Lena Madsen Yoga Logo
    Home   |   Nyack Teaching Schedule   |   Workshops & Events   |   About   |   Blog   |   Contact
January 31st, 2 019

I have decided to take this opportunity to talk about vitamin D deficiency, and the latest research regarding taking supplements. So many of us are being told that we are low in vitamin D these days and encouraged by our health practitioners to take it in some kind of pill form.
As many of you know, Vitamin D is important to us in several ways. It helps in keeping our immune systems healthy, it is essential to bone strength, it helps improve the function of our lungs, and it's an important part in regulating our mood. It also lowers the risk for certain cancers, like serious skin cancers, colon, breast and prostate cancers. And the same is true for very common chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and MS.

So how do we get this vitamin? By exposing our skin to the sun. Some foods have small amounts but it's not enough to get the amounts we are in need of, so sunlight is how we do it. Amazing isn't it?

The new research was a large study of people with low vitamin D levels. Half of them took supplements for several years and the other half didn't. What they were comparing was how long they lived and how high the risk was for those cancers and chronic diseases that are linked to low vitamin D levels. And this is what they found. There was no significant difference between the two groups. In other words, taking the supplements did not lower the risks for these cancers and diseases, and did not make them live longer, healthier lives in general.

To me this is important to take in. This is what it means. There is no substitute, that we know of at this time, that can substitute being outside in the sun. Period. We can't get around the fact that as the animals we are, we are deeply intertwined with mother earth and the sun that brings life to us. And a pill simply will not do the same thing as that gigantic star at the center of the solar system. (When I write it like that it kind of seems funny to even think it would, doesn't it?)

Please do not take this to mean that taking a supplement doesn't do anything to help us be healthier, that is not what the research is showing. It's showing that it does not help us lower the risks of these cancers and chronic diseases that take many lives. And that we don't live longer healthier lives taking them. To have those effects we need to be outdoors in the sun. Without sunblock. On a regular basis. And that is the important part to me. You might still decide to take your supplements for other health benefits, but, you still need sunlight. 

I wasn't that surprised reading this myself, my gut always told me that we need the sun. So, considering that we are in the midst of winter right now, this is my way of encouraging you all to get out there. Even if it's just for a short while. Take your hat off and let the light shine on your head and face, and you will produce the Vitamin D you need. Not to mention all the great health effects it has on you if you can do that in nature. It's simple to me, we were never meant to spend the days indoors, it's not normal human behaviour. So we have to do all that we possibly can to make up for all the hours most of us spend indoors for work. See you outdoors!

New Class on Saturday Mornings

Gentle Restorative Yoga
with Lena

First class on Saturday February 2nd

Class time: 10:45am - 12 noon

Exchange: $25

This class will be a bit different to the gentle class on Thursday mornings. It will be focusing  on easily accessible postures that open up the physical body, what some might think of as "stretching". This will encourager a fuller and freer breath, and will lead us into one or two restorative postures at the end of the class. The vast majority of the practice, if not all, will be done lying on the floor. For those of you who attended the classes between Christmas and New Years, know that it will be very similar to that kind of practice.

The class is open to anyone interested. No experience is needed and you can drop in any Saturday. For those of you who are currently in my other classes, this can be an added class when you feel like it, a make-up class, or you can make it a regular class.

During the winter months one of the classes each month will be a Yoga Nidra. In February it will be on Saturday the 23rd.

I feel strongly that more then ever we all need this gentle, less effort-full practice to come back home to ourselves, to breathe more deeply and to sooth our nervous system. 

Yoga Nidra Meditation

Saturday the 23rd 

11am- 12:15pm

Open to all, no experience necessary.

Give yourself this opportunity to free yourself from limitations of the past, stress about the present,
 and worries about the future. 

Dress in soft, comfortable clothing as you will be lying down for the majority of this practice. Layers are recommended so to stay warm throughout the session. 

Please preregister by email at:

Exchange: $25 


Please note that my website has been hacked more then once this past fall. I am currently getting help with updating the software and reformatting the site. This will make it much easier for you to read it on your phone. Unfortunately, at this time I am not able to update my site, so for now, refer to this newsletter for cancelled classes. And as always, email me if you have any other questions. I hope to have these issues resolved in the near future.

I will offer Thursday, Friday,  Saturday and Sunday classes this month. There are no cancelled classes in February.

Happy winter!


Lena Madsen Yoga
The Lotus Flower

The Lotus is one of the most beautiful flowers in the world. It has its roots in the mud, at the bottom of streams and ponds, but rises to bloom above the water without becoming wet or tainted by the mire below. It symbolically represents being fully grounded in earth, yet aspiring towards the divine. For thousands of years the Lotus has symbolized spiritual growth and self realization.