What are the Chakras?

What are the Chakras?

Why do we use them?

How do they help in mindfulness?

You may be aware of the mindfulness course Inner Rainbow Mindfulness. The basic structure of the course is based on the 7 colours of the rainbow, connected to 7 themes and runs over 7 weeks. Many have asked us why we do this and many have heard the word ‘chakra’ and felt uncomfortable or intrigued. Here is what this structure looks like, why we have them, and how it helps mindfulness…

The entire universe is made of energy, and your body is no exception.

Have a look at this post on using frequencies to heal our body. Long before modern medicines, technology and science, ancient cultures (from East to West) held their own concept and understanding of mind, spirit or soul as distinct from the physical body. We all know that all living things carry a life force, energy, chi or soul with them. It separates us from alive and dead. Once that energy leaves, we are only a physical body that can no longer function. Our living matrix is a complex network connecting all body systems, organs and cells together.

Always considered ‘woo’ by the modern scientific community, energy medicine has been often looked at as quackery, fraud or witchcraft! However our bodies are electromagnetic in nature, on this we all agree, and science has measured these frequencies with machines, like X-ray, EKG, thermography, PET and MRI for many years. Also the scientific community have been interested in  using technological research, ranging from holographic patterning (3D images) to Kirlian photography, to observe the human energy field (HEF) and been even been able to begin to demonstrate it’s existence. They are able to recognise networks of complex energy fields which interact with our physical and cellular systems. They have even noted DNA’s positive and negative response to pulsing magnetic fields (see here, here and here).

All healing, natural and pharmaceutical is rooted in science.

There are vibrations from everything in the universe, physical and emotional. Conditions that influence you, consciously or subconsciously will be reflected in your physical and emotional self. They are intrinsically connected. Your inner energy body as well as your external environment influence these reflections. Your upbringing, culture, and geography, for instance, all affect your perception of health and how you should/could be.

Children are more aware of their energy systems and react to them with less consciousness baggage.

They may lack the intellectual capacity and maturity to use words to describe and explain how their body feels. However they can be very true to themselves and react very well to colour, textures, smells, tastes and gut instinct. They are able to use their senses without too much attachment to other things and this can give an amazing opportunity to help them consciously connect their body and mind to achieve true balance and health. 

The chakra system originated in India between 1500 and 500 BC. The map of the chakras connects with various TCM Meridian points flowing along the spine and even the modern images of the autonomic nervous system. They have have been the main means of accessing non-physical areas of your body before surgery. There are thought to be over 110 chakras in the body,  seven are considered major. These seven line up vertically on key points along the middle of the physical body. They each have a corresponding colour from red through to violet.

Within your body you have an Inner Rainbow. 

By learning about the 7 chakras, you can become more in tune with the natural energy cycles of your body and mind. By removing the spiritual belief system of the chakras, we can use them energetically to open up themes and areas of the body. Each chakra has a colour and core issues attached to it.

Using the colours and themes we can link the Bach Flower Remedies and affirmations we use each week, the aromatherapy oils used in the room spray, the different Brain Gym exercise goals and areas they support, the acupressure points used to help reduce the intensity of emotions to the potential core issues. 

By doing this, those on the course are able to approach each weeks issue and theme through a non-threatening or confusing way. The language can become simpler and more accessible. We can all sit and think about a colour entering and exiting your body, however when asked to confront or release a big emotion can have much conscious trauma attached to it.

Here is an overview of each Chakra or Colour and what we aim to work through in that weeks class:

RED/ BROWN

THEMES: “I Have”

Survival, safety, grounding, connected to the earth, family, right to live, who am I? 

ELEMENT: Earth

SENSE: Smell

CORE ISSUES: Security, trust, identity, family, society/school, health, prosperity.

The first week resonates with grounding and feeling stability and security. Many of us feel consciously safe, however the body may resonate subconsciously as unsafe.  You may even feel afraid to change, be unwilling to accept habits, thought patterns or transition is even possible. This can be because of our childhood, c-sections have been seen to possibly re-wire primal instincts and the nervous system response. Relearning new habits and reactions can take time, change can only happen when we feel safe and we trust.

We explore and discuss who we are, our names, feeling safe in the strangeness and perceptions of the course ahead. Introduce the concept of mindfulness as being, “Just noticing”.  Feeling safe in the knowledge that there is no wrong or right, only opinion. We discuss the sense of smell and explore what that opens up. We discuss red foods and what a ‘real’food actually is. Explore smells and how smells make us feel. We try a simple meditation and brain gym exercise. We use an Emotion Stress Release point (acupressure points) to release any fear or nerves.

OUTCOMES: Feel comfortable and safe in change and a new routine. Be open to your environment and begin to feel connection to breath and the body through the sense of smell. 

 

ORANGE

THEMES: “I Feel”

Relationships, how we feel, identity, passion

ELEMENT: Water

SENSE: Taste

CORE ISSUES: Pleasure, creativity, imagination, what we like, reactions, impulses, movement & connection, emotions

We discuss anger and fear being connected. How we react and why, most importantly strategies to help us to change our reactions. By feeling safe, warm, connected and protected we can come out of fight or flight mode and have more flow in life. We talk about how we can work on being present and aware and mindful in your interactions with others

We discuss identity, what that means, also that we are not our emotions, that we feel them and they can come and go. Every emotion is important and noticing, without judgement, about how we feel is key. When we know how we feel we can begin to make decisions about if we want to continue to feel that way.

We are introduced to more tools and we start to move our body to feel more flow in our surroundings. We discuss the sense of taste and explore what that opens up. We discuss orange foods.

OUTCOMES: Feel more open and relaxed to begin to notice how we feel. We do not need to be perfect, everyone makes mistakes.

 

YELLOW

THEMES: “I Am Me”

Self-confidence, identity, personal power, respect, ego, concern about outward appearance

ELEMENTFire

SENSESight

CORE ISSUESPersonal power, respect, humility, will, energy

We learn about our personal fire, how it can be too weak and too strong. Life can be hard and we can still be strong for ourselves. We can take responsibility for our decisions and look inside to know the answer for ourselves. Mistakes can be learnt from and there is great strength in humility and compassion.

Our physical energy is linked to how we feel and we explore how we speak and move can change how we feel. Personal power is important and our beliefs and feelings are important. I am responsible for my happiness.

OUTCOMES: Feel confident in different situations. Feel free to make own decisions for your benefit. To release past issues and begin each day new and with confidence and strength. 

GREEN

THEMES: “I Love”

Love, acceptance of self and others, unconditional love, balance, forgiveness and compassion 

ELEMENT: Air

SENSE: Touch

CORE ISSUES: Respect for self and world around you, intimacy, acceptance, empathy and compassion.

It is really important to feel and give kindness towards yourself and/or others. To create peace and harmony we must first look in the mirror and be kind. We play trust games and communicate to feel safe. We talk about green food and how important food is to nourish and heal.

We explore and discuss love, why we are the most important person to love. We can only feel empathy and compassion when we love ourselves enough to give more love out. We discuss the sense of touch, how that creates trust and when is it ok to touch and when is it ok to have boundaries. To have confidence and love for ourselves to say no to ideas and experiences that do not resonate with our body and mind.

OUTCOMES: Feel comfortable saying “I love me, I am special” in the mirror. Know that love is something to give and to receive.

BLUE

THEMES: “I Hear”

Personal truth communication, Creative identity, self expression, choice, communication and listening, balance of logic and emotion

SENSE: Listening

CORE ISSUES: Be comfortable with change and making decisions, communicate truth, courage, forgiveness, finding one’s own voice

Communication to yourself and the world around you is so important. Many of us struggle to say what we think through fear of being wrong or upsetting the other person. We learn different ways of communicating our feelings by drawing them and acting them out. We discuss whole body listening and how to deal with distractions. Focus can be really hard, trying to notice something different every day or using a listening meditation to hear all the different sounds can help you maintain focus by keeping interest there. 

Practising gratitude can be really simple. Using our journals, we stay in the present moment to list what we are grateful for. It can make a big difference.

OUTCOMES:Be able to communicate effectively through a variety of mediums, write, draw, speak, move and act. Know when to use each one to be an effective communicator. Help others to have space to communicate and be a good listener.

PURPLE

THEMES: “I Perceive”

Intuition, insight, sensory perception, imagination, visualisation

SENSE: Intuition (Sixth sense, gut instinct- connects all the other senses)

CORE ISSUES: Wisdom, experience, intuition, imagination, manifesting abundance, dreams, 

 

The pineal gland in the brain is in the shape of an eye, hence the term Third Eye. The Egyptians and other ancient cultures knew about this and understood that it took in information from the world around them and sometimes believed even information beyond the stars could come through. The pineal gland lets the brain know when it is night and day, it is responsible for melatonin (sleep hormone) and serotonin (happy hormone).

We discuss screens and over stimulation. Also we put together a sleep tool kit in class and make goals to reduce screen time, especially when eating or before bed. We empower with knowledge to set the goals by themselves. To give back responsibility of body and mind to the individual.

The meditation is all about feeling the magic, joy and excitement about life. About being able to manifest what you want from life. This helps to provide energy and motivation in the present to go after their dreams. A valuable feeling to be able to tap into.

OUTCOMES: To feel grater control over their lives, to find something they want and to have the energy and motivation to go after it. To trust their instinct and make choices in the present moment free from fear.

PINK

THEMES: “I Know”

the way you express who you are and your connection to the universe, ability to trust life, values, ethics, courage, faith and inspiration

CORE ISSUES: Belief systems, awareness and consciousness.

The Crown chakra is a sum of all the pieces. We review and repeat our favourite games, journal activity or exercise. We goal set for the future based on how we feel at the end. We get ready to come back and go a bit deeper into each colour to find more understanding about ourselves. We learn how we are all connected and how to use our tools in real life.

OUTCOMES: Round up and set goals for the future. Connect all the work we have done and trouble shoot some scenarios to help integrate new tools. 

 

 

What is Mindfulness?

What is Mindfulness

What is Mindfulness?

Mindfulness is one of the most over used word of the last few years. We equate it with meditation and being quiet and on our own. Most of us think about mindfulness with dread and guilt because we know we should be doing it but it seems like something we just don’t have time for right now, life is just too hectic. However, mindfulness is simply being in the moment.

We can be in the moment whilst surrounded by others, eating, drinking, socialising, before sleep, whilst exercising, with the kids and of course in stressful situations like work, driving, travelling and basically anywhere at anytime!

There are so many studies, articles, blog posts, books and classes about mindfulness, but what are we looking for and how do we find it and make time for it? It is my wish to try and help you through the minefield!

The whole point of mindfulness, I believe, is to access and switch on the body’s rest and recovery mode. Have a look at my post on how the immune system works here. Most people (especially children) are wired into the fight or flight response long term. This has a massive impact on the body’s ability to repair and heal. Inflammation CANNOT we switched off when in fight or flight. How many of you can list some kind of inflammation (digestive weakness, skin issues, muscle aches and pains, back issues, immune weakness, hormone disruption, fatigue and energy issues, lack of libido, sleep issues and brain fog) among their symptoms of unease. Without even having a diagnosis, you can assume we all have inflammation and these symptoms from time to time, we need inflammation to survive and repair. the real problems come when these symptoms become the new normal, when we adjust to thinking that this is how life is. 

Mindfulness insta

Being mindful is first and foremost re-connecting to your body and listening and learning to what all of these symptoms are telling us- AND ACTUALLY RESPONDING.

So many of us think that there has to be a huge change to heal these symptoms, that a strict and impossible diet change has to happen, that a ‘detox’ needs to be done, that a radical upheaval of how we live our lives must be undertaken. So we make small term promises to ourselves to make changes tomorrow or next week, after New Years, in the Spring etc. However you can make a change right here and now.

  1. Feel your body sitting/standing/lying right now, nothing changes you are just checking in.

  2. Listen to your breath naturally and without effort coming in and out.

  3. Say ‘Thank you” to your body and repeat “I am safe”

Welcome to mindfulness, welcome to stopping everything for a second and being in the moment. Even just for a that short time. It is as simple as that. Be mindful as to how you feel, did anything change in that moment. Those tiny changes have a big ripple effect. You may have awakened your intuition a little, did your body prompt you to adjust your position spontaneously or to remember to do, say, take care of something in that moment? Your body will begin to let you know what it is you need to do if you take the time to listen, even for a second.

Once your body begins to return to rest and recovery and you change your beliefs slowly but surely towards self care and nourishment rather than punishment, guilt and shame for not doing more for your body, life will become easy.

In rest and recovery so much healing can begin. When you feel safe in your body and in your environment you can feel energy, motivation, hope, gratitude, faith and happiness. Mindfulness is simply the route to seeing your life for what it already is, wonderful and full of possibility. Not what it has been prior to this moment or even what it will be beyond right now. It is the ability to accept the past and release control over the future by being here now. Subconsciously if you believe life is hard, full of danger and work, where does joy fit in? If there is no joy how can there be health? Maybe it is hard to see life as wonderful, bring mindful can simply be the belief that there can and will be change, that you are open to finding joy, even if it is not in front of you right now.

Mindfulness is accepting that you actually have the ability to be happy even if it is not how you are feeling in this moment. That it is ok to feel what you feel now, that you can thank your body for the chance and opportunity to accept and therefore move forward. It is only when you feel your presence in the here and now that you can make changes. This is true for all ages and I have been teaching my kids mindfulness skills since they were babies so they have lifetime methods to adapt and react to their day to day lives. To try to build core beliefs based on the ability to change and have the responsibility to choose their own paths. Now I have co-written Inner Rainbow Mindfulness as a 7 week course directed at specific ages groups and adaptable for all. Soon to become an online course too.

Inner Rainbow logo (1)

What is Mindfulness pin

Bach Flower Remedies

 

I am a fully qualified Naturopath and I use Bach Flower Remedies in my professional and personal life. These views are my own and not written to impose views on you, but rather to empower and encourage you to take responsibility for your own health and your own choices. If you are interested to seek out professional help to discover what works for you, I am happy to try and help you. This said, I do not advocate that any of the information here be taken as medical guidance or advice, but act as a platform for exploring ways of looking at health and your own individual needs.

 

Think about the last time you felt angry, shocked, sad or alone. When you just think about these emotions you can feel them in your body. You have a physical reaction. This is the same when you think about the last time you felt joy, hope, confidence and motivation. Your physical body actually changes, you feel different.

bach quote

Dr Edward Bach (a renowned bacteriologist in the 1880-1900’s) was not alone in thinking that the route to physical health and healing was rooted in emotional health. How and what you think, dictates the choices you make, the way your body works and how you act and react. The placebo affect has time after time proved immeasurably valuable to the patient’s outcome. Being able to find the emotions and change them can be tricky. Some of our beliefs and reactions are so deep rooted and subconscious, we believe them to be unchangeable. This is where Bach Flower Remedies are so unbelievably powerful.

Bach Flower Remedy Bottles

Our bodies are a whir of energy exchange, wavelengths and frequencies. Just like wifi or telecommunications, information is constantly transported and reported without much tangible, physical motion. Frequencies and wavelengths can be altered and distorted in many ways. Physical and emotional blocks can occur all the time. Energy medicine at its very essence is based in physics and in helping to realign and enhance these powerful seemingly invisible factors. By using water to hold and transport these wavelengths and frequencies and altering our own body of water’s memory, we can access subconscious, intangible blocks in our body and begin to correct our health at its very core.

Bach_zonnemethode_Cerato

The 38 remedies (most people have heard of Rescue Remedy which is a blend of 5 of them) in Bach’s system are rooted in nature. Using plants, trees, flowers and even a rock, by harnessing their energy and rooting it in water, their positive vibrations can alter our own. A system that is 100% kind, compassionate and simple, where the worst thing that can happen is nothing, means that these remedies can be used safely and effectively by all ages. For all symptoms, conditions and emotions these remedies can help us to understand how we feel and make changes in the layers of our emotions to help us to heal and return to joy.

 

Bach’s aim was to devise a simple, effective and accessible way to people to help themselves and to take responsibility for their body. The remedies are organised and categorised, each of them accessing a different negative state (emotion) and helping reverse the body to a more positive and therapeutic state. For example; Holly, which is fairly prickly and jealous in the negative, becomes giving, loving and accepting in the positive. By realising what you want to feel and allowing yourself to be being grounded in the present we can help to heal the wounds of the past and forge a stronger, brighter future.

DU5W6133

I use Bach Flower Remedies in almost every one to one session I have with clients as well as personally, at home, with my own family, pets and plants. When there is a world event or trauma locally, I try to make a small vibrational shift by adding rescue remedy to our environment (either in the atmosphere or adding it to a body of water). Every tiny shift in thinking can have a ripple of repercussion. By having your own kit and the confidence to use them, you can start to make small repercussions of your own, for you and the world around you.

Have a look at my class information here

Bach Flowers Class Pinterest

Picture attributions: Cerato flowers in bowl: By HennyGieles (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)

Kit bottles Louise Kane Buckley

 

Grain-Free Pizza

 

Grain Free Pizza Base

I have played with several grain free pizza bases over the years. We have been using this recipe for a year now and I am ready to share it with you all.

In my experience grain free bases are a faff to make and never taste like pizza most of the time! Traditional pizza base is very simple; flour (gluten and grain rich!), olive oil, yeast, water, sugar and salt. To recreate this without gluten and adding nutrients (which I always have to do!) is a tough thing.

Grain Free Pizza Loula Natural fb

I have really enjoyed my cauliflower crust however it was not nice cold and that is a must for lunchboxes! So I have been searching and playing for the right combination. I tried simply replacing the flour with a gluten free mix, but my need for nutrients was not being met! Then I decided that I actually wanted it grain free for the kids and my digestive needs. Thats when I turned to tapioca flour (see here for a great one to buy). Learning to use tapioca flour is an experience!!

The best starting point I found was in this book, Paleo Eats by Kelley Bejelly; (its a really great book)

paleo-eats-cover

I then went about filling it with nutrition, namely making sure it contained the amount of protein in it necessary to nourish and fill up my kids. Here is the result;

Grain Free, Nutrient Rich, Pizza Base
Serves 5
A delicious grain free crust which is great for kids and works well for leftovers in their lunchboxes
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
20 min
Prep Time
20 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 cup of water
  2. 2/3 cup of olive oil (I have also used coconut oil)
  3. 1tsp of dried herbs (I like an italian mix- you can use what you like or sun-dried tomato flakes)
  4. 2 tsp garlic or dried onion powder
  5. 2 tsp salt
  6. 3 cups of tapioca flour
  7. 1tbsp collagen hydrolysate (gelatin)
  8. 2 beaten eggs
  9. 1tsp nutritional yeast (optional)
  10. 3tbsp coconut flour
  11. 2 tbsp almond flour (optional)
  12. dash of kefir (water or milk) (optional, you can also add a dash of apple cider vinegar)
Instructions
  1. Add the water, oil, herbs and garlic powder to a saucepan and bring to the boil.
  2. Add the tapioca flour and it will instantly become a sticky mess (I mean dough)
  3. Ensure it is all mixed in and allow to cool for 10-15 mins
  4. Heat your oven to 200 centigrade.
  5. Add in remaining ingredients until it is a dough that can be kneaded. You may need to adjust the dry ingredients. Coconut flour expands so be careful if you add more. The gelatin helps to make it more doughy.
  6. I roll the dough out in between two pieces of baking paper. It is then easier to get really thin and then move to a baking sheet or pizza stone.
  7. Roll your dough out to a couple of mm. It is a nice thin and crispy pizza, any thicker and it is a bit too chewy.
  8. I have frozen the bases at this point
  9. Put pizza in the oven to 20-30 mins to pre cook (longer if you have cooked from frozen)
  10. Add toppings. I add passata, and whatever I fancy (the kids eat ham, pineapple and olives!) we like bacon, artichokes, olives and peppers!
  11. Add cheese if you like and put back in the oven for another 10-15 mins.
  12. Enjoy
Notes
  1. The gelatin, almond flour and eggs add a good nutrient content to the pizza base so it is not so starch heavy. The oil adds a good fat content. We always serve with a nice crisp and colourful salad and it is very filling.
Adapted from Paleo Eats, Kelley Bejelly
Loula Natural http://loulanatural.com/
Grain Free Pizza Loula Natural pin 

Weaning Recipes from Nurture Your Life

Untitled designWeaning Recipes Loula Natural fi

Weaning Recipes Loula Natural fb

Weaning Recipes

Have your read my new REAL FOOD way to wean your child? Its called Nurture Your Life (link here). These weaning recipes are all featured in the book. 

My new weaning book
My new weaning book

Here are all the recipes with their links from the book. Let me know your favourite!

First foods:

(4-8 months depending on child’s ability to sit up)

Fish eggs

Bone Broth

Coconut Yoghurt

Parsnip rice (steamed of stirfried in Ghee)

Sweet Potato/carrot Chips (cut into battons and lightly steamed or baked tossed in coconut oil.

Sweet Potato mash

Sweet potato Rosti

Steamed broccoli

Sliced avocado

Sliced pear

Scrambled egg yolks (separate the eggs and scramble the yolks in a little ghee)

Mashed banana

Water or coconut water kefir

Green smoothies (make with powdered greens and fresh coconut water or water kefir)

Fermented green beans

Apple Sauce

Rhubarb and ginger sauce

Oat milk/ Coconut milk

Miso soup

Seaweed snacks (ensure the ingredients contain healthy fats and no MSG)

 

6-12 months

Popcorn chicken

Cauliflower Crust Pizza

Falafel

Coconut and ginger chicken soup

Sweet Potato Falafel (use flax/chia as an egg replacer until 12 months or just use egg yolk)

Cauliflower Cheese nuggets (same advice as above for eggs)

Beef Jerky made with thinly sliced beef

Kefir/Kombucha gummies

Chia porridge (use breast, coconut or oat milk) with coconut yoghurt

Banana Flax Crackers or quinoa flatbreads serve with:

Salmon pate

Coconut butter/yoghurt

Hummus add some fermented garlic for an added fermented kick

Tahini and avocado

Rasperries/blackberries/watermelon/mango (mango seeds are great for kids to suck on)

Mango Chia jam

Fat banana custard (before 12 months only use the egg yolks)

Chocolate Avocado pudding

Homemade Chocolate

Balls of Energy (until 12months use only seeds)

 

12-18 months

based on elimination diet protocols can start to introduce egg white, nuts, raw honey. (Try to keep grains to a minimum or traditionally prepared and served with something fermented until 2years)

 

Blender Waffles/Blender pancakes

Egg Muffins

Grain free granola (until you have checked nuts you can just use a variety of seeds; pumpkin, sesame, sunflower, chia and ground flax. Try this salty cinnamon flavour

Breakfast in a glass smoothie

Slow cooked apple, rhubarb and ginger porridge (serve with coconut yoghurt)

Almond milk

Nate’s Kefir Blueberry Mawfins

Weaning Recipes Loula Natural 

X