5 Guidelines for Discovering Your Nutrition Needs
Diet and nutrition are common topics being discussed in yoga class. When I first began practicing yoga, through no mindfulness of my own, my diet began to change. I started to notice that certain foods I enjoyed made me feel heavy and lethargic. Through yoga, I became aware of the effects the food I ate had on my body and so I naturally began to adjust my diet. Yoga helps us to tune into Nature’s rhythms and allows our true nature to resurface.
Just as no two people have matching fingerprints, we need to take into account our human uniqueness when discussing nutrition. Exercise your own judgment as to what is right for you. Our food choices reflect the ongoing evolution of ourselves, our life values, and our sense of purpose. There should be no forcing or struggle when it comes to what you eat (much like your yoga practice). Trust the wisdom your body has to offer and modify based on what your body is telling you.
Listening to and supporting our unique needs takes conscious effort. With nutrition information changing on a daily basis, it is hard for us as consumers to make informed choices. Technology, the media, and poor examples from those who raise us contribute to this separation from our intuitive abilities. We can honor ourselves and the planet by being aware of where and how our food is being produced, and understanding how our body digests and assimilates it.
Food gives us energy and helps us face life’s challenges. We should eat to nourish ourselves and not devitalize ourselves.
“Keeping ourselves clear through light and simple eating allows our full energy to be available to us so that we can be the true ‘spiritual warriors’ or ‘spiritual athletes’ we were intended to be.” – Elson M Haas, MD
5 Guidelines for Intuitive Whole Health
Here are some basic guidelines to follow:
1. Eat natural, fresh, good quality, organic, GMO free foods. Limit processed foods. The quality of the food eaten affects our well-being.
2. Diet varies with activity level and time of the year. Create meals based on foods available at Farmer’s Markets. Don’t be afraid to eat more if your activity level increases.
3. Meals should be simple. Big meals, or combining lots of different foods, can act as a mental and physical sedative.
4. Develop the habit of relaxing around eating. This supports the bodies digestive functions.
5. Exercise keeps the body healthy and helps our bodies utilize the nutrients we consume.
Health Benefits of Castor Oil Packs
Castor oil is pressed from the castor bean, which is actually a seed. Native to Africa, India, and the Mediterranean region, the Castor plant, Ricinus communis in Latin, has spread throughout the world since ancient times. The plant is one of the world’s oldest cultivated crops.
What is Castor Oil Used For?
Castor oil was first documented in an Egyptian medical papyrus in 1550 BCE, but is believed to have been used for centuries prior, specifically for constipation. But this oil has served multiple purposes, and has been used in soap manufacturing. It has also been incorporated into skin and hair products, and in modern times, is used in manufacturing polyurethane. There are also claims that the oil encourages hair growth, and has been found to have anti-inflammatory properties. Research shows that the oil speeds wound healing, and is a useful treatment for bedsores.
New York Times best-selling author of the groundbreaking 1994 “Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom,” Christiane Northrup M.D. has practiced medicine, and been an advocate for women’s health, for decades.
Dr. Northrup recommends castor oil packs for a number of issues, including endometriosis (a painful condition where uterine tissue forms within the pelvis), PMS and severe monthly cramps, urinary tract infections, and ovarian cysts, and advises using castor oil packs three times a week (except during menses) for immune system health.
Another author, Carolyn DeMarco, (“Take Charge of Your Body”) recommends castor oil packs for painful varicose veins, liver, gallbladder, and kidney concerns, constipation, sciatica and arthritis. The packs are also used by cancer patients, and in detox regimens.