Statistics indicate that eight out of ten people suffer from acne in their teenage years. No research has to be done to prove that but everyone does get to experience acne breakouts once in their lifetime. For some people it quickly passes on as they age and their body, lifestyle, environment and skin regimen changes. For others, acne problems become a lot worse and may unfortunately leave not just physical scars, but emotional trauma.

Sebaceous glands found in the follicles of our skin contain fatty tissues that help lubricate our hair and epidermis. These fatty oils keep our skin in a healthy condition. Acne forms as a result of the fatty oils, also known as sebum, being blocked by our skin's dead cells. They form into pimples, whiteheads or acne and worsen as it gets infected.

Most commonly affected by acne breakouts are teenagers who are still developing into puberty. However, adult acne is also very common among those people between twenty and forty years old. Some of the factors that cause acne breakouts among the adult population include lifestyle, stress and toxins from the environment, make-up, use of medicine and other anti-biotic, emotional problems and hormonal changes in the body.

Adult women are very prone to acne because some tend to use the wrong kind of beauty products for their skin. They also undergo serious hormonal changes as they reach the age of menopause. However, adult acne is not just limited to women, as men do get the same problem. Part of this has to do with hygiene and taking care of one's body. Smoking or drinking too much; not eating the right kind of food; or working too hard and not getting enough sleep are some of the things that might not only cause one's health to deteriorate, and it can also contribute to acne.

In treating acne conditions, a big lifestyle change may be in order for some people. The right kind of food to eat; the right amount of sleep; the way one handles stress; the environment one moves around in have to be altered or modified. Acne is also treatable with vitamins and capsules containing Vitamin A, B1 or E. This should help boost the body's immune system from infection. In really extreme cases, acne may also be treated with prescription drugs which should be recommended by a very good dermatologist.

Jason Rickard is the owner of Your Favourite Shop - Offering Self Help CDs [] - Visit Health Resources for more articles.

Stretch Mark Creams


You have probably heard the news by now but if you haven't I will repeat it. There are methods of lessening the appearance of your stretch marks. The most common of them at the moment is stretch mark cream.

The rich first realised that surgical procedures could be undergone to enojoy the removal of unsightly stretch marks from your life but quite obviously this option didn't fit the price bracket or the comfort bracket of millions of women suffering from the condition of stretch marks, scientifically known as Striea.

So as they do, scientists band together in their labs to invent the now popular stretch mark creams that can be seen from a simple websearch for stretch mark cream. Stretch mark creams have been around for the last few years but have so far gained popularity on the internet more so than in the offline world.

So what do stretch mark creams do? After all it is the belief of most people that there is in fact no reliable cure for stretch marks.

Basically a stretch mark is a tear or damaging of the underlying tissue of the skin cells. The job of a good stretch mark cream is to penetrate deep enough into the skin that it can actually affect and by certain means heal and repair this damaged tissue causing a visible difference to the physical appearance of the skin.

For the most part stretch mark creams are compounds of natural ingredients and hence although they can be powerful do not require prescription. Keeping this in mind though, if you are looking at actually purchasing a stretch mark cream a few things should be considered.

Firstly you need to look on which level the stretch mark cream really works. Some stretch mark creams work on the outward appearance of the skin and work to tighten and firm the layers of skin nearest the surface and in doing so alter the skins appearance. While these stretch mark creams can produce results in changing the appearance of your stretch marks they won't actually penetrate to the cause of the stretch mark and work to fully heal it so that the mark that you see can eventually disappear.

The other type of stretch mark creams, the more effective and powerful type that is works on what is called a trans cellular level meaning that the active ingredients of the cream actually penetrates to the tissues below the surface of the skin to cause internal and hence more effective and longer lasting healing. It is when these tissues are healed, along with the combination of a healthy diet, will result in permanent removal of stretch marks.

Stretch mark creams retail on the market anywhere from $20 to $80 per bottle/jar/tube etc. Generally you will find that the second type of stretch mark cream mentioned will be at the higher end of the price scale due to the more advanced actions it performs and the more advanced technology they require, while the first type while being less effective will often be sold at the lower price.

Gary Stephens is a skin care product reviewer and runs an informational website dedicated to demystifying the new stretch mark cream Trilastin.

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3 Simple Ways To Clear Acne From Your Body

Studies show that an individual has an eighty percent likelihood of having body acne at some point in his/her life. Though many claim that body acne is caused by hormonal imbalance, there is no single definite cause to this common skin problem.

Besides hormones, there are several other factors that can lead to body acne such as heredity causes, environmental factors and personal hygiene habits. Considering all acne causes at hand, there are several things you can try to banish or clear acne from your body.

Simple Ways to Clear Acne from Any Part of Your Body

The first and simplest way to clear acne from any part of your body is to detoxify. Detoxifying your skin is a way of getting rid of toxins out of your body. The natural way to detoxify is to have a good diet and ensure your body gets enough rest. Stress is a key factor in aggravating body acne. If an individual eats a healthy diet and sleeps at least eight hours a day, the existing acne is free from irritation and enables the skin to rejuvenate.

Use topical treatment. There are several types of topical treatments that can help the skin detoxify and kill the bacteria from building up in your skin. It is usually better to use natural topical treatments instead of over-the-counter topical treatments which contain harsh chemicals that can irritate body acne.

A gentle but effective one is Topical 4% Niacinamide or Nicotinamide, derived from Vitamin B3. There are many household items that you can use as a topical treatment as well like baking soda as a scrub, facial masks out of egg whites or oatmeal, tea tree oil as antiseptic, and aloe vera to help lessen scars.

Lastly, switch to a healthier lifestyle! Exercise daily to detoxify your skin naturally. Make sure to take a bath regularly to prevent bacteria from building up.

Eat healthily by adding vegetables and fruits to your daily diet. Although body acne appears on the outside, what causes it comes from within!

Avoid taking in too much fatty food, dairy products, and beverages such as caffeine and alcohol. Bad habits, such as smoking, also contribute to skin dehydration that can contribute to body acne. Avoid using too much make-up and beauty products too that contain harsh chemicals. Instead, use skin care products that are mild and organic.

Richard Hargreaves is a former MR AUSTRALIA and publisher of On his website he provides a FREE 70 page Acne Blemish Treatment eBook and information on the best acne skincare treatment products and how to clear acne.

3 Simple Ways To Clear Acne From Your Body

Studies show that an individual has an eighty percent likelihood of having body acne at some point in his/her life. Though many claim that body acne is caused by hormonal imbalance, there is no single definite cause to this common skin problem.

Besides hormones, there are several other factors that can lead to body acne such as heredity causes, environmental factors and personal hygiene habits. Considering all acne causes at hand, there are several things you can try to banish or clear acne from your body.

Simple Ways to Clear Acne from Any Part of Your Body

The first and simplest way to clear acne from any part of your body is to detoxify. Detoxifying your skin is a way of getting rid of toxins out of your body. The natural way to detoxify is to have a good diet and ensure your body gets enough rest. Stress is a key factor in aggravating body acne. If an individual eats a healthy diet and sleeps at least eight hours a day, the existing acne is free from irritation and enables the skin to rejuvenate.

Use topical treatment. There are several types of topical treatments that can help the skin detoxify and kill the bacteria from building up in your skin. It is usually better to use natural topical treatments instead of over-the-counter topical treatments which contain harsh chemicals that can irritate body acne.

A gentle but effective one is Topical 4% Niacinamide or Nicotinamide, derived from Vitamin B3. There are many household items that you can use as a topical treatment as well like baking soda as a scrub, facial masks out of egg whites or oatmeal, tea tree oil as antiseptic, and aloe vera to help lessen scars.

Lastly, switch to a healthier lifestyle! Exercise daily to detoxify your skin naturally. Make sure to take a bath regularly to prevent bacteria from building up.

Eat healthily by adding vegetables and fruits to your daily diet. Although body acne appears on the outside, what causes it comes from within!

Avoid taking in too much fatty food, dairy products, and beverages such as caffeine and alcohol. Bad habits, such as smoking, also contribute to skin dehydration that can contribute to body acne. Avoid using too much make-up and beauty products too that contain harsh chemicals. Instead, use skin care products that are mild and organic.

Richard Hargreaves is a former MR AUSTRALIA and publisher of On his website he provides a FREE 70 page Acne Blemish Treatment eBook and information on the best acne skincare treatment products and how to clear acne.

Ten Skin Problems of Pregnancy


Pregnancy brings with it many changes, emotionally, physically, and mentally. From a mental and emotional standpoint, you're preparing to adopt a new role of parent, with all its accompanying responsibilities. Physically, of course, you're dealing with changes in the shape, function, and movement of your body. While we have a society-wide belief that pregnant women are always glowing, that, unfortunately, is not always the case. No where is this more evident than in the skin problems of pregnancy.

You've probably heard the phrase, "the eyes are the window to the soul". If this is true, your skin is the window to your current state of health and the changes taking place on the inside. During pregnancy, aside from all the other issues, you may also have to deal with a variety of skin changes, including rashes, acne, stretch marks, breaking nails, hair growth or loss, and dark blotches on the skin.

Most of these changes are directly linked to the enormous amount of hormonal fluctuations women experience during pregnancy. During pregnancy, there are all kinds of changes which can have impact on your skin, leading to new skin problems or worsening of existing ones. In some cases, pregnancy may actually help improve existing skin conditions. Let's look at various skin conditions in more detail, defining the main ten skin problems of pregnancy.

1) Rashes. Rashes appear due to irritation of the skin. One common pregnancy rash is called pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy (PUPPP). This is the most frequently seen condition specific to pregnancy. Women with PUPPP demonstrate a rash which starts on the abdomen and can spread to the breasts, arms, thighs, and buttocks.

2) Acne. Acne is another skin condition that may get better or worse during pregnancy. Acne is, at least in part, driven by hormones, so the hormones of pregnancy can lead to more breakouts for some women, and clearer skin for others.

3) Oily skin. Oily skin is third skin condition which may arise during pregnancy. This is related to increased levels of androgen, the male sex hormone, which causes an increase in sebum production. The more sebum produced, the oilier the skin. Many women report that their skin and hair becomes oilier during pregnancy. Most of the time, these issues can be addressed with over the counter oil controlling cleansers and products.

4) Stretch marks. The fourth skin problem of pregnancy, stretch marks arise when the under layers of the skin is stretched, resulting in visible striations on the surface of the skin. Stretch marks can be treated after the fact, but the best treatment is always prevention. Keeping your skin well moisturized, especially on your tummy, breasts, thighs, can help reduce the appearance of stretch marks.

5) Spider angiomas. These are another possible skin problem of pregnancy. Spider angiomas are groups of very tiny blood vessels which gather around a central point and radiate out like the legs of a spider. Pregnant women are likely to develop these on their chest, faces, arms, and sometimes on other places on the body. Most of these spider angiomas clear up after pregnancy.

6) Chloasma. Chloasma, also called melasma, or the "mask of pregnancy" is another skin condition which is diagnosed when certain areas of the skin turn darker because of excess pigmentation. Most often, this condition affects places of the skin which are most often exposed to sun, like the upper lip, forehead, cheeks. This condition is likely to clear up after pregnancy. Again, you can lessen your chances of chloasma by using a good (baby safe) doctor recommended sunscreen throughout the course of your pregnancy.

7) Too much hair. Changes in the hair are also common during pregnancy. Some women lose a lot of hair within a few months after delivery, while many are troubled with excess hair growth during pregnancy. Excess hair growth is most often seen on the lip and chin, and is triggered by an increase in androgen and other male hormones during pregnancy.

8) Brittle nails. Many women experience breaking, splitting, or brittleness to their nails during pregnancy. Physicians aren't quite sure why this occurs, but it may be managed with an over the counter nail hardening polish. Check with your doctor.

9) Skin tags. Skin tags are little pieces of skin which over-grow and hang from the neck. These can increase in number during pregnancy. If you have skin tags before pregnancy, it may be that pregnancy will cause these to increase.

10) Atopic dermatitis. Also known as eczema, this skin condition may appear or worsen during pregnancy. Marked by extreme skin itchiness, too much scratching can lead to the skin become red, swollen, or cracked.

If you are pregnant, be sure to watch for these ten skin problems of pregnancy. If you begin to develop any of these conditions, seek appropriate medical advice; you don't have to suffer through these conditions for the whole nine months. Chances are that your doctor will have recommendations which can address your skin problems so you can have healthy, beautiful skin, even while you're pregnant.

Ally McNeal loves learning and teaching about skin care. Learn more about taking care of pregnant skin

Reducing Your Acne Problems

You look in the mirror and you are frustrated to see that your worst problem refuses to go away. Acne! If you are battling with the dreaded acne, you are not alone. Chances are you are among the 80% of people of all races that suffer from this condition.

Acne is the term used to refer to skin disorders characterized by persistent and recurring reddish blemishes on the face and other parts of the body including the neck, shoulders, chest, upper back and/or buttocks.

Acne is commonly manifested in these areas due to the predominance of sebaceous (or oil producing) glands in these areas. These glands are responsible for producing sebum, the natural lubricant of the skin and hair. Sebum is normally drawn off onto the skin surface through the pores. When the pores are blocked by excess oil or hair, sebum accumulates under the skin causing a "plug". This allows pimple-causing bacteria to thrive in the plugged pores resulting in inflammation and acne.

The term "acne" may also be used to refer to whiteheads, blackheads and pimples. Whiteheads develop when a pore becomes clogged, stays just beneath the skin and bulges out forming a white bump. A blackhead, on the other hand, results when a clogged pore remains open and forms a dark center due to the exposure of sebum in the air. Pimples are formed when infected whiteheads rupture. This infection makes the skin look red.

Although acne may not be a serious health condition, its existence may cause significant emotional concern to acne sufferers.

For a very long period of time, acne had been blamed to a variety of things, from eating chocolates and greasy foods to dirty skin to stress. However, there is still insufficient evidence on the relationship between acne and these factors.

Although the exact cause of acne is still unknown, its incidence can be attributed to many factors. Among these are:

Hormonal changes. Acne is most prevalent during puberty. This can be attributed to the increase in the male sex hormones called androgen in both boys and girls. This hormonal imbalance causes the sebaceous glands to enlarge and produce more sebum. Some adolescent girls and women may also experience acne outbreaks before their menstrual periods. Pregnancy also causes hormonal changes, which may explain why pregnant women are susceptible to acne outbreaks. Starting or stopping birth control pills may likewise cause acne.

Heredity or genetics. Research proves that heredity plays an important role in determining the tendency to develop acne. If one parent suffers from acne, it is possible that he or she may pass the condition to his children.

Bacteria. Certain bacteria have the tendency to infect oil glands and skin pores.

Drugs. Certain drugs, including lithium and androgen are also known to cause acne.

There are many ways to treat an acne problem. There are over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription drugs used to counter the problem. Medications are available in various preparations. There are topical (applied to the skin) and oral (taken by mouth) preparations for treating mild to severe cases of acne.

To reduce acne problem, several precautionary measures should be observed.

Do not squeeze, pick, scratch or rub your skin. Putting undue pressure forces oil and bacteria deeper in the skin making matters worse. It may even cause scarring.

Wash your face twice a day using a mild soap and rinse well with water. Stay clear from granular facial scrubs. Exfoliating irritates the skin and produces more dead cells which clogs the pores and may further aggravate the condition.

Change your wash cloth every day. Damp cloth is a haven for acne-causing bacteria.

Avoid touching your face unnecessarily.

Shampoo hair regularly and try to keep your hair away from your face.

Exercise regularly and minimize stress levels. Stress aggravates acne conditions.

Oil from certain skin products may clog the pores so it is advisable to wear make up on special occasions only and remove it completely afterwards. It is best to use hypoallergenic and/or fragrance-free products.

.Avoid being sunburned. Certain acne medications make the skin prone to sunburn. Avoid this at all costs even if tones the skin and makes the blemishes less visible. Excessive exposure to the sun may hasten skin aging and may even cause skin cancer.

Remember, however, that for proper treatment of persistent and uncontrollable acne, it is best to be safe. Consult a dermatologist!

Michael Russell Your Independent guide to Acne

Self Medication and Acne Treatment

Since acne is so common among teenagers, it is normal for most of us to believe that a visit to the a doctor is unnecessary. What frequently occurs is the acne is treated using some type of self medication. The majority of us will take medicine on the recommendations of our friends and family. We also turn to television and radio ads for medication that will help treat the acne.

What ought to be understood, however, is that self medication should be averted in the majority of the situations. It is accurate that acne is not some type of a terminal condition, yet a dermatologist would be in a superior position to counsel you on your circumstance. When you consume medicines for acne you would take generic medicines, but a dermatologist would be capable to supply you acne treatment on the basis of your specific case.

But if you really want to try some self-medication, we would like to tell you that there are so many products in the market that you are sure to get vexed. And if you are thinking of taking some medicine which proved extremely effective for your friend, always remember that what works for one condition might not work for your condition. And if you still wish to try self remedy it is advisable to have some understanding of the different ingredients that go into making different acne medications. That would allow you to prepare an insightful decision when it comes to acne treatment.

Benzoyl Peroxide is one of the most popular ingredients in acne treatment. It comes in the mould of gels and ointments and it helps in acne treatment by fighting against bacteria. In addition to that it helps in acne treatment by taking away dead skin cells that get amassed on the surface of the skin. Maybe you understand that in reality these lifeless cells band with sebum to form whiteheads and blackheads.

There are numerous reasons behind the reputation of benzoyl peroxide. The primary explanation is its effectiveness in acne treatment. There are many who use this even after acne has been treated to keep the skin free from bacteria but care should be taken here. You would find that excess use of benzoyl peroxide might result in dry skin. And it might also bleach hair and even your clothes. So, be careful while applying it.

Another popular ingredient being used for acne treatment is salicylic acid. What it does is that it clears the epidermis of dead skin cells. The exact skin cells that obstruct the pores. There are two primary problems alongside this product for acne treatment. First is that you would have to go on using it even after your acne has been cleared. And the second is that it makes your skin dry and irritating.

Sulphur and resorcinol could also be used for acne treatment. Resorcinol helps in peeling out the top coating of the skin with the dead cells clogging the pores. The majority of the times, it is cast-off with sulphur. Although while sulphur is not used by itself (as a result of its repulsive odor) it is used with most of the material used for acne treatment.

Because acne is so commonplace, we have literally just scratched the surface of the types of acne treatment that are available. We have looked at a few of the self medication products and some of the pros and cons of using them. Although there are many over-the-counter products available, it is always best to speak with your doctor if the condition worsens.

J. Purdy runs websites that offer resources and information to people suffering from acne: Acne Skin Care [], Laser Acne Treatment [] and Acne Cream []. Visit each of his sites today for all your acne needs.

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Skin Care and Your Health


Proper Skin Care is crucial since your epidermis or skin is actually considered the largest organ in your body. Your skin protects you from contaminants outside our soft shells and can prevent your body from contracting diseases, viruses or pathogens.

It also protects us from the Sun and is every part as important as our livers for keeping the bad out and allowing the good to flow. One of the best things to help you keep you skin healthy and looking well is to moisturize it and in doing so you will feel happier and healthier and of course you will look great too.

It is truly amazing how many people eat right, exercise and then fail to take care of their skin? What a shame that is. Skin, which is not taken care of opens us up for so many risks of contracting bad things or even skin cancer. If you will moisturize your skin and use the proper conditioning you will see a big difference, if not you run the risk of a not so good situation.

Some may think this is a lot of work, but really it is not. You see there are so many inexpensive ways to take care of your skin and it takes less than a few minutes a day. Simply rubbing in a little bit of skin crème while watching Television or hanging out on the porch is enough to solve all the problems. Such a simple preventative maintenance strategy will work wonders for your skins longevity. Consider all this in 2006.

"Lance Winslow" - Online Think Tank forum board. If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; Lance is an online writer in retirement.

9 Tips To Cleaner and Healthier Skin


For cleaner, healthier and easier to manage skin just follow this list of nine items:

1) Lower your stress level through prayer and meditation. Stress creates hormones that actually age us as they destroy cells and create toxic byproducts and free radicals. Studies have shown that prayer and meditation can reduce our stress levels. Prayer and meditation have been proven to even alleviate some of the symptoms of cancer and other life threatening diseases.

2) Drink plenty of water. It is a fact that 90% of us do not drink enough water. For your skin cells to function properly and heal properly from cuts, etc... we need to drink 8-12 glasses of water every day. Our skin is one of our most important organs as it protects us from disease, cushions our falls, etc... It needs plenty of water.

3) Get proper sleep. Not getting the proper 8-10 hours of sleep per day will first show in your skin. Broken capillaries, puffiness, circles under the eyes.

4) Eat well. Get proper nutrition. Too many junk foods can cause or worsen skin problems like pimples and acne. A well balanced meal 3 times per day has been proven to help alleviate spikes in skin problems and help to average out the outbreaks in acne vulgaris.

5) Take vitamins to supplement your skin and body. We can't always make sure we get 100% of each vitamin and mineral with the foods we eat, but we can take a multivitamin once a day. They are cheap at Walmart and there is no excuse. People that take multivitamins once a day live longer. Its a proven fact just like persons that smoke take years off their lives.

6) Properly clean your skin. Harsh soaps can dry out your skin and even stimulate further sebum (oil) production which can worsen acne. Use a mild cleanser with 2% salicylic acid. This has been proven very effective in ridding excess oils while maintaining proper hydration and pH. The slight acidity will keep bacteria at bay.

7) Don't smoke. Smoking puts years on you. Literally, smoking can add 10 years to the aged look of your skin. Why would you want to do that? If you must have nicotine then get nicotine gum or the patch - they will cure your cravings and there is no evidence or statistics of anyone developing cancer, lung disease, etc... from these.

8) Wear sunscreen. The skin does have keratonin to protect against the suns rays, but it is no match for UV rays, etc... that we expose ourselves to. Melanoma has several forms and all are deadly. If you don't think you will get skin cancer or think you are invulnerable, just go to your local dermatologist and ask to see pictures of clients with skin cancer, better yet go to the oncology center at your local hospital. You won't think that way ever again. Wear sunscreen.

9) Treat yourself to a spa treatment at least once a year. Skin peels, TCA peels, deep tissue massage, complete relaxation, aromatherapy, etc... will all energize and heal your skin. TCA peels will actual improve your skins ability to regenerate itself and improve collagen levels.

Instant Energy From Yoga

The dreaded mid-day slump has set in, and you need a burst of energy to get going again. Instead of turning to a cup of coffee or a sugar-filled fruit bar, try a few asanas or an energizing pranayama session for an instant pick-me-up.

The Yogic Solution for the Mid-Day Slump

Sitting in your chair, close your eyes and take a moment to still your breath and movement. Bring your mind into focus and set your intention. Nurturing your body, feeling your emotions fully, and bringing productivity back to your mind and spirit, are all good intentions for this kind of situation. Begin breathing deeply and twist your upper body first to the right, then to the left, for an upper body stretch.

Now, close your office door, and drop to your hands and knees for some Cat and Cow stretches. Curl and press to full spinal extension, moving with the breath. Push back into Child's pose for a moment, perhaps cupping your hands to give the arms a better stretch.

Pulling up to a standing position, fold forward into a forward bend, nodding "yes," and gently shaking your head "no" to relax the neck. Roll slowly upwards, one vertebrae at a time. Step forward into Mountain Pose, feeling strong and powerful. This entire sequence need take no longer than five minutes; yet the energy should last you through the afternoon.

How Yoga Cultivates Energy

Why is Yoga so energizing? Firstly, sitting in a desk chair exacerbates poor posture and keeps the chest from fully opening. Full, deep breaths are rarely taken while the mind is engaged in office work. Muscles, that sit in the same position for a long period of time, do not rid themselves of lactic acid, while they can become tense, sore, and stiff. Moving into Forward Bend briefly stretches the spinal structure, while the entire movement causes the heart to pump slightly faster.

Beyond the physical aspects of raising one's energy level, taking the time to focus on stilling the mind provides mental relief from the office and job duties. The "monkey mind," or thoughts that aimlessly wander around our heads, cannot be stilled easily, and cause a fatigued mindset.

Within the workplace is an increasing emphasis on multitasking, using personal devices to increase productivity, and networking. The mind is called upon to move in thousands of ways every hour on the job. Spending even five minutes away from this flow of incessant demands is a very real rest. Practicing and gaining energy from Yoga, to revitalize the mind and body, may be the best thing you do for yourself all day.

© Copyright 2011 - Paul Jerard / Aura Wellness Center - Publications Division

Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, has written many books on the subject of Yoga. He is a co-owner and the Director of Yoga Teacher Training at: Aura Wellness Center, in Attleboro, MA. He has been a certified Master Yoga Teacher since 1995. To receive Free Yoga videos, Podcasts, e-Books, reports, and articles about Yoga, please visit:

Yoga Moves for Tough Guys


When it comes to working out, tough guys have long adhered to the "no pain, no gain" philosophy. According to experts, however, this belief is not only faulty, but it can result in serious injury. While physical training can be rigorous, pain is not a prerequisite for success. It may actually be a warning from within one's body to slow down or change routines.

Men have traditionally preferred competitive contact sports, but the need to win can be hard on the physical body and emotional health, as well. Professional athletes, along with other sports enthusiasts, are discovering that the practice of Yoga can help them function more effectively in contact sports, and increase their overall health and wellbeing, at the same time.

20 Ways Yoga Moves Help Tough Guys

• Teaches breathing techniques that make it easier to work through strenuous or painful routines

• Helps to release and balance uneven muscle patterns entrenched by years of rigorous training

• Improves flexibility and relaxes tight muscles

• Gives a different perspective and appreciation for "gentler" methods of exercise

• Increases awareness of sensations within the body

• Cultivates patience and helps to let go of perfectionism

• Makes other training programs more effective

• Helps to prevent injuries or to recover more quickly

• Tones muscles and improves posture

• Aids in weight control

• Slows down the aging process

• Enhances immune system and improves general health

• Encourages healthy sleep patterns

• Boosts concentration and mental acuity

• Improves organ function and circulation

• Releases endorphins that improve mood

• Enhances endurance and performance

• Breaks down lactic acid, resulting from sustained physical activity

• Works entire body

• Removes toxins from the body

If these reasons are not enough to convince tough guys of the benefits of yoga, these recent news stories might do the trick:

• Swami Bua - a Yogi, not listed in record books, because there is no written record of his birth - died in 2010, at an estimated age of 120. He could stop his circulation; and, in his later years, was still able to blow a conch shell for up to five minutes, during one breath, each year at an annual gathering, honoring the United Nations in New York City.

• Wim Hof broke his own world record in 2008 by spending for 1 hour, 13 minutes, and 48 seconds immersed in ice. He used Tummo breathing - a practice used by Yogi Monks in Tibet - to control his body temperature.

Chances are - not many men want to spend days blowing conch shells or using breathing techniques to stay alive on a freezing mountain, but these examples do illustrate the amazing power of Yoga and its potential to enable seemingly insurmountable feats. They leave little doubt of Yoga's usefulness in the field of competitive sports and other arduous physical endeavors.

Although there are many Yoga moves (asanas) to challenge one's strength and fortitude, the following is a short list for competitive athletes of both genders.

Yoga Moves for Tough Guys

The Sun Salutations Sequence

Dolphin Pose

Head Stand

Hand Stand

Crow Pose

Wheel Pose

Lord of the Dance Pose

As always, please consult with your primary physician or medical specialist, before starting a new exercise program. Proper instruction with a certified and competent Yoga teacher is recommended. Any pre-existing medical conditions or injuries must be respected by modifying techniques.

© Copyright 2011 - Aura Wellness Center - Publications Division

Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, has written many books on the subject of Yoga. He is a co-owner and the Director of Yoga Teacher Training at: Aura Wellness Center, in Attleboro, MA. He has been a certified Master Yoga Teacher since 1995. To receive Free Yoga videos, Podcasts, e-Books, reports, and articles about Yoga, please visit:

Yoga Classes For Children


How many reasons can you think of for enhancing the education of our children and grandchildren? Children are growing up in a world where they will soon be expected to be problem solvers. Yoga prepares children to think rationally during times of severe stress. Yoga for children is a break from chronic stress, and it helps them build life skills at the same time.

With budget cuts, state-mandated tests, and a one-size-fits-all public education system, there is little wonder that kids today are as stressed as their parents. Imagine what a difference it would make if all children were taught the art of Yoga at an early age. Not only would it come in handy before the big math test, or when dealing with the school bully, but Yoga is a gift that can be carried throughout life. As B.K.S. Iyengar once said, "Yoga is a light, which once lit, will never dim."

Approximately 1 out of 5 youths, who participate in sports, is hurt each year; and 25% of these are serious injuries. While few people would argue with the value of athletic programs, not every child blossoms in competitive sports. Like academics, the sports arena often becomes an area where under achievement can leave lasting scars. Too often, much emphasis is placed on winning and not enough on awareness and community.

As Yoga classes for children become increasingly more popular, a variety of programs are being offered in studios, schools, and community centers around the world. These classes provide the same benefits as traditional Yoga, but their impact can be far-reaching. Healthy bodies and healthy minds create well-balanced kids, and Yoga helps to do both.

Benefits of Yoga Classes for Children

• Builds social skills and encourages team-building

• Increases awareness and emotional stability

• Improves coordination and flexibility

• Helps to develop self-control

• Teaches breathing techniques that enhance performance and lessen stress

• Decreases likelihood of injuries during other activities

• Builds strong bones and strengthens the immune system

• Makes it easier to accomplish in other areas - both academic and physical

• Sets groundwork for a healthy lifestyle

• Improves posture and balance

• Improves focus and attention

Yoga classes for children, have also shown effectiveness in the management of ADHD, autism, and other conditions that require special accommodations. However, practicing Yoga poses can give any child a greater feeling of control when facing everyday challenges. Favorite Yoga postures for children are: Child's Pose, Tree Pose, Downward Facing Dog, and Warrior Pose; but the options are as limitless as the benefits.

© Copyright 2011 - Aura Wellness Center - Publications Division

Paul Jerard, E-RYT 500, has written many books on the subject of Yoga. He is a co-owner and the Director of Yoga Teacher Training at: Aura Wellness Center, in Attleboro, MA. He has been a certified Master Yoga Teacher since 1995. To receive Free Yoga videos, Podcasts, e-Books, reports, and articles about Yoga, please visit:

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Yoga for Back Pain

Pain in the back is a normal experience. The severity of back pain varies though. Some are curable while others are manageable. Any person will know what he feels best to ease this discomfort. A variety of ways is available to ease that discomfort.

Several people prefer medicinal intakes to reduce the pain. Anti-inflammatory and pain medications are example of these. However, this method is effective when combined with bed rest.

The common and safest treatment is exercise. Such methods causes the blood to flow to the affected areas. The circulation of blood clears toxins and blockages from that area. The oxygenated blood hastens the healing and recovery of injured areas in the body. That is why many experts have studied the effectiveness of a yoga exercise in managing and curing pains in the body as well as the back.

Recent studies prove that a yoga exercise can actually eliminate this pain and lessen the possibility of having one. One major study found that almost 60% of people who consulted a medical doctor for this condition had tried some sort of alternative therapy.

Yoga is a combination of breathing techniques, poses and meditation. The combination technique reduces lower this pain because poses align the bones. Maintaining an aligned bone will eliminate a yoga practitioner's tendency to have a back pain.

Yoga also reduces back pain for pregnant women because the poses help lessen the degree of pelvic tilt associated with pregnancy. A variety of specific yoga poses stretch the muscles and tissues associated with lower back, hips, and hamstrings.

Yoga does not only reduce pain but also increase strength, improve balance, and cultivate mental focus. Many physicians recommend yoga for people experiencing normal back issues. Patients with severe back pain may not be able to tolerate a normal yoga practice. A good yoga instructor during these situations is required.

Yoga can be practiced for many other ailments not just for back pain. If one has issues for the knee, leg, arms or other parts of the anatomy yoga has a place for it.

A common issue for knee trouble is that the thigh muscles are not supporting the tissues and ligaments around the knee so the knee becomes comes stressed and causes concern. Most bodies have an imbalance in the body, have you noticed how YOU walk? Do you walk at ten to two? Or are your feet more parallel? Is one foot pointing out more than the other? How is your alignment?

Glen Wood - The Yoga Teacher. Glen is a yoga expert whom loves to teach you how to lose your neck, shoulder and back pain with yoga.

Dedicated to unlocking the Real Secrets of Back Pain.

Free Video Reveals No 1 Secret to Losing Your Back Pain with Yoga. Go here for more information:- it has the tips and guides you need to be successful in losing your Back Pain, today tomorrow and whenever you have the need. Our guides are methods that work and are in use by many former Back Pain Sufferers. If you want to learn more, join us at

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Children and Cooking

You only have to go as far as your local grocery store check-out line to know that Americans, especially women, are obsessed with weight. Countless magazines promise to help you lose 20 pounds in two weeks or give you the secrets as to how the latest celebrity took off their baby weight. If you are on a diet, you have to be careful that your efforts to lose weight do not turn into an unhealthy "obsession." This is particularly important when you are dieting with children in the house because children often mimic the behavior of their parents, both good and bad. Studies have shown that when a parent is obsessed with diet and weight loss, the children are also more likely to be focused on the same issues.

According to a report from the National Eating Disorders Coalition, 40% of 9-year-old girls have dieted. However, experts say that it is not a good idea to let your child mimic your "diet" unless a physician has specifically instructed them to do so. Per the Office of the Surgeon General, children should not be put on a diet unless under the supervision of a physician. Unlike adults, kids are still growing and developing. During this time, they need a variety of healthy foods to keep their bodies growing properly and diets can compromise their growth.

So how do you get around the dreaded "D" word in your house? - Simply by promoting healthy eating, exercise, and a positive body image. Here are some tips to help you accomplish that objective, which will hopefully in turn help you achieve your weight loss goals.

    * Reduce the amount of time you and your family spend in sedentary activities, such as playing video games or watching television.
    * Make exercise a part of fun family activities, not a chore.
    * Teach your children healthy eating habits. Teaching healthy eating practices early will help children approach eating with the right attitude- that food should be enjoyed and is necessary for growth, development, and for energy to keep the body running. If you are in doubt about healthy eating choices, consult your child's pediatrician or a dietitian.
    * Don't make negative comments about other people's weight in front of a child.
    * Emphasize the complex beauty and natural diversity of body shapes, types, and sizes. Parents can learn to accept, affirm, and love their own bodies. Showing appreciation for your body's strength, dependability, and health will encourage your children to do the same.

If you are dieting, rather than focus on diet and weight loss with your children, shift the focus to healthy eating and healthy habits. In the long run you will be glad you did.

Kelly J. DiLauro, CEO of Dedicated Woman, Inc., a company dedicated to the nutritonal needs of women. Products created, formulated, manufactured and tested by women for women. For more information on how Dedicated Woman can help you loose weight, gain weight, implement supplementation into your lifestyle or teach you how to love your body, visit us at

Healthy Diet For Children


Health becomes an issue as people get older. Experts have said the healthy diet for children helps prevent diseases and can keep your kids from being obese. Obesity is constantly increasing because of the increasing popularity of fast foods.

Before even starting the diet, never force your children to eat healthy. This might affect your relationship and children don't like it when they're told what to do. The first step is food shopping. Involve your children in grocery shopping and let him choose the foods he wants. From there, devise your own recipe and think of ways on how to make a healthy diet for children.

If your child loves to eat fried chicken, consider boiling the chicken and removing the skin so that the oil and fats are eliminated. Serve the chicken with gravy and mashed potatoes so that the chicken isn't bland. In fact, the tastier it is, the more your kid will enjoy it.

Reduce intake of salty foods. If you can come up with dishes that contain no salt at all, the better. Salty foods are not healthy, and this is why junk foods are bad for the health. The fries and burger that your child loves in the local fast food joint contains an amount of salt more than you can imagine.

Instead of that chocolate ice cream or vanilla smoothie, why not let your child try yogurt and a fruit shake? Yogurt tastes good and is a healthier alternative because it has the same texture as ice cream, minus the calories. The vanilla smoothie can be replaced by a mango shake and can work wonders for the body. You can even combine different fruit shakes like strawberries and bananas, mangoes and melon, and a lot more. Be creative and serve them nicely in cool glasses so that they are more attractive to your kids.

Explain the good effects of the healthy diet. Discuss the effects of it on the immune system stressing the decreased chances of getting sick, the positive effect on the skin and muscles, and the like. This might motivate your kids and they might even help you come up with great recipes.

For sandwiches, use less butter and more of the healthy stuff. Adding lettuce and replacing the beef burger with chicken is healthier and tastier even without ketchup and mayo. Your kids don't really have to sacrifice the taste to get the best health benefits. When bringing snacks to school, opt for cereal bars and eliminate junk food.

If your child has a huge appetite, eating frequently might work. A healthy diet for children means eating small snacks rather than three big, heavy meals. While doing their favorite activity, you might also want to encourage them to munch on carrot sticks or fruits like pears and grapes rather than the junk foods and crackers. When it comes to the diet, it is up to the parents to come up with creative ideas and make sure to have fun preparing it. Your kids will surely love being healthy too.

5 Tips to Teach Children to Be Healthy and Active


For young kids, it has been a struggle. It's because they tend to do things they want, without knowing if its really good for them or not. Parents often worry about their kids health but it should not be only them who have to work for this. There is a more responsible person that can help them achieve the optimum health status - themselves. Young as they are, they should already be taught on how to take care of themselves and what are the important things they must do to keep themselves fit.

Here are some reminders for parents and their kids:

1. Eat in Variety
Kids seem to have favourites and it's the only thing that they would ever want to eat. Being healthy doesn't need to be that stressful or complicated. Encourage your child to eat in variety. For parents, serve a variety of foods. Make sure the meal appears very pleasant. Add fun during meal time such as making fun shapes or allow them to help in cooking. Add fruits and nutritious food and refrain from sending them junk foods on their lunch boxes at school.

2. Drink Healthy
It is important to watch what they drink. Encourage them lots of water. Include it in their routine such as when getting up or before bedtime. Teach them to avoid sodas, instead encourage them to drink water. Of course they can consume chocolate drinks or juices, just make sure they don't drink them very often.

3. Be Active
Just like adults need exercise, kids need to be active. But this is not a problem because kids love to have fun. Limit time on watching television or play online games. Although these should not be totally banned in their activities, try to promote outdoor or play physical activities.

4. Get Enough Rest
Sleep and rest are necessary for growth and development. It is a way of relaxing your body and mind. Make sure they get enough sleep. Don't let them stay out late at night.

5. Understand your body
Listen to your body. If you are hungry then go ahead and eat. When you are tired get some rest. Parents should make sure they do not abuse their bodies. As your parents take part in taking care of you, take good care of yourself.

Healthy Eating Aimed at Children

Healthy eating aimed at children can often miss the target.

What parent hasn't tried at least once to bribe, cajole, threaten or manipulate their child into eating healthy food? Wouldn't it be nice if we didn't have to stoop to such heavy-handed tactics?

Here are seven sharp tips to help you hit home with healthy eating.

1. Start as early as possible. The longer you wait the harder it gets. Once your child is already ruined by sweet treats, it's much more difficult to get them to eat Brussels sprouts and broccoli. If you've already waited too long, you'll have to go for tip # 4 - be strong - and realize your kids might not like you for a few days.

2. Keep a variety of healthy foods available. This helps stop them from latching on to one food or food group. Sure they'll still have their favorites, but a variety will help them get used to varied tastes. And please, don't keep unhealthy food in the house. That's right, no junk food allowed. It will only sabotage your plans.

3. Combine foods they like with foods they don't like. For example, stir-frying onions with zucchini, broccoli, carrots, and snow peas might not seem as bad as sitting down to a whole plate of steamed broccoli. It also helps to make sure the pieces are small enough so your child gets some carrots with his or her zucchini.

4. Be strong! If you can't give tough-love, your project will fail. Tell your children that this is what's for dinner and that's it. There's nothing else for them to eat. Having only healthy food in the house helps to make this work. If there are no other options available, when they get hungry enough, they'll eat whatever's served.

5. Keep your kids away from saboteurs. Some people are just hell-bent on winning-over your children by offering them sweet treats. It constantly amazes me how so many otherwise well-meaning individuals, including some doctors and dentists, will offer my children candy. Teach your kids to politely say, "No thank you." If it's a relative, you can even threaten not to visit unless they stop.

6. Don't let your children watch commercial TV. Yes, you read that correctly. Television commercials are the nutritional education for about 95% of our population. And the majority of ads on kid's shows are about getting them to eat unhealthy junk food. You'll see a huge decrease in your child's food cravings when you turn off the tube.

7. Set a great example. This is the most important tip of all. How can you expect your children to give up candy and ice cream, if you won't? How can you get them to eat fish, vegetables and whole grains, when you don't? While your kids are still young, you're their main role model. Choose to be a great one.

If you're not a good example, you have no right to complain about your child's poor eating habits, obesity, ADHD and all the time you have to take off from work when they're sick.

So, use tough-love on yourself. Aim at healthy eating for you too!

Children's Healthy Living Depends on You


A healthy balanced lifestyle is developed in your child a lot sooner than you might expect. When you conceive a child you have to consider what you do every day and how it might impact on the gift inside you. Healthy development starts as soon as the new baby can sense its surroundings.

For example if a mother is in a stressful situation the baby is exposed to the hormones circulating around the mothers body and feels stress themselves. This is not good for an unborn infant and can lead to a distressed baby when born who is often inconsolable.

The mental development of your baby is just as important as the food they consume as they grow up. The majority of us often focus purely on the food we give to children without considering their environment and how it affects their psychosocial development. In order to promote healthy development it is important to spend time with your family to promote your babies healthy living by creating a suitable environment for them to feel safe in.

Consider your own childhood, were you incessantly instructed to eat your vegetables since they are good for you? Parents are insistent that vegetables are an essential part of a child's healthy development but there is more to being healthy than food. It is common now for both parents to go to work and arrange child care for their children. Parents often insist it's because they want their offspring to have everything they never had unfortunately all the physical possessions cannot make up for a parents care and attention being absent.

When I was growing up I attended church regularly and it has certainly given me a balanced spiritual grounding, but unfortunately for many now the pressure of life does not lend itself well to regular attendance in church. There is a gap which needs to be filled, but by whom if both parents are away working, is it sufficient to rely on paid help to promote the healthy development of your child? Everyone with children especially when both parents work should consider how they can have good quality time with their children.

Quality time gives your child someone to learn from, to look up to, you must find a way to fit this into your lifestyle for your children to develop a healthy balanced outlook on life. Are you really too busy to take half an hour out of your day to sit and cuddle your child while reading a story? Is that last report so essential that you have to finish it tonight or could you take it with you for when they are asleep. There is always another way to do what you are doing. Find the win win option where both your company and your family get what they need from you.

Ask yourself this simple question, and be honest with yourself about your true motivation.

Do you work to live or live to work? I myself have always and will always work to live, after all you can't wait until you retire to start living the life you dreamed of, it could be too late.

It was my 3 year old son who taught me to change my attitude to life when he saw one of his friends Dad's playing with a friend of his. He said my Daddy doesn't do that. I realized when my wife told me that I had been so focused on work that I had neglected him. I haven't ever done so since nor will I ever again.

Teeth Healthy Snacks For Kids - Advice From a Children's Dentist


As most parents know, children don't always want healthy snacks -- especially when they have the option to eat sugar-loaded snacks instead. What parents may not realize or think about too often is just how bad those sugary snacks are for their children. Not only will they affect a child's weight, but they also can ruin a child's teeth. No parents like to have to go back to the children's dentist because they are dealing with rotted teeth and cavities. Here is some advice from a children's dentist on some teeth healthy snacks for kids.

A Healthy Diet For Healthy Teeth

A balanced diet is essential for maintaining good oral health in children. When too many foods that contain starches and sugars are eaten, plaque is able to thrive on the teeth. The plaque mixes with the sugars and starches that are found in foods to produce an acid that attacks the enamel on the teeth, causing tooth decay. When a child has a nutritious diet, the chance of plaque forming and causing tooth decay dramatically decreases. A balanced diet for children is not just about meals, but also includes healthy snacks. In fact, snacks are usually the worst foods in a child's diet, as often they are quick, unhealthy, 'on the go' treats.

Healthy Snacks To Consider

There are plenty of nutritious snacks that a children's dentist would recommend. Teeth healthy snacks don't have to be complicated but can be just as easy as grabbing a chocolate bar. Some quick nutritious foods for healthy teeth include: sliced fruit, raw vegetables with dip, string cheese, and yogurt. Your children's dentist will be able to recommend plenty more teeth healthy snacks as well.

Snacks To Limit Or Avoid

Snack foods such as chocolate bars, candy, cake, cookies, and potato chips should be avoided or at the very least limited to special occasions. These foods contain too many sugars and starches that lead to tooth decay in children. Another recommended tip from a children's dentist is to limit the amount of fruit juice that is given to a child. Most fruit juices contain a large amount of sugar. Instead, give your child milk or water and have them eat a piece of fruit. It is a good idea to avoid even buying these non-nutritious foods or beverages so that they are not readily available to your children.

The other types of snacks that should be limited in children are the ones that tend to stick to children's teeth. A children's dentist may recommend avoiding these types of foods since the longer that a food sit on the teeth, the more likely the acids in the sugars will start attacking the tooth, causing tooth decay to start. Examples of these types of snacks are: raisins, fruit snacks, white breads, peanut butter and dried fruit.

No matter how hard you try, though, it is usually inevitable that both children and adults will occasionally eat sweets. It's sometimes simply too hard to pass up a piece of celebratory birthday cake or special holiday cookies. However, it is especially important to brush after consuming sweet snacks. If brushing is not possible, even rinsing your mouth out with water will help.

If you are having any trouble picking out a balanced diet for your little ones, your children's dentist will be able to help you select the best foods to keep your children's teeth healthy for years to come.

Children And Healthy Risk Taking


We began Southwoods knowing the kind of relationship we wanted to develop with our camp parents. A relationship that was bi-directional, a partnership with good communications that allowed us to continue to progress all the hard work our parents where doing at home. In continuing to develop that relationship, we are happy to introduce this new parents section to our newsletter. Each month we will try to include articles or books that you may find helpful in this wonderful, crazy ride called parenting. We hope you enjoy and find value in them.

Nurturing Good Children Now by Ron Taffel

The Romance of Risk by Lynn E. Ponton

Parent Piece

We recently attended a child development conference called the Joe Kruger Educational Conference. Keynote Sessions were given by Dr. Lynn Ponton a psychiatrist, author and professor at the University of California, San Francisco and Dr. Ron Taffel, noted child and family therapist, speaker and author. While both spoke about the risks facing our children, each speech focused on a specific type of risk. Dr. Ponton spoke about risk assessment, (helping children learn the importants in making good risk decisions), normal, healthy, growth inspiring risks like attempting an activity that scares you as well as unhealthy or dangereous risks like something that can hurt you, is illegal or immoral. Dr. Taffel spoke about the risks we are faced with in our ever changing world and how these risks, fears and situations affect our children and their emotions.

Dr. Ponton listed ways to best help children grow and take healthy risks... talk to your children, ask questions about what they are doing, get to know their friends, give them boundaries and enforce family rules and be a good role model... we all nodded our heads in agreement that these things were important but the last one really resonated. Dr. Ponton added that the most powerful tool in helping children learn good risk taking was sending children to summer camp. Mom and dad are not at camp, and what better place can there be for children to learn about making good choices and taking safe risks without mom and dad than at Camp.

Risk taking is a good and healthy part of development when it is combined with safe and positive activities. For many children the first risky thing about camp is getting on the bus and saying goodbye to mom and dad. It is normal and okay for both your child (and you) to be nervous about camp. Risk taking, even when it is in positive activities, can be scary. While getting on that bus may be extremely difficult for some children, it is the first accomplishment in a long list that children are going to have during their camp experience. A good camp environment helps a child feel emotionally safe. It has good staff that helps guide children into good decisions. All of the things campers see as risks during the four weeks at camp, some big and some small, will have an impact on the person that you see at the end of the summer. Teaching a child that healthy risk taking is a positive tool for discovering, developing and consolidating his or her identity is not easy.

In a world where there are too many risks to imagine, it is nice to know camp is a safe place where kids can be kids, making choices and learning from their mistakes.

If you have chosen to send your child to camp you already know the value of organized camping on children. You probably know that your child will become more independent, hone their athletic and artistic talents, make new friends and learn how to be a better one. But, we also want you to know that by sending your child to camp, you are also helping them learn about risk assessment and how to make good choices while being surrounded by people that will guide them through this process. Camp is a place for exciting, fun and safe risks.

Naturally Healthy Children


As a society we are becoming more aware of how to promote healthy growth and development in our children through a whole foods diet, exercise and unconditional love. However, the environment to which our children are exposed plays a crucial role in how this healthy foundation is acted out in the prevention of serious diseases.

Children of this century have higher exposures to environmental toxins than our ancestors. Our body has not genetically caught up to our industrial revolution. We have not evolved to be able to completely detoxify this accumulation of toxins which can be more harmful to young developing bodies.

The occurrence of diseases directly attributed to environmental exposure is rising. Children are exposed to harmful byproducts of our industrialized society starting in the prenatal period. What needs to be addressed is the accumulation of toxins over time and the effects of a variety of chemicals on the body. There are increasing episodes of asthma in children today as compared to twenty years ago. As well, cancer is seen as the 4th leading cause of death in children, while one in three adults are expected to have cancer in their lifetime. Both of these diseases were not common in our great grandparents' time.

I would like to present to you a few ways to improve our children's environmental health. Along with the arrival of a baby comes a plethora of plastics - from toys to bottles to packaged foods. Anything your child comes in contact with goes directly into the mouth. Your child may be absorbing harmful chemicals like phthalates and bisphenyl A from these plastics. Consider replacing plastic toys with wood, cloth or natural fibers. Buy food in glass or paper rather than plastic.

Common cleaning products can damage our organs with regular use. Safety tests have been done on single chemicals, however tests have not been done on the interaction of many chemicals nor have long term studies been performed. A useful website that details the concern about home and body care products is Make a visit to the Cowichan Green Community or any of the health food stores in the Cowichan Valley for resources on nontoxic body and home care products.

Ingested chemicals found in our food chain can mimic estrogen's role in our bodies. These chemicals have been termed xenoestrogens and biochemically stimulate our cells to grow. This is why I promote our children to eat organic meat, chicken and dairy. As well, I encourage the consumption of a plethora of antioxidants through colourful fruits and vegetables.

As a naturopathic family physician, I view the prevention of disease to come from not only annual exams but also the promotion of a healthy diet, lifestyle and environment right from the start. I strongly focus on teaching families how to live with nature and to support a developing immune system.

Combatting Dry, Flaky Skin


Flaky skin occurs when the outermost layers begin to shed off of the body because of the extreme dryness. The body has a natural layer of oily skin that keeps our skin moisturized, but when it dries out the body is no longer able to keep it moisturized and replenished. More often than not, the body is able to keep up with the skin that is being lost but sometimes it is unable to keep up and other protection is needed.

When the skin becomes flaky it becomes itchy, inflammed and scaly (like a fish). Severe cases are characterized by cracks and skin that is chapped. When the skin dries out we are tempted to itch and scratch it. This causes even more problems because painful wounds can open up. The most affected parts of the body are the legs, arms, knees and elbows. The reason that these areas are normally a problem is because the skin is more thin and exposed to the elements.

If you have flaky skin then you should stay away from makeup that has harsh chemicals in them. Anything that has fragrance in it is bad for your skin and will only make the problem worse. Also, make sure that you stay away from skin cleaners and detergent based chemicals. The best thing you can do to combat flaky skin is to use a moisturizer on a regular basis. If used regularly they will help the body to keep the moisture and make a big difference over time. If you have a serious condition, such as eczema, then you will need to talk to a dermatologist to find answers.

Winter is an especially bad time of year for flaky skin. The air outside is low in humidity and the air inside our houses is heated. This is a perfect storm that causes a lack of moisture in the skin and subsequent flaking.

As we age the skin is more likely to dry out. Senior citizens are very likely to have dry skin because of natural changes in their bodies. Dry skin will only be made worse by taking showers or baths too often. The water has a tendency to sap the moisture right out of the skin. Using harsh soaps also extend this problem.

Natrium muriaticum is a tissue salt that can be used to keep the moisture balanced within the body. Try using it to regain the moisture in your skin. Kalium muriaticum can be used to clean the blood and lymphs and naturally detoxify the skin. When you choose a moisturizer make sure that it is natural and does not contain fragrance or other harsh chemicals.

Seven Unknown Functions of Banana


Bananas can not only provide human body with abundant nutrients and various kinds of vitamin, but also make your skin tender, eyes bright, energy rich and life longer. Besides this, bananas also have many other kinds of functions that are unknown to you.

1. To Reduce Serum Cholesterol Level

High cholesterol can cause coronary heart disease. The fruit stem of bananas can help to reduce cholesterol levels. People with high cholesterol can get 50 kilograms of banana stem and then cut them into slices. Soak these slices into boiled water and then drink the water. You can do this 10-20 days successively. This will help you to reduce cholesterol level

2. To Prevent and Cure Gastric Ulcer

Banana contains a kind of medical substance which can prevent gastric ulcer. It can simulate the growth and reproduction of mucous cells, thus to produce much more mucous membrane to protect the stomach.

3. Treat High Blood Pressure

People who have high pressure and cardiac and cerebral vascular diseases often have more sodium than kalium, while banana contains large amount of potassium ions, which can effectively restrict the negative effects of sodium ions. These negative effects consist of vasoconstriction and damaging cardiovascular. Eating bananas can help to maintain the balance between sodium and kalium. Therefore, to have 3 to 5 bananas each day brings benefits to people with high blood pressure and cardiac and cerebral diseases.

4. To Treat Melanchonia

Banana contains a substance which can help human brain to produce 6-hydroxytryptamine, which make people be happy, lively and cheerful. People with melancholia are suggested to eat bananas frequently to avoid being depressed, pessimistic and disappointed.

5. To Treat Pruritus Cutanea

Banana skin contains a kind of substance which can restrict the reproduction of bacteria and fungi. Experiment shows that banana skin can cure pruritus cutanea and beriberi caused by bacteria and fungi. The effectiveness is excellent.

6. To Treat Cough

Banana has a good effectiveness when it is used to treat cough. People who cough with lung heat can use one or two bananas to stew with crystal sugar, one or two times a day.

7. To Help to Lose Weight

As the content of starch in banana is very high, so it will make you easily feel full if you take in several bananas. In addition, it takes time for starch to transmit into sugar, so there will not be much energy remained. Thus, bananas can be treated as food which can help to lose weight.

Why Are Women in Favor of Bananas


Do you know that bananas are considered as "wisdom fruit"? It is the most common fruit in the market, but it can supply the body with abundant nutrition and a variety of vitamin as well as make skin tender and fair. Then I will list several reasons why women love eating bananas.

1. Bananas can be used to battle depression.

Bananas contain a substance that can help brain produce 5-hydroxy tryptamine and thus make people feel delightful. People who suffer from depression can take in more bananas so as to increase the density of 5-hydroxy tryptamine in brain and finally reduce the hormone that cause low spirits. Therefore, bananas are also looked as "happy food".

2. Bananas can be used to cure cutaneous pruritus.

Bananas contain a substance that can restrict the production of fungus and bacteria. Experiments prove that banana skin can be used to cure cutaneous pruritus and beriberi caused by fungus or bacteria. It works wonderfully.

3. Bananas can be used to reduce blood pressure.

Banana is a kind of healthy food which contain a large amount of starchiness. Bananas can promote stomach to wriggle. In addition, bananas can help to reduce blood pressure and relax the bowels.

4. Bananas can help to lose weight.

Bananas can help you lose weight because they contain a large amount of food fiber while the amount of calorie is very small. You may feel full after eating some bananas because the starch amount inside them is high. In addition, it takes time for starch to convert into sugars. Therefore, there will be no excessive energy stocked inside body.

5. Bananas can be used for breakfast

With the fast pace of life, there are more and more people who try to replenish unbalanced diet with healthy food or supplements. Bananas contain nearly all kinds of vitamin and mineral substances, thus you can easily take in various kinds of nutrients from bananas. Bananas contain much kalium and magnesuim. Kalium can prevent high blood pressure and muscle spasm while magnesuim can help to eliminate tiredness. As bananas can be easily digested and absorbed, they are suitable for all people. In addition, bananas can be used as a substitute of breakfast. You do not need to worry about gaining weight.

Diabetes, High Blood Sugar Levels, And How You Can Prevent It All

Diabetes has become one of the most prevalent diseases in the United States. For the last fifteen years, the percentage of our population being diagnosed with diabetes has increased every single year. It is sad to see how diabetes affects families and destroys lives. If you are diabetic, I can not stress enough how important it is to monitor your blood sugar levels on a regular basis. With all of the testing tools available today, there is no excuse not to!

Blood sugar levels can easily be maintained by watching what foods you put into your body. Honestly, common sense can be your best friend. For example, lets look at the traditional all-American cheeseburger. When you look at the soggy bun and greasy burger, do you think health food? No, you think heart attack! The first step to eating healthy is using common sense with your food.

There are a lot of foods that you can eat that will help you prevent from getting high blood glucose levels and diabetes. Here are a few examples that might get you started:

    * Brown Rice
    * Almonds
    * Spinach
    * Carrots
    * Oranges
    * Apples

I think you get the idea. If it is grown from the ground, than it is more than likely a lot better for you than junk food. Always try to eat organic foods and also eat as many whole grains as possible. Blood glucose levels really are not hard to maintain as long as you keep focused on a healthy diet. One site that really helped me out in setting up my diet routine is You may also want to try for help.

Like I mentioned before, there are a lot of tools that you can use to help you keep normal blood sugar levels. Let me name a few examples:

    * Blood Sugar Levels Chart (AKA: Normal Blood Sugar Levels Chart)
    * Blood Sugar Tester
    * Blood Sugar Diet Logg

Diabetes has been a very big issue within my family. Both of my parents have diabetes and I also have an uncle with diabetes. It has really affected my family in a negative way and my goal is to help you avoid the issues that my family is going through. Diabetes is a disease that can be removed from you life if you take the proper steps. Watching your diet is the first step, but you must also exercise on a regular basis to be successful. Do not try to do everything at once. It is not a race. Take your journey one step at a time. I wish you all luck in your quest to eliminate diabetes and high blood sugar levels.

I have worked in the healthcare industry for most of my life. Diabetes is a disease that has ran in my family for generations. I have made it my lifelong goal to help people overcome diabetes and to live healthier lifestyles. Diabetes can destroy your life and it is not something you should mess around with!

I have a whole website devoted towards beating diabetes and beating High Blood Sugar Levels.

If you need help or someone you know needs help, please check it out and learn how to maintain Normal Blood Sugar Levels.

You will not find anyone more passionate about beating diabetes than I am, I promise!

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Blood Glucose Levels

Anyone with Type II diabetes or pre-diabetes definitely needs to keep a tab on his or her blood glucose levels. They have to ensure that they are within the normal levels at all times. You should be thankful if your blood glucose levels are self-regulated. Many people out there are suffering from this condition and trying their level best to cope with it. This article will try to determine the exact meaning of normal blood glucose levels.

To start with, what does the term glucose mean? Glucose is a sugar form that traverses the human body through the blood stream. It is sourced from foods high in carbohydrates and it enters the body through them. The pancreas is charged with the function of regulating the body's blood levels. It accomplishes this amazing and sensitive function through secretion of glucagon hormones and insulin. Once the pancreas is unable to produce enough amounts of glucose to satisfy the body's requirements, then we definitely have a problem in the offing.

Acceptable blood glucose and those that are accepted as normal lie in the range of 70 to 150mg. These levels in the blood are subject to a variety of factors, which range from the type of meal that you had to the particular time of the day. Values lying above or below the acceptable normal range present various complications. Blood glucose levels below 70mg result in a condition referred to as hypoglycemia (low blood sugar). It is characterized by various symptoms, which include lack of focus, energy and irritability. Should the blood glucose levels fall further than this, then loss of consciousness will surely result.

When your blood levels are above the upper limit of 150 mg, then you are said to be hyperglycemic (high blood sugar). Higher levels than 150mg can result in diabetes which can translate to diabetes development which comes with a horde of complications e.g. kidney failure, blindness among others. It is imperative that you strive to keep your blood glucose levels at a manageable level always as the alternative is too grim to contemplate.

A variety of tests exist that help to ascertain the level of blood sugar in our bodies.

These include:

• Fasting blood sugar test- used to ascertain glucose levels typically after an eating abstinence lasting several hours. The results are guaranteed to be free of food factors. Should the result be in the range of 70-99 then you are good to go. They are usually carried out in the morning.

• 2-hour postprandial blood sugar test- applied 2 hours after taking food. If the result is 70 and 99mg, then your blood glucose levels are quite okay.

• Random blood glucose testing- It tests sugar levels in the body throughout the entire day. This is irrespective of exercises, sleep activities or food consumption. Acceptable range with this test is between 70 and 135 mg.

• Glucose tolerance test- The patient is made to have a drink that is principally glucose. The objective being to ascertain the body's reaction to a sudden influx of high glucose amounts.

My name is Michele Adams. I love to write about health, hair, fashion, and more. I wrote this article today to talk about diabetic health. If you monitor your Blood Glucose Levels and watch your diabetes you can live a long healthy life. For more information about Diabetes and your health visit - Blood Glucose Levels

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Normal Blood Glucose Levels - What Are Normal Blood Sugar Levels?

What are normal blood glucose levels is a concern for those who might have a blood sugar issue or have been diagnosed with Pre-Diabetes or Type 2 Diabetes. Hopefully, you are lucky enough to have your blood sugar levels under control. If you or someone you know is having problems in this area, read on. We will explore what normal blood sugar levels are.

What is glucose? Glucose is a form of sugar that travels through the human blood stream. It usually enters your body in the form of foods high in carbohydrates. You can regulate glucose levels through the body's use of insulin and glucagon hormones which are produced by the pancreas. The problem arises if the pancreas is unable to generate the proper amount of glucose to keep your body in check.

Normal blood glucose levels typically register between 70 and 150 mg. The level in someone's body will change during the day and is affected by many factors including what time of day it is as well as what your most recent meal was (or was not). There is danger associated with levels either below or above the range. If your level is below 70, you most likely have a condition called hypoglycemia or more commonly called low blood sugar. Other symptoms of hypoglycemia include lack of energy, focus and irritability. You can even lose consciousness if your glucose is too low.

If the level of sugar in your blood is over 150 mg, then you are considered to be hyperglycemic, also more commonly known as having high blood sugar. If you have persistent high sugar, then you are at risk for diabetes which can result in serious organ damage to your eyes, kidneys and other organs. If you do not have normal blood glucose levels, you should take all necessary steps to reverse the condition.

There are a variety of tests available to check for glucose levels.

1) The "fasting blood sugar" test evaluates glucose levels after a fast - typically 8 hours long. This is why most people take this test the first thing in the morning (where their blood sugar would not be impacted by eating, drinking). If the test results for the blood fall between 70 and 99, the patient is considered to be at a normal range.

2) The "2 hour postprandial" blood glucose test evaluates sugar levels exactly two hours after eating. If the results for this blood test are between 70 and 99, the patient is considered to have normal glucose levels.

3) Random blood glucose testing tests sugar levels all through the entire day - regardless of food consumption, activity, exercise or sleep. For this test, the blood glucose result level should fall between 70 and 135.

4) The glucose tolerance test is performed where the patient drinks a liquid that is mostly made up of glucose. The purpose of the test is to see the blood's reaction immediately after a high amount of sugar is consumed and then released into the blood.

CLICK HERE to learn how to maintain normal blood glucose levels.

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The Pregnant Woman and Normal Blood Glucose Levels

The following article makes reference to an extensive gestational diabetes study reported in February, 2010 that concluded the currently accepted gestational diabetes blood sugar levels are not safe for baby and mother and that they should be revised downwards.

Current recommended blood glucose target levels during pregnancy

Meanwhile, for the purpose of this piece, cited here are current gestational blood sugar levels obtained from publications of the National Diabetes Information Clearinghouse, a department of the National Institute of Health, and from publications of the Canadian Diabetes Association's Clinical Practice Guidelines for 2008. The values for the United States are given in mg/dL, meaning milligrams per deciliter, while most other countries use mmol/L, meaning millimols per liter.

    * Fasting blood sugar levels should not be above 95 mg/dL, which is 5.3 mmol/L
    * One hour after a meal they should not be above 140 mg/dL, which is 7.8 mmol/L
    * Two hours after a meal they should not be above 120 mg/dL, which is 6.7 mmol/L

The Canadian Diabetes Association source states that the A1c level for most pregnant women should not be greater than 6%. A1c levels provide a measure of blood sugars over the prior approximately 12- week period.

A1c levels are determined by a laboratory analysis after a blood sample is taken by a registered clinic. Other daily blood sugar readings can be obtained from a self-administered blood test using an appropriate blood glucose meter.

There is much that a newly pregnant woman must be aware of in taking care of her own health and that of her developing child and high on that list would be the choices of nutritious foods.

One of the considerations regarding specific food choices for the pregnant woman, is to take into account the effect of a food item on her blood glucose levels, not something that most people are aware of, but with the growing incidence of diabetes in our world today, it pays to know and understand some of the risks that higher than normal blood sugar levels can pose. And it could be easy for the symptoms of gestational diabetes to go unnoticed as the body is going through many changes as the pregnancy progresses.

The condition of persistent elevated blood glucose levels that occurs in about 5 to 7 percent of pregnant women is a temporary form of diabetes called Gestational Diabetes that ends after a the birth of the baby. Although not common compared with normal diabetes, the condition is being diagnosed in increasing numbers and for some of those who do become diabetic it does increase the risk of developing, later in life, the full version of diabetes known as Type-2 and also increases the risk of developing cardiovascular disease after pregnancy.

Also, some women already suffer from diabetes when they become pregnant and those diabetics definitely face their own set of special problems that carry serious implications for the mother-to-be and for her fetus during pregnancy and perhaps for the longer term beyond, after the birth of the baby. In these cases, the medical professionals are well prepared with established guidelines to monitor and care for the diabetic who becomes pregnant and this lessens the risk to mother and baby and helps prevent the development of diabetic complications during pregnancy.

Important new conclusions that currently accepted blood sugar levels are not safe for baby and mother

In late February of this year, 2010, it was reported by the Northwestern University News Center in Chicago that an extensive study by a panel of 50 experts, coordinated by researchers at the university's Feinberg School of Medicine, concluded that the blood sugar levels considered normal should be revised downward, that currently accepted levels are not safe. This would increase the number of pregnant women facing the possibility of gestational diabetes by two or three times.

The study, to be published in the March issue of the American Diabetes Association's magazine Diabetes Care, involved medical histories of over 23 thousand women from nine countries. The lead author of the study, Boyd Metzger, M.D. a professor of Metabolism and Nutrition at the Feinberg School, said "Our research represents an examination of the risks and a consensus about how high a level of risks needs to reach before a diagnosis is made and treatment should be considered."

Anyone with diabetes must be under the care of a doctor
Health authorities report a growing incidence globally of gestational diabetes and even in the United States I have seen reference to numbers suggesting they are almost double the percentage of 7 percent cited above. As in all forms of diabetes and pre-diabetes, the individual must be under the care of a doctor and supported by an effective health care team. Excellent pre-natal healthcare and advice is readily available to most in North America, as it is in most other developed nations of the world.

Early diagnosis and treatment of even the mildest form of gestational diabetes is important because it can help prevent or lower the possibility of more serious complications developing later. Treatment will most likely involve the adoption of suitable dietary plan for all meals and snacks together with an exercise routine - which is usually beneficial in all pregnancies - and maybe the monitoring of daily glucose levels by a simple self-administered blood test using a hand held meter the same way that regular diabetics do.

We hear nowadays of so many larger babies being born and the need for caesarian surgery. And gestational diabetes, if not treated properly, leads to larger babies, sometime already obese at birth, with often complicated deliveries and a higher risk of birth defects and long-term health problems.

The wonders, the thrills and the excitement in the miracle of the birth of a baby should not be impaired with the complications of gestational diabetes, every necessary step should be taken to prevent or minimize the condition. It is all about maintaining normal blood glucose levels

Author's Comment:

I am a diabetic, writing from the perspective of a patient for my fellow diabetics and others. So for more information on a wide range of diabetes related subject matter, please check out the List of Topics provided on my blogsite by clicking on the following links for information about Normal Blood Sugar Levels and considerations of a Diabetic Menu Plan. At the end of both pages there is a link to the full "List of Topics". Worth a visit, check it out!

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10 Foods That Lower Blood Sugar Level

Here is a short list of foods to lower blood sugar level of diabetics. To achieve normal blood sugar levels is the prime aim of the treatment of diabetes. This is the only thing that assures 10 Foods That Lower Blood Sugar Level

healthier and longer lives of diabetics.

Nuts: Though it was previously assumed that nuts are not good as they are high in their fat content but now it has been proven that nuts contain only healthier fats. This healthier fats help to lower the insulin resistance. The fat content of the nuts help to lower down blood sugar by keeping the person away from binge eating. Few examples of healthier nuts are


Brazil Nuts


Macadamia Nuts




There are some who have allergies towards some nuts; so it is advisable to stay away from those kinds. However those diabetics who do not have this problem must, take the nuts as regular part of their diets.

Avocado: Avocado is a fruit that carries healthy fat content. It raises the sensitivity towards insulin and lower downs the blood sugar levels. It is generally used in sauces, dips and spreads. The fruit is rich in dietary fiber that helps to slow down the increase in blood sugar level soon after big meals. It is a tasty, healthy and convenient food that helps to lower down the level of blood sugar.

Sweet Potatoes: The high fiber content of sweet potato has made them much lower in their glyceimc index value when compared with regular potatoes. The component carotenoids of sweet potatoes are powerful antioxidant and renders positive effect on the level of insulin. However one must not negate the healthy content of sweet potatoes by dipping them in sugary sauces.

Cinnamon: It is a common spice that carries a natural component that have the ability to reduce the level of bad cholesterol and make the insulin more effective. Cinnamon is high in its fiber content and is a rich and natural source of magnesium. It helps in controlling the level of blood glucose.

Onions: The flavonoid as well as sulfur content of onion causes a significant reduction on the level of blood sugar. It also increases the level of HDL. It is believed that it helps to prevent the onset of cancer because of its high antioxidant content.

Garlic: It is another food that lowers blood sugar level. It increases the production of insulin as well as insulin sensitivity. Garlic contains antioxidant properties that promote a healthier lipid profile.

Flax seed: Flax seed is not only rich in magnesium but also in lignans. Both of these components help to lower down blood sugar level. Flaxseed is also a vulnerable source of Omega 3 fatty acids. It helps to control blood sugar levels. An added advantage of flaxseed is that it aids to block the negative effect of estrogen. It also helps to delay and prevent the onset of estrogen related cancers.

Cherries: Cherries not only contain antioxidant but at the same time help to reduce the blood sugar level. Cherries are naturally rich in the fiber content and low in calories. The rich antioxidant level of cherries aids to protect heart diseases, cancer and diabetes.

Barley: It is a healthy substitute of rice for the diabetics. It has cholesterol lowering content that is also found in oats. It also significantly help to lower down the glycemic index of other food items added into it. Barley helps to give the fuller feeling to diabetics.

Lemons: Lemon is full of vitamin C. It carries limonene and rutin. The acidic property of lemon reduces the glycemic index of the food. It also contain anticancer and cholesterol lowering properties.

If you want to have a free diabetic meal plan specifically designed according to your personal requirement check List Of Foods For Diabetics To Eat. This list will help to design a meal plan that has the ability to control the Signs Of Diabetes in a way that you'll end saying where is my blood sugar?

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