Monthly Archives: April 2010

Thyroid Challenge | Breakin out

Hey! Since starting my thyroid challenge, I’ve notice a change. There are a ton of zits near my throat! I’m totally breaking out! Rats. I’ve never gotten zits there in my life. I wonder if it’s the thyroid toxins oozing out? Seems kinda odd that it’s all around that area doesn’t it? Look! And it’s sooo gross and I’m kinda sad :(

But it’s also kind of interesting. My body seems like it’s doin’ it’s thang with the help of the yoga poses. I’ve actually received suggestions about herbs and other things to try for the hypothyroidism, but I really want to try JUST yoga to see if it works. To me, that would just be so awesome. So I’m goin’ bare bones with this. Plus! The yoga teacher in India said that if you do the poses for one month, your thyroid will be fixed. I’m testing the theory to a tee.

Ok, that’s all for now! Next step will be reducing the meds in a few more weeks…keep you posted! xo

5 Spices for the Brain

Check it out! Someone has their finger on the pulse of Ayurvedic spices. Eeeeven if they don’t call them “Ayurvedic.” Those of you who are my clients, know that I recommend these often. xo!

New scientific research backs up Ayurveda: 5 spices that are good for the brain!

MonicaB featured on Tranquility du Jour podcast

Hey! Anyone out there know who Kimberly Wilson is? If not, you will really dig all the great things she does. She is an entrepreneur, yogini, author (Hip Tranquil Chick and Tranqulista), non-profit owner, AND eco-designer! Whew! She has a beautiful yoga studio (studio. 3 floors!) in Washington DC that she has nourished and watched flourish for the past 10 years.

I stumbled upon her and was so inspired that I immediately signed up for her yoga studio’s newsletter, even though I lived in San Francisco. Five years later, after the Uni (that’s my nickname for the Universe) aligned our paths a few times, I was a guest on her Tranquility du Jour Podcast today. I love how life works! Kimberly continues to be such a source of inspiration for me. She’s an absolute delight and is as much fun as she is wise. If you ever have the opportunity to go to one of her workshops, yoga classes, or retreats, your mind and heart will be instantly rejuvenated! You can enjoy more of her podcasts too – she makes it easy to listen to the archives. yay!

Podcast link:
Tranquility Du Jour Podcast on Ayurveda | Kimberly Wilson & Monica Bloom

More about Kimberly

Keep Calm & Carry On

I would never call myself “zen.” In fact, I’m pretty far from it (ask anyone who knows me). BUT! I do have a tool of sanity that I use quite often. I practice a lot and I’m getting better at it. It saves me from filling with anxiety or hanging onto stabbing pains of grief. It lifts me from sorrow and relieves me from being a complete stress ball (I have loosely tied stress, but it’s not a ball).

Over the past two weeks I have encountered several complaints from friends about how they feel and it all relates to not staying present. A friend was afraid of being hurt when dating a new guy, so she decided not to act like herself. Another friend has kept herself so busy with her own business that she hasn’t had a weekend for herself in 5 years! Another friend emailed me today who expressed overall sadness and she’s not sure why.

My guess is this. We are so in our heads about the “what-ifs” in worrying about the future, that we FORGET to live right now. Right here, right now (Jesus Jones. Aw, come on! You know you were thinkin it…) is all that matters because the past is gone and the future hasn’t happened yet. We can create this turmoil by chasing large goals and forgetting about today. Or maybe we worry so much about having a failing relationship, that we don’t let it begin. Maybe we can’t let go of the past and we punish ourselves by reliving old arguments or experiences.

Stay here. Take a breath. Look around. Are you safe? Are you warm? Everything seems ok? Ok. Then you can manage it. One little step at a time and stay here. Enjoy the peace of what is now.

My worklife (day job) has changed so much in the past two days, it’s staggering (or comical). But all I can do is what I can do. I am not going to spend my time and energy in a panic worrying about the future. Nor am I going to spend my time and energy reminiscing about what used to be and how great it was. Why bother? None of those things exist. So, I stay neatly in place and carry on. And I find that amongst all the crazy change, I remain quite happy.

So look at your world. What do you really have to worry about? And what is made up? When you are stressed, anxious, or depressed, ask yourself if it’s because of something happening right NOW or is your mind causing your own stress?

Live in the now. And like the Brits said on the WWII poster below, “Keep Calm and Carry On.” xoxoxo

Ghee-Licious Flavors!!

Yaaaay!! My dream has come true. The ghee man (Sandeep! From Pure Indian Foods. 1.877.LUV.GHEE) has created some knock-your-socks-off ghee flavors! In addition to the original grass-fed ghee, now there are 6 different flavors of the ghee infused with healing herbs and spices. Woooo!!

They are all tasty and an easy addition to make meals extra good. Did I mention that ghee is the numero uno best friend of vata & pitta? Ghee reaches and nourishes all tissues (the best lubricator), it’s sattvic, it’s the only oil that increases agni (digestive fire/metabolsim), and it’s cooling for pitta. Below are the six flavors Sandeep and family have created with the love of cows in mind :)

1. Digestive (MonicaB Favorite!!): Ghee infused with cinnamon, cardamom, & ginger. Great on toast! Tastes like a cinnamon roll. Good for digestion.
2. Garlic (MonicaB Favorite!!): Ghee infused with garlic. Great on pasta, stir fried veggies, bread roll, homemade pizzas (spread on the crust). Good to help remove ama (toxins).
3. Indian Dessert: Ghee infused with fennel, cardamom, & saffron. Good for digestion and peace of mind.
4. Italian Herbs: Ghee infused with oregano, thyme, rosemary. Use on oven baked potato pieces, drizzle on veggies and add sea salt & pepper.
5.  Herbes de Provence: Ghee infused thyme, rosemary, basil, tarragon, lavender flowers. Add to caprese sandwiches, pasta with asparagus.
6. Niter Kebbeh: Ghee infused cardamom, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, tumeric, nutmeg. Nice on rice.

Go order some from Sandeep! | | His family has been making this for 5 generations and their website has a ton of great information on ghee too. And be sure to tell him MonicaB sent you!

Warm Saffron Cocktail

If you are a vata or pitta type, you might have a tendency to get stressed (who doesn’t, right?) and perhaps worries of the future can creep in to cause some anxiety. When a client of mine was feeling anxious, ungrounded, wound up, and stressed, I told her to “wrap herself in a fuzzy blanket” with this little cocktail below.

Any time you feel like you have nothing to hold on to or that you are about to come unhitched, give it a try. This tiny drink is also great if you have a feeling of “emptiness” in your heart. It soothes both vata/pitta doshas and the ingredients are sattvic, which means that they are pure harmony for your entire being. And, it’s quite yummy!!

Small glass of warm milk
Add one strand of saffron
Can sweeten with brown or rock sugar if desired

Saffron is pricey. If you have a Trader Joe’s nearby, you can get a wee tiny (I mean wee tiny, it’s super small. You may have to ask for it) for about $6. But don’t be sad, it will last you a good while. Hopefully by the time the jar is finished, you won’t need to make them any more :)

Bit Of Wisdom {25}

Remember, WE control how we feel. Always. If you don’t like how you feel, YOU can change it in an instant. Light a candle, give a hug, say a prayer, be grateful for 10 things, do so hum, burn incense, give a smile, rub your feet or temples. And most of all, train yourself to think positive. Always. xo.

MonicaB’s Thyroid Challenge!

Yay! I’m on a quest to cure my own thyroid! Before you get all excited and want to share with your loved ones, let me do it on myself first to see if it works.

Here’s what’s goin on. I’ve had hypothyroidism since I was about 15 (well, that’s when they caught it). I am 34 now, so I’ve been on thyroid meds for…math…19 years. The bad thing is that if I stay on these meds too long, there is a chance that my thyroid will get lazier and lazier and eventually stop working. It works like any ole’ machine and if you don’t use it, it will rust and forget how to work. Same same with our bodies.

So! I’ve decided to do something about this. When I was in India this past Jan/Feb, I had a yoga class every day. And he gave us some poses to help cure thyroid. The yogi said that if you do these poses every day for one month, you will not have any more thyroid problems. I was also told in India that driving to the next town would take 3 hours when it really took 6, so I was a bit leery of his promise.

However! I’m going to try it. Essentially the thyroid needs to be trained on how to work again so slowly with these poses the thyroid (chugga chugga) can get functioning to it’s full capacity again. The two poses below, shoulder stand and fish pose, compress and expand the thyroid gland. In a sense, it’s doing a bit of massaging to the area. Through this, it should stimulate proper functioning! it’s a slow process, but here is my plan.

• Every day I need to do shoulder stand (saravangasana) holding for about 5 minutes and can do up to 10. More details on shoulder stand

• And every day I need to do fish pose (matyasana) and hold for 3-5 breaths, repeating 3-5 times. More details on fish pose

• After doing these poses DAILY for 30 days, my doctor-doctor (Western MD who is open to eastern healing) will reduce my levothyroxin dosage by .25 micrograms. Hopefully this will leave a little wiggle room for the thyroid to begin working – it suddenly has a job to do again!!

• Then I’ll get my blood checked and see if hormone levels are normal with the lower dosage. If so, it works!! And I will continue to do so until I’m off meds.

So that’s the plan, Stan. Again, I don’t suggest that anyone try this. If I do it and it works, I’ll let you know. Then you need to get an MD on board to help you. I’ll keep you posted on my crusade to heal America through my own experiments! After all, the rule is that you have to heal yourself before you can heal others. Cross my heart. xo.

Bit of Wisdom {24}

Carry your yoga practice off the mat and into life! No matter the situation, stay at peace and go with the flow. Practice navigating your little boat steadily while waves of life change around you. Happy Friday. Namaste. xo

4th Dosha Uncovered!!

Heehee. A wee bit of nerdy Ayurvedic humor for ya. There are only three doshas – you should know them! Have a great day!