Category Archives: PCOS

information related or pertaining to Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Intro to the #TruthSeries Journals

 

The #TruthSeries Journals ARE My Stories Of Struggles and Learning Who I Really Am 

“Vulnerability is the only authentic state. Being vulnerable means being open, for wounding, but also for pleasure. Being open to the wounds of life means also being open to the bounty and beauty. Don’t mask or deny your vulnerability: it is your greatest asset. Be vulnerable: quake and shake in your boots with it. The new goodness that is coming to you, in the form of people, situations, and things can only come to you when you are vulnerable, i.e. open.”
Stephen Russell, Barefoot Doctor’s Guide to the Tao: A Spiritual Handbook for the Urban Warrior

In the coming days, months, years or however long it will take – I will cover and share several of my life experiences that will make me very uncomfortable, and most likely some of those close to me as well. My goal is for you to be able to read, watch or hear what I’ve struggled with & learned and to use it in some way that is beneficial to yourself.

The Truth Series Journals will consist of several different personal topics that are all inter-connected in some way. I am trying to find out who I am, who my spirit is, and what it is that I need to accomplish in this lifetime. I feel an overwhelming need to share these experiences with you. I have been suppressing this feeling of sharing for a while because putting myself out there is HARD and scary. I have decided to do this now because I’m over this feeling of self-pity and paralysis. This is my first outward step in a different direction from nutrition.

Let me start by saying that I am still early on in my journey to my core (who I really am- you’ll hear me call this a few different things that I’ll use interchangeably because I get bored pretty easily) and this is by no means a how-to guide because I am how-to’ing myself and just want to start writing it down and getting it out there in case you can relate and learn a thing or to about your own journey.

photo cred: Jairo Alzate

photo cred: Jairo Alzate

The truth has always been something I can relate to because it is not politically correct. The truth is kooky! It is unusual, its scary, humorous, sexy even… but really – the truth is so familiar because it is the only way I can relate to other people. I love it when someone else has completely stripped themselves of who they think they are and leave themselves unprocessed, rough, and organic to the core. This core is what we can identify with – its like ripping off the blanket and although we are cold and don’t feel protected, we are also able to allow someone to get close and make that skin to skin contact that will protect us. It may be a weird analogy but it came to mind first!

That intimate connection and relationship to other people is what I love, I need it to feel like I am living and moving forward. Without feeling connected I am lost, off my path, and depressed.I’ve always known I wanted to work with people; I’ve always been interested in getting to know people and am so curious about their lives. So perhaps being intrigued by other people is my way to understand my own life.

Many of the truths I am going to share aren’t what I have portrayed on social media because social media is usually a place where I post things that are really positive in my life and not where I want to talk about all my struggles. BUT I hope to change this over the process so that my social media accounts represent who I genuinely am and what I am going through as a real person and not just the shiny parts of my life. Many of you that know me might not know about these struggles but these are things I want to talk about because they are part of me and I have learned so much from each of them!

How does this relate to a “Clean Will Of Health” or rather my health coaching business? This is a large part of why I remained in paralysis for so long (having too many ideas and not knowing how to start). Once deciding that I was going to make a career out of helping people heal their body’s ailments just as I had done myself (get the scoop here) I went to school to train how to become a health coach and embarked on a new and scary journey of being an entrepreneur. This took a LOT of effort for me to step out of my comfortable bubble and do something different – create a website, market myself, do the work, etc. While I do enjoy helping people make healthier food choices and notice a difference in how they feel and look, I also want more and know I am capable of more.

I want to reach people on a soul to soul level to make extreme change possible.

How am I going to do this?? NO IDEA how I’m going to do this and that has been difficult. Trying to rationalize that this “soul to soul” thing relates to my current health coaching business and the detox groups I run has been mind-numbing. Because of this internal and ongoing struggle, I have been torn between being marketing myself as a health coach and aligning myself with what I really need to do. I need to find and be my authentic true self.

Health and nutrition has provided a wonderful and NEEDED foundation that I will use for the rest of my life. I am aware that figuring out who I am is related to health on several levels but I don’t know how to bridge that gap yet. I have faith I am going to though ;). I am ready for my path to do more zig-zagging now!!

My soul is yearning for me to speak the truth about my struggles in an effort to bring some of us together. I have been silencing this part of my soul for so long that it is now time to spit it all out and be vulnerable. Because I want to keep my emotions raw and unadulterated, I don’t want to edit my truth series very much. So if I miss a few grammatical things, let them go – because I have too!

I hope to provide my thoughts, feelings, trials, errors, fears, frustrations, accomplishments, successes to you along the way. These will come in the form of my #TruthSeries Journals which will be written or recorded via video/audio, etc.

PLEASE NOTE: As I go deeper into this journey, I am still making myself available for a limited number of personal coaching clients so please message me if you want to have me coach you through PCOS, burnout, simple nutrition, digestion issues, incorporating more vegetables, loving yourself, hormone stuff, and baby steps to a more sustainable and healthy life! These are all things I have personal experience with and am happy to help you with and share about.

In TRUTH & LOVE,

Sofia :)

The BEST Way To Pop a Zit!!!

Sooooooooo, I might make some of you cringe with this one! I realize ACNE doesn’t affect everyone, but if you know someone dealing with acne, zits or pimples (I don’t like any of those word but I’m sticking with “zits” for the sake of the post) please pass this along as a good way to pop them without scarring. And while I am a true believer in holistic healing from the inside out and fixing acne/zits from within, sometimes it is one hell of a long ride to healing and it’s always good to have a backup plan when a little (or BIG) red monster zit creeps up on you!

Sadly, whether occasionally or frequently, many of us can relate to getting zits, right? Or maybe you feel like you are the only one around getting them, not true! Having suffered from PCOS, I know I had to worry about zits popping up at some really inopportune times (weddings, job interviews, dates, oh my!!).

Photo cred: Andrei Porfireanu

Photo cred: Andrei Porfireanu

I have been tweaking and perfecting my zit-popping-ritual for over a decade now and have put it all in one neat place for you. As you might be able to tell if you continue reading, I have grown fond of popping zits, while I don’t enjoy getting them, I really like the ritual of bursting them, watching the pus come out and cleaning it up for proper healing. Call me crazy!

Here is my tried and true solution to popping zits the best way with the least recovery time and without scarring!

 

 

Following the whole method is the KEY.

  1. Night Popping- Let’s say you have a zit forming on your face, and you notice it when you wake up in the morning. DON’T pop it then!! What I have noticed is that when I’ve popped my zits during the day is that my fingers (subconsciously and consciously) wanted to be around my popped zit all day, causing more bacteria to get into my open zit wound. Has anyone else noticed this? After you pop it, you are so aware that it is on your face, and it still oozes. Popping zits at NIGHT is the way to go! If you pop your zit right before you go to sleep, it has the whole night to restore and heal without any grubby fingers touching it. This is also when the rest of your body is restoring and healing, SCIENCE,  so there you go ;). I realize no one wants to walk around all day with a big, red zit on their face, or worse, a whitehead but sometimes you gotta suck it up today for the sake of tomorrow and this week’s beauty! (See below for some quick inflammation reducers in emergency)
  2. Whiteheads are best- Now before you pop the zit (AT NIGHT), it’d be best if it has a white head but I’ve worked some without white heads and can attest to similar results even if the zit is almost ready. If it does not have a white head then you need to be sure the zit is ready to pop and ooze the good stuff (this takes experience haha), otherwise you risk squeezing to hard leading to possible scarring. To ease the process of getting a zit to form into a whitehead, finger-touching comes in handy. So if I feel a zit coming on during the day, i’ll touch it with my fingers as much as  possible to get it to form a white head so I can pop it that night! Gross I know :/ but it works!
  3. Clean Fingers and Clean Tweezers- This is especially important to not spread bacteria and/or infection, I wash my hands and tweezers with hot, soapy water and usually wipe the tips of my tweezers with Hydrogen Peroxide or Rubbing Alcohol before and after popping. If you don’t like using these to clean, just sterilize by setting tweezers or needle in distilled boiling water for 2 minutes.
  4. Sharp Tweezers or needle- I don’t condone using needles, mainly because I love my Tweezerman tweezers (shout-out to Tweezerman! I love these tweezers for many reasons), you’ll want something sharp that can poke a very small hole on the tip of your zit. Now while tweezers we most likely not intended for zit-popping and it may frighten some of you- I assure you, it is not as painful as it sounds. Because the skin on your pore is already fragile and easily penetrated (i.e. the zit is full of goopy pus) tweezing a tiny little hole on top won’t hurt as bad as NOT tweezing a tiny hole and just squeezing your fingers together for dear life. Making a tiny hole is important because it lets the goopy pus come out easily and with direction.
  5. Squeezing- After you tweeze a tiny hole, you’ll need to force out all the goopy pus (white/yellow/greenish). It is important to get ALL the pus out otherwise the zit will be twice as big and red the next day!!! How do you do this? Take 2 clean fingers (and squeeze the zit from the sides: East and West), make sure you have tissue or toilet paper handy to catch the pus. After you squeeze once from the sides (use 2 fingers again and squeeze from the top and bottom: North and South). Keep switching after squeezes, East/West & North/South, until no more pus comes out. After the pus is all out you should see a little blood, usually this means the wound is clear of goop but can also be deceiving sometimes because I’ve seen a little blood mixed with goop when I’ve squeezed a little to hard. A good indicator is if when you run your clean finger over the open zit wound that it is not raised to a head like the zit was at first, because all the pus will be gone it shouldn’t feel like a zit anymore to your finger. Now you’ll still have a slight bump and it will be RED and inflamed so you won’t want to go out in public afterward, hence WHY you do this RIGHT before bed. Also, schedule nookie time appropriately if you’re worried about it ;).
  6. Washing the zit wound- I found what works for me after I pop a zit is to immediately wash the zit with warm/hot soapy water. Since I don’t use soap on the rest of my face, I only spot-wash my zit which is me just soaping and washing the 1/2 inch radius around my zit as well as my zit, I get up in there with the soap to make sure it doesn’t come back with a vengeance the next day!  Then I cleanse my face with my normal skin routine at night and apply a light moisturizer. After washing and drying, you may notice some residual clearish-colored oozing, this is good! It will dry on its own pretty quickly. Don’t touch it with your fingers, bring a tissue to bed and blot your oozing zit a few times before you fall asleep if you like.
  7. Get a good night’s sleep- I’ve popped a zit or 2 at night having had an awful night’s sleep (3-5 hours) and awoken with a not-so-happy zitty and painful wound the next morning so please give yourself ample time for rest so your whole body can repair.
  8. The next morning- If you are like me, you may be excited to see what your zit looks like the next morning and how much better it looks. If done properly, it should just have a teeny tiny reddish scab that will go away within a day or 2. DON’T TAKE the scab off and try not to pack on the makeup because bacteria can still get into the wound with a scab. If you are desperate for coverage for your tiny red scab, blot a little light green powder on it- NOTE, I only do this in emergencies because I like the zit to dry out naturally with no makeup on or around it. But you should not see a bump of any sort. Personally, I think the worst part of zits/acne is the bumps that come with it so I’m usually a happy camper when the bump is gone the next day and the healing is underway. If you will be in the sun, apply an SPF, if only on your zit at least, preferably an SPF without all the nasty chemicals in it!

For those of you that need a quicker fix, you can try some of these:

dab on lavender or tea tree essential oil,  or an aspirin/water paste for 10 min, rub a potato slice on it, or do a honey mask

I’d love to hear from you, what rituals and products have you tried on zits? Has it worked? What is your tried and true method?

I am in no way getting paid to promote anyone’s products, The product I link to in this article or have linked to in past article are of products I personally use and love, and I would never promote something that I didn’t love and use myself

10 Healthy Snacks for Busy People

So we all ideally want to eat healthier (right?) but sometimes don’t have the time to make healthy snacks  so we reach for what comes easy… like hitting up the vending machine or reaching for some unhealthy snack that takes 3 seconds to open and stick in your mouth for instant gratification. Been there! While working in corporate America, it become a cycle to fuel myself with crap just to get through the day, i.e. I didn’t get enough sleep at night leaving me more hungry throughout the day, more irritable and more likely to make small mistakes in my work. This was very stressful on my body (even if I brought a healthy salad for lunch) because in order to fuel myself I drank sugary coffee-like substances, ate sugary office treats or grabbed a bag of salty chips to shut my hunger up. I was working out  4-5 days a week but wasn’t losing weight, still getting acne, wasn’t sleeping better and was still stressed! All the while, I brought very healthy lunches with me to work thinking because I had at least 1  or 2 healthy meals a day would be enough to keep me healthy. Not the case, this cycle of mine was not a good one.

Here are 10 healthy snacks that you can prep at work or at home so you can easily grab something and satiate yourself in a normal 5-10 break at work. Most of these healthy snacks require you to bring things with you to work or better yet store them at work so they are always available in a pinch. I used to store my healthy snack ingredients (that didn’t need refrigeration) in my desk: Extra Virgin Olive OIl (EVOO), sea salt, pepper, seeds (sesame, pumpkin, sunflower), healthy crackers, apple cider vinegar (ACV), nut butter (almond, cashew, peanut), and fresh seasonal produce that doesn’t need refrigeration such as tomatoes/avocados/ peaches/ nectarines/apricots/lemons/oranges/grapefruits/etc. Don’t forget a bowl, plate, fork, spoon, knife, etc if your place of work doesn’t supply these items to you.

  1. Photo cred: Leonie Wise

    Photo cred: Leonie Wise

    Avocado & Tomatoes with Olive oil, salt and pepper (Prep at work)- bring your avocado to work (feel free to use tomatoes too!) cut it up in a bowl, add EVOO, salt and pepper, mix with fork and enjoy.

  2. Bell Peppers (Prep at home or work)- Cut them up the night before and put into a ziplock or bring the peppers to work whole and cut them on your break, or bite into them like an apple… the green ones are not as sweet so beware!
  3. Photo cred: Juan José Valencia Antía

    Photo cred: Juan José Valencia Antía

    Handful of nuts (Prep at home or work)- If buying raw nuts in bulk, you should soak your nuts to remove some phytic acid, Here is a great example of how to soak your nuts (hehe) and why it is beneficial (shout out to the blog author, Kayla!) and also how to dehydrate them. Soaking nuts will make the process more time-consuming but when buying in bulk, it is much easier because they save well. Make sure not to eat too many, they are high in fat (good fat) but still have quite a few calories.

  4. Berries (Prep at home or work)- buy fresh or frozen but make sure they are ORGANIC Frozen berries- put a handful or two of frozen berries in a tupperware at night and take to work next day, use a fork or spoon and enjoy with all their juices. Fresh berries- wash and put in tupperware or bowl and eat.
  5. egg-869300_1280Hard-boiled eggs (Prep at home)- try to find eggs from chickens that are raised on pasture, hard boil the eggs the night before (I set a timer for 10 minutes because i really despised over-cooked hard-boiled eggs). Then after the 10 minutes, I pour the boiling hot water out, add really cold water, and let them cool a little. I then peel them and put them in a tupperware, rough-cut them in the tupperware, add salt, pepper, sometimes nutritional yeast for extra nutrients, and EVOO then put the lid on and stick it in the fridge to bring to work the next day, eat at any time for a protein boost.
  6. Cream cheese on crackers with salad greens on top (Prep at home or work)- spread your cream cheese (This is my favorite cream cheese) on cracker of your choice, add a little salt, pepper and some fresh salad greens like arugula, spinach, mixed greens and drizzle some EVOO on top. I sometimes add my soaked and dehydrated sunflower seeds, turkey lunch meat, tomatoes, etc and it can even become a full meal. It can get oily and drippy with the EVOO but it is totally work it!
  7. Cucumbers and Salt (Prep at home or work)- At home, cut up cucumbers and place in tupperware and add salt then put in fridge and bring to work the next day. Or cut up at  work, add a pinch of salt and perhaps even a spritz of lemon, then eat it up.
  8. IMG_3121Homemade no-bake chocolate-rice crispy treat (Prep at home)- I just threw some stuff together with no real measurements here, SO in a bowl mix up coconut oil, nut butter of your choice, brown rice syrup, raw cacao powder, cinnamon, vanilla powder, vanilla extract, pinch of salt then throw in some chocolate rice cereal (I used this one), then once you mix in the rice cereal with all the wet ingredients listed first, just pour it all into a pan, even the top and put in the freezer for an hour. Take out, cut up and enjoy, then store leftovers (if any!) in fridge.
  9. Apple, celery or banana and nut butter (Prep at home or work)- cut up fruit of your choice and add some nut butter (cashew, almond, peanut, etc)
  10. Photo cred: Alex Munsell

    Photo cred: Alex Munsell

    Homemade popcorn (prep at home)- buy USDA Organic or nonGMO corn only and no I do not condone microwave popcorn, even if it has “healthier” ingredients than the others. This is where I learned how to make my own without burning any kernels, thanks Elise! I make a big batch (3/4 cup or 1 cup un-popped kernels), season with nutritional yeast, salt, pepper and then put the popcorn in to-go bags to take as a snack.

Now I realize these are all not instant snacks but they are really not too time-consuming and will bring you back into consciously thinking about your snacks and how you are fueling yourself daily. After all, we all could stand to benefit from taking better care of ourselves. What do you crave while you are at work? Leave a comment and let me know…

Hello world!

I am so excited to have this site up and “running” today, I had been thinking about putting this website together for quite some time and I finally took the plunge! It feels gooooooooood.  Since this is my first post, I would like to tell you a little about myself, my journey to becoming a health coach, where I picture this website going and so forth!

About Me…

Who am I? I’m a bit crazy in many regards (more on this to come), just know this out the gate and keep it in mind. I am 29 as I type but will be 30 in less than 2 months, OMG, let’s do this! I am first generation Italian-American and have a loving, supportive and loud family. I married my one and only 2 years ago and have been doing the marriage thing since then. They weren’t lying when they said it takes work, boy it does! But we love each other and are ever-excited about our journey together. My Bachelor’s degree is in International Business which I have yet to utilize efficiently but have recently taken the most important leap in my life and have decided to become a certified holistic health coach.

I could probably just talk about myself for paragraphs on end so to keep it somewhat brief, in this paragraph I will just list things out about myself and you can tune in or out (and because I am new to WordPress and cannot find the line-spacing button, I can only write in paragraph form) so here is my “list”: I was born and raised in The Bay Area, CA, currently live in Vancouver, WA, I will have curly hair for life!, I have a lot of freckles, I am the baby of my family, I have 2 older brothers, I have 1 nephew (and he’s the cutest ever….no seriously), I am a free spirit, I am very positive (it keeps me sane), I loooooove simplicity but have a knack for drama when things are too calm and simple (here is some of that crazy peeking through), I think my grammar is great but in reality I use commas and parenthesis way too often… oh and these 3 dots…and exclamation points because I’m a pretty ecstatic person!!!, I love authenticity and just being real which can also be vulnerable, I love adventure, I love children, I love soccer, I had ACL reconstruction surgery due to loving soccer, I love to travel, I love to cook (JERF), I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) in 2011, I “cured” my PCOS (more on this to come) by 2013, I love supplements (probably too much), I love to grocery shop (Dork I know! I’m all about that organic, nonGMO, unprocessed base), I love investigating health and the body, I love how holistic health treats the ailment from the inside –> out, because really, what is more thorough than that? Oh and I love to not proofread… I will do my best to keep this page professional and neat but cut me some slack once in a while.

Becoming a Health Coach

I am an aspiring holistic health coach (graduation- Sept 2015, IIN) and quite possibly, at the happiest point in my life because I have finally found the direction my life is supposed to be headed (its been a journey to this point) along with being content in the other areas of my life of course. But as we know, its a balance game, and any area of life can fall behind if neglected so for now, contentment is in balance! I have always enjoyed helping people, which can mean any number of things and quite frankly did mean many things, as I always tried to find a way to make someone else’s life a bit easier or better, even if they didn’t want it. But the last 4 years of my life created a funnel of how I wanted to help people, this all lead me to holistic health and wellness and being a health coach seemed the natural path at this point. I want to help people understand their health, listen to their bodies, take manageable steps to become healthier and have that Clean WILL Of Health so they can really enjoy more things in their life.

What is a Health Coach?

As defined by the Institute of Integrative Nutrition (the school I’m attending), a health coach is “a wellness authority and supportive mentor who motivates individuals to cultivate positive health choices. Health coaches educate and support clients to achieve their health goals through lifestyle and behavior adjustments.” So health coaches look at the whole person, including diet and lifestyle, this is an area in which doctors don’t usually look at because they aim to treat your symptoms. We work together to make the small changes you need to get to a healthier version of you, basically we try to help clients where doctors can’t because either they don’t have the time or the resources. With our healthcare system struggling to keep us all healthy, health coaches act as that liaison between the people and healthcare providers, and with the rise of health coaches, hopefully we’ll be able to help more people!

The Future of Clean Will of Health

Honestly, I love reading other people’s blogs. I love being able to search Google for anything and up pops a blog with some relevant info on it. I wanted to start my own blog years ago but scary thoughts halted that. The most recurring scary thoughts are: I thought that people wouldn’t listen to me, I didn’t have enough expertise, I’m always going through my own health issues so who would want any info from me because I don’t have it completely together myself? Now I have learned that my scariest thoughts are all very common fears, and what better way to conquer your fears… than to jump in head first?!

I have many ideas for the direction(s) of this website and I hope to one day be able to touch on each idea. For now (short term), I will share health insight that I know has helped me, ways I have helped friends and family with their specific health goals, and of course those awesome products and people that got me helped me along my journey. Later (medium term) I’d like to be able to use this site as a way to help you takes steps to better your own health and implement a health program and my services as a certified holistic health coach. Also in the medium term I’d like to start a podcast of sorts and talk to real people about health. Much later (long term) I’d like to be an inspiring speaker and health coach, helping people turn around their lives and literally make the world a better place for each of us. I want to be able to connect with people all over the world, raise awareness of current nutrition, health and wellness.

Along this journey I will be learning about WordPress (I am tech-challenged) and making this site look the way I want it to look, which according to this crazy gal, may be ever-evolving. Occasionally I will slip in something you may think doesn’t relate to health but I hope I can finagle it in a way that either it won’t matter and you’ll appreciate it anyhow or (fingers-crossed) you’ll just be hanging on my every word ;). Leave a comment and introduce yourself, where are you from? What do you want more information on relating to health?

– Sofia :)

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