COLLAGEN: THE STRUCTURAL INTEGRITY OF OUR BODY

Collagen is a protein, but no ordinary protein.
Collagen defines the structural integrity of our bodies and contributes greatly to the vitality that is typically associated with youth. As the body ages, collagen supplies and the ability to regenerate them decrease. This compromises structural integrity, leading to overall degradation of cell form and function. Collagen is the most abundant protein
in the human body, and can be found in bones, skin, organs, muscles, eyes, nails,
teeth, and hair. Best known for their ability to help connective tissue stay
vibrant and flexible, collagen proteins serve two main functions in the body: structure and regeneration.

STRUCTURE : Collagen is the primary structural component for all tissue in the body, providing the strength, tenacity and resilience we rely on daily.

REGENERATION: Collagen aids in regenerating and forming new tissue. Depending on how it is arranged, collagen forms the basis for either rock-hard bone or soft, pliable skin.

true science: collagen depletion Although abundant in our youth, the body’s natural Collagen production typically slows at a rate of 1.5% per year after the age of 25. As Collagen production slows, Collagen fibers in the body become brittle and begin to break down, resulting in many of the telltale signs of aging such as wrinkles, tendon injuries, and joint pain.

Therefore, Collagen supplementation is a crucial part of a healthy regimen for youthful vitality.

COLLAGEN FACTS
BEAUTY:

• 70% of the skin is made of Collagen Type 1&3

• Collagen aids in the transport of nutrients to the hair shaft

• Collagen supports hair and nail thickness and strength
JOINTS:

• 100% of tendons are made of Collagen Type 1&3

• 86% of ligaments are made of Collagen Type 1&3

• 60% of cartilage is made of Collagen Type 2
BONES:

• Over one third of healthy bone is composed of Collagen

10 OUT OF THE BODY’S 11 MAJOR SYSTEMS REQUIRE HEALTHY COLLAGEN &
COLLAGEN REGENERATION

Collagen proteins are responsible for regenerating and forming new tissue.
Worker cells in the body produce a Collagen fiber matrix to form the
structure of tissues. Over time, the Collagen fibers naturally break down
into disorganized Collagen fragments known as peptides, which float loosely in the extracellular fluid. To compensate for the lost Collagen fibers, worker cells have molecular receptors that detect the presence of these loose peptides. Once the
loose Collagen peptides build up to a certain concentration in the extracellular
fluid, the molecular receptors “turn on” the worker cells and new Collagen fibers are produced.
However, this regeneration cycle of Collagen fibers slows down as we age,
resulting in fewer replacement Collagen fibers and a weakened Collagen matrix
in the body’s tissues. This degrading matrix of Collagen fibers results in
many signs of aging, such as wrinkling skin, thinning hair, and less stable connective
tissue. But there is a solution. By supplementing with Sharrets CPH+ , additional Collagen peptides are introduced into the extracellular fluid. The molecular receptors of the
worker cells are “turned on” more frequently, thus continuing the
regeneration cycle at a healthy rate, and rebuilding the Collagen matrix
more quickly

true science: natural law of regeneration

All natural systems exist in a fluid equilibrium of continuous replenishment,
renewal, and decay, regulated by equal and opposing forces. Imbalance in these
forces leads either to adaptation or system decline and eventually failure.
Sophisticated natural systems, biological or ecological, maintain a feedback loop
that detects and responds to significant changes that would otherwise alter the
harmony of the system, thus sustaining vitality and enabling adaptation.
Sharrets CPH+ Collagen is formulated to work with your body’s natural regenerative cycles.

 

 

Make Water More Interesting …HERBAL JUICES by SHARRETS

Think fit  Get fit & stay fit,  which means health is very important factor which should remain fit physically and mentally fit in anyways. Juicing is one of the easiest ways to guarantee the proper nutrition of body. Intake of herbal juice s is the best part in our routine plan. Homemade or herbal juice is best option  for our health.Juice are made of  different types of fruits or herbs,which can easily made at home.

Health concerns such as obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure or other metabolic health concerns in which sugar is an offender,in such case fruits and  herbal juices is best  until your health concern(s) is under control.

There are lots of Herbal juice are like aloe vera, parsley, mint, amla, Karela, Jamun,  ets.which is the best solution  for different problems.Even at market herbs powder is available for easy to make at home by adding some sugar or water.there are lots of benefits of juice, Some of benefits of juice are  as :-

 Improved Digestive Health:

Digesting our food is very important.majority of the population suffers from digestive disorder  at least one of these problems-persistent heartburn, colitis, ulcers, gas, bloating, abdominal pains and nausea. the main reason for digestive disorders is inflammation of the digestive tract that makes it tough for the body to absorb nutrition from the food we consume.so in such case juicing is important which can relive the digestive system & heal from inflamed lining of the intestine.

Increased Energy

We often feel sleepy, lazy, weakness  after eating a heavy meal;because the body uses majority of the energy to digest these foods.so that is why Replacing heavy meals with nourishing fruit or herbs  juices means less work for the digestive system, leaving a lot of energy for other important works, which helps in increasing concentration, mental clarity and sharpness making us more efficient and productive.therefore intake of juice which is important to boost our energy level of the body

Shining, Healthy Hair:

These is another benefits of juicing which included  vitamins, proteins, minerals and nutrients.  Therefore it is important to nourish your hair from within if you want to have healthy and thick shining tresses and the best way to do it though fresh fruit and herbal juices that not only reduces hair fall but also promotes hair growth effectively.

 

Hence, these are the some benefits of herbal juice which are important in our routine life

 

 

MCT Oil May Help With Weight Loss in Several Ways


There are several ways that MCTs may help with weight loss, including:

  • Lower Energy Density: MCTs provide around 10% fewer calories than LCTs, or 8.4 calories per gram for MCTs versus 9.2 calories per gram for LCTs (10) .
  • Increase Fullness: One study found that compared to LCTs, MCTs resulted in greater increases in peptide YY and  leptin , two hormones that help reduce appetite and increase feelings of fullness .
  • Fat Storage: Given that MCTs are absorbed and used more rapidly than LCTs, they are less likely to be stored as body fat .
  • Burn Calories: Studies in animals and humans show that MCTs (mainly C8 and C10) may increase the body’s ability to burn fat and calories .
  • Greater Fat Loss: One study found that an MCT-rich diet caused greater fat burning and fat loss than a diet higher in LCTs. However, these effects may disappear after 2–3 weeks once the body has adapted .
  • Low-carb Diets: Very low-carb or ketogenic diets are a effective ways to lose weight. Given that MCTs produce ketones, adding them to your diet can increase the number of carbs you can eat while staying in ketosis .

Bottom Line: MCTs may aid in weight loss through reduced calorie intake, increased fullness, less fat storage, improved calorie burning and increased ketones on low-carb diets.

Do MCTs Actually Cause Weight Loss?

Weight Scale

While many studies have found positive effects of MCTs on weight loss, other studies have found no effects.

In a review of 14 studies, 7 evaluated fullness, 8 measured weight loss and 6 assessed calorie-burning.

Only one study found increases in fullness, while 6 studies found reductions in weight and 4 found increased calorie burning

In another review of 12 animal studies, 7 reported a decrease in weight gain and 5 found no differences. In terms of food intake, 4 detected a decrease, 1 detected an increase and 7 found no differences .

In addition, the amount of weight loss caused by MCTs is actually very modest.

A review of 13 studies found that on average the amount of weight lost on a diet high in MCTs was only 1.1 lbs (0.5 kg) over 3 weeks or more when compared to a diet high in LCTs .

Another study found that a diet rich in medium-chain triglycerides resulted in a 2-lb (0.9-kg) greater weight loss than a diet rich in LCTs over a 12 week period .

Further high-quality studies are needed to determine how effective MCTs are for weight loss and what amounts need to be taken to experience benefits.

Bottom Line: A diet high in medium-chain triglycerides may help with weight loss, although the effect is generally quite modest.

Evidence for MCTs Enhancing Exercise Performance is Weak

MCTs are thought to increase energy levels during high-intensity exercise and serve as an alternative energy source, sparing glycogen stores.

This may positively affect endurance and have benefits for athletes on low carb diets

One animal study found that mice fed a diet rich in medium-chain triglycerides did much better in swimming tests than mice fed a diet rich in LCTs

Additionally, consuming food containing MCTs instead of LCTs for 2 weeks resulted in longer duration of high-intensity exercise among recreational athletes

Although the evidence seems positive, there are not enough studies available to confirm this benefit, and the overall link is weak

Bottom Line: The link between MCTs and improved exercise performance is weak and more studies are needed to confirm these claims.

Other Potential Health Benefits of MCT oil

A Jar of Coconut Oil and a Teaspoon

The use of medium-chain triglycerides and MCT oil has been associated with several other health benefits.

Cholesterol

MCTs have been linked to lower cholesterol levels in both animal and human studies.

For example, calves consuming MCT-rich milk had lower cholesterol than calves fed LCT-rich milk

Several studies in rats have linked coconut oil to improved cholesterol levels and higher antioxidant vitamin levels

A study in 40 women found that consuming coconut oil along with a low-calorie diet reduced LDL cholesterol and increased HDL cholesterol, compared to women consuming soybean oil

Improvements in cholesterol and antioxidant levels may lead to a reduced risk of heart disease over the long term.

However, it is important to note that some older studies report that MCT supplements had no effects or even negative effects on cholesterol

One study in 14 healthy men reported that MCT supplements negatively affected cholesterol, increasing total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol .

Bottom Line: Diets high in MCT-rich foods like coconut oil may have benefits for cholesterol levels. However, the evidence is mixed.

Diabetes

MCTs may also help lower blood sugar levels. In one study, diets rich in MCTs increased insulin sensitivity in adults with type 2 diabetes

Another study in 40 overweight individuals with type 2 diabetes found that supplementing with MCTs improved diabetes risk factors. It reduced body weight, waist circumference and insulin resistance .

However, evidence for the use of medium-chain triglycerides in diabetes is limited. More research is needed to determine its full effects.

Bottom Line: MCTs may help lower blood sugar levels by reducing insulin resistance. However, more research is needed to confirm this benefit.

Brain Function

MCTs produce ketones, which act as an alternative energy source for the brain and can therefore improve brain function.

Recently there has been more interest in the use of MCTs to treat or prevent brain disorders like Alzheimer’s disease and dementia .

One major study found that MCTs improved learning, memory and brain processing in people with mild to moderate Alzheimer’s disease. However, this was only effective in people containing a particular gene, the APOE4 gene .

Overall, the evidence is limited to short studies with small sample sizes, so more research is needed.

Bottom Line: MCTs may improve brain function in people with Alzheimer’s disease who have a particular genetic make-up. More research is needed.

Other Medical Conditions

Because MCTs are an easily absorbed and digested energy source, they’ve been used for years to treat malnutrition and disorders that hinder nutrient absorption.

Conditions that benefit from medium-chain triglyceride supplements include diarrhea, steatorrhea (fat indigestion) and liver disease. Patients undergoing bowel or stomach surgery may also benefit.

Evidence also supports the use of MCTs in ketogenic diets treating epilepsy

The use of MCTs allows children suffering from seizures to eat larger portions and tolerate more  calories and carbs than on classic ketogenic diets

Bottom Line: MCTs are effective at treating a number of clinical conditions including malnutrition, malabsorption disorders and epilepsy.

Dosage, Safety and Side Effects

Oil on a Spoon

MCT oil appears to be safe for most people.

It is not clear what dose is needed to obtain potential health benefits, but many supplement labels suggest 1–3 tablespoons daily.

There are currently no reported adverse interactions with medications or other serious side effects.

However, some minor side effects have been reported and include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and an upset stomach.

These can be avoided by starting with small doses, such as 1 teaspoon, and increasing intake slowly. Once tolerated, MCT oil can be taken by the tablespoon.

Type 1 Diabetes and MCTs

Some sources discourage people with type 1 diabetes from taking medium-chain triglycerides due to the accompanying production of ketones.

It is thought that high levels of ketones in the blood may increase the risk of ketoacidosis, a very serious condition that can occur in type 1 diabetics.

However, the nutritional ketosis caused by a low-carb diet is completely different than diabetic ketoacidosis, a very serious condition caused by a lack of insulin.

In people with well-controlled diabetes and healthy blood sugar levels , the amount of ketones remain within a safe range even during ketosis.

There are limited studies available that explore the use of MCTs in type 1 diabetes. However, some have been conducted with no harmful effects .

THE BENEFITS OF MCT OIL: NOT ALL FATS ARE CREATED EQUAL!

What We Know As Fat. Fats are made up of fatty acids. The size of each fatty acid depends on its carbon chain length. Whether saturated or unsaturated, most long chain triglycerides (LCTs) act as the building blocks of body fat. Due to their long 14-24-carbon length, the body recognizes long-chain fatty acids (LCFAs) as an efficient storage fuel source. As a result, the body deposits LCFAs as fat tissue until blood glucose levels are depleted.

The Other Fat. Due to the shorter length of its fatty acids (8-12-carbon length), the body views medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) as an inefficient energy source that isn’t suitable for fat storage. To the body, singular medium-chain fatty acids (MCFAs) actually resemble carbohydrates and are metabolized immediately instead of being deposited as fat.

Standing Strong. Being 100% saturated fats, MCTs do not contain any carbon double bonds – maximizing the carrying capacity of hydrogen atoms. This makes them extremely stable and resistant to oxidation and free radical formation, thereby reducing the aging process (another one of the benefits of mct oil!)

References:
Fife, B. (2004). The Coconut Oil Miracle. New York: Avery.
Thampan, P. K. (1994). Facts and fallacies about coconut oil. Jakarta: Asian and Pacific Coconut Community.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

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3 YOGA MOVES TO GET STRONG, SEXY, AND SVELTE THIS SUMMER

HAVE YOU EVER CONSIDERED DOING YOGA FOR STRENGTH?

Practicing yoga is a great way to get strong, sexy, and svelte during summer. Get ready to feel the burn! These three moves will help you tackle your body’s problem areas and, most importantly, improve your overall body confidence.

Eagle Yoga Pose - Kristin McGee

Eagle Pose

Why it works: The Eagle is a great pose to strengthen and stretch the ankles, calves, thighs, hips, shoulders, and upper back. This one pose works on many areas of the body to make it stronger and sexier.

How it works: Bend your knees enough to wrap one thigh over the other at the top of the thigh. See if you can double cross the foot behind the standing leg’s calf. If this is too challenging, just keep the foot out or tap it to the floor. Wrap your arms high at the shoulders and double cross at the forearms to bring the palms together. If you can’t press the palms, press the backs of the hands. Hollow out your abdominals and bow forward as you gaze down the hands. Pick a spot on the floor to rest your gaze and hold for 8 to 10 breaths. When you come up and unwind, notice how less anxious you feel and note the sensation of spaciousness in your thoughts and your body. Repeat on the other side.

Incline Plank - Kristin McGee - Yoga

Incline Plank

Why it works: This pose strengthens and stretches the shoulders. It strengthens the arms, upper back, legs, glutes, and wrists and stretches the chest, abdomen, feet, and ankles.

How it works: Start seated with your legs out in front of you, place your hands about 10 inches behind your hips with fingers facing forward. Press in to your hands and feet and lift your entire body off the floor. Hold for 5 breaths then lower down and notice the opening in your heart center.

 

Warrior I - Kristin McGee

Warrior I

Why it works: Warrior I is another great yoga pose to strengthen and stretch the shoulders, arms, thighs, calves and ankles. And you just can’t help but feel like a warrior in this pose!

How it works: Start standing with your feet hip-distance apart and your arms at your sides. Turn your front foot 90 degrees. Turn your back foot to 75 degrees. Step your foot a little to the left if needed. Your back heel should be dropped and back leg should be straight. Your hips and ribs should be facing forward. If your knee is bothered, you can always open that hip up a bit. Lunge the right knee, but do not let the knee go past the ankle. Lift your arms alongside your ears. Either keep the arms parallel or press the palms together. Tilt the head back and gaze up at the thumbs. Hold up for one minute. To release, press your weight through the back heel and straighten the front foot. Lower the arms and turn to the left. Repeat on the opposite side.

Courtesy www.sharrets.com

Arthritis – Osteoarthritis/ Rheumatoid

 

The term arthritis means inflammation of a joint or joints. Arthritis is more than 100 medical conditions. Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis are the two most common forms of arthritis.

SYMPTOMS : Osteoarthritis is characterised by joint pain, stiffness (especially after periods of rest), swelling and tenderness. The affected joints may also have a diminished range of motion.

The symptoms may interfere with the sufferer’s ability to participate in the basic activities of daily living, such as walking around and using household utensils.

Osteoarthritis develops slowly  and is most common in older people , but is also seen in the young.

Bony growths or spurs may develop on the margins of affected joints. There may be audible cracking or grating noises when the joint moves.

Rheumatoid arthritis causes joint pain that is sometimes quite severe. Other symptoms may include stiffness (especially in the mornings), joint swelling, muscle weakness, fatigue, anaemia, fever, and weight loss.

Rheumatoid arthritis usually affects more than one joint at a time, often in a symmetrical pattern (for example both wrists). The joints may become deformed and damaged, especially in the first few years of the disease.

Sufferers may experience intermittent flare-ups during which the joints become more inflamed and painful.

CAUSES : Osteoarthritis is associated with loss of the cartilage in a joint.

Risk factors include getting older, being overweight or obese, a history of injury or trauma to the affected joint, and participation in sports or occupations that involve repetitive stress to the affected joint   . For example, osteoarthritis of the knee commonly occurs in people whose occupations involve kneeling or squatting.

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder, a disease in which the body turns on itself, attacking its own tissues. Its underlying cause is unknown.

Contributing factors to rheumatoid arthritis may include being a smoker and having a family history of the disease.

NATURAL THERAPIES 

  • Collagen : Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body.
    A key constituent of all connective tissue, it provides the infrastructure of the musculoskeletal system and is the main structural element of skin. Collagen peptides are the hydrolyzed form of collagen.
    Their health benefits have been recognized for almost ten centuries. They have a long history of use in Asia, particularly Japan, where they are the nutricosmetic of choice for skin beauty. Today, collagen peptides are a trusted ingredient by consumers throughout the world.
  • Curcumin (Turmeric) : Turmeric has been used by Ayurvedic practitioners in India since 1900 B.C. Traders brought this powerful herb to China in 700 A.D. Since then it has been used traditionally around the world in many cultures for supporting health. It is now a staple in the diets of many cultures. After the turmeric root is processed to powder, it becomes a deep, orange-yellow and is often used to impart colour to mustard or fabric. Today, turmeric is the subject of much scientific research into its potential health benefits. During research, it was discovered that curcumin is the principal curcuminoid of turmeric. Studies show curcumin is responsible for most of the biological activity of turmeric, and is proactive in maintaining human health. SHARRETS Turmeric Extract is standardized to 95% curcumin.
    Sharrets offers Turmeric Extract to quench the fire of metabolic inflammation, and support multiple body systems to maintain good health. Turmeric root is used extensively in Indian cuisine, and is held in high regard in Ayurvedic herbalism where it’s referred to as the “cleanser of the body.” Women in India often enjoy using turmeric for beauty purposes.
  • S ADENOSYL  SAMe (S-Adenosyl-L-Methionine) acts like a vitamin especially for your mood, your joints and your liver. SAMe can help you feel better physically and emotionally naturally, safely, effectively.
    SAM-e is a natural substance that is in every living cell and helps make the brain chemicals (called neurotransmitters) that affect your mood. The most remarkable thing about SAM-e is that it can help you in so many different ways. Not only is SAM-e known for helping to boost mood, but it plays a big role in how you move and how you feel. For example, SAM-e helps support your cartilage—the “cushiony” substance that acts as a shock absorber in your joints. SAM-e has even been observed to support the liver in its cleansing function.

LIFESTYLE FACTORS

  • If you suspect you’re suffering from arthritis, prompt diagnosis will determine the type, and therefore, the right form of treatment and most appropriate changes to your diet and lifestyle. Talk to your doctor for more information.
  • With the exception of gout, potential links between arthritis and diet are not well understood. Some people do find that avoiding certain foods helps their arthritis symptoms, but this is believed to be due to food intolerances, rather than a deleterious effect of certain foods on arthritis itself.
  • Food allergies and intolerances may be a particular issue for people with rheumatoid arthritis, and following an elimination diet under the supervision of your healthcare professional may help to determine which foods (if any) are contributing to your health issues. The most common intolerances/allergies in rheumatoid arthritis include wheat, corn, dairy products, beef and the nightshade vegetables (which include tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, capsicum and chillies).
  • There is some evidence that following a vegetarian diet may aid the management of rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Include plenty of omega-3 oils in your diet in order to take advantage of their anti-inflammatory properties. Good sources include fish (and fish oil capsules), ground flaxseeds also called linseeds (and flaxseed oil capsules), canola oil, and walnuts.
  • Being overweight has a negative effect on your joints, forcing them to bear a greater load. Work with your healthcare professional to devise a diet and exercise regime that allows you to achieve a healthy body weight without aggravating your arthritis.
  • Exercise is important for both osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis sufferers and helps to improve mobility, flexibility, posture, muscle strength and balance, while also aiding the management of symptoms such as stress, pain and fatigue. Aim for a combination of activities that improve your flexibility, increase your muscle strength, and support your aerobic fitness.
  • Low impact forms of exercise such as swimming, walking, aquarobics, weight lifting and cycling may be particularly beneficial , and there is also some preliminary evidence suggesting that doing yoga may be beneficial for rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Don’t start a new exercise programme without first talking to your healthcare professional. Your physiotherapist or exercise physiologist may prescribe specific exercises that are tailored to your personal needs.
  • Don’t overdo it. Continuing to experience joint pain two hours after you’ve finished exercising is an indication that next time you need to take things more easily.
  • Stop your exercise session if it causes excessive or unusual pain.
  • Skeletal misalignments may aggravate arthritis by increasing the pressure on your joints, so treatment from a chiropractor or osteopath may be beneficial for you, and in some cases orthotic insoles may also be helpful.
  • Ask your doctor or occupational therapist about specialised household gadgets that have been adapted for ease of use by patients with arthritis.

REMEDIES

Exercise is important in both the prevention and treatment of arthritis . It improves muscle strength and maintains mobility.

Overweight and obesity also affect the weight bearing joints, which become irritated and stressed by having to carry too much of a load.

Correct posture is also important in avoiding body weight to be distributed unevenly, and causing stiffness and crippling.

IMPORTANT NOTES

  • Symptoms that appear to be arthritis may actually be indicative of other underlying health problems, so it’s important that you see your healthcare professional for a diagnosis.
  • Early diagnosis and treatment may help to limit joint damage and deformity in rheumatoid arthritis.
  • In severe cases of osteoarthritis, joint replacement surgery may be necessary.

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Yoga Offers New Hope for Victims of Trauma and Sexual Abuse

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Yoga and health -Watch video

Story at-a-glance

  • Yoga has been shown to improve mental health, including depression, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, childhood trauma and sexual abuse
  • Yoga is uniquely suitable for treating trauma, as regulated breathing calms your parasympathetic nervous system, and the mindfulness required helps counteract dissociative effects of trauma
  • In teenagers, yoga has been found to strengthen emotional resilience and ability to manage anger; in the elderly, it’s been shown to stave off cognitive decline to a greater degree than aerobic exercise

Yoga — a form of moving meditation that demands focused attention on your body — has many physical, mental, emotional and even spiritual benefits that can be helpful for those struggling with pain- and/or stress-related health problems. As you learn new ways of moving and responding to your body, your mind and emotions tend to shift and change as well.

In a sense, you not only become more physically flexible, but your mental outlook and approach to life may also gain newfound flexibility.

Yoga appears to be particularly beneficial when it comes to mental health, with studies showing it helps improve psychiatric disorders such as depression, anxiety, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and schizophrenia

Some of these studies suggest yoga can actually have an effect similar to that of antidepressants and psychotherapy.

In studies with teenage participants, yoga has been found to strengthen emotional resilience and ability to manage anger. In the elderly, it’s been shown to stave off cognitive decline to a greater degree than aerobic exercise. Most recently, gentle yoga practice has been identified as a valuable aid in healing childhood trauma, known to be a source of not only poor mental health but also a contributor to chronic health problems such as diabetes , heart disease and cancer.

Trauma-Sensitive Yoga Benefits Female Juvenile Delinquents

The report  in question, published by the Georgetown Center on Poverty and Inequality, reviews over 40 studies assessing the mental health benefits of yoga , with a focus on female juvenile delinquents, whose trauma is disproportionally based on violence within relationships and sexual violations.

Previous investigations have found girls in the juvenile justice system are twice as likely to report past physical abuse than boys (42 percent versus 22 percent), with 35 percent of girls in the juvenile justice system having experienced sexual abuse, compared to 8 percent of boys.

Not surprisingly, girls are at increased risk of psychological problems; 80 percent have received at least one psychiatric diagnosis compared to 67 percent of males. As reported by NPR:

“The … report argues that, since the effects of trauma can be physical, ‘body-mind’ interventions, like yoga, may be able to uniquely address them. Regulated breathing, for example, calms the parasympathetic nervous system. Practicing staying in the moment counteracts some of the dissociative effects of trauma.

And the physical activity of yoga, of course, can directly improve health. Yoga that is specifically designed for victims of trauma has modifications when compared with traditional yoga teaching.

For example, says Missy Hart, ‘They always ask you if you want to be touched,’ for an adjustment in a pose. ‘I see now that really helped me. Other girls who have experienced sexual abuse, sexual trauma or are in there for prostitution at the age of 13, 14, they had their body image all mixed up.’”

 

How Yoga May Benefit Victims of Trauma

Co-author Rebecca Epstein commented on the report’s findings, saying:16

“What we’re learning is that fights go down on wards after adolescents participate [in yoga]. Girls are requesting medicine less often. They have fewer physical complaints.”

Other noted benefits include improved:

  • Emotional awareness and regulation (through the restoration of neurological pathways in the brain’s emotional awareness processing center)
  • Coping skills
  • Body awareness, “body connectedness” and self-empowerment, in part by rebuilding neural networks in the insula and prefrontal cortex
  • Relationship and parenting skills
  • Physical and psychological health outcomes. By improving stress-related imbalances in your nervous system, yoga can help relieve a range of symptoms found in common mental health disorders. Researchers also believe yoga can be helpful for conditions like epilepsy, chronic pain, depression, anxiety and PTSD by increasing brain chemicals like gamma amino-butyric acid (GABA)

The report concluded that trauma-informed yoga is a “cost-effective and sustainable” way to address and heal the physical and psychological trauma haunting so many young girls in the juvenile justice system.

To support that end, the authors recommend interpreting “existing health laws to allow yoga and mindfulness programs to be introduced into juvenile justice settings,” expanding access to already existing yoga programs and improving on such programs by including “sensitivity to race, ethnicity, sexual orientation and gender identity in their design,” and lastly, increasing funding and research of yoga and mindfulness-based trauma programs.

Previous research certainly supports the use of yoga in prison settings, showing it helps reduce anxiety and aggression among inmates. After doing yoga once a week for 10 weeks, participants in one such study reported feeling less stressed, and also scored better on tests of executive control, indicating a higher degree of thoughtfulness and attention to their surroundings.

Other Mind-Body Benefits of Yoga

Other studies have demonstrated that regular yoga practice can impart a number of physical, mental and emotional benefits, including the following:

Improved immune function Improved sleep
Reduced risk for migraines Lowered risk of hypertension and heart disease and improvements in atrial fibrillation (irregular heartbeat)
Lowered cortisol (stress hormone) level by down regulating hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and calming sympathetic nervous system Improved sexual performance and satisfaction in both sexes
Reduced food cravingsand weight loss. In one study,overweight yoga participants lost an average of 5 pounds, whereas the non-yoga group gained 13 pounds.

This held true even when accounting for differences in diet.

One possible reason for this is yoga’s ability to influence leptin,a hormone that plays a key role in regulating energy intake and energy expenditure

Improved mood. A 2011 review of published clinical studies on yoga concluded yoga movements stimulate skin pressure receptors that boost activity in your brain and vagus nerve, both of which influence the production and release of various hormones and neurotransmitters, including serotonin, thought to play a role in mood regulation, appetite control and sleep

One explanation for yoga’s wide-ranging effects is that it actually alters genetic expression, and it does this through its beneficial effects on your mind! In fact, the relaxation response triggered by meditative practices has been shown to affect at least 2,209 genes. As previously reported by the Institute of Science in Society:

Yogic meditative practices were shown to have positive effects on the heart rate, blood pressure and low density lipoprotein cholesterol, and decrease the levels of salivary cortisol, the stress hormone.

These findings are consistent with a down regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis and the sympathetic nervous system, both of which are known to be overactivated by the stressful western lifestyle. Now, a series of new studies on gene expression profiles in immune cells circulating in the blood are showing that yogic/meditative practices have profound effects at the molecular level.”

Yoga Intervention for Depression

According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness,nearly 44 million Americans experience some form of mental illness in any given year, and  is one of the most common mental disorders in the U.S. If not effectively treated, depression may become chronic.

Considering the widespread incidence of depression and other stress-related disorders, and the fact that 40 percent of individuals with major depressive disorder treated with antidepressants fail to achieve remission, the rising popularity and acceptance of yoga may be a blessing.

In a recent studyassessing the effect of Iyengar yoga classes on participants diagnosed with major depressive disorder found the practice reduced symptoms by at least 50 percent. Lyengar is a specific form of  that focuses on detail and precise alignment of posture combined with deep breathing.

As noted by study author Dr. Chris Streeter, associate professor of psychiatry and neurology at Boston University School of Medicine, yoga has the clear advantage of avoiding side effects from drug treatments. He commented:

“While most pharmacologic treatments for depression target monoamine systems, such as serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, this intervention targets the parasympathetic and gamma aminobutyric acid system and provides a new avenue for treatment.”

Prior studies using other forms of yoga for treatment of depression have also recorded positive results. As noted by Dr. Alan Manevitz, a clinical psychiatrist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City:

“The mechanism of action is similar to other exercise techniques that activate the release of ‘feel good’ brain chemicals … [and may] reduce immune system chemicals that can worsen depression. It has been demonstrated that ‘mindful’ movement — conscious awareness — has a much more beneficial impact on the central nervous system.”

The findings from the current study corroborate findings from a 2016 study from the University of Pennsylvania, in which researchers found participants who suffered from depression, and had an inadequate response to antidepressant medication, found significant relief through yoga.

Improved Mood and Reduced Anxiety Are Core Benefits of Yoga

Indeed, aside from building core strength and flexibility, some of the greatest scientifically-proven benefits of yoga are improved mood and decreased stress and anxiety. Research has linked these improvements to changes in GABA, an amino acid that acts as a neurotransmitter in your central nervous system. GABA is responsible for blocking nerve impulses, telling the adjoining nerve cells not to “fire” or send an impulse.

Low levels of GABA can result in nerve cells firing frequently and easily, thereby triggering or contributing to anxiety disorders and conditions such as headaches , cognitive impairments  and seizure disorders. Studies have identified yoga as a technique that naturally increases your thalamic GABA levels. Improvements in stress response and a possible role in the treatment of PTSD are also attributed through scientific study to the use of yoga poses and breathing.

Consider Outdoor Yoga for Additional Benefits

Have you noticed how much better you feel when you walk barefoot on the ground, whether it’s dirt or sand or grass? For most of our evolutionary history, humans have had continuous contact with the earth, but this is certainly not the case today. We are separated from it by a barrier of asphalt, wood, rugs, plastics and shoes.

The reason it feels so good walking barefoot is because living in direct contact with the earth grounds your body , producing beneficial electrophysiological changes that help protect you from potentially disruptive electromagnetic fields (EMFs). Some of the harmful EMFs closest to our bodies are those generated by the electronic devices that have practically become a modern appendage, such as your smartphone and iPad.

Your immune system functions optimally when your body has an adequate supply of electrons, which are easily and naturally obtained by barefoot/bare skin contact with the Earth. Research indicates Earth’s electrons are the ultimate antioxidants, acting as powerful anti-inflammatories.

So, if you want to significantly bump up your yoga benefits, take your poses outside, to ground yourself at the same time. Make sure your feet or hands are in direct contact with the Earth, rather than separated from it by a rubber mat. Grass or even sand make suitable yoga substrates on which to take your poses.

The above report is for general information only ,

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