A good night’s sleep is essential so our bodies could properly function.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Smartphones need to be plugged in and charged, humans need to sleep. But it’s hard to get a good night’s rest in this day and age. Office hours are long, our smartphones are constantly beeping with social media notifications, and even our books emit blue light that prevents our brains from releasing melatonin.
A study published at the beginning of the year was saying that most American adults are sleep deprived. Another one mentioned that the less you sleep, the more you’ll eat. The lack of Zs can cause a lot of long-time damage on a person’s body, but some find it hard to get a good night’s rest.
There are a few tricks that might help you get a good night’s rest without resorting to medication or other artificial or chemical substances that could ultimately do as much damage to the body as sleep deprivation.
Since sleep is just another bodily function, most of the advice doctors give to their snooze-deprived patients are the same as those given to the people who wish to live a healthier life.
Daily exercising will not only help you catch those elusive Zs, but it will also keep your bowel movement regular, keep your heart young and healthy and help you look like a million dollars.
And ladies, exercising and sleeping are the best ways to ensure a healthy, glowing skin.
Careful with the Coffee
If you want to get a good night’s rest, you will have to be careful with the coffee. It’s okay to drink your morning cup of Joe, maybe even an afternoon one with your lunch, but don’t bring him to dinner or else you’ll be counting sheep all night long.
Also, stay away from sugar or sugary products right before bed because they tend to give a sudden boost of energy to the body.
Lay Down on the Technology
There’s a reason humans sleep during the night. When the light begins to fade, our brains are wired to release melatonin, a substance that makes us feel sleepy and helps us get a good night’s rest. When morning comes, and light appears, the brain knows it’s got enough rest, and it will stop secreting it.
But electronic devices emit blue light which tricks our brains into thinking that it is still daylight outside, and it needs to be alert. Doctors recommend people to stop using phones, tablets and other such technology three hours before snoozing. But if you’re a tech junkie, one hour is enough.
Routine Is Healthy
There are a lot of studies out there who claim that a regular sleep schedule is beneficial to the mind and body.
Bedtime is not just for growing kids; it’s a rule that all functional adults should follow and respect.
You can also try to read something before going to bed, or write an entry in your journal. When it comes to a good night’s rest, anything that is healthy for the body will also help you with your missing Zs.
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According to the latest research, back pain can be cured by meditation and mindfulness.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – According to the new research, you can ease back pain with mindfulness. Of course, the treatment is recommended to those who have lower back pains that were not explained by their physicians.
Alternative medicine has been a subject of debate for a long time. And for a couple of years now, more and more people are starting to turn to this branch of medicine looking for answers that the traditional approach couldn’t provide.
A team of researchers from the Group Health Seattle Research Institute discovered that almost half of their patients could ease back pain with mindfulness. Daniel Cherkin, the lead author of the study, believes that meditation can help patients where traditional medicine failed them.
Stress reduction based on mindfulness (MSBR) and therapy based on cognitive behavior (CBT) were the two methods used by the team of scientists in order to determine whether or not psychological well-being is linked to a decreased level of back pain in the lower regions.
MSBR is a technique that focuses on the sensations, emotions and thoughts of the patients through meditation and yoga. CBT is a more pragmatic approach to dealing with pain in the sense that it uses a combination of medical and behavioral information. Basically, it teaches the patients what pain is, how it’s related to day to day activities and how it can be managed using individual tools.
The team decided to focus on back pain, notably pain in the lower regions in the back because this type of affliction is often left unexplained by doctors. This causes the patients to feel stressed, tired, afraid and even irritable. They feel like their symptoms are not validated like their doctors left them alone to deal with it.
In order to test the potential of MSBR and CBT treatments, the Seattle researchers gathered a sample of 342 patients and randomly assigned them to three groups. The first was used as a control group, and the participants received the usual pain coping tools, the second was assigned MSBR treatment and the third was introduced to CBT.
After six months in which the patients received regular therapy, the scientists discovered that the MSBR group was faring the best, with 61 percent of volunteers showing meaningful improvement. The BCT group was not very far behind with 58 percent of pain-free participants, and the control group registered a 44 percent success rate.
It seems that you can actually ease back pain with mindfulness, so next time pills don’t work, try striking a yoga pose and clearing your mind.
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While people are losing faith in God, they are still holding on to the belief that Heaven exists.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – According to the latest studies, Americans prefer believing in Heaven rather than God. It seems that the millennials are more prone to dismiss the existence of God, than any of the previous generations, but they still hang on to the idea of Heaven.
Reverend Barkley Thompson, the dean of a Christ Church Cathedral, declared that younger generations, especially millennials, are less inclined to follow religion.
And if Reverend Thompsons’s church is seeing fewer visitors seeing as it also harbors the Center for Prayer and Spirituality that offers a more non-traditional religious experience, like tai chi, yoga, meditation, sacred art and sacred movement, just imagine how empty other, more classic churches are beginning to be.
Ever since the ‘80s, Americans started gradually losing faith in the mystical entity that delves in the sky. The number of religious individuals was reduced by more than half in the last 35 years, and the ones who pray are even more reduced. Moreover, the percentage of United States citizens who never uttered a prayer in their life has reached a new, maximum peak.
By analyzing a sample of over 58,000 adults, the researchers discovered that the number of individuals who believe in the existence of God, pray to him, attend the religious services meant to spread his word and consider the Bible as being the real deal, true Christian history, rather than literature, are higher than in any other decade.
Furthermore, a third of the surveyed people consider themselves as being “secular,” while a fifth opts to describe themselves as being “not spiritual.”
It seems that the younger generations are more inclined to pass on any religious beliefs. While the percentage of young adults with ages between 18 and 22 who didn’t affiliate themselves with any religion in the ‘70s was just a little over 10 percent, things have significantly changed.
The survey discovered that 36 percent of those belonging to the same age group now renounced the idea of pertaining to any religion. Additionally, in the 1970s only four percent of people were prayer-free, now, 28 percent of the surveyed individuals admitted to never having prayed.
But it seems that Americans prefer believing in Heaven rather than God. Even though the number of people losing faith in religion or the existence of a higher being is rapidly decreasing, the survey showed that people still want to think that there is life after death.
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Betts’ theory goes against everything our parents and doctors have advised since the dawn of time.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Even though we have been told that it’s the most important meal of the day, one nutritionist is convinced breakfast is not mandatory. Relying on a small study, James Betts is trying to convince people that they are not obligated to wake up earlier just to sleepily stuff food under their nose.
There was an old saying that advised people eat breakfast, lunch and dinner like a king, common and, respectively, popper. The ancient words of wisdom were based on the idea that people should never skip the most important meal of the day, the morning one.
But one nutritionist is convinced breakfast is not mandatory. In order to prove his theory that people were led to believe such things only because of the continuous cereal, bacon, and eggs propaganda, he conducted a scientific study.
Betts gathered a sample of volunteers that he randomly divided into two groups. The first group would eat a 700 calories breakfast while the second only drank water and other fluids until lunch.
According to the results that he published in the Clinical Nutrition American Journal, the participants who skipped the most important meal of the day had a tendency to eat a bit more during lunch. But they never made up for the 700 calories that they missed on in the morning.
Also, it seems that breakfast skippers were not in danger of gaining extra weight, even though the morning meal eaters somehow managed to burn more calories.
There are still some variables that the study did not take into consideration. For example, Betts did not mention if skipping breakfast affected cognitive awareness or mood. Furthermore, it did not look at the caffeine effects because participants who skipped breakfast probably drank a cup of coffee or tea in the morning.
While the study does draw valid conclusions, it only focuses on the weight gaining myth. But doctors are still advising people to eat something in the morning because breakfast doesn’t only ensure a steady weight.
Eating something in the morning helps you have a proper digestion. Also, when it comes to meals, routine is essential. When the intake is regular, then the outtake follows its example. This regularity helps people maintaining not only a healthy lifestyle but also keep the organic machine that is our body functioning at maximum capacity.
And even though one nutritionist is convinced breakfast is not mandatory, there are still plenty more doctors out there who would disagree with him.
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David Wilson declared he is not sorry for what happened with the teenager.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – An HIV-positive man raped 2-year-old and impregnated a 14-year-old. When questioned about his deeds, he said that he is not sorry for the sex, but regrets the fact that he passed the HIV to the girls. The court sentenced him to life in prison.
Gruesome stories are told about men condemned to life in jail after being accused of child rape. As the legend goes, a lot of them end up spending little time behind bars because other inmates help them achieve a significantly shorter lifespan.
If the stories are real, than the future colleagues of David Wilson won’t be very sympathetic when they hear his life’s story and the reason that landed him in jail.
After his drug-abusing sister had moved away, Wilson was left in charge of taking care of his niece. The 34-year-old man left in charge of the 2-year-old infant did atrocious things to the toddler. His actions were so cruel that they left an entire nation in awe.
Wilson repeatedly raped the little girl. The sexual abuse was so intense that doctors were forced to perform reconstruction surgery on the developing genital parts of the toddler. And apart from raping her, the man also infected the child with HIV, gonorrhea and chlamydia.
Since the immunity system of a two years old is not as efficient as that of a male adult, the sexually transmitted diseases that the man bestowed upon the child significantly affected her weakened organism. So aside from being charged with multiple accounts of sexual assault, the man should be accused of seriously endangering the life of the toddler.
But his deeds are worse. The HIV positive man not only abused his own niece, but he also infected and impregnated 14 years old.
The girl, whose identity was not disclosed, declared that they were in love. According to her testimony, Wilson would pick her up from school, park his car in an intimate location and proceed to have intercourse with the minor.
The last time this happened, they did not use protection. In consequence, the 14 years old teenager is now pregnant and HIV positive.
Wilson also stated that he is in love with the girl. He stated that he is not sorry for the sex because their love powered it. Instead, he is sorry for the fact that he infected her with several STDs.
An HIV-positive man raped 2-year-old and impregnated 14-year-old, and he is only sentenced to life in prison.
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Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and skipping it can cause obesity.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. And due to subjective reasons like a need for extra sleep, or weight watching a lot of people skip it. In order to ensure that all children benefit from a meal in the morning, a lot of US schools offer free breakfast for students, leading to other concerns such as a second meal. Researchers say that a double breakfast doesn’t cause obesity, but skipping it does.
According to the latest research, a double breakfast doesn’t cause obesity but skipping it does. So the parents who were concerned about the weight of their children should make sure the infants eat at least one meal in the morning.
There are roughly four million children in the United States who live in poor conditions. Most of the time they leave for school with an empty belly, and this significantly affects their ability to concentrate and learn.
In order to avoid these situations, a high number of schools in the US are giving out free breakfast meals to their students. But because the meals are offered to all of the children, there sometimes are cases of students eating two meals.
Even though they have breakfast at home, some children join their peers for a second breakfast at school. This led to a growing concern about childhood obesity, and some parents started to contest the free school meal system.
In order to prove to the overly worried parents that the hobbit regime was not affecting their children, a team of scientists at the Rudd Food Center in Connecticut conducted a study.
According to their results, double breakfast doesn’t cause obesity but skipping it does.
After analyzing a broad sample of children over the course of a few years, Marlene Schwartz’s team discovered that the students who sometimes ate two breakfasts instead of one were not in any danger of growing obese in the next year.
But those who skipped the most important meal of the day had significantly increased chances of gaining extra weight. Usually, it was the girls who refused to eat breakfast because, ironically, they claimed to watch their weight.
“Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, and dinner like a pauper.”
Thanks to Schwartz’s team parents can now rest assured that their children are not in any danger of becoming obese if they eat breakfast twice. The only concern should be that all students must benefit from the morning meal in order to achieve better academic performances.
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There is an enzyme in our brain that tells it when we ate enough food, or when we need more.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Imagine how efficient diet pills would be if they acted precisely in the area of the brain that dictates us whether to eat or not. Instant satiety would stop unnecessary cravings that fatten up our bodies. And the idea is not as farfetched as some may believe because researchers have recently found that OGT regulates food consumption.
A team of scientists decided to search for the memory switch in our brains. While experimenting on mice rats, they discovered that an enzyme named OGT regulates food consumption. In order to test the potential of the brain enzyme, they ran an experiment on a couple of mice.
The John Hopkins researchers eliminated the OGT enzyme from the brain of a sample of rodent subjects. In consequence, the lab rats started eating more than usual. Their minds were convinced that they didn’t eat enough food, so they munched non-stop.
Because of their insatiable appetites, the mice more than tripled their amounts of body fats three weeks into the experiment.
And because every discovery has a backstory that can be used as an anecdote, the medical breakthrough happened by accident.
The best part of the entire study is that the John Hopkins team of researchers actually started out studying memory centers in the brain when they stumbled upon the OGT.
It seems that the enzyme plays a crucial role in maintaining a connection between separate brain cells. The cells in question are the ones who signal satiety or hunger.
Even though the experiment was only done on rats, the OGT is presumed to have the same effect humans, because we also have the same type of cells in our brain.
According to one member of the team, they will continue to experiment on different animals before applying for human trials. If all tests turn out successful in all of the cases, the scientists will be able to start working on safe appetite controlling medication.
The enzyme OGT regulates food consumption by allowing the creation of a strong connection between individual brain cells. In the absence of the enzyme, the brain cannot figure out if we had ingested enough food, so it will still signal hunger.
In order to determine whether or not the enzyme works as good in stopping food cravings, the scientists injected another sample of mice with OGT. The extra quantities of the enzyme lead to a 25 percent drop in food intake.
Now that the researchers know that OGT regulates food consumption, they will be able to find new, safer ways of controlling appetite and removing those pesky food cravings.
Image source: www.wikimedia.org
Book are not only portals towards other worlds, but they are also a way of exercising our brain.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Reading is healthy for the mind and body, due to the fact that it not only improves brain functions, but it also relieves stress. So if you have a library card and a gym membership one sitting in your wallet, collecting dust, you might want to use the first one. Of course, a balanced lifestyle dictates in favor of the latter, too, but reading is the sport of the brain.
Brewing up a nice cup of tea, cozying up on the comfy chair or in the corner of a couch and opening up a good book is a perfect scenario for a lot of people. And it’s not just a relaxing way to spend an afternoon, according to various research, reading is healthy for the mind and the body.
Apart from expanding your knowledge and escaping into wondrous worlds, picking the minds of famous authors while playing made-up games or exploring the nine circles of Hell, there are several physical benefits of burying yourself in an excellent book.
Reading Reduced Stress
Reading a good book (and by good book we understand any work of fiction or non-fiction that is appealing to the reader) for more than six minutes can reduce the levels of stress with 68 percent.
Researchers at the Sussex University discovered that a person than engages in reading is able to shake off stress much quicker than a person who decides to walk it off or rock it off.
Reading Improves Your Memory
The director and president of the Haskins Laboratories at Yale, Ken Pugh, discovered that reading engages different parts of the human brain. When browsing the pages of a book, we wire up associative learning areas, as well as language, vision and a couple more.
This means that reading a book is as good for the brain as Dwayne Johnson’s regime is for his brick-tight muscles. Furthermore, researchers at the University of Chicago discovered a link between reading and slower memory decline rates.
Reading Makes You More Empathic
Researchers at Emory University found that the memory center is not the only part of the brain that we “work out” while reading.
It seems that reading makes you more empathic with other people because fiction allows you to develop and train your imagination to work better.
Re-Reading Is Therapeutic
All voracious readers have a book that they turn to whenever they have the blues or feel like life is not making sense anymore.
And there is a scientific explanation for that. It seems that re-reading a book at different times in a person’s life leads to a beneficial type of self-reflection. So why spend money on therapists when you can pick up that worn out copy of *insert favorite book title here*?
Reading Increases the Attention Span
Children benefit from this the most. Because stories have a traditional frame, it allows them to better grasp the notion of order. They learn to follow the natural steps of a situation, and they train their brains to focus on something for a longer period of time.
So next time you have some spare time to kill, just pick up a book. Reading is healthy for the mind and body and as Stephen King said,
““Books are the perfect entertainment: no commercials, no batteries, hours of enjoyment for each dollar spent. What I wonder is why everybody doesn’t carry a book around for those inevitable dead spots in life.”’
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The position of the neck in beauty parlor chairs is often wrong and can cause health damage.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Beauty has a price, and sometimes it turns out it is rather steep. From all the health hazards in the world, a woman experienced a stroke after visiting the salon to get her hair washed and styled.
Elizabeth Smith decided to treat herself to a salon visit two years ago. But she never realized for a second that her little trip to a San Diego beauty parlor will leave her terrified and awaiting the worse for the rest of her life.
Two weeks after Smith got her hair done, she started experiencing strange symptoms. The worse of all was when her head ached so hard that she became nauseous. The 48 years old woman was incapable of moving her legs, and the pounding noise in her head was only growing bigger.
It was only after she got rushed to the hospital that the woman was informed that she suffered a stroke. On one hand she was lucky because strokes are often fatal, or they can cause permanent damage more severe than what Smith is experiencing at the present moment.
After being admitted and treated, the doctors started looking at her history, trying to figure out what triggered the blood clot to form. It was only after she mentioned her visit to the San Diego salon that the doctors figured out what happened to her.
The “Beauty Parlor Syndrome” as they call it is a real disorder. The primary cause is the chair that hair stylists use to wash their clients’ hair. Because of the inclined angle of the special chair designed for hair washing, some customers who are shorter in stature or who suffer from arthritis can temporarily block their blood flow to the brain when standing in the awkward position.
When Smith’s neck was hyperextended by the salon worker that washed her hair, one of her vertebras sliced through her artery. This led to the formation of a clot that during the two weeks in which Smith was feeling fine traveled to her brain. When it got there, it triggered the stroke that almost ended her life.
Because the 48 years old woman experienced a stroke after visiting the salon, she is now suing the San Diego establishment. She is accusing them of negligence and asking the owner to cover her $250,000 medical bills.
Two years after the terrible incident occurred, Smith is still experiencing problems with her vision, strength and balance. The worst part is that the clot is still in her brain, and it could end her life any day.
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Rats are serious depression hazards and an underappreciated stressor.
(Mirror Daily, United States) – Rats are serious depression hazards, at least, that’s what researchers at John Hopkins believe. The ever-present rodents seem to affect the mental health of poor neighborhoods inhabitants more than the authorities first thought.
Rats are present in Baltimore almost all over town. And most people agree that they are disgusting and annoying and treat them like vermin that should be eradicated. But there are some people who actually get sad and anxious when they encounter the furry rodents.
Upon studying the response of several Baltimore inhabitants to the presence of rats, researchers from the Public Health Bloomberg School at John Hopkins concluded that rats are serious depression hazards.
According to the lead author of the study, Danielle German, a Department of Behavior, Society and Health assistant professor, inhabitants of poor neighborhoods are more likely to experience depression-like symptoms, anxiety and sadness when coming into contact with the rodents rather than disgust or annoyance.
The study reveals that rats are serious depression hazards and an underappreciated stressor for a particular part of the Baltimore community. Especially the neighborhoods that are considered to be populated by individuals with little to inexistent income sources.
When interviewing people from low-income communities, German and her team discovered that trash and rats were listed as the primary triggers of anxiety and health concerns. And the trash and rats were invoked as main stress factors by people who lived in neighborhoods affected by drug-dealing at street level, deteriorating and vacant housing and crime.
In order to get her results, German and her team interviewed 448 residents of said neighborhoods between 2010 and 2011. More than half of them claimed to see rats on a weekly basis; a third reported encountering them daily, and roughly thirteen percent declared living with them in the house.
According to the data provided by the researchers, more than 72 percent of the people who saw the rodents presence as being a concerning problem were more likely to battle depression or depression-like symptoms than those who lived in cleaner, rat-free neighborhoods.
But a couple of years have passed since German, and her team conducted the study, and in the meantime, the local authorities have begun implementing more efficient control measures. And since the inhabitants cited trash and rats, the most obvious choice consisted in the distribution of sturdier trash cans.
Sadie Gooch, a 70 years old resident of an affected neighborhood, is pleased with the garbage cans that she and her neighbors received. The lids are compact, and they don’t allow rats to get in there to search for shelter or food.
Not only are they a paramount of disease spreading and filth, but rats are serious depression hazards, too. That is why Baltimore authorities are working on new, better ways of exterminating the rodent population.
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