Hi friends! You are reading the post of an official yoga teacher. I've got 3 classes under my belt now. Can't believe it! I was an emotional wreck before my first class, and I still get pre-class butterflies, but it has gotten a bit easier every time. At first I was afraid I would mess up or make a fool of myself, now I'm more concerned with the experience my students are getting. It's a lot of responsibility! It is a sculpt class so they are coming to get a workout, and I'm always afraid it wasn't hard enough! Did they feel satisfied when they left? Did the class feel accessible to everyone? Was I motivating to them? They are relying on ME to guide them. I want people to feel exhausted but energized at the same time, to have pushed to their limit. Teaching is a whole new thing for me and I hope that I can improve so I am able to make an impact on the lives of my students. It's so interesting how my focus has quickly gone from myself to concern for others. This outlook is so much more inspiring. It makes me want to grow as opposed to just focusing on the negative I feel about myself. I'm already loving my new job! Any teachers out their, yoga or otherwise, with words of wisdom? Successful teaching tips and tricks? I would love any information I can get! Enough about my week. I think it's time for a bit of learning. I haven't posted anything on my favorite topic, food, in awhile. One of my staple foods these days is EGGS! I eat a ton of them. Over easy, scrambled, in baked goods, pancakes, hard boiled, fritatta style, on salad, in soup. They are such an easy way to add protein and vitamins to your meal, and pretty essential in trying to bake anything without grains. And guess what? I eat the delicious golden yoke in every single one of them! gasp! "What about the cholesterol?" you ask. Well lets discuss this 'dreaded' cholesterol. I'm going to say some things that you may resist at first and you may not believe, so get ready. We cannot live without cholesterol. That's right, it is necessary for our livelihood. I'm talking both good and so called "bad" cholesterol. Why? Cholesterol plays many roles in our body, including:
- Every cell membrane is made from cholesterol and saturated fat. They give the membrane it's sturdiness and strength.
- Our steroid hormones (stress and sex hormones) cannot be made without cholesterol. If we had no cholesterol we would be unable to even reproduce as a species.
- Our brain uses 25% of our body's cholesterol to function
- Synapse formation in our nervous system, which helps in our memory formation, relies on cholesterol. This is why one of the side effects of cholesterol lowering drugs is memory loss.
- Bile is made of cholesterol. Our bile helps us to digest and utilize our dietary fat which in turn makes fat soluble vitamins available to us.
- Cholesterol is used by the body to repair itself. For example it is called on to repair tears and irritation in the arteries, which is why often times people suffering from heart disease have high cholesterol.
- It helps us to fight off infection
The human body is going to make cholesterol regardless of our dietary intake, because it needs it. If we are eating a lot of cholesterol then our body will produce less, but if we are eating less then it will produce more.
85% of our cholesterol is made by our own body and only 15% comes from our diet!
So lowering our dietary cholesterol isn't necessarily going to change our blood cholesterol levels at all.
Doesn't cholesterol cause heart disease you ask?
It's not cholesterols fault, the body is simply calling on cholesterol to fix an ongoing problem. When irritation, or tears, start to form in arterial lining the body obviously will want to save itself by patching it up! Because the body is amazing, it has the means to bandage up these wounds on the arteries and it comes in the form of cholesterol.
LDL is the shuttle the cholesterol comes in from the liver to repair the damage and the HDL is the form it leaves the damage in once it is done. If a person has high cholesterol then there is something bigger happening that needs to be found and addressed. Their body is trying to fix itself, so the question should be "From what?."
When there is a repair made to the lining of the artery what's left is a plaque bandage. We all have them, and they keep us alive. It's when our body is constantly having to make them and they begin to block the path of the blood that it becomes an issue.
Again, we need to get to the root of the problem. What is making it so the body is constantly having to form these plaques? There are so many factors in our lives these days that can contribute to damaging of the arteries lining. Environmental chemicals, smoking, pollution, pesticides are some, along with processed foods. These foods have been chemically altered, the nutrients have been destroyed, preservatives, and artificial colors added. All these changes in food have happened in less than a century, how do we expect our bodies to adapt to these drastic changes in diet so quickly? We aren't designed to eat, digest, or use these fake, processed, chemical laden foods. They don't provide us with nutrients and in fact in trying to digest them they deplete us of nutrients! The abundance of trans fats found in fried foods, and vegetable shortenings in fact alter the very chemical structure of our cells! Heart disease is a modern affliction correlating with the modern diet.
Now that we've talked a little about cholesterol, lets move on to why eggs are so amazing!
Properly produced eggs are full of just about every nutrient discovered. Fresh raw eggs have been compared to breast milk, and all the nutrients are immediately absorbed without needing to go through the whole digestion process. The yolk is full of essential B vitamins, and fat soluble vitamins A & D.
Eggs are considered to be the most complete protein source in a single food. Their amino acid complex is so well balanced they are often used as a reference point to judge the quality of protein in others foods.
The fear of the egg yolk came only in the 1950's and the Americans consumption has greatly plummeted. But guess what, heart disease hasn't. In a study done by the American Cancer Society 804,409 individuals with no history of coronary heart disease were divided into 2 groups. One of the groups ate 5 or more eggs each week, while the second group at no eggs or less than 4 per week. The death rate from heart attacks and stroke was higher in the second group. Let's not blame heart disease on the eggs people.
That being said, not all eggs are created equal.
As with most of our foods, especially animal products, where it comes from is important. The living conditions and diets of conventional chickens do not create delicious and nutritious eggs. The nutrients of the egg depend on the health of the chicken. So choose organic, free range eggs at the very least. If you can get pasture raised that is the absolute best.
Who wants to eat something a chicken created that couldn't walk because it was packed in so tight with hundreds of other chickens, was pumped with antibiotics, ate a genetically modified unnatural diet of corn and soy, and sat in its own waste. ICK!
I start off just about every morning with eggs. I also often hard boil them and pack for snacks or meals on the go.
If you found this intriguing, or you aren't convinced do some research! Always remember to look at who is sourcing and paying for the information and studies though. That often skews what information gets put out there. A fantastic book is Put Your Heart In Your Mouth by Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride. It's easier to understand and a fairly quick read, plus it has recipes at the end! Have a great rest of your weekend and eat some eggs! :)