If there was only one yoga exercise I would teach you, it would be the Long Deep Breathing. From the time we are born until we leave this world we are breathing. We can´t survive without breathing. When we are babies, we automatically breathe the way we are supposed to breathe. We breathe long and deeply, from the belly up to the chest. As time goes by we get affected by our surroundings, family, friends, school, work, stress and so on. The breath becomes shallow and not as deep as it should be.
This causes some problems. Our cells don´t get the oxygen they need and our body and mind are not fully working as well as they should.
So what does the breath really do? Why is it good to breathe long and deep? And how do we do it?
When you inhale deeply the air goes from your nose (or mouth) to your lungs and reaches the alveolus that look like a cluster of grapes. There are around 300 millions of them. Here is where the exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide takes place. From the alveolus oxygen is transfered to the blood. And the blood transfers oxygen to the cells. Your cells can then do the job they need to do to keep you in a healthy state. Every breath consists of 20% oxygen, but only 4 % will actually be absorbed in your body. The deeper you breathe, the more air arrives to the alveolus. The oxygen is used as fuel in the cells, the by product is then carbon dioxide. Receptors in the brain measure the level of carbon dioxide and the pH-level in the blood and send a signal to the lungs that it´s time to inhale again. Carbon dioxide leaves the body when you exhale, from the cells through the blood out to the alveoulus in the lungs out through your nostrils or mouth. This is just a simple explanation of how it works, the breathing system is a complex network of cooperating factors.
Long and deep breathing:
· creates relaxation
· gives you clarity and patience
· reduces toxins and mucus from the lungs
· stimulates a chemical balance in the brain
· regulates the pH level in your body, you become more alkaline
· increases the spinal fluid to the brain
· counteract depression
· reduces insecurity and fear
· affects the pituitary gland
· is a very good tool when you have pain!
And a lot more…
How you breathe the Long Deep Breathing – The Complete breath
It´s good if you lie flat on your back when you´re learning this breathing technique the first time. Place one hand on the navel point and the other hand on your chest, the rib cage, so you can feel the movements when you breathe. In Kundalini Yoga you always inhale and exhale through your nostrils unless you get other instructions. (It prevents the particles from the air reaching your lungs and keeps the air moist and warm) We breathe around 12-14 breaths per minute, and by using the Long deep Breathing technique it´s possible to get to breathing only one breath per minute! Give it a try!
The Long Deep Breathing, the Complete Breath, is the foundation in Yoga and it consists of three parts that together becomes the Long Deep Breathing:
Inhale steadily through the nostrils, filling the lower part of your lungs first. Your abdomen will expand, feel it with your hand. Hold the breath and then exhale, and the abdomen sinks down again.
2. Chest, ribcage
Inhale and fill the middle part of the lungs, pushing out the lower ribs, breastbone and chest, feel with your hand that the ribcage is expanded. Hold the breath and then exhale.
Put your hand on the chest close to the collarbone. Inhale deeply, fill the next highest part of the lungs, expanding and lifting the upper chest, and the upper six or seven pairs of ribs and collarbones. Hold the breath and then exhale.
Now: put these three parts together so it becomes only one smooth, continuous motion - the Long Deep Breathing:
Inhale through the nostrils, fill the lower part of the lungs, expand the abdomen. Continue to inhale and fill the middle lungs and feel that the chest is expanding and the abdomen is sinking slightly. Continue to inhale and fill the upper lung and feel the collarbones lifting a little bit. Then take a pause and exhale in reverse order: first the collarbones sink down followed by the chest and at last the abdomen. After you have exhaled wait a couple of seconds until you inhale again. Let the body decide when it´s time to inhale again.
If nothing else is said, this is the breathing technique you use in the yoga exercises, the rests between them and in meditation.
Try to breathe long and deep as much as you can throughout the day. You can do it wherever you are: On the bus, in the line at the supermarket, before going to bed as a relaxation...
Here is a video instruction.
When you start a health journey it´s good to set up some goals that you want to reach. That will make you more motivated and more focused on staying on the right track. It will make you keep up and have the discipline you need.
Do you have a vision? Goals? Maybe this seems to be a weird question when it comes to health. Normally you ask this kind of questions when it comes to your personal development, your carrier or spiritual journey. But I think it´s good to ask yourself what your vision is. Or what your goals are when it comes to your health journey. Just give it a thought: What would you do if you could see yourself in a better health condition, let´s say one year from now? What would you like to do when you´re not forced to staying home from events, work and friends because your health just won´t let you have the freedom choosing what you want to do? What are your dreams? When you set your goal you can also put a deadline when you want to reach that goal, so you don´t let your dreams wait forever. Here are some areas you can set your goals to get started. A goal should be like a dream, a wish. Try not to think what your abilities are today, let your dreams become your goals!
Maybe you´ll come up with more!
That´s obvious, right? I think the first thing that comes up for most women with endometriosis is that they want to be free from pain. But think a little bit further. What else would you like to achieve when it comes to your health? Stopping eating painkillers, getting rid of other symptoms like back pain, headache, fatigue? Being able to exercise more, starting dancing, hiking? Start writing your goals and the dreams will just come up on the paper!
What would you like to change when it comes to yourself as a person? Maybe you want to be better at saying no. Standing up for yourself, being less shy, having more discipline doing things that are good for you? Stopping having fear of doing difficult and challenging things, telling more jokes, being less angry, less sensitive or more sensitive…
What are you doing today that is creative? Are you able to use your creativity in your life? When it comes to creativity many think it´s only about painting pictures or other artistic creativity. But it can be other things too! It can be house decorating, planting flowers and vegetables, writing, coming up with funny ideas that you can do with your family. Creativity is very good for your health! Have you been in that state when you´re doing something in a total focus so the time has just stopped? It can happen when you are doing something you really love and when you are in your creativity flow. It´s like your energy flows and it gives you a great feeling. In a moment like that it can even happen that you don´t feel your pain!
Well, many people stay at work like 8 hours a day, so it´s very important that you feel you are at the right place and are doing the right things. Maybe you´re totally satisfied with your job today, but if you´re not or if you want more development you can set some goals for your career. If you are not satisfied at all, it can be a good idea to really sit down and think what you want to do in your life. This is a huge thing, I know and maybe it is not the first thing on your list if your health is bad. The health is always the most important, but what you can do is to set a little bit longer deadline on the goals that have to do with your career. Some people have no idea at all what they want to do in life so this can be a little bit frustrating. No worries, this is a big and important issue that has to have an article of its own in the future!
Are you ready to start your healthy journey when it comes to food? So how to start this changes that can seem rather huge when you begin thinking about it? Food is not only for survival, it´s also a social activity that people are deeply connected to. It´s a matter of enjoying, what you are eating too.
What you eat should not be boring or tasteless. Then I can guarantee that you will not put up with the diet for very long. And some food can also be a bit addictive, and more difficult to stop eating. Like bread or sweets. But everything is possible! When I started with my diet change, I had eaten chocolate every day for many years. I thought it would be very difficult to be without it. But I did it! It only took a couple of weeks and then the cravings were gone.
1. Set your goals
If you haven't done this already, I recommend that you write down what you want to achieve with the changes you´re about to make. You can read more about this in an article coming soon. To have clear goals about what you want to feel like, be like and what you want to do in the future gives you more motivation and makes it easier to stick to your plans.
2. Make a plan on how to remove foods that are not good for you.
Of course you can stop eating everything that is not good for you all at once. If you are the kind of person who can stop eating the food that is said to have a bad effect on you, all at once, you can do it of course, just go ahead. Some girls find it difficult to do that, it can then be easier to do it in small steps. Having a good plan on how to do it, can be a big help. You can start removing one thing at time. Give it a couple of weeks, and then remove the next thing. You can for example start with removing gluten. Give it 2 weeks or so. If you have not noticed any difference at all, you can just go back to gluten for one day and feel how it feels. Then don´t eat gluten for another three days and try it again.
For some people it is enough removing one or two things in the diet and they feel much better already. Other girls have to remove more and be more consistent. We are all different and react differently on food.
3. Introduce the food that is good for you
It´s not only about removing food that is bad for you. You should also eat more of the stuff that is really healthy for you. Try to sneak it in to your meals whenever it´s possible. You can start with:
- Good omega oils: Virgin olive oil, chia seeds, hemp seeds, nuts
- Fresh Greens: Salads, spinach, kales
- Other vegetables
You´ll get more information about healthy food in the articles.
4. Write a journal
Writing a journal can be very helpful, to have actual “proof” how you feel and react. Write in it every day, how you feel. To make it easy you can make a grade from 1-10. 1 is just a little and 10 is a lot. For example: Pain 5 Tired 10 Digestion 10 (very good), in good mood etc. Write what you eat during the day. In that way you´ll figure out if there actually is something that you´re more sensitive to. This can take time, especially if you have IBS or a food sensitivity that can show up some days after you have eaten. Or maybe you´ll notice that you can actually eat one produce one day, but if you eat it more than once a day or two days in a row you feel bad. Don´t hesitate contacting a nutritionist if you are food sensitive.
5. Tell your family and friends
It´s a good idea telling your family and friends what kind of changes you have made in your diet. And why! I´ve noticed that people are a little sensitive when the food subject comes up, and it can be very difficult for them to understand why some people have chosen not to eat certain kinds of foods. Tell them what your diet is and why you´re doing it. When you tell them that it´s because of your health, that you want to get well and reduce your pain and other symptoms, that it has a huge effect in your daily life, you´ll have a good support. You can also tell them that you really need their support in your journey. It makes everything easier if you are open about your lifestyle changes.
6. Find new exciting recipes
To keep going with your diet, a good way is to find new tasty recipes. Fortunately the internet is full of them. And here you´ll be provided with some!
"Food is thy medicine and medicine is thy food". A quote from Hippocrates. And it´s so true. Just think about it: If you think about the food as your fuel and the fuel is what gets you going, it makes more sense, doesn´t it? Here you´ll get a lot of inspiration and information on how diet can affect your health. How you can take charge of your own life and health. Here you´ll find suggestions on what you can do to feel better.
Primarily the focus is on facts, studies, testimonials and my own experiences on diet and endometriosis. Diet can help if you have problems with digestion, pain, inflammation, and imbalance in the hormone system. Many different illnesses and symptoms have improved by a modified diet. Not only for gynecological diseases but also for example: diabetes, bowel disorders, autoimmune diseases, etc.. The dietary recommendation that you´ll get here is inspired from the so-called "Endodiet" but when you look closely at what the diet focuses on, you can see that it is similar to other dietary recommendations for other illnesses. Basically it's about eating natural food that helps the body to start functioning properly again.
Unfortunately, our diet in modern times has taken a wrong turn and we do not eat what we from the beginning of the evolution were meant to eat. By eating foods that your body wants and needs, you can improve your health a lot. The information you´ll get here will give you a clue o what you can try, so you can affect your own health. We are all different and respond differently to different things. Feel what your body wants and needs. Take it at your own pace and try things out, notice what feels good for you. Explore exciting new recipes that you can do!
One advice is to keep a journal of what you eat and how you feel. That will help you to figure out how the diet affects you. Get help of a nutritionist if you´re insecure and need more detailed help with diet.
What can diet do to make you feel better?
The diet described here and recommended:
• Is anti-inflammatory
• Strengthens the immune system and increases your energy
• Is hormone balancing
• Is non-allergenic
• Builds serotonin, which is pain-blocking
• Boost the brain and nervous system health.
• Strengthens the liver's cleansing process.
When you eat this kind of food you can feel that you become less swollen, have reduced pain, cramps subside, you lose weight and you feel more energized. You simply feel better!
A summary what you can focus on when it comes to food:
- Animal products: Meat, farmed fish and fish from unclean water. Dairy products: Milk, cheese, butter and cream
- Vegetable oils: Corn oil, safflower oil, sunflower oil, sesame oil, rapeseed oil, margarine
- Grains: Wheat, rye and barley
- Beverages: Coffee, alcohol, sodas and other sweetened beverages
- Sugar: White refined sugar, different types of starches
- Additives: Synthetic dyes, preservatives, anti-caking agents and flavor enhancers
- Oils: Virgin cold-pressed olive oil, virgin cold-pressed coconut oil
- Vegetables: eat a lot of green vegetables and raw
- Legumes: Kidney beans, green beans, chickpeas...
- Grains: Millet, quinoa, amaranth, rice, buckwheat and oats (gluten-free)
- Fish: Wild caught and fatty fish, such as salmon, mackerel
- Small amount of nuts / seeds, unroasted
- Organic produce
- Drink plenty of water
More interesting articles about food will come!
Yoga for Endometriosis is designed for you who have endometriosis and other pelvic pain. It is a dynamic and gentle yoga that anyone, no matter what kind of background one has, can do. No matter what state you´re in right now, how much pain you have, lack of energy you have you can do it!
In Kundalini Yoga and also MediYoga, there are some yogasets that are made for women with menstrual problems and hormonal imbalances. As a very dedicated yoga student, I have tried some of these yogasets, but discovered that many of the exercises hurt too much, because the exercises are often done with focus and emphasis on the pelvic area. What I always have experienced with MediYoga is that simple exercises can have powerful results. You don´t have to do too hard and strenuous exercises to feel a positive difference. Having the experience what didn´t work for me I began figuring out that it should be possible to design special yogasets for those who have endometriosis, menstrual pain or other pelvic pain. Yogasets that are possible for those who have pain and are adapted for that group. After trying out some of my own designed yogasets for a longer time, I noticed a great difference. I could do sessions for longer periods without giving up because of the pain. I had more energy, pain decreased and I was happier. I also found some great yogic techniques to use when I had pain. The yoga exercises and yogasets, you'll find here, are suitable for those with pain, fatigue, stiffness, digestive problems and other symptoms. If an exercise is too difficult, it is always possible to modify and customize to your own ability. Yoga is not about being an acrobat, it's all about listening inward, to know what the mind and body signals.
Yoga for Endometriosis will help you to:
- Reduce stress
- Reduce pain and deal with pain
- Balance your hormones
- Have a better digestion
- Have more energy
- Sleep better
- Become more conscious about your body and mind
- Be more flexible in your body
- Be happier
- Begin your healing journey today! Start with the Introduction Yoga gift. Do that session for a month or so. You can also very soon find different kind of yoga sessions to buy in Classes. If you´d like a private yoga session you can book that on Skype. Having a private session will be more designed for you personally and it is an effective way of finding your own personal yoga program.
You´ll find great advices in the articles over time. It can be easy yoga exercises you can do for a certain problem you have or other great tips for your health. Yoga is such a great tool to use to feel better and together with a good diet and other lifestyle changes it´s an awesome way of getting better!
Popular blog posts
A Breathing Meditation that helps to re-energize, detox & beat the heat
A quick health tip for your back and shoulders
A Yoga pose for sensitive people
How to get less affected by people
A Breathing exercise for anxiety & depression
Are you struggling with anxiety?
Five ways to get rid of your headcahe
One minute meditation
Yoga to start your day
Do you want to
LOWER YOUR STRESS, get more relaxed in your hips & pelvis and MORE BALANCED & EMPOWERED?
Get your ⤵
Helen Kåselöv is a yoga teacher and yoga therapist and the founder of Healing from within with yoga & food (former Yoga for Endometriosis & Pelvic pain). Helen has a history of severe endometriosis and is today helping women with endometriosis, PCOS, uterine fibroids and other pelvic pain online, with yoga, nutrition and other lifestyle changes. Using yoga both as a tool in different kinds of healing programs, pain management, yoga has become the foundation in her work. “Yoga can help you in so many ways: Physically, mentally, spiritually and as a personal development tool.”