October 02, 2006 3:03 PM
Healing Chakra Songs You Can
From the Sahaja
Yoga site online.
According to ancient Hindu wisdom, each chakra, or energy center in the body,
resonates at a particular frequency. When a chakra has gotten out of balance,
music can help to put it right again. Simply listening to these songs, sung in
Sanskrit with the accompaniment of ancient instruments, is a healing experience.
Go to this site, scroll down, and
click on a chakra to hear the healing song for that chakra (or listen to all
[ send green star]
YOGA July 29, 2006 5:30 AM
Om what a feeling!
is much more than contortionist poses and a supermodel butt. Find out
why more Australians than ever choose to twist like a pretzel and what
science has to say about its many alleged health benefits.
Not being able to turn her head was the last straw for Jane
Robinson. Although it was five years since she'd sustained whiplash in
a car accident, Robinson had been seeing a physiotherapist for five
years with no relief. She felt uncomfortable with some aspects of the
treatment; "The physio sent me to work with this huge foam collar
around my neck and I felt pathetic. I took it off and I thought, 'I've
got to try something else'."
So Robinson went to see a chiropractor, who successfully treated her neck stiffness and recommended yoga.
The experience was life changing. "The first class was a miraculous
opening up of 'this is what I want to do'. I had no idea if it was
going to help my neck problems, but I just loved doing it. It filled
that space that I'd always known was there but had no idea how to fill."
Robinson committed to regular yoga classes and strengthened her neck
and spine. She then found the courage to quit her stressful corporate
job with a software company and became a certified Iyengar yoga
teacher, opening up her own yoga studio in Sydney.
'Yoga' comes from the Sanskrit word 'yug' meaning 'joining together'
and refers to the union of body, mind and spirit. When yoga originated
in India 5000 years ago, the goal was spiritual enlightenment. These
days, the focus is less on the metaphysical, more on the physical.
Certainly in the West, yoga has tended to be associated with exercise
and getting fit, although Robinson's more holistic embrace of yoga is
Whatever your interpretation of yoga, there's no doubting its
popularity. As revealed by the Australian Bureau of Statistics in 2003,
311,000 people had participated in yoga at least once in the previous
12 months compared to 307,900 for Aussie rules football!
[ send green star]
July 29, 2006 5:28 AM
The data we have on yoga is far from comprehensive. "We really don't
know much at all about the actual practice of yoga in Australia," says
Professor Marc Cohen, Head of Complementary Medicine at RMIT. "And bear
in mind there are many different lineages and practices that people can
choose from, such as breathing practices, meditation practice, physical
postures, yoga lifestyle that incorporates things like yoga hygiene,
karma yoga and so on."
So to learn more, Cohen and his team are conducting a web-based national Yoga in Australia survey,
the first of its type in the world. They want to know how many people
do yoga, what their practice is, why they take it up – be it for
spiritual, lifestyle, medical, health or exercise reasons – what its
effects are, and the extent of injuries.
In keeping with the different forms yoga practice takes in
Australia, the researchers are looking at all aspects of yoga – as a
spiritual path, a therapy and a form of exercise. "We have deliberately
avoided defining yoga because if we did that, we would potentially
exclude a lot of people," explains researcher Stephen Penman.
According to Penman, who has already analysed the first few hundred
survey responses, early indicators are that most people see yoga as a
physical discipline. Seventy percent of respondents gave
'health/fitness' and 'flexibility/muscle tone' as reasons for starting
yoga. This then rose to 78% and 80% respectively as reasons for
continuing. However, 18% of respondents started yoga to help with a
specific health issue or medical condition, while 22% continued for
Yoga as a strategy to 'reduce stress/anxiety' also rated highly,
with 59% of respondents giving it as a reason for beginning. This
increased to 77% as a reason for continuing.
"Yoga has traditionally been seen by western medicine as a
musculoskeletal therapy, so if you have a bad back, your doctor might
prescribe yoga," says Penman. "But I think the survey will show that
where people are taking up yoga for health or medical reasons, they are
doing so as much for their mental health as for their physical health."
So is yoga helping? Respondents were asked to detail the specific
health concerns or medical conditions they used yoga for and to rate
the benefit they received. Conditions given included chronic lower back
pain, arthritis, asthma, insomnia, anxiety and depression, sleep
disorders, pregnancy, menopausal symptoms, menstrual cycle symptoms,
stress and weight loss. Spectacularly yoga improved every condition
Yoga as medicine
The healing power of yoga has long been known. In fact, texts dating
back to 200 BCE extol its health benefits. But even though physical and
psychological therapists have used yoga-derived techniques for therapy
right up to the present day, the scientific validity of yoga as therapy
hasn't been fully documented.
Simon Borg-Olivier has been teaching yoga for 20 years and recently co-authored The Applied Anatomy and Physiology of Yoga.
In chapter one, he writes "A MEDLINE literature search on yoga reveals
that there are 726 scientific articles relating to yoga written from
1965 to March 2005."
Borg-Olivier goes on to point out that these articles claim a vast
range of benefits from yoga including improvements to lung function,
obesity, arthritis, diabetes, various respiratory diseases, sinusitis
and indigestion. But "… very few present valid scientific proof of the
benefits of yoga. Only 54 articles were based on randomised controlled
trials on yoga…"
He believes the lack of rigorous scientific proof has less to do
with the validity of yoga and more to do with the reductionist
scientific approach. "It goes against the very nature of yoga as a
time-honoured holistic science."
Cohen agrees, "Yoga is so all encompassing and involves so many
different practices that it's hard to reduce it to one or two elements
for the purposes of research".
Nevertheless there are now a number of well-researched papers on the
benefits of elements of yoga such as stretching, one-legged exercises,
breathing relaxation, visualisation and meditation.
Most agree these benefits are amplified when yoga is practiced as
more than one of its elements. Certainly the data from the randomised
control trials that have been done generally support this.
The most famous was that begun by Dr Dean Ornish in 1990. Ornish
tracked two groups of heart disease patients over five years. The first
group took medication only. The second took medication and also adopted
a lifestyle based on yoga principles incorporating exercise,
meditation, diet, relaxation and group support.
The study, published in the Journal of the American Medical
Association in 1997, showed the medication-only group had experienced
two-and-a-half-times as many heart attacks or deaths as the yoga
[ send green star]
July 08, 2006 11:38 AM
Printed from www.care2.com
Traits of Healthy Hand Chakras
Adapted from Your Aura and Your Chakras, by Karla McLaren (Weiser Books, 1998).
the center of each of your palms are your hand chakras. They can be
both expressive and receptive. They are more like channels through
which any energy can flow than they are like specific storehouses of
specific energy. Your hand chakras are connected to your heart chakra,
and their general condition shows where you are in your ability to
give, receive, and create in the world.
Are your hand chakras healthy? Find out, here:
Your heart chakra’s condition relates to your ability to channel
internal love and artistic information throughout your body and spirit,
whereas your hand chakra’s condition speaks to your ability to channel
these things in the external world.
When your hands and heart are properly connected, the outward flow of heart-chakra energy can be controlled by your hands.
People with healthy hand chakras can translate the information of their
healthy chakra system out into the world. They are naturally (as
opposed to compulsively) giving and caring, but they have an extra
dimension: they can also receive. They can receive help, compliments,
gifts, and loving advice, without losing their center. And, they can
give all these things to others without creating indebtedness, guilt,
Healthy hand chakras confer a natural creativity on their owners. The
creativity of these people flows. They don’t suffer from dramatic
artistic blocks or fallow, muse-free periods. They have a flair for
dressing, cooking, home decoration, car restoration--whatever makes
They don’t need to rely on teachers or institutions to validate their
artistic expression. They have a comfortable give-and-take relationship
with the world and the people around them. They also have a comfortable
give-and-take relationship with their own energy, and are able to
protect their giving nature by closing off their heart-to-hand
connection in the presence of habitually needy people.
[ send green star]
June 13, 2006 8:40 PM
Releasing the tension in our bodies allows us to better cope with the annoyances
that arise in our everyday lives. Our minds often generate thought patterns that
can embed themselves in our bodies. These thoughts can create physical tension,
which then becomes a source of frustration. When we relax and release tension,
we are better able to reduce our mental irritations and soothe our minds. We can
then realize that we have the mental tools to work through any of life’s minor
frustrations that happen to come our way. By taking the time to relax your body
today, you will find a powerful means to cope with stress.
[ send green star]
h June 12, 2006 5:00 AM
News in Science
Health & Medical News - Memories grow sweeter with time - 30/05/2006
[This is the print version of story http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/health/HealthRepublish_1650763.htm]
Memories grow sweeter with time
Tuesday, 30 May 2006
Chances are, you'll feel good about life-defining events when you look back on them (Image: iStockphoto)
When we remember events that helped to shape our identity, such as a
break-up or marriage, we tend to downplay the fear, anger or other
negative emotions and remember more of the positive ones, a new study
[ send green star]
findings suggest that healthy individuals work to build a positive
narrative identity that will yield an overall optimistic tone to the
most important recalled events from their lives," write study authors
Drs Michael Conway and Wendy-Jo Wood of Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec.
The findings, published in the latest issue of the Journal of Personality, may also have implications for someone's mental health.
"Mental health is maintained or improved by people's attempts to make sense of their life experiences," Conway says.
try to see the positive in even very difficult life experiences, and
come to downplay, as much as they can, how negative some events were in
the past," he explains.
For their research, Conway and Wood
investigated people's emotional memories for self-defining events,
which they described as emotionally complex events that contribute to a
person's sense of identity or overall life story.
In one study, 279 university students were asked to think about an important past event that helped define themselves.
were then asked to describe the event in various terms, including the
extent to which it had a big impact on them and how much it helped them
learn about themselves and about life.
Based on the students'
responses, Conway and Wood conclude that a person's perception of the
impact of an event is a good marker for meaning making, that is the
process that results in an individual integrating an event with his or
her positive sense of identity.
In a second study, 79
university students were asked to report and describe, on paper, five
self-defining memories and to rate those events on a five-point scale
in terms of its impact.
They also completed two questionnaires
about the 10 emotions they felt when the event occurred and how they
currently felt about the event, respectively.
Happiness and pride
and Wood found that when the study participants reflected on negative
events, such as conflict with bosses or teachers, death, or physical or
sexual assault, they reported that they currently felt less negative
emotions, like anger and disgust, and more happiness and pride than
they had felt at the time of the event.
And when the students
reflected on positive events, like a dating relationship or marriage,
recreation, or attaining a personal goal, they reported feeling just as
happy as they had felt at the time of the event, as well as similarly
intense feelings of love and pride.
Again, however, they also
reported feeling less anger, embarrassment, guilt and other negative
emotions than they had initially felt.
"What was striking is
that the findings held up for a wide range of emotions," Conway says,
adding that "when making sense of their past experiences, people would
downplay all the negative types of feelings they had, such as fear and
Death in the family
How does this relate to a negative event like the death of a grandmother, for example?
"The sad event is still mostly sad," Conway says. "But the positive emotions have come out more."
are "seeing the silver lining, so to speak" and may feel happy
afterwards as they realise that the grandmother's suffering is over, he
Conway says how the practice is common among men and women in a variety of life situations.
can experience strong emotional reactions in extreme situations, and
everyone needs to come to terms with such events in order to maintain a
positive sense of self, and a positive sense of the world at large."
June 02, 2006 4:19 AM
Natural Ways For Dealing With Anxiety
"Although people experience anxiety as a normal part of life, true anxiety
attacks are much different. anxiety is treatable. If the situation is serious,
your doctor may recommend prescription medication such as Klonopin, but before
you get to that point, you might consider a number of natural ways for dealing
[ send green star]
From The New Zealand Health Network May 27, 2006 2:38 PM
Organic Flax Seed Oil
clinical research has shown that the majority of
western diets are deficient in the Omega-3 essential
fatty acids A deficiency of Omega-3 can he implicated
Coronary Heart Disease:
A large number of studies have shown that oils
containing Omega-3 can have a number of beneficial
effects in the prevention and treatment of coronary
heart disease. Omega-3's have been shown to reduce
the cholesterol ratio, blood pressure,
triglyceride levels, platelet aggregation (blood
cloning tendency), artheroscierosis (plaque
formation) and cardiac arrhythmia.
Cancer: Omega-3 has been
shown to selectively kill human cancer cells in
tissue culture studies, without harming normal
cells. Clinical studies are confirming the potential
of high doses of Omega-3 to reduce tumour growth.
double blind studies have shown that when oils rich
in Omega-3 are taken as a dietary supplement, about
two thirds of patients are able to discontinue their
non steroidal drugs and a further 20 % can cut down
their drug use.
Skin Problems: Skin
conditions such as psoriasis, acne, eczema and other
allergic conditions, and dry skin have all been shown
to be partly related to. Omega-3 deficiency.
Stress: Omega-3 fatty
acids are the precursors for the
Series 3 prostaglandin's, which regulate immune
function and are responsible for reversing the body's
physiological response to stress.
Some clinical studies have indicated a sense of
calmness in response to Omega-3 '5.
Growth and Development:
Studies have shown that mothers require increased
levels of Omega-3 during pregnancy and nursing for
normal brain and eye development in their children.
- Waihi Bush Fresh Flax Seed
Oil is 60% Omega-3, One of natures richest
sources. Fresh Flax Seed Oil is
- Free from trans fatty
acids and free radicals due to the exclusive
Omegaflo process which excludes
light and oxygen a good source of high
quality Omega-6 (15%) and Omega-9 (18%) fatty
- Rich in it's own naturally
occurring antioxidants, with 15 mg of mixed
tocopherols (incl. 5 mg Vitamin E) and 1100
mg of mixed carotenoids (incl. 50 mg Beta
carotene) per 100 grams.
- Bio-Gro certified organic,
nothing added - nothing removed genuine
cold pressed at 30 - 330C - Fresh Pressed
[ send green star]
Erasmus U Fats and oils - the Complete Guide.
Simopoulos. A.P. (/99/) American Journal of
Clinical Nutrition: 54:438-63.British Nutrition
Unsaturated fatty acids nutritional and
physiological significance. Chapman & Hall,
From Annie's Healthy Living February 14, 2006 3:24 AM
For those with high blood pressure, I use absolutely NO salt, but a ground up mix of
8-10 juniper seeds
6-7 (a pinch) of cumin seeds, whole
a couple of sprigs of fresh origano
about 2 tblspoons dried rosemary
a sprinkle of nutmeg
pound all together in a wooden or stone grinder
use as salt (sprinkle it, don't cover the dish with it)
[ send green star]
January 28, 2006 4:34 PM
November 24, 2005 1:28 PM
Does Laughter Really Help?
While happiness may be associated with better health or longevity,
is there any proof that laughter per se provides similar benefits?
Japanese researchers suggested it might help patients with type 2
diabetes, the most common form of this disease. They showed that there
was a significantly smaller spike in blood sugar after a meal when
diabetics watched a popular comedy show compared to listening to a
In another study of patients allergic to dust mites and other common
irritants, skin lesions shrank after watching Charlie Chaplin's antics
in Modern Times, whereas a video containing weather
information had no effect. There is abundant evidence that laughter can
relieve pain, as Norman Cousins had claimed.
A five-year study that began in 2000 called Rx Laughter at UCLA's
Jonsson Cancer Centre was designed to determine if laughter could
lessen the pain and improve immune system function in children
suffering from cancer and other chronic diseases.
It started with the help of a $75,000 grant from cable TV network
Comedy Central by working with hundreds of children to determine what
makes them laugh.
One of the methods used was to ask them to hold their arms in cold
water as long as they could for up to three minutes. It was found that
kids watching funny videos during the experiment reported significantly
less pain and could also keep their arms in the cold water longer than
controls not viewing the videos.
Other benefits of laughing reported by this and other groups here and abroad include:
- Relaxation and reduction in muscle tension.
- Lowered production of stress hormones.
- Improved immune system function.
- Reduction in blood pressure.
- Clearing the lungs by dislodging mucous plugs.
- Increasing the production of salivary immunoglobulin A, which
defends against infectious organisms that enter through the respiratory
- Aerobic effects that increased the body's ability to utilize oxygen.
- A rapid ability to disregard aches and pains or to perceive them as less severe.
[ send green star]
November 24, 2005 1:26 PM
Do the Health Benefits of Humor and Laughter Have Scientific Support?
By Paul J. Rosch, M.D.
President, The American Institute of Stress
Clinical Professor of Medicine and Psychiatry
New York Medical College
Originally published in Health and Stress, the newsletter (November 2005) of The American Institute of Stress
Part of the problem in obtaining proof that laughter promotes health or prolongs life is that it is sometimes viewed as being synonymous with humor and happiness. Laughter is not the same as humor or happiness.
Laughter is the physical and physiological response to humor that frequently results in a feeling of happiness.
The only link between all of these is that happy people and those
with a good sense of humor are more apt to laugh at something that is
funny than their crabby counterparts.
A prior article, titled Why Do Happy People and Optimists Live Longer?, reviewed
the evidence that validates this view and discussed possible
explanations for such relationships. Since then, this belief has been
bolstered by other reports that also shed light on some mechanisms of
action that may be responsible.
In one study of 2,500 senior citizens that were followed for six
years, those who scored high on a happiness quiz had much fewer strokes
than those at the bottom of the scale.
In another study of more than 200 middle-aged healthy London civil
service employees, those who reported feeling happy almost every day,
whether while at work or on weekends, were significantly healthier and
had lower heart rates than others who were not as consistently jolly
Researchers asked participants to rate their happiness at 33 times
during work or leisure days during which they also monitored heart rate
and blood pressure.
Saliva samples were collected eight times a day to determine
concentrations of cortisol, a stress-related hormone that increases
risk for heart disease and diabetes.
In addition, all were subjected to a mental stress test, following
which they were asked to rate their happiness level on a scale of 1 to
5 and blood samples were obtained to measure fibrinogen, a blood
clotting factor and index of inflammation associated with increased
risk of coronary heart disease.
After adjusting for age, smoking, weight and other possible
influences, it was found that people in the top fifth for daily
happiness scores had cortisol levels 32 percent lower than those in the
bottom quintile. Happiness was also linked to a lower average heart
rate in men. While the majority showed some rise in fibrinogen
following the mental stress test, this was far greater for the least
happy group compared to those at the other end of the scale.
Surprisingly, there was no evidence of any relationship between
happiness levels and age, sex, marital status or socioeconomic status.
The happiest people reported feeling that way whether working or during
leisure time but those who were least happy tended to report this more
while they were working.
Low-Rung Employees, High Mortality Rates
These subjects were part of the large ongoing Whitehall II study
designed to determine the causes and health effects of job stress in
British civil service workers. The original Whitehall study that
started in 1967 showed that males in the lowest clerical jobs had the
highest overall mortality rate and heart disease death rate whereas top
administrators had the least; there was a consistent inverse
correlation between mortality and grade of employment for those in
The second, Whitehall II, began in 1985, and was designed to confirm
and explore the reasons for this disparity. In one phase, investigators
interviewed over 2,000 male civil servants aged 45-68 who had completed
questionnaires detailing their medical history, job title and
responsibilities, mental health, diet, smoking, alcohol use and
physical exercise habits.
Various risk factors for coronary disease were measured including
heart rate variability (HRV), which reflects the heart's ability to
adapt to changing situations such as increased physical activity and
emotional distress. As emphasized previously, low HRV, a strong
predictor of sudden death and coronary events, may be the most accurate
way to assess the severity of job stress.
Researchers very recently reported that a diminished HRV was more
common in workers at the bottom of the corporate ladder. However, it
was also associated with job stress due to a sense of little job
control that was independent of civil service employment grade. One
might assume that frustrated workers with little job control would be
less happy than others.
HeartMath studies have also confirmed that feelings of frustration
lower HRV while those of happiness and satisfaction have the opposite
effect. In addition, a prior Whitehall II report on male workers
showing a link between low HRV and high job stress levels may help
explain why both, as well as depression, can contribute to coronary
Low HRV was associated with an increase in cortisol, fibrinogen and
other chemicals believed to cause insulin resistance, diabetes,
hypertension and other manifestations of metabolic syndrome, a major
risk factor for cardiovascular disease. This suggests that it is not
that healthy peopl
[ send green star]
November 19, 2005 12:43 PM
Evening Primrose Oil Fights Breast Cancer
acid (GLA), the essential omega-6 fat that is found in evening
primrose, black currant seed, and borage oil, can inhibit the action of
the cancer gene Her-2/neu. This gene is responsible for almost 30
percent of all breast cancers.
40-Fold Increase in Effectiveness
When cancer cells that overexpress the Her-2/neu gene are
treated with GLA, it not only helps suppress the cancer-causing gene,
but also causes up to a 40-fold increase in response to the drug
Herceptin (trastuzumab), which is used as part of breast cancer
treatment. GLA also selectively affects cancer cells without damaging
Good News for Those With an Aggressive Form of Cancer
This is especially good news because patients who possess the
Her-2/neu gene also typically have an aggressive form of the disease
and a poor prognosis.
GLA is one of two essential fatty acids, which are necessary
for the normal functioning and growth of cells, nerves, muscles and
organs. GLA is present in evening primrose oil, borage oil, and black
current seed oil, among other sources.
Journal of the National Cancer Institute November 2, 2005; 97(21): 1611-1615
EurekAlert November 1, 2005
Northwestern University November 2, 2005
[ send green star]
HEALTH MATTERS November 15, 2005 3:11 AM
Sleep Pattern May Indicate Depression
A particular sleep
profile runs in families and that the sleep profile seems
to be fairly clearly associated with an increased susceptibility
of family members to suffer from depression. Researchers may
actually be closer to learning about the genetics of depression
by pursuing sleep as a means of what might be underlying depression's
Two major sleep
states are rapid eye movement (REM) and non-REM. Non-REM is
classified by overall brain wave slowing. It occurs in stages
1-4, where 1 is the most activated brain and 4 is the least
activated. Deep sleep is low wave, occurring in stages 3-4.
REM is when brain activity is similar to when people are awake,
but they are really deeply asleep.
The sleep profile
the researchers identified is characterized by an earlier
onset to this REM state and a drop out in slow wave sleep.
Overall, there is more REM sleep and less slow wave sleep
and a quicker slide into REM sleep. This discovery led the
researchers to conclude that there is a fundamental regulatory
problem in sleep which is linked to people's vulnerability
Relatives of depressed
people who have rapid REM onset were four times more likely
to also have rapid REM onset, and that their risk of depression
was nearly double compared with the relatives of other depressed
patients. The study findings also suggest that rapid REM onset
indicates a higher risk of depression than having a family
member with depression.
Most people are
not aware that they may have this sleep profile. It is not
associated with waking up often during the evening or not
feeling rested in the morning. However, if people have a substantial
number of family members who seem to have a problem with depression,
that suggests they may have this sleep profile.
Journal of Psychiatry (1998;155:192-199)
Disturbed sleep patterns are a very powerful indicator of
depression. It is the most sensitive clue I have to recognize
if I am getting depressed. Cardiovascular aerobic exercise
is also one of the most effective treatments for disturbed
sleeping patterns. Typically, 30-60 minutes four times a week.
Doing this amount of exercise or even more is no guarantee
that it will work. I know many depressed individuals who are
exercise fanatics. However, it is one simple and inexpensive
way to treat this problem.
[ send green star]
SELF CARE SO YOU CAN CARE
View All Topics