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Stressing Stress: Understanding the world’s No. 1 health problem

Stressing Stress

Stressing StressIt seems that we have no way to explain the impact of stress on our lives other than stressing stress. Everyone in the Modern World gets it. Deadlines. Financial Pressures. Family Disruptions. Strained Relationships. Addictions. The list goes on and on. There are so many pressures that mount on us. There seem to be so few outlets to deal with them. The evolutionary Fight or Flight is, indeed, not relevant. Both options seem to be out of reach for so many. Healthcare needs to step in and support people before they become patients (and add to the stress as well as financial concerns). This requires a holistic approach… not just pills and procedures.

The word stress is meaningless today. It now refers to vague feelings of unease and discomfort. Stress has become so much a part of our daily life that we accept it as normal. A bad idea. In fact, according to the World Health Organization, stress is the developed world’s No. 1 health problem.

Consider this: Up to 90 percent of physician visits are for problems rooted in stress. As Dr. Paul Rosch, former president of the American Institute of Stress and professor of medicine at New York Medical College, put it: “Stress is taking a terrible toll on the nation’s health and economy. It is a heavy contributor to heart disease, cancer, respiratory distress, lupus and many other life-threatening illnesses.”

Stress triggers a complex assortment of biochemical and hormonal reactions, reactions known as the “Flight or Fight Response.” The FFR is hard-wired into us. It’s designed to keep us alive in the face of life-threatening danger. Stress hormones energize us to fight or flee.

The problem is that the FFR is now obsolete. It’s intended for a time that’s long gone. Evolutionary biologists refer to this problem as the Great Mismatch. Our intense, fast-paced life no longer matches up with our wiring. And our mind now triggers the FFR — in error. We get stressed not just by what happens in our life — but by the way we view what happens in our life. As a result, toxic stress hormones, released in error, seep into our blood and tissues. And set up conditions for serious health problems.

At the end of the day, stress is also a spiritual problem. Because it disturbs our thinking mind so much that we lose a connection to the deeper levels of who we are. And without that connection, we not only lose sight of the brighter colors in life, but we also stop believing they exist.

The solution to stress-related health and spiritual problems is to understand what stress is and what we need to do about it. Including learning how to find, stabilize and strengthen a connection to the “Calm State.” Doing so will flush stress hormones from our blood and tissues. And give us access to the well-being and sanity we find only in deeper states of mind.

For more information please see the original article: Health and Well-Being: Understanding the world’s No. 1 health problem | Lifestyles | newburyportnews.com

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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VA Expands Holistic Health Programs | Military.com

VA Expands Holistic Health Programs

VA Expands Holistic Health ProgramsGood news for those vets who need a more holistic approach to their health problems. The VA is expanding its holistic health programs! The VA seems to be leading the way in holistic health approaches that knit together multiple facets of health: mind, body, spirit, and environment. The programs embrace complementary therapies like yoga and mindfulness practices that can be personalized into a vet’s care plan.

According the the VA’s website, the Whole Health Initiative is a new program that they say creates a personalized health plan that considers the physical, mental, emotional, spiritual and environmental needs of veterans. The VA says the Whole Health System “acknowledges that health care involves more than the physical human body.”

“VA’s Whole Health approach helps veterans live their lives to the fullest,” said VA Acting Secretary Robert Wilkie. “By developing a personal health plan that integrates many areas of their lives, veterans can truly take charge of their well being and improve their health all around.  I’m pleased to recognize these VA facilities that are helping our veterans do just that.”

NEW DIRECTION FOR VA CARE

This new program offers things like peer support involving other veterans with similar medical conditions or military service experience; well being programs such as yoga, tai chi, and mindfulness; and whole health clinical care utilizing a holistic approach rather than just handing out pills.

The VA says they are shifting from a health care system focused primarily on treating disease to one rooted in forming continuous healing relationships and partnerships that “support you in achieving your greatest overall well being.” The result is a whole health approach, which is a radical redesign of health care focused on empowering you.

To read the entire article please see: VA Expanding New Holistic Health Programs | Military.com

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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Meditation 101: Practices, Postures, and Everything In Between

Meditation 101

Meditation 101Meditation is supposed to be simple, even relaxing. For many, however, it can be confusing and cause tension. Fitness Goat provides us with a Meditation 101 guide that lists many types of meditation and reassures us that it takes time.

“I am incapable of meditating,” admitted a friend of mine just the other day. “It ends up being just me silently agonizing over my to-do list.”

I totally get it; meditation is difficult. It’s definitely not a practice you’ll excel at right away. Just like you can’t pick up a golf club for the first time and expect to make it to the Masters Tournament next year and get that green jacket.

Okay, maybe that’s exaggerating, but you get the picture. The art of meditation can take years to learn, and you may never achieve perfect bliss, but it’s all about the practice.

And just like golf may not be your sport, certain styles of meditation may not be your cup of tea either. It takes some experimenting to find what works for you.

What is Meditation?

Meditation is a deliberate practice and one that requires your most quiet, mindful state. The word is tossed around a lot, but you may not exactly know meditation’s actual meaning or function. If asked, I would initially picture Yoda summoning the Force. Perhaps this is a form of meditation, but we’ll leave that for the galaxy.

Though mediation varies and splinters off into different styles of practices, it begins with one specific application—calming your mind. It also (hopefully) ends with a similar goal—restoring balance. The in-between is where you can customize your practice.As with most new endeavors, it’s helpful to be educated on the subject before you jump in. That’s why we’re here! In this comprehensive guide, you’ll learn about the types of meditation, the benefits of meditation, meditation postures, and even some apps that will help you get in the zone. Then we’ll answer some common questions about meditation and silence any skeptics out there.

For more information please see: Meditation 101: Practices, Postures, and Everything In Between

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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Science Supports Meditation: In Depth | NCCIH

Science Supports Meditation

Science Supports MeditationMeditation, mindfulness, etc. have generated much interest recently. For thousands of years humanity has recognized the importance of mind – body practices like meditation, yoga, Taichi, Qigong, and more. Increasingly, conventional science supports meditation as this recent article from the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health highlights.

What Is Meditation?

Meditation is a mind and body practice that has a long history of use for increasing calmness and physical relaxation, improving psychological balance, coping with illness, and enhancing overall health and well-being. Mind and body practices focus on the interactions among the brain, mind, body, and behavior.

There are many types of meditation, but most have four elements in common: a quiet location with as few distractions as possible; a specific, comfortable posture (sitting, lying down, walking, or in other positions); a focus of attention (a specially chosen word or set of words, an object, or the sensations of the breath); and an open attitude (letting distractions come and go naturally without judging them).

What the Science Says About the Effectiveness of Meditation

Many studies have investigated meditation for different conditions, and there’s evidence that it may reduce blood pressure as well as symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and flare-ups in people who have had ulcerative colitis. It may ease symptoms of anxiety and depression, and may help people with insomnia.Read more about meditation for these conditions:

  • Pain
  • For High Blood Pressure
  • For Irritable Bowel Syndrome
  • For Ulcerative Colitis
  • For Anxiety, Depression, and Insomnia
  • For Smoking Cessation
  • Other Conditions

Source: Meditation: In Depth | NCCIH

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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The difference between wellbeing and wellness

Wellbeing and Wellness

Wellbeing and WellnessWe often use these terms interchangeably. However, there is a growing distinction between wellbeing and wellness as consumers become more involved in their holistic health decisions.

Wellness and wellbeing are not the same thing. Wellbeing refers to a more holistic whole-of-life experience, whereas wellness refers just to physical health. Employers can have a big influence over employees’ wellbeing.

The essential elements of wellbeing were discussed at a presentation to HR Practices Day, conducted by the Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI) in Sydney on 10 March 2011.

Watkinson identified five essential elements of wellbeing:
  1. Career wellbeing — the most important one — whether you like what you do each day (which is not necessarily work)
  2. Social wellbeing — relationships and love
  3. Financial wellbeing — managing finances in order to reduce stress and increase security
  4. Physical wellbeing — levels of health and energy
  5. Community wellbeing — involvement in community activities.
He added that it is perceptions rather than actual measurement that influence wellbeing; that is, comparisons with the circumstances of others. For example, a person who has average wealth is more likely to be unhappy with it if he/she lives in a ‘rich’ locality than in a ‘poor’ one.
Another problem is that many people over-focus on one element at the expense of others (eg career versus social). A balance is required, but just 7% of survey respondents said they were ‘thriving’ in all five elements.

Source: The difference between wellness and wellbeing | Workplace Info

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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AYUSH Medicines Booming In India

AYUSH Medicines Booming

AYUSH Medicines BoomingIndia boasts one of the oldest medical systems in the world, Ayurveda. Now India is investing in the renewed interest of its non-conventional medical systems, AYUSH (Ayurveda, Unani, Yoga, Naturopathy, Siddha, and Homeopathy). The new global interest has resulted in AYUSH medicines booming. This boom has attracted not only government investments but Indian entrepreneurs as well.

The systems of alternative medicines, mainly comprising the AYUSH streams (Ayurveda, Unani, Yoga, Naturopathy, Siddha, and Homeopathy), are fast gaining traction and popularity in India. The government, in the 2018 Union Budget, increased the allocation to the AYUSH Ministry, purposed with developing education and research in these areas of medicine, by more than 13 per cent to Rs 1,626.37 crore. Backed by strong government support there is a steady increase in graduate and postgraduate institutes for the study of AYUSH medicine. Central regulatory councils are also being established to create infrastructure and put in place a strong regulatory framework.

Increased awareness of these systems of medicine is creating a burgeoning demand across India and the world. AYUSH is a $10 billion market and is expected to grow to a $15 billion market by 2020. A range of startups is working to tap this market. While some of them are working to repackage medicines and formulas offered by Ayurveda and Homeopathy, others are offering preventive and holistic treatment through the same. Customers who have been failed by conventional medicines or have suffered side-effects are being driven to these alternate sources of healing.

Source: Alternative medicine is booming in India, and these 5 startups are leading the way

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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Duke Integrative Medicine Wheel of Health

Duke Integrative Medicine Wheel of Health

Duke Integrative Medicine Wheel of HealthThere are many models to depict health. Some are as a simple and powerful as the Chinese Yin Yang symbol that guides not only Traditional Chinese Medicine but various martial arts, philosophy and more. The Duke Integrative Medicine Wheel of Health is, in our humble opinion, a wonderful construct for today’s demands.

So many “health care” organizations claim to be “patient centered” and focused on “patient engagement”. However, this is one of the few models from a conventional Western institution that puts YOU (holistically, not just as a patient) in the center. The Wheel of Health depicts so many non-clinical determinants of health and levels of care. This is not the normal PCMH focus on getting lab results or coordinating appointments with specialists. We are, after all, in the 21st Century and those things should have been put to rest years ago.

No. This is about YOU. This is about cultivating YOUR Mind-Body Connection, YOUR Movement, Exercise and Rest, YOUR Nutrition, YOUR Personal & Professional Growth, YOUR Physical Environment, YOUR Relationships and Communication, and YOUR Spirituality. If a physician’s office can’t get lab results in the 21st Century let the $3.4 Trillion “health care” system worry about that… you have enough.

Where YOUR Self Care isn’t sufficient (and we all need a little help) the Wheel of Health recognizes both Complementary and Conventional approaches… there isn’t a pill for Spirituality or a surgical procedure to reattach a Relationship. We DO value pharmaceuticals and surgeries where they do bring benefit but there is so much we can do before reaching for pills and operating room calendars.

Take a few moments to reflect on YOUR needs in this model… and maybe work with Duke Integrative Medicine or other providers to address your holistic health needs along the lines of the Duke Integrative Medicine Wheel of Health.

In today’s fast-paced and increasingly complex world, medical science and the evolution of unique models for health care are bringing us closer to truly personalized medicine. Given these evolving trends, the need for a comprehensive and dynamically responsive plan for your health is even more important. For this reason we want to help you create personalized health plans that are as responsive to your current health needs as they are adaptable to your future health.

Source: Wheel of Health – Duke Integrative Medicine

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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Most Popular Alternative Healing Therapies

Popular Alternative Healing Therapies

Popular Alternative Healing TherapiesTrying to stay healthy has been with us since the dawn of Humanity. Many popular alternative healing therapies have been around for thousands of years. Traditional Chinese Medicine like acupuncture and herbs started over 2,500 years ago. Ayurvedic Medicine started over 3,000 years ago in India. We exist at a great time because there are now more choices for health than ever. With education and awareness, these ancient therapies as well as modern gizmos and conventional allopathic medicine can all work together.

Alternative Healing Therapies are healing methodologies that differ from the usual line of treatment than that of a doctor. In other words therapeutic practices that are currently not considered as an integral part of conventional medical practice are classified as alternate healing therapies or alternate medicine. Many a times the benefits and healing abilities of these therapies are established through research, other times they may be unproven scientifically. With alternate healing therapies, healing, treatment and cure may be achieved through diet, self healing mechanism of the human body, various energies, herbal and other supplements and much more.

Over the last couple of decades there has been a renewed interest in holistic and natural and thus various therapies have found acceptance and are getting popular both in India and world over.

Source: Most Popular Alternative Healing Therapies | Business Standard News

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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Indian Gooseberry Health Benefits

Indian gooseberry health benefits

Indian Gooseberry Health Benefits

We are, admittedly, latecomers to recognize Indian gooseberry health benefits. Luckily people like Dr. Michael Greger and the scientists behind the research he reviews are not. Based on Dr. Greger’s insightful articles / videos, we wanted to understand more about the Indian gooseberry, or Amla, and found this nice overview of Amla on Organic Facts to share with you.

The Indian Gooseberry belongs to the Euphorbiaceae family. This fruit ripens in the autumn in wet, forest, hilly areas on the Indian subcontinent and is considered as a sacred tree in India. The fruit is very nourishing, but it tastes sour. Both, dried and fresh fruits can be consumed for their respective health benefits.

It provides remedies for a lot of diseases and so it is widely used in Ayurvedic treatments. Gooseberry is very rich in vitamin C and contains many minerals and vitamins like calcium, phosphorus, iron, carotene, and vitamin B complex. It is also a powerful antioxidant agent.

Many health problems are caused by oxidative damage (when body cells use oxygen, they produce by-products called free radicals that can cause damage). Antioxidant agents prevent and repair these damages. Vitamin C is a good antioxidant agent, which makes gooseberries a powerful tool against a variety of conditions, including various types of cancer.

Source: 13 Amazing Benefits of Amla or Indian Gooseberry | Organic Facts

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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Amla’s Benefits For Cholesterol And More

Amla’s Benefits

Amla's Benefits
Amla, the Indian Gooseberry

First, what is this “amla” thing and second what kind of benefits? Amla is simply a variety of gooseberry that is native to India. Amla’s benefits? Numerous!

Occasionally we bump into something new that has real health potential and we are excited to try it. Sometimes we hear great insights about a food or therapy from a notable source that reinforces what we know. This is a time when a respected healthcare professional, Michael Greger, M.D., spoke about amla!

“Medicinal plants are [said to be] nature’s gift to human beings to promote a disease free healthy life”—here in reference to amla, a fruit, the Indian gooseberry, described as an “Ayurvedic wonder.” You hear a lot of that larger-than-life talk about amla coming out of Indian medical journals. Who can forget “Amla…, a wonder berry in the treatment and prevention of cancer.” Amla is so revered that you find serious scientists, at serious academic institutions, in serious peer-reviewed medical journals, making statements like this: “[E]very part of the [Indian gooseberry] plant has its unique therapeutic characteristic for the remedy of almost all the ailments…[and] can be adopted as a [bold italic] single bullet [against disease].” Okay, then.

So, here’s this fruit that has enjoyed “a hallowed position in Ayurveda,” the ancient system of medicine in India—so hallowed that it was mythologically pegged as “the first tree…in the universe.” So, for thousands of years—before we even knew what an antioxidant was—they were revering this plant that just so happens to turn out to be the most antioxidant-packed fruit on the planet Earth. Okay, you got my attention. But, I still needed to see it put to the test.

Well, indigenous tribal healers used amla to treat diabetes. So, researchers decided to give it a try. This is the study that originally bowled me over. In fact, it was the subject of one of my first NutritionFacts videos over five years ago: the effect of amla fruit on the blood sugars and cholesterol levels of normal subjects and type 2 diabetic patients. In my video, I talked about the jaw-dropping effects of five cents’ worth of this powdered fruit— five pennies’ worth—compared to a diabetes drug. But, what about the cholesterol effects?

If you take healthy individuals and give them a placebo sugar pill, nothing much happens to their cholesterol. Ideally, we want our total cholesterol under 150. This was a pretty healthy group; the average cholesterol in the U.S. is over 200, which is where the diabetics started out in this study. And, when you give them placebo pills, nothing much happens either. But, give people just about a half-teaspoon of amla powder a day—not some extract or something, just dried Indian gooseberries, a powdered fruit, and this is what happens. That’s like a 35-45% drop in three weeks—absolutely astounding. That’s the kind of thing we see like six months after putting people on statin drugs.

Source:  The Best Food for High Cholesterol

Just a Taste of Amla

If you haven’t watched to Dr. Greger’s video (The Best Food for High Cholesterol) we highly recommend it! Amla’s benefits cover a range of chronic illnesses (as well as elephant flatulence and hair loss). Dr. Greger does a particularly good job of walking through various published studies that provide insights on amla. Yeah… we just ordered some!

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The HealthCare Too model provides for a collaborative holistic care approach to health. We look for articles and knowledge to help consumers and their care teams make holistic health decisions and also shop for the best deals in holistic health so you can find them here! We appreciate the value of surgery and pharmaceuticals but want to make more paths available for your HealthCare Too. See our model for Holistic Health for more information!

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