The Dangers of Holiday Binging

Posted on November 20, 2014

The Dangers of Holiday Binging

 If there's one thing that's most commonly associated with the better times of the holiday season, it's the food. We like to enjoy turkeys, hams, dressed up desserts, carb-heavy sides, and a load of other delights that are all filled with different rations of sugar, butter, and salt. These traditional foods are great for the winter, because they help us to pack on pounds that we can use to stave off the cold-- at least, that would be your approach if you didn't have the miracle of modern heating and gas.

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Three Foods for Thyroid Support

Posted on November 7, 2014

Your body gets much of the support it needs for its hormone production and gland regulation from your diet. The foods that you eat can greatly help or hinder the efficiency of your glands, which is why there are many different supplements on the market that are available to support their function. While these products can be helpful, your diet should also include the materials that your body will need to stay healthy.

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The Season for Ragweed

Posted on October 13, 2014

Those who haven't dealt with seasonal discomfort throughout their lives may be lulled into a false sense of security once the Fall arrives. After all, the wild blooms of the Spring and Summer have long since faded, and now is the time to watch the leaves turn, the weather grow colder, and all of those irritating pollen-producers to take a break for a few months and give us some peace. 

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The Quick Guide to Naps

Posted on October 7, 2014

You should already know that sleep is important to your mental health, and your physical health. Sleeping helps to regulate your hormone production, gives your body proper time to check and regulate its own systems, and also provide you with the much needed mental clarity that you will call upon to do your work for the day. What you may not know is having the occasional, or even better, regular, nap can have a lot of benefits. 

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Avoiding Bad Drinking Habits

Posted on September 25, 2014

Most people don't set out for the night thinking that it will be a wonderful morning of headaches, nausea, and general malaise, but that's exactly what happens when they ingest too much alcohol. Everyone knows the general rule of thumb, “Drink more water!”, but that isn't the whole story. Here are a few bad habits that can lead to drinking, and why you should avoid them.

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Pumpkins: Health Food in Disguise

Posted on September 7, 2014

From pumpkin pie, to pumpkin spiced lattes, this humble gourd has come to be associated with some of the most sugary and decadent deserts and delights, racing far beyond its squashier brethren to become one of America's most beloved holiday comfort food flavors. What you may not know about these once and future Jack-o-Lanterns is that they are actually jam packed with some very nutritious substances and minerals. From the flesh to the seeds, pumpkins are quite secretly healthy. Here's how.

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Getting to Know Milk Thistle

Posted on August 23, 2014

Milk thistle can prove to be a strong ally in the battle against a nasty hang over. When the sun comes up, and it's time to take care of life's many tasks the next day, there's few things that can be worse than the hangover. With milk thistle on your side, you may be able to overcome it, and seize the day without the headache, fatigue, nausea, and general discomfort that last night's drinking has left on your shoulders.

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Top 4 Causes of Stress

Posted on August 5, 2014

Stress is everywhere. From the moment you wake up to the blaring sound of an alarm clock, to the rush to get ready for work, take care of the children, or get everything in order for the day, you're practically bathed in potential stress factors before you even leave your home. For some of us, those sources of stress have become so commonplace that we barely even know that they're there. For others, every day holds new, surprising, and stressful triggers like car parts breaking down, traffic congestion, job challenges, and more.

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Are You Losing Sleep to Seasonal Discomfort?

Posted on July 9, 2014

Did you know that seasonal discomfort can disrupt your quality of sleep, even if you manage to doze off successfully? One of the more obvious issues that seasonal discomfort cause to your sleep cycle can be irritation or blockages in your sinus cavities, both of which can make it more difficult to get off to a good night's rest, but seasonal discomfort can continue to disrupt your sleep cycles even after you've nodded off. 

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Six Foods That are Rich in Iodine

Posted on July 1, 2014

Want to support healthy thyroid function while enjoying some tasty dishes? There are quite a few options available at your grocery store that can make that happen. From entree stars, to side course MVPs and garnishes, here is a list of six different foods that contain iodine to help you reach the recommended DV of 150 micrograms for adults.

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Two Mood Influences We Don't Usually Recognize

Posted on June 8, 2014

There's a lot of factors that can make an impression on your entire day. From the way that you wake up in the morning, to the amount and type of food that you eat, to the type of service that you get if you visit a restaurant. There's so many different factors, in fact, that it can be difficult to pin down the exact moment where your day can turn either “good” or “bad” for the remaining hours that you're awake. 

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Two Common and Dangerous Alcohol Myths

Posted on June 2, 2014

Everyone's heard the “beer before liquor, never been sicker” rule by now. There are some rules about drinking which are just based on anecdotal evidence, and then there are myths which are more rooted in the actual feelings you get when intoxicated. Keep in mind, your ability to actually make judgment calls while you're drunk can get heavily skewed; you may think that you're sweet talking your way into the heart of someone who's caught your eye, but the next day, you get the field report from a friend and learn otherwise. “Common knowledge” about drinking is often not that different.

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Gardening With Seasonal Discomfort

Posted on May 27, 2014

Your lawn isn't going to take care of itself. Well, it might, but the end result will be something closer to a jungle than a garden. When left unchecked, your lawn will sprout a dictionary of weeds that will redefine your view on “the beauty of nature.” Even more alarming, an unchecked lawn can bring pests into your home; once there's enough cover from predators, insects and other wildlife will seek refuge in an unmanaged lawn. The best way to keep that from happening is to put on your canvas gloves and get to work, but what do you do if you're one of the many people who grapple with seasonal discomfort every year?

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Better Living Through Solar Power

Posted on May 21, 2014

The sun's good for a lot of things: It produces the natural light that we use to keep our electricity bills low, keeps the world at a generally agreeable temperature most of the time, and helps all of those important trees that supply a good portion of our breathable oxygen to grow. It can also give you a nice tan, dry out your clothes, and power your calculator so that you can figure out how much money you'll have left at the end of the month.

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Hangovers and Travel - What You Need To Know

Posted on May 6, 2014

Now that the weather's warmed up in most parts of the country, and a lot of students are graduating from college, it may be that time of the year when vacation is on your mind. Whether you want to take a brief trip to a scenic locale somewhere in the southern equator, or you've got your eye on a back packing excursion through Europe, you can leave your home soil behind, but not your propensity for hangovers.

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Pushing Through the Pain: How to Exercise with a Hangover

Posted on April 18, 2014

Unless you're one of the few people who can drink quite a bit without experiencing a significant hangover, chances are that you'll encounter those days when you're supposed to hit the gym with a prior night of drinking hanging around your neck. 

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A Brief History of Nasal Irrigation

Posted on April 4, 2014

Nasal irrigation has recently garnered a lot of attention in the West, due in no small part to the television commercials which feature people using small, plastic, tea pot-shaped devices to pour water through one nostril, and letting it flow from the opposite nostril. For those of us who have never seen nasal irrigation products before, this can seem somewhat odd, or even comedic, but make no mistake; nasal irrigation actually has a very long history that goes back for centuries. 

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The Importance of Iodine

Posted on March 26, 2014

Iodine's got an important part to play in the function of your thyroids, but that's not the only benefit that it has for your health. Much like calcium and magnesium, iodine can be found in many different food sources. 

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The Skinny on Selenium

Posted on March 26, 2014

Named for selene, which means “Moon,” Selenium was first discovered in 1817. It is mainly found in ores, and is a byproduct of their processing. Primarily used in everything from pigments to computer parts, selenium's characteristics give it a silvery or deep red appearance, typically in a powder form. It's also toxic in large amounts, so you may be wondering why you'd want to supplement it in your diet.

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How to Boost Your Thyroid

Posted on March 26, 2014

The importance of proper thyroid function cannot be overstated, but there isn't a lot of common knowledge about what can be done for thyroid function outside of a professional, medical environment. For those who want to find ways to boost their thyroid, and their metabolism, there are actually many different avenues of interest that may put you on the right track toward healthier hormonal balance and weight management.

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Three Herbal Cocktails and Their Benefits

Posted on March 18, 2014

Mixing the right cocktail is all about playing to the strengths of your ingredients. Every aspect of the drink should be, in some part, built on the foundation of what you put into it. With a little luck and the right measurements, it's easy to make a drink that both tastes great and leaves you feeling all the better for having enjoyed it. When you add herbal ingredients into the picture, you can even get a cocktail that could have surprising benefits. 

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Three Odd Mood Boosters

Posted on March 18, 2014

The human mind is a strange bath of chemicals, wrapped around a center that stores light, sound, and other forms of information in a container that is said to be one of the most complex structures in the known universe. We spend all day thinking of different ways to think, and constantly contend with holding two opposing ideas at the very same time. It may be no wonder, then, that human mood and emotion are rarely understood as well. 

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Mood and Food: Sugar

Posted on March 18, 2014

There are times when nothing can give you a more effective pick-me-up than something fast and sweet, but is there any science behind our love of candy and how it can effect our mood? Sugar's long been a staple in the human diet, dating back to our hunt for fruits and berries that could give us the energy we needed for long voyages. We've used sugar for breads, early grain alcohols, and for the many sauces we use to compliment our meals. We've harvested it from furious bees, and long fields of cane, but does it effect us in ways we're not aware of?

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Odd Hangover Remedies from Around the World

Posted on March 10, 2014

You've no doubt heard of the “hair of the dog,” or the raw egg as miracle remedies for your hangover. How about the milk of a buffalo, or some old fashioned black magic? From eating parts of animals that probably aren't meant to be eaten, to a few odd ideas on how the human body actually works, hangovers are a battle that humanity has been waging war with for thousands of years. 

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Two Quick and Easy Changes That Can Improve Your Mood

Posted on March 10, 2014

Sometimes, a change in mood can happen without warning. All it takes is a comment, a new task at work, an interaction with a friend, or even just a moment of quiet contemplation to raise or lower your mood seemingly without any explanation. It can be difficult to know when and where these moments happen in life, because they're almost always based on a chain of prior events we may not even be aware of. One comment from a person may just be a string of other comments that have effected us in the past, but that single moment pulls the others forward right along with it.

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Why Liver Health Matters

Posted on March 10, 2014

Whether you're occasionally enjoy a glass of wine, or just enjoy living, a liver's a good friend to have. It's one of the largest organs in your body, and handles a lot of the important functions that you need to stay healthy. The most important of those functions is the filtration of your blood to detoxify it. Without a healthy, functional liver, you wouldn't be able to get nutrients from food, or get rid of the toxins that you ingest on a daily basis. You'd accumulate loads of negatives, and miss out on all of the positives that come with eating and drinking. 

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Three Healthy Comfort Foods to Boost Your Mood

Posted on March 10, 2014

The most notorious comfort foods, however, are full of calories. If you're on a diet, most are out of the question. Even if you aren't, eating comfort foods consistently can definitely create an uncomfortable situation for your body. We'll look at a few healthy comfort foods that you may want to consider, as well as healthy alternatives to old standards.

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Food and Mood: Diet and Exercise

Posted on March 4, 2014

A positive attitude is one of the keys to exercise and losing weight, but changing your diet and your exercise habits can both have an impact on your mood, whether you realize it or not. We're all familiar with the stereotype of the neckless bodybuilder screaming, grunting, and generally popping a vein whenever something goes slightly awry. What's more interesting is how we've come to that stereotype, and how diet and exercise can actually improve, or worsen, our mood. 

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Three Ways to Stay Hydrated While Drinking

Posted on March 4, 2014

One of the most common tips for avoiding, or fighting, a hangover is to drink plenty of water. We already know that we should drink water during our regular, day to day activities. The amount of water that you need to drink can differ depending on your level of activity, your weight and height, and your predisposition to certain conditions that may require you to drink more. People who are dieting, living in different altitudes and temperature zones, and a host of other concerns can all influence just how much water you need to drink. Throw alcohol into the mix, and it can really up your need.

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Five Fast Foods to Fight a Hangover

Posted on March 4, 2014

One of the hardest parts of fighting a hangover is dealing with your appetite. After you've spent hours torturing your gut with all manner of intoxicant, it often doesn't itself doesn't have the stomach for keeping anything down. If you do have the ability to partake in some breakfast or brunch, however, there are a few foods which you can deploy in your battle with the dreaded hangover.

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Making Sense of Milk Thistle

Posted on February 25, 2014

Even the healthiest diet will come across certain ingredients or substances which are toxic. All meat, to some extent, contains toxins. Organic foods can contain toxins. Even the air that we breathe and the water that we drink will have some, although often miniscule, amount of toxic chemicals. While we may not notice these toxins throughout our daily lives, they can accumulate within the body. Our liver is part of our bodies' detox engine, which helps to protect other organs and keep them free and clear of the toxins we're exposed to. The more that we care for our livers, the better our overall health will be.

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The Benefits of 5-HTP

Posted on February 25, 2014

5-HTP, otherwise known as “5-Hydroxytryptophan”, is a compound that is produced in your body whenever it makes serotonin. In previous articles, we've discussed the importance that serotonin has in mood regulation, which is why for some, boosting or regulating serotonin can often lead to an improved mood. Our bodies naturally make 5-HTP from tryptophan, which we can help to promote through the consumption of carbohydrates. It's converted into serotonin.

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Food and Mood: Iron

Posted on February 25, 2014

Whenever Popeye or his friends were in danger, the grizzled sailor would simply pop open a can of spinach and gain both a passion for fighting, and incredible strength. In those days, spinach was promoted as a high source of iron, which was linked to physical strength and a “can-do” attitude. After all, iron is certainly one of the “strongest” parts of our nutritional needs. Inexoriably linked with heavy metals and great feats of engineering, iron is one of the key components of the human diet, and a great source of many benefits

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Four Healthy Drink Ideas for the Winter

Posted on February 25, 2014

If you're living in the parts of America and Canada that are getting hit with the dreaded “Polar Vortex” phenomena, you already know that it can put a serious hurting on your ability to go out and enjoy your evenings. Whether you're someone who only goes for the “once a month” visit to see friends, or you enjoy a drink after a hard day at work, some of your personal favorite drinks may not be as enjoyable as they could be due to the cold weather. 

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Sleep and How It Effects Your Mood

Posted on February 18, 2014

“Beauty rest” may not be a cute way of describing a restful night of sleep. When we get the right amount of sleep at night, it helps us to be more alert, but it also helps our mood and even our physical health. If you've ever missed a few hours, or even a day of sleep, then you already know what it can do to the way that you feel, the way that you look, and the way that you interact with others.

Unfortunately, in a day and age when people are expected to work 10 to 12 hour shifts and balance a family life, it's often your sleep that ends up getting shortchanged. Most people don't imagine that they need more than four to five hours, but in reality you may need as many as nine hours of sleep depending on your age, your physical level activity, your diet, and other indicators. The trick is to find your sweet spot, and then to put that as your highest priority. Here's why.

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Nasal Irrigation and Seasonal Discomfort

Posted on February 18, 2014

We've all seen it; that strange little blue pot, sometimes made of plastic, usually in a bathroom. We've seen the commercials. We may have even seen someone use it, or try to tell us about how it can make such a big difference. The real question is, does nasal irrigation actually work, and can it help people who suffer from seasonal discomfort?

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4 Simple Tips to Improve Your Mood

Posted on February 18, 2014

There are a lot of products out there that will say they can boost your mood. Some work, but others aren't quite as genuine as they claim. Apart from supplements, there are day to day things you can do to improve your mood, here are 10 simple things that can help boost your mood.

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Food and Mood: Carbohydrates

Posted on February 6, 2014

Carbohydrates aren't the dirty word that they used to be. During the early-to-mid 2000's, carbs were seen as the primary cause of weight gain in the Western diet, and there may be some truth to that. While carbs were responsible, the main culprit is, and always has been, the amount of processed food that we eat in the West. Culprits such as white bread and white rice are stripped of the vital germs and nutrients that made these foods a staple in the human diet to begin with. The process is so diminishing that you may have noticed that many on the shelf are “vitamin enriched” or otherwise enhanced to try and replace what's been lost in the bleaching process that gives them their stark white color.

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Brown or White, Which Liquor is Right?

Posted on February 5, 2014

There's a lot of “common knowledge” about alcoholic drinks that can increase or reduce your chances of being hungover after a night on the town. Some of that advice has survived the test of time simply due to their rhyming qualities, such as “beer before liquor, never been sicker.” Others may seem to make sense just due to the values that we associate with food and drink, such as whether or not brown liquor is actually worse for you in the morning. What may surprise you is that there are some common pieces of advice that actually hold up when examined closely.

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Foods That Can Help, or Harm, Your Quality of Sleep

Posted on February 5, 2014

Sleep is an important part of how we feel throughout our day. If we're low on the amount of sleep, or the quality of that sleep isn't quite what it should be, then it can have both physical and mental effects. The average person needs around 7 to 9 hours of sleep every day, and while scientists are divided as to whether or not that constitutes 7 to 9 continuous hours, or 7 to 9 hours in total, there are some measurable negatives if you don't get enough. 

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Foods that Fight Hangovers

Posted on February 5, 2014

There's nothing wrong with a little alcohol in moderation, but let's be honest; most people don't do moderation with their drinks. The trickiest part about a night of drinking is that the more you imbibe, the more impaired your judgment becomes. When that occurs, you get hit with a double whammy of not knowing that you've had too much, and drinks going down much easier. Suddenly, the burn of bourbon turns into a far easier thing to swallow, beer's like water, and your wine glass is empty before you know it. At that point, you're probably going over the edge of Hangover Canyon, a dry and desolate place with a deep, stark drop.

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Food and Mood - What You Need To Know About Omega-3s

Posted on February 5, 2014

Omega-3 fatty acids usually refer to ALA, which is found in plants, and EPA and DHA, which are found in fish and eggs. These acids are one of the most important to include in your diet, as they have several positive benefits for both your ability to process and remember information, and your ability to regulate your mood.

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Passion Flower

Posted on November 4, 2013

Many people are familiar with the light, sweet flavor of passion fruit; few are aware that this popular fruit comes from the passiflora, or passion flower, a plant rich in medicinal value and health benefits. The passion flower, with its vibrant purple petals and tentacles surrounding a bright yellow center, was discovered in the middle of the 16th century by Spanish explorers during an expedition to South America. Interpreting the flower’s striking appearance as a representation of the passion of Jesus Christ, the explorers named the plant “passion flower”, and the name has been used ever since. The unique passion flower looks like the kind of plant that could only grow in the most exotic regions. However, species of this hardy and adaptive plant thrives in an astonishing variety of climates, from the Midwestern United States to southern Asia and Australia.

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Meditation and Stress

Posted on August 30, 2013

Stress is a fact of daily life. For most people, it is a constant companion and a serious drain on energy, emotions, and general well-being. Whether you are struggling to succeed in school, climb to the top of your career field, raising children, or dealing with challenging circumstances like financial or health concerns in your family, the stress of your situation can weigh on you and overwhelm you until you feel helpless. Many adults suffer physiological symptoms that result from unhealthy levels of stress and anxiety.

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5-HTP

Posted on August 30, 2013

If you’re like millions of other people, you know what it’s like to be under stress. With increasing demands and what seems like less and less time to meet them, it’s not unlikely that stress is a loyal (and unwelcome) companion in your life. In addition to being a nuisance, constant stress can actually cause some negative physiological effects. Excessive stress has been proven to deplete serotonin levels and alter the chemical balance in your brain. Serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter, is involved in the regulation of a number of body functions. Low serotonin levels are associated with depression, weight gain, decreased mental function, increased anxiety, and a host of other mental and physiological conditions.

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