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Navitas Organics Blog

5 Steps to Reducing Stress

Posted by Julie Morris, Navitas Organics Executive Chef on Apr 17, 2018 2:30:21 AM

Although some level of stress is an essential component of evolution (think fight-or-flight survival instincts or the emotional response to a sad situation), most experts agree stress has taken on an entirely new form in modern society, turning into a true epidemic. These days, we have a hard time “shutting down” at all: bringing work on vacation, checking emails right upon waking up, and even creating demanding activity-filled schedules for our children and family. But what's even more concerning is that stress doesn't just stop with the time frame of the triggering circumstance. Rather, stress can have profound long-term effects in the body as well. 

John Carpi for Psychology Today reports, “Psychological stress doesn't just put your head in a vice. New studies document exactly how it tears away at every system—including your brain. But get this: the experience of stress in the past magnifies your reactivity to stress in the future. So, take a nice deep breath and find a stress-stopping routine this instant!" If you're as ready as we are to relax, here's a simple five-step plan for hitting reset on your stress response that you can do anytime, anywhere:

1. Change Your Senses. There are many environmental culprits that induce a stress response. Fluorescent bulbs, for example, emit an almost imperceptible “flicker,” which can trigger nervous system stress, while artificial scents or even chemicals and cleaners can provoke inflammation. Even if you find yourself often in an environment you can't control, you can manipulate your sensory experience to improve your mental state. If possible, find some natural sunlight to step into for a few moments throughout the day; place your bare feet for a few minutes in some grass; or inhale a whiff (or rub on your temples) a natural stress-reducing aromatic such as lavender, lemongrass or sage. Think of these techniques as a sensory “reset.”

2. Change Your Breath. One of your best tools for stress regulation is built right inside of you: your breath. Deep breathing has been scientifically proven to stimulate a parasympathetic nervous system reaction, helping you to biologically relax and slow down. You can download breathing apps on your phone for timing guidance or simply take 10 long, slow inhales and exhales, with a brief “hold” at the top of the inhale. Even just a minute or two of breathwork will slow your heart rate and signal your body to cool down.

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Topics: wellness, livelifepositive, stress, blog, health, healthy, superfoods

Self-Care Can Save Us from the Flu!

You’ve read the headlines – the 2018 Flu Season has now reached record proportions! Starting earlier than usual in December, the virus first gained strength in California and quickly spread to 48 states across the country. Many people spent their holiday season passing the virus back and forth between family members, hampering social and travel plans. It hasn’t been uncommon to hear people say they haven’t been this sick for decades. At this point, the number of the population affected is at the same level as the Swine Flu Pandemic of 2009, a new flu strain that had surfaced at that time for which we were not prepared. Previously coined the “hospitalizer” due to its severity causing record levels of hospitalizations, this year’s H3N2 Influenza strain is shaping up to be no different, continuing to circulate despite predictions that it would fade out as the season wore on.

 

The resultant strain on healthcare facilities has outgrown capacity in many areas, causing a number of them to expand services into parking lots under makeshift tents to handle the influx of patients. The worse part? All of this transpired before officially reaching the peak of the season, which typically occurs during the month of February. So, why is this year’s flu so bad and what can we do about it?

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Topics: wellness, livelifepositive, blog, flu, health, healthcare, superfoods

How to Make 2018 Your Year of Happiness

Posted by Tiffany Napper on Feb 1, 2018 2:22:59 AM

Sometimes it takes a great big boom to spur a metamorphosis. Other times, it's about returning to the place you once were, slowly, somewhat haphazardly, and yet purposefully all at once. That’s how 2017 felt for me: returning joy to my life again.

I had spent 10 years living with music industry struggles, being a female in a male-dominated world. #Metoo episodes were the norm. I spread myself too thin, owned three businesses and though I didn’t realize it at the time, I was glorifying my hustle. I thought the harder I worked, the happier I would be…because the only way to accomplish your dreams was to put in more work, right?

And it’s no surprise, I suffered from entrepreneurial burnout. At the same time in my personal life, I experienced unhealthy relationships – one in particular was with a Narcissist that reads like a Hollywood movie. After that fallout, I dove deeper into my work. I practiced yoga daily, but without any real mental clarity, yoga could only do so much, and eventually, I lost my way. I put on a little weight – enough to feel it in my jeans and make me feel insecure. I felt myself slipping into a depressed state and I was desperate to feel good again.

I knew that if I wanted to feel different, I had to do things differently. I downsized my business, let go of things that were tying me down and started envisioning the life I wanted to live – one filled with whitespace and wellness.

I wanted to heal myself from the inside out, so I decided to start with what goes into my body. I prioritized real, clean ingredients. Matcha lattes, superfood-filled smoothies and energy balls soon became part of my regular day. I learned about adaptogens, discovering the natural healing benefits of Maca (stress fighter) and Goji Berries (mood booster), and I made easy choices like substituting cocoa with Cacao. Pro tip: when not heated at high temperatures like cocoa, Cacao is a superfood full of antioxidants and rich in nutrients including magnesium, calcium and iron!

I recommitted to my yoga practice. I started taking long walks and making time for morning meditations.

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Topics: wellness, livelifepositive, blog, health, healthy, superfoods

How To Celebrate Life Every Day

Posted by Julie Morris, Navitas Organics Executive Chef on Jan 22, 2018 1:25:00 AM

Between high work expectations, increased traffic, screen-time distractions like social media or just a To-Do List that seemingly never gets shorter, it’s easy to get lost in the small things that make up a fast-moving day. As most of us live a lifestyle that’s increasingly removed from the physical, tangible world, it comes as no surprise that the rates of depression and anxiety are also rapidly on the rise, and increasingly experienced by younger individuals. There has never been a more important time to re-learn how to celebrate our time, become connected to our community and to our planet, and take practice in the universal truths of life.

There is nothing complex about celebrating life. In fact, most of this celebration simply comes from being present, aware, conscious and practicing gratitude. This change of mindset can ground your entire day with a new outlook, and help you feel more satisfied and alive than ever. As we start fresh this New Year, here are some methods to reshape your life:

Begin Each Day with Gratitude
From the moment you wake up, start your day aware of the life in which you’ve been honored to participate. Many people find solace in morning meditation, writing in a gratitude journal or connecting with the universe in prayer while expressing appreciation for their riches of all varieties – from a warm bed to a loving family member. This is a wonderful way to “turn the lights on” in your mind and put you on the right track to leading a more mindful, and ultimately more satisfying, day.

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Topics: wellness, livelifepositive, blog, health, healthy, life, superfoods

Your Three-Step Guide to Hunting for Happiness

Posted by Danielle Rodriguez on Jan 15, 2018 2:22:21 AM

It’s 2018 and the resolutions are pouring in. The New Year can be a time of reflection, and for some, it can mean hunting for happiness. I’ve definitely done my share of “hunting,” but I’ve come to realize that when it’s happiness you’re searching for, you need to find it for yourself. However, there are a few changes I’ve incorporated into my life that I believe have helped me bring more happiness into it. Taking the time to find which hobbies, foods and overall lifestyle choices you enjoy can ultimately help you reach a higher level of happiness in your own ways. 


1. Listen to Your Needs and Wants
Hiking is an activity that I’ve only become passionate about over the past few years, as growing up in Chicago didn’t lend itself to spending much time in the great outdoors. After moving to Arizona and exploring local mountains, I truly discovered my love for nature. The everyday work grind and other stressors can wear on a person, and I am certainly no exception, but I’ve found that committing to spending time outdoors every weekend gives me the dose of fresh air I need to reset for the days to come. If the outdoors isn’t your thing, that’s totally fine! Take time, though, to do something you love to do. Try a new restaurant, take a pottery class, visit a friend or walk your dog. Hunting for happiness begins with committing yourself to your needs and wants, and once you find out what those are, listening to them will undoubtedly bring you great joy.

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Topics: wellness, goals, livelifepositive, blog, blogger, happiness, health, healthy

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