The Advantages of Living Naturally

Living naturally doesn't mean you must go all out and start living in a treehouse. Instead, why
not try living a more natural lifestyle? It has so many benefits for your mind, body, and soul.
Here are five reasons why you should live an all-natural lifestyle:

1. You’ll Be Healthier

Living an all-natural lifestyle will help you become healthier overall. When you eat healthy
foods and exercise regularly, you’re giving your body the nutrients it needs to function correctly.
Additionally, natural remedies can help boost your immune system and fight off illness. Also,
exercise helps to keep your heart and lungs healthy, and it can also help you to maintain a
healthy weight and adequate rest allow your body to heal and repair itself.

2. You’ll Look Younger

Who doesn’t want to look young and radiant? An all-natural lifestyle can help you achieve just
that. Eating healthy foods and exercising regularly will improve your circulation and give your
skin a natural, healthy glow.

3. You’ll Have More Energy

If you’re constantly feeling tired, an all-natural lifestyle may be what you need. When you eat
nutritious foods and exercise regularly, your body will have the energy it requires to function
correctly. You’ll also be able to sleep better at night, further improving your energy levels during
the day.

4. You’ll Be Less Stressed

An all-natural lifestyle can help reduce stress levels. Exercise is a great way to relieve stress, and
eating healthy foods will help improve your mood and mental state. Additionally, natural
remedies such as aromatherapy can help reduce stress levels.

5. You’ll Be Happier

When you live an all-natural lifestyle, you’ll likely be happier overall. This is because you’ll care
for your mind, body, and soul. You’ll feel good knowing that you’re doing something positive
for yourself, and you’ll be less likely to experience adverse health effects.

Different Ways You Can Switch to Living an All Natural Life

If you desire to start living a natural life, try these habits:

1. Start by Eating Healthy

Eating healthy foods is one of the best ways to live an all-natural life. Make sure to eat plenty of
fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Avoid processed foods and foods high in sugar and fat.

2. Exercise Regularly

Exercise is not only good for your health, but it’s also good for the environment. Walking, biking
and swimming are all great exercises that don’t require any special equipment or membership
fees.

3. Use Natural Products

Another way to live an all-natural life is to use natural products instead of synthetic ones. For
example, use natural cleaning, personal care, and homeopathic remedies. Living a natural
lifestyle also has benefits for the environment. Using natural products helps to reduce the amount
of pollution that is produced. It also helps to conserve resources.

4. Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle

Reducing the amount of stuff you use, reusing what you can, and recycling what you can’t reuse
are all great ways to live an all-natural life.

5. Live a Simple Life

Finally, another best way to live an all-natural life is to live a simple life. That means consuming
less, wasting less, and living more simply.

The Negatives of Living an Artificial Lifestyle

If you live an all-natural life, you may find a few disadvantages, such as:

1. You Might Spend More Money

If you live an all-natural life, you might spend more money on healthy food and natural products.
However, the long-term benefits of living a healthy life outweigh the extra cost.

2. You Might Have to Give Up Some of Your Favorite Things

In most cases, you might have to give up some of your favorite things, such as processed foods
and synthetic products. However, natural alternatives are usually just as good, if not better.

3. You Might Have to Change Your Lifestyle

Finally, changing your lifestyle may be necessary to accommodate a healthy diet and exercise
regimen. However, the benefits of living a healthy life are worth the effort.


Written by Taylor McKnight, Author for AKRS Equipment Solutions Inc.


Featured image Photo by Tim Swaan on Unsplash 


This Is How Nightmares Are Linked To Brain Creativity

By Tiffany Harper

Etymologically speaking, the word ‘nightmare’ is weird itself. It's obvious why it has a night in it, but there's a history to the mare part of the word. ‘Mare’ was the word used to describe demons thought to people during their sleep in old English. So the word 'nightmare' originally was a term used to describe spirits. It was much later that it was used to refer to dreams these demons caused.

This term has remained, even in our modern world; however, there seems to be a new twist to the whole idea of nightmares. There's more to nightmares, and they may indicate something in people. According to psychologist Michelle Carr, who works on dreams at the Center for Advanced Research in Sleep Medicine, University Of Montreal, there are two dominant theories to explain nightmares. The first is that nightmares are a reaction to some negative experiences people have during their waking hours. The second one is the ‘threat simulation theory.’ This is the idea that humans evolved to have nightmares to prepare them for future adversity, so when something terrible happens in real life, they can handle it much better.

 

Photo by Stefano Pollio on Unsplash

It’s hard to say if nightmares are rehearsals for negative real-life experiences. However, one thing that has been noted is that nightmares have benefits for those that have to live and fight through them in their sleep. According to a study, as stated in college paper reports in 2013 [1], people that suffer from frequent nightmares tend to be more empathetic towards others in real life. They also tend to mirror other people unconsciously in different ways, like contagious yawning, which studies have revealed is a good indicator of empathy. Meanwhile, Carr's studies [2] have found that people that have nightmares constantly tend to think outside of the box when dealing with word-association tasks. There has also been other research to support the idea that there's a link between nightmares and creativity in people. A previous study by Ernest Hartmann, a sleep researcher, and psychiatrist at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston, during the 1980s, discovered that people that seek therapy for nightmares didn’t do it because they were more anxious or fearful, but because they were generally sensitive to all emotional experiences. According to him, the driving force for intense dreams is sensitivity. When a person’s sensitivity is heightened towards fear or threat during the day, they're likely to have nightmares and bad dreams. In the same way, if a person has their passion or excitement heightened during the day, they may have intense positive dreams. It's also possible that both forms of dreams find their way into the person’s waking life and may increase their distress after a nightmare or promote their empathy and social bonding after positive dreams.

 


Photo by RhondaK Native Florida Folk Artist on Unsplash

There are still other effects to this. During Hartmann’s study, he found that people's sensitivity spills into their thoughts and perceptions. So, people that have experienced nightmares constantly also experience some dreamlike qualities in their waking thoughts. This is the kind of thinking that gives them an edge and heightens their creativity. Studies reveal that people like this may have higher artistic expression and creative aptitude. This is something that Carr confirmed in her research with two of her subjects, Chris and Jess, scoring exceptionally high on a boundary thinness scale, which was a test measuring their artistic expression and creative aptitude. It comes as no surprise that both of them are artists. Chris is a musician, while Jess is a photographer and painter. As nature likes to balance things up, Carr also discovered in her research [3] that people that experience frequent nightmares also have a higher tendency to experience positive dreams than other people. There is evidence pointing to the idea that instead of interfering with their normal activity, people that unfortunately suffer from lots of nightmares also have an opposite dream life that’s as vivid, positive and creative, as they have the terrifying and distressing one as well. It’s also interesting to note that their imaginative richness isn't confined to when they’re asleep alone. It permeates through to their daydreams and waking thoughts. So after these people shake off the demon and wake up from their nightmares, there are still traces of it left behind, which they possess throughout the day. As Carr admitted, these new views of nightmares have their roots in the work of Dr. Hartmann and his research associate, Dr. Van Der Kolk. Their research found that nightmares play a role in a person’s mental life, even though they were more speculative with their conclusions at the time. During their research, they studied 50 women and men reported to have at least a nightmare per week since childhood. These subjects were recruited through an ad in the Boston newspapers.

Photo by Martin Látal on Unsplash

The commonest nightmares that people had were being chased, hurt, or threatened by someone or something. However, unlike ordinary dreams, nightmares mostly come in colors and also have other sensations that are very vivid, like pain that people rarely experience in ordinary dreams. One thing that struck Dr. Hartmann was that many of the research subjects had trauma-free childhood. From his research, he indicated that when a disturbing incident occurred very early in the subjects’ lives, such as being raped or mugged, that incident found its way into their nightmares for weeks. It combined with old themes before fading out later. Traumatic incidents
like that caused them to have frequent nightmares for a while, just like other stresses like having a hard time at work or school. In his view, one thing that stood out for him significantly is that the nightmare sufferer has a general personality. People like this are primarily defenseless and open and have failed to develop the psychological protection most people have. According to him, they have what he called thin boundaries. As a result, they’re likely to let things through. The majority of his study subjects also described themselves as being unusually sensitive from their childhood. They’re hurt easily and particularly more responsive to other people’s feelings.
They weren’t happy as children even when they weren’t experiencing any family problems. It was also common among them that some of their relatives were hospitalized for schizophrenia, and even some of the subjects themselves claimed to be schizophrenic. These are why Dr. Hartmann proposed that people who continue to suffer from constant nightmares through their adolescence have a greater risk of suffering schizophrenia. When reporting his study in an article for The American Journal of Psychiatry, he wrote that his study subjects were not particularly anxious and weren’t neurotic. However, he also noted that his subjects are biologically vulnerable to schizophrenia, but most of them hadn't developed any chronic mental illness signs. According to him, the same factors that set these people apart and make them more susceptible to suffering mental illnesses have also allowed them to be more creative in pursuing activities in the arts. This will enable them to use their vulnerability, openness, and sensitivity more positively and creatively. Dr. Hartmann’s study subjects included people mainly in creative arts, such as musicians, poets, movement therapists, and art therapists. However, many of the other people saw themselves as artists somehow even though they were doing other things to support themselves. This was the first link between nightmares and brain creativity before Michelle Carr’s more recent work. There has also been other research over the years to support this claim. So, the next time you find yourself trying to escape from zombies in your movie, wake up and remember that you can put that energy into creative use.


Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash


Featured image Photo by Soundtrap on Unsplash


Tiffany Harper is a training guru who’s been working in the corporate sector as a technology expert for several years now. She is a management graduate and loves to share her experience through blogs and expert articles. For her love of writing, she provided online consultations for one of the dissertation help writers, while working with UK Best Essays. Please do not hesitate to contact her on LinkedIn.


Ancient Chinese Medicine Secrets For Younger Looking Skin

By Sally Perkins

Skin aging is a common concern among millions of people all over the world, and some people won't hesitate to spend a lot of money to keep their skin looking young. According to a survey, most people spend over 25 percent of their beauty maintenance budget on their face alone. Moreover, it was found that more women in their 30s choose to invest in anti-aging products and facial moisturizers than any other age group. Using pricey creams and serums may give your skin a youthful glow, but traditional Chinese medicine and therapies may be even better to prevent and combat wrinkles, fine lines, and other visible signs of skin aging. Here's are some ancient Chinese medicine secrets for younger looking skin.

Almonds to reduce fine lines

Photo by Nacho Fernández on Unsplash

Several factors, such as constant exposure to direct sunlight, lifestyle habits, and an unhealthy diet can cause skin aging. Having dry indoor air can also result in dry skin and make it look older than it really is. This is why it's important to increase the moisture in the air with a humidifier to keep your skin looking supple and young. Apart from adding humidity to your indoor air, another thing that you can do to keep your face smooth and wrinkle-free is to use almonds as part of your beauty regimen.

Almond oil has been used in ancient Chinese practices to help soothe and soften the skin. Since it contains Vitamin A, it can also stimulate the production of new skin cells and reduce fine lines. You can use a small amount of almond oil as a facial moisturizer, or use it as a makeup remover. You can also try using ground almonds as an overnight mask. Prepare an ancient Chinese skincare recipe by soaking almonds in water and peeling the brown skins off. Grind the peeled almonds and mix with one egg white. Apply to your face and leave it overnight; rinse it off in the morning with cool water to reduce fine lines.

Acupuncture for wrinkle-free skin


Photo by Katherine Hanlon on Unsplash

Acupuncture can stimulate the body's healing responses, depending on where the needles are inserted. To improve wrinkles, an acupuncturist will insert needles in certain facial points to trigger the production of collagen in the body. Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body, but as we age, our bodies produce less and less collagen, which can result in wrinkles and older looking skin. By increasing the body's collagen stores, acupuncture can help to give you that radiant glow that you once had. Avoid reversing the effects of facial acupuncture by limiting your exposure to direct sunlight, avoiding smoking, and refraining from eating too much sugar and refined carbohydrates.

Soy to increase skin firmness


Photo by Yoav Aziz on Unsplash

Food therapy is an integral part of traditional Chinese medicine since the food we eat can have an effect on the way we look and feel. Soy products such as tofu and soy milk have always been consumed by women in various parts of Asia, which may explain why their skin looks younger than their years. Studies show that the nutrients in soy can increase the production of elastin in the body, which can make the skin stronger, firmer, and less likely to sag. You can include tofu or miso in your everyday meals, or mix warm soybean milk with a little ground almond, and drink it in the morning to enhance your skin's firmness.

Having younger looking skin doesn't have to cost you a fortune. Try these traditional Chinese remedies to get rid of fine lines, wrinkles and sagging, and enjoy having beautiful and healthy skin as you age.


Featured image photo by Alexander Krivitskiy on Unsplash


The Stages of Drug Rehab and Recovery

By Emily Blunt

To overcome an addiction is not a simple process. It is a journey through unknown territories before you can finally reach your destination. Understanding the concept can be helpful when you are looking into treatment options for yourself or your loved ones.  When you are coping with drug addiction, you believe it is time to clean up your body, and you should enter a professional drug treatment program.

Recovery from drug addiction requires effort, time, support, and willpower. When you choose to go with a professional drug treatment program, you will enter into a journey through four different stages of rehab recovery as you learn to develop a healthy and sober lifestyle. Every treatment program for drug or alcohol recovery goes through a series of steps. Here, we will discuss the stages of drug rehab treatment.

The four stages of drug rehab treatment are as follows-

  • Treatment initiation
  • Early abstinence
  • Maintaining abstinence
  • Advanced recovery

Stage 1- Treatment Initiation

When you get out for help from a professional drug rehab program, you start with the first stage of your recovery, treatment initiation. In the early days of your rehab, you probably will have some conflicting feelings about giving up your drug permanently, and you may think that your substance abuse problem is not as bad as others.  At this point in the treatment, the aim is to help the individual participate in treatment actively and accept that frugality is the aim.

To achieve this, a substance abuse counsellor may help the individual to do the following-

  • To look at the damaging effects of addiction
  • Explore the feeling of refusal with regards to the problem
  • Help the person to become motivated or recover

However, during this stage of treatment, an individual’s drug use history evaluation will be held. The treatment program will be initiated, and the counsellor will work with the individual to develop a treatment plan.

Stage 2- Early Abstinence

Once you decide to continue treatment for your substance abuse problem, you will enter the second stage of rehab, known as early abstinence. However, early abstinence from drugs is significantly associated with positive treatment outcomes. This can be a challenging stage to handle because of many factors, which include the following-

Continued withdrawal symptoms

  • Physical cravings
  • Psychological dependency
  • Triggers that can appeal you into a relapse

Threats at this stage of treatment can include cravings, social pressure to drink, and high-risk situations that can target alcohol consumption. During the early abstinence stage, your addiction counselor will start to teach you the coping skills you need to live a sober life.

Some helpful strategies include the following-

  • Encouraging participation in healthy activities
  • Finding alternative behaviors to occupy in rather than turning to alcohol
  • Participation in self-help group that offers support and information
  • Recognizing environmental triggers that can lead to cravings, including people, place, or a thing.

Stage 3- Maintaining Abstinence

After 90 days of abstinence, you will move from the early abstinence stage of recovery to the stage of maintaining abstinence. If you have started with a residential treatment program, you will now move to the counselling phase of rehab program on an outpatient basis.

The focus of this stage of rehab is to maintain abstinence by avoiding a relapse. You will learn the warning signs and the steps that can lead to deterioration. The maintaining abstinence stage of rehab will begin about three months into your rehabilitation program and last till you reach five years clean and sober.

Stage 4- Advanced Recovery

After five years of abstinence, you will reach the fourth and final stage of your rehab, advanced recovery. At this point, you take all your tools and skills that you have learned during your rehab counselling and put them to use to live a satisfying life.

In this stage, the below strategies can help-

  • Developing a long-term goal
  • Creating a daily schedule
  • Developing social relationships with people who are not addictive
  • Engaging in recreational activities which do not involve drugs
  • Finding ways through spirituality, religion, social action, or community work

Learning to apply these strategies will help you remain sober, but you will also have the skills to become a healthier person and a better family member. After all, recovery is much more than just staying sober. It is more of learning to live a happier and healthier life.


Author Bio

Emily Blunt is a passionate blogger who is exploring the field of addiction recovery. With the help of her blogs, She provides information and knowledge about various addiction recovery techniques and rehab centers.


Photo by Vladislav Murashko from Pexels


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5 Wise Tips to Gain Weight and Lean Muscle in a Healthy Way

By Luke Douglas

Many people are concerned about their weight, but rarely do you hear someone wishing to add weight to their frame. For the most part, people want to achieve sensible weight loss to eliminate unwanted fat and reach a healthier weight target. Needless to say, losing weight is a healthy decision if you’re currently overweight, and especially if you’re experiencing certain symptoms that might deteriorate your health.

But then there are the people on the other end of the spectrum. Many of us are actually looking for a way to optimize our nutrition to gain weight in a healthy way and if possible, build lean muscle mass to shape our physique and make us stronger in the process. If you are currently for ways to add weight to your frame without adding unwanted fat, then you have to take a careful and calculated approach.

Let’s take a look at some important tips that will enable you to gain weight and lean muscle in a healthy way this year.

Prioritize your calories

You probably know by now that the most important element of weight loss or weight gain is how you manage your calories on a daily basis. Simply put, you need to eat more calories than you’re expending during the day in order to gain weight, and do the opposite if you’re trying to drop pounds off your frame. However, restricting calories can be much easier than adding them, because you’re not used to eating more and because you have to be very careful about the kind of calories you add to your diet.

Typically, you would always want to prioritize calories from protein-rich foods if your goal is to add lean muscle and sculpt your physique. Keep in mind that carbohydrates and fats are not fattening per se, but focusing on maximizing your protein intake will ensure that you keep growing muscle while burning fat. It takes more energy for your body to process proteins than other macronutrients, and protein is the building block of muscle.

Focus on the right exercise program

Once you know that you need to consume more calories, you can start complimenting your diet plan with muscle-building exercise. Remember, it’s much easier to add pounds to your frame by complementing your lifestyle with exercise, particularly if your training sessions revolve around resistance training.

You should focus your resistance training on hypertrophy (building muscle) and strength, because muscle is lean, and it shapes your body. If, on the other hand, you start eating more but don’t exercise, you can expect to add only fat to your frame. With that in mind, be sure to work closely with your personal trainer to create a workout routine that will prioritize strength and lean muscle growth.

Include the right supplements into your diet

When you’re trying to lose weight, it’s important to use healthy supplements in the form of vitamins and minerals. However, when you’re trying to build muscle and add weight, then it’s important to use specific supplements for muscle gain that will help optimize your metabolic rate, increase hunger steadily, and get more nutrients like protein into your system.

That said, supplementation is not a substitute for a healthy diet, but it can help you get more of the right calories into your body on a daily basis. After all, eating more is a difficult task, and you have to ensure that you stay consistent. The right weight gain supplements will focus on quality proteins but also the right micronutrients to help you slowly but surely start eating more healthy foods.

Try eating more frequently

Speaking of eating healthy, you can’t hope to put more food on your plate but eat the same number of meals every day. For many people who are struggling to add weight to their frame, eating more is impossible, but eating more frequently is a smart alternative.

The key is to add healthy meals into your daily routine, preferably something like a plant-based diet rich in fiber, vitamins, and various minerals. Eating more frequently is not only a great way to nurture your metabolism, but it’s also one of the best ways to safely add calories to your diet without even noticing the difference.

Hydrate throughout the day

Last but not least, remember that it’s not just about the calories and the supplements – it’s also about healthy hydration. Most of us forget to drink ample amounts of pure aqua every day, and that’s a bad habit that you’ll need to change if you want to add lean muscle and weight to your frame in a healthy way.

Hydration is extremely important for athletes, whether you’re exercising occasionally or every single day. Over the long term, proper hydration will help you stay energized and it will allow you to push your limits in training. Of course, you should try to drink more water between meals so that you don’t ruin your appetite.

Wrapping up

As with every habit in life, the key to healthy weight gain is to stay consistent. Follow these tips but make sure to adhere to them consistently over the following weeks and months and you should have no problem adding lean muscle and weight to your frame, sculpting the physique of your dreams.


Luke is a lifestyle blogger. He is editor in chief at blog Ripped.me and one of the contributors at blog Trans4Mind. He follows the trends in fitness, gym and healthy life and loves to share his knowledge through useful and informative articles.
Connect with him on Facebook & Twitter


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Welcome To The Year of the Ox!

By Emma Suttie, D.Ac, AP

The Chinese New Year arrives on February 12th this year. The celebration of the Chinese New Year is called the Spring Festival and is the longest and most anticipated Chinese holiday. It is also celebrated by an estimated one-sixth of the world's population or one billion people! The traditional holiday period for the Spring festival is 23 days and is broken up into 3 parts. The first 8 days, this year from February 4th to the 11th is called Little Year. This is when preparations for the New Year begin and go until New Year's eve. Chinese New Year officially begins on February 12th and ends on February 22nd. This is the Spring Festival. And the last four days, this year February 23 to the 26th are called the Lantern Festival. Preparations begin on the 23rd and the lantern festival is held on February 26th.

Chinese Lantern Festival takes place on February 26th in 2021.
Photo by Leon Contreras on Unsplash

Lunar Calendar

The date for the Chinese new year varies each year because it is based on a lunar calendar and not the gregorian calendar that we use in the West. Using the lunar calendar, the first day of the month begins on the new moon. This is why Chinese new year falls on a different day each year.

Chinese New Year - February 12, 2021

The Twelve Animals of the Chinese Zodiac

Each Chinese New Year is associated with an animal. There are twelve animals in total and they go in a specific order and repeat every twelve years in a continuous cycle. 2021 is the year of the ox, which is the second animal in the zodiac. Each of the years also has an element associated with it. There are five elements and they are fire, earth, metal, water and wood. 2021 is the year of the metal ox.

Ox Years: 1901, 1913, 1925, 1937, 1949, 1961, 1973, 1985, 1997, 2009, 2021

Here are the animals in the Chinese zodiac listed in order with their corresponding year.


This image from cafeastrology.com


The Ox Personality

People born in the Year of the Ox are hard-working, loyal, trustworthy and conscientious. They are also reliable, methodical, fair and inspire confidence in others. As a result of these traits, they make friends easily and keep them for the long term. They are usually quiet and say little, but have strong opinions. They believe strongly in themselves but are also stubborn and hate to fail or be challenged. They usually have a great deal of common sense and intelligence. They are hard workers but never want praise or to be in the spotlight. In Chinese culture, the ox is a highly valued animal because of its work in agriculture. The twelve animals were chosen because of their importance to the people and the way they benefited their lives. Below are some of the personality traits of people born in the year of the ox.

  • strong
  • reliable
  • fair
  • conscientious
  • calm
  • patient
  • methodical
  • trustworthy
  • intelligent
  • loyal
  • quiet
  • serious
  • positive
  • grounded
  • workaholics
  • inspire confidence in others
  • opinionated
  • stubborn
  • hate to fail
  • don't like being challenged

According to astrologers, the year of the ox denotes hard work, positivity and honesty and these are the qualities that will manifest in all of us over the next twelve months.

Compatability

Most Compatible with Ox

Most compatible with Ox are Rat, Snake and Rooster.

Least Compatible with Ox

Goat, Horse and Dog.

Lucky Things for Oxen

Colours: Blue | Green | Yellow
Numbers: 1 & 4
Flowers: Lucky Bamboo | Lily of the Valley

Unlucky Things

Colours: Brown | Red
Numbers 3 & 6

What Animal Are You?

Check the chart below and find out your Chinese animal...

This image from changechecker.org

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Download This Sheet - Chinese Year Of The Ox

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Emergency Treatment of Cardiac Arrest

By Luke Douglas

Dealing with a heart condition is one of the most difficult things in the world – for the doctors, for the patients, and their families. This is why avoiding any potential problems and minimizing the chances of heart failure in the first place is so important. However, in case something does end up happening and you might be forced to be admitted to a hospital, you’ll need to undergo emergency treatment. What does this treatment include in case of cardiac arrests, is there something you can do yourself, and what does the outcome look like?

No warning

The biggest problem each one of us faces when it comes to cardiac arrest is the fact that it can occur with no previous warning at all. You may be focused on your everyday activities, relaxing at your own home, or walking to your favorite store – and suddenly start experiencing the symptoms of cardiac arrest. That’s when you’ll probably either lose your responsiveness, start having problems breathing, or temporarily lose your consciousness.

Some of the other symptoms of cardiac arrest include the feeling of discomfort in your chest, sudden weakness, or an elevated heart rate. Feeling these things will probably scare you, and that’s quite normal and expected, but what you shouldn’t do is panic and lose your cool. If that happens, though, the symptoms will probably get even worse and you’ll start feeling even less comfortable because of that. Therefore, try to remain calm, think happy thoughts, and be patient because help is surely on the way.

Treating cardiac arrest

Whether it’s you, someone you know, or a person you’ve never met in your life, as soon as you notice something’s wrong, you need to react. Calling for help is the first thing you should do, especially if you’re home alone or with someone you can’t seem to help on your own. Once the medical professionals arrive at the scene, they’ll do some tests and check if you’re dealing with cardiac arrest or something else.

Still, before they arrive, there’s a simple technique you can perform and make a huge difference in the outcome.

CPR is a combination of chest compressions and rescue breathing you can perform on another person and possibly save their life. In case that doesn’t seem to work, the emergency medical team will take the patient to a hospital where the doctors will use defibrillation. This is a procedure that uses a defibrillator to issue electric shocks in the patient’s chest, trying to help the heart start beating on its own once again.

Getting certified

If someone in your family – from your partners and your parents to your children or your cousins – is struggling with cardiac arrest and experiences problems every once in a while, taking things to a new level is the best way to go. This means getting certified and learning how to deal with this problem professionally and effectively that won’t just minimize the consequences of cardiac arrest, but actually help the patient feel better than ever.

One of the ideas you could explore is taking an Advanced Cardiac Life Support course and learning all the tips and tricks that will allow you to help different people at the same time. The course you’ll take and the certification you’ll get will make you an expert in this field, which will, in turn, mean the people in your life struggling with cardiac arrest have nothing to worry about in the future.

Help yourself

Another huge issue with cardiac arrest is not being able to rely on someone else to help you. If you’re living alone or simply happen to be alone once you start feeling the aforementioned symptoms, you may get frightened and not know what to do. That’s why you need to learn a few techniques that will help you remain calm and start feeling better – at least until someone comes back home or the ambulance arrives your way.

One of the most popular solutions you can find online is the so-called cough CPR, but you need to keep in mind that this procedure isn’t the safest and most effective in the world. On the contrary, it could lead you to further issues and delay medical help that could save your life. Instead, what you need to do is take a minute, relax, sit down, and take a dose of glyceryl trinitrate. These come in tablets and spray, and could effectively prevent further damage to your heart. After you do that, you need to wait five or six minutes and repeat the process in case you remain feeling breathless.

In the end, no matter what happens, remember to call for help because cardiac arrest is a serious matter that should be treated by professionals. Still, if you know how to react and what to do, you’ll be able to save someone’s life, and that’s all that matters!


Luke is a lifestyle blogger. He is editor in chief at blog Ripped.me and one of the contributors at blog Trans4Mind. He follows the trends in fitness, gym and healthy life and loves to share his knowledge through useful and informative articles.
Connect with him on Facebook & Twitter



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Chinese Medicine To Support Sensible Weight Loss

By Sally Perkins

According to the CDC, around three-quarters of all American adults are overweight. With around two-thirds of these trying to change their eating habits and lose a few pounds, it’s no surprise that weight loss plans and programs are big business, with a huge range of suggestions and options touted as providing miraculous results – some with more success than others. Chinese medicine offers the opportunity for mindful, realistic and sustained weight loss, so if you’re looking for a sensible solution for an ongoing, healthy lifestyle, here are some changes you could consider making.

Food and Functionality

Traditional Chinese Medicine is based on many principles relating to food consumption, metabolism and digestion which can aid weight loss and improve your relationship with eating. Excessive weight gain is thought to relate to the accumulation of ‘dampness’ – a condition that occurs when food intake, absorption, digestion and transportation are not balanced. Take the festive season as an example – if you eat too much, or consume food higher in fat, your spleen and stomach will struggle to transform your food, and any excess will be left sitting stationary, leading to an accumulation of dampness.

Elimination of dampness is the main tenet of traditional Chinese weight loss programs, and there are a number of ways to achieve this. According to the guidelines, cultivating a diet of bitter, sour and pungent foods can aid with achieving a healthy body shape, and help you avoid fluctuating weight that can have an impact on your mood, wellbeing and budget – having to invest in different clothes of different sizes gets expensive, and has a negative impact on the environment too. Whether you’re ensuring your favorite bikini will fit exactly come the summer, aiming to eliminate health conditions exacerbated by weight, or simply want to adopt a more mindful lifestyle, changing the way you eat can make a real difference.

Antioxidant Assistance

Many Chinese people drink tea every day, and it is thought to have a number of health benefits. Polyphenols are an antioxidant found in tea and may help to maintain a healthy metabolism whilst you lose weight, repairing cells and easing digestive issues. Green tea, Jiaogulan tea and Oolong all have a soothing flavor and a good level of antioxidants, and just one cup a day is enough to make a difference – something that can be easily incorporated into most daily routines. There are also various herbs known to support weight loss by suppressing appetite, burning fat, and boosting metabolism. He Ye (lotus leaf), Fu Ling and Huang Qi are some of the most well-known, but there are others that may also be suitable, depending on your lifestyle, goals and commitment to weight loss. Consulting a Chinese medicine practitioner can help you to tailor an individual treatment plan based on your personal needs.


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Changing the way you eat and drink and supplementing with appropriate herbs is not just about losing weight; it’s about improving your overall wellbeing and health as well. Making one or two small changes at a time can support you to develop positive food habits that’ll balance your body and leave you feeling fit and functional – as well as helping you to stay that way.


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5 Tips for Athletes to Thrive on a Plant-Based Diet

By Luke Douglas

Over the years, vegan and plant-based diets and lifestyles have become extremely popular around the world. Naturally, this is a good thing for Mother Earth as well as our general well-being, so if you’re contemplating making this transition, rest assured you’re not in the wrong. That said, it’s important to note that sustaining a vegan lifestyle or simply a plant-based diet can be difficult at times, and if you’re a novice, it can seem completely overwhelming. Especially if you’re an active individual who cares a great deal about their nutrition.

After all, you’re eating to fuel your body and your mind in training and perform at your best, so you need the nutrition approach to match your goals. Without a doubt, a plant-based diet fits well into an athlete’s lifestyle, but only if you know that you’re doing. Let’s take a look at the five tips that will help you thrive on a plant-based diet as an athlete.

Mind your caloric intake

First things first, before we get into macro and micronutrients, we need to address the overarching question of calories. As an athlete, you probably know that calories are the predominant factor that influences your figure and performance. While it is true that not all calories are created equal, it’s also true that fueling your body with the right number of calories daily is paramount for peak performance.

Eat too much, and you will gain unwanted weight. Eat too little, and your precious muscle will start deteriorating and you will lose weight. Now, it’s important to keep in mind that a plant-based diet can often be low in calories, whereas meats, dairy, and eggs are calorie-dense.

Don’t let this catch you off-guard, and keep in mind that you will need to eat more food on a plant-based diet to compensate and get enough calories in daily. If you’re unsure how many calories you need, you can refer to Mayo Clinic’s handy calorie calculator

Understand complete vs incomplete proteins

Photo by Marta Branco from Pexels

Protein intake is one of the most important factors that will determine your performance and progress as an athlete. Not only is protein an excellent source of sustainable energy next to carbohydrates, but it is also an essential building block of new muscle tissue. If you’re looking to add lean muscle to your frame and ensure long-term health and well-being, then you mustn’t skimp on protein consumption.

On a plant-based diet, however, you need to be very careful where you’re getting your protein from. This is the matter of complete vs incomplete protein sources, and you need to prioritize the former in your clean diet in order to get all the essential amino acids to build muscle, fuel your body, and reach your weight goals. You can find complete proteins in nuts and seeds, beans and legumes, buckwheat, seitan and soy, whole grains, and the like. 

Supplementation is more important than for carnivores

Before we get into supplementation, understand that supplements are not there to replace a wholesome diet. You still need to eat all your meals and get micro and macronutrients from whole foods, however, getting the right amount every day can be a challenge as a vegan.

Adequate protein intake can be one of the biggest challenges. So it’s important to delve deeper into the matter and go through a reliable plant protein guide where you will find out exactly how to maximize your protein intake and find the right supplement that is vegan-friendly and has all the amino acids you need. For vegans, it’s also important to supplement with vitamins D3 and B12, zinc and iodine, iron, and calcium.

Fats and carbs matter as well

Of course, it’s not just about the amount of protein you consume or if you’re getting all the micronutrients – you also have to be mindful of your fats and carb intake. Carbohydrates are your body’s primary fuel source, and luckily, the plant-based diet is rich with slow-releasing carbs that will provide sustained energy throughout the day.

Fats, on the other hand, are essential for the proper functioning of your immune system and are important for brain health. You can find healthy fats in all nuts and seeds, but also in avocados, olive oil, and coconut oil.

Ensure consistency over the long term

Photo by Ella Olsson from Pexels

On a final note, always remember that staying consistent with your new lifestyle will be the key to long-term success. This is a journey, not a destination, so you have to make sure that you’re able to adhere to the plant-based diet in the long run.

This can be a challenge if you’re new to the vegan game and haven’t yet mastered the art of meal prepping. Make sure to use a slow Sunday afternoon to prep the majority of your meals for the upcoming week, and you will have no problem sticking with a healthy plant-based diet no matter how hectic your life might be.

Wrapping up

Switching to a plant-based diet can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be if you take a calculated approach. Use these tips to transition to a plant-based diet quickly and easily, and most importantly, to make it an inextricable part of your lifestyle.


Luke is a lifestyle blogger. He is editor in chief at blog Ripped.me and one of the contributors at blog Trans4Mind. He follows the trends in fitness, gym and healthy life and loves to share his knowledge through useful and informative articles.
Connect with him on Facebook & Twitter


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Emotional Healing In A Time of Crisis

By Emma Suttie, D.Ac, AP

We are living in unprecedented times in our world. We have just lived through a global pandemic of COVID-19 and the world we knew no longer exists. Anger and frustration are coming out in so many ways all over the world as people struggle with the new reality and many struggle to survive. 

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To me, it isn’t the physical challenges that the virus presents that worry me, it is the emotional state of our global population. In the US we see riots, campaigns to defund the police, racial tensions, destruction of property and businesses and unprecedented violence. No matter how many of us may want to politicize what is happening, I think it points to something much deeper that has been brewing for much longer than many people realize. People are angry. They are frustrated. Life is getting harder. People work more for less money. There is so much uncertainty about the future. Many have lost their businesses. Their jobs. Their abilities to support their families. People are exhausted and scared. And they see more and more corruption at every level of business and government - which only feeds the anger and frustration that a few profit at the expense of so many. 

 


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I can’t offer a solution to the problems we face as a global community, but I think that we need to be honest about what is happening and be able to express those feelings. We have a right to be angry, frustrated and afraid. And we need to give those feelings a place to go. There is so much “political correctness” that people these days feel that they can’t say anything for fear it will offend somebody. We need to be able to have honest discussions about what is REAL and TRUE. And yes, it might offend somebody. In the present climate, the truth seems to have become a dirty word. The truth might hurt someone’s feelings. The truth might not be what someone wants to hear. And this is part of the problem. Because the truth is what is going to save us. 

For most of my life and career, I have been very conscious of focussing on the good. The positive. Practising kindness. Being loving. Having compassion. But I don’t insulate my life and not let anything negative come in. That would be delusional. When you are healing, people come and they need those things. They are hurting so they need love, kindness, compassion and your positivity and light. Those are the things that start the healing process, and support it until the end. But now I see that we seem to be having a reality problem. Some people are unable or unwilling to accept what is happening in the world. I understand this, as often, the reality is dark. It’s hard. There are things that are difficult to accept. And they hurt. 

There have been a lot of difficult truths coming to the surface lately. And if you don’t know what I am talking about, then you aren’t paying attention. This has been causing a lot of pain and a lot of grief. The new reality, for many, is difficult to accept. 

Another theme I see that is contributing to a lot of pain is that there seems to be a conscious effort to divide us. Break us apart and make us fight with each other. This breeds fear, fear of the “other” and only compounds the feelings of grief, depression, anxiety and isolation that have exploded since this all began. They want you to feel that you are alone. But the truth is, that you are not alone. There are more than 7 billion of us on the planet. We are a global community, and we have the intelligence and creativity to solve any problem we may face. But we can’t solve problems when we are angry, sad and afraid. You cannot focus your energy on solving problems when you are fighting an enemy.

I have been thinking about how we might go about trying to heal from so many of the powerful emotions we are dealing with right now. Both ones that have been building up for years, and the ones that are a result of this new situation that we find ourselves in. Chinese Medicine is really unique in how it looks at our emotions and how important they are to our health and wellbeing. As many of you know, each of the emotions is associated with an organ or an organ pair and when that emotion is healthy and in balance, it is strengthening to the body and that organ in particular. But when that emotion is out of balance, in excess or unexpressed, it is depleting to the body and its respective organs, causing problems in all aspects of your life and health. Generally in our culture, we are not taught that emotions can make us sick, but I think that most of us instinctively know that this is true. How does your stomach feel when you worry? Or how about those headaches when you are angry and stressed? How does your heart feel when you are grieving?

The good news is that because emotions are built into the system of Chinese Medicine, it also offers solutions and practices we can use to keep emotionally healthy. Each of the seasons, for example, offer us an opportunity to really work to clear old emotions we’ve been holding on to and balance and strengthen the system. I have been thinking that this wisdom is so needed right now. 

The emotions - things that hurt us, cause us grief or stir up anger can be an opportunity to learn something about ourselves. Why are we having these reactions to things that are happening? Why does one person respond to a situation in anger when another might feel grief?

Treating Emotions in the Real World

Helping us to manage the tsunami of emotions we are all feeling right now is the understanding that we must first become aware of the emotions, and then work to change not WHAT we are feeling but how we REACT to those feelings. Read that again. It's so simple, but it will likely change the way you think about how you may be feeling.

In my work with patients, we often start with simple awareness. Let's use an example.

If you are struggling with a particular emotion, let's say grief. Usually (but not always), the person is aware of the grief. The cause is the death of someone close to them, their loss is causing the grief. The lungs in Chinese Medicine are associated with grief, so there might be lung symptoms as well- shortness of breath, asthma, dizziness (not enough oxygen), coughing, etc. Their grief can literally be causing the lung symptoms because intense or excessive grief weakens the lungs' Qi. The person is describing how they are feeling, saying they feel consumed by their grief, out of breath, have no energy and are anxious and stressed because the grief is making it difficult to function because they still need to go to work and look after their young children. And this is it. The grief is a completely natural result of someone important in your life passing away. But the reaction is an increasing feeling of anxiety and panic because there is no space for the grief in their life because they have to keep going to work and looking after children.

So, we look at those feelings first - the anxiety and panic - and we figure out a way to help to manage them. Are you able to take some time off? Could the children go to stay with a grandparent for a few days? Can you take some time to allow yourself the space to grieve? Do you have someone you can talk to about everything you are feeling? All of these things will help release some of the pressure that can make these emotions so overwhelming. Just the acknowledgement begins the healing process. We start with the reaction - the anxiety because of the pressure to keep going normally while you are suffering - and work backwards to the grief itself.

When we get to the grief, there are a few ways that we can help reduce its intensity. We work to strengthen the lungs and build up their Qi, which very often helps lessen the grief's potency. We create a space for the grief to be felt, fully allowing those feelings to be expressed. In Chinese Medicine, the way emotions can be causes of disease is if they are repressed or unexpressed, leading to a stagnation in the body and eventual toxicity. Anyone who has a secret or something in their past they have been holding on to for years can tell you. It has an effect. Holding on to emotions isn't good for you, so finding the proper avenue for their expression is an important part of the healing process.

We are living in challenging times that are unprecedented in our history. Our struggles are multi-faceted right now. People are struggling to find their way in the new reality we face as a global community. The good news is that human beings have incredible intelligence, adaptability and resiliency. If we are able to stay positive, stick together and express what we are all feeling honestly, we can come out the other side of these difficult times stronger and with a new appreciation for everything good that still exists in this world.

If you need help working through what you are feeling right now or healing in general, I am here for you. My information is below.


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