Where When How — May/June 2017
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Health For Mind & Body

Are you taking care of the health of your body and neglecting that of your mind? The whole of the human body is connected through spirit, body and mind. The spirit is nourished; the body is fed, but the mind is mostly left to its own mechanism. Living life in a balanced manner requires finding time to take care of your spirit, body and mind.

Often when we think of relaxation we think of a trip to the spa which can be rejuvenating for the body and mind but can cause stress to the budget. It is possible to create some of the spa experience at home with meditation and essential oils, helping you achieve a clearer mind and healthier approach to daily life and its stresses.


Robbie Maller Hartman (PhD psychologist who works as a health and wellness coach in Chicago) states that ‘research suggests that daily meditation may alter the brain’s neural pathways, making you more resilient to stress.’ Try to find a few quiet moments each day to practice some meditation to help ease away anxiety. A simple routine of sitting up straight and placing both feet on the floor or in relaxed pose, close your eyes and focus internally, and then empty your mind for just a few minutes. This can help you reset to tackle the rest of your day.

Breathe Deeply

Quiet meditation along with focused breathing helps in easing the body as well as the mind. Take a five minute break from everything and focus on your breathing. It helps to sit up straight and place your hand on your belly. Inhale gently through your nose allowing the breath to start from your abdomen to your head. Do this process again in reverse mode as you exhale through your mouth. Deep breathing can help counteract the effects of stress by slowing the heart rate and lowering the blood pressure.

To help recreate the spa feeling at home, experiment with adding essential oils to your meditation or breathing practice. Aromatherapy is the use of powerful aromas of essential oils that affect the mood and feelings of an individual through the sense of smells. Essential oils are a great way of relieving stress along with relaxing the mind and body and promoting a more positive outlook.

Now available at Flamingo Pharmacy are your choice of 100ml or 300ml electric aromatherapy diffusers with a seven colour LED that helps create a perfect ambience for relaxation. Try a single oil or blend several oils together to create a unique aroma for your home or office.

• Peppermint Essential Oil – a very potent, fresh, minty aroma that produces a cooling, refreshing sensation.

• Lavender Essential Oil – perfectly balanced floral-herbaceous aroma well known for its calming effects.

• Roman Chamomile Oil – a sweet herbal, green apple-like aroma which creates an atmosphere of calm and relaxation. A great alternative to lavender. There are also pre-made oil blends in stock at the Flamingo Pharmacy for a quick fix:

• Meditation Blend - a blend of cedarwood, myrtle, patchouli and sandalwood oils promotes a state of calm and awareness.

• Purify Blend – this blend of patchouli, sage, peppermint and tea tree oils counteracts negative feelings and establishes clarity.

• Relaxation Blend – this blend of sweet orange, tangerine, lemon, bergamot, lavender, Roman chamomile, ylang-ylang and sandalwood oils facilitate a calm, steady attitude.

• Panic Button Blend – this blend features the oils of rose flowers (rose absolute) and orange flowers (neroli). A heart-warming radiance evokes a sense of peace and calm.

Still feeling stressed? Other methods to get things back on track are:

Reaching Out

A personal social network is an excellent way to manage stress. So reach out and talk to others preferably face to face or over the phone. Express what is going with you and get a fresh perspective.

Laughing out Loud

Laughing out loud doesn’t just lighten the load mentally, it also lowers cortisol (the body’s stress hormone) and boosts brain chemicals called endorphins which stimulate your mood. Lighten up by tuning into your favorite sitcom or video or chatting with someone who makes you smile.

Cranking the music up!

Research shows that listening to soothing music can lower blood pressure, heart rate and anxiety. Go ahead and create a playlist of songs or nature sounds (the ocean or a bubbling brook) and allow your mind to focus on different melodies. This, or blow off some steam by rocking to an upbeat tune or singing at the top of your lungs.

Fredlie Swann Bruno, Healthcare Advisor, Flamingo Pharmacy