You may have remembered to have green smoothies during the holidays. You may have learned not to neglect your yoga practice. Yet even with the best of intentions, chances are you ate more and moved less in December. Although Buddha rocked his distended belly with a sly smile, you aren’t so certain the look is one that you want to maintain.
You may assume that the best way to get your optimal digestion back is with a kick-butt fitness sequence that has you miserable. In fact, sitting intentionally might be just what the yogi ordered. Not sitting with a big bowl of dessert, mind you, but meditatively.
This may be the part of the article where you become absolutely certain that life is harder work than that. However, don’t discount how difficult it can be to meditate on a consistent basis. It is a challenge and one that can help heal your gut and balance your body.
Here are the three points that we think are absolutely fascinating and even more reason to carve out regular quiet time in 2015:
- Tension can be everywhere. If you are stressed (even the “good” stress that stokes your ambitious fire) it is likely your gut will be stressed as well. Our body needs a little parasympathetic action to rest and digest. Meditation can help the whole body to function more optimally as you re-learn how to relax and recover. Your digestive health will have no option but to follow suit.
- You can control more than you think. You certainly can breathe without thinking about it (thank goodness!). However, by taking the reigns every once in awhile and breathing deeply into the pit of your belly, you can start to affect your own physiology. Deep breaths with a straight spine will massage the internal organs, helping with peristalsis. Let your belly be soft. Most of us don’t take a deep breath all day long, so this may be one of your healthiest new habits.
- Stress eating starts in the mind. Sure, there are moments when it makes sense to eat a piece of chocolate rather than another head of kale. But if the first thing that you are grabbing tends to supply quick energy that burns out quickly, you need to slow down. Without slowing down, you won’t be as able to control your cravings. Some time in quiet can make your realize that your 3pm sweet craving is related to an emotion, making it have a lot less hold on you.
There are many theories as to how long you should maintain a habit to make it stick. Give 30 days a try with tuja wellness and their absolutely free meditation challenge. Every day, you will get a guided meditation sent to your inbox to bring you peace and pause. Sign up here and see if this calm lifestyle leads to a happier gut.
Courtney Sunday wanted to write her first book by the age of 10. Although she has not lived up to her own expectations, she now happily works as a freelance writer. She is particularly pleased to be one of the writers for the Canadian healthy living website tuja wellness. She also teaches yoga and Pilates and leads yoga teacher trainings and retreats around the world. Visit her at her website or contact her through muuyu.
Photo credit: Meaghan Eady