Alternative medicine can include anything from nature such as herbs that could be used to treat minor burns. Severe pain could be reduced by the use of acupuncture. This type of medicine has been around in one form or another for thousands of years and its beginnings are generally attributed to the Chinese.
Traditional Chinese Medicine states that the human body and the environment are closely linked. So when the body’s rhythms are upset, the treatment and its ultimate prevention can come from the environment.
Herbs, plants and many other ingredients still unknown to us here in the western world, are widely used in the making of Chinese medicine. This type of medicine which often seems a little strange is said to bring balance back to the body. Meditation, massage and acupuncture are used in conjunction with the mind and to bring harmony to the body.
According to the Chinese, the forces in the universe are believed to affect everything in life, including our health. These forces are represented by the symbol of yin and yang, the two most powerful cosmic forces in the universe.
Yin is the female force and is represented by the moon, while yang represents the masculine force and is represented by the sun. From these ancient beliefs, the Chinese developed a technology for health care that in many ways still rivals that of modern western medicine.
Many of these alternative methods were thought to be that of quacks in the early years. But as scientific evidence surfaced to prove otherwise, the historic ways of thinking had to be reconsidered.
In the early years Chinese medicine was thought to be that of quacks by the general public. But the chinese population beleive whole heartedly in the their beleifs and history. Chinese that scientific evidence has been difficult to come by. The huge drug companies aren’t going to put costly research efforts into techniques that won’t bring in piles of money.
It wasn’t until the mid-1990s that funding for alternative medicine began to appear in academic circles. Since then, it’s become a form of therapy and healing that’s widely accepted around the world.
So love it or hate you had better get used to it because I cannot see it ending anytime soon.
Focus And Concentration Can Often Suffer As You Age
Discover these eight key foods that will boost your focus and concentration as you go from middle age to old age and beyond.
Focus and Concentration are crucial in just about all our lives in one way or another.
Focus and concentration is something which many people struggle with, but in order to keep focused or to maintain concentration for anything from say thirty minutes or longer periods of time, or sometimes to get going at all. But quite often the secret to remaining focused or to maintaining concentration is not a myth at all.
Exercises using techniques from Yoga and Meditation have been proven to help focus mental performance for people over the age of forty and come highly recommended. But we can also turn our attention to Nature to come to our aid in the form of foods which we are already eating and will not only aid our focus and concentration but improve it as well.
I am going to go through eight of these food types and explain the merits of eating them and to explain why they are so good at helping with our memory techniques especially as we continue to get older
Salmon and other types of Oily Fish such as Trout, Tuna and Mackerel etc.
These types of Oily Fish contain vitamins A and D plus Omega-3, which has been proven to improve our brain function and concentration and by affecting our cognitive processes, we can think clearer which also means an increase in our focus. Oily Fish also have good anti-inflammatory properties, which helps to protect the brain cells and keep them functioning properly.
This group of fish also have other health benefits such as cardiovascular diseases and as they contain anti-inflammatory properties there are also said to be good at combating Arthritis.
Berries These are rich in antioxidants, especially vitamins A, C and E. The nutrients contribute to adequate blood flow to the brain, which is essential for maintaining brain function without which, the brain will have difficulty with concentration. Additionally, these foods contain anti-inflammatory properties and provide protection for the actual brain cells.
Tomatoes These have the same properties as Berries above, rich in antioxidant properties
Nuts Nuts are rich in vitamin B6, which has been scientifically proven to be beneficial to our cognitive function. Vitamin B6 directly affects our levels of memory and concentration, therefore increasing our intake is really expected to aid in our concentration. Research has also discovered another possible benefit of eating this type of food, rich in Vitamin B6, also aids in the protection against diseases such as Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
Dark Chocolate Especially good quality dark chocolate has many health benefits besides improving your focus and concentration. Research has shown that it can increase serotonin, and endorphin levels, which improves brain function. In addition, the dark chocolate also contains antioxidants and a number of important vitamins and minerals such as potassium. However as a note of caution, eating too much of this chocolate in a short space of time can only add to your calorie intake and can only lead to a reduction any positive effects it may have!
Green Tea This is a really refreshing drink, especially when you are ready for that caffeine hit. Many people turn to their favorite coffee or tea although by the time you add the milk and sugar, the calories mount up and often the overall benefit is lost. So substituting Green Tea for tea and coffee is going to improve your thinking and concentration and be far more beneficial for your figure. Green tea has been known to contain Antioxidants for some time but it also contains caffeine which aids your brainpower almost instantly and you can enjoy it knowing that you are also protecting and preserving your brain cells too.
Bananas These are very simple and easy to eat fruit, especially for those people on the go. Studies have shown that people who eat bananas before an examination will perform much better than those who don’t. Bananas also contain high levels of potassium which is itself a fantastic brain food. Potassium helps to keep your brain and nerve cells in top working order, so combine this with some of the other foods already mentioned and you should never be short of focus or concentration again.
Water Okay this may not strictly what we take to be food but without it we would not survive much beyond three days without it.
A large percentage of our body is made up of water, so it’s hardly surprising that we struggle to work properly if we don’t consume enough water on a regular basis. Dehydration can occur quickly and one of the first areas to be affected is the brain. So without water, it will be difficult to even think clearly and mental fatigue can easily set in.
In order to benefit from the foods above it is important to remember that we need a good well balanced diet, yes some people may have more fish in their diet because of seasonal availabilities and where they live, but most of us these days can mix up a menu by having meats, fish and poultry and potatoes along with other vegetables or salads.
If you choose to live on junk foods or processed foods, you will soon find yourself struggling not only with your attention and concentration, but with possible health concerns like weight, heart problems and diabetes, bone disorders and many other conditions far too many to list.
Gluten-Free is a term which always appears to be in the news at the moment whereas the term was hardly ever heard let alone understood.
Fortunately for sufferers of a variety of ailments that cause sufferers to avoid Gluten in their meals, there are far more Gluten-Free produce available than ever before.
After hearing about the term Gluten-Free recently I must confess I had not heard the term mentioned before and that must have been around seven or eight years ago. It turned out that a friend of ours was suffering for years with problems surrounding her stomach, this meant she had to be extremely careful with the type of food she ate.
It eventually became known that she had some form of allergy to do with almost anything dairy and wheat food meaning that she had to avoid any food containing gluten. The official description of a Gluten-free diet is as follows;
A gluten-free diet is a diet that excludes gluten, a protein composite found in wheat, barley, rye, and all their species and hybrids. The inclusion of oats in gluten-free diet remains controversial.Wikipedia
Can you imagine that?
As I had not really heard of this term Gluten Free before I thought I would explore it a little further. It appears that more people are suffering from this type of problem plus other issues affecting their stomach and digestive tract and are having to look very carefully at their diet, some have gone on to a totally gluten-free diet and in some cases, the whole family have changed their diets. I agree it would be more convenient if everyone in the household ate the same food, it would certainly make the weekly shop easier.
I first came across the term gluten-free because a friend of ours had to go on to this form of diet because she was suffering from Celiac Disease, or gluten-sensitive enteropathy which is a digestive and autoimmune disorder that results in damage to the lining of the intestines when foods containing gluten are eaten. Gluten is a form of protein found in some grains. The damage to the intestine makes it difficult for the body to absorb nutrients, especially fat, calcium, iron, and folate.
We seem to be hearing about this sort of problem more often now, its all over the internet about going gluten-free! It even goes as far as making statements that it is the best thing that any of us can do. But is it?
But if it is then why isn’t the government and the big corporations doing anything about it?
It has been suggested that a possible cause has to do with all the modern changes that have been made to our wheat to increase the production, the growth or its resistency to disease etc,
Eliminating gluten means eliminating any and all products containing rye, barley, or wheat. This usually includes breads, cereals, crackers, cookies,
and other bakery treats and drinks. But many people are now turning to gluten-free diets so there are a constantly growing variety of alternative meals available.
It’s actually much easier to transition the whole family than it would be to try to just have one or two people in the household give up gluten. When everyone’s on the same diet it is so much easier to shop and then to carefully plan your meals.
Such a diet will eliminate a lot of the processed foods from the mealtime that aren’t good for you. Also foods that tend to be high in gluten are also usually high in sugar, fat, and artificial colors and preservatives. So when you eliminate gluten from your diet you eliminate these types of foods as well. But the big thing is that there is still plenty of variety for you and your family to be able to get a healthier balanced diet from.
Instead of these processed foods, you’ll be able to do more cooking using fresh fruits and vegetables. You can find gluten-free breads and other treats available to substitute for the wheat varieties allowing you to continue to enjoy sandwiches, toast, cakes and cookies.
You’ll also need to look out for gluten in places you might not expect it to be found. There are many more gluten-free products such as salad dressings, condiments, and even in some lunch meats, making it much easier to make the transition for the whole family, you just need to check the labels.
If you do have an allergy to gluten, it’s important to completely eliminate it, you don’t want any trace of it to get into your system again and return to the problems of the past and wreak havoc on your health. But if you don’t have an allergy, you can still make the change to support another family member to keep them company because you will probably appreciate the health benefits that go with it.
You can even start by changing just one or two products at a time and replacing it with a gluten-free version. But you should be aware that even if your home is totally gluten-free, other homes aren’t and neither are restaurants, so if your child attends birthday parties or other events there may not be gluten-free options available so you may have to provide an alternative if necessary or at least forewarn the hosting parents. On the other hand unless it is very important for your child to remain totally gluten-free you could make allowances for the occasional gluten ingredients to be consumed especially if it is a special celebration.
Detoxing seems to be the “in thing” right now according to the Health Magazines but you have to know more and that it’s right for you?
We are constantly being told that our bodies are being polluted
with Toxins and that we should go on a Detoxing program, but how do we know if Detoxing is the right choice for you?
Its true that we regularly see and hear about pollution being in the air and bad toxins building up in the foods and drinks which we take in on a daily basis. Yet we see that despite the advancement of technology helping to protect us from these harmful toxins, that we’re being invaded by them even more.
We are told that Detoxing is a good thing and is a method which people use to flush out these toxins and give your body a jump start that it needs to function properly. But it might not be something you want to pursue, so it’s vital that you learn exactly how it can benefit you and how a detox works before you embark on one blindly. So, Where Are Toxins Found?
In short, toxins are all around you. They’re in your cabinets, on the skin of your fruit, in nature, in the air and more. You can’t truly escape toxins for very long, but you can shield your body from them and give it a chance to recover and fight back.
Every day you go to the store to stock up on household cleaners, food and beauty products, you’re buying toxins to bring back into your home. You use them for yourself and even on your little baby if you have children.
They’re typically invisible to you – especially in the air that you breathe – but in products, you can spot them if you look at the ingredients list and see a slew of words you can hardly pronounce.
Natural toxins are in your environment, like poisonous plants, animals and even germs. You typically know about these and try to avoid them. We’re less likely to learn about the toxic chemicals in our life, though.
Chemicals aren’t made by nature – they’re made by man – and they’re very dangerous. Sometimes we know the dangers – like using pesticides on our lawn or garden to keep pests out.
Other times, we blindly accept a company’s use of toxins in products that we buy, assuming the government would protect us from anything truly harmful. But they’re rarely tested and often ignored until it’s proven that they are harmful.
It’s almost a case of innocent until proven guilty, when in reality, for the protection of humankind, it should be the other way around. Companies should have to prove the innocence of their chemicals before using them, but that’s not how it works.
To start, identify the toxins in your day today. Look at everything you eat – especially processed foods. Are there ingredients with very chemical-sounding names in them? These are likely toxic chemicals.
Preservatives, artificial flavoring, and coloring enhancements are all false ingredients that attack your body, rather than contribute to its nutritional benefits. They’re in foods that are even branded as healthy, so make sure you investigate carefully.
Look at the toxins in your community. Many news stations will have a pollution index that you can analyze to see how toxic the air is that you breathe. You want to pay attention to everything landing on your skin or being sucked into your lungs, such as cleaning aromas.
Not everything will have a scent, like lemon-scented cleaner. Many of them are colorless and free of any aroma. So look for whatever is being used in your home and work environment.
What Does It Mean for Something to Be Toxic?
Well, it means your body has no use for it, so it has to work hard to rid your body of it. Sometimes, it even fails, and those toxins build up inside your body and wreak havoc on your health.
You may not see any side effects the first day you’re exposed to toxins, but over time, it begins to take its toll and you start to experience the burden of your body being unable to handle the overload.
Sometimes toxins have mild side effects, like a minor headache, a sneeze or other reaction. Sometimes it’s more serious – like being a cancer-causing toxin residing in your body.
If your body isn’t performing optimally, then it’s going to struggle cleaning the toxins out. It will become sluggish and falter. A detox periodically can rev up your inner engines and help you function at peak performance levels.
Basic Rules of Detoxing
With a detox, you’re going to have to identify the toxins in your own life and then avoid them. At the same time, you’ll need to take some steps to boost your body with the repair process.
You can detox your body from the inside-out. The toxins are things you’ve ingested as well as outer pollutants that have landed on your body. Many people don’t think about it, but your skin is the largest organ you have – and you may not be protecting it from toxins in the air.
When you detox, you’ll not only be identifying and avoiding toxins, but you’ll be using things like diet, sleep, stress relief and more to help rid your body of damaging elements.
When you go through a full body detox, not only will your skin get cleansed, but your internal organs as well – your kidney, stomach, lungs and more. Your kidneys and sweat glands will do most of the heavy lifting during the detox process.
After identifying where your toxins are coming from, start replacing any processed foods with organic, whole foods. If you notice your diet has gaps in what your body needs nutritionally, then supplement it with various solutions like vitamins and minerals.
A good place to start would be:
• A good multi vitamin – specifically one for your gender and age group • Omega-3 fatty acids – a great thing to take in lieu of eating oily, toxic fish like tuna • Vitamin B – preferably, a vitamin B complex that contains all of the B vitamins • Vitamin C – which will help boost your immune system • Vitamin E – with powerful antioxidants and the ability to keep you well • Resveratrol – which does the same as red wine, providing antioxidants
Diet is one of the main things you’ll be addressing during this detox. You want to start by knowing what to avoid putting into your shopping cart at the grocery store. That includes:
• Milk, which is packed with antibiotics and hormones • Corn oil, which comes from genetically modified corn • Margarine, or anything that contains trans fat • Soy, which many believe is healthy but is horribly processed for consumers • Deli meat, which is packed with salt, artificial color and flavors and more • Tuna fish, which contains higher levels of toxic mercury than other fresh fish • Lard, which comes ripe with steroids, hormones and antibiotics like milk • Artificial ingredients, like colors and sweeteners that are harmful to your body
Get ready to sweat! Your body’s sweat glands help usher out toxins from the body. So in addition to exercise, your body’s natural sweat activation system, you can also use heat like a pampering sauna (which has now been proven to help with heart health) to increase your body’s sweat potential.
You’re going to have to change your habits. Everything from getting a good night’s sleep to getting up and moving more will help your body flush out toxins on a daily basis.
If you smoke, you’ll need to stop. If you drink alcohol, let go of that habit during your detox stage. Even bad habits like cursing a lot can weigh heavily on your emotions and contribute to stress, which is toxic to your body because it floods your bloodstream with unhealthy hormones.
Benefits You’ll Experience with a Good Detox
A detox can be something you have to fully commit to – and it might feel dramatically different to you. But if you give yourself a chance to experience the full array of benefits, you’ll feel amazing and give your body a gift that contributes to your longevity.
The first thing you’ll notice is that when you’re starting the detox, your energy levels might slump slightly at first. Then, they soar! Detoxing your body helps refuel your energy levels because your body isn’t having to work so hard to function.
Your stress levels will plummet. Doing a total wellness detox means not only are you avoiding physical toxins, but the pollutants of your mind start to disappear as well. When your brain is functioning better and you’re sleeping better, your stress levels will naturally subside because you’ll gain clarity.
You’ll notice that you get sick less often. Toxins really attack your immune system, so when you rid your body of them, your white blood cells are able to fight off invaders more easily.
Weight loss will come to more easily, too. Your body won’t have to focus on cleaning your body of toxins. It will be able to burn fat with a laser-like focus. The energy increase, paired with natural shedding of pounds will really inspire you to stay on track with your detox.
Things That Can Derail Your Detox Success
You want to believe that when you embark on a formidable detox plan, you’ll stick to it. But there are many issues that can stand in your way, and unless you know what they are and how to manage them, you might be prone to failure.
The first thing you want to watch is eating away from your home. Whether that means fast food, nice restaurants, the office workplace or a friend’s house – eating where you’re not the one fully in control can be hazardous to your detox plan.
You have to understand that Sally who brings a casserole in for lunch at work, or Ed’s Chicken Shop down the street, don’t have detox plans on their minds when they’re planning their meals and menus.
They’re not ensuring that your food is toxin free, made with whole grains and organic, pesticide-free fruits and vegetables. They haven’t even looked to see if the chicken they’re serving is awash in steroids, hormones and antibiotics.
This means you have to be very diligent about planning your meals away from home. If you’re serious about detoxing, then that doesn’t mean you flub a few meals. Your body will be bouncing back during this flush and re-introducing toxins periodically keeps it from achieving its goals of better health.
Mindful eating and mindfulness in general will help keep your stomach and other organs from having to work overtime for you. Take your time eating, enjoy the meal and flavors and give your brain time to recognize your fullness cues.
Throughout your day, be mindful whenever you’re driving, working, interacting with others and spending time alone. When someone snaps at you, take a moment to think about what’s possibly going on in their world to cause them to lash out – it helps you not take things so personally and your stress hormones won’t flood into your bloodstream, wrecking your detox plan.
Make sure you get the minimum exercise requirements into your day. Remember, sweat helps your body flush the toxins out. So go hard for a minimum of 30 minutes of sweat-inducing movement, like cardio-type exercising. But take a shower straight away after you have finished so that they’re not re-absorbed through the skin.
Increase your intake of water, we never drink enough so ensure you are taking in plenty of water and not coffee or tea and definitely no alcohol. Water should be one of the only things you drink on a detox plan. Your body needs it to help almost every organ function, and most of us don’t get nearly enough.
You’ll notice a change in the color of your urine when your body is getting plenty of water. It will go from yellow to clear, usually in a couple of days. Keep a glass of water nearby and sip it throughout your day to stay hydrated and give your organs the fluid they need to get rid of toxins.
Try to get your family on board for better health. They don’t have to be on the exact same detox plan as you, but try to replace the unhealthy, processed foods and toxic cleaners and beauty products with those that are not harmful to anyone living with you.
Detoxing is a great way to lose weight, clear out brain fog, distress and increase your longevity by preventing disease. It’s not something that’s easy and enjoyable right at first, but most people who commit to it, eventually crave the detox lifestyle because they feel so much better while doing it.
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Recently, the Diabetes Care website shared some information about a clinical experiment conducted by the American Diabetes Association. They found out that a low fat vegan diet improves the lipid and glycemic control in people with Type 2 Diabetes. It showed that vegan diet helps manage diabetes and at the same time prevent cardiovascular diseases. But what exactly is a vegan diet? Why are antioxidants vegan friendly?
A vegan diet includes the consumption of non meat and non dairy products. Vegans do not consume meat and meat by products including milk, eggs, and honey. By sticking to this kind of diet, you will be able to lower your risk of heart disease and diabetes, and become healthier overall.
Vegan Diet and Antioxidants
The United States National Library of Medicine’s NIH website (National Institutes of Health) once shared a study that showcases the wonderful health benefits of a vegan diet and it focuses on the consumption of foods rich in antioxidants. After the study was completed, it was found that compared to meat eaters, vegans have higher concentrations of vitamin C, beta carotene, and vitamin E in their body.
Most vegans eat raw food which enables them to get more antioxidants from their food than if they cooked their food.
The results? Vegans get a lot of benefits from their diet primarily because their diet is high in antioxidants. Here’s a look at some of the benefits of a vegan diet.
Treatment of Certain Ailments
There have been several studies made on the effect of a vegan diet on people suffering from rheumatoid arthritis. According to the University of Kuopio’s Department of Physiology researchers in Finland, uncooked vegan food is rich in lactobacilli which have a positive effect in the symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis.
Another study conducted on participants who ate a gluten free vegan diet showed that this kind of diet also eliminates the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
While the jury is still out on whether these effects are a result of the high levels of antioxidants found in vegan diets, experts believe that antioxidants play a key role on this. One biochemistry expert has said that fibromyalgia symptoms are brought about by excessive amounts of nitric oxide in the body. But by treating patients with high amounts of antioxidants, there is a reduction in nitric oxide’s damage on the tissues.
Antioxidants Keep You Healthy
The role of antioxidants in the body is crucial. They perform an essential task and that is by protecting the cells from damage and keeping the immune system in excellent shape.
Lucky for vegans, they are consuming lots and lots of antioxidants through the food they eat. Antioxidants are vegan friendly and they’re making these individuals healthy. However, for omnivores, they may not be getting enough of it.
This is why taking antioxidant supplements can really help. If you are looking for supplements that will give your body all the antioxidants it needs, then check out Cell Fuzion, which is one of the best antioxidant supplements in the market today.
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