It seems like every celebrity health & fitness trend begins and ends with Gwyneth Paltrow’s site goop. Very few celebrities cause such a stir. Controversial and trend setting, Gwennie’s nod of approval can put a business on the map.
In 2011 Moon Juice was born. Started by a single mom and entrepreneur, Amanda Chantal Bacon, this impressive company is definitely fascinating. Hailed by goop as “She (Amanda) literally glows from within, making any encounter with her, an “I’ll have what she’s having” moment. For the past few years, Amanda’s been hard at work developing an extensive line of rare, healing dusts, powders, and other concoctions that do everything from stimulating brain function to improving your sex life.”
Celebrities like Karlie Kloss, Emma Roberts and Kourtney Kardashian are also fans.
Obviously, I had to check it out.
Sooo… I walk into the small shop. Juices, almond milks, and snacks are all lined up in fridges. Probiotics and other powders line the shelves. This is basically an all white modern apothecary meets cafe. Expensively dressed locals mull about ordering various funky treats as I stare at the mystical menu (and the fashion). I notice a large crystal behind the counter.
At the counter, I get a brief description of what my choices are. We decide I should try a 2$ shot of silver strawberry almond milk with a hit of Spirit Dust inside.
(Why the Spirit Dust selection? I was jetlagged and I wanted to feel open to encounters with new people, even though my body wanted to go to bed.)
It tasted better than ice-cream, and I felt energized!
I let the woman who helped me sell me a bottle of Beauty Dust filled with goji berries that would “make my eye whites whiter, my skin glow and my face slightly lift”. It would take about a week to start working. Now that I’m back at home, I can happily report that I take a small dose with my morning smoothie and it fuels me all day with a euphoric rush of energy. It feels great and I do find that my skin glows ever so slightly more than before.
I was told that for a night of insomnia, to try the Dream Dust. She warned me that it may aid your subconscious in “working itself out so be wary that dreams may be slightly disturbing” depending on what’s going on in your life. Hmmm.
It really depends on the person. The “superherbs” and “supermushrooms” are adaptogens that help your body deal with “mental, physical and emotional stress”.
I also bought a box of two sachets of each dust. Then she let me try one of their peanut butter brownies for free. It was incredible. She also gave me a complementary mix of Brain Dust and cocoa to add to my coffee on a day when I need a mental boost.
I love that all of the dusts are made from their organic farms. They also have the highest level of CCOF organic certification.
Final word? Definitely worth trying and kudos to Amanda for her impressive marketing skills.
Source: Wikimedia Commons
Jennifer Anniston, Katy Perry, Madonna and Angelina Jolie are just a few celebrities that meditate daily. On the plane ride to LA I read an article about sound bath meditation. I keep hearing about it from bloggers and friends. I decided to try a session at Ceremony Meditation on Rose avenue in Venice beach.
The teacher Sunny is 27 and wise beyond his years. (For a visual, he gets told he look like Bob Marley.) He was talking about how he had a girlfriend that required “two jobs to keep”. Exhausted from over working, he asked himself if this lifestyle was what he really needed. He decided to leave the jobs that were taking all his time, and the girlfriend. He decided to be his own boss and to only accept jobs that made him happy. Riding on faith, he found that that the universe kept providing and he lives with gratitude. He asked us to look around and appreciate every detail. To notice how the room we were in, while simple, was filled with attractive details like turquoise pillows. That we were warmly wrapped in blankets. He told us he would be spritzing us with rose water because it opens our spirit. He asked us to lie down and close our eyes. Then he began the music.
How do you describe sound bath music? Here goes. Cue the soft wooden flutes, the kind that Peter Pan would play. Add in the sound of chimes, so high pitched you see crystals. Add in instruments you have never heard before mixed in with the sound of flowing water. I felt like I was a crystal floating in the ocean. Then I felt like I was a leaf floating on a river in the jungle. Then I (the leaf) floated into a cave. I saw rainbows and fairies exploding into hundreds of colors and butterflies.
I felt like I was inside Mickey Mouse’s Fantasia.
At one point as I was thinking about rainbows and I thought “I am the rainbow.” He told us to hug ourselves and while he spoke a select amount of beautiful words, he asked us to remember how we felt surrounded by love. He told us that this would be our new lowest point. We should remember the warmth and self-love we were feeling. He asked us to kiss ourselves. (This made me panic, I was picturing it turning into an orgy which is not what I signed up for. I am open-minded but I have my limits. Then, I calmed down and the thought struck me as very funny.) Then it was over. I struggled when class first began to keep my eyes closed because it felt like my mat and I were floating above the ground, so it was hard not to check. But then when class ended, it felt like only 5 minutes had passed.
Sunny asked us all to hug each other. He called us his brothers and sisters. He also told us that during the meditation “I am…” statements likely came to the surface and to hold onto them. Mine stuck with me the rest of my trip and was an instant pick me up. Don’t overanalyse these things…just go with it. It held an important meaning for me, so that’s what matters. Why can’t we create our own lexicon of phrases that pick us up and center us when we need it?
Final word? I loved this experience and I’ve never slept that well before. I plan to download sound bath meditation music so I can recreate this class home. Now I just need someone to spray me with rose water…
Source: Wikimedia Commons
There isn’t a celebrity whose body I admire that doesn’t incorporate yoga into their fitness routine. Meghan Markle’s arms? Yoga. Jennifer Anniston, Kate Hudson, Jennifer Biel, Justin Timberlake, Gisele Bundchen, Ryan Gosling…need I go on? Yoga is nothing new but making the time for it even while on vacation is new for me. I also think that yoga is important to incorporate into our life more than ever to counteract all the sitting we do in front of our computers.
The class at The Yoga Collective was in a simple room with just a table and chair for a reception area. They closed a curtain in front of the wall of cubby holes for privacy from people walking by outside.
My teacher opened with a question. “How do you handle adversity? Who is someone that has handled adversity in an inspiring way?” I thought first of myself, but then I went with Rupi Kaur, the poet who wrote “the sun and her flowers” and “milk and honey”. She moves me.
To be honest, I wasn’t in the mood to think about adversity. It’s a topic too heavy and serious for how great I was feeling but I went with it. The class was a struggle because the flow she took us through was outside my comfort zone. I felt stiff, ungraceful and needed to rest often. I told myself ‘That’s ok, you showed up and that is what matters.’ I hit some pain points both physically and emotionally in my hips. I felt so stiff and it made me annoyed. I battled on. Then after everyone else did handstands and I lay with my legs against the wall, something great happened.
I don’t typically use blocks but she had us put a block under our hips and this position felt so freeing, like I was flying and all my troubled thoughts and lack of grace disappeared. I felt a bliss that reminded me why I love yoga so much. Discomfort is part of the journey to get to that joy. I left the class with my chest high, my shoulders back, and a grin on my face.
Final word: It felt amazing and I love that they offer on-line classes.
Source: Wikimedia Commons
For celebrities like Jessica Alba, Alicia Silverstone and Anne Hathaway clean eating is a lifestyle.
There is no better city to try eating clean than in LA, or at least making the healthiest choices possible. For me that means selecting whole grains, farm fresh fruits and vegetables, and reducing fatty fried foods whenever possible. I find being 100% vegetarian difficult, but since this trip I stopped having dairy milk in my coffee every morning and switched to almond milk. Why? I had been considering it for a while. Every time I asked for regular milk while I was in LA, I not only got a weird look, but it had to be entered as a special order. I decided to try the switch and I actually like it.
After an uplifting yoga class, I headed straight to Café Gratitude which is right next door. It is beautifully decorated. Light-filled with lots of soft couches and simple striped cushions; it looked plucked out of a French meets California home in a magazine! I saw a smoothie on the menu called Grace made with coconut and almond butter. I ordered it immediately. I am a huge fan of peanut and almond butter. It was creamy, sweet and delicious! I love that they don’t use plastic straws.
The cashier asked me the question of the day. “How do you nourish yourself?” I thought about that while I waited. Too often I skip yoga and make lazy food choices. I felt so inspired in that moment to treat my body better. It’s hard in Canadian winters to not choose comfort food and another glass of wine. It’s easy to say “I’m not going outside again today, it’s too cold.” But now that flip flop weather is on its way, I’m going to take full advantage of the moksha yoga in my neighbourhood. It’s hard to believe that one yoga class, a few days in the sun, and some Moon Juice can alter you, but I truly felt a desire to live differently.
3 LA restaurants where eating healthy is easy.
This is considered a hot spot for “clean eating”. While I was waited to order, hipsters in cool shades sat outside and a dance version of “Harvest Moon” played. This is my kind of casual place. We all stood in line to order and then sat down next to our number. I ordered a harvest bowl of (OMG) brussels sprouts, sticky almond rice, sliced squash, pickled onions, avocado slices and orange cauliflower. Clean never tasted so good. Great White is also known for their fried chicken, so you won’t feel forced to eat salad!
The owners also own Gjlena which is apparently the best restaurant in LA according to all my sources, but very hard to get into unless you arrive at the bar at 5 PM if you don’t mind eating early. Gjusta was originally a bakery and has grown into a full-fledged restaurant with an outdoor terrace. The style is rustic and the garden is plush. My friend and I ordered the Mediterranean breakfast that was sensational! Two boiled eggs with FRESH snap peas. OMG, they were incredible! Grown in the California sun! Just wow! The bread was hardy and absolutely delicious. I could feel my insides happy dancing over the nutrients. The people watching was also great.
The Butcher’s Daughter
This is the go to place to eat clean and people watch. The décor is gorgeous and the music is happy. It is the place to see and be seen while treating your body right.
How do you nourish yourself?