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Fasting for 72 Hours Can Reboot The Entire Immune System

Anybody can cook, even if it’s only a fried egg – but not just anyone has the discipline to fast. This ancient practice of abstaining from eating for a day, or sometimes even a week or more has a history of curing a whole host of health problems, but even a brief fast can completely re-boot your immune system.

This practice isn’t without criticism by modern nutritionists and unbelievers, but research implies that when the body is hungry in short spurts, it can kick-start stem cells into producing new white blood cells.

White blood cells, also known as leukocytes, are the cells which the immune system uses to fight against foreign invaders like viruses and bad bacteria.

Scientists at the University of Southern California found that fasting could be particularly beneficial for people suffering from damaged immune systems, such as cancer patients on chemotherapy, or people with auto-immune disorders.

Intermittent fasting even triggers stem cells to regenerate!

Valter Longo has conducted a body of scientific research about fasting which is absolutely astounding, as well.

He published a fascinating paper in the Journal of Cell Biology based on work he did on yeast cells.  The results were considered so unlikely he almost didn’t get his paper published.  What Longo discovered was that when he starved a colony of yeast cells, about 95% of the cells would commit suicide, using the controlled death mechanism of apoptosis. They would disassemble their proteins, dissolve the cell membranes, and turn themselves into food for the remaining 5%.

Longo’s work suggests that if the fasting body is able to rejuvenate and multiply the bone marrow cells that are responsible for blood and immunity (hematopoietic stem cells), then it is obvious that the body could do this as well or better when it has plenty to eat.

Ancient Fasting Techniques

Moreover, in Ayurvedic and Traditional Chinese Medicine, it is understood that our body’s metabolism and digestion are often under strain form the foods we put into our bodies on a daily basis.

For Buddhist monks in the Theravada tradition, all eating is confined to the morning hours, implying a daily fast of 16 hours, since they don’t consume food just before bed or while sleeping. The idea is that the body has plenty of time to process the food we put into it.

Sikhs often abstain from eating to heal the body and as a spiritual practice of rejuvenation.

We eat when we are stressed. We eat on the run, and we eat things that we know the body doesn’t really want. Other times we skip meals, causing a drop in our blood-glucose levels, or we eat bad food combinations. Our poor digestive system has barely had a chance to fully digest the last meal we’ve eaten before we put the next one in!

What Fast is Right for You?

There are few choices if you want to reboot your whole immune system with a brief fast.

Selective Fasting

Selective fasting means that you abstain from only certain foods or for certain hours of the day.

Water Fasting

In this fasting diet, you consume only water for a specified duration. It not only helps you to feel full, but also helps to cleanse toxins form the entire digestive tract as you abstain from food.

This might be one of the more difficult fasts to complete, because you are consuming zero calories, but it has hailed as a cure-all for chronic pain, arthritis, migraines, and more.

Intermittent Fasting 

Intermittent fasting is often confused with dieting, but it more closely resembles making a conscious decision to skip certain meals. You fast and then feast on purpose, (consuming only healthy foods). Intermittent fasting means that you eat your calories during a specific window of the day, and choosing not to eat food during the rest. This is similar to what the Theravada Monks practice.

Working Out on an Empty Stomach

You can also do a half-day fast and add a moderate workout. This combination of fasting and exercise maximizes the impact of cellular functions which break down fat and free up glycogen for energy-use. It forces your body to burn fat without eating up muscle. A word of caution, though. You might not have as much energy to do a hard-core workout as when you have eaten.

Caveat: fasting can be harmful. If you have any serious health conditions, and you’re seriously thinking of trying this, you should consult your doctor first.

Taken from: https://themindunleashed.com

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The breakfast Dilemma

‘What should I eat for breakfast? ‘ is one of the most common question I hear and I know it represents a real problem most of us struggle with. Is breakfast indeed the most important meal of the day? Should we eat a light or full nutritious breakfast ? High in carbs? Or rich with proteins? Let’s think about it for a moment, the word breakfast consists of two words; break and fast meaning literally breaking the fast. That is good because in order the break the fast you need to fast first and then eat, right?

 

EVOLUTION OF HUMAN PHYSIOLOGY

When we evolved as a species, food was not available 24/7, when we found or hunted something, we ate and then perhaps had to fast for hours, days or even more. Our physiology has evolved to deal with these conditions, hence the whole mechanism of hormonal production, secreting insulin to remove excess glucose from the blood to keep it ‘for later’ and leptin to manage energy storage in fat cells and releasing it back to the blood when needed (when there is no food available). Now, our bodies still work exactly the same, only we don’t really stop eating all day long…

The more the nutrition science develops the more we look into understanding our ‘manufacturing manual’ in order to understand what is the optimal diet and lifestyle for us and this principle of ‘intermittent eating’ proves to have a lot of health benefits; regulating hormonal production, natural weight balancing, leveling blood sugar, regeneration of cells and natural healing processes and many more. For most of us, who live busy life, working, taking care of families, it is practically impossible to stop eating for a whole day or more and therefore shorter fasts on a regular basis e.g. narrowing the eating window is a perfect solution.

LISTEN TO YOUR BODY

So I say, fast first and then break the fast; try fast for at least 12, and even better, 14 hours before you start eating again. For example, if you finished your dinner around 7 or 8 pm, stop eating until 7or 8 am and if you ate later then start eating later. Some of us are naturally not hungry in the morning and some of us can’t start the day without breakfast. The only golden rule I suggest here is to listen to your own body and needs. If you have to leave the house you can always pack your breakfast to eat later. The nature of your breakfast should also take into consideration the type of work or activity you do. Is your work physically challenging or do you sit the whole day in front of a computer?

PRACTICAL TIPS

And now for some practicality. For most of us, midweek mornings are hectic as hell and not much time at hand and therefore the ultimate quick yet super nutritious breakfast can be a smoothie. You can throw in fruit, green leaves, nuts and seeds, good fats like coconut oil or avocado, your favorite super foods like green powder, maca, cacao or protein powder. As liquid you can use any nut milk, coconut water, green veg juice or herbal tea. The possibilities are endless and there are so many recipes out there, experiment a little and find your favorite. You have a whole nutritious meal in a glass and you can easily pack it in a flask or a jar and take it with you. Remember though, smoothies are food not drinks so drink really slowly as if you’re eating them rather drinking.

Here’s another dilemma, most of us tend to eat a very sugary and starchy breakfast thinking that all these carbohydrates will get us going and fuel us for the day but in fact what happens is that our blood sugar levels shoot up and come mid morning we start feeling peckish and perhaps experience an energy drop (especially if you had refined carbohydrates like cereals or white bread for breakfast). So make sure to pack your breakfast with vital nutrients (vitamins, minerals, good fats and proteins) and minimize the sugars.

BREAKFAST IDEAS & THE ULTIMATE RECIPE

Other breakfast ideas could be:

  • yoghurt with some fresh fruit, nuts and seeds
  • Egg of your choice with cut vegetables
  • A rich (miso) broth with some greens, sprouts and tofu, just like they eat in the Far East (cook the broth in advance and reheat in the morning)
  • Whole grain crackers with avocado, sprouts and fresh cut veg

And here is one of my favorites:

CHIA SEEDS PUDDING WITH ALL THE TRIMMINGS

Chia seeds pudding is absolutely the ultimate breakfast for me, easy to make and ever so nutritious. Rich in the precious fatty acid omega 3, minerals, fibers, essential amino acids and more. They promote good digestion and stabilize blood sugar level. What more could you ask for?!
This dish will boost you with energy and will keep you going for a long time

 

 

 

Makes 1-2 portions, depends on how hungry you are in the morning…

1. 4 spoons raw chia seeds
2. 1 cup coconut milk (or other nut nut milk)
3. ¼ cup Goji berries soaked in water over night
4. a handful of fresh berries like blueberries, strawberries, raspberries etc.
5. a generous handful of raw nuts
6. 1 spoon cacao nibs (optional)

Mix the seeds and milk well by using a whisk to make sure there are no lamps. Let it ‘rest’ and thicken for 10-15 minutes, wile you’re busy with other morning tasks. You can prepare this in the night before and keep it in the fridge for the next morning. Spoon the soaked Goji berries on top of the pudding and top it up with the fresh fruit, nuts and cacao nibs. Here you can play with it and add any topping of your liking.

Enjoy! Your body will thank you…

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Ayuryoga – Ayurveda & Yoga

The concept of AyurYoga was formed around three years ago when Elena & Cristina met in an Ayurvedic Nutrition course in the Academy of Ayurvedic studies in Amsterdam.
Elena, Ayurvedic practitioner & therapist certified at the Ganesha Centre of Ayurveda en Yoga studies in Alkmaar and Cristina, Iyengar yoga certified teacher.

 

MEDITERRANEAN DIET AND AYURVEDIC NUTRITION

They say Yoga and Ayurveda are sisters sciences, they are in fact coming from the same philosophical background. Further as Yoga practitioners we know that it’s impossible to engage into a yoga practice without spontaneously reviewing one’s own lifestyle and as Ayurveda practitioners we know how physical activity will benefit our mental and physical condition.

Instead of dogmatically applying Yoga and Ayurveda teachings and impose a rigid military lifestyle forcing changes from the outside, with our workshops we want to take participants to the level of simple observation of their nature.
Here Ayurveda offers a simple method based on the Doshas system and their qualities that, beyond any kind of “judgment”, supports people to reestablish their body/mind equilibrium throughout reviewing and tuning diet, daily routine, massage and the use of spices and herbs that are finally just a part of your diet.

Ayurvedic doshasHOW TO APPLY AYURVEDIC PRINCIPALS?

This knowledge is very simply learned; once the basic principle is understood it can be applied to every situation. In this sense you don’t need to go indian to remain healthy. Speaking about food, eating what you need at your cellular level as well as your emotional level is enough, provided that you are aware of your needs of course!

To become aware of one’s own needs requires a process that may be chaotic, dynamic, concerning at the first sight, but it is a necessary step to remove any external conditioning that may prevent you to develop your own, unique personal awareness.
With our AyurYoga workshops we hope to make a contribution into supporting students in taking responsibility towards their own health and joy.

AYURYOGA WORKSHOPS AT LIVE YOGA AMSTERDAM

The AyurYoga workshops are tuned with seasonal changes affecting body and mind as well as nature around us. They are generally composed by 3 parts:

  • Asanas & Pranayama practice
  • Eat & Learn experience based on Ayurveda Nutrition concept
  • An interactive discussion amongst participants on topics treated by the workshop in relation to their personal experience.
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Summer time, holiday time!

Ah, summer! Shorts, sandals and the the wonderful sensation of sunny warmth on your bare skin. Many of us go on holiday to make the most out of the season; a time for us to take a break! Even if you’re keeping your daily routine of work and commitments, life feels different- the warm weather (if you’re lucky), the long days with light evenings and the wonderful feeling that life is just one big, ongoing party. Time for going out or BBQing with friends, indulging yourself, loosening up and letting go. Kids are out of school and we need to pay a lot of attention to keeping them busy and entertained. If you are on a holiday or traveling, then your daily routine is completely different.

But, are you taking a break from your body? A break from your health and well being? A break from taking good care of yourself?

 

10 TOP STRATEGY TIPS FOR HEALTHY EATING ON HOLIDAY

If you choose to live consciously and eat with care, you want to keep making those choices while on holiday. Naturally it will be a bit more complicated to do so, but if this is the path you chose in life you might want to opt for a more conscious holiday. I would like to share with you some of my tips and experience for keeping a healthy lifestyle, also during the holiday summer months.

Like everything else, it starts with putting your mind in the right place, to create the awareness. What you need to do is think about and develop a strategy. So, here are my top ten tips for forming a good strategy for a healthy, mindful holiday:

1. Decide on what is really important for your well being so you can set yourself some borders. For example, if you’re not eating gluten, or you follow a vegetarian diet, or are limiting your alcohol consumption to very minimal, cut your sugar intake and so on, only enforce the laws that are most important to you and let go slightly with the rest. Don’t be too harsh on yourself- don’t be afraid to give yourself some legroom.

2. Good planning: don’t leave food matters only to chance and luck. If you’re flying or traveling long hours, take food with you so you don’t find yourself hungry and bound to eat something you’d rather not.

3. Choose a self catering accommodation where you can easily prepare your own food and thus rely less on food that is made for you with unknown ingredients and unhealthy cooking methods.

4. Include exploring local markets, farms, artisan food producers into your travel plans. Try going on a wild herb and edible plant hunt. This not only enrich your holiday experience as well as your culinary repertoire, but will give you a chance to get your hands on some fresh, local and sustainable ingredients that you don’t get to include regularly.

5. Find out about restaurants with good ratings that can cater for your dietary requirements ahead of time.

6. Make sure to include some physical activities in each day of the holiday. It could be hiking or biking, swimming or practicing yoga every morning. Choose something enjoyable that also relaxes you.

7. Get kids involved with food shopping and preparation. This is the time to create some fun activities in the kitchen and keep them busy.

8. Make cooking even more fun by taking the time to cook with friends, put the music on and have a small glass of wine. Boost your creativity in the kitchen by trying new ingredients and new recipes.

9. Opt for light summer food. This is the time to eat more raw or slightly cooked food. Naturally, in the summer we are less hungry so follow this instinct and eat less and light.

10. Leave guilt and self hatred at home when you go on holiday. These are spoiling factors that are absolutely not needed in your luggage! Only self love and acceptance are your good companions for a wonderful vacation.

SUGGESTED RECIPE: MARKET SALAD

I call this salad ‘market salad’ because you just make it from what ever you can find in the local market at your holiday destination. As we are loosening up and letting go here, there are no quantities but it’s rather the principle that will inspire you to indulge yourself with a light, fresh, summer salad, full of goodness and takes only minutes to prepare. Work with what you find and just improvise.

 

 

  • Very ripe tomatoes! Try to combine a variety of types, cut into cubes
  • Cucumber, cubed
  • Red pepper, cubed
  • Radishes, halved
  • Red onion, thinly sliced
  • Fresh herbs: basil, parsley, oregano or anything you find and like, chopped
  • Zest and juice from half a lemon
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • A handful of pine nuts (optional)
  • Some feta cheese, cubed (optional)
  • A handful of good quality olives
  • A pinch of sumac, (optional)

Place all ingredients, apart from the cheese, in a large salad bowl and toss gently to mix well. Crumble the feta cheese on top, sprinkle the sumac, if using and voila! Your salad is ready to go!

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Spring detox

The health of our kidneys is important to filter fluids and keep our body clean from waste and toxins. The bladder you want to keep strong and functioning well over the years for obvious reasons. Twists Asanas are the right one, the twisting action gives the abdominal organs a thorough massage and squeezes the kidneys, while the intensifying blood flow to and from the kidneys rejuvenates them. As groin opening poses keep the bladder in good shape and help keep its elasticity. You want to create space in the lower abdomen and tone the muscles supporting the bladder. The spreading action of the legs and relaxing of the groin area like in Baddha Konasana and Upavista Konasana, does just that. And to increase the effect you can do them in inverted poses. That way the whole abdomen relaxes and the pressure in the organs felt from being upright is relieved.

INGREDIENTS AND THEIR PROPERTIES

Probably you all know cranberries for its properties to help keep the bladder healthy. But there are lots of ingredients that support the bladder and kidneys. I created a rich dish with flavor and crunch packed with these ingredients. Pomegranate has one of my favorite flavors and the zing of its molasses combines well with the sweet beets. Apple and walnut is a killer combination and the thick creamy cashew topping makes these wraps a true indulgence. Beets are wonderful, with anti carcinogen and blood purifying properties. They also help dissolve and eliminate acid crystals from the kidneys that can form into kidney stones. Also walnuts and sprouts strengthen the kidneys, whereas pomegranate and cilantro support the bladder. In the recipe the bold ingredients support the kidneys or bladder, so make sure you include them in your dish.

BUCKWHEAT WRAPS WITH POMEGRANATE, BEETS, APPLE, WALNUT & CASHEW CREAM RECIPE

(for two people)

Wraps

50 g. buckwheat groats
1/2 tl. chia seeds
100 ml. water
coconut oil to fry

Filling

handful mixed lettuce leaves
10 g. sprouts
125 g. cooked beets in 2 cm. cubes
1/2 peeled apple in thin slices
20 g. chopped walnuts
40 g. sweet little tomatoes cut in 1 cm. pieces
juice of 1/2 to1 lemon
handful chopped cilantro
handful chopped mint leaves
1 tbs. pomegranate molasses (pure pomegranate without added sugar)
1/2 ts. honey
ground black peper

Cashew cream

1/4 cup raw cashews (soaked 6 hours, then rinsed)
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/4 clove garlic
1/2 teaspoon Himalaya salt
pinch white peper

Instructions

Ground the buckwheat groats and chia seeds to a flour in the foodprocessor. Add a pinch of salt and water and mix until you have a batter. Heat a frying pan on a medium fire, add a little coconut oil and bake 18 cm. wraps.

Put the beets in a bowl with the pomegranate molasses, honey, black peper and a pinch of salt to marinate. Peel and cut the apple in thin slices sprinkled with lemon juice to avoid them getting brown. Cut the tomatoes in 1 cm. pieces, sprinkle with some salt and let the water drip out from a sieve. Combine in a bowl with the juice of half a lemon and lots of chopped koriander and mint leaves.

Blend the cashew nuts with the other ingredients as long as it takes to become silky smooth as mayonaise.

Assemble on each wrap some lettuce leaves, beets, apple, tomato salsa, sprouts and walnuts. Add some good dollops of cashew cream on top.

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