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At the Structured Water Frontier

The days of thinking water was just plain old H2O are long past with an increasing focus on the life-enhancing properties of structured water, says Martin Oliver 

Humankind has explored the vast reaches of space, and the infinitesimally small nano world. Now we are starting to seriously investigate a subject that has so far eluded our thorough attention - water.

Erroneously considered by many to be nothing more sophisticated than a simple molecule, water is more mysterious than we think. Its 70 plus anomalous properties include expanding when it freezes, unlike most liquids, which contract when they are cooled.

Living things, including human beings, are about 70% water. To maximise our level of health, it is recommended to drink eight glasses per day, and also to remember that all waters are not equal.

The Magic Vortex 

During the 20th century, a number of influential pioneers, including Viktor Schauberger, Rudolf Steiner and Theodore Schwenk, were influenced by the natural tendency of flowing water to spiral with a vortex motion that is encountered as a pattern throughout nature. They saw this motion as maintaining or enhancing its aliveness, and it has long been incorporated into flow forms where water is swirled in circular patterns.

Among water’s unusual properties is an anomaly point at 4 degrees Celsius (39 degrees Fahrenheit) where it reaches its maximum density. From his observations, Schauberger concluded that water reached its greatest vitality at this temperature, which was most commonly encountered in springs, and in streams protected from light and heat by protective thick vegetation.

Rudolf Steiner, the father of biodynamic agriculture, recommended a technique that involves stirring water and regularly reversing the direction of motion. Achieving a brief ‘chaotic’ state between the two rotation directions...

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Nova View:
Mindfulness nurtures stillness and peace

Welcome to beautiful Spring! As you read this month’s issue I hope you’re noticing all sorts of green shoots springing up all around you and little bursts of colour as we shake off our heavy winter coats.  I mean it more than literally of course but that’s a great place to start. 

There’s no disputing the world is a challenging place as the sharemarket continues on its rollercoaster ride and upheavals of one sort or another confront us every day as we take in the news. But at the same time life can often seem so simple and beautiful if we only stop to savour it. 

Mindfulness is attracting a lot of interest these days as we all seek ways to ease the stresses of daily life  - and stopping the chatter of the monkey mind to focus on the here and now, or, as it’s often called, present moment awareness, is a powerful tool at our fingertips. Of course, those who’ve studied yoga or meditation or any Eastern practice will know its power already but the fact that mindfulness is now making its way into the mainstream holds great hope for anyone seeking greater peace and contentment without having to pop a pill. 

One of my own favourite mindful moments is watching the blackbirds in my garden and in the morning waking to their delightful warbling song as they set up a real conversation in the neighbourhood.  As they dart about in the grass and weeds (as you can tell I’d rather look at the garden than pull anything out!) pecking at whatever takes a blackbird’s fancy, there’s clearly a family hierarchy at work here.  Mum, or is it Dad, always ventures closer to the house to pick up the juicier morsels that no one else dares to snatch, while junior warily keeps his distance. And I have to admit to a certain pride that we have nurtured this baby blackbird in our backyard with their telltale nest perched in the now bare branches of our quince tree.  I don’t know where they went in winter but now they’re back and I’ll keep an eye out for them. In summer though it’s a different story as these notorious orchard raiders get to work. We have yet to pick a single cherry from our quite fruitful tree as they invariably swoop on the very day when we’ve decided it’s time to pick. Next summer a mesh net will be draped over everything!

Blackbirds aside, staying in the present moment and enjoying the stillness and quiet that overtakes you, is a recurring idea in several of our articles this month.  I was struck by the advice of a leading TCM practitioner to practise mindfulness even while we exercise and never to exercise too much!  A man after my own heart! It’s just one of the tips in “Live to Past 100”...

Margaret EvansRead the entire
Nova View

by Nova Editor
Margaret Evans

Margaret Evans
NOVA Editor
September 2015

Stand Up for Exercise

NOVA Magazine, Australia's Holistic JournalPeter Dingle PhD suggests that while exercise for weight loss is overrated, there are so many other benefits there is just no downside to getting moving

Exercises on television shows like The Biggest Loser give a false impression of the role of exercise. Exercise, unless it is extreme as in the case of the biggest losers who have cameras and personal trainers and doctors on call, plays a relatively lesser role in weight loss and may even backfire in people who overdo it. 

That doesn’t mean you don’t do anything because being active is critical for many aspects of your overall health and wellbeing. I’m just saying you don’t have to be a gym junkie to get to your optimal weight.  

A lot of evidence shows that aerobic exercises which are great for the heart are minimally effective for weight loss, although they have multiple other benefits including reducing your risk of all forms of chronic illness. 

The problem is that, in general terms, exercise does not burn tonnes of calories (unless we’re doing heroic amounts of it). It doesn’t usually take much additional eating to wipe out any calorie deficit induced through exercise. For example, the energy burned while walking 30 minutes (170 calories) each day will only lose you around one kilogram after 50 days. 

In one study of 23 overweight and healthy men engaged in a six month program of exercise, 108 minutes of exercise a week changed the expression of about a third of the genes in their fat cells, including some that relate to the risk of type 2 diabetes and the development of obesity. There were also changes in their waist circumference, waist-to-hip ratio, diastolic blood pressure (the lower of the two blood pressure readings), resting heart rate and levels of HDL-cholesterol. However, their weight only declined by one kilogram on average and they appeared to be no less fat for their efforts. 

In a meta analysis of children’s weight loss, physical activity interventions were not associated with reductions of BMI. However, there was an association between the interventions and reduction of blood pressure. In a study of overweight people expending either 300 or 600 calories a day exercising for 12 weeks, twice the exercise did not translate into improved weight loss. Those doing 300 calories of exercise lost an average of 2.7kg compared to 3.6kg for the 600 calorie exercise group.  Double the exercise led to a 30% extra loss of weight. It’s of interest that those exercising for about half an hour a day (300 calories) had a more positive attitude to exercise. Doing larger amounts of exercise is harder which is a barrier to maintaining the exercise.

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