Archive | Yoga

Using a Health Savings Account to Pay for Alternative Medicine

Health Savings Accounts allow you to set up a tax-deductible account to pay for medical expenses that are not covered by your health insurance. These include expenses to cover your deductible, and other medical expenses like dental and eyeglasses. But many don’t realize that HSA funds can be used to pay for virtually any type of medical service, as long as it pertains to the treatment or prevention of a specific health condition.

Because money withdrawn from a health savings account to pay medical expenses is tax-free, anyone who has an HSA can funnel all alternative medical expenses through their HSA and get a tax write-off. This could include biofeedback, naturopathy, Ayurvedic medicine, aromatherapy, magnetic healing, reflexology, and the list goes on.

People who use complementary therapies are often very health conscious, and go to traditional physicians less often. So it does not make sense for them to be paying a high premium for a traditional health insurance plan with a co-pay, particularly when their medical treatments are not covered anyway. Instead, many are choosing a low cost high-deductible HSA plan.

Alternative Therapies Becoming Mainstream

Many hospitals are now offering complementary treatments. The website for the Memorial Sloan-Keating Cancer Center states that complementary therapies are used to “help alleviate stress, reduce pain and anxiety, manage symptoms, and promote a feeling of well-being.”

Some group health insurance plans are beginning to cover more complementary expenses, but there is still very little coverage for these expenses in individual or family plans. Those that cover chiropractic limit coverage to 12 – 20 visits per year, and a few will cover a limited amount of acupuncture. But very few if any cover hypnotherapy, Reiki, iridology, or faith healers.

Why Complementary Medicine

The conventional medicine practiced by most MDs is called allopathic medicine. The philosophy of this system is to treat disease and injury using counteractive methods. For instance, if you have a fever you may take aspirin to make it go down, if your cholesterol is elevated you may take a statin to reduce it, if you have heartburn you may take an antacid. The thinking is mostly focused on removing the symptoms of disease, and the primary treatment modalities are surgery and prescription drugs.

But there are other ways to look at things. Naturopathic medicine is based on the belief in the body’s own healing powers, which can be strengthened through the use of certain foods, vitamins, herbs, or other “natural” treatments. Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is based on ancient Chinese theories about the balance of yin and yang. Ayurvedic medicine is based on principles of movement, metabolism, and structure.

Part of the growing use of complementary therapies is a reaction to the costs, side effects, and philosophy of conventional allopathic medicine. Physicians get much of their continuing education from the pharmaceutical industry, and they work in an environment where the insurers and the patients are both looking for a quick fix. The result is that the average 60 year old is now taking 5 regular medications, yet there is little expectation that those drugs will ever cure the health problems for which they’re being used. Many consumers see this, and instead are using other methods to try to get to the root of their illness.

What is Considered an “HSA Qualified Expenses”

Qualified medical expenses have been partially defined in IRS Publication 502, and through various federal court rulings. There is no definitive list, but there are really very few restrictions as long as the procedure is for the treatment or prevention of a specific health condition. For instance, you could not use your HSA funds to pay for a relaxing massage for your own personal pleasure. But if your doctor recommends you get a massage for specific medical reasons, this is considered a qualified expense. Yoga would not normally be considered a qualified medical expense, but it would be if it was recommended as a physical therapy following some sort of accident.

Some may question why the government would give a tax deduction for someone to use some crazy energy vibration machine to cure their cancer. But this is as it should be. No one but you should be able to decide what type of treatment you will use for your own illnesses. By empowering individuals to manage their health as they see fit, Health Savings Accounts encourage personal responsibility and help loosen the monopoly on healthcare that conventional medicine has had for the past few decades.

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Food Guidelines For Basic Constitutional Types

Tridosha system

The central concept of Ayurvedic medicine is the theory that health exists when there is a balance between three fundamental bodily humours or doshas called Vata, Pitta and Kapha.

Vata is the impulse principle necessary to mobilize the function of the nervous system.

Pitta is the energy principle which uses bile to direct digestion and hence metabolism into the venous system.

Kapha is the body fluid principle which relates to mucous, lubrication and the carrier of nutrients into the arterial system.

All Ayurvedic physicians believe that these ancient ideas, based in the knowledge discovered by the sages, exist in harmony with physical reality. These concepts allow physicians to examine the homeostasis of the whole system. People may be of a predominant dosha or constitution, but all doshas have the basic elements within them.

The philosophy of Ayurveda

The emergence of different schools of Sanskrit philosophy like Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Sankhya, Yoga, Vedanta and Mimamsa was another landmark in the history of Indian medicine. The principles expounded in these philosophies facilitated the development within Ayurveda of its theory of humoral pathology which propounds that the human body is composed of Tridoshas, the three humors – Vata, Pitta and Kapha. When these are in equilibrium they are called the Tridhatus.

The body in which these three humors are in a state of equilibrium enjoys perfect health; their disequilibrium causes ill health.

Disease management in Ayurveda

The principles of pharmacology are fundamentally different from those of other systems of medicine, especially evidence-based medicine. Most medicines are prepared form herbs.

Shamana and Shodhana are the two concepts of disease management in Ayurveda. Shamana means alleviation. Shamana methods mitigate the disease and its symptoms. Shodhana means elimination and Shodhana methods aim at the elimination of the basic cause of disease.

Note: Guidelines provided here are general. Specific adjustments for individual requirements may need to be made, e.g., food allergies, strength of agni, season of the year and degree of dosha predominance or aggravation.

okay in moderation okay rarely

FRUITS

VATA

o Avoid: Generally most dried fruit, Apples (raw), Cranberries, Dates (dry), Figs (dry), Pears, Persimmons, Pomegranates, Raisins (dry), Prunes (dry), Watermelon

o Favor: Generally most sweet fruit, Apples (cooked), Applesauce, Apricots, Avocado, Bananas, Berries, Cherries, Coconut, Dates (fresh), Figs (fresh), Grapefruit, Grapes, Kiwi, Lemons, Limes, Mangoes , Melons, Oranges, Papaya, Peaches, Pineapple, Plums, Prunes (soaked), Raisins (soaked), Rhubarb, Strawberries, Tamarind

PITTA

o Avoid: Generally most sour fruit, Apples (sour), Apricots (sour), Bananas, Berries (sour), Cherries (sour), Cranberries, Grapefruit, Grapes (green), Kiwi, Lemons, Mangoes (green), Oranges (sour), Peaches, Persimmons, Pineapple (sour), Plums (sour), Rhubarb, Tamarind

o Favor: Generally most sweet fruit, Apples (sweet), Applesauce, Apricots (sweet), Avocado, Berries (Sweet), Cherries (sweet), Coconut, Dates, Figs, Grapes (red & purple), Limes, Mangoes (ripe), Melons, oranges (sweet), Papaya, Pears, Pineapple (sweet), Plums (sweet), Pomegranates, Prunes, Raisins, Strawberries, Watermelon

KAPHA

o Avoid: Generally most sweet & sour fruit, Avocado, Bananas, Coconut, Dates, Figs (fresh), Grapefruit, Kiwi, Mangos, Melons, Oranges, Papaya, Pineapple, Plums, Rhubarb, Tamarind, Watermelon

o Favor : Generally most astringent fruit, Apples, Applesauce, Apricots, Berries, Cherries, Cranberries, Figs (dry), Grapes, Lemons, Limes, Peaches, Pears, Persimmons, Pomegranates, Prunes, Raisins, Strawberries

VEGETABLES

VATA

o Avoid: Generally frozen, raw or dried vegetables, Artichoke, Beet greens, Bitter melon, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Burdock root, Cabbage (raw), Cauliflower (raw), Celery, Corn (fresh), Dandelion greens, Eggplant, Horseradish, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mushrooms, Olives, green Onions (raw), Peas (raw), Peppers, sweet & hot Potatoes, white Prickly pear (fruit & leaves), Radish (raw), Squash, winter Tomatoes (cooked), Tomatoes (raw), Turnips, Wheat grass, sprouts

o Favor: In general, vegetables should be cooked Asparagus, Beets, Cabbage (cooked), Carrots, Cauliflower, Cilantro, Cucumber, Daikon radish, Fennel, (Anise), Garlic, Green beans, Green chilies, Jerusalem artichoke, Leafy greens, Leeks , Lettuce, Mustard greens, Okra, Olives, black Onions (cooked), Parsley, Parsnip, Peas (cooked), Potatoes, sweet, Pumpkin, Radishes (cooked), Rutabaga, Spaghetti Squash, Spinach (raw), Sprouts, Squash Summer, Taro Root, Turnip greens, Watercress, Zucchini

PITTA

o Avoid: In General pungent vegetables, Beet Greens, Beets (raw), Burdock root, Corn (fresh), Daikon Radish, Eggplant, Garlic, Green Chillies, Horseradish, Kohlrabi, Leeks (raw), Mustard greens, Olives green, Onion (raw), Peppers (hot), Turnip Greens, Watercress, Zucchini Prickly pear fruit, Radishes (raw, Spinach (cooked), Spinach (raw), Tomatoes, Turnip greens, Turnips

o Favor: In general, sweet & bitter vegetable, artichoke, Asparagus, Beets (cooked), Bitter Melon, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots (cooked), Carrots (raw), Cauliflower, Celery, Cilantro, Cucumber, Dandelion greens, Fennel (Anise) Green Beans, Jerusalem, Artichoke, Kala, Leafy Greens, Leeks (cooked), Lettuce, Mushrooms, Okra, Olives black, Onions (cooked), Parsley, Parsnips, Peas, Peppers sweet, Potatoes, sweet & white, Prickly pear (leaves), Pumpkin, Radishes (cooked)Rutabaga, Spaghetti Squash, Sprouts (not spicy), Squash, winter & summer, Taro root, Watercress, Wheat grass, sprouts, Zucchini

KAPHA

o Avoid: In general, Sweet & juicy vegetables, Cucumber, Olives, black or green, Parsnips, Potatoes sweet, Pumpkin, Squash summer, Taro root, Tomatoes (raw), Zucchini

o Favor: In general, most pungent & bitter Vegetables, Artichoke, Asparagus, Beet greens, Beets, Bitter melon, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Burdock root, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Cilantro, Corn, Daikon radish, Dandelion greens, Eggplant, Fennel (Anise), Garlic, Green beans, Green chilies, Horseradish, Jerusalem, artichoke, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leafy greens, Leeks, Lettuce, Mushrooms, Mustard greens, Okra, Onions, Parseley, Peas, Peppers, sweet & hot, Potatoes, White Prickly pear (fruit & leaves), Radishes, Rutabega, Spaghetti Squash, Spinach, Sprouts, Swaush, winter Tomatoes (cooked) Turnips, Watercress, Wheat grass

GRAINS

VATA

o Avoid: Barley, Bread (with yeast), Buckwheat, Cereals (cold, dry or puffed), Corn, Couscous, Crackers, Granola, Millet, Muesli, Oat bran, Oats (dry), Pasta, Polenta, Rice cakes, Rye, Sago, Spelt, Tapioca, Wheat bran

o Favor: Amaranth, Durham flour, Oats (cooked), Pancakes, Quinoa, Rice (all kinds), Seitan (wheat meat), Sprouted wheat, bread (Essene), Wheat

PITTA

o Avoid: Bread (with yeast), Buckwheat, Corn, Millet, Muesli, Oats (dry), Polenta, Rice (brown), Rye

o Favor: Amaranth, Barley, Cereal, dry, Couscous, Crackers, Durham flour, Granola, Oat bran, Oats (cooked), Pancakes, Pasta, Quinoa, Rice (basmati, white, wild), Rice cakes, Seitan (wheat meat), Spelt, Sprouted wheat, bread (Essene), Tapioca, Wheat, Wheat bran

KAPHA

o Avoid: Bread (with yeast), Oats (cooked), Pancakes, Pasta, Rice (brown, white), Rice cakes, Wheat

o Favor: Amaranth , Barley, Buckwheat, Cereal (cold, dry or puffed), Corn, Couscous, Crackers, Durham flour, Granola, Millet, Muesli, Oat bran, Oats dry), Polenta, Quinoa, Rice (basmati, wild), Rye, Seitan (wheat meat), Spelt, Sprouted , wheat bread (Essene), Tapioca, Wheat bran

LEGUMES

VATA

o Avoid: Aduki beans, Black beans, Black-eyed peas, Chick peas (garbanzo beans), Kidney beans, Lentils (brown), Lima beans , Miso, Navy beans, Peas (dried), Pinto beans, Soy beans, Soy flour, Soy powder, Split peas, Tempeh, White beans

o Favor: Lentils (red), Mung beans, Mung dal, Soy cheese, Soy milk, Soy sauce, Soy sausages, Tofu, Tur dal, Urad dal

PITTA

o Avoid: Miso, Soy sauce, Soy sausages, Tur dal, Urad dal

o Favor: Aduki beans, Black beans, Black-eyed peas, Chick peas (garbanzo beans), Kidney beans, Lentils, brown & red, Lima beans, Mung beans, Mung dal, Navy beans, Peas (dried), Pinto beans, Soy beans, Soy cheese, Soy flour, Soy milk, Soy powder, Split peas, Tempeh, Tofu, White beans

KAPHA

o Avoid: Kidney beans, Soy beans, Soy cheese, Soy flour, Soy powder, Soy sauce, Tofu (cold), Urad dal, Miso

o Favor: Aduki beans, Black beans, Black-eyed peas, Chick peas (garbanzo beans), Lentils (red & brown), Lima beans, Mung beans, Mung dal, Navy beans, Peas (dried), Pinto beans, Soy milk, Soy sausages, Split peas, Tempeh, Tofu (hot), Tur dal, White beans

DAIRY

VATA

o Avoid: Cow’s milk (powdered), Goat’s milk (powdered), Yogurt (plain, frozen or w/ fruit)

o Favor: Most dairy is good!, Butter, Buttermilk, Butter Cheese (hard), Cheese (soft), Cottage cheese, Cow’s milk, Ghee, Goat’s cheese, Goat’s milk, Ice cream, Sour cream, Yogurt (diluted & spiced)

PITTA

o Avoid: Butter (salted), Buttermilk, Cheese (hard), Sour cream, Yogurt (plain, frozen or w/fruit)

o Favor: Butter (unsalted), Cheese (soft, not aged, unsalted), Cottage cheese, Cow’s milk, Ghee, Goat’s milk, Goat’s cheese (soft, unsalted), Ice cream, Yogurt (freshly made & diluted)

KAPHA

o

Avoid: Butter (salted), Butter (unsalted), Cheese (soft & hard), Cow’s milk, Ice cream, Sour cream, Yogurt (plain, frozen or w/fruit)

o Favor: Buttermilk, Cottage cheese (from skimmed goat’s milk), Ghee, Goat’s cheese (unsalted & not aged), Goat’s milk, skim, Yogurt (diluted)

ANIMAL FOODS

VATA

o Avoid: Lamb, Pork, Rabbit, Venison, Turkey (white)

o Favor: Beef, Buffalo, Chicken (dark), Chicken (white), Duck, Eggs, Fish (freshwater or sea), Salmon, Sardines, Seafood, Shrimp, Tuna fish, Turkey (dark)

PITTA

o Avoid: Beef, Chicken (dark), Duck, Eggs (yolk), Fish (sea), Lamb, Pork, Salmon, Sardines, Seafood, Tuna fish, Turkey (dark)

o Favor: Buffalo, Chicken (white), Eggs (albumen or white only), Fish (freshwater), Rabbit, Shrimp, Turkey (white), Venison

KAPHA

o Avoid: Beef, Buffalo, Chicken (dark), Duck, Fish (sea), Lamb, Pork, Salmon, Sardines, Seafood, Tuna fish, Turkey (dark)

o Favor: Chicken (white), Eggs, Fish (freshwater), Rabbit, Shrimp, Turkey (white), Venison

CONDIMENTS

VATA

o Avoid: Chocolate, Horseradish

o Favor: Black pepper, Chutney, mango (sweet or spicy), Chili peppers, Coriander leaves, Dulse, Gomasio, Hijiki, Kelp, Ketchup, Kombu, Lemon, Lime, Lime pickle, Mango pickle, Mayonnaise, Mustard, Pickles, Salt, Scallions, Seaweed, Soy sauce, Sprouts, Tamari, Vinegar

PITTA

o Avoid: Chili pepper, Chocolate, Chutney, mango (spicy), Gomasio, Horseradish, Kelp, Ketchup, Mustard, Lemon, Lime pickle, Mango pickle, Mayonnaise, Pickles, Salt (in excess), Scallions, Soy sauce, Vinegar

o Favor: Black pepper, Chutney, mango, (sweet), Coriander leaves, Dulse, Hijiki, Kombu , Lime, Sprouts, Salt, Seaweed, Tamari

KAPHA

o Avoid: Chocolate, Chutney, mango (sweet), Gomasio, Kelp, Ketchup, Lime, Lime pickle, Mango pickle, Mayonnaise, Pickles, Salt, Soy sauce, Tamari, Vinegar

o Favor: Black pepper, Chili Peppers, Chutney, mango (spicy), Coriander leaves, Dulse, Hijiki, Horseradish, Lemon, Mustard (without vinegar), Scallions, Seaweed, Sprouts

NUTS

VATA

o Avoid: None

o Favor: In moderation: Almonds, Black walnuts, Brazil nuts, Cashews, Charole, Coconut, Filberts, Hazelnuts, Macadamia nuts, Peanuts, Pecans, Pine nuts, Pistachios, Walnuts

PITTA

o Avoid: Black walnuts, Brazil nuts, Cashews, Filberts, Hazelnuts, Macadamia nuts, Peanuts, Pecans, Pine nuts, Pistachios, Walnuts

o Favor: Charole, Coconut

KAPHA

o Avoid: Black walnuts, Brazil nuts, Cashews, Coconut, Filberts, Hazelnuts, Macadamia nuts, Peanuts, Pecans, Pine nuts, Pistachios, Walnuts

o Favor: None

SEEDS

VATA

o Avoid: Popcorn, Psyllium

o Favor: Chia, Flax, Halva, Pumpkin, Sesame, Sunflower, Tahini

PITTA

o Avoid: Chia, Sesame, Tahini

o Favor: Flax, Halva, Popcorn (no salt, buttered), Psyllium, Pumpkin, Sunflower

KAPHA

o Avoid: Halva, Psyllium, Sesame, Tahini

o Favour : Chia, Flax, Popcorn (no salt, no butter), Pumpkin, Sunflower

OILS

VATA

o Avoid: Flax seed

o Favor: For internal & external use: (most suitable at top of list), Sesame, Ghee, Olive, Most other oils

o External use only: Coconut, Avocado

PITTA

o Avoid: Almond, Apricot, Corn , Safflower, Sesame

o Favor: For internal & external use: (most suitable at top of list), Sunflower, Ghee, Canola, Olive, Soy, Flax seed, Primrose, Walnut

o External use only: Avocado, Coconut

KAPHA

o Avoid: Avocado, Apricot, Coconut, Flax seed, Olive, Primrose, Safflower, Sesame (internal), Soy, Walnut

o Favor: For internal & external use in small amounts: (Most suitable at top of list), Corn, Canola, Sesame (external), Sunflower, Ghee, Almond

BEVERAGES

VATA

o Avoid: Alcohol (hard; red wine), Apple juice , Black tea, Caffeinated, beverages, Carbonated drinks, Chocolate milk, Coffee, Cold dairy drinks , Cranberry juice, Iced tea, Icy cold drinks, Pear juice, Pomegranate juice, Prune juice, Soy milk (cold), Tomato juice, V-8 Juice, Herb Teas: Alfalfa, Barley, Basil, Blackberry, Borage, Burdock, Cinnamon, Cornsilk, Dandelion, Ginseng, Hibiscus, Hops, Jasmine, Lemon balm, Mormon tea, Nettle, Passion flower, Red clover, Red Zinger, Violet, Yarrow, Yerba Mate

o Favor: Alcohol (beer; white wine), Almond milk, Aloe vera juice, Apple cider, Apricot juice, Berry juice (except for cranberry), Carob, Carrot juice, Chai (hot spiced milk), Cherry juice, Grain “coffee”, Grape juice, Grapefruit juice, Lemonade, Mango juice, Miso broth, Orange juice, Papaya juice, Peach nectar, Pineapple juice, Rice milk, Sour juices, Soy milk (hot & well-spiced), Vegetable bouillon

o Herb Teas: Ajwan, Bancha, Catnip, Chamomile, Chicory, Chrysanthemum, Clove, Comfrey, Elder Flower, Eucalyptus, Fennel, Fenugreek, Ginger (fresh), Hawthorne, Juniper berry, Kukicha, Lavender, Lemon grass, Licorice, Marshmallow, Oat straw, Orange peel, Pennyroyal, Peppermint, Raspberry, Rosehips, Saffron, Sage, Sarsaparilla, Sassafras, Spearmint, Strawberry, Wintergreen

PITTA

o Avoid: Alcohol (hard; red & sweet wine) , Apple cider, Berry juice (sour), Caffeinated, beverages, Carbonated drinks, Carrot juice, Cherry juice (sour), Chocolate milk, Coffee, Cranberry juice, Grapefruit juice, Iced tea, Icy cold drinks, Lemonade, Papaya juice , Pineapple juice, Tomato juice, V-8 juice, Sour juices

o Herb Teas: Ajwan, Basil, Clove, Eucalyptus, Fenugreek, Ginger (dry), Ginseng, Hawthorne, Juniper berry, Mormon tea, Pennyroyal, Red Zinger , Rosehip, Sage, Sassafras, Yerba Mat

o Favor: Alcohol (beer; dry white wine), Almond milk , Aloe vera juice, Apple juice, Apricot juice, Berry juice (sweet), Black tea , Carob, Chai (hot, spiced milk) , Cherry juice (sweet), Cool dairy drinks, Grain “coffee”, Grape juice, Mango juice, Miso broth, Mixed veg. juice, Orange juice, Peach nectar, Pear juice, Pomegranate juice, Prune juice, Rice milk, Soy milk, Vegetable bouillon

o Herb Teas: Alfalfa, Bancha, Barley, Blackberry, Borage, Burdock, Catnip, Chamomile, Chicory, Comfrey, Dandelion, Fennel, Ginger (fresh), Hibiscus, Hops , Jasmine, Kukicha, Lavender, Lemon balm, Lemon grass, Licorice, Marshmallow, Nettle, Oat Straw, Passion flower, Peppermint, Raspberry, Red clover, Sarsaparilla, Spearmint, Strawberry, Violet, Wintergreen, Yarrow

KAPHA

o Avoid: Alcohol (hard; beer; sweet wine), Almond milk, Caffeinated , beverages, Carbonated drinks, Cherry juice (sour), Chocolate milk, Coffee, Cold dairy drinks, Grapefruit juice, Iced tea, Icy cold drinks, Lemonade, Miso broth, Orange Juice, Papaya juice, Rice milk ,Sour juices, Soy milk (cold), Tomato juice, V-8 Juice

o Herb Teas: Licorice, Marshmallow, Red Zinger, Rosehip, Bancha

o Favor: Alcohol (dry wine, red or white), loe vera juice, Apple cider, Apple juice, Apricot juice, Berry juice, Black tea (spiced), Carob, Carrot juice, Chai (hot, spiced milk), Cherry juice (sweet), Cranberry juice , Grain “coffee”, Grape juice, Mango juice, Peach nectar, Pear juice, Pineapple juice, Pomegranate juice, Prune juice, Soy milk (hot & well-spiced),

o Herb Teas: Alfalfa, Bancha, Barley, Blackberry, Burdock, Chamomile, Chicory, Cinnamon, Clove, Comfrey, Dandelion , Fennel, Fenugreek, Ginger , Ginseng, Hibiscus Jasmine, Juniper berry, Kukicha, Lavender, Lemon balm, Lemon grass, Mormon tea, Nettle, Passion flower, Peppermint, Raspberry, Red clover , Sarsaparilla, Sassafras, Spearmint , Strawberry, Wintergreen, Yarrow, Yerba Mate

SPICES

VATA

o Avoid: None

o Favor: All spices are good Ajwan, Allspice, Almond extract, Anise, Asafoetida (hing), Basil, Bay leaf, Black pepper, Caraway, Cardamom, Cayenne, Cinnamon, Cloves, Coriander, Cumin, Dill, Fennel, Fenugreek, Garlic, Ginger, Marjoram, Mint, Mustard seeds, Nutmeg, Orange peel, Oregano, Paprika, Parsley, Peppermint, Pippali, Poppy seeds, Rosemary, Saffron, Salt, Savory, Spearmint, Star Anise, Tarragon, Thyme, Turmeric, Vanilla, Wintergreen

PITTA

o Avoid: Ajwan, Allspice, Almond extract, Anise, Asafoetida (hing), Basil (dry), Bay leaf, Cayenne, Cloves, Fenugreek, Garlic, Ginger (dry), Mace, Marjoram, Mustard seeds, Nutmeg, Oregano, Paprika, Pippali, Poppy seeds, Rosemary, Sage, Salt, Savory, Star anise, Thyme

o Favor: Basil (fresh), Black pepper, Caraway, Cardamom, Cinnamon, Coriander, Cumin, Dill, Fennel, Ginger (fresh), Mint, Neem leaves, Orange peel, Parsley, Peppermint, Saffron, Spearmint, Tarragon, Turmeric, Vanilla, Wintergreen

KAPHA

o Avoid: Salt

o Favor: All spices are good Ajwan, Allspice, Almond extract, Anise, Asafoetida (hing), Basil, Bay leaf, Black pepper, Caraway, Cardamom, Cayenne, Cinnamon, Cloves, Coriander, Cumin, Dill, Fennel*, Fenugreek, Garlic, Ginger, Marjoram, Mint, Mustard seeds, Neem leaves, Nutmeg, Orange peel, Oregano, Paprika, Parsley, Peppermint, Pippali, Poppy seeds, Rosemary, Saffron, Savory, Spearmint, Star Anise, Tarragon, Thyme, Turmeric, Vanilla, Wintergreen

SWEETENERS

VATA

o Avoid: Maple syrup, White Sugar

o Favor: Barley malt, Fructose, Fruit juice, concentrates, Honey, Jaggary, Molasses, Rice syrup, Dried or fresh sugar cane juice, Turbinado

PITTA

o Avoid: White Sugar, Honey, Jaggary, Molasses

o Favor: Barley malt, Fructose, Fruit juice, concentrates, Maple syrup, Rice syrup, Dried or fresh sugar cane juice, Turbinado

KAPHA

o Avoid: Barley malt, Fructose, Jaggary, Maple syrup, Molasses, Rice syrup, Dried or fresh sugar cane juice, Turbinado, White sugar

o Favor: Fruit juice, concentrates, Honey (raw & not processed)

FOOD SUPPLEMENTS

VATA

o Avoid: Barley green, Brewer’s yeast, Vitamin: K

o Favor: Aloe Vera juice, Bee pollen, Amino acids

o Minerals: Calcium, copper, iron, magnesium, zinc, Royal jelly, Spirolina, Blue-green algae

o Vitamins: A, B1, B2,B6, B12, C, D, E, P and Folic acid

PITTA

o Avoid: Amino acid, Bee pollen, Royal jelly

o Minerals: copper, iron

o Vitamins: B2,B6,C,E, and Folic acid

o Favor: Aloe vera juice, Barley green, Brewer’s yeast

o Minerals: Calcium, Magnesium, zinc, Spirolina, Blue-green algae

o Vitamins: A, B1, B12, D and K

KAPHA

o Avoid:

o Minerals: Potassium

o Vitamins: A, B1, B2, B12, C, D, and E

o Favor: Aloe vera juice, Amino acid, Barley green, Bee pollen, Brewer’s yeast

o Minerals: copper, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, Royal jelly, Spirolina, Blue-green algae

o Vitamins: B6, C, P and Folic Acid

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Melanomas – Visible and Invisible

Melanoma is essentially skin cancer. If detected early

enough, it can be cured in ninety-five percent of the

cases. However, it can also be fatal if allowed to run its

course. Melanomas can be almost invisible in some cases, so

a cursory examination is not effective in some cases.

Hidden melanomas are, fortunately, relatively rare.

All melanomas are formed from cells that produce pigment.

These are called melanocytes. So the cancer can develop

wherever there is pigmentation in the body. Hidden

melanomas can occur in difficult to detect parts of the

body, hence the need to do a thorough check annually.

An example of an unusual location where a hidden melanoma

can develop is the eye (intraocular melanoma). So the eyes

should be included in the check-up. An effective

preventative would be to use high quality sunglasses with

one-hundred percent UV protection. If you have prescription

glasses, photochromic lenses with UV protection are

preferable.

It is useful to be aware that melanomas can also develop in

areas that are not exposed to sun rays. These include the

palms of the hands, the soles of the feet, in-between toes,

under the nails, and on the scalp! Even harder to detect

areas that the cancer can develop in are the genitalia,

anus, and mucosal lining of the mouth.

A potentially dangerous phenomenon is a “halo nevus”. This

manifests as a white halo around a mole or brown spot. It

appears that the mole or spot is shrinking, but a more

lethal process is underway – the melanoma is actually

digging deeper leaving less of itself on the surface.

HOW TO DETECT A MELANOMA:

It is of vital importance that you do a body skin check

every month, looking for brown spots in all the areas

outlined above. What you should also be looking for are new

spots or moles, or any changes to existing ones over a time

period of a few months. Potentially dangerous growths are

those that have asymmetrical ragged borders, or are six

millimeters or more in diameter. Another danger signal is

when growths disappear and reappear, or growths that bleed

easily. Melanomas under the nails usually occur in the

thumbs and large toes, and appear as black or brown

coloured streaks.

Possible symptoms of hidden melanomas, such as in the mouth

and esophagus, are inexplicable bleeding from the nose,

genitalia or urinary tract, throat pain and difficulty

swallowing, and a tightness in the esophageal area.

In addition to your personal monthly skin check, it is

strongly recommended that you have an annual examination

conducted by a qualified dermatologist.

HIGH RISK CANDIDATES:

Melanomas can develop in anybody, but the following are at

a higher risk:

Those who have had a previous skin cancer.

Those with a family history of skin cancer.

Those with several abnormal appearing moles (dysplastic nevi).

Fair skinned people with light eyes, who easily sunburn.

Blacks, and dark skinned people, are susceptible to under

the nail melanomas (subungual), and mucosal melanoma.

PREVENTION:

Avoid excessive exposure to the sun, but don’t be obsessive

about it. Remember, sunlight stimulates the formation of

vitamin D, which is important for the body. Conduct

frequent checks on yourself, especially if you fall into

the high risk group. And, studies show that if you exercise

regularly, you gain protection from melanoma. Researchers

think that this might be because exercise enhances a

process called UVB-induced apoptosis, in which the body

kills sun-damaged cells.

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Tony Robbins – Personal Power II – Day 19-21

Day 19 -21 (includes the weekend review time)

Today, we’re drilling down to observe how to overcome fears of failure and success.  Both of these fears can paralyze one from taking any action at all, and of course, success in anything is tied up in taking massive action.

In order to eliminate fears, we must change our mental rules. First, what must happen for you to feel successful and to feel like a failure? Define specifically what that looks like for you. Then, you must create new definitions for what has to happen for you to feel successful and to feel like a failure.  Developing new rules by which you can happily achieve your goals, well, that really can make for a more satisfying life.

For example, at the beginning of this lesson, my old definition of success was:

I wanted to achieve reasonable goals by accomplishing several things each day directly related to financial gain. I wanted time left over for hobbies, play and other areas of endeavor.  Achieving that felt like success to me. Your definition is bound to be different, but the idea is to identify where you are NOW. make success achievable so it can easily be attained.

To feel like a failure, my definition was:

I let things go that I know are good for me. That includes not following through on actions that are directly connected to success.

Where did our rules come from? Who designed the success and failure rules we live by? Are they empowering or dis-empowering? Can they be improved?

I didn’t think my old rules were wrong.. just maybe not complete.

So, here’s my new definition of success:

To live in a forward posture, learn and grow with expectancy and curiosity. To Boldly, confidently experience my life so that no matter what happens, I will be able, to the best of my ability,  choose my attitude and my desired outcome, without fear.

And my new definition of failure:

To live in fear with no hope of improvement. But even then, I’d learn something, so then it wouldn’t really be failure, would it?

Huge difference! Changing those definitions have given me ways to be far more successful, more often, and basically eliminate failure.

Let’s look at taking a core fear and getting rid of it. This is called the “erasure technique” and it really blew my mind! I don’t know if you’re like me, but I’ve had several events in my life with strong negative emotions connected to them. From time to time, they just run themselves like a movie and the same angry, sad, fearful, emotions come up again. I have tried various techniques to try and diffuse them (and it has helped quite a bit), but I wanted to see if I could get even more leverage.

OK, are you ready? Here’s the technique. Stand up tall and straight, feeling really great.  Say “boom” or “great” or some other word to anchor the feeling. Now, watch the memory of some old, big mistake you made. Pick a really big one!  Run it forward, but at a distance like you’re in the audience watching. Now run it backwards faster and faster. Repeat it several times, but add clown suits, costumes, funny voices, big ears, just make it silly. Run it back and forth in your mind until you actually smile when you think about this. What you’ve just done is break up the old pattern, much like scratching a record until it can’t play anymore.

Think about the pain connected to not being free of these old memories and get yourself enough leverage to take the time to do this. You can do this technique for each one.

The second part of today’s lesson had to do with rejection. Many people have allowed rejection to influence their lives. Tony talks about making similar changes when dealing with this emotion as when dealing with success and failure.

1).   Decide that rejection will not control your life.

2).   Get leverage by understanding the price you pay if you fear rejection. Also, what are all the benefits for not being affected by rejection.

Create a new set of rules for rejection. Learn that no matter what someone says or how they respond, it may be their issue. Massive rejection is really one of the keys to success. As you get stronger, sometimes the old friendships and associations you had may drift away. The dynamic changes you are adopting causes you to attract in new friends that reflect the new values you are developing. Condition yourself to feel strong when you get rejected. Create helpful anchors to control access to the strength you wish to feel.

Assignment:

Write down 2 failure and 2 rejection events.

What benefits were there from those 4 experiences?

Now, use the erasure technique to change them.

Don’t forget to also write down three money making ideas. Grow your mental portfolio for your future.

I’d love to hear from you about the results or questions you might have.

See you for day 22 (two days off for review and subliminal tapes or CDs if you have them).

And, of course, onward!

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

How to Escape Fatigue and Stay Active

We tend to become tired easily quite often as we use up the stored energy. Here are a few ideas which would come handy in order to remain physically and mentally fresh all the time.

Drink More Water

It is always recommended to drink more water as it will increase the brain activity and blood circulation to brain. When more blood reaches the brain, it will automatically help to stay active. It is advisable to keep track of how much water is consumed every day and it is recommended to increase the intake of water till 3 litres of water a day is reached. Keeping the body hydrated is the first step to stay active all the time. Besides removing fatigue, it also helps the skin to glow and makes metabolic activities to be performed with ease.

Eat Healthy Foods

On eating more health-rich foods, we can stay active. The breakfast is highly essential and must not be skipped as it provides energy for the entire day. There must be higher amount of carbohydrates in the breakfast meal. The foods which are rich in iron content must be taken as it prevents the body from being non-anaemic. It is also necessary to drink fresh juices for the brain to remain active. Drinking glucose will provide immediate results. This activates the brain cells immediately making you fresh. The fruits can also be cut into pieces and taken in a small box to the office and can be eaten instead of oily foods.

Exercising

The sweat is not only good for the physique but also for the mind. It helps to keep the brain working at a faster pace. Severe workouts are not necessary. Even mild exercises to hands and legs would suffice. The exercises also help to tackle stresses, blood pressure, and by increasing the oxygen intake, nourishment is supplied to the cells. Yoga can also be done which helps to improve the concentration and the working of the brain. Other aerobic exercises can be encouraged in work places to fight fatigue and can also be recommended in every educational institutions to help students to tackle tiredness.

Relax During Breaks

The break time is highly essential and continuous work will definitely lead to fatigue. Moreover, if a lot of time is spent before the monitor, there will be a lot of energy loss. It is recommended to close eyes for twenty seconds for every continuous-twenty minutes that you look into the screen of a desktop or laptop. That would be a good relaxation to the eyes. It is advisable to use radiation protected glasses while using computer as it would help eyes not to become tired quickly. Walking out from the chair for a break is essential. Whenever time permits, it is advisable to take fresh air from outside.

Get More Sleep

It is definitely not going to be useful when the work is done continuously compromising the sleep as it spoils the health to a greater extent besides making the person drowsy for the next day. The sleep at night time cannot be compensated by equal sleeping time during the day. The best time to sleep would be from ten in the night to six in the morning. Insufficient sleep not only spoils the physique but also causes mental illness like stress and high blood pressure. It is absolutely important to get sufficient sleep as this aligns the activities in the brain and help us to perform better the next day.

Thus you can see that these measures can be taken to avoid fatigue and stay refreshed all the time and lead an active life.

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Field Hockey Warm-Up Drills

Before starting any sports practice or game, you must make sure to run a thorough warm-up that gets players both physically and mentally ready to play. A good warm-up routine includes both a cardiovascular component such as running and a series of stretches that highlight the muscles used most during the sport in question.

The following field hockey warm-up drills are an excellent addition to any warm-up routine since they emphasize the basic skills of the game while getting the joints moving and the blood flowing to avoid later injury.

One thing I’ve noticed in my years of coaching field hockey is that players hate running laps. So at our field hockey practices we’ve replaced running laps with a 5-minute long version of freeze tag. Tag is an excellent way to get players running around while keeping their minds more active than if they were simply running laps around the field.

After the cardiovascular section of your warm-up is completed, it is time for the stretching. I like to start off with head rolls and neck stretches and make my way down. If you have no experience leading a stretching routine, don’t hesitate to contact other coaches or a certified yoga instruction for some guidance on which stretches are not to be missed for your field hockey team.

Hits and Misses

Once you’ve finished stretching your team’s muscles, it is time to begin the field hockey warm-up drills. When selecting drills for your warm-up, look for simple drills that emphasize the basic skills of the game without pushing players too far–save that for the conditioning drills!

The first warm-up drill I like to use at my field hockey practices is a basic hitting drill, since the hit is hockey’s most basic and useful skill. For this hitting drill, I divide my team into partners and have them stand facing each other 10 feet apart to start off with.

When running this and all other warm-up drills, the emphasis is on perfect form. For example, when hitting it is important to make sure the player’s hands are firmly together near the top of the stick. Use the hands and wrists to bring the stick backwards, and the goal should be to hit the lower half of the ball when the stick is brought back down. Don’t forget to follow though with the stick after the hit is completed. Another thing to remember is to keep the feet parallel to the direction you want the ball to go.

I have my players hit back and forth for 2 minutes at this distance, then I blow my whistle and have each player back up one giant step, repeating this process two more times before moving on to the next drill.

Push Pass Perfection

The next of the field hockey warm-up drills focuses on the push pass, which is a better way than hitting for moving the ball over large distances. Using the same partners as before, have your players stand anywhere from 20 to 40 feet apart and push pass to each other.

The form of the push pass differs slightly from that of the hit. For the push pass, players are to place their left hand near the top of the stick with the right hand further down. Keeping their eye on the ball with their knees bent, players are to shift their weight from the back foot to the front as contact is made with the ball. As with the hit, make sure to follow through completely. The follow through is complete when the stick is pointing towards the direction of the pass.

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Romantic Relationships – Building Intimacy Through Communication

What do you think of when you hear the word intimacy? Perhaps it conjures up images of sexy lingerie, a deep soul mate connection or a passionate, sexual relationship. Certainly, it can refer to all of those aspects but the entire meaning of intimacy is far greater than that. In our relationships, whether they are marriages, long-term relationships, exclusive partnerships or casual dating experiences, true intimacy is often missing. In fact, most of us don’t know how to achieve a high degree of intimacy with our significant other. When intimacy is lacking in a relationship we get that dark, lonely feeling. You know the one where you feel even lonelier sitting right beside your partner? Nobody wants to feel this empty, so although intimacy takes some work to achieve, it’s well worth the effort.

Open communication, vulnerability, transparency and reciprocity are required to realize intimacy. It requires letting our partner into our hearts and our minds. Since we all have thoughts and feelings we don’t even accept in ourselves, it seems like quite a stretch to share many of these shameful ideas with others. We often believe that our loved ones would think less of us if we were completely honest. This results in our revealing very little about our true nature.

Disclosing personal information within a romantic or sexual context is important, but being intimate involves much more than this. It requires imparting our ideas about everything, including negative points of view. Sharing how you like to be touched or kissed is an example of open communication. Another is telling your partner in a kind and respectful way that you would appreciate it if he or she would do his or her share of the laundry, instead of just doing it yourself and saying nothing. Speaking in a calm, confident manner is assertive and highly effective. How many of you choose instead to ‘pick your battles’ figuring it’s not worth speaking up? When we ‘sweep it under the carpet’ by not saying a word, or choose to blame and criticize, we inhibit intimacy. Some of you are probably thinking that ‘speaking in a direct and considerate manner might work for some people, but not with my partner!’ Fortunately, this calm, respectful communication style works with everyone. Having ongoing conversations about your life goals and what your life was like as a child are also necessary, as are discussions about your preferences. Most importantly, you must make a point of letting your partner know what you need to feel loved, what your values are and what makes you happy, angry, jealous or sad. Who are you behind the social mask we all wear in public? We drop the mask a lot in romantic relationships, but much of it still remains.

When our partners only know a percentage of our personality, they can only love us in part, leaving us feeling deep down that if he or she really knew us they might possibly leave or love us less. This type of thinking keeps us stuck in unsatisfying relationships and often leads to the end of a relationship. By exchanging our ideas directly and sincerely we can create an intimate bond that is strong enough to revive or maintain our relationship instead. If we say it gracefully, we can say anything, because our messages are primarily transmitted through our ‘tone’ of voice. It’s our tone that conveys love or hatred, rather than our words. Without honest, upfront communication it is impossible to feel a close connection. The more our partner knows about us, the more he or she is able to love us. The more we are loved, the happier we are. Happy people have fulfilling relationships.

Since we can only feel lasting intimacy when our partner knows us at a deep level, we often think this means that we have to share our most personal secrets. This is neither necessary nor advisable. We all need a place inside that’s just our own, that we don’t share with anyone else; a special space that’s sacred. Outside of this though, there is a whole lot we keep to ourselves out of fear that we would be judged harshly, ridiculed or even left.

Fortunately, those fears are largely unfounded. Sharing aspects of ourselves that we are ashamed of has the exact opposite effect that we think it will. Being vulnerable enough to disclose things we feel silly about or ashamed of creates real closeness with others if it’s done within the right context. The reason for this is that we all hold very similar negative thoughts. For example, when your partner is busy all the time, even though it’s unhelpful, it’s normal to start thinking that he or she is losing interest, which often triggers a fear of abandonment. Most likely, when this situation arises, your partner is simply focusing on other essential areas of his or her life. Instead of feeling abandoned, we can choose instead to use this time to engage in interests and activities of our own. This will make you even more vibrant and attractive. When your partner starts focusing on you again, and he or she will, you will have a lot to talk about and perhaps something new to teach each other. Sharing novel ideas with one another creates both increased interest and intimacy and is necessary to keep your relationship exciting.

We all feel inadequate about certain things. It’s common to feel we’re not good enough, feel insecure about our competence or that we’re unlovable or unworthy sometimes. Part of learning to create and maintain an intimate relationship comes with accepting these parts of ourselves; our humanity. As humans we all share these same frailties, the same fears and shame. I know some of you are thinking, ‘but I don’t accept that part of me.’ To say that you don’t accept your weaknesses is the same as saying you don’t accept that you are human. There isn’t anyone without weaknesses. Some people pretend they are without fault. However, people with only positive traits, without a shadow side, do not exist. Everyone is comprised of both negative and positive characteristics. If we don’t accept our weaknesses, in both ourselves and our partner, we cannot fully appreciate our strengths since they are two sides of the same coin. If there is to be any change, it will start with your acceptance of your perceived faults. We are unable to alter those things that we do not identify as existing within us. Admitting that we lie at times, make mistakes, fear standing up for ourselves in certain circumstances or mistrust our partner on occasion is incredibly freeing and creates a starting point for change.

When we have the courage to share personal information, our partners can relax and love us more. If your loved one is honest, he or she will admit to having similar concerns of his or her own such as feeling inadequate or unlovable. Disclosing this information increases trust and understanding. How many of you believe that saying ‘no’ to requests from your partner and spending time away from him or her to do things you enjoy will be detrimental? Although the fear and anxiety around admitting to your weaknesses and having the courage to be independent is very real, it is unlikely to end your relationship. In fact, the opposite will occur and your bond will become stronger. This level of self-disclosure and self-sufficiency will free up extra energy since you are no longer pretending to be someone that you are not. Another added benefit is that your partner will now know more of you to love. In order to get to this stage, it’s necessary to tolerate and push through bodily sensations like the queasy stomach, racing heart and dry throat that often surface when we engage in conversations that make us feel vulnerable. Based on our own individual experiences and personalities, this will be easier for some of us than others. In order to attain a desirable level of intimacy, some people might choose to work with a therapist who specializes in assertive communication and relationships.

So, how do all of these intimacy-building skills relate to passionate lovemaking and sex? As physically gratifying as sex can be, it reaches the height of ecstasy when real intimacy is involved. When you keep most of what you think and feel inside, it’s as though all of those thoughts and feelings stand between you and your partner. Remember the laundry? When we say/don’t say or do things out of fear instead of desire, a lot of resentment builds inside. What looks like a nice gesture is actually not nice at all. When that resentment reaches the limit, as inevitably it will, you are guaranteed to do something to get your partner back. This is typically unconscious and often takes shape in some sort of acting out behaviour. When we are unable to express what we really think and feel we become very angry inside. Depending on your personality, if you are someone that never gets mad, you might not be aware of just how angry you are. If you are prone to feeling depressed you might be someone who is disconnected from your anger. When anger and resentment build up enough we will act out unconsciously by hurting our partner in some way, such as making sarcastic and rude remarks, withholding affection, becoming impotent or by cheating. Although we aren’t consciously aware of the connection between acting out and our mishandled laundry for example, we can become aware that ‘sweeping it under the carpet’ or complaining ensures there will be a high level of emotional damage in your relationship. When intimacy is in short supply, rest assured that there are countless unspoken thoughts, dreams, bitter resentments, interesting ideas and assumptions standing between the two of you and blocking the closeness you desire.

When we lack the skills to be fully transparent, we are unable to feel close, which leaves us open to stepping outside of our primary relationship to find the love and security we need to feel whole. Frequently, we are unable to ask our partner for what we need, making it seem easier to cope with the feelings of emptiness this creates by using infidelity, pornography, food, alcohol, drugs, activities, religion, work and television to fill ourselves up. When we fall prey to these outside forces, we are usually not even aware why we’re so drawn to them. All we know is that we feel good or better when we engage in them because they take our minds off of the feelings of shame, abandonment and loneliness that surfaces when we spend time alone with our thoughts. Starting with acceptance, communication and individuality (having a life of your own, separate from the life you share with your significant other), we can eliminate many of our humiliating feelings and create the kind of magic we crave with our loved one. This is possible regardless of how dismal things might seem and safeguards us from wanting to end our relationship or fantasize about someone new.

An incredible transformation takes place when both partners risk feeling vulnerable enough to share without reservation. Our hearts and minds open up allowing us to feel the sparks we had when we first met. Do you remember the butterflies, laughter and endless conversation? When we start to reveal what we think and feel, our loving feelings and desire come back. During this time, you have the opportunity to create an exhilarating and dedicated relationship. Let’s say that you’ve learned to attain a high degree of intimacy. What now? Having this strong bond allows us to feel together even when we are apart, increases the amount of laughter and makes us feel deeply loved. When we have this level of safety in our relationships the sex can be outstanding. I know some of you are wondering exactly how this takes place. Surely it doesn’t just spontaneously occur on its own? The same skills you cultivate to create and sustain a joyful connection are primarily the same skills you need in the bedroom. These are courage, confidence and cooperation, along with the fourth required ‘c’, compatibility, which we will assume exists if you’ve made it this far.

The same inadequacies we discussed earlier, including fear, shame, and guilt often show up in the bedroom. Being aware of these, accepting them and discussing them openly with your partner is essential. An attitude of equality between you and your partner will also help set the stage for a sensual, trusting experience. Both partners need to be able to give and receive, and feel safe enough to express vulnerabilities, desires, dislikes and fantasies. Bringing a sense of humour, playfulness and imagination to your sex life, will intensify your sense of pleasure and intrigue.

When real openness and communication exists between the two of you, you have created a relationship that can sustain sexual requests and the sharing of dislikes and fantasies without your partner feeling unloved or incompetent. There is a collective misnomer that our partners should just know how to satisfy us if they truly love us. Most of us don’t even know what we need sexually or otherwise to be happy. If we don’t know how to really satisfy ourselves is it even possible for our partner, no matter how much they love us, to know what we need? How many of you have made statements such as ‘if she really loved me she would do that for me’ or ‘if he really loved me he wouldn’t have said that’? The way we need to be loved and made love to is extremely personal. The only way your partner will know what you need is if you tell him or her in a kind and respectful way.

Making requests in a positive manner works extremely well. Instead of saying, “I don’t like it when you reach orgasm first and don’t consider my needs,” you might try saying “I would love it if we made sure that I reach orgasm first next time.” In the first instance your partner will feel criticized and will not be very willing to give you what you need, but in the second scenario, your partner will feel respected enough to honour your request. What if he or she doesn’t want to do what you’ve asked? Well, don’t give up. Perhaps over time he or she will be more inclined to meet your specific needs. Depending on your request, it’s important to acknowledge that anything you engage in sexually needs to be mutually satisfying. If this is not the case, it’s essential to be able to say ‘no’ in a kind and respectful manner. Many of us believe that once we’ve had these discussions, our partner should know what we want for all future sexual liaisons. However, this kind of thinking won’t usually get us what we want. To get our sexual needs met we need to become confident about making direct requests during every lovemaking session. Our needs change over time and the only way to achieve new ways of connecting sexually is by communicating in a self-assured manner (a way that suggests you believe your partner wants to please you), instead of dropping hints, which is rarely effective.

Once you start expressing what you need in a friendly and forthright manner, making specific requests for your sexual enjoyment will become automatic. You might be thinking that asking for what you want all the time is too difficult or is simply unfair. This may be true, but it works! If you refuse to ask, the only one standing in the way of your own sexual satisfaction is you. Nobody is very good at mind reading, so help your partner out and let them know what to do and what not to do. An added benefit of sexual cooperation and experimentation is that it will greatly enhance your attraction for one another and make challenges and conflicts outside of the bedroom easier to deal with. In the end, you will enjoy sustained intimacy, eroticism, sensuality and long-term loving.

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

How To Get Rid Of A Migraine

Migraine is one of the most common types of headaches often described as sharp, “pounding” and throbbing pain on one or both sides of the head that may be associated with bright spots of light, blurred vision, blind spots or other visual hallucinations.

The exact causes of migraines are not fully understood yet, however, it is known that migraine involves changes in chemicals (drop of levels of serotonin) and blood vessels in the brain. Another cause of migraine can be hormone imbalance. For example, about 70% of women, who suffer from migraine headaches get them during or right after menstrual period.

If you want to learn how to get rid of a migraine, you will have to what triggers them.

Migraine attacks may be triggered by stress, bright light, loud noises, smells (paint, strong perfume, fumes from car heaters), too much or too little exercise, smoking, alcohol, illegal drugs and certain foods such as chocolate, coffee, tea, cheese, meats containing nitrates (salami, bacon, hot dogs), citrus fruits. Sometimes just by eliminating things that may trigger your headaches you can noticeably decrease the frequency of migraines.

The best approach to get rid of migraines is “preventive”. It means that while taking over-the-counter or prescribed medications during migraine attacks may be helpful to eliminate the symptoms and temporally reduce pain, they are not effective in curing the causes of migraine. Besides many pain-killers and prescribes drugs have some serious side-effects like sleep disturbance, memory problems, dizziness, sexual performance problems and fatigue.

Safer and more effective non-drug treatments include:

o Acupuncture and acupressure – two very similar therapies that help to treat the underlying causes of migraine.

o Hypnosis can be beneficial in reducing pain and identifying the triggers of migraine.

o Relaxation therapy like yoga, meditation helps to calm down the mind, promote muscle relaxation and increase a feeling of well-being.

o Massage helps to decrease muscle tension and improve blood circulation.

o Hot and cold showers reduce pain during migraine attacks.

o Aromatherapy. As certain smells can trigger the migraine, there are some smells that help to prevent or decrease it. For example, lavender, rosemary, chamomile and peppermint oil can be used during massage, added to a hot bath or simply used for inhalation to decrease worry, pain and lethargy.

o Herbal remedies. Feverfew, if taken regularly for a few weeks, is proven to prevent blood cloth and relief migraines. Other herbs that have been used for centuries for treating migraines are ginger, kava kava, St. John’s wort, chamomile and fennel.

o Right diet. Avoiding foods that may trigger migraines and incorporating more fresh fruit, vegetables and grains into the daily ration decreases your chances of getting a migraine attack. It is also important not to skip meals as well as avoid overeating.

Living with frequent migraine headaches can be frustrating. Good news is that you don’t have to put up with headaches any longer. Take a conscious action to eliminate migraine permanently from your life. It if not as hard as it seems!

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Can Bad Karma Be Erased, Forgiven Or Expunged?

When criminals break the laws of the land, they are condemned and sentenced accordingly to what is required by the provisions of the laws that were broken. But the president of the country or the governor of the state is empowered in mitigating circumstances to let the lawbreaker off with a lighter sentence or to pardon him altogether. In the same way, God being supreme and His highly developed saints who are in harmony with him can stop the fruition of bad karma or sins against the soul in persons by exercising their spiritual will-force. They can concede forgiveness of sins and free others from suffering the results of their bad actions by changing the nature of their mind and brain cells with the understanding of the precise relation of their habits and mind to the brain sufficiently changing their karmic blueprints.

Only God and His highly advanced masters or saints can forgive others. To illustrate in simple terms how this principle works, suppose for example, someone was poisoned through wrong eating, he can immediately be given an antidote to counteract the poison and thus create a new cause with an effect that will destroy the poison in his system. The powerful consciousness of the masters can equally counteract the adverse effects of earlier wrong actions accumulated in misguided people by various means. The laws of cause and effect created by God however cannot be broken; the judgments of karmic law have to be compensated in fair exchange or in kind.

Any disciple or devotee who finds his adversary through introspection realizes his wrongful actions and bad karma, has been arraigned before the court magistrate in the cosmic judiciary of karmic law of cause and effect. He must ceaselessly pray to be set free from reaping the consequences of his wrongful actions. Those condemned by the judge for breaking the cosmic laws are sent to the penitentiary of suffering by the official officers of karmic inclinations accumulated from wrong actions. It is impossible to escape from the tribunal of cosmic laws that govern every single human action until we all worked out and fully paid our karmic bills through reformation, suffering and prayers for deliverance. In time it is possible to be partially or wholly free from adverse effects of bad karma. Our final recourse for redemption and grace is devotional sincerity and deep prayers to the Divine supreme jurist, the architect of the karmic law.

Those who have not been caught for breaking the laws should not consider themselves free, innocent or guiltless than some who were condemned and punished for their offenses for they will be convicted as they are apprehended by the cosmic laws of cause and effect. These are words of warning for people who become complacent and assume themselves as rightfully virtuous and secure. They so far have not had the misfortune visited upon others. Those sleeping in ignorance who never analyze themselves and who never make any spiritual effort, will one day be bluntly awakened from mental, spiritual or physical suffering. By the cultivation of spiritual consciousness, repentance and prayers for redemption they can, without fail, avert or lessen unfavorable karmic recompense.

The master knows the secret thoughts of men and is able to manipulate certain mechanical features of the laws of karma which can be skillfully adjusted by his fingers of wisdom and by counteractive measures taken by a distressed person such as faith, deep love for God, prayer and yoga meditation to reduce or cancel out the harmful effects of past sinful actions. But if the master wants to hasten the spiritual development of an individual or disciple, he may in severe cases of deep-rooted bad karma. He may also in reply to the devoted faith and receptiveness of the petitioner accept onto himself the karmic state of a disciple, or part of it, and let the karmic effects be worked out in his own body.

Lets say a weak man named Joseph enraged an associate who was physically stronger and who then decided to raise his hand and beat Joseph but I am also very strong and instantly jumped in between them and received the well intended punch and absorbed the blow which affected me in a far lesser degree sparing Joseph the pain. Similarly when a person is condemned to suffer from wrongdoing, he is bound by the karmic law of cause and effect but a great master can repel the turmoil and let it spend its force within his body.

There have been saints recognized for having taken onto themselves the very diseases of the afflicted and thus relieving the sufferers. It is not necessary for one to suffer in order to heal by divine law, but only masters and remarkable Christ-like healers have knowledge of the sacred technique and are able to take on the spiritual, mental or physical sufferings of another to release them in their own physical bodies. Even though a pardon is granted from illness, the body is temporary and must perish in its full season. It does not matter what one’s blessing of healing or disorder is, the only way to lastingly wipe out unwanted karma is by God contact. Unfortunately the multitudes do not believe that real God contact is possible but knowledgeable disciples and devotees know better.

There are some credulous offenders who want to be free of suffering and consider it sufficient to seek confession from an everyday priest to receive divine amnesty through confession of their sinful evil deeds. There is mental consolation that confession confers on them and grants pardon, but the operation of the karmic laws are too subtle to be seen and they deem themselves to be forgiven. The selfish fear of consequences along with shallow prayer will not bring God randomly to counteract the just and truthful workings of the laws of cause and effect. Men would continue in error if permitted to do so without consequences. God cannot be moved by bartered deals of good behavior for past misconduct or sporadic emotions of praise. With heart felt divine love and devoted sincerity any sin and its consequences can be forgiven, not by mere supplication.

We have all heard the expression “get a life.” If one really wants a real life, one must try to find who his or her God-ordained guru is because no one can even casually meet their guru without good karma. We are told that during a period of psychological curiosity we should thoroughly investigate how God sends the seeking individuals ordinary teachers for addressing the awakening of souls. When the first yearning for truth comes, somebody offers you a book or recommends a teacher to awaken you, but when a soul is determined to know God, the Heavenly Father sends him a guru or an illumined soul who has cosmic consciousness and is one with him such as Jesus, Krishna, Buddha, Sri Ramakrishna, Paramahansa Yogananda and other great unknown masters who have come to earth throughout the centuries.

These masters have complete mastery of the self and no karma of their own. They come only to help the disciple to acquire the freedom from his own karma. It is extremely important to follow one master who has no karma and who can take a portion of our cross on his back. If the person you follow has not realized God he can not take it, he is only a school teacher and a person who learns from an ordinary teacher is called a student but a person who learns from a guru is called a chela or disciple. When the disciple faithfully applies and learns the teachings of a God-sent guru preceptor, he attracts the same guru in following incarnations until liberation is attained. The technique in finding your true spiritual guru not a self-appointed one is explained in the book “Autobiography of a Yogi” by Paramahansa Yogananda, a spiritual classic which explains this in detail. For more information on this subject read my article titled “Can You Break the Endless Cycle of Reincarnation with a Guru?”

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Are Scoliosis Exercises A Waste of Time?

As a clinician who uses natural methods to reduce and stabilize scoliosis the question of effectiveness as it pertains to scoliosis specific exercises is always a concern. The internet is riddled with advice, some good, and some not so good especially when it comes to curing ailments. There are a lot of so-called “experts” giving conflicting advice. Unfortunately this certainly holds true with the diagnosis and treatment of scoliosis especially adolescent idiopathic. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I feel the world has become a bit more hostile when it comes to what healthcare option is best for a certain condition. Scoliosis, because it affects children, comes with plenty of hostility when discussing what is best for a child diagnosed with this spinal deformity.

I remember when the Milwaukee brace was the standard of care for children with crooked spines. This was a rigid cast style brace with metal traction rods that pushed the skull away from the body to traction the spine. Orthotists (specialists in bracing) have since removed the traction component and now use just a plastic cast to force pressure on the spinal curvatures and claim to prevent progression, yet tens of thousands of kids are fused using titanium rods every year, most who were braced prior. Surgery is also a very controversial treatment option for scoliosis patients, mainly because of the magnitude of risk involved in fusing a large portion of a child’s spinal column; having referred scoliosis patients for surgery, I have seen the devastating consequences of this procedure when things do not go well, so it is not without justification.

When it comes to actually reducing curvature of the spine using any treatment option, the first thing that needs to be questioned is the length of time the result from treatment should last. If you perform an exercise designed to reduce your scoliosis, how long will the result from that exercise program last. Tractioning a patient for 5 days, taking an x-ray immediately afterward, and then marveling at the 30% improvement, does not provide evidence to claim that traction is a way to successfully treat scoliosis. The traction produces a temporary improvement but nothing that will last more than a few hours. Exercise is a very broad term that encompasses a wide variety of things. So when patients ask me if there are exercises they should be doing for their scoliosis, I usually respond with, “It depends on what you mean.” Exercises like, Pilates, yoga, cardiovascular, or weight lifting will have no ability to reduce or stabilize a child’s scoliosis. Sure there are few patients that did 5 years of Pilates or yoga and reduced their scoliosis by 5 or 10 degrees, usually adults, but this does not provide evidence that Pilates or yoga permanently reduces scoliosis.

The real issue when it comes to exercise induced changes and scoliosis is in understanding what type of exercise is being performed and to what capacity it can create spinal adaptation. For instance, I can do one directional exercises at the gym or stretch only to the left and it won’t give me scoliosis. I can position myself in a scoliosis type posture consciously and it won’t give me a 30 degree curvature. These types of conscious exercises lack the ability to influence spinal control centers that cause an adaptive response. These exercises can alter global posture and can influence the overall scoliosis measurements by approximately 5 degrees in larger curvatures but really lack the neurological punch necessary to actually reduce a scoliosis by more than a degree or two.

The complexity of spinal adaptation limits my discussion based on the educational background of most readers, not everyone will understand neuroscience and muscle physiology to warrant a scientific discussion. When simplified the spine is made up of layers of muscle that are of different mass and fiber type. The larger the muscle the more leverage it has and can move the body easily when contracted, these muscle groups are largely Type II fibers which are good for voluntary movement and also can be controlled by thought. These muscles have little to do with scoliosis as they are not asymmetrical in composition or function when examined in scoliosis patients. The deeper we get in examining spinal muscle layers we find that muscles get very small and their fiber type switches to Type I which is resistant to fatigue and controls the stability and alignment of the spine in gravity. These intrinsic deep layers are involuntary and controlled for the most part innately through righting reflexes in our anti-gravity mechanism of our brain.

So exercises that activate the intrinsic muscle layers and influence how the brain is programming these muscles will have a significant ability to cause spinal adaptation and alter static alignment of our spine. If I were able to perform an exercise that caused by brain’s anti-gravity system to learn a new alignment pattern it will have a lasting effect as it is involuntary, like our heart beat. This form of scoliosis specific exercise is termed auto response training. The clinician provides a piece of equipment that uses forces which push and pull against your body and hips while you are performing balance exercises usually on an unstable surface. Your body fights to not fall off, and in the process the brain initiates those deep intrinsic muscles to engage at a high level as they are responsible for stabilizing you and creating an alignment pattern that causes balance. If in the process of redistributing weight, your scoliosis gets smaller, than you have now influenced the ability to reduce your curvature in a lasting manner.

So to quickly summarize, exercises which do not engage the anti-gravity system and cause spinal adaptation will be a waste of time, if your goal is to reduce and stabilize your scoliosis.

Posted in Yoga0 Comments

Page 5 of 78« First...34567...102030...Last »