JOURNEY TO WELLNESS - November 2017
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In the United States this month we celebrate Thanksgiving, and we pay homage to what many think is our "national bird," the turkey. Actually our national bird is the eagle, but for November every year we pretend and adopt the turkey, even as we devour it for Thanksgiving dinner.
However you celebrate the tradition of giving thanks for an abundant fall harvest, I hope you enjoy a time of festivities with family and friends as we enter the beginning of this year's Holiday Season.
If you are new to Journey to Wellness, please know that you are welcome. It is always my goal that each reader find something that helps them on their own journey to wellness. In addition I always want this newsletter to be interactive. Please feel free to write to me HERE, with questions, views, etc.
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How we carry our self, sitting, standing, or walking, tells the world so much about us. If we are happy, sad, depressed, anxious, tired - actually almost any emotional state - alters our posture.
Proper physical alignment of spine and body is an important aspect of health.
Sitting and standing with proper postural alignment will allow one to work more efficiently with less fatigue and strain on our body's ligaments and muscles. Being aware of good posture is the first step to breaking old poor posture habits and reducing stress and strain on your spine.
Experts tell us that poor posture is the beginning of much of the pain and disability related to the aging process. When we combine good posture with stretching, deep breathing, and keeping our body moving, we have the framework for healthy aging.
There is probably no subject about which I have received more e-mails over the years than meditation. When I first began my Internet and newsletter work 20+ years ago and began recommending meditation, I was sort of like a lone wolf. Now, however, meditation has become very prominent with people from all walks of life.
ABC Newsman Dan Harris is a seasoned newsman, skeptical by nature, etc. Here he shares how he had a panic attack meltdown on national television, which ultimately lead him to meditation. The first short video is a great introduction to Dan - if you are unfamiliar with his story - and also to meditation.
After you watch the first video, I highly recommend you watch the second one. You will not only be informed, you will be entertained.
Meditation for Beginners - Featuring Dan Harris and Sharon Salzberg
Video No. 1 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mtsdz_jhB7c
Dan Harris: "10% Happier" author talks to Google
ABC anchor Dan Harris embarks on an unexpected, hilarious, and deeply skeptical
odyssey through the strange worlds of spirituality and self-help.
Video No. 2 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dt5Qv9tUObI
I have recently reached the conclusion that I need to do a survey of my readers to get your suggestions for how I can best help you. Whether you have been with me for years, or are relatively new to this mailing list, I really need to hear from you.
Just click on this link and it will open a blank e-mail addressed to me with a subject of "Journey to Wellness Survey."
Then highlight and copy the following on that e-mail, together with your responses, which will remain anonymous.
Name: E-Mail address:
1 If you have a physical/health challenge, please share what it is.
2 How long have you been reading this newsletter?
3 Have you found this newsletter particularly helpful?
4 What do you suggest I do to make it more relevant and helpful to you?
5 Is there a particular subject you would like me to cover in a future issue?
6. What is your overall impression of Journey to Wellness.
Thank you so much for your participation and helping me to keep Journey to Wellness relevant and meaningful. Please make your response as detailed as you wish.
In the last newsletter I referenced an Internet research report about the potential dangers inherent in the use of Gadolinium. So many of you wrote to me about that report, and I want to address the general subject of the common use, as well as over-use, of MRIs for people with MS.
Early on in my MS experience, I had a neurologist who told me that the only purpose an MRI served was in the initial diagnosis. He told me that the MRI scan does not reflect changes in the patient's disease course.
He said that you can have a new lesion, with absolutely no change in symptoms, and conversely you can have an increase in disability with no change in your lesions indicated on a new MRI scan.
This neurologist then went on to say that MRIs are a huge money-maker for the hospital, clinic, or whatever medical facility takes them, and often the fees are split with the referring physician.
I have followed the advice of my diagnosing neurologist and have refused to ever have another MRI since I was diagnosed 23 years ago. Follow-up MRIs were rare at that time, but now they have become so commonplace that many long-term MS patients have them a couple of times a year, many times with the contrasting gadolinium.
We all know the old saying, "Buyer be ware." Once we have been informed, we can no longer plead ignorance. Please remember the dangers of gadolinium.
is using your imagination
Occasionally I come across something on the Internet that intrigues me. This is one of those tidbits that I found really helpful an useful, so I'll pass it on:
● Put a tiny bit of
toothpaste into a small cup
Thoroughly mix and then brush your teeth for two minutes. Remember to do this once a week until you have reached the results you want. Once your teeth are good and white, limit yourself to using this whitening treatment to once every month or two.
NOTE: Peroxide is used in
most over-the-counter teeth whitening products.
Here are a few of my favorite recipes. Enjoy.
Here's a one-minute recipe from Bobby Flay for crunchy avocado salad that I like a lot.
1 ripe avocado,
peeled, pitted and diced
Gently toss the avocados, tomatoes, olives, chickpeas, parsley, vinegar, olive oil, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Crumble the chips over the top and serve.
1. Puree the tomatoes in a blender or food processor
6 skinless boned chicken
1. Place chicken in a
single layer in large ovenproof dish.
NOTE: You can easily cut this recipe in half, but I make the whole thing and then freeze leftover portions.
If you are newly diagnosed, when it is so important to get started on a good program before you sustain significant neurological damage, this is an option I strongly urge you to consider. It is much easier to prevent neurological damage than to reverse it once it has occurred.
Or perhaps you feel "stuck," and have become discouraged. Usually when that happens our belief level has slipped, and a private consultation can really kick start your program. These consultations are most effective when done by Skype video (if you have a web cam), and consultations are up to two hours in length.
A coach or mentor can be invaluable in your healing journey. If you are interested in knowing more about a personal consultation, please let me know HERE and I'll send specific information, as well as a pre-consult6ation questionnaire and testimonials.
Our research lady, Karen, sends along the following important items.
Glyphosate herbicide commonly known as ROUNDUP (originally known as Agent Orange in Viet Nam), has now been banned by six middle eastern countries, over 'probable carcinogen' fears. Read all about it here:
Sugary beverages and snacks may be a go-to for college students or busy parents looking for a pick-me-up, but studies have shown that consuming too much sugar can have lasting effects on your brain. Some doctors and scientists have found that sugar can affect memory, mood and energy. Others have performed studies suggesting relationships between sugar, brain atrophy and addiction.
Memory and Learning
High-fructose corn syrup is one source of sugar in the American diet. Dr. Fernando Gomez-Pinilla, a neurosurgery professor at UCLA, studied the role of high-fructose corn syrup on memory and learning processes in the brain. In his 2012 study published in the "Journal of Physiology," he reported that rats that consumed a high-fructose corn syrup diet experienced memory impairment and cognitive issues. However, a review of studies on this topic, published in the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition" -- which included studies on humans and on rats -- concluded that specific doses of glucose may positively affect memory in humans, especially in the elderly. However, the study did not include any research investigating the long-term effects of high sugar intake on the human brain.
Mood and Energy
A study published in "The Journal of Personality and Social Psychology" investigated the effects of sugar and moderate exercise on energy, tiredness and tension in women. In this study, the women were asked to self-rate their energy, tiredness and tension at a specific time each day. The study found that women who consumed a sugary snack reported that they felt greater tension one hour after eating the snack. The women also reported that they experienced an increase in energy that quickly dropped off after one hour and gave way to tiredness and reduced energy.
Atrophy and Dementia
Dr. Daniel G. Amen, author and medical director of Amen Clinics Inc. in California, examined several studies that suggested high sugar diets may lead to brain atrophy and dementia. One study, published in "Neurology" in 2012, examined the association between glucose levels and brain atrophy in health adults from 60 to 64 years old. The study found that high glucose levels were associated with atrophied hippocampuses and amygdalas. These areas of the brain deal mostly with memory and mental skills. But the "high" glucose levels were less than 6.1 millimoles per liter, which is within the normal range.
A study published in the journal "PLOS ONE" involved the addictive effects of sugar on rat brains. The study suggests that sugar may be more addictive than cocaine. The rats in the study were given a choice of sugar or cocaine.. Surprisingly, 94 percent of the rats chose sugar. Even more interesting, the rats continued to choose sugar even over higher doses of cocaine -- this includes the rats that displayed signs of cocaine addiction. The results of the study suggest that the pleasure that the brain experiences in response to sugar may override self-control and result in sugar addiction.
● Hi Betty. Thanks for the Garlic Chicken with Mushrooms recipe. My family loved it. I learned a lot about "fake foods." /s/ Jerry K.
● Dear Betty. I continue to learn from you. Thank you so much. /s/ Kaye D.
● Dear Betty. Thank you Betty for recommending Bright Line Eating and Grow Young Fitness. I have started BLE and am loving it. And the young man who does Grow Young Fitness is great. Thanks again. /s/ Mark A.
Kaye, Jerry and Mark, and to everyone who wrote this month, thanks for sharing. I love getting your notes.