The Legend of the Sesame Seed and Immortality


 

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Black Sesame Seed / Hei Zhi Ma,  Image credit

The Legend of the Sesame Seed and Immortality

There is an ancient Chinese legend from the Qing dynasty that pays tribute to the importance of sesame seeds in one’s diet. It is said that during this time, a governor was sent to Yin Tai, a region in the North China Sea, now known as Japan. The Emperor had requested he find a “holy medication” that could give the Emperor immortality. It was thought that the combined energy of 3,000 young men and women who were “pure in spirit” was one source of producing everlasting life. The governor searched high and low through treacherous terrain in mountains and forests for this miraculous remedy that would ensure longevity. Finally after many years of searching, he returned with sesame seeds. His instruction to the Emperor was to take the sesame seeds and its oil everyday in order to be granted a longer life.

Sounds like a good idea to me!  In Traditional Chinese Medicine, black sesame seeds and their oils can be used medicinally to treat a wide variety of symptoms often associated with Liver and Kidney Yin Deficiency including constipation, alopecia (hair loss), premature graying of hair, tinnitus (ear ringing), dry skin, chronic low back and knee pain, as well as menstrual health and infertility. It can also be used to help women with insufficient lactation produce more breastmilk. Here’s one way you can gain the health benefits of sesame seeds. Enjoy!

Black Sesame Pudding Recipe

160 grams – toasted black sesame seeds

4 tbsps – white glutinous rice

8 cups – distilled water

400 g – raw honey, or other natural sweetener of your choice

Directions:

Wash glutinous rice and allow to soak for two hours. Combine toasted sesame seeds and glutinous rice with 2 cups of water, and blend in food processor until the texture is creamy and smooth. Transfer mixture to a sauce pan and add 6 cups of water. Bring to a boil at medium heat. Stir regularly to keep consistency smooth. (Story and recipe adapted from Dan-On Foods and Dan-D Foods )

Want to know more about the many benefits of Black Sesame Seeds?

“Taking black sesame seeds can heal all the chronic illness after 100 days, improve skin tone on body and face after 1 year, reverse gray hair after 2 years, and regrow teeth after 3 years.” says the Compendium of Materia Medica, the largest and most comprehensive medical writings in the history of Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). This herb is also known as Semen Sesami Nigrum and Hei Zhi Ma and related experiments show that the content of vitamin E contained in this herb is the highest in all foods of plant origin. It is well known that vitamin E can promote cell division and delay cell senescence. Long-term use can counteract or neutralize the accumulation of cell senescence substance of “radicals” and then delay aging and extend life expectancy.” -from Chinese Herbs Healing

 

The “Be Inspired Weekly” Writing Challenge #24


Fay Meling von Moltke Pao, R.TCMP, R.Ac:

Feeling inspired to write a Quinzaine with me? From the “Be Inspired Weekly” writing challenge.

Here’s mine:
Let me be perfectly clear-
Do you see the road?
Do you go?

Originally posted on Paint the world with words:

Greetings!

The Be Inspired Weekly is back again! I would like to apologize to all the participants for my late reply as I am too down with work, but don’t worry guys, I have already read your poems and feel so nice after reading each of those, as each gave so much of imagery and were really enjoyable to read. Also, I may be late in reading and commenting, but won’t miss out on them at all :)

I would like to thank all the participants for Challenge #23 which was to write a Monoku!

Thanks Again :)

This week’s challenge is to write a Quinzaine poetry.

How to write a Quinzaine

Once done writing, comment back your post link to…

View original 34 more words

Family Fun at Easter: How to Naturally Dye Your Eggs


It’s Easter and the signs of new and “renewed” life are all around us.  Here is a great activity you can do to celebrate the start of spring.  Enjoy!

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How to Naturally Dye Your Easter Eggs

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Kids: Get your Veggies the Yummy Way


The start of spring here in the northern hemisphere was a good excuse as any to make our first batch of healthy smoothies for the season. My kids were pretty impressed with the results and no one complained of the added greens!

We used what ingredients we had in the fridge and came up with this delightfully tasty and nutritious Blackberry Mango Green Smoothie:

Ingredients (makes 6-8 servings):
-chopped kale (approximately 3 stalks)
-chopped celery stalks (approximately 3 stalks)
-200g frozen organic blackberries
-200g frozen organic mango chunks
-3 cups of organic almond milk
-1 cup of organic pear juice

Directions:Combine ingredients in blender. Serve immediately.

*You can adjust amounts as per your preference.

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Parents: Get back into the rhythm of the day with an exercise routine


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As a parent of young kids, it can be challenging to schedule in time for yourself each day. There will always be plenty of others things to catch up on and before you know it, you have spent the last few months or even years of your life, not having taken time just for yourself. Don’t become a victim of your situation! Even if it’s just getting in a 15 minute workout doing yoga, tai chi, qigong, a morning walk, or a simple stretch routine, I challenge you to try and schedule in that time just for yourself. Exercise helps flush toxins, rejuvenates and repairs your body, and boosts your overall mood. Wake up a half hour earlier or schedule it in after the kids have gone to bed. I promise you won’t regret it. And even if you miss a few days, get right back on it. You’ll feel amazing in no time. What things do you like to do just for yourself?

 

 

How Acupuncture Can Heal Your Broken Heart


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Ah…Valentine’s Day. It’s a very special day to honour the people you love today. Hopefully, you have been doing your best to do this each and everyday! For some, it may also be a very difficult day that brings painful memories to the surface. If you have suffered a significant loss or breakup, a day like today seems like a pretty good one to avoid. Which is totally acceptable and understandable. A broken heart is a very difficult thing to take care of. But what do you do when you’re ready to move forward and learn to love with an open heart again?

I’m generally a pretty content person. There have been a few times that have really brought me into a period of deep-seated sadness. The loss of my father after battling crazy cancer is one of them. Realizing that you have lost someone who has been a constant in your life is an indescribable feeling. While the initial raw feelings will eventually transform into a more “refined” sense of loss, they leave an indelible print…one that can eventually strengthen or uproot you. These periods of loss and change are times when support from family, friends and your health team are very much in order. For those who have a hard time expressing their emotions verbally with a counsellor and/or friend, Chinese medicine and acupuncture can be very helpful to release you from the incredible sadness that is weighing you down.

Acupuncture serves to unblock stuck energy in the pathways of the body, also known as “meridians”, that are closely connected to the nervous system, immune system, and circulatory system. By using specific points along the affected channels, the body responds by physically relaxing tight, contracted muscles, increasing blood flow to the local and adjacent areas, warming up the torso, limbs and extremities, and calming the mind. The little pins that are inserted are hair-fine in thickness and glide smoothly under the skin. Most people experience an initial mosquito bite sensation followed by a warm / cool tingling sensation around the points. The complete state of deep relaxation that follows is something that not only offers immediate physical and emotional relief, but can help reset long-standing holding patterns and behaviour.

When someone suffers from a broken heart, there may be accompanying symptoms of shock, fear, anxiety, insomnia, poor appetite, low energy, and long-standing grief. Acupuncture can help you address these concerns as well.

In Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), it is said that the Heart (心, pinyin: xīn) is the “Monarch” of all the other organ systems and the whole body. It governs the blood and vessels and stores the Shen (mind). Without the heart, the brain could not function. When the heart is working properly, there is a brightness in the eyes, a sharp memory with a clear and open mind, and a joyful heart. When you look at someone with healthy Shen there is a general feeling of the whole body and spirit being vibrant, healthy and happy. This person radiates such energy and spirit that it is hard to resist them!

Whatever your association with February 14th, let it at least serve as a reminder to take the time to really nurture and care for yourself, whether it be with acupuncture, meditation, prayer, exercise, a nourishing meal, a walk with a friend, a hug from someone you love, or all of the above. After all, you have been gifted with this body and soul that makes you unique. There is no one else like you! So take the time to figure out what you need to help create the best, happiest version of YOU that you can send out into the world.

Creating a Vision Board for 2014: Make Your Dreams Reality!


Yesterday we enjoyed a fantastic New Year’s day dim sum with our “family”. I love how our family not only includes our most immediate family members but also our long-time family friends and their family. We were a total of 14 spanning three generations, and all indulging our love of dim sum and good cheer. Following our brunch, we braved the winter wind a few short blocks so that we could escape into movie theatre land where we cozied up to one another with popcorn in hand and watched ‘Frozen’. I have to say that my children aren’t particularly adept at sitting through a feature length film yet, and since they only watch a few select kids’ shows on netflix that have zero plot twists, they had a really difficult time watching some of the upsetting and scarier scenes in the movie. All in all though, it was a fun one to watch.

Since the past week and a half has really been at odds with my goals and aspirations for the year, I am hoping to anchor myself with a vision board. This was suggested to me by my coach and I think it’s a fantastic idea for anyone to implement.

What is a vision board? It is a visual board that can either be made with magazine and paper clippings or done virtually on a personal board on Pinterest using images culled from the web. The items that you post onto your board should be a reflection of what inspires you and what represents your dreams and vision for the year and beyond. If you aren’t sure where to start, just post those things that most intrigue you first. Slowly, you will discover what your true passions are.

Once you have the concept of your ideal life forming on your vision board, review it everyday to help you visualize your full potential and achieve your dreams.

What do you want your ideal life to look like? How do you live, breathe and move in this new vision for yourself? What images appear when you think of your ideal work/life balance, your ideal state of health, your ideal social and family life? Are there specific places you want to visit? Specific activities you wish to experience, or specific people you want to meet? What are the things you most wish to accomplish? What inspires you to become your best version of your self?

Use the most beautiful pictures, photographs, hand-written notes, and inspirational quotes you can find and set your heart and spirit free!

Here are some great articles for more info on how to create your own vision board and make 2014 your best year ever:

Martha Beck’s, How to Make a Vision Board – And How it Can Change Your Life on Oprah.com

Jayme Barrett’s Manifestation Board: How to Design a Blueprint for Your Dreams.

Happy vision boarding :)

-M.