Your Body Is Mostly Water – keep it watered!

Especially as summer approaches, it’s essential to be on the lookout for the common signs of dehydration (or what’s medically referred to as “volume depletion”):

• Dry mouth. The mouth may be first on the scene by becoming dry or sticky. Saliva is 99 percent water, after all.
• Lowered blood pressure, headaches, and dizziness. Blood may be thicker than water, but it’s actually about 83 percent water, and less water circulating around the body means less blood, too. This can lead to lowered blood pressure, headaches, dizziness, and even a rapid heartbeat as the heart needs to pump faster to make up for having less blood.
• Muscle fatigue. Lean muscle tissue contains about 75 percent water, so when the body’s short on water, muscles are more easily fatigued.
• Dry, cool skin. When the body’s dehydrated, it does what it can to hold onto to whatever fluid is left — even stealing water from Peter to pay Paul. The skin is the first place to be robbed of water, resulting in dry, cool skin.
• Thirst. Of course, but you should not wait for thirst to hit to drink water. Thirst hits after the body may have begun to experience other symptoms.
• Feeling lethargic and irritable.
• Lack of urine. When the body’s short on fluid, no wonder it doesn’t want to expel even more! If the yellow tide (too much?) stops for more than 12 hours (or there’s only a very small amount of dark yellow urine), something’s definitely wrong.

Staying Hydrated.

• Start the Day Topped-Off. Let drinking water be one of the first things you do when you wake up. Some people even sleep with 8-12 ounces on their nightstand for their morning quenching.
• How much you need depends on body weight and activity level. It used to be that 8-8 ounce glasses of water daily was the goal. Now the rule of thumb is to consume one half ounce to one ounce of water per pound of body weight daily. Drink closer to the full ounce if your activity level is high. Yes, that’s a lot of water.
• Drink water throughout the day. Drinking 6 glasses all at once does not do it! This will also help to spread out the need to eliminate the water throughout the day.
• As with everything, start where you are. If you know that hydration is an issue for you, consider how much you consume daily now and add an additional glass 2 or 3 times daily and gradually increase it over time. You will feel better and that will motivate you!

What’s in an Acid Peel?

Skin care treatments feel wonderful, often smell great, and can work some magic on your skin. Peels are usually those skincare treatments that really do add the “zip” to help you manage your particular skin concern – acne, sun damage, wricustom-facialnkles, loss of elasticity. Have you ever wondered how they work?
The purpose of a peel is to exfoliate the dead cell layer from the skin’s surface revealing that new, fresh under layer. As we age, our ability to shed that layer of skin slows creating a thickening of the upper layer, loss of elasticity, congestion and clogging of pores, dullness, etc. So a peel applies an acid to the skin to break through that layer to reveal that re-newed, more supple layer. But are they actually acids?
Yes, scary as it seems, the peels do use one or more of many different acids. While there are quite a number of acids available, they generally fall into one of two categories: Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHA) or Beta Hydroxy Acids (BHA). AHAs are water soluble and are often more gentle; BHAs are fat soluble and tend to penetrate deep into pores removing dead skin cells and excess oils.
It is important to note that, while there are certainly chemical peels, there are many effective “botanical” peels and others derived from naturally occurring substances, such as milk. Because they are more gentle and offer more options for those with sensitive skin, they are becoming much more utilized. Of course, these are the types of peels used at Blue Heron Wellness and many of our botanical peels are also organic.
As stated there are many acids that form the basis of peels, some more commonly used include:
Citric Acid, easily recognized as coming from lemons and other citrus fruits, this AHA is used to exfoliate the upper layer of the skin to brighten and restore skin’s appearance. It is frequently used with Hyaluronic Acid.
Hyaluronic Acid, also an AHA, is a sugar-related substance that is found throughout the body and used essentially for lubrication. For peels and serums, Hyaluronic Acid is derived from certain bacteria. Because it is a fairly large molecular structure, it is not absorbed into the skin but sits on top of it, drawing water into and through it directly into the skin, enhancing the skin’s hydration and smoothness. Because of the way it sits on the skin, it is frequently paired with other acids, commonly Citric Acid. Hyaluronic Acid acts as a sealant for other acids, magnifying their effectiveness.
Lactic Acid, made from sour milk, this AHA rebalances and brightens skin and increases skin’s hydration. This leaves skin looking refreshed and plumped.
Glycolic Acid, derived from sugar cane, this AHA is a stronger acid and will penetrate deeper to resurface skin on a deeper level. It is great for concerns of aging skins or for discoloration.
Salicylic Acid, one of the only commonly used BHAs, is derived from willowbark. Salicylic Acid has been used frequently in the treatment of acne and with acne-prone skin. It is a bit harsher that the other acids but is able to penetrate down into the pores to free impactions and minimize breakouts.
Which type of peel that may be most effective for you depends on your skin type and condition. Your esthetician will certainly evaluate your skin and, based on that, will make some recommendations for you. There are a few things to consider before you add a peel onto your next facial. Sun exposure is one of the most critical. Peels can make your skin more sensitive to sun for a time. Peels should also not be applied if you have open sores, such as cold sores, as peels could cause inflammation. Of course, if you are pregnant, using a retinol product, or are taking acutane treatments, some acids may be contra-indicated. It is best to talk to your physician about any concerns with any types of acid peels.
And of course, you should consider your goals for your treatment. While a peel often has that “Wow!” effect – where you may notice a difference on the first treatment – most peels require consistent application over a number of treatments to have more lasting effects. As Freida has said to me, “It took you a while to get here, a single peel will not turn it all around!” As with many things, slow and steady usually wins!

Got Migraines? Back Pain….Something Else? Try Acupuncture….For Free!

Complimentary Mini-Stress Reducer Treatment and Consultations are

now available at Blue Heron Wellness

 

Migraines or muscle or joint pain a complaint?  Acupuncture has been found in many scientific studies to be effective for eliminating or managing these concerns.

Digestive concerns, sleeplessness, stress and anxiety or other issues?  Acupuncture has been shown to be a successful treatment for many common health concerns.  In fact, acupuncture has become so well-documented in medical and health care literature that many physicians and other health care providers, who once would never consider it, are now recommending it to their patients.

Never tried acupuncture but want to know how it can help you?  The Blue Heron acupuncturists have created a complimentary mini-stress reducing treatment and consultation just for you.  Of course, one mini-treatment is not intended to resolve your stress or stress-related symptoms; however, it is intended to:

BH_acupuncture

  • give you a sense of what acupuncture “feels” like (how often do we get the question, “Do the needles hurt?”);
  • let you have some understanding for its potential effectiveness in general;
  • most important, give you a private, individual consult with an acupuncturist who will thoroughly discuss and professionally assess the applicability of acupuncture for your specific concerns and treatment goals
  • let you see what a possible treatment plan for your concerns would be.

Interested?  Really, what risk is there?  This complimentary mini-stress reducing treatment and consultation takes about 20 minutes, it is absolutely free with no obligations, and it gives you the opportunity to have your questions answered.

It only takes one call to book the appointment.  Call now:  301-754-3730.  Really, nothing to lose – except maybe pain!

And, yes, we do accept all insurances.  We are in-network with Blue Cross/CareFirst.  We accept all other insurances on an out-of-network basis.  Let us know if you have questions:  301-754-3730.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Yoga For Teens – It Benefits throughout Life!

teen yoga manages stressI hear from many adults that they wished that they had started yoga in their teens and I agree with them – I wish I had too.  But why?  Yoga provides many of the skills we need today to cope effectively with the stress and tension that comes in life – starting early in life.  Yoga develops the ability and awareness of relaxation.  Every class is ended with a deep relaxation pose – a pose that opens the student to the benefits of letting tension in mind and body dissolve.
Life has stress. Stress creates anxiety and depression. According to The Huffington Post article February 11, 2014, American Teens Are Even More Stressed Than Adults,  American teenagers are now the most stressed-out age group in the U.S.” Sourcing the same article,  according to APA’s 2013 stress in America survey
·       Teens report that their stress level during the school year (5.8/10) far exceeds what they believe to be a healthy level of stress (3.9/10).
·       31 percent of teens report feeling overwhelmed as a result of stress, 30 percent say that they feel sad or depressed as a result of stress, and 36 percent report feeling tired or fatigued because of stress.
Yoga is an invaluable practice that creates a repeated experience of effort, awareness and relaxation that benefits the mind, body and emotional plane.  The continued practice of yoga brings an awareness of breath and how linked breath, mind and body really are. Breath is used as a tool to link body and mind and can create deeper experiences of relaxation, focus, and a growing sensitivity of creating space between thoughts and impulse.
Another value of yoga is it’s non-competitive nature.  Within yoga, curiosity becomes one of our greatest skills – the curiosity to see what the body can do, what control we have on our experience and a strengthened internal perspective. That strengthened internal perspective is what brings us balance and equilibrium when life gets confusing and choices become more complicated.  Perhaps that is what we wish we had more of as teenagers, that inner awareness and confidence.  Or maybe it was being in an atmosphere where there was less pressure to perform and compete.  Maybe it is just that we realized we needed more down time and less stress time.

How Does Reiki Work?

A holistic perspective sees health as a dynamic state of balance with considerable resilience in the overall system. A healthy person can withstand a certain amount of stress and bounce back. This is because the human body’s ability to heal includes various self-regulating mechanisms that maintain overall balance, which is known as homeostasis.

However, after experiencing sudden, intense stress or moderate stress that is constant over a period of time, the body’s ability to regulate itself becomes compromised and health declines, slowly or not so slowly. Stress causes the body to lose its ability to rebalance, to restore homeostasis.

Unless they are addressed, the stresses of everyday life – environmental, emotional, physical,financial, social etc. – can combine with an individual’s genetic predispositions and result in declining health and wellbeing.

At the simplest, most obvious level, it appears that Reiki treatment helps lessen the impact of stress, releasing tension from the entire system. Not only does the person move toward his or her own unique balance in body, mind and spirit, but also, depending on the level of physical health when Reiki begins, the body’s own healing mechanisms often begin functioning more effectively.

What is Reiki doing?

How exactly does Reiki release tension and help the body heal? That question has yet to be answered. Although there is increasing research evidence documenting the effects of Reiki (such as lowered heart rate, blood pressure, and stress hormones; increased immune strength), we have only broad theories as to what causes these effects or the pathways through which the healing occurs.

The multileveled, rapid response to Reiki suggests a complex process that engages many body systems, simultaneously or in quick succession, shifting the body from domination by the “fight or flight” (stress) response to the relaxation response, and supporting the body’s own healing mechanisms. (For more information about the relaxation response, see the Mind-Body Therapies section.) Some researchers theorize that Reiki’s physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual healing effect is triggered on a subphysical level, perhaps in what science refers to as the biofield.

What is the biofield?

The biofield is the term medical science has adopted for the intricately layered vibrational energy field that is said to surround and penetrate the physical body. The biofield is extremely subtle and there is as yet no conventional scientific technology that can document its existence or otherwise study it directly. However, for thousands of years, traditional, indigenous, prescientific medical systems have recognized a balanced, evenly pulsing biofield as the foundation of health and wellbeing, and seen any disruption of this balance as the beginning of illness.

The healing traditions of indigenous cultures around the world use vibration to restore balance through ceremonial drumming, through instruments such as the didgeridoo and the tamboura, and through chanting, overtoning, and humming. Moreover, the therapeutic value of vibration in the forms of sound and music is increasingly supported by science. Perhaps Reiki’s benefits occur through the same vibrational mechanism, a process which likely involves increasing coherence and decreasing dissonance in the system.

One theory is that the Reiki practitioner’s hands carry the energetic vibrations of the recipient’s wellness. The effect of Reiki could be seen as a shift in attention in which the recipient becomes aware of the wellness that exists deep within his or her being regardless the current level of health. Reiki could then be understood as entraining the recipient back to health in a process similar to the way grandfather clocks in the same room self-adjust to the rhythm of the dominant clock, or in the way we relax when in the presence of someone who is deeply peaceful. Reiki seems to connect the practitioner with an inner source of peace no matter how he or she feels in the moment.

Many therapies aim to restore balance in the biofield-acupunctureqigongshiatsu, andyoga/pranayama to name a few. Reiki appears to be the subtlest of these therapies, balancing the recipient through subtle Reiki vibrations rather than through manipulation or even the gentlest force. It is also possible that Reiki, which some practitioners consider more akin to meditation than to energy therapies, does not originate in the biofield, but rather arises from an even subtler source: what physicists have termed the unified field.

Friday Night Restoratives w/ Kath Meadows 8/29

Release the week’s stresses and start your weekend feeling refreshed and well-rested! Relax, renew and restore with cool and calming restorative yoga. We start with some slow, gentle movements and then settle into the use of blankets, bolsters, straps, and other props to safely support the body in various postures allowing the body to move towards a state of release and balance. All levels welcome; no yoga experience necessary. $20

7:45 – 9:00 PM
Click Here to register!

Taoist Flow and Yin Yoga w/ Machelle Lee 7/19

Machelle returns to Blue Heron to offering this exciting workshop.  Blending the energetic and poetic expression of Taoist Flow Yoga with the contemplative experience of Yin Yoga, this workshop will combine a creative muscular practice with joint tending. While you may know Machelle as a mentor of Yin Yoga, come and enjoy how the inclusion of fluid muscle movement complements the therapeutic joint stimulus of the quiet practice of Yin. This gentle to moderate paced practice is appropriate for beginners and experienced participants alike. Modifications are offered throughout but the ability to move between standing and the knees/belly a few times during the flow section is suggested. The Yin practice is all done on the floor.

$40 minimum donation.

Click here to register.

Yoga Nidra with Shira, Fri. 7/11

Join Shira for 75 minutes of bliss.
In our over-stimulated world, many of us live chronically exhausted. Yoga Nidra is a systematic way to obtain complete relaxation that rejuvenates and restores body, mind and spirit. Using guided imagery, body scanning and breath work, students are led into a deep physical relaxation, allowing the mind to release tension and stress. It leaves you feeling completely relaxed and rested and at peace with a more positive outlook than before. No experience necessary.
$20
Click here to register.

Free Community Class Today (6/27) at Noon

w/ Rekara Gage -Rekara Gage is an RYT 200 who started practicing flow yoga with hopes of finding community and purpose. Although the physical practice brought her to the mat, the peace of mind urged her to explore the philosophy and spiritual connection that helped her unlock her full potential. Incorporating both elements of yogic teachings and a variety of styles into her classes. She links meditation, breath and posture to the practice, with the goal that her students leave feeling better than they did when they came in. Students can expect a creative class that explores the energetic possibilities of asana and breath.

Blue Heron is offering free community classes to allow new and existing teachers to share their love of yoga with new and existing community members. All levels welcome.

Healthy Back Workshop w/ Naomi TONITE! (6/6)

Don’t miss the last class of this mini-series.

7:00 – 8:15 PM, Friday, 6/6

Low back pain is one of the most common complaints these days among yogis and non-yogis alike. Sometimes back pain is a symptom of too many hours seated and sedentary; other times unsupportive repetitive patterns can contribute to back pain. Even yoga, when done with less mindful alignment can wreak havoc on our backs.

This class is here to help. Learn the ways that your yoga practice can support your low back, through specific poses designed to help relieve low back pain as well as strengthen an unstable spine. Using some basic, but essential actions to create healthier alignment in your legs and hips, you’ll offer your spine the optimal circumstances for freedom. You’ll also be given tools to take this healing and strengthening practice into your everyday activities.

Core Power~Awaken Your Abs to Create Greater Back Strength

This class is appropriate for all levels. The intent of this series is to give tools to yogis who have struggled in yoga due to lower back pain, as well as reintroduce yoga to those who have taken a break from their yoga practice as a result of lower back pain or injury. Ideally this series will offer confidence to students looking to regain access to their bodies by creating healthier patterns and actions. This series should also serve as an opportunity for injured students to learn how to practice yoga safely in a public class or at home, respective to their low back impairment.

 

Friday Night Restoratives w/ Kath Meadows tomorrow!

Friday, 5/30/2014, 7:45 pm – 9:00 pm

Join Kath Meadows to release the week’s stresses and start your weekend feeling refreshed and well-rested! Relax, renew and restore with cool and calming restorative yoga. We start with some slow, gentle movements and then settle into the use of blankets, bolsters, straps, and other props to safely support the body in various postures allowing the body to move towards a state of release and balance. All levels welcome; no yoga experience necessary.   $20
Click Here to register.

Yoga for a Healthy Back w/ Naomi this Friday

Friday, May 16th – 7:00 – 8:15 pm.

Low back pain is one of the most common complaints these days among yogis and non-yogis alike. Sometimes back pain is a symptom of too many hours seated and sedentary; other times unsupportive repetitive patterns can contribute to back pain. Even yoga, when done with less mindful alignment can wreak havoc on our backs.

This class series is here to help. Learn the ways that your yoga practice can support your low back, through specific poses designed to help relieve low back pain as well as strengthen an unstable spine. Using some basic, but essential actions to create healthier alignment in your legs and hips, you’ll offer your spine the optimal circumstances for freedom. You’ll also be given tools to take this healing and strengthening practice into your everyday activities.

Each of the 3 weeks will focus on a different area for strengthening and supporting the low back.

Week 1: Find the Midline~Learning to Use Your Legs to Support Your Lower Back

Week 2: Strength and Length~Accessing the Hamstrings and Quads for Optimal Lower Back Health

Week 3: Core Power~Awaken Your Abs to Create Greater Back Strength

This series is appropriate for all levels. The intent of this series is to give tools to yogis who have struggled in yoga due to lower back pain, as well as reintroduce yoga to those who have taken a break from their yoga practice as a result of lower back pain or injury. Ideally this series will offer confidence to students looking to regain access to their bodies by creating healthier patterns and actions. This series should also serve as an opportunity for injured students to learn how to practice yoga safely in a public class or at home, respective to their low back impairment.

You can sign up for the remaining 2 Fridays or attend as your schedule allows.

2/$34  or Drop-Ins/$20