Tag Archives: meditation

Coffee: Friend Or Foe

The Questions
There may be no flashing neon lights reminding you about the side effects of drinking coffee, but we all know they exist. Because coffee comes from the seeds of Coffea plant’s berries, and how could something that comes from berries be harmful? After all, coffee is what kick-starts every morning and gets us working. But can you sip on your coffee with absolutely no concern about its side effects? Do you ever wonder which is better, regular systematic consumption of coffee or avoiding habituation completely? Finally, does coffee really improve athletic performance? If these questions have been burning in the back of your mind, then you should read on.

What is Caffeine Withdrawal?
Against popular belief, scientific literature tells us that there is no physical harm in drinking coffee. In fact, moderate consumption can benefit your body. There’s one catch: this positive effect is not caffeine’s work, but rather the coffee itself. Caffeine can be bad for you, and it all depends on your own physiology. Some people experience headaches, increased heart rate, tremors, or even performance impairment. On top of that, coffee has addictive characteristics and caffeine intoxication that comes from excessive intake can cause withdrawal symptoms, such as fatigue, headache, and difficulty focusing. The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) now categorizes caffeine withdrawal as a mental disorder, noting that many people are addicted to the process of coffee consumption.

The Benefits
Yet, there is plenty of scientific evidence that caffeine ups the endurance of the athlete via a type of fatigue resistance or an altered perception of effort. Recent studies recommend that consumption be kept modest, at a range of 1-3mg/kg BM or 70 to 150 milligrams caffeine before or during exercise. More is not necessarily better in the case of caffeine, and everyone’s body reacts differently to caffeine. So, it’s best to stay within the recommended range and keep track of your own consumption and your body’s reaction.

Should You Keep Drinking?
Finally, can someone adapt to caffeine consumption, dulling the positive effects of caffeine on athletic performance? There still needs to be research done on caffeine, athletics, and their relationship. However, it seems that the most recent studies are recommending coffee drinkers to continue their usage schedules rather than risk withdrawal symptoms. Some even state that the positive effects of caffeine on athletic performance increases with habituation, with less risk of the negative effects such as heart rate increase, tremors, and irritability. From this, we can conclude that a moderate caffeine schedule as part of a balanced diet is ideal.

As you can see, coffee consumption is perfectly fine for most people. The complexity comes from individual differences and the habit-forming nature of caffeine. What is definite is that recognizing that coffee is not a substitute for good-quality sleep and being aware of potential side effects of caffeine withdrawal is vital for any user.

Trying Yoga for Back Pain? Then pick the RIGHT poses

Studies have shown that Yoga may be one of the most effective exercises for back pain relief. In fact Health-First reporter Leslie LoBue says twisting your body into those sometimes awkward positions may actually be just the thing for lower back pain.

However, as effective as Yoga may be to reduce the pain of back problems, knowing exactly what poses to use, for how long, what to offset the poses with and in what sequence to execute them, are other factors that should be taken into consideration before using it as a therapeutic relief from back pain.

I can see a reader go “Wait a minute…if I have to go through all that, then maybe I should just take some painkillers and call it a day.”

If that applies, it is hardly my intention to scare you away from Yoga for back pain, in fact I’d rather you embraced its use as an alternative to drugs-prescribed or otherwise-for your problems, however, for your success with its use, a little bit of awareness of the correct poses to use for back pain is required and will come in handy for a lasting use of this drug-free alternative.

I will go over the common, simple yet very effective poses for back pain and also give you instructions on the proper poses to offset the spinal motions when applicable. Moreover, I will discuss the factors of the duration of time needed when executing these poses as well.

Though some of these poses may best be learned under the supervision of a certified Yoga Instructor or avid expert, with the descriptions given below-and if need be, the use of image searches on related Yoga sites and search engines-
I believe you should be able to get a good concept to at least be able to practice these poses at home.
Here are some of the best poses for back ache and since the aim here is more so back pain relief versus exercising, it is not mandatory that you hold them more than 5-15 seconds, depending on your level of comfort. Moreover, a use of a yoga mat or any other soft surface is highly recommended in the execution of these asanas.

The Shoulder-stand (Savangasana)

This, folks, is a noted panacea for near any human ailment.
Don’t panic, it is extremely easy to execute, however, depending on the severity of your case, use discretion in its use.

-Spread a thick blanket on the floor and place your yoga mat on it. Lie on the back.
-Slowly raise the legs. Lift the trunk, hips and legs to a vertical position.
-Rest the elbows firmly on the floor and support the back with both hands.
-Raise the legs till they become vertical. Press the chin against the chest..
-While performing this pose, the back of the neck, the posterior part of the head and the shoulders should touch the floor. (I can assure you that you will say “Hey, I’ve done this before as a kid…this is yoga?”)
-Breathe in counts of 5-5-5 (inhalation, retention and exhalation).
-Don’t allow the body to shake.

Now for the counter poses to the Shoulder-Stand, try to incorporate the following:

Bridge Pose (Sethu Bhandasana):

From the Shoulder Stand position, stretch the legs and slowly touch the floor with the feet. It is done to bend the spine in the opposite direction.

Fish Pose (Matsyasana):

Lie on your back. Stretch the legs and keeps the hands palm down under the thighs. Raise the chest with the help of the elbows and, bending the neck as much as possible backwards, rest on the top of the head.

Suggested Duration:
Try to use the ratio below to time the execution of these three poses.
6:1:2 (meaning the fish pose is held for a third of the time spent in the shoulder stand and the bridge pose held for half the time spent in the fish pose (or a sixth of the time spent in the shoulder-stand)

Or as an alternative, you could simply forego the bridge pose and apply a 2:1 ratio (shoulder-stand to fish pose) but this is only advised if you intend to do the parent pose (the shoulder-stand) for only a few seconds.

Obviously a lot of detail has gone into the description of these poses, however, that is because my intention is for you to be well informed, but for the sake of time and space. I will briefly go over the other poses you could do well to include AFTER you try the sequence above. This is if you decide to use it by the way.

Tips For Doing Inversion Yoga Poses

Headstand (salamba shirshasana) is one of the yoga poses that are considered inversion poses. Inversion poses involve any asanas that lift the feet above the head. Other inversion poses that are well known include shoulderstand (salamba sarvangasana) and half shoulderstand (viparita karani). But even lying on the floor with your legs on a chair is an inversion pose.

The concept behind inversion poses is expressed in yoga texts as viparita karani. Viparita karani is translated as meaning ‘opposite process’. This simply means facilitating a different perspective. From the purely physical point of view, this different perspective in inversion poses is literal – in terms of looking at the world from a different physical viewpoint – as well as involving the body being supported in a different way.

But as yoga is more than simply physical exercises, there are other processes that are assisted. A lot of yoga is designed to help us change mental habits as well as physical habits. Through increasing our ability to adapt to change, instead of being stuck in old habitual responses, we increase our capacity for growth and transformation. This applies in all areas of our lives.

There is a theoretical concept in yoga about why inversion postures help. Ayurveda considers that many of the body’s impurities are in the lower abdomen. When we raise our feet above the head, gravity is assisting us to move these impurities towards what the Ayurvedic system calls agni, or ‘fire’. Agni particularly relates to our ‘digestive fire’, and is thus located above our lower abdomen.

So, by being upside down, and by using the deep and slow breathing typical of yoga, we help ‘burn off’ the impurities that were previously stuck.

Improved circulation is a more readily apparent and less ‘esoteric’ benefit of inversion yoga poses.

Whilst inversion postures have many health benefits, the ability of an individual to receive those benefits depends as much on their capacity to comfortably hold these sometimes difficult postures. For example, headstand and shoulderstand should simply not be done if people are pregnant, have neck pain, high or low blood pressure, neck injuries, or are menstruating. And neither of these postures should be attempted without the appropriate preparatory postures. Otherwise the risk is there that an injury, or stiffness, particularly to the neck area, will result.

Likewise, if doing these postures is very uncomfortable and difficult, more benefit will be derived from doing either the modified versions, or simply working on other yoga poses that strengthen these areas.

There are several important prerequisites for getting the most benefit fro inversions. The first one, a strong neck, I’ve mentioned. The others are a strong back and abdominal muscles, and the capacity to breathe well whilst in the posture. The latter is going to get better with practice, both of yoga itself and the inversions. It is also somewhat tied into having a strong back. Our back and stomach muscles will provide the support to hold the legs straight, which inturn opens up the thoracic cavity, and increases our ability to breathe well whilst upside down!

Tips for Doing the Inverted Postures

For Half Shoulderstand:

* Lengthen the exhale
* Don’t lock the chin
* Keep your weight not on the head but on the wrists and elbows
* Don’t try to pull your torso (and legs) into the vertical like in full shoulderstand if you have difficulties with your neck. By doing so, you’re placing more pressure on your neck.
* Make sure you do the appropriate balancing postures afterwards. These include shalabhasana and bhujangasana

For Shoulderstand:

* Don’t worry so much about keeping your elbows and arms parallel. This will create more tension in your neck if you’re not proficient in this posture.
* Do the appropriate balancing postures. These are the same as for half shoulderstand.

For Headstand:

* Don’t ever make adjustments whilst in headstand. If you feel your alignment is not quite right, come down and do it again.
* Never do this posture first up, or without the prerequisite postures. It will lead to stiffness in the neck at best, and injury at worst. And the negative effects can build up over time. This posture is never done traditionally without preparation, and there is reason for this.
* Use a wall for support as a learning stage
* Support your head with all of your fingers, including the little fingers and thumbs
* Finding the right position for your head will make sure weight is distributed evenly, and ensure you don’t have to overly press down with your elbows to compensate
* Think of the support for the whole body as being distributed evenly across both elbows and the head
* Don’t hold your weight too much on the back of your body. It will place too much pressure on your neck.
* Don’t use props that allow the neck to be free.

The Secret Behind The Secret Law Of Attraction

The Secret, a film made only for DVD, a docudrama on the Secret Law of Attraction has had an impact that can be measured in millions, namely it cost millions to produce, influenced millions, and made millions of dollars in profit.

Those who got the message, tried it out, proved it for themselves, and wrote emotionally-charged testimonials that fill the official website of The Secret. Those who did not, claimed it was an extravagant celluloid marketing campaign with no substance. Overnight experts emerged in influential magazines and periodicals to proclaim it dangerous, misleading, and more magical thinking than the naive general public could handle.

Does it really work? My own humble opinion is that it works like nothing before ever has in my life. When I read testimonials about it on the official website and on numerous other websites that also talk about the secret law of attraction, I nod in agreement. I’m even willing to declare it to be scientifically valid, because it can be empirically proved by the subject, and because it can be explained by Quantum Mechanics where the observer influences the experiment.

If it works, if people have proved it works, then why are many people also disappointed and frustrated and publicly decrying it as a form of mass delusion. The answer to this is application. Yes, application is the secret of the secret law of attraction. Correct, appropriate, relevant application.

In order to engage the mind to work for you, you have to believe that the mind can work for you. In this particular case, we are talking about the conscious mind believing in the unknown power of the subconscious mind. Those who have asked have been answered, those who have sought have found, and those who have knocked have found that the door opens from the inside. Similarly, those who have no faith at all, or a faith laced with either timidity or scorn, have proved their belief true: that it does not work.

Let’s break this analysis down to specific techniques in the secret law of attraction.

One of the techniques is to hold a focused thought about what you desire. People whose minds jump around in excitement like children at a birthday party, one minute laughing, the next minute crying, and the third minute intent on something else, can’t be expected to manifest anything. You need to focus on an image long enough for it to settle into the subconscious mind. A clear, detailed image, a sense of color, texture, and form is necessary.

Since the entire process of manifestation is a phenomenon that arises from the action of the subconscious mind, those people who delight in endless intellection are poor candidates for success. While they may have a knack for writing satirical pieces about the secret law of attraction or analyzing something to death, this level of mental acuity works against them when they’re trying to manifest. A gift for abstraction almost certainly cancels out a gift for manifestation. Again, the reason for this is rather simple, embarrassingly simple, you have got to be in touch with your feelings to manifest anything. No feelings, no vibrations, no manifestation.

The secret of the secret law of attraction is application. It will work if you work it. Working it means focusing on a desire long enough to get a clear and detailed picture of it. It also means feeling the reality of what has not yet happened as if it had already occurred.

The secret law of attraction is only for people who believe in the evidence of things not seen and are patient enough to wait for them to show up. The secret is out and you can use it to enjoy health, wealth, romantic love, and happiness.

Health Advantages Of Different Vitamins

The health pack, skincare products and usana vitamins are highly in demand as these are of world class quality and satisfying the users’ need effectively. As we all know that vitamins are a key component for a perfect immune system. Meanwhile, these have a significant ability to complete the biochemical processes occurring in the body continually. And if you are lady and developing fetus inside you, it is needless to say, vitamin supplements are a must to take in protecting both. These vitamins provide you protection against any infections and diseases.
One of the popular brands in vitamin supplements is USANA. No doubt, pregnancy is an assailable time in a woman’s life. The mother need to care herself with proper diet and routine medical checkups. And when it comes to nutritionally demanding phase, these USANA vitamin supplements just serve the purpose accurately.
Here is the list of USANA Vitamins, which are recommendable during pregnancy:
Along with knowing about the USANA supplements, it is also important to consider about prenatal care. During this stage, following are some of the important prenatal vitamins and minerals a woman should consume:
1.Iron: to increase the blood volume, thereby meeting nutritional demands of placenta and fetus.
2.Calcium: to make the bone and teeth formation strong.
3.Iodine: to make the sound functioning of thyroid
4.Selenium: to boost the muscle strength.
5.Zinc: for strengthen of immune system.
6.Vitamin B6: generally known as pyridoxine, is an important coenzyme in the biosynthesis of the neurotransmitters GABA, serotonin and dopamine.
Allthese vitamins and minerals are supplemented in USANA products. Now, here is the detail of these products:
1.USANA Essentials: the supplement consists of powerful antioxidants that meet the guidelines for potency and uniformity, set by United States Pharmacopeia. The main ingredient of this is olive fruit extract. The product has been passed by the United States Recommended Dietary Allowances as an effective dietary supplement.
2.USANA SoyaMax: the supplement is a better alternative to animal proteins. One can consume it to maintain the right balance of cholesterol.
3.USANA Calcium Plus: calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and silicon are the main ingredients of this vitamin supplement. All of these are ideal in promoting a healthy bone health and growth.
4.USANA BioMega: you can get the rich source of omega 3 essential fatty acids with this product and can ensure a strong cardiovascular health. Additionally, it provides healthy neural and bone growth properties. The best part is, it is devoid of any heavy metals, hence is safe to be consumed.
Although, these entire vitamin supplements are safe to use, but one should take with doctor prescription as the effect varies from body to body.