Clearing Space for Chinese New Year

5 Ways to Make your Home a Wellness Sanctuary

Our living space has a tremendous effect upon our mental and physical health and well-being. When people walk into our storefront in Westport, CT, very often they immediately take a big breath in and say, “Wow! it smells so nice in here.” Or as they walk around the store browsing our teas and wellness products they mention how calming the space is. And when clients come out of an acupuncture or massage session, they often linger in our store front to soak up the good vibes and peacefully drink a cup of tea before moving on with their day. Everyday I see people coming in to our store and immediately being uplifted, soothed and reminded to breathe deeply upon entering our peaceful environment. What makes a space healing for your mind and body? And how can you bring these elements into your own life so that you too can make your home a wellness sanctuary?

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Homemade Digestive Spice Blend

Wei’s Digestive Spice Blend

One of my favorite spice blends to uplift a pot of noodles or rice is the Japanese spice powder called shichimi togarashi. Being a lover of DIY kitchen projects, I decided to make my own adaptation of this digestive spice blend with an Arogya-touch. Not only does this blend bring an added dimension of flavor and depth to any meal, it also has medicinal value. In Chinese medicine, healthy digestion comes with good stomach-fire. When the stomach-fire is weak, digestion is poor, which also affects other systems of the body including immunity. This well-balanced, anti-inflammatory and flavor-enhancing powder promotes healthy stomach fire, and thus, improves digestion.

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Hollyhock Dressing Recipe

I recently returned from a 9-day meditation retreat at Insight Meditation Society in Barre, MA. It was a wonderful opportunity to tune in, slow down, observe the nature of the mind, and cultivate mindfulness and compassion. Each day involved a schedule of alternating periods of walking and sitting mediation, mediation instruction, qigong, a dharma talk, chores, and three incredible vegetarian meals a day.

Meal times were some of my favorite moments of the day. Not only was every meal delicious, fresh and varied, it was also such a delight to have the time and awareness to eat slowly and mindfully. Taking my time with each bite, chewing thoroughly, and noticing how the food delighted my taste buds and mind made each meal incredibly satisfying and nourishing.

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Chai Almonds Recipe

Scrumptious Chai Almonds

I’m a big fan of delicious protein-rich snacks that travel well. With this in mind, I recently created this recipe for roasted chai tea infused almonds.  These wholesome nuts have a touch of caffeine and a little sweetness, making them a delightful afternoon pick-me-up.

Plus, they’re easy to prepare and more cost-effective than buying pre-roasted nuts.  Additionally, cooking or baking anything from scratch makes it easier to use better ingredients and control just how much sugar and/or salt goes in.

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Overnight Raw Muesli Recipe

I recently returned from a trip to central Brazil, far from the rain forest, and days from the beach, in a savannah-like region known for its national park, hundreds of waterfalls and quartz crystal deposits. There’s nothing like escaping the cold of winter to a warm climate! Though it was challenging to leave behind the sun, waterfalls, fresh mangos and papayas, I was able to bring back something that is as easy to enjoy here as it is in Brazil; a recipe called Muesli Viva, or “raw muesli”. It’s a combination of rolled oats, soaked nuts and seeds, rehydrated dried fruit, and whatever seasonal fruits are available. Muesli Viva makes a wonderful breakfast, hearty snack, or healthy dessert. I’ve been enjoying this treat in the mornings and whenever I need a nutritional boost.

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