Waist Beads and Weight Loss

 

Waist Beads are an excellent tool for women to feel more feminine and beautiful. These beautiful gemstone waist beads are usually hand made and customized. The tradition of wearing beads is an age-old one. They have been worn for varying reasons by royalty for body adornment, deification and decoration.

The wearing of beads on the waist was made popular by West Africans, specifically Nigerians. Overtime the culture of the use of beads has been associated with both spiritual and material reasons. In some parts of Africa, the beads are anointed in oils.

This practice aids in sensory pleasure for the man. Some beads are adorned with bells, which is a signal to let the man know that the woman wants to engage in sexual intercourse. The Yorubas have a revered usage attached to the waist beads. It is also worn as a form of birth control, as a way of preventing obesity or also for their, healing and therapeutic powers.

As far a waist training, waist beads are being used more and more in North America as a way to control weight gain and shrink your waist. Naturally, as the beads get tighter, you know you’re gaining a few pounds. So you can nip that weight gain in the bud before you’re struggling to button your jeans.

Here’s a few key things to remember when using waist beads for weight control:
1. Know Your Position – It’s important to know where your waist beads are sitting. If you want to use them for weight and waist control be sure to position them around your stomach and not just on top of your hips. They may look sexy on your hips, but they are doing nothing for your weight control. It’s also important to take them off at night

2. Know When To Eat – Even though you may feel that tight fit of your waist beads on days that you are heavier, it’s important to not stop eating all together–just change what you’re eating. When those waist beads tighten be sure to

…eat foods that will help flush our your kidneys and help you go to the bathroom on a regular basis (carrots, celery, juice blends, etc). That will help get rid of the excess weight you may feel around your waist. Also, stay away from salty foods when that happens because that will store up more water weight than you need.

3. Know The Feeling – They’re waist beads so enjoy them! Utilizing your waist beads as a fun tool to attract/tease your lover is great exercise for your mid-section (think belly dance moves). Also, throughout the day, don’t be afraid to contract and expand your stomach to work your stomach muscles. A good method for those who sit most of the day is to sit straight up and tighten your waist for a total of 5 minutes, then relax for two. Do this 4 times then repeat the whole exercise at least 3 times a day.

There you have it: beauty and history combine allowing all of us to define and embrace our curves.

 

 

Adinkra Waist Beads

Here’s a little story about the power of adinkra symbols.
About two years ago, a young woman came to visit me to purchase some waist beads. As she viewed the selection, she became excited when she saw a set of amethyst waist beads adorned with the gye nyame adinkra symbol. “What’s this?” she asked.
I explained an adinkra is a West African symbol, and each one presents a cultural message or wisdom. The gye nyame represents the power of Spirit with the message, “I fear no one but God.”
“Wow,” said young woman. “I never knew that!”
She then showed me the gye nyame she had tattooed on her shoulder! “You got that tattoo without knowing what it meant?” I asked, amazed.
“I got it about 6 months ago and the artist wasn’t sure of its meaning
,” she replied. “But I was drawn to it. I just liked the way it looked.” The adinkra’s meaning couldn’t have been revealed at a more appropriate time because she was experiencing a life-threatening illness and needed her courage.
Somehow our ancestors knew.

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Click here for adinkra waistbeads by Wrap and Soul

Waistbeads Among The Yoruba

FROM: ngrguardiannews.com

By Alloysius Nduka Duru

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THE use of beads especially waist beads in Nigeria is widespread across the various nationalities that make up the nation. There are similarities and peculiarities in their usage. However, the Yorubas developed the most varying and peculiar uses for waist beads. The Yorubas have developed a culture of bead usage that cuts across both material and spiritual aspects of the life of the people. In addition, they have also the capacity to produce the beads for varying purposes ranging from royalty, body adornment, deification and decoration.

The Yorubas are found in the southwest geopolitical delineation of present-day Nigeria. They are a vibrant and social people who accentuate their way of life in their day-to-day activities.

Beads are usually small round piece of glass, wood, metal or nut, pierced for stringing. They are either used for adornment such as the waist, neck, ankle or as decorative ornament in art work or even for royalty.

The art of beading is serial in process and serrated in composition. It has a step-by-step or one-by-one approach in stringing and when traded together, the beads stand for unity, togetherness and solidarity.

Beads of the waist are believed to posses the power to attract and evoke deep emotional responses; they are a sign of success and affluence as well as spiritual well being.

The origin of the Nigerian beads is still speculative due to its fragility portability and popularity.

Beads have been traded and used since time immemorial. However, the earliest known African beads are traced to Libya and Sudan. In Nigeria, the Nok terracottes and Igb Ukwu art display the use of beads in those societies as early as 500 B.C., however there is no concrete statement of origin to the beads.

A common usage of the item is for adornment especially on the waist. There is however varying purpose for which people adorn the waist beads.

Waistbeads are mostly worn by women folk, only in exceptional theatrical perform will a man adorn waistbeads to symbolize feminism. The waistbeads are synonymous with feminism.

The Yorubas have esteemed usage attached to the waistbeads. They refer to the waist bead as Ileke, “lagidigba” the term lagidigba means something big, thick or massive. The lagidigba is made of palm nut shells string together, while the bebe is made of glass.

The Yorubas have a belief that the waist beads posses some erotic appeal; they have the power to provoke desire or deep emotional response on the opposite sex.

Waist beads are also used by the Yoruba for birth control; the beads are laced with charms and worn by the women to prevent conception.

Beads are a precious ornaments to the Yorubas, hence when adorned by a women, accentuates her feminism or beauty. Beads also helps to portray the chastity of a maiden or women sensuality. Parent show their love for their girl child through gifts of waist beads that are colourful and expensive.

The lagidigba or palm nut shell beads is used for fecundity purposes. The nuts signify multiple births as they are in clusters, thus one can infer the high incidence of multiple births in Yoruba land to the usage of the lagidigba bead.

Brides seduce their spouses with the beads they adorn; some women are said to lace their beads with charms to make them irresistible to the male folks. The Yorubas can easily comment on a women’s moral standing by interpretation of the movement of the waist bead she wears. The way she moves her buttocks can depict her morals as either seductive or reserved.46b8_2

The Yorubas have a popular saying: “It is the beads that makes the buttocks to shake.”

Other users of the waist beads in Yoruba land are the Orisas or devotes of water deities and other priestesses, they adorn the waist beads for protection against spiritual attacks as well as part of their dress regalia.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

TO BE CONTINUED

In Namibia, Waistbeads Are More Than Ornaments

BY CLEMENCE TASHAYAMusicians_and_dancers_on_fresco_at_Tomb_of_Nebamun

EENHANA, Namibia — Waistbeads date back to ancient Egypt, where painting of dancers wearing the beads appear on tombs walls, according to a former educationist, historian and now a pensioner here in Ohangwena region.

The tradition has since spread through several continents and centuries to include women in various cultures, including Namibia. According to Meme Paulina Omaholo, this cultural practice is also in the United States of America. Waistbeads have a number of different purposes and perhaps even more different styles. She says waistbeads can be very simple or incredibly elaborate. Beads can be of any size and material, including glass stone, clay and sandalwood or other material. Some African women add fragrant oil to their beads, Omaholo notes, while mostly the Namibian Oshiwambo women add gems and crystal to add healing properties.

Most Oshiwambo cultures wear at least two or more strands of waist beads, although an even number of strands brings bad luck in some other cultures in Namibian regions such as the Damara/Nama, Silozi and Tswana tribes. African women have traditionally worn waistbeads beneath their clothing, yet other cultures proudly display the beads over their clothes or on bare midriffs.

Waistbeads can serve as a symbol of femininity. The beads were an integral part of all African women initiation lodges and ceremonies in the old dynasties, according to the Oshiwambo tradition and culture. Young females began to wearbeads when they started to menstruate, marking their passage from girlhood to womanhood. “The beads may have also served as a kind of belt onto which the ‘monthly cloth’ was attached,” Omaholo adds.

In other areas, waistbeads are gifts to young women about to marry, according to Omaholo. “Women of other regions in Africa wear the beads while pregnant or use the beads in foreplay to entice their husbands as in the Zambezi region here in Namibia and as well as in Malawi, Zambia and other parts of Angola and Zimbabwe. Others start to wear the beads as young girls after receiving a set as a baby gift.

African folklore gives waist beads special powers, Lungowe Simataa from the Zambezi region says. The beads, worn to define the waist, help hold their shape. They also serve to help women hold onto their mate. Protection is another function of the beads, as they encircle the body and close off the circuits of energy. “Wearers are thus protected from obsessive thoughts, negative spirits and even vampires,” Simataa adds.

Ornamentation is a major role for waistbeads. In the Zambezi region and other cultures in West Africa, the beads served to transform women into “walking charms,” she says. “Since beads were considered money all over Africa, waistbeads were both ornamentation as well as dowry in matriarchal societies. A husband-to-be would give his bride to be a set of waistbeads accompanied by beads for her neck, arms, wrists and ankles.

Throughout parts of the world, Simataa notes, waist beads were worn for aesthetics, largely considered an item of beauty.

Waistbeads have a long history in Africa and they have also filtered into other cultures. Belly dancers in Far Eastern cultures have embraced the beads as have women of Islamic cultures. They prominently display the beads during their dances, while some wear them beneath their clothes.

Reprinted from: http://allafrica.com/

Waistbeads: An Age-Old Tradition, A Modern Trend

 

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It might just be the prettiest trend you’ll never see.

Oh, you might get a peek now and then. Tica Bowden says she spies glimpses of color all the time lately, as a woman leans over a certain way and the glistening glow of her African waist beads makes a coy cameo appearance.

They’re everywhere, but “they’re not for show,” said Bowden, owner of Creative Waist Beads by Journey Armon (her children’s names) in Oakland. “In African tradition, waist beads are meant to be worn under clothing,” she said. “They’re for you. It’s personal. The meaning of the colors varies with every tribe — it’s kind of like visual dialects. And here in America it’s certainly a form of personal expression and individual interpretation. They’re for all women — any body type, any race, any background.”

Think of them as colorful strands of femininity — vibrant glass or clay beads, gemstones, pieces of horn, shells and sometimes gold or silver fittings, strung together by hand and tailored to embrace a woman’s individual midsection.

Yet they’re more than just pretty baubles. The hues — and the reasons for wearing them — bear myriad meanings and a modicum of mystery and folklore. While the practice dates back centuries in various regions of Africa, even depicted in Egyptian hieroglyphics and taking on different interpretations in other cultures, it has become increasingly popular in the United States during the past couple of years. Now waist beads are often sold at house parties and bridal showers in the style of Tupperware and Mary Kay — a sign they’ve clearly taken on trend status in American culture.

Ndeya Berryman of Waist Beads by Ndeya in East Palo Alto gives two to six house parties per month.

“(They’re) addictive,” Berryman said. “I’ve had women who get one strand then quickly come back for more.”

ADORN, APPRECIATE

A big reason for the modern popularity of waist beads is the sense of empowerment they provide over an area of the female form that’s often a source of physical discomfort or embarrassment over extra pounds.

“Most women have an issue with their middle section, and the last thing they want to do is draw more attention to that area,” said Sewra Kidane of Waist Beads by Sewra, who has been wearing and making the jewelry since 1999. She sells the beads at art shows all around the country and has a booming online business. “By putting on something very beautiful and adorning that area, you accept your body more, appreciate the beauty of it.”

Berryman says the beads are a wonderful way to combat the unrealistic body images women see in magazines and on fashion runways.

“So many things in the media are telling us not to be happy with who — and what shape — we are,” she said. Berryman started wearing beads in 2005 — a gift after her second child was born — and they immediately increased her self-confidence.

“I have stretch marks, and I don’t have the perfect body,” she said. “But it doesn’t matter if someone else doesn’t think I have the perfect shape. (The beads) honor that shape. Our midsection is our center of balance. We need to be aware of the womb area. We carry a lot of miracles in that section.”

STRANDS OF FOLKLORE

She now sells beads to women with waistlines from 20 to 65 inches and of all ages — from young women to clients in their 60s and 70s.

During an interview at her home studio last week, Bowden tugged up her tank top to reveal several strands of vibrant greens and blues swirling about her waist — colors that, to her, symbolize growth, humankind’s connection to the land and her own African heritage.

Historians believe the African tradition of waist beads may have originated among the Yoruba tribes, now mainly in Nigeria. But the practice is also seen in West Africa, notably Ghana, where the beads signify wealth and aristocracy, as well as femininity. Waist beads are also found in other cultures, and while African and Islamic women typically keep them under wraps, some display the beads over their clothes or on bare midriffs, such as belly dancers in Eastern cultures.

Beads, which are typically worn at all times — even while bathing or sleeping — can serve as symbols of sensuality, fertility and rites of passage, passed down from mother to daughter. There are superstitions about pregnancy and the energies of the Earth. Some see them as conveyors of positive energy and healing. Some wear them strictly for fashion. And still others choose them for the very practical use of weight control — when your beads are getting a little tight, it’s time to back off that blueberry muffin.

Jinina Knox, 40, of Oakland, a nurse who works with autistic children, bought her first set of beads a couple of years ago when Berryman gave a presentation at a bridal shower. Knox, not a small woman, loves the idea that the beads embrace all sizes, defying media images of what’s beautiful.

“I felt sexy the moment I put them on,” she said. “They are definitely not just for the skinny woman. You go walking naked past a mirror and see this gorgeous jewelry hanging on you. It makes you feel beautiful. They’re for the confident, vivacious woman, whatever size she is.”

What they mean

While the colors in African waist beads are open to interpretation, some traditions equate certain qualities to various hues:

Blue: knowledge, healing, peace, truth, harmony — a cooling color symbolizing faith, devotion, deep insight.
Green: prosperity, hope, harmony, healing and ripening, encouraging the wearer to love nature and be generous, humble and self-controlled.
Red: self-confidence, vitality, sexual energy, passion, courage.
Yellow: wisdom, knowledge, clarity, increasing awareness and calming nerves.

Angela Hill, Oakland Tribune.  7/31/12 San Jose Mercury News

 

 

 

 

 

Celebrate Black Love Day

Celebrate Black Love Day Feb. 14

The centerpiece of these beautiful aquamarine waistbeads is the heart-shaped African adinkra symbol, the Sankofa. In the Akan language of Ghana, Sanfoka translates to “go back and take,” and the word is often linked to the proverb, “It is not wrong to go back for that which you have forgotten.” This phrase holds special meaning for the people of the African Diaspora.
Pale blue-green aquamarine was popular among the ancient Egyptians, they believed the stone was a symbol of happiness and eternal youth.

The heart shape and the special significance makes it the perfect gift for Black Love Day – St. Valentine’s. One of a kind! Only $25.

For