Sunday, November 24, 2013

Body Activation: Recalibrating the Body from Inside Out

Body Activation is a new, integrative approach to healing and awakening the body from the inside out. Developed by Michele Kadison, who has over 30 years experience as a dancer, choreographer, and Master Dance Teacher, this system of exercise is designed to help you release tension, create more space in the body, strengthen and tone the muscles and organs, and find greater overall ease.

Please visit the Body Activation blog to learn more about how you can find greater comfort and awareness through this deep and inspiring protocol:

Thursday, November 21, 2013

13 Frequently Asked Questions about Periods - Be Acquainted with Menarche & Your Monthly Cycle

- by guest blogger, Claudia Etura

The dilemma and confusion associated with periods are a known affair for women. As soon as we are on our menarche, puberty hits the body and mind, and things start changing all of a sudden. A lot of girls wish to talk to their mother or someone who will understand them, but shy away or hesitate to openly talk about the issue.
Getting the first period is a cue that you are stepping into womanhood. Let me start by saying that it is nothing to be afraid of and you need not stay quiet about it, as menstruation is a natural process every woman goes through.
Recently, we conducted a survey amongst some teenage girls and came out with 13 common questions that linger in their minds. The questions were sent out to experts for the right advice.
Take a look at the queries and what the experts have to say about it.
·      Anna asks: I am 13, and I started menstruating 5 months ago, but it has returned only once. Is it ok to have irregular periods? Was it periods or was I bleeding due to a different reason?
Expert says: It is absolutely fine to get irregular periods in the first 2 years. Your system is picking up with the menstrual cycle and would slowly become normal with time.
From what you have said I reckon that it is just a glitch in the body and nothing else. If you find any abnormal symptoms, visit a Gynecologist.
·      Rebecca asks: I’ve been menstruating for a couple of years now. My periods usually last for more than a week and starts again within the next 20-25 days after the onset. But it doesn’t cause me any pain or discomforts. Will it affect my body at a later stage?
Expert says: Ideally 3-5 days of menstrual bleeding is considered normal. If you bleed profusely more than a week, it could be an underlying condition which may harm you later if ignored for long. So, attend this concern as soon as possible.
28 days are considered to be the standard break between periods. But, it is normal to have a gap of 21-35 days and varies from person to person.
·      Eryn asks: I feel bloated during periods and usually get pain on the first two days. Why does that happen?
Expert says: Bloating during periods is a common phenomenon. It happens due to hormonal changes that triggers excess water retention. You can avoid bloating by drinking a lot of water and sweating it out.
Muscle contractions in the uterus cause period cramps. It is induced by the hormone – prostaglandin, which aids in shedding of uterine lining.
Two to three days of pain before or during periods is fine unless it is too severe to bear.
·      Maya asks: I find a buttery fluid in my panties. Is it some sort of infection?
Expert says: The fluid is called cervical mucus. It could be dry, sticky or moist and vary with your menstrual cycle.
An indication of infection is when cervical mucus becomes smelly or turns green or gray in color. Maintain vaginal hygiene to avoid infection.
·      Pearl asks: My menstrual blood is dark brown in color and not red. Is that normal?
Expert says: Period blood fluctuates in color and flow throughout periods. Generally at the beginning, period blood might appear bright or dark red and as you are nearing the end of your cycle, it will become brown, dark brown or even black.
It is absolutely normal as long as you have regular and normal cycle.
·      Priya asks: What should I use, tampons or pads? Does tampon hurt?
Expert says: Either tampons  or sanitary pads/napkins are fine as long as you are comfortable using them.
Pads absorb period blood from outside and tampons are inserted in the vagina to absorb the flow. They are available in different sizes meant for heavy and light periods.
If you are using pads, it is hygienic to change it within 3-4 hours and tampons need to be changed within 4-6 hours. Or else, it could cause irritation or rashes to sensitive skin.
Choose tampons if you are going for a swim or vigorous physical activities during periods. But do not force it in if your vaginal opening is too tight to hold a tampon. Relax and be gentle while inserting the tampon if you are trying it for the first time. Also, pick a day when your  flow is less (by the end of periods usually) and go for a smaller-sized tampon.
You would have definitely heard about Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS) linked with the usage of superabsorbent tampons. It is a perilous condition leading to a shock-state, caused by toxin-producing bacteria. Well, it is very rare, therefore, pay attention to TSS symptoms and change your tampons time to time to prevent it.
·      Katalin asks: I am part of the soccer team in my school and we have coaching on alternate days. Should I be taking rest during periods?
Rachel asks: Can I work out or practice yoga during periods?
Expert says: Yes absolutely, carry on with your practice and wok out sessions as long as it doesn’t tire your body or cause unusual pain.
In fact, you can avoid period cramps by being active and doing some light physical activities.
Skip moves that strain your abdomen and inversions, as it may disrupt the normalcy of period flow.
·      Chloe asks: I take contraceptive pills to delay my periods. Will it have adverse effects on my body?
Expert says: To be honest, this is a tricky question. Researches and studies have proven it either ways and have not arrived at a unanimous conclusion.
A few studies say that women can totally avoid periods by consistently depending on these pills. It is much helpful for women who go through traumatic periods every month.
There are acceptable side effects of using contraceptives such as irregular periods, mood changes, headache, nausea, dizziness, breast tenderness and mild blood clots. It is acceptable only when they are low in intensity.
Certain studies have showcased that there are high risks involved in using contraceptives including cancer and heart stroke. The risks can be aggravated by other factors like smoking, unhealthy lifestyle, age, obesity and past or present medical conditions.
Hence, don’t jump into choosing any pill. Fix an appointment with your doctor, have a detailed discussion about your body and which pill you should take. Also read through the entire package leaflet before taking the pills.
·      Natalie asks: I am 14 years old. All my friends have periods and I have not started yet. My mother and sister had it at the age of 12. Could there be a problem with me?
Expert says: Hi Natalie. You are not late for menarche.
Though the average age of menarche is 12, it is perfectly fine if you get it between 10 and 15. If it occurs before or after the mentioned age, you need to consult a gynecologist as it might occur due to some medical conditions.
The onset of your first period is not only genetic but also depends on factors like diet, lifestyle, weight, health and more.
So let your body work as per its schedule while you get prepared for the first period.

·      Ellie asks: Can I have sexual intercourse during periods?
Expert says: The long-prevailing myth that sexual intercourse during periods is unhygienic is absolutely discarded. It is safe and natural to have sex during periods.
Sex while menstruating could take away cramps and other distressing symptoms allied with periods. Women tend to bleed out faster and get done with periods sooner.
But know that you can get pregnant during periods as well. So use birth control even while periods.
The risk that accompanies sexual intercourse during menstruation can be getting prone to Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) and other vaginal infections. Hence take the right precautionary measures like condom to prevent the possibility of such conditions.
·      Ashley asks: Why do I get acne during periods and my friends don’t? What can I do to stop the outbreaks?
Expert says: These acne breakouts are called menstrual or hormonal acne. They are produced as a result of hormonal fluctuations that your body goes through before and during periods.
First thing you can do is keep your face clean and nourished, and follow a good diet. Avoid stress, smoking and skin dehydration.
If acne flare-ups go unruly and you are unable to treat it with regular methods, visit a dermatologist for proper guidance and treatment.
·      Noah asks: Isn’t bleeding unhealthy? How much blood am I supposed to lose during my period?
Expert says: Period bleeding is absolutely healthy when normal; it is just a natural process of a woman’s reproductive system.
What makes it unhealthy is when some amount of nutrients is passed out through the bleeding, which has to be compensated through your diet.
If you are feeling tired and worn out during periods, consult your doctor. Most probably you are in need of some supplements.
·      Aaliyah asks: Can you tell me how to identify when periods are not normal and when to consult a doctor?
When your system doesn’t function properly it usually gives you hints and symptoms to detect some sort of abnormalities.
Following is the checklist that you need to keep in mind:
·      Bleeding between periods
·      Bleeding after intercourse
·      Bleeding after menopause
·      Spotting between periods
·      Heavier and/or longer days of bleeding
·      Severe pelvic pain
If you experience the above symptoms, consult a doctor immediately.
I suppose most of your queries are answered here. If you have any additional questions, get in touch with us to speak with specialists.

About Author
Claudia Etura Marketing Manager at Dudley Wellness Company a key enabler in improving the quality of men and women lives by offering Immediate Pain relief products, menstrual pain relief cream and joint pain reliever.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

My Almost Daily Power Protein Breakfast

Loaded with nutrition, fired up with taste, this is the most delicious breakfast for starting up the day. Guaranteed you won't feel hungry for hours afterwards while you experience a beautiful energy boost that lasts!

Pumpkin Seeds
Bee Pollen - 1 tsp
Flaxseed oil - 1 tsp
Raw chocolate nibs
Stevia or honey to taste

Put your desired amount of quinoa in a small pot and cover with filtered water, about an inch and a half above the grains. If you're a committed measurer, it will be about 2 water to 1 quinoa.

Cover and simmer until the water is absorbed, which usually will take less time than rice.

Place in your favorite bowl and let cool, as heat destroys the powers of the pollen and flaxseed oil.

Once ready, add the above ingredients, mix, and enjoy!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Guest Blogger: Polly Mertens on Healing from Bulimia

Appreciation – Create a Shift in Your Life
Self-love is one of the keys to lasting eating disorder recovery in my opinion.   Yet I’ve come to realize recently that it is the feeling of appreciation (of anything, not just ourselves) that creates a shift in our lives.  When we appreciate something we align with that which we are.  We align with our highest Self, God, the Source within us.
I went on a spiritual quest years ago and spent a long time in nature just learning the feeling of appreciation.  I tapped into the feeling of love that Source is.  I learned that our true nature is love.  Love is at the core of who we are.  Each and every person, every animal, every plant or species is at its essence love.  Love it what binds us and love is Source.
When we are focusing our attention and feeling the feeling of appreciation we are feeling love.  We are being loving and our Source energy is love so we become aligned with who we innately are. If you want to overcome bulimia there are many tools and resources to help you break your habits of abuse, but I believe it is when we finally learn to love and be loving that we really find lasting eating disorder recovery.
When I talk to women who are struggling with regaining their strength after years of binging and purging, just the mere act of stopping the cycle is a major breakthrough.  I realize that when you’re “in it” with your eating disorder it’s too much of a stretch to ask you to love yourself right then.  Self-love is pretty much the furthest thing from having an eating disorder.  After all, if you loved yourself why would you abuse your body, mind and spirit this way?  You wouldn’t.
I’d now like to offer than instead of trying to move up the emotional scale to self-love right out the gate after starting recovery that you instead take it gradually.  I have an idea that I hope will help you move your needle from self-hatred and self-loathing towards self-love more rapidly and with grace and ease.
Start by loving and appreciating things that are easier to appreciate (than yourself).  Start by loving things like babies, kittens, flowers and sunsets.  When you can focus your attention on something for as little as 17 seconds you activate a vibration within you that law of attraction will respond to and bring more thoughts like it to you.  When you have the vibration of appreciation active within you, you’ll begin to attract more things to appreciate.  The momentum will begin to create a shift in your life that will allow more things to appreciate into your life.
When you’re appreciating the things around you, in time you can turn your love towards yourself. If you spend a few days or a few weeks practicing appreciating the things in your day-to-day life you’ll have practiced the vibration and alignment with Source.  That feeling will be activated within you and with practice it will feel like your new normal.  Your new normal way of feeling will be loving. So when you activate or think thoughts about yourself it will be easier to be loving instead of hateful.
Negative self-talk can be so crippling when you’re trying to beat bulimia.  Overcoming your eating disorder I believe requires you to activate a new vibration.  A new pattern of thought within you that’s aligned with a higher vibration, a loving vibration instead of a negative, harmful vibration.  The way we feel is just our practiced vibration or focused thoughts.  If we can actively focus on loving the thing around us I think we can create a shift in our life that will make it easier each day to appreciate our Self.
How to feel appreciation
It’s the little thoughts, the little moments that if we recognize them and milk them for what they are – opportunities to feel love – we can find so many reasons to appreciate the world around us.  This is why I’ve often recommended a gratitude journal.  If you were to sit in bed at night before going to sleep and write in your journal five things you’re grateful for, you would spend at least the 17 seconds it takes to activate law of attraction and you’d put yourself in a positive vibration just before going to sleep.
To take it a step further, I encourage you to spend time in every day looking for things to appreciate.  For example:
  • I love this beautiful morning.
  • I love my husband…my children…my friend…my friends.
  • I love my home…my car…my clothes.
  • It feels so good talking with my best friend…
  • This food tastes so good.
  • I love writing….dancing…going to the beach…knitting…painting.
  • I love my dog….my cat…my bird….my horse.
Finding things that make us feel good and holding them as the object of our attention will activate pure positive vibration of love and align us with Source.  Focus on the things that are easiest to appreciate first.  Then turning your attention on yourself will be easier.  Have fun with it.
If you are struggling with an eating disorder I would encourage you to check out my blog, Inspiring Bulimia Recovery.  This blog is one of the best resources for support and self help methods to help you recover from an eating disorder. Find real bulimia stories, videos and blog posts all aimed at assisting you on your road to recovery. Discover where you can find additional support to enhance the tools we provide you with.  This blog is more specifically aimed at bulimia recovery but is applicable to all other eating disorders.
Appreciation from Abraham
I would like to conclude with this uplifting video.  The feeling of gratitude is palpable in this video.  Just listening to this exchange between Abraham and a guest your vibration is uplifted.  I listened to this a few times and it brought me to tears when I focused on the feeling of appreciation.  The benefit to you and the world by your vibration is worth the effort.

From Guest Blogger, Polly Mertens:

Monday, February 27, 2012


Practitioners of Traditional Chinese Medicine and other ancient healing practices have always used food as one of the ways to balance the body to help prevent and treat disease.  With the understanding that every type of food contains its own characteristics, these wise healers know that the energy contained in what we eat is not just a matter of calories, carbohydrates, fats, and protein, but also has to do with temperature.

Temperature and Health Conditions
Traditional Chinese Medicine doctors also look at temperature as it relates to health conditions.  In allopathic medicine, we rarely think of a physical problem having hot or cold properties, but in Oriental health practices, the body is considered in terms of these qualities depending on the condition.  In this way, specific foods are proscribed to help with the healing process.

Often by instinct we will eat warmer foods in the wintertime and cooler in the summertime, which is our body’s way of helping us to stay in balance.

Warming Foods
Warming foods are yang, which the Chinese represent as the warm, sunny side of a mountain.  They tend to be drying and help to raise the energy of the body by improving circulation and bring heat to the organs, blood, and cells.  The need for warm food is often signaled by these conditions:
·      Cold hands and feet
·      Cold body
·      Diarrhea
·      Stomach pain
·      Bloating
·      Discomfort after eating or drinking cold foods and beverages
·      Sore joints
·      Fluid retention
·      Lack of energy

Warm foods are generally those that take a longer time to grow.  Incorporating them into the diet can help balance the body if you have any of the above symptoms.  Here is a partial list of warming foods:

Cabbage, kale, mustard greens, onions, garlic, winter squash, pumpkin, parsnip, leek, chives, scallions,

Cherries, nectarines, coconut, avocado, cooked or dried fruits

Oats, nuts, seeds

Butter, soybean oil

Most meats, including chicken and lamb


Cayenne pepper, cinnamon, cloves, dry ginger, basil, rosemary

Cooling Foods
Cooling foods are yin, which are damp and represented by the shady, cooler side of the mountain.  These foods help to clear way heat and toxins, calming the blood and moistening the body.  The need for cooling foods is often signaled by these conditions:
·      Hot body
·      Thirst
·      Constipation
·      Strong smelling stool
·      Burning anus after bowl movements
·      Dark yellow urine
·      Heartburn
·      Anxiety
·      Red eyes and face
·      Overly emotional
·      Rapid pulse
·      Headaches
·      Ulcers in the mouth or on the tongue
·      Cold sores
·      Red tongue with yellow coating

Cooling foods generally take less time to grow.  A short list of some of these foods includes:

Lettuce, celery, radish, cucumber, summer squash, broccoli, tomatoes, most leafy veggies, mushrooms, eggplant

Seaweed and seafood

Bananas, pears, oranges, apples, kiwi, watermelon

Millet, amaranth, barley, wheat

Northern, navy, kidney, lima, and mung beans soaked in water 12 hours before cooking

Sprouted grains and legumes

Tofu, egg whites, yogurt

Fresh ginger, mint, marjoram, cilantro, lemon balm,  white peppercorns

Herbal teas, vegetable broths, fruit and vegetable juices

Balanced Foods
Some foods contain naturally balanced thermal qualities.  These include:
·      Root vegetables
·      Black mushrooms
·      Peanuts
·      Olives
·      Lemons
·      Grapes
·      Plums
·      Sunflower seeds

The Color of Food
The color of food can also help you determine its temperature. Green, blue, and purple fruits and vegetables tend to be more cooling than those that are red, orange, or yellow. In this way, a green apple or pepper will be more cooling than one that is red.

The Preparation of Food
How you prepare your food also affects how warming or cooling it will be for the body.  Lightly and quickly cooked foods are more cooling.  Long and slow cooking makes food warmer. 

And now… continue your research…
Understanding the principles of warm and cool foods and the properties of yin and yang is an in-depth study that I can only touch upon here.  My goal is to ignite your interest so that you do your own research into the healing benefits of  balancing your diet with cooling and warming foods.  What better way to expand and balance your approach to well being! 

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Integrative Medicine: Allopathy and Homeopathy Hand in Hand

The body in form….
I always thought I had a body in perfect form… in top quality, high performance, never-get-seriously sick form.  As a dancer whose been dancing all of my life, this body has almost always been in shape (even when I gained 15 pounds living high on pasta and vino in Italy) and has always been toned, stretched, strong, and reliable.

An uninvited guest…
That is, until about two weeks ago when I found out that the digestive blockage I was trying to resolve with homeopathic medicine and diet was nothing less than an uninvited guest lodged in my sigmoid colon, otherwise known as a tumor!

I’ve got it covered…
I know I write all about natural protocols for keeping healthy.  It’s my pride and joy that I never have had to go to an allopathic doctor in my adult life to resolve a physical problem.  I have lists of my favorite alternative doctors in whichever city I happen to be living in.  Here it’s my Taiwanese traditional Chinese medicine specialist, my Korean electro-acupuncturist, my Argentine muscle-worker, my miracle-working Floridian chiropractor, and my brilliant Russian homoeopathist (ex-allopathic doctor to the astronauts in St. Petersburg.)  I’m always covered and always sure that at least one of them will find a solution to a torn ligament, misaligned spine, digestive problem, and the like.

Or do I?
Well, we are speaking of a digestive problem here.  One that started a little bit less than a year ago.  My usually perfectly functioning system began to perplex me.  Elimination was a problem.  I went for colonics, but my natural ability to cleanse wasn’t up to par, to say the least.  I was staying thin, had my usual resources of energy, but month by month the problem was not resolving.

The rebel…
I finally went to a specialist who advised me to have a colonoscopy.  I rebelled.  Me?  A colonoscopy?  That’s for grannies who don’t know how to use diet and natural protocols.  More months went by.  Now less and less was happening and I wondered, where is it going?  I look the same.  Shouldn’t I be getting bloated, puffy, fat?  I thought I had parasites.  Perfectly treatable with natural formulae.

But nothing was changing and finally I relented and went for tests. 

Giving in…
I had the colonoscopy and then a cat scan and the long and the short of it was that I had a blockage the size of a tennis ball that was taking up 80% of the space in my intestine and I’d better get me to surgery fast before it became an emergency!

I changed my diet to the bland foods I always avoid – white rice, white flour, eggs - with no fruits, veggies, or whole grains in sight.  I went for the surgery. 

Revelatory and humbling note…
Had I had the colonoscopy months ago, the tumor would have been in mini form and easily extractable during the colonoscopy itself.

It’s been a week and I’m at home recuperating.  No exercise for at least a month, which means my assistant teaches my dance classes and I hear all the news.  No lifting (darn, really wanted that cement hauling job), and serious rehearsals for when I’m 104 years old, meaning I’ve got shuffling down to a science.  I’m supposed to walk as much as I can to keep the intestines supple, which I do around the house until fifteen minutes later its time for a nap.  Mostly I’m sleeping, reading, listening to music, and feeling the humanness of my body.

In the normal flow…
Eating whole foods is essential.  Cleansing the body on a regular basis is essential.  I recently read Alejandro Junger’s book, Clean, and believe that his protocols are key for a healthy life.  Being mindful by getting enough rest, avoiding stress, and doing what you love is paramount.  But even with all of this, we are vulnerable creatures, human, with bodies that sometimes tell us to stop, to notice, and to listen.

Using the homeopathic and allopathic…
I completely adhere to integrative medicine, which combines homeopathic with allopathic protocols.  There are times when one is more effective than the other. 

Back from the hospital, I was given no medication other than the advice to take ibuprophin if I needed to.  I haven’t needed to.  I’m on a homeopathic formula given to me by my Russian doctor that has arnica and other healing extracts to get me back to form.  I’m back to eating whole grains, veggies, and fruits; drinking tons of water and lots of organic herbal teas.  But now I’m going to also get my annual allopathic check-ups, my blood tests, and my periodic colonoscopies. 

The lesson…
My lesson in all of this ~ to be wise.  To respect all types of medical science.  Not to self-diagnose.  To be faster in reacting to a problem.  Not to assume that I’m invulnerable.  To understand what it means to LOVE myself in a deeper way by listening and investigating all avenues for health.  To not be afraid.  To trust.  To know that LOVE attracts LOVE and that loving doctors will appear, as they have for me in this experience, even though they came from that dreaded allopathic place!  Everything has its place.

Please take a look at The Body In Form store to find hand-picked items for easy purchase online such as:  vitamins, herbs, beauty products, and self-help, health, and recipe books that encourage you to have a body - and life - in form!