Little Value and Possible Harm in Taking Vitamins

“In the modern world, the abundant supply of a wide variety of foods makes it possible to satisfy virtually all nutritional needs by eating a healthful, balanced diet rich in vegetables, fruit, and protein sources. But based on the idea that more of a good thing is better, companies are now selling Americans $12 billion worth of vitamins a year. Many scientists and doctors, however, question the value of gobbling vitamins—and there is evidence that large doses of some vitamins may actually be harmful. A recent long-term study of more than 400,000 people concluded that ‘most vitamin supplements have no clear benefit’ and warned that excess vitamin E and beta-carotene may actually weaken the immune system’s ability to kill cancer cells. ‘The case is closed,’ the study authors wrote. ‘Enough is enough.’”

Source: “Too much of a good thing,” THE WEEK, July 18, 2014


5 Top Reasons to Pracitce Yoga at All Ages

1. Cognitive Resiliencyolder people doing yoga

Yoga’s process of drawing distinction between body parts, sensations and degrees of effort supports increased self-awareness, and balance. By coordinating different and often contrasting regions of the body, both sides of the brain communicate better, which could be linked to improved memory and decision-making skills.

Engaging in new physical routines builds and strengthens brain pathways. This action of neuroplasticity has been shown to increase intelligence.

2. Improved Circulation

Breathing practices alone will help to increase movement in the upper back and chest at a time in the aging process where this region is often stiff, dehydrated and compressed. Regular yoga practice can also act as a preventative measure for pneumonia in older populations that are especially vulnerable to this sometimes fatal condition.

When gravity has been pressing down on the sphincters, vessels and cavities of our bodies for decades, the fullness of circulation can deplete and pulmonary issues are more likely. With age and habit, connective tissues harden, leading to discomfort and inflammation.

The dynamic movement sequences in a typical yoga class cause pressure and release for the organs and connective tissues that hold the body together, thought to work like a gentle massage for these areas. Whenever we increase blood flow to an area of the body, that innate healing intelligence activates, improving our odds to fit off stress and its consequences.

3. Sustained Strength and Flexibility

With age, our joints and bones become more vulnerable to fractures and inflammation, but yoga’s signature method of low-impact, resistance training builds muscle tone and strength. Even a gentle practice with just a few weight-bearing poses can help retain strength and stave off issues related to arthritis. That adage about “being set in their ways” isn’t so far off in this case. Habits and a more sedentary lifestyle will atrophy muscle tissue, causing weakness and poor circulation. But, hatha yoga encourages the body to lengthen muscle fibers that are often short and stressed, increasing flexibility and also resiliency.

4. Improved Focus and Willpower

Concentrating is difficult enough in our busy, over-stimulated modern world.  When that kapha influence of laying low and keeping cool are the signature influences of this stage of life, willpower and the motivation to exercise or meditate can be daunting (especially if regular exercise and mindfulness work isn’t part of the daily routine). A regular hath yoga practice can quell the stiff inertia of immobility without the over-exertion of more athletic exercise programs.

5. To Maintain Well-being

Getting into the healthy habit of a regular yoga practice promotes socializing, sharing and community building. Mindfulness, resiliency in the body-mind, and honoring the aging process for what it is, all help to maintain wellness. Living a healthy, active life aids in increasing the feel-good hormones in the brain that elevate mood. Also, having cross-generations mingle together in the supportive environment of a yoga class sets a great model for younger generations who have outdated ideas about what it means to grow older.

Like wise-elders types – can dole out some pretty wonderful insights about growing up and getting closer to death. They talk about  how yoga makes them feel young and strong.

If we are really only as young as our spine is healthy, could you imagine what our world would be like if our oldest tribe members were backbending their way to the grave. 

Via Niki Saccareccia’s blog


4 Summer Time Health Tips

Cool off this summer with yoga, meditation and breathing techniques. Stay focused, healthy and happy with some simple practices.

4 Yoga Tips to Cool Off This Summer

One season flows into another – each one brings its set of changes. A yogi will simply look at the changes and act accordingly. Here are some best practices and tips to ensure the body and mind stay fit.

You could choose a favorite yoga tip and practice it regularly or even do all.

#1: The secret is in your breath

The next time you have a few minutes before you rush out for the day, try the body cooling pranayama.
1. Stick your tongue out and curl the sides of the tongue upward towards the center of the tongue.

2. Breathe in through the mouth, hold the breath and slowly exhale through the nose.

Repeat five to 10 times.

#2: Drink up

The more you hydrate yourself, the better. With 70 percent of water in your body, you’d better ensure there’s lot of liquid out there.

Besides drinking extra fluids, you could include the alternative nostril breathing  in your routine. Here’s how:

1. Close the right nostril with your right thumb.

2. Exhale completely through the left nostril and then breathe in through the left nostril.

3. Close the left nostril with your little ring finger and exhale through the right.

Repeat five to 10 times.

#3: Slow down on yoga poses

Yoga poses practiced gently and meditatively balance the mind and body and are beneficial at any time of the year.

Strenuous physical activity or yoga increases body temperature, best to avoid in summer and save for cooler months. Early in the morning or late in the evening are the best times to practice yoga postures during summer.

#4 Watch what you Consume

Reduce intake of spicy food, tea, coffee and sugar.MFM_FinalLogo_CMYK1

Avoid fatty food because it puts extra burden on the digestive system and heart.

Consume larger quantities of fruits, raw and cooked vegetables

Minimize consumption of non-vegetarian food.

Increase your intake of water add a option squeeze of lemon or lime with a pinch of salt.

Last but not least;

After a long day, do you want to unwind in the evening? Lie down near a wall – with your legs and feet up the wall in a comfortable manner.  Stay  for a 2 or 3 minutes.  Bring the legs down and rest in Shavasana.  These yoga poses are refreshing and restorative. How does this work? Since the heart is pumping out more blood, when the temperature is high, this yoga pose helps the heart by returning more blood back to the heart. (use gravity to bring the blood back to the heart.)


Beginning Yoga: Barriers of Entry

Yoga is very popular. It’s everywhere. It seems like everyone does it. And yet, if you don’t currently do yoga, it can be difficult and intimidating to begin.

What are the barriers of entry?

For starters, yoga poses are hard. The classical form of most poses is inaccessible to most people. We are constantly bombarded by images in the media of pretty people and celebrities doing flexible and strong poses. They make the most difficult poses look easy, enticing us to try this ancient discipline with it’s many benefits. However, our initial attempts rarely match our ideas about how yoga is “supposed” to feel or look.

We’ve all had this moment…

Meditation is also hard. Have you ever tried to sit still and find mental and emotional clarity and stillness? “My back hurts…I’m hungry…we are out of milk…” Sound familiar?

Yoga culture itself can be strange. Do you need tight and bright exercise clothing? Do you need to talk in new-agey self-help slogans? Do you need to wear beads around your neck and your wrists? Do you need to have an OM sticker on your car, or tattooed on your body?

According to the 2012 study “Yoga in America:”

  • 20.4 million Americans currently participate in yoga
  • Almost 105 million Americans are interested but have so far not participated, or have participated in the past, and would like to start again.

And yet, the benefits are many:

On its most surface level, yoga is a challenging and fun discipline that keeps the body fit.Noah in Mountain-Pose-1-e1401397539434
It regulates the internal organs and balances the circulatory, respiratory, and hormonal systems.

Yoga alleviates stress, aids in the healing of physical injuries and illnesses.

Yoga helps us to reclaim our general sense of well-being; physically, emotionally, and spiritual.

What are your barriers of entry? Or, what were your barriers of entry?

For more information on YOGAMAZÉ101: 40 Days of Yoga to Change Your Life, or to register for the course, go to: http://yogamaze.net/yoga-101-practice/

editation is also hard. Have you ever tried to sit still and find mental and emotional clarity and stillness? “My back hurts…I’m hungry…we are out of milk…” Sound familiar?

Yoga culture itself can be strange. Do you need tight and bright exercise clothing? Do you need to talk in new-agey self-help slogans? Do you need to wear beads around your neck and your wrists? Do you need to have an OM sticker on your car, or tattooed on your body?

According to the 2012 study “Yoga in America:”

  • 20.4 million Americans currently participate in yoga
  • Almost 105 million Americans are interested but have so far not participated, or have participated in the past, and would like to start again.

And yet, the benefits are many:

On its most surface level, yoga is a challenging and fun discipline that keeps the body fit.
It regulates the internal organs and balances the circulatory, respiratory, and hormonal systems.

Yoga alleviates stress, aids in the healing of physical injuries and illnesses.

Yoga helps us to reclaim our general sense of well-being; physically, emotionally, and spiritual.

What are your barriers of entry? Or, what were your barriers of entry?

– See more at: http://blog.yogamaze.net/?p=1#sthash.RDgppt6H.dpuf

What are the barriers of entry?

For starters, yoga poses are hard. The classical form of most poses is inaccessible to most people. We are constantly bombarded by images in the media of pretty people and celebrities doing flexible and strong poses. They make the most difficult poses look easy, enticing us to try this ancient discipline with it’s many benefits. However, our initial attempts rarely match our ideas about how yoga is “supposed” to feel or look.

– See more at: http://blog.yogamaze.net/?p=1#sthash.RDgppt6H.dpuf

What are the barriers of entry?

For starters, yoga poses are hard. The classical form of most poses is inaccessible to most people. We are constantly bombarded by images in the media of pretty people and celebrities doing flexible and strong poses. They make the most difficult poses look easy, enticing us to try this ancient discipline with it’s many benefits. However, our initial attempts rarely match our ideas about how yoga is “supposed” to feel or look.

– See more at: http://blog.yogamaze.net/?p=1#sthash.RDgppt6H.dpuf

What are the barriers of entry?

For starters, yoga poses are hard. The classical form of most poses is inaccessible to most people. We are constantly bombarded by images in the media of pretty people and celebrities doing flexible and strong poses. They make the most difficult poses look easy, enticing us to try this ancient discipline with it’s many benefits. However, our initial attempts rarely match our ideas about how yoga is “supposed” to feel or look.

– See more at: http://blog.yogamaze.net/?p=1#sthash.RDgppt6H.dpuf

Yoga is very popular. It’s everywhere. It seems like everyone does it. And yet, if you don’t currently do yoga, it can be difficult and intimidating to begin.

What are the barriers of entry?

For starters, yoga poses are hard. The classical form of most poses is inaccessible to most people. We are constantly bombarded by images in the media of pretty people and celebrities doing flexible and strong poses. They make the most difficult poses look easy, enticing us to try this ancient discipline with it’s many benefits. However, our initial attempts rarely match our ideas about how yoga is “supposed” to feel or look.

– See more at: http://blog.yogamaze.net/?p=1#sthash.RDgppt6H.dpuf

Yoga is very popular. It’s everywhere. It seems like everyone does it. And yet, if you don’t currently do yoga, it can be difficult and intimidating to begin.

What are the barriers of entry?

For starters, yoga poses are hard. The classical form of most poses is inaccessible to most people. We are constantly bombarded by images in the media of pretty people and celebrities doing flexible and strong poses. They make the most difficult poses look easy, enticing us to try this ancient discipline with it’s many benefits. However, our initial attempts rarely match our ideas about how yoga is “supposed” to feel or look.

– See more at: http://blog.yogamaze.net/?p=1#sthash.RDgppt6H.dpuf