Read stories from women who turned to VIVA EVE for help with fibroids. Success Stories
Nehal Farouky, Co-Founder and President, VIVA EVE (right)
Nehal Farouky, Co-founder and President of VIVA EVE was recently interviewed by Maria Dorfner on BOLDTV Health about what sets VIVA EVE apart from other fibroid clinics.
“At our practice, we’ve designed a truly inclusive care process that provides patients with empathy, support, education, and a wide range of treatment options,” says Nehal. “Our commitment to deliver quality in everything we do is reflected not only during the patient’s time with their doctor, but in all areas of our patient experience.”
Fibroids are abnormal uterine growths that develop in more than half of the female population in the U.S. by age 50. Mild fibroid symptoms can give way to more serious medical conditions. While they’re rarely life-threatening, fibroids can make life uncomfortable to say the least, causing:
Heavy, prolonged or painful periods with or without clotting.
Weak bladder control or frequent urination because of bladder pressure.
Anemia (low blood count) that can lead to a lack of energy and fatigue.
Lower back pain and pain in the back of the legs.
Women are most susceptible to getting uterine fibroids when they are of childbearing age. Unfortunately, research indicates that on average, women wait 3.5 years before seeking help. The scope of this unspoken problem was what inspired the practice to integrate a personable, warm, comforting ethos.
VIVA EVE’s empathic approach to patient care can be felt within their office space. From waiting room to consultation rooms, patients are treated to a spa-like atmosphere with thoughtful, modern touches including spacious bathrooms with bidets, fruit-infused water and free phone charging stations.
“When we originally set up our practice, our first goal was to design a space that patients enjoy being in,” says Nehal. “We know that going to an OB/GYN isn’t the most fun activity, so we did what we could to alleviate that stress.”
In addition to the office’s pleasant amenities, patients are examined in state-of-the-art consultation rooms. Tablets and medical touch screens are used to educate patients and explain different procedures. Certain diagnostic testing is also done in-office, such as sonograms, bloodwork, biopsies, and pap smears.
Apart from the amenities offered at their facility, VIVA EVE’s team of fibroid experts work together to give patients more choices than most standard OB/GYN offices. They offer both surgical and nonsurgical treatment options so that each woman can choose the right treatment according to her needs.
“Our unique combination of doctors from different specialties allows us to provide each patient with an individualized treatment plan that suits their needs. It’s hard for other clinics to have the same perspective as a group of experts dedicated to treating fibroids.”
Throughout the treatment process, patient care is coordinated, tracked and managed by VIVA EVE’s patient care team. This specially trained team onboards patients and remains closely involved in moving the patient along the funnel to success.
“Our patient care representatives are truly there to assist patients in any way possible,” says Nehal. “They will check to find out the insurance details of prospective patients, address questions and concerns, and touch base with patients between visits.”
Currently, VIVA EVE has one location in Forest Hills, Queens – but expansion is on the horizon, with plans to move to Manhattan some time this year.
“Our mission is to provide as many women as we can with the support and care they need to regain control of their lives,” says Nehal. “By adding a location in Manhattan, we hope to provide women across the tri-state area with greater access to fibroid treatment.”
By putting patients first, VIVA EVE has become renowned for the level of care they offer – with no plans to slow down any time soon.
Nehal Farouky, Co-Founder and President, VIVA EVE
How VIVA EVE helped other women:
Read stories from women who turned to VIVA EVE for help with fibroids. Success Stories
VIVA•EVE offers informative ebooks. Feel free to click below.
Uncomfortable with a Hysterectomy? 4 Easy Steps to Seeking Alternatives: bit.ly/2D8GRX3
Grief is an emotion that takes time to deal with, but you can get through it and eventually move on. Grieving is a healthy response to tragedy, loss, and sadness, and it’s important to allow yourself time to process your loss.
“Don’t try to run away from it; rather, face it head on,” advises Sally R. Connolly, a social worker and therapist at the Couples Clinic of Louisville in Louisville, Ky. In more than 30 years of practice, Connolly has helped many individuals and couples deal with grief and various traumatic events.
“Acknowledge that something traumatic has happened and that it has had a profound effect on you,” Connolly advises. Give yourself time to grieve, but seek help when you need it.
Coping With Grief: Finding Help
You may want some time alone to process your thoughts and struggle with your grief, but it’s important to recognize when you need help from others.
“You might need more help if you find that, after some time, you are not able to get back to normal activities, you have trouble sleeping or eating, or have thoughts and feelings that interfere with everyday life,” says Connolly.
A grief counselor or other therapist may be able to help you cope with grief, and finally start to move past it. Getting your grief out in the open is an important first step.
“Talk about it with someone — a friend, family, a support group. Support groups can be wonderful,” Connolly says. There, you can relate to other people who understand your situation, and you can get advice on what helped them through their grief.
Of course, expressing your emotions doesn’t have to be done out loud. “Write about it,” suggests Connolly. Rather than allowing thoughts to swirl in your head, put them down on paper. This is a great way of getting out your feelings if you are shy or embarrassed about sharing them with another person.
Coping With Grief: Getting Closure
Closure is also an important part of coping with grief and may help you move through the grieving process.
“Depending on the event, developing a ritual to say farewell may be helpful. We have funerals when someone dies and they are a healthy step on the road to acceptance. Rituals can be helpful for other traumas as well,” Connolly says.
There is no set timeline for grieving. And unfortunately, you may never completely get over your loss. But your loss shouldn’t keep you from enjoying life, even with occasional periods of sadness.
“Let yourself grieve as long as you need to. You do have to resume normal life, but know that it’s going to take a while,” says Connolly.
Look for small signs that you’re coping with grief and getting past it.
“Happy times signal that you’re progressing,” she says. When you realize that you aren’t always dwelling on the sadness or don’t think about it as frequently as you once did,”
If you deprive yourself of the grieving process, you may find that you have more difficulty accepting what has happened or that unresolved feelings and issue
Allow yourself to feel sad and even selfish; eventually you’ll find yourself feeling better a little bit at a time. Even though part of you may always feel sad about your loss, you’ll find yourself happy and laughing again one day.
__________________________________________________________________________________________According to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), emotionally healthy individuals have a capacity to process and express their emotional experiences in a productive way that reduces stress.Many life transitions, both positive and negative, can produce a sense of loss, sadness and anger. Acknowledging sadness and seeking support through difficult times can be critical to stress management and physical health.
Experts at the American Academy of Family Physicians note that emotional health is defined by how people handle difficult emotions.
For example, many of life’s challenges, such as the loss of a job or death of a family member, can leave us with a marked sense of sadness and even anger.
Doctors note that the expression of these feelings is critical to maintaining stability both physically and emotionally.
When we feel sad it important to express those feelings to others in appropriate ways or use activities such as meditation or exercise to release the built-up stress.
MIND BODY Connection
According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, our bodies react to the way we feel. If we are sad or stressed about a situation, our bodies might respond with a variety of physical systems, such as headaches, difficulty sleeping, and weight loss or weight gain.
When we monitor our emotions and identify how we feel, we can choose effective tools to care for our health. When people do not acknowledge and work through emotions such as sadness, they can often develop unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as overeating or substance abuse to avoid the difficult feelings or to find a sense of comfort.
Dr. Edward T. Creagan of the Mayo Clinic suggests that people take particular care of their health in the aftermath of a sad or upsetting event.
Eating a healthy diet, maintaining a healthy sleep schedule, and talking to trusted friends or a counselor are all helpful tools for coping with sadness. When people use these methods for self-care, they often find that the period of sadness passes within a reasonable amount of time.
When sadness is not expressed or processed in healthy ways, it often can lead to depression. The American Academy of Family Physicians notes that this is particularly common among people who use alcohol or drugs to cope with sad feelings.
Many of these substances depress the central nervous system and leave the individual feeling increasingly more depressed.
People having a particularly difficult time with persistent feelings of sadness should consider consulting a medical professional or therapist for additional support.
Treatment for Emotional Issues
People who struggle with healthy management of emotions often find that they benefit from counseling or support groups. Doctors at the American Academy of Family Physicians note that sadness, when not processed and communicated, can lead to destructive emotional patterns, such as anger management issues.
By working with professional counselors or peer support groups, people can learn to identify how they feel and how to cope in healthy ways.
The notion that big boys or big girls don’t cry is a persistent idea fed by popular sayings, but psychologists and researchers say that it’s just not so.
Shedding tears can be a huge and very healthy emotional release, particularly if you are experiencing deep pain, sadness, anger, or stress.
One study analyzed 140 years of popular articles about crying and found that more than 9 in 10 found tears to be a good way to release pent-up feelings.
An international sample of men and women from 30 countries found that most reported feeling relief after a good cry.
And about 70 percent of therapists say they believe crying is good for their patients.
Crying as Catharsis
The main benefit of crying is catharsis, or a purging or purification of your feelings through emotional release. When you cry, you can let go of the tension and sadness and other emotions that have been causing you pain.
In many ways, crying serves as a safety valve that allows you to blow off emotions that have built up too much pressure inside you.
It’s been difficult for researchers to figure out how this works. When tears are induced in a laboratory setting — for example, having subjects watch a sad movie — more often than not the participants report that they feel worse rather than better.
Despite this, people consistently report that a good cry makes them feel better. One recent study reviewing more than 3,000 detailed reports of recent crying episodes found that most people reported an improvement in their mood afterward.
Another study of 196 Dutch women found that nearly 9 in 10 said they felt better after crying.
Another benefit of crying is that it can bring people closer. An Israeli researcher studying the evolutionary aspects of crying has speculated that shedding tears communicates vulnerability to others, since the tears blur your vision and leaves you defenseless.
A person who cares for you while you are in this weakened state can grow closer to you, and the bond between the two of you may grow stronger.
Have a Healthy Cry
Research has found that for crying to improve emotional health, certain conditions need to be met:
You should have a shoulder to cry on. People who receive social support while crying report more cathartic release than people who cry alone. Find a friend or loved one you trust.
You should cry after you’ve solved the problem. People feel better when they cry about a problem that’s already been resolved. If you cry before you’ve dealt with the situation that’s making you feel like crying, you are likely to receive no benefit or actually make yourself feel worse rather than better.
You need to make sure you’re crying in an appropriate place. People who experience shame or embarrassment while they cry are less likely to report an improvement of their mood. If you’re going to feel bad about crying in a public place or in front of certain people, you need to hold back your tears and go somewhere else.
Crying likely won’t help you if you are living with a mood disorder. People who live with clinical depression or anxiety disorders are less likely to feel better after they have a good cry. If you find yourself feeling worse after crying, you should see a doctor or therapist to see if you have a mood disorder.
But if you can’t stop the tears from falling, go ahead and let it all out — the odds are you’ll feel better afterward.
Steve Jobs once said you can only connect the dots looking backwards. This true story is a reminder that even childhood pestilence or infirmity in elder years can lead to a surprising resurgence one can only appreciate in hindsight. -Maria Dorfner 1/2/2020
“At it’s core, it’s designed to taste, look and crunch just like real junk food. The dream is if junk food could be more nutritious let’s create it.” -Nick Desai
Nick Desai, CEO, Snack It Forward, maker of PeaTos is revolutionizing the billion dollar snack food industry because Americans demand better junk food.
Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King have a favorite snack. BBQ potato chips. Well, wait until they get a hold of PeaTos!
BOLD flavor without all the junk.
They must try Crunchy Curls PeaTos in Cheese!!
Turns out, Oprah and Gayle aren’t the only people who love snacking. 94% of Americans snack.
Ha. Who are these other 6%?
77% of Millenials say they can’t get through the day without snacking. Consumers have spoken.
“The goal was less junky junk food that’s still flavorful and fun.” -Nick Desai
Smart move as no one wants to stop snacking.
Instead, we want snack companies to create better junk food.
Nick Desai, CEO of PeaTos was inspired by the concept of “pea based salty snacks” during childhood visits to India…junk food style texture and BOLD flavors that are delicious, which makes it hard to believe it’s plant-based, non-GMO without any of the harmful chemicals, like the toxic Yellow #6 dye used in one of the most popular snacks, proven to be a toxic chemical that causes hyperactivity, anxiety and other problems. We say Amen to that.
PeaTos is already the fasting growing better junk food with repeat customers, because like I said, they’re delicious. If you’re going to stock your pantry with better junk food, PeaTos is a winner.
“We launched in the Produce section. Kroger launched nationally and has been an amazing partner. It’s become the fasting growing snack in the produce section and #2 selling snack in California in our category. You can also find them on Amazon.” -Nick Desai
PEAS JUMP TO THE NATIONAL SPOTLIGHT
Rich in protein and fiber
No known allergies
No synthetic colors
No artificial flavors
Reduces blood sugar
Improves digestive health
Peas are drought tolerant
Peas reduce the need for nitrogen
Ideal for crop rotation
Fertilize soil with rich nitrate growth
Prevent polluting runoff
Almost 800 new pea-related foods hit the shelves in 2018
Peas are packed with vitamins & minerals
Member of Plant-based Pulse foods, which include dry beans & lentils
Totally Vegan and Vegetarian
PeaTos are also lower in sodium, fat and calories, while retaining the yummy taste and texture of why we love crunchy snacks in the first place.
Snack It Forward is a better-for-you snacking company with a focus on plant-based snacks. The company has a portfolio of brands that includes World Peas and Sunkist Snacks.
The World Peas brand Peatos’ mission is to help mainstream America eat better by creating snacks that taste like “junk food,” but have more substance. Desai entered the food and consumer space in 2011 by leading the acquisition of Energy Club, a snack food manufacturer.
Before dedicating his career to the snack industry, Desai’s experience spans an extensive background of over 25 years of operations, private equity/investment banking and law. Desai has a JD/MBA from Loyola Marymount University, and was a UC Regents Scholar at the University of California, Irvine. He currently lives in Los Angeles with his wife and four children.
1. What are the best words of advice you’ve received?
“Once you make the sale, shut up.” — My dad.
2.What are your goals for the next 12 months?
We are on a mission to eliminate the compromise that has become prevalent in snacking: do I eat tasty or do I eat better? World Peas Brand Peatos does that and allows fans to get the full “junk snack” taste experience while still being full of plant-based protein, fiber and cleaner ingredients. Like many junk snack brands, I want Peatos to become a household name and the go-to snack for kids. We were fortunate to have Kroger as our initial national launch partner. They understood right away that Peatos belongs in the produce section. Consumers are embracing us via social media telling us how much they love Peatos due to their great taste, broad appeal and better-for-you positioning.
3. What do you do to relax?
I like movies and yoga, but in all honesty, I don’t have much time for either these days.
4. What would you like to be your lasting legacy?
I want to build something that grows beyond any individual, like a lasting entity with brands that endures (which is exceedingly rare nowadays). What is today’s Oreo, M&M’S or Doritos? I want to build something that will take on a life of its own. Maybe my kids get involved, maybe they don’t, but at least there is something of value that is left behind and continues on. World Peas Brand Peatos is the snack that people have been waiting for. We dared to take on the big guy because we knew we were on to something. I want to be the man who helped the vast majority of Americans eat better, and not just the small percentage who is shopping in high-end natural channels.
5. What are the top three things on your bucket list?
1, Get a pilot’s license. 2, Watch my kids become adults and prosper. 3, Celebrate my 90th B-day!
6. What work would you have pursued if you had not been in the fruit and vegetable industry?
I am kind of following my dream here so this is really it, but I also do love the entertainment business.
7. What is the one truth you’ve learned about the fruit and vegetable industry?
This is true for any business, but Steve Jobs said it best: “Stay hungry, stay foolish.” I would add: never give up.
Courtesy: Food Processing
The Rise of the Pea: How an Unassuming Legume Emerged as a Frontrunner in the Race to Replace Meat and Dairy
No one denies peas are nutritious. Whether they’re delicious—that’s debatable. But arguments over taste no longer matter because peas, specifically yellow peas, are being formulated into so many products, they’re unavoidable, and often invisible.
As a crop, the pea has risen and fallen in favor, but today everyone seems to agree that it checks the box against the biggest problems plaguing the Earth: climate, food and health.
From a sustainability standpoint, peas, in the legume family, do everything wheat, corn and soy don’t. They require less water, are drought tolerant, reduce the need for nitrogen fertilizers because they take nitrogen gas from the air and store it in their roots, and make an ideal candidate for crop rotation. Worried about GMO peas? They don’t exist outside the lab. Want to avoid allergens? You’re probably good there too; allergies are rare, another reason peas are leaving soy in their dust.
Mintel, the market research firm, reported that 757 new pea-related foods hit the shelves last year. That’s in addition to what’s already out there, including the most famous pea food, the Beyond burger. With one of the strongest first days of trading for an IPO in the last two decades, Beyond Meat is a prime example of our food system’s new priority: plant protein. Much of the 20 grams of protein in each burger comes from peas, but some comes from rice and mung bean. “One goal of this innovation is to diversify protein sources,” says Ethan Brown, the founder of Beyond Meat. “We believe it isn’t a desirable consumer proposition to have pea protein as the sole protein across our product platforms.” He’s right. Who wants to eat the same thing everyday?
Almost any doctor will posit that a plant-based diet is healthier than one high in animal protein. They would also agree that eating a plate of peas is better than eating processed foods made from fractions of peas. Nevertheless, “there is an assumption in food science that we’re going to break things into components. I guess it has become a part of our culture,” says Liz Carlisle, author of The Lentil Underground. Understanding that the food industry has started to utilize plants as source material for multiple components is key to understanding the pea’s newfound financial success.
Peas are easily broken down into building blocks of function: starch, fiber and protein. In China, home to many of the manufacturing plants that do this work, called fractionation, pea-protein isolate is widely thought of as the byproduct of the process. Pea starch is used to make noodles, and the leftover protein is shipped over to the US. McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams makes five non-dairy flavors starring micronized pea protein; Ripple Foods has sold 7 million gallons of its non-dairy milk made with Ripptein, a proprietary protein made from yellow peas; and Annie’s, one of the scant few utilizing organic peas, stashes it in its mac and cheese.
The United Nations named 2016 as the International Year of Pulses, which include peas, lentils, chickpeas and beans. That, says Tim McGreevy, CEO of USA Dry Pea and Lentil Council, helped kick off a “paradigm shift towards plant-based foods” in the U.S. “Up until five years ago the majority of our product was exported,” says McGreevy. But now, the U.S. is getting on board with the rest of world, where highly adaptable pulses like peas, chickpeas and lentils are widely used across cultures.
The federal government is helping push the trend, as well. In the last two farm bills, the government authorized funding for the Pulse Crop Health Initiative, including almost $3 million in the last two years to the U.S. Department of Agriculture to finance proposals that will accelerate our knowledge of peas.
However, these efforts pale in comparison to Canada, which has $115 million (about 153 million Canadian dollars based on current conversion rates) earmarked for research into plant protein and plant-based products. Canada is also luring investors out to build processing facilities closer to its pulse crops, which are more than double what’s planted in the US. Roquette, a French company, is spending $300 million (about 400 million Canadian dollars) on a pea-protein facility in Manitoba, and Verdient Foods, a pulse processing facility in Saskatchewan, largely invested in by married partners James Cameron, the film director, Suzy Amis Cameron, an environmental activist.
In addition, Canadian companies don’t have to deal with the constant threat of retaliatory tariffs from places like China. “All of US agriculture has been hugely affected by the tariffs,” says McGreevy. “We’ve been completely shut off of green and yellow peas, and the Canadians are taking full advantage of that.” Because the U.S. is no longer a reliable supplier, McGreevy reports that his Chinese counterparts are looking towards the Baltic region of Europe to fill the gap.
In any case, peas are likely here to stay. “I don’t see this as a trend that is going away as the world works towards meeting food demands globally,” says Ron Kehrig, deputy director of investments for the Saskatchewan ministry of trade.
It’s not only food manufacturers who see the beauty in peas. If science can make a more protein-packed legume, it could answer the looming question of how to feed our growing population. To that end, an international team is poised to release the entire genomic sequence of the pea, opening the tiny legume up for genetic studies. “It puts peas back where they belong,” says Rebecca McGee, a plant breeder with the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, who worked on the project. “Of course, this comes from a pea breeder, so take it with a grain of salt.” McGee is currently working on a related initiative called “MP3,” which stands for “more protein, more peas, more profit.” The goal is to find the genetic nature of protein concentration, which could then be modified to make a more powerful pea.
We’re in a world that craves new and there’s a line of plants waiting quietly behind the pea for their 15 minutes. In Canada, Kehrig reports his farmers are testing fava beans and canola seeds. From Brown and his team at Beyond Meat, we may soon get sausages made from lupin beans, or camelina, mustard and sunflower seeds. The message is clear and there’s a not-too-distant future where our unsustainable reliance on animal protein is jettisoned for the almost limitless variety of our plant kingdom.
Do you love snacks? You’re not alone. Here’s why you eat more of them all day long.
The days of eating three large meals a day have gone the way of the butter churn.
Now, it’s all about grazing from morning to night, and often relying on foods traditionally thought of as snacks to power through a busy day, according to new analysis by the research firm NPD Group. Americans ate an estimated 386 billion ready-to-eat snack foods last year, up from 356.4 billion in 2011.
A granola bar, dried cranberries and yogurt are often a meal for Shamika Johnson of Akron, Ohio, who also has protein snacks and almonds to get her through her daily to-do list.
“I work. I’m busy. Sometimes, it’s easier to get snacks,” said the 27-year-old masseuse. “Half the time, I don’t have time to sit down for a meal. Combining a bunch of snacks gives me what I need nutritionally.”
Whether you like chocolate bars, pretzels and dried fruits or string cheese, beef jerky and candy, here are four trend takeaways to munch on:
No candy for lunch, but …
Snacks are increasingly becoming part of Americans meals. We’re not talking about crushed potato chips on top of a casserole or raisins tossed into a salad. Snacks are no longer just munchables for a mid-morning or mid-afternoon pick-me-up, but the building blocks of meals.
“There’s a changed definition of what a meal is,” said David Portalatin, NPD’s national food and beverage analyst. “Today, I might have a piece of fruit and trail mix and call that lunch. In the past, we would’ve thought of that as exclusively snacks.”
The blurred line between snacks and the traditional trio of breakfast, lunch and dinner impacts what Americans choose to munch on, too. He pointed to breakfast sandwiches eaten as snacks, despite the first word of the food’s name.
Nick Desai, CEO of Snack It Forward, visited the Livestream Studio at NOSH Live Winter 2018 to discuss his brand Peatos. Peatos is a peas and lentil-based snack that takes on the “junk-food” platform with a plant-based approach.
Desai discusses the mission of Peatos, distribution of the brand and how his childhood experiences influenced the approach to the plant-based snack.
PEATOS VARIETY PACK – GET ALL YOUR FLAVORS HERE!: All your favorites are here, Masala, Fiery Hot, Cheese and Chili Cheese. So Enjoy all of them without the guilt.
MADE FROM POWERFUL PLANT PROTEIN: Don’t let these words fool you, nutrient-dense pulses are here to take the snacking crown. We combine the strength of powerhouse pulses— like yellow peas, and lentils— with all the bold, flavors you want from a snack. (It’s just like “junk food,” except we tossed out all the junk.)
130 CALORIES, Low Sodium, 4g Protein and 3g of Fiber – GOOD FOR YOU SNACK FOOD : We put everything good into Peatos. Only 130 calories, low sodium. These SuperFoods (Plant Proteins) pack a nutritional punch: non-GMO, gluten free, and sustainably grown, in addition to delivering vitamins and minerals.
NON-GMO, GLUTEN-FREE, NO MSG, VEGETARIAN AND NOT FRIED We use the finest Non-GMO ingredients to create the base of our snack. We stay away from artificial, man-made colors like Red 40 and Yellow 6. We keep it real with bold colors that come right from natural sources, like vegetables, real cheese, and spices!
TOTALLY VEGAN AND VEGETARIAN Yes, you can eat this! For all you vegans out there, Masala and Fiery Hot are vegan and Chili Cheese and Classic Cheese are not vegan but they are vegetarian, we thought of all you snackers out there.
This hoodie to help you sleep is now on my list of Favorite Things for Your Health!
Insomnia is no longer something a few people suffer from. It’s now almost at 100% of Americans. All these electronic gadgets aren’t helping our case.
“People spend up to 10 hours a day on electronic devices, which directly impacts melatonin production and stimulates the fight-or-flight response system in the brain. – Jenn J. Allen
Our physical, psychological and emotional health are all linked to our sleeping habits.
University of California, Berkeley researchers recently found that insufficient sleep can amplify levels of anxiety up to 30 percent and, on the flip side, that a solid eight hours or so helps reduce stress.
“Deep sleep seems to be a natural anxiolytic (anxiety inhibitor), so long as we get it each and every night,” Mathew Walker, a senior author of the study and a professor of neuroscience and psychology at the university, said in the published report for the journal Nature Human Behaviour.
The study analyzed brain scans from 18 young adults and discovered that those who got a full night’s rest had a lower heart rate and lower blood pressure, as well as stable emotions when they woke.
According to National Sleep Foundation, most adults need 7 to 9 hours a night for the best amount of sleep, although some people may need as few as 6 hours or as many as 10 hours of sleep each day. Older adults (ages 65 and older)need 7-8 hours of sleep each day. Women in the first 3 months of pregnancy often need several more hours of sleep than usual.
There can be underlying causes to insomnia that need to be addressed first because if a you simply take a sleeping pill, you’re masking the underlying cause.
The best way to uncover that is with cognitive behavioral therapy –a fancy name for talk therapy.
Then, you want to set the stage for a good night’s sleep or day if you’re napping.
This is where Glenn Paradise found the ideal solution.
When his wife (who he met in high school…awww) got sick, and was in the hospital for 7 weeks, Glenn was left home alone caring for kids, dog, house and couldn’t sleep worried about everything.
He was brought up to fix things instead of complain, so he ended up designing something that solved every frustration he had when he tried to get a good night’s sleep.
Of course, I tried it and I’m sold on it. It was also incredibly comfortable to wear while commuting. Loved it.
Glenn Paradise invented the dēp sleep hoodie out of a need.
“I wasn’t getting the quantity or quality of sleep necessary to consistently feel or perform at my best. I learned I wasn’t alone and that hundreds of millions of people around the world don’t sleep well. The DepSlepwear hoodie is our first product in a line of wear and gear purpose-built for deep sleep every night. No pills, elixirs or gimmicks required.” -Glenn Paradise
“I consider myself a problem-solving entrepreneur. It’s in my blood. When I was young, I was side-by-side with my father as he created several businesses that helped people learn faster, perform better, and enjoy their lives more. The gratification I felt from helping people during those early years inspired me to keep the good stuff coming in my professional career. The products and services I create are born from necessity and are designed to help people live more fulfilling personal and professional lives. I know and trust they work because I need and use them myself.” -Glenn Paradise
Other tips for a good night’s sleep include:
Do not exercise within 3 hours of bedtime
Turn off all electronic devices 2 hours before bedtime
Spend time outdoors preferably in sunlight in a natural setting during the day
Take a nourishing bath before bedtime
Maintain a regular sleep schedule where you go to sleep and rise at the same time
Take a break from work every 90 min.
Breathe deeply. Focus on nothing except breathing before bed
Prepare items for the next day to alleviate worries upon rising
If you are worried about something remind yourself worrying doesn’t help
Remind yourself everything will work better when you recharge your batteries
Give yourself permission to rest your mind, body and spirit
Remind yourself you get to help more people when you yourself are at your best
Avoid any alcohol 3 hours before bedtime
Do not eat too close to bedtime as your digestive track needs time to rest
As explored in this article on The Sleep Forum, temperature plays an important role in achieving quality sleep. If you’re not taking steps to control your body temperature throughout the night, your sleep will never be optimal.
6. WHOLE WHEAT PASTA – Add fresh veggies & diced chicken with tomato sauce; high protein dish that also releases tryptophan
7. YOGURT SPRINKLED WITH CEREAL – You get the calcium and the carb combo to help bring on the Z-z-z-z’s
A good night’s sleep also spurs creativity and improves your athletic performance the next day. It also curbs inflammation. Those that don’t get enough sleep have higher levels of inflammatory problems.
If you are STILL tossing and turning or watching the clock, make sure you are doing the following:
1. STOP SIPPING CAFFEINE AT 2 P.M. – Check labels. You may not be aware what you’re drinking contains caffeine.
2. DIM THE LIGHTS IN YOUR ROOM ONE HOUR BEFORE YOU TURN IN.
3. SOAK IN A WARM BATH TO UNWIND AS SOON AS YOU GET HOME, NOT RIGHT BEFORE BED.
4. CLOSE YOUR EYES FOR 10 MIN. AND GENTLY STRETCH BY PAYING ATTENTION TO YOUR BREATHING.
5. THIS IS A MUST: MAKE SURE ALL YOUR GADGETS ARE TURNED OFF. PLACING THINGS ON VIBRATE DOES NOT COUNT AS OFF. THAT SOUND CAN STILL DISRUPT YOUR SLEEP.
6. MAKE SURE ALL CLUTTER IS REMOVED FROM YOUR BEDROOM.
HOPE THESE TIPS HELP YOU SLEEP BETTER ALL SUMMER. STAY HEALTHY, EVERYONE! 🙂
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Diabetes is a growing world-wide epidemic, but there’s good news. Research shows choosing healthy habits makes a positive difference.
RESEARCH SHOWS CHOOSING HEALTHY HABITS MAKES A DIFFERENCE.
CLEVELAND CLINIC’S DOCTOR MARY KELLIS DID NOT TAKE PART IN THE STUDY, BUT SAYS MAKING HEALTHY LIFESTYLE CHOICES CAN SIGNIFICANTLY LOWER RISK FOR TYPE-TWO DIABETES.
CG: Dr. Mary Kellis/Cleveland Clinic
“What they found was that people who had the healthiest lifestyle, had a seventy-five percent reduced risk of developing type 2 diabetes compared to those who had the least healthiest lifestyle.”
RESEARCHERS ANALYZED DATA FROM STUDIES WHICH INCLUDED ABOUT ONE MILLION PEOPLE.THEY FOUND THOSE WHO DID NOT SMOKE, DID NOT DRINK ALCOHOL, EXERCISED, HAD A HEALTHY DIET AND WERE NOT OVERWEIGHT, HAD THE BEST CHANCES OF AVOIDING TYPE TWO DIABETES.
DOCTOR KELLIS SAYS WHEN IT COMES TO DIABETES RISK, IT’S IMPORTANT TO LOOK AT DIET. SHE SAYS EATING A DIET HIGH IN WHOLE GRAINS AND FIBER, AND LOW IN REFINED SUGARS IS KEY.
CONSUMING TOO MANY REFINED SUGARS,SUCH AS WHITE BREADS, PASTAS, RICE AND SWEET DRINKS, CAN CAUSE INSULIN LEVELS TO SPIKE VERY QUICKLY AND RESULT IN CHANGES IN BLOOD SUGAR LEVELS.DOCTOR KELLIS SAYS IF YOU’VE BEEN DIAGNOSED WITH PRE-DIABETES, IT DOESN’T ALWAYS MEAN YOU’LL GET DIABETES –BUT YOU HAVE TO MAKE LIFESTYLE CHANGES TO TURN THINGS AROUND.
CG: Dr. MaryKellis/Cleveland Clinic
“You can definitely prevent progression to diabetes. Importantly, we found that even losing five to seven percent of your weight can substantially reduce your risk to develop diabetes.”
DOCTOR KELLIS ADMITS IT CAN FEEL OVERWHELMING TO KNOW YOU HAVE TO MAKE MULTIPLE LIFESTYLE CHANGES TO ACHIEVE YOUR HEALTH GOALS.
SHE RECOMMENDS TAKING BABY STEPS AND TACKLING ONE NEW HEALTHY HABIT AT A TIME.COMPLETE RESULTS OF THE STUDY CAN BE FOUND IN DIABETOLOGIA.
But they’re also common if you walk or stand a lot or exercise too much.
If you suddenly find yourself with pain, remove the shoes you were wearing and make sure to be properly fitted.
Stay off your feet as much as you can.
Elevate them with pillows. Check below to recognize the type of pain you’re experiencing and what it could mean.
For women, avoid heels. Flats and sneakers should be specifically engineered for your sport or for standing all day at the office.
Then, pinpoint where you feel pain.
Overuse and repetitive motion is a common cause of foot pain. If you exercise, increasing too quickly or doing so without stretching first can do it.
You need to stretch properly before AND after exercise. Stretch your calves and toes.
Being overweight can also cause your posture and gait to change, which can affect your arches and tendons in feet and ankles.
Weight gain also increases the chance you’ll develop health conditions contributing to foot pain such as gout, tendinitis and osteoarthritis.
PINPOINT THE PAIN IN YOUR FOOT
PAIN ON SIDE OF FOOT
Most likely Peroneal tendonitis:
This condition causes the peroneal tendons to swell or become inflamed, resulting in pain on the lateral side of the foot and the heel. A person who runs excessively or places their foot abnormally may develop peroneal tendonitis. It may also occur after an ankle sprain.
PAIN ON TOP OF FOOT
Most likely Extensor tendonitis:
This is caused by overuse or tight-fitting shoes. The tendons that run along the topof the foot and pull the foot upwards become inflamed and painful. … This condition causes pain in the topof the foot and outside the ankle.
PAIN ON HEEL OF FOOT
Most likely Plantar fasciitis:
Heel Pain (Plantar Fasciitis) Heel pain is most often caused by plantar fasciitis, a condition that is sometimes also called heel spur syndrome when a spur is present. Heel pain may also be due to other causes, such as a stress fracture, tendonitis, arthritis, nerve irritation or, rarely, a cyst.
PAIN ON ANKLE
Most likely Sprain:
Ankle pain is often due to an ankle sprain but can also be caused by ankle instability, arthritis, gout, tendonitis, fracture, nerve compression (tarsal tunnel syndrome), infection and poor structural alignment of the leg or foot.
PAIN IN BIG TOE
Most likely Turf Toe:
Turf toe is a sprain of your big toe joint resulting from injury during sports activities. The injury is usually caused by excessive upward bending of your big toe joint. Jamming the toe, and repeatedly pushing off when running or jumping are common causes. Although most common in football players, those who play soccer, basketball, wrestling, gymnastics and dance also are at risk. (more below)
Refrain from activity, standing or walking on the foot in pain. Keep your foot elevated on pillows.
Keep proper fitting shoes by your bedside when you rise. See a Podiatrist in the pain persists more than a week. Ask your Podiatrist about insoles.
Here’s some more information. According to CoxHealth, if If you’re athletic, eventually you’ll have a problem with your foot or ankle.
These are some of the most common foot and ankle problems in athletes.
The injury is called “turf toe” because it’s especially common in athletes who play on artificial turf. The less-supportive, flexible shoes worn on this surface and the foot’s tendency to “stick” to turf are some reasons why artificial turf may be partly to blame.
The signs and symptoms of turf toe can include pain, swelling and limited joint movement. If turf toe iscaused by repetitive actions that cause injury, the signs and symptoms will usually begin slowly and can gradually worsen. Turf toe can also be caused by a direct injury leading to damage of the bone beneath the cartilage. If direct injury is the cause, the signs and symptoms may begin suddenly and get worse over a 24-hour period.
DIAGNOSIS TYPICALLY INCLUDES:
Physical exam of the foot
X-ray to rule out any broken bones.
TREATMENT TYPICALLY INCLUDES:
Compression and elevation
Switching to less-flexible footwear
Surgery is usually only necessary for severe cases .
A stress fracture is a common overuse injury. Usually, a fracture, or broken bone, is caused by an acute event, such as a car crash or a fall. When this is the case, the bone experiences a very high force that causes the fracture. A stress fracture occurs when the forces are much lower, but happen repetitively for a long period of time; these injuries are also known as “fatigue fractures.”
Stress fractures are commonly seen in athletes who run and jump on hard surfaces, such as distance runners, basketball players and ballet dancers. A stress fracture can occur in any bone, but most common in the foot and shin bones.
If you increase your level of activity over a short period of time, a stress fracture is more likely. The increased demand placed on these bones causes them to remodel and become stronger in the areas of higher stress. However, if the response of your bones can’t keep up with the repetitive demands, a stress fracture may result.
Dietary and menstrual irregularities can also contribute to stress fractures, as both contribute to overall bone health. Poor nutrition, anorexia, bulimia or unusual menstruation may place you at a higher risk for these injuries.
DIAGNOSIS TYPICALLY INCLUDES:
Physical examination and medical history
X-ray, which may show a bone attempting to heal around a stress fracture
MRI or bone scan, if the initial diagnosis is unclear.
TREATMENT TYPICALLY INCLUDES:
Resting the injured leg
Icing the injured area
Wearing proper equipment, especially footwear
Increasing activity gradually
One rule of thumb (but not an absolute rule) is: if there is pain, don’t do it. If jogging causes pain where you have a stress fracture, don’t jog. If walking causes pain in that location, use crutches. If pain develops and persists, see you doctor.
Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome
The tarsal tunnel is a space in your foot formed between bones and overlying fibrous tissue. Within the tarsal tunnel lies a nerve called the posterior tibial nerve. The tarsal tunnel is walled on one side by sturdy bones, and on the other by tough fibrous tissue.
When the posterior tibial nerve is pinched in the tarsal tunnel, numbness over the bottom of the foot is common, as is pain, burning and tingling over the base of the foot and heel. Occasionally, tarsal tunnel syndrome is confused with plantar fasciitis, or heel spurs.
It isn’t always possible to pinpoint the cause of tarsal tunnel syndrome, though fractures, bone spurs, ganglions and other benign tumors, muscle impingement, and foot deformities can lead to the condition.
TREATMENT TYPICALLY INCLUDES:
Possible injection of cortisone around the nerve
Using different footwear, possible including orthotics.
If none of these measures helps, then a procedure called a tarsal tunnel release may be necessary. During this procedure, an incision is made to open up the tarsal tunnel and decrease pressure on your posterior tibial nerve. This surgery is very similar to a carpal tunnel release in the wrist.
Achilles Tendonitis or Tendon Tear
Achilles tendonitis is irritation and inflammation of the large tendon in the back of your ankle. It’s a common overuse injury in recreational athletes that causes pain and swelling. This is different from Achilles tendinosis, which is caused by degenerative, microscopic tears within the tendon, and also results in swelling and pain.
Achilles tendonitis is typically caused by a lack of flexibility, over-pronation, recent changes in footwear and recent changes in exercise training schedules. Middle-aged recreational athletes are most susceptible to Achilles tendonitis, due to a loss of flexibility in the tendons as you age.
The main symptom is pain behind the heel, usually in an area two – four centimeters above the location where your tendon attaches to your heel. The most significant pain usually occurs after you’ve been inactive – such as when you first walk in the morning, or when you get up after sitting for a long period of time. Running, jumping and other similar activities may also be painful. Achilles tendonitis pain associated with exercise is most significant when you’re pushing off or jumping.
TREATMENT TYPICALLY INCLUDES:
Icing the affected area
Resting the tendon
Crutches or immobilization of the ankle may be required
Medication, injections or surgery may be needed for more serious cases.
An Achilles tendon tear occurs when the tendon attaching your calf muscle to your heel is completely torn. This injury is common, especially in middle-aged, male, “weekend warriors.”
This injury causes sudden pain behind your ankle. You may hear a ‘pop’ or a ‘snap,’ and will almost always feel as though you’ve been kicked in the heel. If you experience this injury you’ll have difficulty pointing your toes downward, and may have swelling and bruising around the tendon.
About 15 to 20 percent of patients have symptoms of Achilles tendonitis before they experience an Achilles tendon tear, but most patients have no prior history of Achilles problems. More than 75 percent of Achilles tendon tears are associated with playing ball sports, especially basketball or tennis. Other risk factors that are associated with Achilles tendon rupture include cortisone injections into the Achilles tendon, gout and fluoroquinolone antibiotic use.
Your doctor will examine your ankle for continuity of the tendon. A defect in the Achilles tendon can often be felt after a tear. In addition, flexing your calf muscle should cause your foot to point downwards, but if you have a torn Achilles tendon, your foot won’t move. Your doctor may also order an X-ray to check for other potential conditions including ankle fracture or ankle arthritis.
There are surgical and non-surgical treatment options. If you opt for surgery, it’s likely you’ll be able to get back to the sports you love more quickly, and there is probably a smaller chance that you’ll re-tear the tendon. If you opt for a non-surgical approach, you’ll avoid any potential risks associated with surgery, and your long-term results should be similar to patients who do have a surgical procedure. Discuss the pros and cons of each approach with your physician.
If you have a broken foot, seek immediate medical attention. You may experience some of the following signs and symptoms:
Immediate, throbbing pain.
Pain that increases with activity and decreases with rest.
Difficulty in walking or bearing weight.
How to Care for Your Feet
Hiking, running and jumping are some of the enjoyable activities your feet allow you to do.
Feet contain 26 bones and joints that support the body’s total weight and travel over 100,000 miles in the course of an average person’s lifetime.
They allow you to stand, balance, walk, move about and contribute to the alignment of your skeletal system. Some people spend as much as 80 percent of their waking hours on their feet.
The condition of your feet is important to your physical and emotional well-being. Feet need to be kept strong, healthy and comfortable.
They are highly susceptible to injury because of constant use. Every year, people spend millions of dollars on over-the-counter remedies to correct problems that can be prevented with proper foot care.
This information covers common foot problems and proper foot care as well as provides tips for good foot maintenance to help keep your feet in top condition.
Common Foot Problems
About 98 percent of all people are born with normal feet; however, most people eventually suffer some form of a foot disorder by adulthood.
Children may start to show foot defects or damage as early as age two. Most foot problems are caused by improper foot care.
Here are a few of the more common problems and suggestions for treatment.
Athlete’s Foot– a fungus infection of the skin. It may begin with tiny blisters which burst and dry up, causing the skin to flake, crack, itch and burn.
Treatment: Try to keep your feet clean and dry. Wear cotton socks to help absorb moisture and discourage fungal growth. Use an anti-fungus powder or solution. If sores don’t heal after one week, see your doctor.
Bunions – Swollen and tender areas caused by misaligned joints. Usually the big toe is affected and develops an overgrowth of bone.
Treatment: Special cushions worn in the shoe can alleviate some of the pressure caused by bunions. Cortisone injections may help alleviate swelling.
Corn and calluses– Hard, thickened skin which usually causes a painful and burning sensation. Corns form on the top of toes above a center joint or on the soles of your feet. Calluses form on the heel or ball of your foot.
Treatment:Wear properly fitted shoes to reduce the friction and pressure on the feet which causes corns and calluses. Occasionally, surgical removal is necessary.
Foot Cramps – Sudden, very painful cramps in the arch of the foot caused by strained muscles.
Treatment:Stretch the arch muscle and massage it until the cramp ends.
Foot Strain– Dull, pulsating ache in the arch due to fatigue or stress on the foot.
Treatment: Rest your feet, soak them in warm water and massage them. If the pain persists, seek medical attention.
Ingrown Toenail– Corners of the toenail cut into your skin and cause pain – especially when pressure is applied to the toe.
Treatment: Soak your toe in warm water and get early medical treatment to prevent infection. Your doctor may correct the problem surgically.
Onychomycosis (Toenail Fungus)– A fungus infection which grows under the toenail, causing thickening of the toenail.
Treatment:See your doctor. Several types of anti-fungal medications are available.
Some foot problems are signs of more serious trouble. Seek medical attention if your feet suffer from chronic infection, foot or leg cramps, coldness or discoloration.
Caring for Your Feet
Proper foot care also includes foot maintenance. Here are a few things you can do to keep your feet healthy and prevent problems.
• Keep your feet clean and dry — wash your feet, change your socks and air out your shoes to prevent fungus infections.
• Rest and relax your feet every day. Lie back and elevate your feet for a few minutes. Give your feet a soothing massage with your fingers or roll your feet over a golf ball, tennis ball or a rolling pin for a similar effect.
• Exercise your feet to maintain blood circulation. Walking is best. Try taking brisk 30-minute walks five to seven times a week.
• Check your feet regularly. Look for sores, cracked skin and redness. Don’t forget to inspect the areas between your toes.
• Clip your toenails straight across, leaving nails a little longer than the tips of your toes to avoid ingrown toenails.
• If you notice problems with your feet, get it treated right away so it does not get worse.
Tips for Buying Shoes
Many people who shop for shoes put style above comfort, cramming their feet into shoes that are too tight or too high. Ill-fitted shoes can cause many foot problems. Buy shoes that are right for your feet by following these tips:
• Shop for shoes at the end of the day when your feet tend to swell.
• Use the hosiery or socks you plan to wear regularly with the shoes when you try them on.
• Avoid very high heels, platform shoes, clogs and other extreme styles.
• Try on both sides of the shoes and walk around, jump, lean or jog to see how the shoe feels. Don’t buy uncomfortable shoes. They can make you miserable and seriously damage your foot or another part of your body.
• Make sure there is a thumb’s width between the end of your big toe and the tip of the shoe and the ball of your foot fits comfortably in the widest part of the shoe.
• Buy the size that fits your larger foot, if one foot is slightly bigger.
• Look at the shoes while wearing them. If they are being pushed out of shape, they are too tight, Leather and fabric shoes are the most comfortable since they mold to the shape of your feet.
• Check the shoes for good quality, strength and durability. Look for good workmanship such as smooth stitching and finished edges.
• DO NOT buy shoes that you have to “break in.”
• Remember that brand name shoes do not guarantee comfort. If “no name” shoes fit well, buy them.
Especially for children
Use the above guidelines to buy shoes for your child, and:
• Get the appropriate footwear to match your child’s activity.
• Buy shoes that fit your child now; over-sized shoes that the child can grow into can cause foot problems such as blisters.
• Avoid using hand-me downs to save money. Each child’s feet are different and shoes that fit one child may be uncomfortable for another.
Everyone needs to take care of their feet. However, there are certain groups of people who need to take extra good care of their feet because they are likely to develop foot problems. These people include diabetics, the elderly, children and athletes.
Diabetes can cause poor circulation in the feet, making infection a serious danger. Here are some special tips for diabetics:
• Never go barefoot; wear shoes or slippers whenever possible.
• Try not to wear garters, rolled hose, tight girdles, tight or elasticized socks or ace bandages.
• Don’t cross your legs for extended periods of time.
• Wear comfortable shoes and socks.
• Use lotion on your feet to keep the skin soft and supple. Avoid letting your feet get cracked and dry.
• Do not treat corns and calluses yourself. See your doctor.
• Use only lukewarm water on your feet when you wash or soak them.
Do not use hot water, heating pads, iodine or hot water bottles which can cause burns. Also, avoid Epsom salts or alcohol.
As you grow older, your feet are more prone to injury because of poor blood circulation. Older adults can protect their feet by following these suggestions.
• Be faithful about daily foot care.
• Try not to stand for long periods of time or over-exert yourself.
• Avoid over-the-counter remedies for foot ailments. See your doctor.
• Use properly fitted, good-quality shoes.
• Do not expose your feet to extreme temperatures.
Children’s feet develop during the first 18 years of life; this is when abnormalities usually can occur. Give your child the best foot care possible:
• Allow babies to kick freely by leaving their covers loose or off.
• Try not to force your child to walk before he/she is ready.
• Be alert to abnormalities in your child’s walk. If you notice anything odd about the way your child walks or if he/she is bowlegged, pigeon-toed or flat-footed, inform your pediatrician.
• Teach your child about proper foot care.
• Check the fit of your child’s shoes regularly since their feet grow rapidly.
Most sports put a lot of strain on the feet and demand the best performance from them. This makes feet extremely vulnerable to injury. You can prevent infections and injury by doing the following:
• Use shoes appropriate for your activity . Look for leather or fabric shoes which are cushioned and don’t cram your toes.
• Stretch and warm up before you begin any physical activity and take the time to cool down and stretch afterwards.
• Begin slowly and gradually increase the intensity of your activity at a comfortable pace.
• Keep your feet clean and dry; air out your shoes after using them and change your socks daily.
• Deal with injuries immediately. See a doctor for persistent pain or swelling.
• Listen to your body. Stubborn muscle cramps and spasms that can’t be worked out may be a signal for you to rest.
Protect Your Feet on the Job
More than 100,000 foot injuries result each year from accidents at work. These injuries can cause pain, suffering, disability and losses of time on the job and income. Save your feet and toes from disabling injuries by using the basic form of protection — the safety shoe. To get the most out of protective footwear:
• Ask your supervisor about the type of shoes you need for your job.
• Be aware that you can add special features to your shoes for protection against specific hazards.
• For maximum protection, choose your safety shoes carefully. They should protect your feet against any work hazard and be comfortable.
• Wear your protective footwear every time you need it.
Care for your protective footwear properly so it stays in good shape:
• Check them regularly for damage such as cracks or dampness which could lessen their effectiveness.
• Clean and condition them.
• Repair or replace them when necessary. Repairs made should not decrease the protective ability of the shoes.
• Let your supervisor know of any problems with your shoes.
“Triumphs of Experience” by George E. Vaillant published four years ago, is an interesting read on the longest longitudinal study of human development beginning in 1938. The study was led by psychiatrist & Harvard professor, Robert Waldinger.
At a time when many people around the world are living into their tenth decade, the longest longitudinal study of human development ever undertaken offers some welcome news for the new old age: our lives continue to evolve in our later years, and often become more fulfilling than before.
Begun in 1938, the Grant Study of Adult Development charted the physical and emotional health of over 200 men, starting with their undergraduate days.
The now-classic Adaptation to Life reported on the men’s lives up to age 55 and helped us understand adult maturation. Now George Vaillant follows the men into their nineties, documenting for the first time what it is like to flourish far beyond conventional retirement.
Reporting on all aspects of male life, including relationships, politics and religion, coping strategies, and alcohol use (its abuse being by far the greatest disruptor of health and happiness for the study’s subjects), Triumphs of Experience shares a number of surprising findings.
While the study confirms that recovery from a lousy childhood is possible, memories of a happy childhood are a lifelong source of strength.
Physical aging after 80 is determined less by heredity than by habits formed prior to age 50.
The credit for growing old with grace and vitality, it seems, goes more to ourselves than to our stellar genetic makeup.
George E. Vaillant, M.D. determined your relationships are the most important single thing in your well-being.” The author adds, “It’s been gratifying to find support for something as sentimental as love.”
The Harvard Grant Study is the longest scientific study of male development and adjustment to life. It began in 1938 and is still active today, 79 years later.
Listed below are 10 findings:
The most important contributor to joy and success in adult life is love, and the second greatest contributor is the individual’s involuntary coping styles.
What goes right in childhood predicts the future far better than what goes wrong. A warm childhood predicts joy and success in adult life.
The capacity for intimate relationships predicts flourishing in all aspects of men’s lives.
Marriages become happier after age 70.
Alcoholism was the most important factor in divorces.
As men approach old age, their boyhood relationships with their mothers were associated with their effectiveness at work, continuing to work until age 70, and late-life income. Men’s warm relationships with their fathers (but not with mothers) seem to enhance their capacity to play. Good father-son relationships predicted subjective life satisfaction at age 75.
After age 40, IQ does not count for much.
Men’s military rank once discharged from WWII was significantly correlated with a cohesive home atmosphere in childhood and warm relationships with mother and siblings. Body build, parental social class, endurance on a treadmill, and IQ were not associated with attained military rank in any way.
Of the 26 personality traits assessed when the men were in college, the one called Practical, Organized best predicted objective mental health at ages 30 through 50.
Men who live to be 100 years old are usually pretty active at age 95.
The study conducted an in-depth examination of the lives of 268 Harvard University sophomore men (classes of 1942, ‘43, and ‘44) commencing at age 19 and following participants to the end of their lives. Some are still alive. They include blue-collar workers, professors, artists, and a former U.S. president. The purpose of the Study was to “transcend medicine’s usual occupation with pathology by learning something about optimum health and potential, and the conditions that promote them.” The study has uncovered clear predictors of physical and psychological health of men.
Vaillant joined the study as head researcher 45 years ago when he was only 32 years old. As he notes throughout the book, this study is a telescope of sorts: it has gathered valuable insights that suggest the variables that predict success and optimum health of men. The variables studied were diverse and included (but are not limited to) childhood environment, genetics, maturation, work, alcohol use and abuse, coping styles, marriage, and social support.
Researchers also conducted interviews with three generations of relatives. As you can imagine, 75+ years, 268 men, information from their relatives, and thorough objective psychosocial and biomedical health data have generated a vast reservoir of information about the antecedents of optimum health and success for men.
The Gift of Longitudinal Prospective Research
The Grant Study employed a longitudinal prospective design in which participants continue to be followed in real time, information is collected on numerous variables of interest as their lives progress, and outcomes are identified as they occur.
This is unlike retrospective designs in which the outcomes are known before the variables are identified, which can lead to errors in distinguishing between causes and correlations.
In prospective longitudinal research, the outcomes and what led to them are documented throughout the person’s life. Researchers can look at behavior in-the-moment, which makes it easier to see what predicts future behaviors. The dynamic resource of information gives context to the outcomes.
A Glimpse Into the Findings
The entire list of interesting discoveries documented in this book is much too long to encompass in a short review, but I’ll share a few captivating teasers.
The men supplied thorough information about their biomedical and psychosocial health. A few of the biomedical variables were EEG, scrotum length, and blood pressure.
Some aspects of psychosocial health were childhood experiences, first marriages, divorces, second marriages, lost loves, first jobs, active duty in WWII, volunteer work, friends, children, grandchildren, psychological difficulties, being institutionalized for major disorders, and alcoholism, as well as participants’ greatest regrets and joys.
In line with the study’s purpose, the book describes Vaillant’s Decathlon of Flourishing. The Decathlon is a set of 10 accomplishments in late life that covered many different facets of success.
Examples include good subjective and objective physical and mental health at age 80, being in a good marriage between ages 60 and 85, and being close to kids between ages 60 and 75. He wanted to see how and if these accomplishments correlated with three predictor variables:
A loving childhood
These three variables often showed to have very significant associations with late-life success, as researchers processed the goldmine of valuable information, with the most important being: