WTF Life vs. WFH Life

selfcareWTF is when you work in an office each day.  You waste time getting there. You waste time looking a certain way to fit in with the office culture. You waste time making small talk with the same people.  Asking, “How was your weekend?” is getting old. Your feet  hurt. Your back hurts. You are tired. And you are stressed knowing you have to do it all over again the next day.

WFH is an acronym for Work From Home. #WFH began trending on social media after The Corona Virus Task Force issued a Stay At Home or Shelter In Place or Work From Home order to everyone to help avoid its spread.

Some people have always worked remotely so it’s nothing new. Others freaked out.

There’s zero to freak out about. Remain CALM. Working from home is better for you.

I’ve been working remotely for decades, so I can share why it works, and how and why it’s easy it to stay healthier than those in an office. Contrary to popular belief, there are less distractions and you seriously get more done without sacrificing your health or life.

Occasionally, I take on an assignment that requires me to be in a physical office. Those times reinforce they are a colossal waste of money and space, not to mention people’s time. If you can do something using a computer or phone in 2020, why waste a minimum of four hours getting to and from an office. Makes no sense.

Ever wonder why a lot of business leaders boast about deals being made on the golf course? It’s because people are relaxed there. Good luck making a deal on a crowded B-Train from Brooklyn to NYC or any place you are squished like a sardine.

When you work in an office your stress begins upon waking up.  Tired. Again.

insomnia27WTF.  You’re already in a bad mood because you need more sleep, but know you won’t get it. When you set alarm knowing you need to get to a bus, plane, train or bus it places your body immediately goes into fight or flight mode, which right off the bat releases Cortisol, the stress hormone. Your fat cells are already gearing up to preserve them since they think you’re in danger. You are in danger. You’re in danger of illness from chronic stress.

vs. WORK FROM HOME WELLNESS sleeping11WFH. When you set your alarm to wake from home you wake up smiling. There’s no rush. In fact, if you’re wise you start to give Gratitude and stay in bed a little longer giving thanks and praise for blessings. Then, you can stretch. Your body is relaxed already releasing feel good Endorphins and Oxytocin to start your day off healthy. It’s proven fat cells shrink when you’re well-rested. You have time to Meditate. You do. You glance over at your To Do list written the night before knowing you’ll tackle it. No stress.

insomnia45WTF. WTF. You need caffeine and are the walking dead and quite cranky until you get your first cup of coffee. Coffee dehydrates you and has no health benefits.
Don’t believe the hype.

vs.

WFH. You don’t need coffee. You start your day with hot water and lemon, which hydrates you, cleanses and activates your metabolism for the rest of the day.  You wake up alert, not groggy when you need a cup of coffee. That tells you right there which is better for you.

WTF. You bring your gym bag to work because you plan to go to the gym afterwards. By the end of the day all you want is to get home in your pajamas with cookies and a tall glass of milk. Your favorite part of the day will be when you change into your pajamas. Think about that. It’s a real WTF.

vs.

exercise2WFH. You start your day with exercise which gets your brain and body energized to start the work day. Nothing is rushed in the work from home life. You’re in the zone. Your favorite part of the day is when you closed that deal, wrote that script or learned something new.  Your favorite part of the day is no longer the end of it.

sleep2WTF. You will not get enough sleep because by the time you get home, run errands, eat something, try to relax it’s way past your bedtime. This sleep deprivation will be chronic and slowly erode your health. You will begin to feel aches and pains and be moody and quite unpleasant to be around. You will snap at people when you get home, so your relationships will suffer. You just got home from work, so can’t be expected to do anything. You want to be left alone. If you have a spouse or children or pet –who want or need your attention –it’s a recipe for disaster.

vs.

WFH. The sleep you’ve been getting shows in your calm demeanor, and you feel great. No aches or pains and your skin looks better and you’re even keeled. No bad moods. People will comment you look younger than your age. You have time in between calls to toss in laundry and do a bit of cleaning or walk your dog or hug your spouse.

WTF. You are always hungry while at the office. The Gremlins are alive and well because you’re not getting enough sleep and you’re stressed. You feel like there aren’t enough snacks to keep you going until you can get out of that office.

vs.

WFH. You eat healthier because you’ve more time to prepare meals and you have time to make better choices when grocery shopping. You realize you feel better when you eat better.

 

Co-workers laughing together
Co-workers laughing together

WTF. No privacy. You have to listen to every conversation in the office. If someone sneezes the droplets land on your desk. If someone brings in smelly food or wears awful perfume –you’re right there having to soak it all in. It’s disgusting. You’re sick of the small talk, clicks and reminder of why you hated high school. Every day you have to convince yourself it’s not so bad as you watch the clock.

WFH. The Do Not Disturb sign is alive and well. Your office is your sanctuary. You don’t have to listen to co-workers gossiping, talking on the phone or kissing up to the boss. No worries about sexual harassment or any other nonsense. You can focus, get your work done and get results.

So, relax. Working from home is amazing. Make sure you don’t have a micromanager for a boss. You want a leader. Here’s the difference.

A leader lets you all know the vision and goals and then delegates tasks. A leader trusts you to get things done. They get out of the way. They ask you to call, email or text (whatever their preference is) them if you need them. These leaders inspire and motivate people with their positivity. Employees love working for this person and go the extra mile for them. They trust you’ll let them know if you need assistance.

A micromanager is the equivalent of a little kid tugging at your shirt while you’re trying to get work done. These people aren’t qualified for whatever position they are in, so they overcompensate for insecurities by brow beating other people. You can spot them because they send questions like, “Where are we at with …?” or ask if you’ve done what they’ve asked you to do right after asking you to do it. When they say people don’t leave jobs, they leave bosses –this is that boss. They have a negative affect on the morale of employees, productivity and bottom line.

WTF. You can’t always leave your desk when you’re feeling anxious.

WFH. You can go for a walk, take a hot shower, make a cup of green tea, call a friend, stretch, open your refrigerator to grab a snack (stock up on water and Better For You snacks when you work from home and healthy foods you can pick on. I blog a lot about those. You can search past articles. Some of my favorites are Veggie Stix, wheat thins, blueberries, cherries, almonds, walnuts, PeaTos makes Cheetos made from peas —and good ol’ chocolate.

How much money would a company save if they allowed employees to work from home? Can things be done differently?  Why do people really need to be inside a particular office or building? Can what’s being done in there be done remotely and end up costing less? Can the world prioritize health and family time? Things to think about the next two weeks.

Maybe there’s a healthier way long-term and not just for two weeks.

For now, enjoy Working From Home.  Stay healthy!

tea

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Dog Is Man’s Best Friend Post Heart Attack

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According to a study in Circulation, after suffering a heart attack or stroke, a dog really is man’s best friend.

cute dog laying on the bed
Photo by Sart Face on Pexels.com

Cleveland Clinic’s Doctor Luke Laffin did not take part in the research, but says results show owning a dog was associated with better outcomes.

man wearing white suit walking with a dog
Photo by Daria Sannikova on Pexels.com

CG:  Dr. Luke Laffin | Cleveland Clinic

“What they found was that those dog owners actually had a lower risk of having recurrent cardiovascular events.” [:07]

The study looks at more than one-hundred eighty thousand people between the ages of forty and eighty-five, who had previously suffered a hear attack or stroke.

Results show dog owners who lived alone, had a 33% reduced risk of death when compared with people who suffered a heart attack and lived alone without a dog.

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Doctor Laffin says the relationship between dog ownership and heart health makes sense.

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Photo by Lisa Fotios on Pexels.com

Dogs typically have to go for walks, which gets you out the door and moving, which is good for heart health.

Dogs also provide companionship, so it’s possible that dog owners have less loneliness.

Previous studies show depression and loneliness can increase the risk of heart disease.

But if you can’t own a dog –don’t worry.

Doctor Laffin says people can still mimic the benefits of owning one for the sake of their heart health.

pet dog licking face of man
Photo by thevibrantmachine on Pexels.com

CG: Dr. Luke Laffin | Cleveland Clinic

“They can go out for regular physical activity –maybe a walk, jog or even classes like yoga, swimming –those are all great activities that you don’t need a dog to do.” [:10]

Doctor Laffin says getting more physical activity on a regular basis can go a long way towards better heart health and longevity.

 

man walking near body of water
Photo by Yogendra Singh on Pexels.com

Complete results of the study can be found in Circulation.

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Cleveland Clinic News Service

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The Hoodie That Helps You Sleep…Anywhere!

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.

Teenage boy (16-17) using laptop, sitting on bed

“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.
Dēp Slēpwear is purpose-built for deep sleep

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

Display of DepSlepwear near Lord & Taylor

“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

CEO, 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
  • Exercise regularly
  • 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

Dēp Slēpwear is purpose-built for deep sleep

Get Your Hoodie to Help You Sleep at: http://www.depslepwear.com

Related Articles on Sleep:

We’re all getting less sleep, but especially those who need it the most.

A recent study from Ball State University found the prevalence of inadequate sleep, defined as seven hours or less, increased from 30.9% in 2010 to 35.6% in 2018.
  • NHL players embrace sleep as a performance enhancer.

    Sleep could be the secret weapon of NHL players. And for us regular folks, too.
  • This secret to sleeping success comes from within.

    Clearing your mind is an important part of your sleep hygiene practice. But like many things in our daily lives, this is easier said than done.
  • What you should know about insomnia.

    Learn helpful details about insomnia and some strategies on how to effectively deal with it.
  • Control Your Body Temp to Optimize Your Sleep

    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.
  • Permission to Sleep? Granted

    This is the story of the genesis of the Dēp sleep hoodie and Dēp Slēpwear. Writing it brought back some very emotional memories of a time when my f…
  • Why we can’t sleep

    An estimated 164 million Americans struggle with sleep at least once per week. That’s a lot of people having trouble performing one of the most imp…
  • What really happens during sleep?

    The more you know about what happens during sleep, the better you will be able to prepare for and achieve a sustained, restful night’s slumber. Sle…
  • Sleep is more important than diet?

    Shawn Stevenson’s story is impressive and inspiring, and his take on sleep is a must read for anyone who wants to sleep and feel better every day. …
  • Tips for starting your healthy sleep habits

    From setting a schedule to establishing a ritual, the National Sleep Foundation helps us prepare for better sleep with these great tips.
    Dēp Slēpwear is purpose-built for deep sleep

    Get Your Hoodie to Help You Sleep at: http://www.depslepwear.com

    7 Foods That Help You Sleep by Maria Dorfner

    sleep6

    It’s worth repeating.  A good night’s rest is what makes you look AND feel your best.

    Woman Sleeping

    Yet, texting, tweeting, blogging, emailing, facebooking and thinking in daylight can also keep you up at night.

    texting1

    A good night’s sleep isn’t just about being able to wake up when the alarm goes off. It benefits your weight, heart, mind & more.

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    In a 2010 study of women age 50 to 79, there were more deaths in those that got less than 5 hours of sleep a night.

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    So yes, it can affect the length of your life AND quality of life.

    sleeping1

    Sleep also lowers stress, depression, anxiety,  improves attention and learning, keeps your mind sharp and one more thing.

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    Well-rested folks lose more fat.  That’s right. It gives a whole new meaning to Snooze You Lose.

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    All great reasons to stock your refrigerator with these 7 foods that help you sleep soundly. Eat an hour before bedtime:

    oatmeal

    1.  OATMEAL – It promotes insulin production and sleep-inducing chemicals to relax you

    bananas

    2.  SMALL BOWL OF COTTAGE CHEESE WITH SLICED BANANAS – The magnesium and potassium are muscle relaxants

    cherries

    3.  CHERRIES –  Melatonin controls your internal clock and cherries help to release it

    toast

    4.  TOAST – Carb rich foods produce insulin helping you relax

    milk

    5.  WARM MILK – It contains amino acid L-tryptophan and turns into 5-HTP, releasing serotonin. Calcium is good for sleep too

    italian2

    6.  WHOLE WHEAT PASTA – Add fresh veggies & diced chicken with tomato sauce; high protein dish that also releases tryptophan

    yogurt2

    7.  YOGURT SPRINKLED WITH CEREAL – You get the calcium and the carb combo to help bring on the Z-z-z-z’s

    insomnia14

    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.

    insomnia43

    If you are STILL tossing and turning or watching the clock, make sure you are doing the following:

    insomnia42

    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.

    “I love giving gifts that improve people’s health and life. This hoodie falls into that category. When I wore it on my commute from New York City to Pennsylvania, I felt incredibly comfortable for the first time. Normally, when I travel the temperature tends to vary from hot one minute to freezing the next, especially in airplanes. The fabric of this hoodie maintains body temperature. No freezing or sweating.  And I love that cocoon feeling. This is well designed.” -Maria Dorfner, CEO, NewsMD

4 Healthy Ways To Deal With Anxiety

tea1Everyone gets anxiety. It’s when you worry about something in the future, which let’s face it, can be tomorrow. A meeting, an interview, an exam, a commute, the weather…so much to worry about, right?  Wrong.

STOP those thoughts from spiraling because you’ve no control of tomorrow.

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You have THIS moment. Make it a HEALTHY ONE. Repeat that. STAY in the NOW.

Number ONE: Exercise daily. Don’t make excuses like rich people have a personal trainer.

When I was a kid I was influenced by one man I saw on TV. He had nothing, except ONE chair beside him. I was in the first grade when I first saw him.

His name was Jack La Lanne.  He spoke about the benefits of daily exercise. I listened. Kids brains are like sponges. Mine absorbed his message. His message is still true.

It is proven your brain benefits at the 45-minute mark. So, if you’re feeling anxious it may be a signal from your body or brain that you need to move.

Look at all the benefits you get simply from walking.  Best part? Do it anywhere.

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And stay hydrated. Drink water, even when you’re not thirsty. Look at all the benefits of staying hydrated in the photo below.

drink_water

When people tell me they get headaches, the first thing I ask is how much water they drink. Most say none.

Well, that’s why you have a headache. Most tell me they drink coffee, which DE-HYRDRATES. Your brain needs water.

Your doctor in a rush to get his or her next patient will be too quick to give you pills for headaches or migraines before even asking you this simple question.

If you are prone to headaches –you need to check how much water you should be drinking (use search in my blog to find that) daily and do that. Your headaches will probably magically disappear. You’re welcome.

The times you need to visit a Physician is when you’re doing everything right and you’re still experiencing some sort of pain.

But if you’re not doing the basics of self-care, then you need to make a LIFESTYLE change first to find out if that’s what’s causing your pain. We were created to be healthy and feel good, but we need to take care of ourselves. Here’s that photo magnified.

drink_water

Speaking of sweat, if you can get to a SAUNA after you exercise, even better. If not, no worries. Can’t get to a sauna?  Take a long hot shower or hot bubble bath with Epsom salt afterwards. They now make Epson salt with bubbles.

Try Dr. Teal’s. It contains Magnesium, which can only be absorbed through the skin. CVS sells it. It costs about six dollars. Smells nice too. Like lavender. It’s usually near the soap section. A lot of people lack Magnesium.

Remember, the second you start to feel anxious get up, DRINK WATER, STRETCH, BREATHE and MOVE.  Drink water, even when you’re not thirsty. Go for a walk.

photography of a man drinking water
Photo by Thomas Chauke on Pexels.com

WALK. WALK BRISKLY and TAKE DEEP BREATHES (BREATHE IN…AND HOLD FOR 4 SEC. AND breathe out slowly) until the feeling passes. It will.  You can do this anywhere, even in a tiny room. Stand up. STRETCH AND HOLD. Then, walk. Every cell in your brain and body benefits when you do this. Don’t focus on what you were worried about. Instead, repeat the words “You can do it…” while breathing. Yes, you CAN walk off anxiety.

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Number TWO:  Take a good look in your refrigerator and pantry. Toss out the garbage. You don’t need me to tell you what’s garbage. Sugar, soda, junk food, processed foods, white bread, alcohol, cookies, cake, donuts, potato chips.

NOW replace those things with healthy go-to items like alkaline water, almonds, walnuts, blueberries, strawberries, greek yogurt without sugar in lieu of ice-cream or cottage cheese, veggie sticks instead of regular chips, cook veggies in olive oil and garlic, green tea.

Veggie sticks are so yummy I regret blogging about them because like everything else I blog about –it’s suddenly SOLD OUT on store shelves the next day.

I’ve blogged about emotional eating in the past and which foods to reach for when you feel a certain emotion because having different emotions are part of being a human being. Don’t let anyone numb them with pills.

The healthiest thing you can do is try all the good stuff first, because the good stuff works.

The good stuff is what they mean when they say the proof is in the pudding.

 

Proven healthy lifestyles are proven time and time again from centenarians and those of us who are healthy.

If someone gets through their 40’s and 50’s feeling great with natural energy and no prescription medications they are doing something right.

Unfortunately, there are males and females in their 20’s and 30’s who still think how they look, even if it’s through plastic surgery, or extreme dieting, makes them healthy. Health magazines (which I no longer buy) fuel this misinformation by placing these cropped top people on their covers. That’s insecurity, folks.

The good news is what it means to really be healthy is rising above all that noise.

As I predicted decades ago, the world has shifted conscientiousness regarding health. Take a look at this circle. There’s no bikini in it. There are no six or twelve pack abs for men.

HEALTH comes from inside and it doesn’t need external approval.

There is no longer any denying how interconnected the following are:

 

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Every generation goes through the same feelings as the one before them, so it’s time to start educating ourselves on how to LIVE HEALTHY and PREVENT ILLNESS while living in a crazy world.  Even if we live in a healthy bubble and try to shield ourselves from all the craziness –there is no escaping it. Even family members, friends, partner, colleagues, boss, kids, parents, strangers driving near you on the road  can infiltrate your peace. You can’t control that.

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The healthiest advice anyone can give you is DON’T REACT. The calm one is the healthy one.  Did someone less qualified get a position you earned, because they’re related to or know someone? Don’t react. Don’t despair.  Didn’t close a deal when something less deserving did? Same thing. It may make you angry. You’ll want to grab a bag of chips or drown your sorrows in ice cream.

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Keep your pantry or refrigerator stocked with healthy stuff you can grab instead. A bag of cherries, a large bowl of blueberries or those veggie sticks I told you about earlier.  You can snack on a ginormous bowl of these thing and not be left feeling even worse afterwards, as you will with regular chips and junk food.

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Number THREE: Turn off TV. Get out in nature instead or read a good book. I’ve been reading a book a day since I was a kid. I thought everyone did until my younger brother laughed and said I was crazy and people are lucky if they read one a year.

pile of five books
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Fine.  Then, make it one positive book a year.

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Photo by Leah Kelley on Pexels.com

 

Keep that ONE book on your nightstand and reread it when you need inspiration. For non-readers I recommend you start with, “The 7 Laws of Spiritual Success” by Deepak Chopra. I used to give them out as gifts. Little gem of a book. Then, get “The Four Agreements.” These are 2 books you can re-read during stressful times.

bookcover

My book, “Healthy Within” is one every celebrity who writes a Tell All Memoir should read. The reason is I never mention my ex’s name, or what actually happened. No details. Why? That part is not important. That part is no one’s business. What’s important is how to get through anything that at the time feels like a personal or professional tsunami.

That is the HEAL part in HEALthy. Other than that, it’s tabloid toxicity.

When you’re blaming someone else or pointing out all of your ex’s flaws, people reading it are actually cringing.  No one wants someone in they’re in an intimate relationship with to write a kiss and tell, so to speak.  There are two people in a relationship or marriage. Two.

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Advice to Demi.  Let.It.Go

I don’t know who advised her to write this in the first place. It feels like something that should have never been made public. When someone is in the public eye and they reveal they were someone entirely different than we believed them to be –it feels like WE were lied to and betrayed. So, I felt more let down from who I thought Demi Moore was than anything having to do with Ashton. Even when the other person betrays you it’s enough to know it was a betrayal –we don’t need details, thank you.  I would have passed on this book. I’m an avid reader and have zero desire to buy it.

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Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Back to self-care. Fuel your body and brain daily with nutritious foods. What does healthy food look like? Here are a few visuals.

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Photo by Artem Bulbfish on Pexels.com

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And do not forget how important SLEEP is…

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NUMBER FOUR: REST. NAP. SLEEP. Allow your brain and body to shut down and reset itself just like you do when your computer has lost it’s charge or starts acting up.  Shut it down. Anyone who brags about only getting or needing little sleep isn’t healthy. Every cell in your brain and body is created to regenerate and health itself, but you need to sleep and shut it down in order for it to do what it does naturally. It’s called Beauty Sleep for a reason.

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I’ve blogged about foods that help you sleep. If you’re a late-nigh snacker keep bananas, cottage cheese, blueberries and a bag of cherries in your pantry, along with decaf organic tea. Turn off all electronics 2 hours before a set time. Keep the room you sleep in a little chilly. Wear eye shades. Take that hot bath with lavender and you will crash naturally.

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If you are on any type of anti-anxiety or depression medication it needs to be under the supervision of a physician, who should ONLY prescribe TEMPORARY low-dose if you are in crisis mode, say after the death of a loved one or other tragedy. It needs to be in combination with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, fancy word for Talk Therapy, to taper you off prescribed medication.

person holding white medication tablet
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

It’s not dealing with what is causing your anxiety or depression. What’s causing it is change and stress from it. That change can come from work, finances, seasons, relationships, age, moving, parenthood –anything in life.

That’s why it’s natural and you need to LEARN healthy coping mechanisms for LIFE. Having a trusted confidante in life to go through ups and downs also helps keep your brain and body in top form.

Healthy relationships are a wonderful buffer against daily stressors in life. It’s having someone in your life to talk to, bounce ideas off of and be there during good times and bad. Healthy relationships proven to be a positive  constant in a sea of change. Positive because healthy relationships release all the feel good chemicals and hormones in your body and brain. Love releases oxytocin. When you have LOVE and commitment everything is less stressful.

So what do you do when you don’t have a trusted hand to hold during it all?

man and woman looking at earch other
Photo by Jasmine Wallace Carter on Pexels.com

Revert to the Four Tips solo, because HEALTHY attracts HEALTHY. Be your best you in mind, body and spirit.  Work on healing any past hurts. Put them in the past. Forgive. Move on. YOU need to BE that which you want to attract. Think about that. You want a healthy, intelligent, kind, independent, fun, supportive, honest, loving, faithful, committed, loyal, trustworthy partner?

BE that.

Photo by Rosie Ann on Pexels.com

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When your friends and the people you surround yourself with are healthy –you’ll learn healthy coping mechanisms, even through observing their habits. HealthDay

HealthyHalloween

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Post note: I love tea and have blogged about the benefits of tea and my favorites in the past. USA Today and Washington Post now says tea bags contain plastic and that it is toxic. I cut right to the bottom to find out which brands contain plastic bags because not all of them do. Here are brands to avoid.

Mostly, it’s those cute triangle bags. Apparently, it looks like they are made out of paper, but it’s plastic that holds them together. They are cute. Recently, a restaurant served me on that looked was so cute. I commented asking how it was held together Now we know.

Avoid brands in RED

“So which tea bags contain plastic?

Brands that use plastic sealants include Tetley, Twinings’ ‘heat-sealed’ and ‘string and tag’ ranges, Yorkshire Tea and some Aldi tea bags.

Co-Op and PG Tips have all switched to 100% compostable bags.

Abel & Cole and Teapigs using plant-based SoilOn and Clipper makes a plastic-free teabag made from bananas, while some Tetley and Twinings ranges are biodegradable.

But if you want to be absolutely sure your tea is plastic free, loose leaves are the best way to go.”       [Source: USA Today, September 2019]

It’s not all tea and it’s not all brands, so get past their hype to the facts. Then, get back to:

Remember, when you have a bad day, week, month or year –don’t call it a bad life. Think of it as a bad season, like leaves falling off a branch in Fall. What do you need for leaves to grow back?  Oxygen, water, nourishment, sunshine. Nourish yourself every day and your leaves will return one day at a time. You got this!

Stay healthy!

blog contact: maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

 

Stress Forms New Fat Cells In Your Body

Mary Teruel is a senior author and professor of chemical and systems biology at Stanford University, conducted a study published last April in CELL METABOLISM.

“When glucocorticoids are constantly high, as is the case when we’re chronically stressed out, it can boost the chances for a certain type of cell to morph into fat cells, the study found. And that could bump up our weight. So basically it’s not about food intake. It’s about timing.”

Tercel says, “While mice and people are certainly different, both are greatly influenced by circadian rhythms and both produce glucocorticoids in response to stress. Although the research was done in the lab, it’s likely human body would react in a similar fashion to the mice to continuous high levels of glucocorticoids.”

Tercel says the increase in fat is likely related to the fact under normal circumstances glucocorticoids wax and wane with our circadian clocks.  So our bodies are designed to ignore short-term fluctuations of these hormones.

But everything is thrown out of whack when levels stay high — as they will if a person’s stress doesn’t diminish, even after the day’s work is done.

“So maybe it’s OK to get stressed during the day, but not at night,” Teruel said.

The implication is that if we could find ways to modulate our stress in the evenings and at night, it might affect our weight.

That makes sense to Dr. Anthony Heaney, an endocrinologist and an associate professor of medicine and neurosurgery at the University of California, Los Angeles, School of Medicine.

“It would suggest that any method people can use to beat stress could be of benefit,” Heaney said. “I think the challenge is for people who are stressed often. I don’t think jumping into a 30-minute yoga or Pilates class will be enough to address that.”

We recommend MINDFULNESS before jumping into any class, running out to the gym or any exercise after work. That’s actually keeping your stress level high.

What you need to do is de-compress first.

If you’ve had a stressful day, sat all day at the office or had an awful commute –close your eyes for 20 minutes when you get home and focus on your breathing.

RELAX.  BREATHE.  This study reinforces why SLEEP is so important to maintaining a healthy weight. If you only sleep 4, 5 or 6 hours a night, you are sending a message to your fat cells to stay ON.

Every cell in your body and brain needs to rest and replenish itself. You throw yourself out of wack when you deprive your body of this. The damage may not show up immediately, but it will in the long-run.

CHRONIC STRESS can be alleviated by consistent sleep.  If you have to chose between exercise or sleep when you’re going through a stressful time, pick consistent sleep and you will get through it.  You can get your daily exercise through walking after you’ve allowed your mind to calm down.

Burning the candle at both ends will do just that –leave you burned out. Allow yourself a REST and RESET, so your fat cells stay turned off.

You may not be able to control the amount of stress in. your life, but you can make a note to turn everything OFF at a certain time at night so you deactivate your glucocorticoids.

HOW TO COPE WITH DAILY STRESS

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1. Find the optimistic viewpoint in a negative situation.

One of the simplest but most effective ways to build a more positive outlook has in my experience been to ask more helpful questions as often as possible.

When I am in what seems like a negative situation – maybe I have been lazy, made a mistake, failed or stumbled in some kind of way – then I like to ask myself questions like:

  • What is one thing that is positive or good about this situation?
  • What is one opportunity within this situation?

Doing so is a whole lot better than what I used to do in such situations. Because back then I usually asked myself how much I sucked and how things could get even worse now.

I do however not always use these questions right away.

Oftentimes I need a bit of time to process the thoughts and feelings that arise in situation before I can do that.

Trying to force optimistic thinking when you are still in an emotional turmoil or a bit shocked usually don’t work that well.

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2. Cultivate and live in a positive environment.

Who you choose to spend your time with and the input you get from further away like the TV, the internet and magazines will have a huge effect on your outlook.

To be able to stay positive it is essential to have influences in your life that support you and lift you up instead of dragging you down.

So carefully consider what you let into your mind.

You can for example ask yourself:

  • Who are the 3 most negative people I spend time with?
  • What are the 3 of most negative sources of information I spend time on?

Consider the answers. Then think about how you can start spending less time with one of those people or information sources this week.

And how you can spend more of the time you have now freed up with one of the most positive sources or people in your life.

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3. Go slowly.

I have found that when I go too fast, when I try to think, talk, eat and move around in my world really quickly then things don’t go too well.

Stress builds up. Negative thoughts about just about anything start to well up and I feel like my own personal power decreases.

But if I slow down just for a few minutes – even if I have to force it by walking, talking and eating slower – then my mind and body calms down too. It becomes easier to think things through clearly again and easier to find the optimistic and constructive perspective.

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4. Don’t make a mountain out of a molehill.

It’s very easy to lose perspective, especially if you are stressed and you are going too fast.

And so a molehill can become a big and terrifying mountain in your mind.

A simple three step way to handle these situations so they don’t get out of hand is to:

  • Say stop. In your mind, shout “STOP!” or “NOPE, we are not going down that path again!” as soon as thoughts of this kind starts to spin in your head.

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  • Breathe. After you have disrupted the thoughts by shouting stop sit down and just be still. Breathe with your belly and focus on just your in-breaths and out-breaths for a minute or two to calm your mind and body down.
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  • Refocus. Question your mountain building thoughts by talking to someone close to you and getting a more grounded perspective on the situation by just venting or by getting his or her input.
  • Or simply ask yourself this to widen your perspective and to chill out: Will this matter in 5 years? Or even 5 weeks?

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5. Don’t let vague fears hold you back from doing what you want.

Sometimes you may want to take a chance in life. Start a new habit that feels unfamiliar, your own business on the side or ask someone out for a date.

A common trap when you want to do one of those things is to get lost in vague fears and about what could happen if you actually took action.

And so the mind runs wild fueled by fear and it creates nightmare scenarios and plenty of self-doubt.

I know. I have been there many times.

So I have learned to ask myself this: honestly, what is the worst that could happen?

When I have figured that out I also spend a bit of time on trying to figure out what I could do if that that often pretty unlikely thing happens.

I have over the years discovered that the worst thing that could realistically happen is usually not as scary as the nightmare my fear-fueled mind could produce.

Finding clarity in this way doesn’t take much time or effort and it can help you to avoid much mind made suffering. And help you to get going, step outside of your comfort zone and take that chance.

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6. Add value and positivity to someone else’s life.

What you send out you tend to get back from the world and the people in it.

Not from everyone. And not every time.

But what you send out there matters a whole lot.

What you give them and how you treat them is what you’ll get back. And they way you treat others and how you think of them also tend to have a big effect on how you treat and think about yourself.

So give value and spread the positivity by for example:

  • Helping out. Lend a hand when moving. Give a friend a ride in your car. If he or she needs information then help out by checking it up on Google or asking a friend of yours.
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Co-workers laughing together
  • Just listening. Sometimes people don’t want any direct help. They just want someone to be there fully and listening as they vent for a little while.alzheimers7

 

  • Boosting the mood. Smile. Give hugs when appropriate. Play uplifting music when hanging out with a friend or suggest an inspiring movie for your movie night. Or encourage when someone has had a bad day or are going through a tough time.

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7. Exercise regularly and eat and sleep well.

This is very obvious of course.

But I know the big, big impact a good night’s sleep or good workout can have when my thoughts are pessimistic and I have a lot of tensions on the inside.

And I know how much simpler it is to think clearly and optimistically when my belly is not empty.

So I highly recommend being careful about these basic habits that may sound boring. Because they do have a huge effect either way depending on how you manage them.

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8. Learn to take criticism in a healthy way.

One of the most common fears is the fear of criticism. It can hold people back from doing what they want in life.

Because having negativity flowing out of someone’s mouth or email and it being about you can hurt. And being rejected can sting quite a bit.

But if you want to take action on what you deep down want then criticism is pretty much unavoidable. So the key is learning to handle it in a healthier way.

By doing so your fear of it will lessen and it will hurt less if you do get criticized.

I usually use four steps when I get some criticism. Maybe they can help you out too:

Step 1: Don’t reply right away.

When you are angry, upset or riled up then is time to calm down a bit before you reply. Take at least a couple of deep breaths or a little time to process the message before you respond.

Step 2: Really listen to the criticism.

Try to remain open and level-headed and figure out how this message can help you.

Ask yourself: Is there one thing I can learn from this criticism? Is there something here that I may not want to hear but could help me?

Step 3: Remember the criticism isn’t always about you.

Some criticism is helpful. Some is simply attacks or someone lashing out because they are having bad day, year or job.

To lessen the sting of such criticism – often really angry or overly critical in an unconstructive way – I try to be understanding. I think to myself that this person might not be feeling so good at the moment.

Step 4: Reply or let go.

No matter the content of for example an email I try to keep my reply level-headed and kind. I may add a question or two to get more specific feedback that is helpful.

And if they don’t reply or I have simply gotten a nasty attack then it is time to delete it and to let that situation go.

9. If something still gets under your skin then know what to do.

Sometimes something can still get under your skin and hurt you. Even if you use the steps above.

Two things that have helped me with that challenge are:

  • Let it out. Just letting that issue out into the light talking it over with someone close can be very helpful to see it for what it actually is. And to find a healthier perspective on the situation.

 

  • Improve your self-esteem. I have found over the years that with a stronger self-esteem things drag me down less and they don’t ruin my day as much anymore. Negativity from others  bounces off me much more often instead. If you want to practical help with this then have a look at my 12-week, step-by-step Self-Esteem Course.

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10. Start your day in a positive way.

How you start your day usually sets the tone for the rest of your day.

So be careful about how you spend your mornings.

If you get going at full speed, lost in future troubles in your mind then the stress, perceived loss of power of over your life and negative thoughts will ramp up quickly.

If you on the other hand start your day by moving slowly, by having an uplifting conversation with your family or friend or you spend some time with reading or listening to inspiring and helpful articles or podcasts over breakfast or during your bus ride to work then that can make a big difference for how your whole day will go.

HealthDay

11. Mindfully move through your day.

When you spend your time in the present moment then it becomes so much easier to access positive emotions and to stay practical about what you can actually do about something in your life.

When you get lost in the past or future like so many of us have spent a lot of time on doing then worries very easily become bigger. And failures and mistakes from the past being replayed over and over in your mind drag you down into pessimism.

By moving slowly through your morning and hopefully through much of the rest of your day it becomes easier to mindfully stay in the moment you are in.

Another simple way to reconnect with the moment you are in and to put your full attention there again is to focus just on what is going on around you right now for a minute or two with all your senses. See it. Hear it. Smell it. Feel the sun, rain or cold wind on your skin.

It might sound like a small and insignificant thing to do. But this simplifying reconnection with the moment can have a very positive effect on the rest of your day.

-Hendrik Edberg

 

http://www.positivityblog.com

 

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Blog contact: maria.dorfner@yahoo.com

 

Find Out What Ages Your Brain Prematurely

Late Night Health interviews Dr. Daniel Amen

BRAIN HEALTH

Named the most popular psychiatrist in America by the Washington Post

Find out what helps and hurts brains and what causes your brain to prematurely age. The good news is even if you haven’t taken care of your brain up to now, you can still reverse the damage.

Dr. Amen tells you what you need to do FIRST.

Since 50% of people age 85+ will be diagnosed with some form of dementia, this is a topic EVERYONE needs to care about, including teenagers.

According to the CDC, suicide is the second leading cause of death among teenagers. Find out why it’s critical to pay attention to brains first.

Dr. Amen talks to Mark Alyn about what has a negative impact on your kid’s brain AND adult brains, and what has a positive impact.

Teenage boy (16-17) using laptop, sitting on bed

Children and teens are vulnerable because they’re experiencing increased stress  when their brains aren’t fully developed and won’t be until their mid-to-late 20s. Find out the number one thing kids can do to improve their brain’s health.

Dr. Amen says ignoring environment, nutrition, physical, spiritual and mental health can result in behavior problems, depression and anxiety.

Dr. Amen also answers questions about playing football and your brain, the use of marijuana or CBD and your brain.

We’ve heard a lot of opinions on this topic. Find out what the brain expert says based on hundreds of thousands of brain scans. He has seen first-hand what helps or harms your brain.

Dr. Amen has scanned over 160,000 brains and what he’s learned is something everyone needs to know, especially kids, who currently face increased on and offline pressure.

And test performance requirements, and competitiveness to get accepted into colleges.

Mark Alyn, Host of Late Night Health  talks to Dr. Amen about how to boost your brain power and prevent it from aging faster than you do.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Listen to Interview here:

Change Your Brain – Change Your Grades – Brain Health For All Ages!

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ABOUT DR. DANIEL AMEN:

Dr. Daniel Amen co-authored more than 70 professional articles, 7 scientific book chapters and 40-plus books, including the No. 1 New York Times bestsellers, “The Daniel Plan” and “Change Your Brain, Change Your Life.”

“Change Your Brain, Change Your Grades,” includes editorial contributions from his teenage daughter, Chloe Amen, and niece, Alizé Castellanos.

Late Night Health host, Mark Alyn and Dr. Amen share funny stories about raising daughters and what it’s like to have a psychiatrist Dad.

Known for his work in treating the most complex psychiatric issues through eight Amen Clinics around the country that hold the world’s largest database of functional brain scans on behavior.

With the release of his 40th book, “Change Your Brain, Change Your Grades,” Dr. Daniel Amen provides students, parents and teachers simple steps to improve brain health for better performance in school and in life

 

Try Dr. Amen’s Free Brain Health Assessment Quiz: https://brainhealthassessment.com/

Top 10 Safe Tea Brands

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Great news. There are still safe pesticide-free tea brands out there, and my favorite, Yogi tea is on there.

 

Top 10 Safe Tea Brands by Tammy Catania

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Testing Teas for Pesticides

According to a 2014 report done by CBC Marketplace pesticides in some tea exceed the allowable limit.

CBC had 10 different teas tested by an accredited lab, the lab used the same testing method as the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Half of the teas tested contained pesticide residues above the allowable limits in Canada. As per the test results eight of the 10 brands tested contained multiple chemicals, with one brand containing residues of 22 different pesticides. (1)

But what actually is the allowable pesticide residue in tea? As per the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, it is 0.1ppm. (2)

Other Countries Are Banning These Ingredients

Two of the chemicals that they found are actually in the process of being banned in other countries.

One of the chemicals found was Endosulfan.

This chemical is one of the most toxic pesticides on the market today. It is responsible for many fatal pesticide poisoning incidents around the world.

Endosulfan is also a xenoestrogen—a synthetic substance that imitates or enhances the effect of estrogens—and it can act as an endocrine disruptor, causing reproductive and developmental damage in both animals and humans. (3)

The second chemical they found was Monocrotophos. It is acutely toxic to birds and humans. Being also a persistent organic pollutant, it has been banned in the U.S. and many other countries (4)

Top brands of tea that CBC Marketplace had tested

  • Uncle Lee’s Legends of China – Green tea and Jasmine green tea
  • No Name- Black tea
  • King Cole- Orange pekoe
  • Signal- Orange pekoe two cups
  • Twinlings- Earl grey
  • Lipton- Pure green tea and Yellow label black tea
  • Red Rose – Orange pekoe
  • Tetley- Pure green tea

Out of all the teas that were tested, the only one that came back clean was the Red Rose Pekoe. (Here is the full test report from CBC marketplaces lab.)

Did you know that pesticides have been linked to a wide range of human health hazards, ranging from short-term impacts such as headaches and nausea to chronic impacts like cancer, reproductive harm, and endocrine disruption.

Some of the Acute dangers – such as nerve, skin, and eye irritation and damage, headaches, dizziness, nausea, fatigue, and systemic poisoning – can sometimes be dramatic, and even occasionally fatal. (5)

Some of the symptoms of Mild Poisoning or Early Symptoms of Acute Poisoning are headache, fatigue, weakness, dizziness, restlessness, nervousness, perspiration, nausea, diarrhea, loss of appetite, loss of weight, thirst, moodiness, soreness in joints, skin irritation, eye irritation, irritation of the nose and throat.

 

Another great place to get amazingly healthy, pesticide tea is from Mountain Rose Herbs.

How to Know if Your Tea Is Safe

  1. Look for the certified organic label on the package so you know that your tea was cultivated without harmful chemicals. You can find information on Organic certification here http://www.pro-cert.org/en/tea
  2. You can grow your own herbs and make your own tea.garden
  3. Research the brands you plan on purchasing. The Environmental Working group has many teas and their ingredient and toxic levels listed. Also, they have a great App that you can use when out at a store shopping.tea7
  4. Do be careful of buying tea that is grown in China or India, even if they state they are organic. Here is some information on the pesticide use in India, and here is some information on the pesticide use in China .

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Thank you registered holistic dietician, Tammy Catania. Stay healthy!

 

Today Is National Walking Day!

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THE FIRST WEDNESDAY IN THE MONTH OF APRIL IS DESIGNATED AS NATIONAL WALKING DAY.

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MY FAVORITE NON-COMPETITIVE SPORT!  BUT ACCORDING TO THE C-D-C, EIGHTY PERCENT OF AMERICANS DO NOT GET THE RECOMMENDED TWO AND A HALF HOURS OF MODERATE-INTENSITY AEROBIC EXERCISE EACH WEEK.

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ERICA STEPTEAU IS A HEALTH COACH AT CLEVELAND CLINIC. SHE SAYS THAT STARTING A WALKING ROUTINE IS THE FIRST STEP TOWARDS GETTING YOUR BODY MORE ACTIVE.

CG: Erica Stepteau, MPH/Cleveland Clinic “Get up every five to ten minutes. Put a timer on your phone and see that those are ways that can actually help you get up more instead of just sitting all day.”[00:08]

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STEPTEAU SAYS WE TEND TO UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF WALKING.

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SHE SAYS IT DOESN’T TAKE A GYM MEMBERSHIP OR A PERSONAL TRAINER TO GET YOURSELF UP AND MOVING.

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WALKING IS SOMETHING THAT YOU CAN FIT INTO YOUR DAY ALMOST ANYWHERE. AND IT NOT ONLY HELPS YOUR HEALTH, BUT CAN ALSO BOOST YOUR MOOD.

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STEPTEAU RECOMMENDS WALKING DURING YOUR LUNCH BREAK, TAKING THE STAIRS, AND WHEN YOU GET HOME, GET YOUR PETS OUT AND MOVING WITH YOU.

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SHE ALSO SAID THAT SPRING IS A GREAT TIME TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THE WEATHER CHANGING TO START WALKING OUTDOORS.

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IF BRISK WALKING IS YOUR GOAL, SHE SAYS YOU WANT TO WORK YOUR WAY UP TO THE POINT WHERE IT’S A LITTLE CHALLENGING TO TALK WHILE WALKING.

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AND LIKE ANY EXERCISE PLAN, STEPTEAU SAYS YOU’LL HAVE BETTER RESULTS IF YOU CAN FIND A BUDDY TO WALK WITH.

CG: Erica Stepteau/Cleveland Clinic “It can help you push you beyond your own limits because that person may be at a different level than you; higher or lower, depending; but it helps you either be the encouragement that that person needs to step it up, or it could be the encouragement for you to step it up for yourself.”[00:14]

IF GETTING YOURSELF MOVING IS A REAL CHALLENGE, STEPTEAU SAYS THAT IT’S IMPORTANT NOT TO BEAT YOURSELF UP ABOUT IT AND TO JUST START SLOW.

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SHE SAYS IF YOU’VE BEEN INACTIVE FOR A LONG PERIOD OF TIME, IT’S A GOOD IDEA TO CHECK WITH YOUR DOCTOR BEFORE STARTING A NEW EXERCISE ROUTINE.

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[MEDIA SEE Pathfire#:10752 FOR VT]

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HAPPY NATIONAL WALKING DAY!  Stay healthy.  -Maria Dorfner

http://www.clevelandclinic.org

 

 

Digital Strategy & Value-Based Care

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Digital Strategy and the Shift to Value-Based Care
by Guest Author, Terence Maytin

The U.S. healthcare system is rapidly transitioning from fee-for-service to value- based care as part of massive and ongoing industry-wide transformation. Digital strategy is evolving to meet new challenges, help drive disruptive innovation, and better engage a large, growing audience of connected health consumers.

Already complex and fragmented, the healthcare sector will look very different over the coming years. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has spurred rapid innovation and disruptive change across the entire ecosystem in the quest for better quality care across the entire population at lower per capita cost. Payers are accelerating rollout of value- based payment models with providers, and the shift to pay for performance arrangements with Pharma companies is increasing as well.

Moving an entire industry from volume-oriented reimbursement requires aggressive, innovative approaches to move from traditional siloed care to collaborative models, with system-wide provider coordination, patient engagement and proactive interventions. Technology will continue to act as a critical change agent, enabling large- scale improvements in process efficiency, automation, connectivity, collaboration, interoperability and advanced analytics.

With the convergence of healthcare and digital technology, industry stakeholders are reassessing their digital strategies to help tackle new business opportunities and challenges. Just a few years ago, digital health efforts largely focused either on acquisition marketing, community aggregation, or customer service portals designed to redirect volume from higher cost channels. However amid the current environment, digital offers much greater and far-reaching impact potential than ever before.

Digital investments are ramping up to support the shift from volume to value, particularly in the areas of care coordination, patient engagement, post-discharge monitoring, measurement, and behavior change. Since 2014, venture capital has provided $10B in new funding for clinical tools, analytics, consumer engagement, mHealth, telemedicine, wearables, and business services. In 2016, firms have raised a record $1.8B.

Two important trends drive home the relevance and importance of having a comprehensive, well articulated digital strategy: the rise of consumerism and nearly ubiquitous web/mobile adoption. Across all age groups, large audiences not only already consume digital services but also expect high quality, omni-channel experiences. In order to deliver on this promise, companies must design optimized, journey-based experiences that balance customer needs, preferences, and behaviors against desired business objectives and outcomes. Companies must embrace the concept of “putting the customer first” throughout the organization and across functions (e.g. strategy, product development, marketing, operations and technology). This also must be accompanied by an insights-driven, decision-making approach.

Essentially, digital strategy will be most effective if viewed as an organizational imperative. Armed with a holistic vision and comprehensive strategy, stakeholders will be better able to leverage and capitalize on digital’s full disruptive potential to help solve some of the most pressing challenges facing healthcare today.

Healthcare Industry Transformation

The transformation of healthcare is multidimensional and complicated. Disruptive innovation, technology and consumer trends are upending traditional business models. The competitive landscape is getting ever more crowded with new entrants while at the same time, insurer and provider consolidation is accelerating.

Consumers are motivated with more skin in the game and greater information access than ever before. Payment models are shifting from volume to value, and payers, providers, pharma, and medtech will need to collaborate and coordinate to a much larger degree within a more integrated care delivery system. These factors along with intense focus on quality improvement and evidence-based outcomes have big implications for the entire care delivery continuum…

Click here to read full article

TerenceMartin  Guest Author, Terence Maytin is VP/Director | Head of Digital Strategy and Delivery | Digital Health Business Analytics and Technology  and  Strategic Advisor for First Growth VC.

Stay healthy!

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Maria Dorfner is the founder of NewsMD and Healthy  Within Network. This is her blog.
She can be reached at maria.dorfner@yahoo.com
Be sure to click red FOLLOW on upper right of this blog to be notified of new posts.
On Twitter:  Maria_Dorfner

 

 

 

 

7 Keys to Happiness

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Happiness and Health are like fraternal twins.

They are not identical, but they’re born at the same time.

They are interchangeable. If you feel healthy you feel happy.

If you feel happy, you’re more likely to feel healthy.

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So what’s the key to happiness?  I can tell you that if you think it’s a destination as in, “I will be happy when I retire and move to Florida” or “I’ll be happy when I’m on vacation next week” –you will not be happy.

KEY #1:  HAPPINESS IS WHERE YOU ARE RIGHT NOW.  If you can be happy living in one room, you’ll be happy living in twenty.  If you’re not happy in one room, that will not change once the novelty of the twenty rooms wears off.

KEY #2:  FIND HUMOR IN TENSE SITUATIONS. Whenever you can’t control a situation, control how you react to it, which is essentially to not react to it. Respond with calmness, kindness, understanding, compassion or humor whenever you can.

KEY #3:  DON’T BE TENSE UNLESS YOUR HOUSE IS ON FIRE.   Even then, it’s the calm person more likely to get out safe.

KEY 4:  HAVE AT LEAST 1 FRIEND YOU TRUST 10o%.

This isn’t someone who lies, betrays, cheats, gossips or ignores. This is the non-judgmental son you can text: I tossed the garbage out in my robe and now I’m locked out at 3 a.m. friend who laughs first and then helps you figure out what to do next. Ok, maybe you need 3 friends like this.

KEY 5:  SURROUND YOURSELF WITH POSITIVE PEOPLE.  Refer back to #4. These are people who know life is rarely a straight line. The journey is filled with hills and valleys. Positive people genuinely find the best in every situation and see the best in everyone. They are slow to judge others and they don’t gossip because the other person isn’t there to present their side, and if you’re over the age of nine you know there is another side.

KEY #6:  MAKE HEALTHY CHOICES.   Buy healthy, stock up on healthy food and water, walk daily, drink lots of water, get enough sleep and fresh air and you will feel better.  Replace bad comfort foods with healthier ones.  Remember perfect is the evil of good. Educate yourself on what is nutritious. There is a search button on this blog where you can type in nutrition or food to pull up prior blogs on that.

KEY7:   KNOW THAT NO ONE FEELS HAPPY ALL THE TIME.  Accept the ebb and flow as natural. You’re human and will feel different emotions each day.  You manage your state of mind by managing all the above, so that your dominant state is one of calmness and contentment.  Think of a pleasant thought right now.  Smile to yourself.  Hold that thought. Your brain just registered that you are happy.   You’re the only one who owns your Happiness keys.  Use all your senses to pick up on things to be happy and grateful for: birds chirping, quiet, music, time to be reading this blog, eyesight to be reading this.

Tony Robbins says, “Change your EXPECTATIONS for yourself or others to APPRECIATION.”      Love that.

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