My butt, January 2009

My butt,  January 2009
(who could miss it)

My butt, January 2010

My butt, January 2010
photos by Tom Peal

Welcome to You and All your Brilliant Parts!

In 2009 I lost 40 lbs and I got a new butt. How? Diet and exercise, that's the short answer. But all of the things I learned that made it emotionally possible, that allowed me to succeed when I had failed before - that will take longer. This blog celebrates the intelligence of the body. Please leave me a note to let me know what you think of this writing, if it's been helpful. I welcome your input and experience.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Mucus Buster Tea

On a sunny day last summer I took out my Indian spice box (that I built after taking a cooking class at Kalachandji's), opened the lid and discovered that the open cups of spices inside had tipped over and a mixture of pungent seeds and powders coated the bottom of the box. I poured them all into a jar and figured I'd just use them as a general pungent Indian mix. But the jar got put aside because, really, I like to mix spices more specifically, bit by bit.

When I ran out of non-caffeinated tea earlier this winter, I took the jar out of hiding, put a teaspoon of the mix in the bottom of a tea mug, and poured boiling hot water over it. Wow - this is powerful warming tea that also cuts mucus. In fact, be careful with it - it doesn't burn your tongue, but will make your body hot. I've had no trouble with acid reflux with this tea, and several of the spices listed are considered digestive aids; in ayurvedic terms, the spices lift your pitta, or fire, and that's what ultimately enables digestion. Turmeric is also an anti-inflamatory, so perhaps it mollifies the more pungent seeds in my system.

Here are the spices - you can find most of them in bulk at Whole Foods, or visit an Indian grocery store.
Seeds: Cumin, coriander, fenugreek, black mustard
Powders: turmeric, chili powder
Any one of these can be steeped or used in combination.

These are powerful spices, so treat them with the respect you would treat medicine. Manjuali Devi, the master chef and teacher at Kalachandji's told the class that men should be careful with the amounts of these pungent spices that they consume - they can raise body temperature higher than men's sperm can stand and therefore effect potency.

Later, Jenni

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