Just a Little Walk Improves Heart Disease and Colon Cancer

Posted on April 1, 2008. Filed under: Fitness, health, wellbeing | Tags: , , , , , , |

French Doctors report that an overview of the latest research into spot and good health proves that moderate, frequent exercise improves your chances of surviving and controlling heart disease, diabetes, colon cancer, respiratory disease and depression.

This report by the National Institute for Health and Medical Research (inserm) sets a benchmark, for adults of at least 30 minutes of modest exercise, such as fast walking, at least 5 times a week, or 20 minutes of harder exercise, such as jogging 3 times a week.

Younger people are advised to to twice this.

In addition Inserm recommends “strengthening” and stretching at least twice a week, and even advises the elderly to do more stretching.

Daily activities such as climbing stairs and cleaning your bathroom can also be included in the exercise tally. (Good to know doing housework is good for something :0)

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Manage These Common Conditions Without Meds

Posted on March 31, 2008. Filed under: health, wellbeing | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

News of managing your conditions using natural health is slowly filtering into the medical field, and this article is a breakthrough – I have added a few of my own tips through out just to give you a little more knowledge.

ScienceDaily (Mar. 26, 2008) — We’ve gotten used to taking pills for everything that ails us, but medications have side effects and cost money. The April 2008 issue of the Harvard Health Letter takes a look at how to manage seven common conditions without taking medication. It takes some discipline, but in many cases, the nonpharmacological approach can do as much as pills.

Here’s a brief look at the conditions and treatments.

Arthritis

There’s a good chance that losing weight will make arthritis less painful. Combine weight loss with exercise and you may have less pain and more mobility. Even for those who don’t need to lose weight, exercise that doesn’t put “load” on the joints reduces pain. Annie says: taking 6 Fish Oil and using some Magnesium, Calcium and Vit D wouldn’t hurt either, along with whatever targeted supplement you elect to use.

Cholesterol

Your LDL level may drop by 5% or so if you keep foods high in saturated fat off the menu. Additional soluble fiber may reduce LDL levels as well. So can margarines fortified with sterols. Annie says, I have to say I am not impressed with margerine, and your cholesterol levels are greatly added to by your intake of refined grains, so eat more vegetables and fruit and dress your salads with yummy olive oil dressings to cut the cholesterol.

Cognitive decline

Memory training and other “brain exercises” seem to help healthy older people stay sharp. But physical exercise may benefit the brain more than mental gymnastics. This is a great idea and Fish Oil feeds your brain along with sunshine (yes 15 mins a day in the morning is good for you) and choline a derivative of B vitamins.

Depression

Studies have shown that regular physical activity can have a potent antidepressant effect. Studies prove this to be true and for those who are just too depressed to be bothered a Vibration Platform may be the answer, along with Meditating on what you have in your life to be grateful for (see previous article)

Diabetes

Regular physical activity is a powerful brake on blood sugar levels as well, because exercised muscle becomes more receptive to the insulin that helps it pull sugar in from the bloodstream. Eating fewer sweets and easy-to-digest carbohydrates also helps control blood sugar levels. This is so true and my eBooks “A Rainbow On My Plate” and “Sick, Tired & Overweight” deal with this very issue.

High blood pressure

Losing weight, getting more exercise, and eating less sodium all lower blood pressure.  As does meditation, and learning to think creatively, eating more vegetables and fruit (more alkaline foods),

Osteoporosis

Weight-bearing exercise puts stress on bones, and bone tissue reacts by getting stronger and denser, fending off osteoporotic processes. Extra vitamin D and calcium top the list of dietary recommendations. This is good advice, I would add in a little Fish Oil but essentially this advice is perfect.

Adapted from materials provided by Harvard Health Letter, via Newswise.

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Proof Meditation Changes Your Brain!

Posted on March 31, 2008. Filed under: wellbeing | Tags: , , , , , |

meditation lotus Published March 25 in the Public Library of Science One, the study was the first to use functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to indicate that positive emotions such as loving-kindness and compassion can be learned in the same way as playing a musical instrument or being proficient in a sport. The scans revealed that brain circuits used to detect emotions and feelings were dramatically changed in subjects who had extensive experience practicing compassion meditation.

The scans revealed significant activity in the insula — a region near the frontal portion of the brain that plays a key role in bodily representations of emotion — when the long-term meditators were generating compassion and were exposed to emotional vocalizations. The strength of insula activation was also associated with the intensity of the meditation as assessed by the participants.

“The insula is extremely important in detecting emotions in general and specifically in mapping bodily responses to emotion — such as heart rate and blood pressure — and making that information available to other parts of the brain,” says Davidson, also co-director of the HealthEmotions Research Institute.

Activity also increased in the temporal parietal juncture, particularly the right hemisphere. Studies have implicated this area as important in processing empathy, especially in perceiving the mental and emotional state of others.

“Both of these areas have been linked to emotion sharing and empathy,” Davidson says. “The combination of these two effects, which was much more noticeable in the expert meditators as opposed to the novices, was very powerful.”

The findings support Davidson and Lutz’s working assumption that through training, people can develop skills that promote happiness and compassion.

“People are not just stuck at their respective set points,” he says. “We can take advantage of our brain’s plasticity and train it to enhance these qualities.”

The capacity to cultivate compassion, which involves regulating thoughts and emotions, may also be useful for preventing depression in people who are susceptible to it, Lutz adds.

Source: University of Wisconsin-Madison

As a certified meditation teacher I have long held the belief that daily meditation, even just 15 mins a day, can change your health, there is proof that it can help with heart disease and here is a new study proving that we can change our brain too. Relieving depression with just 15 minutes a day sure beats taking antidepressants.

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Are You Insulin Resistant?

Posted on February 26, 2008. Filed under: health, weightloss, wellbeing | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

insresist_w300_h2401.jpg Do you have the signs of being Insulin Resistant? Are you pre-diabetic?

Do you have heart disease, high blood pressure or high cholesterol levels?

Are you gaining weight around your middle even though you’re dieting?

Are you depressed or chronically tired?

Do you have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome?

Do you have non-viral Chronic Fatigue or Fibro-myalgia?

If you have one or more of these symptoms, you just might be Insulin Resistant.

What is Insulin Resistance?

Insulin is a hormone that is produced by your pancreas to help the body to utilize sugars in your diet, it helps the glucose (sugar) pass from your blood into your cells. Once it is in your cells, it is either used to fuel muscles or stored as fat for future needs.

Insulin resistance happens when a diet high in carbohydrates forces the cells to resist the flood of carbohydrates and all that glucose just stays in the blood, and not only do you now have high blood sugar which is the forerunner to diabetes, the pancreas continues to produce more insulin and you now have insulin overload as well.

What are the symptoms of Insulin Resistance?

  1. Fatigue.
  2. Brain fogginess and inability to focus. Sometimes the fatigue is physical, but often it’s mental.
  3. Low blood sugar. Mild, brief periods of low blood sugar are normal during the day, especially if meals are not eaten on a regular schedule. But prolonged hypoglycaemia with some of the symptoms listed here, especially physical and mental fatigue, are not normal. Feeling agitated, jittery, moody, nauseated, or having a headache is common in Insulin Resistance, with almost immediate relief once food is eaten.
  4. Intestinal bloating. Most intestinal gas is produced from carbohydrates in the diet. Insulin Resistance sufferers who eat carbohydrates suffer from gas, lots of it.
  5. Sleepiness. Many people with Insulin Resistance get sleepy immediately after eating a meal containing more than 20% or 30% carbohydrates.
  6. Weight gain, fat storage, difficulty losing weight. For most people, too much weight is too much fat. The fat in IR is generally stored around the midsection in both males and females.
  7. Increased triglycerides.
  8. Increased blood pressure. It is a fact that most people with hypertension have too much insulin and are Insulin Resistant. It is often possible to show a direct relationship between the level of insulin and blood pressure: as insulin levels elevate so does blood pressure.
  9. Depression. Because carbohydrates are a natural “downer,” depressing the brain, it is not uncommon to see many depressed persons who also have Insulin Resistance.**

What can be done?

First of all the good new is Insulin Resistance can be controlled by diet, this is a whole new lifestyle, not a diet that you do for a few weeks or months. A whole new way of eating and exercising is needed. If you need more help there are some drug treatments and supplements that can greatly help with the challenge of getting your insulin and blood sugar under control. The great new is that once you have changed your lifestyle, most if not all of your previous health challenges will often disappear completely.

For more information on Insulin Resistance and the Lifestyle choices you need to make please see my eBooks “Sick, Tired and Overweight” and “A Rainbow on My Plate” on http://www.health-fitness-videos.com or click the link to Wamuran Fitness and Wellbeing in the left sidebar under the heading “Blogroll”.

**This is not a guide to the various types of depression and in no way constitutes a medical diagnosis or recommendation.

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