Category: Ideas

Sitting quietly – and no I don’t mean the naughty chair – Meditation

Meditation

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Ok, so I am a terrible quiet person. When I try and be quiet I end up smashing things, falling into walls and slamming doors. Let’s just say its best not to be sleeping if I am up or in your general vicinity.

With meditation, being quiet and sitting still is a big thing. Not so great for clumsy me.

However, the benefits of meditation out weigh my terrible balance and noisiness.

Meditation has a million benefits, some being:

Stress reduction

Calming

Reduces anxiety

Lowers blood pressure

Increases serotonin (better mood people!!!)

And the biggy – helps to put things into perspective (problems become way smaller).

When my husband and I were backpacking in India, we spent a week doing Vipassana meditation. Oh my – not for the faint hearted or the never-meditated-before backpacker such as myself. It certainly was an eye opener, and a bit of a back breaker as well (never had I had to sit so still before in my life!!!). While I did not continue to meditate with such dedication, it did help me feel a lot better because my thoughts were not so constantly busy.

In the real world, (where I live most of the time) I find it hard to sit down and meditate and I know that sounds like such a cop out but still…Even though I am slack I have found a few ways to incorporate meditative practice into my life;

  • Listening to a guided meditation as I walk (I have the Art of balance by Tricia Brennan on my old school MP3 player that I listen to. You can pick different colours for different meditations). Strictly I know that you should be seated but I like to concentrate to the words as I wander.
  • Doing some calm and gentle yoga poses – physically meditative.
  • Lying in bed before sleep or first thing in the morning and just being still for a bit.
  • Using the time in the line at the post office to just breathe and be aware of your surroundings (this my friends is tough!!!)
  • Sitting for just 2 minutes and letting your thoughts just come and go. Don’t pay any attention to anyone of them, just let them come and go. You can even do this in the ad break of Miranda (just saying…)

Meditation is an amazing thing to do just for you. It makes life a little easier and anything to calm a busy mind (which most of us are guilty of having) can only be a good thing.

Oh yeah I forgot to mention that since meditation makes you feel better and calmer it also means less wrinkles and more radiant smiles. So purely for vanity reasons you should definitely try it.


I may have purchased some ‘superfoods’. Now what to do…

index

Ok so I am the ultimate food consumer, you just have to write ‘New’ under a product and I will buy like 50. So whenever there is a new ‘superfood’ out I will totally buy it (for the record I hate the term superfood. Most foods are super. Except mums fish pie. I’m sorry Mum, I’m still scarred for life).

Anyway I thought I would attempt to help you navigate your way through some newish superfoods with crazy as names.

Lucuma

We buy it in it powdered form, it comes from a fruit with a really low GI so diabetics can use it as a sweetener. It is high in beta carotene, calcium, iron, magnesium and vitamin b3 just to name a few. How do I use it you ask? Well it makes smoothies awfully tasty as it has a caramely, mapley taste. You can sprinkle it on yoghurt, use it in your muesli bases, mix it in to custards or cakes.

Mesquite
This guy is another awesome sweetener. It comes from a plant called prosopis from South America. Mesquite is super because it prevents blood sugars from rising (yay for diabetics) AND can help regulate blood sugars as well. Good news for all as it helps with sustained energy release through out the day. It is high in fibre; one tablespoon (perfecto for a smoothie) is a bout 3g of dietary fibre so that is about 10% of what you need daily – and we all know we need to have more fibre. Taste wise it is malty and can be added to raw things (snacks, slices and cakes), smoothies, normal cakes and cookies.

Camu camu
Ohh this is my current fave. I am a big vitamin C fan, (oh the sad life of a naturopath), anyway a lot of the Vitamin C you can buy is not so friendly on people’s stomachs and if possible, it is always best to have vitamins in its truest form. Here is why camu camu is super. It is a Amazonian fruit – even that sounds cool. It has 23 times more Vitamin C than an orange, and one measley teaspoon of camu camu gives you 1000% of your vitamin c daily requirements. Vitamin C is great for your skin health, generally healing ability (it helps with collagen and elastin production within the skin) and protects you from free radical damage, helps with reduce inflammation and helps our poor wee immune systems. With camu camu powder you can sprinkle it on your cereal, porridge (it is nearly winter guys so you can start planning what to eat now. Or is that just me?) Mix it with cacao powder for a tart and chocolatey smoothie, or make your own chocolate with it.

Oh yeah one more thing – throwing one of these guys into a chia pudding is an awesome idea for breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert. I am all about chia puddings for any occasion.

Now I know it is hard not to be suckered in to buying amazing new health foods that claim to cure all ailments and clean your house for you; but in the real world where we live most of the time, it is still only food. So really it is what you do with the new pantry additions that count. It’s not going to change your life over night, but with regular consumption it will add more nutrients into your diet. So if you know you have a pretty temperamental immune system; regular Vitamin C from food and with the addition of camu camu would be a great idea, or if you have a sweet tooth and you get wicked 3pm cravings (or nonstop 10am, 1pm, 5pm, 8pm cravings as well) Mesquite or Lucuma would be a great thing to help to stop you reaching for the toffee pops. Just a thought.

Ohhh its another year… what to do.

Ok, So I had a marvellous Christmas break. I did all the things I should not have; ate too much, got a wee bit sunburnt, did no consistent exercise except this:

Screenshot_2014-09-23-22-00-47

But I blinked (ok had too many 3pm naps on the couch) and it’s 2015.

I had such high hopes for myself this year. I was finally going to start to become that cool running person you see that doesn’t sweat, or go bright red or fall over their own feet (despite the fact I despise running and I do all the other things just being me).

I was going to get up everyday at 6am and meditate for 20minutes, then have warm water and lemon juice and then have a very healthy breakfast and casually saunter to my car, no rushing around in 2015.

I was going to stop watching so much TV ( I have a reality TV addiction. Masterchef consumes me).

I was going to stop mindless facebooking. Or just general internet time wasting.

But yeah, none of that has happened, and after being me for my whole life, I kinda already know it ain’t ever going to happen. So I have rewritten my new year resolutions.

Exercise. I will aim for at least 20minutes of movement per day. And if its me wandering around the supermarket for that long, just chilling with food stuffs – I am counting that. (For the record I wander at a good pace).

I will aim to watch just one TV show a day. That my friends is huge. Shortland street or Masterchef or the block….

I will limit my facebook/internet stuff to 15 minutes a day.

I will get up early three times a week to either meditate, exercise or just chill out before work crazy sets in.

I am subscribing to ”a new day, a new start” approach this year. Each day gives me a new chance to follow through on my goals and plans. Some days my goal maybe to nap…Just joking (kinda).

I will also try to kinder in my approach to 2015. No-one knows what is happening for others, and they don’t know what is happening for us. Trying to be kinder and calmer can only be a good thing. So luckily for Jed, he will get more chips on fish n chip Friday.

Happy new starts everyone.