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JANUARY / FEBRUARY 2016

Welcome to

A more organic way No. 104 of Being ROWING IS THE NEW SPINNING: interval training with Dr. Cory Holly.

GOOD MOOD HELPERS: our selection of products to help happy minds, moods, and tummies.

Winter weariness be gone! Feng shui: the year of the fire monkey Contemplating happiness Top good mood foods An Ayurvedic ode to happiness Happiness expert

Gretchen Rubin A DAY IN THE LIFE P R I NTE D IN CANADA

(Happy) new year recipes The all-Canadian natural brand that makes healing beautiful (and smells great)

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No. 104 I’ve often heard experts say that a good night’s sleep begins the day before. I’ve taken this advice to heart, as I began planning 2016 in early November. Instead Welcome to of entering the year with a food hangover and a cluttered house, I wanted to enter it with fresh paint on the walls, less clutter and with a feeling of being refreshed and ready for a beautiful new year. Over the course of developing this issue, our first ever happiness issue, I’ve had the opportunity to interview various experts on the topic of happiness. What does happiness mean? Is it something that we can work towards? And how do we day begins.And I’ve also decided that there’s no shame nourish our bodies in a way that can facilitate a greater in going to bed before 9pm. I’ve been taking better care sense of calm and an uplifted mind from day to day? of my adrenal health, and applied principles of feng In speaking with Gretchen Rubin (see page 16), shui (see page 18) throughout my home and office. the NY Times bestselling author of The Happiness Most importantly, happiness is the most auProject—amongst other titles—she’s taken a very meththentic when it’s shared with others. I’m sure that odical route to happiness; in a way, creating “happiness you have more to give than you even think; don’t habits”. Make your bed, hug more, quit sugar, go on underestimate your ability to make others happy. adventures, and fill your home with great smells. To a brilliant New Year, cheers! I’ve realized that at least part of the happiness recipe are those small daily habits—and creating the space in your life to sit back and fully absorb the greatness of the small details of life. Myself, I’ve taken more time to be with my daughter. In the wee hours of the E D I TOR morning, we snuggle in bed and read books before the

A more organic way of Being

PHOT OS : AL M OND AND P O M EG RA N AT E T REES © IVA N A LVA R EZ D E LOR ENZANA; BUD D H A WI TH C H I LD R EN © SABI NE ED R I SSI -BR ED ENB RO CK ED IT O R' S P H O T O © ALY SON STR I K E, ALY SONSTR I K E. C OM

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No. 104 Publisher:

Trent Nellis Editor:

Katharine Herringer Art director:

Iván Álvarez de Lorenzana Sr. graphic designer at large:

Natalina Percival copy editor:

Sabine Edrissi-Bredenbrock editorial coordinator / contributing editor:

Reilly Whittaker V I S TAM AG AZ I N E . C A

@ V I S TAM AGAZIN E

I S S U U . C OM / V I S TAM AG AZ I N E C AN AD A VISTA Magazine Suite 451, 15216 North Bluff Road, White Rock, BC, V4B 0A7 Canada Telephone (877) 905-7771, e-mail: info@vistamagazine.ca Subscriptions Vista Magazine is published six times a year. To subscribe to Vista Magazine and receive delivery bi-monthly, email us at info@vistamagazine.ca for details. Disclaimer The opinions expressed herein are those of the authors and advertisers and do not necessarily reflect those of the Vista Magazine publisher, editors, or staff. Readers are encouraged to consult with their health professional before embarking upon any exercise, medical or nutritional changes. Contents of Vista Magazine are copyright © 2016, all rights reserved. Vista Magazine may not be reproduced in whole or in part by any means without written permission of the publisher. Canada Publication Mail Sales Product Agreement # 42898014 VISTA MAGAZINE IS A PROUD SPONSOR OF:

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Top 5 good mood foods Get to know the foods that help to nourish a happy and healthy mind and spirit.

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If you are what you eat… can Cheerios make you happy?

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Desiree Nielsen, R.D. tells us how to get those “happy hormones” flowing with food.

An Ayurvedic ode to happiness Balance your doshas, and experience more ease and flow in your life .

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Contents J A N UA RY / F E BRUA RY 2016

Welcome to

No. 104

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A more organic way of Being

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Projecting happiness: Q&A with Gretchen Rubin, NY Times bestselling author and happiness expert.

Feng shui for happiness in 2016 Q&A with a feng shui master.

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Spreading aroma-wellness from coast to coast

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We chatted with the co-founder of Saje Natural Wellness.

Contemplating happiness Dr. Werner Spangehl highlights behaviors and health tips for improved mental health.

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Winter weariness be gone!

Allison Tannis, R.H.N helps us to banish the winter blues.

Get rowing Did you know? It’s an oldie but a goodie. Rowing is the new spinning!

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Baked fish for a lucky new year An ode to baked fish, and a few more delicious seasonal recipes, sure to make you smile.

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Take a breath

“Want to be happy? Stop trying to be perfect.” D R . BRE N E BRO WN

Type “how to be happy” into any search engine and you will be overwhelmed with results ranging from meditation to medication. But if you ask Paul Zak — nicknamed Dr. Love — a pioneer in the field of neuro-economics, his answer is simple: give more hugs. Research shows that trust, empathy, morality, affection and love all increase as levels

of oxytocin increase. One study concluded that individuals who inhaled oxytocin displayed much greater levels of trust and generosity than those who used inhalers filled with a placebo. But getting your daily dose of oxytocin doesn’t require inhalation; in fact it’s surprisingly easy to cause people’s brains to release. The simple act of hugging

boosts oxytocin levels in the body, resulting in a happier you and a better world. Those who give more hugs release more oxytocin, helping us foster better relationships and experience a happier state of being. So here’s your prescription for happiness from Dr. Love: eight hugs a day — now go get hugging! f

SOUR CES: THEG U A R DIA N .C O M, T E D.COM P HOT O: ALMOND TR EES IN B L OOM IN EAR LY F EB R UARY, S ELVA , BA L E A R I C I S L A N D S , © I VA N A LVA R E Z D E L O R E N Z A N A

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Whole Foods

Top 5 good mood foods 1) Chili pepper

If you’ve ever wondered what causes the burning sensation in your mouth when you eat a hot pepper, the answer is a molecule called capsaicin. Our brains respond to the heat of capsaicin by releasing the same endorphins as when we exercise. Just as runners report a post-workout “high,” chili pepper lovers can experience a soothing, euphoric response from eating this spicy snack.

2) Fish

Those suffering from depression often lack the omega-3 fatty acid DHA. One study found that individuals who took one gram of fish oil each day noticed a decrease in symptoms such as anxiety, sleep disorders, and unexplained feelings of sadness. If you’re feeling down, nutrient dense sardines or salmon can have a dramatic effect on your mood.

3) Coconut

Sprinkling coconut flakes into your morning oats is a good way to start your day off right. Coconut contains medium-chain triglycerides that your body processes and uses as instant brain fuel. Even the scent of coconut has been shown to suppress your “fight or flight” response, slowing your heart rate and reducing stress and anxiety.

4) Asparagus

Asparagus is rich in tryptophan, responsible for the development of serotonin— dubbed the “happiness hormone.” It also contains high levels of folate, which up to 50 percent of individuals who suffer from depression are low in. The enzymes in asparagus are also very effective at breaking down alcohol, preventing hangovers — and that’s definitely something to be happy about.

5) Maca

This ancient Peruvian superfood has been used as a stress reliever for thousands of years. It is an excellent source of magnesium and iron (two key nutrients for controlling anxiety), as well as calcium, and potassium. Purée maca powder with almond butter, chopped almonds, dates, and vanilla, then form into balls and refrigerate for delicious and raw energy bites. f

D RI ED CHI LI S. P HO T O : © S U T O N O R BE RT Z S O LT

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The state of global happiness The World Happiness Report is a survey of the state of happiness in the world today, tracking the well-being of people in 156 countries. Published by the UN’s Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), the 2015 edition of the report surveys each country according to six life evaluations: GDP per capita, healthy years of life expectancy, social support (as measured by having someone to count on in times of trouble), trust (as measured by a perceived absence of corruption in government and business), perceived freedom to make life decisions, and generosity (as measured by recent donations).

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The report also examines a range of positive and negative experiences by gender, age and region, with the positive items including happiness, smiling or laughter, enjoyment, feeling safe at night, feeling well-rested, and feeling interested. Top global boost of women's happiness, by region: +2% in South East Asia +1% in East Asia +1% in North Africa Average global difference in happiness, by gender: Women's happiness is 2% higher than men's. Average global difference in happiness, by age: 10% decline in happiness from the teenage years to midlife. f SOURCE : W OR L DHAPP I NE S S . REP O RT

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The top good-for-you whole foods Whole Foods

According to Greek mythology, while imprisoned in the underworld, the goddess Persephone was able to resist all types of foods except for one: pomegranate seeds.

Pomegranate Pomegranates are most readily available in North America between October and February; and it is because of this harvest time that they are often referred to as the “jewel of the winter.” Pomegranates are packed with hundreds of tiny red arils; jewel-like capsules filled with sweet juice and a tiny seed. One of the most nutritionally dense foods, consumption of pomegranate seeds have been shown to have anti-cancer and immune supporting effects, and prevent heart attacks and strokes. The

impressive antioxidants in pomegranates also help protect our skin from sun damage, contribute to anti-aging benefits, and may even shield us from degenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and rheumatoid arthritis. Full of vitamins B and C, folic acid, and iron, a half cup of pomegranate seeds contains just 80 calories with 5 grams of fibre and 180 mg of potassium. Like Persephone, you shouldn’t live without this fruit in your diet.

Pomegranate juice contains three times more antioxidants than green tea and red wine. Phytochemicals in pomegranates stimulate estrogen and serotonin receptors in the body, helping to alleviate or lessen the occurrence of feelings of depression. Pomegranate seeds can be consumed raw, sprinkled into salads or oatmeal, or juiced for a refreshing, antioxidant rich beverage. f SOURCES: EATINGWELL.COM, HEALWITHFOOD.ORG

PH O T O © I V Á N Á LVA R E Z DE L OR ENZ A NA

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Projecting Happiness Q&A with Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project

Happiness

Gretchen Rubin wears many hats: Yale Law School graduate, #1 New York Times bestselling author, and happiness expert who has inspired millions. 1

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Through her popular blog, new podcast Happier With Gretchen Rubin, and three books The Happiness Project, Happier at Home, and Better Than Before, Gretchen Rubin discusses how to live a happier life. She’s in pursuit of happiness; and wants you to be too. How was it that you began researching happiness? Gretchen: It was actually a very ordinary moment in my life. I was stuck on a city bus in the pouring rain and I had this rare moment of reflection. I asked myself: “What do I want from life, anyway?” And I realized what I wanted was to be happy. But I had never thought about what made me happy, or how I might be happier. I ran to the library the next day and came out with a huge stack of books, filled with what ancient philosophy and contemporary science said about happiness, and whether it was even possible to make yourself happier. That’s what I set out to find out.

What are some of these things? Gretchen: There are two things, people specifically tell me, that have been really transformative, and they’re both so simple. The first is the resolution to make your bed everyday, and the second is the one-minute rule. What’s the one-minute rule? Gretchen: It’s the idea that if you can do something in less than one minute; you should do it without delay. For example, if you can hang up your jacket or print off a document and file it in less than a minute, just do it!

these people in my life. It’s constant, very low pressure, engagement. In your latest book Better Than Before, you talk about “quitting sugar.” How does the way you eat affect your happiness? Gretchen: I think when it comes to eating, there are a lot of ways to eat healthily. People can be healthy while eating wildly different things, but no one is arguing, “It’s really good to eat a lot of sugar and refined carbs.” I switched to a low carb diet overnight after reading Gary Taubes’ Why We Get Fat. When you don’t eat sugar, you don’t crave it, so I have much more bandwidth to think about things that are interesting, instead of whether or not I can eat that cookie.

What has people’s reaction to The Happiness Project been like? Gretchen: It resonates with a lot of people, and I think that’s because I talk about happiness in a very manageable way. People often think “to be happy, I’d have to go on a ten day silent meditation retreat”, or “I would have to completely revolutionize my life”, and that just doesn’t seem attainable. For most people, there are easier ways to achieve happiness that can be done on any ordinary day.

How else do you bring happiness into your day-to-day life? Gretchen: My parents, sister and I have started doing something called update. My mother commented on the fact that when you see someone everyday, you have loads to talk about, but when you don’t see them all the time, you often have nothing to talk about. So every few days we send an email to each other titled update, and our motto is: “It’s okay to be boring.” My mother will literally say something like: “I’m going to get my hair coloured today.” You don’t have to reply, and you don’t have to be witty or interesting, but it’s amazing how much closer I feel to

In our consumer driven world, what is your opinion on the “stuff” we live with in relation to happiness? Gretchen: People often say the secret to happiness is to simplify, and I definitely agree that the things you don’t need, don’t use, and don’t love tend to weigh us down. But I think possessions can play an important role of happiness in our lives. They serve as reminders of the people and places that we love. When you look around, people have different levels of what they want around them. Even abundance lovers don’t want to be surrounded by junk. The process of clearing clutter, and mindfully choosing our possessions is important, but what works for one person might not work for everyone. The key point of happiness is to know yourself. f

1. GRET C HEN

2, 3,6,8. A FFI RMATI ON S

4. GRETCHEN ON OPRAH’S SUPERSOUL SUNDAY.

R U BI N .

PHOTO © ANDY RYAN

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THE HA P P IE R P ODC A S T.

PHOTO FR OM GR ET CHEN'S IN S TAG R AM

FOR HA P P I N ESS.

PH O TO F R O M G R E T C HE N ' S I N S TA G R A M

7. B A R N A B Y,

PHOTO FROM GRETCHEN'S INSTAGRAM

HER N EW P U P P Y.

PH O TO F R O M G R E T C HE N ' S I N S TA G R A M

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Feng shui

Feng shui for happiness in 2016

LAUGHING BUDDHA WITH CHILDREN: BEST IF PLACED IN THE WEST SECTOR OF A HOME OR ROOM. USED TO ENHANCE FERTILITY AND EDUCATION LUCK FOR CHILDREN. PHOTO © SABINE EDRISSI-BREDENBROCK

Move your stuff, change your life, or so says pop culture surrounding the 3500 year practice of feng shui. The practice of feng shui discusses architecture in metaphoric terms of “invisible forces” that bind the universe, earth, and humanity together, known as qi. Walaa Zeidan endeavours to live in a world filled with hard copy books, hand written notes and fast cars. Born in Beirut, Lebanon, and growing up

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during a period of civil unrest, Walaa came to Canada as a refugee. A tremendous journey of perseverance and hard work led her to become a sought after management consultant and leading authority on creating better chi in your personal, professional and spiritual life. Walaa is the CEO and Feng Shui Master of What the Feng Shui Corp. — a company designed to create well-being, harmony and abundance between the physical, emotional, financial and spiritual aspects of one’s life. As a Feng Shui Master, she’s received distinction

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“The year of the monkey is the year of opportunity… for risk-taking and getting out of your comfort zone.”

LUCKY BAMBOO: THE MEANING OF BAMBOO PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE AS A LIVING EXAMPLE OF THE FENG SHUI ELEMENTS OF WATER, WOOD AND EARTH.

and I wasn’t getting restful sleep lately. Walaa pointed out the priorities which she urged me to have addressed before the beginning of 2016. After smudging with buffalo sage, status by one of the most renowned adding some new lighting, getting some Feng Shui Grand Masters in Asia. of our photography mounted and hung, We spent an afternoon with Zeidan, a few new curtains, a water feature, while she feng-shui-ed my home and a new coffee table, and changing the office, to give me an idea (and now you) direction in which I work from, I feel of the powers of improved flow. We can an entirely new sense of flow and order all use a little more chi in our homes. in my life. And dare I say, increased Zeidan began by taking every mem- cash flow. Everything just seems ber of our household’s date and time easier, even if we’re busier than ever. of birth, which revealed our Chinese My conversation with Zeidan sign and corresponding element, as continued over lunch, where I asked well as our “best directions”. Indeed, her a few more questions, especially everyone has a “best direction” (mine around how to get the most out of 2016. happens to be west), from which to best sleep, eat and work from. 2016 is the year of the fire monkey— I generally have a crazy workwhat’s to know for the year to come? load, a busy household, a seemingly The year of the monkey is the cluttered home (I blame my toddler) year of opportunity, it’s a year for

1. PH OTO © S A B I N E E DR I SSI -B R E DE N B R O C K

2. P HO T O © E V E RY T HI N G

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SIX ROD METAL WIND CHIME: BEST IF PLACED IN THE SOUTH SECTOR OF A HOME OR OFFICE FOR 2016. THE NUMBER 6 SYMBOLIZES HELP FROM HEAVEN AND IS A METAL ELEMENT NUMBER ITSELF. ACTIVATING THE NUMBER 6 STAR WILL BRING UNEXPECTED GOOD FORTUNE OF THE SPECULATIVE KIND.

3 SEVEN LEVEL METAL PAGODA: BEST IF PLACED IN THE WEST OR NORTHWEST OF A HOME, ROOM OR DESK. THE PAGODA BRINGS WISDOM TO ACHIEVE HIGH ACADEMIC SUCCESS. IT NOT ONLY ENHANCES SCHOLASTIC ACHIEVEMENT, BUT WILL HELP THOSE WHO ARE JUST STARTING OUT THEIR CAREERS.

entrepreneurs, for risk-taking and getting out of your comfort zone. It’s the best year to also slow down, and get your ducks in a row. A good year of change for most people as well as a year for enhanced self-care. What’s not so good for you in 2016? Instead of lighting candles in the center of tables, favor plants, flowers, and purchase bamboo. Pay attention to the Mercury retrogrades, which govern communication. Try and be more patient with each other, as next year will be about rapid movement. In general, pay extra attention to where you spend the most of your time at home.

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PHOT O © SAB IN E EDRISSI- B RE D E N B RO CK

No refrigeration needed.

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What should people do to prepare for 2016? I would recommend doing a vision board after Feb 4th (Chinese lunar new year), try and de-clutter your home (no burnt out lightbulbs!) before the new year, and pay attention to the moon phases. As always, focus on cleaning up and energizing your front door, which is considered the “mouth of the home”. (Tip: use your iPhone’s compass to find out which way your front door faces). It’s important to remember that your own personal karma will determine how well the feng shui will work for you. f

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PH O TO © SA B I N E E DR I SSI -B R E DE N B R O C K

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Since opening the first Saje aromatherapy store in 1992, they have now opened 34 stores across North America, from Vancouver to St. John’s.

The Organic Entrepreneur

All Saje products are 100% natural, free of any synthetic colours or fragrances, and organic wherever possible.

Spreading aroma-wellness from coast to coast Q&A with the co-founder of Saje Natural Wellness BY K ATHA R I NE HER R I N GER

This Canadian owned and operated company is always looking for ways to reduce their environmental footprint. All products are manufactured locally, with simple packaging, made of recycled or recyclable materials, and ingredients lists aren’t filled with hard to pronounce chemicals.

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Jean-Pierre LeBlanc and his wife Kate Ross LeBlanc are the co-founders of Saje Natural Wellness, a Vancouverbased company, committed to connecting people with the healing power of plants. Their essential oils are made from sustainable, pure ingredients that are supportive of the body’s breathing, living, and healing functions. We chatted with Jean-Pierre about the beginnings of Saje, and today, with 34 locations across Canada. How did your interest in alternative medicine begin? Jean-Pierre: It all began on the Toronto expressway. An accident left me with a bad case of whiplash; so, I was prescribed painkillers, anti-inflammatories, and muscle relaxants. None of these helped. And seven years after the accident, I was diagnosed with chronic pain, and then clinical depression. Dozens of prescription medications were debilitating. I had to get off these drugs and

find some other way to get well. I had no idea how that was going to be at the time, but I knew there had to be a better way. As it happened, Kate had heard about a traditional medicine symposium, which I quickly signed up for. Is that where you learned about aromatherapy? Jean-Pierre: Yes, though Traditional Chinese Medicine initially intrigued me. I left that talk and was trying to figure out how a French Canadian, like me,

would become a Traditional Chinese Medicine doctor as I arrived at the next talk, which happened to be about Ayurveda and the use of essential oils. Drs. Light and Bryan Miller were discussing how on average, essential oils are 80 times more potent than the dry herbs used in Traditional Chinese Medicine. I figured, as sick and depressed as I was, that I wanted medicine with that kind of potency. Where did you go to learn more about essential oils? Jean-Pierre: The best scientists studying essential oils are in the South of France. It wasn’t too hard of a sell to say to Kate “Hey honey, want to go to the South of France and learn about essential oils?” I have a background in chemistry, and I’m French, so I was extremely well received, and I absolutely fell in love. Then we went to England, where we learned there was a very holistic process to making people well through essential oils. Back in Canada, a combination of an urgent need and a passion for wellness lead me to begin blending my first remedies. I wanted to get rid of my migraines, and that’s how Peppermint Halo was created – which was the first Saje product ever.

P R EV I O U S PA GE : GR E E N WA L L S A N D E CO DE S I G N AT A SA JE RETAI L STORE I N CF SHERWAY G A RD EN S, TORON TO THI S PA G E:

1. S T OR E F R O N T,

C F S H E RWAY GA R DE N S.

2. COFOU N D ERS

JEAN - P I ERRE LEBLAN C AN D K ATE ROSS LEBLA N C, W IT H

DA U GH T E R K I A RA. A L L P HO T O S © S A J E W E L L N E S S .

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How did that lead to opening your first Saje store? Jean-Pierre: Kate and I moved from Toronto to Vancouver in 1992, and opened the first aromatherapy store in North America — a tiny 200 square foot store at Lonsdale Quay. We had only seven or eight essential oil products, which shouldn’t have been enough to keep a store alive, but it did. It was essentially a free clinic, and our stores are still like that today. You can go into any Saje store and say “I have a headache,” or “My neck is sore,” and a very caring individual will help you without asking you to buy anything. Saje has been around for over two decades, but it seems to have exploded in the last few years. What changed? Jean-Pierre: I was given a book called Mastering The Rockfeller Habit by Verne Harnish, and this completely changed the way we ran our business. We started making important decisions, all based on our core values, realizing that our brand promise was truly 100% natural and positively outrageous customer service. At the same time, a financer approached us. We knew how

SAJE' S P OCK ET P HARMA CY. P HO T O S © S A J E W E L L N E S S

we wanted things to be done, but until then we didn’t have the financing to make that possible. This allowed us to start doing tremendous things. Next thing you know, we’re doubling in size. Three years in a row we have doubled our stores.

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“You can go into any Saje store and say “I have a headache,” or “My neck is sore,” and a very caring individual will help you… We started making important decisions, all based on our core values, realizing that our brand promise was truly 100% natural and positively outrageous customer service.” What would you say to those who are sceptical of the benefits of essential oils? Jean-Pierre: I can change their minds in four minutes or less. Peppermint Halo applied properly can get rid

of your headache in minutes. It’s hard to remain a sceptic after that. What’s a typical day in your life like? Jean-Pierre: It usually starts with yoga, meditation, or walking — I believe that sitting is the new smoking! I am the Chief Wellness Officer at Saje, and I can’t lead others in wellness habits if I’m not leading myself first. I’m on the road a lot, but I check in with the team on a daily basis. Inevitably even after I’ve left work, Kate, our daughter Kiara (who is now the Creative Director for Saje) and I will continue talking about Saje. But it doesn’t feel like work, it feels like enjoying time with the two most important people to me in the world. Finally, what are your ‘go to’ essential oils that you use everyday? It’s the Saje pocket pharmacy; I use it as my wallet so that I can have our top blends at my finger tips. f

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Contemplating happiness Research shows that only 10% of our happiness is determined by circumstances. After positive or negative events, most people will return to their baseline level of happiness. Dr Werner Spangehl , MD oneminutemedicine.com facebook.com/ Werner-Spangehl-MD Dr. Werner Spangehl is a Canadian Family Physician who was born in Regina, Saskatchewan. He studied Biology and Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan and then completed an Internship at St. Joseph’s Health Centre in Toronto. Dr. Spangehl has a family practice in White Rock, British Columbia. He is a Clinical Assistant Professor for the University of British Columbia College of Medicine, and mentors medical students and Family Practice residents. Dr. Spangehl is interested in using lifestyle modifications to improve health and has taken courses with several leaders in

40% is determined by our internal state of mind, and 50% is related to our genetics. So we have the opportunity to improve our happiness based on choices we make, thought patterns, and behaviours. The human soul fundamentally yearns to be happy. Moreover, it is apparent that attributes of health and happiness are very similar; both imply wholeness and balance. Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, reflected on happiness over 2300 years ago. Aristotle described four levels of happiness: instant gratification,

gratification through achievement, gratification through the contribution to others, and transcendent gratification. It is in this highest level of happiness that we live more consistently from a place of purpose and truth, using our signature strengths to serve others, and working in various creative ways for the good of the world.

“It is empowering to learn that we can be the architects of our own happiness and health.”

Integrative Medicine. A R IS T O T L E A N D H IS P U P IL A L E X A N DE R THE G REAT. E N G R AV I N G © E V E R E T T HI S T O R I CA L

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“Happiness is socially contagious! A smile begets a smile, a kind deed is paid forward — and slowly, the world becomes a better place for all of us.” One of the most common attributes of happy people is a shared attitude of gratitude. Like athletes, who train hard and then leave it all on the track or the field, if we practice a spirit of optimism and sufficiency and truly see the glass as half full, it allows us to live a life of happiness and contentment — leaving little room for regret. On the opposite end of the spectrum, research has shown that the root of unhappiness — fear — lies in the oldest, reptilian part of our brains, and negative reactions are often dictated by primal instincts. We’re literally “hardwired for hard times.” In What Happy People Know, Dr. Dan Baker uses evidence from the new science of happiness to show us, how we can overcome this genetic predisposition toward negative reactions and lead a truly rich, happy, and healthy life. The “Home of Happiness” in the brain is our limbic system — or emotional brain. This is what determines feelings, motivation, drive, and affects our immune system. Studies have shown that how you feel is how you heal. The limbic system is a little bit like a young child who listens to everything going on — and then acts accordingly. So how we speak to others and to ourselves affects our limbic system — and therefore our emotions and our health. This is why positive self-talk and behaviours are so important. Are there actual specific health benefits of happiness? Absolutely! We know people who are content in their work and relationships — especially those who are happy in marriage — also live longer, have lower blood pressure, sleep better, have more energy, heal faster, take fewer medications and have less stress-related and chronic illnesses than those who are not. Antidepressant medications certainly have a role to play — especially in refractory depression. However, they also have numerous side effects, so it is wise to embark on other strategies first. • Boost your vitamin D levels. This may be achieved by taking 1000–2000 IUs a day, but in the winter months older adults may need 5000 IU/day. Ideally, you would want to get your Vitamin D level checked and aim for 100–150 nmol/L). Vitamin D

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is essential for bone health, but also strengthens your immune system, lowers the risk of MS and certain cancers — and can lift your spirits. • Omega-3 fatty acids called EPA and DHA can also be helpful. These are most prevalent in seafood and krill, as well as the algae that fish and crustaceans eat. The problem with fish is that they often swim in polluted water so they (and their oils) can contain heavy metals such as mercury as well PCBs. Some people therefore prefer to get their omega-3s from plant sources such as flax, chia, walnuts, and soy. These foods contain omega-3 fatty acids called ALA which can be converted into EPA and DHA; however, only 10% or so is converted. So, if you can get a pollution-free source of the omega-3s (EPA and DHA), that humans need, that would be preferable. • Exercise! There is no doubt that exercise has numerous health benefits and certainly improves mood. In fact, studies on antidepressant medications have shown, that overall they are not more effective than placebos or exercise. • Spend time with positive family and friends. It is empowering to learn that we can be the architects of our own happiness and health — or our misery. It is tremendously important to nurture ourselves, foster meaningful relationships, seek the good in others and in situations, live lives of purpose and meaning, share our blessings, and remain hopeful and optimistic. This positive attitude will not only improve our own lives, but that of people around us. Happiness is socially contagious! A smile begets a smile, a kind deed is paid forward — and slowly, the world becomes a better place for all of us. f WALNUTS A R E HI G H I N O ME GA - 3 S . IL L US TR ATIO N © L IL IYA S H L APA K

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Winter weariness be gone! Allison Tannis allisontannis.com allison tannis, r.h.n. is an expert, Author, athlete, and Mom who has been described as one of Canada’s most enthusiastic educators of nutritional science. she is a regular keynote speaker across North America, and has been featured in many national magazines. Allison has written four books, including: Feed Your Skin, Starve Your Wrinkles (Fairwinds 2009), and The 100 Healthiest Foods to Eat During Pregnancy (Fairwinds 2009). she has a practice in Halifax, NS, and specializes in digestive, prenatal, paediatric and weight loss. she is best known for making the science of health easy to swallow.

Is your bed looking overly inviting these days? Instead of just waiting under the covers for spring to come, banish winter weariness. Here are 5 ways research says we can feel more energized in winter. 1) Drink more water As we turn up the thermostat in our homes and offices, our indoor environment becomes increasingly dry, which increases our body’s need for water. Being dehydrated reduces the body’s ability to function optimally, leading to slower metabolism, cognitive impairment and reduced physical performance. Plus, dehydrated skin looks more wrinkled — yikes! We’d better drink up.

2) Resist the urge to live on the couch When you are feeling tired, resist the urge to skip exercising. The more you exercise the more energized you feel. According to a University of Georgia study, when a group of sedentary people did 20 minutes of low to moderate exercise, three times a week for 6 weeks, they had more energy and felt less tired. Low to moderate exercise includes a walk around the neighbourhood, shoveling the driveway, or a few rounds of climbing up the sledding hill with the kids.

3) Avoid taking a turkey nap Eating certain foods, such as turkey, can make you feel sleepy. Turkey contains tryptophan, an amino acid used by the body to make melatonin. Melatonin helps people fall asleep and maintains the body’s internal clock. Supplementing with melatonin may help you find the will to pull back the covers and get out of bed. Worth noting, foods high in fat or starch can also make us feel sluggish.

4) Bite into winter wellness Our winter lifestyles can leave us feeling unwell. Lacking energy is common in winter when V I S TA M A G A Z I N E I S S U E N O . 1 0 4

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our diets are filled with comfort foods, such as stews, which are not great sources of B vitamins. Mushrooms, dark leafy greens, beans and seeds are great sources of B vitamins your body’s cells need to produce energy. Vitamin D is an important fat-soluble vitamin involved in bone health, calcium absorption in the gut, maintenance of blood phosphate levels, bone growth and remodeling by osteoblasts and osteoclasts. Researchers have discovered links between vitamin D deficiency and diseases including some forms of cancer, autoimmune diseases, heart disease, rickets and osteoporosis. At latitudes above 35°, there is minimal, pre-vitamin D3 production in the skin. Few foods in the typical North American diet provide vitamin D. Small amounts can be found in mushrooms, egg yolk and cheese, and salmon provides a great source. Though it’s worth noting that studies have found wild salmon to be 75–90% richer in vitamin D than farmed salmon. For those whose diet does not include animal products, fortified soymilk or orange juice can offer an alternative source of vitamin D, or a supplement can be an excellent addition to any diet.

5) Kiss away your sweet tooth Craving a few more sweets in the winter is common. The quick energy rush they offer is a delightful reprieve from our weary winter days. Yet, we’d do better if we cut down on sweets. That quick energy rush they offer just leaves you feeling low and slow after. Push back the covers and jump out of bed. Banish winter weariness with some simple adjustments to your daily life, such as drinking more water, biting into energizing foods, heading out to the sled hill and kissing that sweet tooth goodbye. f


UHTCO Corp x

PHOTO © VADI M P ET R AKOV

Do you know where your maca comes from? Get the facts. You may have heard about Maca, may have taken this product or encountered it as one of the ingredients in your favourite supplement or food, but did you know the real story behind maca? Maca is originally grown in the highlands of Peru, specifically on the Junin Plateau at 14,000 ft altitude; it grows in a volcanic soil region under harsh climate conditions, in fact, it is the only crop that grows in this area, and that makes it unique. A wild crop in the early Inca times, it is now organically farmed by the locals in this magnificent and forgotten place. There are different varieties (in color) of maca; black, red-purple and yellow, being the last one and most common variety, and certainly the least potent. SPONSORED EDITORIAL

Maca is one of the most beneficial nutrients for hormonal balance, energy and enhanced well-being, specifically attributed to the darker root varieties. Maca root grown in Peru have been studied and researched for many years, establishing the safety and efficacy with no known toxicity, side effects or possible interactions. Since its introduction in the market, the demand for Maca has increased substantially, attracting many entrepreneurs to grow this crop out of its natural and original habitat. China was the first country to attempt to do so, however they were unsuccessful. The products showed very little nutrition and benefits. Due to the high demand and price paid for this precious crop, many Peruvians embarked on the farming of maca roots outside its original habitat with a terrible outcome of unusable

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products; even though the products resembled the original maca root, none of them provided the benefits known and studied for many years. Maca roots grown out of its original habitat will neither produce dark roots nor the known benefits. Different soil, weather, temperatures and care are important factors that make this product different and so potent. Maca roots must go through a natural freeze drying process, an important ancient practice to obtaining the nutrient density. This simple but unique process allows the transformation of this product generating new complex bio-chemical compounds, not present in the fresh harvested root — this is only possible with roots originally grown on the Junin Plateau. Always check for good quality products and be aware of the differences; you may not be experiencing the known benefits of maca if the source or processes used in the production are not the right ones. If you would like more information on the subject, please write to us at info@uhtco.ca, we’ll gladly answer all your questions. f FOR MORE I N FORMATI ON , V I SI T UHTC O.C OM

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Reviews

For happy minds, moods and tummies A few great products that you might consider keeping on hand to help give you a little lift, and a better sleep. Some of nature’s best remedies.

1)

Boiron Sédatil

Under a lot of pressure at work? Travel anxiety? Jittery nerves? Sédatil is a gentle, effective homeopathic which relieves stress-related symptoms, such as nervousness, hypersensitivity and irritability. It can also be used for kids age 12 and up. Like all homeopathics, take 10 minutes away from food and drink. >> boiron.ca

2)

Saje aromaBreeze ultrasonic nebulizer + happiness diffuser blend collection

Create fresher and healthier air in your home or office. It will surely revitalize your mind, body and improve your sense of well-being. We love their happiness collection with four oils to uplift and enliven. Even on the greyest of winter days, create a little sunshine. >> saje.ca

Nordic Naturals 4) 3) Ultimate Omega Bio-K

It’s no secret that a diet rich in omega-3s is important for the body and mind. Without solicitation, doctors and researchers worldwide consistently choose and recommend this powerful formula. Just two lemon-flavored softgels of Concentrated Ultimate Omega deliver a whopping 1,280mg of omega-3. Daily use is sure to help cognitive and brain function, cardio health and mood balance. >> nordicnaturals.ca V I S TA M A G A Z I N E I S S U E N O . 1 0 4

Strawberry Probiotic

The latest research points to a clear link between the gut and the brain. Bio-K plus is Canadian product that you’ll most easily find in the fridge of your local natural health store. It’s a fresh probiotic, which makes all the difference, contains 50 billion live bacteria count per bottle. Great for adults and even wee ones alike. Happy tummies, happy mood? Try it. >> biokplus.com

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5)

AOR GABA

GABA has been referred to as the brain’s natural calming agent, inducing relaxation and reducing anxiety. It is a neurotransmitter that inhibits the activity of excitatory neuronal impulses to prevent the overstimulation of the brain. Well-known “biohacker”, David Asprey recommends GABA for “hacking your sleep”, as it dramatically calms you. Perfect for burnt out executives and insomiacs.>> aor.ca

Nutrition 6) Preferred HappySense 5-HTP

5-HTP is a metabolite of the amino acid tryptophan. Tryptophan is broken down by vitamins, enzymes and other co-factors, into 5-HTP and then 5-HTP is turned into serotonin. Serotonin, one of the “happy hormones” is responsible for mood and sleep balancing. A great supplement for helping to reduce anxiety, sleeplessness. It helps reduce appetite and increase energy levels. >> pno.ca

7)

Spontaneous Happiness by Andrew Weil, M.D

Published in 2013, it’s not a new book, but it’s an excellent read from one of the gurus of integrative medicine. Dr. Weil presents a vast, scientifically proven array of integrative treatment strategies for low mood and depression, drawing on techniques from Ayurveda, Buddhism, acupuncture, psychotherapy and mindfulness training. >> drweil.com f

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Get rowing

Indoor rowing machines, known also as ergometers, simulate the rowing action of waterborne rowing for the purpose of exercise or as an adjunctive method of training for rowing on water. Today rowing is a popular form of cardio in gyms around the world. Cory Holly

Rowing provides a unique form of cross-training alternative that can be mixed with treadmills, coryholly.com elliptical machines, Stair Masters, Life Cycles or even skipping. Dr. Cory Holly is the Founder & President of the Cory Holly Institute (CHI). He completed his Doctor of Naturopathy degree at Clayton College of Natural Health in 1992 and studied exercise physiology and biochemistry at Western Washington University. Cory apprenticed at the Colgan Institute of Nutritional Science and currently studies physics, molecular biology and genetics online at MIT, Yale and Stanford. Dr. Holly specializes in product formulation, dietary analysis and exercise management. He is the author of the CSNA education program, and a dozen books and courses. Cory competes as a Masters athlete, and lectures on sports nutrition, anti-aging, and health & fitness.

Benefits of rowing

Using a rowing machine can help build and tone your muscular system, strengthen your cardiovascular function and increase your stamina. Rowing machines are particularly effective for older folks because they place no strain on the back and joints. A vigorous workout on a rowing machine utilizes plenty of calories as rowing uses virtually every major muscle group in the body, with each stroke including the legs, hips, buttocks, back, shoulders and arms. The trunk and core are also nicely stimulated throughout the entire stroke.

Rowing technique

With rowing, the resistance is created by how hard you push with your legs or pull with your arms, so you control the intensity of each session. The rowing stroke is divided into four basic phases known as the ‘catch’, the ‘drive’, the ‘finish’ and the ‘recovery’. It’s best to have a personal trainer or rowing expert teach you good rowing technique and also watch how you row. I’ve seen many people at the gym row incorrectly and it’s always because the person hasn’t received decent instruction. Another great way to learn proper technique is to watch how rowing is performed correctly online. A great site that will give you more than bargained for is concept2.com.

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Rowing workouts

Of course the old standby with cardio is to just get on the device and start using it for 20, 30 or 60 continuous minutes at a low to moderate pace. It’s up to each one of us to do what feels good, but for best results and improved overall fitness, that strategy has been replaced with a newer, more effective style of exercise called interval training. Interval training is more intense and typically shorter in duration. Interval training is ideal for those with time restraint issues, as ten minutes of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) is superior in many ways to someone jogging on the treadmill for one hour. First, you burn more fat, not only during this anaerobic style of cardio workout, but also over the next 24 hours as your body compensates metabolically from the intense exertion. You can also elevate your heart rate to a level not possible at a moderate continuous pace. The good news is this effect is not only wonderful for heart health but also for preserving and building new muscle. The idea is to warm-up for say 5 minutes at a moderate pace, then row harder and faster for 2 minutes, followed by a subsequent return to your original moderate pace. After 1–2 minutes at this recovery pace, depending on your fitness level, you then crank it up again for 2 minutes. Each training interval is called a ‘piece’ and an entire workout on average will include 3–12 pieces. Individual pieces can vary from short (2 min) to medium (6 min) to long (15 min). The workout variation is vast and perfect for those who enjoy variety. f


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PHOTO © MAR I NA ZEZELI NA

Create some breathing space for happier adrenals The “fight or flight” response Over time, the constant secretion so commonly associated with of these key hormones can cause the adrenals to become stressed to stress has been hard-wired into the point of adrenal exhaustion. our bodies; it begins when the hypothalamus sends a signal Symptoms of weakened to the adrenal glands (via the adrenal function Weakened adrenals can manifest pituitary gland), causing them themselves in insomnia, fatigue, lack of energy, irritability, cravings, to release hormones such as weight gain and ultimately, a weakadrenaline and cortisol. Many of us have responded to stress by taking positive action in our life, making the necessary changes and hence living healthier. The challenges to our health arise when we are faced with chronic stress for protracted periods in our life. Adrenaline and cortisol are released whether we are undergoing acute stress, such as a death in the family, a divorce, surgery or other forms of trauma, or dealing with low-grade daily stresses such as traffic jams, work deadlines, or even meeting expectations from friends and family, irritation and worry. SPONSORED EDITORIAL

ened immune system. It’s clear that prolonged chronic stress plays havoc on the body, creating a myriad of issues that can elevate anxiety and potentially affect our working memory.

Stress triggers, and what can you do about them Recognizing self-imposed triggers is an essential step towards managing them, reducing them, and potentially eliminating them from our lives. Can we arrange our schedule to have more breathing space between meetings or commitments? Are we

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skipping meals and allowing our blood sugar to drop? Are we living in the present or entrenched in the past? Being proactive in our daily lives by managing physical, emotional, and environmental stress allows us to feel more at ease; essentially, less stressed. Effective stress management and lifestyle strategies include diaphragmatic breathing (belly breathing). This has been shown to have some positive effects in reducing the impact of stress and in calming the parasympathetic nervous system. The same applies to meditation, yoga, and other forms of exercise.

Botanical support Supporting our adrenal glands with nutritional supplementation can expand our capacity to manage the inevitable stresses of daily life. Adaptogens — such as the medicinal mushrooms Chaga (Obliquus), Cordyceps (Ophiocordyceps sinensis) and the Ayurvedic herb ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) or blends such as Purica Adrenal Support™ — can balance the system, calm the body and restore balance to our overworked adrenal glands, thereby mitigating the impact of stress. Synergies are important: The happier our adrenals, the better we deal with stress and the happier and healthier our lives. f FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT PURICA.COM

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PHOTO © TAKE P H OT O

Stevia: the better sweetening alternative Stevia is a genus of over 200 species of plants, native to Central and South America. Stevia rebaudiana has been used for centuries to sweeten beverages and foods, and for medicinal purposes. Referred to as steviol glycosides, they are 250–300 times sweeter than sucrose, heat stable, pH-stable and non-fermentable. Stevia extracts containing stevia glycosides are permitted as food additives and sweeteners in many countries around the world. They have been shown to be a safe, natural sweetening option. In 2012, steviol glycocosides, were approved as food additives in Canada and are used in a variety of products, including beverages, breakfast cereals, bakery products, desserts, and table-top sweeteners. Extraction and manufacturing techniques have been employed to reduce the licorice-like flavour and bitter aftertaste. Stevia is gaining popularity as a sweetening alternative due to its intensive sweetness, diversity and functionality. It is extremely heat V I S TA M A G A Z I N E I S S U E N O . 1 0 4

Marva Ward, CNP discusses the benefits of stevia as the sweetener replacement of choice. For almost a century, science has been seeking sugar alternatives. From chemical sweeteners to sweet sugar alcohols extracted from fruits and vegetables, stevia may be the perfect replacement. stable and can be used in many cooking and baking recipes. However, stevia does not caramelize or crystallize like sugar and may not be suitable for some baking applications. It is suitable for diabetics and as a safe sugar substitute. Stevia has no glycemic (blood sugar) impact and provides zero calories per serving. Numerous health claims have been backed up by scientific research. Blood pressure lowering effects have been documented, as have blood sugar stabilizing effects in diabetics. A well vocalized criticism and concern about many stevia sweeteners on the market today is that manufacturers are not using the complete spectrum of sweetening components found in the stevia plant but isolating small fractions. The typical stevia extract on the market may contain only the Steviosides or Rebaudiosides, while stripping away the other sweetening molecules. Some brands contain only Rebaudioside A, which only makes up about 28% of the sweet glycosides

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found naturally in stevia leaves. There are companies that continue to offer stevia extracts with most of the naturally-occurring sweetening molecules intact whether in a powder, liquid or tablet format. Consider whole-leaf or full-spectrum stevia extracts if you are looking for a more natural product.

Quick facts about stevia • Stevioside extracts are typically 200-300 times sweeter than other natural flavours. • When combined with other foods, stevia is said to enhance the true flavours of that recipe. • In its raw, natural state, the stevia leaf contains over 100 phytonutrients. • Stevia does not raise blood sugar levels. • It is carbohydrate and calorie free. • Stevia will not promote tooth decay. f FOR MORE INFORMATION VISIT PURESOURCE.CA

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If you are what you eat… can Cheerios make you happy? ®

Good food always makes me feel happy. There is nothing I love more than sitting around a table with family and friends and enjoying a deliciously healthy meal. Desiree Nielsen desireerd.com @desireerd Desiree Nielsen, R.D. Desiree Nielsen is a registered dietitian, whose particular interests include digestive health, anti-inflammatory nutrition and vegan diets. She's a frequent guest on CBC News Now, CTV, Global, and Breakfast Television. Desiree's first book, Un-junk your diet, is

available at Chapter's Indigo across Canada.

Just what is it about food that lights us up? Around this time of year, you might look no further than the classic realm of the comfort food. Each one of us has foods that we reach for when feeling down or trying to boost ourselves on a dark and dreary day. Often, our choices might be driven by the memories evoked by the food, which is why someone might reach for a grilled cheese sandwich when blue—because their mother used to make them grilled cheese sandwich to cheer them up. Maybe tiramisu puts a smile on your face because it was a treasured family dessert. Most of us would suspect that food can make us happy in the short term… but is there any scientific basis to explain how foods affect your mood?

the physiological effects of food on mood? Here, serotonin usually gets all of the attention. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that relaxes the nervous system and even plays a role in suppressing appetite. This is where food plays a crucial, but no less complex role.

Folate SP I NAC H , OK R A, ED AM AME AND LENTI LS

Tryptophan P OULTRY, EG G S, D AI RY, SOME LEG UM ES

The comfort cure The study of comfort food itself has some pretty complex results. One recent study subjected individuals to mood-altering videos, and then fed them their desired comfort food and found little lasting effect. However, one might argue that testing a bit of comfort food in an uncomfortable lab setting might be doomed from the start. Other evidence has shown that stress does actually drive people to eat more ‘highly palatable’ foods — A.K.A. those high in fat, sugar and salt. From a neurological perspective, eating these kinds of foods can light up the reward and hedonism centres in the brain, helping us ‘self-medicate’; and over time, we may learn to reach for these comfort foods in response to stress and lowered mood. Of course, the comfort food strategy can backfire if the effect of the indulgence leaves you feeling lethargic and unwell. So what about

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Carbohydrate FR UI TS, VEG ETABLES, LEG UMES, WH OLE G R A IN S

Omega 3 Fats H EM P, G R OUND FLAX SEED S, FI SH

Seratonin V I S TA M A G A Z I N E . C A


It’s natural health like you’ve never heard it before

Join us in January-February: Our host Steve Herringer welcomes back these guest experts to The Natural Health Show in January: —Nutritionist Caroline Farquhar —health expert Jason Watkin —Naturopath Dr. Lee Know

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And then in February, Heart Health month, Steve interviews: —Author and health expert Brenda Watson —Holistic Pharmacist Sherry Torkos Always great health experts in conversation. There is no show like The Natural Health Show.

With host:

Steve Herringer Listen every weekend: Toronto’s AM740, Saturday at 11AM (ET) Vancouver’s AM980, Sunday at 5PM (PT) Download your favourite shows and listen while travelling:

thenaturalhealthshow.ca

The trouble with tryptophan To build serotonin, we need folate, which you can find in foods like spinach, okra, edamame and lentils. Folate helps with the production of serotonin from tryptophan. Tryptophan is an amino acid (the building block of protein) found in poultry, eggs, and dairy foods and to a lesser extent, legumes. Tryptophan is a unique molecule as it can cross the blood brain barrier (BBB), where it would be converted to serotonin. But tryptophan doesn’t do this all alone. In fact, because of the increase in total amino acids post-meal, tryptophan does a poor job crossing the BBB because it is competing with all of the other nutrients in the bloodstream. So protein foods build up tryptophan stores in the body… but don’t necessarily lend to a big boost in serotonin levels in the brain. In order for serotonin production to occur, you want to add some carbohydrates to the mix. When you eat a carbohydrate food, insulin is released, which hastens the absorption of nutrients from the blood stream. Tryptophan, however, remains in circulation and now it can win the numbers game of crossing the BBB to become serotonin. So, consistent (but not excessive) protein intake is critical to staying happy… but all that serotonin production requires a helping hand from your friendly neighbourhood carbohydrate. Speaking of carbohydrates, quality counts. You might want to reach for armloads of candy when you feel down, but it will likely work against you in the long term. While an increase in insulin helps with the conversion of tryptophan, a blood sugar spike will act against you. When eating highly processed carbohydrates, such as cookies or pastries, a spike in insulin levels follows a rapid spike in blood sugar. 1. OK RA .

P HO T O © L E N A G A BR I L O V I C H

Call toll free: 1.855.333.TNHS(8647) 38

2. EG G S.

P HO TO © STI LLFX


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The result is a rapid, mood-busting drop in blood sugars that might just lead you to more poor choices. In addition, the inflammation brought on by repeated blood sugar spikes doesn’t do your brain any favours. So when choosing carbohydrate foods as part of a mood-lifting eating plan, keep it whole: fruits, vegetables, legumes and intact whole grains.

Liquid sunshine? All of this talk of proteins and carbohydrates would be out of balance if we didn’t mention the role of fats in elevating our mood. We can’t forget about our favourite fats, the omega 3 fatty acids. DHA is the most abundant fatty acid in the brain, and a deficiency is associated with depressed mood. Research has also associated higher rates of depression with lower intakes of seafood. Of course, association isn’t the same as causation. Clinical trials have been mixed on the effect — with some clearly showing improvement — but eating plenty of omega 3 fatty acids certainly couldn’t hurt and has a world of other health benefits, including lowering inflammation. Eating plenty of omega 3 rich food daily, whether it is hemp or ground flax seeds, or small oily fish like herring and sardines, is an important part of nourishing your brain and keeping spirits up. Happiness is a complex construct, and lifestyle choices such as time in nature, stress levels and sleep are critically important to lay the physiological groundwork for a contented life. The good news is that the very same measures you take to build a healthy body contribute to a healthier mind. And here, food definitely counts. Glad this story has a deliciously happy ending. f 3. QUINOA.

PHOTO © LETTERBERRY

4. SARDINES.

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PHOTO © ZAIRA ZAROTTI


Eating with the seasons

Lucky fish (en papillote) Recipes and preparation by chef Fred Edrissi

The beginning of a new year is rife with tradition and symbolic ritual. Recurring themes here are foods that symbolize wealth and prosperity. Fish are lucky in three ways: their scales resemble coins, they travel in schools—which represents prosperity— and they swim forward, symbolizing progress.

V I S TA M A G A Z I N E I S S U E N O . 1 0 4

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Arctic char en papillote

• ½ tsp turmeric • Sea salt and pepper to taste

INGR ED I ENTS :

P R E PA R AT IO N :

• 2–3 lb of fresh whole wild Arctic char, cleaned • 1 large garlic clove • ½ shallot • 1 lime, sliced in ¼” thick slices • 1 fennel bulb • 1 leek • 1 medium size carrot • 1 medium size field tomato • ½ cup of white wine • 2 tbsp organic butter + 1 extra tbsp for parchment paper • 3 sprigs fresh thyme

1.

Preheat oven to 380°. Wash fish under cold water. Pad dry with paper towel. Coarsely chop garlic and shallot and stuff into fish belly. Finely julienne carrot, fennel, and leek. Cut tomato in wedges. 2. Cut a piece of parchment paper at 2 feet by 2 feet and brush parchment paper with organic butter or alternatively with olive oil. Place the fish in centre of the parchment

paper, sprinkle fish with sea salt and pepper. Place julienne vegetable on top of the fish; then place lime slices on top of the vegetable. Pour white wine over the fish and add the two tablespoons of butter on top of the vegetable. Add thyme sprigs. 3. Fold parchment paper up like a pocket and place on a baking sheet. Bake for 12–15 minutes. 4. Serve with either oven-roasted rosemary potatoes or boiled potatoes with chopped Italian parsley and olive oil.

P H OTO © KAT HARIN E HERRINGE R. P HO TO A S S IS TA N T: S A B IN E E D RIS S I- B RE DE N B R O C K

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V I S TA M A G A Z I N E . C A


Asian-style kale salad with marinated halibut on skewer INGRED I ENTS :

• 2 cups of shredded kale • ½ cup of edamame beans • 1 medium size pink grapefruit (substitute with blood orange) • 2 large cubes (2”x2”) halibut filet • 2 shitake mushroom • 4 sweet cipollini onions • 1 tsp grated ginger • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped • 1 tsp grated lime zest

• Juice from 1 lime • 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil • 2 tsp tamari sauce • Fresh cilantro to garnish S IMP L E VIN A I G RETTE D RESSI N G :

• 2 ½ tbsp olive oil • 1 ½ tbsp apple cider vinegar • 1 tsp honey • ½ minced shallot • ½ tsp good quality Dijon mustard • Sea salt and pepper to taste P R E PA R AT IO N , SA LAD :

1.

Whisk all ingredients together to create slightly foamy consistency.

Toss kale salad, beans and grapefruit in vinaigrette. HA LI BU T ON SK EWER:

In a bowl mix ginger, garlic, lime juice, lime zest, vinegar, olive oil and tamari sauce. Add halibut cubes, cover and marinate well for at least 2–3 hours. 3. Filet grape fruit. Put 1 peeled sweet cipollini onion, 1 shitake mushroom, 1 piece of halibut on skewer and repeat. Sauté skewer slightly until caramelized and finish off in oven for 7 minutes at 350°. Serve with kale salad and cilantro for garnish. 2.

PH O T O © K AT H A R I N E H E R R I N GE R . PH O T O A SSI STA N T: SA B I N E E DR I SSI -B R EDENBR O C K V I S TA M A G A Z I N E I S S U E N O . 1 0 4

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Persimmons with Greek yogurt and honey, scented with cardamom INGREDIENTS :

• 1 ripe persimmon fruit • 2 tbsp organic Greek yoghurt • 1 heaped tsp Greek honey • ½ tsp ground green cardamom • Zest of one organic orange • ½ tbsp of chopped pistachio

P R E PA R AT IO N :

Mix yogurt, orange zest, honey and cardamom. Cut the persimmon fruit in half and scoop out the ripe flesh. Purée flesh and pass through a fine sieve. Start with one layer of yogurt and then add one layer of persimmon puree. Repeat and garnish with chopped pistachio. f

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V I S TA M A G A Z I N E . C A


An Ayurvedic ode to happiness In Ayurveda the answer to every question is: it depends. I love this simple wisdom. Hard to argue, as we humans are all diverse in our perception and experience of life.

Glynnis Osher

academyaromatica.com themysticmasala.com thousandpetallotus.com Glynnis Osher is a certified Ayurvedic Practitioner (CAP), passionate teacher and author with over 16 years experience in Ayurveda. She is on faculty at The Vancouver School of Bodywork and Massage, teaching aromatherapy, Indian Head Massage and Ayurvedic Self-Care. Glynnis is founder and CEO of The Mystic Masala Ayurvedic Aromatherapy and Thousand Petal Lotus Indian Head Massage. Glynnis has co-authored the book Your Irresistible Life: 4 Seasons of Self-Care through Ayurveda and Yoga Practices that Work.

Consider that each of us has a unique makeup and will respond to foods, medicines, herbs, sensory impressions, and pleasure in a distinct way. There are billions of possibilities and outcomes and we will by nature seek the answer that fits our personal blueprint. This must mean that happiness is not a one-size-fits-all pursuit roller coaster. It depends. From an Ayurvedic perspective it is possible to find lasting happiness once we have gone into the sacred practice of finding and expressing unhindered our true self. Unless we have experienced freedom in our entire body and mind, how would we even know happiness? I believe it is a state of constant self-knowing. Through the darkest passages and roller coaster rides of our life we can still feel free, when rooted in the knowledge that we are connected with our authentic being. This freedom is an enduring and sustainable happiness. More desirable I think, than the fleeting happiness that depends on external circumstances and conditions or the sanctions of others.

Drinking from the deep well of your own knowing With the epidemic of depression, suicide and violence, how can anyone hope for happiness as a lifelong unflinching companion? We can so easily forget that happiness is our birthright and our responsibility. Dig tirelessly into the beautiful mystery of your unique constitution, your mind, body, and soul. As you unearth the treasure of your elemental makeup, you will feel the steady bubbling up of happiness. The deeper you go, the more effervescent. This can be found in the stillness of your meditation, the joy of movement, the ease of good health.

V I S TA M A G A Z I N E I S S U E N O . 1 0 4

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Happiness practices and a life in balance. In the early days of my practice I was misread and told I was predominantly air and fire (a Vata predominant constitution with secondary Pitta). I became sluggish and gained weight, aggravating my Kapha which is heavy and dense in quality (the elements of water and earth). I was miserable, confused, and my digestion completely thrown off. My learning here was ‘know thyself’ naturally followed by “This above all: to thine own self be true”. The underlying values of these wisdoms from Shakespeare, the Greek sages such as Plato and Thales, and the ancient mystical texts of the Upanishads, are presented as the ultimate goal of life. Experience continues to show me that when I cultivate this wisdom and observe those practices most true to my essence, I become finely attuned to these goals and experience a growing happiness. So first “know thyself.” Ayurvedic counselors, books, dosha charts and quizzes abound to help you discover your own unique mind/body type. Are you Vata, Pitta, or Kapha predominant? What is your elemental blueprint? What are your untamed natural tendencies? Once you are confident in this knowledge you begin the path of balance specific to you. Simply by practicing a daily routine divined for your body type, cultivating a strong digestion, and developing a vital ojas or life force, you can significantly increase your happiness quotient. Vata Dosha: Air types benefit from a steady daily routine with warming, nourishing foods rich in healthy fats, grounding herbs and spices such as cardamom, licorice, and nutmeg. Grounding, sweet and earthy aromas such as vetiver, spikenard, and clary sage calm the nervous system and


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March / April 2016

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bring a feeling of contentment, stability, and joy. Pitta Dosha: Fire types flourish with a purposeful daily routine that includes lots of breaks for playtime. A substantial diet satisfies Pitta with cooling, hearty foods, and cooling herbs and spices such as coriander, cilantro, fennel, and coconut. Refreshing, sweet, and cooling aromas such as sandalwood, mint, rose, and geranium reduce intensity, heat, and inflammation and increase self-love, peace, and joyful contemplation. Kapha Dosha: Water/Earth types are invigorated with an active daily routine that is uplifting, dynamic and stimulating. A lighter, warming, and moderate diet is balancing with pungent herbs and spices such as ginger, black pepper, cayenne, and mustard. Aromas of lemongrass, ginger, rosemary, and eucalyptus will energize and uplift the spirit. Gandhi who spent his life steeped in deep inner inquiry said so well “happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” It is such an exciting journey to uncover what makes you flourish. When your mental, physical, and emotional health are steady and you get closer to the very heart of what enchants you, watch as happiness rises up and radiates from the inside out. f 1. VATA

Enhancing your productivity and creativity Get fresh with Ayurvedic cleansing Tonics and bitters

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DOS HA— TRY G R O U N DIN G H E R B S S U CH A S C A R DA MOM.

PHOTO © GR EENART P H OT O G R APH Y

2. PITTA

DOS HA— S EEK C OOL IN G H E R B S S U C H A S CIL A N T R O .

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3. KAPH A

DOS HA— EN ER G IZ E W IT H A R O MA S L IK E E U C A LY P T U S.

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The #1 New York Times bestselling author (The Happiness Project, Better Than Before) talks to us about her typical day.

A Day in the Life

Gretchen Rubin

Better than Before, New York Times bestseller, is available on Gretchen’s website gretchenrubin.com

1. HOW DO YOU BEGIN EACH DAY? I take my new puppy Barnaby out for a quick walk. 2. WHAT’S YOUR ‘GO-TO’ NATURAL HEALTH PRODUCT? Raw almonds.

6. IF YOU COULD CHANGE ONE THING ABOUT HEALTH CARE, WHAT WOULD IT BE? I wish that I could tell healthcare providers about my Four Tendencies framework—which divides people into Upholders, Questioners, Obligers, and Rebels; because when a health message is tailored to suit someone’s tendency, that person is far more likely to follow through on a suggestion. For instance, if I were a doctor trying to persuade someone to take his/her blood-pressure medication, I would speak very differently to an Upholder than to a Rebel.

3. VEGAN? VEGETARIAN? PALEO? OMNIVORE? FLEXITARIAN? I eat a very low-carb diet. 4. WHAT’S YOUR SECRET TO STAYING HEALTHY WHILE TRAVELING? Getting enough sleep. 5. WHAT’S ON YOUR NIGHTSTAND? A few books that I just checked out from the library, Encore by May Sarton, Better by Atul Gawande, Conversations of Goethe by Johann Peter Eckermann, The Chosen by Chaim Potok.

7. WHAT INSPIRES YOU? Reading. And the people around me! f P HO T O © ANDY RYAN

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Profile for Vista Magazine

Vista no. 104, January-February 2016  

The happiness issue. Welcome to a more organic way of Being.

Vista no. 104, January-February 2016  

The happiness issue. Welcome to a more organic way of Being.