Sep 25, 2012

Woman

I heard this poem in a movie long back.It was a movie about a couple of African American  women but the rest is sort of vague.

In a world where everyone is becoming finicky or are being taught to do so,we sometimes forget the essence of a woman is not whats on her but rather in her.Outward appearances are given so much of a priority in these times and men being men....at least most of them,they seek their appeal on how a woman makes them feel down there..than what actually is really admirable about her.Anyways,

Its "Phenomenal Woman " by Maya Angelou.



Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.

I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.


I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
The swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.


Men themselves have wondered
What they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.


Now you understand
Just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
The need of my care,
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.





Looks I adore......

Sep 3, 2012

Arthritis

This topic will interest a whole lot of people as rheumatism and arthritis are one of the many diseases people have today and it can range among kids as well as young and old.

I have been suffering from RA (rheumatoid arthritis) for around 4 years now.It started when I crossed 30 and as usual I have inherited this from my family.Rheumatism according to modern science is a kind of a blood disorder and those who suffer from it know its something that changes your life altogether.Some don't have so much pain while some find it difficult to do even the simple daily chores of life.I know the hard way.I know the value of doing something as simple as holding a spoon or a brush or using the toilet and even walking.I remember screaming in pain as I couldn't get up from my bed or chair and needed help to even sit up straight ad having no help whatsoever other than my husband who could assist me when he came back from work.I remember all those nights when I cried in my sleep,wetting my pillow and asking God to just grant me death.Even thinking about the pain wells my eyes up.

But......this disease made me see things and approach life in a totally different way.I learnt my strengths and my  weaknesses.I learnt how to use my other hand if one wasn't functioning,I learnt how to hop or drag myself to the toilet,I learnt of ways to get up from my bed....it was painstaking but I learnt and I'm proud of myself.I guess I became deeper friends with God in such times of horror in my life.Anyways,for those who don't get it,people it is horrible and lets Praise Allah for giving us good health and alive today.

The purpose here is not to describe the disease or share my scary times.I'm just going to write a few natural things I have come to know and use to help alleviate my pain and help me lead a better life.

Firstly,I take a whole range of western medications for my RA.That includes calcium tablets initially,vitamin D tablets,Sulphasalazine for RA,Methotrexate as well both in the form of tablets or injections( they are chemotherapy drugs used in autoimmune diseases,cancer,etc).Now these medications have sort of improved my condition but it being antifolate and antimetabolite,has decreased my haemoglobin count and and as it weakens the immune system,I started losing my hair slowly,have major dark circles but in the end,I would anything to just live a day with no pain.I also take prednisolone regularly and actually cannot survive a weak without it.Its no picnic having such strong medications but I don't want to land on a wheelchair or on a bed for months ever again.

Anyways,some alternate things to help out.

1) My doctor says I should avoid eating meat but I have read eating camel's meat once in a while is okay as it is lean and healthy.

2) Camel Milk traditionally has been suggested for auto immune disease sufferers.Also Camel Urine.Don't go yuck but I guess when you have gone through bad pain episodes,you would gulp down in a jiffy.I put up an article on Camel on my blog in detail,read it if its of any interest to you.

3)My husband brought me Ostrich oil recently and I must say it is a wondrous oil.When I applied them on my aching joints,It went numb after a few minutes.I mean it gave me instant relief.Better than taking Tramadol right.Yeah I take those when I cant bear it anymore.

SO  I will jot down a few things about Ostrich oil so you can read a few benefits of this oil.

Ostrich oil has long been used in ancient Egyptian, Roman and African cultures for both medicinal and cosmetic benefits. Ostrich oil is a wonderful moisturizer and diminishes the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles and is said to have been used by Cleopatra as a part of her skin care routine.


Today, scientists are re-discovering the benefits of ostrich oil. This oil is very high in essential fatty acids, omega 3, 6 and 9 and is completely non-comedogenic (will not clog pores). Because the molecules are almost identical to human skin and are even smaller than the molecules in human skin, the oil is quickly absorbed and does not sit on top of the skin as do so many moisturizers.
Emu oil also has been long touted as beneficial to the skin, but ostrich oil is found to have an even higher content of omega 3,6 and 9. These fatty acids are essential for cell growth, division and recovery. Ostrich oil is said to be great to use on burns, bedsores, eczema, insect bites, skin rashes and dry skin. Ostrich oil has been found to be both anti-inflammatory anti-fungal. Because ostrich oil is anti-inflammatory, it can be used for such conditions as rosacea, eczema, psoriasis and even gouty arthritic joints.


The oil is becoming more popular today and is being added to numerous skin care products. It contains numerous essential fatty acids, including omega-3, omega-6 and omega-9 and is also almost completely non-comedogenic. This means that it doesn’t block the pores because the molecules in the oil are almost identical to human skin, except they are even smaller. The oil can sink into the skin with ease compared to other moisturizers, making it perfect for all skin types.


It has also been used to lessen the appearance of stretch marks, cellulite and scars, by promoting cell renewal and by hydrating the problem areas of skin.


Ostrich oil has helped a large number of people with a large number of skin ailments, but unfortunately, all data is at this point anecdotal, so we don’t really know the long-term effects of ostrich oil. That being said, you could try using ostrich oil products for your skin complaint – just make sure that you have regular check-ups with a doctor to ensure that if you have any adverse side effects, you can get immediate medical attention.


Arthritis Herbal Remedies


Turmeric Eases Joint Pain

Turmeric contains anti-inflammatory properties that are beneficial against rheumatoid arthritis. Additionally, curcumin is a powerful antioxidant and is able to neutralize free radicals that cause havoc on the joints. Regular usage of turmeric can shorten the duration of morning stiffness, longer walking time and reduced joint swelling. Turmeric is also effective with Osteoarthritis in its ability to reduce pain and disability.
Ginger Remedy For Arthritis

Ginger contains a chemical called Zingibain which is analgesic in nature and reduces pain caused by muscle aches, arthritis, headache, migraine, etc. Ginger oil or ginger paste can be added to the massaging oil to soothe the aching muscles. A decoction of dry ginger and castor roots can be taken every morning for lubrication of the joints and relief from pain.

Ashwagandha Acts Against Joint Pain

Ashwagandha has anti-inflammatory and tonic properties and is a wonderful supplement for rheumatoid arthritis. Clinical studies have shown that naturally occurring steroid like compounds in Ashwaganda are as effective in the management of inflammation as the synthetically manufactured hydrocortisone. The pain relieving ability is comparable to aspirin and phenybutazone without the unsavory side-effects.


Garlic Reduces Joint Pain

Consume a crushed garlic decoction daily to soothe those aching joints. In clinical studies, garlic has shown to reduce pain and inflammation associated with rheumatoid arthritis. It also inhibits the formation of free radicals that accelerate joint damage.

Guggulu Arthritis Remedy

Guggulu is an anti-inflammatory and a pain reducing herb. You could consume 250 mg capsules twice daily with warm milk

Capsaicin Application For Arthritis

To ease the pain of arthritis, apply a cream containing capsaicin, an active ingredient in cayenne pepper to the painful areas.

Devil's Claw Treats Arthritis

Devil's claw is a popular treatment for osteoarthritis as it can improve pain, range of motion and the time needed to recover from stiffness.

Camphor Stimulation For Arthritis

Camphor is a detoxifier and a stimulant on the circulatory system and as such it excites the blood circulation and gives relief in rheumatism, arthritis, gout, etc. It is also anti phlogistic - it reduces swelling of body parts. Pieces of camphor can be added to sesame or mustard oil and used for this application.

  • Kalonji oil/onion seed oil/Nigella sativa seed oil :
Take one spoon of vinegar, add half tea spoon of Kalonji oil and mix two spoons honey, use twice a day (In the morning before the breakfast and in the night after dinner)





Dos and don'ts


Following is the diet suggested for the patients suffering form arthritis:

• Vegetable juices and soups

• Coconut water

• Coconut milk

• Carrot juice

• Beet root juice

• Cucumber juice

• Cooked vegetables like squash, zucchini and pumpkin

• Spices like cumin, coriander, ginger, asafetida, garlic, fennel and turmeric Green salad with a dressing of lemon juice and a little salt

• Khichadi (recipe made by cooking rice and mung dal )

• Regular physical exercise and massage with oil should form an important part of the routine.



The patient of arthritis must avoid the following:

• Eating hot, spicy and fried foods, sweets, wind forming foods like cabbage, Cauliflower, spinach, broccoli, okra and potatoes.

• Too much tea, coffee, alcohol, white sugar, yogurt, chocolate, cocoa.

• Antibiotics, painkillers, steroids and nicotine

• Sleeping during the day

• Staying up late at night

• Mental tensions like worry, anxiety, fear, stress and grief.














Sep 2, 2012

Dal Kulfa recipe

Lets clear these Indian names first. 

Dal means Lentils and there are so many varieties of them.Most of them are cooked in almost the same manner,but a few of them are cooked with Milk,few of them are added in combination with other dals.A few of these can be combined with mutton or chicken ( cooking these differ a bit).Also they can be cooked with a variety of vegetables and green leaves like spinach,purslane or saag.In the end dal is a wholesome meal on its own,eaten either with rice or rotis or in the form of soup.If you learn to cook it well,then good for you.They say the simplest things are sometimes the tricky ones to cook.Too much blabbering....okay lets move on.

Kulfa is Purslane leaves.My hubby says they are cooling things..in the sense...you can eat them in the summers.Spinach is a heaty thing I've heard.Anyone wants to correct me anywhere,please go ahead.

I used red lentils as they are my favourite,they cook faster and I love to eat it with rice,matta rice or basmati rice,your choice.

2 bunches of kulfas.The leaves have to be plucked and washed and kept aside.For 2 people or 3,
2 cups of red lentils,washed well and kept aside.

I use a pressure cooker coz its faster but if you have a normal vessel with a good lid,that's perfect too.Add the lentils,add 4 cups of water or the water level should be at least an inch and half above the lentils.Now add the leaves directly,add half a tsp of turmeric powder,salt to taste,red chilly powder and a few green chillies.( you know your spice limit,so adjust,we Indians love our chillies and that's what makes us hot ;>)

Close the lid.If its a pressure cooker,then I think a mere 8 minutes will do,if its not a cooker,then close the lid and keep checking.The dal will cook and so will the leaves.You don't want a paste or you don't want the contents to stick to the bottom of the pan.Keep stirring if not using a cooker.

Now the main thing.Its called the tadka( don't remember what its called in English right now),I guess tempering.

Using clarified butter or ghee is the perfect thing here but you can use sunflower or any vegetable oil you like.Olive oil will render a different taste.I normally use sunflower oil and rarely ghee.
3/4ths of a cup of oil in a small shallow frying pan.To it,add an inch of finely chopped ginger,half an onion finely sliced,2 tsp of garlic chopped fine,half a tsp of mustard seeds,half a tsp of jeera or cumin seeds,a pinch of hing or asafoetida and 2 dried red chillies and curry leaves.When the garlic gets golden Brown,switch the gas off ( shouldn't be on high heat anyways) and directly add it to the Dal-leaf mixture.

Close the lid after mixing it in well and let it sit on simmer for at least 15 minutes on slow heat.If the Dal is thick,add water to make it a little watery like consistency.

That's Dal kulfa for you my way.

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