New for October at Heidi Ella Wellness and Massage

The beautiful crisp Fall weather conjures up images of apple picking, crunching through knee deep leaf piles and…colds? Yes, sadly this is the beginning of cold and flu season. With that in mind, our focus this month will be Immune Boosting. Be sure to check back on the blog for educational posts and healthy, immune-boosting recipes!

October Special

We will be offering a special package of an Immune Boost Foot Soak with a 30 Minute Reflexology session targeting immune points along the foot. This 50 minute treatment is yours for $60.00 Be prepared to leave The Wellness Center restored and replenished and ready to tackle whatever comes your way. Book online here.

New for Heidi

Heidi just returned from an advanced workshop in Myofascial Release. She continues her excellence for working with clients to address structural imbalances caused by fascia. Her expert and well-educated hands will help you find new balance on and off the table. Book with her today and see how she can help you on your path to healing!

New for Janet

Feeling sluggish and rundown? Recovering from an illness or surgery? You may need some Manual Lymph Drainage. This gentle and relaxing modality can help encourage the lymph system and balance the body. Many clients report feeling relaxed and energized after. Perfect for helping to support the immune system for the beginning of Fall. Add a foot soak with Immune Boost for added benefit. Book today!

DIY Holistic Skincare Workshop

September 15, 2016 4:00pm-6:00pm

Heidi and Elizabeth will once again be leading the popular skincare workshop. This 2 hour workshop will give you the opportunity to learn about foods that enhance your skin’s own natural glow from Certified Nutrition Specialist Elizabeth Owens. Heidi Viverios will lead you through the dangers lurking in conventional skincare items and how to make your own safe and effective natural skincare products. $80.00 per person. Book online here or call 703-323-1563 for more information.

New Yoga Quarter Beginning with 2 New Classes at The Wellness Center

The Wellness Center offers a full range of yoga classes for everyone from the newest beginner to advanced yogis. Be sure to check out the website for a complete list and schedule.

New to the Schedule for October:

Hatha Yoga
Led by Janet Brown
Tuesdays 6:00pm (NEW)

Hatha yoga is the “yoga of balance”. In this class we will seek to unite styles and create inner awareness to bring your inner and outer body to a state of equilibrium. Perfect for the beginner or experienced yogi alike; this class is about YOUR yoga practice. You will be led through poses and breathing exercises that will foster knowledge and appreciation for your body in hope that you carry the balance created in class with you off the mat and into life.

Prenatal Yoga 
Led by Janet Brown
Tuesdays 7:15pm
Saturdays 1:30pm (NEW)

We are pleased to continue offering Prenatal Yoga at The Wellness Center this quarter.  This Yoga series will be devoted to learning asana (postures) and pranayama (breathing) to prepare for childbirth. We will use gentle and restorative yoga and breathing exercises to strengthen body and mind in anticipation of labor.  Part Yoga, part childbirth education, this class will see you challenged in the second trimester and supported in through your third.

The Wellness Center is a full-spectrum healing center offering massage therapy, acupuncture, yoga and Pilates We seek to keep the class sizes small to encourage questions and discussion. Please dress in comfortable clothes you can move in. You should also bring a yoga mat. All other props will be provided for you at the studio.

Recipe of the Month: Ayurvedic Postpartum Porridge

From an ayurvedic perspective, the mother is supposed to rest and recuperate the first 42 days after childbirth. During this time she should eat soothing and lubricating foods that restore inner heat and keep the mother hydrated. Today, we will look at an easy to prepare breakfast staple that will encourage healing and milk production.

Cook Time: 30-40 mins

1/2 c rolled oats

2 c water

1 tbsp of ghee (clarified butter)

1 tsp cinnamon

1/2 tsp cardamom

1/2 tsp fenugreek

1/2 tsp ground ginger

maple syrup to taste

Cook the oats and water for 30-40 minutes. The ending porridge should resemble a thin soup. In the last 5 minutes of cooking, add the remaining ingredients. Should be eaten warm, but not too hot. Adding chopped sweet almonds would also add additional pacifying and healing qualities, in addition to protein and milk production benefits. The oats and the fenugreek also promote lactation. The ginger and the cinnamon are warming and promote healing. Bring this dish to a new mother…and then do some laundry and hold the baby while she eats. 😉


Holistic Postpartum Care

In many traditional cultures, mothers  spend the first 40 days of the postpartum period being cared for by family and friends. They remain home to heal from the rigors of childbirth and learn about their new baby. As she heals, she is given specific foods and holistic treatment to care for her, body and soul.

In several European countries, women after childbirth are assigned postpartum helpers to help make sure the mother and baby unit are allowed to bond, to facilitate successful breastfeeding and to make sure the mother can focus on rest and recovery. They also put an emphasis on whole body recovery, including pelvic floor health.

In the United States, help is often a luxury and maternity leave is not always a given. It can be difficult to care for mom and baby after birth. We will now talk about some ways to help the healing process and make the transition into motherhood easier.

Herbals Sitz Baths

A sitz bath is a shallow pan that is used to help promote healing in the pelvic floor region. It can contain herbs and salt or just plain warm water. The herbs are usually astringent, healing and tonifying herbs to help promote blood flow and reduce inflammation. You can find many pre-made postpartum herbal mixes or check here for a DIY version.

Belly Binding

Many traditional cultures use belly binding as a way to encourage the involution of the uterus and support core muscles after childbirth. After the initial treatment, the mother will learn how to use the wrap herself in order to continue getting the benefit in the postpartum period. Many women find this to be especially useful post-cesarean.

Postpartum Massage

Postpartum massage helps the mother recover after pregnancy and childbirth. It can also help to the mother begin to be in her new body, that for better or worse, has changed. The therapist will use gentle massage techniques, hydrotherapy, manual lymph drainage and other customized therapies to help promote healing and restore the mother’s health and wellness.

Placenta Encapsulation

This is the process of drying and preparing the placenta for ingestion. Traditional Chinese Medicine has promoted the use of placenta encapsulation for thousands of years. It is believed to help with postpartum mood and hormonal regulation. While much of the information regarding efficacy is anecdotal, it is has not been researched in great depth. There is also not a risk to the mother if she is ingesting properly prepared pills. Be sure to look for a placenta encapsulation specialist that is trained in the proper handling of placentas.


Nutritional needs change from pregnancy to postpartum. You may have increased (yes, that says increased) nutritional needs to help your body heal and to keep up with breastfeeding. While you will be encouraged to continue taking your prenatal vitamins, you may also need to increase your calcium intake as well. This can be through food sources and/or supplements. Healthy fats will also help promote recovery and help produce balanced milk. If you are unsure of your nutritional needs, many nutritionists specialize in prenatal and postnatal heath and wellness.


Exercise in the postpartum period is key for maintaining overall health and supporting a healthy balance of physical and emotional health. Moderation is key. Too much and you can do damage that has repercussions years later. The core and pelvic floor will need time and support to return to normal after childbirth. Working with an expert in postnatal exercise can help you get back into your body in a safe manner.


Postpartum Maternal Health Care in the United States: A Critical Review

Postpartum Belly Binding

Placental Encapsulation

Placenta Encapsulation

Postpartum Counseling: Diet, Exercise and Nutrition

You Don’t Have to Be Normal: The Reality of Postpartum Fitness



Product of the Month: Herbal Postpartum Sitz Bath


It is no secret that childbirth can be difficult on the body. Our Herbal Postpartum Sitz Bath can help to soothe tired and inflamed areas. It contains gentle herbs to restore and tonify as well as astringent herbs and salt to heal and comfort. Each bag contains enough mix for 3 sitz baths in the postpartum period.

Our sitz bath contains:

  • Sea Salt
  • Lavender
  • Calendula
  • Uva Ursi

This is an excellent addition to your own birth kit for after baby or as a gift for a mom-to-be. $15.00 per bag