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Meet the experts

From the 'Recharge Retreat'

 

Turn up your wellbeing

Want to try some mindful meditation with Roxie? Or some soulful cooking with Jasmine?

See how they can help you recharge now we're in the colder months.

recharge retreat

Jasmine's soul tips

Feeling drained at this time of year isn’t unusual. Less daylight and colder weather can leave you feeling unmotivated. But understanding the things that have an impact on mood and emotion - like food - can make a positive difference.

Food sustains us on the most basic level, but we need to understand how to let its benefits work for us in order to fully recharge our systems, rather than just ingesting it mindlessly. In Ayurveda, the 5,000 year old holistic system of wellbeing, getting the best out of your food comes down to healthy digestion – after all it’s not just about what you eat but what you can digest. Here are some powerful ways to look after your digestion, and therefore yourself!

1. Switch from cold or iced drinks to hot. In Ayurveda, digestion is understood as a fire – “Agni” – which we want to be working optimally when we introduce food to it. Cold foods and iced drinks (even room temperature as we move into winter) can dampen it. Opt for hot water or herbal tea to keep your digestive fire ablaze!

2. Prioritise well cooked foods, such as freshly cooked soups and stews, as these are more readily digestible. Avoid too much raw food (regarded in Ayurveda as cold, dry, light and rough) which can put a strain on your digestive fire, in turn leading to poor absorption of nutrients and imbalances in your body.

3. Savour your food. Eat mindfully without distractions and in a stress-free environment to nurture your digestion and connect with the food that ultimately becomes you. This can make a big difference to your overall sense of wellbeing and becomes a regular opportunity to create calm in a fast-paced world.

4. Use herbs and spices (aka nature’s medicine cabinet) in your everyday cooking, not only to create delicious flavours and keep seasonal foods interesting, but also to support our health by helping to maintain important functions in our immune, hormonal and digestive systems.

5. Have your main meal at lunchtime when your digestion is at its peak and go back to traditional suppers — light meals eaten earlier in the evening to make sure you are able to fully digest your food before bed for a better night's sleep.

Roxie's mind tips

We found that stress is one of the main reasons why we feel drained and in need of a recharge. Clearing those nagging tasks can often create some headspace.

We asked mind expert, Roxie Nafousi, to share her handy advice to recharging your mind...

1. Start small

Meditating can be really hard and intimidating when you first start. Often, we try it, find ourselves unable to switch off and then think we are ‘bad at meditating’ and get put off trying again. Meditating is a practice which takes commitment, but when you break through you will reap the benefits! Start with just three minutes a day and build up from there. Don’t worry if you struggle to switch off, practice makes perfect, just like everything else.

2. Research

There are so many different types of meditation, so find one that suits you. There are lots of apps out there or guided meditations on YouTube. Try a few until you find one that resonates with you.

3. Be mindful

Meditating is the ability to be entirely present, and mindfulness is the same thing. We can apply mindfulness to every task we do, giving 100% effort and focus. This allows us to feel more fulfilled and enriched in our day-to-day lives for every task we do, from making breakfast to completing a deadline at work, or reading stories to our children before bed.

4. Just Breathe

If you are feeling stressed, anxious or uneasy, then slowing down and watching your breath is an easy way to bring your mind back to the present, whilst also stimulating your parasympathetic nervous system. Inhale for four seconds, hold for two, exhale for four. Repeat.