Posts

We love Tamarind Fruit – But what about the Seed?

Most people know about Tamarind fruit in some form, in Tamarind juice, in Indian chutney or curry or in good old BBQ sauce… Tamarind fruit pulp is the base for what most of us know as Tamarind.  The pulp which is rich in Vitamins and minerals boasts a whole list of health benefits by itself, helping to regulate digestion, improving blood glucose levels, blood circulation and cholesterol.  But did you know that hidden inside that tangy-sticky fruit pulp of a whole Tamarind are seeds (3-12 per pod) packed with proteins, amino acids, essential fatty acids and minerals?  These little morsels of nutrition have surprising health benefits on their own!

For the Body:  Joint Relief & Other Benefits

Tamarind Seed holds great anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial benefits (1) when ingested.  Amongst its traditional uses is the treatment for joint pain and arthritis by ingesting roasted Tamarind Seed Powder.  Early research suggests that Tamarind Seed does indeed reduce inflammation and oxidative stress in joints, helping with pain and protecting bone and cartilage (2).

For Skin:  The Skin Hydration Optimizer

When applied to skin, Tamarind Seed Extract helps draw and bind vital hydration to the skin by feeding the skin’s natural moisturizing factor in the skin’s surface, similar to how Hyaluronic Acid does.  The genius lies in the molecular structure of Tamarind Seed Extract, which is able to penetrate the skin surface more deeply, resulting in deeper and more long-lasting hydration.  We use Tamarind Seed Extract in our Tamarind Tea Hydrating Toner, where it is combined with Hyaluronic Acid, Green, White & Black Tea and Rice Bran Extract to draw and bind vital hydration to the skin and feed the skin’s natural moisturizing factor (NMF).

Make your own Tamarind Seed Powder!

While fresh whole Tamarind is now available in many Asian and Latin grocery stores in the US, Tamarind Seeds alone or Tamarind Seed Powder are not.  Fortunately, you can make your own Tamarind Seed Powder quite easily!

  1. Buy fresh whole Tamarind and save the seeds after eating the pulp as a snack or using it for cooking.  Wash and dry the seeds with a paper towel.
  2. Roast the seeds in the oven at 300 degrees for approximately 10 minutes. Alternatively you can also roast them in a frying pain on low heat for about 5.  Let cool.
  3. Wrap the roasted seeds in a dish towel, place them on a thick wooden cutting board and roughly crush with a hammer. The kernels are very hard so you will need to use quite a bit of force.  When the Tamarind Seed cracks, the dark brown seed skin will come off, exposing the inner white seed.  Keep the brown skin.  It has nutrients as well!
  4. Grind the crushed kernels and seed skin in a coffee grinder until it is a fine powder. You will notice a nice, nutty aroma.
  5. Store in an airtight container. Keep cool and dry.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add 1 teaspoon of Tamarind Powder to your smoothie, juice or yogurt.  The powder does not actually dissolve in water, so I have found it easier to consume when it was suspended in a thicker medium like a smoothie or yogurt.

Enjoy experimenting!

UV Radiation Primer with 6 Easy Sun Protection Tips

Is that another sunspot on my 3 year old daughter’s face?!? We put sunscreen on her face everyday, but yes, I skip a day or two when we are rushing out the door. Pool season is here, and I have been a BAD mother. I have not properly shielded her from a life of wrinkles, saggy, rough and dull skin! Another thing for her to blame me for when she becomes eighteen. Thankfully, my non-paranoid rational brain kicks in and reminds me that it never hurts to freshen up on UV radiation and how to protect oneself from the sun.

UVA/UVB Primer

Big picture reference: UV Radiation is shorter wavelength than visible light (700-400nm) in the electromagnetic (light) spectrum.

UVA I (340-400nm) and UVA II (320-340nm) together make up 95% of the UV radiation that reaches the earth’s surface, where we humans live. UVA is present with relatively equal intensity during all daylight hours, throughout the day, and can penetrate clouds and glass. Wait, I spend more hours in the car than I would care to discuss, and UVA penetrates glass. Plus, windows of cars do NOT have UV protective film. UVA penetrates deeper into the skin than UVB, to the dermis (skin photo-aging and wrinkles!), but does some dirty work in the epidermis layer above the dermis where it damages skin cells in the basal layer – basal, squamous, and melanocyte.

UVB (290-320nm) varies by season, location, weather, and time of day. In the northern hemisphere, significant UVB rays only make it through from about 10am to 4pm, October(ish) til March(ish), depending on what city you are in. UVB is the only ray that makes vitamin D. But to get the right amount, it has to be between those months and times on sunny days, full body exposure for about 15 minutes, depending on your skin color, age, etc. UVB tends to damage skin more superficially in the epidermis, and cause reddening and sunburn. This can be throughout the year, even with cloud cover. But bright side, UVB doesn’t really make it through glass!

Both UVA and UVB rays can have an 80% bounce rate on reflective snow, water, or ice! That’s almost double the damage! Both rays can damage and age your skin and eyes resulting in wrinkles, sagging, thinning skin, or cataracts. On the good side, both rays can be blocked or absorbed by protective clothing, hats, or the appropriate sunscreen protection, and sunglasses. We usually do these, but sometimes we forget!

Protection is Key! Make it Easy and a Habit!

  • Broad spectrum (UVA/UVB) sunscreen everyday, or most days
  • Long sleeves unless it’s 90F out
  • Broad-brimmed hat when we spend time outdoors
  • But wait, I realized I had not factored in the amount of time we spend in the car. So today, I booked an appointment to get UV blocking film applied to my four door car, about $300, but lifetime warranty!
  • UV blocking Sunglasses- not the cheap kind. Get one from a reputed store. A tinted lens is not the same as a UV blocking lens.
  • And the clincher – placement of the sun accessories by the door with a mirror, especially if you have children. Visual cue to start the sun protection habit.

Do you have any additional ideas on sun protection? Please share! I need all the help I can get.

A UV primer only gets you so far. Next up, I have to dig deep and consider whether to sacrifice sun protection for Vitamin D (there’s a whole host of research on why vitamin D is great for you!) and find out more about how UV rays affect the skin and eyes. Then ingredients that block and absorb, clothing that protects – SPF and UPF…. Anything else you can think of so I can learn more to keep my daughters’ skin healthy and dewy? And mine as well!

Making Your Skin Warm-Weather Ready!

It’s May 1st!

We’ve made it through the brutal winter, the polar vortexes, and the incessant rain…  But has our skin?????

It’s time to shed those winter layers and show some leg, but to ensure that your skin is as luminous as possible:

Check Out These Fantastic Tips To Make Your Skin Warm-Weather Ready!

1. Ditch That Heavy Foundation

The trick to mastering bright, fresh, spring skin is losing that heavy winter foundation. Don’t hide your face from the world! Try something with slightly less coverage like a tinted foundation or BB Creme to even out your skin tone. Not ready to completely switch beauty products? That’s okay! Try mixing your favorite foundation with a light moisturizer to let more of your natural beauty shine through. JUARA Sweet Black Tea and Rice Moisturizer is the perfect mixing partner!

2. Exfoliate, Buff, and Shine!

Nothing says winter skin like dull, ashy legs. Give your body some love by exfoliating away all of the dead skin that has accumulated over this winter season. Pay extra attention to your knees and elbows, the driest areas of your body. 

3. Moisturize!

After you’ve buffed away all of that dead skin, moisturize to keep your body luminous. Something light like JUARA Tiare Jasmine Tea Body Milk is a great option for daytime because it absorbs quickly with a nice, light scent and won’t stain your clothes! Try a heavier cream at night when the skin is most open to absorbing moisture.

4. Hydrate

No amount of exfoliating and moisturizing will illuminate your skin if you’re dehydrated. Beauty starts from within, which is why the best beauty tip ANYONE can give you is to stay hydrated. Proper hydration allows the body to rid itself of toxins so that they don’t take up residence under the skin (in the form of nasty breakouts). Staying hydrated also allows the skin cells to fill with water, decreasing fine lines and wrinkles naturally to create a beautiful glow.

 

 

Hidden Superpowers of the Candlenut Body Creme

The JUARA Candlenut Body Creme.


It’s a cult classic. It’s a favorite.

 

The product that started it all for JUARA- it has become a love-at-first-sight product for countless JUARA customers, celebrities and beauty editors. An ultra-nourishing complex of velvety Candlenut Oil, firming Rice Bran Oil, redness-reducing Avocado Oil and rich Illipe Butter give you long-lasting moisture without the greasiness. But did you know it’s a whole lot more than a feel good-smells great body creme?
 

Candlenut Oil  is very high in Omega 3 and Omega 6 Essential Fatty Acids (EFA).  In fact, the oil is 69% EFA, which puts it up there with Flax Seed Oil and Chia Seed Oil (71% and 70% respectively).  Almond Oil has 17%, Avocado has 10%, Rice Bran Oil has 36%, just to give you perspective.

 

Why is this important?  Application of EFA is key in strengthening the skin’s lipid barrier which is why, for example, Evening Primrose Oil (81%) is often prescribed for Eczema Patients.


So in the context of our Candlenut Body Creme Formulation:

Amazing Avocado*

Caressing Candlenut

Caressing Candlenut*

Impenetrable Illipe

Impenetrable Illipe*

Radiant Rice

Radiant Rice*

Candlenut Oil: Omegas (EFA)
Avocado Oil: Sterols, Vitamin A, Vitamin E
Illipe Butter: High Melting Point- provides a protective barrier for the skin
Rice Bran Oil: Oryzanol (Vitamin E)- essential in improving skin elasticity and brightness
 
Candlenut Body Creme: It’s a Skin Superfood!

*click the link to check out more products that use these amazing ingredients

Skin Facts: Coffee or Tea? I’ll Take it All! – Lauren Lang

(function(d, s, id) {
var js, fjs = d.getElementsByTagName(s)[0];
if (d.getElementById(id)) return;
js = d.createElement(s); js.id = id;
js.src = “//connect.facebook.net/en_US/all.js#xfbml=1”;
fjs.parentNode.insertBefore(js, fjs);
}(document, ‘script’, ‘facebook-jssdk’));

Coffee or Tea?

Oh, which do I choose… Can I have both?

Ever thought about putting coffee and tea on your face and body? My usual form of coffee or tea intake comes in the style of iced coffees and teas, adding to the 400million cups that are drank per day in the states. Although I might think twice (or thrice) about splashing a bit of that (possibly overpriced) latte or tea on my face before breakfast or bed, I wouldn’t rule out some pretty potent ingredients they contain to put on my skin!

COFFEE: Coffee has been used in other cultures, particularly in Indonesian body scrubs, for a number of years. For example, ‘Boreh’ (a combination scrub of coffee grounds mixed with spices) was developed by farmers in Bali to stimulate circulation and warm the skin; great after a hard day of work, or if you’re feeling the chills. Recent developments have seen the use ofcaffeine (a powerful antioxidant) in products such as eye crèmes and other cellulite appearance reducing body cremes.

Benefits of caffeine can give us a more youthful, healthy look! Here are some ways how:

– Increasing circulation: Helps reduce bags under the eyes in eye cremes, and stimulates healthy blood flow in body scrubs, helping remove toxins. Our Invigorating Coffee Scrub, also stimulates circulation in the skin whilst offering some tightening benefits for younger looking skin. Smell AND feel good – why not!
– Anti-inflammatory & diuretic effect: Good for creams that claim to reduce the appearance of cellulite (because sorry ladies, no amount of skin cream alone can break down this type of fat cells…)
– Helps constricts blood vessels which can reduce the appearance of dark circles under the eyes, and can also give the skin a smooth, glowing appearance.
– Contains antioxidants, which also help reducing toxins in the skin

Now on to my British favorite – TEA: You guys have ‘Lipton’, us Brits have ‘Tetley’, Tea was first originated in China and has been said to date back to the 10th century BC! Tea can be much more beneficial for your skin than you might think. Green tea contains powerful polyphenolic antioxidants called catechins, which have been proven to fight viruses, slow aging, and have a beneficial effect on health.  Some benefits of tea on the skin include the following, all which make skin look more youthful:

– Antioxidant protection: the catechins and vitamin c in a lot of green tea can help fight free radicals (which can lead to faster skin aging). Our Tamarind Tea Hydrating Toner contains all black, green, and white teas.
– Tones skin/refines pores: You can even use real tea for this – an Indonesian traditional secret handed down from mother-to-daughter till today: After cleansing and rinsing, splash your face with your leftover tea (at room temperature, please!) to tone and brighten skin.
– Rejuvenates skin cells: Gives skin a brighter, healthier look. Some studies show it even extends the life span of the skin cells as they near the end of their life cycle; doesn’t do a miracle job on your face overnight, but every little thing counts!
– And don’t forget Kombucha, a fermented sweet black tea with organic compounds that help slow down your skin’s aging process, keeping it plumper and smoother for longer! Read about this fun beverage here and about all its health benefits. Also, the main anti-aging ingredient in Kombucha can also be found in our Sweet Black Tea & Rice Facial Moisturizer, the oil-free version, and our Sweet Black Tea Eye Creme.

So next time you’re feeling a little under the weather, or fancy treating your skin and body to some naturalness, remember that your daily dose of coffee and tea can do more for you wake you up from that sleepy state!

For more coffee and tea facts visit: http://www.bellybytes.com/foodfacts/coffee_tea_facts.html

And if you like cool coffee foam art, this is a fun site! http://www.womansday.com/Articles/Food-Recipes/Cool-Cappuccino-Foam-Art.html

Sun Protection: What NOT to rely on and why – Yoshiko Roth-Hidalgo

One way to protec your skin from the sun…

We all know by now:  Sun can be dangerous to the health of our skin.  Sun exposure is the #1 culprit for premature aging and skin cancer.  While the days of sprawling your baby-oiled body in the mid-day sun are over, there are still many misconceptions about sun protection and about what works and what doesn’t.  Here are my top 5 of what you should not rely on for protection:

1) Clouds & Shades

Clouds and shades will not adequately protect you from the sun.  UV rays penetrate through even thicker clouds and reach our skin.  Your skin may not feel as hot on a cloudy day, but the rays are still damaging to the skin.  Sitting in the shade is better than sitting in the sun, but may only provide an SPF15, due to UV-rays reflecting off of surrounding surfaces (water, sand, buildings) and reaching our skin.

2) SPF

SPF only indicates the level of protection from UVB-rays.  We now know that UVA-rays are just as damaging to the skin.  The beauty and healthcare industry has yet to come up with a standardized system to rate UVA-protection in cosmetics.  Until then, look for key words like “broad-spectrum protection” and active ingredients like Avobenzone (Parsol 1789), Titanium Dioxide, Zinc Oxide, Ecamsule (Mexoryl), Bemotrizinol (Tinosorb S) and Bisoctrizole (Tinosorb M).

3) Clothing

While putting on a T-shirt is definitely far better than not having any protection, keep in mind that a simple white T-shirt only holds a sun protection factor equivalent to SPF6!  The darker and thicker the fabric, the higher the protection.  Alternatively, look for special sun protection clothing with an UPF (usually goes up to UPF50).  You can also buy a special laundry-aid like Sun Guard, which will wash an UPF30 into your garments.

4) Make-up with sun protection

With growing awareness about sun protection, makeup companies have been quick to add sun screen into their foundations and powders.  The problem is that most people will never apply enough foundation or powder to achieve the indicated protection level, because they would look like a clown.  Rather than think of makeup as the base of your protection, think of it as the icing on the cake.  Use your regular sunscreen and apply broad-spectrum makeup or powder for added protection.

5) Your body’s alarm system

Our bodies are amazing at telling us what we need.  Unfortunately, with sun exposure, your body will not sound the alarm bell as soon as your skin is being damaged.  By the time your body tells you, i.e. your skin feels hot and stingy or changes color, the damage has already been done.

What are your foolproof ways to stay protected in the sun?