Category Archives: Health

Top 5 Immune boosting Foods and Supplements

Published on February 26, 2019 by

Immune Boosting Foods

There are a lot of products out there this time of year that claim “if you take our powder or tablet you can help diminish the symptoms of a severe cold or flu”. It has always been my attitude to never allow myself to become ill in the 1st place. So why not begin to incorporate these 5 foods and supplements into your daily routine and help prevent anything from ever making you feel like you don’t want to get out of bed today! After all, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure

1. The 1st food to mention is something that a great number of people know about but don’t always get in proper daily levels to prevent illnesses. The classification of food known as citrus fruits is amazing! Citrus foods contain Vitamin C and Vitamin C in the body works as an antibiotic. It helps destroy viruses, bacteria, and molds that you are exposed in many various ways each day without even knowing it. The average person might resort to taking a milligram of Vitamin C per day in pill form for protection. It is simply easier, works more effectively, and is less stressful on your body to get Vitamin C from 2-3 food sources on a daily basis than to rely on a tablet form. Some great food sources of Vitamin C are camu Camu Berry, Amlalaki Berry, or Aronia Berry. Getting your Vitamin C from food sources on a daily basis will keep your body’s defenses in top condition.

2. Herbs are a wonderful food source for a variety of reasons. The best herbs to begin working with daily, in order to boost your immune system, are Rosemary, Turmeric, and Ginger. It was recently determined that blood cells from people who consumed Rosemary, Ginger or Turmeric for a week showed an enhanced protection from daily oxidative damage. The herbs also lowered the inflammatory markers in body. Lowering inflammation in your body results in less risk of a variety of diseases, including respiratory illnesses. Begin to incorporate these herbs into cooking chicken dishes, put them on top of salads, or add them into your soups and stews to boost the ability of your body to feel it’s best every day and avoid illnesses.

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Ignite Your New Year!

Published on December 13, 2018 by

New Year New You!

As we enter into 2019 you may be wondering: “where did 2018 go??”. You may have things you wanted to improve upon in your health that didn’t quite happen as planned. If you are like a lot of people you kept thinking you had time to start in 2018 and you kept delaying it…..

The time is now to make a decision and get some positive results. Maybe you want to lose ten pounds, maybe you want more energy, or maybe you want to sleep better. The list of desires may be long but you can achieve them! The time is now for you to feel and look better. No matter where you are at today in your health, you can see positive results in 2019!!

Where do you start??

  • 1. The first thing is to decide what it is that you want. Write it down, don’t just think about it. Write down what it will feel like to have what you desire. Visualize it completely and write down the details. If you are resisting doing this, think about this: you don’t go on a road trip without consulting a map do you? Why would you try to achieve a better body, more energy, etc without knowing exactly what it is you want and what it will bring you?? This step is critical. Having clarity in what you desire is the first step to achieving it.
  • 2. Think about the people that can help you to achieve what you desire. Friends, family members, health professionals, etc. Having people in your life that can support and guide you is extremely helpful. Write down who they are and reach out to them for help. Stay connected with them.
  • 3. Stop hanging around the negative people in your life (if you can). Minimize your exposure to them if you can’t avoid them completely. Naysayers and people who sabotage your positive efforts are not to be tolerated. Keep people in your life who care about you and want you to succeed. Sometimes the people around you can unknowingly sabotage your efforts to improve yourself. Once you explain to them your needs, hopefully they will understand and support you. Remember this: when you stand up for what you need, the people who matter don’t mind and the people who mind don’t matter. If you need to change what you eat, drink, or do and someone gives you a hard time; it is time to rethink that relationship and decide if they really care about you. You are an amazing person who deserves the love and support of those around you!
  • 4. Figure out a game plan. Write down the steps that are needed to achieve what you want. Break it down into easy steps. This may sound like a lot of work but if you take a little time now, it will make it much easier to achieve what you truly desire for your body. Start with small steps. Great things are achieved by small daily actions.
  • 5. Start each day visualizing what it is that you desire. Sit quietly each morning and also before bed. It only takes a minute or two to do this. Imagine yourself achieving what it is that you desire. See it and feel it happening. Taking action on a regular basis will be much easier when you have visualized what you want.
  • 6. If you are having trouble focusing, having the energy to make changes, or having other physical symptoms that are impeding your progress; get your hormones and other blood work evaluated properly. I see a lot of people who have a hormone imbalance causing fatigue, decreased motivation, lowered ability to exercise, brain fog, depression, etc. Hormones are like the gas in your car and they must be optimized for your body to run well.

The bottom line is that you can end 2019 in a better place. It takes desire, clarity, visualization, and small daily actions. You deserve to feel as good as possible!

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Published on November 25, 2018 by


It’s that time of year where our checklist doubles and for most people, our stress level doubles too.

Stress means different things to different people. What causes stress in one person may be of little concern to another. Some people are better able to handle stress than others. Because people handle stress differently, symptoms of stress can vary.

And, not all stress is bad. In small doses, stress can be a great motivator. Our bodies are designed to handle small doses of stress. But, we are not equipped to handle long-term, chronic stress without physical and /or emotional consequences.

Emotional symptoms of stress include:

  • Becoming easily agitated, frustrated, and moody.
  • Feeling overwhelmed, like you are losing control or need to take control.
  • Having difficulty relaxing and quieting your mind.

Physical symptoms of stress include:

  • Low energy.
  • Headaches.
  • Aches, pains, and tense muscles.
  • Insomnia.
  • Nervousness and shaking, ringing in the ear, cold or sweaty hands and feet.
  • Clenched jaw and grinding teeth.

Cognitive (Mental) symptoms of stress include:

  • Constant worrying.
  • Racing thoughts.
  • Forgetfulness and disorganization.
  • Inability to focus.

There are many ways to handle stress in a way that keeps you from feeling this way.

1. Set aside time each morning to sit quietly and just breathe. All it takes is 5 or more minutes a day to get your mind and body relaxed. If you can sit outside in a quiet place while you do this, it is even better!
2. Write down three things you are grateful for each day. Studies have shown that people who do this on a regular basis experience less symptoms of stress. It’s a quick thing to do for your health.
3. Exercise regularly. Regular exercise is great for your mind and your body. No one can dispute the mental and physical benefits of exercise. It does not matter what you do, if you don’t exercise now start with something. Find an activity that gets your body moving and do it regularly. You can even start by doing push-ups and squats at your desk at work, taking a walk around the office, and taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
4. Take time out for you before you feel stressed. Carve time out for you and take it! You are important. Love yourself enough to take care of you. Do things that bring you Joy on a regular basis.
5. Look up and smile throughout the day. Try it now! You will feel better just by doing this simple act.
6. Have a craniosacral session.

Cranial Sacral Therapy is a gentle, non-invasive form of bodywork that addresses the bones of the head, spinal column and sacrum. The goal is to release compression in those areas which alleviates stress and pain. Effects have been known to last for weeks after a therapy session. It is relaxing and therapeutic to have a Craniosacral treatment by a trained professional.

Craniosacral therapy offers many benefits aside from alleviating stress.
These include, but are not limited to:

  • Decreasing chronic and acute pain from a variety of causes.
  • Improving the immune system function and assisting in fighting infections.
  • Release of tissue and bone restrictions, improving mobility.
  • Enhancing your overal relaxation and revitalization of your mind and body.
  • Taking care of you increases your ability to withstand stress. It allows you to enjoy each day of your life and live life to it’s fullest!

Take time to add in the stress relieving measures mentioned above. And, if you wish to experience a craniosacral treatment session please contact me at 951-319-7819.

30 minute sessions are only $50 and 60 minute sessions are only $95 for the holiday season.
Sandra Scutelnicu

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Published on October 28, 2018 by

Healthy Holiday Food

Crowded shopping malls, holiday parties, grocery store carts, sniffling children, public transportation, theaters – things we all fear during cold and flu season! Germs lurking everywhere! Fortunately, you can create your own arsenal of natural, organic, and safe essential oil blends to help keep you healthy this holiday season.

One of the most effective blends to keep on hand is a stock blend to use as a steam. Just one or two drops (no more!) of blend in a steaming pot of hot water, with head tented with towel, can really help to nip a cold or flu in the beginning or greatly lessen severity and duration. Some good essential oil choices are Douglas Fir, Saro, Eucalyptus (Globulus) or Eucalyptus (Dives), Rosemary, and White Spruce. (If you are asthmatic, smell a drop of Eucalyptus before adding it to blend – in some asthmatics it can really help to open airways, but in others can cause an asthma attack. If you feel like you are beginning to tighten, do not use this essential oil.) Steam for 5 to 10 minutes – this will cause a lot of mucous to be expelled, so keep tissues nearby! Repeat 3 to 4 times per day until symptoms have diminished.

Using a diffuser with a stock blend is a great way to kill airborne germs and contaminants. There are so many oils to choose from, but some to consider are Hemlock, Cedarwood, Black Spruce, Lemon, and Ghandi Root. I generally recommend starting with 5 to 7 drops in diffuser, depending on type of diffuser and size of room. Increase or decrease as necessary. If diffusing around pets, small children, or elderly, use extra caution and make sure room is well ventilated. When using a diffuser, do not run the diffuser continuously throughout day. This is not only wasteful, but it is a lot for our bodies to process. A good rule is to diffuse for 20 minutes, turn off for an hour, and then repeat if desired.

Personal inhalers, one of my favorite delivery methods for many intentions, are another great addition to your winter “survival kit”. Inhalers are portable, discrete, long-lasting and inexpensive. Essential oils are always chosen for each individual client, but some good ones to try are Fragonia, Rosalina, Sitka Spruce, and my favorite, Ravintsara. Inhalers used during cold and flu season should contain oils which are anti-inflammatory, anti-viral, anti-microbial, analgesic, strengthening to the immune system, and, if necessary, opening for nasal passages. If your nose is stuffy, Ravintsara is an “essential” essential oil to add to blend! Ravintsara, however, should not be used with children under 5 years of age, and in very small percentages with children under 10, due to high 1,8 cineole content.

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Holiday Health

Published on September 27, 2018 by

No Stress Express

With the holidays just around the corner, many of us are feeling the pressure of the hustle and bustle that the season seems to bring. Making time for self care is not everyone’s first priority, although it is a very important one we tend to ignore. Give yourself the gift of self care.

There are some simple things that you can do to ensure you enjoy the holiday season.

  1. Schedule time for you. Say no to things you don’t want to do. It’s ok to say no to others and say yes to yourself. Ensure you schedule in time to unplug regularly. You are important. The people who care about you will understand if you take time for you. Have time on a regular basis to do things that bring you joy and relaxation.
  2. Take an Epsom salt bath or schedule a Float on a regular basis. Magnesium is very calming to your brain and excellent for muscle soreness and body detoxification.
  3. Get outside a few minutes each day. Close your eyes and breathe in deeply and slowly. Even a few minutes a day can be rejuvenating to your mind.
  4. Turn off your phone alerts and check your phone when you want to. Having your phone buzz and ring at you is a stressful event to your brain. Take control of your phone instead of having it control you. It is also important to turn off your phone at night to give yourself a break from the outside world.
  5. Schedule a Reiki session. Reiki is a safe, natural, holistic healing practice. Reiki helps us move towards balance and wholeness by using simple relaxation techniques which activates the body’s natural healing response.

Benefits of Reiki:

  • Heal mind, body and emotions
  • Relieve pain and calm the mind
  • Promote deep relaxation
  • Relieve stress and anxiety
  • Increase rate of recovery from injury
  • Strengthen the immune system
  • Help meditative state
  • Promote personal awareness
  • Enhance spiritual connection
  • Foster natural self healing
  • Balance energies in the body

Best of all, Reiki adapts to the needs of the recipient. If you are overwhelmed with stress, worry, emotional upsets, physical aches and pains, and disease you should consider a Reiki session. Your physical and energetic bodies will thank you!

By taking time to care for yourself on a regular basis, you will find yourself more energetic and able to handle life, as well as the holidays, much better. You can live an Optimal life by taking care of you!!

By Darla Conchas & Richelle Schmidt

Reiki Masters
Wellness Partners at An Optimal You

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New Year Reflections

Published on December 13, 2017 by

The new year is a great time to reflect upon what you would like to improve in your health and make positive changes. Sometimes this can seem overwhelming and yet, it can be a simple thing to do. There are things you can do in order to make positive changes painlessly and move towards your goal. Everyone thinks that you have to make drastic changes immediately, this is simply not true.

Healthy New Years

The first step is to set aside an hour or two to focus on what you want. If you are not clear on where you are going, it is easy to get off track. You are worth taking some time to visualize how you want to feel and look a year from now. Write down your thoughts. Include as much detail as you can—involve all of your senses(sight, sound, feeling, etc) . Write down what achieving your goal will mean for you in your life using all of your senses. Dig deep and write down everything that comes up. Use a pen and paper— this works better with our brains.

Once you have a clear idea on what you desire, you can achieve it by taking small actions daily towards your goal. Take your vision and first write down the big steps that it will take to get to your goal. Then break those down into smaller steps until you come up with easy to do action steps. You will be able to use your emotional attachment to your goal to help motivate you to stay on track as you take these small steps.

Next, write down obstacles in your life that could derail you from your plan. Be honest with yourself. Things are going to come up and that is to be expected. Plan for them and know how you will handle them.

Here is an example for you to understand the above recipe for success:

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Spring Cleaning For Your Health

Published on April 1, 2017 by

Spring is a great time to clean out your house but it is also a wonderful time to take stock of your health. Is there something that you want to improve upon?

Healthy Life Style Word Cloud

Take some time and think of one thing that you can work on. Write down a goal that is doable. For example you may want to lose weight but that is a huge goal. What if you start with eliminating soda, or adding more vegetables, or increasing the amount of movement you do every day; pick something that you can focus on and is a piece of your bigger goal.

Once you have picked the one thing that you can do and will do, take some time to develop a plan of action. Figure out a way that you can accomplish your goal. You may want to ask for guidance from someone who has achieved what you desire.

It is really that simple. We like to make things more complicated than they should be. Break down your big goal into easily obtainable goals. It is the little things that we do that add up to big successes.

Achieving Optimal health is a multifactorial approach. It involves getting the right mind set so that you may achieve your goals. It includes incorporating proper nutrition and supplementation, bio-identical hormone balancing, getting adequate sleep and exercise, and minimizing toxins. Each of these are important to address. Pick the piece that you want to work on and break it down into manageable steps.

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An Optimal You – 2017

Published on December 26, 2016 by

2017 and New Years Balls

Feeling optimal involves hormone balancing, restful sleep, adequate exercise, proper nutrition, detoxification, a healthy mindset, and the right supplements. Let’s talk about exercise since it is the beginning of the new year.

Have you ever noticed how hard it is to get a parking space at the gym in January? The place is crowded with people coming and going all day long, every day. People are motivated and they go to the gym.

What does the parking lot look like in March? July? December? It has more open spaces and it is easy to park. We have all seen this trend. Typically in January people are motivated and energized to make a change and then this tapers off in February and as the year progresses.

Goals written on a napkin

The reason we see this trend is that people are trying to make a change by taking quick action and not by changing their mind set. They consciously want to make changes but forget that it takes more than that to create lasting change.

In order to create lasting changes it is important to first determine why you want to make the changes. There needs to be a motivating force to get you through the tough times. Take some time and write this down (pen and paper works best for your brain). Write down how it will feel when you have made the changes. Be specific on why you desire the changes and how it will make your life better. This applies to any change, not just exercise.

You would not get in your car in a new place and drive without looking at a map, would you? Create your map for the outcome that you desire. Be sure to write down why you want to make the changes you desire and look at it each day. This is your map that will guide you each day.

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Diet and Hormones

Published on December 6, 2016 by

Healthy Older couple in front of fruits and vegetables

Refined grains and sugars plus processed and heated fats, all serve to raise your estrogen and cortisol to abnormal levels. This affects both men and women. The increase in estrogen and cortisol can cause irritability, fatigue, moodiness, fat deposition, and an increased risk for certain cancers and heart disease.

Refined grains and sugars also decrease a number of other hormones critical to the health and wellbeing of both men and women. A decrease in Testosterone can cause sleep disorders, moodiness, depression, loss of focus, muscle mass decrease, and an increased risk for dementia, osteoporosis, and heart disease. A decrease in Progesterone can cause anxiety, sleep disorders, headaches, and an increased risk for osteoporosis, certain cancers, thyroid disorders, and dementia. A decrease in thyroid hormone can cause fatigue, weight gain, depression, and an increased risk for heart disease.

Treating hormone imbalances helps you to feel better and to prevent a variety of chronic diseases. Balancing your hormones requires a whole-body approach; addressing diet, exercise and other lifestyle-based strategies along with replacing deficient hormones with bio-identical hormones. A healthful diet, low in processed foods, minimal grains, and high in whole organic foods, along with regular exercise, can go a long way to ensuring that the bio-identical hormones prescribed for you can work optimally.

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The Ultimate Gift

Published on November 23, 2016 by

During the holiday season, so often people rush around to get the right gifts for those they love. They go to malls, shop on line, and spend their few spare minutes on shopping. The pressure to get things done is felt by many.

What if the gift you focus on, is the gift of taking care of you?

The results of taking care of you:

Present Wrapped with a bow
  • Sleep Better
  • More Energy
  • Balanced Hormones
  • Improved Mood
  • Less Pain
  • Less Disease
  • More Productivity
  • Healthy Libido
  • Optimal Weight
  • Live With Vitality

If you have these things, do you think that those you love will enjoy being around you?? Will they be happy for you? Hopefully the answer is YES!!

After spending 40 days in the hospital ten years ago, I learned that the people who care about you, want you to take of yourself. They understand when you take time and money to take care of you. They suffer when you suffer. They feel better when you feel better. Besides, why would you “kill” yourself pleasing the people who do not understand?

It is selfish not to take care of you. When your Progesterone, Testosterone, or Cortisol are depleted from stress; you will feel out of balance and those around you will suffer as well. When you overeat or don’t sleep because you are not taking time for you, your weight and irritability will increase. When you don’t take time to exercise you will have more pain, a depressed mood, and be less productive. The list goes on.

Taking time out for you is a gift for you and for those around you. Talk to your loved ones and come up with ideas to make this holiday season a time to rejoice and enjoy those you love. You will find that you have more energy and overall feel better.

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