Longevity advice from the Greek Blue Zone of Ikaria – Part 2

Blue Zones: Diet advice from a 105 year old

Recently my wife and I went on holiday to the Greek island of Ikaria, where there are people who famously live well into their 90s and 100’s in good health. We met the lovely 105 year old Ioanna, and even heard a report of someone who is 115 and still going strong! Longevity advice from the Greek Blue Zone of Ikaria 2

There are number of factors contributing to this amazing longevity and we have been exploring them in this series of three blog posts on the Blue Zones. This is the second blog post where Ioanna gives us her advice on diet. 

Ioanna told us that although she was a very young child, that she had lived through World War 1 and into World War 2. She said she got married in the second World War in order to have companionship and not feel alone. She didn’t talk about her husband any more than this so who knows what happened there, but she did tell us a lot about her diet! 

I’ll just summarise now that her advice is very much in keeping with the advice in the Blue Zones book by Dan Buettner. I highly recommend the book but if you don’t have time then you’ll get a fair idea about the recommendations for diet from the following post.

Ioanna lives by a rather simple diet that is probably much older than she is. Though with that said I don’t feel she was trying to live to 105, she seems as surprised by it as anyone… But she also doesn’t look to be giving up any time soon! 

Now for her advice:

Ioanna said she doesnt eat very much meat and she has a lot of vegetables and fruits.

She said that fish was okay and I think she maybe ate a little bit of chicken now and then, but she didn’t have any red meats. 

In terms of oil she said she really liked olive oil on her salads and that she used a little corn oil in cooking, but she said she didnt eat any butter. 

Ioanna did also say don’t fry things, that its bad to fry food and you should bake or boil them instead. 

And in terms of fruit and vegetables, she said that she eats everthings like potatoes, courgettes, tomatoes, things like that. There are figs and grapes growing outside her front door, so she certainly eats fresh fruit on a daily basis!

She doesn’t have a big or heavy meal in the evening. She just has a snack and very weak milky coffee.

Ioanna said she quite enjoyed a coffee and a few figs and also maybe a few biscuits in the evening.  And she seems to be okay with eating a little bit of sugar now and then.

She also said that every morning she’d have a teaspoon of Ikarian honey and it was quite nice. 

Ioanna says she enjoys a little bit of wine with water now and then. Ikaria - Blue Zones - Diet advice

She said she doesn’t drink beer or the famous Greek drink of Ouzo or Tsipouro or the stronger spirits, just a little bit of wine and water. (She has a habit of repeating herself but that can be helpful for us young folk with our short attention spans)

One of her gems about drinking alcohol “Drink wine if you can drink it, but not if it drinks you!”

So as you can see Ioanna has quite a simple diet. and I would say probably everything in Ikaria that she eats is essentially organic, because everything is grown naturally from the land. I think it’s quite good volcanic soil, high in nutrients and they are still farming and growing in the traditional Greek style.

It’s a very fertile land, there’s fruit growing everywhere, right outside her front door there are grape vines and fruit trees.
The island also has its own underground water source and receives more rain than the average Greek islands in the autumn, winter and spring so I think that helps a lot.
It’s more difficult for those of us who live in the colder countries and more temperate climates as things don’t grow quite as easily or reliably… and there’s not much food just growing on the trees where I live!

If you’d like to read more then there’s more information on diet in the Blue Zones book, and they generally agree with Ioanna (in fact I’m quite sure she contributed to the book) 

To summarise Ioanna eats a little bit of meat, mostly fruits and vegetables and also nuts, she drinks a little bit of red wine, 

Longevity advice from the Greek Blue Zone of Ikaria 1And one of the main things she said is that she doesn’t eat in the evening. 

So she’s right on track with the diet recommendations in the Blue Zone book. 

There’s also a growing belief that Greek coffee has anti ageing benefits, which is good for coffee drinkers to know 🙂
I hope you’ve enjoyed Blue Zones blog post no. 2, the next and final part will be blog post no. 3 where I ask Ioanna about her opinion on whether the young people of today have as good a chance to live to 105 as she did!
Please post any questions below or any advice that you’d like to share on longevity and healthy ageing

Part 1 is here

Longevity advice from the Greek Blue Zone of Ikaria – Part 1

My wife and I were recently on holiday in the Greek Island of Ikaria, which in recent years has become famous as one of the world’s ‘Blue Zones’ where people regularly live into their 90’s and 100’s in good health and are leaving a lot of the rest of the world behind in terms of health and longevity. 

Long term human health is an interest of mine and I’ve written about it here at this site: thelifeextensionproject.com and below is a series of blog post exploring some advice I received from a 105 year old Ikarian lady called Ioanna.

Ioanna was born in 1911 and is still very sharp of mind at a huIkaria - Blue Zones - Diet advicendred and five years old, although her body is starting to go on her now and she walks with a zimmerframe, also she had an accident two years ago at 103 and her right shoulder has ceased up. Luckily I was able to give her a short Shiatsu treatment to help the pain in her shoulder and neck, which she hugely appreciated. She even started to call me Dr. Simon. 

Her advice on living a long and healthy life came in 3 parts. Primarily blog post 1 is about happiness and outlook on life, blog post 2 will be about diet and blog post 3 will be about the future of health for the young people of today

Oh well let’s call young people those under 70 or 80 for her. 

Happiness and outlook on life. 

This seems to be just as important to Joanna as her work and her diet. She had a very passionate view of the world and even at her rather advance age was sharp, witty, funny and very quick! She was happy to impoart her view of the world and give advice to the young (although she didn’t speak english so I had everything translated) 

Her advice was as follows. 

“It’s important to love the Universe, the Universe is life”

She said she stays awake at night thinking about the Universe and the wonders of the Cosmos. Joanna thinks this is an important part of her long term health and her ability to persevere through difficulties and to still be here a long time after many of her friends and family passed on. Longevity advice from the Greek Blue Zone of Ikaria 1

Other nuggets of her wisdom and advice:

She said “Don’t be jealous. Jealousy is what makes you ill” 

“If you’re not happy about other people then it’s your own unhappiness and so its jealousy, which is not good”

“Be happy for other people’s success. If other people are successful you should be happy for them” 


“You shouldn’t resent their success because what does that get you? It just makes yourself unhappy! So just feel happy for them” 


“When other people feel sad then feel sad too.” 

My understand of this is that it’s more about having appropriate feelings for other people around you, to say connected and not be separate from each other. It stands to reason that you shouldn’t feel happy about other people’s misfortune, or to see somebody whose life was better than yours and then gets worse and that makes you happy… It’s just the wrong way!

More of Ioanna’s advice was around money and posessions

she said “don’t accumulate money. Life here (ed: on Ikaria?) is not about making more money than you need. You can’t take it with you. Just have enough and to be able to live a happy, comfortable life. Having more than you need isn’t going to bring you any happiness.”

Longevity advice from the Greek Blue Zone of IkariaThis stands to reason. There is no point in spending your life acumulating weath and posessions without enjoying life itself. But I’m going to try to do both and enjoy the whole journey as much as possible!

Ioanna also said to make your own life. She was rather concern about a lot of young Greeks (in particular, as that’s where she lives and her frame of reference) who were living off their parents and being rather demanding and asking for money from them, expecting a lot from their families. She believes that “nobody owes you anything, so don’t expect others to look after you.” 

“You have to make your own life” and that “it’s important for you to be independent and stand on your own two feet”  

“Just have enough for a good life. You dont need to be spending your time accumulating and wanting more and more because also that is whats making you unhappy”

Seems to me an almost Buddhist philisophy for life, but it’s solid and makes good sense to me 🙂

Ioanna has a rather simple approach to life, she is a very straight forward woman who lives in quite a basic house, but she was still working at her trade as a weaver right up until the age of 105. She is an inspirational and quite a remarkable lady who has quite a passion for life even now!

Further blog posts are below, and please subscribe for updates or check back soon!

Blog post 2 is about Ioanna’s approach to diet

and blog post 3 is about her view on the young people of today!

Multiple Sclerosis – Natural Treatment

Multiple Sclerosis or MS is a degenerative nerve disease that has a number of increasingly debilitating symptoms.

Shiatsu is a Japanese acupressure massage working on the meridians and pressure points (the same ones used in acupuncture)

So how do they work together?

Natural Remedies for Multiple SclerosisMultiple Sclerosis Natural Treatment

I had an enquiry recently from a lady seeking natural relief from her MS symptoms, she reported feeling ‘locked in’ and was looking to feel looser and more relaxed

Client overview:

Let’s call her M

M has just turned 60, she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 5 years ago, her symptoms have been getting progressively worse, particularly with stress and poor eating habits when stressed.

Lately she had been suffering with pain and rigidity in her right shoulder and arm, with shooting ‘pins and needle like pains’ through her stomach and down her legs, again mostly on the right hand side. This was also coupled with lower back pain and digestive issues (constipation and flatulence).

She reported a life of looking after people, pushing herself and not looking after her own needs.

She felt her body was letting her know that it was time to change this.

During the treatment she experienced her usual symptoms of the shooting pains through her stomach down her legs, bringing tears to her eyes, possibly from frustration.

When I enquired she told me that this was more or less normal.Natural Remedies Multiple Sclerosis

I started to work gently, taking a meridian diagnosis on her abdomen (getting a feel for the energetic quality of the meridians that pool there)

Then I moved onto working on her right arm and shoulder to release the tension, shaking out the shoulder joint and straightening the elbow which had become quite tight in a bent position. Followed by her neck, upper back and legs.

I completed the treatment by returning to her right arm and releasing more of the tension there, getting the hand to open up and the elbow to straighten out.

Throughout the first half of the session M had shooting pins and needles down her legs, but by the end of the session the pains had subsided and she was very relaxed.

She still had issues with the mobility in her right leg, but for a first session we were both very happy with the results and booked again for the following week.

During the session we talked about being open to finding a kind of harmony in the body with what was, with where she was at… A sense of nurturing and acceptance of the body felt appropriate.

Physical Therapy for Multiple SclerosisPhysical Therapies for Multiple Sclerosis

While shiatsu is not going to ‘cure’ MS it certainly appears to be extremely beneficial (almost immediately) in calming some of the more distressing and painful symptoms of MS. It will be interesting to observe how long the results last for and whether progress is made in long term pain relief and improving mobility over all.

I wanted to share the following resources with anyone suffering from MS or who knows someone who is…

First for some inspiration from the amazing TED Talks –

Diet and Supplements for Multiple Sclerosis:

Dr Mercola – diet & supplements

MS Society recommended CAM therapies:

MSsociety.com – link to suggested CAM treatments

Shiatsu Therapists in your area:

Shiatsu Society Practitioners List

Email from M that I’d like to share with you

Hi Simon

That was lovely again today.

I feel as if I am turning a corner right now in terms of what I’m creating for myself, and my decision to treat myself (in both senses of the word!) to body therapy feels very healthy all round.

I’ve had a very good day since and have been looking at the Gokhale method in order to get some good tips re addressing my age old postural habits….I was very aware that my tense shoulders were kind of undoing the relaxing effects of the shiatsu!

Also became very aware this afternoon that historically my response to stress has been flight mode…a continual need to ‘hurry forward’, which I identified very clearly in my body as a chronic stress.

The only ‘cure’ for that can be to slow down and take as much time as I need, all the time! Of course this is what the (so called) MS has been insisting I do anyway, although I can see that I have been resisting it – not quite getting the message so to speak!

I’ve still been in ‘flight mode’, despite no longer being physically capable of rushing around busy all the time.

Anyway, so I got dressed deliberately slowly, walked downstairs, walked to the shops and back ‘in my own sweet time’, and it felt very good. I wasn’t entertaining my usual thoughts about “how difficult and stressful this is for me these days- because it’s so slow and painful ( painfully slow?!) and I even found myself walking upstairs properly, (albeit slowly) i.e without holding onto the rail or leaning on wall, despite carrying a bag of shopping in each hand.

(There’s a subtle but profound difference between being slowed down ‘against my will’- and taking my time, even if the actual resulting pace is the same.)

These are all very good signs…

Your blog post is cool too btw! 😉

Many thanks…


Shiatsu Massage at The Hale Clinic

The Shiatsu Guy is now in one of the most prestigious London complementary and alternative therapy clinics – Have your tensions released, your stresses soothed, pain relieved and energy boosted in the Hale ClinicThe Hale Clinic, 7 Park Crescent, Marylebone, London W1B 1PF

Shiatsu Massage is an extremely grounding, stress-relieving acupressure style massage from Japan. The benefits are so widespread that a long list could be included here… but suffice to say that Shiatsu is perfect for relieving pain and tension around the back, neck and shoulders as well as banishing work-stress and life’s pressures leaving you calm, relaxed and centred yet energised.

Whats more, Shiatsu is traditionally performed on a futon on the floor without any oils, so you can keep your clothes on during the treatment. Just wear comfortable clothing that allows you to move freely, such as jogging bottoms or yoga pants.

In September 2014 Simon started working with Ruth Freeman in her ‘Cleansing Space’ multi-disciplinary practice at the Hale Clinic.

Simon is giving bespoke Shiatsu massage on Monday afternoons and evenings from 4pm until 8.30pm

Sessions can be 60 or 90 minutes long, depending on how stressed you are and how deeply you want to relax…

The Hale Clinic, 7 Park Crescent, Marylebone, London W1B 1PF

The Hale Clinic is one of London’s Premier complementary health clinics, founded by Teresa Hale and officially opened in 1988 by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. The Hale Clinic delivers the very best in complementary and alternative therapies, from the best therapists London has to offer. Now Ruth and Simon will be working together to provide the very best in care for all of your health needs.

Within the Cleansing Space will be a number of other therapies that complement Shiatsu, such as Colonic Hydrotherapy, Reiki, Regression Therapy and Acupuncture

Colonic Hydrotherapy at the Hale Clinic

Ruth Freeman is a talented Colonic Hydrotherapist, reflexologist and massage therapist treating hundreds of clients since she began in 2004.  Ruth has a busy Colonic Hydrotherapy practice in Balham where she works several days per week, and has branched out into the Hale Clinic in order to bring her amazing treatments to a wider audience.  In May of 2014 Ruth spent 3 weeks at the Hippocrates Institute in Florida, USA where she absorbed a huge amount of new information and lived a super healthy lifestyle in order to integrate these new learnings into her practice, for your benefit!

Who can benefit from Colonic Hydrotherapy at the Hale Clinic?

Colonic hydrotherapy is a way to reduce the toxic load on the colon and therefore the rest of the body, by literally flushing away accumulated waste products and toxins from the rectum and large intestine. This allows the body to use it’s energy elsewhere to heal the body, rather than trying to ineffectively deal with the effects of the toxic build up.

So you will benefit if you are trying to lose weight or detox, as well as if you are suffering from chronic fatigue, low energy, burn out, food intolerances and skin conditions.

Many other conditions are also effectively helped through colonic hydrotherapy. If you’re interested please contact Ruth on 0207 0604 146 anThe Hale Clinicd tell her you heard about her from the Shiatsu Guy, you’ll be well looked after!

Reiki and Regression Therapy at the Hale Clinic – on Tuesdays from 4.30 until 8.30pm

While still the youngest member of the multidisciplinary practice, Maria Maraveli has an impressive range of qualifications and experience under her belt. Maria lives her practice with integrity and passion. Maria trained in Reiki, Regression Therapy and Hypnotherapy with a number of masters, overcoming her own serious health issues through self-healing. she had an established clinic in her native Greece and has been working between Athens and London for several years, teaching and treating,  before deciding to move herself and her practice to London in 2013.

Who can benefit from Reiki and Regression Therapy at the Hale Clinic?

While Reiki and regression therapy may sound a little more esoteric than the other therapies offered by the Cleansing Space at the Hale Clinic, it actually fits very well in with supporting you and the other treatments.

Reiki, hypnotherapy and regression therapy can help you to take control of and release seemingly unconscious compulsions and urges, maybe an addiction to chocolate that isn’t helping your weight loss plans, or a negative habit that keeps afflicting your personal relationships, or negative thoughts that keep derailing your best intentions and plans to make positive changes in your life or lifestyle.

Maria is an expert at looking under the surface of what appears to be happening, to your subconscious motivations, in order to shift or release habits that seem beyond your control.

This supports you and allows you to much more easily stick to the new path you have chosen to health and resilience.

The work itself may seem easy but the results are often surprisingly powerful!

Shiatsu Massage at the Hale Clinic – on Mondays from 4 until 8.30pm

Advanced bodywork techniques such as Shiatsu, which incorporates pressure points with soft tissue massage, addresses a broad spectrum of potential applications, from minor physical niggles to addressing deeper systemic issues such as nurturing life-force (Chi) or supporting the body to heal from major traumas such as aggressive surgery, major accidents or debilitating illnesses.

Simon Henderson is the Shiatsu Guy, who studied at the long-established London College of Shiatsu, qualifying in 2008 and building several busy practices around London since. Simon has become an expert at making people feel better physically, mentally and emotionally, as well as energetically, in a short space of time, through the Japanese healing art of Shiatsu.

Generally, people come to Simon for relief from pain, injuries, stress or just London life. Typically people see Simon every two to three weeks for 3 to 6 sessions to deal with their most pressing ailments, then settle into a monthly maintenance programme to keep their health and energy in optimum balance.

Who can benefit from Shiatsu at the Hale Clinic?

You may be interested in a total health reboot (by utilising the experience and expertise of all of the Cleansing Space therapists) or just a tweak and tune-up of your general wellbeing, either way, Shiatsu will have you feeling at your best in as little as 60 minutes.

If you’re suffering from stress and tension, shiatsu will quickly have you relaxed, energised and motivated. If you’re just off a long-haul flight you’ll be feeling refreshed and comfortable in your body again, ready to sleep in the correct time-zone!

If you’ve got aches and pains Shiatsu can have you feeling better quickly.

If you’re looking to support your physical energy, immune system and emotions, Shiatsu can help you with that too.

Because every Shiatsu session is unique to you and your current mental, emotional and physical condition, you will receive a bespoke treatment that boosts as required, soothes as required, balances as required, releases as required and nurtures as required… So that you leave every session with an enhanced sense of wellbeing.

As a multidisciplinary clinic, Simon and the other therapists provide a natural and holistic approach to many health issues, from the physical, through nutrition and into the more esoteric/energetic realms, ensuring that together they will be able to help you with whatever your health challenges are.

To book a Shiatsu Massage or any of these other treatments at the Hale Clinic, contact us by email at info@TheShiatsuGuy.com

Location of the Hale Clinic

The Hale Clinic, 7 Park Crescent, Marylebone, London W1B 1PF

Nearest Tube Stations: Regents Park (Bakerloo Line) and Great Portland Street (Circle, Hammersmith and City, Metropolitan Lines)

Simon was able to treat me from my office The Shiatsu massage I received from Simon managed to release a lot of my tension during a stressful few weeks I had been experiencing.  His approach and detailed explanation of the treatment he would give me was very much appreciated and interesting, as I knew little about this type of massage beforehand. Working on a computer all day, I tend to fall into bad habits. After the massage I was sitting up tall and felt revived, I would recommend anyone who has not had a Shiatsu massage before to experience it. Even better Simon was able to treat me from my office, which saved me valuable time, it would have taken me weeks to actually make an appointment myself, so I would say to anyone go on and give it a try.
Tina TosarCompany DirectorLondon, UK

Pain Management Clinic

Relieve your pain and discomfort naturally in as little as 60 minutes, reduce your dependency on painkillers and avoid surgery

Have an old injury that just keeps hurting? Muscle tension causing nerve pain? Wear and tear getting you down? Pain Management Clinic London

Shiatsu massage helps you manage and release pain naturally. You can say goodbye to lingering pain and hello to a pain-free life!

What You Get from our Pain Management Clinic:

Fast, effective pain-relief for conditions that might have been plaguing you for years – no more time spent worrying and suffering

Several convenient London Pain Management Clinic locations – fit appointments in during your lunch break and get back to work quicker

Through-clothing, oil-free massage – no time spent dressing and undressing, wiping off oil or showering

Shiatsu releases muscle tension, tight joints and trapped nerves through applying a direct pressure throughout the body, leaving you feeling rejuvenated, refreshed, relaxed and pain-free.

Shiatsu uses the same pressure points and meridians as acupuncture but without the needles, instead using a firm (but not painful) pressure to stimulate and balance the natural energies of the body. Simon also practices a type of Shiatsu that uses the ‘Hirata Zones’ for releasing pain and inflammation, so you get even more benefit.

Shiatsu massage can help reduce your pain:

  • Shoulder pain, shoulder impingement, rotator cuff issues, frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis), arthritic shoulders, calcific tendonitis, biceps tendonitis, dislocated shoulders
  • Leg pain, knee issues, hip issues, muscle pain, adhesions and scar tissue, old injuries, tendinitis, bursitis, misalignment, plantar fasciitis, fallen arches, sprained ankles
  • Neck and back pain, lower back issues, pelvic pain, painful and dislocated ribs, scoliosis, lordosis, sciatica, twisted spine, slipped discs
  • Headaches, migraines, eye strain, facial neuralgia, Bell’s palsy, jaw issues, teeth clenching, bruxism and grinding
  • Arm and hand pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, RSI, tendinitis, tennis elbow, golfer elbow, painful thumbs
  • Premenstrual pain and cramps

Pain Management Clinics LondonThis is not an exhaustive list, if you are experiencing pain other than the symptoms listed above, please contact Simon to find out if he can help you.

Please note, certain pains should be referred to a doctor, such a chest pain or abdominal pain as this may be an indication of a more serious health problem.

If you have a suspected break or fracture then you should go to your nearest hospital for treatment. Come to see Simon when the bone has healed and he can help with the rehabilitation process.  Other parts of your body can be worked on while the fracture or break is healing,

Contact Simon today to get a free consultation and book your space in the clinic

Treatments available in 3 London Pain Management Clinics:

Physical Health Clinic, Moorgate (EC1Y)

Snowfields Wellness, London Bridge

Canvas and Cream Therapy room, Forest Hill

Home visits also available – contact us to ask about availability

To book your Pain Management treatment, contact us on info@TheShiatsuGuy.com

Simon was able to treat me from my office The Shiatsu massage I received from Simon managed to release a lot of my tension during a stressful few weeks I had been experiencing.  His approach and detailed explanation of the treatment he would give me was very much appreciated and interesting, as I knew little about this type of massage beforehand. Working on a computer all day, I tend to fall into bad habits. After the massage I was sitting up tall and felt revived, I would recommend anyone who has not had a Shiatsu massage before to experience it. Even better Simon was able to treat me from my office, which saved me valuable time, it would have taken me weeks to actually make an appointment myself, so I would say to anyone go on and give it a try.
Tina TosarCompany DirectorLondon, UK

Shiatsu for mothers

It’s tough being a Mum so try Shiatsu for all stages of motherhood – enhance your immune system, relax, take time out for yourself, and get rid of that nagging back pain – all in as little as 60 minutes!

Shiatsu for Fertility

When you’re getting ready to have a child Shiatsu can help prepare you for fertility; by encouraging the right balance of hormones, reducing stress, relaxing the mum-to-be and reducing anxiety about conceiving. Shiatsu will also help you get in the best shape of your life in order to support the baby’s future development and give the best start in life.

Shiatsu for Mums

Shiatsu in the First trimester

Having conceived it’s important to use shiatsu to support mum’s health and energy, as well as early foetal development. Job stress and life pressures can have a negative effect on the young foetus, so it’s important to utilise shiatsu at this stage to support your health by de-stressing regularly and taking some time out of your busy schedule. There are certain pressure points that it’s important to avoid during the first trimester: the top of the shoulder, above the ankle bone on the inside of the leg, and the web of the hand between the thumb and forefinger (though all of these are very useful later in pregnancy… Read on)

Shiatsu in the second trimester

Now the baby is established and starting to grow/show… so it’s time to support the growth of the baby and the changes in future-mums body. You can expect the beginning of backache, swelling feet, difficulty sleeping, and increased frequency of urination… Fun times!

So it’s really important to slow down, look after yourself and make sure it’s as easy as possible from here on out

Shiatsu in the third trimester

By now you may well have ballooned with baby and baby weight, so you need support with the extra weight you’re carrying. You’ll be feeling it in your feet, lower back and inside your pelvis. Your energy levels may well be at an all-time low, so regular shiatsu will be supporting your body as all these changes take place

Shiatsu around the Due Date

Remember those points we were avoiding in the first trimester? They’re about to come into their own! Those points encourage uterine contractions, not good when you’ve got a tiny teeny foetus holding on but great to encourage the birth! Shiatsu around the due date includes a series of points which relaxes mum and baby ready for delivery.

Shiatsu for late-term mothers

Shiatsu master Kensen Saito helped mothers as late as 43 conceive naturally using only shiatsu (having already miscarried) (p92)

Shiatsu can also be used in conjunction with IVF treatment as will have only positive interactions. supporting mum to relax, boosting the immune system, promoting the right mix of hormones to produce healthy eggs… Generally bringing balance to the system, optimum to fertility!

Postnatal Shiatsu

Support mum to recover from the ordeal of birth, recoup her energy, and adjust to the new role of being a mother (or a mother of multiple little people). Can also give mum much-needed space and emotional support post-birth, as well as help with post-natal depression and the baby blues.

Shiatsu for Mums in action

For Mums, it’s all go looking after the little ones and can contribute to back pain, low energy levels, and a feeling of overwhelm… Take the time to switch off, nurture and invest in yourself, boost your immune system, give yourself quality time, and support your sleep cycle all with a simple shiatsu treatment!

So for future mums, expecting mums, active mums… Shiatsu is a one-stop shop to make you feel like super mum again!

Treatments are available in Liverpool Street, London Bridge and Forest Hill clinics as well as in the comfort of your own home (travel may charges apply)

Contact us on info@theshiatsuguy.com to find out more and to book your Shiatsu session

Natural Treatment for Anxiety

Looking for a natural treatment for anxiety and panic attacks, with no side effects? You can start to feel the benefits in as little as 60 minutes

Is there a natural cure for panic attacks and anxiety?

This is a good question and depends a lot on your definition of ‘cure’ and the cause of your anxiety and panic attacks.

Natural Treatment for Anxiety

The pharmaceutical companies may say the only real cure is to chemically alter your brain to make anxiety impossible to experience, but that doesn’t sound very natural to me… Surely the feelings of anxiety and panic are serving a purpose; to give us warnings and keep us safe in some ways. But it seems that due to a number of factors these signals are turned up too high or are triggered at the wrong times.

And what about the host of potential side effects from taking prescription medication? Often anti-anxiety drugs may make you feel worse in other ways, listed side effects of popular anti-anxiety medication Venlafaxine are blurred vision, headaches, high blood pressure, chest pain, irregular heartbeat, mood changes, possible convulsions, swelling and changes to menstrual cycle. Who would want that? Who would risk feeling worse than they already do, with no real guarantee you’ll ever be free of the medication?

Natural anxiety relief

Whereas if we look at the causes of the anxiety and panic attacks, take a natural approach and try to rebalance the systems responsible for those feelings of panic and anxiety, we would be working towards a more balanced response to the anxiety triggers.

This may be the closest you’ll come to an actual ‘cure’ but it will be a natural one!

By focusing on releasing nervous tension, emotional anxiety and the physical symptoms of anxiety and panic attacks, you will be able to gain a greater degree of control over your life, eliminating the need for prescription medication and at the same time enhancing your overall health and wellbeing, instead of jeopardising it with side effects.

Shiatsu is an amazing natural massage technique that is especially effective when dealing with the connection between the physical, mental and emotional aspects of the body. Shiatsu is performed fully clothed on a futon on the floor or a traditional massage couch. A firm and steady pressure is applied with palms, thumbs and fingers to a series of energy lines and points throughout the body (meridians and pressure points, the same as acupuncture, but we don’t use needles). This pressure allows the body to release tension from the muscles, let go of stuck emotions, relax the mind and rebalance the central nervous system.

Shiatsu helps in many other ways below the radar: promoting the correct balance of hormones and chemistry in the body to enhance health and improve feelings of wellbeing. The only side effects are beneficial; such as reduced pain and tension, improved sleep, looser joints and muscles, improved concentration, enhanced immune system, improved mental clarity and much more…

Shiatsu sessions are generally 60 minutes in duration but can be 90 minutes or longer (by arrangement). A number of weekly or fortnightly sessions may be required to reduce the tension and anxiety levels to what feels manageable, then monthly maintenance sessions are advised to keep anxiety levels to a minimum. Extra sessions are recommended when experiencing greater levels of stress and pressure in life, to help you cope and carry on with your day-to-day life in as normal a way as possible.

Natural anxiety treatment

Simon has four London clinics and makes house calls within London and Bromley.

Reduced rate/subsidised treatments are available if your anxiety levels impact on your ability to work or study. Please contact Simon on 07951 621 308 or simon@TheShiatsuGuy.com

Remember a natural treatment for anxiety and panic attacks is available, with no side effects. You can start to feel the benefits in as little as 60 minutes!

Onsite Massage and Moshi Monsters

I recently attended an Evening Standard Business Connections event where Michael Acton-Smith of Mind Candy and Moshi Monsters was the guest speaker.

Moshi Monsters is one of the most successful UK startup companies, with 75 million registered users. Moshi Monsters is an online playground for children and their adopted Moshlings, cute and scary cartoon monsters.

Moshi Monster at Evening Standard Business Connections
Moshi Monster at Evening Standard Business Connections

Michael Acton-Smith first found success with university friend Tom Boardman when they launched Firebox.com, and particularly with their shot-glass chess set!

Between Firebox.com and Moshi Monsters Michael Acton-Smith founded Mind Candy and the locational puzzle game Perplex City, which by all accounts was a great learning experience but not a commercial success.

Since then Mind Candy hit it’s stride and Michael Acton-Smith has become a leading spokesman for the UK startup scene and one of it’s leading Entrepreneurs.

[pbp_pinit mediaurl=”http://www.theshiatsuguy.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Moshi-Monster-Wired.jpg” mediatype=”image” count=”none” description=”I met Michael Acton-Smith of Mind Candy and Moshi Monsters recently and got my Wired magazine signed :o)”]

Michael’s talk at the Evening Standard Business Connections event covered the development of his various businesses and what he sees as the future of the tech scene in London and the UK. The talk was followed by a Q and A session with a range of questions from the audience generally revolving around how to be successful in the UK startup scene.

Michael Acton-Smith at Evening Standard Business Connections
Michael Acton-Smith at Evening Standard Business Connections

After the presentation and Q & A Michael was swamped by people asking 1 to 1 questions, so my friend and I went off to eat cheese and drink wine at the buffet tables (it’s only natural).

Later having chatted so several of the other attendees and enjoyed the complementary snacks and drinks, Michael Acton-Smith appeared in the bar area with only 5 or so people around him.

This was my chance, I approached, was somehow standing in front of him very quickly… I pulled the Wired Magazine out of my back pocket (showing off my geek credentials) and got it signed. I then produced my business card and suggested to Michael that his growing staff team at Mind Candy might appreciate and benefit from Onsite Massage 🙂  Michael seemed to appreciate the novelty of my approach and the idea of treating his team to some massage.

[pbp_pinit mediaurl=”http://www.theshiatsuguy.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/Michael-Acton-Smith-Wired-Cover-Signed.jpg” mediatype=”image” count=”none” description=”I met Michael Acton Smith at the Evening Standard Business Connections event and got my UK Wired Magazine Signed!”]

He now had my card but the deal was not yet on the table…  I still had work to do…

At the time of writing this blog post I haven’t landed the sweet gig of working with Mind Candy and Moshi Monsters, but for me the action of going beyond my shy and reserved self was a big move and felt great.

I also made a pitch to a former Dragon of Dragons Den, which I’ve written about in this blog post. (coming soon)

The benefits of this sort of thing:

For me, it’s about going beyond my comfort zone, to actively promote my services (rather than letting my treatments, website and clients speak for me) and to make connections in real time and space.

My first Moshling
My first Moshling

For the new High Tech and Startup companies: A great way to look after your staff when wages and salaries may not be as high as the industry standard, when there is a lot of pressure on the team to produce the next release of software or launch a new product. It may even stop your best people being poached by another company who can offer them more money.

They say an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure… So by looking after your staff now you can save on future recruitment costs, lost productivity, sick leave, low morale and hangover days (just book me in for a day of onsite massage after a big social event and count how many more of the team turn up for work!)

[pbp_pinit mediaurl=”http://www.theshiatsuguy.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/My-first-Moshling-e1365246996120.jpg” mediatype=”image” count=”none” description=”My first Moshling! I might be a bit old for them but I think they’re really cool :)”]

So for example, for a regular booking of 5 hours per week, you could give 80 staff a massage per month, at a cost of around £1000, or £12.50 per head (for 15 minutes each) which is much cheaper than either a pay rise, recruiting a new team member or even in the lost productivity from a sick day, hangover or disgruntled and disenchanted member of the team…

It’s more of a positive contribution than a day of paint-balling (not to mention cheaper) and 5 minutes after their massage session has ended they’re back at their desk getting on with their tasks with a renewed enthusiasm and vigour!

Onsite Massage Chair
Onsite Massage Chair

I’m a low tech geek available for the high tech and Startup industry. I deliver an excellent massage, targeting the most important areas and getting real results in a short time.  I come to you with my specially designed massage chair and can deliver anything from 2 hours of chair massage right up to 7 hours of massage in a day. So anywhere from 8 staff up to 28 can receive a massage in a single day!

There are of course a range of massage lengths and regular bookings will receive a preferential rate…

[pbp_pinit mediaurl=”http://www.theshiatsuguy.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/onsite-massage-chair-office-chair-massage-corporate-chair-massage.jpg” mediatype=”image” count=”none” description=”Onsite Massage in my special massage chair, in Businesses and at Events throughout London. Contact me on info@OnsiteMassageLondon.co.uk to find out more”]

Get in touch now for some complementary sessions in your office*: simon@onsitemassagelondon.co.uk or call Simon on 07951 621 308

Stay tuned for updates on my mission to massage the Moshi Monsters!

*Ts & Cs apply, but get in touch anyway, it’s always good to talk 🙂

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Information about Cancer I gave my Mum

My mother was diagnosed with a particularly agressive forms of Uterine cancer on her ovaries, which only 7 weeks after being removed by surgery had grown back to the same size (large grapefruit, or two fists held together). So in December of 2012 my wife and I made a fast dash to my native New Zealand for what we thought would be a last Christmas and a farewell to my mother. But first I loaded her up with information about Cancer…

Before leaving I compiled a list of the best alternative and complementary cancer advice I could find on the internet from my favourite sources. (Dr Mercola and Dr Lam were the main sites)

Information about Cancer
Information about Cancer I gave to my Mum

She didn’t follow even half of the advice, but she chose a few and really stuck to them. While we were with her we cooked her healthy vegetarian food from fresh produce, filled with yummy super foods.

The main things she chose to do where:

No sugar or alcohol (right through the festive season, not an easy feat)

She stopped microwaving her coffee and tea (a weird practice that people of a certain generation seem to do all the time?)

She added frozen and grated lemons to EVERYTHING she ate (something to do with getting all of the nutrients, this came from a friend, not me)

But I think the most important thing she decided, was that she wasn’t ready to die yet! That it was worth fighting to life, it was worth having goals and plans beyond the next Chemo session… To me this was the single most important factor in her survival thus far (it’s now April of 2013, and she is still fighting!)


Update: As of October 2017 my mum is still alive and well, she has had over 100 chemo treatments, but went on to a drug trial working with Immunotherapy… Her tumour is much smaller than it was and has shrunk dramatically over the course of the immunotherapy treatments 🙂

My original email to her with information about Cancer is below:


Nutrition and diet advice for you to beat the beastie!

Hello Mumbo, I hope you’re feeling ok after the treatment…

So here is my quick digest of do’s and don’ts and also a bunch of links for further reading at the bottom…

These are taken from Dr Mercola (mercola.com) and Dr Lam (drlam.com) If I find more I will send it through to you, but for now this should keep you going for quite a while. I wouldn’t change anything you’re doing with the doctors, but

  • Cut out GMO foods
  • Eat Organic wherever possible
  • Cut out Sugars, artificial sweeteners and preservatives etc in food – or basically eat a natural whole-food diet
  • Cut out instant coffee (I know you love your coffee, but who knows what process they put that stuff through to get it to dissolve like that… drink organic ground coffee if you have to)
  • replace black/english tea with green tea, Matcha Green tea if it’s available – high in antioxidants!
  • Start taking Vitamin D3 supplements – oral spray is the best way to get it into your body quickly – can take with calcium too (don’t take D2 or cod liver oil)
  • Safe sun exposure over large parts of your body is the best way to get Vit D, but only until the skin turns the lightest pink
  • Might not be helpful at the moment, but keeping strong muscles is a good way to reduce the risk… a little late info perhaps…
  • Another important supplement is curcumin, which effectively addresses inflammation and has potent anti-cancer properties.
  • Apparently you should get your home checked for Radon gas (which comes from underground…) it’s easy to block it out…
  • Avoid non-stick cookware and stain resistant fabrics…
  • Check out your personal products (skin care, soaps and cosmetics) – Some of the most common culprits to avoid include SLS, parabens, phthalates, antibacterials, musks, 1,4-dioxane, mineral oil and petrolatum, hydroquinone, nano particles, formaldehyde and formaldehyde-producing ingredients.
  • Avoid canned foods and foods in plastic package and containers – they contain a chemical called BPA, which isn’t good for us.  Eat traditionally fermented foods to help break the BPA down and lower absorption in the intestines, as well as containing health bacteria.
  • Get rid of all of the chemical cleaners, use soap and water or 3% hydrogen peroxide and vinegar
  • Use Green building materials… there are lots of harmful chemicals in paint, varnish etc, get low or no VOC paints (Volatile Organic Compounds)
  • Don’t put chemicals on your garden if you’re going to eat the produce…
  • Sleep in complete darkness, or wear an eye shade – get rid of night lights, block street lights getting in through the window, cover clock radios with lights, don’t turn the light on when you go to the toilet in the night etc
  • Eat Onions and Garlic! Often!
  • Take Calcium Carbonate and Magnesium (30-60 minutes before meals or 60-120 minutes after, so as not to reduce effectiveness of digestion)
  • Proper exercise is important! See the link below


Take mega doses of Vitamin C daily!

Over 5,000 studies have been conducted on vitamin C, and here is the general parameter on a daily intake basis:

· Prevention of scurvy – 35 mg

· Low Dose – Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) – 80 mg

· General well being: 100-300 mg

· Anti-aging Dose: 300 – 2,000 mg

· High Dose – 2,000 – 10,000 mg (where cancer cells are killed and normal cells are spared) 

· Very High Dose – for Active cancer treatment alone or as adjunct to conventional treatment: 5 gram to 50 grams (by mouth and IV) 

· Toxic Dose – where cancer calls and normal cells are both killed. There is no established toxic dose.

(Recommend to take 2000 to 10,000 mg per day… Dr Lam offers a consultation via email depending on your particular case: http://www.drlam.com/askme.asp)


Build your Immune system: Take cats claw, Oliver leaf extract, Fish Oils, Mstletoe (aka Iscador treatment – involved subcutaneous injections, do more research on this yourself perhaps?), Miatake, Shitaki and Reishi Mushroom extracts, and super mushroom Agaricus Blazei Murill(ABM). Also take Gotu Kola (a herb that has anti-inflamatory benefits amongst others)



When the Treatment is Worse than the Disease…

Perhaps more importantly, most conventional cancer treatments tend to add insult to injury by doing more harm than good — a fact that has been largely swept under the rug by the medical industry.

Meanwhile, the real culprits—the underlying causes—are completely ignored, and that is, I believe, the root of the problem. The cancer industry has become a massive for-profit business that is doing everything in its power to maintain the status quo. It is, quite simply, not interested in truly reducing cancer rates; it’s interested in treating cancer. From that perspective, the more cancer cases the better…

Information about Cancer – Winning the War Against Cancer Begins with Your Personal Choices

You can do a lot, right now, to significantly decrease your cancer risk. Even the conservative American Cancer Society states that one-third of cancer deaths are linked to poor diet, physical inactivity, and carrying excess weight. So making the following healthy lifestyle changes can go a very long way toward ending the failure-streak and becoming one less statistic in this war against cancer:

1. Normalize your vitamin D levels with safe amounts of sun exposure. This works primarily by optimizing your vitamin D level. Ideally, monitor your vitamin D levels throughout the year.

2. Control your insulin levels by limiting your intake of processed foods and sugars/fructose as much as possible.

3. Get appropriate amounts of animal-based omega-3 fats.

4. Get appropriate exercise. One of the primary reasons exercise works is that it drives your insulin levels down. Controlling insulin levels is one of the most powerful ways to reduce your cancer risks.

5. Eat according to your nutritional type. The potent anti-cancer effects of this principle are very much underappreciated. When we treat cancer patients in our clinic this is one of the most powerful anti-cancer strategies we have.

6. Have a tool to permanently erase the neurological short-circuiting that can activate cancer genes. Even the CDC states that 85 percent of disease is caused by emotions. It is likely that this factor may be more important than all the other physical ones listed here, so make sure this is addressed. My particular favorite tool for this purpose, as you may know, is the Emotional Freedom Technique.

7. Only 25 percent of people eat enough vegetables, so by all means eat as many vegetables as you are comfortable with. Ideally, they should be fresh and organicCruciferous vegetables in particular have been identified as having potent anti-cancer properties. Remember that carb nutritional types may need up to 300 percent more vegetables than protein nutritional types.

8. Maintain an ideal body weight.

9. Get enough high-quality sleep.

10. Reduce your exposure to environmental toxins like pesticides, household chemical cleaners, synthetic air freshenersand air pollution.

11. Reduce your use of cell phones and other wireless technologies, and implement as many safety strategies as possibleif/when you cannot avoid their use.

12. Boil, poach or steam your foods, rather than frying or charbroiling them.

13. Avoid BPA, phthalates and other xenoestrogens.

14. Watch your iron levels.

15. Make sure you’re not iodine deficient




VIT D INFO** http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/03/11/is-vitamin-d-the-silver-bullet-for-cancer.aspx


More Vit D info  http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2009/06/11/New-Model-Of-Cancer-Development-Vitamin-D-is-the-Key.aspx

7 slides of things to eliminate in your home and life http://articles.mercola.com/sites/mercola/slider/cancer-proof-slider.html


Interesting info about the increase in cancer predicted over the next 20 odd years http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/12/19/why-are-cancer-cases-rising-by-nearly-50-in-the-next-20-years.aspx

Info on 12 top tips to reducing cancer http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/10/15/mayo-clinic-finds-massive-fraud-in-cancer-research.aspx


More Vit D info http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2011/08/06/why-we-dont-have-a-cure-for-cancer-yet-or-do-we.aspx



This is important Re: Exercise** http://fitness.mercola.com/sites/fitness/archive/2012/09/21/exercise-helps-cancer-patients.aspx

AntiOxidants are important**  http://www.drlam.com/articles/cancer_and_antioxidants.asp

Build your immunity** http://www.drlam.com/articles/cancer_and_immunity.asp


Eat an Alkaline diet

10 Alkaline Foods that Will Clean, Repair and Produce New Cells in Your Body – Infographic