The parlor is all about beauty from the inside-out. Come sift beyond skin deep with me
through the perpetual refinement for looking and feeling your best.
Let me tell you something that might bore you to death. It’s what you’ve already heard a thousand times coming from your mom: Take good care of your health.
We’ve all heard the saying your body is a temple. If you don’t guard it well, you won’t be getting anywhere in life. At least, that’s what my mom keeps saying to me.
“Without your health, you won’t be able to do anything,” she tells me. If you don’t look after yourself before everything else, you will never get ahead (like, literally).
Personally, I’m not as high maintenance when it comes to taking good care for my own body. I think it’s a hassle to have tons of beauty products on my dresser.
However, I have a very healthy mom who’s getting younger by the year. It’s not everyday that I get to wake up and see her walking around the house – I can only see her every time I come back to Jakarta for my holidays away from school. Every time I see her, she looks slimmer, younger, and happier. And her beauty secrets are all passed down to me, the only girl (and the youngest child) in the family.
My mom may not be the only role model I stumble upon in my life, but she’s my mentor when it comes to beauty and wellbeing. However, I don’t necessarily take the best care of myself as she does to herself, because I care too much about other things. And then when I get sick, or I have problems with my hair, skin, nails and such, she would always look after me.
Indeed, every girl deserves a fairy godmother.
And then I would get a nagging voice in the back of my head, reminding me what she’s always been saying about my ugly toenails, or my lack of sleep, or months when I don’t get my menstrual discharge and showing PMS symptoms regularly instead. That’s what Asian moms do: They keep telling you and telling you and telling you until the things they say becomes a permanent part in your brain.
No wonder she suffers from stress, like any other aging mother would. Behind those burdens is an anti-wrinkling mom, though, enjoying the sun and the sea and the skies (with UV protection, of course):
By the by, she’s 47 this year. I bet she’ll kill me if she finds out I tell you her age. So shush.
I think a picture is worth a thousand words. So let’s get on to the meat of things here. i hope I can share her information to you readers so that you too can benefit from improving your own health and consequently, leading a happier life.
Contrary to Western medicine, Eastern practices heal your ailments through a more natural approach to remedies. Think popping pills or energy shots – aren’t they the conventional method to ease your pains?
However, Oriental medicine, namely herbal and dietary therapies, now comes in supplements for the last centuries, though modern practitioners are still taking in the natural stuff.
To maintain my vitality, regulate my menstrual cycle, and even out my complexion, there are three supplements I take on a day-to-day basis. I never used to trust my mother’s words, because I hold a personal bias on Eastern medicine that they generally lack scientific proof as to whether they work or they don’t.
After popping these pills for some time, I do feel a difference. Other than my mother’s trust, I know I might need to readjust my opinions on the medical knowledge (and wisdom) passed down from my lineage (strictly speaking, my Asian heritage).
Here are the three pills I pop into my system everyday:
Ophiocordyceps Sinesis 冬虫夏草 (Dong Cong Xia Cao)
The cordyceps are rare parasitic fungi best known to boost immunity and vitality, originating from traditional Tibetan medicine. It boosts energy and athletic endurance, nourishing the lungs and fortifying the kidneys, and improving the many functions of the liver. It is also considered as an aphrodisiac, stimulating sexual functions and the endocrine system of the body. With so many health benefits, it’s no wonder that this metabolism-regulating supplement became a huge contribution to modern preventive care, as numerous scientific studies have shown.
In 1993. three female Olympic track runners in China largely claimed the cordyceps responsible for them breaking their world records. Ever since then, the Dong Cong Xia Cao gained wide attention across Western medicine.
To read more about its anti-cancer properties, refer to the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center’s comprehensive summary of cordyceps over here.
Black-Bone Chicken and White-Phoenix pills 乌鸡白凤丸 (Wu Ji Bai Feng Yuan)
This is a tonic supplement to increase fertility and maintain women’s health. Pill-takers are usually prescribed by doctors to regulate menstruation and arresting leukorrhea, an abnormal vaginal discharge caused by hormonal imbalance in the body. Other uses include emaciation and general feebleness, aching, weakness and limpness of legs, postpartum bleeding and fatigue, lassitude, poor appetite, and irregular body weight. Currently, there are no known side effects in the scientific literature, making it a long-lasting medicine since it was first recorded in 1406 A.D. on “Pu Ji Fang” (Prescriptions for Universal Relief), a compendium written by medical expert Zhu Su.
For more background information on Wu Ji Bai Feng Yuan, check out the institute for Traditional Medicine’s wrap-up for the remedy here.
Pearl powder 珍珠粉 (Zhen Zhu Fen)
It’s an anti-inflammatory herbal medicine made of minerals and amino acids that relaxes the mind and beautifies the skin. The chief ingredient of a powdered pearl, calcium carbonate, mainly functions to ease bowel movements and maintains the acid/alkaline balance in the stomach.
While it works internally through oral intake, the pearl powder is also a powerful exfoliant when applied topically. This speeds up the removal of dead cells on the skin, acting as an antimicrobial agent that evens out the skin’s complexion. Because it is in crystalline form, our body can easily absorb these trace elements throughout the bloodstream, lowering blood pressure, relieving stress, thus harmonizing our mind and spirit as we benefit from its soothing effects. For more than 2,000 years, the pearl powder has been widely used to promote youthful appearance, reducing redness, blemishes, and other ailments of the skin.
To learn more about the magic of Zhen Zhu, see Acupuncture Today’s pearl review here.
For starters, you can pop some of these pills and notice how your body responds. Stick to the regimen for at least 4 weeks, and you’ll notice the difference.
In due time, I will be sharing more tips and information about the Asian way (and other alternative ways uncommon to Western medicine) my mom secretly shares with her 21-year-old daughter to maintain a healthy, happy you – and that’s what I call ageless, timeless beauty.
I’m sipping my last drop of warm, Jasmine green tea before I run off to my hour-long massage therapy. I’ll be drizzling on lavender oil to prepare myself a good night’s sleep tonight. My mother, on the other hand, is catching her acupuncture therapist in about half an hour from now. So, until next time, my beautiful reader.
Keep an eye on me – but don’t forget to look after yourself.
- Image courtesy of Suhaila Salimpour via Pinterest