As a Physician Assistant, I have seen firsthand the toll of unhealthy lifestyles, addiction, poor choices, and chronic disease. Over my 20 year career, I evaluated patients in the emergency department, operated on some of them, and took care of many more in the ICU. I have witnessed the dying process, and health has become a personal mission for me. Watching people suffer and die from cancer, heart disease, COPD, and trauma made me feel helpless.
A few years ago, I decided to follow a holistic path based on food as medicine, merging this approach with the western medical model I knew and used professionally. This path was inspired by a wonderful medical student from Nepal who I met a few years before I moved to Steamboat.
Sponsored by Denver Health, I was running a medical clinic for the homeless on Thursday evenings. I supervised volunteer medical students and we had minimal supplies for the people we treated. We talked a lot about food choices, supplements, and even yoga. One night this wonderful student from Nepal made a comment and it changed my life forever. He said, “I don’t understand your country. In Nepal, when someone sees a doctor the first question is ‘What can I eat?’ In your country, patients don’t ask about food and doctors don’t talk about diet, just pills.” This student is now a gastroenterology fellow studying holistic nutrition.
I believe if we learn to listen to our bodies, they will tell us what works and what doesn’t. In our culture today, we are so busy that we don’t even know how to tune in to our bodies’ communication until something goes wrong. The media inundates us with so much information about good foods, bad foods, supplements, and diets; it’s overwhelming trying to figure out what’s best for our health.
“Rakta” is one of the seven tissues in Ayurvedic medicine. It refers to the red blood cells and is thought to nourish the body and preserve life. The mission at Rakta Hot Yoga is to provide yoga, fitness, meditation, and wellness to nourish our clients. We use infrared heat for our heated classes because of its therapeutic benefits. We offer non-heated classes for those who don’t like the heat or have medical reasons for avoiding it. We offer fitness classes like kickboxing, bands, and Essentrics as compliments to your yoga practice. We have a strong focus on restorative yoga, gentle yoga, and meditation because we believe in the importance of recovery for active bodies.
The wellness team at Rakta is comprised of experts in many different aspects of wellness including nutrition, Ayurveda, sleep, financial health, and spirituality. We will offer free wellness talks the first Sunday of every month at 5:30pm. In addition, we have a wellness room for massage, Ayurvedic treatments, nutrition coaching, and other services available by appointment.
Rakta was born from my passion to help people on their journeys to health. I love the medical precision of anatomy and alignment. I also love the fidelity with which we can use yoga, pilates, and nutrition to customize treatment for each individual. It has taken great perseverance to see my vision to fruition. For me, Rakta Hot Yoga is “Passion Precision Perseverance.” We support your passion in life and help you connect to it. We use precision in our teaching, wellness talks, and wellness services to give the best information available. We will help you persevere through life’s challenges to achieve your goals.
In light and love, Sandy