Top 5 Spices for Your Health

Add more than flavor when you add spices to your life

When it comes to spices, they don’t just make your food tastier. Research shows there is a multitude of benefits to your health. In countries where people consume a lot of different spices, the incidences of diet-related illnesses such as heart disease and cancers are relatively low.

Here are the top spices to include in your spice cabinet:

Turmeric

This spice is a root that is part of the ginger family and most often sold in ground powdered form. The root can be found in many health food stores.

It is orange/yellow in color and often found in curries, and tossed into smoothies.

From aiding wound healing and digestion, relieving colds and respiratory problems, to enhancing immune function, turmeric is a powerhouse spice to have in your cupboard.

Perhaps the most pressing reason for taking turmeric is its’ anti-cancer benefits. Preliminary studies have found that curcumin, the active ingredient, can inhibit tumor cell growth and suppress enzymes that activate carcinogens. It also shows promise in preventing and treating Alzheimer’s disease.

Ginger

Also a root. Can be purchased ground or whole. Ginger can soothe nausea and an upset stomach, aids in digestion, and relieves sore muscles and osteoarthritis pain.  Easily make a ginger tea with hot water added to a cup with a few slices of ginger. Ginger can be used in many sauces and stir-fry cooking, as well as being the essential ingredient in gingerbread and gingersnap cookies, used in its’ powdered form.

Cinnamon

One of the oldest known spices, this rolled brown bark can be purchased whole in sticks, in ground form, or as an oil.

Consuming as little as a ¼ tsp a day has been shown to stabilize blood sugar levels in those with diabetes. Cinnamon is sweet without adding calories, and is often found in gum and candies and used widely in baking. Apparently just smelling the spice improves attention and memory.

Cinnamon is an excellent source of minerals like potassium, calcium, manganese, iron, zinc, and magnesium. It is also known to reduce inflammation.

Saffron

The dried stamens of the Crocus sativus plant, saffron has always been prized for its flavor and its medicinal properties. It contains several chemical compounds that are known to be antioxidant, disease preventing and health promoting. It has been used as an antidepressant since the antioxidants help protect the body from oxidant-induced stress.

Chili Peppers

Chili peppers contain a compound called capsaicin, which has an anti-bacterial, anti-carcinogenic and anti-diabetic properties. What this means is they boost metabolism causing one to burn more calories, and stimulate brain chemicals to make us feel full longer.

They add heat to your dishes and a strong spicy flavor while providing high levels of your daily requirements of vitamins and minerals.

 

 

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Refresh Your Mind and Spirit with a Hobby

Spending your leisure time learning a new skill can be very rewarding.

Living a full, healthy life is not just about eating well and working out. It includes making time for yourself.  No matter how busy or how old you are, you can always make space in your life for something new. From dancing, cooking, playing an instrument, to traveling, reading, and writing, to name a few, there is sure to be an activity that complements your current lifestyle. The benefits are many, from relieving stress and boredom to boosting health and in turn, longevity.

You Choose it

It makes sense to spend your leisure time doing something that compliments your job, or how you otherwise would spend your day. If you are a writer or a graphic artist spending long hours on your computer or laptop, you will want to do something where you are more active, such as hiking, yoga, pottery, or playing an instrument. If your job is a solitary one, perhaps you would want to find something that allows you to be in a more social setting. Keeping active gives the body and soul an energy boost, and can ward off illness. When you feel better, you sleep better.

You Own it

There is so much in life that we have no control over but a hobby can change that. A hobby is something you choose to do. You take control of it, when and how much time you spend on it. Devoting time to your leisure time pursuit helps you learn to manage your time more efficiently. You learn to better structure your time to create that chunk of time that frees you from other demands and obligations.

Pride of Accomplishment

It’s just as much about the journey as the completion of learning any skill or new project. But there’s that unmistakable feeling of personal pride and accomplishment upon completion or the pleasure of learning something new.

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Chakra Meditation for Beginners

Through meditation and awareness, you can bring your physical and mental health to a more harmonious state.

Chakras have been identified and used for centuries in Hinduism, Buddhism, and Ayurveda. A chakra is a center of life energy within our bodies. There are 7 key chakras areas and include 7 colors associated with each.

Chakras are powerful energy centers within our bodies.

Chakras can become blocked and cause an imbalance in your body. When this happens, the other chakras may become over-energized to compensate for any area that has shut down. Clearing the energy flow within each chakra can have a powerful healing effect on any physical malfunction connected to that energy center and your general sense of well-being.

The 7 chakras and colors are as follows:

  1. Root Chakra: Colour – red.  Found at the base of your spine. It governs your connection to the outer world, your foundation and your fundamental needs for food, shelter, clothing, etc. It can be thought of as a tether cord that ties you to the earth.
  2. Sacral Chakra: Colour- orange. Sits just below the navel. It is involved in your creativity, your imagination, impulses, as well as your reproductive organs. Balance is needed here for exploring the world, and coping with changes.
  3. Solar Plexus: Colour- yellow.  Sits just above your navel. This chakra is associated with your digestion and personal inner strength. Balance here is needed to allow you to embrace the things that you experience and understand your place in them.
  4. Heart Chakra: Colour – green. It is the center of compassion, altruism, and love, the center of our emotions. An imbalance here can cause respiratory problems and high blood pressure. When this chakra is in balance, you are able to form emotional connections with others.
  5. Throat Chakra: Colour – blue. Governs communication and self-expression. It’s like a translation center where all that is entering our bodies can be communicated outwardly. A blockage here can lead to isolation and susceptibility to infections.
  6. Third Eye Chakra: Colour – indigo. Sits just above your eyebrows, between your eyes. It represents a more spiritual side of you, your psychic center, as well as and your intuition. It allows you to see how the world around you is interconnected.
  7. Crown Chakra: Colour -purple and white. Sits right at the top of your head. It represents your power connection to the wider world.  It feeds meaning into our lives. When it is in balance, you have a sense of confidence and well-being,

How can you unlock a blocked chakra?

Begin with self-guided meditation involving all the chakras to bring your entire body into balance.  All that you need is 30 minutes and a quiet place where you can sit undisturbed. You can begin by trying to visualize each chakra center and the colors associated with them. Devote several minutes to each chakra and visualize the energy passing through it.

We can discover so much about ourselves, if we allow ourselves the time and space, to tune in to these important areas of our bodies.

Through meditation, we can find a balance of energy flow of chakras with our bodies.

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Is Green Tea Actually Good for You?

If you are looking for healthy foods and practices on the Internet, you can find all kinds of articles recommending all kinds of things. But how much of what you read is actually true?

For example, green tea has been widely celebrated as one of the most healthy drinks around. But does it actually live up to the hype? Thankfully, yes.

Can Green Tea Make You Smarter?

Not in the sense that it will automatically get you into Mensa, but it does contain the amino acid L-theanine, which increases the production of dopamine and alpha waves, both of which are beneficial for brain function. Improved brain function = improved performance. Doing a better job can make you feel smarter…or at least seem that way to those around you.

Green tea also contains caffeine, which can help you to function longer, but it does not contain as much as coffee or tea, so you get the good effects without overdoing it.

Green Tea Contains Antioxidants

Have you heard of antioxidants? These help to prevent the oxidative damage in your body which can lead to cancer. Green tea is an excellent source of antioxidants, but make sure that you do not put milk in your tea because this reduces the effectiveness.

Green Tea Can Kill Bacteria

Here is a green tea power you might not have suspected: germ fighter! Cavities can result from a build-up of bacteria in your mouth; green tea helps you deal with those germs by inhibiting the growth of streptococcus mutans.

Green Tea Can Make You Thinner

No, drinking gallons of green tea will not automatically cause you to shed those extra 20 pounds you put on over the summer. However, it does help to decrease the build-up of abdominal body fat and green tea is not the least bit fattening.

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How Many Drinks are Safe in a Day?

If you want to start a healthy argument, get a bunch of people in a room and ask them how many drinks are safe to have in a day. Some will argue that they enjoy two or three and are doing fine, one will argue that a drink a day is good for your health, while another will say that even one is too many.

A lot of people love their alcohol. Some use it to get through the day, some use it to celebrate, some use it to cut the chill of a cold night, and some use it for all of the above. You would be hard pressed to find medical sources stating that healthy people should never drink at all. However, how much should you have in a day?

I was Googling this subject and came up with so many different answers, my head was spinning. Depending on your gender and what country you live in, you will get a different response. For example, in the United States, the Department of Agriculture and Department of Health & Human Services says women should have no more than one drink per day. Meanwhile, across the pond in France, the French Ministry of Health and Sports says that ladies there can enjoy three. Is the alcohol different in France? Not that I know of, so why the disparity?

I could site more statistics, but there are so many variables. A person’s size can determine how much alcohol they can drink, while certain health issues can preclude a person from consuming any alcohol. If your doctor tells you to stay away from the bottle, then you absolutely should. Does alcohol make you do things or act in a way that you regret later on? Then moderation is definitely the ticket…or abstinence, if that doesn’t work.

As for the rest of us, personal judgment comes into effect. I’m skeptical of the claims that a glass of wine a day is good for you, but, by the same token, I can’t honestly say if it’s bad for you either. Everyone’s body and tolerance levels are different, so you have to chart your own course. If you think you have a drinking problem, talk to a therapist for an objective opinion. In the meantime, I will continue to use the old adage, “Everything in Moderation” as my guide.

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7 Habits to Ensure A Good Night’s Sleep

Have you ever begun your day feeling a little less refreshed and a little more confused and forgetful than usual? Perhaps you’ve spent more time counting sheep and less time asleep the previous night. You may have been deprived of a good night’s sleep for a number of reasons.

 

The earlier you realize what is preventing you from having a quality eight-hour sleep, the better! Sleep deprivation over time can lead to many chronic health problems such as heart disease, kidney disease, obesity, depression, and suicide. It can also harm you in an instant, as in a car crash!

Getting enough sleep is key to a healthy lifestyle and vital to our general well-being. It helps us function well the following day. While we sleep, our brains are active, forming memories, going through events of the last day and preparing for the next. With a good night’s sleep, you will be better equipped to learn, to think creatively, to be alert, and make clear decisions. It also affects our mood and how we interact with others.

  1. Have a Consistent Sleep Pattern

Try to get to bed around the same time each night. This holds true for weekends as well. This can be a problem for people who do shift work, late night entertainers, or travelers dealing with the affects of “jet-lag”.   It can take some time to get caught up on missed sleep.

  1. Take Time to “Power Down”

Have a pre-bedtime ritual. At least a half-hour before you turn in, take the time to de-stress and turn off the noise of the day. Walk away from any screens. Try to avoid using the computer, or watching TV. Listening to some quiet music, that can help you relax.

  1. Don’t Exercise Late in the Evening

Gentle yoga postures that help you relax are okay, but strenuous exercise that gets your heart pumping close to bedtime is not a good idea.

  1. Create a Bedroom Oasis

Your bedroom should be a calm relaxing environment. It should be dark, and quiet. Some people like to introduce white noise such as the sound of a fan or humidifier to drown out loud street noise.

You’ll need a comfortable mattress, pillows and suitable blankets or comforters. If you consistently wake up with a sore neck, your pillow may be to blame.

An overnight temperature of between 60 to 67 degrees Fahrenheit (15 to 19 c) is ideal. As we sleep, our “set point” for body temperature goes down. If it’s too hot or too cold, the body struggles to reach this ideal temperature for sleep.

  1. Don’t Eat Close to Your Bedtime

Avoid late meals, and keep any pre-bedtime snacks “small”. Also, limit the fluids you drink, so you won’t be awakened in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom.

  1. Avoid Coffee, Alcohol, and Cigarettes

Alcohol may act as a sedative and help you fall asleep, but will likely disrupt your sleep throughout the night. Not to mention your unruliness will affect anyone you are sharing your bed with! Coffee or any other caffeinated drinks and cigarettes are stimulants that will affect your sleep.

  1. Be Aware of any Medical Conditions Affecting Your Sleep

Be aware of any medical conditions that might be interfering with your quality of sleep, such as leg cramps, stomach pain and digestive issues such as heartburn, joint pain, arthritis, asthma or psychological issues. There may be some side affects of any drugs that you are taking. Check with your doctor if you have any condition or sleep disorder that prevents you from having a good night’s sleep.

 

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How technology is improving your health

technology-improves-healthcare

After spending years research and practice the question is still there on the self : how technology is improving our health? No doubt the new robotic surgeries have revolutionized the meaning of surgical procedures but when we ask a common person about it will he be able to give his views with same aspect as a medical person can do?

With the period of time, new medical developments and techniques have been developed that has promised to give a better hold on health care. The aim of medical sector is to provide the society everything that it can to improve their health and mental status.. From treating cancer and delivering babies to dealing with heart attacks, doctors have developed technology and improved techniques to make things easier for them.

Technology aims to make the health opportunities digital so it is making the numerous apps do that mobile devices gets a great way to integrate and streamline all aspects of the medical process for enhanced care which can even let a common person to keep himself healthy at regular normal basis..

At regular levels health and fitness apps  have opened up a whole chapter in the field of medicine. Pretty much everything you do that involves fitness can be enhanced by an app.  there are BP apps, ovarian cycle app, ecg apps, all in all all the good thing right in your phone to make you visit doctor less and of course gadgets like blood glucose checker that again works for you like a mini clinic at home.

The point is with changing time and developing technology , it has become easier for a common man to get the best of his health and that also right within his reach.

 

 

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4 Ignored Symptoms of debilitating Health

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Not a single luxury is a luxury if you do not maintain good health. Whoever said it, said it right; indeed Health Is Wealth. Many a times, we fail to notice very obvious symptoms of diminishing well being; these symptoms come into our knowledge only when a serious disease has implanted its seed in our body.

Anemia

Liver diseases, diseases of general weakness, malnutrition all start with anemia. Anemia is defined as deficiency of iron, therefore hemoglobin, in the body. How can you check if you are anemic? Anemia is indicated by paleness of face, white periphery of eyes become yellowish, nail beds become pale, delayed or reduced menstruation in females, hair fall and easy tiredness. What to do for anemia? Consult a physician for iron supplements.

Continuous Headache

Most common and neglected form of pain is headache. Long standing headache has always been dangerous in the medical science. Headache along with dizziness requires immediate medical consultation. The complications include: Sinusitis, Head trauma, Brain Tumor.

Mental Irritability

Mental irritability, forgetfulness and clumsiness, particularly in adults of age 45+ are alarming. With advancing age, the chances of mental degenerating diseases increase, therefore, keep in touch with your physician if you even slightly feel that you might have become irritable or ill-tempered with age.

Lack of appetite

Lack of appetite or anorexia is very common in adolescents and teenagers. Sometimes, it is associated with puberty and subsides with time. In other instances, anorexia may be an early symptom of a digestive tract disease; in these cases it is almost always associated with diarrhea and vomiting.

 

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