Wrap It Up!

The Basics of Body Wrapping
While the treatments listed here are more time consuming than some of the facial or hair treatments, they are well worth the indulgence! In addition to the physical benefits brought forth by the various ingredients used, the rewarding spiritual effects cannot be ignored. So go ahead and wrap yourself in the ocean's best and emerge like a new creation, a mermaid perhaps?
Tips to Enhance Your Treatment
Prior to a treatment, make sure that you remove all lotion, perfume, deodorant, and dirt by taking a quick shower. It will be better if use a non-perfumed soap (an all natural soap is best, but a mild one will do). Warming the tools , towels, sheets and wrap ingredients will help with your body's heat retention, thus enhancing your experience. To this end, use of a space heater is also recommended. Placing it near your relaxation area will not only prolong the heat of the wrap for as long as possible, but it will increase your comfort level. You can further intensify your treatment, as well as raise your body's temperature by sipping on some hot herbal tea before your treatment. The cotton strips or sheet that you use to wrap should be immersed in water that is approximately 180 degrees F or 82 degrees C. Wearing rubber gloves to wring out the sheets will help you avoid burning your fingers. Begin by wrapping the strips snugly around your legs, then your arms, and lastly your torso. Make sure to tuck the ends of the strip under a wrapped area nearby to ensure a snug fit. Once you are finished, lay yourself on a plastic sheet (or a shower curtain) and wrap yourself up in it, then cover yourself with blankets, as this will help to maintain the warmth and heat helps activate your treatment. Once you are finished wrapping, put on a warm robe and sit and relax for 20 minutes, unless otherwise directed. Keep in mind that it is very important that you do NOT attempt any physical activity immediately after your treatment. It is usually best to slowly remove the strips and simply roll into bed after relaxation type wraps. Showering shortly after many treatment is not recommended, so please do so only if the recipe specifically mentions it in the instructions.
To get prepared, select your relaxation spot, such as your bed, the bathtub or a lounge chair, then place the plastic sheet or shower curtain liner on it. Set up the space heater next to it and turn it on. Place blankets nearby.
Relaxation Wrap
1 Cup fresh, chopped, chamomile OR 1/2 Cup dried chamomile 1 Cup fresh, grated valerian root OR 1/2 Cup dried valerian root 1 Cup fresh, crushed lavender OR 1/2 Cup dried lavender 1 cotton or linen sheet cut into 3" wide strips 1 large pot for boiling water (a lobster or spaghetti pot works well) 1 plastic shower curtain liner or plastic sheet blankets Place the herbs in a large pot and fill with water, then bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for five minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for five minutes. With a strainer, scoop out as many of the herbs as possible. Then place the sheet strips in the pot and allow to steep for five minutes. Once your five minutes is up, remove the strips one at a time, as you use them, and wring out the excess water. Proceed to wrap yourself as described above, making sure to cover and relax for 10 minutes, after which you should remove the strips slowly and roll on into bed. Valerian has been used since ancient Roman times as a mild sedative, and is used today as a mild sleep aid and anxiety reliever. Chamomile offers calming and anti-spasmodic properties, while lavender lends its balancing, relaxing, and restorative properties, all of which combine to make this wrap the perfect end to a stressful day. Using this wrap just prior to bedtime will maximize its effectiveness, as will delaying washing until the next morning.
Detoxifying Wrap
1 Cup fresh, chopped lemongrass OR 1/2 Cup dried lemongrass 1 3" long piece of grated or minced ginger root 1 large pot for boiling 1 cotton or linen sheet cut into 3" wide strips 1 plastic sheet or shower curtain liner blankets place the lemongrass and the ginger in a large pot and filled with water. Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to sit for another 5 minutes. Scoop out as much of the herbs as possible, then place the sheet strips in the pot and steep for 5 minutes. Remove the strips one at a time, as you use them, and wring out the excess water. Apply as instructed in the tip section above. Once completely wrapped, cover with blankets and relax for 15 minutes. After you remove the wrap strips, shower off. Ginger has been cultivated in Southeast Asia for over 2,500 years for its medicinal properties. It has been found to rid the body of flu-like symptoms, colds, and respiratory ailments, while the scent of lemongrass uplifts and rejuvenates moods. Lemongrass has tonic, invigorating and antiseptic properties, while ginger offers stimulating and cleansing effects, which makes this wrap perfect for part of your morning ritual.
Remineralizing Wrap
8 oz dried or powdered seaweed OR 3oz fresh seaweed water (enough to make a paste) 2 Plastic sheet or shower curtain liner blankets This wrap is probably best executed in the bathtub for ease of cleanup. Put a blanket (or blankets, enough so that you are comfortable) on the bottom of the tub, then set the plastic sheet or shower curtain liner on top of the blanket(s). While sitting in the tub, on top of the plastic, cover yourself with the seaweed past or the fresh seaweed, then wrap yourself with a plastic sheet and blankets. Relax for 20 minutes, then slowly unwrap yourself, remove the blankets and sheets from the tub, fill with warm water and relax for an additional 10 minutes. After the treatment pat your skin dry, and don't forget to moisturize. *Make sure that you use the space heater for this treatment. Seaweed wraps are a quick way to remineralize the body while replenishing the body with nutrients and elements that are lost on a daily basis, such as amino-acids, calcium, copper, iodine, magnesium, phosphorous, potassium, protein, and vitamins. The molecular formation of the human blood cell and that of seawater is very similar, which allows nutrients from the seawater to easily filter through the pores of the skin and directly into the bloodstream. The most popular type of seaweed used for cosmetic and healing purposes is kelp, which is the common name for the leafy brown algae that grows along colder coastlines. Although using fresh seaweed is optimal, a seaweed powder (mixed with enough water to create a mayonnaise-like paste) will give you equally satisfying results.


On this wearin' of the green day, and being of almost full fledged Irish decent [Great, great Grandma was a full blooded American Indian], I'd like to say, Eire go brach, which is Gaelic for "Ireland until the end of time" (or Eirinn go brath, which is "Ireland Forever")! The term Erin go braugh! is the Anglicized version. Any way ya say it, Top of the morning and a Happy St. Patrick's Day to ye! LOL, I have been out all afternoon celebrating St. Patty's Day! Upon returning home I found that I never finished and published this post! Oops and sorry! I do not, however, want to wait another year, so here ye are. I hope your day was blessed with the luck of the Irish! In keeping with the green theme, try these! The oatmeal in the following recipe is very rich in vitamin E, and is well known for its anti-itch, anti-inflammatory, and skin soothing properties. Almonds are a natural emollient and, when ground, make an excellent exfoliant. The almond, oatmeal mixture is great for irritated, tired, dry skin. The avocado pulp, which contains vitamins A, D, and E, possesses collagen rebuilding properties. In order to avoid clogging your drains, use a small pouch or make a muslin bag to hold the oatmeal and almonds. Ideally, the pouch/bag should be large enough to fit your hand into, so that you can use it as a mitt to rub the avocado on your body. Alternatively, you could use a bath glove, but the pouch will afford you more room. AVOCADO ALMOND BODY SCRUB 1/2 cup almonds 1 cup dry oatmeal 1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and mashed Grind the almonds in a blender or coffee grinder until course, don't make too fine! Then mix the almonds with the oatmeal and place into a muslin mitt or a glove. Scoop the avocado and rub on your body with the mitt. Rinse with warm water, pat dry and moisturize. Then save the pitt to use as a natural massage tool ! AVOCADO CARROT CREAM MASK 1/2 cup heavy cream 1 carrot, cooked and mashed 3 Tbs. honey Combine the ingredients in a bowl and spread over your face and neck. Relax for 15 minutes, rinse with cool water, then pat dry. Remember that the thicker you make the mask paste, the more intense the action on your skin will be. The carrots are high in beta-carotene and anti-oxidant vitamins, the cream high in protein and calcium, while the avocado is rich in vitamin E. Put them all together and this mask will improve skin texture while diminishing age spots and rebuilding skin collegen when used regularly. AVACADO HAND RUB 1 ripe avocado, peeled and pitted 3/4 cup oatmeal 1/4 cup almond oil 1/4 cup olive oil 1/4 cup water Place all ingredients except water in the blender. While slowly mixing, drizzle the water into the blender until the paste has the consistency of a thick pudding. You may not need all of the water, depending upon the amount of avocado meat. Once completed, rub and massage the paste into your hand in a circular motion. Rinse off with tepid water and pat dry. For best results, use twice a week to maintain soft, smooth hands.

A Little Mind, Body and Soul

Taking a holistic approach to your health care means to create a balance in your personal life, family relationships, community activities, and work environment. Finding "wholeness" through acknowledging, honoring, and healing all your individual parts; Mind, Body, Emotion, and Spirit, is the ultimate goal. To take the first step, we need to become knowledgable about the various methods used to gain this balance. We must understand the basics before we can decide what we are willing to try, and what may work best for our needs. To that end, I have been researching and listing some of the many types of treatments available today. For the more physical and massage type of treatments, please see the following post; http://uniquegardenessences.blogspot.com/2009/02/whats-that-touch.html

Today's posted treatments may have physical components, but they [also] strongly impact the mind and/or the spirit. Since holistic seeks balance of the mind, body and spirit, most treatments are multifaceted. No matter what treatment you are looking at though,
I strongly encourage you to be knowledgeable about the method and to be bold and adventuresome. Don't be afraid to try something new! You never know when the new thing will become your favorite thing!

Aromatherapy is the at of using aromatic essences [essential oils] derived from flowers, leaves, roots, shrubs, woods and fruits for healing. The aromas of essential oils are beneficial for many ailments, and the oils themselves are used for various treatments, including total body massage, inhalation therapy and even baths. Interestingly, during the time of the plague [in Europe], people who worked closely with essential oils (pharmacists or priests for example) seemed to be spared from contracting the disease. Since that time, essential oils have been recognized to alleviate, and used to treat, a wide variety of ailments. The term "aromatherapy" was first coined by the French in the 1930's.

Ayurveda is an ancient Indian system of traditional folk medicine that combines nutrition, essential oils, massage, and meditation to restore the body to its perfect balance.

Each Bach Flower essence used today was intuitively derived by Edward Bach, a homeopathic physician in the early 20th century, who felt that certain flowers had energetic and associated virtues. These remedies are made with very small amounts of flower material which are mixed in a 50:50 solution of water and brandy, and used to alter mental conditions. These remedies can be added to food or water, used in a topical application or made into a mist. There are 38 Bach Flower remedies, each corresponding to specific emotional states. If more than one remedy is needed, you can combine up to four of them.

Balneotherapy refers to water-based treatments such as those using thermal hot springs, mineral water or seaweed which helps digestion and relieves gastric discomfort.

Chi Kung is a Chinese exercise focusing on breathing and body movements to reharg and energize the body.

Guided Imagery uses visualiztion to stimulate the body's immune system.

Hakomi Method is a body based psychotherapy which uses a special state of consciousness to help probe non-verbal levels. Body-mind awareness and touch are used to explore the body as a deep source of information.

Hellerwork is a system of deep-tissue body work, stress reduction and movement re-education, developed by Joseph Heller.

Hypnotherapy engenders a state of physical and mental relaxation ,which is then applied to psychological issues.

Kneipp System is a system of treatments that combine hydrotherapy with herbal preperations and a diet of natural foods, which was named after Father Sebastian Kneipp.

Neuromuscular therapy is a technique that works on the combination of relief from soft tissue pain and dysfunction. The focus of the work is to find the origin of pain and to address it. Neuromuscular therapy is intended to renew structual homeeostasis by restoring normal physiological functioning among muscles , nerves and the musculosceletal system. It is very effective in breaking chronic pain cycles.

Panchakarma is a system, or way of life that focuses on meditation, diet, cleansing, and purifying treatments to achieve internal balance, as well as balance with one's surroundings.

Pilates Method was developed in the 1920's by the German, Dr. Joseph Pilates. It is a body conditioning system that focuses on improving flexibility and body strength, without incresing bulk.

Stress management is a program of meditation and deep relaxation that is intended to reduce the effects of stress on the body systems.

T'ai Chi Ch'uan is an ancient Chinese martial art form of styalized, meditative exercise. It is characterized by slow, methodical, circular and stretching movements and positions of bodily balance.

Yoga is a disciplin of stretching and toning the body through movements, breathing exercises, postures, relaxation techniques, and diet. It is practiced to achieve control of the body and the mind.

Zero Balancing was created by Dr. Fritz Smith (an Md.). It focuses on guiding the body to find its own equilibrium by balancing the body energy and body structure.

Soups On! Spa cuisine for your home spa day!

Just a few notes, all of the salad recipes serve two, while the drink recipes are single serve I have not tried this recipe, but it was listed on two of my spa cuisine for the home books, so I am going to put it out here. To me it sounds questionable, but you never know if you don't try! -WATERMELON GAZPACHO 1 cup yellow watermelon, seeded and diced 1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped finely 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded and chopped finely 1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped finely 2 scallions, trimmed and chopped finely 1/2 medium red onion, chopped finely 1 celery stalk, chopped finely 1 Tbs. fresh lime juice 1 Tbs balsamic vinegar 1/4 tsp. salt freshly ground pepper to taste 1 sprig parsley, trimmed and chopped for garnish Place the watermelon in a blender, pulse two or three times, until it is broken up. Strain through a sieve, discard the pulp and save the juice. In a bowl, toss the cucumber, red pepper, tomato, scallions, red onion, celery, lime juice, vinegar, salt and pepper. Stir in the watermelon juice and chill for an hour or more. Garnish with parsley just prior to serving. Serves two. -EASY BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP 1 butternut squash, peeled nutmeg to taste 2 Tbs. unsalted butter 1/4 tsp. salt freshly ground pepper to taste 1 medium onion, peeled and chopped finely 6 cups of low fat or no fat chicken broth/stock

Cut the squash into 1-inch chunks. Melt the butter in a large pot. Add onion and cook until translucent, about 8 minutes. Add squash and stock. Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is tender. Remove squash chunks with slotted spoon and place in a blender and puree. Return blended squash to pot. Stir and season with nutmeg, salt, and pepper. Serve. Depending upon the size of your squash, this will serve 4-8



1/2 cup dried apricots

2 Tbs. honey

1/2 cup nonfat cottage cheese

1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt

1/2 pack unflavored gelatin

Place the dried apricots in a bowl and cover them with boiling water. Leave them sit for one hour to rehydrate, then place in a blender, add the honey and blend until smooth. In a small saucepan dissolve the gelatin in 2 Tbs. of water, placing over low heat and stirring until the gelatin is well dissolved. Combine the cottage cheese and the yogurt in a bowl and whip with a hand mixer (or you can blend in a blender until smooth, then place in a bowl). Pour yogurt mixture into a bowl and slowly stir in the gelatin. Fold in the apricot puree and pour into two glasses. Refrigerate for at least one hour before serving.


2 Tbs. fresh lime juice

2 Tbs. honey

1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt

1 ripe papaya, halved and seeded

In a small bowl combine the lime juice and the honey. Gradually stir in the yogurt, making a creamy sauce. Pour this mixture into the papaya halves.


1 8oz can of pitted cherries, drained

1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt

1 tsp honey

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped ice

Blend the cherries in a blender until completely pureed. Add all the other ingredients and continue blending until smooth. Pour into glasses and serve.


2 seedless oranges, peeled and cut into wedges (save some peel for garnish)

3 Tbs. honey

1 cup of brewed orange pekoe tea, chilled

Place the orange wedges in a bowl. Dissolve the honey in the tea and add to the bowl. Chill for four hours before serving, garnish with some strips of zest (from the orange peel).

Now that you have these spa cuisine recipes, go to the grocery store, stock up and prepare for your spa day at home!

More Spa Cuisine For Your Home

You've got all of your items gathered, your recipes out, and you are ready to have your home spa day. You have your mineral water, your herbal tea, or your smoothie ready to go, but what else will you have with it? Why not try some simple salads, some healthful, yet tasty soups, and then you'll have room for some interesting deserts!
-WARM LENTIL SALAD 1/2 cup dry lentils 1 cucumber, peeled and diced 1 tomato, diced 1/2 red onion, peeled and diced 2 Tbs. fresh, chopped, parsley 3 Tbs balsamic vinegar 2 Tbs. olive oil, EV (extra virgin) is best 1/4 tsp. salt Fresh ground pepper to taste Cook the dry lentils until tender. Once tender, drain and place in a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients, toss well and serve while still warm. -SWEET HEALTH SALAD 2 cups grated carrots 1/2 cup sweetened, shredded coconut 1/4 cup raisins 1/4 cup almonds 1/8 cup chopped walnuts 2 Tbs. olive oil 2 Tbs. red wine vinegar 1/4 tsp. salt Freshly ground pepper to taste Place all ingredients except the pepper in a large glass bowl and toss. Season to taste with the pepper and serve. -TRICOLOR SALAD 1 cup cooked and drained white beans 1 yellow pepper, stemmed, seeded and diced 6 cherry tomatoes, cut in half 2 Tbs. fresh, chopped parsley 2 Tbs. red wine vinegar 3 Tbs. olive oil 1/2 tsp. salt white pepper to taste Place white beans, yellow pepper and tomatoes in a large bowl. Toss together, then add the rest of the ingredients and toss again. Serve. -BLISS POTATO SALAD 6 small Red Bliss potatoes, scrubbed 2 Tbs. fresh dill, chopped 2 1/2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar 3 Tbs. olive oil 1 tsp. Dijon mustard 1/2 tsp. salt 1 red onion, peeled and chopped freshly ground pepper to taste Boil the potatoes until tender (usually about twenty minutes), then drain and quarter. Combine the dill, vinegar, oil, mustard and salt and place in a blender. Blend. Place the potatoes in a large bowl , then dress with the blended ingredients. Season with the pepper to taste and serve. -PEAR SALAD 1 1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard 2 Tbs. balsamic vinegar 3 Tbs. olive oil 1/4 tsp salt 1 bunch of arugula, rinsed (discard tough stems) 2 medium Belgian endive, trimmed and julienned 1 Bosc pear, peeled, cored and diced freshly ground pepper to taste Blend the mustard and vinegar together in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, salt and pepper. Combine the arugula, endive and pear in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss, then serve. All of these salads serve two, so you can share your spa cuisine with someone special! Next post will be soup and desert recipes, so make sure you keep following along!