Urban Retreats

 


No Soup for You and Yoga!

Time: 4:30 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. Class will be held in Northeast Minneapolis, led by Kamie. Cost: $25 if registered before date listed below, $30 after. Upcoming dates: January 29th, February 12th, February 19th, February 26th

  • 4:30 p.m. Check-in and Tea
  • 4:45 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. Meditation, Pranayama and Yoga – All levels Welcome!
  • 6:00 p.m. – 7:00p.m. Eat/Social
Limited to 8 participants. Kamie’s Tasty Tea before class and soup will be prepared for after the yoga class. Cost of meal included. Please let Kamie know if you have any food restrictions.
Upcoming Class times

Diet and Nutrition: Inflammation

Cost: To Register  

Class will be held in Northeast Minneapolis, led by Kamie

Ayurveda and yoga are sister sciences that are thousands of years old. They guide us to find balance in our lives, our bodies, and our minds. Busy schedules can distract us from proper diet and balance, and we find ourselves pressing from one task to the next. This depleting lifestyle leads us to eat when it is convenient rather than to deeply nourish our bodies and minds. In all of history, the teachings of ayurveda and yoga are most relevant today to bring optimal health to our lifestyles.

An ayurvedic kitchen is a pharmacy for health and wellness. Ayurveda is clear that health starts with proper digestion and eating wisely. Food is considered a powerful medicine and is often used as the main approach to healing the body and for health and vitality. If we eat foods that nourish our bodies and follow a sattvic diet, a life-supporting diet that strengthens digestion, our bodies will gain the benefits.Ayurveda and yoga are both built on the foundation of the three gunas: sattva (balance), rajas (excess), and tamas (stagnant). These qualities are evident in our foods, nature, actions, bodies, and minds. Having some knowledge of these qualities helps us make more educated decisions about how we live.

Foods that are sattvic promote a clear mind. Foods that are rajasic create a stimulated state of mind. Foods that are tamasic require a lot of energy to digest and have a grounding effect, increasing stagnation and ama and causes a dullness in the mind.

Ayurveda teaches that a sattvic diet will lead to optimal health. Ayurveda also teaches that an impaired agni and the accumulation of ama (the negative byproduct of digestion) is at the source of imbalance and eventually disease. The word agni means “fire” and is essential to determining the health of the digestive system and is the source of life.

Inflammation has become a buzz word in the health and wellness community in recent years and a topic of conversation and research. It is proven to be a contributing factor to frequent health-related conditions today, including heart disease, cancer, asthma, dermatitis, digestive issues, and arthritis. Recent studies have even shown surprising links to conditions such as severe depression from inflammation in the brain, fibromyalgia, and autoimmune diseases. Is inflammation the major contributor or possibly the cause of every disease? From cancer to the common cold, inflammation should be considered.

There are two types of inflammation: acute and chronic. Inflammation tends to be seen from a negative perspective, but acute inflammation is our body’s natural reaction to tissue damage. Our body needs a certain amount of healthy inflammation and can actually protect itself against infectious illnesses and trauma. When you fall and cut yourself, the cut swells, reddens, and feels inflamed. These are healthy indicators that your immune system is sending the proper amount of white blood cells to the injured area so that your body can repair the damaged tissue. In this situation, inflammation is your friend, and you couldn’t live without it.

On the other hand, chronic inflammation is when our immune system is confused or damaged by a bombardment of environmental, physical, mental, and emotional stressors. Poor diet and toxicity from chemicals are just a few examples of these.

Arthritis is a word taken from the Greek language and literally means “joint inflammation.” This type of inflammation can affect one or more joints. While there are many types of arthritis—osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, gout and psoriatic arthritis—the most common complaint with the symptoms is pain, swelling, and stiffness in the joints. This can be anywhere in our bodies from fingers to larger joints like hips and shoulders. Often the pain or stiffness that is associated with arthritis can begin mildly and is often overlooked, only to be attributed to over exercising, age, or normal wear and tear. However, this is our body’s way of warning us that the inflammation is building. The symptoms start out mildly and generally worsen, and by then, the underlying problem is harder to treat.

Unfortunately, chronic inflammation and arthritis are often treated with expensive drugs and risky surgery. They often only offer temporary relief from the symptoms and fail to treat the root problem. In addition to short term relief of only the symptoms, the drugs have side effects that can add to our health problems.

Ayurveda and holistic medicines offer education on inflammation management and a natural, and more affordable method to reduce and treat the root of the problem.

I understand that it may seem overwhelming, but following an ayurvedic plan of treatment will empower you to take control of your body. It will guide you, teaching you to listen to your body and reduce the causes inflammation, and over time, lead you to a healthful life.


Urban Retreat: Celebrate Menopause: Aging Gracefully

Cost: $150 if registered before February 4th, $200 after: To Register  Class will be held in Northeast Minneapolis, led by Kamie

Menopause is a natural transition when the production of estrogen declines and a natural decrease in ovarian function occurs. Menopause occurs at the age of 45-55 years when menstruation stops and sex hormone levels decrease. In Ayurveda, menopause is described as a natural transition of the aging process and does not reflect any disease. It can be effectively managed through diet, lifestyle changes, stress management practices and herbs. Conventional treatment for women going through menopause may also choose to take hormone replacement therapy to manage the symptom management. Though HRT (hormone replacement therapy) can be effective in treating symptoms such as night sweats and hot flashes, the risks outweigh the benefits according to a 2002 study by the Women’s Health Initiative. Read more about the WHI study here. This has created debate regarding the use of conventional hormone therapy. We will cover ayurvedic routines, yoga, pranayama, herbs, exercise, nutrition, lifestyle changes, and more…


Urban Retreat: Rest and Restore: Sleep and Stress

Unwind your body and relax your mind from the tensions of everyday stress. In this retreat, we will focus on practices that support relaxation through different strategies, gentle yoga movement, meditation, mudra (hand positions), pranayama (breath awareness), yoga nidra (meditative sleep), and restorative yoga. A special feature of this class is Yin yoga, which focuses on stretching the deep connective tissue in the joints. Poses are held for approximately 4-5 minutes, enhancing a greater range of motion because of the lengthening of the connective tissue and increased joint circulation. Restorative poses are an important part of any long-term yoga practice; they heal the effects of stress, recharge our energy reserves, and bring balance to our nervous systems. Restorative yoga props such as blankets, blocks, bolsters and straps are used to support the body, fully relaxing the muscles, quieting the mind, and allowing the spirit to experience peace and restoration. The yoga portion of the retreat will end with Yoga Nidra, built around facilitating deep relaxation and rest through guided meditation while lying in a reclined restorative position.

After the yoga portion of the retreat, we will also talk about stress and the importance of restful sleep. The short-term effects of insufficient or poor quality sleep are too familiar for most of us: lethargy, drowsiness, lack of concentration, impaired appetite, digestive problems, low motivation, flat emotions, loss of excitement, dull skin, premature aging, bags under the eyes, less productivity, and less mental capacity the next day. Do any of these sound familiar? Research indicates that the brain actually uses sleep to heal, recover from injuries and trauma, and store needed information. It also gives us the much needed rest from the hustle and bustle of the day. For students, the brain uses sleep to store and categorize information; after a period of intense study, those who make time for adequate sleep are far more likely to remember more information than those who cram the whole night before the exam.

The long-term effects of ongoing sleep deprivation is sometimes less obvious because of prolonged abuse, but the repercussions are far more damaging to our overall health and well-being. Long-term effects consist of impaired immunity, meaning a depleted resistance to diseases like cancer. Studies have linked sleep deprivation to obesity and high blood pressure. The mental and emotional effects cripple our ability to make logical decisions, shaking our emotional stability, and negatively impacting relationships and performance at work. Improper sleep habits are also linked to chronic depression and a disruptive sleep-wake cycle; this can throw the body’s systems out of balance.

Both ayurveda and modern medicine are in agreement about the importance of sleep as a means to recharge and rejuvenate our body, mind, emotions and spirit. In ayurveda we evaluate not only how much we need but also when we should sleep. Stress plays critical role in our sleeping habits.  While it is a part of our everyday life, too much stress can be detrimental in the long run.

Ayurvedic medicine has a few basic ideas. What are the roots of your stress? How can you find ways to change the patterns that are causing it? The way that we view stress is important, but in ayurveda it is believed stress stems in the mind and our perception of our reality. Too much activity in the mind (rajas) leads to attachments to things, needs, wants, and desires, leading to a negative reaction when these impulses can’t be met.

Here are some warning signs that you are moving toward burnout. If you have been experiencing the symptoms over extended periods of time it is time to reconsider you current situation.

EMOTIONAL: irritability and short temper, being anxious over little things, feelings of loneliness, isolation, and depression

BEHAVIORAL: nervousness, pacing, nail biting, franticness, neglecting to do things, sharp increases or decreases in appetite or sleep, and isolation.

PHYSICAL: Body aches and pains, diarrhea or constipation, frequent nausea, feeling sick in the morning, dizziness, heartbeat increases, decreases, or flutters, or frequent colds or illnesses.

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