Devotional Yoga is a DONATION class that helps
us find a deeper connection with God through
movement of the body, prayer/meditation,
and breathing exercises.
The class is a BEGINNER level with gentle standing and seated poses, creating strength, balance, flexibility and stress relief.
Every class begins with a bible devotion. Then after a seated warm up, we move through a standing flow of poses, moving to the Lord's Prayer (similar to Sun Salutations).
Class ends with breath work, meditation, prayer and Savasana. We'll explore how releasing tension in the body and mind opens our heart and allows our soul to be filled with the Holy Spirit!!
Sundays 11:30a - 12:30p beginning on October 13th @ Camden Wellness Center,
1029 Broad Street, Camden, SC
After 2 days of no sugar (well almost no sugar), no grains, and no fried foods, I am sleeping better and have more energy. I'm very sensitive though because I've become very mindful over the years of how my body is feeling and how I feel when I eat, or don't eat, different foods. I use myself as an experiment to learn more about health and wellness, so I can help others.
It's been a journey! As I mentioned in my last post, I've done a lot of different diets over the years and I've learned a lot from those experiences. I've shared that knowledge with friends and families, and what I've found is that not everyone has the same results on the same diets, or with the same lifestlye changes. Our bodies are so complex, it's mind blowing!
Let me tell you about my latest discovery and self-experimentation. 2 years ago, for Lent, I gave up grains and sugar (and fried foods, but really never ate a lot of this anyway). Yes, I did it for both health and faith reasons. I knew I needed to make the change for my health, but asking for God's help and knowing that sacrificing two of the loves of my life (bread and sweets), would help me be mindful and grateful for all that I have and from where my gifts come.
So, I struggled through the cravings, knowing that in some way, I would have a change; would be changed, for the good. I ate lots of veggies and lean meats and fruits, but for the first 2 weeks or so still had those cravings. I perservered. I stayed away from faux breads and sweets because I knew my mind would trick my body back to wanting deserts. I had to go cold turkey with those items - chocolate (the biggie), bread, pasta, oats, corn, rice, quinoa. I still had a little bit of potatoes, maybe 2-3 times a week in moderation. It wasn't easy, but I felt like it would be worth it and it kept me mindful of my faith.
And then it happened - the awareness, the epiphany - about 3 weeks in, that I had been sleeping better. But wait a minute... was I not sleeping well? So, let me go back.
Actually, I did know that my sleep had gotten terrible. I tossed and turned, my hips (the one side I'd been sleeping on) would go numb, and my hands would start to tingle and also go to sleep. But they didn't go to sleep, they tingled and got numb and buzzed, and would wake me up. Geez, it was terrible! I'd shake out my hands and toss and turn to get back to sleep. It would happen over and over again...every night. It was not only annoying, but the cascading effect of poor sleep was causing me to be irritated, anxious, and have a brain fog that caused me to make silly mistakes at work. I was yawning all day and tried drinking more coffee to give me energy...which doesn't work for me.
But here's the deal!!
I thought my sleep problem was just about getting older and it was just going to be a "sucky" part of life that I had to deal with. But then, the epiphany happened...it was about 3 weeks after I'd given up sugar & grains, I was at work, walking down the hall, talking to a friend. I don't even remember what the discussion was about, but it made me think about my sleep and I realized that the tingling hands and hips that kept me constantly tossing and turning had gone away. Wow! How did I not realize this? But I hadn't made the connection yet. I had to stop and think about what had changed in my life that would have changed my sleep. It was my diet!!! AH HA! My diet was contributing the the over-sensitivity of my nervous system. I never would have imagined that my diet could affect my nervous system and my sleep!! OMG, He works in mysterious ways! If I hadn't decided to make a sacrifice for Lent, I may not have had the perseverance to stick with it!
Now, here's the deal. After Lent, slowly I began to integrate some grains like rice and oats back into my diet. My thought was that perhaps its the gluten problem that is getting so much attention in the media and heath fields these days...and maybe it is. Over time, the downhill slide back into eating all grains and sugars has crept back into my diet. Since then (2 years ago), I've tried giving up sugar and grains again, but not as strictly, and you know what...my sleep is suffering again. I'm tossing and turning and feeling like a zombie during the day.
So....I'm starting over. But, YOU know, it is SO HARD in our culture to eat healthy! We are constantly bombarded by commercials and ads for sugar cereal they claim to be a healthy start to our day and images of gooey, sugary desserts that we should "treat ourselves" because we "deserve it"! And the fast foods, burgers, fried chicken fingers and fries...all made to look glamorous by supermodels eating a greasy, dripping burger. EWWW!! Yeah, like she got that figure from eating like that :(
So...I'm starting over. 2 days now, and already I'm sleeping better. I slept from 10:30 pm until 4:30 am and still went back to sleep until the alarm went off. I do not remember waking up, tossing and turning from hand/hip tingling. I've not eaten any grains and I've given up any sweet snacks....well mostly. I had a pack of raisins, which are just candy made by nature. Even though they come from nature, they keep the sugar craving alive, so I have to give those up too. Yesterday, I stopped off for a coffee and ...there "they" were, the creme brulee, almonds. I justified them by saying that almonds are good for you... haha, no one is totally immune!! Nonetheless, I'm not giving up on this lifestyle change because I know I will feel and function so much better! Every day, I realize I have to get myself in the mindset of doing what will make my body feel better, not just comfort my emotions. I am going to start again...START HEALTHY HERE!
Won't you join me? Comment on this blog post and let me know what's going on with you, your diet, your lifestyle. What do you want to change? Do you have cravings that are keeping you unhealthy? Maybe together, we can help each other!!
Wishing you Wellness!!
I've done a lot of different diets over the years: Low Fat, Atkins, Low Carb, Whole30, Paleo, Keto, etc. and I've done a lot of research about our health, diet, and lifestyle, and here's what I've found...
The Standard American Diet (SAD) is killing us!!
Since the invention of canned, and boxed, and bagged foods, soda and an overload of highly processed, sugar laden foods, disease has been on the rise. Since we have become reliant on "instant" foods and "fast foods (and away from natural foods from the earth), we've gotten fatter, and sicker, and more depressed/anxious, with less sleep, and more dissatisfied with our bodies and health!
Sure, the average life span may have increased since the early 1900's, but what is the quality of life, if we have more heart disease, more diabetes, more Alzheimer's, more cancer than ever before?
Here are just a few charts that show the increase of chronic disease in America:
Bottom line is this, we have become a society of convenience and comfort eating - instead of eating for survival and health, like our bodies were meant to.
Stay tuned for the month of July, I'll be focusing my blog articles on why the SAD is so bad for us and what we can do about it to START HEALTHY HERE!
WISHING YOU WELLNESS!!
Since becoming a doTERRA Wellness Advocate over 2 years ago, I have become much more aware of what is in our foods, body care products, makeup and medicines...and it's scary! I've started researching articles and other resources that share the truth about what is in the products that go into and onto our bodies and I'm saddened/maddened by what I'm learning.
Our food has become laden with chemical preservatives, colorings, and pesticides. It happened while we weren't watching; while we figured our government wouldn't let us eat something that could cause cancer or digestive disease or heart disease. Sadly, the US government (USFDA) is not doing it's job. They are being fooled by big food conglomerates who are only about making money.
Check out this article comparing US food with the "same" product sold in the UK.
So, we have to educate ourselves, learn to read labels, and get involved to let our government we see what's going on and that we care.
While we wait for the slow train of change towards healthier foods on the shelves and restaurants, you must be aware what's in your food! There are 4 immediate things you can do to support your own health, and these are things I'm working on myself and struggling with...but it's worth it "for the health of it".
1. Start preparing your own meals at home with fresh vegetables, fruits, and local meats.
2. Limit or eliminate eating out (you have no idea what kind of unnatural stuff goes into the food there)
3. If it is processed; i.e., comes in a box, bag, or can on a shelf, or is a processed meat or cheese, you MUST read the label, and start educating yourself about what those ingredients are! Do you really want to take a chance with your health?
4. Start educating yourself. Here's a great place to start... https://www.ewg.org/ (the Environmental Working Group)
Wishing you Wellness!
I think people (especially in this country) are looking for a very specific answer. They think "healthy" can be measured by your cholesterol level or your blood pressure or your weight or your...you name it.
What about you? Are you healthy? How do you define healthy? Did you set a new year's goal to "be healthy"? What is/was your plan to "get healthy"?
For me, healthy is about doing the best you can in a holistic way...being mindful of how your actions affect your mind, body and spirit...realizing that part of our being can't be healthy without the other. So what does that mean? For everyone, this may be slightly different.
However, here are 6 simple guidelines to follow that help create health and wellness.
1. Put natural, whole foods into your body as often as you can.
2. Limit refined foods like soda, sugar, fried foods, "foods" from a box (especially items that have a long of list of ingredients you can't pronounce).
3. Get regular exercise...this may vary for different people with different genetics, lifestyles and diets, but consider moving your body with intention for at least 15-30 minutes 5 days a week... walk, bike, dance, Yoga, etc.
4. Meditate/Pray daily...even if only for 5 minutes. Perhaps read a short devotion, sit still, close your eyes, and breathe.
5. Limit social media...
6. Sleep 7-8 hours a night
If you did these things, do you think you'd be healthy? Then, why don't you start today?
There doesn't have to be a specific plan, or calorie restriction, or exact menu. Just do one of these things today. Then do it again tomorrow. Then add another thing the next day. If you wait until you "have enough time" or "make enough money" or "find enough motivation" or wait until you've eaten all the unhealthy food in your pantry, you'll never start! Don't wait until Monday...
Start Healthy Here and Now!! Do it for yourself and those you love!
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So this is what 3pm used to look like for me...
Today it dawned on me that I didn't have the 3pm droopy, drowzies! After being on doTERRA's Cleanse & Restore Program for about a week now, I've noticed I'm sleeping better and not having the afternoon sleepy time!
What food is it you crave that you KNOW is not good for you, but you can't stop eating it anyway?
Is it donuts, or cake, or soda, or fried chicken, or chicken and waffles, or potato chips with ranch dip?
For me, it's the sweets! I love cookies like white chocolate macadamia nut, but I'm not a big chocolate chip fan. Now a good dark chocolate...mmmmm...so delicious!! Yeah, I know they say dark chocolate is good for you, but we also both know that too much of anything, even dark chocolate, is not good for you!
So what's the best way to limit or eliminate unhealthy foods from your diet without the emotional scars?
For me it's a process... and I'm going through it myself right now. Some diets or programs suggest you go cold turkey and I get it, but for me I have to go through a mental and physical withdrawal process that is intentional and empowering. If someone tells me I can't have something, I want it even more, so I have discovered something about myself, and maybe this is true for you:
I have to give myself time and space to say good bye!
So here's my process:
1. Determine why I need to rid myself of this food (i.e., sugar leaches calcium from bones; it creates inflammation/pain in the body; or it jacks me up and let's me down, over and over and over; it makes me gain weight!)
2. Dig deeper into why I need to rid myself of this food (or drink for that matter...like soda, regular or diet). Read a book or article(s) about how bad that food is for me.
3. Start to limit how much I eat.
4. Ask myself why am I clinging to this food? Does it hold memories of good times; does it comfort me when I'm stressed; does it feel like a friend; does it help me pass the time?
5. Remind myself that I choose to make this change and eliminate this food because I know I will feel better when I get through the DT's!
6. Look around myself and see people who are eating "this food". Are those people the picture of the person I want to be?
7. Set a limit of what my 1 treat of the day will be of that food (1 oz of dark chocolate, or 1 cookie).
I'm not perfect and sometimes I slip up and that's OK. You're not perfect and that's OK. Lets be imperfect together! We can always decide to "begin again"!!
We've been eating gluten (naturally occurring in wheat, barley, rye, and other grains) for generations, why all of a sudden is gluten sensitivity and Celiac disease becoming so common? Good question!
According to Dr Daivd Perlmutter, author of The Grain Brain, "... there are several reasons why this is happening...With the overuse of antibiotics and other challenges including other medications like anti-inflammatories, and even chlorinated water, the regulation of our gut related immune system can be compromised, and this leads the gut to react inappropriately a nonthreatening protein like gluten. So disturb the balance of bacteria in the gut, and next thing you know, you are at risk for gluten sensitivity. In addition, the hybridization of wheat has favored both genetic changes in the composition of gluten as well as greatly increasing the amount of gluten found in wheat-derived products (as well as barley and rye). These changes further overwhelm the immune system’s ability to respond in a normal fashion when exposed to these products.
What I discovered personally, is that when I eat wheat or other gluten containing foods, it affects my nervous system and I don't sleep well. I toss and turn all night, and my hands go to sleep, tingling to the point they wake me up. When I cut out gluten, I started sleeping so much better. If I go back to eating wheat (cookies, pasta, bread, etc.) I start having the problems again. So I'm eliminating gluten again!!!
One other reason (among many) you want to eliminate (or greatly reduce) your consumption of wheat is that it most often is consumed in a very refined form...white bread, pasta, sugary cereals, and these refined carbs turn into sugar in the body. See my first blog on sugar with more to come.
Wishing you Wellness!!
Hi, I'm Laura Mickelson -