Weekly Health Update

“A wise man should consider that health is the greatest of human blessings, and learn how by his own thought to derive benefit from his illnesses”.
~ Hippocrates

Mental Health: The Relaxation Response: Learn It!

Researchers at Harvard recently took a pile of 28 people who had never meditated or done anything similar in their lives, and taught them the simplest form of what they call the ‘relaxation response’ — by talking them through a muscle-by-muscle relaxation of their entire body while they repeated a mantra. They essentially Pavlovianly trained these folks to relax when they invoked their mantra, in the same way that Eastern monks who regularly meditate relax by closing their eyes and taking a deep breath. The benefits of learning to enforce relaxation? “[The relaxation response] produces immediate changes in the expression of genes involved in immune function, energy metabolism and insulin secretion,” the study says. In other words, you resist bugs more effectively, burn more calories, and store less fat — oh, and your stress levels plummet, too.
Science Daily, May 2013

Health Alert: ‘Five Second Rule’ Proven True…ish

Two separate studies examining the speed with which bacteria and other grossness on the floor gets transferred to your food have used very similar methods and received very similar data…and somehow managed to end up at nearly opposite results. The more liberal group essentially said that the five-second rule is probably OK given that the food gets dropped in your own home (where the bugs are ‘your bugs’ and you’re used to them) — not so much on the street or even in someone else’s house. The conservative group looked at the same data and concluded that “there is no five-second rule…eating food off of the floor is as dangerous as driving without a seat belt on, even after zero seconds.”
National Geographic Magazine, March 2014

Diet: Ketogenic Diet Can Fight Cancer!

Dr. D’Agostino, an assistant professor at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine in the Department of Molecular Pharmacology and Physiology, has been studying the effects of extremely low-carb ‘ketogenic’ diets, and believes that cancer sufferers can manage their tumors metabolically. It turns out that cancer cells don’t burn fat for energy — only sugar — but humans who simply don’t eat any sugars will (after some suffering) naturally switch over to burning fat and fat alone for energy, which essentially starves the cancer, sending it into remission.
The Examiner, March 2014

Exercise: Obese People Don’t Get Any Exercise…and Should

It’s fairly common knowledge that obese people should exercise more, but a recent study revealed just how much they need to work at it — a study by the Mayo Clinic found that obese women get at little as one hour of aerobic exercise…per year. Men faired little better, with obese men averaging just four hours of exercise per year. Their conclusion: even if it’s just five minutes a couple of times a week, getting tiny amounts of exercise and working to increase that amount slowly — even over years and years — will improve these peoples’ quality of life (and lifespan) significantly.
Time Magazine, February 2014

Neuromuscular Massage: Myofascial Pain: A Sticky Subject

The term ‘myofascial pain’ is fairly common (and getting more so) but not that many people have a clear idea of what it means. Here’s what it means: the ‘fascia’ are like envelopes of slick tissue that surround almost every part of our internal body. Imagine the thin, clear layer you can often find in top of a skinless chicken breast. ‘Myofascia’ means ‘fascia around your muscles’ — so ‘myofascial pain’ is ‘pain caused by a problem with the tissues that envelop your muscles.’ This happens most often when small tears in the myofascia cause them to adhere to nearby other tissues. Massage or other forms of directed pressure can release the adherence and thus allow the myofascia to return to their proper place (and stop hurting!)
Click here to learn more about Neuromuscular Massage

Academy of American Family Physicians, February 2002

Ergonomics and Proper Posture: Does Your Office Chair For Back Relief Do This?
The office chair market is drowning in the word ‘ergonomic.’ There isn’t an office chair produced in the world today that isn’t ‘ergonomic’ — yet we’ve seen nothing but an ever-increasing amount of back pain. Chairs that are ‘ergonomic’, in fact the entire science of ‘ergonomics’, have failed us. If you want a serious back pain chair, you need the next evolution…Click Here to Read About the Ultimate Chair for Back Relief.

Wellness/Prevention: Knowing What Your Risks Are

Anne Wojcicki, founder of genetics testing lab 23andMe, put on a TED talk regarding some of the benefits of knowing your genes, and while 23andMe is currently prevented from giving out health advice based on their genetic findings, it’s almost certainly only a matter of time before that gets sorted out. Once they’re back in business, it should be considered an investment in your own future health to get yourself profiled — their results will tell you, for example, whether to worry more about cancer, heart attack, Alzheimer’s, or something altogether different. From there, you can decide for yourself what preventative measures suit your lifestyle.
Engadget, March 2014

Alternative Medicine: Herbal Remedies for Back Pain – the most common and uncommon!

There are a mountain of powerful, all-natural herbs in the world that help the human body heal in a vast number of ways. If your back hurts, for example, there are more herbal remedies for back pain than you can shake a stick at. Here’s just a rough sampling of a few…Continue Read Here

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