October 24, 2011
Just two decades ago the spa was a decadent experience reserved for societal elites, and otherwise only indulged in on rare occasions.
The New York Times [http://nymag.com/beauty/features/41280/index1.html] reports that such visits to the spa were by no means a regular occurrence. Waxing was nearly unheard of, and facials a luxury. Manicures were done at home, and the massage was an indulgence.
Fast forward to today and you see a major cultural shift under way. At Balance Spa in New Orleans and locations around the world, the spa treatment has emerged as an integral part of lifestyle management. According to the Times article, spa treatments have gone from optional to necessary. From waxing as a prerequisite for the dating set, to manicures and eyebrow shaping as part of the professional’s uniform, having such procedures performed is viewed as a sign that you have arrived as a together modern individual, in control of your own body.
Spa treatments have broadened to become more inclusive of gender, socio-economic status, and age range. Spa packages typically range in price depending upon what’s being offered, providing a convenient menu selection balancing service with budget. At some locations, packages are even specified for gender for a more targeted experience, but most services appeal across genders. While the spa experience is traditionally an indulgence for adults, it is not uncommon to see parent and child fitting in a spa visit while shopping, or just while out-and-about. Even children in groups will make a day of it as a celebratory event or weekend pastime. For those adventurous spirits who look to explore the spa for these purposes, Balance Spa in New Orleans has the flexibility to accommodate your needs!
At Balance Spa in New Orleans, while the spa treatment has expanded in its appeal by widening its selection of services, it still retains its essential nature of luxuriousness and indulgence. Unlike certain services or commodities which have diminished in stature and quality over time due to market forces, at Balance Spa in New Orleans, the spa retains its elite, indulgent profile while opening up to a more diverse clientele.
If the current trend in spa treatment services continues to gain in popularity, it’s entirely possible that a trip to the spa will offer so many essential services to its clientele that regular visits will become a cultural standard. Balance Spa in New Orleans is at the forefront of this trend.
Tags: socio economic status
, beauty features
, spa treatment services
, body spa
, spa treatments
October 17, 2011
(Read the Art of Resilience in a Complicated World – Balance New Orleans Spa (Part 1))
In part one of ”The Art of Resilience in a Complicated World – Balance New Orleans Spa” we explored the importance of identifying what truly makes you happy by examining your internal motivation. Through this process, we begin to see the parts of our lives which are “non-negotiable,” and where we can clear some activities and simplify our lives. In part two, Balance New Orleans Spa takes a look at the value of nourishing positive thinking and taking time out of our schedule to renew.
Nourish positive thinking
Whether or not you are a proponent of the law of attraction, it’s hard to deny the importance of a positive attitude. Study after study has shown that viewing the glass as “half-full” rather than “half-empty” not only improves your quality of life, but also enhances performance. At Balance New Orleans Spa, we believe that this is why the art of visualization has become a powerful tool in everything from sports to business and the performing arts. Simply envisioning success serves to boost achievement levels. By this same method, envisioning peacefulness and happiness can increase these same feelings within your life.
Along with visualization, other tools to nurture positive thinking include affirmations, gratitude journals and surrounding yourself with positive-minded people. What’s more, applying these skills will help to promote a resilient attitude sure to help in dealing with whatever life throws your way.
Take time out to renew
One of the most effective analogies of stress management involves a glass of water.Holding it out for a minute is no problem at all.Hold it out for an hour, and you’ll have an aching arm.But hold that same glass of water out all day and you’ll need an ambulance.The same holds true for even small burdens.We all have challenges in our lives.However, carrying them around 24/7 can make even the smallest ones insurmountable.Also, the fatigue arising from carrying your other burdens all of the time will make it more difficult to deal with new challenges as they arise.
With this in mind, it is important to make a conscious effort to set aside your worries.This can be done by “leaving work at work,” practicing meditation, enjoying a relaxing treatment from Balance New Orleans Spa or simply participating in an enthralling activity that will keep your mind focused on something else. This small break from your concerns can leave you feeling refreshed and often contribute to finding new solutions to your problems that you hadn’t thought of before.
(Read the Art of Resilience in a Complicated World – Balance New Orleans Spa (Part 1))
Tags: time out
, positive thinking
, gratitude journals
, New Orleans
October 14, 2011
It’s no secret that today’s complex world can be a pressure cooker. At Balance New Orleans Spa we have seen that technology has put the world at our fingertips. However, along with this information and opportunity overload, most of us have increased our expectations of ourselves and the world around us. It’s no longer OK to be satisfied with our corner of the world and focus our efforts on perfecting it. Now we need to constantly expand our awareness to make sure that we are not “missing out” on something; often stretching ourselves so thin that we cause ourselves stress and anxiety.
As much as we can’t slow down the world around us or turn back the clock to a more simple time, there are some great strategies to help us relieve some of the pressures of modern life and find harmony in our lives.
At Balance New Orleans Spa, we know that feeling confident about the way that you look is a huge key in reducing stress in our lives as well as improving our overall feeling of wellness. However, this is only one means to keeping sane in an ever-demanding world. Balance New Orleans Spa would like to suggest a few steps that you can take today to experience a more serene life:
Identify what truly makes you happy – Balance New Orleans Spa
It often takes a great reflective effort to figure out our motivation for doing what we do. After all, many of our behaviors have been engrained in us since childhood and we’ve been acting them out for so long that we’ve forgotten the reason we began the activities in the first place.
At Balance New Orleans Spa, we believe that this is where it’s important to look inside ourselves and observe our own feelings. The best way to do this is to take a few days or more, and commit yourself to being conscious of your feelings as you move through your day. Notice whether you are experiencing joy or pleasure from the actions that you take throughout the day. Ask yourself what your purpose in doing each of the activities of your day is and consider what the consequences would be if you did not do it.
Once you’ve identified the purpose, ponder how important it is. Is this a purpose that you have created? Is it something that you feel society requires of you? Is it a goal that you have taken on for someone else; whether consciously or unconsciously? At Balance New Orleans Spa, we believe that taking the time out to consider these questions will, in time, reveal to you your priorities and help you to pare down your life where needed, or even choose a new direction if you find that your goals and activities are not truly internally motivated.
Acting in congruence with your internal priorities can go a long way in reducing stress in your life, increasing motivation and increasing your sense of purpose.
Next week: Nourishing positive thinking – Balance New Orleans Spa
Tags: reducing stress
, world balance
, pressure cooker
July 7, 2011
Massage – There are few experiences that provide the release that a New Orleans Massage does. Not only a release of the physical tension and pain associated with our muscular system, but a New Orleans Massage can lead to a release of emotions. One of the most damaging emotional conditions that can be greatly reduced is suppressed anger:
Holding in Anger Increases Pain – Massage New Orleans
Massage therapists are aware of how emotions can be held in the body and sometimes released by the client in session. In new research, investigators found that the intentional suppression of anger results in increased pain and blood pressure.
“Suppression of anger may be linked to heightened pain report and pain behavior during a subsequent painful event among chronic low-back patients,” the researchers noted in an abstract published in www.pubmed.gov
For the study, chronic low-back pain patients were assigned to Suppression or No Suppression conditions for a cooperative computer maze task during which a confederate harassed them.
During baseline and maze task, patients’ lower paraspinal and trapezius muscle tension, blood pressure and heart rate were recorded, according to the abstract. After the maze task, patients underwent a structured pain-behavior task.
Results indicated that the subjects who suppressed their
anger experienced greater lower paraspinal muscle tension and systolic blood pressure increases during the maze task than did the nonsuppressors.
“Results suggest that suppression-induced lower paraspinal muscle tension and systolic blood pressure increases may link the actual suppression of anger during provocation to signs of clinically relevant pain among chronic low-back pain patients,” the researchers noted.
“Suppression of anger and subsequent pain intensity and behavior among chronic low back pain patients: the role of symptom-specific physiological reactivity” was conducted by researchers at the Department of Behavioral Science, Rush University Medical Center, in Chicago, Illinois, and published in the Journal of Behavioral Medicine
Tags: Rush University Medical Center
, massage therapists
, low back pain
, muscle tension
June 27, 2011
June 24, 2011
Visiting Balance Spa in New Orleans is a huge step in the healthy lifestyle we are all seeking. After all, our focus at Balance Spa in New Orleans is on revitalizing the body and soul; offering an extensive menu of spa services to accopmplish both.
Most have heard by now that we should all eat every 3 hours. It makes our digestive system happy, our energy level even, and our body, mind and soul engaged throughout the day. However, at Balance Spa in New Orleans we also see the fast paced lifestyle that today's world seems to demand. Here are some excellent snack suggestions from ZenHabits.com to keep your diet intact and nourish the whole you:
Healthy Snacks: 10 Ideas for More Wholesome Eating
Reading Get Started: From Overweight to Healthy recently on Zen Habits, I couldn’t agree more with Leo’s advice.
Eat move veggies, drink more water, move more and get rid of the junk. All great ideas.
It also got me thinking. For me at least, the most difficult part of healthy eating is when it comes to snacks.
It would be nice to think we’re all going to start reaching for a raw carrot or celery stick when hunger strikes between meals. But it can be difficult to go from junk to super healthy in one step.
So here are a few ideas to help you snack more healthfully.
As with all things, remember that even healthy snacks aren’t going to be good for you in large quantities, so moderation is key.
10 Healthy Snack Ideas
1. nori sheets
Head to your local Japanese or Asian grocery store and grab some nori. Yes, the seaweed stuff used in sushi rolls is delicious fresh from the pack. Although it is quite drying so you will need some water with it.
My go-to snack, especially when I’m traveling. Almonds, brazil nuts, macadamias, pistachios: there’s so much variety to explore. Nuts are portable, delicious and packed with minerals. Look for dry roasted, preferably unsalted. And remember nuts like almonds with their skins on have more fiber than those without.
3. kale chips
There are a heap of different commercial kale chips on the market these days. While delicious, they tend to be expensive, so you could have a go at making your own. Just toss some kale (or other leafy greens) in a little oil, layer on a baking sheet and bake for 5-10 minutes until crisp.
Based mostly on tomato and chilli, a good salsa can be a great way to boost your veggie intake.
5. nut butters
Look for unsweetened nut butters such as almond or cashew butter at your local health food store, or try making your own. Pop a handful of nuts in your food processor and whizz until it forms a nut butter, adding a little oil to help if it looks too dry.
The Italians know a thing or two about healthy snacking. Olives, marinated veg like eggplant, artichokes or peppers all make wonderful quick snacks. You can even throw in a little proscuitto (but don’t tell Leo).
Similar to antipasto, these Lebanese small plates are a great thing to have in the fridge. Hummus is probably the most famous but there’s also babaganoush, tatziki and beetroot drips to make your carrot and celery sticks more appealing.
8. boiled eggs
While not for the vegans, eggs are a wonderful source of protein. Boil up a whole batch at once then keep them in the fridge to peel and eat with a little salt and pepper as needed.
9. roast chickpeas
I just adore chickpeas (garbanzo beans) in all their forms. And have recently started roasting them and tossing with a little spice to serve as a snack. So. Good. [recipe below]
10. dark chocolate
When only something sweet will do, dark chocolate is your best bet. At least you’ll also be getting some antioxidants. Look for good quality brands that tell you the % cocoa solids. The higher the cocoa, the less sugar.
makes about 1 1/4 cups
By all means cook the chickpeas from scratch if you prefer, but I find canned chickpeas work really well, without the effort.
Feel free to play around with the spicing. If you can’t find smoked paprika, a little cayenne pepper or chilli powder would be lovely. Or keep it simple with just some sea salt and black pepper.
If you have any leftovers, allow them to cool completely before storing in an airtight container. Will keep for a week or so but I like them best while they’re still warm.
1 can chickpeas (14oz / 400g), well drained
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon smoked paprika, optional
1. Preheat your oven to 400F (200C).
2. Place chickpeas in a roasting pan or oven proof dish, drizzle with olive oil and bake for 10 minutes.
3. Stir the chickpeas and sprinkle over the paprika. Bake for another few minutes until the chickpeas are golden and crisp on the outside.
4. Season generously with pepper and sea salt and serve warm or at room temperature.
Tags: little oil
, olive oil
, snack suggestions
, brazil nuts
June 13, 2011
Balance Spa, New Orleans – Socializing is known to play a huge part in a healthy life style. At Balance Spa, New Orleans we know that social events allow us an opportunity to bond with others. It reduces stress and aids in achieving a healthy outlook on life. Unfortunately, many of the traditional venues and activities used in many cultures as social events can have negative consequences on our physical health. From activities that are mainly stationary to events that involve unhealthy food and drink, many of these can be damaging to our body. Balance Spa, New Orleans is happy to share with you this idea-filled article from Organic Spa Magazine to get you thinking about new ways to socialize that won't show on your wasteline.
At Play with Gal Pal Friday
Many folks planning to celebrate traditional weddings or parties this season also aim to curb their budgets and try something unique. We asked Sophia Paliov in Los Angeles, an “active party planner” to show us how to shape up our own festivities
Game Night. Instead of hosting a typical game night with static board games, try one of the hyper Wii games for fun. “For kids’ parties and bar mitzvahs, I suggest the Just Dance, Sports Resorts, Wipe Out or Minute to Win It WII games,” says Paliov.
Bachelor(ette) Revelry. Morph your celebration into something healthy with golf getaways, badminton tournaments, tennis lessons for the wedding party or sushi-making dinners. “You can always do the spa afterwards,” says Paliov.
Summer BBQ. A poolside cookout is perfect! “Competitive games between all your guests, like water polo is ideal. “Everyone works up an appetite for the main course,” she says. “The invitation should remind your guests to bring swimsuits and sunscreen.”
Gal’s Night. These wild eves usually involve cocktails and fatty food, so turn it into a “Girl’s Workout Night” instead, and invite chicks over for a new DVD workout (try Pilates or belly dancing!). “It’s the best way to girl-bond, giggle, and get in shape,” says Paliov. Afterwards serve a low-cal meal you create together, such as salmon salads with wine spritzers…fun!
Park Picnics. Plan ahead when you pack. Family gatherings should include calorie-smoking volleyball games, a Hackey Sack or Frisbee, and balls for basketball or soccer. For more playful party ideas, log onto galpalfriday.com.
Tags: negative consequences
, typical game
, traditional weddings
June 7, 2011
Balance Spa New Orleans – One of the biggest factors affecting our overall health today is stress. Although frequent visits to Balance Spa New Orleans can help counter-act the effects of stress, many find that they need to take extra steps to combat stress. To make the matter worse, in today’s fast paced world, many people have no idea of how to reduce their stress. A common solution for many to accept stress as a natural part of life and learn to feed off of it. But is this the best solution? Take a look at this article from Women’s Health discussing this serious matter:
Do You Stress Yourself Out?
More and more women are overworked, overwhelmed, and overwrought. The bigger problem: They’re proud of it! Learn how to break an unhealthy, addicted-to-high-anxiety lifestyle
When you think about it, stress is a mysterious thing: You can’t see it or touch it, but you definitely know it’s there. And its enigmatic nature just might be preventing us from fully realizing the damage stress can do—to our minds, bodies, and spirits.
According to the American Psychological Association, more than half of all women say they’re “highly stressed,” an increase of 25 percent from just four years ago. But very few do anything to chill out. In fact, many seem to be saying “bring it on!” because somewhere along the line being stretched to the limit turned into a badge of honor.
That’s how it was for Meredith Bodgas, 28, of Forest Hills, New York. Before switching to a lower-key Web job, Bodgas worked until 9 p.m. most nights. “I figured anyone who left before 7 p.m. simply wasn’t as valuable,” she says. She subscribed to the same misguided belief adopted by so many modern women: Stress is synonymous with success—and if you’re not totally fried, you may not be doing enough. “I loved it when people would ask me ‘How do you do it?’ ” admits Bodgas, “even though I suspect what some of them really meant was ‘Why do you do it?’ ”
Turns out, high anxiety may be, well, an actual high.
“Some people think they need to be stressed all the time in order to really feel alive,” says Patt Lind-Kyle, author of Heal Your Mind, Rewire Your Brain: Applying the Exciting New Science of Brain Synchrony for Creativity, Peace, and Presence. They become hooked on the rush they get from stress, which stimulates hormones such as adrenaline, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), and especially cortisol. The tension can become addictive—and as with most addictions, it can usher in an unhealthy craving.
The ready willingness to put out a welcome mat for stress also stems from myriad social and cultural pressures. While you’d think the feminist movement would have moved women way past this by now, “many still feel driven to prove they can be just as successful as their male counterparts,” says stress researcher KaMala Thomas, Ph.D., an assistant professor of psychology at Pitzer College in California.
“In fact, studies show that women expect to juggle multiple roles from an early age. The result is that they end up thriving on stress and feeling guilty if they’re not multitasking. They get used to the adrenaline rush and eventually interpret stress as a drive to be productive rather than a potential source of long-term health problems.”
Compounding this is the possibility that women embrace stress because, somewhere along the way, they came to believe that the more frazzled they are, the better person they are. “Many young women think if they’re not working every second of every day, they’re lazy,” says Steve Orma, Psy.D., a clinical psychologist in San Francisco.
“They are ashamed of taking breaks and feel they’re not a ‘good’ enough person if they aren’t pushing themselves to the absolute limit. It has become a moral issue.”
Plus, a lot of women are willing to forgo sleep and sanity for an implied payoff. In Bodgas’s case, she figured the more hours she clocked—and the higher her stress meter continued to soar—the greater her reward would be. “I felt as if I were one of those pledging frat guys who tells himself that the fraternity must be amazing if he has to go through so much horrible stuff to get in,” she says.
Tags: Balance Spa
, San Francisco
, high anxiety
May 24, 2011
Balance Spa New Orleans
- For centuries society has sought to improve their life and health through relaxation. From the history of meditation which precedes historical record, to the imperial bath complexes of ancient Rome, man has instinctively searched for ways to reduce stress. And now, science is backing up this instinctual undertaking. Read about the latest science of relaxation below:
Predicting the Future: New Blood Test for Longevity?
Soon to be available in the U.K , the test measures the length of telomeres, a DNA structure which controls the longevity of dividing cells. The shorter the telomere, the faster you are aging. A very specific blood test can determine telomere length and, based on the length can use an algorithm to assess longevity based on current lifestyle.
Life Length, a research company based in Spain, developed the test and is working on approvals throughout Europe and America. While the test will not tell you the exact date or year of your demise, it can make predictions within a decade.
“Knowing whether our telomeres are a normal length or not for a given chronological age will give us an indication of our health status and of our physiological ‘age’ even before diseases appear,” said Maria Blasco, the head of the telomeres research at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre, in Madrid.
The test involves blood being drawn at a lab and will take about four weeks for results. The cost to know your fate: In England the price is set at £435, which is roughly $705 at today’s exchange rate.
The upside of a test like this is that you have the opportunity to make lifestyle changes that will benefit you and increase your lifespan, should you choose to do so. A study published online and in print form, in The Lancet Oncology in 2008, gathered evidence showing major lifestyle changes may extend life and prevent premature cell death.
Thirty men with low-risk prostate cancer who were asked to make significant lifestyle changes participated in a study lead by Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn, a UCSF biochemist and known for her discovery of telomeres, along with her lead colleague Dr. Dean Ornish.
The men were introduced to their new lifestyle, which lasted for three months, during a three-day residential retreat. They were taught stress reduction techniques, and given instructions on how to follow their strict diet, that involved a 10 percent lower calorie diet from fat, low refined sugars, and a diet filled with fresh fruits, veggies, whole foods, fish oil and supplemental vitamins. They were also taught to incorporate a moderate aerobic activity to their daily regimen and even learned relaxation methods, and breathing techniques.
Telomerase levels for the men were taken at the beginning of the study, and again after the three-month period. Researchers discovered telomerase in the blood increased by 29 percent and bad cholesterol decreased. Telomerase is an enzyme that repairs and lengthens telomeres, a DNA protein complex which affects how fast cells age.
Would you be willing to take the test? Would you alter your life accordingly or continue on the path you are on?
Balance Spa New Orleans
, we specialize in helping people relax. From our relaxing amenities to our extensive menu of spa services
, Balance Spa New Orleans is dedicated to helping our guests escape the stresses of everyday life. Call us today at (504) 595-5333!
Tags: United Kingdom
, susan brady
, europe and america
May 10, 2011
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Taking Time Out for a day spa Massage – Good for Body and Soul
AT The Balance Spa at the Loews Hotel in New Orleans, we are well aware of the busy lives most people today lead. Whether it’s a demanding career, a busy life managing the home and raising children, or a grueling school schedule, it’s often difficult to find even a moment during the day to slow down this often frantic pace and catch our breaths.
Stress Can Be Dangerous to Your Health
It is a well-known fact that overwork, tension, and stress represent some of the leading causes of debilitating conditions such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and even cancer. Therefore, it is extremely important to periodically turn off the computer and cell phone, send the children to their grandparents, and close the school books in order to get much needed rest to restore and rejuvenate body and soul.
Relaxation and Beauty – An Unbeatable Combination
The quality day spa services of the Balance Spa include a number of unique ways to accomplish relaxation and beauty.
Relaxing facials. A Balance Spa’s day spa facial is an ideal way to take time out of your busy day to relax and be pampered. Our staff is dedicated to ensuring that you have the most relaxing and comfortable experience possible. In addition to exfoliating, cleansing and moisturizing the skin, our skilled estheticians massage the face and neck, using light, gliding strokes that both relax face and neck muscles and stimulate blood flow. Our facials leave your entire body feeling relaxed, refreshed, and rejuvenated.
Soothing pedicures. The feet represent one of the most sensitive areas of our bodies, containing thousands of nerve endings and “reflex” points that correlate with other areas of the body. Because you probably spend a large part of the day on your feet, we want to ensure that you receive a soothing foot and leg massage as an integral part of our pedicure process. A day spa pedicure is an excellent way to relax and beautify tired, aching feet.
Deep-tissue massages. Getting a full-body or even a partial day spa massage is one of the most effective ways to relieve the stress and tension that accumulate in the body’s muscles and connective tissue. Our skilled massage therapists use a variety of massage techniques (e.g., Swedish, pressure-point, reflexology) to stimulate circulation and promote relaxation. Experience the soothing and healing benefits that only a Balance Spa massage can offer.
Let the Balance Spa New Orleans help you choose the perfect combination of beauty and stress-reducing services that will provide the most restorative and rejuvenating experience for you. Call our day spa today at 504-595-5333 to schedule your next appointment.
Tags: tissue massages
, foot massage
, spa pedicure
, Intercontinental Hotel
, stress-reducing services
, day spa services
, quality day spa services