It can be very difficult to learn a new language. How about a language that goes beyond words & is expressed within your own body without you necessarily even understanding it. What do you know about your body’s own language? The language of sensations, signals and symptoms that you might experience and try to interpret and better understand.
Both the practice of yoga and the field of holistic nutrition can be of great help in better understanding this language. Within the physical asana (posture), along with pranayama (breathing regulation) practices comes an increased sense of awareness about sensations and feelings experienced, sometimes very deeply, within the body tissues and within the construct of the mind and somewhere along the way, a better understanding of what those experiences can teach us. As we continue to navigate this input, as we maintain a physically aware practice based on mindfulness, over time we are better prepared for possible sensations, as well as the deeper meaning behind them. Discerning when to deepen, when to stay steady, and when to back away from sensations, all of which continues to be refined as we dedicate to regular yoga practice. Sometimes these experiences take only a few sessions, while other times taking potentially hundreds of hours on our mat. Really it’s up to your own body, mind & breathe to make these decisions and potentially with the guidance of a yoga teacher to assist in weaving through the signals can accelerate that learning.
Outside of the physical sensations and mental awareness we may experience in the practices & disciplines of yoga traditions, we can also greatly benefit from the wisdom the body expresses through signs, symptoms and signals both physically and mentally through nutritional science.
Regularly in yoga, we are asked to check in with our body & mind to see “what is”. Part of this allows for time to feel, sense, touch base with and work through certain challenges, tight spots, irritations, tense spaces or other awareness’s of feeling & observation.
Some of the following might be helpful in better understanding nutritional needs of the body and the signals it might give you. Below are just a few common problems that can be aided by boosting the body’s nutrient intake on both physical & mental levels.
Just getting you considering if the body is displaying signs of challenge, maybe it can be addressed nutritionally.
What’s happening What does that potentially mean?
Leg, foot & muscles cramps
Dehydration, magnesium deficiency, electrolyte imbalance
Carpel tunnel syndrome
Deficiency of vitamin B6
Slow wound healing
Deficiency of zinc
Easily bruised tissues or bruised tissue slow to heal
Deficiency of vitamin C
Deficiency of vitamin B12
Blood sugar imbalance (diabetes/hypoglycemia)
Deficiency of chromium
Skin Sensitivity to sunlight, prone to sunburn
Deficiency of vitamin E
Anxiety, worry or emotional crisis
All B-vitamins (especially niacin & pyridoxine)+ vitamin C need to be increased
Runny nose, watery eyes, cold, flu, itchy skin, allergic reactions
Vitamin C & vitamin D need to be increased
Bowel irregularities (diarrhea, constipation, IBS, crohn’s, colitis)
Bowel microbiome imbalance (insufficient healthy bacteria inhabiting intestinal tract)
Night vision challenges
Deficiency of vitamin A
White spots in nails
Deficiency of zinc
Cold sores, herpes simplex strains
Deficiency of lysine (protein amino acid)
While this is certainly not an extensive or complete list, it certainly gives a good starting point in better understanding that symptoms you may be experiencing, have links to the food & beverages, as well as any supplements you take in & overall dietary habits. Even medications that you take may lead to deficiencies or excesses in certain elements.
Whatever the issue, know that there is support. The root cause of any problem has a health stream deeply ingrained in your tissues. Can you support your body through regular movement, good breathing practice, body awareness, sound nutrition and of course, yoga?
Hopefully you can, will and do.