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Showing posts from September, 2010

Lead in Children's Apple Juice

Clutter and Your Health

"Often people say that their homes aren't dirty, they're just cluttered. But clutter inhibits you from being able to clean your home well, as it is hard to clean behind and around things. Clutter promotes the buildup of dirt and allergens and increases your household's chances of respiratory problems. The health problems caused by clutter aren't just physical. In 1996, psychologists defined compulsive hoarding syndrome as a psychological disorder. In homes with severe cluttering, the residents nearly always suffer from anxiety or depression."

The previous paragraph was taken from the book "It's All Too Much," by Peter Walsh (professional Organizer from TLC's hit series "Clean Sweep"). Among many good ideas, this statement struck me to be the most profound in that I never considered how the act of acquiring more and more "stuff" as we seek to find satisfaction and security in our lives (aka: happiness) can actually become …

A Single Massage Can Boost the Immune System

Devotees of massage therapy know it's relaxing and feels good. But massage may also be an effective tool for maintaining good health. Researchers from Cedars-Sinai Medical Center reported this week that a single massage produced measurable changes in the immune system and endocrine system of healthy adults.

The researchers, led by Dr. Mark Rapaport, studied 29 healthy adults who received a 45-minute Swedish massage and 24 healthy adults who had a 45-minute session of light touch massage, a much milder exercise that served as a comparison to the more vigorous Swedish massage. Blood samples were taken before the massage began and at regular intervals up to one hour after the massage was completed.

The study found several changes in the blood tests of the Swedish massage group that indicated a benefit to the immune system. For example, Swedish massage caused sizeable decreases in arginine vasopressin, a hormone that contributes to aggressive behavior, and small decreases in the stre…

Becoming an Eco-Conscious Eater

So, maybe you’ve heard that there is a food related weight epidemic in America.You might have even read that, according to the U.S. Government's Weight-control Information Network (WIN), over one-third of Americans are considered to be obese. But, there is more that affects Americans (and essentially the world) than just over consumption and poor food choices. It’s the fact that our eating affects our eco-system. I recently learned that the food processing systems usually used to produce & preserve many favorite foods are responsible for up to one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions, and that an average 73% of all fruits and vegetables tested by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) were positive for pesticides. It is for more reasons than those mentioned above, that I suggest this: If you are going to be vigilant about what you eat (whether it’s to assist in weight loss or simply to contribute to your overall health), why not contribute to a healthier environment as well? Af…

Making the Time for More Meaningful Living

Everyone wants to have a "meaningful life", a concept that many whole-life wellness coaches encourage as a way to minimize stress and maximize the effects of things like exercise and meditation techniques.
Common wisdom holds that in order to give life more meaning, an individual should try to limit the time spent working, and increase free time. According to researcher Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, (yes, that’s his real name) however, this may not always be effective. While the average American spends approximately five hours per day involved in leisure activities, according to the 2009 U.S. Department of Labor "American Time Use Survey", not all of these leisure activities contribute to what would be described as a "meaningful life." According to Csikszentmihalyi, while most people claim they are happier at home during their free time than at work, their happiness tended to be higher at work than at home. Why? Because in many cases work represents order, stabil…

Understanding Cholesterol

If you don't understand everything about cholesterol, you're not alone. Cholesterol can be confusing. There's good and bad cholesterol and numbers that go with each. To actively manage your cholesterol, you need to know about the different kinds of cholesterol and the different ways to reach your cholesterol goal.

Know the Basics Cholesterol is a fat that your body needs. But too much of it can build up as plaque along the walls of your arteries, which can reduce blood flow and increase your risk of heart disease.

The Good and the Bad LDL is called "Bad" Cholesterol because it builds up in your arteries. HDL is known as "Good" Cholesterol because it helps remove the Bad Cholesterol from your body.

Food and Exercise Some foods, such as egg yolks and fatty red meat, increase LDL "Bad" Cholesterol levels. Regular physical activity can help raise HDL "Good" Cholesterol levels. Following a healthy diet and exercising regularly ar…