Archive | HEALTH AND WELLNESS

The Top Three Wellness Trends to Kick Off 2020 the Right Way

As 2020 kicks off and we start this new decade many wellness trends have appeared as more people resolve to take care of themselves. These trends show that personal wellness is much more than going for a jog every week or cutting back on the amount of ice cream you eat, which the average American consumes 28.5 times every year. If you’re looking to start this new decade right and focus on your own personal wellness, here are the top three popular trends that you need to be aware of.

Massage and Acupuncture

Firstly, massage and acupuncture are a potentially beneficial combination that everyone should take note of. Stress can build up and take a toll on the body leaving you with pain and tight muscles that make daily activities uncomfortable. Worst of all this stress can also contribute to headaches and poor moods that add to the stress and further perpetuate the cycle! Currently, 14 million Americans are using or have used acupuncture. Here’s how massage and acupuncture can help.

  • Encouraging Healthy Energy Acupuncture has long been used to treat neck and back pain, as well as headaches, nausea, insomnia, anxiety, and depression. This is because acupuncture helps promote natural healing which can then improve how the body functions. By stimulating specific places — acupoints — proper energy flow can be encouraged throughout the body which can in turn ease pain and discomfort, and improve sleep and digestive functions. Massage can work in a similar way to stimulate these points and release tension to promote better circulation.
  • Relieving Chronic Pain With six in every 10 Baby Boomers expected to be managing a chronic condition by 2030, solutions such as massage and acupuncture will be more important than ever. While both are great for relieving chronic pain, acupuncture can be used in places where massage would be uncomfortable. That said, massages can be great on their own for relaxing overtaxed and tight muscles. Some studies have even found that massages can help reduce inflammation and boost the overall immune response making your body more effective at keeping itself well.
  • The Sense of Wellness While both have tangible physical benefits that can be felt and experienced, they also can work on a mental level when it comes to soothing stress and making you feel more centered and calm. By encouraging energy flow, acupuncture can encourage feelings of stamina and emotional release making you feel more content and alert. Both of these options can be used as powerful healing methods that, with continued use, can help you feel healthier, calmer, and happier in 2020.

Medical Body Modifications

More specifically one such modification that acts in a way similar to acupuncture: the daith piercing. These piercings have been growing in popularity as an alternative way of mitigating migraines both in frequency and in severity. A daith piercing involves piercing the innermost cartilage of the ear and usually is maintained with the use of a clicker, curved barbell, or captive bead rings.

This type of modification is usually sought out by those who have seen an impact in their migraines with the use of acupuncture and see the daith piercing as a more permanent solution. This is because the piercing itself goes through the place there the acupuncture needle is usually placed. By replicating this with a permanent piercing, the hope is that the benefits of acupuncture treatment can be longer-lasting and more significant. While there haven’t been very many scientific studies on the effects, in a survey released by MigrainePal, 47% of those polled say that they have experienced a lower number of migraines after obtaining a daith piercing, and 50% reported the piercing reducing the severity of migraines when they did occur.

If you’re looking for a way to reduce migraines in 2020 a daith piercing might be for you; however, you could try using acupuncture first to see how the less permanent form of control works for you. That said if you do choose to seek out this type of piercing, know that the healing process can take around 2 – 3 months on average, and taking care of the piecing via regular cleanings is imperative. It’s also recommended that you speak with your piercer to ensure it is fully healed before you switch out the jewelry or stop any aftercare.

The Rise of Sober Culture

Alcohol is often put on a pedestal by many who see it as a way to unwind or let loose; however, a new movement is on the rise, one that aims to put the benefits of sobriety into the limelight. Ruby Warrington, a British writer and founder of Club Soda NYC, an alcohol-free event series, states in her book Sober Curious that reducing alcohol consumption is “the next logical step in the wellness revolution.” While the liver is the second largest organ after the skin, Warrington is on to something when she links lowered alcohol consumption with wellness. Overdrinking is a problem that many Americans face and addiction is something that is easy to fall into. An article released by Medical News Today in 2019 states that consumption of alcohol has risen globally by 70%, a statistic that is too large to ignore. The short-term risks of excessive drinking can include:

  • Injury from falls, burns, drownings, and motor vehicle accidents.
  • Increased violence, suicide, and sexual assault risks.
  • Alcohol poisoning.
  • Increased risky behaviors such as unprotected sex.
  • Increased risk of stillbirth, miscarriage, and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders.

If those weren’t enough, the long-term effects of excessive alcohol consumption can include:

  • A greater risk of heart disease, liver disease, high blood pressure, and digestive problems.
  • A greater risk of cancer in the throat, mouth, esophagus, breast, and colon.
  • Increased memory and learning problems that can include poor school and work performance and a higher dementia risk.
  • Increased risk of developing anxiety and depression.
  • The potential for family issues, unemployment, and loss of productivity.
  • Increased risk of alcoholism and alcohol dependence which further contributes to the above.

What Ruby Warrington is advocating for is not the abstinence of alcohol forever and always, a glass of wine once and a while with dinner is not frowned upon, it is the dependence on alcohol as a prerequisite for having a good time and being happy. While some of this is ingrained in us by Hollywood culture, the wellness movement now is challenging how we think about drinking.

Consider how much alcohol you consume regularly and see how much you can cut back. If you find that you’re struggling to go without, it could be a sign that you’ve become too dependent. In order to achieve a better sense of wellness in 2020, look seriously into the sober culture and see if it can make a difference in your life.

A New Decade, A New You

With 2020 getting into full swing, these three wellness trends are something to consider if you want to feel better and take better care of yourself as a whole. Used together or separately, you could see benefits from these trends such as a stronger immune system, which can help you recover from a cold more quickly than the average 10 days. Acupuncture and regular massages can help you unwind from the day-to-day and help keep your stress down at a manageable level. Those suffering from migraines could also benefit from acupuncture, and by extension, daith piercings, as a way to manage painful migraines and decrease them in frequency and intensity. Furthermore, cutting back on the amount of alcohol you consume can help you stay focused, take care of your body, and discover that you can, in fact, have a great night out without being under the influence. Each of these steps can contribute to making you a healthier and more wellness conscious individual ready to tackle the new decade without harmful habits.

3 Surprising Things That Could Be Causing Your Hair Loss and Natural Solutions To Prevent It

3 Surprising Things That Could Be Causing Your Hair Loss and Natural Solutions To Prevent It

Anyone can have pattern baldness if they have the genes for it. In fact, the average person loses anywhere between 50 to 100 hairs a day. But hair loss isn’t always a genetic problem.

There are many things you could be doing in your daily life to cause hair loss. From your workout regimen to new medication, here are a few surprising things that could be causing your hair to thin and all-natural solutions to preventing hair loss in the future.

The wrong hair products

Hair products that cause issues for your hair are nothing new. Product liability cases make up 5% of personal injury cases in the United States.

Many hair products contain toxic chemicals that don’t provide any long-term benefits for the health of your hair. The best way to prevent hair loss is to avoid products with these chemicals altogether, such as those with sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS). This is a chemical foaming agent often found in hand soaps that can irritate the eyes and skin.

Instead, invest in organic hair care products. You can determine which products are organic by paying attention to the ingredients on the bottle. Keep an eye out for products made with natural ingredients like shea butter, omega-3 fatty acids, and calendula to increase your hair’s protein production and keep it healthy.

Your workout regimen

With less than 5% of adults participating in 30 minutes of physical activity every day, it may seem like a cruel and unusual punishment for hair loss to be caused by working out. But it turns out that going hard at the gym for too long can actually be pretty bad for you.

Hair loss is only one of the potential problems you could be facing if you work out for more than a few hours every day. You could also be damaging some of 650 muscles in your body because you’re not giving them enough time to recover.

If you’re less of a gym rat and more of a gym gerbil, consider cutting a few hours of gym time every week.

You can also help prevent hair loss naturally by changing up your diet. As hair follicles are made of a protein called keratin, consider incorporating more protein into your diet with eggs, nuts, beans, peas, and low-fat dairy products. This additional protein can also give your tired muscles a much-needed boost. Diets with raw vegetables and herbs, like the Mediterranean diet, can also help prevent hair loss.

New medications

New medications can have a big impact on your body, including hair loss. Two types of hair loss are especially common with medications: anagen effluvium and telogen effluvium.

Anagem effluvium is common in cancer patients receiving chemotherapy. Telogen effluvium can occur within two to four months of taking a new medication. Talk to your doctor if you notice more hair loss than usual. Inquire about homeopathic solutions to your condition that are more in line with an all-natural lifestyle.

At home, you can also help give your hair a leg up by taking natural supplements that promote hair growth, such as ginseng. Even applying products such as coconut oil and olive oil directly to your scalp can provide an all-natural boost to your hair’s health. Remember to avoid hairstyles that pull at your scalp, like tight braids and ponytails, and chemical treatments that can damage your hair. If you want to dye your hair, ask your stylist about organic hair dyes that are free of harmful chemicals.

There are many things that can impact your health and your hair. Try out some of these eco-friendly tips for hair loss prevention today. If your hair loss persists, and especially if you’re experiencing other symptoms, be sure to talk to your doctor.

6 Health Screenings That Could Save Your Life!

NOTE FROM SWEET GREENS: Thank you supporting the companies that keep Sweet Greens in business.
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Medical screenings or tests are examinations that are used by physicians in order to find illnesses and health conditions before any symptoms or signs appear. Such medical screenings or tests can become lifesavers in the event that they locate a serious health condition. Medical screenings or tests are gender or age specific because some ailments only attack certain groups of people. The following tips will help to lead people in the right direction.

A Pap smear is a test given to females in order to inspect cervical cells for abnormalities. These particular tests are important for women aged 21 and older. Abnormal cervical cells that are taken, being kept in a biorepository, might be found to be cervical cancer. Women that are between the ages of 21 and 29 should visit their gynecologist every three years in order to have a pap smear test done. For women that are aged 30 to 65, it is recommended that they have a pap smear test done every five years if the test is completed with a human papillomavirus test.

Mammograms are health screens that x-ray the breast of men and women in order to identify the presence of breast cancer. Individuals should begin this health screening by the age of 50. If an individual has a family history of breast cancer then it is recommended to start having the health screens done by the age of 40. Mammograms can help to save a life in the event that they catch images of cancerous cell. Early detection means that a patient can start early treatment, which helps to increase the chances of beating the disease and stop the cancer from spreading. Patients should receive mammogram screenings every other year or annually. The frequency of the screening will depend on the person’s family history and also if abnormalities were found in the health screening.

There are two important health screenings that can help to identify heart disease. A stress test monitors the heart while the patient is engaging in a number of exercises. A stress test can help to show the existence of blood flow problems. The more vigorous the exercise gets, the harder the heart will have to work. A hard-working heart is able to pump blood faster and if there are any abnormalities within the heart, the stress test will be able to reveal it. The second health screening that helps to monitor one’s heart is an electrocardiogram or EKG. This screening is different from the stress test because a patient does not have to engage in any exercises. The EKG has the ability to monitor the beats of the heart. An abnormal heartbeat can reveal dangerous heart conditions such as arrhythmia or a heart attack. EKGs and stress tests should be given to individuals that have a family history of heart disease, chest pains, shortness of breath, or a decrease in one’s ability to perform everyday activities.

A fifth health screen test is a colonoscopy. A colonoscopy can help to reveal colon cancer. Colon cancer is the third most dangerous cancer in the United States. In order to battle this deadly disease, physicians urge patients who are over the age of 50 years old to have the procedure done. Patients may want to have this procedure done earlier if there is a family history of colon cancer or if the patient has had inflammatory bowel disease for more than 8 years. Colonoscopy testing should be done every 10 years, as long as no abnormalities are found.

Finally, a prostate-specific antigen test or PSA test is a health screen that can help to reveal early signs of prostate cancer. This particular screening measures prostate-specific antigen, a protein created in the prostate gland. This particular test is recommended for men that are 50 or older. If a male has a family history of prostate cancer then it is recommended that the screening is done earlier. It should also be noted that African-American men are at a bigger risk of developing the disease so they should begin testing at the age of 45.

All of the above health screenings should be taken seriously due to the fact that they can help to save a life. These tests can help to identify health threats and help you to begin early treatment.

On the Go this Summer? Grab Stonyfield!

I don’t know about you, but for me, summertime is family time. We love going out together to walk the dogs, splashing in the pool, heading on a beach adventure, or simply riding our bikes down the Lake Trail. Biking is a big thing in our family, especially in summertime. We ride them everywhere – even to do our shopping!

Because we’re out and about so much, we need on-the-go snacks that are easy to transport, healthy, and (of course) delicious! Enter Stonyfield Organic Kids Pouches. Stonyfield’s pouches are lightweight, portable, and resealable. And, while I know it says “kids” on the pouch, I don’t mind telling you that I enjoy snacking on them from time to time, too!

Stonyfield’s are a great option for the whole family for many reasons:

  • they’re made with 25-35% less sugar than the leading kids yogurt
  • they have live active cultures to help keep your family *ahem* regular
  • you’ve got so many delicious flavors to choose from
  • and they’re USDA Organic certified, Non-GMO Project verified, made with milk from pasture-raised cows, Kosher certified, and gluten-free!

Right now, we are loving the strawberry, but, no matter which one we toss in our backpacks, everyone is snack-satisfied!

If you’re heading out on a bike adventure this summer or just lounging at the pool or beach, pick up some Stonyfield’s for your journey. And don’t forget the sunscreen! I’m currently obsessed with Badger Balm’s Broad Spectrum SPF 30. It’s a mineral-based sunscreen that is safe, effective, and smells great, too. And, just like Stonyfield, it’s B-Corp Certified. That means they’ve been third party certified to meet rigorous environmental and sustainability standards, along with accountability and transparency. Hooray! 

If you’re looking for a product that’s both earth- and kid-friendly, look no further than Stonyfield’s. Your whole family will love them, and they’ll make any trip you take – be it by bike, boat, or car – so much more pleasant! Which flavor of Stonyfield’s is YOUR favorite?    

 

This post is sponsored by Stonyfield – all opinions expressed are my own.

How to Prevent Your Family From Getting Sick During the Transition to Spring

If you have a family, you probably know how important it is to make sure that everyone stays healthy throughout the year. When one person becomes sick in the family, things tend to spiral out of control. Your kids might have to miss school, you might have to miss work, or your whole family might have to miss out on major events.

The change from winter to spring can be rough on many people. Allergies are on the rise and sickness is in the air. To prevent your family from coming down with any illness this spring, there are many things that can be done.

Rose Medical Groups suggests making time for regular exercise. You might not like the idea of getting off the couch and heading to the gym, but exercise can really help maintain your health and prevent coming down with an illness.

Now, you don’t necessarily have to go to the gym in order to get your exercise in. If you have kids, take them to a trampoline park or rent a bounce house. A mere 10 minutes of jumping is a better cardiovascular workout than 30 minutes of running. It’s a really easy way to make getting out and getting active fun, without forcing your entire family through the doors of a health club.

Drinking plenty of water is another key to staying healthy during this time of year. Get your family in the habit of drinking eight to 10 eight-ounce glasses of water every day. The water can help get rid of your body’s bad toxins and can help prevent any cracks from developing on your skin. Children especially should be drinking plenty of water each day if they want to maintain their skin’s youthfulness.

Spring cleaning is one of the easiest things you can do to help prevent your family from getting sick when the seasons change. Go through your home and dust the corners that haven’t seen the light of day in about six months, get rid of any boxes you neglected to throw out after the holidays, and use steam to kill all germs and bacteria hiding in your carpets. Steam has been said to kill 99% of common household germs and bacteria like E.Coli, salmonella, and staph, as well as dust mites and bed bugs.

According to NBC 2, spring cleaning is also the perfect excuse to get rid of any expired or unwanted medication you have in your home, and to do so properly. You can even bring the medications to a take-back program to properly dispose of the unwanted pills. They also suggest using your spring cleaning time as a period of making sure your home’s first aid kit is up-to-date and that all of your emergency contacts are updated in your cell phone.

Taking any of the steps listed in this article can help prevent your family and household from coming down with any springtime illnesses.