Food & Lifestyle Coaching = Health

Food & Lifestyle Coaching = Health

A lousy day on the golf course made Pete realize how much pressure he was under at work and at home, but it took a lousy day on the golf course for him to finally realize that he better take a good look at his life and make some changes.  He was stuck and had no idea what to do. He knew his weight was up, his cholesterol, and blood pressure were too high, he wasn’t getting enough sleep, and his wife wasn’t happy with him.

He had no clue what to do or where to start. He didn’t want to take medications. He was afraid!  He had no idea what his possibilities were!

One day when he was at the supermarket, he saw a magazine about complementary and alternative health services.  He had no idea what it was all about, but he was desperate enough to pick it up and read through it.  Most of the services he had never heard of – funny names like Feldenkrais, Tai Chi, and Ayurvedic.

The more Pete read, the more interested he became. Most of the magazine had to do with the benefits these services provided.  It was hard for him to get his brain around this way of thinking, but he was desperate and kept investigating these new concepts that restored health in a natural way.

One ad caught Pete’s attention. It had to do with Wellness Coaching. He called the number listed and got answers to all his questions. There were so many possibilities!  He now felt hope for a healthy future!

The Coaching helped him realize that he needed to learn to be aware of what he ate, how he ate it, and to be responsible for his health on many different levels.  He called his wife all excited because he signed them up for a “food preparation” class.  That was a start – something for them to do together to improve both their health.

Pete continued with his “wellness journey.”  With the Wellness Coach and other practitioners, he addressed his diet and eating habits, sleep issues, and stress and anxiety.  Today Pete is at a healthy weight, his blood pressure is normal, and he is able to manage his stress.  These were his possibilities and he took advantage of them!  Life is good and so is his golf game – now!

Gale Maleskey, M.S., R.D.

Greg Schweitzer, MBA, D.Ay.

From Resentment to Love—with Meditation

Is there anyone in your life that challenges your serenity?  Of course, we all have such people and situations.

The question is what to do about it? Holding resentment and anger hardens our hearts, taking the joy and serenity from our lives. You may have heard the saying that if you hold revenge in your heart, you’ll need two graves. One for the person upon whom you wish revenge and the other for you!

Chronic anger and animosity breed a host of diseases not to mention unhappiness and discord. The UN charter reads, “War begins in the mind.” The good news is that we have the power to charge.

Louise Hay, a wise teacher and best-selling author, suggests that we send our troublemakers love. The next time you catch yourself replaying those negative internal messages of despair and anger over the actions of others, remind yourself to “send
them love”.

We do not have to love what they’ve done. Their actions may have really hurt. Do you, however, want to hold onto the hurt and anger, or do you wish to move beyond it?

Sending them love puts forth a positive transformational energy. We have the power to bring light to our world through our thoughts and intentions. Try it and notice the impact
on the quality of your life.

Steve, an Effortless Meditation™ client, was frequently rehashing feelings of sadness and loneliness. His family, upset by decisions he had made and actions he had taken, shunned him. He was no longer welcome in their home or in their lives.

Although Steve’s actions were in accord with his conscience, they were not in alignment with the family’s desires and values. They no longer returned his phone calls or initiated any communication with him. Steve’s hurt and sadness replayed over and over in his mind.

After years of distress, Steve learned of this empowering approach in a coaching session.  When his recurring negative feelings toward his family come up, he now sends them love. Almost immediately, he reported feeling better, happier and more at peace. The resentment and sadness was lifting.

Steve is powerless over the thoughts and actions of his family. By sending his family love, his thoughts and feelings have changed. He has jump started his healing process from within.

 

 

Structural Integration (Rolf Method) – Creates Real Strength!

Betty heard someone say, “Pain and strain is your body’s way of telling you it is out of balance.” She had no idea what that meant. After doing some research, she started to think that maybe her back aches were the result of her body being “out of balance.”

Inthe midst of Betty’s research, she read about Structural Integration and learned how soft manipulation, education, and awareness helps the muscles, bones, and organs move into proper relationship to each other.

The part that excited her the most was when she read that releasing physical restrictions actually increases strength, adaptability, and resilience. Betty loved to run and for the last several months wasn’t able to enjoy this exercise because her back was ”talking to her – real loud!”  So, she found a Structural Integration practitioner and committed to the series of sessions.  Each of these sessions was to build upon the last and the strategies were tailored specifically for her. 

 At first, it was a strange concept for Betty to think that if she builds and deepens a relationship with her “body and self,” she will live with more awareness and harmony in her life. But, this is exactly what Betty experienced as her Structural Integration sessions progressed.  It was working for her!  She could feel her body changing – more natural and powerful.

Betty was able to run longer distances in a shorter time because she was more flexible and stronger. To get back to running and be pain free was her goal and she succeeded. She felt so relaxed and peaceful while she ran.

Betty felt like a new person and decided that the best thing she could do for herself in the future was to continue with periodic Structural Integration “tune-ups.”  Structural Integration transformed her body – and life!

Get Natural Help for Neurological Problems

If you’re seeing a neurologist for peripheral neuropathy, multiple sclerosis, stroke-related damage, migraine headaches, epilepsy, or a movement disorder such as Parkinson’s disease, you should know that good nutrition and certain nutritional supplements are proven to help these problems. They can reduce pain, slow the progression of nerve damage, help you reduce your drug dosage, and remove toxins from your body that may be contributing to your health problems. 

I’ve helped a number of people with neurological problems, working with them and their doctors to safely combine their medical care with natural, nutrition-based treatments.

If you have peripheral neuropathy, for instance, consider taking alpha lipoic acid, a nutritional supplement that can work as well as the drug Neurontin–without the side effects. Make sure you’re getting enough vitamin B12, folate and Coenzyme Q10, which can help relieve some forms of neuropathy. And if you’re taking cholesterol-lowering statin drugs, you need to be aware that these drugs greatly increase your risk for developing neuropathy, and can also cause muscle weakness and mood changes. Getting your cholesterol down with a healthy, plant-based diet can help you lower your dosage of statin drugs and reduce your risk for developing these troubling symptoms. 

People with MS often do better when they start on an anti-inflammatory diet, getting more omega-3 fats and fewer omega-6 and saturated fats. They also benefit from other nutrients: vitamins D, E and B12, n-acetyl-cysteine, phosphatidylserine, CoQ10 and alpha lipoic acid. 

People with Parkinson’s disease often have had exposure to toxic chemicals, such as solvents, herbicides or pesticides, and may benefit from an evaluation to reduce ongoing environmental toxin exposure. They also often improve by following a detoxifying diet and supplements to help their bodies break down and remove brain and nerve-damaging toxins.

People who’ve had a stroke, who have high blood pressure, or who are at risk for having stroke because of clotting problems can reduce their blood pressure with a diet high in potassium, magnesium, calcium, vitamin D, getting more omega-3 fats, and cutting back on sodium and saturated fats. This kind of diet can also help restore normal heartbeat in some people who have heart arrhythmia problems.

People with migraines and epilepsy sometimes find that they are reacting to certain foods or food additives.  A little detective work can help pinpoint these foods, but sometimes people need to get food allergy testing to figure out what is going on. I’ve found people often improve once they stop eating foods, or, especially, food additives like sulfites and MSG–and aspartame!–that are making them sick.

Gale Maleskey, MS, RD, is an Integrative Nutrition Counselor and Certified Wellness Coach

 

Feldenkrais®: Making the Impossible, Possible and Easy!

Anna, a middle aged mother of two has been experiencing more and more physical pain as she gets older. A childhood auto accident left her with physical challenges, but now her hip is the main concern. Her physician said that she would probably need a hip replacement in her future.

Naturally, Anna became very fearful about this prognosis and mentioned it to Laura, her good friend. Laura told her that she had read an article recently about an alternative health modality called Feldenkrais that helps people with hip problems, arthritis, and other painful physical conditions.

Anna was a little skeptical, but pursued the search for a Feldenkrais practitioner and made an appointment immediately. Sure enough, her experience after her first private session, which was called Functional Integration®, made her feel very hopeful.  Her tight muscles felt more relaxed and she was more aware of her body feeling more open. The practitioner used gentle, non-invasive touch and verbal instruction to guide her in her own movement process. As she walked down the hall after this session, she felt taller, her balance seemed to be better, and her hip was not hurting like it did before the treatment.

After a couple private Functional Integration sessions, the practitioner suggested that Anna attend some Feldenkrais classes called “Awareness through Movement.”  During the class the practitioner verbally directed the students to highly sophisticated movement sequences that were very pleasurable and effortless.  She did most of these exercises while on a floor mat, but there were others in the class who did them sitting in a chair.

Since Anna has been attending the classes for a couple months and doing the exercises at home, she has gradually felt less and less pain in the hip area. Her balance and flexibility has greatly improved along with her range and ease of movement.

What her original research said was that Feldenkrais exercises help at a fundamental level by improving the body’s underlying neuromuscular and skeletal organization. Learning new ways to move can be an essential addition to the treatment of neurological, orthopedic, chronic pain and stress-related conditions.

Since she caught the problem soon enough, surgery in her future is unlikely; however, she has learned that those who do have hip surgery still benefit greatly from the Feldenkrais classes because their physical therapy recovery is so much easier and faster.

Feldenkrais classes and private sessions are available at Twin Ponds Integrative Health Center.

There is never enough food for a hungry soul!

Many of us realize that we are overweight and/or recognize that we are driven by food cravings that lead to unhealthy food choices. And most of us are aware of the impact of being over weight or obese – lethargy, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes and gastrointestinal problems are just a few of the major complications. So, why do we continue to overeat and make unhealthy choices about food?

Ultimately, it’s not about the food, it’s about the lack of fulfillment (the hungry soul) inside us. It drives us to eat to satisfy an emotional not physical need.

How do we bring greater fulfillment to our lives and make healthier food choices? A good place to start is with positive lifestyle habits such as exercise and meditation.
Effortless Meditation™ changes our brain and improves our thinking; brain waves
become more coherent and orderly during our meditation.  The state of restful alertness in our meditation brings peace and serenity to our lives. Adding this revitalizing experience, ideally as a daily practice, works wonders.

Try one month of feeding your soul daily by quieting your mind with meditation. I suspect you will quickly notice that you are developing a growing awareness and sensitivity about your need or lack of need for food. Making healthier and smart food
choices comes more easily, almost automatically with growing awareness.

With greater mental clarity and awareness, you will be better prepared to improve the quality of the food that you are consuming. Just as a high performance engine does best on high octane fuel, we thrive when our food is packed densely with nutrients. In
contrast, if we eat foods that are mostly “empty calories” (e.g. soda, white flour and highly processed nutrient sparse foods) we will continue eating and consuming excessive calories in order to get the nutrients that your body needs. Nutrient dense foods energize us and satisfy our hunger with fewer calories.

Be gentle with yourself, meditate, get some exercise, and eat well.

Greg Schweitzer, Director of Stress Reduction Resources and Effortless Meditation™ Instructor for more than 30 years

Acupressure: Holiday Health Is In Your Hands!

Ready or not, the holidays are coming! Along with the hustle and bustle, stress slowly builds. Who wants to waste time running to the doctor and spending money on pills? There are gifts to be bought and wrapped, decorations to be placed, cards to be sent, parties to attend, cookies to be baked, food to prepare, and on and on! Just thinking about it, creates stress. Save your precious time for the joys of the season. Don’t let stress take control of you.

There’s no better time than right now to learn how to take charge of your health with the healing touch of your own hands.

How can this be done? The ancient Chinese practice of acupressure brings balance to the body using the power and sensitivity of the fingers and hand. Through the use of gentle finger pressure, tapping, gentle pounding, and pressing meridians at acupoints to even the flow of energy, health and wellness is restored.

The body has twelve healing energy pathways (meridians) as identified by traditional Chinese Medicine. Energy (chi) flows through these meridians and your holiday stress and tension can cause them to get blocked at the acupressure points. By effectively using acupressure techniques, energy begins to flow through the meridians reducing muscular tension, increasing circulation, and enabling deep relaxation. Stress is relieved and harmony is restored to all body functions.

Let this holiday motivate you to relieve the stress that is stored in your body now (and even more so as the holidays approach), strengthen your resistance to disease, and ultimately maintain your health. Join us to learn self-care applications and pressure points for not only holiday stress but many other specific conditions.

Give yourself the gift of stress relief this holiday. You don’t have to shop for it, wrap it, or return it!  You’ll have it for the rest of your life to use at any time you feel the need.

 

 

 

 

Do You Know Why a Lymphatic Massage…

is beneficial for your health? The lymph is like its red brother, blood. It filters foreign matter and removes excess fluid, protein, and waste products from the tissues and transports them to the blood to be circulated and eliminated.

If the lymph didn’t do its job, you would die from protein poisoning within
twenty-four hours.

Unlike the blood, lymph does not have a heart to pump it through the body. It moves along slowly with the help of the contractions of voluntary muscles (a reason exercise is beneficial), squeezes of intestinal muscles, and pulsations of nearby arteries. The negative pressure in the chest cavity provides suction.

External hands-on stimulation helps increase the passage of lymph, especially when it gets backed up.

Lymph collects at nearly eight hundred nodes throughout the body, with two hundred in the neck alone. When nodes become swollen in the neck, armpit, or groin, the areas feel tender.  And, when the ankles, feet, legs, arms, and hands become thick with accumulated fluid, you have edema. Lymphedema also may occur following the removal of lymph nodes due to cancer.

Therapist and doctors report good results for:

  • sprains and bruises
  • puffiness in the face following cosmetic or dental surgery
  • muscular spasms from overuse or chronic tension
  • also figures in the treatment of:  sinusitis, burns, acne, scars, arthritis, emphysema, migraines, tinnitus, trigeminal neuralgia, spinal injuries, and some cerebral disorders

For patients who have undergone such operations as hysterectomy, prostectomy, and mastectomy, clinical evidence indicates that Massage Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) moves fluid when an area can no longer perform this function. If begun before the 5th month of pregnancy, it can serve as a preventive for swelling and stretch marks.

Twin Ponds Integrative Health Center has 4 Lymphatic Massage Therapists.  If you would like to make an appointment, please call 610.395.3355.

“I was introduced to the Twin Ponds Integrative Health Center while undergoing treatment for breast cancer. The massages continue to be very helpful in my recovery and well being.” Mary 

Research by European scientists confirms the effects of MLD. From the book, “Discovering the Body’s Wisdom,” by Mirka Knaster

 

Spinal Cord Injuries and the Feldenkrais Method of Movement Education

Cindy Allison, a University of Canterbury, (UC) PhD student, is carrying out the world’s first research on spinal cord injuries using the Feldenkrais Method to provide people the chance to recover movement and stability.

In the 1940s, Israeli physicist, Dr Moshe Feldenkrais, combined his knowledge of martial arts, biomechanics, neurophysiology, anatomy, learning theory, child development, systems theory, physics and psychology to develop the Feldenkrais Method, a form of sensory motor education.

Research has provided evidence of benefits including reduced pain, fatigue, stress and medicalcosts; and improved mobility, stability, coordination and breathing. However there has been no research done with spinal cord injury.

Cindy was drawn to the Feldenkrais Method because of her own pain and loss of movement and sensation. For her PhD she is developing the first Feldenkrais program in the world for people with spinal cord injury.

Rather than isolating muscles and working hard in an attempt to restore movement, Feldenkrais encourages expanding body awareness, and paying attention to the quality of movement and the effect that the movement has on  the coordination of the whole body.

You stay within your comfort zone; it is process oriented and fun. The focus is also on learning how to learn. Clients grow to understand biomechanics and learning principles, they are eventually able to improve their movement independently of the practitioner.

“I was so impressed with the method that I began researching its potential for people with spinal cord injury. Some of the world’s top neuroscientists advocate the method. I have people around the world with spinal cord injury discovering significant
improvement using Feldenkrais principles despite negative prognoses.’’

Kevin Hitchcock, a former director of news and Channel Ten in Sydney was told he would be paralyzed from the neck down for the rest of his life, she said.

He has made an almost full recovery and written a book after improving via the Feldenkrais Method.

American Molly Hale, subject of a documentary film, broke her neck in 1995 and was told that she would be paralyzed from the shoulders down. Hale has made significant progress. In recent months she has walked unassisted for the first time since her accident.

Germany’s Irene Lober was able to ditch her wheelchair, ski, and climb hills despite being told she would need a wheelchair for the rest of her life. She documented her recovery in her Master’s thesis and then went on to train as a Feldenkrais practitioner.

Australian triathlete, Michael Forbes, describes on YouTube how he learned to walk again using Feldenkrais. More examples are on Allison’s website www.neuroplasticity.co.nz.

I suspect many more stories that haven’t been documented. Recovery is a gradual process but my clients have reported a number of benefits including reduced pain and spasm; and improved coordination and ease of movement, posture and breathing.

“Clients who had no sensation below their break are reporting that sensation and
movement are returning. I want to develop group programs that are accessible
and affordable for disabled people.’’

Voxy.co.nz

If you know anyone with paralysis from stroke, head injury, spinal cord injury or multiple sclerosis, please have them contact us concerning Feldenkrais Private Sessions and Classes. Visit our website for information about Feldenkrais and Carol Siddiqi, Feldenkrais Practitioner.

 

 

The Incredible Value of Play for Adults!

Carol was bored on her daily one-hour walks, so she inventeda game to entertain herself. In the next two blocks she would take exactly 300 steps. Walking as “normally” as possible; first day – needed 25 mini steps, second day – needed 10  giant steps, third day-tried zig-zags and only needed 10 mini steps (zig-zags were fun), and so on.

Little did she know that as she was playing she was also improving her mind; improving the way her brain and body handled space, time, design, and even stress.  So, later she was surprised when she was able to avoid a car which had suddenly swerved into her lane by almost effortlessly maneuvering her car, going off the road safely and well.

Play can be lifesaving which is why the military teaches its officers how to improve their ability to play. Einstein riding on a trolley, pretended (played) to ride a light beam as he was watching the town hall clock which enabled him to get the insight he needed to discover that e = mc sq. Miles Davis played with the notes to find the “real” music.

Play helps us deal with our ordeals, and lighten the stress and loads of our lives. Play opens up and heightens our short-term memory and can even help us use our dreams to solve problems, especially creative problems.

Play can help us to use all our talents and skills better, and even lower pain levels and help us heal faster. Play can bring incredible insights into the way you and others function in daily life.

Many people have discovered that a family that plays together is creating a structure and trust that helps when problems arise. The same trust issues can be developed by play in business, which is why those golf and other outings are important and worth the time and money.

There is a funny paradox:  play can improve us without our knowing it. Useful play is a skill that can be improved. You too can learn how to use play more effectively which is why I have joined with Jungian and play expert, Dr. Mary Alice Long, to create the workshop: “Know Thy Self and Play for Success.”

Join us for four days of playful transformation. For more information see our flyer.  Learn how to play with your problems and stress and turn them into the game pieces of success, as you also improve your
creativity and leadership abilities (including parenting).  Besides, we are going to be playing and we’re going to have fun!

By Betsy Wetzig, Originator of Coordination Pattern™ “Breakthru” Training

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