Healthy Lifestyle - Harmonic Arts Botanical Dispensary

Healthy Lifestyle

Dealing With Cravings On A Cleanse

During a cleanse it’s inevitable that some cravings will come on, especially when we may not be eating as much calorie dense food as we’re used to. Sometimes cravings come on so strong you feel like you’re turning into a ravenous beast that simply MUST have whatever it is you’re craving in that moment.

Moments like this are normal…but the first thing to do is catch your thoughts, examine them, and determine if you’re just hungry and your body/brain are defaulting to the calorie dense foods that they remember. Consider if you truly do want to eat these foods or if it’s just a passing craving, if you’re feeling emotional, stressed, or are simply just hungry and need to eat something healthy to curb your craving.

Breath deeply and think about how you will feel after you eat whatever it is that you’re craving, and if the consequences are worth a few moments of temporary pleasure.

Here’s a list of common cravings that could come up, and some cleanse friendly alternatives that can help you curb that craving, and keep you feeling great:

  • Bread: Eat quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat, millet, rice, or root vegetables. These foods are  a good source of gluten-free carbohydrates, loaded with fiber to fill you up, and vitamins, minerals and protein. If you simply must have some bread look for gluten-free breads/wraps but preferably the ones with the fewest ingredients, and organic ingredients. You can also bake your own yeast-free gluten free bread using gluten free flours. There are many great recipes online.

  • Cheese – Try making your own nut cheese (eat in small amounts), or sprinkle some nutritional yeast on your meal (goes great on salads, steamed vegetables or whatever you can think up). A craving for cheese could also be a need for healthy fats, so eating foods like Avocado, Coconut, hemp seeds, chia seeds, flax, or small amounts of cold-pressed oils can help nourish your body and curb your desire for cheese and other dairy products.

  • Alcohol – Try fermented beverages like Kombucha or Jun, fresh coconut water, or make an herbal soda with carbonated water and Harmonic Arts Herbal Root Beer Syrup or Chaga Kola Syrup.

  • Coffee – We often use caffeine as a stimulant when we are tired. One way to rely less on caffeine is to get adequate sleep. Caffeine is a poor replacement for rest that our body needs. Earlier bedtimes, using less electronics and artificial lighting in the evening, and relaxing evening teas like chamomile can help create a better night time routine to help you get to sleep earlier. As a replacement for coffee try Harmonic Arts KickStart, Herbal Teas, Matcha, Yerba Mate, Guyusa, or Herbal ElixirsRoasted Dandelion Root also makes a great coffee substitute that is very cleansing. Water can also be a great resource for helping you cope with consuming less caffeine. Every time you crave coffee or other caffeinated beverages just sip on some water. Being hydrated will help you stay more alert, improves digestion, and is essential for cleansing.

  • Sweetener – Dates, Molasses, Maple Syrup, Honey, Stevia Leaf, Berries, Yacon

  • Dessert – There’s nothing wrong with craving something sweet after a savory meal. The key is to avoid the heavy, sugar laden common dessert foods like cake, cookies, ice cream, pie etc. You could have a piece of fruit and a cup of herbal tea with some honey, or make a small dessert smoothie with some frozen berries, almond milk or water, and banana. Eating it out of a small bowl with a spoon makes a smoothie seem more like dessert, especially if you make it thick.

  • Salty Crunchy Snacks – Try replacing things like chips, crackers, and other salty snacks with fresh vegetables like carrots, celery, snap peas, and cucumbers. If you prepare them in advance and have them ready in the fridge or in your lunch bag, they’ll be ready and easy to grab when you’re craving a crunchy snack. You can also try healthy snacks like brown rice cakes,  and for something salty dried seaweeds like dulse and nori are a great way to get those ocean minerals into your body and curb a salt craving. Upgrade your salt with high quality mineral salts like pink crystal salt, smoked sea salt, black lava salt, and other sea salts that are much better for your body than standard table salt. Avoiding heavily salted, processed foods will help your taste buds adapt to less salty food. That way, when you do use salt, you need less.

    The key to dealing with cravings is to figure out the source of the craving and what the best option is to overcome it. If it’s stress or emotions you can try some physical activity, or something calming like yoga or meditation. If it’s true hunger then you definitely need to eat, just choose the best, healthiest alternative possible and you’ll stay on track.

    We don’t always choose the best options. We aren’t perfect beings, so if you do give in to a craving, don’t beat yourself up over it. Simply examine the source of the craving, how/why you gave into it, and what your intentions are to deal with those cravings moving forward.

Have you joined our Facebook group yet? If you have any questions, please ask them there or email us at [email protected]

Happy Spring Cleansing!!
The Harmonic Arts Team

Tonic Immune Protective Soup Recipe

Tonic Immuni-teaAt Harmonic Arts, one of our favourite Winter Tea Blends is Tonic Immuni-tea.

This deeply nourishing, earthy flavoured blend has a few sweet notes consisting of Wild and Organic Adaptogenic/Tonic herbs and mushrooms used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) including Chaga, Reishi, Eleuthro, Astragalus , Rehmannia, Codonopsis, Goji, and Wild Yam.

Tonic Immuni-tea is the perfect base for creating immune protective elixir drinks and soups…

Strengthening Commitment to Your Self

The earth has circled around the sun yet again, and many of us find ourselves in a similar place as we did this time last year; ready to make a commitment to that which is important, and close to our hearts. Perhaps it is a desire to more deeply commit to your health, to your relationships, or to your career. What you are committed to does not measure the success of your intentions. It is the strength of your commitment that will determine success.


How can we fortify the agreement we decide to make with ourselves, in order to bring to fruition the important matters of our hearts?

Winter Health Alignment

This is the 1st in a 4-part blog series from Harmonic Arts and Yarrow Willard, to be released on Solstice and Equinox. The intention of these blogs is to deepen our understanding of ways to show up in optimal health during each season of the year. When we  choose to align with the natural energies of the season, we are proactively reducing imbalance and disease in our body, mind, and spirit.

winter alignmentWinter’s Decline

When it comes to health, many people see winter as the toughest time of the year. It’s not uncommon to feel challenged with immune issues, stress, depression or a lack of energy in the winter months. Partly this is because it’s the natural completion of the life cycle. The world around us is retreating into sleep mode. If our actions and choices are not in alignment with this seasonal tone, our health and wellness will suffer.

4 Favourite Natural Cold and Flu Fighters



This time of year I actively add an ounce of cold and flu prevention to my family’s daily regime.

As our bodies adjust to the shifting seasons and the retracting light, fortification to the immune system becomes an important intention.

In that, I choose anti-microbial herbs as defense, immune boosters as offense, and deep immune tonics for conditioning and maintenance.



Cold Defense– When we feel a hint of the winter wetlands hit with stormy cold symptoms, we pull out this blend to come in strong with support to our natural defenses. This blend is ideal to take when sensing oncoming symptoms of a potential cold or flu.



Immune Boost Tea– This tea is a favourite for it’s healing essence that permeates the air while it brews up on the stove during colder months. It boosts our resistance to winter bugs while warming the body from the outside-in.immune boost tea


Elderberry Syrup– This one is always welcome to all members of our family, even the choosiest of palates enjoy the sweet berry flavour of this classic syrup. Elderberry is said to have a center of gravity on the lungs, and its anti-viral properties either keep colds and flus at bay, or lessen the impact of such symptoms.Elderberry-Syrup


Viral Support– This blend has a deep penetration to trigger the immune system. It lends support to the body in conditioning for its best defenses yet.Viral-Support-50ml


Rolling through this winter cycle, you may also find some of these products to be especially helpful, assisting you through the season with a lowered level of stress on your health and wellness!


angela willardAngela Willard became a Clinical Herbalist through the Wild Rose College of Natural Healing in 2005. She has since practiced as an Herbalist through many avenues including consulting, growing herbs, wildcrafting, and co-creating Harmonic Arts Botanical Dispensary. Angela actively adds herbal and health tools to her basket of wisdom by continually upgrading her knowledge with a strong focus on Women’s health and wellness. Sharing information that empowers people to live with integrity and reach their highest potential is a true calling, one which fuels her on her path. She balances her time between raising a young family and nourishing her passionate purpose as an herbalist.


5 Ways to Encourage Kids’ Summer Enjoyment, Naturally!

angie and lindenFamilies and friends of children are beginning preparations for the coming summer holiday months. Kids of all ages will be home from school during 10 warm weeks, and keeping them engaged and cool are keys to everyone’s happiness.

In our home, we aim to guide our children through their senses, the gateways to communing with nature. Facilitating nature connections allows these budding beings to learn from the original guru, mother nature herself.

Planting the seeds to ignite children’s imagination takes a little intention and inspired invention on the homefront.

Beltane… The Initiation of Summer

solar yearLike many old world traditions, the days of celebrating Beltane have come and gone. There was a time in Northern Europe though, when Beltane (May 1st) and Samhain (Nov. 1st ) were considered the most important dates in the calendar year. These dates are mid-haven between Equinox and Solstice, and carry an important traditional significance as the beginning of Summer and Winter. As such, they were celebrated with many rituals and ceremonies to ensure a prosperous and healthy season to come. Beltane also served to connect everyone in the community with the importance of giving thanks for the abundance they already had.

Spring Health with Harmonic Arts

It is getting close to the end of the dark and cold northern season.

In the next few months life will be unfurling its leaves and reaching out for the sun after its long winter’s rest. With this burst of Spring sun comes a renewed source of energy and drive in ourselves and the world around us.  

arnica flower patch mountain sunshineThis natural regeneration of life makes it the opportune time of year to work on ourselves and enhance healthy practices over the coming season. Traditionally, at this time of year people would be mostly fasting and grazing on the young shoots and fresh greens as they started to become available.

Many of the first plants that come up naturally stimulate our body’s cleansing mechanisms. Specifically the liver and eliminatory channels, helping to shed the accumulation of toxins and stagnation we’ve built up over the winter season.

The Flexitarian and the Opportunivore


  • A state of 80% awesome, 20% less than awesome
  • Flexible dietary habits and lifestyle design
  • No hard set rules or limitations
  • Seeking intuitive choices that best fit each situation


  • Engaging in life, whatever it brings 
  • Using what you have to its fullest potential
  • Finding opportunity in every moment
  • Seeking upgraded choices that best fit the moment.

In the modern world we are challenged  not to take ourselves or our situations too  personally or seriously so we can be  available to the opportunities that each moment  presents.

We are called to the challenge to be flexible and adaptable in a world filled with uncertainty. We can let go of the  safety blanket of  routine,  structure and habit that are reinforced by our fears, concerns and uncertainties. Most of the time they  don’t really serve us and end up stifling our ability to thrive.

The Breakfast Jam Jar

Weekday mornings can be pretty hectic; dragging yourself out of bed, getting ready for work, dogs to feed, kids and traffic- trying to fit in a nutritious breakfast can at times  seem downright impossible!

Enter this little savior: The Breakfast Jam Jar.

A breakfast jam jar takes 5 minutes to prepare and is an easy way to start your day off with an abundance of nutrients, fibre and energy. By preparing the jar the night before the oats will be more easily digested and allow for better absorption. This recipe is my Harmonic Arts inspired version of a jam jar- the majority of these ingredients are available on our website or in store.  You can be as creative and picky as you like with this – use your imagination!

Here  are a few of the many nutrients and benefits packed into this particular breakfast jar:

Magnesium, Fibre,  Manganese, Protein, Omega 3 and 6, Antioxidants, Iodine, Trace minerals and B Vitamins



3/4 Cup organic whole rolled oats

1/2 Cup milk or milk alternative (I used almond milk)ingredients


Hemp hearts


Sea Veg Blend



Activate superfood blend

Flax seed

Chia seed

Raw honey



Coconut shavings

Cacao nibs (I ran out and used chocolate chips!)




Place oats in first and then add other ingredients as you please.

You can add bananas and/or fruit to the top.

Pour almond milk into the jam jar.

Close lid.

Place in fridge.



In the morning amidst the hectic hustle just grab and go!

It’s easy, tastes like a (guilt free) dessert and is incredibly  filling.  Enjoy!





This delicious and fun recipe is brought to you by Harmonic Arts team member Kelsey, who is a  Holistic Nutritionist inspired by West Coast living, meeting her farmer, playing with her food and getting outside.

Be Wise; Minimize this Holiday Season

Now this one goes out to us seasonal cynics, who find ourselves cringing at the thought of keeping up with the Joneses while December madness sets in. You know what I’m talking about; the frantic, frenetic, hectic buzz that starts to permeate the air. This hits an octave that penetrates through the toughest layers of protection that sensitive beings create to survive the winter holidays.

I am a strong advocate for being the change in any area of aversion, and this time especially calls forth the game changers that can emanate a new paradigm. We as a culture can celebrate this time of sacred shift, with deserving attention and direction of our focus on that which is true to honouring the cycle of light.

7 Foundations of Winter Happiness

As winter approaches, it is a time when it can really sink in for some of us that we have a long, dark winter ahead. It is the part of the yearly cycle in which dreams are incubated, ideas are created, and shadow work is cultivated.

20150923_100932This for some may feel daunting and scary, as it often involves facing challenging emotions. It’s been given various titles such as Depression, Seasonal Affective Disorder, and even been alluded to levels of madness. Remember that if such times sweep over you during this winter, these feelings are the counter companions of contentment, serenity, and even joy. They truly are two sides of the same coin and embracing  emotions keeps us open to experiencing life in its entirety.

In understanding the challenges of the darker days, I offer a structure of ways in which you can fully support yourself in your darkness to maintain the sweetness of these times and remain available to the opportunities to strengthen your self. Below are my seven key strategies to creating a foundation in winter happiness:

Categories: Healthy Lifestyle, Home

Herbs and Spices for a Therapeutic Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is on the horizon and it is yet another opportunity to take part in festivities that will support our best health! Between the strong connections made with friends and family, eating a seasonally ripe local feast, and puttingthanksgiving food all our loving intentions into the meals we prepare, we will all be well on our way to laying a healthy foundation for winter months.