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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: health, Most Recent at Top [Help]
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1. Green Smoothie of the Day: Chocolate Banana Strawberry Pineapple (Etc.)

Chocolate Banana Strawberry Pineapple (Etc.) Green Smoothie

Chocolate Banana Strawberry Pineapple (Etc.) Green Smoothie

Here’s today’s experiment:

  • 1 handful sprouts
  • 2 large Swiss chard leaves
  • 3 dates
  • 4 frozen strawberries
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 3 frozen pineapple chunks
  • 1 heaping Tablespoon peanut butter
  • 2 heaping teaspoons cacao
  • About 1 cup water (up to the Nutribullet fill line)

Taste review: Looks like a chocolate smoothie, tastes a little more gardeny than that. I started with just half a banana and no dates, and it wasn’t sweet enough. I think I could have gotten by with just one teaspoon of cacao. I’m kind of sick of the taste of dates. Will be looking for other ways to sweeten. But overall, not bad! And very, very filling.

Health review: After just a few days of one green smoothie a day, my skin already looks so much better–healthy and clear in a way it hasn’t for months. And my digestion: wow. I won’t go into detail, but let’s just say it’s meeting my need for spring cleaning.

The key, though, is these smoothies have to taste good. This is a voluntary activity and if it’s not fun I won’t do it. Which is why I’m experimenting with flavors. And why I’m reporting to you about those experiments, so that if you’re in the green smoothie mood, you can do it in an enjoyable, non-punishing way. Because we’re against punishment here on the blog.

Carry on, Greenies!

0 Comments on Green Smoothie of the Day: Chocolate Banana Strawberry Pineapple (Etc.) as of 4/12/2014 8:45:00 PM
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2. Is a Peel Right for My Skin?


The truth is that, there is a chemical peel for every skin type. A chemical peel can help your skin tone, the texture of your skin, reduce fine lines and wrinkles, shrink large pores, lighten freckles and reduce the appearance of scars, as well as lighten the appearance of hyper-pigmentation and sun damage and even reduce the appearance of acne. There are many types of chemical peels, and each one is designed either for a specific skin type or to alleviate a specific problem.

The reported benefits of a peel are extensive but, is a peel right for you? The only way to determine if you should get a Chemical Peel in Atlanta GA, is to go in for a consultation with a specialist. Talking to a professional at The Slender Spa Med can help you make an educated decision.

A professional can tell you about the types of peels that they offer and recommend the right one for your specific skin and needs. The Slender Spa Med has one of the most comprehensive self-improvement spas in the field. In chemical peels they offer both Physician’s Choice and Skinceuticals brand peels. With these two brands they can offer anything from a micro peel to an entire body peel, and everything in between.

During a consultation you will meet with a medical professional, and you will discuss exactly what you want and expect from a chemical peel. You will discuss your skin and your skincare history. A skilled esthetician will conduct an examination of your skin and recommend the treatment that best suits your needs. The final decision will, of course, be yours.

Receiving a chemical peel is a big decision. It can potentially change your life. Imagine having the skin that you have always dreamed of having. Your skin can be free of dark spots, or large pores. You can reduce the appearance of those ugly pimples, or make those unsightly acne or chicken pox scars fade. Your skin can regain that youthful glow and warm vitality, and with it you can have improved self-confidence and perhaps even a new lease on life.

It all starts with a simple consultation to find out what treatment is best for you. There is no time like the present to seize the future. Make an appointment today for a Chemical Peel in Atlanta GA, and find out what is in your future.

The post Is a Peel Right for My Skin? appeared first on Jessabella Reads.

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3. Beginning the Green Smoothie Phase of My Spring Cleaning

As you may have been able to tell from my recent photos and posts, I was skiing up until a few days ago. Just arrived home to the desert where it’s already 92 degrees. It’s a little . . . jarring. Dogs are looking at me like, “What the–?” and while they’re busy shedding as much of their fur as possible–I’ll be able to knit a new Labrador in about a week–I’m taking my own measures to adjust to the almost summer.

It’s a two-phase action plan: Clean my house, clean my body.

Believe it or not, the body part of it is much simpler. All I have to do is switch out of winter eating mode (soups, sandwiches, pastas, sweets, sweets, more sweets) and turn to my old friend the green smoothie.

Also known as Baby Poop.

Why Baby Poop? Because if you saw the way one of my green smoothies has traditionally looked–dark brown, sometimes brownish-red, with hints of green flakes–you’d say, “Yeah, good luck with that, think I’ll have a salad.” But for some reason, I’ve been out of the salad mood for about a year now. Can’t explain it. So I’m just going with it.

The thing that’s going to banish the baby-poopedness look of my smoothies from now on is that tomorrow I’ll be getting this nifty machine that actually has a proper motor. I discovered while skiing that that’s been the whole problem with my green smoothie life. I just haven’t had enough power.

I made that discovery by watching someone else make one for me. The things she put in there! (To be discussed below.) And by the time she poured it into a cup, the liquid was this beautiful, light green, and instead of tasting gritty and *good for me,* it tasted smooth and delicious, more like a dessert. Which, see above re: winter diet, sold me.

But even better, the smoothie fixed me.  Day after day I’d stumble into that place, start croaking out ingredients–”Dates! Cashews! Oh my gosh I’m about to pass out–coconut! More fat! Bring it!”–and the lovely proprietoress, Gretchen, would keep adding and adding (see below) and then give me basically a cup full of green medicine.

I have never recovered from a big physical effort more quickly and more deliciously. That’s what I’m saying. That’s why I’m trekking down the Green Smoothie Way.

I’ll be experimenting with new recipes as I go, and I’ll post some of the best ones here, but let’s start with the Skiing Kicked My Butt recipe that got me through:

  • Big handful of unsalted cashews
  • Normal handful of unsalted sunflower seeds
  • One heaping teaspoon peanut butter
  • Big handful of dates (about 5)
  • One banana, preferably frozen to give the drink some thickness
  • Big handful of strawberries, also preferably frozen
  • Normal handful of blueberries (optional–makes the color a little weirder, but tastes good)
  • Two heaping teaspoons cacao (unsweetened cocoa powder will do) (also optional, but wow)
  • One teaspoon coconut (optional, but yum)
  • Three huge leaves of kale or Swiss chard, stems and all, ripped into pieces and layered on top
  • About 1/2  to 1 cup of peach, pear, or apple juice
  • About 1 1/2 cups pure water–start with 1 cup, then add more as you assess the thickness. Some people like their smoothies thicker, some more liquidy. You’re the boss.

I tried this in my regular blender, but no. Baby poop. I’ll take a photo of the proper green smoothie once I try it with my new machine tomorrow. You’ll see. Fresh and spring-looking.

Onward, green smoothiers!

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4. Where were you?

Where were you when you first heard the sound? Good sounds – your husband’s voice, your baby’s giggle, the words “I love you?” Do you remember? Can you picture the scene and surroundings?

I experienced a condensed courtship with my wife because I was briefly called back to service during Desert Storm. I don’t recall the first expression of the four- letter L word in our relationship. I know it came, and stuck. I have said it to her every day for nearly twenty-two years. I say it every night to my girls and sometimes in front of other people, much to their chagrin.

I wish I remembered the first time I said it, though.

I will never forget the first time I heard the word Cancer as it related to my family. I was in the hospital just a week ago when it was introduced to me, while my little girl lay sleeping nearby. The doctor actually used the words “oncological event” before I made him dumb it down for me. Cancer.

I held my wife in my arms as she collapsed into a puddle. Doesn’t cancer affect other families? Why would he be saying this word? I felt an instant dislike for this man, but my mind clouded to nothing. My wife’s head heaved in my chest. I couldn’t think in more than three word bursts. I have no idea how long we stood that way. I was roused only by the sound of a man pushing a cart way down at the end of the hall. The wheel squeaked as he carried out his task and I remember thinking, “How can he be pushing that? Doesn’t he know? It doesn’t matter where that squeaky cart is! Why isn’t he stopping?”

It was then I realized this isn’t everyone’s diagnosis. It is Kylie’s and ours: our family’s, our friends and network of support. But the rest of the world will continue to march on around us.

I will add a link to Kylie’s Caring Bridge at the end of this post because I won’t allow cancer to dominate my writing. It will peak its evil head in from time to time, I have no doubt. But I won’t allow it to take over my life, steal my joy, soil my faith, or crush my little girl.

It took a while to determine the enemy. Until then, we’ve been punching at shadows. Now we start to take it out. We are at the beginning of a long road, but there is hope. Kylie knows what is going on, she is scared. We cried together and prayed. She has decided that this is happening because God must have a really big, great plan for her. I don’t know if I could have gotten to those words so quickly at twelve – she’s just chock-full of amazing.


The picture I added is one of Kylie as Annie in her school play a couple of years ago. She is an incredible actress and I can’t wait to see her on stage again.

Because our minds are reeling right now, the verse we’ve been holding onto is Romans 8:26

Likewise the Spirit also helps in our weaknesses. For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.

Thank you for your prayers and words of encouragement, friends. I have to go now, the bell just sounded for round one…




11 Comments on Where were you?, last added: 4/10/2014
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5. A Chat with Asperkids™ Author Jennifer Cook O’Toole

Jennifer Cook O’Toole is founder of Asperkids™, a multimedia social education company focused on making life for children and families with Asperger’s profoundly positive and purposeful.

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6. Shaking Hands with your Urologist

My first experience with Dr. P was a week after we discovered our surprise forth pregnancy. I found myself seated uncomfortably on the metal table being interrogated by a very contemplative man half my height, but with an IQ obviously twice mine. He spoke with a fairly thick accent and seemed dubious of my procedure of choice.

Dr. P, “Missa Myers, you seem very young. How old are you?”

Me, “I’m thirty-four.”

Dr. P, “How old your wife?”

Me, “She’s thirty-three.”

Dr. P, “Oh, that very young. You sure you want this?”

Me, “Yes Doctor, I’m sure.”

Dr. P, “You know, this permanent. You might want reversal, but it maybe not work.”

Me, “I know. I’m sure.”

Dr. P, “Your wife sure? She know?”

Me, “Yes, she knows.”

Dr. P, “Okay, you sure. Just one more time I ask, because you maybe not go back?”

Me, “Dr. P, we just found out we were pregnant with our fourth child.”

Momentary pause for contemplation.

Dr. P, “Oh. In that case, why you not come see me sooner?”

He checked a box on his form and left. The procedure came a few weeks later. I’ll mention no specifics except to say that once I was prepped and ready, the quiet, secluded corner room seemed to turn into Grand Central Station. Nurses, accountants, inspectors, magazine vendors, interns, dog walkers, board certifiers, and I think a few pharmaceutical sales reps all of the sudden had important business in my room. Finally the good doctor came and did his work. I left hoping to never see Dr. P again. No offense, but I thought seeing him again meant a fifth bundle of joy. I was wrong.

My second trip to see him came after experiencing some discomfort during a long run. Until then, I had no idea that Urologists did everything! When I went back to the very same room, there sat my friend, Dr. P. who remembered me distinctly.

“How your baby?” Dr. P asked.

Me, “She’s doing great. Six years old now.”

Dr. P, “How old are you?”

Me, “I just turned forty.”

Dr. P, “You know, Missa Myers, we start thinking about prostate health at this age…”


I’ll leave the rest to the imagination. Based on my experience with Dr. P, I have some advice for men.

First, when your Urologist asks you your age, consider consider the ramifications of the question.

Second, when you are greeted by your friendly Urologist, remember that his hands have been places that my dog’s nose only dreams about.




I poke fun at my interaction with Dr. P, but men’s health issues are not a laughing matter. Fortunately, I only had a couple of kidney stones that were easily blasted out. Get checked when it is time to get checked, men. Others are counting on you!


10 Comments on Shaking Hands with your Urologist, last added: 4/8/2014
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7. How a Cosmetic Dentist Can Make it Easier to Laugh


A laugh could be described as an exaggerated smile. Unless it’s a giggle, a laugh involves showing your teeth, whether they be straight and white or crooked and stained. Laughing is good for your health in a number of ways, but doing it confidently will almost certainly require the services of a cosmetic dentist in Miami FL.

Laughter itself results from a chain reaction of physiological events occurring in a fraction of a second. After a person sees, hears or thinks about something that is funny, an electrical impulse travels to the cerebral cortex portion of the brain that is responsible for comprehension. The left hemisphere of the cortex analyzes the concept while the right hemisphere grasps the concept viscerally. The limbic system, which has control over human emotions, then creates a sense of happiness that the motor system turns into the outburst known as a laugh.
Researchers have shown how a good laugh can help a person physically and emotionally, although some observers believe that the benefits may lie in certain social effects due to the fact that laughing is normally a group activity.
For whatever the reason, laughter is known to lower blood pressure and increase oxygen levels in the blood, which makes it a good form of exercise. In the same manner as does physical activity, laughing exercises certain muscles of the body, including those in the legs, abdomen and back. Additionally, it has been proven to reduce certain hormones in the body that can induce stress, including adrenaline and dopamine, while increasing endorphins, which are hormones that enhance a person’s health.
Laughing can even expand human aptitude by increasing a person’s ability to learn and remember things. From a psychological standpoint, laughing can help clear the mind by distracting a person away from anger, guilt and other negative thoughts. People can find humor in movies, television, reading materials and by listening to others, but one of the best ways to get a laugh is by being tickled by somebody else. You may not associate laughing with dentistry, but maybe you should. Whether it be with the help of porcelain veneers, implants or whitening gels, your smile can be made to look laughingly lovable with the right dental care. It is this type of care that is available from a cosmetic dentist in Miami FL.

The post How a Cosmetic Dentist Can Make it Easier to Laugh appeared first on Jessabella Reads.

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8. World TB Day 2014: Reach the three million

By Timothy D. McHugh

Tuberculosis (TB) is a disease of poverty and social exclusion with a global impact. It is these underlying truths that are captured in the theme of World TB Day 2014 ‘Reach the three million: a TB test, treatment and cure for all’. Of the nine million cases of tuberculosis each year, one-third does not have access to the necessary TB services to treat them and prevent dissemination of the disease in their communities. The StopTB Partnership is calling for ‘a global effort to find, treat and cure the three million’ and thus eliminate TB as a public health problem. So is the scientific community making sufficient progress to realise this target?

Early diagnosis is a cornerstone of management of the individual and we know that as the disease progresses and the bacterial load and severity of disease increase, the likelihood of a poor outcome is exacerbated. It is important to distinguish between diagnosis of tuberculosis and detection, which is confirmation of the presence of mycobacteria. Diagnosis for the three million (and many more) is largely dependent on the clinical expertise of the healthcare worker, with minimal input from technology. Whereas detection requires input from microbiological services and the principal tool in this area is sputum smear microscopy. A sputum sample with no evidence of acid fast bacilli is the accepted predictor of low risk of transmission, and so early application is critical in the management pathway. With improvements such as the auramine stain and LED fluorescent microscopy, the smear remains a cost effective component of TB screening programmes. The emergence of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis has accentuated the need for prompt confirmation of drug susceptibility and this is where molecular tools have potential impact. The WHO supported roll out of GeneXpert in resource poor settings is going ahead and we are seeing change in practice, but it is too soon to determine the public health impact of this innovation. The challenge for microbiology is not to get drawn into a ‘one size fits all’ solution. In many settings, the low technology, low cost and rapid screening of smears serves to break the chain of transmission of drug sensitive tuberculosis. Whereas, in areas of high endemicity of drug resistant TB, such as South Africa, an equally fast indication of drug resistance is essential.

Photo by WHO/Jean Cheung

Photo by WHO/Jean Cheung

Diagnosis leads to treatment. TB is curable but treatment regimens are long, toxic and complex to deliver. Following the stakeholders meeting in Cape Town in 2000 there has been a major effort to open up the drug development pipeline. There are two aspects to this, firstly new agents and secondly clinical trials. There is a new enthusiasm for exploring new compounds with action against TB and the publication of the whole genome of Mycobacterium tuberculosis allowed the interrogation of its biochemistry, opening the door for medicinal chemists to contribute their expertise. The development of MDRTB has led us to reconsider compounds previously excluded as too toxic or too difficult to administer; these drugs, such as PAS and thioridazene, are now being re-visited or forming the basis of fresh iterations of chemical screening programmes. After 30 years of no new drugs for TB treatment, two phase 3 trials (RIFAQUIN and OFLATUB) were reported in 2013 and a third (REMoxTB) is expected to report shortly. These studies have shaken things up. They each have potential to make improvements in TB treatment. However, it could be argued that their real benefit lies in the development of a network of facilities capable of undertaking TB clinical trials, as exemplified by the Global Alliance for TB Drug Development and the EDCTP funded PanACEA consortium, and their contribution to the active debate about how to efficiently deliver clinical trials that have a real impact on individuals and populations. We are now looking outside the world of TB and to, for example, cancer trial methodology for innovations such as the multi-arm multi-stage (MAMS) approach. A significant challenge here is to convert the results of studies undertaken, with the aim of full regulatory approval, into the rather more complex environment of programmatic delivery.

The host-pathogen interaction for M. tuberculosis is manifest in the pathology of tuberculosis and has proven to be a fruitful area of immunological research. This, together with the (variable) success of BCG vaccination, has led us to the reasonable expectation of a vaccine for control of tuberculosis. There has been much innovation in this area and new studies are in the pipeline. The quest for immunological markers of disease continues. Useful diagnostic tools for latency have been developed in the shape of IGRA tests (Tuberculosis: Diagnosis and Treatment), but, more importantly, recent advances lead us to the idea that we may be able to define a host response signature to tuberculosis. If successful, this approach may allow us to select those patients for whom a shorter course of therapy is adequate. From the UK MRC studies it was clear that as many as 80% of patients would be cured with a four-month regimen; the difficulty was that they could not be identified in advance or during treatment. A host response biomarker may well enable us to address this issue.

M. tuberculosis is a fascinating organism with many features of its biology that are distinct from other bacteria. For this reason the TB research community has become rather insular, not necessarily drawing on the experience from the wider bacteriology community. This was further exacerbated by the apparent fall in incidence of TB through the 1960s and 70s. Complacency is the term that comes to mind. Despite the commitment of groups such as those led by Mitchison and Grossett, there has been very little innovation in detection and diagnosis, and no new drug introduced to first line treatment after the 1960s. The declaration by WHO of TB as a global health emergency alerted us to the need for new ideas and new tools to meet this challenge. Twenty years down the line, we have rolled out new diagnostics and a new drugs pipeline that flows with the first phase 3 trials reporting shortly. Similarly, innovation in vaccine design and application moves forward and importantly our understanding of operational and behavioural aspects of controlling TB increases. However, we must not become complacent again. M. tuberculosis is not just an academic challenge and as long as the three million exist, we need to focus all our knowledge to achieve a TB test, treatment and cure for all.

Timothy D. McHugh is Professor of Medical Microbiology at the Centre for Clinical Microbiology, University College London. This is an adapted version of Professor McHugh’s commentary for the Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

The Transactions of the Royal Society of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene publishes authoritative and impactful original, peer-reviewed articles and reviews on all aspects of tropical medicine.

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Image credit: From the TB in Brazil series by WHO/Jean Cheung. Via the Stop TB Partnership.

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9. Two Years. 2,000,000 steps!

Celebrating a Milestone

This weekend I’m celebrating a milestone. Two years ago I began running on the steps in front of my local courthouse. In these two years I’ve run up and down about 2,000,000 steps – between 3,400 and 5,600 steps per day, depending on how I feel and what the weather is like. On my 53rd birthday in October I challenged myself to run 10,000 steps. I did it in one hour and 38 minutes!


Why I Love Running Steps

Running steps more than anything is meditative.  I walk about a half mile from my house to the courthouse, through my alley and down a semi-busy street. I watch the sun rise every morning, listen to the birds chirping, often flying overhead. I pass by morning glories opening and alley cats that scamper as I approach. I arrive at the courthouse while no one else is there, except for the security guards. I count the number of laps I do up and down, which I like to call “innings.” I don’t really focus on counting, it just happens naturally and keeps my mind light and free.

I live in Miami, so it’s hot here – really, really hot and humid. That adds to the challenge of keeping up my energy. But it also allows for a really good sweat, providing that feeling that I’ve sweat out the toxins and have accomplished something worthwhile.  It may sound crazy, but the hard work is worth the euphoric feeling you get when you’re finished. I leave with happy, positive thoughts. Running the steps is free. No club membership! Plus it doesn’t take much time – about 45-minutes of time from start to finish.

I run barefoot because shoes cause injury to my feet and knees. Here I am running the Rocky Steps in Philly.


 What Motivates Me to Run

When I was a child I was always the last one chosen for sports teams whether at school or at play. I wasn’t an athlete; in fact I couldn’t hit a volleyball over a net, hit a baseball or golf well. But as I got older I realized that not being athletically inclined didn’t mean I had to be unfit. My father passed away when he was 40 from a heart attack and my mother had two forms of cancer suffering for 9 years before passing away at age 70.  I can’t change my genetics, but I realized I could get and stay fit, eat right and do what I can to stay healthy. Thinking about my parents’ health challenges motivates me every day. I live by my motto, “Shut your pie hole and move your ass!”

It’s Not Discipline

In the beginning, running steps was really challenging. I was already doing aerobics for years at home, but running up and down steps is really a strenuous workout. It took a lot of self-talking to get up and out of the house early every morning. But then after a few months, gradually I began to look forward to going. Now I can best describe running as a habit. It’s sort of like getting up and brushing your teeth. You just do it. I do have sluggish days when I just don’t feel like running, but I go anyway. My husband calls those “bonus days,” because although your time may be slower or your step numbers may be lower, you went out there and did something on a day when you just didn’t feel like doing it.

A white layer cake I made to celebrate.

What Running Has Taught Me

It’s wrong to label yourself in any negative way. “I’m not athletic,” “I’m too old,” “I’m uncoordinated” or “I don’t think I can or should do this or that.” Running has taught me that I can have as much energy as a 25-year-old, and that if I can stick to something athletic and challenging, then I can transfer that success to other areas of my life. The only boundaries are the ones we put on ourselves.




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10. Senior Wisdom: Using Intuition to Master the Gray Areas

Senior Wisdom and Intuition

Senior Wisdom:
Mastering The Gray Areas

As people age and the odds of getting sick and out of sorts becomes greater, it becomes increasingly important to rely on intuition salted with good common sense and a lifetime of experience to get through confusing symptoms and bad days. The odd tingling here, the unexplained headache there—not to mention feeling downright irritable or depressed—can lead one’s imagination to run wild, prompting questions like, “Is my diabetes acting up, am I having a stroke?” These events can be serious but they also might be nothing but instigators for bewildering and frightening experiences—especially if they come on a bad day when a person is lonely, or otherwise not feeling “up to it.” More questions surface, “Should I call my doctor? Can I afford another medical expense?” A whole litany of concerns pop into the mind, compounding the problem by adding to any anxiety or depression already manifesting itself.

Naturally, if a person suspects or has reason to believe a serious issue is presenting itself, a visit to the doctor would be appropriate. However, where there is reasonable doubt, a lifetime of having to solve problems requiring responses where one doesn’t have all the answers can encourage the senior to rely on intuition, common sense and previous experience. A decision to call the doctor will then be based on deep insight coming from the body itself, and can really help the doctor treat the person accordingly.

Most of us have had little motivation to develop intuition

However, most likely, we have not developed intuition for a number of reasons. For one thing, it was almost never taught in school despite the fact that most scientific advances come as a result of intuitive insight. Also, perhaps in younger days there weren’t so many “gray areas,” especially concerning health. Chances are, when we were in the full bloom of youth and health, we only dealt with issues that have ready solutions, or had a medical problem for which the doctors were able to heal or at least adequately address. The chronic conditions were a lot fewer. If we broke a leg skiing; we got a cast on our leg. If we contracted a strep throat; we were given an antibiotic to fight it. Most of us didn’t “listen” to our bodies. We took our good health for granted and lived in blissful ignorance.

So aging seems to bring, along with the gray hair, more and more gray areas in life, especially health related issues, where there are no set solutions to matters of mind, body and spirit A little more than an apple a day is needed to address the problem of an arthritic knee, and no one person has all the answers. In some cases, there simply are no answers or cures. One must somehow forge one’s own path ahead to get light and definition in the gray areas. This can be done through intuition.

Never too late to Build Intuitive Skills

Intuition is something all of us are born with, but few of us make a point to work on as we would work on building our muscles or financial portfolio. Yet like our muscles and portfolios, it’s never too late to work on our intuitive abilities as long as we are mentally competent.

At first this effort to develop intuitive skills most likely will seem completely stupid, especially if one hasn’t tried it. After all, within is where all the problems are felt—between the pounding heart, the tightened stomach and splitting headache!

Where to Start

It helps beginners to read a few good books on intuition or maybe take a class in intuition. It takes a little guidance for most adults to go from the head to the heart, a journey described as one of the longest anyone can possibly make. Like every serious undertaking, a little groundwork and the learning of a few techniques are required. And being serious about it helps. You can’t just say a few “oms” and expect to feel better. For some seniors, reading the books and applying the self-help techniques to develop intuition are quite enough and could prove very beneficial. Others will become fascinated by what they learn, and realize they possess special intuitive gifts which they may want to develop through the help of a trainer. Most will certainly become more confident in making decisions regarding the “gray areas.” The discovery of these gifts could open up a new phase of life not only for self development but for helping others.

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11. The Juice Lady’s Remedies For Stress & Adrenal Fatigue

The Juice Lady's Remedies
Author: Cherie Calbom, MS, CN
Publisher: Siloam
Genre: Health / Nutrition
ISBN: 978-1-62136-567-9
Pages: 128
Price: $12.99

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

If you’re suffering from stress and exhaustion, your diet may be partially to blame. Choosing different foods and drinks could alleviate your symptoms. Cherie Calbom, the Juice Lady, has developed a juicing plan to help you feel healthy and vibrant once again.

In this pocket guide, Calbom introduces the concept of adrenal fatigue and shows us how to make changes in our eating and thinking. Living foods are recommended, and organic is preferable to conventional. But juicing is the key to following this program, since it allows the body to take in more nutrients than eating can provide on its own.

After sharing her story, Calbom shows us the causes and symptoms of adrenal fatigue. The juicing process is explained in detail, to ensure proper technique and storage. Meal and juice recipes look appealing, and the benefits of each are explained.

If you’re already familiar with adrenal fatigue and you’re looking for a quick guide to adding living foods and juices to your diet, this book will be helpful. But if you’re unfamiliar with this condition, you might want to explore one of the Juice Lady’s more comprehensive books.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

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12. Happy Hormones, Slim Belly

Happy Hormones Slim Belly
Author: Jorge Cruise
Publisher: Hay House Inc.
Genre: Diet / Health
ISBN: 978-1-4019-4329-5
Pages: 288
Price: $24.95

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

If you are a woman over 40, you might be facing uncontrollable carbohydrate cravings that throw any attempted diet plan right out the window. Jorge Cruise believes that these urges can be tamed following his Women’s Carb Cycling Plan. In this plan, carbs are severely restricted during some days, but allowed in moderation on others.

Using the logic from his The 100 diet program, he explains how Sugar Calories are to blame for weight gain. Under this modified plan, women are encouraged to limit these Sugar Calories to less than 100 per day, in order to lose weight. Weekly plans, recipes, and food lists are provided as tools in following the program.

While it’s certainly possible for some women to lose as much as 7 lbs in the first week, and 2 lbs/week thereafter, these bold claims on the cover of the book make me skeptical. Most diet plans recommend a safe and steady weight loss of 1-2 lbs per week. But on the plus side, the recipes included in this book don’t resemble traditional “diet” fare, and actually look yummy while also being healthy. I did not attempt to use this diet plan, so I’m not sure how reasonable or successful it would be, but there is nothing in it that looks dangerous to follow.  If you’re struggling with binge carbohydrate eating, this program might be worth looking into.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

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13. Sleep Fat Wake Up Thin

Sleep Fat Wake Up Thin
Author: Kenn Kihiu
Publisher: CreateSpace
Genre: Fitness / Weight Loss
ISBN: 978-1481948067
Pages: 92
Price: $11.99

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Maintaining an ideal body weight continues to be a struggle for many of us, and Kenn Kihiu has offered us his thoughts on how to do this. In Sleep Fat Wake Up Thin he presents his system of weight loss, the F.A.S.T. way.

Using this acronym, he presents a five-step system (modules) of eliminating unhealthy foods, adding more healthy foods and beverages to our diet, and changing the way we eat and think. These build on each other, eventually leading to healthy and lean bodies.

Unfortunately, this successful creator of the danceX Workout and 8020 Body has given us a lot of information we’ve seen many times before. His only divergence from standard diet advice is his presentation of fasting as part of our normal eating cycle.

If you’re already a follower of Kenn Kihiu’s programs, this book would probably be a good complement to what you’ve already learned from him. But on its own, it fails to cover enough new ground. However, if you’re interested in fasting, you may find this chapter particularly useful.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

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14. 10 facts that tell you why The Drugs Don't Work

The Drugs Don’t Work by Professor Dame Sally Davies, a Penguin Special that publishes this week, is a treaty from the UK’s top doctor explaining that resistance to our current range of antibiotics is the new inconvenient truth. If we don't act now, we risk the health of our parents, our children and our grandchildren.

In this book, Chief Medical Officer Professor Davies, draws attention to this potentially devastating story. She provides a scientific overview on microbes and how they can cause human disease; she identifies the different treatment options; and she examines how the rules of evolution mean the bugs are constantly adapting to those treatments. But more importantly she explains what can be done about this global threat, which is just as important and deadly as climate change and international terrorism.


We've pulled out ten, frankly terrifying, facts from the book:

  1. Antibiotics add, on average, 20 years to everyone's lives.
  2. Since the manufacture of penicillin in 1943, for over 70 years we have survived extraordinary operations and life-threatening infections.  The truth is that we have been abusing them: as patients; as doctors; as travellers; in our food.
  3. No new class of antibiotic has been discovered for 26 years and the bugs are fighting back.
  4. 25,000 people a year in Europe alone are already dying of resistant bugs - killing as many people as road accidents.
  5. 1,000 different bacterial species can be found within the human intestine alone. The total weight of bacteria within the human gut can be as much as 2 kg.
  6. In 2011, 55 million people died out of a global population of 6.9 billion. About 10 million, roughly a fifth, of these deaths were from infectious diseases. 9.5 million were from low- and middle-income countries. Put another way, 40 per cent of all deaths in low income countries were a result of infectious diseases.
  7. The most common way for spreading bugs is by your hands: we have between 2 and 10 million bacteria between fingertip and elbow. Wash your hands.
  8. Without urgent action being taken, by 2043 we could be dying from common infections such as a sore throat
  9. Today, over 35 million courses of antimicrobial drugs are prescribed by family doctors in England each year. Many of these cases are falsely prescribed or demanded by patients
  10. Antimicrobials are used in some cases to fatten livestock for slaughter, but this can contribute to drug resistance for humans.

The Drugs Don't Work is available to buy as an eBook from today. It publishes in paperback on Thursday 19th September.

Read an extract from the book in The Sunday Times here.

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15. Get Motivated as Fall Approaches

Running the Rocky Steps in Philly

Even more than January 1st, I look upon the day after Labor Day as the first day of my “new year.” Children are gathering new school supplies, leaving them with that wonderful feeling of a fresh start. Along with them, I feel like starting over too. But it’s not always easy to get motivated. I am disciplined with my healthy diet and workouts, but there are other areas of my life that need some motivation. For that I’m going to take what I’ve learned from what I’ve accomplished and apply it to these new uncharted territories.

  1. Make a list of reasonable goals, but not too many.
  2. Research meeting those goals. (For example: You want to lose weight. First check the BMI Index to see what a healthy weight for you would be.)
  3. Write down the final goal, but also break it into steps. (For example: Lose 30 pounds by Christmas. Lose 8 lbs per month, 2 lbs per week.)
  4. Research and write down your plan to achieve your goal. (For example: Do 5 45-minute aerobic workouts per week. Introduce more fruits and veggies to diet. Omit fried foods, cut way back on sweets. Drink more water. Stick to 1500 calories per day)
  5. Share your goals with a friend or family member and ask them to be a stickler about checking up on you. Sign a document stating what you plan to do to reach your goals by a certain date so your partner can hold you to it.
  6. Surround yourself with the tools you need to get the job done and get rid of the things that might prevent you from reaching those goals. (For example: You want to lose weight so you stock your fridge and pantry with fresh, whole foods and lots of fruits and veggies. You get rid of the junk food and sweets. You make a small investment in workout videos or join a class.)
  7. Find what motivates you best – either positive or negative. (For example: I run the steps 5 times per week, 1 million steps per year. Every day I wake up and feel like staying in bed. I motivate myself to get up and do it by thinking of my parents, who both passed away prematurely from bad health issues. That motivates me to fight my bad genetics and get moving and stay healthy.)
  8. Track your progress and celebrate your accomplishments, both big and small. (For example: There are days when I get to the courthouse steps and just feel lethargic or have an injury and struggle through the workout. I may do less repetitions, but I still go out there and do it. Then I celebrate that despite my lethargy, I did it anyway.)
  9. Concentrate on the benefits. (For example: I am 52 years old and weigh the same as I did in my 20s. I am right on target with my weight on the BMI Index. I can wear skinny jeans. I have a lot of muscle and a ton of energy. I look younger than most people my age.)
  10. Remind Yourself of the Consequences of quitting. (For example: If I quit this new habit of running steps, I will turn to mush and gain weight and have health problems. I will look back and remember how fit I used to be and will be so angry at myself that I didn’t keep it up.

Like everything else positive you set out to accomplish in your life, you’ve got to have a plan and find out what motivates you to get it done. If you fall off track, it’s not the end. Just pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and remind yourself of the incredible benefits you will have when you reach and maintain your goals.

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So this #summeroffitness is off to a good start — and I’m tired! My goals this summer? Get healthy. Lose weight. Get in shape. Within those goals are smaller goals to help me focus on success, so I don’t get discouraged. Here are a few: 1. Work up to swimming a mile, 3 times a … Keep reading 

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17. Trailer: Ouch! Sunburn!

OUCH! SUNBURN!by Donna J. Shepherd A Wings of Faith Children's Book Author: Donna J. Shepherd Illustrations: Kevin Scott Collier ISBN: 1-933090-60-X ISBN 13: 9781933090603 Scroll down to see a video! From the Publisher: Donna J. Shepherd’s snappy rhymes along with the 15 colorful and fun illustrations by Kevin Scott Collier help children see the need to protect their skin in

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18. I Ran the Rocky Steps

I went to Philly this weekend and ran the Rocky Steps. The weather was perfect, and it was such a pleasure to run in cool temps with no humidity! I ran up and down 65 steps, 30 times.

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19. Health Care for Writers

If you are self-employed, you are worried about health care. I know: I had surgery in July and it took six months to get all the bills cleared up.

The new Affordable Heatlth Care plan goes into effect in 2014, with enrollment beginning October, 2013, when self-employed persons can sign up for one of a tier of products. The Small Business Administration has just started a new website and blog about health care to help educate the public. Here are some places to start:

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20. Bork Reveals the Real Deal About the Facts of Life

Bork Reveals the Real Deal
Author: Terri Shearer Trenchard
Illustrator: Tracy Councill
Publisher: CreateSpace
Genre: Boys / Health
ISBN: 9781466427846
Pages: 74
Price: $12.99

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Having a “facts of life” discussion with his parents doesn’t usually top the list of bright ideas a pre-teen boy might consider. But when whispered conversations with friends leave him wondering what’s really going on, he needs somewhere to turn for information. Bork Reveals the Real Deal About the Facts of Life can provide the answers.

Speaking in a humorous and light-hearted manner, Bork explains puberty and adolescence in a way boys can understand. Body changes, fluctuating hormones, and even “the facts of life” are covered in this all-inclusive book about growing up.

Most boys would probably rather not talk to a parent about this topic, unless they first have some basic understanding, but Bork encourages them to try. Even if they choose not to, they will have enough information to handle the many changes going on inside them.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

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21. Make Weight Loss Last

Make Weight Loss Last
Author: Deborah Kesten, M.P.H and Larry Scherwitz, Ph. D.
Publisher: White River Press
Genre: Health / Weight Loss
ISBN: 978-1-935052-61-6
Pages: 256
Price: $20.00

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

Did you make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight this year? How is it going? If you’re like many people, you have probably struggled with your diet and maybe even given up. But have you ever explored the reasons why you’ve been unsuccessful?

In Making Weight Loss Last, authors Deborah Kesten and Larry Scherwitz explain some of the ways you might be sabotaging your weight loss efforts through the unconscious habits you follow. Do you eat alone or with others? Do you eat while also doing other things? How much satisfaction do you get from those fast food meals? Looking carefully at these and other patterns of eating can show the real reasons you’re not losing weight.

If you’re looking the latest diet or plan of eating, this book isn’t for you. But if you want to know WHY you’re continuing to struggle with your weight, Making Weight Loss Last can help. Make the decision today to change your eating patterns, and you may finally be successful at your weight loss efforts.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

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22. About that whole vegan thing

20130309-131251.jpgWhen you think of vegans, you might think of wimpy, lethargic, malnourished weirdos doing yoga while they drive their Priuses to the next Natural Spirit and Judgmental Diet seminar.

That might describe a few vegans, but that’s not a good definition by any stretch.

I’m vegan. I’m also kind of a sturdy fella, if you know what I mean.

At 42, I feel better than I ever did. I feel strong, I have plenty of energy, and I still fit in the same size pants I’ve been wearing since I was 20.

Sure, I could probably exercise more and drink less. However, I wouldn’t change the amount of chocolate I consume, unless it would be more. Always more with the chocolate. In other words, I’m human.

The main reason I feel this healthy is because of my vegan diet. Jenni and I are both vegan, which means we don’t consume any animal products at all.

I grew up on the standard American diet of Mac n’ cheese, Hamburger Helper, fried chicken and steak. I was accidentally skinny for a long time, too, which was deceiving because my bad cholesterol levels at 21 were well above 300. And I smoked. Along with my genetics, it was a great way to guarantee a heart attack in my future.

When I altered my diet to eliminate animal products (and cigarettes), my life and health changed forever. It’s been nothing short of amazing. I don’t get sick often, I heal quickly, and I’m stronger than I ever was.

In the past I haven’t been one to proselytize our vegan lifestyle, because I’ve always had a live and let live philosophy. While that hasn’t changed, I think that after ten years of following a vegan diet (20 as a vegetarian), its about time I started sharing.

In the past year, during many travels around the U.S., I’ve been getting a ton of interest and lots of questions about our vegan diet. Mostly people want to know how to do it. The food I eat always looks fresh and tasty and I have to guard my plate. It’s not easy to travel and stay vegan. It’s an adventure. But the interest in my food is, well, interesting.

So I’m going to start writing about this more. We eat really well at home and that gets us through long days and nights of running our screen print and design business.

I’ll start sharing. One thing I want you to know (this is hugely important) is that I don’t judge anyone based on their dietary choices. I’ll answer questions,I’ll guide, I’ll share. Ultimately what you eat is up to you.

If you have questions, toss ‘em out in the comments below. If you want to stay under the radar and follow along, stay tuned for more posts. We’ll share some recipes, tips, and ways to stay strong on a vegan diet. Adventure is out there!

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23. About that whole vegan thing

20130309-131251.jpgWhen you think of vegans, you might think of wimpy, lethargic, malnourished weirdos doing yoga while they drive their Priuses to the next Natural Spirit and Judgemental Diet seminar.

That might describe a few vegans, but that’s not a good definition by any stretch.

I’m vegan. I’m also kind of a sturdy fella, if you know what I mean.

At 42, I feel better than I ever did. I feel strong, I have plenty of energy, and I still fit in the same size pants I’ve been wearing since I was 20.

The main reason I feel this healthy is because of my vegan diet. Jenni and I are both vegan, which means we don’t consume any animal products at all.

Sure, I could probably exercise more and drink less. However, I wouldn’t change the amount of chocolate I consume, unless it would be more. Always more with the chocolate. In other words, I’m human.

I grew up on the standard American diet of Mac n’ cheese, Hamburger Helper, fried chicken and steak. I was accidentally skinny for a long time, too, which was deceiving because my bad cholesterol levels at 21 were well above 300. And I smoked. Along with my genetics, it was a great way to guarantee a heart attack in my future.

When I altered my diet to eliminate animal products (and cigarettes), my life and health changed forever. It’s been nothing short of amazing. I don’t get sick often, I heal quickly, and I’m stronger than I ever was.

In the past I haven’t been one to proselytize our vegan lifestyle, because I’ve always had a live and let live philosophy. While that hasn’t changed, I think that after ten years of following a vegan diet (20 as a vegetarian), its about time I started sharing.

In the past year, during many travels around the U.S., I’ve been getting a ton of interest and lots of questions about our vegan diet. Mostly people want to know how to do it. The food I eat always looks fresh and tasty and I have to guard my plate. It’s not easy to travel and stay vegan. It’s an adventure. But the interest in my food is, well, interesting.

So I’m going to start writing about this more. We eat really well at home and that gets us through long days and nights of running our screen print and design business.

So I’ll start sharing. One thing I want you to know (this is hugely important) is that I don’t judge anyone based on their dietary choices. I’ll answer questions,I’ll guide, I’ll share. Ultimately what you eat is up to you.

If you have questions, toss ‘em out in the comments below. If you prefer to stay under the radar and just follow along, stay tuned for more posts. We’ll share some recipes, tips, and ways to stay strong on a vegan diet. Adventure is out there!

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24. Milestones

To celebrate this great milestone, Maria and I went to Jaxson’s Ice Cream Parlour and ordered the biggest sundaes we could find

Monday marked my One Year Anniversary of Running Stairs. I have been doing aerobic workouts for more than 17 years, but a year ago I started running up and down the courthouse steps with my neighbor, Maria. She and I had been walking our dogs together for a while and decided to try running the stairs after my husband told me he tried it while on a midnight run.

There are 28 steps. We call it an “inning” when we run up and down once (56 steps). The first time I ran, I strained to do 13 innings. Stepping of this sort is one of the most strenuous exercises. Over the course of this past year, I ran more than 1,000,000 steps, up and down, that’s more than 17,850 innings! The most innings I ran at one time during that year were 100, or 5,600 steps. It took about an hour. On a regular basis (5 X per week), I ran 60 and sometimes 80 innings, 40 at the least. We ran in the rain, extreme heat and some cold (for FL) weather.

Some tips if you want to try this: Bring a towel for sweat and plenty of water. Buy a cheap stopwatch to time yourself so you can mark your improvements. Stretch your calves on the steps before you run. Have a cell phone in case of emergency. Take 60-90 second walking breaks between innings. We break after 20 or 25 innings. Don’t stop moving when you take a break or when you have just finished! We walk 1/2 mile to and from the courthouse, so it is a great warm up and cool down. Make sure you stretch when you’re done or your calves and quads will get very tight. I run barefoot due to plantaar fascitis. When I wear any type of shoes it causes heal pain and even knee pain. No shoes = no pain for me.

Let’s see how many steps I can run in the next 12 months and hopefully I can accomplish some other milestones unrelated to working out.


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25. Your Natural Medicine Cabinet

Your Natural Medicine Cabinet
Author: Burke Lennihan
Publisher: GreenHealing Press
Genre: Health
ISBN: 978-0-9834430-2-5
Pages: 248
Price: $14.95

Author’s website
Buy it at Amazon

There are many over-the-counter remedies for common ailments, but how many of these chemicals do you feel safe taking? Have you ever wondered if there is a more natural treatment? In Your Natural Medicine Cabinet, Burke Lennihan provides a wealth of information on how to treat illness in a less toxic manner that may even work faster than the traditional remedies.

In the first section, Lennihan shows us the basics of healthy living. The easiest way to treat illness is to never get sick at all, and these suggestions work toward overall good health. But if you do get sick, the second section covers the most common ailments and how to treat them using homeopathic remedies. The last sections explain how to stock your own natural medicine cabinet. Flower essences, cell salts, herbs and combination remedies are explored, so the reader has a basic understanding of what would be best to try first.

Lennihan reminds us that these natural remedies won’t work on every illness, and there are times it is imperative to see a traditional medical doctor. But it’s possible that homeopathy will work well in conjunction with your doctor’s care. And when the smaller issues pop up, such as a bout with the flu or occasion insomnia, your natural medicine cabinet is the first place to turn. I highly recommend this book for all who want to stay healthy in a more natural way.

Reviewer: Alice Berger

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