Parenting: 5 Indian herbs that build Immunity

Beautiful Tasty Appetizing Spices for Healthy Cooking

Are you worried about your child getting sick over and over again, and you wonder how you can help build their immunity?

They say “prevention is better than cure” and so it is essential to go that extra mile to ensure that your child’s immune system is healthy, the natural way. Including herbs is an easy way to increase the immune-boosting properties of the food while adding variety and flavor to it.

There are quite a few herbs and spices for spicing up your child’s meal and their immunity.

  1. Turmeric: This wonder spice is a potent immunity-boosting food that is widely used in India for both cooking and medicinal purposes. The best part is that it can be easily included in your diet to equip your child’s body to fight maladies. The best way to include turmeric in your child’s diet is by shaking up a ‘Turmeric Latte’ – the golden milk, which is an age-old recipe to treat cough.
  2. Aamla – Indian Gooseberry: Aamla or the Indian gooseberry is the richest source of Vitamin C. It boosts the body’s resistance power with its unique rejuvenating and revitalizing properties. Children may not prefer eating raw Aamla. No need to fret, as you can let them feast on aamla chutneys, jams or candies and aamla juice.
  3. Tulsi – Holy Basil: Tulsi leaves, also known as the holy basil, help combat cold and flu symptoms and boost your child’s digestive health. It also works as a great natural appetizer and helps to build respiratory resistance. It can be consumed in the form of juice by adding a few drops of honey along with it. If you don’t find fresh tulsi leaves, you can buy powdered tulsi.
  4. Fenugreek: Fenugreek has a unique effect on body. This warming bitter herb is a natural tonic and aids in digestion, bloating or constipation in both adults and children. Fenugreek is available as leaves, seeds and powdered. The seeds can be included in kids diet after they are a year and half old.
  5. Neem or Indian Lilac: This cure-all herb protects the body from exposure and susceptibility with its anti-bacterial properties. It also helps to purify blood and is a great detoxifier. With regular use it rejuvenates and nourishes your child’s skin as well. You can use whole neem leaves or its powdered form.

Adding natural herbs to your child’s diet is a great way to ensure that they get nutrient-rich food along with its immune-boosting properties. So, go ahead and give it a shot. Let your children be “fighting-fit” to defend against viruses and bacteria.

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Movember – The Mustache and Beard Growing Month


It is November and the mighty holiday season is here! It is also time for men across the world to unite, for it’s Movember – the annual no-shave campaign. Flaunt your mustache and beard in style for a good cause. Let loose and go wild with creative beard styles this season, after all, men can also be fashion frenzy, isn’t it?

No-Shave November – The Concept Behind It

Before you find yourself asking “what is no-shave November for” and decide whether to shave or not shave, get your facts right.

The ultimate aim of the Movember campaign is to generate awareness by embracing your hair, which many cancer patients tend to lose. Donate the money you usually spend on grooming for a month towards cancer prevention programs and aid those fighting the battle. Let’s grow our hair to show we care!

Benefits of No-Shave Campaign

  1. Support Cancer Awareness – You are not just letting your facial hair to sprout, but also helping to spread the message about cancer awareness. According to statistics, one in 7 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer. So, it’s time we do something about it and rally together by making use of this wonderful opportunity.
  2. Donate Money for Cancer Research – It’s not just an excuse to not shave and be lazy. The right way of involving yourself in this no-shave campaign is to donate the money that you spend on razors and other shaving accessories to cancer research organizations. 3. Health Benefits – By aiding this cause, you are also gaining the multitude health benefits of growing a beard and mustache. It keeps away the toxins and bacteria from getting into your skin. When it starts getting cold with the onset of winter, all that facial hair will act as an effective shield. It is just the perfect time for stop shaving.

So, what are you waiting for? Let it grow and show your support!

Let us know if you support a Movember cause too 🙂




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4 Exclusive Saree Draping Styles

Saree, a traditional outfit worn by almost every woman in India now has become a show stopper at International fashion shows. Global exposure to sarees has helped India generate awareness about the Indian culture. The trend of showcasing sarees at international levels was started by Indian designers like Gaurang Shah and SabyaSachi,  renowned Indian designers who specialize in designing ethnic wear.

Selling old wine in a new bottle is an age-old marketing mantra. A similar strategy was used to present sarees to the diaspora audience. During the last decade, fashionable blouse cuts, fresh color combinations, subtle, intricate yet trendy patterns have swept the NRIs and other westerners off their floors.

 The origin of the humble saree is traced back to the Indus Valley Civilization (2800 – 1800 BC). In its sinuous folds saree is many things, it is elegant, dignified, regal, fashionable and feminine.

All of the ancient Indian sculptures and paintings depict women in sarees worn in different ways. But, none of them are anything close to the styles we see today. The breadth and depth of a modern saree is so vast that is really hard to fold its nuances in to words.

Saree without Pleats: If you want to look chic and ethnic at the same time, this is the one for you! What is amazing is you don’t have to buy a new saree, you drape your existing saree in this way. This style would be ideal for parties or weddings!

Different Colored Pleats: Traditionally the pallu of the saree was different from the rest of the saree. But the latest trend is that each pleat is in a different color! Most of the 2017 collections will have these styles in their portfolio.

Cocktail Style: These sarees come pre stitched and they can be paired with net tops, embellished blouses, and crop tops. A cocktail saree would be a great twist to the traditional saree tale. It gives a saree – gown vibe and makes you stand out.

Belted Style: Waist belts have been integral part of sarees in India. Traditionally, gold and silver belts with intricate designs are worn during weddings. But the recent trend of saree belts are different from the antique ones. These are chic and simplistic at the same time. Transform the usual saree look into an edgy one with a fashionable belt. Drape your saree the way you do and wear a belt for a bold and classy look.

So what’s your style for the next desi party?

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5 Ways to Prevent Dementia

Almost 50 million people in the world are living with dementia. That’s a terrifying statistic. Dementia affects everybody including the patients, their families and friends. It has a direct impact on how we all live our lives. In the San Francisco area alone, there are estimated to be 15,500 people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. This is estimated to rise to 54,250 by the year 2050. Making small changes to our lifestyle can really make a difference and help to prevent dementia in the future. We need to help ourselves and help others around us.

Eat Healthily

The traditional Indian diet has been proven to help cut the risk of dementia. Indian food is often vegetarian and low fat, containing the essential nutrients to keep a healthy brain and a healthy body. Fresh fruits, grains, legumes and vegetables all help to cut the risk of developing demenita in later years. Following the Indian diet may help to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s by 50%.

Keep involved and keep active

Social isolation has a massive impact on the likelihood of developing dementia. Keeping the mind and body active is so important. Learning new skills aren’t just for children, education is for adults and children alike. Your local community center has so much going on, from dance and art classes, to creative writing and coding. Using the mind and expanding our knowledge helps to prevent the symptoms of dementia.

Be sociable

They say that “no man is an island” and this couldn’t be more important in the fight against dementia. Being sociable with family and friends is a wonderful stimulus that helps protect the mind. We need to be able to have conversations, share the happy times and our troubles and woes. Arranging activities together is a good start, but even a simple phone call will help. Stimulating activities help protect against dementia and it is so important to interact with the people around us.

Exercise the brain

It is so important as we get older to continue to challenge the mind in the same way that we did learning as children. Puzzles and games are a great way to do this. Doing the daily crossword or Su Doku puzzle is a great place to start, as are jigsaws and card games. You can access puzzles in newspapers and books, as well as online, making them easily accessible. Even better, play with other people; join a bridge group or Scrabble club, or get reading and join a book club.

Enjoy yourself

Everyone needs a sense of reason and purpose in their lives. Work with the community around you to keep active and embrace the opportunities that life gives you. Keeping sociable as you get older brings happiness and joy, and ultimately keeps you healthier than if you remain isolated. Taking part in the activities that are going on around you will help to keep you motivated and give you a wonderful quality of life.

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ICC Enrichment Program for Adults and Kids

In today’s competitive, dynamic and multifaceted world, extracurricular activities and classes are becoming crucial aspects for all-round development of children and adults. The growing importance for versatility even in mainstream, conventional careers – has made it inevitable to take classes that help you widen your horizon and explore interests outside of the conventional fields of study.

India Community Center’s new Enrichment Program – consists of myriad options of classes to develop creative, imaginative and out-of-the-box style of thinking. 

ICC Enrichment Classes such as Coding with Python, Chess, Lego Robotics help in acquiring problem-solving skills, raises the I.Q of children by exercising both sides of their brains and develops logical thinking.

Speech writing, Public Speaking & Debate and Youth Theater Program help in improving communication skills – which make children more confident, become tolerant of other’s thoughts and get rid off stage fear.

Hindi classes connect Indian-American kids to their roots and give an insight Indian culture through poems and stories. Kathak dance classes offers a great opportunity to learn Indian heritage and maintain an active lifestyle. Art and Craft classes provide an outlet to be creative and improve motor coordination.


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Why Financial Education Must Start Early?

financialliteracyFood, Shelter and Clothing are considered basic human needs over thousands of years of human existence. Over time we have evolved into needing education and healthcare also as two additional basic human needs.

Ability to buy food, shelter and clothing as well as to pay for healthcare and education needs is essential for our survival. If we don’t have enough money to do so, our well being suffers.

Unfortunately, most Americans lack proper education and training to manage the basic financial needs and lack the knowledge needed to provide lifelong wellbeing for themselves and their families.

Here are quotes from Time Magazines on the extent of the problem. “A number of surveys illustrate the extent of the problem, showing that a substantial proportion of American population fail the basic financial literacy tests. In a study conducted by fellows of the TIAA-CREF Institute, Americans over 50 were asked three questions. To answer them correctly, they needed to understand interest rates, the effects of inflation, and the concept of risk diversification. Only one-third of the respondents were able to correctly answer all three questions.”

“The problem is likely to become worse as Generations X and Y head into middle age: A recent survey from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) found that young Americans were less likely to be financially capable than older Americans. However, that’s hardly surprising. Even though financial decision-making is more complex today than ever before, 26 states have no financial literacy requirements at all in their K-12 education systems. Only four states mandate that students take a personal finance class in high school.” “Minorities, along with women, have some of the lowest financial literacy rates in the nation”. “People who have a lower degree of financial literacy tend to borrow more, accumulate less wealth, and pay more in fees for financial products. They are less likely to invest, more likely to have trouble with debt, and less likely to know the terms of their mortgages and other loans.”

Financial education must start early. Like reading and math, financial education must become part of the core curriculum in our schools. Likewise, parents should engage in regular, constructive conversations about money matters to give kids a solid foundation for financial well being. Teaching our kids to be financially savvy is a gift – one that will keep on giving throughout the course of their lives. Help your children develop positive financial habits and teaching them early!

Author: Bala Joshi

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Dream, Explore, Discover Yellow Stone National Park with GlobeRouter!


  1. What is the best time to Visit?              The best season to visit is the spring and the summer, as you get the best views comparatively to winters. Best months are April – May & July – September.
  1. What are the best places to see?          You must see the Old Faithful Geyser, Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone Lake, Grand Canyon of Yellowstone and more…
  1. Where can you stay?                                                                                                             There are various options for stay most popular are the cabins & the camp grounds which has to be booked way in advance due to its popularity and the other option is the hotels.
  1. What can you wear?                                                                                                        Pack for multiple layers even in summers because temperatures drop at nights. Carry    comfortable shoes as you have to walk a lot to see the best of the park.

Affordable travel deals to Yellowstone National Park ➡

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Why You Should Keep Your Elders’ Air Clean!

is-there-a-connection-between-dementia-and-dirty-airCaring for the elderly is important, as you’ll be making sure that they are comfortable in old age and can pass on their stories and wisdom to the next generation.

Just one way of doing this is by making sure the elders in your community are able to breath clean air. Scientists believe there may be a link between high levels of magnetite in the air and the elevated levels found in the brains of those who are suffering from dementia. To clean the air in the homes of older people, make sure that you bring them a portable air purifier, and put it by their bed. Upgrading the filters in their HVAC to be a higher quality helps to reduce particles in the air, too.

Take a look at this guide to find out how polluted air could be related to dementia, and help keep your elders healthy.

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Treat the Flu Naturally – Try These Ayurvedic Remedies

screw-the-flu-3-belly-blog-talia-zenleaSore throat, cough & cold although considered to be minor ailments can take a toll on your body. Whether you are at work, home, shopping complexes or recreational spots – during the flu season, it is hard to steer clear of the flu virus.  

According to Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, “Fewer than half in the USA get flu shots” Despite vaccines being available more widely than ever – including                        supermarkets, drugstores and workplaces.

A holistic approach to fight flu could be Ayurvedic home made potions. Ayurveda, which means “Knowledge of life” has a history of 5000 years. These home remedies are most effective when used at the initial signs of flu (Scratchy throat, body aches)

ICC_Milpitas_AyurvedaGinger Tea: An old Indian proverb states that “Everything good is found in ginger” which is why Ayurveda recommends ginger as the universal medicine. Both India and China produce the world’s largest amount of Ginger – as it grows best in warm and damp areas. Ginger helps sweat out toxins, which is helpful when you have a cold or flu.

ICC_MilpitasLemon concoction: Lemon is a perfect antidote for cold. “A lemon a day, keeps the cold away” – Mix the juice of two lemons in 2½ cups of boiling water sweetened with honey. Take this at bed time. It is a very effective remedy for bad cold.

turmeric-milk-3Turmeric Milk:
Popularly known as “Turmeric latte” in the US, turmeric milk comes with multitude benefits. Turmeric has strong anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, making it a promising complementary therapy for cancer-prevention.


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Explore New Ways to Teach Your Kids About Diwali!

diwali_diyaIndian culture is like a box of assorted chocolates. It is built with intricate layers of values, wisdom and tradition. And just like you relish chocolates in their wholeness, Indian culture is also incomplete without savoring every aspect of it.

The most awaited time of the year is around the corner! We are very close to one of the biggest Indian festivals “Diwali”, popularly known as “Festival of lights”. The excitement is soaring high – preparations have started in full swing in the Indo-American community.

Diwali party planning is on all our minds, menu planning, sweet preparations, festive shopping for diyas, lights, clothes has also begun. Amidst of all of this, what we tend to forget is understanding the philosophy behind celebrating Diwali – Sometimes even if we know, we find it hard to explain to our kids, why diwali is an imperative aspect of Indian culture.

Diwali, the festival gets its name from the row (avali) of clay lamps (deepa) that Indians light outside their homes to symbolize the inner light that protects us from spiritual darkness.

While Halloween, known as fire festival, also celebrated by lighting lamps is simplified with  an easy “Trick or Treat” tradition. The Di-wali-cious Kaju Katlis, laddoos, gujiyas are heavenly to eat, but understanding the significance behind making and distributing these sweets – is a bit tricky for kids to comprehend!

Manasi Dharane, ICC Preschool/Afterschool Director has come up with some fun ways to teach kids the significance of Diwali, which will widen their horizon and help them learn the importance to celebrating Diwali

93112Teach Math with diyas
: Lighting lamps is an integral aspect of celebrating Diwali. It is a symbol of brightness and positivism. Including diyas, in learning math, will get them accustomed to the objects that are related to the festival. Kids will not feel alien to the concept of the festival.



unnamedUsing Apps for story narration: There are several apps tailor-made for kids learn the importance of celebrating festivals. “Diwali Festival Kids Activity” is one such app that helps kids can play virtual fireworks show, play memory matching game, have fun coloring diwali festival related pictures. Kids get to learn about diwali with an animated story taught by our animated character Hasini. To make this useful to all language speaking Indians, English language is used in all audio clip. “Diwali Stories” is another app.

37caffe484bbf3dcc79d2b5d3dcf7132Rangoli art activity: Kids can be involved in making rangoli designs using sand. This will enhance the creative side of their personalities. The traditional motifs used is making rangolis, have history, it is important for kids to know about their origin. Art has no boundaries, this is a great way to help kids learn about the importance of the festival.


diwali-greeting-card-ideas-2016Diwali greeting cards: Help your kids make personalized diwali greeting cards for close friends and family, with hand-written festive wishes. By writing wishes, kids will realize the importance of celebrating diwali.



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