90 seconds. Concise, Well done. Take a look.
I am sure I was hit by a truck last night. As soon as my eyes opened I looked around for evidence: The bedroom walls were standing; The window wasn’t shattered; and Freddie was sleeping peacefully. Freddie rarely barks but I would hope that if I was in danger of being hit by a truck he’d warn me.
I woke up feeling exhausted, my back hurt, my legs hurt, my brain hurt and if I hadn’t just had my eye-sight checked I would have sworn there was a 50 pound gorilla sitting on my chest.
Here I have today off and all I want to do is pull the covers over my head and going back to sleep.
So I forced myself to do three things to feel better:
1. I said my “go-to” Baha’i prayer when I’m in one of those “woe is me” spaces.
2. I watched 2 videos on “PLAY!” (I was so inspired by the 4 minutes I watched the longer 12 minute version too).
3. Freddie and I went outside to play.
Take your pick: 4-minutes of video, 1/2 – minute of prayer,
12-minutes of video,!*
30 seconds“O God! Refresh and gladden my spirit. Purify my heart. Illumine my powers. I lay all my affairs in Thy hand. Thou art my Guide and my Refuge. I will no longer be sorrowful and grieved; I will be a happy and joyful being. O God! I will no longer be full of anxiety, nor will I let trouble harass me. I will not dwell on the unpleasant things of life.
O God! Thou art more friend to me than I am to myself. I dedicate myself to Thee, O Lord.”
*You’ll have to find your own play-mate.
Freddie’s done playing and resting in the sun.
Every once in a while I have the urge to talk about ME. ”Uh oh”, you’re thinking, here she goes again . . .
When I stopped taking a dopamine enhancing drug early last year I crashed. The exhaustion that accompanies, or perhaps drives, Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue hit me like a tidal wave. (Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome* seem to be over-lapping conditions for many people. The verdict is out whether it is one and the same or different maladies).
It’s so hard to explain what it is like to feel exhausted all the time. I’m not sleepy, not tired, not fatigued. It’s an exhaustion, a heaviness that seeps up from the bone marrow. It saps me, not only of physical energy but of mental energy too. I’ve been staring at the TV all day, sitting like a lump, no energy to get up and even do things I enjoy.
I often explain the fatigue as like running through quick-sand that is up to my eyebrows. I can push through it – only for a while . . .
The exhaustion is invisible. The loss of memory is often public. Yesterday I called 3 different clients the wrong name. My brain is in gear but the gears don’t mesh.
I’m blessed that I have a profession where I’m in control of the schedule. Many people are not that fortunate and have to go on disability, IF they can get it or it’s available. Men, I believe, often have it harder. When they have to give up a job, retire the stigma is harsher for not working, not being “productive”. And because fibromyalgia/chronic fatigue are disproportionately a “woman’s disease” men often do not get appropriate treatment or are labeled as malingering.
Estimates range from 2% to 4% of the population has Fibromyalgia/Chronic Fatigue. Chances are you or someone you know is living with the symptoms right now.
*Chronic fatigue syndrome has eight official symptoms, plus the central symptom that gives the condition its name:
- Loss of memory or concentration
- Sore throat
- Enlarged lymph nodes in your neck or armpits
- Unexplained muscle pain
- Pain that moves from one joint to another without swelling or redness
- Headache of a new type, pattern or severity
- Unrefreshing sleep
- Extreme exhaustion lasting more than 24 hours after physical or mental exercise
Attention Deficit, Hyper-activity Disorder/ Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD/ADD) can be a serious condition impacting not just children but also adults. The self-assessment below is just a check-list of major symptoms.
Diagnosis & treatment always needs to be done by a Medical Doctor.
I’ve never thought of myself as having ADD. When I was growing up this was not a diagnosis. Even though my answers are tongue-in-cheek (but true) this type of brain processing can be a serious impairment for many.
Adults with ADHD are more likely to:
- Lose their jobs (I have been close to losing my job but I’m smarter than my boss and clever enough to talk her out of it)
- Have interpersonal difficulties with coworkers and managers (Solution: I work for myself)
- Experience relationship difficulties and breakups (I break myself up as often as I can. The laughs help minimize the difficulties)
- Struggle with substance abuse, if they’re not treating their condition (My substance of choice is carbs and sugar. It’s never a struggle . . . just give in)
If you think you might have ADHD or ADD, answer the below questions. Do you often do the following?
- Find it difficult to concentrate? (So far, so good)
- Hyperfocus on things you want to do and don’t notice the passage of time? (I have 4 clocks in my 12 x 12 office. AND my job IS to HYPERFOCUS on my clients)
- Have difficulty getting organized? (Too personal a question)
- Miss appointments, deadlines, or other obligations? (Way too personal)
- Make lots of careless mistakes? (They aren’t careless, just relatively unimportant. I hyperfocus on what IS important)
- Procrastinate when given a task? (Only on tasks that are not fun or interesting)
- Bounce from project to project, unable to complete most of them? (I rarely complete any project because I’m into process not product)
- Have racing thoughts? (Only when I’m taking a test like this)
- Become easily bored and lose track in conversations? (When the conversations are about me I never bore)
- Make impulsive decisions (e.g., spend money, change plans, or become sexually involved with someone? (WAAAAAAAY too personal a questions)
- Blurt inappropriate things and sometimes get in trouble for it? (I never blurt, only interject)
- Find it difficult to sit still? (Not when I’m hyperfocusing)
- Have low self-esteem as a result of past failures? (I’ve moved on from past failures – remember I’m into PROCESS, not product)
- Consider yourself an underachiever in school? (I WAS an under achiever – graduated at the BOTTOM of the top 10%)
If you answered yes to at least 10 of these questions, you may have ADHD. (You be the judge, I lost interest in counting half way through)
“Diagnosing adult ADHD is a difficult science because it overlaps with other mental health disorders, which makes diagnosis tricky. Also, much of the diagnostic research to date has been done on children, and the diagnostic features that doctors use for children often take different form in adults. The only way to know for sure if you have adult ADHD is to work closely with your doctor on assessing your symptoms and medical history.” Managing Adult ADHD symptoms
I‘ve always multi-tasked. If I don’t have at least 2-3 things going on at the same time I’m downright slovenly and/or unproductive. Somewhere in my ADD brain I think I’m getting so much more accomplished. Besides it’s boooooorrrrrring to do one thing at a time – right?
Even researchers thought high multitaskers were going to be stars with at least one ability:
- Filtering input and get rid of irrelevancy.
- Switching from one task to another.
- Keeping memory neatly organized.
However, in the words of Clifford Nash, one of the researchers:
“We were absolutely shocked . . . It turns out multitaskers are terrible at every aspect of multitasking. They’re terrible at ignoring irrelevant information; they’re terrible at keeping information in their head nicely and neatly organized; and they’re terrible at switching from one task to another.”
” . . . They get distracted constantly. Multitaskers are very disorganized in keeping their memory going so that we think of them as filing cabinets in the brain where papers are flying everywhere and disorganized, much like my office.” (And mine.)
“. … And the truth is, virtually all multitaskers think they are brilliant at multitasking. And one of the big new items here, and one of the big discoveries is, you know what? You’re really lousy at it. And even though I’m at the university and tell my students this, they say: “Oh, yeah, yeah. But not me! I can handle it. I can manage all these,” which is, of course, a normal human impulse. So it’s actually very scary. …
OUCH! OUCH! OUCH!
So Ryan Dambach’s post Developing-Present-Moment-Awareness came just at the right time. As a matter of fact I’m reading it as I type. I recommend you read it too.
Click here to read the complete interview of Clifford Nass, professor at Stanford University and the founder and director of the Communication between Humans and Interactive Media (CHIMe) Lab.
Here’s another interesting article: Multitasking Splits the Brain OUCH! OUCH! OUCH! OUCH!
I “stumbled” onto one of their introductory workshops in the 1980′s. I had already been certified in hypnosis but was never comfortable with the idea that as the hypnotherapist I held the key, I had the power, to create change.
When I attended that first AGI workshop it was a eureka moment for me. The process and technique of Interactive Guided Imagery(sm) Marty and David were teaching was how I intuitively did hypnosis: The client held the key, the power, I was the guide. Marty and David are brilliant and innovative. I was hooked and went on to study with both of them. I’ve now been on the AGI faculty teaching other health care practitioners how to do Interactive Guided Imagery(sm) since 1988.
I “stumbled” across this video of Marty Rossman and want to share what he teaches about the mind and how you hold the key and the power to create calm.
It is an 1 1/2 hour lecture – easy listening and WORTH your time.
At the end Marty will lead you through an imagery exercise for you to experience the power of your mind-body connection .
“Physician, author, speaker, researcher, and consultant Martin L. Rossman, MD, discusses how to use the power of the healing mind to reduce stress and anxiety, relieve pain, change lifestyle habits, and live with more wellness.”
The times when I feel most ‘alone’ is when I’m ill or fatigued. Those are the times when I also isolate myself the most – little energy or desire to interact. With this research I wonder if I make my condition even worse by isolating myself when I don’t feel well physically or emotionally? (The research doesn’t specifically address that question.) Just wondering . . .
(I’ve edited out a lot of the research description. If you just want the bare bones read the red areas.)
Loneliness, Like Chronic Stress, Taxes the Immune System, Researchers Find
“New research links loneliness to a number of dysfunctional immune responses, suggesting that being lonely has the potential to harm overall health.”
“Researchers found that people who were more lonely showed signs of elevated latent herpes virus reactivation and produced more inflammation-related proteins in response to acute stress than did people who felt more socially connected.”
“These proteins signal the presence of inflammation, and chronic inflammation is linked to numerous conditions, including:
- coronary heart disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- Alzheimer’s diseases
- the frailty and functional decline that can accompany aging.”
“Reactivation of a latent herpes virus is known to be associated with stress, suggesting that loneliness functions as a chronic stressor that triggers a poorly controlled immune response.”
“It is clear from previous research that poor-quality relationships are linked to a number of health problems, including premature mortality and all sorts of other very serious health conditions. And people who are lonely clearly feel like they are in poor-quality relationships,” said Lisa Jaremka, Institute for Behavioral Medicine Research at Ohio State University and lead author of the research.”
“The results are based on a series of studies conducted with two populations: a healthy group of overweight middle-aged adults and a group of breast cancer survivors. The researchers measured loneliness in all studies using the UCLA Loneliness Scale, a questionnaire that assesses perceptions of social isolation and loneliness.”
“The researchers first sought to obtain a snapshot of immune system behavior related to loneliness by gauging levels of antibodies in the blood that are produced when herpes viruses are reactivated.
Participants were 200 breast cancer survivors who were between two months and three years past completion of cancer treatment with an average age of 51 years. Their blood was analyzed for the presence of antibodies against Epstein-Barr virus and cytomegalovirus.”
“Both are herpes viruses that infect a majority of Americans. About half of infections do not produce illness, but once a person is infected, the viruses remain dormant in the body and can be reactivated, resulting in elevated antibody levels, or titers — again, often producing no symptoms but hinting at regulatory problems in the cellular immune system.
Lonelier participants had higher levels of antibodies against cytomegalovirus than did less lonely participants, and those higher antibody levels were related to more pain, depression and fatigue symptoms.”
“Previous research has suggested that stress can promote reactivation of these viruses, also resulting in elevated antibody titers.”
“The same processes involved in stress and reactivation of these viruses is probably also relevant to the loneliness findings,” Jaremka said. “Loneliness has been thought of in many ways as a chronic stressor — a socially painful situation that can last for quite a long time.”‘
“In an additional set of studies, the scientists sought to determine how loneliness affected the production of pro-inflammatory proteins, or cytokines, in response to stress. These studies were conducted with 144 women from the same group of breast cancer survivors and a group of 134 overweight middle-aged and older adults with no major health problems.”
“In both populations, those who were lonelier produced significantly higher levels of a cytokine called interleukin-6, or IL-6, in response to acute stress than did participants who were more socially connected. Levels of another cytokine, tumor necrosis factor-alpha, also rose more dramatically in lonelier participants than in less lonely participants . . .”
“In the study with breast cancer survivors, researchers also tested for levels of the cytokine interleukin 1-beta, which was produced at higher levels in lonelier participants.”
“When the scientists controlled for a number of factors, including sleep quality, age and general health measures, the results were the same.
“We saw consistency in the sense that more lonely people in both studies had more inflammation than less lonely people,” Jaremka said.”
“It’s also important to remember the flip side, which is that people who feel very socially connected are experiencing more positive outcomes.” ’
My father had quintuple bypass surgery in his 70′s. Doctor’s said it was mainly due to his smoking since a teenager. He quit in his 60′s but by then the damage was done. I won’t even begin to recount how horrible the recovery was for him and our family.
On my Mother’s side of the family my Mother, my Aunt and Uncle all had arrhythmia’s and pacemakers.
With this history I should have been more aware of heart disease but I really wasn’t UNTIL I needed a pacemaker. Here’s a scenario of a heart attack happening and what to do. It will only take a few minutes of your time to give someone else a life time.
CLICK HERE to find out what you should do - http://www.heartrescuenow.com/
Click here for a site that lists the places you are most likely to locate an AED
Thanks Sharon for sharing this really important information
An automated external defibrillator (AED) is a portable device that checks the heart rhythm. If needed, it can send an electric shock to the heart to try to restore a normal rhythm. AEDs are used to treat sudden cardiac arrest (SCA).
SCA is a condition in which the heart suddenly and unexpectedly stops beating. When this happens, blood stops flowing to the brain and other vital organs.
SCA usually causes death if it’s not treated within minutes. In fact, each minute of SCA leads to a 10 percent reduction in survival. Using an AED on a person who is having SCA may save the person’s life.
To understand how AEDs work, it helps to understand how the heart works.
The heart has an internal electrical system that controls the rate and rhythm of the heartbeat. With each heartbeat, an electrical signal spreads from the top of the heart to the bottom. As the signal travels, it causes the heart to contract and pump blood. The process repeats with each new heartbeat.
Problems with the electrical system can cause abnormal heart rhythms called arrhythmias (ah-RITH-me-ahs). During an arrhythmia, the heart can beat too fast, too slow, or with an irregular rhythm. Some arrhythmias can cause the heart to stop pumping blood to the body. These arrhythmias cause SCA.
- The most common cause of SCA is an arrhythmia called ventricular fibrillation (v-fib). In v-fib, the ventricles (the heart’s lower chambers) don’t beat normally. Instead, they quiver very rapidly and irregularly.
- Another arrhythmia that can lead to SCA is ventricular tachycardia (TAK-ih-KAR-de-ah). This is a fast, regular beating of the ventricles that may last for only a few seconds or for much longer.
- Ninety-five percent of people who have SCA die from it—most within minutes. Rapid treatment of SCA with an AED can be lifesaving.
In people who have either of these arrhythmias, an electric shock from an AED can restore the heart’s normal rhythm. Doing CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) on someone having SCA also can improve his or her chance of survival.
Warning: Do NOT touch your computer screen.
* * * * *
Good News: I sound like Lauren Bacall.
Bad News: Lauren Bacall is dead.
Good News: I’m not dead
Bad News: I feel like “death warmed over.”
(Bad News: Actually I sound and look like James Earl Jones . . . I only wish it were Lauren Bacall.)
* * * *
Good News: The left side of my throat feels fine
Bad News: The right side of my throat hurts
* * * * *
Good News: God created 2 airway passages so I can breathe out of my mouth.
Bad News: My lips are chapped.
* * * * *
Good News: I lost 1 pound
Bad News: I feel sick to my stomach
* * * * *
Good News: The really HORRIBLE cold I had last week is gone.
Bad News: I caught “something” WORSE this week.
* * * * *
Good News: I have a doctor’s appointment today.
Bad News: I need to see the doctor.
With nerves of iron
the crackling pain, hissing pain
seers its brand on brain
FINALLY! the reason I did not become an engineer, CPA or nuclear physicist and had to take graduate level statistic three (count ‘em, 3) times – I have an avoidant personality. Here’s proof:
Written by Kelly Fitzgerald “Worry about math can trigger regions of the brain associated with the experience of physical pain and instinctive risk detection, according to a new study conducted by researchers at the University of Chicago and published in PLOS ONE.”
“Ian Lyons and his team of researchers discovered that in people who experience high levels of anxiety when anticipating math tasks, encountering math increases activity in regions of the brain connected with the feeling of physical pain. The more elevated a person’s math anxiety, the greater the appearance of neural activity is.”
“The fMRI scans showed the worry of upcoming math events triggered a response in the brain similar to physical pain. (What about WORRY of any kind? Now I’m worried that the researchers have missed the broader picture)* The higher the anxiety about math, the more math anticipation activated the posterior insula, a piece of tissue deep in the brain located above the ear, and is connected to acknowledging threats to the body as well as physical pain.”
“Earlier studies have indicated that other forms of psychological stress, like a traumatic break-up, or social rejection, can also cause feelings of physical pain. However, this particular study analyzes the pain response connected with anticipating an anxiety-inducing event, instead of the pain connected to the stressful event itself.” (How about anticipating an anxiety-inducing event, like ANTICIPATING EXPERIENCING PAIN!)*
“The authors conclude that their findings suggest that it is not the act of performing a mathematical task that prompts this response, but rather the anticipation of math.” (They didn’t need to do all that research. I could have told them when I was in grade school)
“These results give a possible neural platform for the observation that people with high math anxiety are more likely to avoid math-related situations, (balancing my check book) like math classes and math-related careers. Therefore, avoidance comes from experiencing this painful anxiety.”
To read the entire article of which I have CALCULATINGLY taken the parts that interests me, click here: http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/252363.php
*P.S. Research does show that when we anticipate feeling pain all pain does become heightened.
“How great are Your works, O God! You made them all with wisdom, the earth is full of Your creatures.” Psalms 104:24
It rained today. Actually more like a heavy mist that gently moistened the air and wet the ground. In Southern California that qualifies as rain. When it’s anything a bit heavier it’s called a storm . .. A parade of ants appeared in my bathroom. Well it was a bit more than a “parade” . . . an infestation of hundreds, probably trying to escape their water laden home.
“A man is not a great man because he is a warrior and kills other men; but because he hurts not any living being he in truth is called a great man.” –Dhammapada (Buddhism)
* * *
And mind-rattling about our ignorance, often propelled by our search for quantity over quality, our greed, our sense of superiority when we ignorantly eradicate the tiny creatures we pay little attention to . . . when they are causing “problems”.
I do feel a bit guilty about killing the ants. I just didn’t know how to lead them outside.
Read this article, you’ll better understand my reaction. It’s short, has pictures and won’t take you but a minute.
” . . . the growth and development of the vegetable world is impossible without the existence of the animal kingdom, and the maintenance of animal life is inconceivable without the co-operation of the vegetable kingdom. Of like kind are the relationships that exist among all created things.”Bahá’u'lláh, Baha’i
Carolyn Thomas has done it again – written a post that I am compelled to steal. She has single-handedly turned me from a law-abiding citizen to a “blogging” thief. (use a British accent to reap the full benefit on my play on words).
Cognitive-behavioral therapy has been my focus as a therapist for many, many years. I stopped trying to figure out if clients had been weaned too early as enfants when I first read brain research on obsessive compulsive disorders and how thinking literally changes the brain’s neurochemical activity thereby diminishing anxiety & depression in mood disorders. (whew! that was a long sentence).
Research continues to show that cognitive behavioral therapy along with exercise (which also activates certain neurochemical) is better or as good as medication . . . and cheaper in the long run. Read! Here’s something even cheaper than therapy and you already have the know-how and tools.
Carolyn’s article hits a home run. There’s not much I would change. I’m even brazen enough to steal her title. Carolyn has so many jewels that, without an accomplice, I can’t haul all of them over here all at once. So here’s an excerpt from her post: (Read the entire post, it’s worth it, by clicking on Carolyn’s title below)
P.S. Max would have changed the title to “The most OVER-USED word in my world”
by Carolyn Thomas
Any form of negative rumination – for example, worrying about your health – can stimulate the release of destructive neurochemicals. Waldman and Newberg [researchers] explain:
“If we were to put you into an fMRI scanner – a huge donut-shaped magnet that can take a video of the neural changes happening in your brain – and flash the word “NO” for less than one second, you’d see a sudden release of dozens of stress-producing hormones and neurotransmitters. These chemicals immediately interrupt the normal functioning of your brain, impairing logic, reason, language processing, and communication.
“In fact, just seeing a list of negative words for a few seconds will make a highly anxious or depressed person feel worse, and the more you ruminate on them, the more you can actually damage key structures that regulate your memory, feelings, and emotions.
“You’ll disrupt your sleep, your appetite, and your ability to experience long-term happiness and satisfaction.”
“These findings are distressing for those of us who are living with a chronic diagnosis like heart disease that can involve quite a bit of day-to-day serious rumination about one’s health”
“But Ohio researchers warn that there’s apparently an intrinsic problem here: the brain barely responds to our positive words and thoughts; they found that even with simple examples (such as showing research subjects pictures of flowers vs pictures of snakes), we tend to react to the scary snakes but barely register a reaction to those nice flowers.** That’s why, they suggest, we need to bulk up on those positives to outweigh the negatives.”
“Finally, Waldman and Newberg remind us of the findings of Dr. Barbara Fredrickson, (one of the founders of the field of Positive Psychology) and others whose work suggests that we need to generate 3-5 positive thoughts and feelings for each expression of negativity. They add:
“Our advice: choose your words wisely and speak them slowly. This will allow you to interrupt the brain’s propensity to be negative, and as recent research has shown, the mere repetition of positive words will turn on specific genes that lower your physical and emotional stress.”’
(She already knows I’m giving you the keys to her vault – she never locks it anyway, she has a very trusting heart . . .)
I don’t often talk about it – in public at any rate – but I have been exposed to many cutting edge or “far out” health & healing techniques and processes.
David Bresler, Ph.D. and Marty Rossman, MD, the founders of the Academy for Guided Imagery (AGI), have been on the forefront of alternative medicine and brought leading edge researchers and doctors to speak at AGI conferences I attended. Much of what I heard “blew me away” at the time.
This video reminded me of many of the concepts I heard about long ago. Watching it made me rethink my heart “problems”.
Even if your ticker is ticking just fine it will make you view your heart differently too.
Take the time to watch and expand your world of “possibility”.
(And for those of you who have not been “cured” by western mainstream medicine, watch!)
Thanks to Kathe Caldwell, hypnotherapist and instructor par excellence for sharing The Living Matrix Video with me!
The first thing I would print is a personal housekeeper Robot who could clean & cook and looked like George Clooney.
I want one! Printer, that is . . . .
What would you print?
“Organovo, aSan Diego based firm headed by CEO Keith Murphy, has high hopes for the future of the technology as a medical tool with surprising speed. “We currently produce organic tissues grown from cell samples, which can be used as a human analog for pharmaceutical drug discovery and development. The printing process can take as little as 12-24 hours. This can allow for more relevant results and less animal involvement than traditional research methods.” said Murphy in a recent interview. ”
“One day companies like Organovo may be able to simply harvest a grown adults’ stem cells from a blood draw, use a specialized 3D printer to build an organic, polymeric scaffolding in the shape of the organ or tissue that needs to be replicated, and literally grow a kidney, heart, lungs, within a matter of days or weeks. “
“In theory, pluripotent stem cells can be harnessed safely from the intended transplant recipients, without damage to any unborn fetuses. They offer patients no chance of organ rejection due to their self origin, and bypass the need for endless waiting lists where patients may never find themselves at the top before it’s too late. Imagine a world where replaceable organs were available to everyone who needed one. It may be coming faster than you think.”
“With any world-changing technology, it only matters once it actually does change the world”.
Read the entire article at: Forbes
Take a look at Bras & Guitars - http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-20047744
Thanks IDA for sending the link!!
The term “3D printing” was coined at MIT in 1995 when then graduate students Jim Bredt and Tim Anderson modified an inkjet printer to extrude a binding solution onto a bed of powder, rather than ink onto paper. wikipedia
“Ay, yi, yi, yi” my right hips been saying for several months now. Soooooooooo. . . .
Went for a physical therapy evaluation this morning. Seems as if my right leg is shorter than my left leg. My right hip walks ahead of my left hip and my back is skewed. Guess that explains, in part, why my body hurts.
My “delightfully irreverent” Baha’i “mentor, spiritual consultant, friend and inspirer” said that my new mantra is:
Take a Load off Grannie !
A rat helped me get my undergraduate degree. To fulfill a science requirement and avoid biology or botany, I took one undergraduate psychology course . It qualified as science since it was a behavioral psych course with a lab requirement.
Students were all assigned their own lab rat with STERN instructions not to name it or get attached to it in any way. At the time, I thought that was to maintain our “Scientific Objectivity”.
They were albino rats, pure white with pink eyes and long pink tails. I liked my rat. It’s fur was soft. I avoided touching its tail which looked like a snake.
To pass the lab I had to train my rat to drop a marble in the hole of a box in the middle of the training cage. Attached to each cage was a food pellet holder. I controlled dropping the pellets, one by one, into the cage.
I won’t go into all the training but for those of you “science types” it was based on operant conditioning – successive approximations and behavior modification.
Basically every time the rat comes “close” to doing something I want I reward him with a food pellet. The anti is, step by step, continually upped. Finally he has to perform the exact task to get the food reward.
My rat was a very smart rat. (He caught on much more quickly than I would have had the roles been reversed. The food choice would also have had to been changed to motivate me.) It took a semester and twice a week labs to train him. We were together a lot.
I passed the course but wished I had never trained him to put the marble in the box. Once the rats are conditioned to do a task they no longer can be used again for the next lab. It’s good I didn’t name my lab rat and kept my “scientific objectivity”. At the semester’s end all the rats were fed to snakes in the biology lab. Forty-seven years later, I still think about him .
Look what else our rat friends are doing for us – amazing creatures!
ScienceDaily (Oct. 12, 2012) — “While it is well known that starfish, zebrafish and salamanders can re-grow damaged limbs, scientists understand very little about the regenerative capabilities of mammals. Now, researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center’s Institute for Regenerative Medicine report on the regenerative process that enables rats to re-grow their bladders within eight weeks.”
“In PLOS ONE, a peer-reviewed, online publication, the scientists characterize this unique model of bladder regeneration with the goal of applying what they learn to human patients”.
“There is very little data on the mechanisms involved in organ regeneration in mammals,” said George Christ, Ph.D., senior researcher and professor of regenerative medicine at Wake Forest Baptist.. “To our knowledge, bladder regeneration holds a unique position — there is no other mammalian organ capable of this type of regeneration.”
“If we can understand the bladder’s regenerative process, the hope is that we can prompt the regeneration of other organs and tissues where structure is important — from the intestine and spinal cord to the heart,” said Petersen.”
Read the full article: ScienceDaily
Research was supported by the National Institutes of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases under award number R21DK081832.
Co-researchers were Charles C. Peyton, M.D., lead author, David Burmeister, Ph.D., and Karl-Erik Andersson, M.D., Ph.D.
It’s easy for me to forget that with a chronic medical condition(s) my body itself is the stressor. Pain is a signal that something is wrong and tells all my systems to be on alert . . . 24/7
This is a comprehensive easy to read article on stress and provides an excellent reference.
There is a check-list in the article. I love check lists so of course took it. Here are my surprising results:
Stress Warning Signs and Symptoms
- Memory problems No problem, no memory.
- Inability to concentrate I am a great multi-tasker
- Poor judgment Posting this post
- Seeing only the negative I can barely see past my own nose.
- Anxious or racing thoughts Never, I concentrate on relaxing
- Constant worrying “What me worry?”
- Moodiness Only when I’m moody
- Irritability or short temper I get irritable when my temper is short.
- Agitation, inability to relax I try to relax all the time
- Feeling overwhelmed This list is overwhelming
- Sense of loneliness and isolation I long for isolation . . .
- Depression or general unhappiness Eh?
- Aches and pains That’s what’s creating the stress in the first place.
- Diarrhea or constipation There are limits to my self disclosure.
- Nausea, dizziness Does ditsy count?
- Chest pain, rapid heartbeat No kidding!
- Loss of sex drive X-rated, no comment
- Frequent colds Only my feet
- Sleeping too much or too little Much is more
- Isolating yourself from others What other’s? Remind me who they are.
- Procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities Who me?, never! I’ll get to my paperwork . . . soon.
- Using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax My drug of choice is carbs
- Nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing) Shaking my foot
- Eating more or less More is more
This stress checklist has irritated me. I’ll decide if I’m stressed after I eat some cake and relax .
Now don’t get me wrong I’m too old to raise a child (of course it was George’s we would have nannys, lots of nannys). On second thought the fantasy doesn’t include babies . . .
The world of science is exploding with discovery. I wish I could live to 200 as the future, rather than the past, has always intrigued me. EVERYONE should be aware of stem cell research because there’s a LOT of FDA politics, and I suspect lobbying by pharmaceutical companies, to stake out territory over this amazing technology.
Listen to this!
“Scientists in Japan report they have created eggs from stem cells in a mammal for the first time. And the researchers went on to breed healthy offspring from the eggs they created.”
“While the experiments involved mice, the work is being met with excitement — and questions — about doing the same thing for humans someday.”
‘”Wow. That’s my general reaction,” said Hank Greely, a bioethicist at Stanford University who studies stem-cell science. “Repairing hearts, repairing brains, repairing kidneys, that’s all good and important, and we’d all love to be able to do that. But this involves making the next generation.”‘
“Speculation about the possibilities get even more sci-fi. “Any skin cell that you can find on the edge of a coffee cup theoretically could be induced back to being an egg, and a baby could be produced,” said Ronald Green, a bioethicist at Dartmouth University.
‘”When you think about the commercial possibilities of people selling to infertile people babies produced from George Clooney or Jennifer Aniston, or whatever, you have to worry about it,” Green said.”‘
George Clooney and me
(Science or idle fancy?)
rat baby makes three!
*hacked, past participle, past tense of hack (Verb)
1. Cut with rough or heavy blows.
Footprint on mon coeur.
dis-ease of broken heart or
evidence d’ amour?
I’ve “borrowed” again from Carolyn Thomas’ My Heart Sisters:
“This year, heart disease will kill six times more women than breast cancer will. In fact, heart disease kills more women each year than all forms of cancer combined.”
And READ THIS from Carolyn
“When other researchers reporting in the New England Journal of Medicine looked at more than 10,000 patients (48% women) who had gone to their hospital Emergency Departments with chest pain or other heart attack symptoms, they found that women under the age of 55 are SEVEN TIMES more likely to be misdiagnosed in mid-heart attack than their male counterparts are.”
“And it gets worse! In 2005, the American Heart Association surveyed physicians in the U.S. to see how many were aware that more women than men die of heart disease each year (a statistic that’s been true since they started keeping track in 1984).
Only 8% of family doctors knew this fact, and (much worse!!) only 17% of CARDIOLOGISTS were aware of it. CARDIOLOGISTS! This is their business. This is all they do!! Shocking, really!”
Do check out Carolyn’s blog. She does an amazing job keeping up with the latest news and research and information. Here’s a sample of a funny post that may not be so funny:
Creation of pain
works silently in the brain
while the body screams
Whether or not you have chronic pain the article in the on-line magazine I’ve “bolded in red” below will be of interest. Brain research is beginning to reveal important information for us all.
New Issue of Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain LIFE is now available online and in print
The Sep/Oct 2012 issue includes the following feature stories:
* COVER STORY: The IOM Report that is Changing Your LIfe: Relieving Pain in America: A Blueprint for Transforming Prevention, Care, Education and Research
* What Latest Imaging Technology Reveals about How Chronic Pain Changes the Brain
* Pain Tracking–Self-Management Tools to Help You Know Your Progress
* Pet Therapy to Melt Your Pain (Max recommends this article although he’s a bit disappointed it’s about a bunny)
* September is Pain Awareness Month – Upcoming TrueHelp Disability Web Expo
The mission of the National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association (NFMCPA) is to build a united patient and medical community to create a strong voice and organizational base to educate and execute advocacy programs regarding access to care, scientific research, diagnosis and treatment for people with fibromyalgia and overlapping conditions. On our website you can find: support groups around the world, information about overlapping conditions, research, archived newsletters and press releases, and support.
National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association
31 Federal Avenue
Logan, UT 84321
I’m so grateful to Carolyn Thomas, My Heart Sisters for bringing Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week to my attention. Carolyn suffered a Widow-Maker Heart Attack in 2009 and has Inoperable Coronary Microvascular Disease.
Carolyn’s post on her “30 things” is wonderful, honest, informative and well written.
Please read it to get another perspective on invisible illness.
Carolyn’s intro is perfect so I’m stealing it! (Don’t tell Carolyn! . . . ). Here it is:
“Next week is Invisible Chronic Illness Awareness Week and this year, the 2012 campaign organizers have provided a 30 Things template for bloggers like me. Most of us look and sound pretty much the way we did before being diagnosed with a chronic and progressive illness which may not be at all visibly obvious to the outside world. This can then make it challenging for those around us to ‘get it’ when we are struggling with debilitating symptoms. So with the hope of helping to expand public awareness into next week and beyond, here goes:”
My choice: A gossamer gown
or a horse hair robe
1. The illness I live with is: fibromyalgia and chronic heart arrhythmias. Yup plural. The meds I am on for atrial fib caused another problem with my AV node which caused a problem with my pacemaker which caused .. .
2. I was diagnosed with it in the year: Fibro – 1996, Heart – 2000ish
3. But I had symptoms since: Looking back I had fibro symptoms as a child. My heart arrhythmia’s started in the 1970′s. I believe my heart problems are fibro related as fibromyalgia is a central nervous system disorder.
4. The biggest adjustment I’ve had to make is: remembering that my body is no longer 30 years old and not be upset with myself for not doing MORE, more, more.
5. Most people assume: I’m fine. When I’m in public I look fine, I act fine. And that’s fine with me.
6. The hardest part about mornings are: Waking up exhausted and wanting/needing to go back to bed even if I’ve slept 9 hours.
7. My favorite medical TV show is: I don’t watch medical TV shows or anything that has death, dying, famine, pestilence, flood, suspense or mayhem. My central nervous system is always on red-alert and anything that is even a tiny bit tense throws it waaaaaaaaay over the top. I watch a lot of HGTV!
8. A gadget I couldn’t live without is: Romba. I could watch her vacuum her little robot wheels off for hours! If I could afford it I would have a robot clean counters, wash windows and COOK. The best money I ever spent that I thought I shouldn’t spend. (I did have a 20% off coupon . . .)
9. The hardest part about nights are: Hoping tomorrow I’ll have energy but knowing I will wake up exhausted.
10. Each day I take __ pills, 8 or 9 but who’s counting . . . two are for fibro the rest are heart meds.
11. Regarding alternative treatments I: have tried most with no change. I don’t do placebo very well either.
12. If I had to choose between an invisible illness or visible I would choose: NEITHER! I do think that in many ways visible illness or injury is looked at as legitimate and invisible illness or injury is suspicious – particularly when it’s chronic. Once I was on crutches for leg surgery. I got so much care and sympathy that I told everyone I was going to keep the crutches and use them when I had fibromyalgia flare ups.
13. Regarding working and career: I have had to limit the number of people I see on a daily basis. This past year I’ve had to limit the number of days in the office. If I see too many people it takes me days to get any energy back. The older I get the less resilient I seem to be.
14. People would be surprised to know: At home I sit and stare a lot. I’m not always cheery and energetic. When I’m at work I truly am delighted to see clients and I am able to keep my focus for and on them and push everything else into the background. When I notice pain, fatigue or irregular heart beats during a session then I know I’m not doing well at all.
15. The hardest thing to accept about my new reality has been: Not having the kind of energy I used to have, want to have and how unproductive I feel. The hardest thing to DO is pace myself. When I’m feeling ok I tend to do too much and then I create a “fibro flare”.
16. Something I never thought I could do with my illness that I did was: Teach 4 day intensive for the Academy for Guided Imagery. The teaching is from 9 am to 5 pm and then the faculty debrief etc until 6. I take a nap during lunch. The incredibly wonderful students that take the training keep me enthused and stimulated. After the 4 days I crash for days. It’s worth it. I love teaching.
17. The commercials about my illness: I’m glad that the words Fibromyalgia and Atrial Fibrillation are becoming known. But all the commercials about medication in general drive me nuttier than I already am. They make it sound like all you do is take a pill and the world is wonderful. (The list of side effects makes me smile – I’ve had most of them)
18. Something I really miss doing since I was diagnosed is: Spontaneity. I never know how I’m going to feel.
19. It was really hard to have to give up: My previous way of living. After all these many years I still have a difficult time pacing myself.
20. A new hobby I have taken up since my diagnosis is: Taking naps.
21. If I could have one day of feeling normal again I would: I’ve come to realize that what I’m feeling and how I’m living IS my new normal. I can no longer remember how I felt before my fibro and heart problems really flared.
22. My illness has taught me: We all share invisible hurts, scars, pains and sorrows. Invisible emotional hurts and pains are much more difficult than the physical. In a weird way I am blessed.
23. Want to know a secret? One thing people say that gets under my skin is: Give me advice on what I can do, should try to be “cured” or feel better. After 16 years I’ve read books, articles, blogs, research and have pretty much tried everything known to man (at this point in time). I’m sick and tired of trying “miracle” cures and going to health care appointments. I’ve tried acupuncture, herbs, vitamins, yoga, body work, imagery, hypnosis, been to over 30 different kinds of doctors etc. Enough! The only thing I haven’t tried is being stung by a bee 3 times a day. Ouch! (I saw a woman at a fibro conference gave a demonstration) Thank goodness I’m allergic to bee stings . . . or I would have tried that . . .
24. But I love it when people: Forgive me for not calling back, forgetting their birthdays, understanding how difficult it is for me to make long-term commitments or plans since I never know how I will feel.
25. My favorite motto, scripture, quote that gets me through tough times is: ” This too shall pass”. My Mother always said that. She was right. Everything passes. This life is just a small blip in eternity.
26. When someone is diagnosed I’d like to tell them: Your life won’t stop even if your health has. Do what you can when you can, if you can.
27. Something that has surprised me about living with an illness is: How exhausting and isolating it is.
28. The nicest thing someone did for me when I wasn’t feeling well was: To be honest, I can’t think of anything. People do nice things for me all the time that have nothing to do with how I feel. Nice!
29. I’m involved with Invisible Illness Week because: I believe that it is the only way to make invisible illness VISIBLE is to share and talk about it.
30. The fact that you read this list makes me feel: Hopeful. Maybe my experiences can help others not feel as puny & crazy as I thought I was when I first developed debilitating symptoms.
Thanks Carolyn! At least I didn’t steal your answers too!
My resiliency has taken a nose dive since going off my miracle Mirapex. Since I feel exhausted all the time rather than bounce back from any exertion I tend to splat. So I found Carolyn Thomas’ post on resiliency really interesting. Out of curiosity I took the resiliency test, that’s posted at the end, twice: The first time how I’m feeling currently and then how I would have responded PRE-fibromyalgia/heart stuff.
I was pleasantly and unexpectedly surprised. I’m a bit MORE resilient POST fibromyalgia/heart stuff than PRE. When I thought about it, it began to make sense.
Here’s an excerpt from Carolyn Thomas’ post (Read her whole post it’s very good)
“Psychologist Dr. Al Siebert, author of The Survivor Personality: Why Some People Are Stronger, Smarter, and More Skillful at Handling Life’s Difficulties, examines some interesting differences between survivors.”
“Every transformational journey is unique, he reminds us, but some survivors remain emotionally wounded for life. They relive and re-experience distressing moments again and again. On the other hand, some survivors recover fairly well with the help of an accommodating family and friends, or appropriate professional help.”
“Some, however, do more than simply recover, and survivors in this third group have two things in common, according to Dr. Siebert:
- They integrate the traumatic experience into their identity and make the experience a defining part of their life story.
- They talk or write about the trauma in a way that is helpful to others.
Rate yourself from 1 to 5 on the following: (1 = very little, 5 = very strong)
1 2 3 4 5
- In a crisis or chaotic situation, I calm myself and focus on taking useful actions.
- I’m usually optimistic. I see difficulties as temporary and expect to overcome them.
- I can tolerate high levels of ambiguity and uncertainty about situations.
- I adapt quickly to new developments. I’m good at bouncing back from difficulties.
- I’m playful. I find the humor in rough situations, and can laugh at myself.
- I’m able to recover emotionally from losses and setbacks. I have friends I can talk with. I can express my feelings to others and ask for help. Feelings of anger, loss and discouragement don’t last long.
- I feel self-confident, appreciate myself. and have a healthy concept of who I am.
- I’m curious. I ask questions. I want to know how things work. I like to try new ways of doing things.
- I learn valuable lessons from my experiences and from the experiences of others.
- I’m good at solving problems. I can use analytical logic, be creative, or use practical common sense.
- I’m good at making things work well. I’m often asked to lead groups and projects.
- I’m very flexible. I feel comfortable with my paradoxical complexity. I’m optimistic and pessimistic, trusting and cautious, unselfish and selfish, and so forth.
- I’m always myself, but I’ve noticed that I’m different in different situations.
- I prefer to work without a written job description. I’m more effective when I’m free to do what I think is best in each situation.
- I “read” people well and trust my intuition.
- I’m a good listener. I have good empathy skills.
- I’m non-judgmental about others and adapt to people’s different personality styles.
- I’m very durable. I hold up well during tough times. I have an independent spirit underneath my cooperative way of working with others.
- I’ve been made stronger and better by difficult experiences.
- I’ve converted misfortune into good luck and found benefits in bad experiences.
80 or higher very resilient!
65-80 better than most
50-65 slow, but adequate
40-50 you’re struggling
40 or under seek help!
To read the INTERPRETATIONS of the scores CLICK HERE.
Although Southern California has been having incredibly beautiful weather I’m aware that parts of the world are experiencing incredible heat.
One of my favorite electrophysiologists (cardiologist who specialized in electrical) is John Mandrola, MD. I have internet appointments with his blog. He is down to earth, a good writer and has good information. He also is an avid cyclist which has given me a glimpse into the obsessive world of cycling which I shall never physically experience!
I’ve excerpted his information on how to deal with heat as there are several points he makes that I wasn’t aware of.
Although on this post he’s talking about strenuous exercise it applies to a lot of people: Those with medical conditions; Seniors; Children who play hard outside etc.
So for those of you sweltering in the heat right now take a look at what the doctor writes:
“. . . mild dehydration and heat exposure can play havoc with susceptible patients. Now I’m talking to middle-agers with (or without) AF. [atrial fibrillation] The stressful effects of heat-illness–electrolyte depletion and high adrenaline levels–can act as pokers of the nests of cells that drive or initiate AF. You don’t want to poke these cells. mild dehydration and heat exposure can play havoc with susceptible patients.”
- “Hydrate immediately upon awakening. A number of years ago, I had to drink 30 ounces of water in the early morning before a kidney ultrasound. The sensations were amazing. I bopped around that entire day. Starting the day on ‘full’ can make a huge difference in dealing with the heat.
- Drink an entire bottle of water BEFORE [exercise] the run or ride. Even when it’s not hot, exercising in a fully hydrated state improves performance. A side effect: the need to negotiate an early nature break.
- Limit caffeine intake on hot days. I harbor little doubt that caffeine improves performance–in certain individuals–during short bursts of exercise done in moderate weather. I cannot imagine starting a cyclocross race without drinking a stiff Americano. But on hot days, the diuretic effect of caffeine wreaks havoc with heat regulation and electrolyte depletion. I don’t have studies; I just know this.
- Talk to yourself during [exercise] a hot ride/run. Keep telling yourself to drink fluids. For guys like me, with imaginary friends, talking to yourself comes naturally. You may need to practice.
- Colored water can help on long rides/runs [exercise] on hot days. I’m partial to orange and purple sport’s drinks. Of course, the best color drink needs to be individualized. Don’t ask me which proprietary formula best replenishes muscles. Just pick a good color. I say this with caution: The fizzy carmel-colored stuff in a red can also works for me.
- Avoid Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). Under normal circumstances, regular use of NSAIDs is risky. One of the greatest risks of these drugs is kidney failure–the dialysis kind. Taking NSAIDs in a volume-depleted state increases the risk of this catastrophe. Let me repeat: Do not take NSAIDs while dehydrated.
- Don’t push through sickness. When fighting a viral infection—I say viral, because no one exercises through serious bacterial infections—you need to let your heart and body rest. By definition, infection means you are inflamed. Don’t risk pouring in more inflammation. Never add inflammation. That’s a severe health rule!
- Exercise in the morning. The advantage here is that you may learn to go bed early.
- Be alert for signs of heat-illness in yourself or your buddies. It’s pretty obvious. Being cold on a hot day is a really bad sign. Babbling is a less specific indicator.”
The weird part is I couldn’t get these Dem Bone lyrics out of my head while all this was going on. I don’t think I’ve heard this song since I was a child. AND I had no idea, until now, that the gospel song was actually based on Ezekiel.
E-ze-kiel cried, “Dem dry bones!”
E-ze-kiel cried, “Dem dry bones!”
E-ze-kiel cried, “Dem dry bones!”
Oh hear the word of the Lord.
The foot bone con-nected to the (pause) leg-bone,
The leg bone connected to the (‘) knee bone,
The knee bone connected to the (‘) thigh bone,
The thigh bone connected to the (‘) back bone,
The back bone connected to the (‘) neck bone
The neck bone connected to the (‘) head bone
Oh hear the word of the Lord!
Dem bones, dem bones gon-na walk a-roun’
Dem bones, dem bones gon-na walk a-roun’
Dem bones, dem bones gonna walk aroun’
Oh hear the word of the Lord.
The head-bone connected to the neck-bone,
the neck-bone connected to the back-bone
The backbone connected to the thigh-bone
the thighbone connected to the knee-bone
the knee bone connected to the leg bone
the leg bone connected to the foot bone
Oh hear the word of the Lord
1 The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. 3 He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “O Sovereign LORD, you alone know.”
4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD!
5 This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath [a] enter you, and you will come to life. 6 I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.’ “
7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them.
9 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’ ” 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army.
11 Then he said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’
12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel.
13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them.
14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.’”
I snapped at my husband today. I felt justified to boot.
Why would a therapist, who KNOWS relationship dynamics, why would a therapist who counsels others on how to conduct themselves to make their life better, why would a therapist respond in such an unhealthy way?
Why would a woman with a husband and friends who love her and dog who gives her licks upon request, why would a woman who believes that we are all connected and God is in all feel alone?
Hate to admit it, but I keep getting reminded that I’m human.
After the stress, excitement, tension of being “up & on” all day yesterday I’ve crashed.
My body’s aching, my face, feet, legs and arms are burning, I’m exhausted and yes, I feel alone with it all.
Ironically, one of the pictures I talked about yesterday was the collage I did depicting my exhaustion and the part of me who yells to pull myself together, get up and get going, the part of me that just sits, frozen in place, and the exhausted part that just lays there listening.
*I now know why I’m exhausted all morning! This list of food is what I eat for breakfast . . . (except for the potatoes & turkey which I save for lunch so I can be exhausted all afternoon).*
Here’s a repost from Dr. OZ et al. at Real Age
“About 90 minutes before you want to nod off, head for the kitchen and make yourself a sleepy-time snack*. Keep it light (around 200 calories), so you don’t overload your digestive system. And include one or two foods from the list below. All help to relax tense muscles, quiet buzzing minds, and/or get calming, sleep-inducing hormones — serotonin and melatonin — flowing. Yawning yet?”
1. Bananas – They’re practically a sleeping pill in a peel. In addition to a bit of soothing melatonin and serotonin, bananas contain magnesium, a muscle relaxant.
2. Chamomile tea — Chamomile is a staple of bedtime tea blends because of its mild sedating effect, which makes it the perfect natural antidote for restless minds and bodies.
3. Warm milk — It’s not a myth. Milk has some tryptophan, an amino acid that has a sedative-like effect, and calcium, which helps the brain use tryptophan. Plus, there’s the psychological throwback to infancy, when a warm bottle meant “relax, everything’s fine.”
4. Honey – Drizzle a little in your warm milk or herb tea. Lots of sugar is stimulating, but a little glucose tells your brain to turn off orexin, a recently discovered neurotransmitter that’s linked to alertness.
5. Potatoes – A small baked spud won’t overwhelm your gastrointestinal tract as it clears away acids that can interfere with yawn-inducing tryptophan. To up the soothing effect, mash the potato with warm milk.
6. Oatmeal – Oats are a rich source of sleep-inviting melatonin, and a small bowl of warm cereal with a splash of maple syrup is cozy — and if you’ve got the munchies, it’s filling, too.
7. Almonds – A handful of these heart-healthy nuts can send you snoozing because they contain both tryptophan and a nice dose of muscle-relaxing magnesium.
8. Flaxseeds – When life goes awry, and feeling down is keeping you up, try sprinkling 2 tablespoons of these healthy little seeds on your bedtime oatmeal. They’re rich in omega-3 fatty acids, a natural mood lifter.
9. Whole-wheat bread – A slice of toast with your tea and honey will release insulin, which helps tryptophan get to your brain, where it’s converted to serotonin and quietly murmurs “time to sleep.”
10. Turkey – It’s the best-known source of tryptophan, credited with all those Thanksgiving naps. But that’s actually modern folklore. Tryptophan works when your stomach’s basically empty rather than overstuffed and when there are some carbs around rather than tons of protein. But put a lean slice or two on some whole-wheat bread midevening and you’ve got one of the best sleep-inducers in your kitchen.
What if none of these foods helps? Check out your sleep habits with this quick RealAge assessment to find out what’s keeping you up at night.”
OR . . . sleep in a crib.
OR eat the entire batch of Lullaby Muffins and you’ll wake up in the morning fat and happy.
Between the bananas, the whole wheat, and the light touch of sweetness, these muffins are practically an edible lullaby.
2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 large, very ripe bananas
1/3 cup applesauce
1/4 cup honey
1/2 cup milk or soymilk
Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large bowl, combine the flour (make sure it’s whole-wheat pastry flour or you’ll produce golf balls, not muffins), salt, and baking powder. In a blender, puree the bananas; add the applesauce, honey, and milk. Blend well. Pour the banana mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until just moistened. Line muffin tins with paper muffin cups and pour in batter. Bake 30 minutes or until tops are lightly brown and slightly springy. Makes 12 low-fat muffins.
Per serving: 119 calories; 1g fat; 2.5g protein; 27g carbohydrate; 10g sugar; 133mg sodium; 3g fiber; 35mg magnesium
Tallulah, my pacemaker, is doing her job and luckily resting on her laurels a lot (translation: my pacemaker is only having to work 2% to 25% of the time). I still having a bit of “heart matters” going on so this post on my favorite Heart blog: Heart Sisters caught my attention.
(P.S. Fascinating information on Stem Cells and their impact on MEN)
If you are a woman or know a woman take a moment to listen.
“One out of every two of you reading this right now will be impacted by cardiovascular disease in your lifetime, warns cardiologist Dr. Noel Bairey-Merz, Director of the Cedars Sinai Women’s Heart Center in Los Angeles. And worse, diagnostic and treatment strategies “developed in men, by men, for men for the last 50 years” are not working so well for women.”
Simultaneously fills me with admiration, inspires me and makes me tired just reading and watching this synopsis of Mimi’s film. Now if only I didn’t have two left feet . . . . . and fibromyalgia! However, I THINK I am creative enough to develop some fun eccentricities despite the fibro. What’a bout YOU?
“If you don’t dance, for heaven’s sake, you cannot aspire.
“Hats Off, a feature-length documentary, profiles the beauty and eccentricities of an extraordinary woman, 93-year-old actress Mimi Weddell.
“With the style and grace of Katharine Hepburn, the smoky wit and wisdom of Dorothy Parker, and her own personal philosophy, “rise above it,” Mimi is truly an iconic American original, rising above the mundane and difficult confines of her own daily life to reach for the stars and fulfill her dreams.”
“Hats Off captures the essence of this most unusual woman, named at age 90 by New York Magazine as one of the “50 Most Beautiful People in New York,” whose full-time acting career began at age 65 upon the passing of her husband, and whose daily routine mocks the traditional image of old age. From grueling 14-hour days at cattle call auditions to her weekly gymnastics and dance workouts, Mimi Weddell exudes a ‘can-do, will-do’ attitude in the face of life’s trials and tribulations, and moves through her challenges with grace, encouraging us all to be more than we are.”
“Shot over the course of 10 years, by critically acclaimed, award-winning director Jyll Johnstone, (Martha & Ethel, Throwing Curves) Hats Off covers a time span when most seniors are planning their funerals and estate bequests. Instead, Hats Off follows the breathtaking pace of Weddell, a bohemian free spirit now forced to share her east side Manhattan apartment with her two more traditionally minded grown children and a grandchild. Like most families, their relationship is complex, and the mother-daughter/mother-son dynamic adds a fascinating layer of depth to an already compelling and entertaining film.”
When her beloved husband Dick dies, “leaving nothing behind but bills, poor man,” Mimi does what she has to do to stay afloat, even attending an audition on the way to his memorial and landing the lead role in the cult film Dracula’s Last Rites, which marks the beginning of her career.”
Worm-hunting is therapeutic for me. Finding a worm combines the thrill of the hunt with the concentrated, focused attention of meditation. That rush of adrenalin combined with a dopamine hit when I find a worm -whata Eureka Moment! I often wonder if all the wiggling the worms do when I find them is because of their adrenalin hit . . .
I started a worm farm but found out that earth worms don’t make good farm animals. You need red wigglers for farms. So now I dig the earth worms out of the flower beds and directly put them into my vegetable garden. They are free range worms.
I planted marigolds to ward off insect critters.
DID YOU KNOW? If all worms on the planet died (bees too), life as we know it would cease. Worms are busy little bees: They break down organic matter; They aerate the soil; They help to combine organic matter into the top soil and; They even can eat and pacify harmful
industrial chemicals such as those containing arsenic!
I do not want any arsenic in my vegetables. I better go find some more worms.
P.S. Thank you Laurie M. for my starter seedlings.
P.P. S Thank you Rick & Sheila for the only flower-plant that I can’t kill.
P.P.P.S. The 1/2 Mirapex is working so far! I’m not exhausted. However, I have become addicted to finding worms.
Here’s what I’ve decided to do to minimize my fibromyalgia exhaustion!
Desperate measure - Take 1/2 a Mirapex* tablet. That will cut the exhaustion in half! AND . . .
- I’ll compulsively eat half as much and lose weight.
- I’m not sure how the 1/2 tablet will affect gambling and sex addictions since I hadn’t developed those. But since I will only develop half of the addictive side effects I’ll ask my husband which one he prefers.
- I’ll confine the narcolepsy to after dark.
*Mirapex, Other Parkinson’s Disease Drugs Linked to Compulsive Gambling, Hypersexuality
Date Published: Tuesday, April 14th, 2009
“Mirapex and other dopamine agonists used to treat Parkinson’s Disease have been linked to the development of extreme behaviors by yet another study. According to researchers at the Mayo Clinic, one in five patients (I think I met several at the bakery counter) taking such drugs in a recent study developed behavior disorders, such as compulsive gambling or hypersexuality.”
“Parkinson’s Disease occurs because of a lack of the neurotransmitter dopamine in certain areas of the brain. (Some fibro patients have lower levels of dopamine) A dopamine agonist works by mimicking the effects of this chemical. However, dopamine is also known to produce a “rush” in the brain of people who are anticipating a reward or excitement. (So that’s why I RUSHED to eat chocolate croissants every day – sometimes rushed a few times a day) Many experts believe that such a biochemical reaction is behind the reports of compulsive behavior linked to dopamine agonists like Mirapex.”
I TOLD you I was desperate . . .
P.S. My Horoscope for today:
For those of you new to my blog (er, Max’s blog) I have an “affliction” due to alien possession. It’s called fibromyalgia. Fibromyalgia is a misnomer dating back to ancient times when the medical establishment liked to name things with Greek roots because it sounds more scientific. The rest of you who know my whole weary tale can skip down to the red print.
My main symptoms of this central nervous system disorder are depression, allodynia a good Greek name for whole body pain, mental fog (where are the Greeks when they are really needed – FOG is a soft, floaty description for mental muddle, mental muck) and exhaustion. There are many other symptom since the central nervous system impacts every system. I’ve been one of the lucky ones where the aliens decided to lay heavy on the depression and exhaustion and go light on the fog and pain.
I’ve been blessed that my symptoms have been helped for several years – not eliminated – through the miracles of modern meds. That was until I had to go off (that’s an interesting image) my miracle drug Mirapex because one of the side effects was narcolepsy (another Greek name). Unfortunately, I was awake enough of the time to indulge in another side effect – compulsivity. I ate obsessively, compulsively like an addict. Again I was blessed that I stopped the drug before it led to compulsive gambling and sex – I kid you not!
Which brings me to the present. The good news is I no longer fall asleep at stop lights or brushing my teeth.The bad news is I’m EXHAUSTED. pooped-out-of-my-mind. In the morning I wake up exhausted after sleeping 10 hours. So after a few hours I take a 2 hour nap. It’s almost impossible to describe being exhausted without doing anything that is exhausting. I’m NOT TIRED, mind you. Exhausted.
I’ve stopped exercising as the thought of it exhausts me more. I’ve reverted to self medicating myself with anything that contains refined sugar and/or white flour searching for an energy pick me up. I stare out into space thinking of all the things I should be doing, need & want to be doing and get more exhausted thinking about how I will feel exhausted doing them.
My in-basket has now grown to over 300 e-mails not attended to. I forget to call back clients who are forgiving and wonderful as always. I avoid calling friends, not wanting to recount the exhausting litany of reasons why I’ve not called nor responded to them. I don’t walk Max who patiently waits for permission to walk himself.
I woke up this morning, exhausted as usual, and said to myself. “Judy, this now calls for desperate measures.”
However, I’m too exhausted after writing all this so I’ll tell you what my desperate measures are tomorrow. I’m going to lay down now and get in another nap before it’s time for bed.
When I was in my 30′s I ate a LOT of chocolate. I ate chocolate rather than eating fruit, vegetables or protein. I liked my chocolate straight up, with a shooter of brownies or on the rocks (ice cream). And I was fit and thin. In my 40′s I cut down on my chocolate consumption. I was nearing middle age and needed to be more health conscious. Looking back the less chocolate I ate the heavier I got. Now I’m overweight.
And NOW a new study came out that finds those who eat chocolate several times a week are leaner than those who don’t eat it regularly!
Once again . . . I was ahead of the times.
“A new study finds that people who eat chocolate several times a week are actually leaner than people who don’t eat chocolate regularly.
Really, we asked? Last time we checked chocolate was loaded with fat and sugar. But this new research, along with some prior studies, suggests chocolate may favorably influence metabolism.
To test this theory, Beatrice Golomb, an associate professor of medicine at the University of California, San Diego, asked about 1,000 people, ages 20 to 85, a simple question: “How many times a week do you consume chocolate?” The participants then completed food frequency questionnaires to estimate their caloric intakes of a whole range of foods including chocolate. They also had weight and height measurement taken to calculate their body mass index, or BMI.
“In our study, people who ate chocolate more often actually ate more calories,” says Golomb. “But in spite of that they had lower [BMI].”
How much lower? For a 5-foot-tall woman, weighing about 120 pounds, the study found that she was likely to be about 5 pounds lighter if she was a frequent eater of chocolate (five times a week). So to lose 20 pounds I need to eat it 20 times a week. They aren’t saying how MUCH so I’ll start experimenting and let you know. Anything in the interest of science.
And, no, the people with serious chocolate habits did not exercise more than those who weren’t in the habit of eating chocolate. Ain’t science wonderful!?
This study certainly does not prove that frequent chocolate consumption causes people to be leaner: The researchers found that chocolate’s correlation to thinness started to melt away among the participants who consumed the most. They also didn’t suss out whether the type of chocolate — white, milk, or dark, which can have varying amounts of cocoa — made a difference.
But what’s fascinating here is the notion that our bodies may not treat all calories the same way.
“I think a really important point is that it isn’t just the number of calories that matter,” says Golomb. But the composition of calories seems to matter, too.
Not all researchers are convinced of this. Broadly speaking, the “calories in, calories out” method of managing weight is effective for most people.
And it’s possible that overweight participants in the study under-reported their their chocolate consumption, according to Jane Wardle of the University College London. Indeed, a lot of researchers agree that self-reported food data can be flawed. (Now who would do that in a SCIENTIFIC investigation?)
But what research shows is that certain foods contain compounds that have some power to positively influence metabolic factors.
“When people talk about the health benefits of chocolate,” says food scientist Joshua Lambert of Penn State University, “they typically talk about compounds called polyphenols.”
When he investigated some specific polyphenols found in cocoa, he found that they potently inhibit an enzyme, called pancreatic lipase, that’s responsible for digesting dietary fat.
This means that the fat in chocolate may exit our bodies before it has a chance to be absorbed. Or, in other words, these compounds in cocoa may help us fend off fat.
Lambert’s studies have been conducted in test tubes and mice, not in people. “So there’s a big leap from what we’re doing to what the [UC San Diego researchers] are doing.”
But it might be one mechanism that explains why frequent chocolate eaters tend to be leaner.
Another possible mechanism is that the compounds in chocolate may increase the energy that cells make. Researchers are studying this as well.
So, for now, if you’re a chocolate lover, lose the guilt. Or, be reassured, for now, that the associations between eating chocolate and body weight move in the preferred direction.
And one more thing: This study was not funded by the chocolate industry. Funding came from the National Institute of Health; the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute; and the UC San Diego General Clinical Research Center.”
P.S. In my 30′s I jogged 3 – 10 miles a day.
What an incredibly wonderful world this is to be missed by people I’ve never met in person yet feel like family. Wendy, Laurie thank you so much for your concern
I’ve been off for a while – off-line, off mentally, physically and dare I say emotionally. (It’s a bit blasphemous in the therapeutic community for a therapist to be off emotionally and admit it SO PLEASE don’t tell anyone. I DO have a reputation to uphold)
Not sure which is the chicken, which is the egg. All this heart tweaking, testing, stopping miracle Mirapex (click for the saga) has set off my fibro “stuff” and/or the fibro stuff caused the heart stuff which set off the fibro stuff.
The upshot: My body feels like it’s been hit with a train, my brain isn’t remembering, and my affect is rather flat – that’s therapist speak for “depressed”. I’m blessed that I have enough energy to go to work, and focus while I’m there. I find other people’s difficulties and issues far more interesting than my own.
This is the first time I’ve used the new word press format – and the WordPressies already gave this post a title: “Title (optional)” The WordPressie People are really smart. Most things in life are indeed optional – even health.
I LOVE LOVE LOVE all of you for being so LOVING!
I got home from the office early tonight. My last appointment was with a wonderful couple I’ve seen for a few years. The woman didn’t look like her usual smiling self and said she didn’t feel good. On the drive to my office she suddenly had a strange feeling that spread all over her chest, felt nauseated, had pain across her shoulders. They thought it was anxiety.
I sent them to the nearest emergency room. Why? I NEVER assume physical symptoms are simply stress or anxiety unless a person has ALREADY had it checked by a doctor and disorders/disease have been ruled out. It is better to be relieved that it’s just stress rather than to be dead or disabled because you dismissed the symptoms.
I hope that they both are upset with me
for sending them to the emergency room because all she was experiencing was a stress reaction.
Heart Attack Warnings Can Be Subtle
“Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the leading killer of women in America, accounting for over one-third of all deaths. That’s more than the combined death rates from breast, ovarian, and cervical cancers.
“Studies on cardiac events in women reveal that many women may experience prodromal — or early — symptoms of cardiac distress in the days, weeks, or even months leading up to a heart attack. Unfortunately, many of these signs may be dismissed as nothing out of the ordinary — by both women and their doctors. The most common early warning signs include:
71% Unusual fatigue – “Fatigue is a common complaint and one that may indicate that you’re simply missing out on sleep, fighting a virus, overextending yourself, or experiencing a side effect to medication. But unusual or extreme fatigue may also be an early heart attack symptom or a warning sign of heart disease. In one study, more than 70% of the women surveyed experienced marked fatigue in the days or weeks prior to their heart attacks.”
48% Sleep disturbances -- “It’s not unusual to feel tired due to a lack of sleep or a particularly demanding week or month, you should still take special notice of any unusual or prolonged disturbance in your sleep patterns. A recent study revealed that almost half of the women who had recently suffered a heart attack also experienced sleep disturbances in the days or weeks leading up to their attacks.”
42% Shortness of breath during normal daily activities,
30% Chest Pain
“So how do you know if your symptoms are serious? Getting into the habit of noting your typical aches and pains and your normal reactions to foods and activities may help you recognize when something is truly amiss. Also, remember that if you have risk factors for heart disease, you should be especially vigilant about monitoring how you feel — particularly if any of your usual symptoms are often early heart attack signs. If you experience worrisome or unusual changes in your energy level, comfort, or sleep habits, you should discuss your concerns with your healthcare provider, especially if you have heart disease risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, obesity, diabetes, a smoking habit, or a sedentary lifestyle. (Here are 12 things you can do right now to help prevent a heart attack.)”
Do you know that BuckWheat is NOT wheat? Do you know how to make worm juice to fertilize your garden? - Important things I learned at The International Association of Clinical Hypnotherapy Meeting www.hypnosis4u.org!!!!
Linda Weisner a wonderful hypnotherapist and I learned about more than just hypnosis from John Warhank a talented hypnotist and Qigong teacher. Since you didn’t attend the meeting I’m passing on information John knows that EVERYONE SHOULD KNOW:
While many people think that buckwheat is a cereal grain, it is actually a fruit seed that is related to rhubarb and sorrel making it a suitable substitute for grains for people who are sensitive to wheat or other grains that contain protein glutens. Buckwheat flowers are very fragrant and are attractive to bees that use them to produce a special, strongly flavored, dark honey.
3. Can Gardening Help Troubled Minds Heal
by Kristofor Husted
If you haven’t noticed, gardens are popping up in some unconventional places – from prison yards to retirement and veteran homes to programs for troubled youth.
Most are handy sources of fresh and local food, but increasingly they’re also an extension of therapy for people with mental health issues, such as post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD; depression; and anxiety.
It’s called horticultural therapy. And some doctors, psychologists and occupational therapists are now at work to test whether building, planting, and harvesting a garden can be a therapeutic process in its own right.
Much of the science behind just how gardening affects the mind and brain still remains a mystery. What scientists do know is that gardening reduces stress and calms the nerves. It decreases cortisol, a hormone that plays a role in stress response.
click here to Read entire article
P.S. If you have questions don’t call me,
call John johnwarhankhypnotist.com for more information
or Linda yourinnerjourney.net for help!
Addison’s disease, however, is NOT funny:
Addison’s disease (also chronic adrenal insufficiency, hypocortisolism, and hypoadrenalism) is a rare, chronic endocrine disorder in which the adrenal glands do not produce sufficient steroid hormones (glucocorticoidsand often mineralocorticoids). It is characterised by a number of relatively nonspecific symptoms, such as abdominal pain and weakness, but under certain circumstances these may progress to Addisonian crisis, a severe illness in which there may be very low blood pressure and coma
Do Tears Dilute Your Pain? was a post I had several people commented that tears cleansed the body of certain chemicals. Not one to leave a topic alone here’s some excerpts from an article that I found interesting.
Written by Natasha Mann, health journalist
The Health Benefits of Crying
Emotional or stress-related tears are thought to help us through difficult times in a number of ways.
“. . . research has suggested that tears could actually be a way of flushing negative chemicals out of the body and doing you a world of good. We look at why it’s good to cry.
A study by Dr William H. Frey II, a biochemist at the St Paul-Ramsey Medical Centre in Minnesota, found that there is an important chemical difference between emotional or stress-related tears and those simply caused by physical irritants – such as when cutting onions.”
“They found that emotional tears contained more of the protein-based hormones prolactin, adrenocorticotropic hormone, and leucine enkephalin (a natural painkiller), all of which are produced by our body when under stress.”
“We all need the layer of protective fluid covering our eyeballs known as continuous or basal tears.
Basal tears contain lysozyme, a powerful and fast acting antibacterial and anti-viral agent. Without this, the eye – because it’s a moist environment – would suffer enormous amounts of bacterial attack and you could potentially go blind.”
“One of the most important functions crying can have is to protect our eyes from irritants and foreign bodies, such as dust or getting rid of the acidic fumes when cutting onions.
These tears are known as reflex tears. When our eyes come under attack from irritants, the lachrymal glands in our eyes start stimulating more fluid to wash away the irritant and drain it from the eye.
Physically, they are thought to wash toxic chemicals out of our bodies, while psychologically giving your feelings a good airing is thought to be a healthy tonic.”
“Crying is thought to help reduce stress, which can have a damaging effect on our health and has been linked to a number of health problems including heart disease, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes and obesity.
According to the Minnesota study, crying can help to wash chemicals linked to stress out of our body, one of the reasons we feel much better after a good cry. Higher levels of adrenocorticotrophic (ACTH) have been found in emotional tears (compared to reflex tears).
Removing this chemical from the body is beneficial because it triggers cortisol, the stress hormone – too much of which can lead to health problems associated with stress.
‘When you’re upset and stressed, you have an imbalance and build up of chemicals in the body and crying helps to reduce that.’”
Dealing with sorrow
“Aside from removing toxic substances from our body, crying can also have the psychological benefit of lifting our mood and helping us to deal with painful situations.
Deep crying is generally felt to be good for you in that it exposes and expresses deep emotions, which means they can then be dealt with.
‘Whether crying is good for you depends a lot on the reasons for it, the context, and how it is handled.
Crying can also signal a need for help from others and bring people together. People are usually more likely to help someone when they see them dissolve into tears, and it can prompt helpful behaviour.
It may also be a signal for physical contact, such as a hug or reassuring hand placed on an arm – and touch has been linked with helping stress reduction”.
Too many tears
“However, frequent crying is not always good for you and can be a sign of more serious conditions, such as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder and postnatal depression.
What’s more, the healing affect of crying won’t work for everyone. Researchers have discovered that people who suffer a mood disorder are less likely to feel better after crying. If you’re depressed and crying all the time, it’s not good and you might need help,’ says Dr Abigael San.”
“88.8 per cent of people feel better after crying, with 8.4 per cent feeling worse.
On average women cry 47 times a year and men a mere seven.
Until puberty, crying levels are much the same for each gender – testosterone may reduce crying in boys while oestrogen and prolactin increases the tendency in girls.
Men may excrete more of the toxins related to emotional stress in their sweat because they have higher sweat levels than women.”
The mantra to children ‘Be brave, don’t cry’ might not be the most helpful because some believe crying can actually help reduce pain.”
While Miss JudyJudith has been convalescing this past week I’ve been running my little legs off running her little heart out . . . Unfortunately for all my diligence she didn’t appreciate all I’ve done for her and she schlepped me to the doctor today. He said I had been working way to much – he didn’t need to tell me – and I could rest a bit.
Frankly, I just don’t understand why she’s been complaining. She’s not done a lick of work all week. Just sat and moaned and groaned about chest pains, and headaches and light-headedness. She’s so dramatic.
Frankly, I think she just wants attention. So please don’t reinforce her. Tell her to get off her behind and act human.
On second thought. Don’t tell her to act like a human – that’s actually what she does and it’s not always becoming. Tell her to act her age!
On second thought. Don’t tell her to act her age – that’s what she’s been doing and it’s not always becoming. Tell her to act like Tallulah: Always smile, always be gracious and always be grateful to have heart.
but you have to run enough
can’t keep up with mice
Haiku by Rick Yerman
I’m psychic. How do I know? I ONLY open up specific e-mails from my clogged, back-logged 208 e-mails when it is timely.
Case in point.
- Right this minute I returned from a 2 mile walk where I got light-headed.
- Right this minute I opened up an e-mail from the New York Times my wonderful friend Ida sent days ago.
- Tomorrow I take a nuclear treadmill test.
- Last night I ate some bread and butter
- I could have opened Ida’s e-mail as soon as I got it. I didn’t.
- I opened it when I NEEDED to have scientific proof.
- I just drew Rat pictures for Ramesh’s Elephant and Ant Poem
Now! Read what she sent and look at my Rat pictures and tell me if I’m not pyschic!
“When ticking off the benefits of physical activity, few of us would include intracellular housecleaning.
But a new study suggests that the ability of exercise to speed the removal of garbage from inside our body’s cells may be one of its most valuable, if least visible, effects.
“In the new research, which was published last month in Nature, scientists at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas gathered two groups of mice. One set was normal, with a finely tuned cellular scrubbing system. The other had been bred to have a blunted cleaning system”.
“It’s long been known that cells accumulate flotsam from the wear and tear of everyday living. Broken or misshapen proteins, shreds of cellular membranes, invasive viruses or bacteria, and worn-out, broken-down cellular components, like aged mitochondria, the tiny organelles within cells that produce energy, form a kind of trash heap inside the cell.”
“In most instances, cells diligently sweep away this debris. They even recycle it for fuel. Through a process with the expressive name of autophagy, or “self-eating,” cells create specialized membranes that engulf junk in the cell’s cytoplasm and carry it to a part of the cell known as the lysosome, where the trash is broken apart and then burned by the cell for energy.”
Without this efficient system, cells could become choked with trash and malfunction or die. In recent years, some scientists have begun to suspect that faulty autophagy mechanisms contribute to the development of a range of diseases, including diabetes, muscular dystrophy, Alzheimer’s and cancer. The slowing of autophagy as we reach middle age is also believed to play a role in aging.
Most metabolism researchers think that the process evolved in response to the stress of starvation; cells would round up and consume superfluous bits of themselves to keep the rest of the cell alive. In petri dishes, the rate of autophagy increases when cells are starved or otherwise placed under physiological stress.
Exercise, of course, is physiological stress. But until recently, few researchers had thought to ask whether exercise might somehow affect the amount of autophagy within cells and, if so, whether that mattered to the body as a whole.
“Autophagy affects metabolism and has wide-ranging health-related benefits in the body, and so does exercise,” says Dr. Beth Levine, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator at U.T. Southwestern. “There seemed to be considerable overlap, in fact, between the health-related benefits of exercise and those of autophagy,” but it wasn’t clear how the two interacted, she says.
So she and her colleagues had lab mice run. The animals first had been medically treated so that the membranes that engulf debris inside their cells would glow, revealing themselves to the researchers. After just 30 minutes of running, the mice had significantly more membranes in cells throughout their bodies, the researchers found, meaning they were undergoing accelerated autophagy.
That finding, however, didn’t explain what the augmented cellular cleaning meant for the well-being of the mice, so the researchers developed a new strain of mouse that showed normal autophagy levels in most instances, but could not increase its cellular self-eating in response to stress. Autophagy levels would stubbornly remain the same, even if the animals were starved or vigorously exercised.
Then the researchers had these mice run, alongside a control group of normal animals. The autophagy-resistant mice quickly grew fatigued. Their muscles seemed incapable of drawing sugar from the blood as the muscles of the normal mice did.
More striking, when Dr. Levine stuffed both groups of animals with high-fat kibble for several weeks until they developed a rodent version of diabetes, the normal mice subsequently reversed the condition by running, even as they continued on the fatty diet. The autophagy-resistant animals did not. After weeks of running, they remained diabetic. Their cells could not absorb blood sugar normally. They also had higher levels of cholesterol in their blood than the other mice. Exercise had not made them healthier.
In other words, Dr. Levine and her colleagues concluded, an increase in autophagy, prompted by exercise, seems to be a critical step in achieving the health benefits of exercise.
The implications of Dr. Levine’s results are, in fact, broad. It’s possible that people who don’t respond as robustly to aerobic exercise as their training partners may have sputtering or inadequate autophagy systems, although that idea is speculative. “It’s very difficult to study autophagy in humans,” Dr. Levine says. Still, it’s possible that at some point, autophagy-prompting drugs or specialized exercise programs might help everyone to fully benefit from exercise.
In the meantime, the study underscores, again, the importance of staying active. Both the control mice and the genetically modified group had “normal background levels of autophagy” during everyday circumstances, Dr. Levine points out. But this baseline level of cellular housecleaning wasn’t enough to protect them from developing diabetes in the face of a poor diet. Only when the control animals ran and pumped up their intracellular trash collection did they regain their health.
Now go run like a little rat
but stay away from high-fat kibble!
Before I was licensed I was the director of a Rape Trauma program. I’ve gone on to successfully treat people with all manners of traumatic experiences from being in airplane crashes to buried alive. One of the hallmarks is disturbed or disrupted sleep. No matter what suggestions I might have or what they might try it doesn’t often help. Even sleep medications don’t always help.
Reading this release from The University of Massachusetts about how it might be better NOT to sleep after a traumatic event got my attention.
“Sleeping after a traumatic event might lock in bad memories and emotions, a new study has found.
Researchers from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst asked more than 100 healthy adults to rate their emotional responses to a series of images, some depicting unsettling scenes. Twelve hours later, they rated the images again. The difference: Half of the subjects slept during the break; the other half did not.
“Not only did sleep protect the memory, but it also protected the emotional reaction,” said Rebecca Spencer, a neuroscientist at UMass Amherst and co-author of the study that was published in the Journal of Neuroscience.
Study subjects who stayed awake for 12 hours had a weaker emotional response to the unsettling images the second time around, suggesting sleep serves to preserve and even amplify negative emotions. Their memories were also weaker than those of their well-rested counterparts, as they struggled to remember whether they had seen the images before.
“It’s true that ‘sleeping on it’ is usually a good thing to do,” said Spencer, citing evidence that sleep boosts memory and other cognitive functions. “It’s just when something truly traumatic or out of the ordinary happens that you might want to stay awake.”
Spencer said people often find it difficult to sleep after a traumatic event.
“This study suggests the biological response we have after trauma might actually be a healthy,“ she said. “Perhaps letting people go through a period of insomnia before feeding them sleeping meds is actually beneficial.”
While the findings may have implications for post traumatic stress disorder, Spencer emphasized that daily emotional ups and downs are not grounds for sleep deprivation.
“Just because we have a bad day doesn’t mean we should stay awake,” she said. “We need to maintain some memories and emotional context to know what to avoid. We do learn something from them.”
Although sleep gives the body some much-needed rest, the brain stays active. Spencer used polysomnography to monitor brain activity in some sleeping subjects.
“REM sleep in particular was associated with a change in how emotional you found something,” she said. “We think there are parts of the brain being activated during sleep that allow us to process those emotions more than during day.”
I just attended Art & Creativity for Healing HeARTS for Healing Women’s Guild meeting. Art & Creativity for Healing is a non-profit organization I volunteered for as a facilitator in the early years of my being diagnosed with fibromyalgia.
Experiencing . . . again . .. light-headedness when exercising and blood pressure careening from too too high to too too low.
The funny thing is that I have reverse “white coat syndrome” – You know, when you get anxious in the doctor’s office and your blood pressure becomes elevated. My blood pressure goes into a perfect range every time a healthcare professional takes it!
Yup, my heart is REALLY smart. It knows when it’s going to the doctor’s office. It knows when it’s being monitored.
I wore a 24 hour halter monitor to see if the light-headedness had anything to do with the electrical activity.
- As soon as they put the electrodes on yesterday I went on a long fast paced walk — no light-headedness.
- An hour later I walked a bit over a mile to my office to see a client — no light-headedness. (Thank goodness the client I saw is compassionate. She didn’t blink as I sat wiping the perspiration from my face, neck and hair).
- When I got home I went on another 45 minute walk – no light-headedness.
Knowing I had to turn the halter monitor in today and I had meetings all morning I got up at 5:30 am and walked for 60 minutes, up and down hills. You guessed it. No light-headedness.
Until now the only way to control your brain is with therapy, medication and surgery and electromagnetic shock treatments. Technology is moving fast and generations to come with have safer and more effective alternatives. Watch this fast paced 4 minutes to hear where technology will help us control pain.
I’ve had the incredible fortune of studying under David Bresler Ph.D and Marty Rossman M.D. Both are pioneers in the field of MindBody Medicine. They founded The Academy for Guided Imagery, a teaching academy for health care professionals to provide treatment using individualized one-on-one imagery for health and wellness.
Not only did they train me to teach Interactive Guided Imagery(sm) they introduced me to a different way of thinking and experiencing my world.
Many of you already know that I keep ranting and raving about the power of our minds and not to dwell on the negative, not to focus on what we can’t do but on what we are capable of. SO! When I came across this article by Dr Rossman I HAD to share!!
from The Worry Solution by Martin Rossman, M.D.
“Repetitively shifting your attention to positive outcomes may actually result in growth in areas of your brain that start to do this automatically. My colleague, neuroscientist Dr. David Bresler, always says that
“what you pay attention to grows” and research proves him correct.
Neuroscience journalist Sharon Begley wrote in a 2007 Wall Street Journal article, “Attention, … seems like one of those ephemeral things that comes and goes in the mind but has no real physical presence. Yet attention can alter the layout of the brain as powerfully as a sculptor’s knife can alter a slab of stone.
” She describes an experiment at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) in which scientists “rigged up a device that tapped monkeys’ fingers 100 minutes a day every day. As this bizarre dance was playing on their fingers, the monkeys heard sounds through headphones. Some of the monkeys were taught: Ignore the sounds and pay attention to what you feel on your fingers…Other monkeys were taught: Pay attention to the sound.”
After six weeks, the scientists compared the monkeys’ brains and found that monkeys paying attention to the taps had expanded the somatosensory parts of their brains (where they would feel touch) but the monkeys paying attention to the sounds grew new connections in the parts of the brain that process sound instead.
UCSF researcher Michael Merzenich and a colleague wrote that through choosing where we place our attention, “‘We choose and sculpt how our ever-changing minds will work, we choose who we will be the next moment in a very real sense, and these choices are left embossed in physical form on our material selves.’”
I promise I won’t say “I told you so.”
As horrible and frightening as other diseases are cardiovascular disease kills more women over 25 than all cancers combined. Furthermore, young women who have heart attacks are twice as likely to die from them as men are.
Thanks to Nancie Kohlenberger, LMFT
http://www.transformurlife.com/for sending me this e-mail.
I am an ER nurse and this is the best description of this event that I have ever heard.
Did you know that women rarely have the same dramatic symptoms that men have when experiencing heart attack. You know, the sudden stabbing pain in the chest, the cold sweat, grabbing the chest & dropping to the floor that we see in the movies.
“I had a heart attack at about 10:30 PM with NO prior exertion, NO prior emotional trauma that one would suspect might have brought it on. I was sitting all snugly & warm on a cold evening, with my purring cat in my lap, reading an interesting story my friend had sent me, and actually thinking, ‘A-A-h, this is the life, all cozy and warm in my soft, cushy Lazy Boy with my feet propped up.
A moment later, I felt that awful sensation of indigestion, when you’ve been in a hurry and grabbed a bite of sandwich and washed it down with a dash of water, and that hurried bite seems to feel like you’ve swallowed a golf ball going down the esophagus in slow motion and it is most uncomfortable. You realize you shouldn’t have gulped it down so fast and needed to chew it more thoroughly and this time drink a glass of water to hasten its progress down to the stomach. This was my initial sensation–the only trouble was that I hadn’t taken a bite of anything since about 5:00 p.m.
After it seemed to subside, the next sensation was like little squeezing motions that seemed to be racing up my SPINE (hind-sight, it was probably my aorta spasms), gaining speed as they continued racing up and under my sternum (breast bone, where one presses rhythmically when administering CPR). This fascinating process continued on into my throat and branched out into both jaws.
‘AHA!! NOW I stopped puzzling about what was happening — we all have read and/or heard about pain in the jaws being one of the signals of an MI happening, haven’t we? I said aloud to myself and the cat, Dear God, I think I’m having a heart attack! I lowered the foot rest dumping the cat from my lap, started to take a step and fell on the floor instead. I thought to myself, If this is a heart attack, I shouldn’t be walking into the next room where the phone is or anywhere else… but, on the other hand, if I don’t, nobody will know that I need help, and if I wait any longer I may not be able to get up in a moment.
I pulled myself up with the arms of the chair, walked slowly into the next room and dialed the Paramedics… I told her I thought I was having a heart attack due to the pressure building under the sternum and radiating into my jaws. I didn’t feel hysterical or afraid, just stating the facts. She said she was sending the Paramedics over immediately, asked if the front door was near to me, and if so, to un-bolt the door and then lie down on the floor where they could see me when they came in.
I unlocked the door and then laid down on the floor as instructed and lost consciousness, as I don’t remember the medics coming in, their examination, lifting me onto a gurney or getting me into their ambulance, or hearing the call they made to St. Jude ER on the way, but I did briefly awaken when we arrived and saw that the radiologist was already there in his surgical blues and cap, helping the medics pull my stretcher out of the ambulance.
He was bending over me asking questions (probably something like ‘Have you taken any medications?’) but I couldn’t make my mind interpret what he was saying, or form an answer, and nodded off again, not waking up until the Cardiologist and partner had already threaded the teeny angiogram balloon up my femoral artery into the aorta and into my heart where they installed 2 side by side stints to hold open my right coronary artery.
I know it sounds like all my thinking and actions at home must have taken at least 20-30 minutes before calling the paramedics, but actually it took perhaps 4-5 minutes before the call, and both the fire station and St Jude are only minutes away from my home, and my Cardiologist was already to go to the OR in his scrubs and get going on restarting my heart (which had stopped somewhere between my arrival and the procedure) and installing the stints.
Why have I written all of this to you with so much detail?
Because I want all of you who are so important in my life to know what I learned first hand:
#1. Be aware that something very different is happening in your body, not the usual men’s symptoms but inexplicable things happening (until my sternum and jaws got into the act). It is said that many more women than men die of their first (and last) MI because they didn’t know they were having one and commonly mistake it as indigestion, take some Maalox or other anti-heartburn preparation and go to bed, hoping they’ll feel better in the morning when they wake up… which doesn’t happen.
My female friends, your symptoms might not be exactly like mine, so I advise you to call the Paramedics if ANYTHING is unpleasantly happening that you’ve not felt before. It is better to have a ‘false alarm’ visitation than to risk your life guessing what it might be!
#2. Note that I said ‘Call the Paramedics .’ And if you can take an aspirin. Ladies, TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE! Do NOT try to drive yourself to the ER – you are a hazard to others on the road. Do NOT have your panicked husband who will be speeding and looking anxiously at what’s happening with you instead of the road. Do NOT call your doctor — he doesn’t know where you live and if it’s at night you won’t reach him anyway, and if it’s daytime, his assistants (or answering service) will tell you to call the Paramedics. He doesn’t carry the equipment in his car that you need to be saved! The Paramedics do, principally OXYGEN that you need ASAP. Your Dr will be notified later.
#3. Don’t assume it couldn’t be a heart attack because you have a normal cholesterol count. Research has discovered that a cholesterol elevated reading is rarely the cause of an MI (unless it’s unbelievably high and/or accompanied by high blood pressure). MIs are usually caused by long-term stress and inflammation in the body, which dumps all sorts of deadly hormones into your system to sludge things up in there. Pain in the jaw can wake you from a sound sleep. Let’s be careful and be aware. The more we know the better chance we could survive.
A cardiologist says if everyone who gets this information and sends it to 10 people,
you can be sure that we’ll save at least one life.
more information: http://www.goredforwomen.org/
Apparently, I have Narrow Angle Glaucoma. Well, I don’t have it yet but I do have narrow angles. (That may be the only “narrow” place on my body.)
So OF COURSE I researched it and OF COURSE will share it with all of you. So here’s the Q & A and my parenthetical comments.
What is Narrow or Closed Angle Glaucoma (NAG)?
This is the second most common form of glaucoma. Patients often have acute attacks of eye pain due to sudden increases in eye pressure. Between attacks the eye pressure is normal. (Probably the only thing about me that has been normal)
Why do attacks happen?
A watery fluid is generated inside the normal eye. It circulates through the eye and drains out of the eye in the “angle” between the cornea (the clear window of the eye) and the iris (the colored part of the eye). (Brown) Some people are born with narrow, slit-like draining angles (sounds like an alien baby). In such people, anything that further narrows the angle prevents adequate drainage and causes the pressure to build up. The patient then experiences an acute attack of Narrow or Closed Angle Glaucoma.
What are the symptoms of NAG?
Between attacks the eye pressure is normal and there are no symptoms. During the attack there are often eye pain, nausea and
sometimes vomiting. (I don’t vomit. I refuse. I got seasick on a sail boat on a blind date several decades ago. I ran side to side throwing up over the side of the boat closest to the water. It wasn’t a pretty sight and ever since I’ve refused to vomit) The eye may be red, vision may be blurry and patients may see halos around the lights. (and all this time I thought those were celestial beings)
How dangerous is an acute attack of NAG?
( If I ever went blind I would get a guide horse. I’d have to move to the country because one of the criteria is that the horsie can have space outside. Guide Horses live close to 30 years and have to wear booties in shopping malls because of their hoofs)
What medicines should patients with Narrow Angle Glaucoma avoid?
Patients with Narrow Angle Glaucoma should avoid cold remedies (I refuse to get a cold. I also refuse to get the flu which requires vomiting) which contain Pseudoephedrine, Phenylephrine or Neo-Synephrine; anti-histaminics Chlorpheniramine, Diphenhydramine or Benadryl and overactive bladder remedies such as Detrol. These remedies often carry a warning telling you not to use them if you have glaucoma. If your Narrow Angle Glaucoma has been treated with laser, these medicines become safe for you to use.
Steroids and Narrow Angle Glaucoma.
Steroids (cortisone, hydrocortisone, prednisolone, etc.) increase eye pressure. They are a potential problem for patients with the POAG type glaucoma, not for patients with Narrow Angle type glaucoma. (That’s a relief because without my steroids I don’t stand a chance for making the javelin throwing Olympic Team)
How is an acute attack of NAG treated?
Narrow Angle Glaucoma is treated with a laser. In this office procedure a small drain hole (See! I wasn’t being histrionic . . . this time) is created in the iris, the colored part of the eye ( brown). The hole is of microscopic size. The operation is painless. (That’s what they all say). In addition to laser treatment, eyedrops are administered to lower the pressure.
How can you prevent glaucoma attacks?
An easy and painless way to prevent attacks is to create a microscopic drain hole with the laser. (This is undoubtedly where the phrase “everything is going down the drain” came from) This preventive treatment can be done at any time. (Thursday) We recommended this approach to people prone to acute attacks (Alien babies born with narrow angles). When such people are traveling they may not have access to prompt treatment. If they have an attack, serious damage may occur in a matter of hours, long before they reach a treatment center.(Now I know why I haven’t had a vacation in 7 years) Also, people may delay treatment until it is too late because they do not recognize that they are having a glaucoma attack. They often think that they are just having a headache, or a migraine. Because they do not suspect glaucoma they fail to seek treatment and damage to the nerve takes place. Once the nerve fibers are dead, the damage cannot be reversed.
Can laser-made openings close?
Yes, rarely. Then new attacks may occur. If the pain comes back while you are taking medicines known to cause glaucoma attacks, do not take any more and call us immediately. Explain to the receptionist your situation. Tell her that you might be having an acute glaucoma attack. Ask her to have your pressure checked now. If the office is closed, call Dr. Belamaric or Dr. Reno or go to KEI to be checked (see “Emergencies”).(Great, I don’t have their phone numbers. I’ll have to check the contact page)
Never occurred to me to use anything other than paint or crayons to do the exercise of expressing feelings using color.
Wendy is confined to bed after very painful and serious surgery. She wanted to express her feelings but paint was a bit too messy in bed. So she used her computer! This is what she came up with:
Wendy remarked that her red Anger resembled a person. She did a great job of processing her picture so click here and read her interpretation.
It will help you understand how to process your own pictures as well as understand what Wendy is currently emotionally experiencing.
I’ve left some more processing comments for Wendy in the comments section on her blog.
GREAT JOB WENDY! Thank you for sharing.
Send me your pictures and I’ll guide you to process them!
Laurie Miller is one, or two, actually 6 or 7, steps ahead of me and everyone else. I received this the other day and thought to share this with you since her hypnosis recordings are really good AND right now they are CHEAP, er inexpensive.
I’ve not had the time, technical know-how and probably inclination to get my Hypnotic Healing recordings on MP3. AND if the truth be told (I’m trying to live up to Brenda Ueland, my muse for the week ) Laurie is a much better hypnotist than I am or anyone else I know for that matter. By her own admission she was hypnotizing people in her teens and having them pass their hands over lighted matches to show them they were hypnotized!
Laurie has been in legitimate practice since 1983 and no longer uses lighted matches (Probably because she is the President of the International Association of Clinical Hypnotherapy and would be impeached)
Instead of matches she uses a lovely soothing hypnotic voice, years of experience and the recordings are, did I mention, really inexpensive for the holidays.
BUY 3 GET ONE FREE!
ORDER MP3 DOWNLOADS AT
click on “order CDs/MP3s” in right column
If you call or email her and she’ll get the gift certificate and CDs sent to you BEFORE CHRISTMAS!
Tell her I sent you – maybe she’ll stop waving lighted matches in front of my eyes and give me a couple of her recordings for FREE (which is cheaper than you can get them for)?
This is an unpaid, unsolicited and certainly not approved commercial for Laurie Miller who is not running, as far as I know, for President of the United States of America on the Republican ticket. Furthermore, the owner of this web-site nor his Human are not responsible for any relaxation or life improvement experienced as a result of the purchase of and listening to any and all recordings by Laurie Miller, CCH.
Each CD is approximately 30 minutes in length, and includes a soothing relaxation, positive suggestions, and creative imagery. Here they are!
STRESS FREE SERIES:
SERENITY BEACH is the perfect way for beach lovers to “let it all go” at the end of the day. Your tensions slip away so you can release the stressors that weigh you down.
SELF IMPROVEMENT SERIES:
ELIMINATE SMOKING is the perfect stress-free way to permanently release the habit of smoking by neutralizing smoking triggers and minimizing withdraw symptoms.
RELEASE WEIGHT is the perfect way to transform your body to a slimmer, more comfortable you by modifying your eating behavior without dieting or feeling deprived.
TAMING SELF SABOTAGE is the perfect way to eliminate sabotage behavior that blocks progress to your goals.
TRANQUIL SLEEP is the perfect way to train your mind to achieve comfortable, peaceful sleep by letting go of extraneous thoughts and worries to create a new habit of calm, tranquil sleep.
TRANSFORM YOURSELF is the perfect way to start on your journey of change by releasing, physically, mentally and emotionally what is not working, allowing you to become a more positive and powerful you.
SELF EMPOWERMENT SERIES:
ALLEVIATE CHRONIC PAIN is the perfect way to manage chronic pain and discomfort by increasing your pain threshold and turning off pain sensors. Feel better fast!
BEYOND LIMITATIONS is the perfect way to move past road blocks to success, allowing you to easily follow your heart’s desire to create what you want in your life.
FOREVER LUCKY is the perfect way to create good luck by eliminating blocks to deserving and receiving, and adopting the behaviors of a lucky person!
PROBLEMS 2 SOLUTIONS is the perfect way to turn inward for the answers to your problems and issues. When your mind is clear from the chaos, it is amazing how good of a problem solver you are.
BUY 3 GET ONE FREE
ORDER MP3 DOWNLOADS AT
click on “order CDs/MP3s” in right column