wellness

My First Experience with Plant Medicine called Ayahuasca.

When I was twenty, I had a near death experience in the hospital while undergoing a minor (so I thought) surgery.

I didn't know the term “a near death experience” - NDE, but eventually found the book describing this phenomenon written by Dr. Raymond Moody, “Life After Life” www.lifeafterlife.com.

The book was translated into Russian by an underground publishing agency “Samizdat” in 1975.  I was a second year college student studying engineering, and firmly planted in a hard science, with a total lack of any spiritual or religious education. This is when my interest in an altered state of consciousness began. 

It was twenty five years later here in Stamford, I had multiple “Out-of -Body” experiences - OBEs. They were absolutely awesome, but unfortunately spontaneous.  I could not repeat them, as I so wished. 

Eventually I became familiar with the work of  Robert A. Monroe. I devoured his book, “Journeys Out of the Body”.  He had phenomenal OBEs. Bob’s interest in altered state of consciousness was the driving force in the foundation of The Monroe Institute in Virginia. The Monroe institute popularized his “Hemi-Sync” patented audio technology. It was claimed to facilitate “Out of the Body” experiences - OBEs.  From 2008 through 2011 I participated in many programs at The Monroe Institute (monroeinstitute.org

If you are interested in experiencing the Hemi-Sync effect during your next Reflexology/Reiki session, please let me know. I have accumulated a good collection of Hemi-Sync CDs, and it can be easily included into your hands-on session. 

My interest in altered states or I would rather call it, expanded states of consciousness, brought me to the teachings of Gregg Braden. Check out his books.  In 2007 we traveled with him to Peru on a journey called “Unlocking the Incan Code of Time”. While there, I have heard about the powerful medicinal plants ceremonies, that were led by native shamans using Ayahuasca. It was not on our itinerary then.

I started to read and hear from a few trusted friends about the effects of psychedelics on the expansion of consciousness. Even though I wanted a direct experience, I also had an enormous fears. The saying goes, once you drink Ayahuasca, which is a brew from two Amazonian plants, - you SEE, once you SEE, you cannot UNSEE.

A powerful film “Neurons to Nirvana” by Oliver Hockenhull helped me to learn more about the nature of different psychedelic molecules and its impact on physical, mental, emotional and spiritual aspects of the human being.  

I watched the documentary “The Reality of Truth”.  The story of Rythmia - Life Advancement Center in Costa Rica was mentioned in the film. The book “ Sh*T the Moon said” by Gerard Powell, the founder of of Rythmia was very intriguing and inviting for a first hand experience .

My good friend Lisa Wilson, the founder of The Raw Food Institute, talked about going to Rythmia.com in Costa Rica this summer. 

It was the last straw, that broke my fear.  I was ready to become a psychonaut and experience the power of psychedelics in a safe environment guided by a powerful shaman Taita Juanito.

The week of October 14th I went there with my daughter. We had four powerful ceremonies with unique and dramatic experiences  and breakthroughs. 

We also learned how to practice Transformational Breathwork, that helped to process the revelations of the Mother Aya, as this powerful plant medicine is lovingly called. 

The main lesson I got: “We are all ONE”. Mother Aya helped me to shake off “the reality of separation” for good. My other very personal revelation was aptly written on the T-shirt I wear now: “Relax, nothing is under control”

I am still processing on a deep emotional level discoveries and lessons of Rythmia. The Medicine works on your mindbody for three or more weeks after the last drink.

This March my husband Nicholas agreed to go with me to Rythmia. First time for him.

There are plenty of video testimonials on the Rythmia “Youtube” channel - you can get lost in them. 

Check out a brand new documentary “From Shock to Awe”.  It explores the healing effect of Ayahuasca on two American veterans and their families dealing with PTSD. Their transformations after Ayahuasca ceremonies are powerful.  

Also, I would love to mention the serendipities during our travel to Rythmia. The first person we met, when we arrived to Costa Rica airport was from a small town in Florida, where my daughter lives.  The person who greeted us from the big TV monitor at Rythmia entrance hall - our beloved Gregg Braden (remember our trip with him to Peru and recently Israel), and a young lady I met there shortly after, was from Taiwan, born precisely in a small town of Taitung, where my Reflexology Master and Life Mentor Father Josef lives for the past thirty years. Serendipities.

If you want to know more, please do ask me, I am open to share with you face to face.

I need to mention, that the visions I had at Rythmia were of extraordinary beauty, reminded me of my NDE some forty years ago.

The New Wearables

Today I want to talk about wearables. Do you know that electronic smart gadgets can be incorporated into clothing, implanted under the skin or worn on the body as an accessory for the purpose of collecting and tracking your personal physiological data to improve your health and fitness? Such medical data collecting devices are perfect tools in the development and implementation of  a  medical care model that shifts its focus from diagnosis to prognosis.

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Precision Medicine is an emerging field in the science of health and wellness. This Medicine is based on four principles:

  1. Predictive

  2. Preventive

  3. Personalized

  4. Participatory.

The use of FitBits or similar devices is quite common now and  wearables technology is exploding all over the world.
Let me introduce you to the Oura Ring. It is developed by a  fairly new - only two years old - company from Finland.

I have been learning about the outmost importance of good sleep on our health for quite sometime now. Please check  out one of the best books on this seemingly trivial subject.  Here comes the wearable that allows me to quantify the quality of my nightly sleep and much more. Of course I got excited. 

I ordered my Oura Ring - second generation, last December.  Due to its enormous popularity  it arrived with delay this August.
For almost two months I have been collecting and monitoring the data on my SLEEP - 7 characteristics; READINESS  - 7 characteristics, ACTIVITY  - 6 characteristics; yes, steps walked  and TRENDS.

The ring is synched with my iPhone ( can be other cell phone models) via the Oura app and can independently collect and store info up to 5 days, if for whatever reason I am not near my phone. It emits very low EMF compare to other devices and operates in Airplane Mode, if chosen. There is so much more to learn and discuss about the Oura Ring.
 
Ask me any questions at your next session.
If you decide to buy it, you are welcome to use HIH code for $50 off its $300+ price, depending on the model. 
I am happy to share, that my husband agreed to wear his cool Christmas present - Oura Ring. I pray, that his ring will arrive just in time.

Here's other products that I introduce on my page The Products We Love: Vibram Five Toes shoes - give my bunions  - yep, I do have them on both feet more space and to prevent future misalignment  and a simple pleasure Massage Glove

I am also excited to share a fantastic podcast by Peter Attia MD, called The Drive. Thanks to Matt, one of my young and savvy clients,  I am now hooked to Peter's podcast, his style, cutting edge info on many subjects... Mainly, health, longevity, critical thinking and a few others. 

Let us make a Power Protein Smoothie

I'm offering this simple recipe, as it seems the energy runs low for many of us here in the Northeast. Cold and dark weather calls for a Power Smoothie to please the taste and muscles in our bodies. Sure you may have already escaped to the sunny beaches of Florida or California, but you can still make this pleasant morning drink instead of a cup of Bulletproof coffee and croissant - my personal guilty indulgence, although not that often nowadays.

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This smoothie combines health and energy boosting essentials like healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals, into one convenient on-the-go option. Add ingredients to a high powered blender. You may add your other multi-vitamin and minerals that you take in capsules/tablets – they wind up in your stomach anyway. Blend until well combined — ready in under 5 minutes! 

  • 8 oz coconut milk (Natural Value has it in BPA free can lining at Trader's Joe's)
  • 1 scoop raw organic chocolate protein powder from Garden of Life
  • 1 Tablespoon of Styrian Gold Pumpkin Seed oil
  • 4 oz of organic frozen berries, or ½ – 1 full frozen banana 
  • 2 Tablespoons nut butter (Almond or Cashew or Hazelnut)

Top with cacao nibs and enjoy! Here is the link to Fullscript, where you can order some ingredients at a 20% discount, as my client. Check the tab Power Food on your left.

How to Fix Our Stupid Use of Technology

Ever since the proliferated use of the computers and cell phones, I was interested in protecting ourselves from EMF -ElectroMagnetic Field radiation. You know, I have an engineering degree, so is my interest in applicable electromagnetic devices for improving  health is well justified. I also understand physics, and know, that every device that is run by electrical current may have dirty electricity and potential harmful magnetic field - measurable EMF (F for Fog). Hard science, can be difficult for many of us to comprehend.
 

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Here is the book "The Non-tinfoil guide to EMFs" that is written by investigative health journalist in a plain language with  plenty of great resources.

What I do to protect us from EMF?

1. Do not use the laptop on my lap, since I use WiFi (my computer is not connected to Router by the old fashion cable wire), it emits tons of harmful EMF.  My computer sits on WrapTop - Magnetic Shielding,  check out Lessemf.com. If you absolutely insist on using your laptop on top of your lap, buy Defender Pad.

2. Most computers come with  ungrounded cords (two prongs) - I bought USB grounding cords for our computers. If you do not have it yet, please charge your computer when it is not in use, otherwise use it on a battery power.

3. Keep the distance between you and your screens (laptops, phone, tablets) as much as you can. EMF is distance sensitive –At least one foot away from your body, please!

4. Most of all, protect your children, Belly Armor is a great resource for shielding babes that are born or still inside of you, with the blankets made of radiation shield material.
The site has other great devices and EMF protecting clothes for grown ups who invented and constantly use this amazing technology. Anyone totally attached to their cell phone day and night? We all at some point fit this profile and we must protect ourselves more in our daily lives.

5. Buy Shielding Pouch for WiFi Router to reduce microwave radiation, if you're not willing to turn off your router at night, which is the best source of action - please avoid sleeping in a sea of radiation. Signal Tamer from www.lessemf.com will reduce this radiation.

6. Buy your phone a BlackOut Patch, that you can attach to the back of your phone– Get your loved ones a patch as well! A less sexy option is the BlocSock, if you have a habit of holding the phone to your head. For iPad and other tablets - iPad POUCH www.lessemf.com 

7. Are you using earphones? Please attach Ferrite Snap Beads to the wires, as I did, easy. They reduce radio frequency radiation.

8. Switch to Airplane mode, when you're using your phone in the metal boxes we call "cars." You get the worst exposure, since the radiation waves are bouncing around. I am not aware of any cars yet that use radiation blocking material for their interiors. Download music and podcasts, if you are maximizing your time while driving - so there's no wifi needed. 

9. Avoid using your devices when reception is bad, since some phones can ramp up their harmful emissions during this time.
 
Want to know more on the subject,  here is another book – "Zapped."
And of course, do not hesitate to ask me for help. 

Gut Health

Your health begins in the gut, and continues in the intestines. How do you know, if your gut is functioning properly? I would like to share with you the easiest way to evaluate your gastro-intestinal health. 

All you need is to look at your poop, literally, here is the visual. Please share your type with me on your next visit or call.

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Tongue Diagnosis

 First off, read this amazing book: “You are What you Eat” book by Dr. Gillian McKeith.

The following are excerpts from Dr McKeith's book. This information is no substitute for seeking medical advice from a doctor or qualified practitioner, if there are any concerns.

Healthy Looking Tongue:

If this is your tongue below, congrats, no need to look further. If it is not your tongue, review the pictures below and please know that your gut health can be improved and your tongue will show the results. Let's talk about the right nutritional choices you can make. I'm here for you to modify and add appropriate supplements and teas through my Virtual Dispensary- FullScript.

Cracked Tongue

A crack down the middle of your tongue means that you are probably nutrient depleted and your digestion isn't what it should be.  You are probably also often bloated after eating and have energy slumps in the middle of the day.  I would  recommend taking digestive enzymes with meals,  eat soups, stews and blends which are easy to digest, and avoiding fizzy drinks.

Eat nourishing foods: ArtichokesAvocadosCarrots, Sprouts of seeds, Parsnips, Black or Wild Rice, Squash, Sweet PotatoesTurnipsYams

Drinks herbal infusion of Fennel, Peppermint, Licorice.

White Coating

Thick White Coating or Swollen Tongue is an indication of too much mucus in the body.  It's also a sign of a lack of beneficial bacteria and too much yeast.  Dr McKeith recommends reducing dairy products, eating more green superfoods and taking probiotics to replenish your body with healthy bacteria.

Teeth Marks

Teeth marks around the side of the tongue are due to nutritional deficiency. Dr. McKeith says your digestion is also probably impaired and you have a spleen deficiency.  If your Spleen is weak, you probably also struggle with gas and bloating.  

Spleen nourishing foods: Aduki Beans,Yellow squash, Mung BeansKidney BeansAlfalfaBeetrootOatsCarrotsParsleyCelery,ParsnipsPumpkinFennelSweet PotatoesTurnipsYams,  FishChicken. Foods high in Chlorophyll: Leafy greens, AlgaeKaleChard.

Herbs and Spices to Nourish the Spleen: Astragalus, GarlicBlack PepperGingerCayenne PepperGinsengCinnamonHorseradishDill seedPau d’Arco. 

Cracks

Horizontal cracks, small cracks/grooves on tongue are usually a sign of malabsorption, especially of B vitamins, and often accompanied by a lack of energy.  Most overweight patients that Dr McKeith sees for the first time, she says, are deficient in B Vitamins.  This has usually developed over a long time.  

She recommends, Vit. B Complex, digestive enzyme supplements, peppermint and nettle teas and 2 tbsp of Aloe Vera juice before meals.  She also recommends taking echinacea tincture (20 drops daily for 2 weeks), to help move lymph and eliminate toxins that are impeding nutrient absorption. I add the Bellicon trampoline to the daily routine.

Yellow Coating

A Thick Yellow Coating indicates excess heat in the gut, and that you don't have enough healthy bacteria in your body.  Dr McKeith says if the coating is at the back of your tongue you need to pay attention to your colon, as you bowels may not be working as they should be. Check against the Bristol Stool Chart, I provided above.

Solutions: If you can take 2 tablespoons of aloe vera juice before meals.

Add sage tea (2 cups a day for a month), and alternate this with camomile tea.

Eat more vegetables, nuts, grains, seeds. Are you run down from doing too much, please start to take things easier.

Red Tip

Red Tip on the Tongue according to Dr McKeith  indicates emotional stress or upset. She recommends at looking at ways to reduce the stress in your life.

Sore Tongue is a sign of a nutrient deficiency, often iron, vitamin B6 or niacin.

She recommends to drink nettle teas and it may be worth getting your iron levels checked and seeing a medical professional for proper test and supplementation.

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  • She recommends to drink nettle teas and it may be worth getting your iron levels checked and seeing a medical professional for proper test and supplementation.