Exercise is one of the components of a Healthy Lifestyle that make feel good hormones flow. We know the comments ‘runner’s high’ ‘yoga bliss’ – include exercise in your life just for the high or perhaps the scientifically proven benefits below.

Exercise to:

  • Improve energy levels.
  • Prevent and perhaps reverse heart disease.
  • Lower heart rate and blood pressure.
  • Improve blood cholesterol.
  • 50% less chance of some cancers.
  • 40% less chance of getting diabetes.
  • Maintain optimal body weight or body fat.
  • Build and maintain healthy muscles, bones, and joints.
  • Relieve depression and anxiety.
  • Enhance feelings of well-being and self esteem.
  • Improve work, recreation, and sport performance.
  • Improve cardiovascular and/or cardiorespiratory function.
  • Decrease blood triglycerides.
  • Improve glucose tolerance and reduce insulin resistance.
  • Increase muscle, tendon and ligament strength.
  • Strengthen immune system.
  • Shrink fat cells.
  • Stimulate brain activity.
  • Improve balance.
  • Prevent dementia.
  • Relax.
  • Enhance libido.
  • Prevent osteoporosis.
  • Build core strength
  • Enhance self esteem
  • Alleviate insomnia.
  • Improve flexibility and range of motion.
  • Manage stress.
  • Prevent or alleviate headaches.
  • Prevent or alleviate back challenges.
  • Improve menopause symptoms.
  • Improve focus and concentration.
  • Fight the effects of aging.
  • Lower health care costs.
  • Improve fibromyalgia.
  • Prevent or alleviate incontinence.
  • Look great!

No one type of exercise provides all benefits. A well-balanced exercise routine includes 1. aerobic exercise (e.g. power walking, jogging, cardio yoga, power cleaning, hiking, aerobics, martial arts, sports); 2. strength training (e.g. lifting weights, hiking, weight bearing exercises, kayaking, pull-ups and push-ups, biking, rowing, crunches); flexibility training (e.g. gymnastics, martial arts, dance, pilates, yoga). Experts recommend that adults get more than 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity each day. It’s never too late to start. Even small things can count as exercise when you’re starting out – like taking a short walk, gardening or cleaning the yard. Try out different kinds of exercise to see which one inspires you.

Please consult your doctor before beginning any new diet, exercise program.

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“It was good for the skin to touch the earth, and the old people liked to remove their moccasins and walk with bare feet on the sacred earth….The soil was soothing, strengthening, cleansing, and healing.” … Chief Luther Standing Bear TETON SIOUX

 

 

I love to lay on the ground and look at the night sky or the day sky and the clouds. I also absolutely love laying on rocks and practicing yoga in direct connection with these natural surfaces is a favourite activity of mine.

I have always enjoyed sleeping; resting; sitting and walking on the earth. As my children grew up we camped a lot not only to get in nature but to be able to sleep in direct connection with the earth. For me it was a deeply rejuvenating and healing experience.

Recently the value of direct contact with the earth has become more and more recognized.

According to the Earthing Institute:

“The surface of the Earth resonates with natural, subtle energies. Ongoing scientific research is discovering the details as to why people feel significantly better when they connect with these omnipresent energy fields. Earthing refers to the process of connecting by walking barefoot outside, as humans have done throughout history, or sitting, working, or sleeping grounded indoors. For more than a decade, thousands of people around the world—men, women, children, and athletes—have incorporated Earthing into their daily routines and report that they sleep better, have less pain and stress, and faster recovery from trauma. Earthing immediately equalizes your body to the same energy level, or potential, as the Earth. This results in synchronizing your internal biological clocks, hormonal cycles, and physiological rhythms, and suffusing your body with healing, negatively charged free electrons abundantly present on the surface of the Earth.”

“Throughout time, we humans have strolled, sat, stood, and slept on the ground—the skin of our bodies touching the skin of the Earth—oblivious to the fact that such physical contact transfers natural electrical energy to the body.

Modern lifestyle has disconnected us from the Earth’s energy, making us more vulnerable to stress and illness.

Earthing is the landmark discovery that this energy upholds the electrical stability of our bodies and serves as a foundation for vitality and health.

In an age of rampant chronic disease, reconnecting with the Earth’s energy beneath our very feet provides a way back to better health.

We are bioelectrical beings living on an electrical planet.”

For more information on Earthing check out Understanding Earthing.

Recently released studies are showing Native Indians were absolutely right in their belief that walking on the ground was healing.

The most recent study published in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine July 2012 shows that Earthing or Grounding the body reduces blood viscosity.

Subjects were grounded with conductive patches on the soles of their feet and palms of their hands. Wires connected the patches to a stainless-steel rod inserted in the earth outdoors. Small fingertip pinprick blood samples were placed on microscope slides and an electric field was applied to them. Electrophoretic mobility of the RBCs was determined by measuring terminal velocities of the cells in video recordings taken through a microscope. RBC aggregation was measured by counting the numbers of clustered cells in each sample. Settings/location: Each subject sat in a comfortable reclining chair in a soundproof experiment room with the lights dimmed or off. Subjects: Ten (10) healthy adult subjects were recruited by word-of-mouth. Results: Earthing or grounding increased zeta potentials in all samples by an average of 2.70 and significantly reduced RBC aggregation. Conclusions: Grounding increases the surface charge on RBCs and thereby reduces blood viscosity and clumping. Grounding appears to be one of the simplest and yet most profound interventions for helping reduce cardiovascular risk and cardiovascular events.

In March 2012 The Journal of Alternative and Complimentary Medicine published an article describing the interaction of the Earth’s mass-electrolytic conductor on the electrical environment of human organism-aqueous environment and skeleton released by Department of Ambulatory Cardiology, Military Clinical Hospital, Bydgoszcz, Poland.

They found results indicate that up-and-down movement and the elimination of potentials in the electrical environment of the human organism by the Earth’s mass may play a fundamental role in regulation of bioelectrical and bioenergetical processes. The Earth’s electromagnetohydrodynamic potential is responsible for this phenomenon.

In January of 2012 The Journal of Environmental Health published ‘Earthing: health implications of reconnecting the human body to the Earth’s surface electrons’; the source was the Developmental and Cell Biology Department of the University of California. This paper reviews the earthing research and the potential of earthing as a simple and easily accessed global modality of significant clinical importance.

Their conclusion: Emerging evidence shows that contact with the Earth—whether being outside barefoot or indoors connected to grounded conductive systems—may be a simple, natural, and yet profoundly effective environmental strategy against chronic stress, ANS dysfunction, inflammation, pain, poor sleep, disturbed HRV, hypercoagulable blood, and many common health disorders, including cardiovascular disease. The research done to date supports the concept that grounding or earthing the human body may be an essential element in the health equation along with sunshine, clean air and water, nutritious food, and physical activity.

Seems like Earthing is among the most natural and safest things we can do to live healthier! Oh joy!

Dominica is the perfect place to hike barefoot or practice yoga in nature and take advantage of those healing energies.

“A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world.”  — Paul Dudley White

 Join us for Hike Fest 2012! Walk in the footsteps of the ancestors. Take this unique opportunity to experience the healing energies of Dominica’s natural areas.

Hiking is a traditional way of life in Dominica. Only 100 years ago these same trails were our main method of getting around. In those days if you were from Grandbay, Castle Bruce or La Plaine and you wanted to sell your eggs, milk, or fresh produce in Roseau market you carried it over the paths often during the night cause if you left at dawn you could not get there early enough.

The Carib Indians paved their major paths with stones, you will see an example of this on the first hike of the fest. I love the thoughts of tredding on the same stones as those amazing people, who were so closely attuned to nature and such great navigators.

The Maroons, freedom fighters from the days of slavery, mapped the whole island out in trails joining all their villages, at one place called Jaco Flats there was a pulley system built to get big loads down the mountainside. These freedom fighters knew their paths and forest so well, foreigners thought they appeared and disappeared in the forest at will.

To this day our school trips are often “Belle Marches”, a much healthier and environment friendly school trip with many educatonal opportunities.

The Dominica Hotel and Tourism Association are an amazing example of what people can achieve working together to create a dream.

One part of the many ways DHTA promotes tourism here is their yearly Hike Fest.

As a visitor or resident this is a lovely opportunity to immerse in nature, explore the trails of Dominica and learn about the island while meeting a mix of people of many ages from Dominica and all over the world.

This year DHTA has partnered with the Waitukubuli National Trail, Discover Dominica Authority and various other Hiking Committees and Tourism Stakeholders to plan Hike Fest 2012.

This year’s itinerary:

Saturday May 05th

Waitikubuli National Trail Segment 5 (River Hike)

Pond Casse to Castle Bruce, ending at Castle Bruce playing field.

This trail nestled within the Morne Trois Pitons World Heritage Site traverses the Old Carib Trace – a Kalinago stone pathway that leads through the Emerald Pool and Fond Melle areas. It features the long standing contributions of our indigenous people, the struggles of a resilient people and the value of our forest and water resources.

Vegetation Type: Rain Forest, Cultivation & Coastal Forest

Distance: 12 km or 7.5 miles

Estimated Walking Time: 6 hrs

Climb: 533 miles or 1,750 ft

Type of Hike: Moderate, family hike

Areas of interest:

Old road (Carib trace)

Emerald Pool

Castle Bruce Swamp

Forest Station & Nursery

Neg Maron Headquarters

Savanne David

Castle Bruce Village

Jaco Cave

Morne Turner (Morne Neg Maron)

Creole Gardens

Spanny Falls (optional)

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Saturday May 19th

Segment 10 and part of 11 (Cross Country Hike)

Starting Colihaut Heights and ending in Picard, Portsmouth.

This trail traverses old and abandoned farm and estate roads, heavily forested areas and sections of the Northern Forest Preserve. It provides an excellent opportunity to sight the rare Jaco or Sisserou Parrots in their natural habitat. While walking this trail, one can learn about our farmers, about our many trees and listen to the merry sound of our birds. Morne Diablotin National Park is the most popular spot on island for bird watching. Maroons used this trail in the 19th Century!

Vegetation Type: Rainforest; Secondary Rainforest; Cultivated

Distance (km): 6.4

Estimated Walking time (hrs): 4

Type of hike: Easy hike, family hike

Climb: 610 metres or 2000 ft

Areas of interest:

Morne Diablotin

Secondary forest

Agricultural farming

Parrot habitat

Syndicate Nature Trail & Welcome Center (optional)

Lookout points

Morne Diablotin National Park

Rain forest

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Saturday May 26th Beach Hike

Eden by the Sea, Wesley to Londonderry, ending at Cabana Beach

This beach hike with dramatic views of the Atlantic Coastline will commence at Eden on the Sea in Wesley and will end at Cabana on the Londonderry beach.

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The health benefits of these hikes are amazing.

Walking in nature is a proven stress management technique; it releases hormones that fight depression and strengthens our bones and muscles. Hike for Health.

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I love to meet people, and these hikes are a great way to get to know other people who love nature and being active while exploring Dominica’s nature spots.

After each hike there will be a celebration in a nearby village where you can purchase food and drinks.

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Price:

EC$40 for 1 hike

Ec$ 70 for 2 hikes

EC$90 for 3 hikes (DHTA Members)

EC$100 for 3 hikes (Non-DHTA Members)

Price includes: Transportation, Water and a Hike Fest 2012 t-shirt!

Waitikubuli National Trail

Hike Fest on Facebook

Cycle Superhighways

Barclays Cycle Superhighways (BCS) are cycle routes running from outer London into central London.

As part of the Mayor of London’s cycle revolution the aim is to increase cycling in London by 400 per cent by 2025 (compared to 2000 levels).

http://www.tfl.gov.uk/roadusers/cycling/11901.aspx

 

“In times of change, learners inherit the Earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.” ~ Eric Hoffer

                                

RESPECT  to Eleanor Lambert.; a longtime healthy living promoter on island. She dedicated hours to starting a recycled container programme at Ross University Food Court. She introduces incoming students to our local foods through workshops, cookbooks and teaches nutrition at Ross Medical University. Her Healthy Snack Shack provides homemade yogurt; wraps and other healthy foods – vegetarian and non vegetarian. You can always count on a cup of hot oatmeal porridge in the morning……… nuff respect.

 Healthy Lifestyle

Exercise – add a few years to your life!

If we were offered a pill that we took every day to add years to our life and quality to each extra day we live would we take it? Most of us! Exercise is that pill – slightly more time consuming then the seconds it takes to swallow a pill but worth it!

New studies have shown that including exercise into daily life can add years to our lives. How many more times will we be able to hug our children and their children in that time; how much more we can help our community and families when we feel good for our whole lives!

I want to get old gracefully. I want to have good posture, I want to be healthy and be an example to my children. ~ Sting

Dr. Dean Ornish is a medical doctor from California who has dedicated his life to diet and lifestyle research and their effect on disease.  He is also well-known as an author advocating lifestyle changes to improve health.

He is the founder, president, and director of the non-profit Preventive Medicine Research Institute in Sausalito, California, where he holds the Safeway Chair and Clinical Professor of Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco.

His first book on lifestyle changes and weight loss called Eat More; Weigh Less talked about Dr. Dean Ornish’s Life Choice Program for Losing Weight Safely While Eating Abundantly.

A study he released in the Journal of the American Medical Association in 1998 showed that it was possible for heart disease to be prevented and reversed through comprehensive lifestyle changes. During this study healthy effects on obesity were observed too.

A earlier  study on prostrate cancer; directed by Dr. Ornish, and Peter Carroll, MD, chair of the Department of Urology, both of the University Of California, San Francisco, and the late William Fair, MD, Chief of Urologic Surgery and Chair of Urologic Oncology, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center was released in the September 2005 issue of the Journal of Urology.

In that study after one year, the researchers found that psa levels (a protein marker for prostate cancer) decreased in men in the group who made comprehensive lifestyle changes but increased in the comparison group.

Also, they found that serum from the participants inhibited prostate tumor growth in vitro by 70 percent in the lifestyle-change group but only 9 percent in the comparison group.

His most recent study shows changes at the genetic level.

The researchers tracked 30 men with low-risk prostate cancer who decided against conventional medical treatment. The men underwent three months of major lifestyle changes. They lost weight, lowered their blood pressure and saw other health improvements; but most interesting; researchers also found the activity of disease-preventing genes increased while a number of disease-promoting genes, including those involved in prostate cancer and breast cancer, shut down.

Participants in the both studies were placed on a diet consisting primarily of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes supplemented with soy, vitamins and minerals. They participated in moderate aerobic exercise, yoga/meditation, and a weekly support group session. A registered dietitian was available for consultation, and a nurse case manager contacted the participants regularly.

“It’s an exciting finding because so often people say, ‘Oh, it’s all in my genes, what can I do?’ Well, it turns out you may be able to do a lot,” Ornish, said in a telephone interview.

“‘In just three months, I can change hundreds of my genes simply by changing what I eat and how I live?’ That’s pretty exciting,” Ornish said. “The implications of our study are not limited to men with prostate cancer.”

For me this is one of the most exciting articles I have written; we can change oiur genes! How amazing!

by Trudy Scott Prevost; Rainbow Health and Wellness; Dominica

The yoga mat is a good place to turn when talk therapy and antidepressants aren’t enough.” ~Amy Weintraub

 

What is Yoga?
After 15 years of teaching yoga and almost 40 years of practicing yoga I have come to the conclusion that yoga has a different meaning for different people.

 

Now that yoga is so popular there is a plethora of styles of yoga and this expands the meaning of yoga even more. Over the next months we will explore different styles of yoga and different concepts of yoga. 

 

RESPECT to Martha Cuffy: Way back when I still taught classes at the Dominica Legion Hall Martha came to my class and we had a chance to talk. She was off to India for a 2 year MA  in Yoga Psychology;  then had plans to spend more time in Dominica. I had the privilege of being on her mailing list over the next few years as she sent out emails keeping her friends informed as her training progressed. Martha has manifested her goals and is now here on island. She has already opened many peoples minds here to the psychology of yoga ………… nuff respect.

 

 

Yoga Links

YogaJournal.comMy favourite yoga magazine for over 20 years. At Rainbow Yoga Studio; each issue is read from cover to cover by many people many times. Great web site with poses and information galore and they offer a email newsletter of yoga.

 

CALENDAR OF EVENTS
(List your event at  Visit-Dominica.com

 

 

SHAPE  AGM Thursday, December 4, 5 pm, Alliance Francais, participate and build heritage.

 

Lionheart Sister – Saturday, December 6, 8:00 pm, Arawack House of Culture, A play about Mary Seacole, the Caribbean’s Florence Nightingale; and her travels all over the world; fund raiser for Nurses Federation.

 

Please join in the public consultation sessions reguarding the finalized adoption of the DOAM Organic Standards. There will be 4 sessions: Springfield Guest House; Saturday, December 6th, 3 pm; Laplain Agricultural Training School: Wednesday, December 10th, 9 am; Portsmouth Cruise Ship Berth: Thursday, December 11, 9 am; Roseau Prevo Cinemall: Tuesday, December 16, 9 am