Salambasana Sirsasana (Headstand) is considered a restorative pose, and is typically performed towards the end of a yoga practice session. Inverting the body stimulates control mechanisms in the heart and the arteries that monitor and adjust blood pressure. Inversions can also positively affect the flow of the cerebrospinal fluid in the spinal cord and the brain.
The benefits of practicing this pose are many, after all this pose is known as the 'King of Yoga Asanas'. Below are some benefits:
This posture took me a long time to gain confidence in doing. I believe this posture to be one that is perfected over time, day by day, and should never be seen as an 'end achievement'. On the contrary, it is a foundation posture that prepares the body and mind for further poses. I personally love this pose as I find it very relaxing. Many of students laugh when i say 'relaxing', but trust me when I say I am 'fully present' when practicing a headstand as there is no way I could think of what Il be having for breakfast, or wearing that day, when I am in the pose!
Coming into Salambasana Sirsasana
When practicing headstand it is important to breakdown and build up to the posture with the time and respect your body deserves.
Start with practicing Dolphin pose. Setting up the posture is essential to build a strong foundation. If you think of Headstand as a tower, a strong tower needs a strong foundation! Kneeling down bring your elbows to the mat and cross your forearms to measure the distance between elbows with your hands. This is the same distance between your shoulders. Keeping your elbows at that distance, bring your hands together and interlock your hands keeping your pinkies on the mat. Tucking your toes, lift your knees aways from the mat and come on your feet. Bring your gaze to your clasped hands. This may be enough for a while until you master Dolphine.
If you feel you can walk your feet in towards the body, come back to your knees, and tuck your head between your hands, keeping your hands clasped and the pinkies on the mat. Place your head so that your crown is touching the mat but be sure not to place your body weight on to your head, but instead see if you can begin to activate your core muscles. Walk the feet in towards the body and bring one knee into the chest followed by the other so you become a little ball. If this is too much you can practice bringing one knee into the body and alternating. Once both knees are tucked begin by straightening up the legs together. Check that your shoulders are away from your ears, and that your pelvis is neatly stacked in alignment with your shoulders.
Anatomical description of Sirsasana
Shoulders and Arms
The triceps are active, stabilizing the forearms on the floor. The biceps contract the action of the triceps. The long heads of both muscles cross the shoulder joint and attach at the joint socket at the top and bottom. Contracting these muscles hold the head of the arm bone firmly in the joint socket. The anterior deltoids draw the shoulders over the head. The lower trapezius draws the shoulders away from the neck freeing the cervical spine. The infra spinatas and teres minor muscles that join the shoulder blades to the upper arm bones (the hummerus) turn its head into the socket, stabilizing it.
Muscles running the length of the spine lift the back into the pose and remain active to stabilize it. The rectus abdominus muscle, running from the chest to the public bone, activates to prevent the rib cage from bulging out. It works in the opposite direction to the erector spinae, which results in the two muscle groups forming a supportive sheath around the torso. The muscles in the lower back acts in concert with the psoas to support the lower back.
Pelvis and legs
The gluteus maximus in the buttocks extends the hips. The psoas balances the pelvis so that it is tipped neither forward or backward, but is straight up and down – like an upside down bowl. The tensor fascia lata along the outside of the hip works with the gluteus midius deep in the buttocks to turn the hips inward and keep the legs from splaying. This counteracts the gluteus maximus in turning the hips outward. The adductor group draws the thighs together. The quadriceps straightens the knees. The tibialis anterior muscle on the front of the shin bends the ankles. The peronei muscles along the outside of the lower leg turn the feet slightly outward.
The Key poses of Yoga: Your guide to Functional Anatomy in yoga, by Ray Long
Yoga Anatomy, by Leslie Kaminoff
Anatomy of Yoga, By Angus and Robertson
The YogaLife Symbol
The YogaLife symbol represents more than just a logo for me. We treat our centre as a retreat, a home away from home for everyone who visits, and our logo is a natural extension of the 'feeling' we want those who visit to feel. Below is some background to our symbol:
The practice of yoga is an art and science dedicated to creating union between body, mind and spirit. The foundations of yoga philosophy were written in The Yoga Sutra of Patanjali, approximately 200 AD in India. The core of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra is an eight-limbed path that forms the structural framework for yoga practice.
In brief, the eight limbs of Patanjali are:
1. Yama: Universal morality
The first two limbs that Patanjali describes are the fundamental ethical precepts called yamas, and the niyamas. These can also be looked at as universal morality and personal observances.
The Yoga Sutra describes what happens when these five behaviors outlined above become part of a person's daily life. Thus, the yamas are the moral virtues which, if attended to, purify human nature and contribute to health and happiness of society.
For example, I practice the Yamas in my practice by being compasionate about myself (ahimsa) for example not getting angry at myself for not being able to do a pose I could do the previous day, or before I birthed my child. I practice Satya by being aware of my inner dialogue of my mind, and try to be gentle with myself. Not pushing myself to do a pose by stealing (asteya) hurting another part of my body through force. I practice Brahmacharya by being conscious of what I eat, especially in the evenings before waking up early to practice yoga as not to affect my senses and overall practice in the morning. And I aim to practice aparigraha when I practice yoga (and during the rest of the day!) by focusing on what I am doing, rather than the final destination of the pose/outcome.
2. Niyama (Personal Observances)
For example, I practice the Niyamas in my practice by keeping my self and my mat clean (sauca) and also the way I think about my self and others. I aim at practicing Santosa as often as I can by seeing everything as an opportunity to learn, even obstacles such as not holding my balances, or twisting in a certain way. I use tapas to create heat in my body so that I can practice asanas that allow me to burn away the toxins from my body (and my mind!). In my practice svadhyaya by continuously studying and applying this to myself, using each experience as a way to learn so that I can better connect with my students. At times, when I finish my yoga practice I experience my understanding of Isvarapranidhana – as a full contentment with myself, where I am an ease with who I am and the universe I live in.
3. Asanas: Body postures
Asana is the practice of physical postures. It is the most commonly known aspect of yoga for those unfamiliar with the other seven limbs of Patanjali’s Yoga Sutra. The practice of moving the body into postures has widespread benefits; of these the most underlying are improved health, strength, balance and flexibility.
On a deeper level the practice of asana, which means "staying" or "abiding" in Sanskrit, is used as a tool to calm the mind and move into the inner essence of being. The challenge of poses offers the practitioner the opportunity to explore and control all aspects of their emotions, concentration, intent, faith, and unity between the physical and the ethereal body.
B.K.S. Iyengar says "The needs of the body are the needs of the divine spirit which lives through the body. The yogi does not look heaven-ward to find God for he know that He is within."
By practicing Asanas I have experienced improved overall health – physically I am stronger and flexible, but also mentally I have found a tool to aid with my stress, anxiety and depression. Whilst practicing asanas I have learned to become more accepting with myself and who I am, practicing to not judging myself harshly and in turn not judging others – overall deepening my spirituality of why I am here at this moment. Through the practice of asana I have made a deep connection between body, mind and spirit.
4. Pranayama: Breath Control
The key to fostering this expansion of awareness and consciousness begins with the control of breath (Pranayama). Patanjali suggests that the asana and the pranayama practices will bring about the desired state of health; the control of breath and bodily posture will harmonize the flow of energy in the organism, thus creating a fertile field for the evolution of the spirit. Pranayama controls the energy (prana) within the organism, in order to restore and maintain health and directs it through breath When the in-flowing breath is neutralized or joined with the out-flowing breath, then perfect relaxation and balance of body activities are realized.
Personally, through the practice of pranayama not only have I experienced physical benefits such as improved lung capacity, it has taught me to be present in the moment by appreciating the fact I am breathing, naturally, and am alive.
5. Pratyahara: Control of the senses
Pratyahara means drawing back, withdrawal or retreat. The word ahara means "nourishment"; pratyahara translates as "to withdraw oneself from that which nourishes the senses".
The term pratyahara also implies withdrawal of the senses from attachment to external objects or emotions. It can then be seen as the practice of non-attachment to sensorial distractions or emotions, as we constantly return to the path of self realization and achievement of internal peace. It means our senses stop living off the things that stimulate; the senses no longer depend on these stimulants and are not fed by them any more.
Patanjali says that the above process is at the root of human unhappiness and uneasiness. In a sense, yoga is nothing more than a process which enables us to stop and look at the processes of our own minds; only in this way can we understand the nature of happiness and unhappiness, and thus transcend them both.
Over the years of my practice I have come to understand that pratyahara dose not mean a withdrawal from other people/thoughts/experiences but rather an opportunity to connect within. There are certain asanas and pranayama exercises that deliberately cover the senses. For example Pindasana is when the knees cover the ears. Rather than seeing this as an exercise to cut off the exterior world and noises, it is a form to connect with in – to hear the heart beat and and ones breath, and be at ease even when breath can be difficult and focus within.
6. Dharana: Concentration and cultivating inner perceptual awareness
Dharana means "immovable concentration of the mind". The essential idea is to hold the concentration or focus of attention in one direction. The objective in dharana is to steady the mind by focusing its attention upon some stable entity/object. The particular object selected has nothing to do with the general purpose, which is to stop the mind from wandering - through memories or reflective thought - by deliberately holding it single-mindedly upon some apparently static object.
B.K.S. Iyengar states that the objective is to achieve the mental state where the mind, intellect, and ego are "all restrained and all these faculties are offered to the Lord for His use and in His service. Here there is no feeling of 'I' and 'mine'."
When I practice yoga, I practice so that I can manifest the best person I can possibly be to all humanity. At one level I may be practicing for myself, but at a deeper level I am practicing so that I can live in a contributive and compassionate way to help, support and encourage humanity.
7. Dhyana: Devotion, Meditation on the Divine
Dhyana means worship, or profund meditation. It involves concentration upon a point of focus with the intention of knowing the truth about it. The concept holds that when one focuses their mind in concentration on an object the mind is transformed into the shape of the object.
When one focuses on the divine they become more reflective of it and they know their true nature.
B.K.S Iyengar says "His body, breath, senses, mind, reason and ego are all integrated in the object of his contemplation – the Universal Spirit."
As we fine-tune our concentration and become more aware of the nature of reality we perceive that the world is unreal. Meditation becomes our tool to see things clearly and perceive reality beyond the illusions that cloud our mind.
At times when I practice I sense a deep connection with who I am and the universe I live in. I become appreciative of being alive, having a body that allows me to move, lungs that allow me to breath, a mind that allows me to think... and so forth, overall deepening my sense of appreciation and gratitude.
8. Samadhi: Union with the Divine
Samadhi refers to ‘union’ or ‘true Yoga’. There is an ending to the separation that is created by the "I" and "mine" of our perceptions of reality. The mind does not distinguish between self and non-self, or between the object contemplated and the process of contemplation. The mind and the intellect have stopped and there is only the experience of consciousness, truth and unutterable joy.
The achievement of samadhi is a difficult task. For this reason the Yoga Sutra suggests the practice of asanas and pranayama as preparation for dharana, because these influence mental activities and create space in the crowded schedule of the mind.
These eight steps of yoga indicate a logical pathway that leads to the attainment of physical, ethical, emotional, and psycho-spiritual health. Yoga does not seek to change the individual; rather, it allows the natural state of total health and integration in each of us to become a reality. Upon understanding all eight limbs of the path it becomes evident that not one element is elevated over another in a hierarchical order. Each is part of a holistic focus which eventually brings completeness to the individual as they find their connectivity to the divine.
Yoga Mala, by Sri K. Pattabhi Jois
Yoga Sutra, By Pantanjali
Hatha Yoga Pradipika, By Maharshi Swatmarama
Light on Yoga, by B.K.S. Iyengar
The Eight Limbs , The Core of Yoga, by William J.D. Doran
Let me know how you go and send me a photo of your Raw, bake-less creation! xx
Adho Mukha svanasana is an arm balance, a partial inversion, and a restorative pose. It can be an active pose for stretching and strengthening various regions of the body or a pose we return to for resting during practice.
Below are some benefits of this wonderful pose:
When coming into this pose it's important to keep the hands shoulder distance apart and the feet hip distance apart. Check that the outer sides of the feet are parallel to the sides of the mat. Draw the heals towards the mat, it is perfectly fine if they don't touch the mat - with practice and time this will naturally happen. Bring your awareness to your hands. Are they flat againts the mat? Check that your entire palm is resting firmly into the mat, finger by finger including the thumbs. Think about pushing the mat away from you. Externally rotate your shoulders outwards keeping your arms straight. Bring your gaze to your naval or toward that direction.
This posture is known as a resting posture in yoga. Having the head beneath the heart makes this inversion a wonderful, safe, sturdy pose to practice the many benefits listed above. Remember to practice pranayama here, consciously breathing in and out, equal inhalations and exhalations. And above all, don't forget to smile!
Anatomical Description of Adho Mukha Svanasana
Arms and Shoulders
Triceps straighten the elbows. The front (anterior) deltoids lift the shoulders and arms over head. The infra spinatus anterior minor roll the shoulders outwards. The rhomboids and middle trapezius draw the shoulder blades towards the midline. The lower trapezius draws the shoulders away from the neck.
The erector spinae arches the back slightly. The abdominals contract to draw the internal organs inward and flex the trunk.
Pelvis and Legs
The psoas, pectineus, and sartorius combine to flex the hips and the trunk. The quadriceps straightens the knees stretching the hamstrings, gastrocnemius, soleus muscles. The tensor fascia lata aids in extending the knees and combines with the frontal portion of the gluteus medius and rotates the thighs inwards. The tibialis anterior and extensor halluces draw the top of the foot upward, causing the heel to sink to the ground, thus grounding the pose.
The Key poses of Yoga: Your guide to Functional Anatomy in yoga, by Ray Long
Yoga Anatomy, by Leslie Kaminoff
Anatomy of Yoga, By Angus and Robertson
There are many important skills, duties and responsibilities involved in the role of a yoga teacher. The following section is an outline of the considerations to study when choosing a good yoga teacher:
A good yoga teacher dedicates ones life to yoga – by study, practice and teaching.
A good yoga teacher guides the student without too many cues and adjustments. The main focus of yoga practice is uniting the mind, spirit and body through the breath or prana. The teacher commands the room like a conductor conducting an orchestra, with a confident voice that inspires students to work for the 60-90 minutes of the class with passion, clarity, integrity, ease, grace, authenticity, compassion, equanimity and love.
Service to others
Being a good teacher is very different from being a good practitioner. A good yoga teacher is one who wants to be of service to others, often dedicating ones life to the propagation of a correct yoga practice.
Strong personal practice
A good yoga teacher has a strong personal practice. Teachers should have a solid relationship with their own practice, so that they understand why they are teaching yoga and what they have to offer. Having a strong personal practice also allows the teacher to relate first handedly to the students experience for example when practicing asana the teacher will know how to adjust a student, or give the right cues to allow the student to achieve the right alignment.
Sri Pattabhi Jois writes “Yoga is 99 % practice and 1% theory”
Always a student
A good yoga teacher must always have a teacher. The reason for this is that the student always remains humble. There is so much to learn in life, it would be very arrogant to say one has reached a ‘know it all’ stage. There is always more to learn, so one should be humble in one's knowledge, and always keep learning, studying with other teachers.
Buddhist Philosopher Daisaku Ikeda writes “Without a mentor [teacher] in life, one can easily succumb to folly. Without a mentor [teacher] in life, one can easily become self-centered, capricious and arrogant.”
To teach something, study is essential. A good yoga teacher spends a large part of their life studying in order to propagate the right teaching of yoga.
Kundalini Yogi Bhajan says "If you want to learn something, read about it. If you want to understand something, write about it. If you want to master something, teach it."
Personal integrity (Authenticity)
A teacher must walk the talk, and be authentic in all aspects of life to be the example for the student. In other words, a teacher should not only be a teacher inside the class room, the teacher must be a teacher outside the classroom as well. There is no denial that the teacher is human and not some supernatural being, so their life does represent that of the human experience. However, the teacher must take responsibility for their actions (specially of what is taught!) to be the example to the student and those in the direct environment of the teacher.
On a personal note I feel great appreciation to my teachers who not only guide me in my practice, but also provide great inspiration in the way they carry their life. Each day I determine to be the best possible teacher I can be, guiding my students with the utmost respect and care they deserve.
Kundalini Research Institute
Yogi Times, What I look for in a yoga teacher by Isa Israel
GOOD MORNING! Today I am getting the day started with some serious Beta-Carotene!
This morning’s Juice:
Some nutritional facts about our sweet and crunchy Carrot friends: Beta-Carotene is present in these roots, and provide a powerful anti-oxidant for the body. They have a high content of Vitamin-A which is awesome for eye health. It also is a great source of Vitamin-C which helps the body maintain healthy convective tissues, teeth and gums, protecting the body from diseases and harmful free radicals. It's many B-Complex groups of vitamins such as Folic Acid and B-6 are an important component in supporting the metabolism, and its high levels of minerals like copper, calcium and potassium helps cells and body fluids that help control the heart rate and blood pressure. Carrots are awesome for mummies-to-be (like myself!) so Im getting as much carrots into my diet as possible!
I love juicing my carrots for a sweet treat, and mix green apples for a bit of a citric kapow, grate into my salad or have chopped up and ready to go in the fridge for a crunchy, sweet and fresh treat. Enjoy!
Today I went out on a special shopping trip… I went to visit a wheatgrass farmer! I bought two trays full of grown green goodness, and a kilo of seeds and a few trays to start growing my own.
You may be wondering why I bought wheatgrass and not a new pair of shoes? But the fact is Wheatgrass is cool, and I will prove to you why. Wheatgrass increases red blood-cell count and lowers blood pressure. It cleanses the blood, organs and gastrointestinal tract of debris. Wheatgrass also stimulates metabolism and the body’s enzyme systems by enriching the blood. It also aids in reducing blood pressure by dilating the blood pathways throughout the body. It stimulates the thyroid gland, correcting obesity, indigestion, and a host of other complaints. Its a magic bullet guys. Chop a handful and throw it in your juicer. Research suguests first thing in the morning when you break-fast gives the best results, but any time is good in my books.Just remember the nutritional content of the grass diminishes every time it grows. There is diferent studies that suguest only using the first sprout, to some that say you can use up to five times.
Let me know about your wheatgrassing experience!
Lots of love,
Want a yummy (and antioxidant rich) smoothie that will have all your taste buds dancing the cha cha cha?! Try my new (and naughty) Berry Choco Loco!
- 1 cup of frozen berries
- 1 cup of almond milk
- 1 tea spoon of coconut oil
- 1 tea spoon of cocoa powder
- 1 tea spoon of honey
= I'm sexy and I know it.
(You can add some other goodies, like chia seeds, sunflower seeds, shreded coconut..)
Let me know how you go!
The Shoulderstand Asana (Sarvangasana)
One great posture for extending the lower back is a the Shoulderstand. Shoulderstand (sarvangasana) is often referred to as the “queen of all yoga postures,” with Headstand being deemed the “King.”
The Benefits of Shoulderstand (sarvangasana)
It is said that some yoguis just practise this posture throughout their entire life. The pose can be held from 30 seconds to 30 minutes.
This posture is said to aid in curing the common cold to reducing constipation. This posture is therefor a ‘cure -all’ for most common ailments and should be practiced every day. Below are some of the benefits:
1. Balances hormones: Sarvangasana balances the thyroid and hypothalamus glands, allowing for proper hormone production.
2. Strengthens the heart and respiratory system: Due to the fact that the body is in an inverted position, shoulderstand reduces strain on the heart. Healthy blood can easily circulate around the neck and chest, and as a result, people with asthma, bronchitis and throat ailments may get relief.
3. Combats the common cold: Continued practice of this asana eradicates common colds and other nasal disturbances.
4. Soothes the nervous system: This pose has a soothing effect on the parasympathetic nervous system. Therefore, those easily irritated, or prone to anger or nervous breakdowns can be stabilized and less reactive to life’s circumstances.
5. Reduces constipation: The change in gravitational pull on the body affects the abdominal organs so that the bowels move freely and constipation is relieved.
6. Increased strength and flexibility: Shoulderstand strengthens the upper body, legs and abdomen. The posture opens the chest and stretches the neck, shoulders and upper back muscles.
7. Decreases varicose veins: Shoulderstand assist in draining old blood from the legs, pelvis and abdominal area, therefore reducing varicose veins.
8. Stimulates the Visuddah (Throat Chakra): Shoulderstand ignites the fifth chakra, which is associated with creativity and self-expression. When this chakra is open, our negative experiences can easily be transformed into wisdom and learning.
9. Reduces wrinkles: Due to increased blood flow to the face, wrinkles can be reduced. In addition, many practitioners notice an improved complexion with a consistent shoulderstand practice.
10. Aides in restful sleep: Shoulderstand promotes deep sleep and can assist in providing rest for people with insomnia.
Let me know what you think about this pose, I would love to hear from you.
For thousands of years, Tulasi also known as The Holy Basil, has been used in India as a medicinal plant, and is an important symbol of Hinduism. Commonly used in Ayurveda, its powerful medicinal properties aid to cure common ailments. Tulasi is mentioned in the Charaka Samhita, an ancient Ayurvedic text. Marked by its strong aroma and astringent taste, it is regarded in Ayurveda as a kind of “elixir of life” and believed to promote longevity.
The leaves are a nerve tonic and also sharpen the memory. They promote the removal of the catarrhal matter and phlegm from the bronchial tube. The leaves strengthen the stomach and induce copious perspiration. The seeds of the plant are mucilaginous. Overall providing great healing powers when suffering from a Fever, Common Cold, Throat pains, Coughs, Respiratory Disorders… but it doesn’t stop there, studies show how it help get rid of Kidney Stones and heart disorders. If the plant is grinded and use as a paste it can aid Insect bites, Mouth infection (such as ulcer – a few leaves can be chewed) and Skin disorders. A few drops of the Basil juice every night can aid for those who suffer from sore eyes and night-blindness.
I buy my Tulsi in tea bags from my health food shop and have experienced great benefit with managing stress, and going to sleep at night. I feel more ‘balanced’ after a cup of Tulsi tea... one of those feeling that is hard to explain until you try it for yourself.
Have you had any experience with this plant? If so please share with me!
IMPORTANT: These are only general guidelines. It is always better to see a doctor depending upon the intensity of the case. The views expressed above are entirely those of the author.
Here is a super easy, delicious and nutritious juice that will help cleanse your kidneys, hydrate your sexy organs and make your skin glow… Are you ready?
2 x green apples
1/4 of a watermelon = savasana!
Tips: Watermelons are low in calories (aprox 30 calories per 100g), are rich in electrolytes and are an excellent source of Vitamin A. Thats not all our watermelon friend offers, it is also rich in anti-oxidant flavonoids like lycopene, beta-carotene, lutein, zeaxanthin and cryptoxanthin. Research shows these antioxidants offer protection against colon, prostate, breast, endometrial, lung, and pancreatic cancers. Phyto-chemicals present in watermelon like lycopene and carotenoids have the ability to help protect cells and other structures in the body from oxygen-free radicals. Juice the watermelon rinds too! Research show how watermelon rinds contain citrulline, which your clever body turns into arginine. Higher levels of arginine can help improve blood flow and other aspects of our cardiovascular health.
Let me know what you think! ENJOY!!
Oil pulling is an Ayurvedic remedy that has been used for hundreds of years. It involves ‘swishing oil in the mouth’ and then spitting it out. Oil pulling can improve the condition of the gums and teeth by reducing dental bacteria, viruses and fungi – which in turn fosters overall health. Ayurveda practioners swear by it, claiming it can heal diseases from common colds to cancer. The theory behind this is bacteria such as Candida or Streptococcus which is commonly found in the mouth, can multiply and secrete toxins into the bloodstream, thereby causing inflammatory disorders like heart disease.
Some benefits of Oil Pulling
How to do Oil Pulling
Use one table spoon of cold pressed oil (preferably coconut oil, but sesame seed oil or sunflower oil is effective too) and rinse mouth for 15 to 20 minutes. Ideally this should be done on an empty stomach in break-fast and then spat out. It is important not to gargle the oil in the throat. Once finishing, it is recommended to rinse the mouth with water and a bit of sea salt and then proceed to brushing teeth, flossing… whatever your morning routine.
I have been trying this on and off, but for the past week have done it every day religiously. I find my teeth are whiter, my skin is shinny and I have been sleeping better. This is such a cheap and harmless remedy, why wouldn’t you give it a go!? The results will speak for themselves.
Let me know how you go! Or if you have any experience of having done Oil Pulling please share, I would love to hear about it!
Love and light,
Ginger has become a family friend in my household. I love its unique spicy – zingy taste. I brew it in an infusion on most winter mornings, or make ginger ice tea in summer, juice it with my veggies (ginger, apple and carrots – hello!) and like cooking with it in my stir fries.
Ginger becomes my best friend when I’m battling a cold or overdone it in Bikram and feel nauseous, thanks to its unique healing properties.
The healing property of ginger comes from the volatile oils, such as gingerols, that are responsible for its strong taste. The rhizomes from younger ginger plants are generally used for cooking because the older the plant is, the more essential oils are present and the stronger the flavor. Rhizomes from older plants are harvested for medicinal uses.
It has been used in Ayurveda for thousands of years thanks to its incredible health benefits. Fresh ginger is used for asthma, coughs, colic, heart palpitations, swellings, dyspepsia, loss of appetite and rheumatism, while the dried root is used to “strengthen” the stomach.
Benefits of Ginger
Ginger is available all year around. If peeled it can stay unrefrigerated for 3 weeks, or you can freeze it and go using it as you please for up to 6 months i.e. grate it, cut parts off etc.
Why not try a cool summer drink, by cooling your brewed ginger tea, with some squeezed lime and a few drops of stevia to sweeten.
How do you use ginger?
IMPORTANT: If you are taking medications, consult a health practitioner, as all herbs can interact with other medications.
Spirulina is the best present we can give our beautiful bodies. It is considered to be the best supplement, and in my opinion the ONLY supplement we should supply our system with. Spiriluna is a microscopic aquatic plants called blue-green micro algae that have inhabited the earth for several million years. In it’s natural state, Spirulina has been discovered in the lakes and waterways of Africa, Central America and South America and has a huge array of benefits.
The Key benefits of Spirulina are:
It also helps in treating and even reversing the following conditions:
Spirulina is particularly useful for:
Spirulina contains a high amount of protein, vitamins, and minerals. It is about 60-70% protein, which is greater gram for gram than both red meat and soy. It also contains all of the essential amino acids, which makes it a complete protein; this is not very common in plant foods. It contains a large amount of Vitamin B12, which is very difficult to find in other plant foods.
Spirulina will be your best buddy, making sure you are nourished and healthy increasing your energy levels, and making your skin glow! I use 100% Organic Spirulina 500mg Tablets by Synergy Natural, and take on average 6 per day (2 tablets 3 times per day). But you can also get Spirulina in powder form and put a few spoonfuls in your smoothies and juices, or sprinkle on your salads, veggies, soups… up to you!
Spirulina really works from the inside out!
Chlorophyll is what plants (and trees!) produce in response to the sun … yep, as taught in Biology101. Chlorophyll is a green compound that is originally created by plants which helps plants absorb elements including sunlight to perform photosynthesis. Photosynthesis is a process where plants take sunlight and turn it into food and energy. It transforms carbon dioxide and water and results in glucose and oxygen. Chlorophyll has a green pigment and it is this compound that gives plants there green colour. The richer the colour the more chlorophyll it has!
By consuming more Chlorophyll, it supports your body to alkalize your bloods PH level, and helps to rebuild and replenish your red blood cells, boosting your energy and increasing your wellbeing almost instantly by helping the circulation of oxygen through your body! Pretty amazing huh? Well wait, theres more.. Chlorophyll has the power to regenerate our bodies at the molecular and cellular level and is known to help cleanse the body, fight infection, help heal wounds, and promote the health of the circulatory, digestive, immune, and detoxification systems.
Chlorophyll consumption increases the number of red blood cells and, therefore, increase oxygen utilization by the body. Chlorophyll also reduces the binding of carcinogens to DNA in the liver and other organs. It also breaks down calcium oxalate stones for elimination, which are created by the body for the purpose of neutralizing and disposing of excess acid. I use Liquid Chlorophyll, which has a ‘Fresh Spearmint Flavour’ and its so yummy! I strongly recomend you go to your local health food shop and ask for it. I am completly addicted to it, I crave it in the morning!!! So drink up and be a tree!
Sodium Laureth Sulfate (SLS) or Sodium Lauryl Ether Sulfate (SLES), is a detergent and surfactant found in many personal care products (soaps, shampoos, toothpaste etc.). SLES is an inexpensive and very effective foaming agent. SLES, SLS and ALS are used in many cosmetic products for their cleansing and emulsifying properties. They behave similarly to soap in the way that they lather a lot and produce a lot of “bubbles”.
When I first herd about this, my first reaction was “well if a shampoo doesn’t ‘bubble’ it isn’t cleansing?” But was informed that shampoo does not ‘need’ to bubble to cleanse. I then realised how for some reason ‘supermarket shampoo brands’ advertisements had made me believe throughout all my life through adds on TV, magazines etc. that when you clean your hair it should produce allot of bubbles!! OK, Why? I don’t know – this blog is not about multinationals invisible hand and conspiracy theories, but what we can talk about is what SLS is and why this should be avoided.
First of all, I dare you, no double dare you to go to the supermarket and find a shampoo and conditioner without SLS… if you find one please leave me a comment below and let me know. So far, I’ve searched here in Australia, and have had no luck.
Not only does SLS cause hair loss and hair thinning, there are also studies that show it is cancerogenous. Yep! SLS is used to cleanse your hair from the natural produced scalp grease, once lathered it is washed away down the pipe with water. This is good right? (Who wants grease!? Grunge is sooo 90′s!) However part of SLS is left on your hair and scalp. Note that SLS is the same ingredient used to cleanse garage floors to wash away.. You guessed it! Grease! Researches suggest that follicles die when exposed to the acidic nature of SLS for long enough and/or in enough quantity. But as always, I recommend you go out and make your own conclusion.
I use Shampoo and Conditioner from Bilogica, an Australian Brand which uses coconut oils and I am in love. Not only is it great in price, my hair feels better than ever, and I can buy it at my local health food store where other great products like Karpati Hair are sold with no SLS!
Happy hair cleaning!
Love, Lizette x
Its recipe time! My all time favourite blend, specially for Break-Fast (important to empathise that it’s Breaking the Fasting you have done since your last meal the night before, so your body is more prone to absorbing anything you put in it) I call it...*drumrolls* “The Green Diva”:
- 2 stalks of celery
- 1 medium cucumber
- 1 apple
- 1 pear
- 1 kiwi
All blended up = Heaven
This gives me enough for two full cups. Enjoy!