health

SeaWorld’s Tilikum: Should Keeping Captive Orcas Be Banned?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | February 14th, 2014 | 1 Comment
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: animal ambassadors, animals, Blackfish, captive wildlife, cetaceans, conservation, Dawn Brancheau, dolphins, endangered-species, environment, health, killer whales, marine creatures, marine environment, nature, ocean, orca, orcas, SeaWorld, Tilikum, travel, whales, wild, wildlife

orca in the wild

Last October, when CNN broadcast the documentary Blackfish, a film that tells the story of the 2010 killing of a SeaWorld trainer by an orca named Tilikum, there was a public outcry against marine parks — such as SeaWorld — that keep cetaceans in captivity. After the movie aired, several veterinarians and the director of the Dolphin Project at the Earth Island Institute in Berkeley, California, Ric O’Barry, stepped forward to state their professional opinions that confining orcas can make them psychotic.

SeaWorld, however, countered that marine parks such as theirs have done great works in conservation and that hundreds of millions of people have come to love and learn about orcas and other marine animals because of their popular shows and exhibits.

But given what we now know about how confinement can influence an animal’s behavior, should cetaceans ever be kept in a captive environment?

Are There Too Many Climate Change Deniers in Congress?

Candice Gaukel Andrews by Candice Gaukel Andrews | January 14th, 2014 | 3 Comments
topic: Eco Travel, Green Living | tags: carbon emissions, climate change, democrat, environment, extinction, global-warming, Greenland, health, icebergs, Industrial Revolution, nature, ocean health, republican, travel, wellness

Recently, while reading the November/December 2013 issue of Sierra, the magazine of the Sierra Club, I came across a graphic that startled me. It depicted two columns, labeled “House” and “Senate.” Under each of those titles were two more columns, showing the number of Democrats and Republicans in each branch of the legislature that are climate change deniers. Under the House section were 200 Democrats; none were listed as climate change deniers. Of the 233 Republicans, 128 deny climate change.

In the Senate, there were 52 Democrats (with two Independents), again with 0 climate change deniers. Of the 46 Republicans, 30 deny that the world is warming.

My goal here is not to cast aspersions on any one party but to look at the big picture. It is possible that we can make strides to protect the planet against the devastating effects caused by rapid climate change if our leadership fails to believe it is real?

7 Steps to Set Your Yoga Practice Up for Success

Sara Fruman by Sara Fruman | January 7th, 2014 | 1 Comment
topic: Fitness, Yoga | tags: 2014, breath, breathing, change, Fitness, health, new year's resolution, well-being, wellness, yoga class, yoga instructor, yoga teacher, yoga-practice

yoga practice 2014

Beginning a yoga practice can feel frustrating, stressful — maybe even boring! But stick with it. Coming back to your mat again and again will improve your body, mind and spirit beyond levels that you even dreamed imaginable.

Find a blissful yoga practice by following these simple steps:

8 Yoga Poses to Stimulate Metabolism

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | December 18th, 2013 | 2 Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Weight Loss, Yoga | tags: arm flaps, backbends, Bridge, camels, handstand, happiness, headstand, health, hot yoga, inversions, kapalabhati breathing, metabolism, plow, pranaymas, prayer twist, rabbit, savasana, shoulder stand, twisted lunge, twists, ujj, vinyasa, weight-loss, wheel, Yoga

Wheel Pose yoga

In addition to yoga’s well-documented methods of promoting health and happiness. it also has the ability to help you lose weight,  burn calories, boost metabolism and reduce stress. Although yoga is not a quick fix, it can be an excellent long-term approach to losing weight and keeping it off.

9 Yoga Moves to Blast Holiday Calories

Sadie Nardini by Sadie Nardini | December 5th, 2013 | 4 Comments
topic: Fitness, Health & Wellness, Weight Loss, Yoga | tags: abs, arm balance, belly, Boat pose, body, Bound Lunge, burn-calories, Child’s Pose, christmas, core, Core Plank, diet, Dog Splits, downward dog, Easy Pose, eat, exercise, Fitness, flexibility, food cravings, handstand, health, holiday weight, holiday yoga, holidays, inversion, lose-weight, meditate, meditation, release, Revolved Pigeon, Shiva Kicks, Side Angle, side plank, strength, stress, Sukhasana, thanksgiving, thighs, Yoga, yoga for weight loss

GAIAM SIDE ANGLEHolidays are a time for family, friends and — let’s not kid ourselves — food. I love to go away for a few days and eat things I normally don’t in amounts that would shock a Sumo wrestler. Hence, it may be the season to be jolly, but it’s also a time when it’s all too easy to pack on the pounds along with the cheer.

Shoulder Supplement: Daily Dose of Movement to Erase Shoulder Pain

Jill Miller by Jill Miller | October 9th, 2013 | 5 Comments
topic: Family Health, Fitness, Health & Wellness, Healthy Aging, Yoga | tags: Dr. Dawn McCrory, exercises, Fitness, health, healthy joints, Hitchhiking Pizzas, joint pain, Kinesis Living, motion, movement, physical therapy, Repetitive Stress Injury, rotator cuff, shoulder exercise, shoulder pain, wellness, yoga for shoulder pain

shoulder exerciseMy husband’s shoulder started hurting him a few months ago. At first it would come and go. Then it started aching and burning at night, so much that he couldn’t sleep on his side. I suggested lots of exercises to help strengthen his shoulder (which, to my dismay, he did not practice), and he regularly used his Yoga Tune Up® Balls for self-massage, but he was still in pain.

Toxic Cosmetics: Poison Ain’t Pretty

Leslie Garrett by Leslie Garrett | August 26th, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Detox, Green Living, Health & Wellness | tags: Adria Vasil, arsenic, beauty, Campaign for Safe Cosmetics, Ecoholic, environmental working group, health, lead, lipstick, mica, natural makeup, pigments, Stacy Malkan, toxic cosmetics, toxins, University of Berkeley, wellness, women

Toxic Cosmetics

During the Italian Renaissance, many women applied arsenic-based makeup. There was method to their madness. The women made sure that their husbands got up close and personal with the arsenic … dropping dead not long after. It seemed an efficient way to dispose of unwanted men. Though there’s little doubt that the makeup eventually took its toll on the wives too.

Commit to Affirmative Living!

Cynthia James by Cynthia James | June 13th, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Inspirational Media, Personal Growth | tags: affirmative living, awareness, change your life, clarity of purpose, commitments, daily affirmations, destiny, expect the best, financial freedom, focus, health, internal clarity, meditation cd, optimism, peace of mind, personal development tools, positive attitude, product concept, product line, purpose, Relationships, self-help books, self-help cds, self-help downloads, self-love, stress, successful, understanding, vision statement

Several months ago, I began working on the development of some new products. As I began to contemplate a name that would encompass the product line, the words “Affirmative Living” came to me. I was really excited, so I shared the concept with my mastermind group. A couple of the people in the group didn’t understand what the phrase meant and asked me to rethink my concept.

5 Yoga Poses to Fight Seasonal Allergies

Gwen Lawrence by Gwen Lawrence | May 7th, 2013 | 3 Comments
topic: Family Health, Fitness, Health & Wellness, Yoga | tags: air pollution, allergens, allergic reaction, allery symptoms, alternative medicine, alternative therapies, asthma, backbends, breath, breathe, breathing, bronchitis, cigarette smoke, coughing, doctor, dust, expert, Fish Pose, food, Gwen Lawrence, health, holistic healing, immune system, insect venom, instructor, inversions, itchy eyes, mold, perfume, plow pose, pollen, respiratory system, runny nose, seasonal allergies, shoulder stand, sneezing, stress, strong odors, teacher, Three-Part Yogic Breath, watery eyes, well-being, wellness, yoga for allergies, yoga poses

Yoga for Allergies

It’s allergy season — that time of year when many of us are plagued by itchy or watery eyes, runny noses, and bouts of sneezing and coughing that threaten to knock pictures off the wall. These common allergy symptoms are the body’s way of defending itself against bacteria and viruses. Luckily, yoga can help!

First, we have to figure out where those annoying symptoms are coming from. Allergies are triggered by allergens. Some of the most common seasonal allergens include pollen, dust, mold, food and insect venom. Irritants such as cigarette smoke, air pollution and some strong odors (such as perfumes) also impinge the respiratory system.

The best way to prevent allergy symptoms is to avoid what triggers them — such as by staying indoors on days when the pollen count is at its highest and keeping your home free of dust. But yoga can also help with both the prevention and management of allergy symptoms.

One Month to a Faster Mile

The FIRM Master Instructor Team by The FIRM Master Instructor Team | April 11th, 2013 | No Comments
topic: Fitness | tags: cardiovascular fitness, exercise, fast, Fitness, get faster, health, improve speed, job, jogging, mile, mile run, run, running, stopwatch, the firm, timer, walk, walking

Faster MileBy The FIRM Master Instructor Annie Lee

Do you remember having to do the mile-run fitness test in school? Holy cow! I don’t know about you, but those were some of the worst times in my life. Not only did I hate the little-bitty PE shorts they gave you, but I also hated having to complete the test in front of everyone. I don’t know if it was because it was timed — or because I had those little shorts that would ride up with every step I took — or because I had to do it in front of everyone that made it all so traumatic for me, but it has taken me a long time to get over running that timed mile.

But at this point in my life I am finally over it and actually look forward to challenging myself. So, at the risk of sounding like my old PE teacher, let’s talk about how you can go about improving your mile time, whether you’re walking, jogging or running.

Why?

We all know the answer to this one: Because it will improve your cardiovascular fitness. When we set guidelines or goals for exercise, it helps us know where we are starting, what we need to do to improve, and how far we have come in the process. By challenging yourself, you feel good about what you have accomplished and you WILL get fitter!