Wednesday, October 7, 2015

5 Ways to SabotageYour Gut Health

No buts about it, we need a healthy gut. It's the key to overall wellness. Once the wellness of our gut is disturbed, then a domino effect is created for problems in the body. We have several working systems in the human infrastructure. They all interconnect. Our digestive system is extremely intricate and directly works with our immune system. We build our immunity by what we take in physically, environmentally, mentally, and emotionally. It only stands to reason that if we put garbage in our bodies then that is what will come out.

Our gut, the worker bee for the digestive system, or the gastrointestinal tract is comprised of a tube that runs from our mouths down to the anus. Throughout the tract there are necessary hormones, bacteria, and enzymes that are necessary for a well operating machine.

In order to stay strong and vibrant, we need to be aware of the factors that damage our wall of defense, our immune system. The foundation is a mighty digestive system. 

Here are 5 Ways Daily We Can Harm Our Gut:

1) Pharmaceutical Drugs: Prescription drugs at very intermittent times may have a time and place, especially in the case of warding off severe pain long enough to the body to a place where other methods can then be used to get to the heart of the issue, but they are not a permanent solution for life time issues. They do not heal or nourish, simple mask and cover. Often they come with a host of side effects and cause the body more negative issues. They cause confusion in the body. Use them rarely, and then so with care and caution. Antibiotics and vaccines are the worst offenders for destroying good digestive health.

2) Caffeine: It effects different people in different ways. Small amounts from healthy choices like organic green tea and organic dark chocolate usually is not a problem, and the health benefits from those foods evens the game a bit. Consuming caffeine daily, especially larger amounts though is bad news for the gut and our endocrine system.

3) Over the Counter Medications: While marketed as safe and helpful solutions for our day to day rounds, they are far from it. Drugs like acetaminophen are linked to blood cancers and liver failure. NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) like ibprophen, are linked to cancer, miscarriage, and cardiovascular trouble.

4) Processed Foods: While these are sold on the grocery store shelves all across the world, especially the United States, masked as foods, they are actually science projects drawn up in labs. They are inexpensive to produce and keep us sick, which keeps us going to the doctor and the pharmacy, and buying more over the counter medication and prescription you see the connection?

5) Unmanaged Negative Stress: Our nervous, endocrine, and digestive systems certainly take a beating from unmanaged stress. Disregarding healthy ways to manage our emotions can lead to lower immunity then causing anxiety attacks, frequent colds, yeast infections, migraine headaches, unnecessary weight gain, and hormonal imbalances.

In follow up articles I will discuss ways to support our immune and digestive systems. Check in with my blog often.  Learning how to support our bodies and taking control of our wellness is the only way we can truly have vitality and vibrancy in our lives. We need to our own best manager of our health. The more you pay attention to your body, treat it well, and eliminate poor patterns, the more intuitive you will become. You are truly your own best advocate! The journey can be daunting. Consider hiring a health coach as a guide and friend along the way. Contact me for more information on my health coaching program.

Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~Marie A, Brock, HHC


Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Belly Butter

I've just been having so much fun in my body care workshop, aka my kitchen, creating different, safe, nourishing items to use for common body care items. I have two whole cabinets dedicated to the ingredients, containers, and appliances. Feeding our skin is as important as the actual food we eat.

My lovely friend Marie, who just had her baby, recently came to visit me. She asked if there were any cocoa butter based lotions or creams for stretch marks. Immediately I asked if I could make her something. Then "Belly Butter" was born. It is more or less body butter, with a partial cocoa butter base along with grapefruit essential oil. 

Using genuine essential oils in homemade products don't only provide safe lovely scents to body care they increase healing time. Different essential oils have different properties. In this case I chose grapefruit because it contains limonene. It is present in citrus peels, especially grapefruit. It support skin health.

Making the belly butter was extremely simple. The process for making most balms, salves, deodorants, and lotions is very similar. It makes pairing combinations easy. 

Belly Butter Ingredients

1/2 C Cocoa Butter
1/2 C Shea Butter
1/2 C Organic Unrefined Coconut Oil
1/2 C Avocado Oil

Tools Needed 

Double Boiler
Silicon Spatula (reserved for body care making)
Chopstick (I use this to stir)
Hand Mixer
3 (4oz) glass jars or 1 (12-16oz) jar

Instructions (Please read these before jumping into action)

Gather your oils and butters, measure and place all into the double boiler, EXCEPT for the essential oil, it's not time for that yet. Melt the oils and butters in the double boiler over low-medium heat. Be patient, shea butter takes a while to melt. As mentioned in previous posts using a double boiler is really important. Just using a pot directly on the heat could over-heat or burn the oils/butters. You can easily create a make-shift double boiler by using a small stainless steel mixing bowl with a 2-3 qt pot.

Next remove pan from heat and let it cool in the refrigerator until semi-solid. Then remove it the fridge, now add your essential oil, and whip with a hand mixer right in the pot. It will look like mashed potatoes. 

Finally using your silicon spatula fill your jars. 
Use a sticky label and pretty handwriting.

Isn't that easy?!!! You can make it too along with other simple body care. Feed your skin well. Remember to be healthy, be blessed, and be a good steward!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Supporting Emotional Wellness

We live in the culture of the diagnosis. Everyone has a label. Each person seems to have some kind of disorder. Prescription medication is given out like jelly beans, meanwhile hands are being shaken and money is being exchanged...infuriating! Today specifically the topic of discussion is how to support our emotional wellness. We have a lot going against us, so the following are some tips to assist in the day to day for overall healthy living.  Truth be told though there are numerous dangerous side effects to prescription medication. If you are not on medication, this article will go over some areas to be aware of, and things that you can do naturally to support your body. Even if you are on medication,  many of these practices can be employed to raise your quality of living while continuing with your prescription. Clinical depression is an authentic condition. That is not what we are discussing today. It should not be discounted. In many cases though it is more of a symptom, and using natural methods is great way to support yourself..

 *Before I go further I want to state that am a certified holistic health and life counselor. I am not a medical doctor nor a trained psychologist. If you are a patient on ANY type of prescription medication, I am not telling you to stop. That is not my place nor what the article is about today. There are real conditions going on in people's bodies. Every condition is different. You can never be fully aware of all of the factors in someone's life: other medications, lifestyle choices, as well as illnesses/conditions. I would instruct anyone who reads this to NEVER tell anyone to just stop prescription medication. That would be irresponsible.That is a decision between the individual, God, and their doctor. It is extremely important to follow a doctors directives with medication, if you desire to be free from it. Find a trained medical professional. Do not do it on your own. You are not Sally down the street, you are you. Please be responsible.

Supporting a Healthy Environment
It's important to always start with a firm foundation. Examine yourself. Purchase a journal for a dollar and write down these questions and the answer them. Ask why do I feel a certain way? Is there anything truly internal going on causing me to be anxious? Examples are but not limited to: physical illness, prescription medication, poor daily diet, unhealthy digestive system, or unbalanced hormones.

Is there anything external going on causing me to feel this way that would rationally cause prolonged tension? Examples are but not limited to: separation, divorce, a severe physical illness-someone else's, an abusive personality in your life like a spouse, parent, or co-worker, job loss or simply financial instability, or death of a loved one. 

If something like this is going on then you have to give yourself some breathing room! You are bound to fall in one or both categories. You are normal to have reactions to these situations. There simply seasons in life that are difficult. It's perfectly normal for your body to be fighting the negative stress that follows from negative situations. It's even okay for you be down, but only for a time. Chronic negative stress, not dealt with in a positive fashion has been shown to alter the way your brain operates and cause more harm.

Create healthy boundaries for yourself, if possible. If someone is physically abusive removing yourself from the situation is always appropriate. Do not stay in harm's way. Bruises and beatings are not God's Will for your life. Don't allow anyone to tell you otherwise. You are worth so much more. You are a beautiful creation of the Most High God, be safe. Be self-affirming. For every negative comment you hear, out loud tell yourself that you are beautiful, you are fearfully and wonderfully made, and you are loved! Do talk with someone! Good counsel is imperative. Find a trust worthy counselor to meet with often. This may be a psychologist, pastor, or health counselor. Don't go through this alone. 

The Basics
Now is the time to accept responsibility for the things you can change. The number one area is with what you stuff your face. Yep, it really matters what you eat. There is no one best way to eat for all. It is very individualized. 

Good rules of thumb are lots of plant foods, especially organic leafy greens like lettuce, kale, collards, chard, and baby spinach. Greens will cleanse the blood of toxins with lots of chlorophyll and vitamin C. Raw greens are great! If you have certain types of auto-immune disorders though like with thyroid, then you want a higher percentage of cooked green veggies, at least 50/50. Different health conditions require different foods as well as the way they are prepared. If you are dealing with something like breast cancer, then you want to be as raw as possible and vegan. 

There are different classes of vegetables. I cover this in my holistic health counseling program. All veggies are not the same. Eat lots of different colors, and try new things. Take note to how certain ones effect you.

If you eat meat make sure it's organic, 100% pastured/grass fed beef (no grains), soy and corn free for chicken feed for the chickens and eggs. What the animals eat directly effects us. Animals also need lots of sunlight as well as fresh air and space to roam. This provides healthy protein for the muscular system to operate properly. Any animals eating soy and corn are consuming genetically modified fake foods, then those are going into your bodies.

Fruit is great! Eat the lower sugar choices most often like apples, berries, and grapefruit. If you eat oranges, do so with white part, that's fiber to balance out the high sugar. Do not drink fruit juices. Straight fruit juice is too much sugar. If you own a juicer the rule is juice your veggies, but blend your fruits. So do veggie juices and fruit & veggie smoothies.

Higher doses and portions of healthy fats. Be liberal here because your body needs it. Healthy fats are one of tools the body uses. Positive choices are: organic unrefined coconut oil, hempseeds/oil, extra virgin olive oil, chia seeds, grass fed hormone free butter, red palm oil, raw nuts & other seeds, grass fed ghee, wild caught salmon (from clean water if you can find it), organic peanut butter, raw almond butter, and my favorite food-avocados. Fats do not make you fat, sugar does. If you start craving unhealthy starches, which have lots of bad sugars that turn into fat, retrain your brain for what it needs, more healthy fat. Fat does not add fat to the body. The fat is used as a tool in the body for maintenance.

Consider going grain free during this time period. Even whole gluten free grains like brown rice and GF oats have a lot of natural sugars. Choose foods like quinoa, buckwheat, millet, and amaranth. If you don't eliminate them, prepare them properly by soaking before hand, and reduce them in your diet, if possible. The body doesn't always metabolize sugars well during high negative stress intervals. Do what is right for you. Think along the same lines for beans and legumes. Look, I love these foods, just pay attention to your body. Sometimes we need to make adjustments.

Sweet stuff, even GF/DF raw clean treats, should be treated like a regular Twix Bar or Snickers. Choose just a little, don't go overboard, and all will be fine. Stick to low glycemic sweeteners like whole stevia leaf drops, coconut sugar, and coconut nectar. Healthy choices though ones to use less often are delicious raw honey, whole organic cane sugar (also called Rapadura; this is NOT regular organic cane sugar or raw sugar or sucanat or turbinado sugar), and organic maple syrup, dates, and other fruit.

Yes, using truly natural high quality supplements is extremely helpful in giving the body what it needs. Some choices are foods and others are in liquid capsules and herbs. Again, I am not a medically trained physician. So I cannot prescribe these to you. I would suggest you do your research, if you have a doctor make him or her aware of the regimen you'd like to start, and be responsible for your own wellness. If you were a health counseling client of mine these are some we would discuss. For supplements mentioned, if you are on prescription medication of any kind, check with your local pharmacist for contraindications.

Probiotics: a healthy gut is a key to a healthy immune system; inside the gut is it's own set of emotions which affects the rest of our body when it's gets off balance, providing healthy bacterial strains with a high quality probiotic encourage balance; FYI- acidophilus is not enough, look for a multi strain probiotic containing at least acidophilus, bifidus, bulgaricus, plantaris, and saccharomyces boulardii.

Enzymes: extremely important little protein catalysts to the body functioning properly, the digestive function alone is crucial. Enzymes are needed by the entire body though, so their use therapeutically, which will be in an up coming blog post, is extremely helpful to proper body function.

Fermented Cod Liver Oil: cod liver oil that has been through the fermentation process has kept all of its nutritional factors in tact unlike distillation methods used on most fish oils,. FCLO provides healthy omega 3 fatty acids which are integral to the brain working as it should. Studies have shown that higher levels of omega 3 fatty acids have been extremely useful in those experiencing depression and anxiety. (

Chia Seeds: there are 2140mg of omega 3 fatty acids in one TBSP of these wonderful little seeds. They do not need to be ground to absorb nutrients like flax seeds. Chia are also a super source of fiber and calcium. They give fantastic energy. Great in smoothies or on salads or GF oats. I take 1 1/2 TBSP in a mason jar of water with 2 drops of grapefruit essential oil and 2 drops of organic stevia.

Raw Unpasteurized Apple Cider Vinegar: only beneficial when unpasteurized, great way to boost the immune system, naturally cleanse the body, balance pH by supporting proper amount of stomach acid, and burn fat. Do a healthy sized splash in your water daily.

Coconut Oil: in it's unrefined organic form it will nourish the body with healthy fat, combat unhealthy bacteria, and detoxify poisons. I take 2 TBSP a day. Eat it solid, liquid-melt it (not in the microwave) in a glass jar in a pot of boiled water, spread it of GF toast, on an organic baked sweet or russet potato, or in a smoothie.

B3: another name for Niacin; research has shown higher dosages of Niacin has been extremely help in correcting nutritional deficiencies contributing to depression.(

B12: many ailments spoken about today can be contributed to a deficiency in B12. It's an extremely important vitamin and allows the body to function properly. Make sure it is in Methylcobolamin form only and if you purchase it over the counter you get it in sublingual or patch form only. You will not absorb it in a multi vitamin or B complex that go through the digestive tract. (

D3: more of a hormone than a vitamin, it's integral to the brain and hormonally based systems in the body operating as they should; best gotten from the sun although difficult to attain for many reasons; ALWAYS supplement it unless you live below the state of Georgia, and are outside between 12pm-3pm daily; read Dr. Mercola's dosage recommendations. (

Magnesium: a tremendously important mineral, helps operate the nervous system, can only be attained by plant foods, most people are deficient in the USA, best taken in topically when supplementing; I make and sell a magnesium chloride spray; aluminum depletes magnesium, as does a lack of D3 , and TOO MUCH calcium. (

Tulsi (Holy Basil): Ayurvedic herb that is in a class called adaptagenic; allows body to deal with stress while enhancing the immune system.

Ashwaganda: another Ayurvedic adapatgenic herb; works well with Holy Basil to teach the body how to cope with emotional, physical, mental, and environmental stress.

Turmeric: a great root vegetable used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries is a natural all over anti-inflammatory. This allows the body to fight the heart of all illness: inflammation. Eat the organic culinary spice often or the root. Take a high quality organic supplement with a high ratio of curcumin. It's the anti-oxidant in turmeric that gives it the anti-inflammatory action. 

Essential Oils: amazing tools, often over looked, misunderstood, or misused. Essential oils are not some new concept under the sun, but it is only in the last 5-6 years that they are gaining credibility in the USA. Do be sure to know who you are buying from when it comes to essential oils. I only use  Young Living. To be safe , if you are new to essential oils, they should always be used with a carrier oil applied topically. A carrier oil, simply a fatty based oil, that is not aromatic, to blend it with because some essential oils cause a tingling warm feeling that can be uncomfortable. My favorite carriers are organic unrefined coconut oil and avocado oil. Rub essential oils on daily. Citrus oils in particular help supporting a positive mood. Lavender, frankincense, rose, and vetiver are wonderful choices.  Lemongrass for some can provide very positive endocrine system  support. Apply these around the front of neck, chest, and shoulders.  To help encourage a healthy digestive system applying on the bottoms of the feet and the abdomen/stomach area use ginger and fennel. Inhalation is wonderful way to use them. One drop rubbed into your palms then cupped up to face to breathe in deeply is delightful. Also consider purchasing a high quality diffuser. Good ones run $75-$150. You can purchase them here.

We were made to move! Don't skip it! Sedentary bodies do not provide nourishing environments. Motion, movement, and building of muscle detoxifies the body. We must sweat! Never wear anti-perspirants. They clog the lymphatic system. 

We need the release of healthy endorphins, the hormones that say to our body, "Hey, we're doing pretty good!"

Walking is one of the best ways to get the body motivated to do what it should. It is the most natural movement. Try a healthy medium pace for 30 minutes 3-4 times a week. 

In addition employing a high intensity short duration workout is paramount. You will build muscle, especially in your core. The core are the muscles in your abdomen area. These must be strong for a healthy back and posture. I use Dr. Josh Axe's Burst Fit Workout with my clients. It's a 20 minute DVD program 5 days a week. If you travel, take the DVDs with you, or try Natalie Jill Fitness, she has online workouts.

Be aware of skin care products, home cleaning products, air fresheners, and dental products. These all have ingredients that go into the body too. Choose wisdom. Just because it's on the shelf at a store, is FDA approved, or is "doctor recommended" doesn't make it healthy or safe.

Choose clean water. There are all sorts of unsafe chemicals in our water that affect the body's own ecosystem. Reverse osmosis for the whole home is best, but any filter is better. Filters in the fridge, on the faucets, and showers are very beneficial.

I hope this post helps someone. Let me know if you employ any of these tips, and how helpful they are to you. Be healthy, be blessed, and be a good steward! Much love!

Friday, September 11, 2015

Baths ( Natural Cleansing Support Series 2)

I never made time for myself as a busy mom before I was a wellness coach to take a soak in the tub. I whole heartedly believe today that I deserve a rebuke for that way of thinking. Moms everywhere need to soak in a bath at least once a week. I say lock the door, grab a magazine, and just enjoy it. This is a such a gentle and non-invasive way to take care of yourself.

Bathing can actually be a therapy to cleanse the body. Before beginning any detox regimen make sure your body can handle it by eating properly with plenty of vegetables and fruits along with a "healthy for you" daily water in-take. 

Baths are an extra luxury because it's an inexpensive day at the spa in your own bathroom. This is an opportunity to support emotional and physical wellness. This is NOT an option. Our bodies are covered in pores and were designed to release all foreign undesirable visitors in the body. Our lymphatic system, underneath our skin, is one of our bodies' hugest defenses against disease. According to Ayurvedic Healing Expert, John Douillard, it is easily clogged to due digestive distress with the villi in the digestive tract being irritated by inflammatory foods as well as stress. Much of the lymphatic system surrounds the intestines. 

Baths encourage good movement of the lymph as by helping to rid the body of non-beneficial bacterial disturbance as well as releasing negative stress so the white blood cells can get where they need to go to fight for us. It's a great way to encourage the body to keep going strong.


I'm a single homeschool mom and business owner, so I don't have a whole lot of time, and every penny counts.  Almost everyone has real Epsom salts laying around the house. If not, they are extremely inexpensive. I bought the brand below at Costco. In my area it came with two 6LB bags for $8.99.Epsom salts are rich in magnesium sulphate, which removes impurities from the body as well as relaxes the internal systems. Since the magnesium does relax the body, consider taking them in the evening before bed. I use them in all of my detox baths. Use 3-4 cups.

I also always use high quality essential oils.  Lavender is a wonderful choice to support emotional wellness. There are many others from which to choose. Use 6-8 drops of each oil. You can blend oils.

 ***IMPORTANT TIP*** Make sure when using essential oils, that you first mix them with the Epsom salts before putting them into the tub. This will result in much more pleasant experience. Certain essential oils have a very heated effect on the skin when not diluted, in this case by the Epsom salts. Mixing them will prevent the oils from all rising to the top and sitting on the skin in an overwhelming fashion. This way the oils will be evenly disbursed which will make the experience heavenly.

Good Options

Another helpful addition is bentonite clay.

I really like Redmond Clay because it is food grade. (Yes, it can be ingested for a detox too. That's a whole other article.) The bentonite helps keep heavy metals out of the body. This is a great option if you aren't using filtered water to bathe in. You can use 1/4 of a cup mixed as well as possible into the water.

Utilizing Himalayan or pink salt, like the one by Redmond, will purify the body as well as add minerals that are needed. Use 1/4 of a cup.

Use What You Have

Do not despair if you don't have these items. If nothing else, use Epsom salts if the other items are too difficult for you to ascertain right now. Do be sure to use water as warm/hot as you can possibly stand it. If using essential oils with the Epsom salts, then mix them in the water just before or as you are getting in the tub. Extreme heat can damage the effectiveness of the oils. In order for the bath to be effective, bath for 20-30 minutes. You will probably sweat, and that is a good thing. That means impurities are being released. After your bath rehydrate yourself with a filtered glass of water with a sprinkle of Himalayan or Celtic salt. I hope you will make detox baths a regular part of your regimen to live healthy now!

Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~Marie A. Ligorria, HHC


Monday, August 24, 2015

Ever Been Promoted While You Sleep?

Feeling grateful beyond measure to the Lord for getting promoted in my Young Living essential oil business yesterday :) I got out of the car about to walk into church, and my best girlfriend, Cheryl, of 11 years who lives in California, is also my awesome, supportive, direct upline, as I'm about to shut my phone off texts me and says YOU MADE EXECUTIVE! (Kinda cool, did ya catch that? It was like while I was sleeping, I got promoted. That's a tiny bit AWESOME!)

I'm so very humbled and thankful to family and friends for being so supportive. Young Living is a wonderful company due to its integrity and commitment to its customers and its craft of being the industry leader with over 20 years of experience, its Seed to Seal guarantee, and it's patented distillation process. Literally no one else is doing things quite like them with essential oils. 

After working so hard at juggling multiple jobs as a single parent the last six years this promotion was certainly good news. Now working the business with my family, my loving husband, Ken (1 month married tomorrow), and his daughter (my very dear friend) Kendra, makes it even sweeter. I couldn't have gotten promoted without them. 

I certainly didn't start out wanting to do the business side, but I'm glad I listened to the Lord when he spoke in my ear late last spring. See the cool thing about Young Living is they allow everyone the chance to become wholesale members and save 24% on purchases without ever having to work the business side. That was me. I'd been a happy wholesale member just enjoying the oils and other products in my home for a whole year not thinking about the business much at all. Then on a whim Ken and I went to a YL workshop in Charlotte, NC extremely last minute in spring of 2014. Following that summer I took the plunge and started teaching classes. Kendra hosted my first intro class ever in July, and two other wonderful friends, Candace and Briggs, then volunteered to host in their homes as well that same month.  
Network marketing is a lot of hard work in the beginning, and I'm still very much in the beginning. I believe it's so worth it though. It's not sustaining me yet, but will, if I don't give up. I'd rather work hard for little while though and grow instead of fighting for my little place on the map and worrying about getting fired from my $9 an hour job. (I was there not too long ago.) It is not for the faint of heart since many of us need to keep our day job for quite a while until our network marketing business builds. A sweet phrase rings in my ears though: residual income.

There's nothing like residual income. I also love that those above me are invested in my success because we help each other out. It goes both ways, they want me to move up since  it helps them move. It's just a business model that makes sense. The key is choosing a company that you truly love, you actually use what you're sharing about with others, and that as a company they do business legitimately. If you aren't a product of the product, it won't work. That's dishonesty.

 I just finished reading a book called The Four Year Career, if you're considering adding a network marketing business to what you have going on, read that book.

Buy it here:

 I love that I have the opportunity to teach this all to my sons now so they can grab a hold too! My young men see the value in taking care of their health through healthy diet, fitness, and essential oils. They also see the pay check in the mail each month. I am so blessed to homeschool them and make learning the business as well as the essential oils part of our lessons.

 Young Living was a perfect fit for me since I'm already running a holistic health coaching business, I do wellness. If it's a fit for you too, then please let me know. I'd love to talk with you. I'm not some business guru. I won't make you promises I can't keep. I will support you, answer your questions to the best of my ability, and teach you what I know. This is not a get rich quick scheme. 

So maybe you aren't a health coach, so what, you don't have to be one. At the end of the day, I'm just a mom who wants the best for her family and friends. Young Living is special because they fill a need in someone's home, they promote wellness daily. While we are on this Earth, we need to care for our health. 

Feel free to check out my Young Living website or send me an email.

Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~Marie A. Brock, HHC

*Some links on my page are affiliate links. That means when you shop through them the company gives me a small percentage of your sale. You of course are never obligated to purchase, just know that when you do, you are helping me to continue to share this information with you. 

Monday, August 10, 2015

Gluten and Allergy Free Wellness Event: Raleigh

I'm so excited! Are you gluten free? Thinking about going gluten free? Do you live near Raleigh? Well, this coming Saturday is your day! It's the annual Gluten and Allergy Free Wellness Event!!!

I had the pleasure of attending last year's event, and it was wonderful! The vendors were plentiful from gluten free advocating health coach's like myself to magazines to restaurants and more. You can ask questions from the experts who are loving the gluten free lifestyle!

If you would like to attend you can pre-register at: 

Get Tickets!

When you pre-register you automatically get a FREE subscription to DELIGHT  Gluten Free Magazine! Tickets are only $10. Children under 13 are free. 

The location of the event is at the 
North Carolina State University, 
1101 Gorman St, 
Raleigh, NC 27606


GUESS WHAT?!!!! You can also WIN tickets here on my blog! So here is what you need to do to win:

1) Go LIKE my Facebook Page it's

2) Leave a comment on my Facebook page how you'd like to win tickets!!!

2) Comment below with your name and email address here on the blog.

3) Share this blog entry on Facebook and use the hashtag and names
#GFAFEvent @GFAFWellness @KingdomHealth

Going gluten free the right way changed my life. I had chronic illnesses that were resolved by healthy, permanent dietary changes and the removal of chemical allergens in my home. 

Hope to see you this Saturday August 14, 2015 at The Gluten and Allergy Free Wellness Event!!!

Helping you to be a good steward of your health!!!~Marie A. Brock, HHC 

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Healing and New Beginnings PT 1

It's amazing what God can do with our broken lives. For the past six years some of you may not know that I've been a struggling single mom. Within that brokenness the Lord allowed me unbelievable blessings. I'd like to share all He has done. I give glory and honor to the Lord for every blessing He brings and trial He allows for they shape who I am and who I will become.

Many times I've shared how I was chronically ill with accumulating symptoms over the course of 18 years. Then six years ago my life changed. By the leading of the Holy Spirit I made positive, drastic lifestyle changes through changing what I ate, as well as what I cleaned the house with, and used for self/body care. Then to follow was the leap of faith to become a health coach. 

Healing was not just due physically, but emotionally and spiritually. Here's the other part of the story. When my physical body came to be restored is also the same year that my marriage began to crumble. I was caught completely off guard. It was not my choice.

My now ex-husband, to make a long story short, had expressed in 2009 how unhappy he was and wanted to live his life a different way. Our relationship seemed to turn from day to night. I don't mean to say that it was perfect of course. There were struggles at times, but we always seemed to pull through. We were no longer equally yolked and I finally 8 years later began to see the fruit of my decision to follow Christ. He proclaimed that he wanted a divorce. I became a believer in 2001, a little more than one year after getting marriedRegardless of the fact that I was in it to stay, he'd made the choice to go. 

This all was earth shattering. Divorce is like the death of a family member, but instead of the death just occurring once, it's like dealing with the shame, shock, and despair daily because it wasn't a person who died, but a relationship, a covenant. The other person is still around you, but not for you. Even as a Christian, it's a tug of war to remember your worth through separation and divorce. 

I remember trying to make sense of it all. I was the military wife who never complained, I homeschooled our two sons, I brought them to church twice a week, did all of the other "mommy duties", and managed the household. So why my Lord? Oh why? What did I do wrong sometimes I wondered. Why was I not enough? 

I did not make some of the best choices or always deal with the pain well. This is where my mighty God has made beauty from ashes. Never did I think I would've been able to work for myself as a holistic health coach and then expand with a natural beauty and body care line. My experience forced me to go outside of my comfort zone to make it on my own. I followed a passion for wellness that the Lord put in me. 

This all of course deepened my relationship with the Lord to a whole new level. I have found that in everyone's unique situation we come to know the Lord by His many names, sometimes more than one, but not all names at once. From moment to moment, issue to issue, we meet Him one day as father, one day as friend, one day as provider, and in my case as husband. 

Knowing Yeshua Messiah, Jesus Christ, as husband was new for me. There I was though after 9 years of being married all alone in need of love, leading, and a long time companion. I was inside of an emptiness that was uncharted territory. I was disposed of by one and desperately loved by another, so much that over 2000 years ago He died for me on a cross, rose, and is coming back to get me.

Trusting and seeing the Lord as husband did not come easily to me. I foolishly refused for quite a while. During that period of refusal I wounded my own heart unnecessarily. I looked for a husband for myself. Ladies, word of advice, do not do it! It always backfires. It is God the Father's job to appropriately find a husband for His daughter. It is healthy and good to be single at appointed times.

When I finally was able to receive the Lord as husband it was as if I felt covered and safe. By His grace I was made righteous through this unique union. While I still longed for an earthly husband at times, I knew that I belonged to someone special. Mothers teach your daughters to know Yeshua as husband early. 

Time went by and little did I know the plan my heavenly Daddy had for me. There I was working 2 jobs, my part time job at a local small health food store, and health coaching, homeschooling my two sons, taking care of my house, and just plain wiped out...totally exhausted. I'd also pick up any odd jobs I could just to make extra money from babysitting to demo-ing products on video. 

I'll fill in the blanks in my next blog entry part 2 of Healing and New Beginnings. 
Thank you for following along my healing journey. Feel free to share yours below! 

Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~Marie A. Brock, HHC

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Being Green with Essential Oils

Today is the 22nd anniversary of Earth Day. Part of being a good steward of your health is taking care of the world around you! Our Holy Creator Yeshua the Messiah of All created this planet just for us. What a wonderful God we serve! So it our duty to take of the health of planet, so it in turn can help us with our health. All of creation is connected, while we are not same, there is a definite connection.

Here are Easy Ways to Be Good to the Earth with Young Living Essential Oils:

1) Keep Your Air Clean:

Still using Glade Plug Ins, aerosol room freshener sprays, or those crazy eye ball looking scented balls for a pleasant scent in your home or office? Ditch that mess! 

These products contain comments like: 

Phthalates: serious hormone disruptors, extremely dangerous for children, amounts built up over time can cause testosterone disturbance, and even genetalia mutations

Dichlorobenzene: precursor to DDT and linked to lung cancer

Instead....use a cold air diffuser! Young Living provides several high quality diffusers to choose from online. 

Pictured above is called the Home Diffuser. It covers smaller spaces like bedrooms and larger spaces like living rooms. Just adjust how much oil you use. Always start with just 4 drops. Increase from there if needed. 

Here's how to use it:

There's 3 parts to the home diffuser:

The Base
The Lid
The Plug

Remove the lid. There's a little plastic shelf line inside. Fill it with distilled water. Yes, use distilled. In this particular diffuser there's a stainless steel plate, and the minerals from the water can clog it. 

Add your desired oil and desired amount of drops directly into the water. 

Place on the lid.

Plug it in.

Push the button in the front to turn it on. 

The first time you push the button it will run continuously for about 3 hours.  The second time you push the button it switches to 90 second bursts, so it just depends on what you want.

This diffuser (or a higher quality substitution) comes for FREE when you purchase an Everyday Oils Premium Kit from Young Living. You get 8 essential oil sample packs, 2 Ningxia Red Goji Berry Health Drinks, and eleven 5ml sized bottles of therapeutic grade essential oils to use in your home! Order one here.

There are other diffusers available on the market besides the ones from Young Living, but many of them are cheaply made, and the plastic quality is lower. You won't be able to use citrus oils in some of them. For quality and control, choose Young Living.

2) Keep Your Water Clean: 

Get rid of the detergent and fabric softener. This stuff is seriously toxic. Then it goes into our waters, yuck! There are safer ways to have lovely smelling, fluffy towels. 

In commercial detergents and fabric softeners you'll find some of the following, and I'm not listing all of them:

Benzyl Acetate: linked to pancreatic cancer

Benzyl Alcohol: an upper respiratory tract irritant

Ethanol: on the EPA's list of hazardous waste

What works great at my house is I make my own laundry detergent, which is super easy, and way cheaper than brands you'd buy in the store. Here is the recipe I use, given to me from a friend a long time ago. 

Laundry Detergent Recipe

1 Cup Borax
1 Cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda
1 Full Sized Dr. Bronners Baby/Unscented Bars of Soap
1 4-5 Gallon Bucket


Put your bucket into the tub (if you have one). Grate your bar of soap, put it into the bucket. Pour hot boiling water over the top, and stir until mostly dissolved. Pour in other ingredients. Fill the rest of the bucket with water from the tub spicket and stir. Allow this to set for 1-2 days until it kind of gels on top, then it's ready for use. You only need 1/4-1/2 cup per full load, depending on how soiled.

As an option you can scent your laundry detergent itself with 5-10ml of essential oil. You can add the essential to the bucket and stir once it's set. Consider using lemon since it's great on stains!

For fabric softener you can rinse with vinegar. Vinegar is great for softening clothes. Add 1/2 cup for a large load to the rinse cycle. No, your clothes won't smell like vinegar!

For even fluffier clothes, use wool dryer balls. My girlfriend, BethAnne is a Norwex consultant, so I got mine from her. 

Use all three balls for each load. You'll get a ton of uses out of them. I add 2-3 drops of lemongrass essential oil to each ball. That gets me through about 2 loads of my favorite scent!

3) Keep Your Soil Clean:

Do you garden? Did you know that Round Up and other pesticides are toxins to the brain and to the gut? Instead for pesticides use essential oils! 

Try 10 drops each of rosemary, thyme, peppermint in a gallon of distilled water. Keep in a dark, cool closet. Mix the solution, and pour some in a smaller dark glass spray bottle for easy use.  Apply on flowers and vegetables.

4) Reduce Reuse Recycle:

Have a ton of essential oil bottles? Don't throw them into the trash! Make your own essential oil blends and use them for your family, or give them away as gifts. Print out a special label for them and pick a name.

*If you need essential oils, you can purchase them here. You can contact me if you have any questions here.

Enjoy the rest of your earth day! Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~Marie A. Ligorria, HHC

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Building a Great Salad

I love salads, they are fast, healthy, and virtually limitless. You can be so creative with a salad from your base to your dressing. Some salads ingredients are so awesome a dressing isn't even required. 

I do believe building a good salad is an art though. The difference between a boring house salad and a wow oh my goodness I've died and gone to heaven salad is just the willingness to try new things. I can tend to be a salad snob though and while I love them in theory, I don't often order them when I go out because I tend to get disappointed. Salads shouldn't be boring, but that's often case. Paying $10-$12 for a plate of dullness really upsets me.

While I try really hard not to make multiple meals in my house, sometimes it's unavoidable when the main course for my guys is meat, and I simply don't eat it. 

This is when healthy fast food, like a great salad comes in handy. You can be as intricate as you want and the more ingredients, the more interesting. Balancing the right veggies, proteins, and dressings is a fun process. Don't be afraid to mix raw with cooked. I always like to when possible mix some of my homemade lacto-fermented veggies into my salad to boost flavor and nutrition. 

Some of my favorite added ingredients are: 

Raw Nuts & Seeds
Goat Cheese
Fermented Veggies (sauerkraut, beets, carrots) 
Organic Sweet Bell Peppers
Organic Grape Tomatoes
Pastured Chicken (if you eat it)
Capers (gluten free of course)
Avocado (my favorite food ever)
Wild Caught Sockeye Salmon
Grass Fed Steak (if you eat it)
Free Range Eggs (hard boiled or fried)

Your Green Bases 

Rotate your greens in your salad. For optimal nutrition allow a wide variety of greens to grace your bowl. Try to keep your leafy greens organic to avoid nasty pesticides and GMOs. Try baby spinach, mixed greens, bok choy, arugula, kale, chard, mustard, and collards.

Salad Dressings

Rule number one: do not buy them! They  are toxic messes full of junk not needed. If you go organic, yeah it's a step up, but totally not necessary. Seriously, take 5 minutes to drizzle some quality extra virgin olive oil and freshly squeezed lemons over your salad with good salt and pepper, your taste buds will dance.

For easy, awesome homemade salad dressings keep the following items on hand to whip up yummy dressings:

Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar
High Quality Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Fresh Organic Lemons/Limes or Lemon/Lime Juice 
Fresh Organic Oranges
Fresh or Dry Organic Spices/Herbs
Organic Maple Syrup
Organic Local Raw Honey
Organic Mustard (gluten free; yellow/Dijon)
Nut Butters

In the picture below I threw together a miso dressing for my salad. I didn't measure (sorry for those of you out there that must measure everything). I'll try to give you approximates. 

2-3 Tsp Braggs ACV
1 Tsp Organic Chickpea Miso Paste
1/2 Tsp Organic Ginger Powder
2 Tsp Organic Maple Syrup
2-3 Tsp Creamy Almond Butter
1 Tbsp Organic Untoasted Sesame Oil

I just mixed everything in that glass bowl and put it on my salad.

As for the salad itself I just pulled things out of the fridge that I had there: organic fermented beets, organic baby spinach, and kelp noodles. What on earth are kelp noodles, you ask. Well simply stated they are a brown based seaweed providing a natural source of iodine. They are a good source of fiber and very filling. So yes they are gluten free!

I probably used 1/4 of the bag. I cut them with kitchen scissors. I bought mine locally at Whole Foods, but you can order them here. I promise they are safe and healthy although as my son has stated they look "plasticy." They take on the flavor of what you put with them. No, they are not fishy tasting. 

I prefer soaking mine in warm/hot water for 5-10 minutes before eating them. I enjoy the texture after soaking them and eating them with my salad. 

I really enjoy the change of pace the noodles provide to my salad regimen. Do you like kelp noodles? Have you tried them? Tell me below.

Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~Marie A. Ligorria, HHC 

Want help creating more healthy recipes? Want to change your life now by adopting a healthy lifestyle change? Need help? Contact me to set up your FREE health history consultation here!

I do have some affiliate links throughout my blog. You are never obligated to purchase through them, but when you do, you support this healthy momma! So thank you!

Friday, March 20, 2015

Stress Support

I mentioned on Facebook this week that its been a rather emotionally stressful week for my family. My children and I have dealt with some fairly severe stomach issues from contaminated walnuts of all things! My poor, sweet fiancĂ© also landed himself in the hospital with a bicycle accident on a local trail. So yes, after a few broken bones, there's some stress going around.

Stress is just part of life. Stuff happens! It is not often I meet someone who says they do not deal with stress. In fact for those who have told me, I'm not sure I believe them. I think its more accurate to say that one manages their stress well. There are all different kinds of stress, emotional, physical, spiritual, and environmental. There is no way we are not affected.

There are many ways to manage stress. Some are positive and effective, while others, even though they seem on the surface to helping, actually magnify the negative effects of stress, like drugs, smoking, drinking alcohol, lashing out on Facebook or other social media, watching too much television, eating junk food, and not eating at all.

As a health and wellness coach, I'm not exempt from stress, nor am I exempt from having to make a conscious effort to manage my stress. I can be tempted at time to make less than profitable choices too. I have learned what works though, and what certainly doesn't. We are not just physical bodies or people. We are composed of mind, body, and spirit. Stress effects every aspect of our being, so it is important to nourish each part.

 Positive Ways to Manage  Different Types of Stress

1) I most certainly believe in spiritual attacks. I know when things are not going my way that is a time to buck up and praise God more. This is a sure way to defeat God's enemy. Being consciously aware of living thankfully while trials abound, strangely enough make it all bearable. It breeds humility that allows healing. This week I am taking more breaks to pray, read the Bible, be still, and journal. Journaling is like pressing delete on the issues at hand so everything doesn't feel so heavy.

2) Enduring negative stress can take a toll on your adrenal glands. Our adrenal glands are super important. They control the hormones in our bodies, especially cortisol, the stress hormone. When cortisol as well as other hormones are out of balance we become out of balance.

Two wonderful, all natural supplements that can help promote adrenal support are ashwagandha and holy basil (tulsi). Both of these herbs have roots in Ayurvedic medicine, the world's oldest medicinal practice based out of India. These herbs are cousins, and while you can use them apart, they work great together. I really enjoy Tulsi as a tea. You can buy it here too. They are in a class of herbs called adaptagenic. Both help our bodies to regulate our stress depending on how it is affecting us.

3) I support my emotional wellness through the use of essential oils. They really help my body to stay balanced for over all health and wellness. Everyone is an individual and responds differently to each oil or blend. Its important to find the ones that work best for you.

4) Movement is key. I absolutely, positively have to keep my body moving. Exercise is so important, no matter what, I can't make excuses or let anything get in the way. Staying fit and active assists the body with staying on an even keel, as well as releasing built up tension. Despite trials this week, at the very least a 30 minute brisk walk each day is imperative.

5) ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ....yes, sleep and rest. Lack of proper rest is a huge problem for the body, this majorly stresses us out. So when we are already dealing with some serious "uglies", then being proactive about decent bedtimes is paramount. Get to be bed! Worrying will get you no where.

6) Making sure I get my D3, magnesium, and vitamin B12 supplements will help tremendously. These three factors operate so much terrain in our bodies.


Magnesium just to name a few things will help with sleep, muscles acting properly, and prevent fatigue. This mineral can only be found in plant foods and high quality salts like Celtic and Himalayan. Many United States citizens are magnesium deficient due to improper amounts of plant foods in their daily diet. Over the years of eating a poor diet, or taking pharmaceutical medication, the body becomes damaged. So often even when individuals change their food repertoire to a healthier, more plant based menu, nutrients are not easily absorbed due to the need for gut repair.

This is what makes the need for magnesium to be taken in with a topical transdermal solution imperative. That's why I choose to utilize foot baths with Epsom salts, which are rich in magnesium sulphate, a needed form of the mineral. Epsom salts are also extremely affordable, so this is a great option.If you are near Costco, they are really economical there. The feet absorb very well. I do this weekly, you could increase the numbers of times you do it per week if needed. It is recommended to do this at night since magnesium tends to relax the body.

Another very important form of the mineral is magnesium chloride. You could do soaks with them too. In my holistic body care line, I actually make a spray. You can email me to order the spray. Using the spray daily makes getting the magnesium very easy. I keep the spray by my bedside. I use 10-20 sprays on my abdomen. I rub it in, and afterwards I rub jojoba or coconut oil over top to seal it in and prevent itching. Sometimes the skin can itch because the magnesium tends to be drying.


Often referred to as vitamin D3, while it's a not a vitamin at all yet more of a hormone, is one of the most deficient and most needed components in the human body. D3 is responsible for turning on many of the needed receptors throughout the body. It acts as a necessary catalyst for proper function. Dr.Joe Mercola, says the optimal range for your serum level in the body in most people is 50-70ml. In cancer patients he says its higher from 70-100ml. No one should go over 100ml though. The best way to get D3 is from healthy sun exposure without sunscreen. For many of us a supplement is still needed due to change of seasons, and other factors. Dr. Joe Mercola recommends 8000IUs at least to start if you are deficient. I personally have found that D3 drops held under the tongue for 30 seconds, and then swallowed are better for absorption.  The best way to know what you need is through blood testing.

Vitamin B12

If you have chronic low energy, headaches, aren't able to deal with your emotions well, poor memory, or digestive issues you may not be absorbing B12 very well or getting enough from your diet. This vitamin, according to Dr. Josh Axe, has the largest profile for fulfilling needs in the human body than any other vitamin. So if you are a vegetarian or vegan, you absolutely must supplement. There aren't too many vegetable food sources rich in B12 that we have in our diet. Some common B12 rich foods are grass fed beef, wild salmon, lamb, pastured turkey & chicken, pastured/free range egg yolks, and raw milk. Also keep in mind, much like the magnesium, if you have digestive issues like leaky gut, IBS, or colitis, that even if you are eating these foods on a regular basis, your gut is damaged, and the body is most likely not receiving what you need.

Something to be aware of is if vitamin B12 is not coming from our food, and we must supplement, that the best way to absorb it is through the blood stream. That means when you purchase a vitamin B supplement, be aware that even though it says B12 on it, chances are you not getting a lot of it or any at all. There are just some nutrients we can't get well in supplement form, or certain ones. Therefore, there are 3 ways to take it in properly:

1) Expensive, invasive shots
2) Sublingual Tablets
3) Patches

Know that all of three of these methods work. You need to determine what is best for you.

The first are shots. I hate shots, ouch! Plus those babies cost a lot of moola. Truth be told absorption is the highest with them.

Many people feel the way I do, so they resort to sublinguals. Sublingual tablets are made to dissolve under the tongue. The skin under the tongue is extremely thin, so it makes for better absorption. Now these are okay, but you have things to be aware of with them. First there are two types of B12 on the market in the world of supplements, cyanocobalamin and methylcobalamin. Cyanocobalamin is not a natural plant or animal based source, it is a chemical molecule coming from cyanide. While it is so small, and not said to be harmful, that is not the type I want to go into my body. Since it is a chemical form it is less absorbable in the body, but that also makes it cheaper. I implore you to pay a few extra dollars for the meythylcobalamin that is actually naturally occurring in nature and can be provided in a vegan form from bacteria growing on certain vegetables. Also when dealing with sublinguals there can also be little additions to those supplements that you might not want like sugar alcohols or sugar.

My favorite method is using methylcobalamin B12 patches. I actually have these available through my practice locally. You can email to purchase locally. They are also available on Amazon. I love the patches because they are easy to use, noninvasive, and come in the proper form of methylcobalamin. It's just like a small circular bandaid that you place on your body. The recommended place is the backside of the ear due to the thin skin. If you feel a warming sensation, that is completely normal. Some people feel it, and some do not. Transdermal and sublingual B12 both can have that initial effect on the body.

If you are dealing with a heavy load of stress, please look into what I've shared. This is no way  medical advice. Everything is simply for informational purposes. Always consult with your primary care physician. Helping you to be a good steward of your health!~ Marie A. Ligorria, HHC


I do have affiliate links throughout the article. You are never required to purchase through them, but when you do, it is helpful to the work of Kingdom Health.