Wednesday, September 29, 2010

On Meditation

Don't brush off meditation as something that only monks and religious people practice.   Research is now showing that meditation is actually beneficial to your mind and your body.  It has been proven that meditation decreases stress in your body, relaxing it, and consequently relieving it from pain, discomfort, and even causing speedy recovery. Additionally, meditation has been known to increase your attention span, boost your immune system, and even help you get rid of migraines.

So several questions may now be popping into your heads such as, "how do I meditate?", "do I have to be religious to meditate?", or "how can I stop my mind from wandering while meditating?"  To answer these questions, firstly understand that meditation (without any religious connotations attached to it) is simply an activity of non-activity.  A simple and easy way to meditate is by sitting with your eyes closed in a serene, quiet spot, and focusing on your breathing.  Breathe deeply and relax every part of your body, starting from the head. And when your mind starts to wander, accept it, and go back to focusing on your breathing.  Strive to meditate at least 15 minutes per day, and you will notice that with practice your mind will wander less and you will actually feel healthier, more calm, as well as, more alert in your day to day activities. I am hoping the fact that I have personally experienced the above benefits from my recent practice in meditation will encourage you to try it out.

Here are some great webpages for you with more information on meditation:

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Essential Oils Are Therapeutic

Essential oils are derived from flowers and plants and their parts such as, bark, leaves, etc.  They are the essence of the plant.  When essential oils are inhaled or absorbed through your skin they provide healing benefits. These flower essences have been used for healing since ancient Egyptian times. You can benefit from these concentrated essences of plants and flowers by aromatherapy treatments, adding them into your massage oil, and/or bathwater, using them in a compress, or simply just burning them in a diffuser.

In his book, The Maker's Diet, Dr. Jordan Rubin sheds light on the 14 essential oils that have amazing healing properties.  Here are three of the essential oils and some of their uses that  he recommends:

Lavender (my personal favorite) - relieves anxiety, depression, mental fatigue, stress, bruises, earaches, etc

Sandal Wood-  helps low self esteem, bronchitis, sensitive skin, urinary tract infections, etc.

Frankincense- for grief, insecurity, immune system stimulation, headaches, herpes, scars, stretch marks, etc

Please  don't mistake commercially available fragrances as essential oils. The fragrances are either synthetic, or have chemical additives, whilst the essential oils are purely derived from the plants.  Additionally, please make sure the essential oils you buy are 100% pure. And finally, since essential oils are very concentrated, always dilute them in carrier oils such as sweet almond oil, apricot kernel oil, coconut oil, etc.

Here are websites with more information on essential oils: