Monday, March 28, 2011

One Sexy Herb You Need to Take for Awesome Vitality!

Ginseng is a power herb you just can't ignore. Ginseng is chinese for "man root", describing its human shaped form. The Asian panax variety proves to be an elixir that supports overall immunity, adrenal function, hormonal health, energy levels and the blood.

It is a well known adaptogen in the natural health world. Adaptogens help the body increase resistance to stress, injury, trauma, fatigue and anxiety. It is a tonic that supports the body and rejuvenates all vital systems. So taking it will restore your reserves and help you feel more energized and better rested from sleep.

There are many varieties of Ginseng available. Panax Asian ginsengs are the original sources used by Chinese medical doctors. These are said to be the more effective forms to use medicinally.

Ginseng Benefits for Women:
  • Hormone balancing properties will address PMS, and menopausal ailments
  • Increases energy, supports fatigue states particularly for working or stay at home moms who are inundated with tasks, and child rearing responsibilities
  • Increases libido: particularly useful for menopausal women
  • Increases mental focus and memory, which is sometimes impaired with the onset of menopause and the hormonal disturbances that occur at this time.
  • Weight loss aid: Can help increase energy levels, by supporting thyroid and adrenal function, and improve overall metabolism

Ginseng Benefits for Men:

  • Erectile Dysfunction: helps to support overall systemic blood flow and boosts testosterone levels, which lessen with age
  • Infertility: can help increase sperm counts and their overall health
  • Increases stamina: Both physically and mentally, allowing you to be more productive (pun intended ;)
  • Improves immunity, and resistance to viral or bacterial infections
  • Supports prostate health, by assisting the body's hormonal balance

So if you feeling tired often or exhausted, having trouble in the bedroom, or keep getting colds or flu type infections you are a good candidate for ginseng therapy.

Contraindications and Precautions:

Children, and women who are pregnant or nursing should not use ginseng.

Also if you are diabetic and taking insulin be cautious with ginseng. Ginseng may lower sugar levels, and interfere with your medications. Make sure to advise your doctor about this, and she/he can adjust insulin prescriptions accordingly. It has been proven to treat diabetes successfully by lowering insulin naturally.

Also those with hypertension (high blood pressure) should avoid using this herb until they have adressed that first. Ginseng stimulates the body and that includes blood pressure.


Which form is best?

The most well metabolized form is in liquid tincture. It is better assimilated than capsules or tablets. You can also buy the actual root from a chinese herbalist. This will require you to prepare it by boiling it for a set time and ingesting the broth. It is far easier to take the tincture in water 2-3 times a day depending on your particular circumstances.

May Ginseng put a bounce in your step, and make this Spring one full of renewed thriving health for all of you!

In health always,



Saturday, March 26, 2011

Adrenals Part 1-Are your ADRENALS at risk?

We get up early, and rush to get out the door to work. Get on crowded buses or subways, or stuck in traffic jams. We sit at our desks, with the piling workload at our side, and eat lunch while typing, emailing, and organizing the next project.

Meetings, and appointments come later. We run to the next one while thinking of the tasks of tomorrow. We haven't eaten dinner, and need to get the 50 page report finished by tonight for the presentation tomorrow. The kids need to get picked up, the gift needs to get bought, and that call to dad is still on the to do list. It feels like it never ends.

We get caught in this vicious cycle, and it goes on and on until we crash. That's when we finally "awaken" and realize the craziness is just too crazy to maintain any longer. By this point your body is aching, and your spirit follows.

What is Adrenal Fatigue and Exhaustion?

On a physical level your adrenals are the first to suffer in all of this. The mental and emotional stress tears down the integrity of your health. Its an accumulative effect. You don't wake up one morning and crash.

Years of ingesting stimulants like coffee and nicotine really undermine adrenal and overall health.

Years of rushing, not sleeping enough quality hours, eating crap and fast food, not exercising or over exercising.

Years of pushing every limit, or feeling resentments or regrets, feeling guilt or blame, using others for your gain or giving too much of yourself in hopes of being accepted or loved all wear down on the mind, body and most definitely the soul.

And then that's when the adrenals decide to call it quits and throw in the towel. They are tired of fighting that fight. They are exhausted, sore and defeated. So we are left with low reserves, ongoing fatigue, inability to recover from even mild efforts, craving sugar, gaining weight, hormonal imbalances, sexual difficulties, depression or anxiety and suffering from insomnia. The later stages become even more severe and debilitating.

Adrenal Fatigue is Real!

Get your adrenals checked by an alternative medical practitioner. Conventional doctors don't do this and won't even know what your talking about if you ask them. Its a simple test, using your saliva sample taken at various times during the day.

Essentially the test will measure the way your levels of cortisol rise, fall and how intense the amount is at a given time.

From what I have studied and seen in practice adrenal fatigue is at epidemic proportions. Especially in the westernized world. Most everyone needs adrenal support and recovery.

If you suffer from the following, you will want to investigate getting tested!

  • On going fatigue that does not ameliorate with sleep. You wake up in the morning feeling unrested even if you slept 8 or more hours
  • Insomnia that wakes you up at 3 or 4 am, or you feel so wired and awake at the end of the day you can't fall asleep even though you know you are exhausted
  • Craving salt or sugar
  • It takes you a few hours in the morning to get going, and around 3 or 4pm you feel a complete energy dip, and then you end up feeling awake right around the time you should be in bed getting that precious sleep
  • Hypoglycaemia- low blood sugar causing dizziness, shakiness, brain fog
  • On going bouts of anxiety, restlessness, or periods of depression and apathy
  • Sore muscles, and joints
  • Inability to recover from even mild exercise, and not able to work out like you used to
  • Feeling cold
  • Weight gain, that is not improved with low calorie diet, or any amount of exercise
  • Increased symptoms of PMS, and irritability in general
  • Inability to handle even mild daily stress
  • Lowered sexual drive

In my next blog learn which foods and herbs you need to take to help restore and bring your energy levels back up to thriving health!



Thursday, March 24, 2011

What is Yoga?

So you have started a yoga practice I hear!


I'm excited! Ecstatic! Love love love that you are exploring a new terrain! Yoga can open new paths in your life you never thought possible. It has for me, over and over and over again. I started practicing about 10 years ago and haven't looked back.

In the beginning it was just a "condiment" to my fitness routine. I would take a class maybe once or twice a week, to undo the damage I was doing in the gym with weight lifting and running. Eventually I "awakened", and I mean that in a literal and figurative sense. I literally felt more connected to my own intuition, and the process of unraveling years of "stuff" just began to happen. Not always pretty, and for the greater part very very rewarding.

For me Yoga allowed me to step out of my mind, and into my body, and further on into deeper realms of my essence. Again, it's a process. It never really gets done, and the magic, the beauty of this thing we call Yoga is that every single time you come onto your mat, you experience a whole new practice. Even if you did the exact same class, with the exact same sequences, it never ever is the same!!!

I just love that! So for the ADD kid in all of us, this is a god send :)

Yoga means "union" in the broadest sense of the term.

You are "yoking" the Self in you with the Self of every other thing, person and place in existence. Ok perhaps that is a little hard to wrap your mind around right now. Let's just start with the union of You to You.

Essentially yoga nurtures the "Core Connection" we all are capable of. Yoga is thought to be only the physical practice of the asanas (poses) on the mat. However the real yoga is in every single moment, every single experience and every single breath. So what we learn on the mat, is useless if we are not bringing that "union" or "Core Connection" further into our daily lives.

Once we engage that Core Connection I so often talk and teach others to do, we initiate a very profound process that enables us to release stress, focus, and participate from a place of presence. The chaotic mind recedes into the background, and you essentially become free to feel and live at your highest level. You come to learn how being present, in this moment, right here and right is true liberation from suffering. It is our attachments to our past, our future, and ultimately the identity we have created about ourselves.

So Yoga allows you to let go, and let go, and let go some more.

If you can take one thing away from this today, please let it be the following. The only thing you have that is real is this very present moment. What happened this morning, doesn't exist. What you may think will happen in 2 months from now doesn't exist. Only your thoughts create this things, and they appear to be real for you. They appear to be your "reality". Why hang on to illusions, or things that don't exist? When you can be here, right now, enjoying what is.

To your health always,



Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Loss : A Gateway to Your Deepest Sense of Compassion

We have all experienced some form of loss. When it's someone you love it often can be the most difficult to process. It almost feels quite illusionary at first. Almost as if it were all a dream. This often is just a protective response our bodies and mind initially induce in order for us to cope and in a sense survive. Death and dying can make us feel quite alive, and this for many is the hardest part.

Once we realize the dream is actually our reality, our vulnerability surfaces. The rawness of the ordeal becomes alive in our minds and through our feelings. We begin to feel the fragility of our existence and how precious each moment we have truly is. It is in our raw wounds that we come to experience our humanity.

If we let go and surrender to this place of injury, we reach the most compassionate part of ourselves. We reach the part that can feel, sense and have empathy for our vulnerabilities. With continued exploration we can go on to reach even deeper and sense the vulnerabilities of others close to us, and going even further extending to all humanity. That level of compassion is indisputably the highest level of love possible we can ever manifest in our lives.

It is that level of compassion that heals not only our raw wounds around personal loss, but heals the pain of the planet. It is far extending because it originates from that internal original wound or pain we carry around with us day in and out.

Thus I believe with every fragment of my being, that once we calm the war within with self compassion and forgiveness, we have the opportunity to create massive change in our external lives. The wars we see on TV are simply a reflection of the war that each individual is ignoring within themselves.

Loss is traumatic. Death is inevitable. It just is part of life. Once we come to terms that life includes pain and we can face it without running in the opposite direction than we can grow and heal. So accepting that anything that is material in our life is only temporary, and that nothing is permanent makes accepting loss a little more easier. Above and beyond this, death and loss can be valuable lessons in our lives, teaching us to explore and open up to our greatest potential for loving.

To your health always,



Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Spring Weight loss Tip #5 - Fat TRAPS you must know now!

Spring has sprung! Yippeeeee!

I'm ecstatic! Can you sense it? I am one of those that really tries to be at peace with winter weather. I sit on my cushion and chant my oms and start humming my sat nams while watching the blizzards cover everything in sight in white stuff. Yes sitting behind my window. I am not going to go out and be at one with it. Hey I never said I was enlightened... yet :)

This time of year we start to feel our bodies in a sense "awaken" and shift gears. We no longer are hibernating and conserving our energies. The slow pace of long dark winter nights and short days is transpiring to a more vibrant, emerging energy of growth. Plants are beginning their first push to bloom forward, and little critters are busy getting well, busy.

There is far greater inspiration now and so most of you are already making changes to your daily lifestyle habits. It makes me so excited to watch people making wise choices and taking care of their bodies, and lives with more care.

Many of you want to feel better in your bodies, and for some this means losing some of the excess winter weight. Lets get on it!

5 Fat Traps you Can Avoid to Lose the Extra Pudge!

#1 Ground Turkey:

Yes ground turkey is not as healthy as you may think. Some people buy turkey instead of beef believing it will be less calories, and lower in fat. Actually ground turkey can have double the amount of fat that lean ground veal contains. This is because ground turkey usually means its ground with all the skin, and fat included. If you must have ground meat, buy lean veal and have the butcher grind it or grind it yourself if you have a meat grinder at home.

#2 Low fat, No fat, No Sugar, Diet, Low Cal Products:

Food producers know what to label their products to get you to buy them. They slap on a "low fat" or "low cal" label and most dieters are apt to snatch them up, just because of the label. Be careful! Most of these products are not only processed, but contain loads of simple sugars, chemicals, and preservatives. All of which impede your body from burning fat. So skip the hype and just get REAL. Real food, means unprocessed. Make 80% of your daily diet unprocessed foods. Anything that doesn't come off a tree, shrub, plant or root is a processed food.

#3 Flavoured Yogurt:

Yogurt is known as a "healthy" food appropriate for those watching their waistlines. However most flavoured yogurts, including the "no fat" varieties can have more than 25 grams of sugar per serving. And remember that is if you actually measure out a half cup serving. So your best bet is to have plain yogurt, even a 2% fat variety and add some fresh fruit yourself. Focus on the quality and portions instead of the low fat labels.

#4 Granola

Granola is such a deceptive little devil. It can be a great source of energy and fuel if you are trekking for the day, training for an endurance sport or simply going to be active for extended periods of time. However if you are not very active or have blood sugar sensitivities , granola can pose a real obstacle to your weight loss efforts. Most granolas, even the "organic" ones you find in the health food stores are high in sugar, and fat. There is often dried fruit in commercial brands treated with sugars or sulphites, honey, other high glycemic sweeteners and some brands add oils or other fats. Save this for those high energy days, or make your own using plain oatmeal, high fiber cereal, cinnamon, seeds and nuts.

#5 Rice Cakes

Yes I know, this one has been around since the 70s as a diet favourite. Even though rice cakes are a low fat food, they are metabolized just like white bread and are as high glycemic as pastries, and other high sugar foods. This means that they will spike up insulin levels and wreck havoc with your energy levels as well. They also are processed, and really not that natural as we may think. You will feel hungrier than ever after eating these and may over eat later on. So just stick with REAL food. I can't stress that enough. Try whole quinoa, brown rice with chick peas or some berries with plain yogurt. These all can make great snacks or full meals.

Food is meant to be enjoyed, not labeled. So let's get back to basics and come to enjoy food as it was naturally meant to be experienced. Getting real with food, will also invite you to get in touch with your relationship to it ;)

Give it a try, see what happens.



My Present of Presence for You

As a homeopath, holistic nutritionist and Reiki practitioner I have learned immensely about myself through my practice and mainly from my patients. They are some of my greatest teachers. I have learned that each and everyone of us truly thrives when given love and compassion. That without these 2 invaluable things, healing cannot transpire.

We may experience different events, symptoms and diseases in our lives. However underlying all disease manifestations lies a deficiency and imbalance . This deficiency and imbalance is what sets off our internal innate healing mechanism to go in disarray. Deficiency comes in many forms, from what is lacking in our diets, to what is missing in our living environments and personal relationships.

When I began to practice I was focusing on finding the right prescription whether it be the homeopathic remedy most indicated, or the right supplements or the right diet to best suit the patients needs. All this is very important and does play a huge part in my work today.

However now I truly dedicate myself to being first and foremost present with my patients during our consultations and interactions.

Truly present means with compassion, awareness and love.

I listen with my soul and heart first , and then with my mind. I observe with my soul and my heart first and then analyse with my mind the details and symptoms of the case. And I “feel” the patient’s energy and vibe with my intuition and tune in to their concerns instead of concerning myself with deciphering the right prescription.

Conventional medicine may call this quakery or airy fairy BS. But they are far from having a great track record themselves.

Core Connecting

The more I work connecting to my patients on a deeper level, the more I see my patients benefit and reach greater levels of personal healing.

I truly believe that allowing my patients the opportunity to share, and verbally express what they are going through is a huge initiation to their healing efforts. The ability to express their concerns at much longer lengths than the usual conventional 15 minute appointment with their M.D begins to open doors they haven’t even attempted to unlock in ages.

When I look into their eyes, I sense they appreciate my acknowledgment of their pain. More importantly though, when I look into their eyes I connect with their internal wisdom. I observe the love that so desperately wants to be expressed and fully loved back.

Everyone has their own journey to take.

Their path unfolds according to their own level of awareness and how much they allow this awareness to come into being at any given moment.

The more present we become the far more healing we can achieve. The more present we become the far more LIVING we actually experience. Coming to each moment with awareness allows us to experience the only thing we have that is certain in this life.

Which is the present. This is the key to liberation from suffering and the endless states of pain we may believe we never will overcome.

A dear friend of mine shares his insight on presence with me, whenever he feels I may need a bump back into alignment. He just simply mentions to me in the most loving tone:

“Piera it is what it is, and remember where ever you go, there you are-so love it all”.

How do you bring presence to your daily life? to your interactions? to your work? to your relationships?

Your soul is calling. Have you answered?

Give it a try, see what happens ;)



Thursday, March 17, 2011

Core Connections is LAUNCHED! Welcome to my website!


My new website has just been launched!

I welcome you to browse, take the toxic test and find out more about what I offer and how I may help you achieve better health and wellness. So what is Core Connections? A concept I believe with every cell and atom of my being. My life work is devoted to expanding the awareness of Core Connecting for the greatest and highest good possible.

I’m so very excited to present to you an avenue to wellness many search for and yet never find. It really isn’t so hard. At Core Connections we understand that life is really something that must be cherished and celebrated. Life is not a part time endeavour, it’s every moment you inhale and exhale.

Life thus is a process. We often are inundated by various media and external messages telling us we must strive for goals, we must search for better positions, and run, run, run from where we are to get to where we think we ought to be. In all this running, grasping, and searching we have lost the ground beneath our feet and the anchor to our Core.

The place to begin any change, any “improvement”, anyTHING is right where you are! It begins by connecting to the inner core of your Self, and goes on evolving from there. Isn’t that beautiful? Isn’t knowing we are always evolving, shifting and experiencing higher grounds exciting and also a relief? What if there is no specific “target”? What if the target is the actual process, and the learning we are offered each day?

Awareness is true freedom to all perceived “problems”. When you begin to change the way you look at things, what you look at changes all on its own. The change must start within your very Self. Change your mindset, the angles at which you see things and begin to discover there is a whole new world of opportunities and possibilities.

So to Core Connect really means to come to what is, with a compassionate heart, mind and soul. Based on years of studying both ancient and contemporary philosophy, medicine, and health I have made my life work that of offering people better solutions and strategies to achieve thriving health and wellness.

I guide people to use their own very powerful innate tools to achieve this connection, which is possible in every moment, day, week, month, year and for the lifetimes ahead. The ancients knew this and we can know it as well. Come to know it through your own Core Connection. Awareness begins right here in this present moment.

Namaste :)

I invite you to send me your questions, and concerns and I will answer to the best that my Core Connection can offer.

Health and happiness always,


Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Weight Loss Series- Tip #4-Pro Biotics Targets the Core for Weight Loss

Great health is determined by the health of your gut. It simply starts there!

The first area I investigate when seeing a new client is the digestive system. It just is a prime indicator of what their state of health is as a whole. With just a few questions I can gather enough information to begin understanding where the person needs to start with their health and wellness goals.

There really is no point in trying to treat or prevent any ailment or disease process if the diet is not clean, and the digestion compromised. It simply becomes a maintaining cause and obstacle to achieving relief of symptoms.

Your digestive system is the "second brain" and makes up a huge part of your immune system. Some medical experts have gone as far as stating that the bacteria in our guts actually communicate with our brain or nervous system.

I find this fascinating! Having read the book "The Second Brain" by Michael Gershon, I became convinced that we truly have a network of astounding connections in our gut to our whole organism. Its incredible, how each and every part, cell and atom of our being relates and works in tandem with each other and creates the whole.

Good bacteria vs Bad bacteria:

The gut contains bad bacteria and good bacteria. In a healthy functioning gut, there is a roughly 80% to 15% good versus bad bacteria ratio. In many north Americans, the ratios are reversed! It's no wonder diseases and conditions like IBS, constipation, colitis, Crohn's, diverticulitis and cancer is so prevalent.

Good bacteria keeps the bad in check, and helps it not propagate to extreme levels. Good bacteria is essential for everyone. Our modern day lives don't grant us much room to dispute the fact we need to supplement with a probiotic.


Probiotic actually means for life. A good probiotic will ensure you give your digestion system the protection it needs. Bad bacteria will always exist, and the point isn't to eradicate it. Actually we need some to stimulate our immune system and keep it working and protecting us. It's when things get unbalanced that the body becomes compromised.

Find a reputable company that will ensure a safe source probiotic supplement. Yogurt does contain some, but such a minimal amount that it won't provide enough of what you need. Most yogurts are now marketed with the "probiotic label". They are misleading and do not guarantee you will get the recommended amount of bacteria needed.

Aim for a supplement that gives you at least 7 billion units per capsule or serving. If you already have digestive organ disease or intense symptoms, you will need to take more. As a word of caution when you begin to supplement with a probiotic, please GRADUALLY increase the amount till you take the full recommended serving. If you take too much too soon, you will experience a bacteria war in your gut. This may result in a lot of bloating or gas, pain or cramps, and distention. SLOWLY introduce the supplement, especially if you are dealing with an illness.

Fiber, water, probiotics = Winning combination

So you are drinking more water, eating more fiber, and now are going to take a probiotic! You have a winning combo to achieving a healthier, better functioning gut. You will lose weight because you will digest your food better, and assimilate or absorb more nutrients from your food. This translates into fewer cravings, and fewer calories needed to keep you satisfied. You will also improve the elimination and detoxification process leaving you more energy, and less to carry around ;)

Ultimately when you improve your digestive system, you increase your natural immunity. You will notice that getting sick with colds, flus and infections less likely. It just is all connected ;)

So "Core Connecting" is essentially the focus of all of this. When we address the Core of the issue, we connect to what is needed to achieve the health and well being we all deserve.

Recommended Reading: "The Second Brain" by Michael Gershon
"Colon Health" by Dr. Norman W. Walker
"Breaking the Vicious Cycle" by Elaine Gloria Gottschall

The three books above will provide an essential foundation to understanding colon and overall digestive health. I will dedicate a whole series on digestive ailments in the coming weeks.

Please send me your concerns or any specific questions. I will respond as best I can :)

In health always,



Monday, March 14, 2011

Weight Loss Series- Tip #3- Get Friendly with Fiber

Pictures of my Mexico Adventure in November 2010- Markets were full of high fiber treats :)

Time to get down to the nitty gritty. No its not that bad. Fiber is your other best friend right after H2O.

They have quite an intimate relationship. Fiber is an essential part of any weight loss plan. This is because it helps in a number of crucial ways to aid the process of burning fat, lowering calorie content and helping the detoxification process that naturally accompanies fat loss.

So now that you're drinking more water, you can tolerate adding more fiber to your daily meals, and assist the weight loss even further. Fiber requires an abundance of liquid to perform at its best in cleansing and helping the digestive system. It absorbs 3 times or more its own weight in liquid!

How is Fiber your other best amigo in the battle of the bulge?

  • Provides bulk, so you feel fuller, longer, and eat less calories
  • Absorbs and helps eliminate toxins in the digestive tract
  • Helps regulate sugar or insulin levels, helping stave off cravings
  • Helps slow down digestion, so you feel fuller longer
  • May absorb excess fats before they are abosorbed

Mexico is the land of legumes and corn :)
It was such a delight to walk through the markets and see all the goodies

High Fiber Foods:

Select at least one for each meal of your day. This way you will be sure you are getting enough fiber daily. 25-30 grams per day is the ideal minimum .

Whole Oats
Whole quinoa, Spelt or Kamut
Whole Bran fiber (only if you can tolerate wheat and gluten)
Brown, Red or Wild Rice

Nuts and Seeds:
Flax seeds- this is one of the best sources!
Pumpkin seeds
Chia seeds
Hemp seeds

Beans and Legumes:
Butter Beans
Fava beans
Black beans
Chick peas
Green peas

Fruits and vegetables:
All berries
Kale, mustard, dandelion, collards and beet greens
Winter Squash
Sweet potatoes

The above list includes the highest fiber foods around. This is not suggesting to limit your diet to only these options. Include them as much as possible and in addition to the many other wholesome non processed foods available.

Give it a try. See what happens...



Sunday, March 13, 2011

Weight loss Series- Tip # 2 Make water your new best friend

Water makes up nearly 2/3 of your body weight. Depending on age, gender and body composition that number may fluctuate a bit, but the point is water is one of the most vital things we need to be aware of.

It isn't a nutrient per say, but can be considered even more significant than the other essential nutrients we need to survive. Water allows for thousands of bodily processes to occur, of which assimilation, digestion, and regeneration are to be noted as the big contenders.

Without drinking enough water you slow down these bodily processes. This translates in an acceleration in the aging process, stress on the organs to work harder, and eventually a contributing factor to the "epidemic" of fatigue and low energy levels so many people experience in this modern age.

The fact that we are a society that is constantly struggling with fatigue and achieving vibrant energy, reflects a massive correlation to a very poor and nutrient deficient diet. However beyond the cliche' that we are what we eat, we also are what we drink, what we say, what we think of most often, and what we do in life.

So let's tackle the what we drink part of that equation for now.

If you live on :

  • Coffee
  • Alcohol
  • Diet or regular soft drinks
  • Juices sweetened with sugar and glucose syrups
  • Energy drinks which can also be called liquid poisons (that's my personal opinion)
  • Regular milk ( non organic)
  • Tap water

you are risking your body the essential hydration it needs.

For weight loss, water is the most fundamental thing you need to consistently incorporate daily.

It will help with the detoxification process that naturally comes with weight loss. Every time you burn fat from your cells, the cells release the toxins held there. Your fat cells are the ones that store most of the toxicity that resides in your body. The liver is thought to be the main one. But the liver helps the the body transport toxins out of the bloodstream and be stored somewhere a little safer, mainly your fat cells.

How much to drink?

If your goal is to lose weight, I would aim for 2 L of water a day minimum. That is in addition to all other liquids you ingest for the day. If you drink coffee or black tea, (both contain caffeine) you are looking at 2.5-3L daily. The more caffeine containing drinks you take in, the more water your body loses. The aim is to keep intra cellular (within cells) levels of H2O high. This keeps the cell well hydrated, able to do its job and ultimately more ENERGY for you :)

More Benefits of Water:

  • Keeps CRAVINGS in check : Often what we think is hunger is really THIRST. To avoid overeating or unnecessary snacking, drinking water first may be what you really need.
  • Helps Natural Elimination: So your digestive system functions with ease, and you develop natural regularity. Most people carry excessive pounds in their colons. A colon cleanse will help rid the body of that, and help you absorb nutrients more effectively. When you absorb more nutrients, you will CRAVE less and eat less because your body is getting and using what it needs. This is HUGE for people looking to lose weight!
  • Helps Flush Out Toxins: During weight loss you want to assist the body as much as possible in getting the toxins out. Water is the best way to do so. Using herbs and fiber are also important things you should consider as well.
  • Helps Satiation: Its been proven that drinking 1-2 glasses of water 15 min before a meal will help you feel fuller on less food. This may help you decrease calories without feeling you are.
  • Natural Skin Rejuvenator: Water is one of the best ways to healthier skin. It helps keep it hydrated, less prone to the effects of aging, and by keeping toxins out, your skin will reflect that almost within a few weeks of optimal hydration.

Give it a try see what happens ;)



Saturday, March 12, 2011

Weight Loss Series- TIP # 1 Ratios not Calories

Spring fever is in the air! Can you feel it? Can you smell the fragrance of a new and fresh season coming?

The winter pounds are now more pressing to lose, as we begin to shed the coat layers and big bulky sweaters. No reason to feel anxiety or panic just start a sensible approach to changing your lifestyle now.

Crash diets, extreme exercise routines, and the use of fat burners are what some of you may think is the best way to get the job done fast. However, diets don't teach us how to make healthy choices and develop a healthy lifestyle.

Diets encourage the yo yo effect with your weight climbing up then down, then back up again often higher than before. Very low calorie dieting also encourage the body to go into a "famine" mode, and it will conserve and hold on to as much body fat as it can.

So what to do?

Start with the Basics:

Think Ratios and Rations and Not Calories :

An easy way to design your meals is to simply make sure you have a source of lean protein, low glycemic carbohydrate and some good healthy source of fat at every meal. The picture at the top of this blogs is a great example of what I mean here.

I've found that 30% protein, 50% carb and 20% fat works very well. Its not cutting carbs entirely, and its not too heavy on the protein. AND we need fat! Especially fats rich in omega fatty acids, like those found in fatty fish, flax and chia seeds.

Lean protein sources:

Organic Turkey, and chicken breasts
Organic Eggs, and egg whites
Organic Fish : salmon, white fish, tilapia, grouper, snapper
New zealand hormone free whey powder- for on the go times
Hemp protein, rice protein or

Complex low glycemic carbs:

All green, and non starchy vegetables (This should make up half or more of your carb calories per day)
Brown rice
Beans and legumes
Whole spelt, kamut or amaranth
Winter squash

Good Fats:

Olive oil
Coconut oil
Nuts and seeds : especially almonds, walnuts, cashews, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds
Flax seed oil and flax seeds
Udo's blend- great product that consists of the best healthy fats altogether in one product

Now just divide your plate into the percentages stated above and choose a food from each of the lists, and use measuring cups to portion out a sensible size for your body weight and goals.

You may find you need a little more carbs, if your very active and exercise daily. Or you may find you need less because you are more sedentary or you know they are hard for you to metabolize and a prime contributor to your weight gain.

If you have insulin or sugar imbalances you will need to exercise extra care with the types of carbs you have, and really make the effort to combine protein with carbs at each and every meal. This helps prevent any chance of insulin spikes or lows.

Stay tuned for Tip #2 coming next!

In health always,



Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Splenda not so splendid- How fake sugar makes you FATTER!

You cut carbs.

You cut calories.

Then you try high protein and low fat diets and it seems to become a vicious cycle of weight loss and weight gain getting you no where.

You also resort to going sugar free which means substituting sugar with aspartame (Equal), sucrolose (Splenda brand), sorbitol, malitol, and on and on goes the list of fake artificial sweeteners. These substitutes are chemically toxic, can damage neurons (brain cells) and often increase the desire for sweets and sugar. So in the end they actually may encourage you to gain weight and crave more food!

When you ingest these sweeteners, messages are still sent to your brain that sugar is entering the bloodstream. Even though it technically hasn't. Your body prepares just the same for it, and produces a chemical reaction as if you were actually eating real sugar. When it doesn't receive real sugar, it will still act accordingly and produce a stress response because your physiology and brain become all confused. This ultimately translates into increased cravings for carbs, and especially SUGAR.

So what can we do to replace white sugar without adding excess calories and going the fake route?

3 Natural Sweeteners that are healthy, and won't disturb blood sugar levels:

The following sweeteners are completely natural, made from plant sources and can be found at your reputable natural food store.

1) Stevia: This is a South American herb that has been used as a sweetener by the Guarani Indians of Paraguay for hundreds of years. Some studies suggest it helps lower blood pressure and help control blood sugar insulin response. Its also calorie free and great to use in hot drinks like coffee and tea. So for those watching calories, are diabetic, hypoglycaemic, or hypertensive this is a safe and natural substitute.

2) Xylitol: This is my favourite of the three. Don't let its funky name fool you. Its completely natural, made from birch bark or berries, is calorie free and the bonus with xylitol is that is has been proven to benefit the health of your teeth. Studies found that xylitol increases the ph level in your mouth, which helps ward off cavities and dental erosion caused by sugar, and acidic foods. It has a pleasant taste, and used in coffee, it doesn't mask the flavour and allows the true java taste to come through. Xylitol is also great for diabetics, and usually comes in crystalline form.

3) Coconut Sugar: This one is a little harder to find, but one worth scouting for. It is made from the sap of coconuts, has a rich brown colour and the flavour reminds me of maple syrup! Its low calorie, won't create a sugar spike like white sugar, and can be used for baking when brown sugar is the major sweet ingredient called for. I love this sugar on berries and is phenomenal in coffee. It gives java a really awesome caramel tasting accent. I buy it from a local health food store, but if yours doesn't carry it you can find it online.

I wish you the best in your sweet explorations... try them out, and see what happens ;)



Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Banish Belly Bloat!

Look down at your belly.

What does it look like today? What does it feel like buckled in by your belt? Can you become mindful of the sensations going on in there?

One of the biggest concerns my clients come in with when they first come to see me is a problematic digestive system. Often symptoms that arise are bloating, painful distention, gas, retention of excess water, and inability to digest their food properly.

What is going on? There are a number of things to consider:

1) What are you eating?

2) How and where are you eating?

3) When are you eating?

Answers to those 3 questions provide a huge explanation for what may be going on inside that bloated belly.

If you are experiencing digestive upset, here are some probable causes:

Food Allergies/sensitivities:

Food allergies/sensitivities are by far the most offending perpetrators of a mal-functioning digestive system. When your body reacts to foods, inflammation ensues, and often times food is not digested well or takes double the time. The body reacts as if a lethal toxin has been ingested, and pulls out all the histamine forces to the rescue, leaving you bloated, in pain and fatigued.

Get tested and find out what you cannot tolerate. Also consider taking multi enzyme and probiotic supplements. These encourage the type of environment your digestion system favours for optimal function. I will dedicate a future blog to the importance of good gut flora for not only digestion, but for weight loss, inflammatory conditions, and overall wellness.

Most common allergens include : Dairy, eggs, gluten, wheat, sugars, acidic foods, nuts, and seafood.


Your tummy has its own neural network, consisting of more pathways than your brain! Its been called the second brain by some medical officials. Therefore it can be triggered, and affected by stress, emotions and negative thoughts. If you are emotional, don't engage in eating a meal. If you are running around, overworked and not mindful when you eat, chances are you are going to have indigestion, which means BLOATING.

Recommendation: This is the primary focus of my work. Come to your breath, take a moment to press pause, and come to an awareness of what is really going on when you sit to eat. Stop eating on the run, stop grabbing a "bar" on the way to the gym and take 5 minutes to actually chew what it is you are ingesting. Digestion starts in the mind. Your thoughts, and state will affect whatever it is you decide to eat, and how you eat matters more than anything when it comes to good digestion.

Junk Food Junkies:

What you eat is important too. Processed junk, white carbohydrates, sugar, caffeine, alcohol, and anything that essentially doesn't come off a plant, tree, vine or shrub has been altered chemically or mechanically in some way. So make the mainstay of your diet, whole non processed foods, and have the rest be condiments that make up 20% or less of your daily diet.

Pathologies, and digestive disease are also critical issues that are becoming almost epidemic in westernized countries. Colitis, diverticulitis, Crohn's, ulcers, chronic constipation, IBS, and cancers must be ruled out before you decide which treatments and therapies are best. Working with your health care practitioner(s) is highly advisable and the most effective way to wellness :)

In health always,



Monday, March 7, 2011

3 Things you need to "LOSE" to GAIN a Healthier HEART!


You look again at the blood pressure reading.

Could this be right? Just a few months ago you were sitting comfy at 140/80 thinking everything was A Ok. Now the numbers have changed, and the doc wants you on meds. Yikes! It just seems to have happened overnight. Or did it?

Blood pressure is often an insidious condition that seems to appear out of no where. Often times people can't even tell the slight rise to a normal and once healthy blood pressure rate. There may be no symptoms till later stages of the condition.

Medical doctors diagnose high blood pressure when numbers are at 140/90 or greater. The "normal" rate is 120/80, but that is contingent on age, lifestyle and habits . If you are between 120/80 - 140/90 you are considered pre-hypertensive, or the early stage of developing high blood pressure.

Have your blood pressured checked if you:

1) Already know of a family history of Hypertension or Cardiac disease.

2) Are experiencing more headaches than usual.

3) Are overweight, and/or diabetic.

4) If you smoke, drink excessive amounts of caffeine and/or alcohol and are having trouble sleeping.

5) If you feel any heart symptoms of excessive palpitations upon exerting yourself physically, even slightly more than normal.

If you are hypertensive, know that it is one of the most easily addressed health conditions in its early stages, and can be healed.

3 natural ways to treat High blood pressure and stay off the meds!

1) Lose weight!

Even as little as losing 5- 10 pounds for someone obese or overweight is enough to help lower the blood pressure. Often times the extra water weight that is shed alone can be a relief to the heart and blood vessels. Aim to lose weight sensibly! I devote most of my work on this subject of weight loss/management.

Simple equation for weight loss:Bold

Sensible and healthy balanced diet+ Sensible healthy balanced exercise regime+ Connection to your Core for Emotional Balance and Wellness = Sustained weight loss

You need to address all 3, or you will struggle endlessly to achieve your ideal body weight.

2) Lose the Salt!

If you think that only the salt shaker needs to be chucked, think again. Packaged, boxed, wrapped, canned, bagged, and other fast foods are huge culprits that contain MASSIVE amounts of sodium. We all need some sodium to keep our physiology balanced, however eating food on the run, and in processed forms often is a killer in their sodium numbers. Anything you buy on the go, is almost guaranteed to exceed your day's allowance. So make your own lunch when possible, cut down on processed foods, and use herbs and spices to make food come alive. Celtic Sea Salt used in moderation is also not harmful and will add minerals and trace nutrients your body needs to feel its best.

Recommended Daily Sodium Allowance:
2, 400 mg of sodium/day or 1 teaspoon of salt!

Where's the Salt?!

Mc D's Quarter pounder with Cheese 1040mg

30 gram serving of Cornflakes : 1170

A one cup serving of most commercial brand canned soup: 680 mg (almost half a day's worth)

Salt is in everything... even the seemingly "healthy" packaged foods, so be careful.

3) Lose the stress!

High stress levels can increase blood pressure in a number of ways. When we are stressed out we go into survival mode. We begin to engage the flight or fight response, which elevates our insulin/cortisol system, adrenaline and blood pressure.

Also, when we feel stressed we often don't take care of ourselves or health. We slack off on our diet, exercise habits and may engage in unhealthy habits like smoking, excessive caffeine or alcohol consumption and our sleep patterns get disrupted.

Stress management cannot be overlooked.

The breath is really the first place to start. It is reported that deep, diagrammatic breathing helps lower the blood pressure almost instantaneously. Learn more here:

Yoga, Meditation, Pranayama (breath work), engaging in activities that give you joy and make you smile and laugh all reduce stress and help the body and mind deal with emotional upsets.

Breath into that place of uneasiness, and eventually the feeling settles on its own.



Sunday, March 6, 2011

An issue of Trust

What does it mean to trust?

To trust another?

To trust the process and path taken?

To trust the Self?

In my practice and in my own life this sacred value returns to the forefront asking to be examined.

Trust seems to imply we give another our faith, and our whole hearted acceptance that what they appear to be conveying to us in their words and actions is true. We perceive through or our own lens what the other is and represents. It never is about them, it always is about what we see, feel and perceive our reality to be.

So in essence to trust another, we must trust our own Self first. We must claim our truth, know what we believe is right for us first, before we can trust and accept the other.

Often times what we believe has been a violation of our trust by another, was simply a violation of our own sense of self trust. We didn't accept our truth, and went looking to see it or get it from another. That is simply insanity, and the cause for the delusion we often experience when we hand over our need for acceptance to another, before we do it for ourselves.

To honour our own truth, and live the path from that place, creates the most valuable sense of trust you can have in YOURSELF. No one else can grant you happiness, satisfaction and love before you do it for yourself.

Your truth is your very own unique essence. The more you celebrate that, nurture, and cultivate it the greater you will trust yourself to proceed, prosper and achieve all that you desire.

Trust grows immensely when we water the seed of our Truth with self acceptance, self care and self love.

Next time you feel your trust has been violated ponder the following questions:

1) Was I really being truthful about my own feelings with the other?

2) Did I place full trust almost blindly in the other, without first trusting my own intuition about the situation?

3) Is it possible that I don't trust my own truth enough, and am looking for acceptance by others, or the external world where it is impossible to find my own personal truth?

4) Am I really being betrayed? Or could it be that the other is operating through their own deep seated insecurity and fear of being hurt?

Challenge your preconceived notions and beliefs about yourself and others. Like Don Miguel Ruiz says "Never assume anything about anyone, and never take anything personally".

What others do or say, NEVER IS ABOUT YOU! Its always their own to own.

Under all of that, lies your brillance and the essence of who you really are.



Thursday, March 3, 2011

How to breath to Nirvana in 5 minutes!

Feeling a little blah? Are you struggling to feel more energy and less of the heaviness and low vibes you may be experiencing lately? We all want to get to Nirvana at some point...well most of us at least can admit to wanting joy and a more satisfying life experience. So where do we turn?

Its starts with YOU.

You can buy all the "magic" energy pills, go on a extreme diet, get the great new self help book out there, or repeat affirmations till your blue in the face, but all of that is not the best direction to take.

The energy and capacity to feel your authentic true vibrant self is already within.

What do I mean by this?

Many of us are grasping outwardly. I call this the "grasping syndrome". We look, reach, seek, and GRASP outside of ourselves continuously. We look for another to love us, to accept us, and to acknowledge our needs. It gets to the point you don't even know your doing it. Your on AUTO MATIC PILOT , AND black berry, iphone, ipad, youtube, msn messenger, skype, twitter, facebook, stumble upon, google, fire fox, RSS feeds, Flickr, and on and and on and on.

THIS is a huge energy vampire, that can suck the life out of you.

We look to material things, media icons, what Sally next door with the white picket fence, 2 kids, gorgeous husband, and beautiful 5 bedroom house is doing. We COMPARE ourselves to externals and then wonder why we keep feeling tired, unhappy and unsatisfied.

The connection to feeling better, more joy, more love, and eventually FANTASTIC starts by simply stopping all the chaos in our minds, stopping physically, and taking a moment and being with YOURSELF. I call this "pushing the PAUSE button".

Sounds too easy? A fairy tale fantasy to get your wish? Give it a try, what's the worst that can happen?

Assign yourself 5 minutes, 2 times in your crazy day. Ya I know, we all are BUSY, and have NO time apparently. 5 minutes, can be while your sitting on your toilet.(I'm exaggerating here, and I know you get the picture). Let's stop making excuses, and get to the work we need to do to live our best, and fullest life.

Here is how:

5 minutes - 2 times in your day.

Sit, listen to your breath, elongate the breath till you can count 4 seconds for every inhale, and 4 seconds for every exhale, and just be. You'll reset your whole nervous system, get clarity and springboard yourself from YOUR own center, not Sally's!

Allowing yourself to be more creative, productive and living what you are passionate about in life is so very possible, if you take the initiative to do something for your health and well being on a consistent basis.

Because, frankly if your not loving what you do, who you are and what you have then you got some work to do on YOU. Breathing isn't all that difficult and the best place to start ;)

See what happens, and let me know :)