shutterstock_344751932

Yoga really does work to calm & soothe (fact)

Ask anyone why they practice yoga or why they may be considering starting and you will get an array of responses from – “I was told it was good for me”, “keeping my sanity”, “staying fit”… the list goes on.

 

One thing that is definite is that the practice of yoga increases brain GABA levels. (GABA = gamma-aminobutyric acid – our calming transmitter).

 

In a 2007 study published by the Division of Psychiatry at the Boston University School of Medicine … (read more)

 

These kind of studies are wonderful especially as claims for most things need to be supported with evidence, plus, as a long-term practitioner and teacher, it’s really good to know of the wonderful findings that these studies produce.

 

With benefits such as:

  • reduced back pain
  • improved menopausal symptoms
  • reduced depression, anxiety & fatigue
  • changes in memory in older adults
  • reduced medication usage

 

The question is: Why is yoga not being used more widely in the medical profession? Why not prescribe yoga rather than resorting to writing a prescription and sending someone on their way? Yoga can help improve the quality of life of the whole person rather than treating just the symptom.

 

Some of the reasons why this isn’t happening is that regulation of yoga is somewhat mixed – like, who is really an authority on yoga? Plus, there’s inconsistencies in the training that is offered and there’s little or no necessity for ongoing CPD once qualified. All of which is a conversation for another day. Today I’m simply satisfied to know that what I have dedicated more than 25 years of my life to is solid and ethical.

 

[Photo: Shutterstock – used under licence]

Read More

overnight oats

Self-care: Before & After Birth

Taking time for ourselves is tricky, especially when we find ourselves multi-tasking most of the day. Considering our own needs can become something of a distant memory.

Set yourself up for the day with a really nutritious breakfast – it can be made in advance and the good thing is the quantities you make can keep you going for several days.

No more grabbing an unexciting piece of toast or a handful of biscuits, this will really boost you on many levels.

Overnight Oats:
I have to admit, I’m something of a late convert to this. I’ve seen so many images from friends on Instagram and the like and there was something that I simply couldn’t get my head around. It may have to do with being raised in a generation where oats were served hot – who knows?

So I’m writing this from a place of ‘wow, I didn’t realise it could be this easy and taste so good’.

I’m something of a visual person, very rarely using kitchen scales, so apologies for those of you who need exact measurements :)

You will need:

Oats (roughly 200g give or take!)
Milk / Soya / Almond (whichever is your dietary preference)
1/2 tin coconut milk (optional)
Flaked almonds (optional)
Ground chia seeds (optional)

Currently I’m adding milled flaxseed, almonds, brazil nuts, walnuts & co-enzyme Q10 to my mixtures (available from health food stores – the brand is Linwoods and they offer a wide variety of milled nuts / seeds)

Method: put all the dry ingredients in a bowl and stir to mix them thoroughly. Then add the wet ingredient(s) and stir in. You will want the mixture to be quite runny / gloopy as the oats and other ingredients will soak up the moisture. (Otherwise you will have a rather solid mixture the following morning – not so nice).

Cover and pop in the fridge. Takes about 3-4 minutes to make and you’re done. My mix (as I’m the only one eating it) lasts me about 3-4 days. So that’s a huge saving in time – plus – you have a healthy start which will help boost energy levels too.

Simply add a fruit compote or chopped bananas / other fruits each morning!

With thanks to Jenny Burrell Education for this gorgeous recipe.

Continue your self-care by joining one of my yoga classes this September:

Mum & Baby – held on Tuesday mornings 9.45 to 11.05am – this is a safe post-natal class for you with a strong focus on core and pelvic floor, finishing with a mini-baby-yoga session at the end.

Pregnancy Yoga – held Thursday evenings 7.30 to 9pm – safe, modified yoga to see you through your pregnancy and help you prepare for birth.

 

Picture: Google images / Pinterest

Read More

News, Views & Tips

Yoga and Meditation Boost Brain Function In Aging Adults New Study Shows

From Yoga U Online:

 

By: Grace B Bullock PhD, E-RYT500

 

Most of us experience some signs of decreased mental function as we age. Now, a new study published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease shows that weekly yoga and daily meditation practice may boost memory and reduce depression.

 

Although some loss in memory is common among aging adults, mild cognitive impairment, often characterized by problems with thinking, language, memory, and judgment, is considered a precursor to Alzheimer’s Disease and more severe forms of dementia. As such, there is increasing interest in developing programs that may stave off cognitive…[Read Original Article]

 

 

Read More