Print Edition: July 10, 2011

Ditching Insomnia
If sleep eludes you or you spend countless nights tossing and turning, here's your guide to dreamless slumber.

Ditch the Drugs The moment we understand our body through medicines, we lose a part of ourselves to science. Most over-the-counter drugs for allergies, body ache and cold contain chemicals that tend to disrupt your normal sleep pattern. Curb the psychological desire for instant relief and instead cultivate an interest in naturopathy which helps build endurance. Naturopathy involves consuming herbal foods and doing yoga which helps calm the mind and body, in turn promoting sound sleep.

Sense and Sensibility It's a common myth that sleep puts the senses to rest. The reason why you respond to your name while asleep or wake up to bright light suggests the responsiveness of senses. For a soothing effect, paint your room in shades of pale blue or light green and place cotton balls soaked in lavender and chamomile oil near your pillow. Restful backgroundmusic also goes a long way in soothing the nerves and allowing your mind and body to relax while sleeping. Inner Smile Physical exercise can alter your sleep pattern drastically.

Vigorous cardio for at least 30 minutes each day, on the treadmill or a stationary cycle helps release endorphins that generate a sense of wellness and help you sleep better. Clinically proven to cure mild depression and low selfesteem, working out also gives you a sense of control over the body and allows you to discipline yourself. Also aiding sleep is a full body massage with essential oils at the spa. About 60 minutes of massaging will aid blood circulation and calm the nerves.

Tame the Mind The most common reason of insomnia is entangled chains of thought at bed time. In such conditions, the Gordian knot can be cut by expressing yourself. Try and channelise your emotions and let go of baggage which could interfere with sleep patterns. If you sleep with a partner, engage in healthy 'pillow talk' for at least 30 minutes before lights out. This will foster your relationship and augment emotional security, much needed for a good night's sleep. Those who're single can update their blogs or sketch before bedtime. These mediums afford you the pride of creation which in turn offers contentment and boosts sleep.

Saif Khan, resident DJ at Lap, New Delhi, talks about the Ps and Qs of getting behind the console: Setting Up Till recently, DJs depended on CD players, turntables and mixers to make a party rock. Today though, the mantra is to go digital. Although the quality and output remains the same, it saves you the trouble of changing CDs and vinyl records and allows you to experiment much more in your mixing. As far as technology goes, the Macbook Pro is recommended, since there is a very slim chance of the laptop getting infected by a virus, which could affect performance.

With your laptop of choice in place, you need to select the right digital interface like the Serato Scratch Live or the Traktor Pro 8,. This can then be connected to the console. Choice of Music Most clubs have set genres of music that they like being identified with. If you're an amateur, the best technique is to keep mixing and matching till you develop your individual style. To start with, a song base with diverse tracks from all genres is recommended.

Get them Grooving Besides keeping track of changing music preferences, spend time understanding the rhythm of the music. The crowd is king, so be in tune with their needs.


Dr Rajesh Rasal, Oenologist at the Good Earth Winery in Nashik, is convinced that a goblet of red wine will put you in the pink. Scientifically Speaking Red grapes are comparable to life enhancing 'ayurvedic rasayana' tonics in composition and contain 'resveratrol', a plant polyphenol that works as an excellent antioxidant. Scientific research suggests that consuming resveratrol-rich foods reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease and also lowers the level of bad cholesterol. It is also said to contain 'Catechins' or 'Flavanoids' which help prevent cancer. These antioxidants prevent molecules known as free-radicals from doing cellular damage.

Nature's Course Wine is the result of a completely natural process. It is not fortified with added alcohol and is nothing but temperature controlled fermented grape juice. This ageing is a reult of an interplay between yeast and sugars. The result is a spirit with health promoting benefits. It aids digestion and stimulates appetite which is why it is often consumed before a meal.

Savour it Right Wine has the properties of a mild tranquiliser and should be gently sipped to purge anxiety and tension. It is advisable to have one or two glasses with food. While the reds can be savoured with red meats and spicy food, the whites go well with gently fried and smoked food.

Did You Know University of Buffalo researchers have recently concluded that white wine has antioxidants which benefit the lungs when taken in moderation.

Achal Aggarwal of Circa 1193, New Delhi gives out gourmet cocktail snack options with the restaurant's wine pairings:
1.Marinate Japanese yellow tail fish with purple basil and avocado puree with a hint of Japanese Yuzu (lime). Add squid ink flavoured with flying fish roe. The subtle flavours of the Japanese fish are balanced out by the refreshing mix of lemon and basil. This goes well with Australian Shiraz Lindemans Bin 50

2.Thinly sliced steamed duck breast stuffed with chopped fresh wasabi orange and Japanese Yuzu sauce. The pungent flavour of wasabi balances the tang in sun-dried tomatoes. It is paired well with the French Beaujolais Tomme de Savoie 2007.

3.Fresh soya bean tossed with summer truffle dipped in truffle oil and then mixed with diced mango dumplings. The strong flavour of the summer truffle complements the sweetness of mango. Pair this with the Italian white wine -Gavi Doc Pio Cesare 2008.

4.Mozzarella cheese stuffed with basil sauce.The sauce balances the cheesy taste. Savour this with the Chardonnay Casa Lapostolle 2008, Chile.


Israeli fitness trainer Amnon Darsa offers insight on Russian Kettlebells.

What Unlike traditional dumbbells, the centre of mass in these cast iron weights is extended beyond the hand. This necessitates ballistic movements such as the swing, the snatch and the clean and jerk. Why The movements are never single joint ones and always engage many joints and muscles at once. These exercises mimic real world activities like shoveling or farm work which help in building internal strength and losing weight.

How You can begin with the basic swing which involves swinging the prop from under crouched knees to eye level. This is initiated with a powerful hip thrust using your glutes and hamstring muscles and helps in strengthening all parts of the back. The relatively trained should try the snatch which involves lifting the bell from the bottom of your foot to overhead with one hand. This exerts a vertical force and strengthens shoulder stability.

Who Most people regardless of current or previous injuries, training background, age or physical condition can use kettlebells. Begin with 16 kg (36 lbs) or 24 kg (53 lbs) and gradually increase it. Similarly, you should keep the repetitions low o start with (5-10) and then increase them to 10 - 15.

Key Tip Staying bare foot or wearing flat soled shoes keeps the feet gripped to the ground and provides stability. in strenuous movements.

Chennai based artist Ganesh Selvaraj dabbles with mixed media in his work. He offers our readers tips to jazz up paintings: Quirky Materials Idiosyncrasy is the name of the game. To make your painting stand out, choose materials as diverse as burnt wood, steel balls used in bicycles, used train tickets, pieces of rust iron and X-Ray sheets etched in acid treatment. These can be pasted onto the canvas as a collage using acrylic adhesive (which works as glue). Try this Run a newspaper through the shredder for narrow strips or diamond shaped pieces and crumple them further. Paint the canvas end-to-end with acrylic adhesive and sprinkle the pieces randomly throughout the canvas. On drying, you'll have a stunning 3D piece.

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