REPOST: Mary Greenwell: How To Make Up Hooded Eyes

Hello everyone,

As I am aging I am finding that the skin on my eye lids have become super sensitive, maybe you are as well. The skin in this area is known to be the thinnest on the entire body, along with our lips. I am also finding that I need to relearn how to apply my eye make up because I’m getting a bit of what is called “hooded eyes”.  My eyes seem smaller and I’m not fond of this. So, I decided to reach out and booked an appointment with Bridgett the owner of Odalisque Beauty Apothecary, to re-teach me how to apply my eye make up correctly, to achieve my new needs.

Bridgett passed this video on to watch before my appointment and it’s so informative that I thought I’d pass it on to you. I hope you find it useful.

Thank you Bridgett and thank you Mary Greenwell for this informative and helpful video that also talks about skin sensitivities and other issues.

Enjoy!

Theodora Ntovas
founder of YASOU skin care

101 Information On Adult Acne and Your Skin

As an adult I thought I would out grow acne but I didn’t. I suffer from Cystic Acne  which is noted on the information graphic below as Cyst/Nodule.  It is the most severe form of acne because it is very deep rooted in the inner layers of the skin and the nodules are painful.  I started seeing a dermatologist in my youth around 16 years old and still visit them today.   I have educated myself and have learned acne is triggered differently for each person (see the section “Types” on the infographic). For example, my acne stems from stress and hormones.  I have also learned how to treat my acne, using my dermatological products and my Greek inspired YASOU skin care products as a total skin care regime. Today I am proud to say my skin has never looked healthier.

The one thing I can pass on to you is that cleaning your skin every day and being gentle to it is very important. You can find some great DIY cleansers and information in the article “Keep Your Skin Clean With DIY Natural Skin Cleansers.”  I also came across the infographic below and thought it was informative, offering basic information that could be helpful, so please take a look.  The more information you have about adult acne, the wiser you will be in learning how to treat it and care for your skin.  Please drop us a line at info@yasouskincare.com with any tips or information on adult acne that would be beneficial to pass on to others.  YASOU!

(infographic courtesy of Besskincare.com)

 

Active Bodies Need an Active Skin Care Routine

During the course of a week, healthy adults should be getting a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity, as well as doing strength training for all major muscle groups at least twice according to recommendations by the Department of Health and Human Services. Making exercise a part of your daily routine supports not only cardiovascular health, but your skin too. Increased blood flow naturally nourishes skin cells, provides oxygen and carries away waste. Prepping skin before and after exercise will support this natural process and enhance the overall look of your skin.

 

Cleanse skin before and after exercise

Whether you get moving in the morning or evening, cleanse your face before your exercise regimen begins. Many natural DIY face wipes can be easily made at home and transported in your bag. Starting your workout with a fresh face means removing makeup, especially heavy foundation. Your skin’s pores open up while sweating and allow it to breathe. With makeup on, sweat and oil may clog the pores. That said, makeup on the eyes and lip are okay. For those who never leave home without wearing a foundation, a light weight tinted moisturizer will work. It helps your skin retain water.

Wash your hands before and after a workout. Bacteria is left on workout machines as well as other gym equipment including matts. Avoid touching your face while exercising. At a gym, always use clean towels after washing your face and hands.

Post workout, wash your face to remove oil, toxins and sweat. Your fresh face may be a bit rosy because of increased blood flow. You may even see a natural glow.

 

Hydrate skin before and after exercise

Skin loses water through evaporation. Dehydrated skin causes premature death for skin cells and increases wrinkles. Drinking fluids is important for the body but research shows a more efficient way to hydrate the skin is through a topical moisturizer. Adding a hydrating body cream and hand cream before working out helps skin retain water. Applying moisturizer after exercise restores water levels in skin.

Misting can help but only if you apply a moisturizer to seal the mist in. Without a moisturizer, misting will draw water out and dehydrate the skin.

 

Protect skin during outdoor exercise

Apply a light moisturizer and protect your skin from sun rays with a sunscreen of at least SPF 30. Tie your hair back and away from your face. Avoid headbands which can trap skin oils and bacteria while sweating. Don’t apply hair products that can drip onto your face and clog pores.

 

Workout clothing that’s good for the skin

Wear breathable, moisture wicking clothing. These clothes help evaporate sweat away from the skin and help regulate body temperature. They are good especially for acne prone or oily skin. Dark color dyes and synthetic fibers can irritant skin. Loose fitting clothes can irritate the skin because it rubs against the skin while you’re in motion. Natural fabrics are best.

Most fabrics are treated with chemicals so wash them before wearing. Turn workout clothes inside out when washing. Inside is where workout clothes hold sweat, dead skin cells and oil.  Fabric softeners tend to lock in odors and damage stretchy fabrics so avoid using them. Air dry clothes outside if possible. Sunshine has anti-bacterial properties, gives a fresh smell, doesn’t shrink clothes and is energy efficient.

Change out of active wear within 30 minutes, shower, and let skin breathe. Don’t forget to apply your favorite luxe wellness hydrating body cream and vegan hand cream.

Finally, at least once a week, take time to notice and admire your skin in the mirror. Commend yourself for keeping your skin healthy and vibrant.

The Secret To Beauty Is Water

Water is the essence of life. We can survive three weeks without food, but only three days without water according to some estimates. It was H.H. Mitchell, scholar and lead author of The Chemical Composition of the Adult Human Body, who deciphered the average adult human body is between 50 to 65% water.

The majority of emerging skin care brands in today’s “clean beauty” era are primarily oil based. We see new marketing consistently popping up that tells us water isn’t necessary.  I prefer to differ with this line of thinking and want to explore this subject more!

When creating Greek-inspired YASOU skin care I chose to be a water-based skin care line knowing that I would have challenges with the preservation aspect. Mold can grow in water with organic nutrients, especially when oxygen enters the picture.  I’m not going to elaborate on the science of this but wanted to touch on the reason why so many brands today are oil based. They feel like they don’t need to worry as much about preservatives as you do with water-based products.  Beware of this because oil based products still need to have preservatives. Many of these brands use 190 proof alcohol which is drying to the skin.

 

Top reasons why I chose YASOU skin care to be a water-based skin care line are:

  • Humans are water-based creatures. I wanted our certified organic oils, active ingredients and purified water to absorb to the inner layers of theskin reaching a cellular levelto give you optimal benefits.
  • High water content in skin care products is more compatible with a wider variety of skin types.
  • We focus on deep hydration by packing moisture into the dermis and infusing our formula into the skin thus hydrating with active ingredients, nutrients and antioxidants without disrupting the moisture barrier.
  • With up to 65 percent of the body composed of water and the skin as the largest organ, it makes perfect sense that water would be essential in the natural balance of the skin cell membrane.
  • Water helps keep your skin tight and toned, cleansed and flushed of toxins. Your body naturally fills cells with water to make them firm and tight, thus reducing the appearance of wrinkles for a smooth finish.

 

Cleansing with water

Do you use soap?  What kind of cleanser?  The bottom line is that we are all different and you’ll have to experiment with what works for you.  Personally, I stopped using soap on my face years ago. I only use water and have seen a vast improvement to my skin. When I used cleansers and/or soap my face became drier and broke out with acne even more.  Not anymore!

Currently, I am looking at filters for better, cleaner water and investing my money in this area. I use YASOU vegan face cream set daily.  I came across some info that I thought you would appreciate on face washing by the American Academy of Dermatology.

Water is an essential beauty product from the inside to the outside of your body.  You can enhance your skin by taking advantage of the benefits of water for your body. Drink water daily and use water-based skin care that also contains certified organic oils.

YASOU!

Is Your Makeup Remover Enhancing or Harming Your Skin?

Your skin is a complex ecosystem, unique to you. Its environment or microbiome is made up of trillions of microorganisms. Such microbes are essential for healthy skin. Since makeup removers are a product used in everyday skin care we wondered if it’s something that can enhance or diminish the quality of our skin. We found that it depends on the product selected and how the makeup removers are used.

 

Remove your makeup remover

Most makeup removers should be used before cleansing the face not as a substitute for cleansing your face. Some products are being labeled as multi action, meaning they are designed to remove makeup, cleanse and refresh. Some of these are luxe wellness products, but some are not. If you leave the product on your face without rinsing, could harsh chemical residue be left on your facial skin? Clogging your pores? Killing beneficial bacteria? Always check what ingredients the product contains. Some preservatives, such as methylparaben are known to influence the skin’s microbiome. If you experience burning or stinging, alcohol content may be the culprit. This can dry the sky so try to avoid products containing it. Glycerin is a better preservative that hydrates the skin. To be sure your skin is clean, wash your face with a cleanser and rinse with water after using your makeup remover. In other words, remove the makeup remover.

 

Different kinds of makeup removers and how to use them

Makeup removers come in many different forms. There are creams, sticks, oils, waters, balms, foams and wipes that can remove makeup. Which one is best for you? Convenience, effectiveness and residue may be top on your list.

Balms are a good choice for people who find it hard to keep their skin hydrated, especially those living in areas with extreme temperature changes. Balms remove oil, dirt and makeup without drying the skin. Just massage into skin, rinse and pat dry with a cloth. Skin should feel soft and supple. Popular natural ingredients in balms include coconut, argon and almond oils, Echinacea and other botanicals, butters, and spices.

Creams are easy to spread across the face. They break down oils and remove face makeup. Wipe clean with a tissue or washcloth, cleanse and rinse. We are comfortable with creams since many of us use hydrating body creams regularly.

Micellar water contains tiny cleansing oil molecules called micelles that are suspended in soft water. It’s sold as an all-in-one product that removes makeup, cleans and moisturizers. It’s good for travelers, but not for those who wear heavy foundations or waterproof mascara. Another product may be needed. Apply to a cotton ball or pad. If you have oily skin, follow up with a facial cleanser.

Cleansing oils are good for removing long-wearing makeup.

Wipes are convenient when traveling but for home use read the ingredients to determine strength and whether or not you want those ingredients sitting on your face all night.

For specialty areas such as eyes and lips look for a product that is designed for that. An oil-free eye makeup remover may also work well for removing lip stain. Dab a tissue and wipe. Yves Saint Laurent sells such a product that removes eye liner, mascara, shadow and eyebrow gel makeup. It also removes color from long-wearing lipsticks and lip pencils. Be careful when using eye makeup removers so that eyes aren’t irritated and contact lenses are not impacted by residue.

 

Makeup remover routines

Here are some favorite practices we found from people who shared their makeup remover routines.

  • Use coconut water cleansing wipes, then rinse with a cleansing milk, and follow up with a natural ingredient moisturizer.
  • Massage coconut oil product onto face, cleanse with a warm washcloth, then moisturize.
  • Use a facial pad with micellar cleansing water and makeup remover, and then a facial moisturizer.
  • Wipe away liquid eyeliner with makeup remover, follow with a foaming face wash, and add a skin balancing face oil at night.

 

Skin Hydration

Overexposure to products containing harsh ingredients can dry and irritate skin. It’s important to remove makeup every night, cleanse, and then moisturize to keep your skin hydrated.  YASOU’s vegan cell renewal night cream can give you the hydration your skin needs to replenish.

 

Nice to have elements in a makeup remover

Since makeup removers are usually applied at the end of the day, a relaxing aroma can be calming.

A makeup remover that leaves your skin feeling soft and refreshed is appreciated.

One that nourishe your brows and lashes is a plus.

Like our skin, makeup plays an important role in how we present ourselves to others. However, removing makeup should be a daily thoughtful, intentional process that protects the natural beauty of our skin and its unique microbiome.

Prepping Skin For Date Night

When date night comes around or any special occasion, including Valentines Day, you can do a few extra things to make your skin look and feel beautiful. Your skin care requires daily maintenance which in the very least means morning and evening cleansing and moisturizing. But here are some tips that will take your skin beyond the ordinary routine into a touch-me skin experience.

Cleansing Dead skin cells, dirt, pollution and oil attach to our skin daily. These particles must be dislodged and washed away with a good cleanser. If you have oily skin try a gel or foam cleanser. If your skin is dry, try a cream cleanser. For date night, try a luxe exfoliating body bar in the bath. Complete a second cleansing on your face to clear your pores. Remember, warm water opens the pores, so rinse with cool water to close pores.

Waxing & shaving. If body hair is a turn off, get rid of it. Before waxing, check your skin for inflammation or open sores as these areas should not be tampered with. Lightly exfoliate, clean and moisturize skin days before waxing. Avoid use of retinol products for up to two weeks before waxing. When shaving, don’t share razors. A women’s razor is designed for female hair growth and a man’s razor for his facial hair growth. If you like shaving in the shower cool the water temperature down before beginning. Shave upward on legs against the way hair grows.

Layer beauty products You may want to add moisturizer right away after cleansing but layering products beginning with the lightest (serums, toner, eye cream) before you moisturize can make these products more effective.

Moisturize Trap moisture in the skin by massaging a luxe wellness hydrating body cream from the neck down after bathing. Go ahead and share a gender-neutral body cream moisturizer with your sweetheart. Take turns massaging the cream onto your bodies. For a clean smooth surface, wait five minutes after applying moisturizer to allow the skin to absorb it, before adding other products. You can brighten your skin by adding facial or body oil after applying the moisturizer. Try a moisturizer that contains hyaluronic acid to plump facial skin and reduce lines.

Makeup Before date night, give your face a break from makeup, especially at night. Your skin needs oxygen in order to complete its natural exfoliating process. Left on makeup can clog pores and increase inflammation that can lead to collagen breakdown and more free radicals. A cellular night cream can nurture your skin during the night hours when blood flow is higher and absorption increases.

After applying lightweight products and waiting the recommended five minutes after moisturizing, apply foundation first and then concealers. Create structure with a bronzer, then add blush. Add a lip balm and let it absorb before applying lipstick. This helps keep lipstick in line and lasting longer. Yasou Skin Care will be introducing a specially formulated lip elixir in 2018 to keep your lips healthy and beautiful.

Colors in eye shadow, liner, mascara and brows should compliment each other. But for date night, go ahead and add some glam by accenting your eyes or lips with color that is out of your ordinary routine. Set your makeup with a powder.

Handholding is a must on date night. Don’t forget to clean up your cuticles, polish your nails and moisturize with a luxe wellness vegan hand cream specially formulated for this layer of skin.

Essence. Add a light aroma of your choice as final preparation for date night and relax. Be you. The first thing your sweetheart may notice is your spirit. These skin care tips can help you feel confident and bring the most romantic side of yourself to the table.

YASOU skin care is Greek inspired and so is the origin of Cupid, a mythical being now associated with Valentine’s Day. He was identified first in Greek mythology as Eros. It was his uniting power of love that brought harmony and order to the chaos of the world. The Greek story of Eros, Psyche and Aphrodite is one of love, loss, and love returning. May love and beauty bring order to your world.

7 Simple Skin Care Tips for Brides

Relax. A most wonderful aspect of any bride is the happiness she shares on her wedding day. Whether a bold or timid bride, your happiness is what people remember. Your smile shows it. Your eyes confirm it. Your arms embrace it. Your legs dance to it. All these parts of you combine to tell a story of happily ever after. However, you do want to look your best. You want your dress to show well, your shoes to fit, and your skin to be healthy and beautiful. One of our go-to sources for special occasion skin care advice is Makeup Artist, Esthetician and Educator LaTasha Y. Benn. She helps brides celebrate their inner and outer beauty. Here are seven simple skin care tips for brides that can help you put your best self forward.

 

Timing
advance skin treatments, such as chemical peels, microdermabrasion, extractions, or enzyme treatments should be done no later than a month before the wedding date. Brides should not try any new or advanced treatments within two weeks to avoid any harsh reactions so close to the wedding day.

A facial can be done two weeks prior and the same goes for waxing. If the bride is used to getting waxed and knows how her skin reacts, she can schedule as early as she wants. LaTasha recommends waxing a week before to ensure any redness or minor breakouts are cleared up before the wedding date.

 

Balance and hydrate
It’s important to start, or continue with, a consistent routine. To obtain soft and supple skin look for balance (not too oily or dry) and hydrate. Drink plenty of water. Wash your face day and night. Moisturize day and night. Tone to balance and exfoliate weekly with a gentle scrub or enzyme mask.

 

Smooth and brighten
If you want to smooth out the texture of your skin and brighten it, LaTasha thinks a chemical peel is best. It exfoliates through multiple layers of skin. After two to three days your skin will feel like silk. It will appear brighter and clearer, as the peel reduces hyperpigmentation, acne scars, and blemishes. Follow up with a cellular day cream and cell renewal night cream.

 

When a dermatologist can help
Cystic acne, which includes large pustules & papules; large comedones (blocked pores), severe scarring or Rosacea should be treated by a dermatologist.

 

Keep your glow on
To keep your makeup in place, hydrate! LaTasha suggests using a good setting spray or rose water. “A bride shouldn’t have to reapply anything but her lipstick on the day of her wedding. I recommend a good setting powder, setting spray/rose water, and waterproof mascara and eyeliner. A good lip stain, such as Motives All Day Liquid Lipsticks will last all day.”

 

Don’t forget your hands
On your wedding day, many people will be looking at the new ring on your finger. Keep your hands soft and supple with a hand cream that moisturizes, protects, repairs and soothes your hands.

 

Smile
Feeling beautiful and surrounding yourself with the people you love brings about a natural smile. While posing for pictures don’t be afraid to touch, laugh, keep your chin down, or look away. Be you. Love the skin your in.

Top 3 Facials You Need to Try

Summer brings longer, brighter, hotter and drier days all of which can impact your skin. To get some relief and keep your skin glowing, try some of the new facials that can soothe, cleanse, soften and hydrate the skin no matter what your age or skin type. Facials can help detour damage to your skin now and into the future. It’s important to find a licensed aesthetician who will assess the condition of your skin, make recommendations, and customize treatments based on your skin type and personal objectives. Seek out a comfortable and relaxing place for your facial. It should be a good sensory experience. Ask if a soothing face and neck massage is included.

Hydra Facial
The hydra facial offers deep cleansing, exfoliation, and extraction. Impurities and dead skin cells are removed. The skin is quenched and nourished with nutrients including hyaluronic acid, anti-oxidants and peptides that give the skin a healthy glow. It’s a soothing experience with no-side effects such as redness or tingling. The glycolic/salicylic acid peel is gentle to the skin. A collagen-rich serum supports skin elasticity and hydrates while firming skin and reducing fine lines and wrinkles.

Anti-Aging Facial
We all want to age gracefully. Anti-aging facials are a preventive measure for people in their late twenties through their forties. Such facials nourish and hydrate the skin. They focus primarily on exfoliation, deep-pore cleansing with extraction, moisturizing, and may include enzymes, anti-oxidant serums, chemical peels, and scrubs to brighten the skin and reduce wrinkles. “Paying attention to your skincare now will help you avoid more costly and invasive procedures later in life.”

The Brightening Facial emphasizes evening out skin tone. It targets hyperpigmentation and uses Vitamin C and other strong anti-oxidants to support the skin’s natural defenses. Topically applied masks and acid treatments are used.

The Fruit Acid Facial relies on the many natural acids contained in fruit. When mixed in scrubs and cleansers these acids deliver many benefits to the skin. Lemon brightens. The malic acid in apples exfoliates. Pineapple and papaya may be mixed into an exfoliating paste. A cranberry-enzyme peel may be used for extraction. Fruit acid-infused facials cleanse, hydrate, and improve the skin’s tone and texture.

The teenage years may be over but many adults still have breakouts. Fruit enzymes along with antioxidants and hydrating agents offer a deep cleanse to reduce the appearance of blemishes and redness. Another fruit acid facial is the Alpha Hydroxy Acid facial that relies on AHA acids derived from fruits and flowers. Formulated into a cream and applied topically AHAs are known for nourishing skin.

Reverse the Sign of Time Facial
By the time you’ve reached your fifties, sixties and older your skin begins to thin. If not well cared for throughout the previous years dry, dull skin with lines and wrinkles may be the first thing you see when looking at yourself in the mirror. The Reversing Sign of Time facials can help soften the appearance of aged skin. However, it may be a longer and more expensive process than during the anti-aging facial years.

Contouring facials strengthen the face muscles using a tool that can help define features such as cheekbones. LED facials use special lights to stimulate cell regrowth and diminish spots. Laser toning energizes the skin, evens out pigmentation and texture, and stimulates long-term collagen production. Microdermabrasion is a non-surgical option for what some describe as an “instant facelift.” A tool used buffs away the surface of the skin stimulating collagen production and cellular renewal. It leaves the skin soft and minimizes the appearance of skin damage. The Botinol Line Defense Facial provides a Botox like effect, using a combination of peptides with Vitamin A. Fine lines and wrinkles are relaxed without the use of needles.
Your aesthetician will recommend how often treatments are required to keep your skin healthy and rejuvenated.

Trends
While doing our research we uncovered some interesting, nature-focused facial products being introduced for facials. Here are a few of them.

• Hungarian massage techniques that boost circulation with hot & cold herbal masks

• Skin purifying treatment with essential tea tree and white thyme oils to diminish spots.

• Pleasant aromas and antioxidant infusion products made entirely of fruits, herbs and vegetables.

• Moisturizing and plumping skin with algae masks.

Don’t forget your home skincare after having your facial. Apply SPF to protect skin from sun damage, add a cellular day cream in the morning and a cellular night cream at bedtime.

Our next blog post will cover skincare tips for brides. If you or anyone you know is getting married soon please come back and read it. The tips are applicable

Mothering Lessons From Season to Season

Just as trees, flowers, soil and water change from season to season so does a mother. Nobody can tell you how to be a mother. It’s a part of you that manifests itself in little ways each day. Whether you had a great role model in your own mom, or not, have read books by baby and parenting experts, mothers can look to the natural world and their own natural essence for insight and respite.

If you don’t already, pay attention to the seasons for mothering lessons from the natural world.

Winter
A tree in winter may look ugly and bare but its branches will soon grow buds, leaves, and fruit. Every situation will change. You may want to force a change, but that will often backfire when the conditions are not right. A group of trees does not become a forest because someone said: “grow, grow, grow.” Like the forest, a parent can only show patience, acceptance, and diligence when progress seems slow. Share winter’s wisdom.

Spring
Watch if your children hesitate to bloom. Be curious. Listen, the way you would to crickets chirping. You will hear a chorus of sounds and rhythms. Spring is about promise. What do your children need to overcome their reluctance? Maybe a story about a time you felt hesitant. Maybe a story of a time when they overcame an obstacle in the past. Share what you know about spring.

Summer
Feel the joy of summer – its long hours of daylight, warm sun and blue sky. When we are most comfortable may be the best time to get out of the box and travel somewhere new even if its around the block or across the world. Novelty is great for our brains and a change of scene sparks the imagination. To swim in lakes, rivers and oceans rekindles our connection to what sustains all of life. Climbing hills, watching the night sky, and walking prairie paths refreshes our sense of wonder. Share summer’s shimmer.

Fall
Fall is a time of letting go. The tree sheds its leaves with a bright canopy of color. As mothers know, letting go is part of the job. Birds, bears, fish and other members of the animal kingdom know instinctively when its time to let go. But it’s sometimes hard for moms. I read a story by Madeleine Albright, the first woman to become U.S. Secretary of State, about when her overprotective mother sent her away to a Swiss boarding school at the age of 10. Ms. Albright cried all the way there (her mother probably did too). But of that year away, she wrote: “I learned French, I learned to ski, I learned to be in a place that I wasn’t at all comfortable in, and I had to make it comfortable for myself. I learned to be independent. That year has stood me in good stead forever.” Share fall’s favors.

Throughout the seasons go ahead and be simple, natural, and confident with your kids. When a friend of mine had a miscarriage the doctors posed biological reasons, her husband assured her they would try again, but it was her mother who said: “Pregnancies are like flowers. Some bloom and others don’t, even when they are planted side by side with the same amount of sun and water.” This simple thought from her mother brought my friend great comfort. We all aim to hit the right chord at the right time. Sometimes, like turtle doves, we do!

To say “Good job” to all mothers, we are offering a free vegan hand cream this week with the purchase of YASOU’s vegan face cream set.

A Positive Approach to Healthy Eating and Skin Beauty

What you eat and how you eat are important to maintaining good health and beautiful skin. One approach to reaching this goal is to make a list of foods that nurture the skin – from green tea to salmon to colorful vegetables and Greek yogurt. Or you may make a list of foods to avoid – sugar and refined carbohydrates. Limiting your self to only “good” foods and denying yourself any alternatives, may be too narrow of an approach to meet your wellness goals.

Before embarking on a wellness quest Elyse Wagner first wants to know what your beliefs are. She partners with clients to understand their personal goals and helps them achieve them. We talked to Elyse to get her take on how food and our beliefs about food can nurture or disrupt our path to wellness. She is a certified nutritionist and positive psychology professional. As a wellness coach, she incorporates both science and what she calls “body wisdom.“

YASOU: Where do you begin with a new client who wants to make healthier choices?

EW: People may say they want to lose weight or improve their skin. I ask ‘Why?’ to understand what it means to them. What is the motivating factor – is it health, beauty, wellness or something else?

YASOU: What role does food play in maintaining health, beauty, and wellness?

EW: “Food feeds us physically, emotionally and spiritually. It also contains little pieces of information for the body. Does this food contain vitamins, fats, proteins, carbohydrates? High quality food honors the body.”

YASOU: Modern nutrition science is uncovering insights about what we eat and how we look. What do you think?

EW: Our cells are meant to multiply and rejuvenate. Telomeres are strands of DNA at the ends of each of our chromosomes. They make it possible for cells to divide. The longer your telomeres, the better indicator it is for aging well. Fried, processed food decreases the length of telomeres and can speed up aging. Studies show that foods high in vitamins and anti-oxidants are strongly related to longer telomeres. Exercise and stress reduction are also cited for rebuilding telomeres.

YASOU: What are the biggest barriers that you see people confronting when trying to reach their wellness goals?

EW: They usually come to me with a surface complaint such as losing weight or looking younger. They don’t yet have the skills, strategy or self-confidence to make the necessary decisions that lead to a meaningful, sustainable lifestyle change.

YASOU: It’s hard to change, isn’t it?

EW: It is. I try to help people establish a mindset around their own value system. For example, if they are environmentally aware organic food choices may work well because it’s a part of what they value. The same goes for what they put on their skin.

YASOU: Why do you dislike the word “diet” so much?

EW: Healthy food choices are a lifestyle whereas diets are short-term and not sustainable.

YASOU: Why do you refer to how you eat rather than just what you eat?

EW: The digestive and nervous systems react to our state of being. If we are stressed, certain hormones are released. The nervous system goes into fight or flight mode, temporarily suppressing appetite. But if the stress continues cortisol is released and that increases appetite. Stress also seems to affect food choices with those high in fat and sugar being preferred. When we are joyful and surrounded by friends or family while eating that stress effect is countered.

YASOU: How important is being true to one’s self when on a wellness path?

EW: It’s so important to live your own truth. Life brings a lot of wear and tear to our bodies and minds. We need to give ourselves permission to move forward. What do you like? What makes you feel good? It differs for every person.

Thank you Elyse Wagner, you certainly offered us a positive perspective on reaching wellness goals. You can learn more about Elyse at www.MyKitchenShrink.com.