21 Reasons People Fail Creating Health

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21 Reasons People Fail Creating Health

The following is a list that I have created over the years. What makes people succeed and what is it that stops people from living their dreams. Please realize my filter is that I love a new year and a fresh start. Many people shrug it off or roll their eyes and my question to them is,  are you seeing constant improvements in your life? If not, you may be a frustrated perfectionist when it comes to setting goals.

Please do not forget the basics when jumping into your new determined goals for 2018.


Not enough water

Not enough sleep

Not chewing your food

Eating foods that cause inflammtion

Eating foods late at night

Drinking soda

Negative self talk

Setting up unrealistic expectations

Being a perfectionist

Not enough magnesium in your system

Following someone else’s protocol exactly. Your Body Your Way

Having unhealthy foods in the house

Not enough support

Doing the same thing you have always done

Not taking  time to create your life  on paper

All or nothing. One mistake and you throw it all out the window

Not clearing your soul of what has not worked in the past

Not celebrating enough

Attempting this entire list

Telling yourself you will start when such and such is over. Start NOW!

Not enough enzymes

Not enough minerals

For those of you that have that perfect gene running through your soul you will attempt perfection with this entire list.  Just pick one or two things to add and see how being an under achiever can change your life.

For those of you that play the victim you will think to yourself there are way too many things and I can never get all of that right so I am giving up.

Do not forget the core basics:

Magnesium to jumpstart your cells,

Acerola to course correct your zinc/copper

Dessicated Liver to boost your b12 and strengthen your oxygen levels making everything work better

Brain On to feed you a natural balance of nutrients plus load your body with minerals.


Morgan’s Healthy Hot Chocolate Recipe

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Morgan’s Healthy Hot Chocolate Recipe


1 13.5 once can of coconut milk ( would a blog post on coconut milk be helpful?)

27 ounces of water

We just use the coconut can and put two cans of water for every can of coconut milk used. When we make this we always mega batch it for a crowd.

1 bar of quality dark chocolate (we used Lindt 80% cocoa)

sweetener of choice

Morgan will use turbinado sugar, coconut sugar, stevia or even a blend of all three. This recipe is very flexible when it comes to sweeteners. 1/2 of a cup (if using regular sugar) is usually a good starting point and then you can sweeten to taste.

1/8th – 1/4th  teaspoon of Ceylon Cinnamon

juice of one orange

a tiny pinch of Celtic Sea Salt

Put everything in a pan over low heat and stir until all of the chocolate is melted. It can scorch quickly so don’t leave it alone for too long.

My Personal List of Fermented Foods

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My Personal List of Probiotic Foods

My goal was to start every meal with some sort of probiotic food and to get in good prebiotics daily.

Many of you have requested what I did to start rebuilding my gut. Please realize there are many foods that you can use. This is not an exact plan for you. It was what was easy for me with foods that I enjoyed eating. Keeping it easy and simple was my goal.

  1. kefir (second ferment) daily when I am in Utah I have to make it. When I am in California it is easy.
  2. kimchi
  3. saurkraut 
  4. lemon ginger water daily
  5. crio beans
  6. spicy carrots 

Building Gut Health – 3 Easy Layers

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Building Gut Health – 3 Easy Layers

Everything for your health comes down to your gut. EVERYTHING……

After taking probiotics for years you would think that my but health would be through the roof. After extensive gut biome testing I found out it was really low. Basically non-existent. So time to try something else. After learning that synthetic probiotics actually turn on your good gut flora and overtake it. The decision actually because quite easy, as I do not like wasting money.

1. Build Hydrochloric Acid

Simple Pieces of Grandma Wisdom:

  • chew your food 35 times (digestion starts in your mouth)
  • slow down while you eat (give your body time to digest)
  • don’t gulp your food down (we are coming back to that chew your food layer again)
  • sit at the table with the family ( sitting actually signals digestive enzymes to start)
  • take a moment to smell your food (the first moment of smelling your food signals your body to digest and uptake nutrients)
  • drink as little water as possible with your meals
  • adding lemon ginger water throughout the day
  • walk away from shame cortisol 
  • walk away from rage cortisol
  • noodle therapy (more to come on this amazing tool)


Add Prebiotic Foods:

  •  Chicory Root
  •  Dandelion Greens
  • Jerusalem Artichoke
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  •  Leeks
  • Asparagus
  • Bananas
  • Barley
  • Oats
  •  Apples
  • Konjac Root
  • Cocoa
  •  Burdock Root
  • Flaxseeds
  • Yacon Root
  • Jicama Root
  • Wheat Bran
  • Seaweed

Add Probiotic Foods:

  1. yogurt
  2. kefir (2nd ferment is best)
  3. saurkraut
  4. tempeh
  5. kimchi
  6. miso
  7. pickles
  8. fresh peas
  9. green olives
  10. beet kvass

The above list is not in order of importance. I will be posting soon the ones that I ate with some recipes.

The Health Benefits of D-Mannose

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The Health Benefits of D-Mannose

What is D-Mannose? It is a glycol nutrient. The following is a list of what glycol nutrients assist with.

  • Aids communication between invading pathogens and human host cells, boosting immune responses.
  • Help in many aspects of immune system function, including modulating activation or inactivating natural killer cells, non-specific defences, macrophage activation, and cell tissue migration.
  • Assist in signals to direct immune cells where to leave the blood stream.
  • Aid, assist, or help in the maintenance or improvement of your general well-being.
  • Help maintain healthy digestive function.

That last one is where I want to focus. The D-Mannose aids in digestion by cleaning up lectins. When you clean up lectins the good bacteria can grow. Therefore the D-mannose acts as a pre-biotic for your good gut flora to develop. It then further stimulates the growth in your gut biome.

List of foods that are good pre-biotics:

  • onions
  • garlic
  • jicama
  • leeks
  • jerusalem artichoke
  • under ripe banana




Natural Standards web site: “D-mannose for UTIs.”

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database web site: “D-Mannose.”

Rakel, D., editor, Integrative Medicine, 3rd edition, Saunders Elsevier, 2012.

Minerva Ginecol: “Evaluation of the effects of a natural dietary supplement with cranberry, Noxamicina® and D-mannose in recurrent urinary infections in perimenopausal women.”

Maturitas: “Preventing urinary tract infections after menopause without antibiotics.”

Spicy Fermented Carrots Morgan Style

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Spicy Fermented Carrots Morgan Style

These are my favorite fermented food on the planet. Do you want in on a secret though. I hate carrots. Detest them. BUT I love these. I missed out on pounds of them as my husband has been making them for years. Now he has to triple the batch because I LOVE them that much. Little ones not like the heat? Leave out the jalapeno and put them into sticks.


5-6 long carrots cut on the diagonal

one small sweet onion cut

5-6 cloves of garlic

1/4-1/2 tsp crushed red pepper

2 jalapeno peppers

1-3  Tablespoons Selina Naturally Course Ground Sea Salt

3 Tablespoons will create a 5% salt brine in a quart of water

1 Tablespoon of your favorite dried herb. Oregano is my fave….  Always use dried when doing ferments to avoid problems in the ferment itself.

filtered water

Sanitize your jars by running them through the dishwasher

Add everything to your jar but the salt and the water.

Mix your water and salt to combine and then pour over the carrots. Fill so that all the carrots are covered but allow an inch of headspace. sometimes I take a long handled spoon to mix it all in.

Put the lid on and leave out on the counter between 2-4 days. You will start to see some bubbling action and sometimes some clouding. No worries if the carrots are covered.

After the 2-4 days you can put them in the fridge. Be careful when opening as the bubbling can create the liquid spilling.


You can also add cauliflower to this and it is so yummy.


This is a salt ferment that slowly creates lactobacillus. If you want to jump start it you can add some whey. I just always use the salt. They are ready to put in the fridge when you take a bite and they do not taste salty.

Why the course ground salt? Simple, minerals it is all about the minerals.

If I only had one book to read on fermenting it would be Sandor Ellix Kratz






Keepin Them Crunchy:

cut them into coins not sticks

Keeping them kid friendly:

leave out the spice and onions and make them into sticks



Lemon Ginger Water

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Dirty Lemon Water

A little side note. My family does not like this drink without stevia. I like the zippyness (my new word) without. So play with it and see how you like it. I load mine with loads of ginger as the gingerol is a ROCKSTAR nutrient. Watch out for how I do my rice with ginger + garlic blog post that is coming soon. It is amazing. Did you know that this combo of ingredients helps boost metabolism. Anything you do to boost metabolism is good for adrenals and thyroid.


Dirty Lemon Water

1 gallon of good water

2 fresh lemons that you have juiced

3-5 one inch pieces of fresh ginger peeled. I like to just scrape it with the back of a spoon to clean of the outside.

a dusting of cayenne pepper

stevia 0ptional

I use my vitamix and add it half way full of my water then add my ginger and blend until smooth. Strain this to get the hairy little fibers of the ginger out. then in a container that fits in your fridge add your strained mixture and the rest of the water. Dust the top with cayenne.

My family needs some stevia added in but I like it straight. Ang noted you could add honey also. Let us know if you do if you like it that way. If I have water in my hydroflask  it is Dirty Lemon Water.


Oh my. I have to show you the juicer that Kelly got me. It is my favorite thing ever and gets so much more juice out of my citrus and is super easy to clean. SCORE and THANK YOU Kelly.

Kristen’s Granola

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Kristen’s Favorite Granola Recipe

This is one of those recipes that was copied on a scrap of paper and then tweaked numerous times. The original actually got milk spilled on it so I had to improvise. My family loves it and it is often given during the holidays as a gift with the recipe attached.

4 cups old fashioned oats (the kind you have to cook for five minutes) It gives the granola a much better texture

1 cup shredded coconut ( you can so skip this if you do not have it)

1/3 cup sesame seeds (such a power house of nutrition those sesame seeds are)

a pinch or two of good salt

1/2 cup melted coconut oil

1/2 cup honey

3 cups mixed nuts ( my family likes the extra step of pan toasting the nuts to deepen the flavor before starting the granola recipe)

2-3 cups of dried fruit (blueberries are my personal favorite with lots of almonds)

Preheat over to 300 degrees

Combine the oats, coconut, sesame seeds and salt in a large bowl.


In a sauce pan combine warm the coconut oil and honey until bubbly.

Pour the honey and coconut mixture over the oat mixture and stir to coat. Add the nuts.

Spread the mixture in shallow cookie pans.

Bake, stirring frequently for about 25 minutes or golden brown.

Remove from the oven and allow to cool and then stir in dried fruit.

Store in airtight container.

I usually triple this recipe.


Flavor Combinations:

Cranberry + Orange:  lots of flavor with orange zest, pecans, a little cinnamon, and dried cranberries. It’s a flavor combination that’s great for the fall.

Apricot + Pistachio: using all pistachios and only apricots and subbing some of the coconut for olive oil gives the granola a grown up kick.

Vanilla + Almond: This is a classic. Add some vanilla to the wet oat mixture and use only almonds for the nuts.

Cinnamon + Walnut: sprinkle the wet oat mixture with cinnamon and use walnuts for the flavor profile in the nuts.

Almond Joy: add almonds for the nuts and after it is cooled throw on a handful of dark chocolate.

The sky is the limit on what you can combine. Just take notes as sometimes the best flavor combos i have not been able to recreate after creating them.

Tell me what is your favorite granola combo?

Why I Stopped Taking Probiotics

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Why I stopped taking probiotics…


They are a short term solution with long term consequences. A short term benefit would be after drinking a diet coke you get this small burst of energy, it tastes so good and for a minute your head feels better and you can make it through the next hour without dropping.


Fast forward 24 hours. Your head hurts even worse. Your stomach is now bloated + your kidneys stop working as efficiently because the acidity levels in your body have dropped.


That Diet Coke was a short term fix that walked me away from long term health.

Making decisions that keep you healthy in ten years is called Living the Good Life Naturally.


So what does Diet Coke have to do with a probiotic supplement? I am so glad you asked. I have been taking probiotics for 20 years. Did you know that last year 64 Billion was spent in probiotics? Ever since the first studies started coming out about the role your gut plays in your health. Building my gut biome became my obsession. So I was excited when all of the new gut testing started coming out. For the amount of probiotics I had ingested over the years it was going to be amazing to see how strong my gut flora was.


Imagine my surprise when it came back that my gut flora was non existent. WHAT????? So here is what happened. Taking a synthetic probiotic does increase your gut flora for the short term but in the long term it actually turns on your own natural gut flora and attacks it. So I made a decision to drop all of my probiotic supplements. I am not into short term solutions. Fear. True Fear. I was sure that my health would crash without the very pill I had invested in to build my gut. I waited three months and filled my life with whole food based probiotics. In just under three months I built more gut flora with real food than 20 years of taking a synthetic supplement. Real food at this oint does not turn on you. It just supports building that gut biome.


So when would I ever think about taking a probiotic? Only if I  absolutely had to take an antibiotic would I ever take them. AND only for one bottles worth. Making sure rotate what type every single time.


Moral of the story is we need to stay current. As we learn more about our bodies and how they work. New gut testing is getting better and better and much more affordable giving us better insight into what is working to keep us healthy in ten years.

So you will not find me buying probiotics anymore but standing in line for that good old fashioned food.

Now  just in case you think I spent a bunch of time in my kitchen fermenting I want to set the record straight. I did not.My schedule was packed and for me the best fit was buying high quality food that was already fermented. If you do ferment that is great. Please do not think I added that much work to an already busy schedule. Call it lazy. Call it smart. I just bought it at the store and made sure I ate it every day.

Coming up next on the blog?

What gut testing I had done.

What foods I added.

Podcast: Rising Through Depression w/Supplements

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Sending love. My name is Kristen Bowen. I’m the founder of Living the Good Life Naturally. If you’re listening to this recording about rising through depression and the supplements that make a difference, it means that you or someone you love struggles with depression. Please understand if there’s a little bit of laughing or if something comes across as I’m making light of this serious situation, it’s just so you and I can get through this conversation without feeling heavier and darker and twistier inside.

I’ve struggled with depression since I was a young girl, and I have put together layers that have made a difference for me. Before we go into those supplements, I want you to understand something. I want you to understand that part of the problem is in how we deal with whether the supplement works for us or not. Number one, it’s not going to work overnight. It’s not going to work in two weeks. It’s maybe not even going to work in a month. It is with long-term, a sustained dedication that we’re going to make a difference. Here’s what can happen for many people who struggle with depression, they try a supplement, maybe for a full two weeks, and then it doesn’t work. Then, they’re even more frustrated and more discouraged because what they tried didn’t work.

They start picking up patterns, sayings, and thoughts that go like this. “I’m never going to change”. “Nothing works for me”. “I’ve done everything”. In actuality, those are a lie. You haven’t done everything. Something’s going to work. You just have to keep moving forward. That’s why it’s so crucial that you build your board of directors. There is more about building a board of directors in part one of Rising Through Depression. Your mind is your greatest supplement, and I want to teach you how to take that supplement that you’ve been given and utilize it. That is that, if you’re trying something and it hasn’t worked, instead of becoming more discouraged, instead of telling yourself nothing ever works for me, I’ve done everything, instead of buying into those lies, I want you to celebrate. Yes, you heard me right. I want you to celebrate. I want you to put on some Bon Jovi or whoever you like to listen to and celebrate like there is no tomorrow.

Why would I want you to celebrate? Very simply, you’re one step closer to finding out what did work, and you will save yourself the agony of all of those lies that take us down into darker, twistier places. You won’t have to buy into the lie that nothing is going to work for you. You won’t have to buy into the lie that you’ve tried everything, because you are moving your body and celebrating. Get those hips going. Get those hands going. Dance with someone else. Dance for a full entire song. That’s usually about how long it takes to break through that feeling of being stuck, where you think that nothing works and where you think that you’ve tried everything. Remember, here’s the truth bomb, those are lies.

So let’s talk about foundational supplements that are the foundation because you’re a human being. They build the foundation for everything. Did you realize that the WHO organization, the World Health Organization, I’ll refer to it as WHO, the last study that they did, 300 million of us, you and I or maybe someone you love, struggles with depression? That’s an 18% increase since 2010. The numbers are going up. They’re not getting better. A recent study showed that inflammation and depression go hand-in-hand. If you or someone you love struggles with depression, getting a C-reactive protein blood panel done is crucial, because that’s your inflammation marker. Now, it is interesting. If your C-reactive protein is high, another study also shows that prescription drugs won’t make that much of a difference for you, because the depression is connected to the inflammation. More and more valued, valid research is coming out that depression and inflammation go hand-in-hand.

So let’s go to the two foundational things that every single person needs to add to get on top of depression. Now, you will notice that I didn’t say that it takes your depression away, because I am spot-on consistent about these two things. I do not miss them, and I still struggle with depression. It’s still a part of my hardwiring and my DNA. I’m not saying it cures it, it takes it away, that everything is going to be easy, and that you’ll never experience a dark and twisty spot. I am saying it makes the lows not as low and not as long. That’s pretty incredible.

After you get that C-reactive protein panel done, you know your inflammation marker. The next mandatory piece of blood work is your magnesium RBC, which is for someone who deals with depression and/or anxiety. That can be taken at walkinlabs.com. It’s a $49 test. Someone with depression or anxiety has higher cortisol levels. Higher cortisol levels mean your inflammation is going up, and magnesium is mandatory in bringing the inflammation down. That high cortisol means you’re losing your magnesium through your urine. So we’ve got to get the magnesium levels up to control the levels of inflammation. Then, here’s a current-day plague that’s happening. We’re walking around stressed out and depressed with low thyroid function. Eating sugar, that depletes magnesium. Having more stress, that depletes magnesium. Then, we take these supplements that contain synthetic calcium. Excess calcium not utilized by your body increases inflammation. Magnesium is what holds that in check. We need more magnesium and less synthetic calcium, but we’re doing just the opposite, the absolute opposite.

I personally do not take any supplement that has synthetic calcium in it. It is so easy to get calcium from our foods, where we should be getting our nutrients from. It is not easy to get magnesium from your food. I get calcium from my food, and I get magnesium from soaking. Now, they can make synthetic magnesium in the lab. It won’t get you the cell saturation as fast. You can take magnesium pills, but that will decrease your body’s ability to uptake nutrients from food, and we need better nutrients from food to battle the problem of depression and anxiety, so that’s not a good fit. Soaking in magnesium chloride from the Zechstein Sea will help bring those magnesium levels up without costing you your ability to digest food and without bringing in more excess calcium. Calcium ratios should be one to one, so simple to get from foods. We get calcium from greens. We get calcium from good, clean dairy, and we get calcium from chia seeds. Very, very simple to get your calcium from foods. So I want you to go look at your supplements and determine how much excess calcium am I getting? When you have that synthetic calcium, it is increasing inflammation, we simply must bring it down.

The next mandatory layer I want to talk about are omega-3s. Now, ideally, we would have three omega-3s to one omega-6. That’s the ideal omega-3 fatty acid ratio. You can have a test done to test your omega-3-6 fatty acid profile so you can know where yours are. I’ll let you in on a little secret. I love eating out with my husband. That’s one of our favorite things to do, to go discover some fun little restaurant and have a date. When you’re eating out, you’re taking in an excess of omega-6s. Vegetable oils, corn oils, trans fats, and canola oil, those are all high in omega-6s. We need to be bringing in more foods with omega-3. When I share that with people, their first response is, “Oh, I take  fish oil capsules from a big box store.” Well, guess what? That fish oil capsule that you take, the fish oil breaks through the capsules, so the manufacturer has to make those capsules so thick, that they won’t burst, which means they are very hard for your body to digest. The fish oil now is testing very high in heavy metals. When you have high heavy metals, it aggravates the depression. So you think you’re doing something really fabulous when, in actuality, you’re really not.

So taking omega-3s in the proper form is crucial. You want to take it in liquid form. My favorite is cod liver oil. Cod liver oil is loaded with omega-3s. I want you to start thinking of your omega-3 fatty acid profile like building a bridge in your body. Omega-3s build this beautiful bridge, and your neurotransmitters walk across that bridge and communicate with each other. Your hormones walk across that bridge and communicate with each other, so brain function gets better. Sleep gets better and inflammation goes down. When omega-6 and omega-3s are in their proper balance, inflammation is dropped. Depression is aggravated by inflammation. Anxiety is aggravated by inflammation. Now, do you take a week’s worth of cod liver oil and all of a sudden your depression and anxiety are gone? Absolutely not. So we have to be realistic. We need omega-3s every day. We need magnesium every day. Building two foundational pieces can make such a difference for you in managing your depression and anxiety.

Now, here’s a little tip on the cod liver oil. We love the Carlson’s cod liver. Currently, right now, it’s the cleanest one that I can find when it comes to heavy metal toxicity. Sometimes when people take cod liver oil, they get what’s commonly referred to as fish burps, and they’ll say, “Oh, this stuff is making me sick.” No, it’s not. It’s actually shining the light that you don’t have enough hydrochloric acid to break it down. It takes a lot of hydrochloric acid to break down cod liver oil. That is another reason that you’re struggling with depression and anxiety, because you’re not creating the neurotransmitters that you need, to keep your body functional and your brain functioning at peak performance.

If you have that problem after you take cod liver oil … Remember, you never take more than a teaspoon of cod liver oil, because it’s loaded with vitamin A. Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin, and if we get too much of it, our bodies start storing it in our fat, and that’s not good. Now, for children, a half a teaspoon. You would never take cod liver oil if you were allergic to fish. If you do get what we call fish burps, that is your body saying, “Hey, I don’t have enough hydrochloric acid to break this down.” Now, we’ll do another podcast on how to deal with hydrochloric acid, but recognize that’s another layer that is aggravating the depression and anxiety. We’re all about building a strong foundation. We don’t want to chase symptoms. Chasing symptoms is exhausting. You do all of these things, and you try all of these things, and you give up, then you start your research. It’s such a waste of time and energy.

Instead of chasing symptoms, start building a strong foundation. In doing so, you’ll start noticing that your lows aren’t as low and that they don’t come as often, and that is a reason for celebration.