food

Yoga of Eating with Sean O’Leary in Port Moody this Sunday

Yoga of Eating with Sean O’Leary in Port Moody this Sunday

Cultivate a diet that sustains and nourishes your body, lifestyle and yoga practice. This workshop and discussion will address the highly debatable and controversial subjects of our diet and the nature of food. As our physiology changes because of our yoga practice, so to does our awareness of how foods impact our wellbeing and digestion – we begin to feel the effects of the foods we eat. Just like any yoga practice should be developed to meet your individual circumstances, so too should your food choices reflect and nourish your own personal needs.

Topics covered include: the change in food in the last 100 years; eating mindfully; physical and mental experience; ahimsa (non-harming); food preparation; and the use of spices to enhance digestion.

You will leave this workshop with a better understanding of which food choices will create good digestion, encourage lightness and clarity, and achieve freedom and happiness in the mind and stomach. Learn how to make beneficial choices for yourself and your family while causing the least possible harm to yourself, other beings, and the planet.

Expect to practice mindful eating with some yummy Ayurvedic treats prepared by Sean.

details

Sunday January 20th
2pm – 3:30pm
Suter Brook
$10 + HST

Register with Kushala Yoga here. Tickets are almost sold out!

About Sean:

RYT and Thai Massage Practitioner, Sean O’Leary brings an inordinate passion and joy to his teaching – and to his food. An unbelievable self-taught cook, he is knowledgeable in using food preparation and spices to make food delicious, nourishing and full of love. Join him for the workshop, attend one of his yoga classes, or schedule yourself a thai massage on Fridays from 4-9 at Kushala Yoga (first-time massage only $50!)

Golden Halo Over the Golden Arches

Golden Halo Over the Golden Arches

McDonald’s Canada’s latest advertising campaign is called: “Our Food, Your Questions.”

You may have seen the television commercials or floor-to-ceiling advertisements in SkyTrain stations. The company is basically claiming to be 100 per cent honest, transparent and willing to publicly answer any question posed by the public.

Many questions are answered on a new website: 

http://yourquestions.mcdonalds.ca.

Some examples of answers: McDonald’s food has no MSG, the company uses 100% Canadian Beef, their food does in fact rot, additives used in their food are deemed safe by the World Health Organization, etc.

McDonald's

McDonald’s Canada has a new campaign called “Your Questions,” offering to answer any questions from the public about their food.

So if McDonald’s food is indeed so virtuous, is there still a reason the health-conscious should not eat there?

I posed the question to Pura Vida Nutrition’s Registered Holistic Nutritionist, Gabrielle Eagles.

“It’s great they are making an effort with this campaign,” Eagles says, but she points out that most of the questions actually haven’t been answered. The website seems to answer the same kinds of questions, like “What is the beef made from?” several times, but many other questions are unanswered.

“ I have a hard time trusting what they say, as it took a significant amount of public outcry for them to make these small changes,” Eagles says. “They are a company that tries to ‘get away’ with things and only makes changes when they are caught, so why would I trust them now?”

So why would one still consider not eating at the massive fast-food chain? Eagles explains:

  • The actual food quality. Even if the quality of the food increases, it’s still up to the consumer to make informed choices for their own health. For instance, even if McDonald’s had a truly healthy burger, if the consumer ate one per day, the quantity of red meat in their diet could be detrimental.
  • Not organic. There is substantial research regarding the damages of pesticides and herbicides.
  • Added sugar, which can lead to:
  • Inflammation;
  • damaged arteries, which can leave a person more prone to atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries),  heart attack or stroke;
  • increase in insulin, eventual insulin resistance, more prone to diabetes, and;
  • energy/mood fluctuations throughout the day. As a person’s blood sugar escalates and then crashes, there is the potential for a poor mood, less exercise, and decreased productivity.
  • White buns have very few nutrients, so they mostly turn to sucrose. “The whole point of eating is to get quality protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals,” Eagles explains. “With processed food, the vitamins and minerals are significantly diminished, and the quality of those macronutrients is very low.” Plus the buns are simply higher in carbohydrate than required by the body.
    • Fats: “I don’t see any high-quality fats, which should make up 30 per cent of calories consumed,” Eagles says. “Good fats come from foods like avocado, nuts, seeds, cold water fish, and olive oil.”
    • Vegetables. “It’s great they have salad now, but it needs to contain rich greens,” Eagles says.

“Ultimately, it’s the consumer’s choice to not eat at a poor-quality food place like McD’s,” Eagles concludes. “No matter how much they try to clean up, they still aren’t serving primarily vegetables from gardens full of vitamins and minerals, which is what people really need.”

Vancouver’s Che Baba Cantina & Yoga Studio

Vancouver’s Che Baba Cantina & Yoga Studio

There’s a new yoga studio in Vancouver that combines yoga and food! Che Baba Cantina & Yoga Studio effortlessly marries southern French and Mediterranean-inspired fine dining with Hatha yoga:

Che Baba’s yoga studio opened where Kingsway and Fraser connect in November, its cantina, which is linked by a corridor, at the end of December. It’s meant to be a place for locals to socialize and indulge in a healthy way.

Che Baba’s studio hums with an early 1970s vibe complete with heated parquet floors, textured walls and cedar accents. The cozy 28-seat cantina features a stone bar built around an open kitchen.

Gagnon said the two businesses will support each other so there’ll be no pressure for the intimate yoga studio to expand or increase its fees. It offers classes for all levels with prices ranging from $10 to $15 per session […] via Vancouver Courier

Che Baba Cantina & Yoga Studio
603 Kingsway, Vancouver, BC
Phone: 604-558-1518 / 604-558-1519
Email: [email protected][email protected]
Web: www.chebaba.ca

Food As Medicine with Todd Caldecott

Food As Medicine with Todd Caldecott

I met Todd Caldecott in the summer. Practitioner of Ayurveda, author and influential speaker, his talks changed how I think about food, how I cook, and how I eat. Implementing just a few of his many tips for a more sustainable, happy and healthful life, I feel better and have more energy. Come for this unique opportunity to hear Todd speak for an incredibly low price! This event is not to be missed.

Food As Medicine with Todd Caldecott

  • February 25th (Saturday)
  • 1pm – 4pm Kushala Yoga at Suter Brook
  • $10 + HST

Confused About Diet?

Come join Todd Caldecott author of the new book Food As Medicine: The Theory and Practice of Food, on an exploration of food, what it is and how it impacts your health. Using the framework of Ayurveda, learn how to develop a healthy diet for your unique needs, how to eat strategically for the different seasons, and what herbs and foods can be incorporated into your diet to treat common health issues. In this workshop you will learn about the basic elements of food preparation, cookware, detoxification, and therapeutic diets

 

Source: http://www.kushalayoga.com/food-as-medicine-with-todd-caldecott/

Todd Caldecott

Medical Herbalist Practioner of Ayurveda Registered Profession Member

American Herbalists Guild, RH (AHG)

Author of Ayurveda: The Divine Science of Life

Editor of Ayurveda in Nepal

www.foodasmedicine.ca

www.toddcaldecott.com

The Food For All Summit

The Food For All Summit

With the holiday season fast approaching.  It is a time for us to reflect and be grateful for all that we have.  Not only are we lucky enough to be able to practice yoga.  We are fortunate enough to have access to an abundance of food.  This is not the case for billions of people around the world.  On November 30th, join me for a free one-day virtual event empowering you with practical tools and inspiration to make a difference and create a world where all are fed.  Please register at foodforallsummit.com.

 

The China Study

I just finished reading this book.  It is a must read for anyone interested in nutrition.  It gives some very compelling, scientifically proven evidence as to the benefits of eating a plant based diet.  The book speaks for itself. http://www.thechinastudy.com

Raincoast Cookies Are Fit For Vancouver Yogis

We attended a media event with EatingInVancouver last night at the lovely home of Lesley Stowe. You’re probably all familiar with her über popular Raincoast Crisps, but she has just launched a new product – Raincoast Cookies!

Yes, just as healthy and tasty as her crisps, I have to say, these cookies are delicious! Why are they fit for Vancouver yogis? Well, these nutritious products were born, raised, and made in Vancouver – the city where Lesley still calls home. “More than a cookie”, they are the perfect post-yoga class refuel. Packed with all natural ingredients like flax, chia seeds, and chicory root, these filling cookies are made without artificial ingredients or preservatives. Offered in three flavours: Dark Chocolate, Tart Cherry & Pecan (my favourite), Apricot, Ginger & Slivered Almond, and Dried Cranberry & Toasted Hazelnut, they no not contain eggs, or dairy products, so they’re ideal for all the awesome vegan yogis out there. We’ll have a full review up at EatingInVancouver, but in the mean time visit the website lesleystowe.com for further information.

Yoga Stew

It’s that time of year again…hearty comfort food time! Here’s an excellent recipe for a “yoga stew” – a Moroccan-inspired vegetarian dish that includes big chunks of butternut squash and red potatoes; it’s packed with nutrition and will keep you full and satisfied. Tips: Substitute butter for oil and omit the plain yogurt to make this meal vegan. Serve over brown rice or quinoa (in lieu of white rice) for additional protein. Enjoy!

Click here to read the yoga stew recipe.

Eat Local

I am passionate about food.  It brings people together and fuels our body.  My Bikram yoga practice made me very aware of the food I was putting into my body and my bodies reaction to it.  I felt so clean from all the sweating that I no longer wanted to put junk food into my body.

In Vancouver we are so lucky to have access to a variety of amazing food.  Currently, we have a bounty of local produce.  Just go check out one of the many farms in Richmond or your closest farmers market at http://www.eatlocal.org.

Right now is the perfect time to take advantage of the 100 mile challenge.  Try to eat only foods produced, grown or sold within 100 miles of where you live.  This way we eat healthier and reduce our carbon footprint.  To learn more, read the book 100 Mile Diet by Alisa Smith and J.B. MacKinnon.

Bon Appetit!


Shark Fin Soup Ban?

Shark Fin Soup Ban?

As Yogi’s and Yogini’s we learn to live our lives with more compassion.  However, the practice of yoga is not only on the mat.  Yoga is about more than just the Asana.  We are living yoga each and every moment of our lives, by learning to see the divine in all people and all creations of the universe.

It was announced on CBC News that Green Party Leader, Elizabeth May is calling for a ban of Shark Fin soup in Canada.  She is collecting signatures for a petition she plans to send to the House Of Commons.  This is a topic that I feel very strongly about.  If you are unaware of the shark finning industry.  Please watch the documentary Shark Water by Rob Stewart.  It is important for us to live consciously.  To be aware of where our food comes from and how it got to our table.

Sign the petition here: http://www.divepro.ca/

Post Yoga Thirst Quenching Cucumber Water

On hot summer days, post yoga session, the last thing you want to consume is a sugary beverage. Even sports drinks like Gatorade, supposedly more thirst-quenching than water, leave you feeling like you got chemicals coming out of your pores. What you need is something über refreshing, not too flavourful or sweet, healthy, and quick to make: cucumber water!

What are the benefits?

Cucumbers contain vitamin C and caffeic acid, two antioxidant nutrients that can help protect the skin from sun damage. Vitamin C boosts collagen and elastin, which helps keep skin looking vibrant while caffeic acid protects skin cells from UV radiation. Cucumbers also have natural anti-inflammatory properties and help to prevent water retention. Cukes also contain silica, an essential component of healthy connective tissue.

For a simple recipe, just combine sliced cucumber to a pitcher of water, add ice, and enjoy! Alternatively, for an augmented version, you’ll need the following ingredients:

Ingredients

8 ½ cups of water

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger
1 medium cucumber, thinly sliced
1 medium lemon or lime, thinly sliced
12 small mint leaves

Let ingredients stand in a large pitcher for a few hours, or let flavors blend overnight for an intensified taste and aroma.

photo via healthesolutions.com

Be Thin-Skinned When It Comes to Organic

Be Thin-Skinned When It Comes to Organic

You might sometimes become a bit confused when shopping for fresh fruits and vegetables. I know I can be. Do I need to buy everything organic? Can I really afford it? What is the safest choice?

Furthermore, the organic option is not always available. There are a few things that I always buy organic: carrots, celery, apples and garlic. The main reason is that I eat those practically every day in one form or the other: raw, cooked, peeled, unpeeled. Also good garlic is hard to find, and the slightly better one is organic. Generally the garlic sold in shops comes from China and is old and malodourous.

The Environmental Working Group has drawn a very useful list, which identifies the fruit and vegetables most exposed to pesticides in traditional farming, also sometimes known as the Dirty Dozen.  On the other side of the spectrum you will find the clean dozen, the least likely contaminated.

This is a good indicator of which fruits and vegetables to buy organic and which traditionally farmed products are safer to buy as such.

[source: http://thestar.blogs.com]

THE DIRTY DOZEN

  • Peaches
  • Apples
  • Sweet Bell Peppers
  • Celery
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Cherries
  • Kale/Lettuce
  • Grapes
  • Spinach
  • Nectarines
  • Potatoes

THE CLEAN DOZEN

  • Onions
  • Avocado
  • Sweet Corn (Frozen)
  • Pineapples
  • Mango
  • Asparagus
  • Sweet Peas (Frozen)
  • Asparagus
  • Kiwi
  • Cabbage
  • Eggplant
  • Cantaloupe

One simple rule you could apply, and it’s quite common sense, is thick skin versus thin skin. The thinner the skin of fruits and vegetables the more vulnerable they are to pesticides. It’s not as clear-cut as this when you look at the full list, but it is definitely a factor that can help you in your choices.

Moreover, apples, carrots, and celery do taste so much better when they are organic!

5 Fundamental Yoga Diet Principles

We are what we eat! The quality and types of food we consume affects us both mentally and physically. Here are some fundamental diet principles for everyone, especially yogis.

Prefer nutritious value versus going for taste – sure, there may be days when a chocolate covered donut sounds better than an apple, but if you really don’t have to (really, really) then don’t do it. You’ll end up feeling better about the apple. Learn to overcome your cravings and make awesome food choices.

Choose nature – seasonal fruits, vegetables, seeds and whole grains. You can even try the 100-mile diet (eating only produce and food that has been grown and made within 100 miles from where you live).

Don’t over eat. I’ve heard that it’s best to only fill your stomach half way up. It makes it easier for digestion and it also doesn’t leave you feeling lethargic. Taking your time when eating and chewing puts less strain on your digesting system. And wait until after your meal to consume liquids. Remember over eating leads to weight gain!

Drinks. Avoid as much alcohol as possible and limit your intake of caffeine to two cups of Joe or tea per day. Drink at least ten to twelve glasses of water (at least two glasses when you first wake up).

Don’t count calories or stress about vitamin in-take. Don’t be a slave to your taste buds, but focus on what is most healthy. Learn to listen to your body’s needs and remember moderation – do this and you’ll get exactly what your body needs. Yoga is all about self-discipline-you can do it.

Remember to take the time to detox, set goals, find your motivation and make choices that truly optimize your life and those around you.

Namaste!

Photo credit: http://yoga-connection.com

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