• Vitamin D Bottles
    Health & Fitness

    Vitamin D: 10 Myths Debunked

    The conversation around Vitamin D is complex and there are lots of myths and counter-claims passed around like cookies. Most are hearsay, old-wives-tales and the like, even if there may be grains of truth behind some of them. A recent series from Grassroots Health looks at the misinformation and, scientifically, discusses the reality. It’s an interesting story and, if you’re serious about your health, take some time to read through the different articles. My takeaway from this is that you should be informed about the choices and not blindly supplement just for the sake of it. Although this will have some benefits in most cases, it might not have the…

  • Sweet, Sugary Cakes
    Health & Fitness

    Why Giving up Sugar is Hard, and Why you Must Try

    Sugar is hard to give up, not because you don’t have the willpower, but because of the biology surrounding sugar. You can’t overcome your biology with willpower. You will fail every time. So you need to approach it scientifically. Science Over Willpower The science of sugar is fascinating: It not only drives mechanisms that make you gain weight because it produces more insulin and so stores belly fat, but it makes you hungry, it slows your metabolism, and it locks the fat in the fat cell so it can’t get out – it’s like a one-way turnstile. I think we can agree these are not desirable effects. When you look…

  • Lotus Blossom on Water
    Health & Fitness,  Intellectual Life,  Emotional Life,  Spiritual Life

    The 4 Intelligences: Mind, Body, Emotion, Spirit

    I was reading The Fourth Industrial Revolution by Klaus Schwab (2017) last month and the closing chapter took an unexpected approach that relates to my own four-quadrant worldview that we have four principle realms in which we operate – Body, Mind, Emotion and Soul – and need to seek balance in each for our own wellbeing. Much of my work revolves around these four quadrants, and the life wheel builds on this by further compartmentalising different aspects of each, and adding overarching themes which span multiple quadrants. Here’s what Klaus Schwabb said: The Fourth Industrial Revolution may be driving disruption but the challenges it presents are of our own making.…

  • Sunlight through trees illuminating walkers on a path
    Health & Fitness

    The Essential Role of Vitamin D for Immune Response

    A friend sent me a video this week showing Dr JoAnn Manson discussing the efficacy of Vitamin D against COVID-19. The video was produced in May 2020 and you can watch it in full here. It is about 5 minutes long but I can’t embed it here. A recent study (published May 2021) supports this showing a 78% lower risk of death with Vitamin D. The video discusses the role of Vitamin D in the immune response against viruses based on clinical trials (and not just COVID-19) as well as how it benefits bone health and more. As health should be our number one priority since it is the foundation…

  • Morning Routines: Breakfast
    Health & Fitness,  Life Hacks,  Intellectual Life,  Character

    Turning Morning Routines into Morning Bliss

    Do you have a morning routine? And do you struggle with it somedays, or every day? The problem here is the word ‘routine.’ If the first things you are going to do in the day don’t light you up, you’re more likely to snooze than excitedly leap out of bed. 生き甲斐 – IkigaiThe thing that gets you out of bed in the morning – your sense of purpose. There are a gazillion morning routines in books and all over the Internet. You may have tried one or more of them and given up. No single routine is better than any of the others because the question is not “What is…

  • Forest Bathing - A Walk on the Wild Side
    Health & Fitness

    The Therapeutic Benefits of Forest Bathing

    I took a walk in the woods and came out taller than the trees Henry David Thoreau Walking among the pines and catching a shaft of sunlight is a magical thing. Letting yourself feel the joy in the moment (and nothing else) is one of the greatest reliefs there is. The Japanese practise of Shinrin-yoku, or forest bathing is the simple and therapeutic act of spending time in a forest. If you’ve ever been in a forest, listened to the birds, and watched the sunshine filtering through the leaves, you’ve already participated in one of the best things you can do for your physical and mental well-being. Even Japanese doctors…

  • Woman tying up her trainers
    Health & Fitness,  App Reviews

    App Review: HIIT by Down Dog

    Down Dog are possibly most well-known for their yoga app (hence the name – it’s a pose in yoga), but recently they have released a slew of related health-and-fitness apps which have been up to the same excellent levels of craftsmanship. I use the yoga app and recently added their HIIT and meditation apps to my roster. This review is about the HIIT app. For a long time, I have not settled on a preferred fitness app. I have been into running recently, tried push-up quests and a variety of styles over the years. But with the very cold winter weather, plus the heavy rains, I decided running was not…

  • Man Meditating Outdoors
    Health & Fitness,  Emotional Life,  Inspiration,  Spiritual Life

    Meditation Made Easy

    In this video, Mingyur Rinpoche explains the essence of meditation and describes some common misunderstandings about practising meditation. He also shares some tips for bringing meditation into our day-to-day lives. From my own learning about meditation and mindfulness since my initial forays with meditation 30+ years ago, these are 2 key essences of meditation: We are not our thoughts. We are the observer of our thoughts. Meditation is not about achieving the absence of thought, but remaining aware and centred while the thoughts ebb and flow around us. Over time, the thoughts will learn they don’t have your undivided attention and will recede. We will feel greater serenity and greater…

  • Singing Bowls & a Rain Stick
    Health & Fitness

    Can Sound Heal the Body?

    The Mystery of Sound In my teens, I explored the mysteries through the study of different belief systems ranging from shamanism to Buddhism. I experienced various esoteric practices which are now finding their way into the mainstream. These included Tibetan Overtone Chanting and Singing Bowls. Sound has always been important to me; everything from melodies and key changes in music in general through to more metaphysical experiences with New Age music, Gregorian Chant and the aforementioned Overtone Chanting and Singing Bowls. Headphones are great for experiencing the technical intricacies of modern music, but there is something more primal in feeling the music on the body, especially the chants, bowls and…