Focus on Prenatal Massage

The Benefits of Prenatal Massage

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Massage performed during pregnancy can reduce anxiety, decrease symptoms of depression, relieve muscle aches and joint pains, and improve labor outcomes and newborn health.

Carrying a baby inside you changes your center of gravity and puts a lot of stress on your back, neck, abdominal muscles, and shoulders. Pregnancy also relaxes your ligaments, so that your pelvic joints are less stable, and changes your posture, pulling your pelvis forward. Add to that the extra weight you’re carrying and you may find you’ve got an aching lower back.

Benefits of Pre-natal Massage

Reduction of swelling

Edema, or swelling of the joints during pregnancy, is often caused by reduced circulation and increased pressure on the major blood vessels by the heavy uterus. Massage helps to stimulate soft tissues to reduce collection of fluids in swollen joints, which also improves the removal of tissue waste, carried by the body’s lymph system.

Improvement of nerve pain

Sciatic nerve pain is experienced by many women in late pregnancy as the uterus rests on muscles of the pelvic floor and lower back. The pressure of the uterus spreads tension to the muscles of the upper and lower leg, causing them to swell and put pressure on nearby nerves. Massage therapy addresses the inflamed nerves by helping to release the tension on nearby muscles. Many women have experienced significant reduction in sciatic nerve pain during pregnancy through regular massage.

Other benefits of prenatal massage:

  • Reduced muscle tension and headaches
  • Reduced stress and anxiety
  • Improved oxygenation of soft tissues and muscles
  • Better sleep

Body position during prenatal massage

Most women find it uncomfortable to lie face down right from the start of pregnancy because of their tender, swollen breasts. And you can’t lie face down on a traditional massage table once your belly has started to grow. On the other hand, it’s not a good idea to lie flat on your back either, particularly once you’re past mid-pregnancy, because the weight of your uterus puts too much pressure on the vein that returns blood from your legs to your heart.

For these reasons, we at the Spa at Four Seasons Hong Kong use either our special pad with hollowed-out areas and special pillows to accommodate your belly, and often your breasts as well.

Prenatal massage

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Ginseng.

Another research project from my wonderful concierge at the Spa Four Seasons Hong Kong.

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Benefits of Ginseng (Panax quinquefolium) The name Panax means “all-heal” in Greek.

Uses of Ginseng
By folk medicine practices, American ginseng and Asian ginseng (P. ginseng) roots are used as an aphrodisiac, stimulant, or for sexual dysfunction in men.  It is also known to help with respiratory illnesses, quality of life, and resistance to stress (we all need this!) We can also use the healing properties of ginseng in our cosmetic and skin care products.

Ginseng Beauty
It is known to be a secret of delaying aging and sustaining youthfulness and beautiful skin (especially the Korean ginseng)  It provides elasticity to the skin by activating cellular function and producing new skin cells.  The Spa has ginseng in one of our newer product lines, Ling.  They have a Ginseng Mask which is formulated with Aloe Vera to soothe, Collagen to firm and Panax Ginseng to tone.

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Ginseng Tea
Benefits: Ginseng tea is considered as one of the most nutritious herbal supplements available in the world.  Below are some of the aliments it can help.

  • Menstrual Problems: American Ginseng tea is well-known for its cooling effect. It is recommended for young women who suffer from menstrual cramps and distress.
  • Low Blood Pressure: This energetic drink keeps you on your toes all day long.
  • Brain Food: Ginseng tea acts as a stimulant to the brain cells. It improves the concentration power and thinking capabilities.
  • Obesity: This tea is popular as a natural appetite suppressant.
  • Sex Problems: Men with erectile dysfunction disorder can consume ginseng tea as it lessens the symptoms of such sex related conditions.

The Art of Observation

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As I am not born Christian, there is space for me to watch as the world goes into a “one day craziness” filled with the need for glee, the craving for presents, the gift of fleeting happiness.

It as if all my spiritual teachers have given me the gift, every year, for one day, to be an observer. Now, the question comes: how can I create that space into my daily life. Why is it that I can remove myself from the “madness” on this day called Christmas, but not on every other day.

So today starts a new pattern, along with my diet to lose 5 kilos. An added goal. Observation.

“Self-observation brings man to the realization of the necessity of self-change. And in observing himself a man notices that self-observation itself brings about certain changes in his inner processes. He begins to understand that self-observation is an instrument of self-change, a means of awakening. -Gurdjieff

My 2 month goal loosing 5 kilos.

Day three of my 2 month goal to lose 5 kilos.

This morning I started with a cup of hot water and lemon.

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Followed by a cup of pu’er tea. Click the photo and find out more info.

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Followed by a fresh juice of apple, celery, and lemon.

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For lunch:

A white fish filet with steamed greens. Another cup of hot water with lemon.

For dinner:

Yellow lentil soup. And a glass of wine!

No time for exercise today because I have a meeting in the late evening.  However, I have been practicing with pulling in my core and doing deep breaths all through the day. See more about his practice by clicking here.

My 2 month goal loosing 5 kilos.

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I was recently in Boracay for my birthday and was in a bathing suit. OMG. What happens when you leave yourself to eat bread, and not exercise…is not funny. You may think that I am crazy, but to myself I know that the addition of fat cells have made my pants undeniably uncomfortable.

In two months time I will be traveling to see family that I have not seen in years. So I am on a serious health freak trend. I am going to spend the next two months eating healthy and exercising. I will reduce my kilos by 5 and I will be full of energy. I will write every day what I have done. Please join me and comment if you have any other ideas.

Every day drink one liter of Nettle, Red Clover, Alfalfa tea. And 2 liters of water.

Day one:

Had Congee for breakfast.

Hamam Treatment and asked my lovely therapist to focus on lymphatic drainage.

Lunch menu, salad with chickpeas

Took a Hot Yoga class at 6:30pm.

Dinner: Vegetable Soup and water with lemon.

OMG…

Day Two:

Egg with Salmon for breakfast.

Walk in the park with my lovely family.

Lentil Soup for Lunch.

Salad for dinner.

Facial Using Rose Quartz

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For those of you who are more inclined to a healing through facials then this facial is it. At the Four Seasons we have The Organic Pharmacy Facial that uses many techniques of draining the lymph as well as using the healing properties of rose quartz. The lymphatic system is awakened using Rose Crystals and Acupressure massage lifts and firms the skin. The result is re-energised, glowing skin.

Rose Quartz can help to clear eczema and rashes, clear blemishes, and reduce wrinkles. Rose quartz helps re-energize sluggish complexions.

Top Ten Beauty Foods-Concierge Talk

Thank you again from my wonderful team at Four Seasons Spa.  They have complied their top ten foods that keep them beautiful!
1.Berries – helps the body to love the signs of aging and keep fit.
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2.Yogurt contains “good bacteria” that help maintain gut health and diminish the incidence of age related intestinal illness, boost immunity , decreases the risk of colon cancer
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3.Turmeric-May have cancer destroying abilities.  Just add 1 to 2 tablespoons to chicken, veggies or rice. turmeric might protect against types of lung damage, skin diseases, Alzheimer’s disease, heart failure, colitis, stomach ulcers, and high cholesterol.
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4.Garlic –This is one of the most important foods provided to us by nature.. It helps prevent cell degeneration, helps keep the blood thin and also prevents heart diseases. It is most beneficial when eaten raw.
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5.Tomato – One powerful antioxidant that protects the skin from environmental damage is lycopene and tomatoes are full of it. Cooked tomatoes contain more lycopene than raw tomatoes.
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6.Sweet potato is a powerful antioxidant and is fat-soluble. Smoother skin after munching on sweet potatoes regularly, as our bodies turn beta-carotene into vitamin A, which helps smooth skin and ward off wrinkles. They are disease-preventing, cancer-fighting, and immune-boosting benefits.
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7.Dark chocolate is good for you! It’s a great source of antioxidants and a potential mood elevator (and we all know that feeling good is a great way to get glowing skin). Chocolate with 80 percent cocoa solids or more to get a hearty dose of antioxidants and avoid excess sugar.
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8.Salmon This fish is rich in long-chain omega-3 essential fatty acids, most beneficial kind. Omega-3s bolster heart health, may fight depression, and  help keep skin young, supple, and radiant. Wild salmon also contains astaxanthin, a powerful antioxidant and anti-inflammatory.
The Meat House
9.Spinach/Kale / Broccoli Greens contain antioxidants that can reduce the risks of heart disease, protect your eyes, enhance immune response, and help your skin by blocking sunlight-induced inflammation, which can lead to wrinkles and skin cancer
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10.Brown Rice Carbohydrates are long-term energy foods and should never be given up unless you want to invite trouble. Substitute white pasta and rice with whole wheat pasta and brown rice and you will instantly feel the difference in your energy level. Rich in Selenium.  Brown rice is rich in selenium which reduces the risk for developing common illnesses such as cancer, heart disease and arthritis.
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