February 3, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Although it has been used for thousands and thousands of years, acupuncture still isn’t 100 percent supported by the conventional medical community.
While some doctors do believe in the healing powers of acupuncture and actually offer the therapy in their offices, other experts don’t give any legitimacy to acupuncture as an actual medical treatment.
Nevertheless, many studies and patient testimonials have reported positive results from acupuncture therapy. « Read the rest of this entry »
February 3, 2012 § 2 Comments
Physicians and biomedical scientists are always looking for chemical compounds that can be turned into drugs that can kill cancer cells and spare noncancerous cells. Researchers at the University of Colorado believe they have made such a discovery.
Investigators at the Rajesh Agarwal and his colleagues at the University of Colorado Cancer Center say grape seed extract kills squamous cell carcinoma cells in tumors of the had and neck without harming healthy cells.
“It’s a rather dramatic effect,” said Agarwal, a professor at the University of Colorado Skaggs School of Pharmaceutical Sciences.
In a study published last week in the journal Carcinogenesis, Agarwal and his collaborators reported that grape extract killed head and neck squamous cell cancer cells, both in cell cultures and in laboratory mice. « Read the rest of this entry »
January 10, 2012 § Leave a Comment
Symptoms such as hot flashes, night sweats, insomnia and irritability are just a few of the many linked to menopause. Today, many women are turning toward alternative and holistic solutions in finding relief from painful and troublesome menopause symptoms.
While there is little scientific evidence supporting the long-term effectiveness of many of these treatments, a number of studies on the subject are currently under way. Here are some of the most common alternative menopause treatments:
- Soy. The phytoestrogens — estrogen-like chemicals — in soy may help with hot flashes, vaginal dryness, and mood swings, but there is no conclusive evidence. According to family physician and natural medicine specialist Dr. Novey, a combination of soy and black cohosh can be effective in reducing hot flashes in early menopause.
- Ginseng. Novey says ginseng has a stimulant effect and can help with the “brain fog” that some women report in menopause; it also may improve energy. It has no effect on hot flashes.
- Kava. Novey says this herb can help with irritability, but there’s no evidence it decreases hot flashes. He adds it’s possible to get withdrawal symptoms when you stop taking the herb. In 2002, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning about kava, saying it could damage the liver.
- Dong quai and red clover. These herbs have no benefits in treating menopausal symptoms, according to Novey and NCCAM.
January 9, 2012 § 1 Comment
We often hear about the many health benefits to be gained from a regular yoga practice. But while there is much potential for healing, there is less-widely reported potential to harm—that is when we push our bodies so far we end up injured. “How Yoga Can Wreck Your Body,” published yesterday in the New York Times Magazine, states that “a growing body of medical evidence supports [the] contention that, for many people, a number of commonly taught yoga poses are inherently risky.” The piece was excerpted from the forthcoming book, The Science of Yoga: The Risks and the Rewards, written by a Times senior writer and longtime yoga practitioner William Broad. « Read the rest of this entry »
January 3, 2012 § 1 Comment
If you’re thinking that in 2012 you want to become a yoga teacher, join the club. According to statistics compiled by Yoga Alliance, there are now more than 50,000 yoga teachers in the U.S., and that number is growing.
Some yoga practitioners dream of living the life of a nomadic traveling teacher. Others of someday owning their own studio. Other yogis, particularly in a still-uncertain economy, are turning to teaching yoga as a second source of income.
Is it really worth investing in that 200-hour-or-plus teacher training? Will there be a job out there for when you’re done? Is it time to quit your day job? Here’s an infographic, which first appeared on Teachasana (a website resource for yoga teachers), with all sorts of facts and figures from recent articles that might help you make up your mind.
Via Yoga Journal
December 13, 2011 § Leave a Comment
If you’ve ventured onto a running trail in the past year or so, you realize that barefoot running has become all the rage, and now the workout is gaining ground across the exercise spectrum.
Fitness experts from aerobics instructors to modern dancers are lauding the benefits of barefoot workouts.
Connecticut-based fitness instructor Ellen Barrett teaches a mixture of Pilates, yoga and dance and conducts all her low-impact classes barefoot.
“I’ve been teaching barefoot forever. Shoes give you a false sense of a platform. You don’t connect to ground,” explained Barrett, creator of the DVDs “Grace and Gusto” and “Power Fusion.”
“So goes the foot, so goes the body. If your foot is balanced and strong the rest of the body is too,” said Barrett. “That connectedness between foot and core and balance, that core connection, that’s ultimately what balance is.”
Read more about barefoot exercise and its benefits!
November 21, 2011 § 3 Comments
Whether its consumed in a liquid form or taken from a capsule, studies are showing that green tea may shave a few points off “bad” cholesterol readings, according to a U.S. study.
The findings were published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, and showed that green tea trimmed 5 to 6 points more from people’s total cholesterol and “bad” cholesterol levels than dummy capsules or other treatments.
November 2, 2011 § 1 Comment
You’ve been sitting in front of your computer for two hours trying to ignore your stinging, dry eyes and get through your work. You can’t quit now….If only your eyes would stop burning.
Tired eyes and blurry vision are but two symptoms of what is now recognized as a broader problem called computer vision syndrome, or CVS. As computer use continues to rise, so do cases of CVS. A recent study showed that nearly 90 percent of employees who work with computers for more than three hours a day suffer from some form of eye trouble.
CVS has a host of causes, from improper lighting, screen glare, and an ill-adapted workspace, to poor posture and glasses or contact lenses with incorrect prescriptions, according to Kent M. Daum, O.D., Ph.D., of the School of Optometry of the University of Alabama, Birmingham. Infrequent blinking is another culprit. We blink to keep the eyes lubricated, explains Daum. When staring at a computer screen, we blink less, so the eyes become dry. And the more we concentrate, the less we blink, so casually surfing the Web may be easier on the eyes than focused work, he says. Also, deficiencies of vitamin A may cause severe eye dryness, so be sure to get enough. « Read the rest of this entry »
November 2, 2011 § 1 Comment
Four-year-old Milo, a pit/boxer mix, was facing surgery on his cruciate ligament. He was held steady as veterinarian Marc Smith placed about 12 acupuncture needles into the dog’s back and aching leg. Smith is one of several veterinarians that are starting to mix Western medicine with Eastern techniques at his practice, Natchez Trace Veterinary Services. Animals find themselves treated with acupuncture, chiropractic and herbals, as well as traditional therapies.
Milo seemed to have great results. “He came out like a champ and went home this morning,” Smith said of the procedure.
Smith is one of many vets that started a traditional practice, only to become curious and try out chiropractic or acupuncture treatments — and has found that alternative medicine on pets has been very effective. His practice is now about 30 percent Eastern treatments, Smith estimates.
October 21, 2011 § 1 Comment
Today I wanted to provide an overview of an age-old alternative medicine — bitter orange. Here’s what the National Center of Complementary and Alternative Medicine has to say about bitter orange!
What Bitter Orange Is Used For
Bitter orange has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for nausea, indigestion, and constipation.
Current uses of bitter orange are for heartburn, loss of appetite, nasal congestion, and weight loss. It is also applied to the skin for fungal infections such as ringworm and athlete’s foot.
How is it Used?
The dried fruit and peel are taken by mouth in extracts, tablets, and capsules. Bitter orange oil can be applied to the skin.