Connect with us

Health

How Stress Impacts Your Body – And How To Fight Back

Published

on

stress corona
Photo Credit: Pexels / Inzmam Khan

Kate Harveston, Guest Writer

When you feel overwhelmed, your thoughts start racing through every conceivable scenario. You grow irritable, and little things that previously didn’t bother you begin to drive you crazy.

You know how too much tension affects your mind and mood, but what about your body? As it turns out, stress can have multiple adverse effects and even shorten your lifespan. Here’s what you need to know, as well as techniques to help you calm yourself. 

How Stress Impacts You Physically

You go for a hike, and you see a bear. Automatically, several physiological changes take place. Your eyes send a message to your amygdala, which then cries SOS to your hypothalamus. That gets your central nervous system in gear and triggers your adrenal glands to release adrenaline, soon followed by cortisol. Your heart rate and blood pressure increase to supply critical oxygen to your muscles to prepare you for fight or flight. This process all occurs before you start tiptoeing backward.

In a short-term crisis like the above, your body returns to homeostasis, or a normal resting state, once the threat passes. However, while you can beat a retreat before mama bear spies you, it’s more challenging to escape looming deadlines, micromanaging bosses and bill collectors. This prolonged stress keeps your cortisol levels high. 

Small doses of cortisol improve immune function and relieve pain, but your body gets used to elevated levels during periods of ongoing disquiet. As a result, the hormone loses its palliative effect and leads to inflammation. 

The current pandemic creates the perfect meltdown pot. Women, in particular, feel the crunch. While both sexes must adjust to the new reality, women tend to carry a greater sense of responsibility than their male counterparts. When it comes to juggling home-schooling the kids with telecommuting, the lioness is most likely to step up to the plate — and shoulder the burden of added stress. 

A prolonged stress response damages nearly every system in your body. Stress hormones directly impact your heart and increase oxygen demand through your body, making it pump harder. It can also interfere with the electrical impulses this organ relies on to function properly, which can lead to an attack or stroke. 

Stress also impacts your gastrointestinal system. You might recall a time when you got butterflies in your stomach before a performance review or the first day at a new job. People with autoimmune or inflammatory bowel disease often experience worsening symptoms when things grow tense. Researchers suspect this may be due to changes in your intestinal microbiota, or beneficial bacteria that inhabit the area.

Perhaps most frighteningly right now, stress can hinder your immune response. Studies in rats show that the number of T-cells, a critical type of white blood cell for fighting infection, decreases significantly when subjected to repeated tension over several days. If the mere thought of running out for groceries sends you into a paroxysm of fear about catching the COVID-19 virus, your emotions could ironically increase your chances of getting sick. 

What You Can Do to Manage Stress During Uncertain Times 

Getting a grip on your stress levels can benefit your overall health significantly. How can you do so, though, when so much uncertainty abounds, even among world leaders? Try these techniques to manage your emotions positively:

  • Meditate: You don’t need to spend a dime to learn how to meditate. All you need is a quiet space where you can sit and focus solely on your breath. As thoughts intrude, as they will, observe them neutrally. Then, let them go. Remember, the mere fact that you feel worried about something means it isn’t happening at present. If you prefer the guidance of a teacher, you can find ample meditation videos on YouTube for free.
  • Exercise: When you work out, your body releases endorphins, natural feel-good chemicals that help you to relax. For best results, keep your fitness time to under an hour. While moderate exercise decreases your cortisol levels, prolonged bouts can raise them. Save the marathon training for a less anxious time. 
  • Do yoga: Yoga unites your breath and body movement. It combines the mental benefits of meditation with the physical perks of exercise. You don’t need any equipment except perhaps a mat, and you can find ample free videos online. 
Lower Your Stress Levels and Improve Your Health

If you want to improve your physical health, it pays to start by getting a handle on your stress. By using natural, holistic techniques to tame the tension tiger, you can improve the length and quality of your years.

About the Author

Kate is a health and wellness journalist with an interest in holistic healing and all-natural living. If you enjoy her work, you can visit her blogSo Well, So Woman.

Please SHARE this article with your family and friends.

Health

5 Health Powers Of Asparagus

Published

on

asparagus growing
Photo Credit: Pexels

Mary West, Guest Writer

Exciting research is finding that asparagus is valuable for health in diverse ways, being beneficial for several medical conditions that plague many worldwide.

Perhaps most exciting of all is a new study that finds the vegetable may help prevent or treat a feared cancer that over 200,000 women in the United States are diagnosed with each year.

1. Asparagus found to have anticancer properties.

A new study published in the Indian Journal of Pharmacology found asparagus contains certain compounds that have substantial anticancer properties. Researchers tested the compounds, known as shatavarins, on test tubes of human breast, colon and kidney cancer, as well as on mice with breast cancer.

All the results showed that shatavarins had potent toxicity against cancer cells. Extract of asparagus administered orally in doses of 250 and 500 mg/kg body weight for 10 days caused a significant reduction in tumour volume and tumour cell count.

2. Asparagus may help prevent diabetes.

In addition to the anticancer properties of asparagus, it may have some anti-diabetic properties as well. Researchers at the University of Karachi in Pakistan found that high doses of asparagus extract had a positive effect on insulin output by the pancreas. The findings add to a 2006 study by the British Medical Journal that found the vegetable triggered an 81% increase in glucose uptake by body tissues. Therefore, asparagus can help diabetes by stimulating an increased production of insulin, in addition to enabling the body to absorb more glucose.

3. Asparagus may prevent a hangover.

Those who celebrate the New Year by drinking too much alcohol may prevent a hangover by taking asparagus extract. Chronic drinking can cause detrimental changes in the liver, as well as the unpleasant symptoms of a hangover. Scientists at the Institute of Medical Science and Jeju National University in Korea found the asparagus extracts “significantly alleviated” the cellular toxicity of alcohol, a benefit that translates to lessening of a hangover and protection of liver cells.

4. Asparagus offers up tremendous cardiovascular benefits.

This vegetable contains a compound called rutin that can help prevent deadly blood clots, which can lead to heart attacks and strokes. Moreover, asparagus is a good food source of folic acid, a nutrient that helps counter the bad effects of homocysteine, an amino acid in the blood linked to increased cardiovascular risk.

5. Asparagus can help balance out your electrolytes

Adding to the list of impressive health properties are three more benefits. Asparagus is a rich source of potassium, a mineral that regulates fluid balance; so the diuretic effects of asparagus can reduce bloating in the tummy area that sometimes occurs after eating a big meal. The vegetable also has anti-inflammatory and antifungal properties.

Some Further Reading, If You’re Curious…
Article Sources
Recommended Articles by Mary West
About the Author

Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance overall wellness. Ms. West is the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies, and  the creator of alternativemedicinetruth.com, a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects.

This article was republished with permission from Live in the Now, one of the fastest growing natural health newsletters. Visit LiveInTheNow.com to browse their complete library of articles, or join the nearly 60,000 readers subscribed to their Newsletter

Please SHARE this article with your family and friends.

Continue Reading

Health

Coconut Oil Could Help Fight Tooth Decay

Published

on

Coconut Oil
Photo Credit: Pexels

Mary West, Guest Writer

Coconut oil is much in the news these days, being used by the natural health community to enhance many aspects of health. Now, scientists have discovered yet another benefit of this valuable food – it may be a powerful ally in the fight against tooth decay.

Parents will gladly receive word of this discovery, as the pain of tooth decay and the ensuing infections that sometimes occur often involve treatment with antibiotics, drugs that have adverse effects and can lead to antibiotic resistance. A common childhood malady, tooth decay affects 60 to 90% of kids in industrialized countries, as well as most of adults, according to researchers.

Coconut oil, a natural agent devoid of side effects, will be a welcome inclusion to the tools used to fight cavities. The findings were so promising that researchers suggest it could be added to dental care products like toothpaste and mouthwash to promote the health of our teeth.

Scientists Found That Enzyme-Modified Coconut Oil Is a Potent Killer of Mouth Bugs.

Scientists at the Athlone Institute of Technology in Ireland evaluated the effectiveness of three different oils in attacking Streptococcus bacteria, acid-producing organisms that are common inhabitants of the mouth and a major cause of tooth decay. They tested natural coconut oil, olive oil and vegetable oil, in addition to the same oils treated with enzymes, simulating the digestive process. Only the enzyme-altered coconut oil displayed the ability to curtail the growth of most strains of the bacteria. It is believed that the breaking down of coconut oil by the enzymes release its components that fight bacteria.

Advantages of Using Coconut Oil in Dental Products

Lead researcher, Dr. Damien Brady said enzyme-altered coconut oil could be an attractive substitute for cavity-fighting chemicals currently added to dental care products. He points out its advantage of being effective at relatively low concentrations and emphasizes the importance of seeking alternative ways of fighting infections because of increasing antibiotic resistance.

Aside from the above benefits, another advantage is cost, as treating tooth decay can be very expensive in some regions. If the findings of the study hold up in further research, coconut oil could soon become an affordable means of preventing tooth decay.

The results were revealed at a recent meeting of the Society for General Microbiology at the University of Warwick.

Recommended Coconut Oil Based Toothpastes…
Article Sources
Recommended Articles by Mary West
About the Author

Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance overall wellness. Ms. West is the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies, and  the creator of alternativemedicinetruth.com, a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects.

This article was republished with permission from Live in the Now, one of the fastest growing natural health newsletters. Visit LiveInTheNow.com to browse their complete library of articles, or join the nearly 60,000 readers subscribed to their Newsletter

Please SHARE this article with your family and friends.

Continue Reading

Health

4 Ways To Know If Your Body Is Overwhelmed By Toxins

Published

on

4 Ways To Know If Your Body Is Overwhelmed By Toxins
Photo Credit: Pexels

Mary West, Guest Writer

We live in a toxic environment, being exposed to an estimated 2.5 billion pounds of chemicals each year. Once these toxins accumulate in the body, they may manifest in an array of symptoms.

It is impossible to escape this continuous bombardment of harmful chemicals; we come into contact with substances that can negatively impact our system several times a day. We breathe toxic chemicals in the air, ingest them in our food and absorb them through our skin.

Synthetic ingredients are found in fragrances and lotions, and sodium laurel sulphates are present in some toothpastes, soaps and shampoos. And the chemical assaults in the home don’t end there.

Our homes are laden with the toxins found in household cleaning products, “air fresheners” and pesticides, and some clothing, furniture upholstery and carpeting are even treated with toxic, hormone disrupting flame-retardants.

And our food? Well, it’s no secret that our food is loaded with chemical additives such as MSG, dyes and sucralose, while food containers can contain BPA. OUCH!

Think you can cleanse with just a healthy dose of H2O? Think again. Water systems are contaminated with lead and have been treated with fluoride, chlorine and many other chemicals.

4 Signs of Toxicity
1. Constipation

Bowel evacuation is the body’s natural way of eliminating waste. If you do not have a good-sized bowel movement every day, toxins are being reabsorbed into the blood stream and affecting your health.

2. Bad breath

This problem can indicate that your colon and liver are not eliminating toxins well.

3. Extra sensitivity to smells

If you have strong reactions to smoke, perfumes and other smells, you may be experiencing toxic overload.

4. Overweight

Difficulty in shedding extra pounds can be due to eating the wrong foods, but toxicity can also play a role. Some toxins like dioxins and pesticides are stored in the fat cells. When the body is storing a large quantity of these harmful chemicals, it poses a greater challenge to weight control.

Symptoms of Toxicity

The maladies that can ensue from chronic toxicity are too numerous to mention, but here are a few. Toxic overload can cause headaches, joint pain and rashes along with difficulty concentrating, food cravings and acne. Diseases related to toxicity include cancer, depression and attention deficit disorder in addition to autoimmune conditions, Alzheimer’s disease and arthritis.

11 Easy Ways to Detoxify
  1. Drink green tea, which is a natural purifier.
  2. Drink plenty of filtered water to flush toxins out of your system.
  3. Eat foods high in fibre, which include fruit, vegetables and grains as well as nuts and seeds. Cruciferous vegetables like cabbage, Brussels sprouts and broccoli are especially helpful. Two tablespoons of ground flaxseeds per day is beneficial as well. Incorporate garlic, parsley and cilantro into your diet, as they are natural detoxifiers.
  4. Avoid processed foods and refined carbohydrates like white bread and pasta. Get in the habit of reading food labels to avoid those that are high in additives.
  5. Exercise regularly to eliminate toxins through perspiration.
  6. Dry-brush your skin with a natural bristle brush or loofa sponge. Use brushing strokes that more toward the heart rather than away from it. If you need some dry brushing tip, check out this article.
  7. Practice deep-breathing techniques.
  8. Reduce alcohol intake and avoid taking unnecessary drugs.
  9. A 24-hour fruit fast is very beneficial for internal cleansing and eliminating toxins. In this type of fast you only eat only fresh raw fruits, instead of those that are canned or cooked.
  10. Fit for Life authors recommends a daily fruit fast by eating nothing but fruit and fresh fruit juices every morning until noon. It is a means of everyday cleansing.
  11. The use of a castor oil pack is a time-honoured method of detoxification.
Article Sources
Recommended Articles by Mary West
About the Author

Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance overall wellness. Ms. West is the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies, and  the creator of alternativemedicinetruth.com, a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects.

This article was republished with permission from Live in the Now, one of the fastest growing natural health newsletters. Visit LiveInTheNow.com to browse their complete library of articles, or join the nearly 60,000 readers subscribed to their Newsletter

Please SHARE this article with your family and friends.

Continue Reading

Health

8 Foods That Boost Your Immune System

Published

on

8 Foods That Boost Your Immune System
Photo Credit: Pexels

Dr. Edward F. GroupGuest Writer

If you’re looking for an immune system boost, the right vitamins and minerals can help. Although diet gets little attention in conventional media when it comes to supporting the immune system, it is one of the most powerful methods for keeping colds and other illnesses at bay. Nutrition isn’t the only means of immune system support but it is one of the oldest and most reliable natural approaches.

The 8 Best Foods for Your Immune System

The majority of your immune cells reside in your intestines, so doesn’t it make sense to consume healthy foods for keeping your immune system top notch? Here are 8 foods you can eat right now to boost your immune system.

1. Bell Peppers

Reach for all the bell peppers you want because they can actually have twice as much vitamin C as citrus fruits. In addition, bell peppers are a great source of beta-carotene, which not only helps maintain healthy skin and eyes but studies suggest they could also provide an immune system boost. [1] [2]

2. Citrus

Citrus fruits are packed with vitamin C. Believed to increase the production of white blood cells, C is essential for fighting off infections. Since your body doesn’t produce or store this vitamin, load up on citrus to help keep your immune system up and running. Supplementation with the vitamin may be helpful, but it’s always best to receive the vitamin from its natural source.

3. Ginger

Ginger is thought to work much like vitamin C in that it can even stop a cold before it starts. That said, it’s also a great food to reach for after you’re sick. Ginger can have a little heat due to the gingerol, a cousin of sorts to capsaicin—the stuff that makes chilli peppers hot. It’s the “kick” of the gingerol that can even act as a strong soothing agent. [3]

4. Turmeric

You can find this spice in many curries; it’s bright yellow in color, and a little bitter in taste, but it can definitely be pretty amazing for your health. While it’s already been used for its soothing capabilities for arthritis (among other things), a recent study suggests high concentrations of curcumin—what gives turmeric its color—could also reduce fever. [4] [5]

5. Spinach

With vitamin C, beta-carotene, and plenty of antioxidants, spinach is a perfect vegetable for your immune system. If you want to get the most out of it though, cook it as little as possible or even keep it raw. But don’t stop at spinach; a study suggests that other leafy green vegetables are good choices as well. [6]

6. Broccoli

Like spinach, broccoli is another great vegetable choice packed with antioxidants and vitamins. With vitamins A, C, and E, broccoli could easily be one of the healthiest vegetables you can put on your table. Just like with spinach, cook it as little as possible to retain its nutrients.

7. Yogurt

If you like yogurt, make sure you’re getting the full health benefit by eating the kind with live cultures. Recent research suggests these cultures may strengthen your immune system. [7] Yogurt can also be a great source of vitamin D, which can also help boost the immune system. [8]

8. Almonds

When your immune system needs a boost, vitamin E sometimes loses the spotlight to vitamin C, but both are crucial for a healthy immune system. Vitamin E is fat-soluble, which means fat is needed in order for it to be absorbed properly. You can get almost all of your daily allowance of this vitamin by reaching for a half-cup of almonds. How easy is that?

– Dr. Edward F. Group III, DC, NP, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM

References
  1. Hughes, D. A. Effects of carotenoids on human immune function. The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. 58 (3).
  2. Chew, B. P. & Park, J. S. Carotenoid Action on the Immune Response. The Journal of Nutrition. 134 (1).
  3. Grzanna, R. et al. Ginger—An Herbal Medicinal Product with Broad Anti-Inflammatory Actions. Journal of Medicinal Food. 8 (2).
  4. Jagetia G. C, & Aggarwal B. B. “Spicing up” of the immune system by curcumin.Journal of Clinical Immunology. 27 (1).
  5. Sultana, G. N. et al. Analgesic principle from Curcuma amada. Journal of Ethnopharmacology. 163.
  6. Li, Y. et al. Exogenous Stimuli Maintain Intraepithelial Lymphocytes via Aryl Hydrocarbon Receptor Activation. Cell. 147 (3).
  7. Meydani, S. N. & Ha W. Immunologic effects of yogurt. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 71 (4).
  8. Aranow, C. Vitamin D and the Immune System. Vitamin D and the Immune System.
Recommended Articles by Dr. Edward Group
About the Author

Dr. Edward F. Group III (DC, ND, DACBN, DCBCN, DABFM) founded Global Healing Center in 1998 with the goal of providing the highest quality natural health information and products. He is world-renowned for his research on the root cause of disease. Under his leadership, Global Healing Center earned recognition as one of the largest natural and organic health resources in the world. Dr. Group is a veteran of the United States Army and has attended both Harvard and MIT business schools. He is a best-selling author and a frequent guest on radio and television programs, documentary films, and in major publications.

Dr. Group centres his philosophy around the understanding that the root cause of disease stems from the accumulation of toxins in the body and is exacerbated by daily exposure to a toxic living environment. He believes it is his personal mission to teach and promote philosophies that produce good health, a clean environment, and positive thinking. This, he believes, can restore happiness and love to the world.

For more, please visit Global Healing Center.

Please SHARE this article with your family and friends.

Continue Reading
Advertisement Ezoicreport this ad
Advertisement

Trending Now

STAY AWARE

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

You have Successfully Subscribed!