Intentional Eating: 5 Ways to Tune into your Body

mala-beads-yoga-tiny-devotions-photographer-photographer-richelle-hunter-photography-summer-of-soul-240Intentional eating is certainly not something most of us do these days. With our busy work schedules, families, and the many demands that life presents, we don’t have much time to eat, let alone eat healthy and with intention. It can be a challenge to ask busy individuals to really think about the food they eat on a daily basis. I know the struggles first hand. I’m a Physician Assistant who works in a stressful medical environment where the hours are long and the breaks are seldom. But the fact is, if we don’t make a conscious effort to put nourishing foods into our bodies, we will have to live with many chronic ailments, including symptoms of inflammation, food allergies, excess weight, fatigue, disease and emotional problems. We may even shorten our lives. If we eat with intention though, we can give our bodies a fighting chance in a toxic world. Here are some tips that I use to help myself eat more consciously:

1. Think about what the food you are choosing is doing for your body: Is this food serving a higher purpose? Is it providing you with the proper nutrients, or is it just a filler food you reach for out of boredom or stress? So many of us are on auto-pilot these days. When we drive, when we work, and when we eat. So next time you reach for food, ask yourself, what is this food doing for me? The first step of intentional eating is to Be Aware.

2. Shop smart: Most of us don’t have a lot time to grocery shop. So it can be a challenge to read labels and really understand what you are buying. But it’s important to make smart choices because health starts with what you buy. Give yourself just an extra half-hour at the grocery store to read labels. Know what is in your food! A short list of things to avoid: GMOs, preservatives, added sugar, hydrogenated ingredients, and harmful vegetable oils like soybean, cottonseed, and sunflower oil.

3. Try cooking at home, even if it just one night a week: There is nothing more intentional than cooking the food you eat. You get to be in control of everything that goes into your food. And that is actually a very empowering thing! Even if you only have time to cook one night on the weekend, try it! Try a recipe you’ve always wanted to make, and make it fun by cooking with others or for others. When you cook you put love and effort into your food, which makes eating it more enjoyable.

4. Sit down, and chew your food: I know it sounds silly, but sit down when you eat. I used to eat in the morning while standing in the kitchen because I was in such a hurry to get to work. I’m pretty sure I barely chewed my food. Now I get up ten minutes earlier. Just ten minutes! I do this so I can sit down and eat breakfast and really chew/taste my food. Or if you don’t eat breakfast, sit down a few nights a week for dinner.

5. Do your research: I find that the more I read about and research nutrition, the more I enjoy eating and the smarter my choices become. You know that McDonalds is bad for you, but why? You know that kale is good for you, but why? What is it in kale that is good for you? How does it work in the body to help it run smoothly? The Internet is a source for a wealth of knowledge. Learn about your food. Instead of watching that last TV show, take some time to research the nutrients found in spinach, and what those nutrients do for you. Knowledge is power!

 891387_817309051626478_238689318_nErin Carey is a Physician Assistant who works in primary care/urgent care and is a yogi at heart. She practices yoga daily and posts pictures of her yoga journey on her Instagram page to inspire others to practice. She is a supporter of mental and physical health and hopes to help empower her patients to take charge of their health and see food and physical exercise as medicine.

Lustin’ in Wanderlust: A First Timers Guide to Wanderlust. My Top Five Must Haves and Must-Sees!

voyagerYoga lovers unite! 

It’s my greatest honour to be teaching at Wanderlust Whistler this year July 31 – Aug 4. I am so excited to be there to lead classes and have also started filling my schedule with all the amazing things that I want to do. 

Like some of you, it’s my first time to Wanderlust and it can seem pretty overwhelming. But, all the stories I have heard and the experiences everybody tells me just reaffirms the fact that it’s going to be spectacular! 

I’ve consulted a few of my fellow yogi friends (Alice H, Derek M, Don S and Melissa H) and their wise advice for an amazing and transformative Wanderlust weekend, with so many like minded individuals include the following…

Kick it all off with the opening parade and join the party that follows. It is quirky and amazing all at the same time and the perfect way to initiate into your Wanderlust experience

IMG_9567Get yo’ groove on with a bunch of peeps in a spontaneous dance party under the sun! DJ Drez will be spinning it up outside Lululemon so get your booty on the dance floor!

Bring some walking shoes and make your way to a morning hike where your hard work will pay off with the beautiful mountain scenery of Whistler as well as having one of the many talented musicians play for you. 

Find your way to the peak of the mountain for a class for the best scenery, the freshest of Canadian mountain air and the experience of a lifetime!

Practicing with several hundred yogis at the main stage will connect you into that greater whole. The energy will be incredible and you’ll get all the sunny goodness while you do it!

Wanderlust gives you a fantastic opportunity to practice with some of the greatest teachers and pioneers of the yoga world but don’t overlook the teachers you’ve never heard of. They are going to be hidden gems! 

UnknownWhen it’s time to slow down the physical body, then head to the unique lecture series Wanderlust has put together called the Speakeasy. They’ll have inspiring talks on mindful living with a fantastic line up that spans all cuts of people. 

And finally… (and sadly not gluten free friendly). Get your way to pick up some really amazing and interesting artisan breads made fresh daily at PureBread (

Can’t wait to see you there! 
Can’t wait to take in the experience myself! 

In love and always in your service,

Kate W. Mak


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I heart green things! My top 5 fave green things and why they are so rad!

spirulina-just-women-juice-blendAdmittedly, I used to be the furthest thing from a member of the “green team.” You know, the open-minded, free thinkers of our society who are mindful of their choices and concerned about making the world a better, healthier place for all? Then, I got sick with a neurological disease and became severely sensitive to chemicals which turned out to be an incredible blessing in so many ways, one of them being that it prompted me to immerse myself in the world of all things green. I had no choice. While the task of switching to a green lifestyle initially seemed exhausting and expensive, it turned out to be one of the most rewarding decisions I have made to date. Of course, all things that promote a healthier environment are fabulous. Still, there certain products I am partial to, ones I make a point to keep handy at all times. Here are my top five favorites, along with the reasons why I find them to be so rad:

1. Spirituality and Health Magazine (the magazine that’s all about going green): Bashing others is rude, it truly is. So, instead of calling out magazines whose pages reek of toxic ink and chemicals, i’ll call out my favorite one that doesn’t -Spirituality and Health Magazine. If you have been lucky enough to indulge in the soul lifting pages of this magazine then you, like me, are most likely a devoted addict already whose only complaint is that it is a bi-monthly publication rather than a monthly one. Spirituality and Health Magazine is a member of the “Better Paper Project of Green America,” meaning their issues are printed on recycled paper in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, preserve forests, and prevent solid waste from landfills. The added benefit? No migraines for the chemically sensitive. You can actually have a relaxing time reading a magazine without breathing in harmful toxins. Other magazines such as Light of Consciousness, Natural Health, and several others have jumped on the green bandwagon too. What’s more? It’s not just their quality of pages that rock, the content filling them does too. Visit for a full list of these enlightening, green, soul nourishing magazines.

2. CBD Oil: I know how this sounds, but my head is not connecting the word “green” with “cannabis” solely for the means of getting “high.” No. For me, and plenty of others, pure CBD oil is an absolute life changer if not saver. As someone with epilepsy, being able to replace a laundry list of prescriptions with a single herb is a dream come true. Currently, I am testing a product of CBD oil bathed in probiotics that will be on the market in the near future. However, there are many other companies who are now selling pure, legal CBD oil. There are only trace amounts of the psychoactive ingredient THC in these products, greatly reducing the possibility of getting high from using them. For me, pure CBD oil works to control seizures, kill Candida, reduce inflammation, and so much more. Basically, it’s an entire pharmacy -nature’s pharmacy, of course- packed into one bottle. Stop by Collective Evolution to read more of my articles on the subject. This particular one describes my personal experience with this life saving herb, CBD Oil.

3. Younique Makeup: I think it is beautiful when women are confident enough to strut their stuff without any makeup on, but maybe I am just bias because I was forced to for a few years because of the harmful chemicals in most makeup products. I’m still a girl, though, so when a friend suggested I try the all natural makeup products by Younique, I eagerly jumped on board. Now, I religiously carry three of their products in my purse -the “lovestruck” shade of their “Mood Struck Minerals Lucrative Lipgloss” line, along with their purple and gold eyeshadows for green eyes which are made of 100% all natural mineral pigments.

4. Invigorating, Gluten-free Himalaya Facewash by Botanique Pure Body Care: I hate to sound like a broken record, but for obvious reasons I cannot use mainstream face wash brands because of the chemicals in them. I am also gluten intolerant. Furthermore, though, I believe anyone and everyone can benefit from switching from chemical filled bath and body products to ones like the Gluten-Free Himalaya Facewash by Botanique Pure Body Care. When I first got sick with late stage Lyme Disease, it seemed as if my skin was deteriorating. For some reason, my face looked years older. After finding Himalaya Facewash by Botanique Pure Body Care, though, everything changed. It quickly firmed and smoothed my skin, taking years off my look. Now, I use it religiously and suggest it to just about anybody who is struggling with their skin care. This soap-free cleanser gently, but thoroughly, exfoliates your face with a unique combination of herbal extracts that activate the skin’s natural ability to cleanse itself while simultaneously preserving its pH balance. Refined rice grain is used to wash away dirt and other impurities, and it is infused with Soliga Forest Honey, Lemon Peel, and Rose. Give it a try. Your skin will surely give you a sincere “thank you” in return

5. TOM’S OF MAINE “Apricot Fresh” Long-Lasting Care Deodorant Stick: This one is one of my top favorite green products for obvious reasons. First off, products with aluminum in them contribute to Alzheimer’s and other neurological deficits. With the exception of TOM’S OF MAINE and a few other brands, the majority of deodorants contain aluminum. Also, this deodorant offers 24 hour odor protection in three ways: It uses botanical hops to inhibit the growth of odor causing bacteria, contains zinc ricinoleate to absorb odor, and is infused with encapsulated natural fragrances.

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photoShelley M. White is a Lyme survivor, trained Herbalist, Writer, and the new owner and Publisher of Public Health Alert Newspaper.

Their new, interactive website at is set to launch in June. In the meantime, swing by their new Twitter and Facebook accounts to tune in to their exciting new updates:, and @PHAnewspaper.

Follow her on Twitter: @Shelley_M_W
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