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Healthy Habits

The Delight of Golden Milk

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The Delight of Golden Milk

Is anyone else feeling under the weather? I've been battling a cold for what feels like forever right now (in actuality, it's been about a week), and the only thing that's giving me life right now is treating myself with homemade golden milk. 

What is golden milk, exactly? It's a warming, healthful beverage made from turmeric that feels both indulgent and comforting.

Golden Milk

Turmeric is a healthful spice that reportedly has anti-inflammatory properties ... and it is, quite frankly, a mood-booster when you're sick because of its vibrant color! So when I'm sick—like I have been this past week—I like to mix up a cup of golden milk.

There are dozens of recipes for golden milk available online, but you really don't need a recipe for this simple drink. Simply heat a cup of milk (I prefer almond, but you can do that or dairy, soy, rice, coconut, whatever is your jam) on the stove and stir in some ground turmeric (bonus points if it's freshly ground!). I think that 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon turmeric is a good amount, but experiment to see what you like best. Add in approximately 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, and a pinch of ginger or cinnamon or whatever else you might like for flavor. Consider also stirring in 1 teaspoon or so of coconut oil (more on that in a minute). Stir in a little bit of your favorite sweetener, if desired, and enjoy! Simple, isn't it?

Two things to keep in mind when preparing your golden milk: First, to get the greatest health benefits from turmeric, you should combine it with black pepper. One of the compounds in black pepper increases the absorption of the curcumin in turmeric by up to two hundred percent. 

Second, turmeric is fat-soluble, so make sure that there's some healthy fat involved in your drink somewhere ... which is where the addition of coconut oil comes in! 

Golden milk is not some magical illness-curing beverage, but it's definitely warming and delicious and always comforting when I am under the weather! Do you enjoy drinking golden milk? Any delicious add-ins I should try?


Photo credit: Osha Key on Unsplash

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3 Tips for Conquering the Shorter Days and Getting on Your Mat

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3 Tips for Conquering the Shorter Days and Getting on Your Mat

Our daylight hours have been steadily decreasing—and, with the winter solstice still two months away, the days will get a lot shorter before things improve. The lessening daylight can have a huge impact on your mood and energy levels, which may in turn affect your yoga practice. Here are three of my tips for conquering the short daylight hours and getting yourself to class.

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Transitioning Your Practice for Fall

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Transitioning Your Practice for Fall

Fall is officially here! There are so many things to love about fall—the cooling temperatures, the crisp feel of the air, the explosion of color as the leaves change—but it is a season of change, and change can leave us feeling unsettled.

Moreover, according to the Ayurvedic tradition, our Vata doshas become more prominent in the fall season. Vata governs the movement in the body as well as our nervous systems, and so an abundance of Vata—such as we might feel in fall—can leave us feeling unbalanced.

fall-leaves.jpg

To combat these sensations of restlessness and unease, it's a good idea to evaluate our habits—including our yoga practices—and make adjustments to take us into the coming season. Here are five tips for transitioning your practice for fall:

Begin your day with sun salutations

Fall brings cooler weather, and so heat-building activities like sun salutations are more than welcome. By starting your day with sun salutations, you're also setting the tone for your day.

Practice pranayama

It's a good idea to practice pranayama all the time, but it's especially important during fall because focusing on our breath can help us feel more steady in our bodies. Consider adding pranayama, such as alternate nostril breathing, to your daily routine this fall.

Practice grounding asanas

Seek out asanas that are grounding yet energizing to help you transition physically into the fall season. Consider incorporating some or all of the following poses into your fall practice: Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I), Virabhadrasana II (Warrior II), Utkata Konasana (Goddess Pose), Malasana (Garland Pose), Vrksasana (Tree Pose). As always, be sure that you have adequately warmed up your body with some sun salutations or jumping jacks before beginning to practice, and, as always, remember to honor your body and its limitations while practicing asanas.

Take a long savasana

Indulging in a long savasana after practice can help stabilize the erratic Vata dosha and help you stay grounded. Consider having a blanket or sweatshirt handy to stay warm, if needed.

Recommit to your practice

Developing routines helps us adjust to change, and recommitting to your yoga practice is a perfect way to develop a healthy routine. Get started with some of the great deals the studio is currently running to help you recommit, like the membership special ($95 for an unlimited, auto-renewing membership), the two months of unlimited yoga for the price of one special, or the renewal special (once you've completed 5 classes in October, email us at info@shawyogadc.com and we'll send you a code to use in November that will grant you 50% off a 3-, 5-, or 10-class pack or 50% off the first month of membership! ClassPassers welcome; only one code per student).

Are you looking forward to fall? How do you plan to transition your practice for fall?


Photo credit: @tirzavandijk

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