hearthealthy

Sweet or Savoury?... Help Us Decide!

Hey friends!

We need your help! We're in the Mapiya HQ kitchen playing around with recipes for our 2018 season and we want to hear your opinion on...

MUFFINS: sweet or savoury?!

We want to know what YOU want to see on your breakfast plate when you come visit us in Prince Edward County!

Vote on our Facebook page, ( https://www.facebook.com/mapiyaretreat/ ) or comment on this post and stay tuned to check out some yummy new recipes we've been creating for our 2018 retreat visitors!

~ <3 ~

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Delicious Grilled Veggie Sandwich

Eating healthful, nourishing meals not only takes care of your body, but also fuels your mind and reconnects your spirit to the energies of the earth. Eating plant-based meals is good for the environment too! Bonus: it’s delicious. 

Just look at this grilled veggie sandwich! Grilled zucchini, eggplant and peppers on your choice of bread, with avocado for that extra creamy taste, drizzled with balsamic vinegar to taste.

You can add any other ingredients you'd like! Think along the lines of hummus, hot sauce, pesto,  mushrooms, onions, squash, tomatoes or anything else that suits your taste buds!

You’re welcome! ;) 

We’re excited to get our garden started here at Mapiya… there’s something so satisfying about running out to your yard and picking some fruits and veggies straight from Mother Earth herself! 

Gratitude! Abundance! Love! Health! 

~ <3 ~

6 Reasons Why You Should Try Yoga

There are numerous reasons why people practice yoga: flexibility, strength, stress relief, spiritual practices or health reasons. Often times, after an extended period of consistent practice, ones reason for coming to the mat changes... mine definitely did. Being active my whole life, I spent hours stretching before and after dance practices, rock climbing and snowboarding. Eventually my stretching became a ritual, something I'd look forward to every morning. I began incorporating some meditation and through time, my stretching regimen turned into a yoga practice. This quickly became an addiction. I felt SO good afterwards - mentally and physically. Spiritually, I felt I was discovering a new part of myself and the world. My "social goggles" were removed and I found connection that I felt I'd been missing for a long time. I now practice daily and reap the fruits on all levels. 

The health, mental and spiritual benefits are very real. Whatever your reason is for coming to the mat, be proud of it and be open to receiving much more than you may expect. 

Here are some of the most significant reasons why you should try a yoga practice if you've not yet.

- Stress Relief

While an unfortunate reality of the majority of the population includes stress, there are many ways to lessen its impact on your mind, body and spirit, one of which is yoga! You've definitely heard a yoga teacher saying "focus on your breathing" or "come back to your breath", but what you may not notice is the impact this has on you. When you focus on your breathing, you're focusing on what you're doing right now, not worrying about what may be or what happened in the past. For example, during a balance posture, you must be in the present moment and focus on your breath otherwise you will fall over. That is what mindfulness practices and through being mindful, you'll notice all of the unnecessary stressors that exist which you can simply let go of. 

- Variety

There are so many different types of yoga! Depending on what you'd like to focus your practice on (mindful movement, spirituality, fitness and health, meditation, relaxation, stretching, strengthening, cardiovascular), you're sure to find a style of yoga that satisfies your needs.

- Improves posture, balance, flexibility and strength. 

Yoga is a beautiful dance of balance: sitting meditation and mindful movement, yin and yang, strength and relaxation, forward folds and back bends. With each asana (posture) you're challenging both mind and body. Beginners: fear not, there are many postures to get you started in your practice. Through time and a consistent schedule, you'll notice great improvements in all aspects of your physical being.

- Better sleep.

Restorative yoga and yoga nidra are perfect before-bed classes. Deep breathing and meditation before going to sleep can significantly improve quality and length of sleep. There are many postures you can practice in bed too: Viparita Karani (legs on the wall pose), seated forward fold, knees to chest, supine butterfly, reclining spinal twist and fish pose! Don't forget to breathe! 

- You'll feel better.

Whether it's a boost of self-love or a more optimistic perspective on the outer world, a consistent yoga practice with a teacher that suits your needs and matches your energy can do wonders to your mental and spiritual well-being. Certain yoga poses make you feel truly powerful (Warrior series, or that post-savasana bliss, anyone?). Setting an intention before a class can have great effects too: focus on leaving the room better than when you entered or perhaps focus the rest of your day towards being of service to others and spreading love and positivity.

- You'll love yourself more!

As you move through each asana, you will notice all of the extraordinary little things your body does for you on a daily basis! Many yoga classes are in groups however yoga is, at its root, an individual practice. When you spend time focusing on moving with your breath, you'll begin to realize how powerful your body truly is - even if you're not able to do a handstand or any crazy inversions, notice the beauty and power in "simple" daily tasks such as walking, eating, breathing, talking and thinking. Your body is truly a magnificent creation.


Yoga is an ancient practice, stretching back thousands of years. The word itself means "union" - to the divine, to nature, to others, to your body, your mind, your spirit. Yoga has so much to offer to each individual's needs, you just have to be brave enough to open your mind to the possibility of receiving more than you think.

~ <3 ~

 

 

10 Simple Daily Changes to Happiness

  1. Take a nap! Aside from the fact that sleep helps our bodies recovery from the day, sleep does SO much more for us (replace skin cells, grow muscle, repair damaged tissue, synthesize hormones)! Having a restful night’s sleep can also lessen our sensitivity towards negative emotions. 
  2. Spend time with loved ones! Even for introverts, the feeling of being surrounded by people who genuinely care about one another is so… blissful. As Harvard researcher, Daniel Gilbert said; “We are happy when we have family, we are happy when we have friends and almost all the other things we think make us happy are actually just ways of getting more family and friends.” 
  3. Get outside! Fresh air makes everything better. It’s a fact. Don’t believe me? Go for a walk, feel the wind passing over your fingertips, welcome the sun’s warm embrace, smell the scent of nature - the flowers, the trees, the animals, listen to the sound of moving water… waves in a lake, the ripples of a river, or the power of rapids… Nature is healing!
  4. Help others. If you do good, you’ll feel good! Maybe helping constitutes itself as purchasing a gift for someone, spending time with people, volunteering your time, donating to a good cause… there are dozens of ways to give back!
  5. Meditate! Turning inwards is immensely helpful in day-to-day life. Not only does it help us clarify our priorities, but it physically makes us healthier. Meditation over a long period can actually alter our brain structure! 
  6. Practice gratitude. Being grateful for what you have is such an exhilarating feeling. It’s so freeing to realize you don’t need more. Grab a journal and start jotting down 3 things that happened at the end of each day. Try to make them different each day and then watch as your happiness and overall gratefulness skyrockets!
  7. Exercise! Moving your body is not only healthy for you, but also helps you to clear your mind. Even something as simple as a short walk can help immensely!
  8. Stop complaining. When you complain, you’re highlighting the negative. Once you stop doing that, you’re making room for some pretty amazing moments! 
  9. Fake it till you make it. Feelings follow actions. If you’re upset, scared, angry, try faking a smile for a few seconds.. feels silly but the moment you change your mind and physical body, you’ll notice a shift in your emotions. If you’re angry with someone, try doing something thoughtful for them, you’ll notice this feeling of anger will slightly release. It’s really soothing.
  10. Take control. Your life. Your happiness. Though it’s true that we are all born differently, some of us are Eeyore, some are Tigger, there is absolutely nothing stopping you from taking control over your own life! When you begin making conscious steps towards happiness, you’ll notice your mind, body and soul begin to crave it!

Homestyle Sauerkraut and Kidney Bean Casserole

Ingredients:

(makes 4 servings)

1 large onion
3-4 cloves of garlic                                                                                                                                      2 tablespoons olive oil
800 ml (1 jar) sauerkraut (well rinsed under cold water)
1 can (490ml) beans (red kidney or navy, pinto, white kidney)                                                            2 bay leaves
1 1⁄2 tea spoon sweet paprika
Salt and pepper to taste
Dash of cayenne pepper                                                                                                                             1 kg white potato

In a pot, dice onion and fry in a couple of spoons of olive oil until golden (3 min) stirring occasionally. I add bay leaf at the very beginning of frying onions, so it releases the flavor and its essential oils. It can be added later as well. Add rinsed and drained sauerkraut to onions and stir well. Add beans, which you can drain and rinse, if you are trying to control the salt intake. There are products that have no-salt added (Blue Menu), so you can use the liquid they come in as well. Add water to cover the vegetables.

Finely dice (almost purée) garlic and fry it briefly on the side in a bit of olive oil, adding paprika. Pour into sauerkraut mixture and stir well. Add salt and pepper to taste and simmer, covered for an hour, on medium temperature. Check occasionally on level of liquid and if needed add warm water. Be careful, you don’t want too much liquid in this dish.

If you like your food with a “kick”, add a dash of cayenne pepper to taste.

In a separate pot, peel and quarter potatoes, boil in salted water. Drain when cooked through (fork tender).

Serve vegetables together with boiled potato.