Welcome To My Culinary & Holistic Lifestyle Blog!

In Pursuit of Optimal Digestive Health

10 Tips for Self-Care in 2023!


As we bid farewell to 2022 and look excitedly onwards towards the clean slate and fresh start that a New Year brings, this final blog of 2022 reveals 10 self-care rituals (that don't break the bank) that I CAN’T BE WITHOUT!

I hope they’ll come to be non-negotiable lifestyle practices for you, too!

In no particular order, HERE WE GO!



Epsom salt, in actuality, is magnesium sulfate; a pure, time-tested mineral compound.[i]

The critical importance of the mineral magnesium, the anti-stress mineral in the body, cannot be underestimated. It performs countless functions in the body, working largely in conjunction with the mineral calcium.

The functions of magnesium include:

  • Acting as a natural tranquilizer in the body, stimulating the relaxation of skeletal muscles, as well as the smooth muscles found in our blood vessels and gastrointestinal tract (calcium stimulates their contraction and magnesium stimulates their relaxation)
  • Activating enzymes important for the metabolism (break down and use) of protein and carbohydrate nutrients
  • DNA production and function
  • Regulation of electrical potential across body cell membranes, so as to allow nutrients to pass back and forth amongst body cells[ii]

Sulfate enhances the absorption of nutrients, helps flush toxins from the body and contributes to relief from migraine headaches.[iii]

Therefore, an Epsom salt bath is highly relaxing! ensure I soak in this type of bath post-yin yoga class, post-massage, post-workout, or any evening when I’m feeling added stress and just need to plain and simple UNWIND!

*Opt for plain/unscented Epsom salts, as opposed to those pre-scented. The scents are typically artificial ingredients and so potent! Not great for your liver as synthetic ingredients to process!



Dry skin brushing also supports the detoxification process, in support of the Lymphatic System. Check out my dry skin brushing blog post HERE, to learn more about this detox practice and why it’s of great benefit to your body!



The adult body is approximately 60% water. Therefore, adequate hydration IS SO IMPORTANT!

A high-quality water source is required for VITAL functions in the body.

Did you know that water is…

  • Is the medium in which ALL other nutrients in the body are found
  • Is the main component of ALL body fluids (e.g. blood, lymph, urine, sweat, tears and digestive juices)
  • Is involved in ALL body functions (e.g. digestion, absorption, elimination and circulation)
  • Is LOST DAILY via perspiration, sleep and urination
  • Carries ELECTROLYTES (e.g. calcium, chloride, magnesium, potassium and sodium) and is positively charged, contributing to brain cell communication by conducting electricity across heart muscle[iv]

Climate, activity level and diet influence our personal requirements.[v]. As a general guideline, aim for ½ your body weight in ounces, daily. If you consume coffee, add a couple cups for each cup of coffee consumed, to counter its effects.[vi] Please note that DIURETICS (e.g. coffee, caffeinated drinks, alcohol and caffeinated tea) FLUSH the body of vitamins and minerals.[vii] Therefore, consume these beverages with mindfulness.

When I refer to water as being 'high quality', I mean the cleanest, purest source available to and feasible for you. In my household, this entails filtering tap water through my Santevia alkalizing water pitcher and then pouring it into an uncovered, glass water jug. By letting it sit exposed to open air, the chlorine in the water will dissipate over the course of the day. You can amp up your water by adding 1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice to it for an alkalizing effect.



Everyone functions on a different number of hours of sleep. Personally, I know I need 8-9 hours to function WELL, with the nature of my day-to-day. Whatever that number is for you, make it a priority for you. This is of course influenced by young children and other circumstances that impact WHEN sleep occurs (if it does!) and for HOW LONG at a time. If you are very much in control over your bedtime and wake time, make it a priority to get that 'x' number of hours. You will never regret having enough sleep, that's for sure!

Delaying sleep and staying up beyond when you feel tired and needing to hit the sack does you NO FAVOURS. Cortisol, our stress hormone, is a steroid hormone (synthesized from cholesterol) secreted from the small adrenal glands that sit atop the kidneys.

Cortisol has an ideal rhythm throughout the day. Its level is highest in the body in the morning, providing you the ability to tackle your day, and naturally falls in the evening so melatonin (our sleep hormone) may start to rise and make us sleepy! Therefore, cortisol is ideally at its lowest point during the deepest part of your sleep.

The longer the body is pushed to stay awake beyond what is a reasonable time, means a rising cortisol level that then puts stress on the body, starting to suppress the Immune System. This helps to explain why we start to become sick when we allow ourselves to become too tired and worn out! The Immune System is not operating at full force and the bad bugs get IN!

Furthermore, turning technology off at least one hour prior to bedtime is worth considering. Blue light/technological devices stimulate cortisol, suppressing melatonin production. The greater the impact of technology just prior to bedtime, the more compromised sleep then becomes!



Green foods are some of the most alkalizing foods out there! As mentioned above with alkalizing water and the power of FRESH lemon water, green foods further support an alkaline, internal body environment.

My favourite ways to get my greens daily are:

  • A green morning smoothie utilizing organic spinach, kale or mixed field greens…
  • A refreshing green juice, whether homemade or a cold-pressed version in support of a local business (e.g. spinach, kale, cucumber, parsley, lemon and ginger, with some pineapple or red apple for a touch of sweetness)
  • A hearty, green salad

Inflammation in the body cannot thrive in an alkaline environment (a pH of higher than 7 on the pH scale). Consuming alkalizing foods each and every day supports an optimal, internal body environment.



The people you choose to interact with on a daily basis have a HUGE impact on your mindset, beliefs, attitudes and overall health and well-being. In some cases, we are unable to choose who we come into contact with, such as in a workplace.

When you DO have a choice, ensure those you are spending your time with are LIFTING YOU HIGHER! When you don’t have the choice, strategically ensure you’re minimizing the impact such individuals have on you.

EVERY thought you think affects your internal body environment; negative thoughts, particularly persistent ones, have the capability to contribute towards inflammation in the body. It’s true! It’s difficult at times to maintain positive thoughts when challenging life events occur.

Having a positive network around you and a few positive affirmations you can tell yourself can only contribute to a positive self-concept and growth mindset. EVERY THOUGHT AND WORD COUNTS! Instilling a few different self-care rituals into your day-to-day life allows for the greater sense of life balance that elevates your spirit!



That hobby or those hobbies that you constantly think about, that have been pushed to the back burner? Do them...even if it's only in small proportion at a frequency that works for you.

My favourite hobbies have always been movement-based – I just love to break a sweat in ways suitable for my personal health circumstances, and YIN YOGA is where it’s at for me!

To view my past blog post about the tremendous benefits of warm yin yoga, click HERE.

If not a warm yin yoga, you can find me on a brisk trail hike! Hiking is also a long-time love of mine!



Nothing beats a home-cooked meal, especially when you are the one who cooked it! While I LOVE a fantastic restaurant that sources local, sustainably-grown food, I’ll take a beautiful home-cooked meal over any restaurant, any day.

To have complete involvement over the ingredient selection, preparation method and portion size is ideal, as well as the yummy leftovers that remain for the next day. Even if the meal is simple in nature (there’s no need for it to be a complex recipe), the reward of making the meal yourself and sitting down to enjoy it in the comfort of your own home is PRICELESS! And, it keeps more money in your pocket. ;)



In this day in age, this type of time can be pretty difficult to find, let alone set aside. For me, this is my time prior to bedtime, whether I’m just thinking, reading or listening to a meditation. This type of time, even if it is just 10-30 minutes long, makes space in the mind and quiets my thoughts.

By engaging in a short meditation just prior to sleeping, I find my ability to fall into a sound sleep in a reasonable amount of time is enhanced. At this moment in time, I’m really enjoying the Headspace app for nightly meditations! InsightTimer and Calm are also fantastic options!



If you’re not cracking a smile and giggling EVERY day, let alone a few times per day, we need to get some laughter into you! Life is too short to be taken too seriously, day in and day out. While life has its serious moments, all other moments are open for laughter!

Laughter stimulates serotonin production in the body - our Happy Hormone. It also stimulates the release of endorphins, which heighten our mood, such as what you experience following exercise. Laughter also supports our Immune System, which we can all benefit from, especially at this time of year!


There you have it! 10 non-negotiable lifestyle practices/rituals I can’t be without! Which of these resonate with YOU, the most!

Happy New Year ahead, my online community!

Wishing you much health and happiness in 2023 and beyond!



[i] Epsom Salt Council: All-Natural Home Remedy. What is Epsom Salt? Retrieved December 28, 2017 from http://www.epsomsaltcouncil.org/

[ii] Haas, Elson, M. Staying Healthy with Nutrition: The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutritional Medicine. New York, NY: Random House Inc.

[iii] Salt Works Inc. Epsom Salt Uses and Benefits. Retrieved December 28, 2017 from https://www.seasalt.com/epsom-salt-uses-and-benefits

[iv] Haas, Elson, M. Staying Healthy with Nutrition: The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutritional Medicine. New York, NY: Random House Inc.

[v] Haas, Elson, M. Staying Healthy with Nutrition: The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutritional Medicine. New York, NY: Random House Inc.

[vi] Haas, Elson, M. Staying Healthy with Nutrition: The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutritional Medicine. New York, NY: Random House Inc.

[vii] Haas, Elson, M. Staying Healthy with Nutrition: The Complete Guide to Diet and Nutritional Medicine. New York, NY: Random House Inc.

Know Your Practitioner

Jess Headshot 2021 - Under 2MB
I'm Jessica Pecush...

Culinary Nutrition Expert, Certified Holistic Nutritional Consultant™ & AIP Certified Coach®

Learn More


Subscribe To My Mailing List! Receive My Resource 'Critical First Steps for Gut Pain Relief'!


© 2024 Jessica Pecush Nutrition | All Rights Reserved.

Leave a Comment