Friday, August 27, 2010
It is still August but the weather has turned cool and dry. This Vata energy affects how we feel and look. Vata time is about change and transformation.
Those of us who are naturally dehydrated know how to cope with the dry skin. But those of us entering this time of our life may resist the change from youthful adulthood to midlife maturity can learn from Plato who advises,
“He who is of calm and happy nature will hardly feel the pressure of age, but to him who is of an opposite disposition youth and age are equally a burden.”
While those of us, who are naturally more Vata, welcome change, the cooler, lighter fall energy can create unbalancing affects our physical body, our thinking and feelings. Fall can cause Vata skin to look more dehydrated, thin and dull.
For the younger oilier Kapha skin types, this cooler weather can cause more congested and blemished skin.
And for the sensitive Pitta skin types the internal dehydration can trigger outbreaks of Rosacea and eczema.
Get immediate relief with a change in your skin care. Increase skin cell hydration with the regular use of serums and slow down the moisture loss by increasing the richness of your moisturizer
Then change your diet. The physical nourishment of richer foods and skincare can help balance that spacey feeling and hydrate our bodies. Eat warm moist foods to lubricate from inside out. In this transitional time eat warm salads and grains. Choose nourishing stews with root vegetables.
To further rejuvenate take strengthening herbs like Ashwaganda and Ginseng. You can get individualized formulas from your Ayurvedic or Traditional Chinese Doctor. You can take Ashwaganda in tablets alone or in formulas like Healthy Vata
If you prefer Ginseng, you need to both understand your own body constitution and the different types of ginseng. The safest one to take without advice is Canadian Ginseng. The smaller sweeter roots are best for Pitta types. The larger, older roots are best for Vatas types. The best way to get them is to go to a Chinese herbal store and select your roots and have them cut into slices. Then you can make tea by dropping 4-6 slices into a cup of boiling water and let it steep for 20 minutes.
If aging or Vata imbalance is a concern then Autumn is also a good time to detox your kidneys. In Ayurveda kidneys are considered a Vata organ and can influence our emotions negatively with worry and fear. According to Caroline Marie Dupont in her book, Enlightened Eating, we can support our kidney function by developing our ability to process fear, letting it flow through us while retaining the lessons.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine the kidneys determine how well you age. My Traditional Chinese Doctor recommends caring for the Kidneys start in your Thirties to ensure healthy aging.
Kidney detoxifiers are available at most health food stores. My favourite is Kidney Support from Alpha Science Laboratories . It is very effective and easy to do. Just take 2 tablespoons until the bottle is done.
Caroline Marie Dupont advises on maintaining kidney health with a diet high in vegetables and low in fat, salt and animal protein. Drink an average of 8 glasses of water - pure spring water, or purified water from distillation or reverse osmosis.
Sunday, August 22, 2010
September is approaching. While it is not the beginning of the New Year, it is a popular time for self transformation.
After a couple of months of detoxification, I have experienced emotional transformation. Along with the surfacing of repressed emotions, I have been also wizened up to new habits and behaviors that are more suitable to my new awareness.
My annual visit to Steven Dao has confirmed that becoming more succinct in my communications is my home work for the next year. I go to Steven not so much for future predictions but his uncanny ability to tell me what I am ready to hear.
Steven foretells of increase of negations and warns against my regular verbosity. (This is the only time I am quiet so how did he know! ;) My “long form” of communicating has endured through a cousin in law telling me that “while I don’t consider you a big mouth, you sure talk a lot” and to the constant dismay of my more reserved daughter.
So I preparing for September with a new look to solidify the revamped internal me. I will cover my grey hairs with a natural but convenient hair colour, a more conservative -- so longer hairdo from Sharon at John Steinberg (because she can give me a hairdo that is pretty but not boring) and I will save my usual yoga chic dressing for the weekend. ( a lovely site with menopausal tummy)
I have committed to a look that takes more maintenance and is more appropriate to my half century age. I still wanted natural and easy to care for but now it will take more time and money.
While I believe that many of my habits, like over activity, lack of routine and lack of sleep, have sped up my aging , my ability to reflect on my past behaviors and to embarking on new ones have rejuvenated me.
So what are you plans for yourself the next year?
If you are looking to do some self renovation here are some great ideas.
Rejuvenate your appearance with better care for your skin. Fall is a great time for sun sensitizing treatments like Microdermabrasion and Intense Pulse Light. Intense Pulse Light is an excellent way to erase lines and plump up your skin tone. But don’t neglect your daily care routine to help you maintain your youthful appearance. See a video of our Microdermabrasion Treatment. While you are there look over at the sidebar for our other facial treatment on video.
If you are over 35 years old – invest in a good serum. I may be bias but I totally recommend our most popular product, Collagen Elastin Plus for the job. It's like my child as I dictated the ingredients in this seaweed based serum. It will give your face an improved day to day appearance while helping you lessen long term expenditures on skin rejuvenation.
To help you update your fashion statement with accessories consider the advice of Jezebel.com. an e-news for alternative minded women’s http://jezebel.com/5616391/dress-code-accessories-101?skyline=true&s=i.
If your health seems sluggish, you may need to detox. After reading Gilles Marin’s book Healing from Within with Chi Nei Tsang, I would advise against any detox products that contain alcohol. Alcohol, according to Gilles, intoxicates our organs thereby needing to be detoxed. You can visit my past blogs for some ideas. Just avoid the liver detox if you want to avoid alcohol.
If you need some help in deciding your future, you can call Steven Dao at 416-846-0588 and get a objective reading. See my past blog for more on Steven.
An now for a deserved feel good break -- go to Jezebel.com to see the controversy over untouched photos of Jennifer Aniston. While she looks older I believe she looks more beautiful without the touch ups.
Monday, August 16, 2010
Taking care of your skin may first be a thing of beauty. But you intuitively understand your skin is connected to the rest of you from the flash of red in your cheeks from feeling embarrassed or eating spicy food.
Your skin encases and protects the body physically. When you sweat it is maintaining your internal temperature.
It holds and influences efficiency of your blood and lymph systems by distributing moisture and nutrient to the rest of your body.
It comes to the rescue of overworked lungs and kidneys in eliminating excess waste and toxins.
According to Gilles Marin Healing From Within with Chi Nei Tsang “Skin is the main storage space of the body, not only of storing excess and waste but also nutrients, vitamins, minerals and chemicals needed to restore metabolic balance.“
Listening to our skin can guide us get more beautiful and healthier skin but it can also help us know our selves better.
An example is a case of Acne, (you can substitute rosacea and aged-looking skin)
You can merely try to erase the acne with harsh ingredients like retinol cream, harsh cleansers and high tech treatments like Microdermabrasion and Intense Pulse Light.
I am not against ridding the skin of acne quickly but I strongly advise that you deal with the underlying causes of problem skin. It can take courage as it leads to increased awareness of who you are physically, emotionally and mentally. Then and only then can you benefit for the long term from the quick results.
We always start at the physical level by determining what the base skin type is. This information is nonnegotiable. Successful long term results can only be achieved if the solution is individualized to your true physical nature.
Then it is the determination of the external physical cause that has unbalanced the skin. Finding the solution of how to help the skin live harmoniously with climatic conditions is easy but not always successful.
For a person suffering from acne due to oil production stimulated by a lack of skin hydration can be as simple as a few treatments of Sea Salt Microdermabrasion and a regular home routine of hydrating serum and protective moisturizer.
But lets say the problem has improved but not to your expectation, i.e. flawless skin —then we need to look at some internal causes like the digestive system.
If the blemishes are accompanied with dehydration and redness in the cheeks – the problem can be poor digestion or an over acidic stomach – so adding a digestive aid like Pitta Digest could help with digestion and acidic stomach. Or you can visit an alternative healer for solutions to boost digestion.
If acne is mainly along the jaw line – your real problem could be constipation or a toxic colon. You can try a gentle detox program as mentioned in Getting Ready for Detox or get the guidance of an alternative healer . Go to alternative healer to see who we have found to be successful in helping us, the staff at Pure + simple get healthier.
Long term health and healthy beautiful skin reflects a good digestive system. Good digestion relies on healthy clear organs. And healthy clear organs need regular internal cleansing.
So if you are feeling that you need more than digestive enzymes, you are now ready to go deeper.
What is preventing you from attaining good digestion regularly?
Now what was mere acne has started to open doors to self understanding. This non-threatening but annoying physical problem has become your “gateway to your feeling”. (paraphrased Gilles Marin Healing From Within with Chi Nei Tsang)
More information on how emotions can affect your organs go to Detoxing Your Way to Sanity
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Or, why have reflexology and shiatsu massage to improve organ function?
Annual and semi-annual bowel, liver and other internal organ house cleaning is widely accepted as beneficial for physical health. But according to Asian health followers it is also good for our psychological and emotional health.
Mantak Chi (it’s hard to define him so follow the link) advocates that psychological treatment with Chi Nei Tsang (Chi Internal Organ Massage) will give clients better results described in his book and that of his disciple, Gilles Marin .
Conventional medicine supports this theory in the New York Times best seller, The Second Brain by Neurobiologist, Michael Gershon
I have personally experienced this while doing Julia Chang’s Liver Gallbladder Cleanse. Even though I have been doing internal cleansing since I was in my twenties, I still experienced facial breakouts and increased anger and irritability in my day to day encounters as my repressed anger is being cleared as well. It is common knowledge in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine that the condition of the liver and gallbladder can affect the emotions with increased anger, bitterness, irritability and frustration. And excess anger and bitterness can affect the functions of the liver.
“"Sickness of the liver," the Nei Jing tells us, "causes...people... to have fits of anger." Anger causes Qi-and tempers-to rise. Maciocia reminds us that anger can be considered to include irritability, frustration, rage, indignation, animosity or bitterness. Anger, when expressed appropriately, may not cause harm; when chronic or suppressed, it may become pathogenic. (quote from Qi: Journal of Traditional Eastern Health and Fitness”
Other emotional / organ partners are fear / kidneys, grief and sorrow / lungs; worry / stomach; joy / heart. (for more information see the Qi: Journal of Traditional Eastern Health and Fitness)
If you do not like to do internal cleansing with diet, you can do it with massage and exercise. Yoga postures are an excellent way to stimulate and detox the organs. While all Yoga exercise stimulate your organs to detox, I find the meditative, restorative yoga of Iyengar as taught at the Yoga Centre of Toronto may be more fitting for this purpose than the more aerobic or energetic schools..
While Yoga postures can be customized to your body and flexibility, some people who are not very flexible (many males), who are elderly may prefer to practice Tai chi at the Taoist Centres in
Those who want to combine organ health with martial arts can learn the original Tai Chi practiced by the Shao Lin warriors. This is being taught worldwide by Master Wong Kiew Kit. He travels over the world and come to
If you prefer to detox when completely relaxed then order a Lymphomaniac Facial at any Pure and simple and receive a stomach reflexology massage with your facial treatment. If you ask (nicely ;) the esthetician will help you design a stomach massage routine you can do daily each morning to give yourself a great start daily.
If you are too sensitive for direct stomach massage or would like the added benefit of better foot and leg health, get foot reflexology massage. You can even receive this treatment in the comfort of your home or office with Jean Louie (http://jeanlouiereflexology.com/ . Her rates are competitive with in clinics treatments.
Foot reflexology is an excellent ‘ two for one ‘, for seniors and those suffering from foot problems. I highly recommend foot reflexology for people with high blood sugar and diabetes. It will help to alleviate symptoms and problems from poor circulation like edema, numbness while stimulating the chi to your internal organs.
Monday, August 2, 2010
August is here and I am preparing for my fall detox.
For the novice a great way to start is to get professional assistance from a Naturopath, an Ayurveda doctor or a Traditional Chinese Doctor. Click here for a listing of health professionals my staff and I have found to be helpful.
If you are planning to start your own detox, you will find the following pointers helpful.
1. Eat only vegetable for a period of time from 1 day to a week is a gentle way to start. Strict fasting (liquids only) is not recommended for Vatas
2. Clean your bowels and kidneys first
3. Then your liver
Some people who cleanse regularly advise having a colonic at the beginning to clear the large intestine so that toxins from the small intestine and other organs can be released.
I find the people at Supplements plus a great help in recommending a great colon cleanser program.
Renew Life has two good colon cleanse programs. One regular colon cleanse and one for those with Candida
My personal favourite, for those of us who are not fibre friendly, is Alpha Science Laboratories “Ultimate Fibre Plus”. It supports psyllium with slippery elm, apple pectin and a good combination of acidophilus to give a gentle and balanced colon cleanse. Click here for more info.
Due to my satisfaction with “Ultimate Fibre Plus”, I am planning to use Alpha Science Laboratories “Kidney Cleanse”. I like the ingredients list and that no sugar has been added. I have high blood sugar.
I have been cleansing my liver every long weekend for a couple of years. Yes, when you have had 55 years to pollute your internal organs with city air and some very indulgent food choices, don’t expect to clear all toxins out in one shot.
My favourite is the Liver/Gallbladder Flush from Prime Health Products. You need to prepare 6 weeks in advance before you actually do the flush. It is gentle and not disruptive to your daily life. There are no diet restrictions except for the 2 days before the flush when you consume only apple cider and water. Click here for the link.
An excellent support to an internal detox program is body work like massage and body scrubs. Pick up a bath mitt like the ones the Korean Body Scrubbers use (soon you can get it at www.pureandsimple.ca) and use it in your daily shower.
Pure + simple has put the Lymphomaniac Facial on sale for $85.00, so you can get a great facial and have your stomach massaged like never before. This massage, if you allow us, will give your internal organs a direct rub down that will make Reflexology will seem so remote. We are happy to show you how to do for your self daily. This is an excellent daily routine for those of us who suffer less than optimum digestion or elimination.
The Lymphomaniac Facial targets your major lymph nodes so those tender areas surrounding your breasts will also get a boost to increase circulation and cleansing.
Here’s to that wonderful feeling that we get with Beauty through Health!