Six Health Benefits of Lavender

The health benefits of lavender are endless. This gorgeous herb continues to impress, the more you read about it. It’s key actions are that it:

  1. Relieves gas (i.e. helps with digestion)
  2. Relieves muscle spasms
  3. Alleviates depression
  4. Disinfects (makes for a great first aid essential oil)
  5. Kills bacterial (combats skin infections and speeds up healing of scars!)
  6. Stimulates blood flow (i.e. reduces headaches).

At first, what attracted me to Lavender was it’s skin benefits. However, it also helps with headaches – added bonus!

The lavender flowers are well known for their soothing and calming effects and the herb can be used to also calm nerves are relieve irritability. If you want lavender for this specific purpose, Eco-Savy highly recommends using a “diluted” lavender essential oil. The “non-diluted” version is better for first-aid purposes/wound healing.

Lavender Health Benefits- Eco-Savy

 If you want to try a product that contains “lavender” and can (1) help your skin (2) increase your metabolism/increase weight loss and (3) improve digestion, Eco-Savy HIGHLY recommends trying “Green Tea Benefits” Ultra Skinny Tea. It contains “lavender” as a key ingredient. Learn more:

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Natural Remedies For Insect Bites

With all this great summer heat unfortunately comes insects. The problem today is that most insect repellants all contain so many harsh chemicals (i.e. DEET) and often make you feel kinda gross while out in the heat.

Below are a list of some natural alternative insect repellents, some may even surprise you:

Basil – Commonly known for its use as a “spice” in North America, but elsewhere it is used extensively in medicine, particularly in India. Indeed, Indians rub the leaves on their skin as an insect repellent, and Africans do the same.

Best Natural Remedies For Insect Bites

Mountain Mint (Pycnanthemuum muticum) and Pennyroyal – Both of these herbs contain “pulegone”, a powerful insect repellent. Pennyroyal is the more popular of the two, and it has a long and honorable history. In fact, pennyroal goes back to the first century A.D. when people discovered that it was effective against fleas. However, based on personal experience, I would say “mountain mint” works better than penyroyal.

How to apply: Just pick some leaves and rub them on your skin and clothing. Note: don’t use either of these if you are pregnant, as these herbs have been known to increase the risk of miscarriage).

Citrus essential oils: Something about citrus, and plants with citrus-like aromatic qualities, repels insects. The info-graphic below will help you understand how powerful citrus essential oils can be when used as a natural insect repellent.

Citrus essential oils as natural insect repellent If you like this post and want more articles like this, please subscribe to the mailing list. It would make me so happy 🙂

Starbucks Talks Sustainability

When you go to Starbucks, do you recycle the lid or cup? I didn’t think so.

Despite a somewhat unmatchable brand loyalty in the coffee space, Starbucks still takes heat due to the potential negative environmental impact of its disposable cups.

Starbucks is now rising up and taking action to become more sustainable. Recently, they rolled out plastic cups for cold beverages that are produced with polypropylene cups and lids, and launching new lightweight plastic cups to reduce resin consumption. In addition, Starbucks has a goal of making 100% of its cups reusable or recyclable by 2015.

In an attempt to find a solution to this recycling issue, Starbucks has launched an in-store recycling program at selected stores.While the program has hit some hiccups along the way, the company said it is committed to eventually offering in-store recycling on a wide scale.

Currently, Starbucks is working with ConAgra Foods to make their coffee cups recyclable. What is preventing this from happening is the non-recylcable polymer adhered onto the inside of their cups to prevent leak.

Conagra Foods are different in that they use post-industrial recycled polylactic acid and convert it into shrink film packaging materials (i.e. the inside lining of Starbucks coffee cups). The company’s PLA shrink film contains more than 50% post-industrial recycled material, and it uses this material for tamper-evident seals on some of ConAgra Foods’ table spreads. However, the CEO of Conagra Foods still recognizes the limitation of PLA based bio-plastics and their researchers are working hard to make sure no plastic/contamination occurs within the cups with PLA shrink film adhered to them (i.e. increased thermal stability). Below is a quote that expresses the CEO’s concerns more thoroughly…

“We know there are challenges with PLA and how it can impact the bottle-to-bottle recycling strategy,” she said. “But we have strict restrictions on PLA and we make sure it doesn’t stay with the package because we don’t want potential contamination.”

By collaborating with its suppliers, Conagra has been able to convert 260,000 pounds of resin from non-renewable resources (PVC and PET g) to PLA (plastic derived from starch). It will be exciting to learn more about what Conagra can do for food companies to reduce their environmental waste and make their materials more sustainable.