5 Ways To Calm A House Full Of Hormones

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By Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC

familywalk2Women are getting married later in life and having their children later as well. There are advantages to this, because moms and dads have more emotional maturity before they begin their family. However, one of the big disadvantages is that for women it’s becoming more and more likely they will go through menopause while their daughter is going through puberty.

Going through peri-menopause, menopause and puberty are rites of passage and each one tough. You feel moody, irritable, bloated, and exhausted. For moms with small children, it can be overwhelming during this time. But even worse than caring for small children is going through the change of life with a daughter who is going through puberty. You may imagine being on a deserted island where you have only your inner conflicts to deal with, but most moms don’t have that luxury and that means dealing with a daughter who is as moody, irritable and frustrated as you.

There are changes for moms and daughters during this time, and being aware of the body’s changes helps moms react less and keep communication open between themselves and their daughters. With menopause, the changes in hormones affect sleep, worsen moods, cause acne, worsen headaches, lowers libido and decreases the ability to deal with stress–and what mother isn’t stressed? When girls go through puberty, their hormones are just as imbalanced, which causes bloating, weight gain, acne, fatigue, headaches, and an attitude that clear screams, “Leave me alone!”

There are things women can do that will help both themselves and their daughter(s) get through this life passage together without hating each other or becoming arch enemies. It will demand more understanding on moms’ part because, after all, mom is the adult.

Solutions to calming a house full of hormones:

1. As much as possible, keep family peace as a priority in your home. When you’re feeling irritable, hot, or stressed, understand this is hormonal and temporary. Evaluating if some issue is really necessary to confront “right now” will prevent additional drama.

2. Enlist the help of your partner. Ask them to try to be supportive and understanding. Let them know that sometimes the best way to help will be to just let the anger be vented and not to react. The partner can also say, “Take a deep breath. It will be okay.” That might diffuse a pending explosion, and if it doesn’t, the partner should just put on a flame-retardant suit and back away.

3. Exercise with your daughter. Weight gain is a symptom of both menopause and puberty. Going to an exercise class together or taking long walks or bike rides together can open communication and help you both deal with stress.

4. Get closer with your partner. Getting away with your partner and telling him how you feel can help you feel supported and loved at a time when you are feeling miserable about yourself.

5. Talk to your health care provider if your symptoms interfere with your daily life. No one can function if they cannot sleep or if they suffer severe fatigue. When hormonal shifts become severe, it is wise to talk to your physician. Depression as well as heightened anxiety are frequently seen and are usually easily treated.

With menopause–as with puberty–there is a grieving of the past but also an opportunity for a new sense of freedom. People who breeze through menopause are the same ones who embrace the change and keep a positive attitude. Weight gain, frustration and increased stress are symptoms of hormonal shifts, but that doesn’t mean you have to gain weight, be frustrated or stressed out.

– Preparing your mind to help your body go through the changes is a big predictor in determining how disruptive the change of life will be for you.
Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC, is a licensed psychotherapist and co-author with Janine J. Sherman, of Start Talking: A Girl’s Guide for You and Your Mom About Health, Sex or Whatever. Read more about the book at StartTalkingBook.com and more about Rapini at maryjorapini.com.

A Life In Full Color

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By Ron McDiarmid

brainColor is a key component of healthy living. There is little as uplifting to the human spirit as a rainbow. Color has been studied for its therapeutic applications for many decades. There is a reason people in tropical environments tend to be happier, and people who spend all their time in grey institutions are more prone to illness. Just as eating a variety of foods helps us get all the full range nutrients necessary to thrive, seeing a variety of colors helps keep our minds and spirits healthy.

Color and Our Brains

Color is an expression of frequency and vibration. It is also a creation of our brains. We do not actually “see color,” rather the way light waves bounce off our eyes triggers our brains to make certain connections – color is merely a perception. This is partly why color affects us so deeply, because we are actually making it up in our minds.

Color stimulates the hypothalamus and pineal gland, affecting appetite, mood, emotions, temperature, creativity, energy levels, sex drive, sleep cycles, and hormonal balance. A study of color therapy showed that each color affects and supports a different area of the body, in ways that closely resemble the chakra system of yoga.

In Living Color

Several studies of office workers found that people who work in drab, dull environments are more likely to experience chronic stress and associated illnesses.

Patients in hospitals and treatment centers were more able to relax, and respond ed more favorably to treatment when they were in rooms with soothing colors like pink and pale blue.

There is a reason that prisoners are put in drab, dark environments, though some prisons are starting to add more color to help the inmates actually rehabilitate. In one study done on people in monotone environments and colorful environments, the people in the dull spaces for long periods of time tended to become anxious, fearful, and distressed. Paradoxically, they would also become more restless and emotionally reactive, and had more difficulty concentrating.

Color and Children

Students and teachers are more able to focus on tasks and remain productive for longer periods of time in classrooms that have supportive color schemes and appropriate lighting. Students in schools with brighter lighting and inspiring color treatments showed a significant increase in IQ and academic performance scores in a 1983 study.

It has been discovered that children in school are more likely to be irritable, aggressive, and introverted in colorless or monochrome classrooms through multiple studies. In colorful classrooms, children are cheerier, more cooperative, and they retain information better.

Choosing the Best Colors for You

Luckily, color is still all around us. Each color affects us in a different way because of its unique frequency and vibration. You can affect your mood and overall health by wearing clothes of a particular color, painting or decorating your home in a color scheme, or adding pieces of art or fabric to your work environment. Colored light bulbs, or gels and screens over existing lighting are easy and affordable ways to add a color to a room.

thumbsupRed tends to be best for taking action, being physical, and getting things done. If you want to feel energized and be more productive, wear red or have red touches in your office. Red is not conducive to a bedroom or other place you want to be able to relax. It may be too stimulating for teenagers, who fare better with soothing colors like green and blue.

Orange inspires creativity, motion, emotional expression, and connection. In the appropriate shade, it could be a great color for an art studio, meeting room or dining room.

Yellow is mentally stimulating, energizing, and confidence boosting. It makes a great touch in the office if you tend to feel sluggish, or wear it when you want to inspire clear thinking. Avoid yellow in areas that might be stressful, and keep it out of the bedroom.

Green is great almost anywhere to encourage balance, harmony, and tolerance. It is also a good color to wear if you want people to feel welcomed and comfortable around you.

Blue is a soothing, healing color that is great for bedrooms and bathrooms, or to wear when you want to reduce stress and put others at ease. It is not the best for spaces or days that require lots of motion and productivity.

Violet is also a soothing color that inspires serenity and understanding, in pale shades it is great for meditation spaces, healing centers, and bedrooms.

Incorporating more color into our lives can boost our productivity and creativity, and help us stay balanced and healthy.

– This post is contributed by Ron McDiarmid, who is the founder of My Healthy Living Coach. Having had health challenges along the way Ron was keen to share the research and learning he gathered. Through MHLC this continued into a current presentation of healthy lifestyle choices and how to implement them. Check out his website at myhealthylivingcoach.com.

Is Your Diet Full Of Hidden Sugars?

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By Alison Aldridge

healthyjunkMany people are now making a conscious effort to try to cut out cut down on their sugar consumption, but this is easier said than done as a lot of foods have hidden sugars. One of the major reasons for cutting down on sugar is to lose weight or at least maintain weight, but another really good reason is to help improve oral health. A diet high in sugars will increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease as the sugar provides plenty of food for plaque bacteria which in return will produce toxins that increase the risk of cavities and gum disease.

While it’s pretty obvious that certain foods contain high amounts of sugar, others can come as something of a surprise. That healthy breakfast cereal you tuck into each morning could be one of the worst offenders. A consumer organization in the UK tested 50 different breakfast cereals and worryingly found 32 had high sugar contents, including many of those designed specifically to appeal to children. It’s the same story with as many low-fat or fat-free products that are frequently bought by people trying to watch their weight, or by those who are simply more health conscious.

A lot of people who are health conscious exercise regularly, and may use energy drinks after a heavy session at the gym. These can contain up to 13 spoonfuls of sugar, while some of the flavored vitamin waters can contain more than 10 spoonfuls of the sweet stuff.

Getting Into the Habit of Reading Labels

foodlabelIf you’re worried your diet may contain more hidden sugars then you’re aware of then it’s worth getting into the habit of reading the labels and choosing unsweetened versions of foods wherever possible. One typical example might be muesli. It can sometimes be quite tricky to adjust to eating something less sugary, but it’s worth persevering to see if your taste buds will accept the change! It can also be worthwhile trying to finish a meal with something less sweet and more tooth friendly such as crunchy vegetables or a small piece of cheese.

If you do want to have something especially sweet then try to eat or drink it as quickly as you can, as sipping a sugary drink over the course of a few hours is the worst thing you can do for your teeth. Obviously one solution can be to switch to diet versions of popular drinks, but these can also contain a lot of acid and may damage your teeth. Another solution is to try using a drinking straw when enjoying these beverages.

Gum Disease

The reasons for trying to switch to a less sugary diet are compelling, especially if it helps to lessen the risk of developing gum disease. It’s estimated up to four fifths of the population will develop some degree of gum disease at some point during their lifetime, and this risk can increase with age. Gum disease is the major cause of tooth loss in the world and is an extremely serious condition. It’s often called a silent disease as the initial symptoms can be very easy to miss, and is an excellent reason for visiting the dentist at regular intervals. It’s much easier to treat when caught early enough. Having a healthy, tooth friendly diet may help you avoid this serious condition.

– Alison completed her training at the Queen Victoria Hospital in East Grinstead, England, and she is registered with the General Dental Council in London, England. She has over twenty five years of experience working within the dental industry and currently writes for http://findmydentist.com/.

Obesity Pill That Re-Wires Brain Into Feeling Full

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overweightmanFrom Your Health Journal…..”An interesting article from the Times of India entitled Soon, obesity pill that re-wires brain into feeling full. Scientists have gotten closer to developing a diet pill that can prevent obesity by “re-wiring” appetite control in the brain. A recent study has identified a population of stem cells capable of generating new appetite-regulating neurons in the brains of young and adult rodents. Scientists investigated the hypothalamus section of the brain – which regulates sleep and wake cycles, energy expenditure, appetite, thirst, hormone release and many other critical biological functions. The study looked specifically at the nerve cells that regulate appetite. This entire investigation could lead to many positive results in people who have a hard time reducing their calorie intake. In a day and age where obesity is causing people to become ill, and the worries about the rise in the cost of healthcare, this could lead to something positive. Let’s watch this closely to see how it turns out, and if it is entirely safe for humans. Please visit the Times of India web site (link provided below) to read the complete article. The Times of India is an excellent publication with many quality health articles.”

From the article…..

No more toiling hard in the gym to shed flab!

Scientists have inched closer to developing a new diet pill that can prevent obesity by “re-wiring” appetite control in the brain.

A new study, published in the Journal of Neuroscience, has identified a population of stem cells capable of generating new appetite-regulating neurons in the brains of young and adult rodents.

The discovery by researchers at the University of East Anglia (UEA) could offer a long-lasting solution to eating disorders such as obesity.

Scientists investigated the hypothalamus section of the brain – which regulates sleep and wake cycles, energy expenditure, appetite, thirst, hormone release and many other critical biological functions. The study looked specifically at the nerve cells that regulate appetite.

The researchers used ‘genetic fate mapping’ techniques to make their discovery – a method that tracks the development of stem cells and cells derived from them, at desired time points during the life of an animal.

They established that a population of brain cells called ‘tanycytes’ behave like stem cells and add new neurons to the appetite-regulating circuitry of the mouse brain after birth and into adulthood.

“Unlike dieting, translation of this discovery could eventually offer a permanent solution for tackling obesity,” lead researcher Dr Mohammad K Hajihosseini, said.

To read the complete article…..Click here