Nutrition

Healthy Snacks: Eating Kiwis Can Make You Feel Better

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kiwi-042814The results of a recent study conducted at the University of Otago, in New Zealand, indicate that eating kiwifruit can make one feel better. This is accomplished in two ways: energy is increased and mood is improved. Over a period of six weeks, 54 young and healthy university students consumed kiwis on a daily basis. The study participants were split into two groups. The men in one group ate only half a kiwifruit each day, while everyone in the other group ate two kiwis per day. The researchers concluded that those who ate two kiwis per day experienced less fatigue (due to increased energy) and less depression than the other group. continue reading »

How a Healthy Lifestyle Benefits Your Mind as Well as Body

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apple-18721_640We all know that a healthy lifestyle, such as not smoking, keeping your weight down, eating right, regular exercise, and low moderate alcohol intake contributes to long-term health benefits. The recently completed Caerphilly Cohort Study expands the known benefits of a healthy lifestyle to include more evidence for improvements in cognitive function, and a reduced incidence of dementia.

The study began in 1979, and spanned a full 35 years. The health habits of 2,235 men between the ages of 45 and 59 were correlated to their incidences of diabetes, vascular disease, cancer, cognitive impairment, dementia and death (from all causes). The study tracked five healthy behaviors: continue reading »

Can You Use Acupuncture for Weight Loss?

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weight-loss-03102014Everyone is looking for the secret to weight loss, without falling victim to the latest gimmicks. With so many different opinions about how to lose weight, it can be difficult to tell what will really work.

Fortunately there is a technique for weight loss that has been tested for centuries:  acupuncture.

This technique is safe, sound and reliable. And, even more exciting, using acupuncture for weight loss helps you lose weight in several different ways. continue reading »

What Five Star Restaurants Teach You about Healthy Snacks for Kids

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ants-on-a-log4A fine meal at a good restaurant has many details. It uses fresh ingredients and interesting recipes. There is a variety of foods and the presentation is pleasing.

When food is prepared thoughtfully and beautifully, even the most basic meal becomes an experience. You can’t wait to try it. Once you start eating, you want to savor it.

But getting your kids to eat healthy snacks can feel like the opposite. Your child may balk at anything he thinks is healthy. She may be picky or prefer sweet or fatty foods.

You probably wouldn’t say that your child loves the snacks so much they can’t wait to eat them. And savoring them? Not likely.

But sometimes, the solution is easier than it seems.

Think about your snacks like a fine chef. Find ways to prepare your food beautifully. Make common foods seem unusual. Add interesting flavors or combinations.

Sometimes just changing the food a little bit can make your child dig in.

continue reading »

The Holiday Survival Toolkit: How to Not Drink at Parties (And Still Have Fun)

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cocktailThe holiday season is upon us and we all know what that means—parties.

Parties at work, parties at church, parties at school, fundraiser parties, caroling parties, Secret Santa parties…

It’s the season of so many parties that we long for a weekend night with nothing scheduled.

All the parties can lead to excess, but the biggest party of the season, New Year’s Eve, can be the topper.  Many people drink so much that it can take days to feel healthy again. And even if you don’t drink to drunkenness, your extra alcohol intake in the month of December can take its toll.

I think it’s great to celebrate and enjoy the company of your loved ones, but I don’t want to see you sick.  Find out how to not drink (or at least drink less) this party season. continue reading »

The Best (and Worst) Thanksgiving Foods

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thanksgiving-spreadThanksgiving is a great meal.  Friends and family come together to give thanks and celebrate the harvest season–

…and to overeat.

All of us know the feeling of eating too much, too heavy, too rich.  When we should be enjoying our time with loved ones, we are uncomfortable.  We exasperate our health conditions and catch a cold.  We put on weight and feel lethargic.

I’m not going to tell you to make dramatic changes to your Thanksgiving meal.  Usually that doesn’t work—and besides, it’s no fun.

Instead I suggest you just make small choices.  Pick one food instead of the other.  Make little positive choices and they’ll add up to a healthier, more enjoyable meal. continue reading »

More than Needles: 3 Traditional Chinese Medicine Therapies You Can Do at Home

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Baduanjin_qigong_smIf you asked the average person how Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) keeps you healthy, they would probably answer that it uses acupuncture needles.

That is a good start.

TCM is a complex understanding of how Qi, or life force, affects your health.  Qi flows through meridians passing through points which can be used to regulate and control that flow.  When the flow of Qi increases, decreases or its quality changes, your health is affected.  The most common way to manage the flow of Qi is with acupuncture needles.

But TCM is much more than needles.

In the second part of our two-part series “More than Needles,” you will learn three ways to keep yourself healthy using Traditional Chinese Medicine principles at home.  By using these techniques in your daily life, you will be in charge of your health. continue reading »

The Surprising Truth about Migraine Triggers

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migraineHow much do you really know about controlling your migraines?

New research suggests you may not know as much as you think.

According to Timothy T. Houle, Ph.D and co-author Dana P. Turner, M.S.P.H., both of the Wake Forest Baptist anesthesiology department, migraine sufferers make inaccurate conclusions about what triggers their migraines.  Houle and Turner conducted a 3-month study of 9 women who suffered from migraines.  They tracked the women’s hormone levels, their stress levels and the weather.  The women kept daily diaries.  At the end of the study, the scientists could not accurately predict which triggers would cause a migraine.

Their conclusion—most people can’t isolate the many complex variables in everyday life to accurately determine their migraine triggers.

So what can you do?  Can you start eating anything you want?  Do you give up managing your migraines?

continue reading »

The One Simple Summer Eating Tip to Make You Feel Fantastic

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strawberriesHealthy eating tips for the summer are a little tricky.

Since the weather is warm, you need light, cooling foods.  Juicy peaches, sweet watermelons, tomatoes hot off the vine…  The right foods are easy to find.  One trip through your garden or a walk through a farmer’s market and you’ll have the perfect summer meal.

But since you’re outside exercising and working in the garden, you build up an appetite.  You work hard and play hard.  You crave calories to keep the fire burning.  Are cucumbers the first food you reach for after rototilling the garden?  Probably not.

Unfortunately, many times craving calories trumps craving fresh food.  You satisfy your appetite with a meal of tortilla chips and soda.  Or brats and beer.  Or hamburgers and ice cream.

And afterward you feel full, bloated and hot.

Fortunately there is a solution.  It is possible to eat well, have energy and avoid feeling bloated.

The trick is in the timing.

With an easy tweak to your natural summer diet, you’ll feel fantastic. continue reading »

Spring Acupuncture Tips to Keep You Healthy, Happy and Flexible

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spring-has-sprung-5_lSpring is a happy time.  Bunnies hop about.  Flowers emerge in long forgotten corners of your garden.  The birds return and sing so loudly they wake you in the morning.

This is not a time to be angry.

But according to Traditional Chinese Medicine, being angry is exactly what you can expect if you don’t balance your wood element.

In TCM, spring is represented by the element wood.  Wood represents birth and newness, the time for fresh ideas and new starts.  Unsurprisingly, its color is green like the fresh growth of spring.

Wood governs your spine, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons.  A wood imbalance can lead to spinal problems, poor flexibility or arthritis.  Wood also governs your eyes.

But most important for your mood, wood governs your liver.  Read More…