Pomegranate Ginger Elixir

7908262731e570015c8757c7c26e458c_Pomegranate Ginger.jpgTake advantage of a SuperFood with this lively elixir, perfect for breakfast or in place of a cocktail at parties.
  • 2 large pomegranates, seeds removed
  • 1/2 cup of honey
  • 1/2 cup peeled, grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons spearmint leaves
  • 2 cups of mineral or spring water
  1. Combine pomegranate seeds with honey, ginger, and mint leaves in a noncorrosive saucepan.
  2. Stir well, for about 3 minutes, crushing the pomegranate seeds into the mixture.
  3. Add water and bring to boil over moderate heat.
  4. As soon as the mixture comes to a boil, remove from heat and allow to cool for about 15 minutes.
  5. Strain, chill, and serve over ice with a mint sprig as garnish.

Sangria Soleil

  • 1-1/2 cups fresh cranberry juice
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 2 cups chilled rosé wine
  • 3 tablespoons no-calorie sweetener to taste
  • 2 cups soda water
  • 4 orange slices
  • 4 thin pear slices
  • Mint Springs
  1. Combine all beverage ingredients in a large pitcher.
  2. Pour over crushed ice in 4 tall glasses.
  3. Garnish each glass with a thin slice of orange, pear, and a mint sprig.

Eliminate the Sugar

Why Sugar Is Bad For Your Skin

Let’s start with the basics. When you ingest sugar or high-glycemic foods that rapidly convert to sugar — whether it’s in the form of an apple or a piece of cake — your body breaks down these carbohydrates into glucose, which raises your insulin levels. Simple carbohydrates, like refined sugar, white bread and soda, cause your insulin levels to spike, which leads to what Dr. Perricone describes as “a burst of inflammation throughout the body.”

Inflammation produces enzymes that break down collagen and elastin, resulting in sagging skin and wrinkles. Digested sugar permanently attaches to the collagen in your skin through a process known as glycation. Aside from increasing the effects of aging, glycation can also exacerbate skin conditions like acne and rosacea. Plus, the more sugar you eat, the more likely it is you’ll develop insulin resistance, which can manifest as excess hair growth (hirsutism) and dark patches on the neck and in body creases.

Understanding the glycemic index, the scale which determines how quickly blood sugar levels rise after ingesting particular foods (hence, the high- and low-glycemic labels), is key to making the right choices for your skin when it comes to sugar.


What Sugar You Shouldn’t Eat

Simple carbohydrates are your skin’s enemy, since they rapidly break down into glucose and result in insulin spikes. Avoid foods that are proinflammatory, high-glycemic or high in saturated fats like: white bread, candy, fried food, ice cream, fruit juice, pasta, ketchup, cream cheese, jam, pizza, sugar (white and brown), packaged snacks and sodas.




What Sugar You Should Eat

Opt for complex carbohydrates, like brown rice and vegetables, which are broken down into glucose at a slower rate (and therefore don’t cause that pesky insulin spike). Low-glycemic options, like beans, nuts and whole grains, as well as fibrous foods, which delay sugar absorption, also help control blood sugar levels. Do your best to follow an anti-inflammatory diet of healthy fats (like olive oil and avocados), lean protein (like salmon), fiber (like broccoli and cauliflower) and antioxidants (like berries) if you want glowing, youthful skin.




Other Tricks To Counteract Sugar’s Effects On Skin

•Get plenty of sleep. When you don’t get enough shut-eye, your body releases the stress hormone, cortisol, which mobilizes sugar stores and causes your insulin to spike.

•Speaking of stress, try to keep yours at a minimum. Stress can spike insulin levels just like eating sugar can. The effects of stress are particularly correlated with acne breakouts.

•Eat frequent, balanced meals. Don’t think lowering your sugar intake means lowering your food intake per se. If your goal is to keep your blood sugar levels consistent, make sure to fuel up with low-glycemic, high protein food every three hours to avoid insulin spikes.

•Be mindful about how you prepare your food. When cooking starches, like potatoes and foods with wheat, keep in mind that the heat involved in cooking causes a process known as gelatinization, which can lead to upping the glycemic index of a food item. The takeaway? Avoid starches fried in high heat or that are commercially processed.

•Order counts. Eat your proteins first when sitting down for a meal, since they don’t stimulate insulin spikes and therefore keep your body from triggering the inflammatory effects caused when you ingest insulin-spiking foods.

•Fats are your friend. Healthy fats, like Omega-3s, keep your skin looking soft, supple and radiant (read: youthful).

34So, here we are beginning a New Year. I love fresh starts and any excuse to have one. Because we are human after all, it is hard to change habits and the New Year is one of those fresh starts that gets us hopeful that we will do better this time.

I’ve decided this year to not go for broke. To break down my resolutions into 21-Day Challenges to actually succeed in creating a new habit. I have been successful doing Oprah and Deepak 21-Day Meditations and I’ll be starting a 21-Day Yoga Challenge with Wanderlust on Jan. 9, 2017. Click the links to sign up for either of these opportunities. I like them because my approach to skincare as a leading clinical asethetician is a 360 degree concept. Great skin is not developed just from topical applications and procedures, it also comes from reduced stress with yoga, meditation and moderate exercise, and eating for your skin, hair and nails through micronutrients and supplements.

Well, this year I am completing my book Bento Box Beauty, starting a local radio show and turning 55 and thought that I need to live my book a little closer than I have been doing. Mostly because my skin is starting to sag, a few wrinkles are showing and age spots are popping up and all of a sudden I’m becoming somewhat vein at this “mid-life” marker! My goal, just like a lot of my readers, is to look as young as I can, as naturally as I can while having vitality into my next 50 years.

I have created 17 Healthy Skin Challenges for 2017 that will help both you and me look younger, feel better and create a fantastic lifestyle changes that will start in 2017 but will last a lifetime!

Our First Resolution of 2017- Drink More Water

Like everyone I am busy, too busy. That’s why my husband calls me Rushy and hence the company name Rushy Rush. We can’t cram enough into this 24/7 life in which we are living.

I like to keep the small things simple, almost on auto pilot so I have the head space to devote to the big things I want to accomplish in life.

Therefore, for the next 21 Days we are going to simply drink more water.What drinking more water will do for us:

  1. Swap out sugar laden drinks such as sodas, juices and alcohol
  2. Helps to flush out nasty toxins
  3. Enhanced health
  4. Increased energy
  5. Bright, clear eyes
  6. A radiant complexion
  7. Bloating and puffiness often disappear
  8. Carries nutrients to every cell in your body
  9. Improves circulation and blood flow
  10. Lubricates your joints

As aestheticians, we have a saying, “Water is the last thing in and the first thing out”. What does this really mean? It means that drinking more water alone is not going to give you great looking skin.

When you drink water, it is taken up in the stomach and small intestines such that 99% of water (and food for that matter) is taken up by the time it reaches the large intestine.  You lose water 3 ways: sweating, breathing (you take in dry, breath out humid) and urination.  You drink and excrete water basically to keep your tissues hydrated and blood pressure stable. 

As you can see, water is the last thing to your tissues (skin) and since we have Trans Epidermal Water Loss (TEWL) its the first thing out through our skin. So we are concentrating on drinking water for the list above which are the by-products of being correctly hydrated. This will be important for the following challenges we complete together this year.

What kind of water should I drink?

  1. Alkaline water
  2. Filtered water
  3. 365 Days of Beauty Elixirs

Water…how much to drink?

Okay, you’re in. You’re convinced of the benefits of drinking water for your skin and your health. But drink 8 glasses of water per day? Yikes!

The Mayo clinic suggests using “8X8” as a guideline…8 glasses, 8 ounces each, of fluid daily. You may need even more.

Exercising, hot weather, and heated indoor air all cause your body to lose water. Increased water output requires increased water input.

Here are some links to Hydration Calculators to get your personalized water intake needs:

Or if you are a DIY here’s the calculation from umsystem.edu:



Another tip from medindia.net to get 8-10 glasses of water in a day:

  • Drink 2 glasses of water after waking up. It helps activate internal organs
  • Drink 1 glass of water 30 minutes before a meal (3-5 per day). It helps digestion.
  • Drink 1 glass of water before a shower. It help lower blood pressure.
  • Drink 1 glass of water before going to bed. It help avoid heart attacks.

How do you know if you’re consuming enough water?

Answer these questions:

  • Is your thirst quenched?
  • Is your urine clear or pale yellow?
  • Do you feel good?

If so, then you’re drinking enough. My own indication? Lots of trips to the bathroom!

Don’t forget, all fluids count in hydration, but keep them sugar free because we will talk about glycation and how it ages your skin in our next challenge.

Sautéed onions and baby portabello mushrooms with avacado and two over easy eggs. White tea for high amounts of antioxidants. Enjoy😊

Watermelon Lemonade

  • 7 cups cut-up watermelon cubes, seeded
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (or use 1 cup of either juice)
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice (or use 1 cup of either juice)
  • 1 cup SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Granular or 24 SPLENDA® No Calorie Sweetener, Packets
  1. PROCESS watermelon cubes in a food processor, in batches if necessary, until smooth.
  2. Press mixture through a sieve into a pitcher; discard solids. You should have about 3 cups watermelon juice.
  3. ADD the lemon juice and SPLENDA® Granular or SPLENDA® Packets, stirring until SPLENDA® dissolves.
  4. Serve over ice.

Peach Blackberry Smoothie

This power-packed smoothie is adaptable to different fruits – but both peaches and blackberries, with the addition of almonds, provide heart-healthy soluble fiber.   Try it with nectarines and rasperries, or peaches and blueberries, too!

  • 2 cups enriched vanilla soy milk
  • 2 cups frozen peaches
  • 1 cup frozen blackberries
  • 2 tablespoons almond butter
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon slivered almonds
  1. Combine ingredients in blender and blend until smooth and thick.
  2. Serve, garnished with almonds if desired.


Papaya Citrus Smoothie

  • 1/2 papaya, cut into pieces
  • 1 orange
  • 1 lemon
  • 2 teaspoons (or to taste) of sweetener
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 sprig mint
  • Ice
  1. Peel and separate the segments of orange.
  2. Juice the lemon.
  3. Blend the papaya, orange segments, lemon juice, sweetener and salt with 1 cup of ice.
  4. Pour into glasses and garnish with mint leaves.
  5. Serve chilled.

More Green Dreams


  • 1 frozen banana (may add additional banana and reduce agave)
  • 1 cup frozen fruit (soft fruit of your choice)
  • 1/2 peeled orange
  • 1/4 cup milk of your choice (rice, soya, almond or dairy)
  • 1 tablespoon omega 3-6-9 oil
  • 3 tablespoons hemp protein powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon spirulina or powdered greens
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  1. Blend all ingredients together until smooth
  2. Serve immediately.

Cardamom Banana Lime Smoothie


Bananas are the ideal delight on a hot summer afternoon for restoring electrolytes, and great for your skin. If you are feeling a little sluggish, its natural sugars will restore your energy levels as well.

  • 2 bananas
  • 1/4 tsp Cardamom
  • 1 cup Coconut Water
  • 1/3 whole Lime
  1. Combine all ingredients in a blender and puree until smooth.
  2. Serve immediately.
  3. If you don’t have coconut water on hand, use water. Add ice if you like your smoothies colder and thicker.
By the Way
Banana beauty benefits are varied and are considered one of nature’s natural moisturizers. They impart luster on skin and hair, and whether enjoyed as a culinary delight, or used directly on your body (yes, even the banana peel), you will experience soft, smooth and glowing skin.