Home PageBlog

Blog

I used to have acnes-prone skin when I was young. Nowadays not any more (maybe partly because I’ve grown older? ;-).

WHY ACNE PROBLEM?

Throughout the years I do have learned from my own experience that acnes might result from many reasons such as the diet, habits, hormone changes, stress, skin types, etc, or simply just genes.

Some medical opinion points out that most of the acne cases are related to genetics and manifest during teenage years. The reason for this was a study that was done with twins (identical vs normal). It showed that identical twins had similar acne situation while normal twins had big differences with their acne.

That being said, the typical western diet with processed foods, sugar and various industrial fats is also said to be the biggest external cause for acne. Smoking is the second biggest external cause for acne.

For some reason acne is very rare in cultures which consume little white sugar. Sugar increases insulin production and leads to insulin resistence and increased chance of diabetes as well as affects to the production of androgen. (Archives of Dermatology 2002;138:1584-1590).

If I add the Chinese medicine point of view on top it, it is said that acnes have something to do with the general body conditions. For example acnes in the chins of women often indicates that her hormones are not currently functioning in a balanced way. If you pay attention, sometimes especially just before or during the menstrual cycles one might be more prone to have acnes especially in that area.

Although many factors may result in acnes-prone skin, I do believe the concept of wholeness health and believe that adequate sleep, regular exercise, relax mood, healthy diet can improve the skin condition.

As you know, we are in the wild herb/berry business so we also like to tackle acne from the perspectives of nutritions.

USE BERRYPOWDERS AS PARTS OF NUTRITIONAL PLAN TO TACKLE ACNES

First, make a general list of foods to avoid. Yes, it is always more difficult to take away from diet than to add into diet. Ok, here goes, milk related and fatty products because they stimulate oil glands.

Foods with lots of processed sugars are also on the ban list for the reasons mentioned earlier. This includes sugar as such and various industrial sweets like candies and juices but also simple carbohydrates like white bread and pasta.

Second, take natural healthy gentle food is a kind gesture to your body and skin.

Here is comparison of different berry powders’s nutrition in view of combating acnes.

Lingonberry: it contains mostly easily extractable proanthocyanidins by percentage among wild berries. Proanthocyanidins have been used in many products that try to alleviate acne symptoms. Lingonberry includes also high percentage of Omega 3 compared to most berries.

Rose hip: it contains most proanthocyanidins by amount among berries. Finns all know that rose hip soup are great for skin.

Buckthornberries: this is the berries that contain most Vitamin C and Vitamine E. It also contains certain amount of proanthocynanidins. Buckthornberries have also some other nice surprises in their contents, like Omega-3 and Omega-6 fatty acids which will help with skin and membranes. Also Buckthorn is just generally an excellent source of flavonoids and has vitamins C and E in it both of which are regarded as “skin” vitamins.

Bilberries (wild blueberries): although not being “marketed” as berries for skin, it has been our own all-time-favorites! Not only because it tastes great, growing all over Finland in summer time as Finn’s collective memories of summer, but also for its especially high contents of flavonoids, polyphenols and antioxidant. For a general improvement of health, we always recommend to add the Finnish wild blueberries, aka bilberries into your meal!

More figures and charts can be checked from the Finnish online resource: http://www.arctic-flavours.fi/en/info/berries/nutritional+value+of+berries/figures/

I confess that I do eat wild berries regularly everyday, but I wouldn’t go so far to say that simply by taking berry powders and wild berries one can tackle completely the acne problem. To treat your skin, first of all you need to take care of yourself well. Only after your holistic health is in a good condition, the acnes would have nowhere to stay on your skin. It might sometimes sound like a long way to go, but it can also starts from a simple little change, such as to sleep half hours earlier, to stop smoking, to exercise regularly, and to love yourself and learn to relax. Of course, if on top of this some spoonfuls of berrypowders are added to the diet, you are really on the right track!

Buy from our shop: Bilberry powdersBuckthornberry powdersLingonberry powdersRose hip powders.

Lingonberries- many Finn’s favorite in the autumn

Buckthronberry – vitamin C, E, omega 3. the real power berry!

Bilberry – our all-time-favorites from the wild forest

Rose hip- berries for your skin

Rowans, the common tree that produces enormous berries from the autumn on, has been known as the holy tree in the Nordic land.

People believe that rowans can ward off bad spirits and bring good lucks. As you see, we also take some rowan berries home alongside with rose hips, all wild ones in the clean Finnish nature, to give us good fortune for the coming autumn.

In the Nordic, there are many myth surrounding the Rowan trees. One of them being so that birds eating rowan berries will get bit “drunk”, in fact birds are just extraordinary happy during the snowy autumn and winter when eating rowan berries, as not many berries in the nature have the strengths to go on through the cold winter as the rowans.

Rowan berries are also elected as berries of 2014, as it has a lot of vitamin C and minerals. In the coming posts we will introduce more recipes with the rowan berries. Stay tuned!

We also offer Rowan Berry Powders from our shop, check it out!

 

Rowan fruits also known as Rowan berries.

Rowan berry powders

You must be wondering if it is worth to subscribe our newsletter. So many of these lists work as marketing ploys or republish past blog articles as newsletter compilations. Here are some reasons why you can accept our newsletter with open arms.

WE NEVER SHARE YOUR INFORMATION WITH ANYONE

We don’t do any marketing swaps or sell anyone’s information to anyone. You can trust that we use your contact information only to send you our newsletter and nothing more.

WE SEND ONLY ONE NEWSLETTER PER MONTH

Actually sometimes we might miss a month here and there, because we have not been able to experiment or come up with good enough content for you. We are not going to flood your inbox

WE WORK ON OUR NEWSLETTER

Our newsletter comes to your inbox so from our point of view it is more personal than a random visitor to our website. This is the reason why we must provide solid information for you. It would be really embarrassing to serve you warmed up leftovers.

FROM THIS NEWSLETTER YOU WILL GET TRADITIONAL REMEDIES

We are on a mission to learn about natural remedies used by folk healers and we want to combine the knowledge from Chinese Medicine tradition and shamanic healers from Northern Europe. These healers worked with pure nature and bio-energies of their patients. With all the accomplishments of modern science it looks like the keys to feeling good might just be found in tradition. We also want to make it easy for you and provide products that you can safely use at home without prior experience.

SUBSCRIBE TO THE NEWSLETTER AND SEE HOW IT IS

Subscribe to our Nature Secrets Newsletter. You will really like it! * indicates required Email Address * First Name

//

Bilberry, blueberry, bog bilberry…. sounds confusing?

We took the below photo for you a couple of weeks ago from a countryside cabin, deep in the Finnish forests, where we got all of them around.

Have a look, can you recognize them, which one is which one??

→ Click here to read more

WHAT TO DO WITH THIS INFORMATION?

Tea is not just a refreshing drink. For thousands of years it has been used as a remedy for all sorts of ailments. To get the very best out of your tea you should know the basics of various tea varieties. However it doesn’t end there as you can enrich and add new qualities to your tea by the use of herbs, flowers or other edible organic products.

One aspect of holistic health is the basic body nature, which is different from person to person. We react differently when for example the same food is given to a group of people. This tea series presents astrology as a reference to your choice of enriching your tea experience with natural additives. The base for several suggestions here comes from the long astrology tradition and should be considered as suggestions not medical information but I believe many of you will find suggested herbs very suitable to your palate when mixed with your favorite tea.

HERBS

Aquarius is strangely positioned in the world of herbs as they are well matched with plants that have sharp and unusual flavours. It is very difficult to point out anything that could pass as a drink. Peppers might be used to bring in the element of fire into very strong teas – the ones with smoky or earth taste.

TREES AND FLOWERS

Trees bring some more options for Aquariuses because their trees include all trees that bear fruits. We all know that many fruits are used to give some extra flavour for teas, especially at the lower price range of the market. Also all-fruit infusions are very popular nowadays and Aquarius can well benefit from those. One of the most interesting options is Elderberry, which is poisonous unless seeds are not removed from the berries.

OTHER STAR SIGNS

Remember to check our other astrology related tea and infusion articles:

Libra

Virgo

Gemini

WHAT TO DO WITH THIS INFORMATION?

Tea is not just a refreshing drink. For thousands of years it has been used as a remedy for all sorts of ailments. To get the very best out of your tea you should know the basics of various tea varieties. However it doesn’t end there as you can enrich and add new qualities to your tea by the use of herbs, flowers or other edible organic products.

One aspect of holistic health is the basic body nature, which is different from person to person. We react differently when for example the same food is given to a group of people. This tea series presents astrology as a reference to your choice of enriching your tea experience with natural additives. The base for several suggestions here comes from the long astrology tradition and should be considered as suggestions not medical information but I believe many of you will find suggested herbs very suitable to your palate when mixed with your favorite tea.

HERBS

Cancer with its imaginary claws.

Cow parsley and Bishop’s weed are two common herbs, which are associated with Cancer sign. Both happen to have white flowers and white is also the color of Cancer. While Cow parsley and Bishop’s weed are edible and quite healthy they don’t produce a nice cup of tea. However white rose is something that does make good tea.

TREES AND FLOWERS

White rose’s petals do not have as strong taste as red rose’s petals so it blends the best with light teas and in a big portion. Naturally all white rose infusion can be made too.

Sapped trees belong under Cancer and gives great options for sweetening drinks. Maple syrup can be used to sweeten iced tea drinks and birch tree, which also is a tree with sap has leaves, which have a delicate fragrant taste and can be made into an infusion on their own or mixed with some Oolong tea.

OTHER STAR SIGNS

Remember to check our other astrology related tea and infusion articles:

Libra

Virgo

Gemini

WHAT TO DO WITH THIS INFORMATION?

Tea is not just a refreshing drink. For thousands of years it has been used as a remedy for all sorts of ailments. To get the very best out of your tea you should know the basics of various tea varieties. However it doesn’t end there as you can enrich and add new qualities to your tea by the use of herbs, flowers or other edible organic products.

Virgo sign spans over so many stars that it is difficult to show in a standard image without it becoming a tiny.

One aspect of holistic health is the basic body nature, which is different from person to person. We react differently when for example the same food is given to a group of people. This tea series presents astrology as a reference to your choice of enriching your tea experience with natural additives. The base for several suggestions here comes from the long astrology tradition and should be considered as suggestions not medical information but I believe many of you will find suggested herbs very suitable to your palate when mixed with your favorite tea.

HERBS

Virgos are children of the nature and enjoy time spent in the great outdoors. Mercury is Virgos ruling planet and shows strongly on intellectual level. Another strong trait coming from Mercury is healing and it shows in healing properties of  Virgoan herbs like southernwood, valerian and fennel.

Fennel is even now commonly used in cooking while southernwood is an old herbal remedy, which was used as an antiseptic externally and as a digestive internally. Valerian is probably furthest as an ingredient one could use in a refreshing infusion as the smell resembles sweaty feet. Healthy as it may be I wouldn’t use it as a fragrance in my tea.

TREES AND FLOWERS

Trees bring some more options because Virgoan trees include all trees that bear nuts. I’d say that nuts can be used to give some flavor for some selected teas, for example smoky Lapsang Souchong could benefit from a hint of walnut.

Forget-me-not, Alkanet and other flowers in which blue and yellow are combined also many yellow flowers can be considered to be Virgoan. Lavender is the most famous of the lot and it is being used in all sorts of edible and inedible products and can be combined with various tea blends.

ANISEED AND LAVENDER – JUST WHAT DOCTOR ORDERED

Aniseed and Lavender rise above other Virgoan herbs, which also include marjoram, caraway, balm and bittersweet. Aniseed can be used to ease digestion and Lavender eases all sorts of aches all fitting to the healing traits of Virgo.

OTHER STAR SIGNS

Remember to check our other astrology related tea and infusion articles:

Libra

Gemini

 

WHAT TO DO WITH THIS INFORMATION?

It looks like a scale.

Tea is not just a refreshing drink. For thousands of years it has been used as a remedy for all sorts of ailments. To get the very best out of your tea you should know the basics of various tea varieties. However it doesn’t end there as you can enrich and add new qualities to your tea by the use of herbs, flowers or other edible organic products.

One aspect of holistic health is the basic body nature, which is different from person to person. We react differently when for example the same food is given to a group of people. This tea series presents astrology as a reference to your choice of enriching your tea experience with natural additives. The base for several suggestions here comes from the long astrology tradition and should be considered as suggestions not medical information but I believe many of you will find suggested herbs very suitable to your palate when mixed with your favorite tea.

HERBS

Mint is the herb which is most often associated with Librans. Mint is well known for its digestive and antiseptic qualities and this really suits well for Librans as hungry sweet tooth tends to be one of their less-wanted qualities.

Dried Nordic berry fruits can be also be counted into herb-like foodstuffs, which have some health improving qualities. Especially forest berries are good for Libran diet as they provide ample amount of vitamins and balance blood sugar to keep that sweet tooth calm.

TREES AND FLOWERS

It is only apple tree that has something edible on offer for Libra. No matter, dried apple is often in the mix with infusions and teas. Do you know something better than freshly baked apple pie with some vanilla ice cream accompanied with a cup of tea or coffee?

Taurus and Libra share rulership with Venus and therefore have similar associations towards plants and especially flowers. Rose is the strongest and the most widely used herbal flower on the list and it can often be found mixed in to teas and infusions. Powdered rose is especially tempting in baking as it gives natural fragrance to any sweets especially on dry cakes… but maybe I should stop tempting that good ol’ sweet tooth.

OTHER STAR SIGNS

Remember to check our other astrology related tea and infusion articles:

Gemini

Virgo

 

DID FOOD POISONING RUIN YOUR HOLIDAY?

When we travel our immune system comes under stress. Changing climate conditions and time zone changes are challenging but the major stress comes from different bacteria we come in contact in our new surroundings. Food especially can turn our stomachs upside down. There are only few things nastier than having to run in and out of toilet on your dream vacation. How can you protect yourself?

Aching stomach makes me bad bad company on a vacation. It feels like a bleached black and white photograph.

TWO SIMPLE THINGS TO PROTECT YOURSELF

We can easily pay attention to our own behavior but we can’t change the behavior of others. Everybody knows that good hygiene is the starting point against bacteria inflicted stomach problems. This is what our moms have been telling us since we were toddlers, don’t put that into your mouth, you can’t eat that, let’s wash those hands… So what are those two things you didn’t know yet? Believe it or not – tea and bilberries – and you can combine the two by drinking bilberry infusion.

BOILED WATER IS THE KEY

While on holiday we often pay attention to the place where food is made. We don’t go and buy whatsoever from every street vendor, but we do buy refreshing drinks from left and right. These sweet drinks are perfect home for bacteria as there is lots of sugar available and surrounding conditions tend to be quite warm (yes many of us like to have our holidays on skiing slopes).

If you limit yourself to only boiled drinks like coffee and tea your chances to catch a stomach problem on a holiday will greatly diminish. Boiling the water will kill bacteria and as tea leaves and coffee beans are dried they are safe from harm too. Tea especially is a drink that enjoys wonderful rejuvenating qualities and you will get a long-lasting boost from your cup so try to sit down and relax in a local tea room instead of a juice stand.

WHAT ABOUT THAT BILBERRY?

Bilberries calm the stomach and can ward off mild stomach problems like heartburn after a heavy meal. Combining boiled water and bilberry will result into a bilberry infusion free of nasty bacteria and a traveler’s self-help stomach medication via increased fluid intake and acidity soothing tendencies. No wonder your grand mom asked you to eat some bilberry soup when you had a stomach ache. While travelling I keep a little pouch of bilberry powder close at hand. It makes a nice drink and keeps me going.

Airplane image by Kitty Terwolbeck

As mentioned in the previous post, the garlic tea was excellent in relieving my son’s cough.

Another great natural remedy for coughing is Manuka honey. Many know that honey has certain antibacterial functions which have also been proved in the latest related research in Finland.

image source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Manukaflowers.jpg

Manuka honey is produced in Australia and New Zealand specifically from the Manuka flower, which has especially strong antibacterial properties compared to general honey.

The way to use it is simple:

INGREDIENTS:

One spoonful of Manuka honey

HOW TO USE IT:

Before going to bed, take one big table spoon of Manuka honey, let it naturally melt in your mouth and swallow it. It soothes the night cough. If needed, you can take it in the same way two to three times a day.

When my son had coughs caused by the cold last month, I used both Manuka honey and garlic tea to help him. Both natural remedies proved to be efficient.

PRODUCT RECOMMENDATION:

You can find many Manuka honey products from Amazon.com. I have personally chosen the Comvita Manuka Honey UMF 10+ and I am very satisfied with it. The higher UMF number is, the stronger antibacterial properties it has.

Comvita Manuka Honey UMF 15+ 250 gr/8.8 oz

FURTHER NOTES: WHAT CAN BE CALLED MANUKA HONEY

– to be labelled as Manuka Honey, at least 70% of its pollen contents should come from manuka flower (Leptospermum scoparium)

CLARAFICATION OF DIFFERENT RATINGS

. There are different product rating for Manuka Honey in the market, such as UMF, MGO, ACTIVE.

I found a very good page that explained the difference very well. Here I cited some of the paragraph here:

“UMF stands for “Unique Manuka Factor.” It tells you what the full non-peroxide antibacterial rating of the Manuka honey is. Since Manuka honey’s antibacterial nature comes from many factors, the UMF rating takes them all into account and gives you a final rating. The most common UMF ratings are UMF 5+, UMF 10+, UMF 15+, and UMF 20+. The “+” after the number just means that it could be more than the number given, but that it won’t be less.”

“ACTIVE means that the honey in question has some sort of peroxide activity, but it doesn’t guarantee any antibacterial quality.”

“MGO stands for a substance called Methylglyoxal (pronounced meth-uhl-glahy-ok-suhl). It sounds fancy, but it’s just an organic substance found in Manuka honey that has one part to play in Manuka honey’s antibacterial properties. While MGO plays an important part in Manuka honey’s antibacterial properties, it isn’t the only component that makes Manuka honey such a powerful natural antibacterial.”

(contents above are cited from NZMANUKANATURAL)

Based on this information, I recommend you to choose Manuka honey product that has a clear UMF rating.

Check out some SALES for the new store! Currently orders will be verified manually by email