wellness

Grow Your Own Food: Improve Your Health and Life

Monday, 03 August 2015 22:56

By Theresa Joseph

kid-plantingPlanting, growing, and harvesting fresh fruits and vegetables from your own home garden provides you with a myriad of amazing health advantages.

First and foremost, you can eat garden produce seconds after harvest! This supplies you with multiple nutrients, superior flavors, and maximum plant energy. A plant's nutrient value, especially for vitamin C, is highest when just harvested. Afterwards, it quickly begins to lose its potency, which continues to degrade throughout time in storage. For example, in seven days, stored at 4 degrees Celsius, green peas lose 15 percent of vitamin C, while green beans lose 77. Lesser but still notable losses in B vitamins also occur during transportation and storage.

When freshly harvested, vegetables contain their maximum flavor, greatly reducing the need for salt and seasonings, especially unhealthy ones such as fatty sauces and sweeteners. Corn, asparagus, and peas, for example, lose their sweetness within hours, depending upon the variety. You may find you eat more homegrown vegetables than store-bought ones, because they taste so much better.

The energy from plants is also highest when they're first harvested. This means that the consumer's energy and overall health increase with just-picked homegrown vegetables.

Read more: Grow Your Own Food: Improve Your Health and Life

 

Lyme Disease in Pets: 
Non-Toxic Approaches to Prevention and Healing

Thursday, 02 July 2015 07:02

By Karen Gellman, DVM

bigstock-Cat-And-Dog-Portrait-sm

How can you protect your pets from fleas and ticks without resorting to toxic chemicals? Lyme Disease has raged in the Northeast for the past 20 years, but until recently Tompkins County has never been an endemic area. Now it is hitting us with a vengeance, with widespread infections for both humans and canines.

Should I get my dog a vaccine for Lyme disease?

The only sources who vouch for the effectiveness of Lyme vaccines are the manufacturers. It is not recommended by any of the national organizations of veterinarians.

What about "spot on" medicines like Advantix or Frontline Plus?

Commercial products that protect against both fleas and ticks are the strongest, and therefore the most toxic. Please hesitate before exposing your dog to such a high toxic load. If your dog has seizure disorder, vaccinosis from rabies or distemper, or other signs of sensitivity to neurotoxins, none of these types of product should be used.

Read more: Lyme Disease in Pets: 
Non-Toxic Approaches to Prevention and Healing

Spiritual Self-Inquiry: Unlock Your Life's Journey

Wednesday, 03 June 2015 02:01

By Leslie Ihde

bigstock-Young-woman-on-a-train-writing-67995331In January of this year, I made a shift in the focus of my work. Having worked as a psychotherapist since 1984, I made the decision to use the next years of my life to help others on their spiritual journey through spiritual self-inquiry.

What do I mean by spiritual self-inquiry and how is it different from psychotherapy? Self-inquiry encourages the growth of the spirit through rich self-exploration. The foundation of this practice is the search for truth as found in your own experience. This search also reveals the untruth of your assumptions. It requires honesty and fortitude: honesty because without it, no discovery can be made; and fortitude, because it can be painful to face the truth. Spiritual development is concerned with the attainment of freedom of the spirit, which is freedom that transcends but may also satisfy the ego.

Psychotherapy and spiritual self-inquiry overlap. The goal of psychotherapy is psychic health, defined as the ability to honestly face the challenges and negativity that arise in life. At the root of spiritual self-inquiry is the hunger for spiritual freedom. Perhaps a simple distinction between the two disciplines lies in the depth and intensity of the pursuit.

Ultimately, the goal of spiritual self-inquiry is "letting go." In other words, self-inquiry helps you wake up. A Hindu might say that what you wake up from is illusion. I suggest that you can wake up from assumptions that shape your experience of life. Will waking up from these assumptions yield a mystical level of awareness? Perhaps.

In my practice, I offer several forms of guided spiritual self-inquiry. One form is private talk, one-on-one conversation that fosters spiritual development. The initial meetings may seem indistinguishable from psychotherapy appointments. As you develop your practice, however, the difference becomes clearer. No matter what is done — psychotherapy or spiritual self-inquiry — we begin where you are. We work to understand your frustrations, dissatisfactions, and suffering. Together, we discover the ways in which that suffering is related to how you see yourself and life.

Read more: Spiritual Self-Inquiry: Unlock Your Life's Journey

 

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Anna Stratton,
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Do you love probiotics as much as I do? I'm so excited to introduce a handful of new ones to our cooler (and shelves!). Garden of Life has recently teamed up with microbiome expert and neurologist Dr. David Perlmutter to develop a new "Dr. Formulated" line of probiotics, with prebiotics included in each formula for better colonization. Some of these products are shelf-stable, so you can happily travel with them on your end-of-summer camping trips with no worries about refrigeration: check out the Once Daily Men's and Once Daily Women's, both shelf-stable with 50 billion colony-forming units (CFUs). For a more targeted (and still doctor-formulated) probiotic, head over to the cooler, where options include Mood+, Prostate+, and Urinary Tract+, all condition-specific formulations. Or opt for the nonspecific, hefty Once Daily Ultra, chock full of 90 billion CFUs. Finally, Organic Kids+ boasts 5 billion CFUs in a delicious chewable tablet some adults can't seem to stay away from. Time to get a good-bacteria boost!

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