7 Food Stars Of December To Boost Optimal Health!

December is here once again and people are about to get merry. That said the festive season is also a time to rejuvenate the body with some special foods that are only found during this month! It is important to understand that nature provides us with some amazing rich produce especially in winter. It would be silly not to take advantage and really treat yourself!

For this December, I would highly recommend trying out some of these yummy veggies:

  1. White Cabbage

Homemade ColeslawThis month, there will be a lot of white cabbage in the stores and markets. You already know about its crisp taste, but you may not have considered the many benefits that this vegetable contains. Cholesterol is one of the greatest fears of many people in an age when lifestyle diseases are prevalent. When you eat steamed cabbages, your body expels bile acid thus lowering cholesterol in your blood. The good thing also is that you can also eat cabbages raw!

  1. Beetroot

iStock_000045499850_SmallAnother plant that will invade the market and dinner tables of health-conscious families this December is beetroot. This coloured tap root has a sweet earthy flavour, a velvety and smooth texture and cam be combined with some fruits to make juices.

You may even want to combine beetroot with yoghurt and cream to make it even more delicious. Beets are full of antioxidants, protein, folic acid, potassium and fibre among other important minerals and nutrients. The benefits of beetroot include lowering blood pressure as well as fighting cancer-causing compounds.

  1. Apples

Fresh Red ApplesGo apple crazy!! Orchards will be churning out an incredible number of different types of apples that some sweet, some sharp and always crunchy! They will also come in many colours including yellow, red, green and other shades. More importantly, use apples as snacks instead of sugary nibbles.

These fruits are packed with energy and can be combined with other fruits to make nutritious deserts. By making this choice, you will be guaranteeing your body healthy sugars, fibre, potassium, vitamin C and flavonoids. Your digestive processes will benefit a lot and your heart will be healthier than ever!

  1. Butternut Squash

Organic Baked Butternut Squash(ULTIMATE favourite!) Winter also brings to us one of the most balanced food crops – butternuts. You must know the small ‘pumpkins’ plants that are shaped like half-dumbbells or cylinders. They are found in very many places across the world. They are used to make soups, stews, curries and other dishes. Butternuts can be mashed or baked and enriched with cinnamon, nutmeg or cream. Eating butternuts squash will give you complex carbohydrates, sodium and low saturated fats. You will be eating food rich in magnesium, potassium, beta-carotene, calcium and manganese.

  1. Leeks

Leek soup in a bowlWhatever you feast on this December, don’t forget about the leeks! I know you are likely to say that this is just another form of onion and garlic. While this is true, but leeks are sweeter and have a stronger flavour than their cousins. You will find leeks on dinner tables where they make stews and soups more delicious and nutritious. They also create wonderful combinations with cheese and potatoes.

If you want side dishes that will enrich your supper, look no further than leeks. For making the wise decisions to eat leeks, brace yourself for a healthy serving of vitamin C, fibre and iron. Your heart and blood will perform at optimal levels if you make leeks part of your diet this December.

  1. Kale

Kale SaladAnother abundant vegetable during this December is very common but important – kale. This green veggie continues to grace the dinner tables of people who understand the importance of healthy eating. If you cannot get spinach or cabbage, try kale and you will not regret it! You may find it becomes one of your new favourites.

Apart from being a side dish, you can blend it with garlic and even add some soy to it. Your soups too will be richer with kale. Your reward is a healthy serving of vitamins E, A and C. You will also be giving your body a dose of important minerals such as sulphoraphane, iron, phytochemicals, potassium and calcium.

  1. Pears

Ripe pear on a wooden backgroundAnother important fruits that will invade your territory this December is the pear. Just take a trip to the countryside and you will realise that there is a flood of these sweet fruits. More importantly, nature has timed the coming of this fruit with the holiday season so that you can enjoy their exceptional nutritional elements. Pears are available in many textures and flavours.

There are also a variety of ways for you to enjoy them. How about snacking on pears alone? Well, you can also poach them with vanilla or eat them with chocolate. Don’t forget to try a salad that contains pears. For all your efforts, expect energy, optimal and healthy sugar levels in your blood, copper, potassium and vitamins C and B6. Have a pear feast this December because it will be raining pears!

I hope that one of these veggies has caught your eye, if you do try something new I would love see! We would love to see some of your pictures, you can tag us on instagram @grace_guru or use any of our hashtags #graceguru #graceguruloves #gracegurulifestyle!

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

 

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A Beginner’s Guide To Yoga Practice At Home

So, it’s coming to the end of the year, Christmas season is upon us. I know that I have been slacking with the Grace Guru lifestyle recently as work and social schedules are very hectic! During this season I start to brainstorm goals for my new year’s resolutions. If you’ve been thinking the same and trying yoga is one of your goals, this short and simple guide is just for you! We will talk you through the basics so you’ll be calmly yogi-ing your way into 2016!

A key benefit of starting yoga at home is that you are not committed to a specific time or place, you have no nerves about being in a room with strangers, or having anxiety about not being able to reach into a certain pose. The only promise you need to make is to a yoga mat!

However, you will require one form of commitment, a pledge to yourself. Yoga beginners will need an open mind and a lot of patience, mix this with determination and you will feel your body progress and see results in no time at all!

Step 1 – Breathing

Lay down flat on your back (on your yoga mat), feet shoulder width apart and hands relaxed to your side. Attempt to engage your diaphragm and take a long deep breath, breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth. Repeating this 10-15 times will reduce your heart rate and take you to a much calmer place. You can also play calming background music, to help create a peaceful atmosphere and block out any surrounding noises.

If something has been irritating you during the day, think of this as you breath in and out, feel the tension release through your shoulders and down your limbs.

Top Tip: Remember to maintain a smooth breathing pattern throughout your yoga routine to help your body stretch and strengthen.

Step 2 – Stretch

Mountain Pose – stand tall with your feet together; let your arms rest to the side with fingers together. Feel your spin stretch from the bottom of your spine all the way to the top of you neck.

easy begginer yoga pose

Child’s Pose – this pose is perfect for resting! Start wit your knees and feet on the floor, with your feet touching. With your knees apart rest your belly and chest between your legs. Stretch your arms out in front of you and place your head on the floor.

Beautiful sporty fit yogi girl practices yoga asana balasana

Step 3 – Progress

5 Yoga Poses To Strive Towards!

  1. Tree Pose – stand with arms at your side, shift your weight onto your left leg and place the sole of your right foot on the inside of your left thigh. With hips facing forward, when you have found your balance, bring your hands in front of you into prayer position.iStock_000012256061_Small
  2. Warrior – step your feet about legs distance apart and turn your right leg out to about 90 degrees. Take your arms out to the side and bend your right knee so it is above your ankle.virabhadrasana warrior pose #4
  3. Downward-Facing Dog – from the mountain pose hinge forward from your waist to place your flat palms on the ground. Your hands should be shoulder-width apart with your arms and back in a straight line. This may feel a little challenging at first, but remember to breath and relax deeper into the pose when you feel more comfortable.Business woman in conference room
  4. Cobra – lie facing down on the floor with your hands under your shoulders and your legs extended, tuck hips downwards as your squeeze your glutes, push through your thumbs and index fingers as you raise your chest.Yoga upward facing dog pose
  5. Bridge – lie on the floor with your knees bent and directly over your heels, place your arms at the side with your palms down, press your feet into the floor as you lift your hips. Bring your chest toward your chin and clasp your hands under your lower back. bridge

Step 4 – Cool Down and Relax

When you have finished a yoga-routine it is really important to lay down and completely relax your mind and body. The corpse pose is perfect for ultimate relaxation!

Relax your body, with your arms and legs by your side in a natural position that feels comfortable. Feel each muscle in your body start to relax, shut your eyes and breath deeply. Stay in this position for 5-10 minutes to restore balance ensuring you will be re-energised after your first yoga session!

Beautiful sporty fit yogi girl relaxes in yoga asana Savasana

Which poses do you love to practice?

PicMonkey Collage

Namaste!

 

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!

What is one of the most powerful word we use or should use everyday?

A magic word that in a second transforms everything into a great and happy moment for everyone?!

Yes, it’s one of the first words that we learn as a child and hear and say everyday…

Thank you!

“Thank you” Do we? But Do we use and say it often enough? Is it possible to overuse it? And do we really know the real meaning and the power that this one phrase captivates?

I think it’s very good and important to give lots of gratitude to all the good things that surround us everyday, whether it be – people, food, work, family, children, sun, moon and the stars! ….. the list can be endless!

Let’s keep reminding ourselves as to what we should start being thankful for! Everything we have in this life!

Let’s not look back but pay attention to the existing… the moment of now… the power or now!

I love saying thank you to the universe or call it God if you will, every time I’m having a meal. Blessing our food and energising it with positive vibes?!
So many millions of people are hungry at this moment and we the lucky ones who lets be honest spend most of our time complaining about some bullshit that does not really matter!

Why not be grateful for the family and friends we have! Whether that be a few or alot it simply does not matter…just be grateful and send your positive energy out!

Wake up every day and be grateful for life and for a new wonderful day to ahead!

Look at the rain or the sun and be thankful for Mother Nature!

I believe that by expressing gratitude you will even boost your inner happiness! I often take a few minutes in the morning or when throughout the meditation process to just say thank you for all the good things and people that I have in my life! This will work for you too…

Start by creating this amazing energy around you and even more amazing things will start coming back in to your life!

By sending positive vibes out into the universe, the universe will reply to you with the same or even more back!

Therefore I would like to end this post by saying thank you my dear subscribers for reading this and sharing the same gratitude to the world!

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Aura, Awareness and Attitude – What Does Your Aura Say About You?

Have you ever been drawn to someone and not entirely known why? But they make you feel at ease, you feel an instant level of trust?

It is easy to forget that our bodies radiate immense energy. We are not just a mass of flesh and blood. We are masses of energy. To be more precise, you are a field of energy.

The atmosphere of energy that surrounds us is called an aura. People can actually detect our aura’s and relate to us based on that consciousness.

So what is an aura? Think about some of the people in your life who make you feel especially comfortable when you are around them. These special characters in your life tend to pull people towards them, while inspiring confidence. They are like magnets and rarely have enemies. We call it charisma but in this sense it is their auras that are connecting with us.

group of smiling friends taking funny selfie with smart phone

It can even happen with a total stranger! You meet someone, perhaps when you are travelling, and suddenly you feel like you have known them for years! I met a guy called Sam on a trip to South East Asia years ago, his presence made me feel safe, at ease, comfortable. Sam had a powerful and positive aura surrounding him, I can still sense his warmth even when I recall my first meeting with them!

Have you ever experienced this type of interaction? Please comment below – I would love to hear!

The opposite of this extraordinary aura also exists though. You may have met some people who feel as if they have negative energy surrounding them. They have accumulated so much evil and negativity that we prefer not to spend too long in their company. Negative vibrations can make us feel uncomfortable. Nobody wants to be around a person who is always negative and who seems to attract bad luck.

But aura is not just about you,

Every object, living or non-living has an aura.

This is etheric energy that revolves around an object. People and objects are miniature manifestations of universal energy which radiates from an object or a body to the point that it affects our surroundings. Every living thing emits energy nearby and that energy determines the reaction of people to that specific living organism.

For non-living objects, even with the absence of emotions, there is chemistry that determines the aura of the object. It all depends on the composition of the object. If you know how electromagnetism works, then you know the source of the aura of such objects. That is why you experience certain feelings and emotions towards some inanimate things and places. I am sure there are some spots, probably a cliff or lake, where you feel comfortable and nostalgic. You can discuss aura in relation to everything you know of. Whether you are thinking about gold, silver, diamond, stones, buildings, oceans and so on, aura is always present and has a great role to play.

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From the forgoing, it is obvious that your aura is very important. It can open or close doors for you. Your aura can determine how people react to you. You cannot live alone. Success in life depends very much on how strong and effective the relationships you have are. It is for this reason that you must realise the importance of being aware of your aura.

Aura is an indication of character. This is evidenced by the brightness, colour and range of the aura. What your aura reveals is who you really are. You can lie to everyone else but not to yourself. As they say, a good tree cannot bear bad fruits and vice versa. You cannot wake up with a positive aura while deep inside you feel evil and have malicious intentions towards others. Nature is more powerful than you. It is infallible.

You also must understand that aura cannot be hidden.

This is energy that radiates from you unconsciously.

You have no way of telling your aura to remain hidden. People will either love or hate you based on the character you exhibit, which is a manifestation of the aura you emit. If people are attracted to you and want to be with you, there is no way you can change that. If you are obnoxious and detestable, only a change of aura can save you. You either have positive aura or negative energy, which is emanating from within and revolving around you. 

An individual’s aura is powerful. So powerful that experts have discovered its presence three days after one is declared dead! How crazy is that?! Experiments are revealing that human beings continue to exhibit their auras for some hours after death. This shows the potency of aura and cements the need to cultivate positive aura at all times. Imagine a situation where people even fear to come near your body or grave because of the kind of reputation you had when you were alive!

The need for aura consciousness cannot be over-emphasised. You need to be in touch with your inner self to cultivate positive aura. Mindfulness and meditation are effective tools in bringing your soul, mind and body into conformity with the kind of aura you desire to project. By being conscious of your thoughts and focusing on issues that enlighten and inspire you, you can acquire a positive aura. Being aware of you aura is a result of deliberate effort to transform your thoughts. You need to align your thoughts with the universe and ensure you impact the lives of others with genuine kindness and generosity.

Are you in touch with your aura?

Young woman in white clothes standing in field on sunset

Banish fear from your life and embrace positive energy!

 

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

 

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Benefits Of Sirsasana!

Yoga has been around for many years and is credited with many benefits. For example, it is said to have healing qualities in addition to enhancing physical fitness. It is important to understand some yoga poses since they carry specific gains for you. One of the most significant of these postures is Sirsasana.

What Exactly Is Sirsasana?

Widely considered as the best asana, Sirsasana is essentially the headstand. In plain words, it means balancing your body on your head with your feet pointing upwards. Some people think that doing this is acting like a child; after all, children are the only people capable of engaging in dangerous physical play like attempting to support the body’s weight with the head.

What these people do not know is that the headstand is among the most beneficial poses that one can practice in yoga. However, there is a rider. This is the kind of posture or activity that carries with it the tag ‘don’t try this at home.’ Seriously speaking, only engage in the Sirsasana if you have an expert taking you through the motions. If you have back or neck problems please wait until you are fully healed for you to practice Sirsasana. You would rather lose the benefits for the time being than worsen your health problems.

headstand_sequence 

What Are The Benefits Of Sirsasana?

Sirsasana can help you to increase the flow of blood in your body by allowing the blood into the lower limbs to reach the heart faster and get purified. People who sit for long will tell you that by the time they rise up they feel heavy in the feet and legs. The truth is that a lot of blood will have flowed to the lower limbs with little blood moving up. Through Sirsasana it becomes possible to allow stagnant blood to flow back to the heart more efficiently.

Another important benefit of Sirsasana, and which is related to the first, is allowing blood to reach the head region more effectively. Studies show that this movement is important in helping in toning the pituitary gland. All other endocrine glands are controlled by the pituitary, which also helps the reproductive glands to function more effectively. You also must understand that having blood flow to your scalp and follicles will greatly improve the quality of your hair.

Your organs are subject to gravitational pressure and Sirsasana will give you relief for negative effects of this strain. This is in relation to hydrocele and piles which can make you very uncomfortable. It is important to know that for your entire life, your organs have faced downwards because of gravitational pressure. The best way to give them a relief is to let them face the other way for some time.

Sirsasana will also help you to relax particularly when you are stressed. Stress is a common phenomenon in human life but it affects each person differently depending on issues and circumstances they have to deal with. The headstand helps you to become less worrisome and to overcome fear and anxiety. As you breathe in and out in this posture, you will begin to deal with the issues that make you anxious.

Sirsasana will also help you with focus issues. Your brain needs adequate blood to help it function optimally. When you give the brain its food, it becomes better in its work in addition to helping it to focus. In this situation, you are likely to feel more confident, active and attentive. That is what many people are trying to achieve through many not-so-effective methods. With this yoga pose, you have a shortcut to concentration.

If you want to make your arms and shoulders stronger, then Sirsasana is one of the best strategies for doing this. As you stand on your head, you will be building the stamina and muscles in the head and shoulders. To make sure your muscles get the required exercise, you can push your body down and up as you get off the pose. There are not many exercises that can give you this type of workout.

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If you are having problems with your metabolism and digestion, it is time you tried Sirsasana. One of the reasons you are not feeling well in your abdomen is because some of the food you have been eating is stuck somewhere in your system. This yoga pose will help to remove such food and this will in turn help blood to flow into the organs that support digestion. Nutrients are also likely to be absorbed faster and more efficiently when you engage in Sirsasana. 

There are many other benefits of Sirsasana. For example, you can relieve your migraines and headaches through this pose. If you are suffering from asthma, try this posture and you will find relief. Sirsasana also rejuvenates your body. The only way to find out is to begin Sirsasana lessons today.

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With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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What Is Karma?

How many times have you heard someone say, “What goes around comes around?” Karma is the principle that is epitomised by the unwritten law of life that for every action there is a reaction. Have you ever realised that if you do evil there seems to be a way through which evil comes back to you? Let’s put it another way. Do you know that when you do good, good things happen to you even if it is not immediate?

Karma is a Sanskrit word that means word, action and deed. But there is more to this term.

Some Examples

To understand Karma more, let us delve into more examples. Chickens love eating insects like ants. It is part of the chicken’s food. But notice that the remains of a dead chicken are eaten by ants. Wood from trees is the raw materials for making a matchstick. But you must be aware that one matchstick can burn an entire forest.

Have you ever heard of a driver who cuts off other people in traffic or overlaps only to cause an accident? This accident means that all the hurry has now come to a stop and instead of arriving at his destination this driver spends that night in a police cell, a hospital bed or a morgue. This is karma acting in the here and now. There are many examples that we can site, but those ones will suffice for now.

The most important thing is for you to get the drift. Karma is a power that you cannot see but it ensures that every action or thought is reflected back. It is like an echo which comes back to you. Sorry, I had stopped giving examples but could not resist this one. Karma is in simpler terms the law of cause and effect. Whatever you do comes back to you in a different way.

The Law Of Karma?

It is important to emphasise that the law of Karma is universal and cannot be broken. It does not depend on you. Karma will happen whether you want it or not. It does not matter whether you know it or not. You don’t have to love or hate karma for it to work in your life. It is like the law of gravity. You cannot claim don’t believe it exists and then jump from the roof of a skyscraper expecting you will not be hurt or die. Try it and the morgue will be your next destination; a place where you cannot question your beliefs or change them.

Secondly, everything that happens to you is deserved. I know you are fond of blaming others for your mistakes – pardon me if you don’t. But the truth is that you are the architect of your fate. Your misfortune and happiness are just part of your karma. You are in your current state because you caused it. That friend you put in trouble may suffer for the time being, but sooner or later you will find yourself in the same situation. Nothing happens by mistake. You plan it, whether consciously or unconsciously.

Thirdly, everything you go through, the thoughts, the feelings, everything, is specifically for you. Karma demands that you learn from your experiences. Since your current situation is a result of your past decisions and actions, you need to learn to do good and stop being evil. While you may be happy today, tomorrow you have to pay for your past mistakes. The only way to avoid this kind of a misfortune is to live today in a manner that you don’t regret what will happen to you tomorrow.

It is evident, therefore, that you are not fated. Rather, you set your own fate. You have the gift of free will or freedom of choice. You can decide to live honourably or commit atrocities that will come to haunt you later. Nobody has written your future or determined it. You create your tomorrow as you go about today and as you interact with other human beings. Every day you have the opportunity to change your future and to avert bad karma.

Despite this, whatever has been done in the past cannot be undone. You have to experience your share of good or bad karma. The most important thing is for you to learn from what you are going through. When you put your hand into red hot coal, you will get burned. It would be foolhardy for you to be burned again since you should have learned that hot coal can burn your hands. Karma demands that you change your future by learning from the present.

The Role Of Intentions In Karma

It is not possible to talk about karma without mentioning or discussing intentions. Karma is a creation of intention. Most of the evil or good we do is well-thought out. You take time and ponder on what you want to do and the effect it will have on the other person. Once you are convinced that your actions will have the desired good or bad effect, you launch your weapons. Whatever happens, you are creating good of bad karma for yourself and it will surely come to pass.

Does that sound like the couple you caused to separate by spreading malicious rumours and gossip? Wait for your time because karma does not fail. Remember that time you made someone to lose a job by creating the impression that they were not trustworthy? How about the day you laughed at that sick old lady? Isn’t it you who toasted to the collapse of another person’s business? Well, it won’t take long before your bad karma pays you a visit!

What If I Harm A Person Unintentionally?

Karma is born of intention. Where there is no intention to harm, karma will not be unfair to you and inflict punishment. I am saying this because many of us commit mistakes without intending and then fear that bad karma will come our way. Karma scholars hold that where there is no intention, karma is absent. You don’t have to worry. Perhaps you should just perform good deeds to the person you harmed without intention as this will attract good karma.

But I Know Some Evil People Who Never Experience Bad Karma, You Say.

I know them too. I am talking about the relatives who steal from orphaned children – depriving the destitute of their inheritance. I know the politician who murders competitors and instigates violence in order to win a political seat. I know you are aware of the drug load who continues to thrive while the poor people who buy his evil merchandise wallow in addition, poverty and death. There is also your sadist neighbour who will do or say anything simply to see that you are in trouble and suffering. The list is endless.

Don’t despair though; karma does not forget. It is a universal law that cannot be bent. Evil people cannot escape punishment. Their fate may delay, but is will surely come, most likely with vengeance. Karma does not move in a straight line; nor is it subject to our ways of reasoning. Even when people appear to enjoy destroying the lives of others, karma is still lurking in the background, waiting to pounce.

If you have been a keen observer you will have realised that the children of criminals almost automatically become criminals. I read about one of the sons of former Libyan dictator Muammar Gadhafi being sentenced to death by a court in that country. When he and his father were running the show and killing with impunity, they would never have thought that a day would come when someone else would rule Libya and condemn the Gadhafis to death. For decades, this family strangled Libya with impunity. The Libyan people would not have understood or appreciated karma then. Today you can be sure they understand that evil will never go unpunished.

Is Karma A Religion?

Although karma is about ethics and morality, it is not a religion. Karma is not about a god who controls what people do or don’t do. It does not emanate from a supernatural being. Karma is a rule of life and existence. Think about it this way: the law of gravity controls objects in space and on earth without fail. Similarly, karma is the law that controls the spiritual world, the realm of the unseen.

I needed to emphasise this because they are many people who believe that karma is about Hinduism. That said, karma does share some beliefs with oriental religion. For example, karma is about reincarnation. This is the belief that people never die, at least not the soul. After your die, you will continue to exist in a different form and your karma follows you in your reincarnated body. In the same way, your actions come back from the dead, as it were, to haunt you.

It is possible that you understand why some oriental religions advocate for animal rights and adherents practice veganism or vegetarianism. Apparently it is because of the belief that the animal you have in your compound is actually a reincarnated human being who, from his or her action in the previous human life, deserved, through karma, to be reborn as an animal! If you mistreat that animal, karma will catch up with you and you might as well be born a dog in your next life! Wow! That is powerful!

I know I am digressing, but this is important for you to understand the extent to which karmic teachings are entrenched in oriental religions. That goes to show the powerful nature of karma and the fact that we live in an interconnected and never-ending universe where karma will never let you off the hook. If it can haunt you in death, how can you avoid karma when you are walking on the face of the earth?

Are Words Also Subjected To Karmic Law?

Words are powerful tools through which we create reality. Whatever you convince your mind through your words that you can do, you will. Words are also born from intention. The heart and mind ponder what to say before you say it. Consequently, like actions, your words cannot avoid the law of karma. When you pass judgment upon others expect to be judged by the same standard.

Beware of your words when calling people lazy, fat, arrogant, silly and many other negative terms. Time will come for the same words to be used on you. Instead of unfairly criticising people, seek to understand why they behave the way they do. Before you say any words that are unfair to others, think about the type of karma that will result. Remember you did not create anybody and have no justification to call anyone ugly or foolish. If you do, your bad karma will surely catch up with you one day.

Is Karma Reversible?

No and Yes! No because once you have committed a felony, your punishment will come after you without fail. Remember it is a law that cannot be broken and it does not play favourites. However, karma can be reversed by learning from it. By this I mean that once you get your fair share of bad karma, you need to learn and practice good deeds so that you attract good karma.

The universe understands your feelings when you agonise over thoughts or actions that invited bad karma. It cooperates with you as you change your behaviour towards those you may have hurt. It helps you to change your bad habits in order to avert bad karma. As you seek for forgiveness from those who have suffered from your unfair actions, you will begin to feel more at home with yourself and good karma will be you reward.

Final Words

You cannot live on earth and assume that your good or bad actions happen in a vacuum. Karma exists to remind us that we have to be kind, generous and understanding with fellow human beings. You have had your fair share of bad karma, but you can change your life and enjoy more of good karma by beginning to behave responsibly today. Remember karma is real and active, whether you believe it or not.

With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

 

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BOOK REVIEW: “Calm. Calm the Mind. Change the World” – Michael Acton Smith

The author Michael Acton Smith has been cited by some magazines and organisations as one of the most influential personalities in the digital industry. He co-founded Calm, founded Mind Candy, and created Moshi Monsters. Calm. Calm the Mind. Change the World. Is a handbook sharing the many ways and means by which one can have calmness in daily life.

giphy-13Purpose

Truly, the world is becoming a ball of tension. In daily life, in anywhere, at work, at home, in politics, there is nowhere to run. The calm revolution is precisely a revolution to fight the hysteria going on in each of us. This trughly beautiful handbook intends to share expert knowledge contributed and shared by neurologists and gurus of mindfulness brought together by the author for the purpose of bringing it to the mainstream, thereby reaching more people.

What’s in it for You?

This beautifully-crafted handbook illustrates so many practical, easily doable, and creative activities or strategies that promote calmness in daily life. There are so many little things that can bring us calm and rid the tensions, pain, even anger. A walk to nowhere, without an agenda in mind, nor a goal, is a very simple and inexpensive act that can relax our mind and therefore our bodies. The benefits of learning how to overcome anxiety and stress are priceless. It’s not just the increase in productivity at work, it’s improving your health and life expectancy, increasing the quality of relationships, and countless others, all of which lead to a more peaceful and happy life. All of us are after all, still earthly creatures. We naturally aspire for self-preservation. We only want what’s best for us, we only want to be happy. Being calm and happy means we can give more of ourselves to our loved ones and to anything we work on. Calm begets calm, quality begets quality. Hop in the bandwagon and spread the calmness! The world needs it, that’s for sure.

Get a copy now and get a gift for yourself. The gift of calm. The gift of happiness.


 With Love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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Why You Should Eat Ginger

Ginger comes across as a weird knobby root that resembles an animal from the time when dinosaurs roamed the earth. You will be forgiven if you dismiss this important spice as another animal relic from the past. But strangely or ironically enough, some of the best health benefits can come from the most unlikely sources. Indeed, if the people who manufacture medicine were to reveal all the places and organisms from which they derive the pills, tablets, capsules and syrups you take so thankfully, you would think twice before taking any medicine.

Before I send more shivers down your spine, allow me to make a very important statement. If you are not eating ginger, you are not doing your body any favor! I don’t care what you think about the strangely shaped rhizome. What I want you to know that it has tons of health benefits that you may be missing out on. You may be thinking that this is a new health fad that the internet is abuzz with. I will understand if you consider this a wave that will dominate mainstream and social media as well as women gossip forums and die away gradually just like it had started.

If that is the case, you don’t know much about ginger and you need to keep reading this article. Allow me to jog your mind a little bit. During the time of the great explorers like Christopher Columbus, European nations discovered that people in the Far East had healthier lives because of eating spices. Trade in spices therefore became one of the major reasons for people to risk their lives on uncharted waters. While there were many spices involved, ginger was among the most liked. In India and many Arab countries, people liked to eat ginger in its various forms because of the perceived health benefits.

Spicy ginger root

It was in the 16th Century when Europe began to embrace this spice. Today, ginger is a common ingredient in many kitchens in the developed world. However, owing to migration from the countryside to urban centres where people have little time to cook, many have forgotten the amazing medicinal and health qualities that are contained in ginger. Rarely will you find a restaurant that sells food spiced with ginger. Those that serve such meals are few and scattered and only a few people ask for food that has ginger in it. It is unfortunate that while ginger has defied the test of time and remained an essential ingredient, many people are unaware of its benefits and continue to suffer from health complications that could be alleviated or assuaged by eating this spice.

So, Why Exactly Do You Need To Eat Ginger?

1. To detoxify your body:

You and I know that our bodies are in need of cleansing owing to the toxic substances that we eat and the air we breathe. And don’t be cheated by anybody that your body is clean and that it can naturally get rid of all the toxins in it. More importantly, instead of enslaving yourself to ridiculous and ineffective detoxification formulas, simply incorporate ginger in your food. This spice has the elements you need to get rid of poisonous substances in your body, while enjoying ginger’s exceptional flavor.

2. To avert cancer:

If there is a health condition that is scaring people today, it is cancer. Ginger can be of great help to you in this regard because it contains antioxidants in abundance. Not many plants can compete with ginger when it comes to antioxidants content.

3. To overcome nausea and related conditions:

Do you know people who feel sick when they get into cars or when travelling? How about those who have spells of dizziness and nausea more than they should? Think about the pregnant woman who starts be sick when she encounters some odours or aromas? All these people need not worry because ginger can help treat their problems. A little ginger will go a long way in effectively dealing with morning sickness and nausea.

4. To treat inflammations:

People with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis will find great relief when they eat ginger regularly. This plant has anti-inflammatory agents that bring relief to the body especially when one has swellings. This means that ginger can be of great help to the sick and elderly who spend a lot of money on conventional medication. If you have joint pains, there are various forms of ginger that can bring back a smile on your face too.

5. To overcome flatulence:

Most of us have experienced the embarrassing moments then the tummy decides to announce to all and sundry that all is not well. The rumblings of the tummy sometimes become audible to the outside world, with the excess gas being released in not-so-pleasant odours. With ginger, you need not worry much because this spice treats such stomach disorders and brings calm back to your tummy. The impact is almost instant and you don’t even have to eat a lot of ginger for it to work.

6. To bring back your appetite:

There are times when your appetite will take a flight yet you need food to give you energy and nourishment. When hunger pangs seem to elude you, all you need is fresh ginger juice. You will be amazed at how fast your craving for food will come back.

7. To relieve menstrual cramps:

For some women, the monthly visitor is not always welcome. Nobody likes to feel excruciating pain and to miss work for some days simply because of a natural process. The good news is that eating ginger regularly will help you to deal more effectively with this pain. In particular, ginger will give you the much needed relief during that period.

Information On Ginger That You Must Know!

  • Use ginger in many forms. For example you can drink juices, use powdered ginger in tea, mix it in salads or apply its oil externally to the skin.
  • Get acquainted with the many ways that you can prepare ginger as part of your meals. There are countless amazing recipes that will ensure you enjoy your healthy portion of ginger without compromising your meal plans.
  • For nausea and other problems that require immediate relief, you can chew a portion of the ginger rhizome, whether raw or dried.
  • Fresh ginger has more nutrients and benefits than other forms. Once you cut your ginger for use, wrap the unused part in plastic material and freeze it.
  • If you purchase or prepare ginger powder, store it in glass jars that are closed tightly and keep these containers in a dark, dry and cool area.
  • When ginger powder is prepared and stored appropriately, it can last for up to twelve months without any form of preservative.
  • If you want to eat raw ginger, ensure you wash it thoroughly with clean fresh water and peel it into small pieces that you can eat comfortably. If the taste is too strong for you, grate your ginger and add some honey to make it more appealing to your taste buds.
  • Don’t let sore throat and dry coughs spoil your day when you can prepare and enjoy a delicious cup of ginger tea.
  • If you are feeling bored or you need some shot of energy to boost your concentration, take a beverage or a meal containing ginger.
  • Beware that since ginger helps you with memory and concentration issues, it can scare away your sleep. In essence, avoid eating ginger before going to sleep.

 My Fav Ginger recipe!

Ginger and Lemon Detox Drink

Ginger tea

  • 350ml of warm filtered water
  • mince ½ inch knob of fresh ginger root
  • squeeze ½ lemon juice
  • Add squeezed lemon juice and minced ginger in to the warm water and mix well!

 

Anti-Inflammatory Ginger Turmeric, Honey and Garlic Tea Recipe

Ginger tea with lemon. honey and tumeric for detox

  • 350ml of boiled hot water ( 80C )
  • 1/3 teaspoon of grated turmeric
  • 1/3 teaspoon of grated ginger root
  • 1/3 teaspoon of grated garlic
  • 1/3 teaspoon of organic or Manuca honey
  • Add all ingredients in to the hot water, mix well for 3-5min and enjoy!

 

With love,

Your Grace Guru

xxx

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You Can Grow New Brain Cells – Dr Sandrine Thuret

Can humans develop new brain cells, as adults? Scientists do not generally agree about this, as it is a relatively new field of investigation. However, Dr Sandrine Thuret, a neuroscientist with expertise in cellular, molecular, ageing and behavioral biology, says you can. In her laboratory at King’s College London, Dr. Thuret studies adult neurogenesis – the process of forming new brain cells in specific brain regions in adults.

Thuret’s work concentrates on the hippocampus, which is a gray structure within the middle of the brain. Scientists have long known that the hippocampus is essential for learning, emotion, mood and memory. Recently, researchers learned that the hippocampus is a unique structure within the mammalian brain which is capable of generating new neurons or brain cells.A researcher, Jonas Frisen of the Karolinska Institute, found that the human brain generates approximately seven hundred new neurons each day within the hippocampus. Dr Thuret notes:

“While this may not appear to be much when compared to the several billions of neurons within the human brain, by the time you clock age fifty, you would have exchanged all the neurons you were born with within the brain with adult generated neurons.”

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The Importance Of Adult Neurogenesis

As stated earlier, new neurons produced within the hippocampus are essential for memory and learning. “And within the laboratory,” states Dr Thuret, “we have found that if the adult’s brain capability to generate new neurons within the hippocampus is blocked, then certain memory abilities are also blocked”. Furthermore, according to the scientist, this is particularly new and true for spatial recognition.

Spatial recognition is utilized in everyday activities, including simple tasks such as deciding what size of container is required to hold a particular object or navigating your way within the city. It is also utilized when you look within a mirror and understand which side of the reflection correlates with the left side and which with the right. Also, spatial recognition skills help to keep individuals from getting lost when adjusting to a new apartment or office building.

“A lot are still being discovered”, says Thuret, “and aside from being essential for memory capacity, neurons are also essential for the quality or features of the memory”. Also, they are beneficial for adding time to your memory as well as helping to differentiate memories that are very similar. For example how are you able to locate your bike, which you park every day at the station, within the same area; however in a somewhat different position?

Neurogenesis And Depression

Thuret also says that she and her colleagues at King’s College London have been conducting some research on neurogenesis and depression. “In studies of depression using animal models, we have discovered that there is a lower level of generation of new neurons in the brain”, says the scientist. “And if antidepressants are given, it was discovered that the synthesis of these new neurons increased, and depression symptoms were decreased, thereby establishing a clear connection between depression and neurogenesis.” However, if you merely block the generation of new brain cells, then the antidepressant’s efficacy will be blocked as well.

This finding helps to explain why some patients who have been informed that their cancer is cured still develop depression symptoms. According to Thuret, the medication which doctors give to their patients which stops the multiplication of the cancer cells also impedes or stops the generation of new neurons in the patients’ brains. In addition, it will take some time to produce new neurons that attain normal functions.

“Thus, collectively, now we believe that there is sufficient evidence to assert that neurogenesis is an excellent choice if we wish to enhance mood or memory formation, or even stop the decline connected to stress or connected to ageing” – observed Dr. Thuret.

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Can Neurogenesis Be Controlled?

Thuret says the answer to this question is a definite yes, and she details some activities and behaviors that can influence the generation of new neurons within the adult brain. These activities include:

  • Learning : This will increase the generation of new neurons.
  • Stress: Stress will reduce the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus.
  • Sleep deprivation: This will also reduce neurogenesis.
  • Sex: Sex will boost the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus of the adult brain; however Thuret cautions that balance is important. Excessive sex can actually lead to sleep deprivation and attendant medical disorders.
  • Ageing: Generation of new neurons will reduce as you age, however that does not mean it will stop completely.
  • Running: Running can greatly increase the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus of the adult brain. Thuret offers more explanation about this.

Thuret points to an experiment conducted by Salt Institute’s Rusty Gage, which showed that the environment can influence the generation of new neurons within the brain. In the study, some mice were placed in a cage with a running wheel, while others were placed in another cage with no running wheel.

At the end of the experiment, mice from the cage with a running wheel showed a huge increase in the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus, whilst mice from the cage with no running wheel showed very little increase in the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus of the brain. This shows that activity has a huge impact on neurogenesis.

The neuroscientist also points out that diet can also impact the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus, and also specifies some eating practices that can influence neurogenesis. These practices include:

  • Calorie restriction of about twenty to thirty percent will boost generation of new neurons.
  • Intermittent fasting (abstaining from calories for a brief time period) will boost neurogenesis.
  • Consumption of flavonoids that are contained within blueberries or dark chocolate will boost neurogenesis.
  • Omega 3 fatty acids which are contained in fatty fish such as salmon will boost the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus.
  • High saturated fat diet will negatively impact neurogenesis.
  • Consumption of alcohol will reduce the generation of new neurons in the brain. Nevertheless, everything is not lost. Dr. Thuret points out that resveratrol, which is a component of red wine, has been found to boost the survival of newborn neurons. Thus, when next you are at a get-together, you may want to opt for this potentially “neurogenesis-neutral” drink.
  • A soft diet (diet that avoids or restricts foods which are difficult to chew or swallow) impairs neurogenesis.

Healthy lifestyle llustration and info graphic. Food, water, sport.

“Even though all of this data has been generated utilising animal models, this diet has been given to human participants as well”, says Dr Sandrine Thuret, “and what we discovered is that the diet moderates mood and memory in the same way as it moderates the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus”.

For example calorie restriction will enhance memory capacity, while a diet high in fat will aggravate depression symptoms. This is in contrast to omega III fatty acids, which boosts the generation of new neurons within the hippocampus, and also aid to reduce depression symptoms.

“Thus we believe that the influence of diet on mood, memory and mental health, is actually regulated by the generation of the new neurons within the hippocampus”, concludes Thuret. “And it is not just what you consume, but the food texture, when you consume the food and the quantity of the food you consume.

With Love,

Your Grace Guru 

xxx

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