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When Vagus spends time in Yoga!
by Star Kolb

What happens in yoga stays in yoga… Did you know that positive social interactions stimulate the longest cranial nerve in the body, the Vagus nerve.

(I am going to get technical for a few paragraphs, if you want to go for it and stimulate the vagus nerve now, skip to the exercise below!)

This vagabond of a nerve derives from the latin vagary-“to wander”, it is the head honcho of the involuntary biological process and the parasympathetic nervous system, “rest and digest”.

What does this mean to your health? The vagus nerve regulates the heart rate, improves memory, connects brain and gut, prevents inflammation, sends messages to the lungs to breathe, and helps you relax.

Now that we have established the importance of Vagus, what can we do to increase its function? YOGA! This 5,000 plus year old technique has been utilized for wellness, devotion, stimulation, and relaxation long before science was able to measure the results and exact functions of the body. It is now recognized that many Sanskrit and yogic terms have modern day translations, for example, Ida Nadi=Parasympathetic Nervous System.

There are several ways to stimulate the vagus nerve; take a cold shower, singing or chanting, meditation, positive social relationships, deep slow breaths, laughter, exercise, and devotional practices to name a few.

Yoga encompasses several actions on the above list! So next time you get a chance to chant or sing in class, think vagus. Breathing practices (pranayama) and meditation are also a large element to a yoga practice.

Now, lets take a moment to practice yoga.

5 minute exercise:
*The information and exercises provided are to be used at your own discretion.

They are not offered as a replacement or substitute for professional medical advice or treatment.

-Come to a stable seated position with a tall steady spine, ribs and hips aligned, neck long, chin in lightly. Relax the muscles of your face and jaw.
-Hands to your belly, deep breaths into belly, in and out through the nose.
5-10 deep breaths.
-Hands to chest/ribs, deep and wide breaths into the chest/ribs, in and out through the nose.
5-10 deep breaths.
-Now breathe into the belly and ribs/chest together, filling the lungs fully with a deep breath.
5-10 deep breaths.
Want more?
Inhale through the nose, relax the face-exhale out through the mouth making noise, start with
the vowels, Aaaaa, Eeeee…etc.
5-10 rounds.
Bring a soft smile to your face, sit quietly for a moment, and then call a friend or come to a yoga class!
Hello Vagus!

Moab Yoga is located downtown, 37 E Center Street. For information about classes, events, private lessons, and teachers look at our website or call 435-259-2455. And be sure to mention you read about Moab Yoga in Moab Happenings.

A Hawaiian-Grown Miracle Root:
Turmeric at Moonflower Co-op

In a globalized food market, information about our food, including origin, labor practices, and agricultural methods, often eludes us. Member-owned cooperatives, like Moonflower Community Co-op, use selective guidelines when purchasing products. Our produce manager, Doug Fahlbusch, constantly seeks the most sustainable, fairly cultivated produce items to stock our shelves and is always eager to accept locally grown produce.

Many Moabites and co-op shoppers regularly depend on food products cultivated in tropical regions, including turmeric. A rhizomatous member of the Zingiberaceae plant family, turmeric has become increasingly popular in the United States due to its culinary uses and potent health benefits. Related to ginger, turmeric thrives in humid, warm climates with heavy precipitation, and is predominantly cultivated throughout India, the native origin of this rhizome. Populations throughout Asia have incorporated turmeric into their traditional dishes, such as various curries, and herbal remedies for thousands of years. Turmeric factors prominently into Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine. Fortunately, Moonflower Co-op has found a year-round source of sustainably, fairly produced turmeric from Kauai, the fourth largest island within the Hawaii archipelago.

Secret Beach Organics, a family farm situated on Kilauea, Kauai, produces a year round supply of Hawaiian Red Organic Turmeric. The Hay family, descendants of Canadian dairy farmers, purchased 140 acres of land on the north shore of Kauai decades ago and embarked on a massive undertaking: the transformation of overgrown tropical vegetation into a sprawling, highly productive farm. Adam Hay currently serves as the Farm Manager, and Shelly Welch, Farmer/Sales Manager for Secret Beach Organics and Adam’s partner, was born and raised in Moab for over 18 years, providing a serendipitous connection to Moonflower Co-op. The family has focused on soil remediation and farm development for decades, and ultimately they hope to produce dozens of varieties of tropical fruits, including coconut, mangoes, and loquats. They utilize methods based in permaculture, such as the planting of nitrogen-fixing pigeon pea plants around newly planted fruit trees to provide ongoing fertilization and nourishing green manure. Crop rotation and other regenerative practices are a priority for this farming community, and they compensate their farm workers fairly with living wages.

Their main crop is fresh turmeric root. They ship out 2,500 pounds per week to various buyers in Hawaii and the mainland United States, mostly working with small community owned co-ops and health food stores. Hawaii has the perfect climate for growing turmeric because of its year round warm weather, high humidity, regular rainfall, and rich volcanic soil. It also happens to be one of the only crops that can be shipped to the mainland due to strict agricultural regulations. The turmeric is harvested and washed with using water from their onsite well which taps into Kauai’s rich, mineral rich aquifer. It is then dried overnight, and shipped out the next day. This particular Hawaiian Red Organic variety offers a higher quantity of curcumin, a potent compound with anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. We feel incredibly fortunate to stock such a high quality product in our co-op. Learn more about Secret Beach Organics by visiting their website ( and following them on Instagram (@secretbeachorganics).

Six Signs & Symptoms of Psychological Trauma

Events that cause the individual to fear for personal life and wellbeing. Such as a car collision or a physical or sexual assault, long term abuse, a natural disaster, living in a war zone, or life-altering experiences, can all spur Trauma symptoms.

Shock, denial or disbelief often occur immediately following the event. Those affected may seem shaken and suddenly confused about their surroundings. Once these initial symptoms subside, the person may become numb or emotionally distant when asked to discuss the traumatic event or try to avoid the topic altogether.

Aggression: Persons with PTSD will often experience aggression. In some cases, it may be anger toward themselves because of guilt, shame or personal blame surrounding the event that has affected them.

Issues Sleeping: A person may experience disruptions in their regular sleeping patterns. These can include insomnia—difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep—nightmares or night terrors, sometimes of the event itself.

Anxiety: It may be brought on by thoughts or visual images of the event that occur out of the blue and can lead to overwhelming fear and panic attacks.

Dissociation: Dissociation, the detachment of emotions from events, these changes in the brain can cause memory loss, as well as disconnection or withdrawal from others. Such social isolation can in turn contribute to feelings of sadness, hopelessness and depression.

Physical Concerns: Such an experience can also have physical symptoms. Complaints of aches and pains are common, as is muscle tension, headaches or migraines, dizziness, fatigue, chest pain, breathing difficulties, and stomach and digestive issues.

At Integral Brain Health we can alleviate the symptoms of a Traumatic Event, Permanently without supplements, medication or continued visits to the provider.


What’s Up With Your Gut?
by Ray Andrew, MD

Owing to a variety of factors in our lifestyles, increasing numbers of people are experiencing annoying, perplexing, chronic discomforts, especially in the gut. You, like many others we see, might be able to relate to Joan. Joan was at her wits end. Her stomach was all tied up in knots. She was bloated and in pain all the time. She hadn't been able to sleep through the night in years, waking up five or six times before her alarm finally went off, at which time she was exhausted. In fact, she was exhausted all the time. Headaches, nasal congestion, nausea, anxiety, and even chest pains were her daily companions. She couldn’t figure out why she was gaining weight on a low-carb diet. Formerly a top high school athlete, and then a successful professional, she now found workouts tedious and had to drag herself through each day at work.

During her first visit to Prestige Wellness Institute, it was immediately clear what Joan needed. We could have prescribed an acid-blocker, headache medicine, antidepressant, sleep drug, nasal steroid, and an appetite suppressant, just for starters. But none of these drugs would have solved any of her problems. What Joan needed was simply gut repair. Desperate, she couldn’t wait to get started.

Week after week, Joan reported dramatic improvements in her symptoms. Within two months, her stomach pains, bloating, chest pains, nausea, anxiety, and congestion were all gone. Headaches had improved. She was sleeping through the night for the first time in years. Her energy had doubled. Her clothes were fitting better. “It’s incredible!” she exclaimed. Joan felt like a new woman. She could not believe her body was capable of feeling so good again.

Joan’s problem was intestinal permeability. Although thousands of papers have been published in the medical literature on this subject, doctors can go through years of training without ever hearing the term. Sadly, much of this stems from the fact that there is no patentable drug or surgery to treat this problem. Nor is there a cookbook approach doctors can refer to and write a prescription for during a five-minute office visit.

Fortunately, intestinal permeability is not a disease, and it can be fixed naturally. In the Wellness Institute, we use an elegant system of digestive enzymes, probiotics, herbal supplements, and dietary modifications to restore the integrity of the gut lining. Our three-phase protocol is tailored to each individual’s needs by our team, taking the guesswork out of your healing journey.

We also work with you to identify and treat the factors that damaged your intestinal lining to begin with so the problem does not recur. You see, the gut is lined by specialized cells that create a barrier between the hostile outside environment and the inside of your body. These cells enable your body to absorb essential nutrients while keeping toxins and bugs from getting into your bloodstream. The lining made up of these cells is also where the majority of your immune system is located. Damage to this lining leads to a lot of the symptoms and diseases we experience.

By repairing the gut lining, we are able to restore the body’s ability to absorb what it needs while blocking passage of substances that are harmful. This is important because the function of that lining actually affects every organ and system in the body.

In other words, you may have gut symptoms, like Joan did. You might have chronic heartburn or IBS. Or you may not feel anything going on in your belly. Instead, you might have eczema, asthma, ADD, hay fever, depression, recurrent yeast infections, or any number of other problems your doctor just can’t seem to figure out. Even if medicines control your symptoms, they do not fix the unhealthy gut that caused them. As a result, such medicines do nothing to prevent the downstream effects of intestinal permeability, such as arthritis, autoimmune disease (Rheumatoid arthritis, for example), heart disease, hypothyroidism, and much more.

If you suffer from unexplained symptoms and wonder if gut repair might be the answer, call us at (435) 259-4008 to schedule a consultation. With offices in Springville and Moab, we help patients from all over Utah and several surrounding states. Callers who mention this article will receive 20% off Phase I of the protocol. Isn’t it time you felt better?

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