Category Archives: Health

The Best Herbs For Pain Relief

Those who suffer from an injury or chronic pain will know how it feels to have tried almost everything to relieve their pain. Every medication, special mattress, wrap, and back support that is on the market (or so it seems!). An interesting alternative is working these marvelous pain-relieving herbs into your cooking. Feel better – naturally!


Ginger: Long used in Chinese culture, ginger is a powerful anti-inflammatory. Also used to calm and settle upset stomachs, ginger is incredible for reducing osteoarthritic pain!

Red Pepper: Including both cayenne and chili, you’d never guess that red peppers are a crucial and often overlooked component of pain relief. Red pepper can help, as when a heat increase is felt in the body, VR1 (the body’s vanillin receptor 1) changes its shape and signals nerve cells to feel heat as well, fooling the brain into relieving your pain signals.

Oregano: Oregano is a triple threat in that it is anti-spasmodic, anti-inflammatory and analgesic. Long used in the Mediterranean for its natural healing properties, many who suffer from muscle spasms or arthritis swear by it!

Clove: If you have sensitive teeth and suffer from toothaches, look no further. Cloves are frequently a main ingredient in many dental products intended for pain relief. This is because cloves are host to numerous antiseptic, anti fungal and anesthetic properties.

Liquorice: Not the type that your Grandma kept in her candy bowl, liquorice is a longtime source of pain relief. In addition to blocking and preventing inflammation, liquorice has also been known to quell anxiety and nervous disorders.


What will you be whipping up tonight with your newly learned arsenal of natural, pain reliving herbs? Share your recipes with us on our Facebook page!

Yoga – For Kids!

Millions of people worldwide have found calm and solace in the practice of yoga. For many, it’s a daily necessity to find their inner calm and soothe away the day’s anxieties. So why not teach your children these practices? Though not as commonly discussed, children deal with plenty of anxiety experienced at school and dealing with their peers. Take a look at some of the best and easiest yoga poses for children: 

Warrior 2 Pose: This pose will help children embody strength. Lean deeply into the lunge and keep the front foot angled outward. This pose will help your child with stability and assist in opening their lungs and breathing.

warrior 2 pose


Tree Pose: Aim your energy towards the sky and attempt to balance. Though challenging, this pose will be fun for kids to try! This pose will help your child with their balance and strengthen the bones, while also boosting self esteem!

Tree Pose


Downward Facing Dog: This pose will help to boost circulation. And let’s face it, kids loving playing, so anything with an animal name in it will have them happy to cooperate!

downward facing dog




Hero Pose: This pose will help to stretch out your child’s hips, thighs, and even feet. It will also improve circulation, and is said to help relieve asthma symptoms.

hero pose



While you’re constantly looking for ways to improve your child’s life, how about your own wellness? Find your wellness in a beautiful QRay bracelet today!

Banishing Anxiety Without Medication

In today’s world, it seems as though our entire lives exist within the realm of our smartphones and computers. We are continually checking our gadgets for updates on what our friends are doing, who commented on our picture, and if work has sent a new e-mail. This constant inundation of information is enough to drive anyone crazy; so it should come as no surprise that people today are more stressed and anxious than ever before. While medication is a viable option for some to ease their anxiety, it certainly isn’t for everyone. Many people who have tried anti-anxiety medications complain of feeling groggy and almost zombie-like. So what are the alternatives? We’ve put together some holistic approaches to help banish your anxiety without medication!

qray depression


(Un) Social Butterfly

While social media is a guilty pleasure for almost everyone, the social anxiety that accompanies it can often wreak havoc on our nerves. From stumbling across an old flame’s vacation pictures, to having an acquaintance write a critical comment on an article you shared, social media can be an emotional minefield. The communication aspect of technology poses a whole other realm of anxiety. Waiting to hear back after a first date, office communication, and attempting to make group plans is just another layer of anxiety that technology provides. Navigating our many devices and social media accounts tends to be taxing to our well-being and general sense of calm. While some may suggest going on a ‘tech-detox’, this may not be the best approach for everyone. In taking a large chunk of time tech-free, you’re likely to have increased anxiety wondering about missed calls, unanswered e-mails, or unliked posts. Instead, try to abstain from checking your phone or computer for small increments of time. Start with 15 minutes, and slowly leave more and more time before checking your devices.

Get on Up

The benefits of regular exercise are numerous! A Princeton study has shown that physical activity creates excitable neurons in the hippocampus, an area of the brain that is involved in thinking, memories, and emotional responses. Furthermore, the study showed that exercise is able to reduce anxiety in both humans and animals. Researchers were able to determine this by conducting a study on runners and sedentary mice. The comparison revealed that runners’ brains were bursting with new, excitable neurons, while the mice’s brains did not. Of these new neurons in the runners’ brains, a number of them released the neurotransmitter GABA, which essentially prevents too many neurons in the brain from firing, thereby keeping you calm. Aside from the scientific aspects of working out, exercise can help you reach goals, gain confidence, increase your social interactions, and cope in a positive way! So the next time you have a big deadline or a fight with your partner, go out and take a lap around your neighbourhood!

Sit Still

As important as it is to be active and get your brain firing anxiety-reducing neurons, it’s also important to find your calm. Although, as prior noted, being active is an incredible outlet for those who suffer from anxiety, it’s important to be able to manage your stress and emotions. Sitting still during an anxious episode will force you to focus on your thoughts, mental state, and relaxation techniques. If you’ve never practiced any type of meditation before, there are a few things to know. Meditation can be as simple as sitting in a quiet, comfortable place. Simply focus on the act of breathing and controlling your breath. Deep breathing and meditation go hand in hand, and developing a rhythm will help your body to achieve a meditative state. Meditation does not give instant results, it takes dedication and perseverance, so dedicate yourself to mindfulness and you will get better at controlling and calming your mind!

Write It Out

One of the best ways to understand the millions of thoughts running through your head is to chronicle them. Having an ongoing record of how you felt on certain days and how things impacted you is a great way to help understand who we are. Make this a fun venture by picking out a beautiful notebook. Then, write everyday for about 20 minutes cataloging your day and your thoughts. Ask yourself, what am I telling myself? How anxious do I feel today? What triggered my anxiety? On a scale of 1-10, how bad is my anxiety? Even if it initially feels awkward and forced, developing the habit of writing will help you to understand the connection between your thoughts and your anxiety.

If you’re constantly looking ways to improve yourself and your wellbeing, we encourage you to learn more about the QRay difference

Wellness Guru: Why Massages Are Great For Your Health

Getting a massage is one of the most relaxing and luxurious experiences you can have. The dim lighting, soft music, and soothing voice of a talented masseuse all work in conjunction to help create optimal relaxation conditions. In addition to the pleasure we get from giving ourselves a much deserved treat, there are a few unexpected benefits as well!

Massage QRay

Counter Balance

If you sit at your desk all day, you may not realize the negative impact it’s having on your body. The human form isn’t intended to sit upright for extended periods of time – especially if you’re not getting additional exercise! A fantastic way to counteract the daily stress of a desk job is by scheduling massages. This will help to release the stress that builds up in your shoulders and neck. So go ahead, treat yourself!

Feel Better

A medical study shows that women who had regular massages while suffering from breast cancer were actually less depressed. Participants suffered from less anxiety and pain while experiencing more vigor and higher dopamine levels!


Sweet Dreams

There is an unsurprising connection between pain and sleep deprivation. Not only can pain prevent you from sleeping well, but your body also does not receive the necessary sleep time to restore and heal. Massage triggers your body’s parasympathetic “rest and relax” system, the system opposite to fight or flight. Massage combats both mental and physical stress making it easier to sleep and for your body to heal.

Blood Pressure

Just as the body’s parasympathetic helps your body to heal and relax, it also helps to restore balance and homeostasis. Though temporary, this can have powerful effects on the body and the heart!

So go ahead and schedule that massage! Not only is it an incredibly relaxing treat, but now you know that it’s actually good for you as well! What’s another way to improve your body’s wellness? A QRay bracelet!

6 Simple Ways to Boost Your Metabolism

Whether you’re trying to kick-start your weight loss or have plateaued, everyone wants to find simple ways to boost their metabolism. There’s no easy way to lose weight, but there are a number of steps you can take to ensure that your metabolism is in tip top shape for fat burning! Here are 6 steps you can take to boost your metabolism and live a healthier life!

boost metab qray

Eat. Breakfast.

They don’t call it the most important meal of the day for nothing! Starting your morning off with a healthy breakfast gets your metabolism up and moving for the day. Without doing so, your body will try to conserve energy and in effect inhibits your body’s ability to burn fat. So make sure within the first hour of waking up you manage a bowl of granola or some fruit and yogurt.


Don’tSkip Meals

Contrary to popular belief, skipping meals likely won’t result in a smaller waistline or even much weight loss. By skipping a meal you trick your body into thinking its not receiving enough nutrients. This in turn causes your body to hold onto extra nutrients and calories when it doesreceive food. By eating 6 small-portioned meals and keeping your blood sugar levels steady, your metabolism will stay in shape.


Stay Zen

More than just giving you anxiety and making you worry, stress can also slow down your metabolism! How does this happen? Easy, a hormone called cortisol. When you’re stressed, your body releases cortisol and when levels are too high in your body, it decreases your body’s ability to burn fat. Remember to take de-stressing measures in order to keep your stress and cortisol levels at bay.

Hit The Snooze Button

Like any machine, the body needs sufficient time to recharge and rest. So it’s not surprising that adopting a healthy sleep schedule can improve your metabolism. Women that sleep less than 5 hours a night are approximately 32% more likely to experience weight gain! Not getting enough sleep causes your metabolism to function irregularly and signals your body to release a hormone call ghrelin, this hormone actually signals your body to eat more!


Late Night Snacking

You may have heard you’re not supposed to snack after a certain time in order to keep your metabolism running properly. Contrary to popular belief, that’s actually not true. Having a light snack between 100-200 calories before bed will keep your metabolism cranked and even help you burn calories while you sleep.


Garlic and Cinnamon

This unexpected combo is your metabolisms best friend. Cinnamon not only helps with nausea and cramps, it also stabilizes energy levels without spiking your blood sugar. Garlic also balances blood sugar levels and also curbs cravings. So make sure to incorporate these two nutritional powerhouses into your diet (just maybe not together).


Are you looking for additional ways to supplement the wellness in your life? A QRay bracelet is the perfect way! Learn more on our website.

How To Make The Most of the Market

 Going to the farmers market on a Sunday can be such a relaxing treat! However, going to the farmers market can also be overwhelming and sometimes you don’t even know where to start! To guide you through the artisanal labyrinth that is the farmers market, here are a few helpful tips and hints!


Rise and Grind

If you’re looking for the freshest produce and best the selection, the early bird truly does catch the worm! Farmer’s market veterans all know that in order to get the best produce, you have to be there as early as possible. As tempting as it is to sleep in on the weekends, showing up early to the market will be worth it when you’re admiring your enviable haul.


Cash In

A small, but important thing that can be overlooked is the necessity of cash. Chances are most vendors will not have the Interact machines to accommodate debit or credit card purchases. Keeping a variety of denominations of cash, especially smaller bills, will save you a lot of time and hassle while dealing with vendors.


Seasons Greetings 

To save time, energy and disappointment – know your seasons! Know what fruits and veggies are in season so you can plan ahead and know what you’re likely to see from vendors. Not sure how to figure out what’s in season and when? Check out this awesome interactive map that will let you know what’s in season in what locations!


Ain’t Too Proud To Bag

Bring your own bags! First and foremost, it’s environmentally friendly to minimize plastic bag usage. Additionally, using the large nylon bags that can be purchased at your local grocery store or big box store are more durable and often can hold much more produce than flimsy plastic or paper bags.


Shop Around 

The stalls that are closest to the entrance are often the highest priced. Vendors know that people are more likely to purchase as soon as they walk in. Don’t fall into the trap! Take your time and shop around for the best produce andthe best prices. Don’t be afraid to say no and remember, you can always go back to the stalls later.


Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff 

Often times, local and home-grown produce won’t be perfect. The produce may be shaped funny, have a few imperfections and even be a little dirty. Don’t let this deter you! A few imperfections don’t take away from the fact that it’s delicious andlocal. Just make sure to wash everything when you get home.


Last but not least, be adventurous! If you see a fruit or vegetable that you haven’t tried before, don’t be afraid to ask about it and incorporate it into you pantry. Take advantage of all the farmers market has to offer (especially the knowledge of the vendors themselves). What are your secrets to making the most out of the market? Share with us on our Facebook page!

How To Perfect Your Posture

Good posture is more than just aesthetically pleasing; it’s an important facet of your overall health. With proper posture you’re able to achieve balance, breathe effectively and deeply, increase energy, and of course, look good! Follow this handy infographic to ensure you’re perfectly poised!

posture infog

Do you have any tips for maintaining good posture? Share them with us on Facebook!

5 Basic Yoga Asanas for Beginners

Asanas are the names given to the many different yoga poses. If you’re looking to jumpstart your yoga experience, but are unsure where to start, consider this your cheat sheet!

  1. Setu Bandh (Bridge Pose)

Ensure your feet and hips are equal distance apart and lift your body upward.

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana Yoga1

  1. Nauka Chalan (Boat Pose)

Keep your legs straight (no bent knees!) and keep your knees together!


  1. Vakrasana

Keep your back as straight as possible and attempt doing this asana in the opposite direction as well.


  1. Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)

Ensure your palms are tucked under your shoulders before pushing up off the ground.


  1. Paschimottanasana

Don’t let the difficult name fool you, simply do your best to touch your toes and collapse your body into your knees.



What was your favorite asana when starting off as a yogi? Share with us in the comments below or on our Facebook page!

Change Your Breathing Change Your Life

Breathing is something so simple and yet so powerful. It allows our body to function, and yet we don’t often put much thought into its rhythm or pattern. Think of when you become very nervous or anxious, your breaths become heavy and laborious. When you’re calm and even drowsy, you’re breathing becomes deep and slow. Your breathing is a reflection of your state of mind and therefore, changing your breathing and the monitoring of your breathing can change your life.

Profile of a beautiful arab woman breathing fresh air in the beach

If you currently practice meditation, you know the incredible affects that it has on your wellbeing. So much, in fact, that a 2005 Harvard study concluded that controlled breathing could actually increase the size of one’s brain. Focusing your breathing can be more powerful than you think! Meditation also has the power to reduce your stress levels. Shallow breathing suggests that your body is in, or is preparing to be in, fight-or-flight mode. Setting aside a moment to sit down, be still and actually focus on your breathing will significantly help your body to achieve a state of calm. In addition, channeling and controlling your breathing has the ability to reduce anxiety levels. A 2007 study found that students who practiced deep-breathing meditation reported having less anxiety and self-doubt and more concentration than those who did not practice deep breathing beforehand!

Not only great for your brain, breathing can also be incredibly beneficial for your heart rate. Your heart, like your breathing, is a reflection of your current mood and situational factors. Therefore, by practicing non-yogic deep breathing, a study suggests that you can actually improve heart rate variability.

Do you have meditation or breathing techniques that have benefitted your life? Share them with us on Facebook! Supplement your breathing exercises with the beauty of a QRay bracelet.

Acupressure Techniques To Try

Many of us feel that painkillers like Advil or Aspirin can feel like unnatural cures that are foreign to the body. Acupressure can be a great alternative to pills, and may be useful in treating an array of maladies.

hand massage

Nausea: If you’re experiencing nausea, take your wrist in between your thumb and your index and middle fingers. Place your thumb on the inside of your wrist approximately two finger-widths down from the top crease. Make sure your middle and index fingers are on the opposite side of your wrist. Firmly press together.

Stiff Neck: Gently place your fingers behind your ears and move down and inwards until you find the indention at the top of your jaw. Use your middle and index fingers to press firmly on these  pressure points on both sides of your neck. Slowly close your eyes and tilt your head back until the pain starts to subside.

Sinus Pressure: Place your index fingers on either side of your nose. Gently press on the creases where your nose and cheek meet, just outside of your nostrils. Hold this for up to 3 minutes.

Grogginess: Use your middle and index fingers to firmly press against the back of your knees for a quick energy boost. For a real jolt of energy, lightly tap the top of your head, directly in the centre. Then, use your thumb and index finger to massage the same spot behind your knees, followed by the middle of your foot.

Are you familiar with acupressure and have some techniques you’d like to share? We’d love to hear them on our Facebook page!