I am a yoga girl because I choose to shine my light into the world. I am a joyful human being that strives to live with passion and purpose. I am a healer and a student that uses nature, food, and yoga as therapy and a way of life. I practice yoga to make the world a better place.
My name is Nazirber De La Cruz and I am a Latina nutritionist living in New York. I have been listening to Spanish-speaking immigrants for my entire career. I’ve listened to their stories and each one is as unique as the person who shared it. They ask about diets to lose weight, weight loss surgery, how to manage their blood sugars and hormones, improve digestion, among other conundrums. They’re concerned about their appearance and their health. I always ask one question, “could you share with me one thing that you like about yourself?” It’s almost always a blank response.
In the eyes of western medicine my job puts me responsible to help people whom their weight is classified as “overweight” or even worse, “obese”, to get them back to their “ideal” weight based on their doctor’s recommendation. As a nature lover, I wanted to learn how to heal the body with plants, but I struggled with helping my patients feel good about eating. Over the years I have learnt that the reality is that my patients are looking for all the things outside of themselves that can only be filled from the inside. Yoga has been an incredible tool for me to discover how I can truly connect and help people see their own beauty.
The first time I rolled my mat was at age twenty with two college friends who invited me to do yin-yang hot yoga in the city. After my one-hour practice in a 103 degrees heated room I was hooked. Yoga started as a form of movement for me. Over the years I have discovered the world of yoga and meditation and it has become a way of living. My practice and recommendations to patients are now all about deep listening to what their body needs. The work I do is not centered into weight loss and diet. I provide therapy to nourish the body and reinvigorate the spirit.
Today my yoga practice means a lot more than a 60 minutes sweaty movement like the first time. It’s about living from my heart, being with myself at home, getting my inner child out during a partner yoga class with my hubby, or practicing deep listening and compassion with my patients.
Yoga is a reemergence of viewing myself and my patients as a whole person that need to fall in love with themselves again. Self-love, I believe, is where real health comes from.