wellness

Using Qigong to Support Wellness

Saturday, 01 September 2012 16:27

By Shawn Tubridy

bigstock-Woman-Standing-OutdoorsI knew nothing about Qigong (pronounced chi-gung). I only knew that the videotape I ordered from the Traditional Chinese Medicine World Foundation claimed to address breast cancer prevention. My grandmother and two of my aunts have battled breast cancer. With such a strong family history, I was open to any means of prevention. There was another video available on the Dragon's Way program — Qigong for weight and stress management. I ordered that as well since excess weight and stress also run in my family. Since that day I have learned a great deal about Qigong and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM).

When I first received the videos, I started practicing both of them on a fairly regular basis, often getting friends and family to join in. The practice felt right for me and helped me with physical challenges that had troubled me for years. For example, I used to have numbness in my arm that would wake me up at night with excruciating pain. Qigong was the only thing that helped. A move called "The Dragon Looks at His Tail" allowed me to relieve the numbness and pain myself. After regular practice, the pain went away completely. As a result of the relief I experienced, the Dragon's Way became my way!

Dr. Oz has said, "If you want to live to be 100, do Qigong." Qigong, traditionally viewed as a practice to cultivate and balance our intrinsic life energy, has been used in China for over 5,000 years to heal many types of diseases. It does this by helping to awaken, move and build the body's own healing energies. Qigong is believed to help develop human potential, improve awareness and increase access to one's true self. There are many different forms of Qigong, each with a specific purpose, just as different physical exercises have different effects on various aspects of our bodies. I practice a form of Taoist Qigong called Wu Ming Meridian Therapy, passed to Master Nan Lu, founder of the TCM World Foundation, by generations of Energy Masters. This therapy focuses on stretching out the energy pathways, or meridians, that run through the body. Using gentle, repetitive stretches, it assists the body in building and moving energy.

Read more: Using Qigong to Support Wellness

 

Birth Choices in Ithaca — A Shifting Landscape

Thursday, 02 August 2012 15:31

 

By Lauren Korfine and Jeanette McCulloch

Hands-And-Belly-smPregnancy is a time of possibility and learning, of growth and questions, and the contemplation of new life. It is also a time when most of us interact with care providers more frequently than any other time in our lives until that point.

For many women, the first time they think about the kind of care they hope to have during pregnancy and childbirth is when they become pregnant themselves. The learning curve is steep as women discover the many decisions to make, some of them right at the outset.

Read more: Birth Choices in Ithaca — A Shifting Landscape

20 Empowering Tools for Changing Your Diet (Or Facing Any Big Life Change)

Wednesday, 04 July 2012 01:47

 By Jayalalita

food-change-300Whether you've received some diagnosis (say, hypoglycemia, diabetes, or celiac disease) that requires a change in your eating habits, or you simply decide to experiment with food choices to see if a change of diet might give you a different experience (as I did — successfully! — with trying an anti-inflammatory diet to reduce pain levels), you may find the prospect of radical dietary change a daunting one. You may feel ill-equipped to face it.

The concepts that follow can be applied to any realm of life, to any place where life invites you to step into change that scares you ... even as you see the greater well-being and better life such change may offer.

1. It's empowering to hold a consciousness of choice. Even if it's life-and-death (as with diabetes, for instance), changing your diet is still a choice. Dying is an option. So if you choose to live, choose it with gusto and conviction. Choose the diet that will give you a vibrant life.

2. Having chosen, get 100 percent behind your choice. I never stand in front of a case of pastries wondering if I should have one because the decision's already been made; there's nothing to debate. (If you've made the choice to be monogamous, isn't it insanity to walk around checking out others? You'll only feel a constant dissatisfaction and bring a flimsy presence to your relationship.)

Read more: 20 Empowering Tools for Changing Your Diet (Or Facing Any Big Life Change)

 

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Garden-of-Life-pro-bIf you're excited about probiotics, look for new products, both refrigerated and shelf-stable, from Garden of Life.

Do you love probiotics as much as I do? I'm so excited to introduce a handful of new ones to our cooler (and shelves!). Garden of Life has recently teamed up with microbiome expert and neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter to develop a new "Dr. Formulated" line of probiotics, with prebiotics included in each formula for better colonization. Some of these products are shelf-stable, so you can happily travel with them on your end-of-summer camping trips with no worries about refrigeration: check out the Once Daily Men's and Once Daily Women's, both shelf-stable with 50 billion colony-forming units (CFUs). For a more targeted (and still doctor-formulated) probiotic, head over to the cooler, where options include Mood+, Prostate+, and Urinary Tract+, all condition-specific formulations. Or opt for the nonspecific, hefty Once Daily Ultra, chock full of 90 billion CFUs. Finally, Organic Kids+ boasts 5 billion CFUs in a delicious chewable tablet some adults can't seem to stay away from. Time to get a good-bacteria boost!

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    Trees are such a ubiquitous part of our local landscape that it is all too easy to forget their essential involvement in our lives. It was for this reason that the first Arbor Day was celebrated in 1872. Each state chooses the date for this holiday to coincide with the optimal season for tree planting. In New York, Arbor Day is celebrated on the last Friday in April, which this year falls on April 27. While it is largely overshadowed by Earth Da...
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