Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Time To Breathe

By: Libby Young

Our brains on average make up only 2 percent of our total body weight. But did you 

know that it uses 25 percent of our body’s total oxygen? The kidneys use only 12 

percent and the heart, a meager 7 percent. 

Coined phrases like “Remember to breathe” or “Just breathe” have become more 

emotional placaters than they have biological reminders. Breathing is mental and 

emotionally soothing. It’s been proven to lower stress and reduces anxiety 

drastically and immediately. Breathing to get through pain, breathing to ease a 

crisis, breathing to calm the soul, and so on, is very important. But let’s also not 

forget to breathe for our bodies. 

“Of all the essential nutrients needed by the human, oxygen is the one we must have 

on a moment to moment basis. We can’t live without it even for a few minutes, yet, 

this is the one nutrient most people don’t associate with deficiency problems. 

Nothing could be further from the truth.”    -Raymond Francis

Think about the function of your brain. A little bit of play on words, but thinking is 

not our brains only function. Our brain is the operation system of our body. Of 

course it’s responsible for things like language, creativity, imagination, memory, and 

processing; but its more important role is the complete functionality of our bodies. 

Without our brains our bodies wouldn’t work. Our hearts won’t beat, our stomachs 

won’t digest, our blood won’t flow, much less the millions of other inner workings of 

our wonderful bodies are capable of. So what fuels our brains? Well we know at 

lease 25 percent oxygen does. 

Breathing has become so subconscious for us, that we don’t even realize how 

shallow or fast we breathe on any given day. We have become oxygen deficient. So 

while we might not remember every minute or even every hour to stop and breathe 

fully and slowly, breathe when you can. Establish a pattern of every morning taking 

5 minutes to take deep, slow breaths. Repeat it at night before sleeping. You might 

be surprised how quickly this can become a habit. Breathe when you remember to, 

in the middle of a meeting, on your lunch break, when listening to a friend. The great 

part about it is that no one will even notice! 

Let’s help our bodies by helping our brains. Keep using breath for emotional 

support, but take time in the day to breathe for our physical health as well. Enrich 

yourself with much needed oxygen; your brains will thank you for it!

Friday, October 2, 2015

Information Overload

Vegetarian, pescetarian, flexitarian, fruitarian, even breatharian, what does

any of it really mean? And the real question being: what are we actually supposed to

eat? With so much information out there, we suffer from a lack of it. There’s science

that shows harmful evidence against drinking coffee one week and the next week a

study has been done showing that drinking coffee can decrease your cancer risk. It’s

this same story across the board of food and nutrition. Eat this, don’t eat that, drink

this, but don’t drink too much of that, I’m beginning to think the breatharians have it

I’m not writing this to tell you what to eat or even how much. I want to talk

about information in the nutritional world. When I first began my journey into

nutrition, I felt lost. But if there were scores of books, articles, research papers,

documentaries, movies, and entire websites dedicated to nutritional information,

why did I feel this way? Most people, including myself, often surround themselves in

a fog when presented with an overabundance of information they don’t understand.

It’s not that we are too dumb to make sense of the facts; it’s more about the inability

to process all of said facts instantaneously. With the overabundance of facts about

nutrition, it’s no wonder that most people don’t process it all. So what can we do?

How do we understand what we are supposed to eat?

1. Start small.

Don’t expect to understand nutrition in a day. Food is a science. Just as you

would not be able to master the Theory of Relativity on your lunch break, neither

will you understand all theories of nutritional science. So begin with the basics. Start

to study the science; what is food made of, what are its components? Learn your

macros from your micros. Learn what enzymes are! Food is so much more than

what we pop in the microwave or pick up from the drive-thru. Study the origins.

2. Know your sources

As you begin to look deeper into the science of food, make sure that you are

reading the right material. This is not a subjective thing. If I’m looking at a website

called rippedmuscles.com and reading about plant protein versus animal protein

they may have some skewed facts versus Harvard.edu, which will have information

based on unbiased science.

3. Do the research yourself

Don’t be afraid to read research papers yourself. A wise man once told me,

“Data doesn’t lie, it’s the interpretation of that data that can lie.” Be broad in your

research as well. If you read an article or watch a documentary supporting

something, read or watch its counterpoint, and listen to the dissuading arguments.

Read and watch everything, then make an informed decision. You can’t intake too

much, I promise.

4. Get your hands dirty

As you discover more about nutrition, experiment with it for yourself. When

you begin making informational leaps and bounds, translate it to your life. Cook,

blend, chop, bake, plant, breathe, see what works for you. Give it a little time too. But

if it’s not working, then keep expanding. Don’t get stuck in a nutritional box.

5. Share and connect

Talk about your dietary discoveries and changes with friends and family or

even groups on social media. Having that support can make a huge difference. And

by reaching out, you never know who might share the same ideas as you do! Swap

facts, share recipes, have an experimental cooking night. Food is life, so it makes

sense to incorporate it into other areas of life.

Food is an amazing thing, not something to be misunderstood. Don’t let fad

diets and propaganda from industry fool you into thinking inside the box. Break

free, learn, grow, and make your own nutritional choices for yourself. Life can be

more than delicious; it can also be nutritious.

Information Overload by Libby Young check out her classes at maitriyogaarkansas.com