Diary of a 7-Day Armpit Detox

Diary of a 7-Day Armpit Detox

Pop on a peg people, we’re going straight to the stinky zone!

You might be asking, what is an armpit detox? If you’ve been using conventional deodorants, or you feel like your ‘pits are more smelly than usual, then you’ll definitely want to find out the answer, just like I did.

I switched from conventional deodorant to a natural one about 10 years ago. Everything was fine, until I got a super painful rash on both armpits in 2018. It itched, hurt and felt like it was on fire. It was not pretty.

I treated it as a staph infection with no results. Doctors told me to take antibiotics (I didn’t). It wasn’t until I stopped using anything at all on my underarms that the rash quickly disappeared.

I was devastated, because it had taken years of trial and error to find a good anti-odorant. Not only that, but – excuse the TMI – my underarm smell was really bad. Like, it was acrid and really strong. I literally stuck tissues under there some days because the smell was so bad!

I contacted the company to find out if they had ever heard of a similar reaction to mine, and what they said turned my world upside down.

Try an armpit detox.

Like the Googler I am, I went straight to the internet. Totally mind-blown! I knew conventional deodorants were bad, but I didn’t realise the extent of the damage they are doing. 

We’ve been taught our whole lives that pit-stink is gross and perspiration is embarrassing, when in fact, the whole sweat system is pretty darn cool for detoxing your body and dealing with stress. 

Slathering that cool system with chemicals is doing bucketloads of harm:

  • We have 20 lymph nodes in our armpits. The skin on our armpits absorb 100% of anything topical you apply – which means the chemical bomb called deodorant that you’ve been popping on every day for years is going right into your lymphatic system, which transports it right through your whole body.
  • Those deodorant and antiperspirant chemicals include endocrine disruptors that mess up our hormone system. That can lead to issues with endometriosis, early puberty, infertility, immune function, respiratory problems, and a whole host of other life-destroying issues.
  • Sometimes, when we switch from these chemical bombs to a natural anti-odorant, the results can be less than stellar, and rashes (as well as more sweating and inefficacy of the product) are common complaints.

The problem is not the product – the problem is that our skin, bacterial balance and perspiration system is totally out of whack. We need to wipe the slate clean.

Enter, the 7 Day Armpit Detox!

The recipe is really simple, and you only need to apply it once a day for up to an hour:

Ingredients

  • 4 Tbs bentonite clay
  • 1 Tbs apple cider vinegar
  • Enough water to make it a thick paste (it needs to be able to stick to your skin

Notes

If you have colloidal silver, you can use it in place of the water

You can also replace a tablespoon of the bentonite clay with diatomaceous earth if you have it on hand.

Never use anything metal with bentonite clay. Use plastic, wood or glass containers and utensils.

Ready to see what my seven days looked like? Okay, you got it!

My 7-day Detox diary

DAY 1

Made up the recipe in a small glass jar. I pasted it onto my unshaven underarms and was pretty surprised that it stuck as well as it did. I went about my day at home, but after about 10 minutes, I could feel it starting to burn a little. I decided to listen to my body and wiped it off with warm water and a cloth. There was a red circle around my armpit, but it didn’t hurt. What I did notice, however, was that I didn’t smell for the rest of the day, even though it was the hottest week on record for the year!

DAY 2

I lasted 45 minutes on day two before wiping it off, when it started to feel a little uncomfortable. It had started to dry and fall off a bit, so if you do try it, stay away from carpet once it gets flaky! Again, I had a red circle around my underarm, and again, no smell for the rest of the day. I was pretty stoked about that!

DAY 3:

Today, I completely forgot I had the paste on, and ended up removing it at the one hour mark. Less red around the armpit this time, and no itching or burning while I had it on at all. Again, no smell for the rest of the day, even though it was 36 degrees and I was sweating A LOT.

DAY 4

I forgot to put the paste on today, but I think that kind of made the test interesting. I wondered if I would be smelly again – and yes, I was. So, I guess three days is not long enough to create effective change.

DAY 5

Back to lathering on the paste, and again left it on for an hour. No itching or redness, and no smell for the rest of the day. If nothing else, this makes a pretty good natural daily anti-odorant.

DAY 6 & 7:

Yes, I’m putting these days together because the results were the same. I left the paste on for an hour. I had no reaction, no irritation, no redness, and no smell for the rest of the day.

It’s been three months since I did the armpit detox. I’ve been using my anti-odorant again and it’s all been fine. In fact, there are lots of days that I don’t use anything on my underarms and I’ve noticed a huge reduction in smell. The rash hasn’t returned, and I plan on doing the detox at least once a year, just to reset the skin.

What I won’t ever do is go back to conventional deodorants. The risks are too high, especially for our young people. This is another area that we can so easily change for better health and longevity.

So, are you going to join the ‘pit crew’ and try a 7 day detox too?

 

 

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Why does my body feel worse when I eat better?

Why does my body feel worse when I eat better?

“If kale is supposed to be sooooo good, why do I feel like garbage now that I’m eating it?!” (said dieting women everywhere).

I LOVE this subject, because when you dig into it, you start to see how incredibly adaptable and super smart our bodies actually are.

Here’s why: your body was designed to function on a diet high in plant foods, good fats, fibre and protein. Instead, our typical modern diet is high in processed sugars, trans fats, and refined carbs that offer virtually no nutrition and create a host of issues.

Would it surprise you to know that scientists say when we were first introduced to ‘bad food’ like hamburgers and pizza, our cells revolted? This stuff is not helpful, they said!

But then, your amazing little cells transformed and adapted so they could recognise those foods as the new norm, and you wouldn’t keel over and die.

Those ‘unhelpful’ foods don’t contain phytonutrients, amino acids, proteins and all the good stuff that feeds your cells and resists disease, so when you do suddenly start eating high-nutrient foods, your cells don’t have a clue what they are anymore.

So, your body is going to have to change and adapt AGAIN. And while it’s doing that, you are going to feel a whole lot of uncomfortable.  

Here’s what’s going on:

       1. Your body releases toxins from fat cells, which increase oxidative                     stress  (aka, flu symptoms).

Eating a diet high in whole foods will naturally help to reduce oxidative stress, but during the transition (especially if you go cold turkey), the release of toxins stored in fat cells can make you feel a bit like you’ve got the flu: fatigue, pain in your muscles or joints, brain fog, and nasty headaches.

2. Foods high in sugar and rubbish fats release ‘feel-good’ dopamine in your brain, so essentially, you’ll start going through withdrawals.

Yes, that’s right, like a smoker, or a drug addict, or an alcoholic, your body is going to go through serious withdrawal symptoms like mood swings, headaches, and even nausea. You just cancelled Christmas on your body, and it is not going to be happy.

Until, of course, it realises it feels MUCH better having more sustainable and nutrient-fueled energy sources to thrive on (in 3-7 days, for example).

       3. Good foods feed different gut bacteria, resulting in some unpleasant             airborne side effects.

Farts. I’m talking about farts. And bloating, and gas. The good news is that as you feed your good bacteria all those yummy good foods, the inflammation inside your body will reduce, which starts to move you further away from chronic illnesses, asthma and allergies. And yes, no more embarrassing farts.

     

How do we make the change a little easier?

Start slow, and take some care and time to prepare. That includes recognising that discomfort is normal during the transition, and staying strong.

Here’s some simple tips to help you out:

  • Drink lots of water to help with digestion and to flush out your organs during the detoxification process. 1.5 to 2 litres a day is average.
  • You can change your diet slowly; add in a salad for lunch for a few days, then eliminate soft drinks and muffins over the next week, then replace chocolate milk with a smoothie, and so on. It’s ok if it takes 2 to 3 weeks to transition out of bad habits and into healthy eating. It’ll make the change less extreme for your body.
  • Blended foods like green smoothies are easier for your body to handle.
  • Eat fats and protein for breakfast. These foods help your cells to send out the right signals and help with long-lasting energy.
  • Don’t eat less; eat the same amount you always have, just eat lots of wholefoods, good fats and protein. Starving yourself or skipping meals will only add to your woes.
  • Don’t give up! I have literally heard people say, “My body doesn’t agree with greens.” Um no, it’s highly unlikely that you have an intolerance to vegetables, the source of life!

Treat your body with the respect it has earned and give it some time to get reacquainted with an old friend: nutrients. It’ll love you for it… eventually!

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Feeling blah every day? Mamas, think about this.

Feeling blah every day? Mamas, think about this.

If you’re reading this, it’s pretty likely you’re a mum too. So, I think it’s time we had a little chat about that iddy biddy feeling of ‘blah’ that some – not all, but, well, a lot – of mums feel while their kids are little.

I’ve spent a fair whack of my time as a mum feeling a bit blah. Unmotivated. Bored. Unfulfilled. (Gasp! Am I allowed to say that?)

Maybe you feel the same way. Like maybe the groundhog-day-ness of parenting small people just saps some of your energy and mojo.

To get totally straight-up honest, we just need to recognise that while some mums are 100 percent fulfilled by the role of being a mum, others aren’t. That doesn’t mean we love our kids less; it just means we need the elusive ‘something else’ to stop that blahness from clouding our days.

Becoming a mum means becoming someone new

Let’s take a bird’s-eye perspective here.

The change from independent, functioning adult who accomplishes things on a personal level every day, to stay-at-home mum who wipes bums, cleans endlessly and doesn’t sleep anymore, is a massive identity shift.

And while becoming a mum is wonderful and breaks open parts of your heart that you never knew existed, you can begin to feel lost.

It took a long time to work out what was going on with me; why I just didn’t feel like myself anymore, and where the lacklustre doldrums were coming from.

That little thing every mum needs

Here’s what it is, mamas: purpose. When we lack purpose, we lack passion and enthusiasm. Without purpose, we don’t get that excited, squishy feeling in our tummy in the morning that makes us want to bound out of bed to get the day started.

Yes, kids form part of our purpose. But, the reality is, I just don’t get that excited feeling in my tummy about making the 745th round of lunches and breakfasts anymore.

I do, however, get excited about the things I love. I love studying, so I enrolled in online nutrition courses. I started a side business. I joined a women’s business group. I started blogging. I started playing guitar again. I borrowed a bike and rode by myself on warm evenings.

I juggled all that around three kids, and I can tell you know, nothing shooed away the blah feeling faster than reigniting my personal purpose.

Purpose isn’t just fun…it’s fundamental

Setting goals for yourself on a personal, financial, spiritual or physical level is fundamental to that bounce-out-of-bed feeling. Often, it’s those goals and kick-butt achievements that are missing from the day-to day of motherhood.

Purpose in each day inspires and uplifts, and the beauty of being in that season of young motherhood is that we can follow our purpose alongside our role of caring for our kids.

In fact, modelling to your children that you can practice self-love as well as loving others, is an incredible gift.

Easy questions to ask yourself right now

What do you miss about your pre-kid life? What are the hobbies that you really love? What lights you up on the inside? If you could imagine your perfect day, what would you be doing? What would you love to learn more about, or teach others? Who would you love to partner with and start up a new venture or mission?

None of the answers to those questions need to involve your kids. This is all about you! When you set your purpose, you’re not putting your family second.

You’re just lighting that fire again.

There’s a very, very big chance that giving yourself permission to do something you love will make you a happier, more energetic, generous and flourishing mama.

Over to you: what’s going to light your fire again?

(And if you want to discover how Mummies on a Mission helped me on my journey check out our Ambassador page here: https://mummiesonamission.com/become-an-ambassador/)

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5 things about being your own boss that nobody tells you

5 things about being your own boss that nobody tells you

Being an entrepreneur is a dream, isn’t it? Burn those itchy black work pants and shirts in a sacrificial bonfire, and laugh in the face of your iPhone’s alarm setting, right?

How about vision-casting whilst swinging in your hammock, and frothy cappuccinos at your local café, surrounded by cute notebooks and your shiny laptop?

But… does being your own boss really look like that?

Well, maybe someday, but the reality initially is often a little, let’s say, less romantic. Here’s five little truth bombs about living the work-from-home life, from someone who has been a boss-mama for six years:

1.   Being your own boss means pressing against your comfort zone.

When you have your own business, you’ll have to do stuff that stretches you. Not everything will be easy online sales with no interaction, or creative genius that doesn’t require a little grunt work behind the scenes. You’re going to have to make the choice to do things that make you uncomfortable, or nervous, or are totally new experiences.

But, any successful business owner will tell you that pushing against your comfort zone is the ONLY way to create an incredible business – and, you’ll expand your world in ways you never dreamed you would before. Big girl pants on, and give it a go. You won’t regret trying.

2. It means practicing a little self-discipline.

Yes, you might be able to wake up later, or head to the café for some morning motivation every day…but should you? The siren call of Netflix stops many an entrepreneur from moving forward with their business.

So, you’ll need to learn a new skill: when it’s time to hustle, and then when it’s time to chill. The benefit is that you get so much incredible satisfaction from a day of achievement and momentum, and then you really can enjoy that glass of red at the end of the day.

3. You actually do get to choose what you want to do and when.

This is not a bad thing, right? Yep, that’s absolutely right, and I know this one seems really obvious! But, have you ever really imagined what it actually feels like to be your own boss?

Being your own boss means being available. Available for your kids, available for coffee with friends, available to book a holiday any time of the year that you want. It doesn’t matter if your kids get sick and have to stay home; you just care for them because they need you, and no one is going to make you feel guilty about that.

Book appointments when you like, or take the afternoon off to celebrate a win.

It’s all up to you, because you’re the boss.

4. You will have success, but you’ll also have setbacks.

Nothing worth doing is ever going to be easy, and building an incredible business is going to mean you’ll feel every single emotion under the sun. Even though the setbacks suck, they serve a purpose beyond just the old ‘I learned a thousand ways not to make a lightbulb’ adage.

It means you’re really living, and striving, and trying, and learning, and becoming stronger. You’re gunning for something bigger and better and more amazing than you could ever have achieved in a 9-5. Being your own boss takes guts and determination, and the ability to keep going when you stumble, but the reward for yourself and your business is so, so worth it.

5. And finally… you will never wear real pants again.

Prepare yourself girls. Prepare for your new ‘work’ uniform: pyjama pants, tracksuit pants, yoga pants, basically anything with a comfy, stretchy waistband. Zips and buttons? Nope, they’re just for times when real-life people will actually see you.

You’ll make professional phone calls wearing leggings with a massive hole that stretches across your thigh (personal experience). You’ll create inspirational social media posts while wearing your saggy undies and bra on a hot day (yep, done that too).

I mean, really, clothes are just generally optional when you work from home. And that’s not a bad little bonus.

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Six creative ways to drink your two litres every day

Six creative ways to drink your two litres every day

I grew up drinking exactly zero glasses of water a day. Instead, I drank cordial, soft drink, and just stayed dehydrated for much of my young adult life.

When I was 22, a few weeks before my wedding, I decided it was time to like water. I filled a 500ml bottle and sipped it every few minutes. I peed a lot. I didn’t like the taste.

Then, a few people started mentioning how clear my skin looked. I had a bit more uptick in energy. Everyone thought it was pre-wedding excitement – but I know that it was simply that I was hydrated for the first time in my life!

I was a changed woman.

Water is one of those crucial elements of life, and our body just doesn’t function that well when we don’t have enough going in. Headaches, fatigue, brain fog, dizziness, poor sleep, and even low blood pressure are all symptoms of day-to-day dehydration.

If you’re not a water drinker, or you struggle to get your 2-3 litres in each day, have a look at my six big tips for incorporating more water painlessly, and creating a habit for life.

      1. Always start your day with a glass of water.

Your sleeping hours are the longest stretch of time without any fluids going in, so before your morning tea or coffee, chug a big glass of water first. If you really want to ramp it up, sprinkle in some pink salt and squeeze in some lemon juice for an awesome detox/electrolyte drink.

2. Make mineral water your new best friend.

Soft drink is awful stuff that’s not doing you any favours, so enjoy a glass of flavoured fizzy water instead. Squeeze in lemon or lime juice, slices of ginger, cucumber or watermelon, or just enjoy plain with ice. It’s so refreshing, and feels like a treat that you can enjoy anytime guilt-free, and all counts towards your water intake.

       3. Herbal tea, served all ways.

Herbal tea is another form of flavoured water, and you can serve it either hot or cold. These days, the variety of flavours is unreal; choose from combinations of fruit, black tea, green tea, chocolate, even a perky cup of chilli tea!

To make a delicious iced tea, steep your tea bag or leaves in room-temp water for five minutes, remove and fill the glass with ice. Sip through a straw. You can even make blended teas by popping the ingredients into a blender (chai with a squidge of raw honey is divine!).

      4. Prep a jar of ginger ale concentrate.

To make, boil a couple of inches of sliced ginger in about two cups of water with the juice of a lemon and around ¼ cup pure maple syrup or rice malt syrup. Let it sit overnight and strain the next morning. Voila, you have a delicious ginger ale-inspired cordial to add to mineral water or plain water with ice!

 5. Eat your water.

Some foods have a really high water content, so add more of these raw foods to your day to boost your water intake. Cucumber and zucchini are 95% water (crazy, right?), watermelon and grapefruit are about 92% water, and strawberries, cantaloupe and peaches are also really high on the list. Basically if you eat a salad (regular or fruit), you’re topping up your water stores as well as getting a huge nutrition boost.

 6. Treat yourself to a new water bottle.

Ok, so this one isn’t all that sneaky, but it’s pure psychology at work! Buy a snazzy, new, big water bottle that you just love. Stainless steel bottles are the best type to get. Your water bottle is your best friend – take it everywhere, keep it full, and track how many times you refill it each day.

A final few tips:

  • If you’re a non-water-drinker, start slow by upping your intake by 500 ml initially, and slowly increase it over the course of a week or two.
  • Work out how many times you need to empty your bottle to hit your daily quota of water. Aim to drink two-thirds of your water before lunch, so you’ve got the rest of the busy afternoon to get through the final litre or so (and you won’t be peeing all night).
  • Mark your water bottle with deadlines by using tape or rubber bands so you can track where you should be. This is a great strategy for those competitive types!
  • Track your daily progress for two weeks, as well as how you’re feeling and what changes you’re noticing.
  • You might go to the loo a lot in the beginning – that’s normal, and your body will work it out after a couple of days!

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