Great Minds Shit Alike.

I had the honor of talking shit with one of my health and colonic mentors, Mike Perrine, on his EveryDayDetox podcast. Mike is the owner of Vitality NYC, where I work on the first Tuesday of every month. You can book me for a colonic in NYC on the Vitality NYC website. Hope you enjoy listening to our chat!

 

Fashion for your Bloated Ass

My best friend and fashion idol is one of the head buyers at Bergdorf Goodman, what I believe is the highest grossing department store in Manhattan because everything they sell is expensive as shit. My friend is rather private and OCD (I should know, we were college roommates), so let’s just call her Anal. Anal has had the best style since I’ve known her, so it’s only natural that I consistently look to her for fashion advice. She travels to Paris every month to choose the trends of the season. Luckily, big ass baggy tie-dye tshirts are currently in style (not sure that they ever weren’t). Here’s some Anal fashion advice on how to look good even when you feel like shit:

 

If you’re stomach isn’t feeling 100% flat and you would prefer to hide it until you feel better then below are a few forgiving looks to try from the spring runway.

A midi skirt and an oversized sweater hide just about everything while still looking chic. Below are a few Dior looks from Resort and Spring:

bloat wear

 

bloat fashion

An oversized jacket masks everything going on underneath. They are also perfect for the spring weather that is hopefully on the horizon. Below are a few looks from Chanel and Dior:

bloat fashion

bloat fashion

A wide leg pant with a loose waist is not only super comfortable but you will definitely feel small under all that fabric even if it’s not your skinniest day. Below is a favorite from Brandon Maxwell:

Bloat Fashion

Tye dye is a huge trend for Spring and tee shirts are the easiest way to pick up the trend. A simple tee paired back to a cargo pant or short will cover your stomach and still look cute. Below are a few examples from Stella McCartney:

Bloat Fashion

 

Bloat fashion

Pajama dressing has been around for a bit now but it’s still relevant and also the epitome of ease and comfort. Below are a few examples from FRS:

Bloat fashion

Just because you have a black tie event to go to doesn’t mean you have to be uncomfortable, even if you’re feeling bloated. The below looks from Chanel and Brandon Maxwell cover your stomach and still allow you to eat and drink all night long:

Bloat Fashion

Bloat Fashion

 

If all else fails, try a voluminous mini dress. This shape is cute and effortless in the summer and you will feel great regardless of what is going on inside. Below are a couple looks from Valentino and Zimmerman:

Bloat Fashion

Back To Basics

I’m a sucker for scents…I’m always diffusing lemongrass essential oil at the studio and patchouli EO at home. I spray Poopourri in the toilet before I shit. I burn Palo Santo after my cat shits. I want to smell every natural perfume available to woman. I love discovering new scents to inject into my coconut candles. Equally, I love that historic lucidity only a nostalgic scent can offer.

Scents even have the power to make me wear deodorant, for God’s sake. I wear Para Botanica probiotic deodorant just so I can inhale it (grapefruit + geranium is my fave). I’d fucking bathe in it if I could. The odor industry has me struggling with low grade Stockholm Syndrome because while gladly held captive, I am constantly falling in love with products that cause an adverse reaction.

It’s extremely disheartening when I discover a divinely-scented hydrosol or lotion to douse my body in only to get a fucking rash. Lately, my skin has been very sensitive to some natural products, specifically to the essential oils that make them worth a shit. My forearms and shins are the first to get itchy, which I’ve learned not to ignore because the itchiness generally turns into a few small bumps, which can quickly become a rash if unaddressed. It’s easy to underestimate the potency of natural ingredients.

For that very reason, I often forget about the cleanest and most effective skin products in my toolbox: African black soap and raw African shea butter. For me, these are the classics (and the cheapest!). When I feel a rash breaking out from some new fancy product I’m trying not to fall in love with, I’ll stick exclusively to African black soap and the rash will heal. Despite being made from mostly shea butter, African black soap can be very drying, so if you’re using it on your face, you’ll want to chase it with some raw shea butter. However, when I have a rash on my body, I appreciate the drying/cooling effect of the soap. I encourage you to look up the countless benefits of African black soap and purchase the soap and shea butter in unadulterated form (no scents added).

 

soap with no scents

Don’t Be An Ice Queen.

Thankfully, I had no clients booked today because I could hardly muster up the courage to get out of my body-heated bed this morning. Inconveniently, the heater in my apartment does not work well in my drafty apartment when it’s fucking freezing outside. So I spent the day cleaning my apartment and doing laundry to stay warm, or at least not think about how cold I am. While moving around and staying productive is always a good way to generate heat, I want to share two pointers on how to survive this dreadful season.

I purchased a Higher Dose Infrared Bodywrap back in October, but I get overwhelmed easily by new contraptions for no good reason. My mother gifted me an Aroma Professional Plus Multi-cooker over a year ago and it’s sadly still in the box. This, unfortunately, is only one other example of an unused possession that can probably change my life with the click of a single button. But I finally christened the dust-collecting infrared bodywrap last night, which practically rolled right out of the box, bear hugged me and plugged itself in. I cannot recommend this heated sleeping bag enough. There are different heat settings, so you can choose whether or not you feel like getting your sweat on while experiencing the benefits of infrared. Last night, my apartment felt a bit warmer, so I broke a sweat in just 30 minutes, while today I hardly broke a sweat even after staying in the bag for the max allowance of one hour. Today’s objective was just to stay warm, so I appreciated the absence of cold wet clothing (you must wear heavy sweats inside the bag as the heating elements can get really hot) upon exiting the bag. This infrared sauna wrap may just be the solution to my Seasonal Affective Disorder as it boosts happiness chemicals while providing unparalleled winter relaxation.

Infrared sauna bodywrap bag

 

The Infrared Bodywrap turns off after an hour and must rest for at least an hour before its next use. So in search of another warm body, I decided to finally christen my bath tub. I’ve lived in my apartment for two and a half years and had yet to take a bath! I cannot believe how fucking late I am to the bath game. In true fashion, I had luxurious bath salts  – one that was handmade by a friend complete with aromatic rose petals and another one (also a lovely gift) of Dead Sea salts – collecting dust in my medicine cabinet for years. This bath kept me warm for another hour while I relaxed and listened to some podcasts. In The Rockstar Remedy, Dr. Gabrielle Francis suggests taking epsom salt baths not only for muscle relaxation, but radiation extraction! This can be especially therapeutic if you work in front of a computer all day.

In short, being cold sucks and I hope my advice, and perhaps a colonic, make you feel less shitty this season.

xoxo jen

 

The Vanity Mirror

For such an appropriately beautiful word, “vanity” has a bad rep. If you know me personally or have read or listened to any of my interviews, you know I unapologetically got into my line of work ten years ago for vanity and vanity alone. I had no digestive issues, no major recovery, no comeback story. I just wanted to look my best and I learned that detoxing is the most natural and sustainable means to achieving optimal outer beauty.

It’s healthy to care about your appearance. Vanity can actually play a role in disease and humiliation prevention. Had we never looked in the mirror, certain cancers and liver disease would go undiagnosed, weight would creep on faster, repulsive whiteheads (and greenheads) would remain undisturbed and coagulated mucus would have time to harden and stick to the walls of our noses. Needful to say, vanity is a fragile tight rope resting between healthy and unhealthy obsession.

Growing up, my brother and I shared a bathroom. To his dismay, I would annoyingly spend an hour before bed each night indulging in my facial routine followed by a close up analysis of every pore and hair on my face, tweezer in hand. Thank God I never had one of those magnifying mirrors. I would have spent half of the evening mutilating my face!

Upon reflection, my vanity seemed to mark the beginning of my obsession with all things bathroom-related. I remember when my mother redecorated the bathroom and threw up a flattering mauve wallpaper because only then did I realize the significance of a room’s lighting. You’d think this made me feel good about myself (or at least pursue photography), but it only made me question whether the flattering reflection was an accurate depiction of my true appearance as I migrated to a different mirror for comparison. Needless to say, I was a textbook case of someone suffering from dysfunctional vanity that  perhaps led to a mild case of body dysmorphia.

bathroom vanity

A quick google search reveals that we spend about 1.5 years in the bathroom in a lifetime. I’ve experienced an inverse relationship between the amount of time spent in the bathroom and clear skin. A healthy diet is the ultimate skin routine promoting healthy bowel movements (ie detoxification), which requires little time on the bowl. Additionally, less time staring in the mirror, washing/stripping your skin, slathering on toxic products and picking/squeezing encourages skin regeneration and repair. Ironically, a low maintenance daily routine is the key to clear skin. Less is fucking more.

Often I am asked what I use on my skin, which is why I developed the Skin Cleanse on my services menu. You can subscribe to the Skin Cleanse newsletter on the Gravity Colonic Prices page for my full skin regime and recommendations. Spoiler alert: it involves a plant-based, dirtbag lifestyle. Products last forever in my medicine cabinet because I only oil cleanse my face 1-2 times per week. While I don’t believe in the consumerism surrounding commercial skin products, I am a fucking sucker for all things natural. Currently, my fave skincare is Marie Veronique’s line because she incorporates both probiotics and essential oils that smell divine in each product. Probiotics are naturally found on our skin and serve as a protectant. This is why washing your face 1-2 times EVERY FUCKING DAY is no bueno.

In summation, I encourage you to look in the mirror only to embrace your beauty.  If you’re hating what you see, I dare you to embark on a mirror fast while adopting the healthy habits I share in my Skin Cleanse newsletter. True beauty is truly skin deep…like 25 intestinal feet deep. Watch your skin clear up and your innards beauty shine through your pores. Namaste.

xoxo jen

 

Stranger Than Colonics

I’ve been singing Joanne Baldwin’s praises to just about anyone who will listen because I personally feel a responsibility to anyone who could benefit from her work, no matter how much crazier it makes me seem. Joanne has been a client of mine for years since I worked full time in NYC. I’ve seen her through her journey of mastering Biomagnetism over the years as she’s traveled both near and far to apprentice under the masters. I’ve always appreciated her insatiable appetite for alternative knowledge and her impressive dedication to understanding the human body as we don’t know it because…well, I like weird shit.

When I first met Joanne, however, she was always talking about babies and kids, which is not my favorite subject unless we are talking about pregnancy, labor and other reasons I shouldn’t have any. But for some reason, I love talking about kids with Joanne. She is a trained Doula and had specialized in Optimal Fertility and Preconception Detoxification, so naturally, I had a million questions for this bitch during her colonics.Biomagnetism biomagnetic master

The more I’ve gotten to know Joanne, the more I’ve gotten to love and trust this saint. Not only do she and her mother volunteer every single year at an orphanage in India and again in the States to follow up with those who’ve been adopted, but when I first met Joanne, she was a full-time nanny to an autistic child who she sincerely adored. She was on a mission to learn the causes of his condition and how life can improve for this young boy. Her love for this child seemed to drive her passion for detox as his parents exposed her to some of the top alternative doctors in NYC who centered their practices on detoxification and herbal tinctures.

One of said doctors introduced Joanne to Biomagnetism and unbeknownst to all, Joanne’s purpose in life. I’m not the best at articulating what exactly Biomagnetism is, so here is what Joanne’s website says verbatim:

 

Biomagnetism is a revolutionary, scientific and therapeutic approach which helps to facilitate the detoxification and elimination of pathogens, toxins and stress in the body. 

The life you are living has been shaped not only by your personal circumstances and experiences but also your ancestry and DNA. They all contribute to the building blocks of your internal programming and create your belief system. 

This belief system is structuring and running your life. Everything you are experiencing right now; the good, the bad, the things you do and react to, will all be rooted in, and therefore projected from the programming. This determines the health, wealth and success that you experience. 

Your internal programming defines and determines many areas of your life including: health – physical & mental, love life, career, relationships, enjoyment, addictions and potential.

In order to thrive, your life needs to be in balance and that is where Joanne and her magnets come in. You can eat all the right foods and exercise daily but if there are underlying conflicts in your body then overall wellbeing won’t be achieved. 

So basically, you can potentially blame your lineage for symptoms such as feelings of inadequacy or even chronic lower back pain. The Atlantic wrote an interesting piece diving deeper into the symptoms experienced by younger generations that potentially result from famine or war experienced by generations past. This exciting new field presents a completely different way to look at our bodies..and perhaps, our suffering. This all sounds like some past life regression bullshit that I generally avoid, and I guess in a way it is…minus the bullshit.

While Joanne feels that one Biomagnetism session is adequate for clients to receive benefit, I had to have a second session because I could not believe what happened after our first session. My lower back fatigue that I’ve experienced from a young age completely disappeared. I cannot remember a day where my lower back didn’t feel strained from being on my feet all day. It was never back pain, just a pain in the ass. In fact, I never even thought it was an issue! Up until a few months ago, I couldn’t remember going to a concert without having to lean on something to stretch my lower back a bit or straight up hoping the show was over sooner than later so I could go home and lay down.

During my Biomagnetism session, my body guided Joanne to my kidney (she literally talks to your feet!). She says kidney issues are commonly confused for back issues. Bloating/swelling and lower back pain can be an indication that your kidneys are not functioning optimally. I generally felt swelling in my legs, which was an issue I told her about. After my treatment, I peed like a racehorse and my lower back fatigue immediately dissolved. I also experience much less swelling in my legs. According to my “reading,” I can blame an incident that happened to my grandmother on my father’s side when she was 29 years old that subconsciously created a specific coding in her body (and consequently, our lineage) to deal with the emotions she experienced from her situation. Ironically, one of the emotions I released is “someone is to blame,” along with “victim,” “feeling misunderstood,” “my identity is fragile and uncertain” and “feeling like an outsider.” Sensations that I released are “lack,” “unhappiness,” “betrayal” and “humiliation.” I haven’t had much time to really sit with any of this, but I can tell you my back is feeling brand spanking new, which is an apparent manifestation of these emotions.

It gets even weirder because Joanne lives in London. She does this work remotely. I cannot recommend this magician enough. Email her at joanne@fortheloveofbalance.co.uk and prepare to detox your ass of the past.

Grow Your Shit.

Other than my intestines, I admittedly don’t know where all of my shit comes from. I try to be mindful of what I eat most of the time (no animal products, organic when possible, minimal processed foods, etc etc), but how the fuck does lettuce grow?

With the way of the world and our food system, our health is literally in our hands. I’m tired of complaining about how shitty we treat our animals, how much pesticide is in our produce, how every “natural” product we purchase is wrapped in plastic, how GMOs are an abusive scandal, and how this country is controlled by Big Pharma and the meat & dairy industries. Don’t get me wrong, I always enjoy talking shit, but the bottom line is the only way to guarantee clean food is to grow and make it ourselves.

Our culture has grown so distant from food production that unless you’re a factory farm “slave” worker (I don’t reasonably believe anyone wants to kill animals for a living) or an agricultural “slave” farmer (more on that in the expose documentary, Food Chains), we practically have no idea how to feed ourselves from scratch. So I decided to try growing my own shit for the first time this summer and I am excited to share that it is much easier to grow lettuce than you may think (or not have thought about at all!).

I have both an outdoor garden plot in the Brunswick Garden right across the street from the Brunswick Center and an aeroponic Tower Garden in the Doody Free Girl studio. Growing veggies outdoors involves more effort and way more patience than growing indoors. You first need to check the soil for any heavy metal contamination, take time to water your garden, check for potential pests and respond accordingly, and weed…often. Furthermore, outdoor veggies grow at a snail’s pace without Miracle Grow. So far, I’ve harvested a shitload of breakfast radishes, which are the only veggies that seem to grow quickly and easily (for me anyway). I’m still waiting on my carrots, which are currently as thin and disappointing as a pencil thin bowel movement.

I highly recommend an indoor aeroponic Tower Garden, which ensures you know that your plant food is receiving filtered water, optimal nutrients and NO pesticides. I do not, however, recommend it for those in a studio apartment because the LED grow lights must be on for 14 hours each day and they’re bright as hell. But if you can deal with the light, you can grow lettuce (and herbs, tomatoes, cucumbers, kale etc etc) all year long. It took me just under two months from receiving my order to harvest lettuce that replenishes itself overnight. I purchased everything online from TowerGarden.com, which has endless tutorial videos to accompany your order. Make sure to also purchase the LED Indoor Grow Lights and the Tower Garden Dolly from the site.

If this Tower Garden endeavor isn’t that appealing to you or your pets, you can start with a countertop Aerogarden, which grows just as well. Just grow something! I swear you will feel like a fucking magician! I still can’t believe this actually worked out for me…

Tower Garden aeroponic lettuce

Totally Anal

For the most part, colonics are nothing like anal sex. For one, colonics will consistently involve a sufficient amount of lubrication. Secondly, there is a medical grade speculum (not a giant penis) gently inserted into the rectum that will remain stationary and feel virtually invisible for the remainder of the procedure. Unlike anal sex, women actually derive pleasure from the cathartic release colonics provide. Except for some mild cramping, there is no stabbing pain during a colonic. There is no questioning of one’s sexuality during a colonic because colonics most definitely make you gay AF thanks to the release of endorphins.

However, anal sex and colonics do share few similarities. They will both make you feel like you’re taking the longest, hardest shit of your life. The session is best when the recipient is completely relaxed because anxiety does not help shit along. Waves of nausea and intense pressure is not uncommon. Additionally, shit can sometimes get a little messy, which is no cause for panic as both parties should be fully aware of what they signed up for.

I’m not discouraging anyone who is into anal from living their best life, but women technically cannot derive sexual pleasure from anal sex. Men’s prostate gland is stimulated during penetration, which causes arousal. Women, on the other hand, do not have a prostate gland, so scientifically speaking (not from experience), the sensation of anal sex is that of a constipating monster turd jammed up in the rectum where no release is ever experienced. This shit sounds like zero fun. Also, we have transverse folds in the rectum called the “valves of Houston” that keep us from shitting ourselves. They can weaken with age, so why wear them down unnecessarily?

anal colonics

 

So while I don’t necessarily recommend anal sex for those sporting a vagina, I am totally anal when it comes to cleaning my shit. My latest obsession is my Bissell Powerfresh Steam Mop that I cannot fathom living without. I used to get on my hands and knees with a brush, distilled white vinegar and a shitload of paper towels to hand-mop and dry my floors. Now, it takes less than ten minutes to sanitize my entire studio using only steam from distilled water – no paper, chemicals or vinegar smell! The steamer will also come in handy when you need to clean your floors after aforementioned sex act.

 

Fasting & Feasting

It’s taken almost ten years to adopt a lifestyle of fasting where I’m not obsessing, starving, yo-yo dieting, or more importantly, anxious and isolated. I blame the “all-or-nothing” ego of my 20s for these demented thinking patterns. But at the same time, my 20’s enthusiasm landed me on the most rewarding, alternative career path I could have ever imagined for myself as an ass plumber. So I’ve gained a healthy appreciation for comfortable fasting, or what the masses call intermittent fasting.

About ten years ago, I picked up Natalia Rose’s Raw Food Detox Diet book, which changed my life overnight for better or for worse. I speak more to this on the Free Spirit Academy Podcast (episode 20). Rather than slowly transition into this new cleansing lifestyle as the book suggests, I quickly began juice fasting all day until dinner for the sake of vanity. Then for dinner, I would just about eat the kitchen sink thinking I could eat as much as I desired as long as it was “clean.” Additionally, I would throw in a 3-5 day juice cleanse every so often to wipe my slate clean. Little did I realize that this lifestyle was slowly becoming less of an exciting path to everlasting beauty, but rather one to disordered eating. I found myself binging in the evenings until I felt uncomfortably bloated because I knew I would not be eating solid food for another 24 hours. This is not how one should fast.

healthy fasting

 

Intermittent fasting is a hot topic lately, but this is nothing new. What is new is the amount of fucking food we’re shoving in our faces. Our ancestors were not able to go to a store where there is so much food available, the store actually has to throw out most of the produce everyday! In fact, they were forced to fast because food was so scarce. Mark Mattson, head of the National Institute on Aging’s neuroscience lab, argues that fasting and then “feasting” has actually helped evolve the species and make us smarter. In Scientific American, studies have proven that intermittent fasting has proven more effective than calorie restriction in preventing cancer, cognitive decline and weight loss.

Intermittent fasting can mean fasting for a few days at a time, just eliminating a meal or two per day or simply not snacking between meals. I do not fast for days on end anymore. Alternatively, I enjoy comfortably fasting for 12-14 hours each day (this includes not eating in your sleep!). I find myself juice fasting or smoothie “fasting” until dinner on days where I have a packed schedule of clients and am running on adrenaline all day. Those days seem to fly by! My reward is then a huge avocado salad with a veggie burger, maybe some crackers and vegan cheese followed by some chocolaty treat and a huge dump in the morning. The idea is to know when you’re truly full and satisfied, not to deprive yourself. Once you’ve reached the point where you are comfortably full in both your thoughts and your stomach, you have achieved comfortable fasting. Now prepare to live to 120.

xoxo jen

Sugar Addiction

I’ve always had a sweet tooth. Growing up, my parents had to bribe me to eat my Abuela’s Cuban food by promising dessert after. I’m 36 years old now and I still love finishing dinner off with a sweet treat. Thank God sugar is healthy!

Not all sugar was created equal, but luckily, you can satisfy your sugar cravings healthfully. The two best ways to do this is by substituting either breakfast or lunch (or both) with a green smoothie and/or a green juice. People are always freaking the fuck out about the sugar content in fresh green juices because juices do not contain any fiber. No one has a better response to this concern than my mentor, Tom DeVito, who healed himself naturally of grand mal seizures by eating sugary fruits and drinking green juices all the live long day for the last 25+ years:

“Sugar: the so-called villain of the American diet just happens to be the only substance, (other than oxygen) the human cell requires for food! This important sugar comes from primarily fruits and secondarily, green leafy vegetables. In addition, fruit sugar cleanses the bloodstream. Chlorophyll builds blood cells. The molecular structures of hemoglobin and chlorophyll are identical. The body converts the green stuff to the red stuff rather easily and rapidly! And that, my friends, is why so-called diet experts making villains of actual, real human fuel, should be treated exactly as they are: clueless fools who studied fiction from a book and didn’t live a health transformation, by way of deep tissue cleansing, whole foods and a plant-based diet! They read some books, perhaps got a degree and live the same lie as everyone else. Counting imaginary values from fake foods which provide little to no value but rather harm, while vacillating between losing an inch and gaining a pound. Don’t allow fiction writers to teach you about your health. Allow your body to experience real food in a depolluted environment. Begin your personal journey and feel it for yourself. There is the classroom, the textbook, the truth.”

In fact, did you know that all animals have a sweet tooth? And those who do not anymore can thank evolution. So let’s return to nature and take it easy on the processed sugary foods. If you are experiencing insatiable cravings for cakes and unnatural shit, you are suffering from dysbiosis, where an imbalance of good:bad bacteria exists. The best remedy for eliminating the dominance of shitty bacteria is evacuation (aka colonics) and replenishment with probiotics. Those cravings will quickly disappear once you start feeding your healthy bacteria with real food (i.e.  plant food).

Colonics are also important when eating natural sugar because fruit and vegetable sugars are extremely cleansing. We are not exactly burning sugar off anymore like other primates, so elimination is more vital than ever. It is when we do not eliminate the waste natural sugar generate in the body that we experience disease, not because of the mere ingestion of the sugar.

Additionally, fruit/vegetable sugar highs are never followed by a mid-day crash and burn. One important tip when it comes to drinking fresh juices and smoothies is to always ingest them on an empty stomach to ensure instant delivery to the cells via the bloodstream. Make sure to “chew” your drink and your smoothies because enzymes and bacteria in the mouth initiate proper digestion and assimilation.

natural sugar green smoothie

 

My latest obsession is the Omega juicer. I’ve always used a Breville centrifugal juicer, but the Omega juicer extracts way more juice and nutrients from your fruits and veggies. In fact, it is so efficient it can extract juice from wheatgrass and it can even make nut butters! It’s also more fun to use and a lot easier to dispose of the pulp when I need to make more than two juices. You can get one for $260 at Bed, Bath & Beyond (don’t forget to ask for the 20% discount at checkout). My current favorite 32 ounce organic green juice recipe will cost you under $6.50 at Whole Foods. Simply juice an entire 2 pound bag of organic carrots, half of a bunch of organic dandelion greens, and half of an organic fennel bulb. 

In my last blog post, I also promised I would share my current favorite smoothie recipe that keeps me full all day long until dinner. I’ll either milk a juice or a smoothie all day long (not both). I recommend the Vitamix blender as I’ve heard no other blender comes close to blending celery like this machine. Blend three stalks of organic celery, one whole banana, two handfuls of organic spinach, one whole mango, one cup of filtered water, 1.5 tablespoons of Vitamineral Green and 1 tablespoon of organic flax seeds.

Hope this shit was informative. xoxo jen