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By Robin Silver

A wonderful and natural approach to cultivate balance within oneself is through the movement of dance. Let’s establish that humans are, in fact, animals. Play is a natural part of the animal experience, from dogs, to elephants, to us. The rigors of modern life often take away from us a relationship with our animalistic sides, and the opportunity for playfulness and fun is often buried beneath stress. In an attempt to tap into this natural wildness, and fulfill this deep primal need, many have turned to conscious dance as a means to connect with the deeper self.

Conscious dance is a moving meditation which engages our imagination, as well as our bodies. Attending a 5rhythms or ecstatic dance event is not just exercise, but an exercise in moving meditation and mindfulness. Cell phones and talking are forbidden on the dance floor, keeping everyone involved in the present moment. 

Three of the most popular “styles” of conscious dance are 5rhythms, Ecstatic Dance, and Dancing Freedom. What separates these practices from more traditional dancing–whether classes or socials–is that there are no steps to memorize. The focus is, instead, on losing oneself in the music, and tapping into your own inner creativity, expression, and sensuality.

Another important aspect of conscious dance is its emphasis on healing. By creating a safe space for creative self expression and improvisation, people can reinforce their mind-body connection, which is vital to maintaining physical and mental health. Much like yoga, conscious dance inspires a meditative state and improves mental acuity, effective in all age groups, which can potentially reduce the risk of dementia and muscular atrophy. The most effective styles of dance for these benefits are those where you frequently make split-second decisions, as opposed to rote memorisation and repetition.

Dance is a great healer. Losing oneself in the music and the moment can serve as a way to change your emotional state, or as a diversion or escape from pain and stress. Conscious dance specifically can be a safe space to move through life stressors. While, to the uninitiated, each style may seem the same as the next, and they do all share an ethos; they are distinct in the specifics of their practices.

 

Freeing Your Spirit

5RHYTHMS

The oldest and most well established of these practices is called 5rhythms, which was founded in New York City in 1977 by Gabrielle Roth. Each class follows a set ‘map,’ with its own specific rhythm evolutions. Though it does apply a format the nature of the format is not steps, but modes of engagement. The most common ‘map’ is called “Waves,” which teaches embodiment of The Five Rhythms. 

The first rhythm, known as ‘Flowing,’ is all about surrender and flow, allowing your body to move freely in the manner of its nature. This is much like a warm up, to get the blood circulating naturally through the body. The second rhythm, ‘Staccato,’ is considered the “fierce teacher of boundaries,” in which one addresses the full stop and freeze, engaging a completely separate part of the neural system of response with flash decision making regarding movement. The third rhythm, ‘Chaos,’ is where the dancers fully release and journey into the unknown with absolute freedom, moving at their own pace and with a release of conscious thought. The fourth rhythm, ‘Lyrical,’ is about coming out of chaos and a metaphorical rebirth, where energy is directed specifically for a goal, typically that of ease. Finally, there is ‘Stillness,’ which is actually more of a slowing down, than a lack of movement, with a focus on slow, tai chi-style movements to calm the system and rest into a meditative state, much like Yin Yoga practice and even some forms of Shavasana at the end of a yoga class. 

Alternative ‘maps’ delve deeper into emotions, life cycle, trauma, and the psyche.

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Freeing Your Spirit

ECSTATIC DANCES

Ecstatic Dance became popular in Austin, Texas in the 1990s, and from there spread around the United States, and to over 30 countries around the world. It is an extremely free-formed practice, less formally structured than 5rythyms. Many sessions include a warmup, opening circle (meditative intensions), and closing circle (meditative closure). Often a designed DJ’ed set is implemented to inspire work in a “wave of energy.” Ecstatic dance often appears to live in the rhythm of ‘Chaos,’ which makes it an excellent way to burn through excess energy, aggression, and frustration. 

Freeing Your Spirit

DANCING FREEDOM

Dancing Freedom takes most of its concepts from Yogic and Buddhist traditions, meaning that is less of a dance practice as a lifestyle choice. The practice focuses on the seven “spheres of activation” called the Seven Fold Peace: peace in body, heart, mind, family, community, and ecology, as well as peace with the infinite.

Dancing Freedom will often include community aspects regarding meditation, community meals, mindfulness workshops, yoga, and sustainability. Dancing freedom classes tend towards a guided meditation methodology which allows a freedom from choice very akin to the meditative qualities of tai chi. The overall intention is to cultivate balance in life as a whole.

For those seeking enlightenment that doesn’t require so much sitting, conscious dance fulfils a spiritual need, as well as the physical, mental, and social benefits. At Wild Tribe we take a holistic outlook on life along the same lines as the practice of Dancing Freedom, 5rhythms and Ecstatic Dance. At our superfood cafe it’s easy to sit down and chat with the ‘like-minded’ on ways to improve on the self, and the world at large. Come visit us at Natural Detox Center and chat with our practitioners about ways to improve energetic and physical flow through diet, various meditation practices, and health treatments such as TCM cupping and massage.

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By Larisa Segida 

Are you tired of all diets? Are you fed up with boring lectures, palate books, and wordy online posts on how you are supposed to look and what you should eat? No doubt that you just want to be happy with your comfort food and moderate exercise. Why crazily burn yourself in gyms and torture your mouth with tasteless raw greens? To cultivate balance in body and mind does require some effort, but perhaps it doesn’t need to be a battery of discomfort, but instead a natural approach to input versus output

 

Ketogenic Diet

FAT, PROTEIN, AND CARBS

Fortunately, you live at the right time! Almost 100 years ago, Russell Wilder introduced the ketogenic diet to the world. In a nutshell, it is a diet which gives you great energy, health, movement and intensity, by eating a great amount of fat, a defined amount of protein, and a minimum of carbs. 

The scientist successfully treated children’s epilepsy with this natural approach to diet, but the pharmaceutical progress swept the treatment away with effective antiepileptic drugs, and the diet became unfairly forgotten at the end of the last century. 

However, history repeats itself. Like the Phoenix, the diet was reborn, and for the last 15 years, it has been demonstrating its beauty to all contemporary human beings who are obsessed with health, longevity, and their hot look. 

Ketogenic Diet

CAUSE AND EFFECT

Let’s look at how this magical ketogenic diet works, and what happens when the fat-protein-carb formula is applied with a balanced approach

When you eat daily mostly fatty foods (definitely, you love them, as they are yummy, warming, and homey!), one gram of protein per pound of your lean body mass, and less than 35 grams of carbs, your body will respond in one of three ways:

  1. You will lose weight if you subtract 250-500 calories from your diet;
  2. You will gain weight if you add 250-500 calories to your diet; and
  3. You will be in optimal shape when you eat enough calories through a great amount of fat, a defined amount of protein, and a minimum of carbohydrates. 

If you still doubt it, here is a bit of biochemistry for you. When your body has no free carbs, your liver breaks down your fat, so that you can get the energy to live and enjoy life. This biochemical process is called ketogenesis. It produces ketones that supply energy to certain organs and particularly to your brain. The input versus output ratio takes in the fat and outputs the energy.

Ketogenic Diet

TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE

Sounds like the best diet ever! Who doesn’t like fatty-juicy meals? Miracles are wonderful but they won’t happen without your effort. There are two key rules: 

  1. You must watch how much fat, protein, and carbs you consume. 
  2. You must live in motion

Remember, what Heraclitus said? “Walking is the best medicine.” The ketogenic diet is amazing as you don’t need to exhaust yourself in high-intensity activities because a lack of carbs in this diet won’t help you to restore your energy every 10 seconds. 

When you eat a high-carb diet, your muscles rely on glucose for energy–every 10 seconds on average–but in your keto diet, the speed of energy restoration is slower. You will have to exercise 2 minutes before your body shifts from the glycolytic pathway, which burns carbs, to another metabolic pathway that burns ketones. This diet can limit your performance in high intensity achievities such as swimming or soccer, and can also support moderate activities such as yoga. For each body type an adjustment can be made on input versus output to adapt to your physical lifestyle preferences. No one’s saying you need to get rid of soccer. But if that’s a once a week, or once every two week event, and the rest of the time you’re on the yoga train, a specialized approach might improve your overall health. 

At Visit Natural Detox Resort we have many natural detox packages and practitioners to choose from who can help you create an input versus output diet — amongst others — that is right for you.

Ketogenic Diet

BRING ON THE BACON

Do you wonder what lovely meals you can have in this diet? Meat (bacon, pork sausages, smoked turkey, butter chicken), fish (fried or smoked salmon or other fish), eggs, butter-sautéed vegetables, high-fat dairy (cream-cheese, homogenized milk, sour cream, cottage cheese), and low-carb protein powder shakes should be your daily friends. Magically this diet somehow maintains to cultivate balance.

Let’s imagine one day on this fabulous ketogenic diet. Breakfast is the king of the day as you fasted the whole night. Spoil yourself with four pan-fried slices of bacon, scrambled eggs with onion and cream, and unsweetened herbal tea or coffee with 2 tbsp heavy cream (500 calories). Remember, it’s the start of your day. You are going to burn all that fat by simply being awake and engaging in natural movement. At lunch, pamper yourself with grilled chicken, 3 cups green salad sprinkled with 2 tbsp olive oil and cheese, 1 celery stock with Ranch dressing, and unsweetened sparkling water (800 calories).

You’ll notice we got a little leaner on the type of protein. Chicken has less fat content than bacon. Most people tend to exercise less in the afternoon, meaning that it will be easier for their body to digest simpler protein instead of fat protein. Dinner is the queen of the day as you deserve the best joy after all your hard work is done. Indulge in grilled salmon, 2 cups spinach sautéed in butter and cheese, Romaine lettuce with high-fat dressing, and unsweetened herbal tea or coffee with 2 tbsp heavy cream (600 calories). Again, easy to digest butter, and notice the fish – an extremely easy protein with almost no fat content to break down. Total: 1900 calories!

Visit our Natural Detox cafe – Wild Tribe and let our chefs compose true excellence for your palate, body and mind. 

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By Lissette Maduro

“Death is not the greatest loss in life. The greatest loss is what dies inside us while we live.” This Norman Cousin quote caught my attention because, as a consummate professional, there was a nagging element of truth to it. It was easy to recognise why, since navigating daily conundrums, days filled with professional challenges, and little downtime, had finally taken their toll. While I was still going through the motions of existence, the energy needed for a blissful life was quietly passing away. I lacked, in short, what I believed was emotional energy, buried beneath the weights of life, to really care so much about anything real. 

 

Revitalise Energy

WHAT IS ENERGY?

Just as quickly as the predicament was discovered, however, a plan of recovery was hatched. Within a relatively short time frame (considering it is a resurrection miracle), I set out to uncover how to revitalise my emotional energy in 30 days. I needed a reset.

It seemed like an uncomplicated quest, but I promptly stumbled on the need to define the energy in question. I understood emotional connectivity, but I’d really only heard about emotional energy in passing. I didn’t know what energy really was. An online search landed me on Dictionary.com which describes energy as “the strength and vitality required for sustained physical or mental activity.” Energy, it turns out, comes in multiple forms and is derived from diverse sources because our bodies are made up of different forms of energy. 

For instance, thermal energy regulates our body temperature, and mechanical energy facilitates movement. While these forms of energy are essential for maintaining life, I am pretty sure their absence was not what Norman Cousin alluded to in his quote; he referenced an energy that persists while being insufficient to affect life. 

That led me to explore other forms of energy housed in the body–specifically physical, mental, and emotional energy; aha! A singular definition of physical energy is difficult to pinpoint. The term can be used to include: being capable of activity, being in good health, or it can describe how someone carries themselves through life: ambitious or driven, to name a few options.

Mental energy is also not easily defined. In a 2007 PubMed Article, research psychologist HR Lieberman notes that “mental energy can also be defined as the ability or willingness to engage in cognitive work,” and he states that, “factors such as drugs, foods, sleep deprivation, and disease states can affect mental energy.” 

What I found most interesting was what turned up on emotional energy. According to Dr. Kim and Dr. Hill, authors of the bestselling book The Happy Map: Your roadmap to happiness, “the emotional brain is considered the executive power of the brain, and influences all decision-making, thought processes, memories, and present experiences. Your ability to understand, deal with, and effectively use your emotional energy is vital to your happiness levels.” 

Emotional energy is apparently a big deal, and on reviewing it I stumbled on to something called Jing, described as the basic energy reserves of the body; the substance that makes us who we are. These were the strength and vitality sources that required rejuvenation, and fortunately research indicated that it could be done in 30 days with a natural approach.

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Revitalise Energy

NATURAL RESET

While there are many available products boasting the ability to improve energy via specific formated nutrient dense super-foods and vitamins, the natural approach appears to be best. Researchers and physicians agree that the optimum strategy for increasing physical and emotional energy is diet modification. A plant-based healthy diet of natural nutrient-dense foods along with adequate water consumption is the recommended effective treatment from numerous studies on improving overall health. Paleo, Mediterranean, and Ketogenic diets have also shown noteworthy improvements.

A natural balanced approach for bolstering mental and emotional energy combine therapies from the emerging fields of holistic and integrative medicine such as homeopathy, aromatherapy, acupuncture, and Reiki, along with nature immersion exercise, and diet changes. 

Benefits will be observed with all the techniques above, but the most important natural way of harnessing energy is to free up the emotions. Remember, the emotional brain controls everything, so removing emotional restrictions releases emotional energy–naturally. Things that reinvigorate emotional energy include making time for self-reflection a priority, restructuring your workload, eliminating worry and stress by confronting issues when they occur, implementing me-time, and taking nature walks, or indulging in artistic hobbies that fuel creativity and inner joy.

At the Natural Detox Center we have the space, time and energy to help you engage in good mindfulness practices to encourage emotional energy

Life happens daily and quickly so it is always a good idea to enjoy it thoroughly. With these simple reminders, you too can jumpstart your revitalisation:

  • Make the switch to a healthy diet, and drink lots of water
  • Get active: incorporate movement, and add exercise to your daily regimen 
  • Tackle mental obstacles: work through professional challenges and initiate anti-stress measures
  • Clear out emotional clutter: let go of past hurt or pain; be the authentic version of yourself while pursuing the things that really matter to you 
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by Nancymarie

Is your Instagram flooded with people who have dramatically transformed their health and bodies? Have you been working for a similar body, energy, and glow to no avail? Have you pondered whether it is your age or your metabolism, or if mother nature herself has a longstanding vendetta against you? Do not fret! Your body just may need a little more help due to years of stagnation, toxic foods, and pollution.

 

Weight Loss Myths

THE IMPORTANCE OF METABOLISM 4

It is a long established fact that a reader will be distracted by the readable content of a page when looking at its layout. The point of using Lorem Ipsum is that it has a more-or-less normal distribution of letters, as opposed to using ‘Content here, content here’, making it look like readable English. Many desktop publishing packages and web page editors now use Lorem Ipsum as their default model text, and a search for ‘lorem ipsum’ will uncover many web sites still in their infancy. Various versions have evolved over the years, sometimes by accident, sometimes on purpose (injected humour and the like).

Detox

CLEANSING WITH TEA

Your body may be bogged down from the choices of your past and may need a reset. Tea is a great option for doing just that. Our bodies are able to naturally detoxify themselves. But if you have a history of poor nutrition, lack of sufficient hydration, and have a build up of environmental pollutants, this can be a difficult job. This is where teas can help.

Drinking tea can do everything from cleansing the body and supporting liver function to purging toxins and increasing energy, thereby promoting weight loss. Not only delicious, detox teas are a healthy way to completely transform your body and mind from the inside out. Teas are abundant in polyphenols and antioxidants, which protect your inner and outer tissues from harmful toxins and disease, while promoting strength and health. So, when you detox using teas, you are consuming nutrition that supports the natural functions and balance of your body.  

Tea

THE BENEFITS

The caffeine found in tea is not like that in an energy drink or that cup of Joe one yearns for in the morning. While naturally caffeinated, drinking them can increase energy and focus. Tea also contains the amino acid, L-theanine, which promotes calmness and a relaxed state. This means no jitters or mid-day crash. The energy you gain from tea is balanced. Though caffeine levels differ by tea, overall a cup of tea has one-half to two-thirds less caffeine than a cup of coffee. If you want less caffeine in your tea, decrease the steeping time and use cooler water when brewing, as it will draw out less caffeine from the leaves. Alternatively, choose a lighter tea, like white.

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Four

TYPES OF TEA

Generally speaking, there are four types of teas, three of which are true teas from the camellia sinensis plant. They are: black, white, and green. The fourth, red tea, comes from the South African rooibos plant, not actually a tea yet brewed and consumed for its soothing and medicinal qualities just the same. Tea leaves are oxidised (wilted and fermented) differently, producing their unique colours, strengths, and flavours.

#1

BLACK TEA

Oxidised the longest and giving it that dark rich colour and bold versatile flavour, black tea is processed in one of two ways: one, the orthodox method, where it is laid out to wither (oxidise) for up to 18 hours, twisted in a machine and oxidised again before cooking, which stops the oxidation process; two, the cut, tear, curl method (used to make tea bags), same as the above method, but skips the twisting or “bruising” stage. Black Tea boosts energy, improves focus and alertness, lowers stress levels improving heart health, and decreases the risk of certain cancers.

#2

WHITE TEA

White teas are the least processed—they are not torn, twisted or bruised to initiate oxidation. They are light in colour and flavour, and are low in caffeine and high in antioxidants, promoting cellular fitness (fighting early ageing), aiding in oral health, and strengthening the immune system.

#3

GREEN TEA

The least fermented of the bushel is green tea. The leaves and buds are plucked and quickly sent to heating which stops the oxidation process and maintains the green colour. Considered a superfood, green tea is rich in vitamins and antioxidants, increasing metabolism (which burns fat), improves heart health and memory, and strengthens brain cell activity.

#4

RED TEA

Not actually a tea at all, red tea is abundant in antioxidants and used as an anti-inflammatory. It is reputed to improve heart health, assist in treating diabetes, lower risks of certain cancers, and encourage healthy digestion which increases metabolism.

If you are still not getting the results from you weight loss routine that you desire, maybe it’s time to reset your body by detoxing with teas. The teas discussed here can be enjoyed hot or cold, and many are pre-made and readily available at your local market. Need a little more help on your journey to a more fit and healthier you?  Check out our Full Body Reset 8 Day All Inclusive Package and feel the benefits of our Chai Dim Organic Detox Tea and eating beautiful organic food daily, all while surrounded with positive embracing vibes.  

 

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By Nguyet Tran

The idea of a detoxifying is usually associated with the physical being—removing harmful substances such as alcohol, sugar, caffeine, tobacco, from the body. There is little evidence that detox diets remove toxins, however the practice of being healthier in what you consume does have some benefits. The pursuit of replacing harmful products with healthy nutritional food will make you feel better and possibly lead to weight loss, too. 

Detoxing emotions on the other hand, has more to do with the spirit than the body. Emotions can become harmful when they lead to self-doubt, anxiety, or stress and often need to be reset. Being able to lessen the negativity of these emotions will not only make you feel better, it will also help you to feel increased energy and to be in a better position to help others. Yoga helps naturally detox emotions by focusing on the restoration of balance between the body, mind, and spirit. 

There are seven chakras (energy centres) in the body that certain yoga poses stimulate. When they are blocked, your body and mind are not balanced and unwanted symptoms such as anxiety or low self-esteem can arise. Yoga poses stimulate these energetic centres, unblocking them and lessening negative symptoms. Breathing is also integral in yoga. Being aware of how you breathe teaches you to breathe deeply, helping you to relax the body and calm the mind. Yoga provides a long-term solution and one that becomes more effective with ongoing practice. There are many poses in yoga that can help release blockages in the chakras, enabling you to build a stronger and more peaceful you. Below are eight beginner poses that will release emotions, cultivate balance, relieve stress and reset the digestive tract to improve overall health. 

While this article provides simplified descriptions of the poses, we recommend that you work with a qualified teacher, like those here at the Koh Samui Yoga Retreat. Visit Natural Detox and engage in daily yoga, a la carte, or as a part of their detox packages, balancing out cardio and strength training with organic foods. Our experienced practitioners can help you explore different methods to improve overall health. Having this guidance initially ensures you get the most from your practice, and the added benefit knowing that you’re relaxing into correct structure, alignment and understanding of each pose and its purpose can help to facilitate a feeling of safety which can relieve stress.  

 

#8

YOGA BEGINNER POSES

#1 Bharadva’s Twist

BHARADVAJASANA

The Bharadvaja’s twist stimulates the root and heart chakras. The heart chakra is associated with love and compassion; unblocking this chakra will help you feel strong and confident. The pose is easy to perform: sitting cross-legged with your spine straight and tall, breathe, twist and hold your upper torso one way, then the next. This simple pose is great to stretch the back, neck, and legs. 

 

#2

BRIDGE POSE

To reduce stress, anxiety, and fatigue, and to relieve back aches and insomnia, the bridge pose engages the heart chakra, while opening the chest, strengthening the thighs, and stretching the spine. While lying on your back, bend the knees, lift your pelvis while keeping your shoulders on the floor. Remember to breathe. When done correctly, this pose should release stress. 

#3 Marjaryasana

CAT POSE

Start on your hands and knees and curl your spine upward–like a cat enjoying a good scratch. This pose will release tension in the heart chakra, promoting energy flow, creativity and learning. It stretches the abdomen and back, which is essential for core strength and balancing of the emotions.  

#4 Utkatasana

CHAIR POSE

This deep-squat pose stimulates the navel chakra, in turn helping you feel confident and vitalised. It promotes core strength while increasing the tone of your thighs and feet, and helps improve toe mobility. This pose is a little more challenging, so remember to breathe deeply to focus and centre your energy through the release of built up tension.  

#5 Balasana

CHILD POSE

Balasana influences the navel chakra, which, if in a weakened state, can leave you feeling sluggish with low self-esteem. Kneel on the mat with your toes touching and your knees spread just a bit farther than the width of your shoulders. Then stretch your torso and arms forward as far as you can comfortably go. This is a resting pose, so hold it for 30 seconds to several minutes. It stretches the thighs, back, arms, and torso, relieving tension. 

#6 Bhujangasana

COBRA POSE

The cobra pose clears the sacral, navel, and heart chakras, and stimulates pleasure, emotions, and creativity. Lying on your stomach, place your hands on the mat in position with your shoulders. Slowly, push up on your hands, stretching your torso up and out and tipping your head back slightly, while keeping your pelvis, thighs, legs, and feet flat on the mat. The cobra pose stretches the back, neck, and abdomen, relieving stress and anxiety. 

#7 Ujjayi Pranayama

CONQUEROR BREATH

This breathing exercise stimulates the root, sacral, navel, heart, and throat chakras. You can do this while sitting, standing, or even meditating. This exercise may feel a little strange at first, especially if you’ve never considered breathing as an exercise unto itself.

Inhale through your nose, and exhale through a slightly open mouth, forcing the air across the back of your throat to create a “Haa” sound. Hold the “Haa” for the entire exhalation. Repeat. Once comfortable with the practice, you can close your mouth, exhaling through the nose. You should still be able to hear (and concentrate on) the soft hissing produced by forcing the breath over the back of the throat.

#8 Savasana

CORPSE POSE

Often used at the end of a yoga session, the corpse pose may look easy, but many find it difficult. The pose is to lie flat on your back with arms and legs fully extended; the goal is to relax with attention. This is good for lowering blood pressure, decreasing your heart rate, and slowing your breathing to create a state of relaxation and rejuvenation. With a little practice, this relaxation pose is quite balancing

Emotions are a funny thing, they bring you the highs and lows in life, and are generally accepted as evidence that you are alive and functioning within the norms of society. Keeping negative emotions pent up inside can have damaging effects—from tension in your body to stress in your mind. Yoga is a simple proven method of learning to focus, release, and relax. With instruction at the outset, yoga can become a regular practice in the privacy of your own home, as well as a philosophy to live, be and surrender by. Visit Natural Detox to learn a practice that’s perfectly suited for you.   

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By Wendy Stein, MS, LAc

“To cure disease is like waiting until one is thirsty before digging a well…’” – Li Shizhen

 

It’s not hard to argue that preventing illness is easier than treating it. Classical Chinese Medicine is rooted in this idea, excelling in wellness and prevention of disease, not just treatment of it after it becomes symptomatic.

 

Using Chinese Medicine

COMMON, NORMAL, AND WELL-BALANCED

There are plenty of common health issues that we have come to accept as normal. For example, PMS, though common, is not considered normal in Chinese Medicine. It is seen as a treatable imbalance.

Chinese Medicine excels at the practice of tonification–diagnosing and treating weaknesses before symptoms develop. Working in partnership with a well-trained practitioner of Chinese Medicine, a patient can discover what is working well in their systems and what may need to be attended to in order to live one’s life to the fullest.

In addressing the weaknesses, the patient’s constitution becomes better fortified and they will be able to navigate the twists and turns of life with greater resilience and peace of mind—even evading or prolonging the onset of certain illnesses and conditions.

AGING GRACEFULLY

We are born with ‘essence,’ which is likened to our inherited genetic material from our parents that we also pass to our children.

Essence is like a candle; qi, the vital energy that makes processes happen in our body, is like the act of the candle burning; and our spirit is like the flame. Once the flame goes out, our life is over.

~Three Treasures of Classical Chinese Medicine

If someone is fortunate to be born with abundant essence, that person may have a long and healthy life—depending on how it is used. If we choose to live an efficient life, sleep well, exercise, and promote strong digestion, then it is possible to augment how our body uses its essence. Efficient living will supplement our prenatal essence with more postnatal essence, thus making a person more resilient and prolonging life.

If we overtax ourselves with our lifestyle choices, the essence becomes depleted faster, and it doesn’t matter how much essence a person is born with— when it is gone, our life is over.

 

VISITING AN ACUPUNCTURIST

During an intake with a Chinese Medicine practitioner, a patient is given a thorough and individualised assessment, bearing in mind the mental, emotional and physical state of the patient, seasonal influences, diet, lifestyle, sleep, and more. The practitioner will feel your pulse, look at your tongue, and may even palpate some points on your body.

The result is an individualised treatment plan geared to diagnose and treat a patient’s condition and to look at the road ahead. We can’t evade death forever, yet we can learn how our body ages, and to lessen that impact through lifestyle choices and treatment. Even if you feel great now, our tendencies can be seen and we can learn how to minimise or prolong the threat of disease.

Chinese medicine is sensitive enough to gather diagnostic information, and sophisticated enough to provide targeted remedies in the form of acupuncture, herbs, moxibustion, nutritional counseling, lifestyle recommendations (including exercise), and massage therapy.

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WHAT CAN I DO ON MY OWN?

Well-being in body-mind-spirit is like sailing a boat, noticing when veering off course, and gently bringing oneself back on track is the aim. With practice, the boat won’t veer too far, and one’s health will remain balanced and more able to return to states of harmony. Simply follow your practitioner’s instructions, and ask questions when you don’t understand, as these concepts rooted in classical Chinese philosophy may sound foreign.

Using Chinese Medicine

WISDOM OF THE SEASONS

Eating seasonal, well-sourced foods is often a good place to start your journey towards a stronger you. Food can be used as daily medicine. The winter is the time to build up resources in our bodies through eating rich, nourishing soups and stews with warming spices such as cinnamon—bone broth is especially good. It is a time to go inward and to get more rest and regenerate in preparation for the activities of the spring. This is often a missing piece of living in modern western cultures.

The heat of summer begs us to consume lighter fare as we tend to be more active, sweat, and discharge wastes. Our bodies tend to be more vulnerable to climatic changes in the spring and fall, so care should be taken during these seasons to protect against colds and flus, and dramatic changes in the diet should be avoided. Following the seasons can put us in greater harmony and flow with the world around us.

Cultivating The Mind

BECOMING MORE AWARE OF ONESELF

Sometimes our busy lives can deplete our internal resources making it difficult to replenish what is missing—unless we alter our lifestyle. It is akin to trying to fill a sieve. We keep adding tonifying treatments, yet it leaks out faster than we can fill it. Often, that is a result of not having enough “yin time.” Find some time each day to reconnect to the source of who you are through yoga, meditation, or just quietly sitting without phones or media screens.

PARTICIPATING IN COMMUNITY

Whether we are introverts or extroverts, we are still social creatures who create and are created by our social groups. Take a look out at the world and see where you want to direct your energies. Reach out, join up and connect with others. It will benefit your emotional well-being, which will lead to better physical well-being, as was discovered in a study by Cambridge University on the elderly in Italy.

In all, the concept of health is approached in a sophisticated and systematic way in Chinese medicine. There is usually opportunity to strengthen one’s constitution through targeted therapies that will not only prepare a person for a better tomorrow, but also provide for a better today.

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By Renee Daly

‘Detoxification’ is more than a buzzword-movement, and awareness of its healthful impact is growing daily. Physical and mental detoxification practices can be tailored into our daily lives through wholesome foods, movement and strengthening sessions, yoga, pranayama, and short meditations. Emotional detoxification occurs inherently as a flow-on effect from these practices, while all-important ‘downtime’ is an equally important aspect of the cleansing and healing process. 

Emotional detox and healing is sometimes overlooked, yet it is essential to a truly holistic and natural approach towards healing. We live in a fast-paced and systematic world and we often have to set aside our emotions, instinctive reactions, and our basic sensitivities and needs, to the point that these feelings accumulate in the body, further developing as unresolved conflict. 

This doesn’t necessarily mean deep trauma or repressed memories. It can be as simple as our societal conditioning and/or disapproval of our parents or peers that cause us to hold things inside and affect us physiologically. Here, we aim to go deeper into emotional detox and healing by exploring a gentle, effective, and powerful way to reach the next level in restoring your body and soul. 

 

History of

REBREATHING BREATHWORK

American founder of Rebirthing Breathwork, Leonard Orr states: “The main part of the discovery of Rebirthing took about 10 to 15 years, starting in 1962. The giant leap occurred in 1974-1975. 

Orr was taking a bath one morning and describes slipping into a state of regression. Fascinated, he remained in the bathtub for a number of hours. Over the following weeks and years, he would often lay in the bath for long periods, well after he had ‘the urges’– an emotional or psychological urgency—to get out of the water. He came to realise that every time he sat through these urges, deep insights about himself and his life, including memories of his birth and subconscious programming, would arise. 

At a seminar in 1973, he spoke of his experiences to an intrigued audience. He left them with the basic instructions of how to experience it too, encouraging those who wanted to, to try it at home. Some later reported that the intensity of the experience could only have been enhanced by having someone with them to talk through the emotional releases and revelations—spiritual and otherwise. 

Orr then complied with their wishes, providing safety and support in bathtub sessions; observing the similar rhythms in their breathing that these states induced. Thus the beginning of rebirthing (the first method) was developed. Orr’s sessions evolved over the next year or so, into the second, third, and dry rebirthing models discussed below. 

In the late 1970s, Stanislov Grof, a European psychiatrist, joined the ‘conscious breathwork movement’ with his creation; Holotropic Breathwork. This practice has a substantially different intent and focus in regards to achieving emotional detox. In the decades since, many approaches to conscious breathing have subsequently evolved within these two main philosophies, with practitioners and trainers all using the title “Rebirthing” or “Breathwork.” 

The Rebirthing Models:

SECOND, THIRD AND DRY REBREATHING

In the second model, Orr incorporated a snorkel and nose clip into hot tub sessions, simulating a womb-like environment through breathwork. This practice amplified responses, and people were regressing to their birth—and even prenatal states—almost immediately. “It wasn’t just reliving the past, it was also a very high exploration into the spiritual dimensions of life,” explained Orr. “People had a completed energy cycle, which was an integrated healing experience.”

The third model is the natural progression of the practice, with the energy cycle mentioned above increasing in number and the breather “learning to breathe from the Breath Itself — directly from God”. It is at this stage that Orr found the breather felt safe enough to relive the moment of their first breath, liberating themselves and mastering breathing, one of the most practical, yet profound skills that humans are capable of having.

Dry Rebirthing was born of the full understanding that “Connected Breathing” is the key to the practice—not so much the water, at least initially. This shift in thinking created a mass movement with rebirthing sessions as it wasn’t quite so confronting and ‘woo-woo’ in nature. The breather can continue into the deeper aspects of the practice if he or she wishes, or simply work with freeing themselves from previous conscious and subconscious decisions, beliefs, and conditioning as described.

What is it:

A SELF-HEALING TOOLTHAT CAN BE LEARNED

As we touched on before, Rebirthing Breathwork is a breathing method that connects us with our subconscious mind. This natural approach inspires connection which not only clears trauma, repressed memories (if present), and sometimes even physical pain, but also allows us to simply get to know ourselves better by embarking on an ongoing practice of transformation that helps us to understand the nature of the mind. 

While lying down, use the breath in a cyclical way, with no pause between the inhale and exhale. This creates an energy flow in the body, helping to release negative emotions that may be “stuck” on a cellular or physiological level. These emotions are assimilated and the breather goes to a deeper level of relaxation, with the potential to achieve higher states of awareness, clarity, and maybe even a sense of bliss about themselves and the world around them. 

Upon completion of a 1 to 2 hour detox session of Dry Rebirthing (now considered the “entry point method” without the use of water), the person feels calm, light and free. A trained practitioner will guide you through this natural approach, ensuring a safe, supported, and practice. A detox package with practitioner usually contains 10 sessions, prompting long-term transformation. As you feel more comfortable, you may continue the practice on your own, drawing further health, happiness, success, and peace of mind into your life. 

Experience It:

SESSIONS AND RETREATS

There are now a myriad of styles and schools of thought around both rebirthing and other forms of breathwork, particularly as pertains to natural detox. You can attend one, a couple, or participate in the recommended 10 detox package sessions, and you can find various retreats the world over where you can fully immerse yourself into the levels of practice, and even train to facilitate sessions for others. 

A good starting point for finding a practitioner is using the founders RBI (Rebirthing Breathwork International) directory. You can also visit us at the Natural Detox Center and engage in a detox program. We offer emotional detox, breathwork, yoga, as well as take into account the complementary services that each practitioner can offer.

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Ayurvedic Wisdom

PREVENT COLON CANCER

Crowned as one of the world’s oldest holistic medicines of all time, Ayurveda originated in India and has its roots in the B.C. era. Ayurvedic medicine is based on the premise that wellness and health depend on a delicate balance between a person’s physical constitution, mental and emotional nature, and spiritual outlook. It is a combination of six Indian philosophical systems, behavioural and physical sciences, and medical arts.

At a deep level, our beings strive for balance, as it is only in a state of heightened health that our bodies and minds can truly function at their best: to be healthy, there must be harmony between our purpose for healing, our thoughts, feelings, and our physical actions.

Ayurvedic medicine seeks to inhibit sicknesses caused by stressors such as inherited defects, injuries, climate or seasonal fluctuations, time management, and unregulated emotions.

HISTOYR OF AYURVEDA

Ayurveda is recorded in the Veda, the world’s oldest existing literature, the Veda. By 400 AD, the Ayurveda system of healing had come to deeply influence other health care practices, such as Chinese medicine as well as Buddhist philosophy. Currently, Ayurveda has spread throughout the East and West, and practitioners are increasingly spreading the knowledge and healing techniques of this ancient science.

How is

AYURVEDA DIFFFRENT FROM OTHER MEDICINE

In Ayurveda, every person’s body is considered unique, and therefore there is no one recipe that suits all. It is crucial to discern the individual characteristics of each person in order to recommend suitable medicine. Ayurveda’s main function is as a medicine of prevention and maintenance, although it can also be used to fight disease. When receiving an Ayurvedic consultation, patients receive suggestions for food and lifestyle changes, more than a prescription for pills.

How They Affect your Health

THE THREE DOSHAS

According to Ayurveda, doshas are the universal life forces that manifest as three different energies. The three doshas are vata, pitta, and kapha. They are biological forces found in the human mind and body, and although each individual has all of these, there is usually a predominance of just one or two. The unique combination each person possesses is called the prakruti, which is the personal blueprint or nature that we are born with. As individuals go through life, the proportion of their doshas can fluctuate, depending on circumstances like our environment, eating habits, the seasons, our age, and many other factors. Maintaining balance of our doshas implies keeping a healthy balance in our health, energy level, and mood.

Vata is the energy of breathing, circulation, elimination, movement, speech, enthusiasm, creativity, and the nervous system. A vata constitution has a tendency towards arthritis, constipation and anxiety. Vata people are commonly thin, and they like to move around and enjoy creative activities. When imbalanced, they can be ungrounded and anxious. Balance vata with warming spices like cinnamon, cloves and cardamom (try ‘golden milk’), and ginger, garlic and black pepper.

Pitta rules transformations, such as metabolism and digestion, as well as body temperature, vision, complexion, courage, cheerfulness, intellect, and judgement. The pitta type has a predisposition towards infections, inflammations, and ulcers. Pittas are fiery, intense, irritable and strong. Balance pitta with cooling herbs like basil, peppermint and tarragon, vanilla, and turmeric, and by avoiding garlic.

Kapha governs growth, lubrication and fluid secretions, potency, patience, heaviness, compassion, and understanding. Kaphas can easily become overweight, and have diabetes or congestive disorders. Kapha individuals are ruled by the earth and water elements, and they have wide frames as well as stable natures. When imbalanced, they are unmotivated and stubborn. Balance kapha with oregano, rosemary, and thyme, and ginger and garlic, and by avoiding salt.

Imbalance occurs when any of these energies increases in quantity, or changes in terms of its quality. Usually this happens when individuals are not able to perceive things as they are, when we mistreat our bodies, or even when we do the right things at the wrong times.

Natural Herbs and Spices

AYURVEDA AND COLON CANCER

In Ayurveda, every person’s body is considered unique, and therefore there is no one recipe that suits all. It is crucial to discern the individual characteristics of each person in order to recommend suitable medicine. Ayurveda’s main function is as a medicine of prevention and maintenance, although it can also be used to fight disease. When receiving an Ayurvedic consultation, patients receive suggestions for food and lifestyle changes, more than a prescription for pills.

In Ayurveda, cancers are treated as more than just a physical condition, by regarding mental, emotional, physical, and spiritual states all together. Cancerous cells are defined as ‘bad’ cells, however, Ayurveda’s view is that they have become so disconnected from their roots in consciousness, that they’ve lost memory of how to function correctly. This is caused by unhealthy lifestyles, toxins, stress and fear, pollution, and so forth.

There are a number of natural herbs and spices that can used to treat cancer; and in this article we focus on those used to treat colon cancer. The assistance of a qualified practitioner is highly recommended as treatment are as personal as each individual’s doshas.

Herbs and plants for treating colon cancer:

  1. Ashwagandha: This herb helps in a large number of ailments, increases our resistance to stress while also inhibiting the growth of tumours cells.
  2. Garlic: This plant bulb reduces brain and colon cancer cells. Combined with broccoli, it is an effective anti-cancer agent.  
  3. Green tea: Tea can inhibit the formation of cancer cells, and its catechin polyphenols can reduce cancerous cells during their early stages.
  4. Celandine: This is a member of the poppy family, and apart from being know for treating colon cancer, it boosts the immune system.
  5. Aloe vera: Cleans the digestive tract and removes harmful toxins.
  6. Apple cider vinegar: Acts as an anti-inflammatory and has been shown to be effective in treating colon cancer.
  7. Ginger: This is an Ayurvedic staple, it soothes and heals the digestive tract.
  8. Turmeric: Claims are that the compounds in turmeric can heal just about anything. This roots causes colon cancer cells to self-destruct.

The Ayurvedic tradition highly recommends including these herbs, spices and such into your routine, for both prevention and healing. Healthy diets complemented by these herbs and spices have a great potential to bring about positive results.

Natural Herbs and Spices

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Enema Health

AN EASIER PROCEDURE THAN YOU WOULD IMAGINE

In case you’ve never heard about the use of an enema, you’re in the right place. An enema is a procedure that stimulates stool evacuation and relieves constipation. It’s a liquid treatment that conveniently helps push waste out of the colon, with your body reaping many benefits in the process. The average person has almost 5 kgs, if not more, of waste inside their large intestine, so periodically including enemas into your routine can be advantageous to your health. They are especially helpful to those individuals who do not have at least one regular bowel movement per day. Guided support is always recommended, too, especially for your first time.

Read on to learn about the benefits of this ancient technique for cleansing the colon–which you can do either at home or in the comfort of your local spa.

History:

AN ANCIENT DETOXING TECHNIQUE

Dating back to 1500 B.C., the Egyptians were the first recorded people to use the procedure of colon flushing. References have also been made to enemas in ancient texts, from the Babylonians and Assyrians in 600 B.C. to the Ancient Greeks, to Africans along the Ivory Coast in 500 A.D. and among the rich in the Middle Ages. The 17th century became known as ”the age of the enemas” and Parisians would use them three to four times daily. In the 19th century, the development of rubber gave way to more advanced colon hydrotherapy equipment. And the craze ultimately reached into the fancy neighbourhoods of Beverly Hills in California in the 1950s.

Today, the procedure of cleansing stool residue from the large intestine is also called ‘colonic lavage’ and ‘colonic irrigation’. Variations of this flushing technique are used world-wide, and are growing in popularity as the idea of inner hygiene spreads.

Enema Health

COLON PROBLEMS AND THEIR EFFECT ON THE BODY

The role of the colon is to absorb liquid and nutrients from food and to remove waste and toxins from the body. Over the years, however, and especially with the increased exposure to chemically infused food, the walls of the colon can become encrusted with residual waste. This, in effect, makes for a slower and inefficient digestive system.

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WHAT AILMENTS DO ENEMAS TREAT?

Usually diet changes and exercise are recommended as the first steps in treating gastrointestinal issues such as constipation. Laxatives may be recommended by a doctor as well, and enemas are often used for the first time when the “dis-ease” has become more advanced. After discovering the benefits, many people get them regularly.

It makes sense that this technique is used in treating colitis, since the way an enema enters the body is directly through the rectum. Colitis, for those unfamiliar, is an inflammation of the inner lining of the colon. Colitis has variations, which include the ulcerative type, inflammatory bowel disease, Crohn’s disease, and more.

Surprisingly, enemas can be effective in treating a variety of ailments other than stomach issues. These include backaches, Candida yeast infections, headaches, hemorrhoids, skin problems, weight issues, fatigue, and more. Constipation is often treated with enemas, and it is important to do so, as residual accumulation in the large intestine can lead to colon cancer. Yale researchers have also discovered that constipation is linked to the herpes virus and kidney disease. This shows that, as seems logical, the body is a system that works in a unified way, and all organs influence each other. Consequently, the benefits of an enema are all-encompassing; this includes improvement in mood as the stomach and its chemical reactions have been proven to have important links to the brain.

Enema Benefits

EFFECTS ON THE BODY

The benefits of enemas are wide-ranging and include eliminating bacteria, toxins, and excess fatty acids from the intestines, and aiding in the restoration of the stomach’s natural flora. They can also have a positive impact on the nervous system, flushing away exhaustion and anxiety. Enemas help to balance hormones, control appetite, regulate sleep, and improve mental processing. Enemas can also clear your skin, and improve concentration and circulation.

THE RIGHT PREPARATION

This is how you do it. It’s important to sterilise all equipment and start with an empty stomach and bladder before proceeding. Ideally, you should have a few old towels underneath your body in case the liquid leaks. A water bag is filled with warm water and, optionally, a mixture of ingredients depending upon your preferences and goals. The tube, attached to the bag, is then slowly and carefully inserted into the rectum–it is especially helpful to keep a lubricant handy in order to facilitate the insertion. With the bag slightly elevated, gravity begins the flushing process pumping water into the colon.

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RECIPES FOR ENEMA

Generally speaking, there are two types of enemas. Cleansing enemas are meant to be retained for two to three minutes, until the body’s impulse naturally expels them; and retention enemas are meant to be held for about 15 minutes.

Here are some cleansing enemas to consider:

  1. Apple cider vinegar enemas (2-3 tbsp diluted in water) clear mucus from the body and to eradicate viral conditions.
  2. Burdock root enemas aid in eliminating calcium deposits as well as purifying the blood.
  3. Lemon juice enemas detoxify the system and balance the pH level.

Some retention enemas include the following:

  1. Organic coffee enemas stimulate the liver and gallbladder to eliminate metabolic and environmental toxins (no more than 15 minutes).
  2. Probiotic enemas are ideal for treating Candida or yeast infections.
  3. Red raspberry leaf enemas are particularly helpful for women as they are high in iron, and they are also good for the eyes.

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SAEFTY

The most crucial part of using an enema is to be safe. Be careful to investigate options thoroughly, be aware of possible allergic reactions, and be careful with the insertion of the tube as it is possible to damage the walls of the rectum if it’s not properly lubricated. Also, use them in moderation as there is potential for too much of a good thing. And when in doubt, consult with a specialist.

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by Carrie Back

When considering a detox, most people think of the food they eat, or not eating anything at all, to help rid their body of toxic or unhealthy substances. But, what you put ‘on’ your body is just as important as what you consume. Pick up any personal care product and try to pronounce the ingredients. Many contain large amounts of chemicals–natural and synthetic–and we are just beginning to recognise the harmful effects that it can have on our bodies. To start detoxing your beauty routine, begin by taking stock of all the products you use and see what you can substitute with safer, more natural choices to detox your entire body, on the outside and the inside.

 

Cosmetic Cabinet

WHY IT MATTERS

The cosmetic and beauty industry, as a whole, is unregulated and laws vary from country to country. The European Union, which now consists of 28 countries, has more strict and protective laws for cosmetics than the United States. The EU Cosmetics Directive was enacted in 2003 and most recently revised in 2013. The EU law bans more than 1,300 chemicals from beauty products that are considered harmful and are known or suspected to cause cancer, genetic mutation, reproductive harm, or birth defects. In contrast, the Food and Drug Administration in the US has banned or restricted only 11 chemicals from cosmetics. Unlike the United States, EU law requires safety assessments of cosmetics before they enter the market, registration of cosmetic products, and acknowledges that certain chemicals do not belong in beauty products regardless of the concentration factor.

According to a study done by the Environmental Working Group, the average woman uses 12 personal care products a day, containing about 168 unique ingredients. Research on long-term exposure is lacking in the scientific arena, especially on the effects of chemicals when they are combined. Also, scientists have reported that under the right circumstances–factors like temperature and exposure over time–the skin can absorb certain things to the point where they affect our bodies.

Research

THE INGREDIENTS

Depending on where you are, there may be no legal standards for personal care products labelled as natural or organic, so look beyond what it says on the bottle and read the ingredients carefully. Thankfully there are some ways to make this less overwhelming, including some apps that will tell you which ingredients to avoid.

Simplify

YOUR ROUTINES

Choose products with a simple ingredient list and fewer synthetic chemicals. A good rule of thumb is that if you cannot pronounce it, it’s probably best to avoid it. For example, pick up your toothpaste and try to pronounce the ingredients. Some toothpastes include toxic ingredients, such as Triclosan and Propylene Glycol, that can easily absorb into your bloodstream. Stick to products with only a few ingredients listed and avoid synthetic perfumes by skipping products with “fragrance” on the label.

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Natural Cosmetics

KNOW WHICH INGREDIENTS TO AVOID

Read what’s inside before you apply anything to your skin, lips, or hair. The David Suzuki Foundation has published a list of 12 key ingredients to steer clear of in its article “Dirty Dozen: cosmetic chemicals to avoid” — a great place discover the ugly facts about your makeup.  

Cosmetic Cabinet

WHAT PRODUCTS TO DITCH FIRST

To detox your cosmetic cabinet, prioritise by assessing what you use the most. For many women, this means replacing your current body lotion first. Skincare products are probably the one thing you use the most of and most often. Your skin, with its large surface area, has the most potential for harm. Substitute body lotion for an all-natural and organic alternative such as 100 percent cold-pressed coconut oil. Look for natural option, such as essential oils for perfume and hair care products. Ditch your deodorant and use one made from coconut oil, baking soda, and shea butter. Slowly replace your makeup over time, opting for products with environmentally safer ingredients that are natural. Look for organic beauty products that are sustainably sourced and manufactured and packaging in a biodegradable or recyclable container so they are less harmful to the environment.

Even better, replace store bought beauty products with homemade ones. It can be cheaper, and you don’t have to worry about ingredients you can’t pronounce since you will always know exactly what’s going in them.

Natural Cosmetics

MAKE AT HOME

Try some do-it-yourself beauty recipes; you’ll be surprised at what you can create on your own. Some personal care products are easy to make with ingredients from your kitchen. There are numerous books and websites that share their all-organic recipes. Stock up on natural ingredients and use them in a multitude of ways for the hair, skin, and cosmetics. For starters, coconut oil is a favourite since it has numerous uses for the hair and body. For teeth, baking soda mixed with hydrogen peroxide is an effective whitening toothpaste that also kills bacteria.

USEFUL APPS

Apps like Healthy Living and Shop Clean are useful tools for locating good clean products. The Healthy Living app from Environmental Working Group rates more than 120,000 food and personal care products and the Shop Clean app by Think Dirty is  user-friendly and ranks the safety of products on a scale of 1 to 10, and provides more eco-friendly alternatives for when you do your cosmetic cabinet detox.

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