Posts Tagged ‘yoga’

A Makeover for Your Thyroid

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Our thyroid, aka the butterfly gland, is a very important gland located in our neck that releases hormones to regulate weight, metabolism, energy, hair growth, temperature, and much more. Over 25 million Americans have thyroid problems, and most don’t even know it! It’s super important to keep this gland (and the rest of our bodies) nourished, healthy, and active!

Symptoms of an overactive (hyperthyroidism) or underactive (hypothyroidism) thyroid include weight gain, inability to lose weight, fatigue after a full night of rest, lack of appetite, brain fog, poor concentration and memory, muscle and joint pain, cold hands and feet, mood swings, anxiety, depression, a puffy face, brittle hair that doesn’t grow and/or falls out easily, brittle nails, and tons more! These do not sound fun!!

What causes the thyroid to become unhealthy? Lack of iodine, lack of exercise, poor circulation (couch potatoes – GET UP!), processed foods, hormonal imbalances, some prescriptions, birth control, not enough fruits and veggies, and pretty much consuming anything that isn’t clean and whole.

Here are 5 things that’ll drastically improve your thyroid health, which overall improves your health and yes, you will see and feel a difference!

  1. Get some iodine in your diet. Your thyroid needs iodine to function optimally, so take supplements like spirulina (superfood!) and replace table salt with iodized sea salt.
  2. Limit caffeine intake. Your adrenals and thyroids work together so if one isn’t functioning properly, neither will the other.  Caffeine is terrible for your adrenals, making them release the stress hormone cortisol, which causes your body to store fat. Giving up caffeine is very hard, so try to limit yourself to one cup a day, and then slowly decrease that until you can nix it. A great coffee substitute that will save your life is Yerba Mate, a tea-like drink that tastes like a cross between coffee and tea and gives you tons of energy.
  3. Yoga! Certain poses are amazing for your thyroid, such as the rabbit pose, plow pose, one-legged forward bend, fish pose, and cat/cow pose. If you’re not sure what these are, they’re just a Google search away! Also, as you do these poses, remember to breathe in and out through your nose, take your time, and imagine those poses doing their magic on your thyoid…and body!
  4. AVOID SOY LIKE THE PLAGUE!
  5. Avoid cruciferous veggies like broccoli, Brussels sprouts and cauliflower. Research is still new, but studies are finding thyroid disruptions after consumption of these.

Even if your thyroid is healthy, you can still do these every day to improve your overall health. Namaste :)

 

 

 

Leaky Gut Sydrome: A Common Condition that Causes Many Ailments

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What is Leaky Gut? Leaky gut syndrome is a condition we get when we consume unhealthy foods, drinks, etc. that after time, eventually permeate through the cells of our intestines and leaks into our blood stream. The cells in our intestines form very tight junctions with each other, and with time, these junctions can get separated, allowing things to slip through. Your body sees these particles as foreign invaders and begins to attack them, thereby causing food allergies and inflammation.  These invaders are free to roam our blood streams and can go to our joints, muscles, bones, and in severe cases can pass our blood-brain barrier. Ahhh!! That is creepy to think about!!! So, after developing leaky gut, when the very foods we consumed that caused this “leakage” are consumed again, we develop an allergy and other unpleasant symptoms towards them.

What causes it? Excessive alcohol consumption, sugar, GMO’s, processed foods, Candida Albicans (yeast), stress, medications, not enough physical activity, lack of fiber in diet, and pretty much anything that’s unnatural.

What I find crazy about this is that it is the underlying factor behind so many conditions and so many people have this, but don’t know it and are diagnosed with allergies, weight gain that is VERY hard to lose, chronic fatigue, eczema, indigestion, IBS, headaches, joint pain, etc. So, to find out if you have it, observe your diet and lifestyle and pay close attention to how your body reacts after you consume something. If you instantly feel fatigued, achy, depressed, get rashes, or anything that’s not ideal, you may have leaky gut.

What to do?

  • Eat clean foods like fresh fruits and vegetables. Leafy greens every day are a must!!
  • Exercise every day, even if it’s just for 10 minutes in your living room. Gotta keep things moving and circulating!
  • Drink fresh juices and lots of lemon water
  • TAKE PRO-BIOTICS. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. These add good bacteria to your digestive tract and help fight off the bad guys
  • Stretch abdomens daily. Yoga is great for this
  • Spend 10 minutes a day taking deep breathes of fresh air

With correct diet, we can avoid so many common daily ailments and live better, healthier, happier, and more stress-free lives!!

Yoga Poses for Students and Office Workers

Whether you’re sitting in an office all day, sitting in class all day, or studying all night, sitting for long periods of time can make one very restless. Sitting for long periods of time can also slow down circulation, zap your energy, reduce the amount of oxygen delivered to your brain, slow metabolism, as well as compressing intestines and your spine. None of these sound very pretty, do they?! It’s very important to stand up every half 30-40 minutes, walk around, and stretch your body to keep it alive! This is where yoga comes to the rescue. Yoga helps release tension and anxiety, keeps energy, blood and oxygen circulating, opens energy channels, balances your body, and calms your nerves. Here are some highly recommended yoga poses that you can do throughout the day that not only help correct some of these issues, but also make you feel brand new.

Downward Dog

Perks: strengthens wrist, shoulder, and elbow joints; eases carpel tunnel syndrome, eases tension out of lower back and shoulders, stretches and tones hamstrings; delivers lots of oxygen and blood to your brain.

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Triangle Pose

Perks: strengthens legs and  knee joints; alleviates back and neck pain; opens your heart; stretches arms, neck, hips, legs, abdominal region, relieves stress; and speeds up digestion.

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Pigeon pose

Perks: strengthens glutes and quads; releases tension from hips, lower back and legs; stretches abdomen; alleviates sciatic pain; and feel really amazing

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Plow Pose

Perks: Improves circulation, stretches and strengthens neck and spine; massages and stimulates thyroid and parathyroid; calms brain and nervous system; loosens up toxins that sit on the floor of kidneys, liver, lungs, etc.; wakes you up.

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These 4 poses will make you feel amazing, revitalized, and less stressed out. Try them today!

Improve your health by spending time upside down everyday

monkeyGoing upside down every day is a natural way to instantly increase your energy and circulation. This increases flow of oxygen and blood (which carries a lot of vitamins and minerals!) to your brain and is vital for ones well-being. Most Americans, especially those with sedentary lifestyles, do not get enough fresh, oxygenated blood flow to their brains. This is NO BUENO! Whether you hang off the side of your couch, do some yoga moves (downward dog is amazing!) do flips and cartwheels, hang off monkey  bars, or do headstands and handstands, spending 10 minutes a day with your body upside down can change your health and your life! Here’s what it can do:

  • Instantly improves mental and physical energy
  • Reverses your blood flow and can help dislodge toxins that get stuck in tissues, cells, joints, the floor of your feet, etc.
  • Releases toxins that can pile up at the bottom of your organs and stimulate a detox
  • Floods your brain with vitamins
  • Gives you a nice rosy glow to your face and super kissable cheeks
  • Speeds up hair growth
  • Dramatically improves circulation throughout your entire body
  • Brings more fresh oxygen to your brain, heart, and pretty much everything in your body
  • Reduces stress and depression
  • Stimulates and can help open chakras
  • Its fun! Look at how much joy kids experience when they hang upside down on monkey bars. Theres something exhilarating about seeing the world upside down.

Yogis embrace the benefits of being upside down with lots of beneficial poses that dramatically lift your mood, consciousness, and health. If yoga isn’t your kinda thing, go monkey around and do whatever you prefer to hang upside down for 10 minutes a day and transform your health.

2 POWERFUL Lessons from my Yoga Class in Bali

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I spent the last month traveling Southeast Asia, and one of many experiences that I will never forget is the yoga class I took in Ubud, Bali. First, I must say that Ubud is the most incredible place I have ever been to. Friendly and welcoming people, lots of monkeys, delicious food, warm weather, and easygoing lifestyles. Also, I visited Ketut, the Medicine Man from Eat, Pray, Love and got a reading done. SO SO AWESOME!  Okay, back to yoga…..
 
I took a yin yoga class at the Yoga Barn. Yin yoga is a very unique style of yoga, in that it involves holding a stretch for 3-5 minutes at a time. At first it feels painful, but then you get past the discomfort and can move deeper into the pose. The purpose of yin yoga is to unblock tensions, toxins, fears, guilt, and other toxic things that get stored in our deep fascia. Fascia is the deepest tissue in our body and has a weblike structure that exists throughout our entire bodies, and pretty much holds everything into place. The healthier and less toxic our fascia, the better we feel and move, and ultimately the better our health. So, here are some cool lessons I learned…..
 
Lay on something every day that hurts you. Ok this sounds crazy but it feels amazing! We layed stomach down on yoga blocks, skinny side-up, with the block resting under our belly button area of our abdomen. Let your legs, shoulders and head lie limp on the ground. At first its super awkward and painful, but the pain goes away. No pain, NO GAIN! The purpose of this is to help loosen up toxins, pathogens, and negative feelings and memories that are stuck in our guts. Most diseases, according to Chinese medicine, lie in our guts. So if you’re having digestive problems, are bloated, tired, etc., lay on something that hurts you for 3-5 minutes!
 
Braid your toes. Sit with legs in butterfly position, and stagger your toes starting with your right big toe on top. From the top down should be right toe, left toe, right toe, left toe, all the way to your baby toes until they’re all stacked. Use your hands to hold them together as your bend forward. Hold for a minute, release, and braid your toes again starting with your left big toe on top. Hold for a minute, release, and observe the spaces between your toes. Chinese medicine says that when our physical body dies, we die from our feet up, and that when we have clear, tension-free feet, we have a clear healthy mind.  
 
I highly recommend doing these every day for a clearer body and mind! Only takes 8 minutes and the feeling you have after is totally worth it!