Archive for March, 2018

Karuna is a Fragrance-Free Zone

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

Karuna is a Fragrance-Free Zone

Karuna Center for Yoga and Healing Arts is a place where all can enter safely. We request that you make an effort to refrain from using scented products. We understand the challenges of this request; please know that we are all in the process of increasing our awareness and sensitivity.

Please refrain from using any perfumes, colognes, scented oils (even natural ones), or aftershave—when coming to be a part of the space. Less obvious sources of fragrances include cosmetics, laundry detergent, fabric softeners, drier sheets, soaps, shampoos, hand lotions, face creams, deodorants, and sunscreen. Even air freshener, incense, and scented candle aroma can be absorbed in clothing and hair. Sweaters, jackets, and fabric purses will also pick up fragrances.

Thank you for being mindful and making Karuna a welcome space for everyone.

Facts about Chemical / Fragrance Sensitivity:

One in five people experience health problems when exposed to fragrances.

These include:

  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Chronic Fatigue
  • Central Nervous System Dysfunction
  • Asthma
  • Coughing
  • Cancer
  • Mood Changes
  • Difficulty Concentrating

Did you know?

  • A single fragrance can contain anywhere from 10 to several hundred chemicals.
  • 95% of chemicals used in fragrances are synthetic compounds derived from petroleum and have not been tested for human toxicity.
  • EI (Environmental Illness) is widespread and increasing rapidly.
  • Anyone can develop EI or MCS (Multiple Chemical Sensitivity). Fragrance Exposure is hazardous to everyone.
  • A person with EI or MCS needs to avoid personal use of scented products, but also needs to avoid other people who use scented products or who may have picked up scents from places they have been.
  • Second-hand fragrances are as toxic as second-hand smoke.
  • Once sensitivity has occurred, even small exposures can trigger debilitating conditions.

Twist Your Way into Spring – Detox Diet

Tuesday, March 27th, 2018

Register today for the TWIST YOUR WAY INTO SPRING workshop with Paul Menard
April 7, 2019
1pm to 4pm
$45 in advance / $50 at the door

Click HERE to reserve your space in the workshop

Twist  Your Way into Spring – Detox Diet
Courtesy of Acadia Herbals

Detox Diet: Get everything you need for this 3 – 10 Day Detox from Acadia Herbals!  Please call ahead to purchase a bag of the herbs ($7/bag): Acadia Herbals 413-584-8198  (Shop is open Tues – Sat, 11 – 6.)

A Gentle Spring Fast
When you embark upon a detoxification program to restore your body, always follow the recipe as given. The information that follows is in no way considered a substitute for consultation diagnosis and/or treatment by a duly licensed physician or other health-care professional. Children under the age of 12, pregnant women, and underweight people should not fast. Those with medical conditions, such as diabetes, low blood sugar, cancer, and drug or alcohol abuse, need supervision.

Detox Diet
Time frame: 3-10 days
All of the fruits and vegetables needed to stimulate the body to cleanse and eliminate in spring are contained in this simple fast based on the Chinese Five Element theory. Choose the foods that are readily available in your area from the list below. A three-day fast helps the body get rid of toxins. A five-day fast starts the healing process. A ten-day fast completely cleanses and renews your bloodstream and should take care of most problems before they arise. A ten-day fast is beneficial to do twice a year, particularly in the spring and the autumn.

8 a.m. to 12 noon
Kiwis, oranges, limes, grapefruit, lemons, apples, applesauce (no sugar), apple juice, filtered water, herbal teas (such as red clover, dandelion leaf, and peppermint). The above foods can be taken in solid or liquid form. Choose one or more and eat and drink as much as you like until noon. To strengthen the optic nerves, combine freshly squeezed lemons with grapefruit and limes with an orange.

12 noon to 8 p.m.
Asparagus, beets, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, leafy greens and dark green vegetables, carrots, dandelion leaves, parsnip, potatoes with skins, garlic, olive oil, parsley, sprouts, apple juice, pure water, and herbal teas. The above foods can be taken in solid or liquid form. The vegetables can be raw, steamed, baked or roasted, and a simple dressing can be made from the garlic, lemon, peppermint, olive oil, and parsley. It is best to have a combination of cooked and raw foods at each meal to supply the live enzymes needed for proper digestion.

Buckthorn Bark Tea
6 cups filtered water
2 tablespoons red clover
2 tablespoons milk thistle
2 tablespoons dandelion leaf
2 tablespoons peppermint leaf
3 tablespoons buckthorn bark

Buckthorn bark is a mild laxative herb, safe to use over an extended period of time. When combined with blood-purifying herbs, buckthorn bark helps to carry blood and liver toxins out of the body. On the first day of your fast, make this tea and drink one cup in the morning and one cup before bedtime to maintain regularity. The tea will keep refrigerated for three days and may be gently warmed; boiling the tea will destroy the medicinal properties of the herbs.

Bring the water to a boil. Remove from heat and add all herbs. Cover and allow to steep for 30 minutes to one hour. Strain before using.

**A note on the buckthorn bark tea as mentioned in the Yoga Journal diet: I couldn’t find any buckthorn, which is a gentle laxative. I made the tea without it because the remaining herbs are reputed to be liver-cleansing agents. The herbal compound Swiss Kriss may be helpful.

Liver Cleansing Drink (Spring version)
2 pieces fresh ginger, chopped (each about the size of a 50-cent piece)
1 orange peeled and divided into sections
1.3 cup or less organic apple juice
1 kiwi, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon organic flax seed oil
½ lemon, juiced
3 or 4 frozen unsweetened strawberries (or ice cubes)
Pinch of cayenne pepper

Place first three ingredients in a blender; blend on high until ginger is pulverized. Add rest of ingredients and blend again.

Cook’s notes:
This drink can be altered to taste, however, the lemon, ginger, orange, pepper, and flax seed oil are constants. It is helpful to drink two glasses of water upon rising, and then have this drink for breakfast. When it is not spring cleaning time, you can add 1/3 to ½ banana (or more) for a little more staying power as well as a bit of protein powder. The drink can be used in combination with the Yoga Journal cleansing diet. (I stayed on the diet for five days. For the following two weeks I will modify the diet by adding  legumes and salads. I’m not sure what else but will avoid wheat, dairy, meat, etc. and will do my best to avoid sugar and caffeine).

Simple, meditative yoga exercises will help to balance and stimulate your inner organs while fasting. Heavy exercise is best kept to a minimum as your body does its work internally. Yoga also enhances the calm, balance, and peaceful state of mind the fast produces.

Super skin
The skin is the body’s largest organ of elimination. Dry skin brushing benefits the lymphatic system and stimulates your whole body. With a long-handled, natural bristle scrub brush, stroke the skin gently in the direction of your heart, much like you would use a brush to stroke your hair. Use the dry skin brush everywhere except for your face, which requires a smaller, softer brush. You may enjoy dry skin brushing enough to make it part of your daily routine. Avoid using non-biodegradable soaps and lotions containing mineral oil on your skin.

Time, peace, and privacy enhance a fast. This is a good time to reflect, meditate, and be in nature, as you become aware of what does and does not nourish you. If you find it difficult to retreat altogether, be creative. Plan carefully. Ask yourself what you want to achieve in this fast, then begin in full acceptance of yourself.

Menu to break the fast
Build on the detox diet by adding spring grains such as barley, quinoa, wheat, millet, and rye. Eat plain goat’s milk yogurt flavored with apple juice and spices. Goat’s milk cheeses and fish or free range poultry can be eaten once a week.