Shhh. I am the Presidentess of a secret island nation. My country is so advanced, we have long rid ourselves of health issues, power struggles, arms races ('cause arms don't race that fast), animal abuse, and, of course, bacon. Now is not the time to withhold all that I know, and so I blog.





Meditation Seriously Improves your Beauty and General Awesomeness

I appeal to your vanity. If you are not moved to take up meditation to improve your immune system and cardiovascular health, to reduce stress and realise your purpose in life, then do it for your face.

In 2009 Carol Geider won the Nobel prize in physiology for her research in telomerase, the immortality enzyme that slows cellular ageing.

Telomerase is an enzyme that maintains the DNA at the end of our chromosomes. Without telomerase, every time our cells divide, the ends of our chromosomes get shorter. It’s a part of the natural aging process, since most cells in our body have little active telomerase. Eventually, the ends of our chromosomes become so short, cells die. They die!

Scientists who look at longevity, fixate on the end of our chromosomes. The longer the end of our chromosomes are, the better job they are doing to protect and preserve our DNA.

One study showed that when people meditate for as little as 12 minutes per day, telomerase activity increases by a whopping 43 percent.

The study also showed that meditation improves mental and cognitive function, and lowered the level of depressive symptoms, yada yada yada – but imagine what this could do to your face!




Liv' ving in a Material World - wants to kill yo' ou!

It's a polyester world. Wearable petroleum in shimmery high fashion formaldehyde-finished perfection, and assassination method of choice for world leaders.

Did you see the Secretary of State gift the Russian oligarch's wife a beautiful Versace dress? It will kill her in 10 to 20 years, and she won't see it coming.

The process in a Flash

A refined and carcinogenic petroleum gas called ethane is flash heated to nearly 1,500 Fahrenheit (800 Celsius) where ethane becomes ethylene. Antimony, a heavy metal catalyst is added, essentially turning ethylene into goo. If you spin the goo, it turns into fiber that can be woven into cute Versace dresses, and most of the clothes in our closet. Antimony is a carcinogen which deeply offends the heart, lungs, liver and skin.



  • The Danish Environmental Protection Agency found that 10 percent of antimony from polyester seeps into the skin when we sweat.
  • Polyester emits phytoestrogens, an endocrine disrupter. Also known as angry gangster mime artists effectively mimicking hormones. The turf wars they initiate often leads to cancer in their 'hood.
  • Cancer cells multiply rapidly in polyester test tubes compared to glass tubes. 

I want to assure you, I'm no polyester bigot. There are plenty of other materials so nasty, you no longer need to ask the seemingly unanswerable question to random inanimate objects: Is it just me, or is everybody getting cancer these days? Look at these chemical beauties:


The Rayon starts as a beautiful image, like a young princess walking through the forest with singing birds carrying picnic blankets. Rayon is made out of recycled wood pulp or bamboo cellulose. That's the princess forest moment.

But then it turns nasty. In order to convert the pulp into beautiful rayon cloth, one must pour carbon disulphide, sulfuric acid, ammonia, acetone and caustic soda onto it.

Rayon gives off carbon disulphide while you walk, talk with your friends at coffee shops, and otherwise pursue your unicorn farm dreams. It's been known to cause nausea, headaches, vomiting, chest pain and insomnia, among even scarier things.


It’s hard to imagine anything good can come from a fiber with the name acrylic. It’s made out of a slew of toxic substances and is directly linked to breast cancer.


This strong and colour-loving petroleum product is responsible for making your skinny jeans and crop jackets tight and pre-shrunk. Caustic Soda, sulphuric acid and formaldehyde are used in its manufacturing. Nylon is made from benzene, a carcinogen linked to three kinds of leukemia. Carcinogenic Formaldehyde is emitted when our body heat warms the material.

Unique to Nylon is that it seems unsatisfied in trying to kill us; it also emits greenhouse gases like nitrous oxide - while you're wearing it!

Wrinkle Free

That moment where you collect your dry, laundered clothes, and your wrinkle-free items go straight into the closet, saving you time to read my article.

This moment where you discover that it is formaldehyde resin and Teflon (PFCs) you have to thank, for ridding your clothes of nasty wrinkles once and for all.

Keep your appearance up and upkeep down

~ The slogan of the first formaldehyde inseminated clothing company circa 1950

Formaldehyde-laced fabrics are linked to a 30 percent increase in lung cancer, skin/lung irritation and contact dermatitis. The following words are synonyms of we've covered your clothes with formaldehyde so we can kill you:

  • Anti-cling, anti-static, anti-shrink
  • Waterproof
  • Perspiration-proof
  • Moth-proof and mildew resistant
  • Chlorine resistant

 Is this the Armageddon?

I've always wanted to ask that question. I tell you what it is: It is an excellent time to invest in a wardrobe made of organic materials, like hemp, bamboo, and cotton.

But Mama, which textile is worse for the environment?

Besides the carcinogenic non-biodegradable pollution that spews into the air from textile factories, darling? Natural materials require far less energy to produce than laboratory-made fabric.

Embodied Energy used in production of various fibers:

energy use in MJ per KG of fiber:

hemp, organic




hemp, conventional


cotton, organic, India


cotton, organic, USA


















 * rPET is recycled polyester, popular in sport wear.

Organic cotton or bamboo might cost a little more, but what is the price of staying out of the oncology clinic? I don't like the feel of synthetic fiber. It makes my skin feel hot. The strange chemical reaction my skin has to the concoction exhaled by these clothes create a funk like nothing else.

And that, my friend, is why the 70's polyester explosion was the singular muse for the dawn of funk music. Until then, there was no sound that could remotely describe such aroma. You read it here first.

{photo credit: Versace, Guess Jeans, Zoolander}


















Yoga: What you can do in 15 minutes

{via}Do you know your yoga? When you feel confident about the principles of asana, it's only natural that you will take some of your practice home. In the last post I wrote that yoga would be a more frequent guest in our lives if we were adaptable <gag>. It's still hard for me to say that word.

 A keen eye and helping hand from an experienced teacher is critical in the early years of your practice and will ensure that you stay injury-free and reap what each asana sews. When your physical intelligence feels strong, try your practice at home.

If I've only got 15 minutes to practice, I want to breathe as mindfully as I can, and feel my whole body move fluidly. My focus is on softening as much as it is on tension and direction.

15 minutes. Think Flow, whole-body engagement, and serious Ujjay breath.

Here's what I practiced today.

2 x Surya Namaskar A – Sun Salutation

Surya Namaskar B (the 2nd Sun Salutation)

Parsvakonasana (known to some as the Arugh! pose)

Parsvakonasana B (twisted version of the one before)

Utthita Hasta Padangustasana (hand to big toe) series

Virabhadra (warrior) series

Bakasana (crane pose) or Titibhasana (firefly)

Baddha konasana (butterfly)

Seated Twist

Savasana (Corpse Pose )


I don't stay in each asana as long as I would if I practiced a full series. One final word of advice: don't underestimate the power of drishti.

Do you have 15 minutes to fill your body with life-giving prana energy today?

Yoga Home Practice with the Stars: The Hoff's version {image elephant journal)



The 15 minute yoga hack for busy people

I’m a better escape artist than Houdini when it comes to getting out of yoga. Didn’t you know we should never practice yoga during particular lunar events and tidal anomalies that were described by the Essenes in one of their scrolls we have yet to translate? I know it’s in there!

I don’t escape my yoga practice any more; I’m all so learned and wise about it now. But I can’t boast that I was a fast learner. I fought with myself for years. Fortunately for many who still search for a sign in their tea leaves that today’s not a good yoga day, I can help. Today is a good yoga day. May I recommend that you make your yoga practice adaptable?

My voice just sounded like fingernails on a chalk board, didn't it. I nod compassionately. Yoga and adaptability were far, far apart from each other for me also, when I was an grade-A pure varietal idealist: 

I need 2 hours for yoga, and abundant time for pranayama and meditation. Any less and I won’t practice yoga today.

Then began my yoga-less life. Followed by the difficult scramble back. Yet I continued to defend my idealism with my life:

Now that I haven’t practiced yoga in months, doing one random class is not going to do anything. I need a yoga retreat to get back on track - an intensive! I’ll have that much free time next December.

And you seriously can not underestimate the strength of my will. I spiralled even further into my doughy insanity:

You know I should cleanse before I return to yoga, or it won’t affect me like it potentially could. I require six weeks to cleanse before the yoga retreat. Otherwise the whole effort would amount to glorified stretching. I need to be  yoga inside and out.

Rest assured, yoga and I are back together again. I want to show you what yoga looks like to busy people who actually do get down on the floor and practice in their spare fifteen minutes.

 15 Minute Yoga

The hardest part of taking 5 or 15 minutes to practice yoga is to actually stop what you're doing and start yoga'ing. I recommend that you don't think too hard about what you are doing, and what it means to the dish washer or the facebook feed. Just get down on the ground and fold forward. Take in slower and deeper breaths, feel your spine, and the space between each vertebrae.

I don't recommend that you begin your fifteen minutes standing, with a sun salutation. That, for many people, feels daunting, and an excellent excuse not to start. A sun salutation will often be the third yoga thing I do.

 I usually begin by connecting with my breath in a gentle Paschimottanasana - folding over straight legs (they can be bent a little), followed by a favourite sitting asana. When I'm feeling the breath deeper, with more energy, that's when I stand up and really (reeelly) enjoy a slow, deliberate Sun Salutation.

A powerful shift can happen in 15 minutes. After only 5 minutes, you will already feel connected, softer and healthier.

 What moves you?

What is at the core of your love of yoga? Mine is the disconnect I get from the world. To re-center, and feel me. Yes I love the strength, the flexibility, the sweat and challenge. But at its core, it’s the spiritual aspect of yoga that makes the most profound change to my day. *

These qualities can be fast tapped into. In fact, you don’t even need to unroll your mat. In the next post, I will show you one of my favourite 15 minute yoga series.

Remember, yoga is about connecting with your Self. It happens fast, you only need to fold forward and deepen your breath. 

* If you are moved by the strength challenge, it is admittedly difficult to attain in 15 minutes, but things can be done. Choose the most challenging asana or series of asanas that demand the most muscle groups. Go slowly and not so deep. I will suggest a brief series in the following posts.



All The Energy You'll Ever Need in 6 Easy Habits

It’s about knowing the human rhythm. All living things need specific conditions to grow and thrive: plants with their ideal light and humidity, fish with their pH and dissolved oxygen levels. We are no different.

This list is logical, and as simple as you can get. If I was to hand over a pet human to a pet owner, these are the six conditions I would educate them on to ensure their pet human will live happily ever after.

(Scientologists, I hope I didn't just agrivate your suppressed memories)

1.  And on the Seventh Day, Juice

Over-eating is just bad for you. No one likes an over-eater, not your stomach, not your small intestine, not your blood supply. Over-eating tires our entire system, with undigested food sitting there too long, fermenting in unkindness. If we don’t like traffic jams, why should we over-eat?

And that was five lines of off-topic.

My point: Make one day a week a no-solid-food day. Take broth and ginger-spiced juices in cold weather, vegetable and fruit juices on warm days. Explore the rich and vast green tea universe. It’s a day of rest for your system, to catch up on those outstanding fixes and re-fuels.

2.  Superfood for Dinner

How great would you feel if you ate an early, light dinner? (hint: it’s really great) Make lunch the main meal of the day. If dinner has a tantrum and demands to be the center of your day, try to get it happening as early as possible. Uncouple (shoot me) the meal from its bland name, call it something romantic like, the Sunset Meal. My favourite Sunset Meal is wilted salad. If I'm not so hungry, vegetable juice with spirulina.

When I drink dense, green superfood at night, like spirulina or chlorophyll, I need one whole hour less of sleep, and wake feeling very switched on. Try it. Let me know if this works for you too!

Do I need to tell you that a gin and tonic doesn't count as a light dinner? All alcohol does is absorb the beautiful extra energy you're making with your noble efforts of eating consciously.

3.  Early Sleep

It’s the ol’ sleep-before-your-gall-bladder-gets-to-work adage that has stood the test of time. It’s this simple: if I fall asleep before 11pm, I sleep solidly, and wake extremely refreshed. If I stay up late, like I have to do sometimes, I wake later and never shake the heavy feeling. It’s impossible for me to grab my day by the collar and shake free a tonne of inspiration. Instead, the day slowly drags my sandbag body to the finish line. Am I being too dramatic?

4.  Water

Again, super simple: drink a large glass of water every hour. Every single process that occurs in the body requires water.  Drink more upon rising and before bed. Not just any water, unless you're looking for trouble. Make it free from fluoride or chlorine additives. Some water filters can mess with the water ions, mineral content or pH. Research before you buy. Naturally sourced water is a luxury, I know, but excellent if you can get it.

5.  Meditation

There’s meditation and then there’s meditation. It’s a universe if you are ever curious to enter and explore. I practice meditation techniques which unlock (keeping it humble here) a lot of energy, but I can’t tell you what they are. Traditional lineages of meditation schools will teach you several practices that slowly increase your ability to contain larger amounts of energy.

One needs to master concentration before the more powerful meditation practices are attempted. If you are interested in learning how to meditate, I recommend exploring schools like Kriya Yoga, Vipassana, Zazen, or Transcendental Meditation (TM).  There are others. Let me know in the comments which ones you like.

6.  Breathe Deeply

This is not something new. It’s just vital. Exercise makes energy. The diaphragm is such a powerful muscle. Its central location carries a lot of meaning beyond our pursuit of energy. Deep full breaths massage our organs, and detoxifies our blood. It takes in prana, or life-force energy. Move your body, breathe and respectfully challenge the cardio pulmonary system. Are you holding anything emotional? Try exercise and the energy that you generate will move it – which is a good thing.

It’s That Easy

  • Wake early, drink water, meditate even if it’s for ten minutes.
  • Exercise.
  • Eat small meals that are alive with fresh alkaline goodness.
  • Stay hydrated.
  • Eat a delicious, satisfying lunch.
  • Enjoy light Sunset Dinners.
  • Meditate again in the evening, ten minutes is an excellent start.
  • Go to bed before 11pm.

When it becomes habit, you’ll have more time in your day. When there's no huge dinner to prepare late into the evening, with more energy generated from exercise, and more productive morning hours, which passion will you choose to persue?