Posts Tagged mind and body

Practice Mindfulness Based Meditation

Mindfulness 2

Mindfulness refers to being fully aware of the present moment — on purpose and without judgment. When we focus our full attention on the present, we are less likely to worry about past or future events. In addition, some research suggests that practising mindfulness routinely may provide significant benefits, such as a greater sense of well-being, reduced stress level, and better physical and mental health outcomes.

In a society that places high importance on multi-tasking and non-stop streaming of information, focusing on one moment at a time is a challenging feat! Follow along with the mindfulness-based meditation exercise below, or make modifications in order for it to be a meaningful experience for you.


Try it out!

Sit in a comfortable position.

Close your eyes and take a few slow breaths in and out.

Slow down your mind and bring your focus to the sound and feeling of your breath.

Pay attention to the rising and falling of your stomach with each full inhale and exhale.

Calmly assess your current physical state. Are there any muscles that are tighter than normal? Is your body still carrying any weight or stress from the day?

Let go of these thoughts and feelings.

Do not burden your body and mind with negative thoughts.

You are relaxing in this moment. 

Breath out the discomfort and focus on the tranquility of your body.

Focus on how good your body and mind feel to relax.

Want to learn more? Look into the work of Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn (the pioneer of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction) or check out this website for more ideas on how to incorporate mindfulness into your day.


Christopher A. Pepping , Analise O’Donovan & Penelope J. Davis (2013) The positive effects of
mindfulness on self-esteem, The Journal of Positive Psychology: Dedicated to furthering research and promoting good practice, 8:5, 376-386

Kabat-Zinn, J., & Gazella, K. (2005). Jon Kabat-Zinn, PhD: bringing mindfulness to medicine. Alternative Therapies In Health & Medicine, 11(3), 56-64.

Marion Martin (2010) Mindfulness- and acceptance-based behavioral therapies in practice, British Journal of Guidance & Counselling, 38:1, 133-135

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Food for Thought: Diet Choices Linked to Brain Health

Do your snacking habits affect brain health? Could your diet choices help to reduce (or elevate) your risk for diseases like Alzheimer’s? As the prevalence of Alzheimer’s disease continues to rise (more than 5 millions Americans have a diagnosis), many have been intrigued by these questions. Unfortunately, there is no proven method for preventing Alzheimer’s disease and the research into its prevention is lacking. However, an emerging body of scientific research indicates that certain food choices may be conducive to a healthy brain.

Ever heard the axiom “healthy mind, healthy body”? It’s often true! Hypertension, diabetes, high cholesterol, and other chronic diseases have been associated with an increased risk for developing Alzheimer’s disease and other types of dementia. These diseases are harmful to the blood vessels in the body, and they can ultimately cause a lack of blood flow to the brain.

Want to ensure that your diet will protect your body and your mind? Adhering to a heart healthy food selection, like the Mediterranean diet, may help.


The benefits of diet on heart health are already well-documented, and many researchers believe that these same disease fighting foods can be beneficial in protecting the brain. The studies conducted on this subject have yielded promising results, however, more research must continue in order to learn more about effective prevention strategies for Alzheimer’s.

Don’t forget, aging doesn’t start when we reach 65. It’s happening to us all the time, everyday! Commit to a healthy lifestyle long-term, and you will be more likely to stave off chronic diseases, like Alzheimer’s. Life is a marathon, not a sprint!

grocery store

Want to give it a spin? Below is a sample grocery list that reflects adherence to the Mediterranean diet. The most effective eating plan is one that works with your preferences and lifestyle. Experiment with foods that are most appealing to you and enjoy!

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Eggplant
  • Tomatoes
  • Almonds
  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Celery
  • Carrots
  • Salmon
  • Brown rice
  • Whole wheat bread
  • Olive oil
  • Red wine
  • Blueberries
  • Strawberries
  • Bananas
  • Tilapia
  • Basil
  • Oregano
  • Black beans
  • Cannellini beans
  • Whole wheat pasta
  • Tomato sauce
  • Bell peppers
  • Zucchini


Arntzen, K. B. (2011). Impact of cardiovascular risk factors on cognitive function: The Tromsø study. European Journal Of Neurology18(5), 737-743.

Boost your memory by eating right. (2012). Harvard Women’s Health Watch19(12), 1-7.

Féart, C., Samieri, C., Rondeau, V., Amieva, H., Portet, F., Dartigues, J., & … Barberger-Gateau, P. (2009). Adherence to a Mediterranean diet, cognitive decline, and risk of dementia. JAMA: Journal Of The American Medical Association302(6), 638-648. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.1146

Mediterranean diet associated with lower risk of cognitive impairment. (2009). Nurse Prescribing7(3), 134.

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