What is intermittent fasting, and why should you do it?

Posted By : Katie Monsell/ 51 0

Learn about new and different techniques of intermittent fasting in order to maintain good health, to do here on Koh Phangan.

Intermittent fastin concept – empty plate on blue background, copy space

Here on Koh Phangan, there are many health and wellness centers where you can come and learn about new and different techniques in order to maintain good health.

One of them being fasting…

But what exactly is it? Read on to find out more.

What is Intermittent Fasting?

Intermittent fasting is an eating pattern where you cycle between periods of eating and fasting.

It does not say anything about which foods to eat, but rather when you should eat them.

There are a few different intermittent fasting techniques, all of which split the day or week into eating periods and fasting periods.

No food is allowed during the fasting period, but you can drink water, coffee, tea and other non-caloric beverages.

Some forms of intermittent fasting allow small amounts of low-calorie foods during the fasting period.

What are the Benefits of Fasting?

  1. Helps with weight loss (despite eating the same amount of calories):

Intermittent fasting simply allows the body to use its stored energy. For example, by burning off excess body fat.

This process, known as autophagy, or “self” (auto) “eat (phagy), is the body’s natural ability to clean out detox and recycle cells that are no longer functioning properly.

When we do not eat (intermittent fasting), insulin levels fall, signaling the body to start burning stored energy as no more is coming through food. Blood glucose falls, so the body must now pull glucose out of storage to burn for energy.

2. Lowers risk for disease:

Intermittent fasting can boost brain health and lower your risk for neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. For one, it reduces obesity and can help protect against diabetes — both increase your risk for developing Alzheimer’s.

3. Protects neurons:

Intermittent fasting also helps the brain by protecting nerve cells from degeneration. A 2003 study found that intermittent fasting helped guard neurons in the brain from excitotoxic stress (neuronal death).

4. Improves memory:

Intermittent fasting improves learning and memory, another protective measure against erious neurodegenerative diseases. A 2009 study of 50 elderly adults found that three months of caloric restriction boosted memory (measured by their ability to recall words).

5. Promotes Longevity :

Another way it increases your lifespan and slows aging is by manipulating mitochondrial networks. Mitochondria are the power generators in your cells — they produce most of the energy that’s needed for a cell to survive. A 2017 study from Harvard University found that fasting kept mitochondrial networks fused together. That’s what keeps the mitochondria strong and able to do their job of processing energy — crucial for longevity and vibrant aging.

6. Use it as a detox, giving us more energy:

Due to your body using up its excess supply. It provides an opportunity for your body to remove itself for any unwanted, harmful toxins.

No matter how hard we try to practice clean living, modern life overloads us with toxins we can’t avoid. I am talking about pesticides, EMFs, cigarette smoke (second hand or first hand), chemical ridden skin care, sugar laden diets …

Fasting is the perfect way to ‘unclog the pipes’ and start again fresh.

And the list goes on …

Heaps of research can be found on intermittent fasting and all its health benefits. Which one appeals to you?

Case Study of Fasting

As an example, one study split mice into two groups; the researchers put one on an intermittent fasting regime, and they allowed the second to eat whenever it liked.

Both groups consumed the same amount of fat and calories; however, despite having the same energy intake, mice in the fasting group did not develop obesity or metabolic disorders as the other mice did.


The Different Fasting Techniques

The 16/8 Method: Fast for 16 hours each day, for example by only eating between noon and 8pm. You can do this by skipping breakfast, eating your first meal at noon and your last meal at 8 pm.

The 5:2 Diet: During 2 days of the week, eat only about 500–600 calories.

Eat-Stop-Eat: Once or twice a week, don’t eat anything from dinner one day, until dinner the next day (a 24 hour fast).


Will I be hungry?

Despite what you may think, intermittent fasting is actually fairly easy to do. Many people report feeling better and having more energy during a fast.

Hunger is usually not that big of an issue, although it can be a problem in the beginning, while your body is getting used to not eating for extended periods of time.

Proceed with Caution

While intermittent fasting has many proven benefits, it’s still controversial. A potential danger regards medications, especially for diabetes, where doses often need to be adapted.

Discuss any changes in medication and relevant lifestyle changes with your doctor.

Everything you need to know about a Thai Massage

Posted By : Katie Monsell/ 141 0

What are you letting yourself in for with a Thai Massage? Read on to find out …


You’re in Thailand; the perfect place to experience this cultural massage. (Some people get them every week).

But what are you letting yourself in for?

Continue reading to find out.

The History

Thai massage or “Thai yoga massage” is a traditional healing system combining acupressure, Indian Ayurvedic principles, and assisted yoga postures.

Originated in India, around 2,500 years ago, the physician to the Buddha, Shivago Komarpaj, is said to have created the Thai massage.

Most of the recorded history of Thai massage was lost in 1767 during the Burmese attack in Ayutthia. However, there were records that survived and were inscribed in the Sala Moh Nuat, a massage pavilion in Bangkok.

Since the origin, there are a combination of influences for Thai medicine from Chinese, Indian and Southeast Asian culture, making the Thai Massage what it is today.

The Technique

First, you will be given a shirt and pants, then led to a changing room or bathroom. These are loose fitting, clean, and comfortable. So for a thai massage, you are fully clothes, unlike oil massage.

In a Thai massage the therapist uses a variety of different sequences of techniques on clients, who are either lying face up, lying face down, seated, or on their side.

There is constant body contact between the therapist and the client, but rather than rubbing on muscles, the body is compressed, pulled, stretched, and rocked.

The masseuses will use every part of their body in order to do this, including their thumbs, elbows, and knees. Some masseuses might even walk on you.

Thai massages certainly are not gentle. It is important to note that oftentimes, Thai massages can feel like unpleasant, if not painful experiences.

Usually, the masseuse will make it more or less intense depending on a person’s size and age.

Top Tip – “Jep” means “hurt” in Thai. So if the masseuses are making the massage too uncomfortable, this becomes and important word.

Health Benefits

Thai massage is a therapeutic procedure that provides relaxation and restores healthy blood circulation. It also treats energy blockages, weak, dysfunctional organs, aches and pains, flexibility, paralysis, nerve problems and postural alignments, and many more. See below for more detail …

1. Lowers stress

Stress can negatively affect mental and physical health. Chronic, or long-lasting, stress can lead to serious illnesses, including depression and cardiovascular disease.

Thai massage uses gentle pressure and stretching techniques to relax the body, to relieve physical and emotional tension.

2. Boosts energy

Research has shown that Thai massage can increase people’s physical energy levels.

The Thai massage technique is based on the notion of energy lines, or Zen. Most practitioners believe that there are various Zen, or channels of energy, within the body. Over time you body can build up blockages.

These blockages reduce the flow of life energy, which results in stiffness, pain, and illness. Thai massage uses different techniques that either open or constrict different Zen to correct the flow of life energy.

3. Stimulates circulation

Thai massage can promote the circulation of both blood and lymph through the use of gentle stretches. These yoga-like stretches increase blood circulation, which fills the body’s tissues with oxygen. This helps promote cell growth and heart health.

They believe that this is because it improved blood circulation, which, in turn, stimulates the somatosensory system. This is a system that plays a major role in balance.

4. Improves range of motion

Thai massage incorporates yoga-like stretches to reduce stress and improve circulation. The gradual, gentle stretching will enhance the person’s flexibility over time, allowing a greater range of motion.

Thai massage may also improve the circulation of the fluid in the joints, or synovial fluid, which reduces friction between the joints. This can improve joint mobility and range of motion.

5. Thai massages are great for athletes

It works similarly as a sport massage, due to it being in the same style of this deep tissue massage/stretches. Thai massage also improves circulation, which brings more oxygen to muscles and other tissues. This may prevent injuries and improve the athlete’s ability to recover after intense training.

Pricing?

Thai massage prices will depend on you go.

Generally you will see them offered for around Thai massage for 300-400 thb ($9-12).

However resorts or high-end salons will charge 500 thb ($15) plus.

If your masseuse does a great job, it would be a lovely gesture to tip them, for their efforts. The massages are incredibly cheap, and these people’s jobs are simply exhausting.

Timings?

Usually an hour, but if you body is really ache-y, you can differ to the 90 minutes.

Happy endings?

This is a common miss-conception and only very few places offer this service.

To avoid any embarrassing encounters, do your research on the recommended ones.

As of 2018, of the 8,000 to 10,000 spa and massage shops in Thailand, only 4,228 are certified by the Health Ministry’s Department of Health Service Support (HSS).

Thai massages are a must in the Kingdom of the best! Dare to try?

Detoxes, Fasting and Colonics – What are they?

Posted By : Katie Monsell/ 390 0

Detoxes, Fasting and Colonics – What are they?

 

 

What is the difference between a fast, a cleanse and a detox?

Good question!

A detox is any process that helps you remove toxins from your system.

A cleanse is any process that makes one clean.

A fast is a period of time without ingesting any food.

All 3 terms are used to describe detox programs!

 

 

“The best gift you can give your body, mind and spirit!”

 

 

Why do it?

Over time our bodies become overloaded with toxins. These toxins can accumulate through what we eat and drink, the air we breathe, what we put on our skin or even by the way we think!

Although the human body is designed to eliminate toxins, it can quickly become clogged up and store harmful waste in the cells and joints. However through flushing your systems with detox programs Phangan Explorer describes below, you can gain all the health benefits from within a short time.

 

Bathe in its Benefits:

  • Weight loss
  • Improvement of digestion
  • Reducing risk of diseases
  • Improved concentration
  • Increase body performance
  • Deeper sleep
  • Clearer skin
  • Balanced emotions
  • and many more …

 

 

Detox Programs

They may include:

Consultation and Guidance

Fasting – This can vary with types and duration.

Colonics

Detox Herbs

Hydrotherapy Sessions

Thai Detox Massage

Morning Meditation

Gentle Yoga Class

Herbal Steam Sauna

Saltwater Pool

Support and Supervision

 

 

 

“Detoxification and cleansing fast programs are a time-proven system to rid the body of toxins and other unwanted waste.”

 

 

Fasting

 

Depending on the type of detox, it is a restricted diet usually eliminating highly processed food and replacing them with food and supplements with super food and supplements.

This can be from raw foods – fruit, veggies, nuts.

Also they may give you some unheard of foods like, Psyllium powder, lymph juice
Don’t forget the super foods; spirulina, wheat grass shots.

Usually you will be given plenty of liquids and unlimited herbal teas to flush through you, and trick you mind into thinking its full.

 

Duration?

Detoxes vary in length – we recommend 3-7 days, to feel the real effects on your body. However you do what you feel is right for you.

 

 

Cleansing

 

Clean out your colon!

The colon is essential in our detox pipeline, which is the tunnel connecting the liver (the main detoxifying organ of the body) to then pass the toxins out of the body. But if the colon is plugged, it’s like flushing a toilet clogged with toilet paper; everything backs up – resulting in sickness and disease. Eww!

 

What is the difference between a Colema, Colonic Irrigation and an Enema?

 

Colonic Irrigation – a type of enema that injects large amounts of water under controlled pressure through the rectum high into the colon for cleansing purposes. They are performed in clinics and require supervision from a trained therapist. Some treatments add things to the water such as peroxide or even herbs.

 

Enema – are useful for a quick fix. Particularly when temporarily backed up. However they only flush loose fecal matter in the lower part of the colon.

 

Colema – circulates more water than an enema and reaches all portions of the colon. The water is circulated by gravity, not a machine, and is therefore generally more effective, comfortable and safe.

 

 

Gross Fact – A sluggish bowel can retain pounds of old toxic and poisonous fecal matter (10-20 pounds is not unusual, and up to 65 pounds has actually been reported)

 

 

Detoxes in Koh Phangan

 

 

Koh Phangan has many centers that hosts detox programs.

After completing a detox program, you will leave feeling, rejuvenated, vibrant, knowledgeable, self-empowered and dedicated to live a healthy life. You will not regret it!

Beach

Reasons why the beach is good for your health – justifying why you should go!

Posted By : Katie Monsell/ 161 0

Reasons why the beach is good for your health –

justifying why you should go!

 

 

The sand under your toes, the salt in your hair and the sun warming your body. How can you not just forget all your worries and be filled with positivity and tranquility?

 

Proven through various studies, effects of the beach are beneficial to your physiological and psychological health and well being. Here is a short summary of these and why you should take that break for yourself and head down to the beach!

 

 

Topping up those pesky vitamins

The World Health Organization studies have found that sunshine fosters a general feeling of well-being and stimulates blood circulation.

Short exposure to sunlight (about five to 15 minutes) two to three times a week during the summer is enough to keep vitamin D levels high.

Vitamin D is vital for calcium and phosphorous absorption from food and encourages skeletal development, immune function, and blood cell formation.

So not only will the beach instantly give you a happy glow, but it will also make you a picture of good health! Just don’t forget your SPF!

 

 

Water Workouts

 

Another reason why your body will be happy with you is when you go swimming in the sea!

This location is one of the easiest and most picturesque places to burn a few calories.  The Independent shows that swimming burns close to 500 calories per hour.

With the thought of this how wants to be exercising in a crowded, un-hygienic gym environment compared to being surround by this paradise?

 

 

 

Calmer mindset

Feel chilled and zen-like when you take a trip to the beach?

One of the psychological benefits due to this is study by Richard Shuster, PsyD, clinical psychologist and host of The Daily Helping podcast.

“The color blue has been found by an overwhelming amount of people to be associated with feelings of calm and peace,” says Shuster. “Staring at the ocean actually changes our brain waves’ frequency and puts us into a mild meditative state.”

Not to mention the calming crash of waves breaking on the shore, can also help send your mindset into a positive slow pace.

Power sources and electrical devices can lead to a great deal of positive ion exposure, which can lead to anxiety, breathing difficulty, irritability and an overall lack of energy.

Good news for you, found outdoors in natural clean air sources, such as the beach, negative ions are present. Negative ions can reverse the effects of their positive counterparts on your body. Also helping to purify blood, revitalize cell metabolism and boost your immune system.

 

 

Sea air help with respiratory health

Reader’s Digest reports that sea air contains tiny droplets of sea water enriched with salt, iodine, magnesium and other trace elements, which stimulate immune reactions by the skin and respiratory organs and effectively clears up the airways. Well known to relieve symptoms associated with asthma, and other respiratory problems. More reason to take long strolls along the beach and get lost in one’s thoughts!

 

 

Free spa day!

Everyone loves something for nothing, and here is the perfect example!

According to the US National Institutes of Health

Sea salt is packed with healthy skin-friendly minerals like magnesium, calcium, and potassium, which is exactly what makes it so beneficial to various skin conditions. It absorbs the toxins in the body and on the skin, including acne-causing bacteria, and works to treat infections and encourage the healing processes.”

Also the sand is a great exfoliate for your skin, removing any of that ugly dead skin and making way for the pure skin, for the fresh new you.

 

 

 

Unplug and Unwind

Get off your phone! Here you don’t need social media to distract you of the real beauty of the beach. Have a digital detox – Working is not for the beach, therefore you can just relax. You will want to be enjoying every moment of the natural environment around you, until you have to go back into filling the routine roles in your life.