Category Archives: yoga

The True Threat to Inner Peace: Animated Short

Click on The Fly for two animated minutes of profound advice on finding peace and mindfulness, via Bounce.

Want more mindfulness a la moving image?  Check out What You Can Really Get Out Of Meditation


Feet: Meet Your New Best Friend

At a Pilates session this morning, my toes and I were introduced to the Foot Wakers. Wow. I may have to invest in a kit.

Can your dog help you meditate?


Leslie Garrett and James Jacobson think so.

Read more about mindfulness, pets and dog meditation here.

Massage + Therapy = Medicine

Well that hit the spot!  It’s gotta to be a good sign when the Wall Street Journal reports on the medical benefits of getting a massage. Check out Andrea Petersen‘s Don’t Call It Pampering: Massage Wants to Be Medicine.

Related alternahealthgrrrl story: Why a Post-Workout Massage Feels So Good

Holistic Healing: What would Bill W. say? LSD may treat alcoholism

Dropping acid may help you drop drinking, according to a large review published this week.

Reading this study, I was reminded of a talk, “The Impact of Spiritual Experience on Health” that I attended at the Integrative Healthcare Symposium. In the workshop, and the session intro, Richard Schaub, Ph.D, described the role of spiritual experiences in improving people’s health and lifestyle choices. “One famous example is the cosmic consciousness experience of Bill Wilson.  A desperate alcoholic who was hospitalized yet again for detoxification, he became immersed in the hospital in a blissful “white light” and emerged free – for the rest of his life – from his addiction.  He went on to co-found the now-worldwide 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and built spirituality into the Steps because of his experience.”

Schaub went on to tell us about Wilson’s experimentation with LSD later in life, saying that he was attempting to revisit the spiritual experience he had in the hospital. Reportedly, Wilson supported the clinical use of LSD as a treatment for alcoholism.  In Scott Hensley’s coverage, he cites a researcher who suggests, essentially, that a “trip” can be a profound experience that dramatically changes the direction of a person’s life.

Hallucinogenic drugs aren’t a magic cure for alcohol dependency, but I find this line of research fascinating.  Can a consciousness expansion help some people who are struggling with addiction? And, as Schaub asked the workshop attendees: What actually happens to someone in such a moment of personal transcendence?  Why does it cause such a ripple effect of change in the person’s health and life choices?  Can such experiences be induced by safe, effective methods?

I, for one, am going to pick up some of Schaub’s books to further explore this topic.

A New Call To Take Back Our Health–Together

Mark Hyman, MD gave a preview of his new book, The Blood Sugar Solution, due out in the end of February, at the Integrative Healthcare Symposium this month.  In addition to a bunch of daily detox tips (sweat, drink water, eat garlic) he told us about the new movement he’s launching alongside the book. Take Back Our is a social movement, a conversation about how to get healthier together.

It’s not just about occupying healthcare, it’s about taking back health in our schools, in our places of worship, and in our communities.  Like Surgeon General Regina Benjamin in her recent praise of the Seventh-Day Adventist commitment to healthy living, Mark Hyman stressed the important role that social support (aka love) plays in individual health.  Especially in group worship, he says, because a rabbi, priest, minister, pastor, or imam can encourage care of the body as well as the soul. He sited the Saddleback Church project, where he worked with Daniel Amen and Memhet Oz to help create The Daniel Plan, a get-healthier small group guide.  The tagline is “Glorifying God in the Way We Eat, Move and Think!”

It’s the new “group health plan” or group fitness class, and I love the team approach. Belief in a higher power can be motivational–I think (and hope) it’ll be successful.  Especially thanks to the part of Mark Hyman’s site that lets members post pictures of people “caught in the act” doing something healthy.

Holistic Health: What you can really get out of meditation

Elaine Retholtz, my MBSR (mindfulness-based stress reduction) course instructor, shared this clever video short from Headspace.  In mere seconds it explains the practice of meditation and what you can really get out of meditating and being mindful.

It is, I presume, a free sample or promotion for their products–various apps and mindfulness training programs (some of which are free) led by Andy Puddicombe, author of Get Some Headspace. I can’t say for sure how useful the products are, but judging from this clip, Headspace seems kind of amazing.