Wednesday, July 18, 2012

ling Eating Disorders With Mindfulness And Meditation.

Eating disorders, such as anorexia and bulimia, affect an individual’s attitude and emotions when it comes to food. Starving or binging oneself can cause a person to experience physical and mental problems. Though treatment for eating disorders can be difficult, a ray of hope in the healing aspects of meditation and mindfulness has been discovered. Not only can the art of meditation help alleviate symptoms associated with healing disorders, but sometimes it can even cure them. What is mindfulness and meditation? Mindfulness essentially means stilling the mind and being attentive to the present. It comes from the Buddhist tradition as a spiritual aspect experienced while journeying toward enlightenment. In the Western world, mindfulness has been found to alleviate or eliminate various psychological disorders such as anxiety, depression, and eating disorders. Meditation is a practice that individuals use to train the mind and experience a heightened sense of consciousness. There are various kinds of meditation that individuals employ to come to a sense of peace and increased concentration in the present. Meditation differs from mindfulness in that it is more of a practice, whereas mindfulness is likened more to a continual state. People generally meditate to become more mindful. When it comes to eating disorders, the way one identifies with the mind is normally the root of the problem. The mind is always racing with thoughts and for people who struggle with eating disorders the mind races with thoughts that tell them to either starve or binge. Their thoughts about food and their bodies are often irrational or they simply struggle with intense negative emotions, such as anger, shame, fear, or depression. They use food as a tool for temporary relief of such emotions. The thoughts can cause obsessive behavior. For example, a teen girl who wants to be very thin because she believes that people will like her better if she is super thin may develop anorexia and begin to starve herself to be skinny. Her thoughts tell her that she is not thin enough. When she looks in the mirror she continually sees herself as being overweight. Her response is to starve herself. Food, or the avoidance of food, becomes her obsession and her sense of self-worth. The practice of mindfulness and meditation will allow those suffering with eating disorders to take control over their thoughts and experience less obsessiveness. Specialized meditation can help conquer the urges to binge, purge and starve, as various researchers have proven that meditation can be the most powerful means of producing changes in the body and the mind. Separation from the mind and ego. Mindfulness will allow an individual to become separate from the mind and the ego so that identification with those negative thoughts can be cut off. Thoughts about food, negative emotions, stress, and so on will begin to dwindle and float away as one becomes more mindful of their true spiritual self. At the same time a sense of peace and relaxation will begin to occur as the art of meditation and mindfulness increase. It may take time to learn the art of meditation, but that is alright. If you take time daily to practice, you will find that week by week your meditation time will become longer and you will be able to notice your thought life and even physical body changing little by little. If you do not know how to meditate, take some time to read about it or get a mentor to help you out in this area. There are many different kinds of meditation so explore various ways and see what it is you like best. Eating disorders can be helped by practicing the art of meditation and becoming more mindful. There is no need to continue to suffer from an eating disorder. Take some time to begin your journey of meditation today, even if it is just for a few moments. More about meditation for eating disorders on

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Bulimia food addiction: what part of the brain is responsible and how

Bulimia (bulimia nervosa) is an addictive eating disorder which begins
with physical cravings then evolves into a mental obsession and finally
turns into a spiritual illness. It usually comes from an unresolved
trauma (emotional, psychological or even physical) earlier in life.

The question is what is the mechanism of developing a bulimic food
addiction? What happens in a bulimic brain when she/he develops bulimia?

Here is the short and simple explanation. Our brain consists of two
halves (called hemispheres). Both hemispheres are covered by a thick
layer called the cortex. The cortex is the conscious part of the brain,
the part we think with (just logic thinking). But this part of the
brain is not responsible for our feelings.

We have another small part of our brain, which lies between the two
hemispheres and connects them. This little part is called the limbic
system. The limbic system as discussed in the next section, is involved
in regulating emotions and motivations. In addition, parts of the
limbic system, the amygdala and hippocampus, are important for memory.

The limbic system does not have a conscious thoughts it has only feelings.
In other words, the limbic system is what we call our subconscious
or subconscious mind.

It has been found that people with emotional problems have an imbalance
of the limbic system or subconscious. This includes problems like anxiety,
depression, eating disorders, alcoholism and other addictions.

In the period of acute stress, we also have an imbalance in the limbic
system (or subconscious) - that is why stress affects us, not only
emotionally, but mentally and physically as well.

After stress, some people recover quickly - and we call them "strong people."
What "strong" actually means is that they know how to affect their limbic
system (subconscious) and put it in balance.

The question is: how to influence the limbic system and put it in the
right balance?

The answer is: the cortex, which is the conscious part of the brain
and through this we have influence over the limbic system the non-conscious
part. The cortex, which makes decisions for us, learns new things, and
understands things for us, should influence the non-conscious part of
the brain by giving signals to the limbic system to work differently.

Most eating disorders are a learned behavior. Initially you taught
yourself to diet, or to become slim. Initially it was your own conscious
decision to lose weight because you wanted to look better. This conscious
decision was made by your cortex and sent to your limbic system, which
then gave you feelings (like feeling good about yourself when you
become slim).

So, what you need to do is reverse this faulty teaching; you (or your cortex)
should make another decision (about changing your own image and feelings
that you have now, like starving yourself or purging, back to a normal
response) and send a signal to your limbic system to foster good
feelings about yourself and make new decision about your life.

How do you do this? There are lots of examples how this works. There
are special new programs that can automatically affect the limbic
system of your brain (the part of the brain where the eating disorder lives).
These programs can identify and eliminate your subconscious blockages
that created your eating disorder in the first place.

To conclude, bulimia food addiction develops as a result of subconscious
processes due to unresolved trauma or strong dissatisfaction with one's
body image. The limbic system is responsible for developing the problem
but the conscious part of the brain (cortex) can affect it and reverse
the abnormal mental process.

To learn more how to do this read

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Anorexia Side Effects

Anorexia is not just about weight loss and refusing to eat. Anorexia has major side effects on the mental, physical and emotional state of a person.

Contracting anorexia means getting a new life style, new coping strategies, new relationships, new thought pattern and a whole new way of living and none of it is good.

You can say that a new sufferer becomes like a completely new person, different from what she/he used to be.

One of the very distinctive side effects of anorexia is a distorted perception about themselves. It is related to their own body image, their self being and also how they perceive other people as well.

The main measurement of all becomes how skinny they are. Anorexics perceive that their worth is directly related to their weight. They feel and think the same way about other people also.

For example a 19 year old anorexic girl I was talking to said once:" I know that the more weight I lose the better and stronger person I become. I understand that all overweight people are lazy, fat and no good".

But the meaning of being overweight for her is far away from reality. She perceives even normal weight people as overweight, including herself. She was already only 49 kg (height 164cm) but she still saw herself like a fat and overweigh person.

She sees this picture because of the other major side effect of anorexia called "broken eye syndrome". And because anorexics see a wrong picture of themselves and others they want to loose more and more weight and can't stop starving themselves and over exercising.

Their relationships with other people change a lot since they contracted their anorexia because they need to spend all their time counting calories, exercising and thinking over a new strategy to lose more weight. Plus anorexics become very judgmental and picky and loose interest in others and everything they did before. All these prevent them from having a normal relationship with others.

And the other side effect of anorexia is their changing respond to everyday stress. This encompasses everything that happens to them, anorexics respond by increasing their exercising time, cutting down on calories and withdrawing further away from other people.

To conclude, anorexia has many side effects on a person. And to stop these negative side effects it is important to change the sufferer's perception back to what it was before the anorexia.
If their perception is returned back to normal a person will be able to lead a good and healthy life again. How to do it go to for more in-depth information.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

How to get pregnant after 40.

By Dr Irina Webster

You can overcome infertility after 40 by applying certain natural fertility methods correctly. Many older women failed to get pregnant just simply because they can't find the right time when they can fall pregnant.

And there is a biological basis for it. The ability of women to fall pregnant decreases with age. That means the older you are there are fewer days in a month you can fall pregnant. And after 35 – 40 you may only have 1-2 days in a few months you are able to conceive.

So what time of the month are you fertile?

You are most fertile 12 to 14 days before the beginning of your next period. But this time can vary depending on many factors: stress level, illness, changing your environment and the like.

If your ovulation does not come every month (like for many women after 35-40), it is very difficult to pinpoint the time when you are fertile. So, checking on your ovulation time gets more important the older you get.

Secondly, a healthy baby doesn’t result just because ‘egg meets sperm’. It is necessary to have a freshly released egg and new sperm to conceive at an older age. To avoid old sperm you should stop having intercourse a couple of days before ovulation, as sperm can last up to 3 days inside the body.

To avoid old eggs you should not have intercourse just after your peak ovulation day. Although the egg is still viable (up to 24 hours after release), the problem is ageing and potential defects that can occur to the egg especially in older women. Remember that a woman is born with all the eggs she will ever have, so an egg when you are 40 has been around as long as you have.

The right time to conceive would be at the peak day of ovulation. It is the time when you should have frequent intercourse and when a fresh released egg can meet fresh released sperm.

Thirdly, it is important to build up the sperm count prior to intercourse. There are techniques that men can use to build up their sperm count, so that the day before you ovulate they are able to deliver the maximum number of healthy sperm.

One of the simple strategies to build up sperm account is abstain from sex 3-4 days before the woman’s ovulation time. But no longer, because any longer than this you will risk sperm ageing prior to ejaculation.

To conclude, these simple strategies (pinpointing your ovulation, avoiding old eggs and sperm and building up sperm prior to conception) can be a number one strategy you can use to fall pregnant at an older age. These techniques are natural, non-invasive, harmless and very effective. Applying them correctly may save you from having to have IVF or other surgical procedures to get pregnant.

To know about the natural methods to get pregnant read

Friday, April 18, 2008

What can you do if you are a parent who suspects their child has Bulimia how do you know for sure?

I have been ask this question so many times by lots of worried parents who think their child may have bulimia but don’t know any of the warning signs.

If you are one of these parents then here is a list of things to look out for, I will start with simple things first:

1: Look for an excessive amount of food that is missing. Things like packets of biscuits you have just bought and they have disappeared overnight. Packets of sweets gone without you even having one yourself. Look for easy accessible foods that seem to be gone faster than what is normal for your family use.

2: The child is starting to act unusual around meal times. Being a bit anxious and not wanting to eat certain food groups, or may play with their food. They may say they have eaten at a friends place but then start to raid the food cupboard for easy food soon after dinner.

3: You notice that the child may have lots of food rappers in their bedroom hidden under the bed or in their trash basket. Half eaten candy bars or potato crisp packets hidden in places that are unusual.

4: The child may start to miss family gatherings or not want to go out to events where they normally would have, like picnics or parties preferring to stay home. Even making excuses they feel ill or have a headache.

5: The child may start to do more exercise that they use to do. Go for long runs or bike rides and start to really push themselves to the extreme.

These are all little things but point to a change in the Childs habits although you can’t come to the conclusion that your Child has Bulimia from these alone. You need more concrete evidence to go with these before you can be sure.

Bulimics normally become very good at hiding their condition from family and friends. Bulimia has been described as secretive and sneaky and it most certainly is.
So you as a parent have to become just as sneaky if you suspect your child of this disorder.

Here are some more concrete things to look out for.

1: The child after finishing their meal disappears to the bathroom for a long time. This starts to become a habit and is a surefire clue to the child being bulimic.

2: You notice the smell of toothpaste on their breath when they come from the bathroom, or a sour smell on their breath.

3: You start to find laxatives in their bedroom or empty packets in their trash bin.

4: They start to become really edgy and anxious for no apparent reason and may start telling you to mind your own business if you say anything to them. They act out of character towards you.

5: They start to look sickly and feel the cold more that was normal for them. They may start having problems with their teeth or complain of a sore throat all the time.

6: They start to become obsessed with there weight and are looking at the bathroom scales all the time, or asking you if they look fat or looking in the mirror more that they use to do.

If you noticed a number of these symptoms together then there is a good chance your child may have Bulimia. But do not simply confront them as this can drive the child away or warn them you are on to them, so they may become even sneakier.

You should educate yourself first from people who have faced what you are facing now. One of the best educational information around on this subject is at written by a mother whose daughter nearly died from bulimia anorexia. She was able to save her daughter herself when all else had failed.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Yoga promotes and improves fertility.

Here are a few specific yoga practices that can be use for increasing fertility. They have been in use for a long time and there is recollection of these special yoga practices in the ancient papers.

The practices include specific postures, mantras and breathing techniques. These exercises enhance fertility by stimulating the hormone levels and improving blood and nutrients supply to the reproductive organs like ovaries, eggs, tubes, uterus, testes and prostate.

In doing this they maximize the vitality of the organs. For older mums and dads yoga exercises can slow down the aging of organs and tissues like eggs and sperm which is detrimental to falling pregnant.

Here are a few yoga postures you can use in the comfort of your own home.
1. Supported Bridge Pose:
- Lie on the back and bent your knee with feet flat on the floor
- Move your feet to your bottom as much as possible,
- Inhale and exhale deeply 4 times, then slowly lift your pelvis and buttocks off the floor while keeping feet flat on the floor,
-Clasp your hands behind your back,
-Stay in this pose for a minute or two while breathing deeply.

2.Legs up on the wall pose:
-Lie on your side with your buttocks close to wall.
-Slowly inhale and exhale, then when you are exhaling turn your body but move your legs up to the wall at the same time so that you create a 90-degree angle at your pelvis between your legs and body,
-Stay in this pose for a few minutes inhaling and exhaling slowly.

3.Cobbler's pose:
-Sit on the floor with your legs stretched out,
-Inhale and exhale then while exhaling bring your feet close to your groin and push the sole of your feet against each other,
-Hold to your toes and when exhaling try to lower your knees to the ground as much as you can,
-Hold this pose for about 3-5 minutes while slowly inhaling and exhaling.

These postures, mantras and breathing techniques can be mastered by most women and no one can come to any harm using them.

Yoga is a practical commonsense system that gives us the tools to be healthy and fertile. It is like a health maintenance system. It minimizes the wear and tear of all body organs, including egg, uterus, and ovaries.

So, yoga used holistically can increase the fertile time in your life. And that is especially beneficial for older women and men who are trying to conceive at an older age.

These yoga techniques will also balance the production of hormones in the body and stimulate ripening and releasing the egg. It has been proven that women who have been doing yoga for at least 3-4 months ovulate more often and more regular compare to women who have never done yoga before.

If you are older than 35 and have a dream of having a baby, start with yoga first before you rush to have invasive treatments and tests regarding your fertility.

According to the last research a general improvement in health before pregnancy helps nearly 50% of people to conceive despite many failures to get pregnant in the past.

That means that their infertility was only due to unbalanced organ functions which could have been due to everyday stress, wrong diet or lack of physical activity. And yoga could be the right tool to balance all these and achieve the desirable result, a baby.

Dr Irina Webster.

More information.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Bulimia Symptoms That You Can Observe.

Dr Irina Webster

People with bulimia are very secretive about their disorder. For this reason it is very difficult to notice anything as an observer. Bulimics look normal to other people. Even close family members initially have difficulty seeing what is going on with the person.

But you can observe some specific bulimic features if you know what to look for. These features are very subtle but are visible once you realize they are there.

Surprisingly, being extremely thin and underweight is not common for bulimia sufferers, even though people with bulimia are concerned about being fat.

Bulimics usually are about normal weight or even can be slightly overweight; some can be thin too.

But when you closely observe their behavior and know what to look for you can notice increased anxiety close to meal times. Some sufferers can be reluctant to share their meal times with others. They will do things like refusing to go out to a restaurant or a family dinner. Some may refuse to sit at the table to eat while munching something on the run.

If they do go out for a meal, they may disappear to the bathroom straight after eating and stay away for a long period of time.

Sometimes when they eat with others they only eat very small amounts of food, drink lots of water, separate the food on their plate and make strange choices and combinations of food.

Looking at their hands you may notice damaged knuckles from inducing vomiting, although this sign can take some time to develop. Discoloration of the skin on the outer surface of hands can also be noticed on bulimics.

Their face may appear to be puffy with small broken blood vessels under the skin. This is because the salivary glands increase in size making their cheeks look bigger especially below the area of the ears.

Dry lips and small ulcers on the lips or around the mouth are common in periods of extreme vomiting and look like cold sores.

People who use laxatives and diuretics will have extremely frequent visits to the bathroom. In these cases signs of dehydration can be noticed, like dark circles around the eyes, dizziness, nausea, dry skin and low blood pressure are common in sufferers.

There are bulimics who exercise excessively. They follow a strong exercise regiment and become fanatical about their running, jumping, cycling etc.

Many bulimics have what is called 'broken eye" syndrome. This is when they perceive themselves as fat, non-attractive and think that others are better then them. They look in a mirror and see a big fat person standing there even if they are not. These individuals have low self esteem and look very shy and non-confident among others.

Bulimics often complain of stomachaches that occur around meal times. Diarrhea or constipation can bother them as well.

Their teeth can become discolored and decayed fast. Bad breath is one of the common bulimics symptoms especially for those who are less hygienic.

If you ask a bulimic girl about her periods she may say that it is irregular or even absent, it depends on how much she vomits per day.

To sum up, there are many bulimia symptoms but most of them are so subtle and difficult to notice it is hard for the average person to tell. If you suspect that someone has bulimia look for the signs described above.

And if the person has at least two or three of these symptoms especially disappearing to the bathroom after meals, she is likely to have the disease. This means she may be in danger of becoming very sick and she needs help. To learn how you can help go to
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