Real Beauty By

Beauty is a state of mind.

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Tree Climbing Goats

Goats climb trees. It might be unbelievable to some, but it’s absolutely true. In several locations around the world, goats are climbing trees just as well as other goats can climb mountains. To witness this phenomena, one area that features the tree climbing goats is along the western edge of Morocco near Essaouira.

Tamri goats climb trees in search of food, which is otherwise sparse in the region. This is an amazing feat considering they are hoofed animals. They specifically climb Argan trees to feed on their nuts and leaves. The Argan nuts the goats consume are used to make an oil which is highly prized in Morocoo. 

In order to make the oil, the goats’ droppings are collected by the locals as it contains the kernels of the seeds of the nut. The droppings are then pressed and ground into oil. Even more disturbingly is that this oil has a number of uses including culinary and cosmetic. For a quarter-liter bottle of this goat digested kernel oil, you can expect to pay from $15 to $50. 

Known as skilled navigators of treacherous mountain conditions, maybe it isn’t such a surprise to find goats making their way up the steep and narrow trunks and branches of only slightly more dangerous trees. Unfortunately, the Argan tree is slowly being over-harvested as so many other resources are on our planet.

Wow this is crazy to actually see the goats do that.


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Vegan Mug Cake Round Up

One Minute Chocolate Cake in a Mug (GF/SF)

Banana Microwave Mug Cake

One Minute Coffee Cake in a Mug (SF)

Single Serving Chocolate Chip Cake in a Mug (GF/SF)

Coconut Pandan Mug Cake (GF)

Sweet Potato Mug Cake

Single Serving Red Velvet Microwave Cake (GF)

Chocolate Peanut Butter Mug Cake (GF/SF)

Baked Thin Mint Single Serving Cake

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Spice Mug Cake

Wow this an incredible list.  I’m going to try the GF red velvet microwave cake.

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Gluten Detox

Understanding a Gluten Detox.

If you are reading this post its probably because you’re in the midst of a detox or seriously considering giving up gluten.  Since that’s likely the case I’m going to assume that you already know why it’s so important to give up gluten all the benefits waiting around the corner… if you can just get through this detox period!

When I decided to go gluten-free it was for health problems.  In particular I wanted to see if going gluten free would clear up my skin.  And much to my utter surprise and delight – it did!  For the first time since my youth my skin resolved of ALL acne.  I no longer had to run to a dermatologist for expensive medicines every month or so.  I didn’t constantly have to take a string antibiotics.  My skin was clear and the best thing was there were no more harsh chemicals going onto my skin and into my body.  Yeah!

Going gluten free can also really improve the aging process of skin.  Without gluten many people find that their skin brightens and tightens.  The complexion tends to even out.  And the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles diminish.

For me  I noticed a significant improvement in my skin within 2 weeks.    Within 3 months I had the best complexion of my whole life.  Seriously.  I had struggled with teenage acne and then adult acne and then adult cystic acne.  So what I was dealing with was very intense.  I can’t recommend going gluten free enough for the acne sufferer!

But there is something that I wish I had been warned about up front.  And that is the process of the gluten detox.  You may have read about how the body gets addicted to gluten; that it actually has an opiate effect on the body.  Well, it does.  Withdrawal will be different for everyone.  Mine was pretty intense. 

Some people actually fixate on breads and pastas during the detox process.  I’ve heard of people dreaming of gluten rich foods.  And the cravings may feel next to impossible to deal with.

For me it was the lethargy.  The first week I was off gluten I was sleeping 12 hours a night and then during the day I was basically a zombie.  I had zero energy and creative though process was basically nil.  It really took months for me to right myself. 

Also when you go gluten free it can trigger major digestive upsets and difficult bowel movements from the first 72 hours to even weeks later.  The symptoms may even feel like you have an intense stomach flu.

The other issue to be aware of is that if you have a difficult detox process you really can’t cheat at all.  I know several gluten-free people in my life who cheat occasionally and really don’t suffer that much for it.  But if your detox was several months long and it took an extended period of time for you to even an even keel again than any cheating really set you back.  Once you live through detox you don’t want to do it again. 

I think some people expect an overnight cure when going gluten free.  And they expect to feel better right away.  So the process of detox can be shocking and it can really derail some good intentions.  So be prepared.  Kicking gluten may easy for you or it may be a more painful and lengthy process.  But there is hope on the other side.

Remember that if your gut has been damaged by gluten consumption over the years it’s going to take that much longer for you to really feel better and start reaping the rewards. 

I wish someone had warned me of this.  So I’m warning you.  I was expecting immediate results but for me it took 3 months before I was feeling better meaning out of detox and another 2 months before I really started reaping the energetic benefits of being gluten free.

In spite of my difficulties going gluten free I do recommend it to anyone looking to heal their gut, clear their skin, ward off premature aging or drop weight.  Going gluten free is a great way to shed excess pounds.

If you are starting your gluten free journey just be prepared.  The first 2 weeks are likely to be the worst so choose a time when you can sleep, be calm and rest.  Don’t try this when you are working crazy schedules or your family needs all your time.  Be kind to yourself and plan your journey accordingly.

Here’s a video I made on the benefits to the skin when we go gluten-free.  Check it out!

Filed under gluten free gluten detox

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Getting Started Being Gluten Free

Being gluten free can be challenging at first.   We have to learn a whole new way to cook, shop for food, and dine at restaurants.  Often it’s the dining at restaurants that is the most difficult andtrying for a new gluten-free individual.  At restaurants there is often the temptation to cheat.  You want to go with the flow and eat whatever your friends and family are so you don’t want to make a fuss.  You may be afraid to ask for what you really need.

Any cheating can set you back.  It may send you into a full blown detox again - something that you should avoid at all costs.  And it may cause you to retain weight or wheat belly that you would otherwise lose.  It can even cause immediate skin reactions in the form of acne breakouts or a rash.  Gluten entering the blood stream can cause inflammation all throughout the body.  So we need to keep that in mind.  

Here’s a handy list of my favorite national restaurant chains that offer gluten-free menus and food items.  Keep this list handy when a friend or family member asks where you want to go to dinner.



Boston Market

Bone Fish Grill

Red Robin


Buffalo Wild Wings

Chick Fil A

Legal Sea Foods

Ruby Tuesdays

Also, here’s a quick video I did on the impact that gluten can have on the overall skin tone and complexion.

Filed under gluten free restaurants gluten free menu gluten and acne gluten and wrinkles