Foods

Posted on November 13, 2017 at 9:10 AM Comments comments (0)

There are so many reasons to choose organic produce over conventionally grown/pesticide grown produce. Not only is it better for our bodies, it is also better for the planet. Consumers often wonder if it makes that much of a difference, which is fair because often times organic foods are more expensive than their pesticide laden counterparts. The use of pesticides is a business tactic- it ensures that farmers have a higher crop yield ensuring their livelihood. There are other ways to achieve the same result, though. Organic farmers implement various strategies (crop rotation, beneficial insects, and mulching) to ensure that their crops are also producing high yields. 

The big problem with pesticides is that they are often systemic. That means that they become a part of the plant and cannot be washed off. This is typical of insecticides. The insect will eat part of the crop and the insecticide found within the leaf, fruit, or stalk is ingested by the insect resulting in death. The scariest thought is that we also ingest these foods that have pesticides built into their cells. Another negative effect that systemic pesticides have is on bees. The pollen produced by these plants contains the pesticide and therefore also kills bees that come into contact with said plant. 

This also becomes a humans rights issue. Most farms are not run by a single person and therefore the task of applying pesticides is spread across the employees. The World Health Organization estimates that there at 3 million cases of pesticide poisoning a year. Pesticide application is not precise and often drifts into areas where they were not meant to be sprayed (wind and water are two huge factors of pesticide dispersement). One example occurred right here in Virginia, "In 1975, over 70 workers manufacturing Kepone, an organochlorine insecticide, in Hopewell, Virginia, developed a variety of neurological symptoms, the most prominent of which became known as the "Kepone shakes." The workers' symptoms started about 30 days after their first exposure to Kepone. Subsequent testing also revealed decreases in sperm count and motility. In 1976, Kepone was discontinued and substituted with organophosphates." (Toxipedia)

The subject can seem kind of bleek but ultimately we as consumers have a choice. Organic produce still isn't perfect but where we spend our money is important and lets the world know what we like and want to see more of. The biggest suggestion we can make is to join a CSA in the summer with a local farm. There are so many options in the Richmond area. Using your dollars in this way not only supports a small farmer trying to builder a better farming system but provides you with just picked produce free from chemicals. 

Local CSA Options:
https://broadforkfarm.net/
http://www.amysorganicgarden.com/
http://tomtenfarmva.com/

Almond Oil and It's Uses for Skin

Posted on November 8, 2017 at 4:40 PM Comments comments (0)

Almond oil has many uses. It is edible so not only does it provide wonderful benefits for the skin but it can also nourish you from within. Almond oil has shown to be good at reducing the risk of heart disease, protecting against diabetes, regulating cholesterol, promoting healthy weight, and treating earaches. 

When applied topically to the skin it protects against UV radiation damage, prevents acne becuase of it's high Vitamin A content, brightens the skin (especially under the eyes), is a natural remedy for eczema and psoriasis, and relieves itchiness from dry skin. According to Nature Helps almond oil is beneficial in that it contains the list below. 



  • "Oleic acid increases the elasticity of blood vessels, moisturizing the dermis, cleanses pores.
  • Linoleic acid increases the production of collagen fibers, improves skin elasticity and helps to fight against wrinkles.
  • Vitamins B, D, A, E, F regenerate skin cells, eliminating inflammation and preventing acne and acne scars.
  • Carotenes have anti-aging effect, remove inflammation and deeply nourish the epidermis.
  • Bioflavonoids neutralize free radicals that cause premature aging.
  • Minerals normalize fermentation involved in the creation of new cells."


One really simple way to use almond oil is to make a facial mask. There are very few ingredients and most you should be able to find in your pantry/fridge!

1 c of yogurt
2 tblsp of honey
1 tblsp of almond oil
1 tblsp of almond meal (optional)

Mix all of the ingredients together and spread over the face and neck. If you are using the almond meal you can gently rub the mixture in circles to create an exfoliating effect. 


The Wonders of Rose Hips

Posted on November 6, 2017 at 9:30 AM Comments comments (1)

Rose hips are the fruit of a rose. They emerge after the rose has been successfully pollinated and they ripen through late summer/early fall. They have a large array of uses- jams, jellies, teas, eaten as berries, oil extraction, and infusions. They are one of the richests sources of Vitamin C and contain beta-carotene, lutein, lycopene, and zeaxanthin. 

Rose hip seed oil is obtained from the seeds of the rose hip and are high in essential fatty acids and Provitamin A. It makes up a large portion of the oil blend that we hand make for the massages here at Bardos. Rose hip seed oil has so many wonderful qualities! It is astringent which causes the skin to regenerate new cells and promote elasticity. 

We would like to share a recipe with you for an anti-aging facial serum that includes rose hip seed oil. If you wish to simplify things you can simply use plain rose hip seed oil as a night time treatment. There is no need to dilute the rose hip seed oil. 

Fill your bottle 2/3 of the way full with rose hip seed oil, top off with jojoba oil leaving enough room to add essential oils. We like to add 3 drops of lavender and 3 drops of geranium. Both of these essential oils are healing and regenerative for skins that are dry and maturing. 


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