Easy Brain Exercises + The Energy Medicine Summit + Energy Bites

 

Here’s some easy and fun suggestions for keeping your brain sharp from a newsletter by Dr Ryan at Upgraded Parents ….

Just as physical exercise makes us fitter and stronger, simple brain exercises can revitalize our brain function. These are called NEUROBICS, and use all five senses…sight, smell, touch, taste, and hearing. Using all of your senses strengthens our brain capacity by forming new connections. They’re not only fun, they’re simple to incorporate into your daily life regularly.
Your mind will stay nimble. You’ll be better able to remember new names and grasp new concepts, and you’ll find it’s easier to keep up with your workload.
Alright… who’s ready to break a brain sweat!?
1. Use your EYES
Turn objects upside down so your brain sees them differently. When you look at things right-side up, your left “verbal” brain quickly labels it and diverts your attention elsewhere. When they’re upside down, your right brain networks kick in, trying to interpret the shapes, colors, and relationships of a puzzling picture.
+Brain exercise: Turn pictures of your family, your desk clock, or an illustrated calendar upside down.
2. Use your EARS
Read a book aloud… slowly. You’ll use very different brain circuits than when you read silently to yourself.
+Brain exercise: Read aloud with your partner or a friend, alternating roles of reader and listener.
3. Use Your HANDS
Using the opposite side of your brain (as in this exercise) can result in a quick and significant expansion in the tactile parts of the brain cortex.
+Brain exercise: Use your non-dominant hand to brush your teeth, open the fridge, eat, and/or wash dishes. (I love this one! I do this regularly because it’s soooo easy to incorporate into my day.)
4. MEAL TIME brain fun
Eat in silence, and pay attention to the taste of each bite.Try eating (and/or cooking) a new food. Or, try this…
+Brain exercise: Switch seats at the dinner table. The brain benefits from new experiences. Changing seats upgrades who you relate to, your view of the room, and even how you reach for salt and pepper. (My family and I do this one quite a bit, too.)
5. Connect with your NOSE 
There’s a direct link between your nose receptors and the emotional center of your brain. So, new odors may bring on unexpected feelings and associations. By linking a new odor like vanilla, citrus, peppermint, or whatever to an activity, you’ll alert new neural pathways.
+Brain exercise: Wake up to new new scents: Keep an essential oil of your favorite scent near your bed for a week. Open it and smell when you first wake up, and then again as you get dressed.
You see? Who says fitness and exercise has to be hard to make huge brain gains!?
These are 5 easy options to immediately incorporate into your busy life:)
Source: Newsletter by Dr. Ryan
CEO: Upgraded Parents | Total Health Spine & Nutrition
Co-Creator & Host: Superhuman Brain Masterclass

This upcoming free summit has some great presenters on board….
During this groundbreaking 5-day event, you’ll discover:
  • Ways that spiritual practice can create a haven amidst chaos and adversity — an internal place to find stillness before responding to challenging situations
  • The role that energy plays in the connection between mind and body… and why it’s the essential key to healing and living in balance
  • How to improve your vision with Chinese Reflexology
  • Qigong — an ancient healing tool for modern times
  • Leading-edge research about how your mind can shape your destiny
  • Meaningful grounding practices to address your physical, mental, and emotional needs
  • An understanding about how your thoughts hold the power to immediately impact your physical body
  • That coherence between the heart and brain can move you out of trauma
  • Methods for diagnosing excessive or deficient energy in the chakras
  • Scientific research showing how you can create a long-lasting state of bliss, passion, energy, and health
  • Profound practices based on Native American medicine and chakra clearing to remove ego, blockages, traumas, and burdens
  • And many more modalities, all for your own healing. 
You can find out more and sign up here.

And here’s a recipe for energy bites to co-ordinate with the Energy Medicine Summit. 🙂 If you’re looking for healthy sweet treats, you may want to give these from GardenofLife.com a try….
Chocolate Almond Energy Bites

Chocolate almond Energy bites

Serves: 25-30

Use Organic:

  • 2 cups Medjool dates pitted
  • 1 cup creamy almond butter
  • 1 cup roasted almonds roughly chopped
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

For Chocolate:

  • 2 cups vegan chocolate chips
  • 1 Tablespoon cacao butter
  • 1 Tablespoon Garden of Life Coconut Oil

Directions:

  1. Soak dates in hot water for about 20-30 minutes.
  2. Remove dates from water and place in a high speed blender with almond butter, vanilla and salt and blend to a paste.
  3. Spread paste into a parchment-lined brownie pan and freeze for an hour.
  4. Cut paste into squares and place back in freezer while you melt the chocolate.
  5. Using a double broiler, melt chocolate with the cacao butter and coconut oil.
  6. Dip each piece of date/almond bite into chocolate and then place on a parchment lined cookie sheet.
  7. Store bites in freezer until ready to serve.

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained healthcare practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

Free Dental, Eye, Energy Series + Collagen Recipes + EWG 2019 Buyer’s Guide List

A quick post to let you know about a number of free health resources you may be interested in checking out. First up, a series on reclaiming your energy put together by Ari Whitten…..
Image
#1 best-selling author, Ari Whitten, has spent the last 6 years creating something he calls the “Energy Blueprint” that has changed fifty thousand lives and today he’s offering it for free!
Ari has teamed up with several of the brightest minds in the world on overcoming fatigue and increasing energy… world-renowned scientists, physicians, nutrition experts, sleep experts, and neuroscience experts… AND scoured thousands of studies to bring together this information.

Here’s a peak at what you’ll learn in Masterclass video #1:

  1. Why your energy levels are the foundation of your happiness and success in life (proven by research).
  2. Why conventional medicine doesn’t usually have much to offer those struggling with fatigue. (This research will shock you!)
  3. The truth about “adrenal fatigue” according to the latest science
  4. SIX powerful strategies to dramatically increase your energy levels, starting TODAY.

Here are the release dates:

  • April 4th – Masterclass #1 is released.  (You’ll learn: 4 secrets of the new science of energy, and 6 powerful strategies to start increasing your energy immediately).
  • April 8th – Masterclass #2 is released. (You’ll learn: How to literally build up your CELLULAR ENGINE — the capacity of your cells to produce energy).
  • April 11th – Masterclass #3 is released. (You’ll learn: How to supercharge your brain energy, and re-wire your brain out of anxiety, depression and brain fog).
  • April 15th – Masterclass #4 is released. (You’ll learn: The full 6 steps of The Energy Blueprint system).

https://www.energyblueprint.com/optin


Check out this video series about cataracts, glaucoma and other eye issues by Dr Sam Berne of Holistic Eye Care . His site and the series also features eye exercises for various things, including enhanced learning, vertigo, astigmatism, and more. i haven’t finished the whole series yet, but have already picked up some useful information and have started using Dr Berne’s MSM eye drops and also his formula for cataracts. Too soon to know how well they work.

https://www.drsamberne.com


 

Dr Paul O’Malley offers a series of 18 videos that cover everything from mercury removal, dental implants, crowns, bridges, root canals and more. It shows you how dentistry works and how it doesn’t, and everything you need to know about being a dental patient, as well as what various procedures entail. I haven’t watched all the videos yet, but have found the ones I have seen very informative and enlightening.

You can sign up for the dental education course on his website. If you don’t want a call back from his office, be sure you sign up thru the link at the bottom of the page, which is what I did.

https://www.drpaulomalley.com/


EWG’s 2019 Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce™ is finally here, and there are some new additions to the list!

For the fourth year running, strawberries top EWG’s Dirty Dozen™ list for the most pesticide residues. But, the most surprising find on this year’s list is the popular health food kale, which is now among the most contaminated fruits and vegetables. Here’s the latest “Clean 15” list.

See the full list of fruits and vegetables recommended you always buy organic: https://www.ewg.org/foodnews/full-list.php


 

And Native Path has published has a page on their site with +45 recipes using collagen. So if you’re looking for a variety of ways to incorporate collagen into your diet, check out this resource here.

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

Free Introductory Herbal Course!

 

Wow, just got an e-mail from Nick Polizzi at Sacred Science about this free course some of you may want to sign up for. I know I just did a post yesterday, but registration for this ends today, so thought I would do a quick post so you don’t miss out. Here’s what Nick had to say…..

 

If you’d like to learn how to create your own herbal remedies, I have the perfect resource in mind!

Our friends at The Herbal Academy just recently released a FREE online Introductory Herbal Course! I can safely say that this is one of the most high quality herbal education platforms I’ve ever experienced. The women who run Herbal Academy are dedicated, passionate and extremely knowledgeable – which is why they are the best in the biz!

Sign up by the March 17th deadline to start integrating herbs into your daily life!

The Herbal Academy’s Introductory Herbal Course features all-new expanded lessons, fresh videos, hundreds of recipes, new multimedia resources, and experiential exercises that will take your learning off your computer and into your kitchen!

I’ve gotta say, this course is legit!

Through the Herbal Academy’s Herbal Basics Class, you will get an introduction to the herbal approach, learn why herbs are important, and how to use them in teas, infusions, decoctions, tinctures, syrups, topical applications, and body care products.

You will get a taste of the popular Introductory Herbal Course, building your confidence using herbs in your own home!

Features of this free Introductory Herbal Course:

● 32 In-depth lessons including the very latest research, presented in a clear, easy-to-digest way!
● Detailed Recipe Book
● Dedicated and beautifully presented materia medica charts for each body system discussed
● 75 herbal monographs
● A Tea Booklet – full of tea recipes
● Beautiful helpful videos to enhance your learning
● Inspiring media and learning charts
● Experiential exercises to bring your studies to life

Registration for this free Herbal Basics Class, an exclusive offer, is only available for a limited time! The special enrollment period runs through March 17th.

https://theherbalacademy.com/free-herbal-basics-class-herbal-academy/

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Great Acupressure Resource For Colds, Flu, Sore Throat And MORE!

 

Here’s lots of good self-help information to have on hand from Michael Reed Gach, PhD for using acupressure points for a cold, flu, sore throat and MORE….

 

We’re well into the winter season when it is vital to protect yourself from the wind, cold and dampness. Boosting your immune system with Acupressure and keeping your energy flowing is an effective way to ward off many winter ills.

What you eat is also vital for staying healthy.  Eating too many sweets and cold foods can make your body receptive to catching colds and sore throats.

Tip for Colds & Sore Throats: A tea made from fresh Ginger Root (available in produce markets, not the candy) can provide your body with the warmth to counteract colds and sore throats.  Chop a small handful of ginger root and simmer it for 20 minutes or so.  Use this ginger water to gargle with to relieve a sore throat.  Sweeten with a little honey to drink as a medicinal tea for colds.

When a cold comes on your shoulders may ache. This is when Acupressure shoulder points, just above the tip of your shoulder blades can help. Firm pressure on TW 15 (shown below) is great for immune boosting, stress reduction, and can help to prevent a cold.

When you feel a cold brewing, place tennis balls on the points shown above.  Apply pressure with the weight of your body, whether you’re sitting or lying down.  Placing the balls on a soft pillow or on top of your bed can be helpful.

Breathe deeply as these points are pressed for 2 minutes or so. Let yourself deeply relax with your eyes closed for at least 5 minutes immediately afterward to gain the full benefits, and allow your body’s energy to balance.

Here’s more from Michael on using Acupressure for relieving not only colds, flu and a sore throat, but also headaches, neck pain, arthritis, mental stress and a number of other things….

Acupressure Points for
Colds and Flu
Side view of anatomical chart     Colds are caused by viruses that thrive in your nose and throat when the temperature, acidity, and moisture suit them. When you are run down and your resistance is low, your ability to adapt to environmental changes weakens, making it easier to catch a cold, and the mucous membranes become a perfect breeding ground for viruses. Cold symptoms are the body’s attempt to protect itself from these intruders. When a virus enters your nose, for instance, the body secretes more mucus to flush it away.

Because acupressure stimulates your body to expel the virus more quickly, it may seem at first that your cold is worsening. But your body is simply progressing through the symptoms faster than usual. Although acupressure cannot cure a cold, working on certain points can help you get better quicker and increase your resistance to future colds.

Acupressure Points
for Seasonal Changes

Potent point B 36, called Bearing Support, is especially good for stimulating the body’s natural resistance to colds and flu. It’s located near the spine, off the tips of the shoulder blades. According to traditional Chinese medicine, wind and cold enter the pores of the skin at this point.1 The muscles in this upper back area tend to get tense just before a cold or flu takes hold.2

Recently, one of my best friends, a realtor, was suffering from a bad cold with a stuffy nose, a hacking cough, puffiness around his eyes, and a pallid complexion. He hadn’t slept well the previous two nights because of these discomforts and was very tired. After I briefly massaged his upper back, shoulders, neck, and chest, I showed him how to press the decongestion points underneath the base of his skull and on his face. I also told him to drink ginger tea at least twice a day. When I saw John the next day, he told me he had slept soundly and felt much more refreshed. His eyes looked much clearer, and already he was no longer coughing and blowing his nose.

Potent Points for Relieving Colds and Flu 

Drilling Bamboo (B 2)

Location: In the indentations of the eye sockets, on either side of where the bridge of the nose meets the ridge of the eyebrows.

Benefits: Relieves colds, sinus congestion, frontal headaches, and tired eyes.

Facial Beauty (St 3)

Location: At the bottom of the cheekbone, directly below the pupil.

Benefits: Relieves stuffy nose, head congestion, burning eyes, eye fatigue, and eye pressure.

Welcoming Perfume (LI 20)

Location: On either cheek, just outside each nostril.

Benefits: Relieves nasal congestion, sinus pain, facial paralysis, and facial swelling.

Crooked Pond (LI 11)

Location: At the outer end of the elbow crease.

Benefits: Relieves cold symptoms, fever, constipation, and elbow pain; strengthens the immune system.

Joining the Valley (Hoku) (LI 4)

Caution: This point is forbidden for pregnant women because its stimulation can cause premature contractions in the uterus.

Location: At the highest spot of the muscle on the back of the hand that protrudes when the thumb and index finger are close together.

Benefits: Relieves colds, flu, head congestion, constipation, and headaches.

Gates of Consciousness (GB 20)

Location: Below the base of the skull, in the hollows on both sides, two to three inches apart depending on the size of the head.

Benefits: Relieves headaches, head congestion, arthritis, neck pain, and irritability.

Wind Mansion (GV 16)

Location: In the center of the back of the head, in the large hollow under the base of the skull.

Benefits: Relieves head congestion, red eyes, mental stress, headaches, and stiff neck.

Third Eye Point (GV 24.5)

Location: Directly between the eyebrows, in the indentation where the bridge of the nose meets the center of your forehead.

Benefits: Relieves head congestion, stuffy nose, and headaches. 

Elegant Mansion (K 27)

Location: In the hollow below the collarbone next to the breastbone.

Benefits: Relieves chest congestion, breathing difficulties, coughing, and sore throats.

Potent Point Exercises 

You do not have to use all of these points. Using just one or two of them whenever you have a free hand can be effective.

Lie down on your back or sit comfortably.

Step 1

Press into B 2: Use your thumbs on the upper ridge of your eye socket to press into the slight hollow near the bridge of your nose for one minute. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths, letting the weight of your head relax forward onto your thumbs.

Step 2

Press St 3 and LI 20: Place both of your middle fingers beside your nostrils and your index fingers next to them; gradually press up and underneath the cheekbones for one minute. You can easily teach this step to your child to help relieve nasal congestion.

Step 3

Press both LI 11: Bend your arm and place your thumb at the- end of the elbow crease on the outside of your forearm. Curve your fingers to press firmly into the elbow joint for one minute. Repeat on your opposite arm.

Step 4

Press LI 4 firmly: Spread your left thumb and index finger apart. Place your right thumb in the webbing on the back of your left hand and your fingertips on the palm directly behind your thumb. Firmly squeeze your thumb and index finger of your right hand together to press into the webbing. Angle the pressure toward the bone that connects with your left index finger, and hold for one minute. Then switch hands.

Step 5

Firmly press GB 20: Now close your eyes and place your thumbs underneath the base of your skull, two to three inches apart. Slowly tilt your head back and apply pressure gradually, holding the position for one minute to fully release these important cold-relief points.

Step 6

Firmly press GV 16: Place the tips of your middle fingers into the hollow in the center of the base of your skull. Keeping your fingers on the point, inhale as you tilt your head back and exhale as you relax your head forward. Continue to slowly rock your head back and forward, and breathe deeply while you hold this important point for relieving head congestion.

Step 7

Touch the GV 24.5: Bring your palms together and use your middle and index fingers to lightly touch the Third Eye Point located between your eyebrows. Breathe deeply as you hold this point for balancing your endocrine system.

Step 8

Firmly press K 27: Place your fingertips on the protrusions of your collarbone, then slide your fingers down and outward into the first indentation in between the bones. Press into this hollow as you breathe deeply and visualize the congestion clearing.

Potent Points for Relieving Coughing

A severe, repeated, or uncontrolled cough can be harmful and you should always consult a physician. Many illnesses such as influenza, pneumonia, and chronic bronchitis can become serious if the condition continues unattended. 

Sometimes, your physician will find it advisable to attempt to suppress a cough to prevent further irritation of the bronchial tubes. Cough medications may be used, but acupressure can be an effective adjunct therapy. During a coughing fit, many of the large muscle groups in the upper back area can go into a spasm. Specific points on the chest, throat, neck, and upper back benefit the respiratory system, relax your body, and relieve coughs.

 

Vital Diaphragm (B 38)

Location: Between the shoulder blade and the spine at the level of the heart.

Benefits: Relieves coughing, breathing difficulties, and respiratory problems. This calming point also helps balance the emotions.

Ding Chuan (Extra Point 17)

Location: To the side and a little above the vertebra that protrudes at the top of the spine when the head is tilted downward.

Benefits: Relieves throat problems, coughing, shoulder and neck pain, and thyroid imbalances.

Heavenly Pillar (13 10)

Location: One-half inch below the base of the skull on the ropy muscles one-half inch out from either side of the spine.

Benefits: Relieves sore throat, stress, burnout, overexertion, and heaviness in the head.

Heaven Rushing Out (CV 22)

Location: At the base of the throat in the large hollow directly below the Adam’s apple.

Benefits: Relieves dry cough, bronchitis, sore throat, chest congestion, and heartburn.

Elegant Mansion (K 27)

Location: In the hollow below the collarbone next to the breastbone.

Benefits: Relieves chest congestion, breathing difficulties, asthma, coughing, and anxiety. 

(You do not have to use all of these points. Using just one or two of them whenever you have a cough can be effective.)

Potent Point Exercises

Although many of the following points can be held while you are sitting, it is preferable to lie down comfortably on your back.

Step 1

Hold both K 27 points: Place your fingertips on your chest and firmly press into the indentations directly below the protrusions of the collarbone. This is another point that you can easily teach a child.

Step 2

Use tennis balls on B 38: Place two small rubber balls or tennis balls together on a clean carpet. Lie down, placing the balls between your shoulder blades at the level of your heart. Close your eyes and take three long, deep breaths as you continue to press the K 27 points on your upper chest. 

Step 3

Firmly press extra point 17: Slowly roll the tennis balls a few inches higher toward the base of your neck. If the tennis balls tend to slip, or you aren’t using them, Simply use both middle fingers to press this important acupressure point at the base of the neck.

Step 4

Hold both B 10 points and CV 22: Press B 10 on the upper neck with one hand, using the fingertips. Use your other hand to lightly hold CV 22, an inch below the base of the Adam’s apple, pressing lightly at a downward angle. Close your eyes and breathe deeply as you visualize healing energy soothing your throat.

For Sore Throats and Coughing 

A small piece of fresh ginger can be one of the most natural and effective ways for soothing a sore throat. Simply place a very thin slice of fresh ginger on the back of your tongue. If your throat is sensitive and the ginger feels hot, use a smaller, thinner piece and place it farther back toward your throat. Keep the ginger in the back of your throat for ten minutes. Repeat with a fresh piece several times a day as needed. A quarter cup of chopped ginger can also be simmered in a few cups of water and used as a tea for soothing coughs and sore throats. 

Source: https://acupressure.com/articles/colds_and_flu.htm

Check out Michael’s acupressure.com site for free articles and videos and information about his on-line trainings .

Also search the Self-help Health archives for more posts on preventing and treating colds, sinus congestion, sore throats and the flu.

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

 

Two Minute Breath Exercise To Relax & Alleviate Pain + 21-Day Yoga Challenge

 

As someone who for years has been a shallow breather and doing the opposite of what’s recommended, i. e. I’ve been “chest breathing” and pulling my stomach in when inhaling and out when exhaling, I’m determined to be more mindful of doing things correctly. Practicing this routine and a couple of others I’ve come across is already helping proper breathing feel more natural and automatic. 🙂 And I just signed up for Wanderlust’s free 21-day yoga challenge mentioned at the end of this post that will include focusing on the breath, so that should help as well! 

 

This Two Minute Exercise Reduces Pain and Promotes Relaxation

Did you know that over 25 million adults suffer daily with pain? Are you one of them? It could be joint pain, muscle pain, headaches, pain from arthritis, fibromyalgia or nerve pain, to name a few. We are a nation full of pain sufferers, and relief for many is found in the form of over-the-counter and prescription pain medicine.

Dangers of painkillers

Many types of chronic pain are inflammatory in nature. To combat this, some people use anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS), both prescription and over the counter, to relieve it. While these drugs do not possess the addictive nature of opioids, they do carry some potentially dangerous risks.

In the case of all NSAID drugs, the most common side effect is gastrointestinal tract damage. According to Dr. Byron Cryer of the American Gastroenterological Association, over half of all bleeding ulcer instances can be traced back to NSAID use. Other side effects of NSAIDs include severe allergic reactions, kidney damage, and high blood pressure.

Many people who experience chronic pain are prescribed opioid painkillers by doctors. These are a popular option because this class of drug is very potent, and may temporarily eradicate many types of pain. However, these drugs come with a substantial cost in the form of some extremely nasty concerns and side effects.

The primary reason one may want to avoid opioids is their high potential for addiction. Opioid addiction is an epidemic in our nation. The Senate Caucus on International Narcotics Control reported that approximately 2.1 million people in the United States alone abused prescription opioid drugs in 2012.

Opioids also carry a high risk of overdose. The CDC reports that in 2010, just under 17,000 Americans died from opioid overdoses. That’s more deaths than from heroin and cocaine put together.

Aside from the frightening risks of addiction and overdose, opioid drugs are accompanied by a lot of potential side effects. One includes slow, shallow breathing, which can lead to death in the case of overdose. Other side effects include irregular heart rhythms, drowsiness, sleep disorders, digestive issues, lowered sex drive, osteoporosis (when taken long term) and tooth decay. It can even cause hyperalgesia, an instance where taking opioids leads to more pain, not less.

Do you have six minutes a day to spare?

I hope that your answer to this question is an inequitable, yes! If you can manage to carve out just 2 minutes each morning, midday and evening, you may well be on your way to pain relief, and relaxation like you have never experienced before.

This is something most people don’t do well

Breathing sustains life, breathing correctly revitalizes and can improve the quality of life while minimizing pain and maximizing relaxation. Most people don’t take the time to think about breathing; it is just one of those things that happen, all on its own. While this is true – taking the time to breathe correctly, even for six short minutes each day, can make a world of difference to your health.

Belly breathing or “diaphragmatic breathing,” is the ancient practice of breathing in which we can actually control our mind and body. According to the London Pain Clinic, diaphragmatic breathing is known as the act of breathing deeply into the lungs by flexing the diaphragm, not the rib cage which results in shallow breathing. As noted in the name belly breathing, when you breathe deeply there is an expansion of the stomach, not the chest.

Even taking the time to breathe deeply for six minutes each day can make a tremendous difference in your health.

Here are just five reasons why we should all belly breathe daily.

Belly breathing alleviates pain

Do you notice that your pain increases when you are under stress? Belly breathing is the perfect answer to reducing the stress in your life that may be causing pain flare-ups. Deep breathing alters your psychological state and makes pain diminish in intensity. Did you know that your brain is capable of making its own morphinelike pain relievers that are called endorphins and enkephalins? These hormones promote happy and positive feelings that can transmit messages to “stop the pain” through the body. Breathing deeply also oxygenates the blood, triggers the release of endorphins and decreases stress hormones which slow the heart rate.

Belly breathing improves respiration

If you have ever watched an infant or a dog or cat breathe, you would notice something interesting. There is a tremendous amount of 3-dimensional expansive movements around the body – especially the abdomen. As we age, we become less likely to breathe expansively or efficiently. We grow stressed, wear tight-fitting clothing and live a lifestyle that pushes breathing to the bottom of the priority list because it “just happens.”

Our cells suffer when we breathe shallowly. They are not able to get the nutrients they need, and this can cause things like fatigue, brain fog, and even longterm illness and chronic pain.

On the other hand, deep breathing profits the entire body because of improved respiration and nutrient uptake.

Belly breathing promotes relaxation

When we are living in a hurried state, like most of us are, we are often in what is known as a “fight or flight” mode. In this gear, we are engaging the sympathetic nervous system.

The only way we can access the autonomic nervous system is through deep breathing. This automatically increases the efficiency of our heart and digestion.

When we choose the relaxation response over the stress response, we can keep anxiety at bay which reduces our risk of stress-related illnesses such as heart disease, depression, digestive disorders and more.

Belly breathing improves posture

Belly breathing encourages you to sit tall. This allows all of your organ systems to work efficiently. Food is easier to digest, your heart works more efficiently, your nerves and blood vessels are less likely to be pinched. This releases hormones that help you feel more confident, causing you to sit even taller.

Belly breathing stretches and strengthens core muscles

Core muscles include the abdominals, erector back muscles, diaphragm, and the pelvic floor. When we breathe from our belly, the three-dimensional movement keeps these core muscles in good shape.

How to belly breathe

The best way to begin proper breathing is to lie on your back. Take slow, relaxed breaths that fill your entire lungs and expand your belly. Place your hands on your belly to feel the rise and fall. When you can do this easily lying down, try it standing up, it is a lot more difficult! As you progress, a great exercise to strengthen the diaphragm muscle is panting with your tongue stuck out like a dog. Seriously, the rapid motion engages the diaphragm for a quick 10-second breath workout!
To make proper breathing a daily habit, take slow, relaxed breaths for 2–5 minutes several times a day.

Breathing correctly benefits your health in surprising ways. You not only feel more relaxed, but you will have better nutrient absorption, lower blood pressure, and feel more energized. You may even drop a few excess pounds since your body requires a considerable amount of excess oxygen to dispose of fat. With all the benefits of breathing properly, it’s time to make the practice a priority and get started today.

And here’s the intro video to the Wanderlust 21-Day Yoga Challenge I mentioned with a link to where you can sign up below…… 

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

+40 Plus Natural Cold And Flu Remedies

 

I thought this post from The Grow Network where they compiled comments from their readers about what they use for fighting or preventing colds and flu makes a great resource to have on hand. Always good to have that first-hand experience factor when something is recommended!

 

cold flu home remedy

40+ Natural Cold and Flu Remedies

Cold or flu got you down? Our Community’s got you covered! Check out these great tips and tricks for treating (and preventing!) colds and flus naturally.

Silver

When it comes to fighting off colds and flu, several of you swear that silver is worth its weight in gold.

  • Suz says, “Since flu starts in the gut, we take colloidal silver at the first symptoms: 5–6 ounces for adults over 170 pounds, 4 ounces for adults under 170 pounds, 3 ounces for those between 80–110 pounds, and start with 2 ounces for a child. After 90 mins, you should see a reduction in symptoms. Four hours after the first dose, take a second dose of equal amount. Six hours after the second dose, take a third dose of equal amount.” She says it will stop not only flu in its tracks, but also stomach viruses and food poisoning. Suz also suggests taking probiotics or eating yogurt the next day to help restore healthy gut bacteria.
  • At the first sign of illness, Marly gargles with and swallows ASAP Smart Silver, and keeps it up all day while symptoms persist.
  • Dsymons recommends snorting some colloidal/nano silver to help assuage a stuffy nose.
  • Phil Tkachuk recommends 10ppm colloidal silver. He says you can either buy it, or make it yourself using The Silver Edge generator or Atlasnova generator.

Fire Cider/Four Thieves Tonic/Dragon’s Breath

Community members velaangels, MarkKathyBrodo, and Rhonda all rely on homemade fire cider as a winter immune booster. Rhonda takes 1 shot per day throughout the winter for prevention, and also uses it to shorten the duration of the illness if she does catch a cold or the flu.

Loa uses Dragon’s Breath—which she says is similar to fire cider—daily during flu season. She works at a high school “around a LOT of sneezing, wheezing, coughing kids” and says she hasn’t had a cold or the flu in the 13 years since she started boosting her immune system with Dragon’s Breath. Here’s how she makes it: “I layer onions, garlic, horseradish, ginger, parsley, and cayenne peppers in a jar and cover with natural apple cider vinegar. I let it steep for about 6 weeks, then strain, add some powdered turmeric, and put the glass jar into the refrigerator. To use, I mix a tablespoon of the mixture with a tablespoon of honey added to a cup of warm water.”

Read More: “How to Make Fire Cider”

Teas, Tonics, and Tinctures

You offered our Community members some wonderful ideas for teas, tonics, and tinctures.

  • Thomas Hodge makes an infusion with crushed Linden flowers and stems by adding 1/2 ounce of plant matter to a quart canning jar and then filling the jar with hot water. He seals it, lets it sit overnight, and strains it in the morning, squeezing the liquid from the linden. Then, he says, “chill it or drink it right away—8 ounces every 3 or 4 hours.”
  • Val recommends a “flu tea” made with 1 teaspoon each of elderflower, mint, yarrow, and lemon juice. This makes 2 cups of tea. “The elderflower is anti-catarrhal and anti-inflammatory, the mint is diaphoretic (it increases bile, thereby helping to release toxins), and the yarrow increases sweating but lowers fevers. It is a pleasant-tasting tea.” Brodo makes a similar tea, but substitutes lemon balm for the mint and adds a spoonful of local, raw honey.
  • Sunny makes a tea from dried elderberries, turmeric, freshly ground black pepper, and slices of fresh gingers, and drinks it all day long, usually mixed in with coffee or chai tea.
  • peaveyplunker mixes together 3 cloves garlic, 1 tablespoon honey and 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper, and takes 1/2 teaspoon of the mixture every half hour until symptoms subside.
  • Stephanie Lebron creates a tea with hot water and lemon juice, plus either ginger, rosemary essential oil, or lemon eucalyptus essential oil.
  • w13jenjohnuses a homemade tincture of elderberry, licorice, and wild cherry bark, and also recommends a tea made with sage, lemon eucalyptus, and ginger, then sweetened with honey.
  • Shrabonisays that a “ginger, pepper, and turmeric-powder decoction in a glass of warm water works wonders.”
  • moncaivegan90boils 2 cups of water with a cinnamon stick, adds 1 cup of fresh red or purple bougainvillea flowers, turns off the heat, covers it for 2 minutes, and then strains it. “I like to add a spoonful of raw honey and enjoy 2 to 3 times a day. This works especially well for colds and coughs.”
  • Yvette McLean makes a tea with mullein, peppermint, and lemongrass, and drinks it around the clock—hot or cold—for 2 to 3 days. She also uses the tea in the following recipe:5 cloves garlic
    2 Tbsp. sage (fresh or dried)
    2 Tbsp. oregano (fresh or dried)
    3 Tbsp. fresh ginger
    1 Tbsp. thyme (fresh or dried)
    1 Tbsp. rosemary (fresh or dried)
    2 Tbsp. honey
    2 whole lemons (including skin)
    2 c. mullein/peppermint/lemongrass tea, cooled Blend all ingredients together. Do not heat mixture. Take 1–2 ounces 3 times per day.“You will be better by the third day,” she says.

Oregano Oil

Several of you recommend using oregano oil to fight off colds and the flu. But do your research! Joy Deussen says, “Be careful with oregano oil. It is hot and will burn the inside of your mouth. I recommend you put it in a capsule and swallow for no discomfort.”

Vitamins

Increase your vitamin intake when you’re fighting off a cold or the flu.

  • Sunny increases consumption of vitamin D.
  • Stephanie Lebron says she takes 2000 mg of vitamin C every hour or so in the first 24 hours of feeling something coming on.
  • Nance Shaw also takes vitamin A morning and night.

Elderberry

Take some form of elderberry for its immune-boosting properties.

  • Along with taking homeopathic oscillococcinum and drinking a Linden infusion, Thomas Hodge takes a tablespoon of black elderberry extract before bed
  • Denise takes 1 teaspoon of elderberry syrup every day during cold and flu season
  • Scott Sexton takes elderberry syrup and/or tincture, plus recommends “Lots of water and rest. Meditation and yoga. And frequent sips of apple cider vinegar. I use essential oils, too. Oregano and the Thieves blend. Plus, I always add a citrus oil. Citrus oils are just happy, and I think they put me in a better mood, too.”

DIY Elderberry Syrup Kit

Onions and Garlic

Onions and garlic are a favorite food when you’re dealing with colds and the flu.

  • For air purification, Rebecca Potrafka leaves a cut-up onion sitting out in a glass dish. She also takes honey onion syrup for a scratchy throat.
  • Susanne Lambert offers an interesting thought on using onions: “I’ve done some experiments with onions underfoot before bed with a pair of socks. I found that when I woke in the morning, my stuffy nose was gone.”
  • Sunny adds raw or slightly roasted garlic cloves plus sautéed onions to meals.
  • Michael Gray says that if he feels something coming on, he adds to his meals “a fresh clove of garlic, smashed, chopped fine, left out for 2 to 3 minutes” and says that he gets better faster than others who are sick at the same time but don’t take fresh garlic.
  • Marjory is also a huge fan of using raw garlic as an immune booster when she’s fighting off a cold. She’ll chop up several cloves, let them sit for about 10 minutes, and swallow them straight. (Yes, we’ve seen her do this firsthand! 😉)

Over-the-Counter Remedies

Sometimes, the pharmacy is your friend. Our Community members recommended several over-the-counter products that help fight colds and the flu.

  • Bonnie Camo and Thomas Hodge both recommend homeopathic oscillococcinum. Bonnie says it “usually cures colds or flu if taken in the first 24–48 hours. Available in most pharmacies and inexpensive.”
  • Jill recommends cocolaurin. “It’s a natural supplement, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, and anti-fungal. Very effective and safe.” (Cocolaurin is a super-concentrated form of monolaurin, which is distilled from coconut oil.)
  • Several of our Community members take zinc when fighting off a cold or the flu. Nance Shaw recommends a dose morning and night, kathybelair52 sucks on zinc acetate lozenges at the first sign of cold, and Jill takes zinc in the form of Zicam. Sunny also occasionally uses Zarbee’s Nighttime Cough and Throat Relief drink mix, which contains zinc.
  • Sunny also puts Plant Therapy Organic Immune Aid essential oil in the diffuser, under the nose, and on the soles of the feet.
  • When TommyD feels something coming on, he takes 3 capsules of echinacea 3 times a day for a few days.
  • Marius says colloidal silver usually helps him avoid the flu. However, “this year the flu strain was extremely potent, and it got me for the first time in 8 years. I cured it in about 2 days by ingesting hydrogen peroxide 3% In the next days, I rebuilt my intestinal flora—which could be damaged by hydrogen peroxide—by eating probiotics.”
  • Among other things, Nance Shaw recommends soothing coughs at bedtime by putting Vick’s VapoRub on the arches of the feet.
  • Several of you recommend using a neti pot during the sickness to help relieve symptoms. (Remember, though—the FDA recommends rinsing only with distilled, sterile, or previously boiled water, as tap water may contain harmful organisms that could actually make the problem worse.)

Encourage Fever

PInteaReed says, “If you are stricken with flu, make sure to help your fever. Wrap up in heavy blankets and try to keep the fever at 101°F to 102°F. Of course, if it goes higher, unwrap! Fever is what helps kill the viruses inside you. We just used this on this recent strain of really nasty flu that is going around. An hour after you wrap up, you should see a huge abatement of symptoms.”

Prevent It

An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and our Community members offered some great suggestions for keeping colds and the flu at bay.

  • TommyD says he can’t remember the last time he had the flu, and attributes part of his immune strength to cooking regularly with a spice mix of turmeric, freshly ground black pepper, ginger powder, and Ceylon cinnamon.
  • Sandy Hines says neither she nor her husband have caught the flu or a cold in over 30 years. “If your
    body is alkaline, flu viruses and cold germs cannot live. Every night before bedtime, we have 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda in a few inches of cool water.” They also eat about 2/3 cup of plain yogurt with a teaspoon of raw, unfiltered, local honey in it during the day; drink plenty of clean water, eat nutritiously; drink orange juice; and take 1,000 to 2,000 mg of vitamin C every day.
  • Michael Gray helps prevent illness by taking a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar and a teaspoon of honey mixed in warm water every day.
  • Emily says she doesn’t catch colds or the flu, and attributes it to taking Citricidal brand grapefruit seed extract at least once per day. She adds, “I take up to 24 drops. Three is what the package says. Vitamin C is one reason it works so well, and that’s natural Vitamin C, not ‘ascorbic acid.’”
  • Community member bobcarmenmertz has been taking homemade Golden Paste for more than 8 months and credits it for feeling well. “I did start to get a cold, but the severity and duration were greatly reduced. The paste includes turmeric powder, coconut oil, and freshly ground black pepper. You can make it yourself and refrigerate for 2 weeks.” One recipe we found for Golden Paste is as follows:
    1/2 c. turmeric powder
    1 c. water (plus up to an additional cup of water, if needed)
    2–3 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
    1/3 c. healthy fat—either from raw, unrefined, cold-pressed coconut oil, flaxseed oil, or virgin/extra virgin olive oil. Combine the turmeric and 1 c. water in a saucepan, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to low and simmer for 7–10 minutes or until the mixture becomes a thick paste. (You may need to add some or all of the additional water during this step.) Remove from heat and let the turmeric/water mixture cool down until it is warm and not hot. Add the freshly ground black pepper and oil, and stir well to incorporate. Allow it to cool, then keep it in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks, or freeze some if you don’t think you’ll use it up by then. You can use Golden Paste in smoothies, in yogurt, as a condiment—even as as an immune-booster for your pets!

Source: https://thegrownetwork.com/cold-flu-remedies-qotm-0218/

 

As an added bonus, I’m adding this recipe I just got in a newsletter from Green Smoothie Girl Robyn Openshaw:

Immune-Fuel Hot LemonAid

Fabulous immune-boosting hot drink featuring water, raw honey, raw apple cider vinegar, garlic, ginger, and cayenne pepper.

  • 4 cups hot water (not boiling)
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp raw honey (raw is important)
  • 1/2 piece peeled and chopped fresh ginger root
  • 1/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar (raw is important)
  • cayenne pepper to taste (the hotter the better)
  • 2 cloves fresh garlic (optional)
  1. Blend all ingredients for 30-60 seconds, until smooth, in a high-speed blender. Drink 1 cup at the first sign of illness, and another cup every 2 hours or as desired.
  2. Do not re-heat Elixir after you make the batch; enzymes and immune-stimulating properties will be damaged.
  3. Drink it cold or at room temperature after your first serving. It will last 1 week in the fridge but can be frozen!

Related Self-help Health posts:

Neti Your Nose

Don’t Under-estimate the Power of C

Kick-ass Flu Remedy

FYI, you can get many of the items mentioned in this post and other natural remedies at a discount at iHerb.com (use code CJG192 if you are a new customer and spend more than $40 and you will get $5 off your purchase). Plus, shipping is free on orders of $20 or more, you earn loyalty rewards cash, AND you get an extra 5% off on orders over $60. 

Vitacost.com is another one of my favorite on-line places to shop. Great discount prices, ever-expanding inventory, free shipping on $49 and up, and if you are a new customer and use the link on my website you will get a $10 off coupon with your first order of $25 or more. Woo-hoo! 

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. 

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.

Want Good Nutritional Advice? Check Out Canada’s New Food Guide!

 

It’s nice to see that Canada has come out with a food guide that has not been overly-influenced by the food industry/lobbyists, like here in the US, but instead is based on science. It even makes a point of highlighting the importance of having family mealtime. Be sure to check out the link provided in the first paragraph for the guide itself, and at the end of the article for the website with tips, recipes and more…..

Canada's new food guide plate
Promo image Health Canada

Canada’s new food guide is loyal to science, not    the food industry

The food guide is divided into four sections. The first focuses on nutritious foods and what comprises a healthy diet. This is where the emphasis on proportion, rather than portion, is most evident. The guide contains an image (above) of a dinner plate half-covered in vegetables, with quarter-sized servings of protein foods (nuts, chickpeas, tofu, beef, salmon) and mixed whole grains (toast, wild rice, quinoa).

The second part of the guide addresses foods that should be minimized or avoided. These include sugary drinks and confectioneries, alcohol, excess sodium, and sources of saturated fat.

drink waterHealth Canada – “Make water your drink of choice.”/Promo image

The third section is perhaps most interesting, as it encourages Canadians to think about how they eat. The guide states, “Healthy eating is more than the foods you eat,” and this section is dedicated to sharpening one’s food skills and improving one’s food literacy. Canadians are advised to cook from scratch more often, to go to restaurants less frequently, and to eat together. Parents are urged to transfer food skills to their children by example and through changes to school curricula. The guide advises a mindful approach to eating, careful reading of labels, skepticism about food marketing, and an effort to reduce waste.

Health Canada cook more oftenHealth Canada/Promo image

The fourth and final section talks about implementation and how to make healthy eating accessible and available to all Canadians. This is an ongoing challenge for many low-income and Indigenous families, and, as André Picard writes for the Globe and Mail, affects one in six Canadian children.

Overall, the new guide feels like a breath of fresh air compared to the confusing rainbows and pyramids of the past. In the words of Health Minister Ginette Petitpas-Taylor, as reported by CBC, “It doesn’t need to be complicated, folks. It just needs to be nutritious, and, might I dare say, fun.”

What makes this guide stand apart is its authors’ commitment to following the top nutritional science and their refusal to accept evidence from any industry-backed studies, “given the potential for conflicts of interest.” In the words of Picard,

“Health Canada has grown a backbone and distanced itself from industry by excising some dubious advice that was clearly designed to mollify industry, such as the recommendation to drink two glasses of milk a day and consume at least two tablespoons of *canola oil every day.”

Health Canada enjoy your foodHealth Canada – “Enjoy your food.” /Promo image

This guide has potential to make a real difference. Its emphasis on less energy intensive foods and minimizing waste could improve the environmental impact of Canadians’ diets. If workplaces, cafeterias, hospitals, and other public institutions adopted the recommendations to get rid of fatty, sugary foods, we could see an improvement in public health. If schools incorporated cooking classes into their curricula, we’d see kids learning how to feed themselves well. There are so many ways in which this guide could kickstart a healthier, stronger, more resilient country.

This is a guide to be proud of. Way to go, Canada! Find the whole guide and other resourceshere.

Source: https://www.treehugger.com/health/canadas-new-food-guide-refreshingly-based-scientific-evidence.html

Check out this Self-help Health post for why canola oil should NOT be recommended, but IS in the US: https://selfhelphealth.wordpress.com/2013/12/11/omega-6s-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly/

 

Salud!

p.s. Be sure to subscribe to Self-help Health so you don’t miss any future posts, and tell your friends to do the same. Also check out my website’s To Your Health page and Evolution Made Easier blog for more helpful health tips, tools and information.

Disclaimer: Please note that any information here is provided as a guideline only, and is not meant to substitute for the advice of your physician, nutritionist, trained health care practitioner, and/or inner guidance system. Always consult a professional before undertaking any change to your normal health routine.