Health and Fitness

TO WHAT DO YOU OWE YOUR HIGHEST VALUE?

It’s a bizarre things these days to spend hours in the kitchen or stay at home and be a homemaker, just the other day I was casually on the phone to my Grandma and we had a long conversation about recipes, talking about everyday foods we had growing up yet today they are all seen as superfoods. There was always something sprouted, pickled, fresh (herbs/tart cherries) fermented and cultured on the table which were always full of life. I grew up eating lots of fruits and veggies and still do, this was somewhat different to some of my friends and their diets they would snack on junk food instead of celery sticks, even during birthday parties! (Something we all laugh about now). I thought to myself whilst trying to wean out any extra secret information on the telephone, about how much people a...

MOTHERHOOD AND ITS INTENSE CHALLENGES

Being a mother is a wonderful experience and the closest thing to a miracle that women get to experience. But if you are a first-time mother, there are aspects of motherhood that might scare you or at least replace some of your excitement with concern. This can be avoid if you stay informed and know what to expect from such an experience. Let’s go through some of the most common struggles that mothers go through in their first phase of motherhood. 1. Postpartum Depression and Anxiety You have spent 9 months carrying your baby inside of you and as soon as you give birth to them, you might have to face a bunch of emotional changes that will affect you to the extent of depression. However, even if many mothers face this challenge, you don’t have to be a sure victim. If you keep your mind occu...

10 WONDERS OF BELLY BUTTON BATHING

Who would have thought that bathing your belly button in oils and herbs could treat health conditions? Well, according to Desi (Folk/ Native) treatments hand-me-downs they work, and it’s a tradition that needs reviving.   “I was around four years old when I had my first Belly Button bath. I suffered from awful constipation, so my mum arranged for Bibi, an elder in the local Indian community to heal me. ‘Desi’ remedies were our first calling before doctors and conventional medicine. Bibi poured a warm concoction of blended oils and herbs in and around my navel, allowed it to soak and then meticulously massaged my belly in strokes and circles. It tickled, it felt weird but it worked! A generation later, it is rare to find such a person with this knowledge because it was not passed down...

8 HERBS EVERY WOMAN NEEDS TO KNOW

I grew up in the Midwest attached to my Grandmother’s side, making herbal medicine. I would tag along behind her singing The Itsy Bitsy Spider until she gave me the look. I knew the look meant I better keep quiet or I’m going to be standing in the infamous kitchen corner. We had our ritual walk out to the garden every evening after dinner dishes for my entire childhood. We prepared herbs almost every summer night until I was “too old” to do such things. One fantastic summer, my west coast older cousin came to visit for the summer. It was the best summer of my kid life. Then one day, her whole teenage world crashed. She was wrapped up in blankets with  pain relievers and terrible menstrual cramping. My Grandmother, being her natural herb savvy self, held my hand and we went into the garden ...

YOU CAN LOVE EXERCISE AND LOVE YOUR BODY AT THE SAME TIME

I just ran past you on the street.  I’m wearing a sports bra and shorts so you can see the soft layer of  skin  covering  my tummy jiggle with each step.  “She probably hates that,”  you think to yourself. “She’s going to keep running until that goes away.”  Wrong. I don’t mind that skin. And I’ll likely keep running until, well, until  I’m tired. Don’t beat yourself up. We’ve all had those thoughts. Many of us just don’t know any better. You’ve been taught to assume that I hate my body just as you’ve been taught to hate your own body. You’ve also  likely  been taught that movement exists to help us make these bodies that disgust us look more like they’re supposed to. Our culture associates exercise with weight loss to such an extreme degree that it’s hard to imagine the ...

A DIY GUIDE TO OPENING AND ACTIVATING THE 7 CHAKRAS

A chakra (pronounced ‘cha-kra’) is an energy centre within the auric and physical body. The term chakra, derived from Sanskrit, means spinning wheel. A wheel spins like a vortex, or a whirl wind, as each chakra is a disc or node that serves as the nonphysical highway through which energy travels. These energy centers, when even, restore harmony, which translate into a sense of well-being, health and oneness. Though we commonly talk about the seven main chakras, there are 114 chakras in the body and many more on the outside of the body. However, let us focus on just the seven to get us started. Chakras restoration is not some hippy dippy trend or movement; its roots lie deep within pre-historic Indian society. Though empirically we cannot prove that chakras reside within us, we certainly ca...

A SMOOTHIE OF SELF-LOVE

In today’s world we find ourselves bombarded with information about how we should take care of our body; exercises, diets, types of foods, work out routines, etc. The number of people getting involved in a healthier lifestyle has definitely increased, some may do it just to get the “summer bod,” others may do it because they want a healthier lifestyle and some may just get dragged along into the fitness world; everybody has their reasons and that’s okay. Social media is constantly showing us the latest workouts, meal plans, workout guides, training tips, etc., which can be very overwhelming for any person who is just starting to get on board with a healthy lifestyle.   For this reason, I think it is important to share about the most effective diet, which I have started implemen...

#SUPERWOMAN JOSIE SCHWEITZER | FOUNDER OF THANK YOGA TALKS TO HARNESS

Josie Schweitzer talks to us about finding her calling, letting go of her business and the transformative power of yoga In the early 2000s, Josie Schweitzer took her first yoga class in a basement in the beautiful city of Columbus, Ohio. She was intrigued, but scared because the practice was not approachable. A few years later, in her 20s, she was introduced to a more challenging practice – and that’s when the art of yoga stuck. “The fact that I could go and sweat and feel like I’ve been worked in a lot of ways, kept me coming back to it,” Schweitzer said, who is also a runner and an adrenaline junkie. Yet, she knew there was more to yoga than just the physical benefits. “Once I started practicing, it only took a few months for me to get really, really curious as to why I was feeling...

POISONOUS PLASTIC

We’ve all heard “microbeads are bad,” “don’t use plastic,” or “plastic is bad for the environment” but very few people really know why plastic is bad for their health. I’ve been working as a 5 Gyres Ambassador for nearly a year now and I’m still surprised by all the side effects that plastic products have on human health. Let’s start with microbeads. They’re tiny, plastic particles that feel great when used as a facial scrub and they’re so small they eventually end up just going down the drain. Once the beads are in the water they attract pollutants like flame retardants and other industrial chemicals that are directly connected to health problems such as, the terrifying “C” word – cancer. So, these – now toxic – beads are floating around our rivers, oceans and streams polluting the water ...

IT’S A FITBIT, NOT A MORAL COMPASS

I started planning this post while on a run, which is ironic in an Alanis-Morissette-doesn’t-understand-irony kind of way, because we’re going to talk about fitness. If you follow me on Instagram or know me in real life, you probably know that I like to exercise. I’m an avid biker, runner and yogi. I adore boxing classes. I teach indoor cycling. In addition, I’m known for sharing the things that make me happy, a.k.a. those activities, with the world, particularly those who are close to me. However, I (try my best to) do so with extreme caution and intention… because while exercise and fitness have the power to bring joy and growth to my life, it can also create sadness or inflict pain on others. The way we talk about and use exercise can be extremely harmful, whether we’r...

MY FIRST TIME | EMBRACING THE AWKWARDNESS

“Please remove all your clothes and put this robe on. You can just set the sheet on your lap. Dr. Lee will be right with you.” I nod my head and wait for the door to close before I begin to slide my dress off. I hope everything is normal; good thing I’m not on my period; is it weird that I shaved or does that make it seem like I care too much. I try to shake away all the thoughts racing through my mind and my eyes skim across a poster about getting tested for STDs. Below the poster are brochures and pamphlets about everything I didn’t know about my own body. *knock, knock* The door cracks open and then HE walks in. Many women despise going to the OB/GYN – the anxiety, the awkwardness, the vulnerability…the cold hands. I was nervous already, but upon learning that my doctor was ...

THE INTERNAL BAPTISM

Water is essential to life but is often taken  for granted. Some parts of the world struggle with drought, water contamination and shortage. We, on the other hand, have it at our disposal at the turn of a tap. It’s a blessing that we don’t always count. We use profuse amounts of water in dish washers, washing machines, in cooking, washing the car and the list goes on. But do we drink enough to cleanse our inner selves?  A survey by the Royal National Institution shows that 89% of Britons are not drinking enough water. This figure speaks for most of the western world. So what is enough water? National guidelines state that eight small cups is what we need to sustain optimum health but ideally, we should be drinking up to two to three litres a day for better health. We are simply not drinkin...

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