Blog

Can Yoga Help Fight Depression?

All it takes is an hour or so on your mat on a regular basis to feel uplifted!  In fact many studies using written questions to assess the well being of the participants before and after a series of yoga classes show a huge improvement in their perceived mental health. One study consisting of male veterans with symptoms of depression found that their symptoms were significantly reduced after an eight week program of yoga classes. Another study which used yoga to address chronic and/or

Read more ...

Lion Pose – Simhasana

Lion Pose invokes a feeling of light-hearted playfulness.  This silly looking pose is also said to strengthen the voice, reduce wrinkles of the face and neck, benefit the thyroid gland and reduce stress.   Let’s try it Begin in a kneeling position and sit back on your heels. Bring your palms to your knees and sit up tall. Inhale slowly through the nose. Exhale through your mouth with a long and strong audible sigh

Read more ...

Teriyaki Tempeh

Teriyaki tempeh features grilled skewers of tempeh marinated with spices, grilled and served with a lemon-garlic sauce. Delicious and wholesome, this vegan treat is made from fermented soybeans and is packed with readily available nutrition.   Ingredients 300g tempeh, cubed 1 tablespoon oil or ghee   Spice Paste ½ tsp red chillies 3 shallots chopped 2

Read more ...

Brahmari Breathing

Studies have found that Brahmari breathing increases the release of nitric oxide in the sinuses, helping to reduce painful inflammation of the sinuses. Other studies have concluded that humming reduces blood pressure and lowers heart rate. You will find the humming sound very restful and calming for the whole nervous system. Focusing on the humming vibration also helps to focus the mind.   Cautions If you feel dizzy stop and go back to your normal

Read more ...

How to Keep the Mind Focused for Meditation

Here I am sitting down to meditate in a quiet place, I’ve shut off my phone, closed (no …..locked!) the door, I’ve turned the lights down low, I’ve even lit some soothing incense. But…….arghhhh my mind! It’s all over the place, racing along from one thing to another: my plans for tomorrow, what I said to someone, what they said to me, oops I forgot to do something, and on and on. I feel like a hopeless case! Oh I’ll never be able to meditate! But all is not lost.

Read more ...

Happy Salad

Not only is it important to be calm when we are eating so we can digest well, but we can also eat foods that help to keep us calm. This salad is packed with vitamins and minerals that help to lift our mood, calm us down and promote feelings of well being.  Starring asparagus, walnuts, avocado and spinach –  foods that are rich in folic acid, B vitamins, magnesium and omega 3’s. Here’s why these are great mood busters: Depression has been linked to low levels of folic acid

Read more ...

Vegetarian Adobo

Adobo refers to a method of marinating and stewing in a mixture of vinegar, soy sauce and spices. It is a warming hearty dish native to the Philippines. When the Spanish settled in the Philippines during the 16th century they witnessed this traditional cooking method and called it adobo which is the Spanish word for marinade.  The adobo method of cooking is a sure way to make your meals deliciously flavourful!   What You’ll Need 300g

Read more ...

How to Balance Your Spring Energy with Breath

Spring is here, awakening within it sparkling new beginnings.  A time to grow, to renew and to discover. A time also that needs balance, steadiness and nurturing, because along with  the freshness of spring, comes the dry, gusty winds, the fluctuations of temperature; interesting but unpredictable. A good time for a grounding, steady yoga asana practice. But let’s not deny the light happy energy of spring. Our arms and hearts open to greet the warmth of the newly grown

Read more ...

Extended Side Angle Pose

This is a heating pose that has multiple benefits. It is very strengthening for the legs, hips, back and shoulder muscles and strengthens the core as well. Importantly it gives a great stretch to each side of the back which in turn helps to decompress the spine. As we hold this pose and breathe we can feel how the strong base of our feet helps the upper body to be light and open.   Cautions: The easy version of this pose should be adopted by those

Read more ...

Opening Our Yoga Heart

The heart is the sitting place of the soul. This is where, deep within the body, the living entity resides. For so long we may have built thick protective walls around our heart and have hidden deep within. So soft, so vulnerable.  So lost to the real self. But with yoga practices we can not only physically take that built up tightness away from our chest but also gradually chip away at that stony covering of the heart so the true beautiful self can shine forth with joy. The

Read more ...

Homemade Ghee

Ghee (often called “liquid gold”) is clarified butter. It is a truly wonderful food which has been used in Ayurvedic medicine and Vedic cooking since ancient times. Not only does it make food taste delicious but it has very impressive health benefits. It has the ability to protect the gastrointestinal tract, can balance cholesterol levels and boost your energy. It is said to reduce inflammation in the joints and eliminate certain allergies. It is even reputed to protect us from various chronic

Read more ...

Pros and Cons of Hot Yoga

Hot yoga sounds very tempting to me in these cool winter months where every flash of warmth is cherished lovingly. A growing number of people however love hot yoga in all seasons, both in the already sweltering summer months and the icy winter ones. In fact hot yoga is so hugely popular in the US that in some cities it’s very hard to find a normally heated class. Advocates of hot yoga love the heat, the sweat and the stretches. They proclaim a feeling of euphoria after the class and are

Read more ...

3 Warming Shoulder Stretches for Winter

Before you do your yoga asanas it’s a good idea to do some warming exercises like joint mobilities first to loosen up your joints and increase the heat in your body. This is especially true for the winter months when our bodies tends to stiffen up from the cold. Try these shoulder exercises and see how you warm up, not just in the shoulders but also spreading down your torso, arms and up into the neck. They will help release tension from the neck and shoulders also and you may even find yourself

Read more ...

Potato Cauliflower Soup

What can be nicer than on a cold winters day to have a bubbly pot of hearty, tasty soup on the stove and some fresh bread warming in the oven.  Try this soup – it’s simple, super easy to make and is pleasantly warm with a tang of deliciousness.   Ingredients 2 Tbsp ghee or oil 4 large potatoes – peeled and cubed ½ head large cauliflower or 1 small cauliflower cut into flowerets 1 large brown onion peeled and

Read more ...

World Yoga Day 2018

Hosted by the Australian School of Meditation and Yoga, Yoga Day Festival is Australia’s biggest, longest running celebration of World Yoga Day. Growing in size each year, Australia’s Yoga Day Festival is rapidly approaching! Now in its fourth outing, the marquee event of the yoga calendar has been a wildly successful engaging, fun, and free/low-cost celebration of the United Nations International Day of

Read more ...

The Happy Yogi

Yoga is more than a great stretch. Much, much more. Let’s look at some of the wonderful benefits of all aspects of yoga and celebrate this wonderful gift we have been given. The health benefits of yoga asanas are wide ranging. Flexibility is of course the most obvious one. Tight muscles can pull on our joints causing pain and even structural damage. The gentle and consistent stretching of many of the yoga asanas help to loosen up tight muscles and allow for much more freedom

Read more ...

Roasted Spiced Pumpkin

My daughter who lives in the US serves this dish for Thanksgiving every year. Her friends and family love it. Pumpkins are naturally sweet and this recipe brings out the sweetness and adds a poignant flavour to it. As with so many baked dishes it takes minimal time to prepare, giving you time to get the rest of the meal prepared while it’s baking. If your oven can cook on two or three shelves at once you can even add some more baked dishes and have an easy delicious meal. I suggest adding baked

Read more ...

Coconut Spinach Wraps

I got the inspiration for this simple way to feed greens to my children from way back in the early 70s when I visited Fiji and stayed amongst the Fijian people. I watched as they hand grated the coconut and squeezed milk from it and was so impressed with their delicious taro leaves cooked in this fresh coconut milk that ever since I’ve been doing my version of it. Cooking with taro leaves is a special skill that I never acquired but I’ve figured that any green leafy vegetable (spinach, silver

Read more ...

How You Can Prevent Back Pain with Yoga

It is estimated that over a lifetime there’s an 80% chance of developing back pain. Some back pain passes quickly never to be seen again but all too often those niggly little twinges develop into a chronic and costly problem. Of course the logical thing to do is prevention! Most lower back pain that doesn’t come from some congenital problem is caused either by heavy lifting, prolonged sitting, stooping or other poor postural habits, most of which can be prevented and many fixed. For example

Read more ...