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Inflammation is an immune response that our
bodies use to protect itself from irritants.
Although, when inflammation gets out of control --
your body is in a constant state of attack.
This is when the damage can happen, and leave us
with a host of uncomfortable health issues to deal with.
Some foods can cause inflammation, such as the
unhealthy junk foods loaded with sugar
and chemicals our bodies don't recognize. There are also
foods that can fight inflammation, allowing an anti-inflammatory
benefit to sweep through your digestive system. Here are nine of
my favorite anti-inflammatory foods for you to enjoy
more of on a regular basis in my FREE eGuide.

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WHY USE A HEALTH COACH?
  

YOUR HEALTH COACH CLAIRE

Hi! My name is Claire Leedy and I’m a board certified health and life coach. I use holistic nutrition and life coaching to establish root causes of dis-ease for people who just don't feel right (may have a few extra pounds, poor energy and even possibly eating emotionally) create personalized treatment plans so that my clients establish daily rituals, healthy eating habits, and a consistent exercise routine leading them to feel transformed, balanced, energized, and healthy each and every day. 

Are you a busy new (or new-ish) Mom who desperately needs to feel better physically and about your body?

Are you tired of waking up feeling tired, drained and fatigued?

Do you wish you could control those moments of emotional eating?


Do you wish those extra pounds would simply find their way OFF your body! 

Are your adrenals simply exhausted from the constant stress of your life?

Are your hormones completely off track & it’s wearing on you?

Do you want to learn easy & FUN self care techniques that are simple, but work?

Are you ready to feel like a fun & fabulous, happier, healthier version of YOU?

I get it! I've been there!

For the past 25 years I’ve put health, healing and energy as my primary focus of study. I learned that food matters. Healthy digestion matters. A clean body matters. And nothing good comes from anything less, personally and professionally. I’ve transformed my health and my life, and I’m going to help you transform yours.


 

Recent Recipes

 


Chia Pudding Parfait


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Oatmeal Pancakes


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Creamy Berry Smoothie


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Blog

 

Integrative Nutrition
Integrative Nutrition

5 Foods That Are Surprisingly High In Fiber

When it comes to fiber, there are more ways to eat them than just chomping on some prunes. (Which also totally might not be your thing to begin with.)

Claire Leedy, INHC
Claire Leedy, INHC

Mindfulness and Meditation...Do They Really Work?



Well...yes, they do really work. The fact is, science shows definite health benefits for people who use mindfulness and meditation. 

  
Before we dive in, let’s just make sure we’re on the same page when we say “mindfulness” and “meditation.” 
 
“Meditation” is the ancient practice of connecting the body and mind to become more self-aware and present. It’s often used to calm the mind, ease stress, and relax the body. 
 
Practicing “mindfulness” is one of the most popular ways to meditate. It’s defined as “paying attention in a particular way, on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally.”  
 
Mindfulness meditation is well studied in terms of its health benefits. I’m going to talk about a few of them below, and refer to it as “mindfulness” for the rest of the post. 
 
The link between mindfulness and health = stress reduction 
 
Have you heard the staggering statistics on how many doctors' visits are due to stress? Seventy-five to ninety percent! 
 
So, if you ask me, it makes a ton of sense that anything that can reduce stress can reduce health issues too. 
 
Mindfulness reduces inflammation, reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol, and improves sleep. All of these can have massive effects on your physical and mental health. 
 
I'll briefly go over the research in three main areas: mood, weight, and gut health. But know that the research on the health benefits of mindfulness is branching into many other exciting new areas too. 
 
Mindfulness for mood 
 
The most immediate health benefit of mindfulness is improved mood. 
 
In one study, people who took an 8-week mindfulness program had greater improvement in symptoms according to the “Hamilton Anxiety Scale.” They were compared with people who took a stress management program that did not include mindfulness. It seems that the mindfulness training was key to lowering symptoms. 
 
Other studies show that mindfulness has similar effects as antidepressant medications for some people with mild to moderate symptoms of depression. 
 
While mindfulness isn’t a full-fledged cure, it can certainly help to improve moods. 
 
Mindfulness for weight 
 
Studies show that people who use mind-body practices, including mindfulness, have lower BMIs (Body Mass Indices). 
 
How can this be? 
 
One way mindfulness is linked with lower weight is due to stress-reduction. Mindfulness can reduce stress-related and emotional overeating. It can also help reduce cravings and binge eating. 
 
Another way it can work for weight is due to "mindful eating." Mindful eating is a "non-judgmental awareness of physical and emotional sensations associated with eating." It's the practice of being more aware of food and the eating process. It's listening more deeply to how hungry and full you actually are. It's not allowing yourself to be distracted with other things while you're eating, like what's on TV or your smartphone.  
 
People with higher mindfulness scores also reported smaller serving sizes of energy-dense foods. So it seems that more mindful eating = less junk. 
 
Mindfulness about food and eating can have some great benefits for your weight. 
 
Mindfulness for gut health 
 
Recent studies show a link between stress, stress hormones, and changes in gut microbes (your friendly bacteria and other critters that help your digestion).In theory, mindfulness-based stress reduction could be a way to help prevent negative changes in the gut's microbes. 
 
Also, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) seems to be linked with both stress and problems with gut microbes. In one study, people with IBS who received mindfulness training showed greater reductions in IBS symptoms than the group who received standard medical care. 
 
The research here is just starting to show us the important link between stress, gut health, and how mindfulness can help. 
 
Conclusion 
 
Science is confirming some amazing health benefits of the ancient practice of mindfulness meditation. For moods, weight, gut health, and more. 
 
Do you regularly include it in your life? If so, have you seen benefits? If not, would you consider trying it? 
 
Let me know in the comments below. 
 
Recipe (Relaxing Teas): Relaxing Herbal Teas 
 
There are many relaxing herbal teas that would be great after meditation.  
 
Try any of these by steeping in boiling water: 
 
Green tea (has a bit of caffeine, or you can choose decaffeinated green tea) 
White tea (also has a bit of caffeine, or you can choose decaffeinated white tea) 
Rooibos tea 
Peppermint tea (or steep fresh peppermint leaves) 
Ginger tea (or steep slices of real ginger) 
 
Serve & enjoy! 
 
Tip: You can add a touch of honey if desired. 
 
BONUS Guided Meditation “Recipes” (videos, apps & podcasts) 
 
How to Meditate video 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0y1Lu0L8nU&index=5&list=PLerdqrUWzOkd7m9HQj1yfJiI09pwVhPcD 
 
How to Meditate in One Minute or Less Every Day video 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtG8No-MMOM&list=PLerdqrUWzOkd7m9HQj1yfJiI09pwVhPcD&index=10 
 
Calm App 
https://www.calm.com/ 
 
Headspace App (free 10-day trial)  
https://www.headspace.com/headspace-meditation-app 
 
Daily Meditation Podcast 
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/daily-meditation-podcast/id892107837?mt=2 
 
Hay House Meditations Podcast 
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/hay-house-meditations/id955266444?mt=2 
 
References: 
 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meditation 
 
https://www.dietvsdisease.org/benefits-mindfulness-meditation/ 
 
https://nccih.nih.gov/health/meditation/overview.htm 
 
https://authoritynutrition.com/mindful-eating-guide/ 
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3341916/ 
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4454654/ 
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26186434 

Claire Leedy, INHC
Claire Leedy, INHC

Mindfulness and Meditation...Do They Really Work?



Well...yes, they do really work. The fact is, science shows definite health benefits for people who use mindfulness and meditation. 
  
Before we dive in, let’s just make sure we’re on the same page when we say “mindfulness” and “meditation.” 
 
“Meditation” is the ancient practice of connecting the body and mind to become more self-aware and present. It’s often used to calm the mind, ease stress, and relax the body. 
 
Practicing “mindfulness” is one of the most popular ways to meditate. It’s defined as “paying attention in a particular way, on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally.”  
 
Mindfulness meditation is well studied in terms of its health benefits. I’m going to talk about a few of them below, and refer to it as “mindfulness” for the rest of the post. 
 
The link between mindfulness and health = stress reduction 
 
Have you heard the staggering statistics on how many doctors' visits are due to stress? Seventy-five to ninety percent! 
 
So, if you ask me, it makes a ton of sense that anything that can reduce stress can reduce health issues too. 
 
Mindfulness reduces inflammation, reduces levels of the stress hormone cortisol, and improves sleep. All of these can have massive effects on your physical and mental health. 
 
I'll briefly go over the research in three main areas: mood, weight, and gut health. But know that the research on the health benefits of mindfulness is branching into many other exciting new areas too. 
 
Mindfulness for mood 
 
The most immediate health benefit of mindfulness is improved mood. 
 
In one study, people who took an 8-week mindfulness program had greater improvement in symptoms according to the “Hamilton Anxiety Scale.” They were compared with people who took a stress management program that did not include mindfulness. It seems that the mindfulness training was key to lowering symptoms. 
 
Other studies show that mindfulness has similar effects as antidepressant medications for some people with mild to moderate symptoms of depression. 
 
While mindfulness isn’t a full-fledged cure, it can certainly help to improve moods. 
 
Mindfulness for weight 
 
Studies show that people who use mind-body practices, including mindfulness, have lower BMIs (Body Mass Indices). 
 
How can this be? 
 
One way mindfulness is linked with lower weight is due to stress-reduction. Mindfulness can reduce stress-related and emotional overeating. It can also help reduce cravings and binge eating. 
 
Another way it can work for weight is due to "mindful eating." Mindful eating is a "non-judgmental awareness of physical and emotional sensations associated with eating." It's the practice of being more aware of food and the eating process. It's listening more deeply to how hungry and full you actually are. It's not allowing yourself to be distracted with other things while you're eating, like what's on TV or your smartphone.  
 
People with higher mindfulness scores also reported smaller serving sizes of energy-dense foods. So it seems that more mindful eating = less junk. 
 
Mindfulness about food and eating can have some great benefits for your weight. 
 
Mindfulness for gut health 
 
Recent studies show a link between stress, stress hormones, and changes in gut microbes (your friendly bacteria and other critters that help your digestion).In theory, mindfulness-based stress reduction could be a way to help prevent negative changes in the gut's microbes. 
 
Also, irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) seems to be linked with both stress and problems with gut microbes. In one study, people with IBS who received mindfulness training showed greater reductions in IBS symptoms than the group who received standard medical care. 
 
The research here is just starting to show us the important link between stress, gut health, and how mindfulness can help. 
 
Conclusion 
 
Science is confirming some amazing health benefits of the ancient practice of mindfulness meditation. For moods, weight, gut health, and more. 
 
Do you regularly include it in your life? If so, have you seen benefits? If not, would you consider trying it? 
 
Let me know in the comments below. 
 
Recipe (Relaxing Teas): Relaxing Herbal Teas 
 
There are many relaxing herbal teas that would be great after meditation.  
 
Try any of these by steeping in boiling water: 
 
Green tea (has a bit of caffeine, or you can choose decaffeinated green tea) 
White tea (also has a bit of caffeine, or you can choose decaffeinated white tea) 
Rooibos tea 
Peppermint tea (or steep fresh peppermint leaves) 
Ginger tea (or steep slices of real ginger) 
 
Serve & enjoy! 
 
Tip: You can add a touch of honey if desired. 
 
BONUS Guided Meditation “Recipes” (videos, apps & podcasts) 
 
How to Meditate video 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h0y1Lu0L8nU&index=5&list=PLerdqrUWzOkd7m9HQj1yfJiI09pwVhPcD 
 
How to Meditate in One Minute or Less Every Day video 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VtG8No-MMOM&list=PLerdqrUWzOkd7m9HQj1yfJiI09pwVhPcD&index=10 
 
Calm App 
https://www.calm.com/ 
 
Headspace App (free 10-day trial)  
https://www.headspace.com/headspace-meditation-app 
 
Daily Meditation Podcast 
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/daily-meditation-podcast/id892107837?mt=2 
 
Hay House Meditations Podcast 
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/hay-house-meditations/id955266444?mt=2 
 
References: 
 
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meditation 
 
https://www.dietvsdisease.org/benefits-mindfulness-meditation/ 
 
https://nccih.nih.gov/health/meditation/overview.htm 
 
https://authoritynutrition.com/mindful-eating-guide/ 
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3341916/ 
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4454654/ 
 
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/26186434 





 
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