Sthira & Sukha: Stability & Ease

August 31, 2018 | Yoga Philosophy

In the Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, sutra 2.46 is “sthira-sukham asanam”. This sutra is commonly understood as “yoga postures should be stable, and the body be at ease.” This understanding focuses the practice of yoga postures and movements.  Aiming for steadiness and ease when practicing yoga movement is a valuable concept, but there is a deeper meaning.Patanjali used the sutras to describe a path toward developing samadhi, cultivating mental focus and clarity. In this perspective, this sutra would referr to the quality of a practitioner’s meditation pose or seated posture. The practice of asana leads to an ease in the body and allows for extended time in physical stillness to shift the practice to concerns of the mind.Yoga postures should be stable, and the body be at ease – sutra 2.46A more literal translation of the sutra could be “in yoga, we should resolutely abide in a good space.” Sthira etymologically … Continued

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Micronutrient Support for Overworked Adrenals

August 24, 2018 | Naturopathic Medicine

Supporting every aspect of your physical, mental and emotional body is always important.  It’s especially important to be intentional with supporting your adrenal function when going through difficult times. Emotional and mental stress can become so burdensome that your body takes over the responsibility of coping in an effort to give your tired mind and heart a break.  This is something to be thankful for.  Overtime, however, this can result in overworked adrenals, as well as other physical issues.Without proper balance between cortisol (aka the stress hormone) and DHEA (the hormone that balances cortisol), cortisol becomes a burden on the body. If left untreated, this can result in adrenal fatigue.  Supporting the adrenals with targeted nutrition and supplementation can make a big difference in coping with unavoidable stresses.  Here are some micronutrients that can relieve overworked adrenals:Vitamin C: Vitamin C depletion is very common in adrenal fatigue.  It supports adrenals and … Continued

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Late Summer’s Energetics – The Season Of The Earth Element

August 6, 2018 | Acupuncture

  Have you noticed lately how the quality of the light during the day has changed? Or that our mornings and evenings are cooler? It is not summer any longer, yet it is not really Fall either – we are drifting into the season the Chinese call “Late” Summer.  In Chinese medicine this is a special season all its own. We are harvesting food from the gardens while we watch and wait for some foods to ripen. This time of year is all about centering, grounding and balance. Late summer provides us some excellent opportunities to nourish our bodies, especially the digestive system.

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Are Allergies Causing You Anxiety?

June 1, 2018 | Naturopathic Medicine

Is your sleep disturbed?  Are you tossing and turning, or maybe having a hard time falling and staying asleep?  Are you feeling more stressed out than normal? Do you feel depressed but don’t know why? There are many factors that cause insomnia, depression and anxiety, but one of the most overlooked causes is allergies.  While taking an antihistamine can treat runny nose and itchy eyes, long term use can exaggerate sleep disturbances and mood issues. What are histamines? Histamines are stimulatory neurotransmitters (brain chemicals). Our bodies naturally have histamine circulating, which helps control energy levels, motivation, and the sleep-wake cycle. Histamine is an important neurotransmitter but when it increases due to a toxin or insect bite, other neurotransmitters such as epinephrine (adrenaline) may be affected.  Epinephrine helps lower large increases of histamine.  While allergies often present as itchy eyes or sinus congestion, anxiety and insomnia are also common symptoms due to the increase … Continued

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Learning to Breathe

May 11, 2018 | Yoga Philosophy

Pranayama is the yogic practice of breath control. This Sanskrit term is made up of two smaller words; prana and ayama. The term prana refers to the subtle energy that pervades all things. Ayama translated as “to stretch” or to expand. The practice of controlling breath allows us to expand breath capacity and manage subtle energies.Pranayama is also the fourth limb in Patanjali’s 8-Fold path as described in the Yoga Sutras. According to the sutra 2.50 (bahya abhyantara stambha vrittih desha kala sankhyabhih paridrishtah dirgha sukshmah):“Pranayama has three aspects of external or outward flow (exhalation), internal or inward flow (inhalation), and the third, which is the absence of both during the transition between them, and is known as fixedness, retention, or suspension. These are regulated by place, time, and number, with breath becoming slow and subtle.” – translation from SwamiJ.comThe mechanics of breath involve the process of pulling in oxygen … Continued

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Don’t Write Lectins Out of Your Diet… Yet

April 5, 2018 | Naturopathic Medicine

Benefits of LectinsLectins are proteins that bind carbohydrates. By binding to carbohydrates during digestion, they reduce the glycemic effects of food. By stabilizing blood sugar, there may be benefits such as weight loss, sustained energy, improved focus, and reduced blood pressure. Many foods with lectins are nutrient dense foods such as beans, nuts, tomatoes, eggplant and peppers. Plant lectins are thought to be a defense.  They protect plants against pathogens and insects similar to phytochemical in plants. For this reason, plant lectins offer anti-microbial properties and immunity support. Problem with Lectins One common lectin that poses issues is wheat germ agglutinin (WGA) lectin. This lectin is found in wheat as well as other cereal grains including the sprouted forms.  Like gluten, it may cause inflammation in the body, not only in the gastrointestinal system, but also may affect the endocrine, neurological and immune systems.A diet that has received press lately is the lectin free diet. This … Continued

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Calf Envy

March 29, 2018 | Yoga

Before yoga class this morning my students were talking about what they wanted to work on in class. Several of them had lower back issues.Another confided to me that she’s trying to gain weight.

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